From my brief haunting of this forum, it seems to me that different people have very different definitions of what "creationism" is, and, unable to
find a thread that offered people a chance to define it (although, as I am human, there is always room for human error in all of my searches), I
decided to create one.
So, without stereotyping the people that you believe would subscribe to creationism as you see it, or those who would not, what do you mean when
you talk about creationism?
Just to get things started:
Creationism, to me, is defined as those who believe that the earth and everything upon it was willed into existence, by a deity or deities, in a
shorter time than one would expect a planet to form without such divine intervention.
A creationist, in my view, does not believe that organisms currently biologically separate (i.e. incapable of hybridisation) share common ancestry,
but rather, each group was created separately by afore-mentioned deity/deities.
Such a creationist often either cites some abiotic origin for fossils, or holds an atypical view of coexistence of extant and extinct species -
sometimes that humans and dinosaurs (in the forms typical prior to the cretaceous extinctions, rather than modern avian members of the dinosauria)
coexisted prior to some recent (as in within the time scale of written history) extinction event, or that non-human animals all existed
simultaneously, only for several major groups to become extinct before the rise of humanity.
A final point defines my view of the creationist, who holds beliefs - as is his right - but is incapable of recognising that beliefs are not
appropriate for discussion in the context of science, except when presenting ones own interpretation of evidence, with the qualification that said
interpretation is subjective.
I would make a distinction between this viewpoint, which I describe as creationist, that fundamentally relies on a god of the gaps (with the gaps kept
open by force when science threatens to close them), and believers in what I would call a Guiding Deity, where the god (or gods) is not apparent or
necessary to natural processes, but such processes occur - and have occurred - because he/she/it/they intend them to. (A god that needs no gap).
DISCLAIMER: The descriptions of various theist viewpoints within this thread should not be taken to represent the views of the poster who
is, as always, firmly atop the fence.
edit on 8/1/2011 by TheWill because: I really am human, honest