Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Brites

Atheists like to refer to themselves as the Brights...obviously because they are "smarter" than anyone who believes in God. Since Darwinism is the principle pillar in the atheistic worldview, showing the massive flaws in Darwinism reveals the emptiness and futility of atheism.

I've stumbled across a new website which mocks their self-appointed title and reveals the hypocrisy of many of their Darwinian claims. It's written from the perspective of the Darwinists in a tongue-in-cheek fashion. Check out the headline archive for barrels of laughs.

After you've read a few, come back here and comment on your favorite article.

UPDATE: Has anyone seen the new Dr. Dick video? Dawkins actually thought it was pro-atheism until his friends informed him that he was being mocked.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

What is the creationism vs. Darwinism debate so important to you? You devote a lot of your energy to it. Is there more to it than just a personal desire to appear to be right?

Historicus said...

That's a great question. As a Christian, my desire is for people to come to know Jesus as Savior. In our culture, Darwinism has become a huge stumbling block for people since it seeks to explain life without divine intervention.

If by reading my blog entries, people begin to question the Darwinian paradigm and seek the Truth, then the time I've spent putting this together has been effectively used.

Have you got any specific questions regarding the creation/Darwinism debate?

Anonymous said...

No. I think the debate is not relevant. If one lives out one's life in Longview, Texas, the days come and go, the seasons change, one goes to work every day and rear his children... the truth or falsehood Darwinism, plate tectonics, general relativity or any other such theory does not have much bearing on the lives of most people.

Anyway scientific theories are just constructs which may or may not have utility. General relativity for example is certainly not the Truth but can be useful for example in planning trajectories of spacecraft. Darwinism may have some utility in modelling the psychology and behavior of humans or animals.

That said, perhaps you regularly confront people who dogmatically argue that Darwinism is the Truth. That would certainly be wrong-headed. It is only a theory and just as physicists will one day develop better theories to supplant general relativity, so too will newer theories eventually supplant Darwinism.

In other words, dogmatically defending Darwinism just gives fodder to a pointless liberal vs. conservative sort of argument, which may bring some private satisfaction if you think you gave the otherside a sort of verbal "smackdown," but does not really advance human understanding in any useful way.

Historicus said...

You have brought up a good point that Darwinism itself is not particularly relevant in one's daily life.

However, Darwinism is the key pillar in the materialist* worldview. And one's worldview is the principle "lens" through which one sees life. All of your decisions about priorities, beliefs, and actions come from your worldview. So, if your worldview is propped up by Darwinism, you will tend to have a certain set of priorities, beliefs, and actions. Your priorities, beliefs, and actions most definitely affect your daily life.

So, if I can help convince someone that the principle pillar of their worldview is false and direct them towards a new worldview, it will affect their priorities, beliefs, and actions. If they choose the Biblical worldview, and allow Jesus to be Lord of their life, it will even affect their eternity.

Thanks for the reminder of the futility of attacking Darwinism, as it will be replaced with some different materialist “religion” when the rabid Darwinian defenders are no longer intolerantly indoctrinating today’s culture. I should put up a blog entry on this soon.

FYI – Creationists believe in plate tectonics, general relativity, and even (gasp) natural selection/random mutation. But NS and RM are not creative forces.

*materialism is the belief that there is nothing in the universe but physical matter. Everything can be explained in terms of the interactions of matter.

Anonymous said...

life in longview may be dull compared to new york or las vegas, but the end is the same for all - death & eternity. if evolution is true, life is an accident, there is no right/wrong or heaven/hell;

if creation is true, life has purpose; the Creator God defines right/wrong, and His Bible defines a Heaven to gain and a Hell to shun.
a person's worldview now becomes very relevant to eternity

Historicus said...

Anon2,

But a person's worldview affects more than just eternity. It affects life here today and tomorrow...eveen in Longview.

Your worldview affects how valuable you view human life. If life is a cosmic accident, then human life is not that important and can be aborted, subjected, enslaved, tortured, and euthanized.

The creation/evolution debate is very important to how you ultimately view life.

Anonymous said...

If the argument though is just over competing theories, then it will necessarily come to a stalemate because theories are inherently not Truth. Neither can win.

It sounds like the fundamental problem you face is in convincing people to make the leap of faith necessary to acknowledge the existence of God. Would it not be better to appeal to people's sense of rational utility?

An interesting take on this question is Pascal's Wager. This works as follows:

There are two possibilities; either God exists, or God does not exist. People have two rational choices, with no effective middle ground: either one can choose to believe that God exists, and then act accordingly, or one can choose to believe that God does not exist, and act freely. In other words, one can either wager for God, or one can wager against God.

If one wagers for God, and God does exist, then eternal life, salvation, etc. are the result. This is an infinite utility. If one wagers for God, but God does not exist, there is some finite cost for this misjudgment, but it is finite (the upper bound for this cost is one life). On the other hand, if one wagers against God, but God does exist, then there is a serious cost: missing eternal life, salvation, etc. Some claim such a loss is infinite (in this case, negatively infinite), but Pascal surmised that the cost was finite. It does not affect the analysis, so long as it is a cost. Finally, if one wagers against God, and God does indeed not exist, this may yield a benefit—but it is a finite one (one cannot gain more than one free, libertine, mortal life).

The four by four decision matrix then looks as follows, where f1, f2, and f3 are un-quantified but finite utilities:

| God exists | God does NOT exist
Wager for God | ∞ | f1
Wager against God | f2 | f3

The probability that God exists is unknown; it is therefore assigned a probability p. The expected utilities for wagering for and against God are then easily calculated:
E(for God) = ∞(p) + f1(1-p) = ∞
E(against God) = f2(p) + f3(1-p) = finite

The rational bettor will clearly wager for God.

That is, either God exists or He does not exist; So long as we are not certain the probability of God’s existence (p) is exactly 0 (i.e., we are not baptized atheists), rationality requires an individual to wager for God (i.e., it is only rational to maximize expected utility; infinite expected utility is much greater than finite expected utility, so wagering for God is the only rational choice).

Historicus said...

Anon,

There are many ways to try to persuade someone of the validity of the Bible and following Jesus. Pascal’s Wager is a great evangelistic tool, and I hope (with your prompting) to add a pertinent post one of these days.

Just because the current creation/evolution debate seems to be at a stalemate, does not mean that one or the other is not true. Just because it is an origins theory does not mean that creation is not true. In much the same way that a court would operate; even if a criminal cannot be shown conclusively (scientifically/repeatably) to have committed a crime, does not mean he is not guilty. It does not mean that his guilt is true even if he cannot be convicted by evidence. In much the same way, creation may not be able to be repeated in a lab today, but it does not limit the theory from being the Truth.

NOTE: For all the anonymous posters, it helps to differentiate your comments if you will at least put your pseudonym. You don't have to put your email address or website, or even your real name, but help a brutha' out.

Anonymous said...

But how can you really get at the Truth?

The verdict of a court proceeding is nothing more than the subjective determination of the persons sitting on the jury (or the judge in cases where the judge acts as factfinder). In the past, people judged guilt or innocence by such quaint methods as seeing whether a defendant would float or sink. Juries as finders of fact are little better than this but they are the form of tribulation that we find acceptable in this day and age.

The factfinding of a court does not make the determination Truth. It is just a decision that citizens choose to abide by. Even if 10 eyewitnesses agree under oath that a defendant did the crime we can never know whether that is the Truth with certainty.

Thus, even assuming creationism is the Truth, and assuming you could recreate creationism in a lab, its Truth would still be disputable by rational thinkers. The only way for this not to be the case would be for God to come down from Heaven and make a proclamation in the matter.

Thinking in terms of efficiency, I wonder much utility there is in dogmatically arguing for the Truth of creationism. You goal is to convince people of God's grace, but I suspect some people find it off-putting for you to argue tenaciously in favor of something you could never objectively prove. How successful has this been? How many people have you won over vs. how many have you simply alienated?

If you approach someone by saying you are the holder of Truth and everything the other person believes is utter tosh, you will be less successful over time than if you say, "your views have utility but are just a theory that can never be proved with certainty. Humanity can never be certain of anything it discovers objectively but wagering on God is not as irrational as you may think, i.e., Pascal's Wager."

Historicus said...

>>But how can you really get at the Truth?

We first have to agree that there is an absolute Truth to get to. Then we have to agree on how to define Truth. The American Heritage Dictionary defines truth as “Conformity to fact or actuality.” So, just because an event cannot be proven in the lab, does not disqualify it from having really happened in the past.

>>The fact finding of a court does not make the determination Truth.

This is exactly my point. Just because someone can or cannot be shown to have committed a crime, does not prove the Truth of the circumstance. The judgment of the court works on the evidence. Although it has recently become clouded and misguided by the huge amounts of money, the intent of the courts was to find the truth of a situation. Just because the courts cannot always find the truth does not mean truth does not exist, but the courts allow us to have a practical means to resolve problems because we believe that the truth can ultimately be found. If we as a people did not have an inherent belief that the truth were able to be found, we could not have a court system at all (even though the court system in the USA has in many ways not lived up to its lofty purpose.)

>>The only way for this not to be the case would be for God to come down from Heaven and make a proclamation in the matter.

Isn’t that what Jesus did when HE came to earth 2000 years ago? Jesus spoke the words, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the life. No man comes to the Father except by me.” He also quoted Genesis when HE answered His critics in Matthew "Haven't you read," he replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,'.

>>Thinking in terms of efficiency…

People come to Christ in different ways and with different experiences. Not everyone comes to their realization of a need for a savior with the most rational method. The people that I have talked to find the Darwinism is a powerful obstacle. The public school system in America indoctrinates the students with the materialistic mindset, and creationists are mocked as ignorant. Some of my interest in researching the evidence for creationism is to educate and encourage Christians. Christians sometimes struggle with the constant battering that the media, “authoritative scientists”, and public perception rain down on the Truth of scripture and on Christianity in general. While much of my purpose is evangelism, a significant goal for my blog/teaching is to encourage Christians that the Bible is reliable and trustworthy. We can see evidence of the truth of Genesis if our perspective is not clouded by the virulent Darwinistic worldview.

>>How successful has this been?

I’ve never been a fire and brimstone teacher. I’ve not shied away from standing firm in the face of a dispute for what the “evidence” says, but I think if I present the creationist side of the argument, at least some seeds can be planted. If someone’s mind is closed to seeing the evidence around us, then no amount of persuasion will convince them. While I try to be confidently humble in expressing my side of a debate, I’ve not always been perfect in the presentation. I’m not perfect…just forgiven.

Anonymous said...

I think that's a bit circular:

You want people to believe the Bible is the Truth. You believe convincing people that Creationism is the Truth will lead to believe in the Truth of the Bible. But to support the Truth of Creationism, you quote from the Bible, which is what we are originally trying to establish the Truth of.

I think the only place where I disagree with you is on the nature of Truth. I think the Truth is out there but it is beyond the reach of human ability to find it. But I don't think Truth can be boiled down to a one-line dictionary definition. For millenia, much ink has been spilled discussing the very nature of Truth.

I think that is why, at the end, religion is a matter of faith. We have to have faith in the religious Truths that we cling to. Much better to convince people of God's grace in the world than to sell a competing scientific theory.

Sorry I'm not trying to wind you up or anything.

Historicus said...

It’s hardly circular reasoning for me to answer your comment, “The only way for this not to be the case would be for God to come down from Heaven and make a proclamation in the matter” with the fact that Jesus had something to say about the issue. There is plenty of extra-Biblical evidence that Jesus lived and many of his words.

The Bible is regarded as the most reliable historical document in history. You can see Josh McDowell’s book, Evidence That Demands a Verdict, or www.carm.org for more info.

I did not build my entire case for supporting creationism as true by quoting only from the Bible; I was only answering your “proclamation” comment with a few verses. There is plenty of scientifically observable evidence that supports a biblically cohesive view of creation.

You make a good point that I was too brief in trying to represent truth with a simple dictionary definition. And we may have to disagree on the reachability of Truth.

Yes, all religion (Christianity, Islam, Darwinism…) requires a certain amount of faith. One of the main questions to ask is which religion/worldview best answers the important questions of life most realistically and most closely aligned with Truth.

>>Much better to convince people of God’s grace in the world than to sell a competing scientific theory.

The creation/Genesis story answers the question of why we need God’s grace in a fallen world. It gives a more compelling answer to the question of why we need God’s grace than just, “God is good, and we need His grace.”

Jon Saboe said...

The Brites is a hilarious site!

My favorite article is the (apparent) serious paper on the Evolution of Jocularity Article and .pdf HERE which demonstrates how jokes can be improved over time with nothing but random mutation and natural selection.

As to the importance of Evolution vs. Creation to Christians:

Either we (humans) are special and made in the image of a Creator, or we are accidental sacks of chemicals that have no purpose, reason, or justification for existence.

From a phenomenological standpoint, reality can not be ascertained outside of external information. Since the Bible claims to contain such extra-universal information about how the universe began and why we were made, it is something that ought to be examined.

Upon examination, we find a collection of writings that give us information about our Creator coming to earth to restore creation to its intended perfection. (It got screwed up by rebellious humans choosing to run the planet without HIS help.)

The first half of these writings tell us to watch for this Creator, and tell us his birth place, birth year, parentage, occupation, life activities, plus specific detail about his birth, his betrayal, and manner of death (Psalm 22 contains a description of crucifixion centuries before it was invented by the Phoenicians.) These writings were written over a 3-4 thousand year period by Kings, slaves, farmers, shepherds, and judges. And they all agree.

The second half of these writings tell is of a man who lived and just happened to fulfill all of these predictions (over 300!), including how he died, and how he came back from the dead. (Yeah, I know… but if he WAS the Creator, it’s not such a difficult feat.)

http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/prophchr.html

So, if evolution is true, then we are all hostage to a meaningless universe and slaves to entropy and determinism. And according to the BRITES, we should just toughen up and accept this fact.

This also means that all death, sorrow, cruelty and evil are normal, illusory, and without hope of ever changing.

But If Evolution is false, and we were designed by a Creator, then (unfortunately) we are accountable to Him and He has a right to do what He wishes with His creation. (Just like we have the right to do what we wish with OUR creations.)

Fortunately, what He wishes to do with us is fellowship. Commune. Share His creation and demonstrate His nature.

He does this by letting us know that any barriers between Him and us have been removed at the Cross (that moment in time when all of our imperfections and screw-ups were placed on Jesus). Once we accept this payment, the crime of rebellion that separated mankind from God is removed, and no longer is there any barrier between us and Him.

Then He is free to restore our souls, repair our damaged emotions, and give us the inner life, peace, and vitality that we were originally designed for. (Sorry for using the word ‘design’.)

Anyway, that’s why Christians make such a big deal about Creation and Evolution.

Now it doesn’t mean that you are going to hell if you believe in Evolution. (That is also something that was paid for on the Cross.) It just means that there is a better explanation for suffering, death, loneliness, and are desire for significance that just saying that all is meaningless, and individuality (free-will) is just an illusion.

Hopefully this will shed a little light on why those obnoxious Christians keep harping about creation.

Historicus said...

Well said Jon. This is how I wish I could write.

It's just what I would have said...if I could write that well.