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Judge Declares DOMA Unconstitutional

Hits: 21765 | Rating: (2.9) | Category: News & Politics | Added by: madest
Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Next >   Jump to: Bottom    Last Post
green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Monday, July 12, 2010 8:33:02 PM
I am awed by nature as well, but I don't attribute it to an intelligent creator. The universe did not come about in a "random" manner; it follows causality. It has specific rules for how it functions and every action sets off a reaction that follows these rules. Everything that happened in the universe up until life evolved happened the way it had to happen. Whether sapient beings have the ability to actually choose their actions, or whether they are subject to the same determinism is a matter still up for debate among philosophers, though current science would suggest that we don't truly have choice.

green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Monday, July 12, 2010 8:32:53 PM
iluvsporks: I am aware of all of those functions, but the difference is that those organs don't have the same function in other animals. The tailbone typically is much longer, comprising an actual tail. The appendix is used to store bacteria that digest cellulose in herbivorous animals. The tonsils simply don't function as well as the once did, being susceptible to infection and generally not functioning particularly well.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 10:11:02 PM
Cut off, as usual.

The universe is spectacular and staggering and genuinely awesome. The more I learn about it, the more awesome I know it is. We, too, are awesome. We are made of stars and we think.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 10:09:01 PM
A little more on science and awe...the man in this video is a scientist. Neil Degrasse Tyson - he's an astrophysicist.

When I look up at the universe, I feel large

He isn't unusual in that attitude. It's normal for scientists, especially those involved in astrophysics and astronomy. Nor is it recent - it goes back to the very beginnings of science and continues throughout it.

Trying to explain how the universe works doesn't diminish awe at its existence, nor does knowing the scale of it diminish humanity.

Stephen Hawking on humanity:

[quote">We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the universe. That makes us something very special.[/quote">

The universe is spectacular and staggering and genuinely awesome. The more I learn about it, the more a

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 9:14:56 PM
tailbones aren't useless. they are a connection point for several muscles that aid in well, defecation, and they also help us sit properly and remain balanced.


Which in no way requires them to be a vestigal tail.

But it goes much further than that. Human embryos have tails. Some humans have tails. They're usually removed by surgery, but the point is that humans still have the genetic coding for tails.

It's not an isolated example, either. Whales still have the genetic coding for legs. Horses still have the genetic coding for toes. Many animals carry genetic coding from species they evolved from. It's just not used any more.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 9:04:39 PM
and that's where i find the disconnect with people who trust science but hate religion because i look at the world and am in absolute awe


So do they, in many cases. Certainly scientists feel awe at the world and the universe, although most of them don't actually hate religion.

You have a disconnect with your own image of them, which isn't the same thing as them.

and everything i've observed has pointed me to thinking there is something bigger than myself...


Obviously there is - the rest of reality. That doesn't in any way imply, let alone require, any gods, let alone the one you choose to believe in.

not that this is all random.


Who says it has to be random? If it was all random, science couldn't exist. Scientists don't claim the universe is all random.

iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 9:04:19 PM
@angilion and yaekazura

i'm absolutely exhausted and i need some more time (and coffee) to read through what you've brought through the table and process it. there's a reason i'm an artist and not a scientist... this stuff makes my brain hurt! i will formulate a reply for tomorrow after i get back from work... so don't expect any more from me this evening. and just a general thanks for the intriguing conversation and the civil debate. i like having my brain stretched.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:57:13 PM
If you want an example of rapid evolution in action in humans, I suggest CCR5-delta32. It's an *inherited* mutation that is far more common in people whose ancestors lived in a specific part of the world ~700 years ago. That appears to be the result of a very extreme force driving human evolution - The Death. The mutation occurs naturally in a tiny number of people, but that evolutionary force strongly selected for it. That occured in less than two years.

iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:53:54 PM
@green_batman continued

your appeal to my faith does work because i agree that learning about the world helps me to learn about God... and that's where i find the disconnect with people who trust science but hate religion because i look at the world and am in absolute awe... and everything i've observed has pointed me to thinking there is something bigger than myself... not that this is all random.


iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:51:38 PM
@green_batman

tailbones aren't useless. they are a connection point for several muscles that aid in well, defecation, and they also help us sit properly and remain balanced. i don't find those abilities to be useless, and well... i quite like being able to sit up and not soil myself regularly.

as for the appendix, a recent study found that the appendix is likely a safe house in our bodies for helpful bacteria that aid in digestion and fighting off germs. the appendix can be removed with little consequence since we (mostly) live in developed countries that have good sanitation and health services to keep our immune systems in order. its similar to the gall bladder, which serves the purpose of breaking down fats but can be easily gone without.

similarly, tonsils produce lymphocytes which aid in fighting off infection, and while they don't always do their job to handle the new things that civilized life has exposed us to, they are particularly good at handling &

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:45:33 PM
Contradictions and untrue statements in the Christian bible...here's a convenient link to a few dozen.

Cud is not dung, and many others

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:37:30 PM
as for selective breeding, i think there is a huge difference between selective breeding and evolution. selective breeding is a matter of simple genetics that is caused by human intervention in the natural world. evolution is a self-driven process that happens simply with time.


The process is the same. Evolution is not self-driven - it is strongly affected by external forces. Essentially, evolution favours changes that make a species better suited to those forces. In nature, those forces are environmental change, the introduction of new predators (though that can also be caused by humans), etc. In selective breeding, those forces are human choices. Selective breeding is evolution directed by humans.

If evolution was impossible, selective breeding wouldn't work because the animals or plants would be unchanging.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:29:09 PM
i have pretty severe allergies and we adopted a stray cat. after about two years of living with it on medicine, i was able to slowly stop taking it because i was building up an immunity... adaptation, but when i have kids, i am not creating a new species of humans with no allergies to cats.


There's a key difference - the adaptations I referred to are inherited. Your counter-argument only applies to adaptations that are not inherited, which aren't evolution anyway.

I may be wrong, but you also seem to be using the "new species" counter-argument. That fails right at the start, because evolution does not require the immediate production of new species. With a species as long-lived as humans, that would be expected to take many millenia. It's also surprisingly hard to define a species anyway, so it would be hard to tell if a new homo species had evolved.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 8:21:06 PM
if you believe that we all started as primordial ooze that grew more and more complex over time, you have to wonder where the ooze came from, if you follow? out of curiosity, what is your opinion on abiogenesis?


The default position of science - I don't know. It seems very likely that it happened, as the alternative is that life always existed in this universe, but there isn't enough weight of evidence for any one of the hypotheses concerning how it happened for me to think that one is most likely to be true.

as for viruses becoming immune to antibiotics and such, i consider that to me adaptation, not evolution.


I don't consider there to be a difference between an adaptation that confers significant change in response to evolutionary pressure and evolution. That's a fairly decent working definition of what evolution is.

Yaezakura
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 431 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 7:55:39 PM
@iluvsporks: Adaptation on a species-wide level is evolution. The species is now different than it used to be. The difference may be small, but when you add up all the very small differences that happen over the course of millions and millions of years, you have quite drastic changes. In just 10,000 years, we have gone from wolves to chihuahuas. Imagine what a million would do. And while yes, humans did direct the change from wolf to ankle-biter, we merely accelerated what was already possible.

Adaptations do lead to new species. We have observed the creation of new species, both in the lab and in the field. For a good example, you should research "ring species". These are species that form rings in their habitats that eventually come to overlap. A can breed with B, B can breed with C, but A cannot breed with C. A and C are too different. They are different species. But a living transitional stage between A and C exists in B, which is able to breed with both.

iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 6:07:41 PM
@ angilion continued

as for selective breeding, i think there is a huge difference between selective breeding and evolution. selective breeding is a matter of simple genetics that is caused by human intervention in the natural world. evolution is a self-driven process that happens simply with time. the lizards didn't sit down and cross breed themselves based on who had feather-like traits to create birds. and if humans, say, the highest level on the evolutionary chain, breed based on traits, we aren't going to create a new extra-human species... if so we would have by now considering historical cross breeding families. in fact, breeding with similar characteristics and genes usually results in defects that cause that person lesser health and therefore, survival of the fittest picks them out.

iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 6:01:12 PM
@angilion continued

and you make a good point. it makes me wonder, while they are separate, how much you can take one without the other? if you believe that we all started as primordial ooze that grew more and more complex over time, you have to wonder where the ooze came from, if you follow? out of curiosity, what is your opinion on abiogenesis?

as for viruses becoming immune to antibiotics and such, i consider that to me adaptation, not evolution. i have pretty severe allergies and we adopted a stray cat. after about two years of living with it on medicine, i was able to slowly stop taking it because i was building up an immunity... adaptation, but when i have kids, i am not creating a new species of humans with no allergies to cats. animals do things to make themselves prosper, but i don't believe that adaptations result in new species.

as for the bible verses, give me your top ten offending verses and i'll see what i can do?


iluvsporks
Female, 13-17, Western US
 51 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 5:55:25 PM
@ angilion

"You're spelling it wrong, though.

It's an odd name and many people spell it wrong in various ways. No biggy."

haha. the irony. i apologize. i need new glasses. glad there's no offense taken.

and you make a good point about the history of the church. it's unfortunate and certainly a large blemish on the records. and its true that sects of the church have been more than happy to kill each other over petty differences. and while that doesn't happen so much anymore, it certainly does in the more metaphorical sense. the arguments within the church between congregations have always bothered me. i've had people get very mad at me because i believe that jesus died for everyone and they don't and it hasn't been fun. so perhaps they're right and i'm going to hell anyways!

as for using the less supported abiogenesis argument to undermine the evidence for evolution, i can see how creationist do often lump those together.

green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 1:34:10 PM
Correction: I think it was Aquinas that expressed that argument. I studied Augustine and Aquinas around the same time, so I sometimes get the two mixed up.

green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 1:23:16 PM
You are expressing Pascal's Wager, when you say that you have a higher likelihood of personal gain (in this case, a good afterlife) by being Christian. The flaw in Pascal's Wager is that it pays no mind to the idea of truth. I'll use Saint Agustine's philosophy to appeal to your Christian sensibilities. If God created the world, the nature of physical reality is an expression of him. Learning about science and nature makes one closer to God because one is using the rational mind given by God to it's fullest potential to learn about God. By ignoring truth, you are turning your back on the talents given to you by God and the knowledge of God that can be gained by studying nature. Therefore, Pascal's Wager, which does not take truth into account, is a rather hollow way to come to worship God.

green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 1:17:26 PM
cont:

able to fly.

And doing good for the sake of others is still selfish. It makes you feel good. There is some motive that you have, even if you aren't consciously aware of it, that does good for you while you do good for others. And humans are not inherently bad. Just because we're selfish doesn't mean we're going to go around killing each other at random. It is evolutionarily more sensible to do good for others at least part of the time. We are social animals and we are more successful when we have the help of others. Lending help to others means that you can expect to receive help in the future.

green_batman
Female, 18-29, Eastern US
 730 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 1:14:38 PM
iluvsporks: Complex organisms often have redundant DNA and vestigial organs. If we were created as is by God, why do we have tail bones, tonsils, and appendixes? These things are easily explained by the fact that DNA does not go away during the evolutionary process, so we will often retain extra organs that are simply smaller and non-functional. We evolved from some form of primate that had a tail, but our species found less use for a tail and so it got smaller, but never actually disappeared, because DNA doesn't just fall out of the genome. Humans, whales, bats, and many other mammals have a five digit structure where their "hands" would be. Whale fins have no need of five digits, but they have them because, again, the DNA doesn't just fall out of the genome. They adapted what they had to their new environment. Bats would probably fly more gracefully if they were bird-shaped. But, because they evolved from an animal with five digits, they had to adapt what they had to be abl

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 12:29:59 PM
Also on the issue of evolution - there are a multitude of examples of major changes being made by humans using selective breeding of animals and plants. That is evolution in action, with humans selecting which evolutionary pressures to impose. Your life probably depends on it, as it's been crucial to farming.

Evolution is fact, simple as that.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 12:19:11 PM
Incidentally, do you want a list of verses in which the Christian bible contradicts itself and/or reality? You provide good counter-arguments for the half a dozen previously mentioned, but I'm confident about finding over a hundred.

Angilion
Male, 40-49, Europe
 11726 Posts
Sunday, July 11, 2010 12:13:25 PM
Bah, an unclear typo a couple of posts down. 'Maby' should be 'Many'.

There are even examples of variants of Christianity being entirely destroyed by other variants of Christianity, all believers killed as heretics. Then there's the internal war in the very early years of Christianity, probably as soon as Jesus died.

My point being that many Christians have been convinced that Christians from other sects are heretics. Heretics, of course, are even worse than unbelievers. So another possibility is that you'll be treated as a heretic in the afterlife because you chose a wrong version of Christianity.

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