AE BB DB Explorer

Search Terms (separate with commas, no spaces):

form_srcid: ScaryFacts

form_srcid: ScaryFacts

form_cmd: view_author

Your IP address is

View Author detected.

view author posts with search matches:

Retrieve source record and display it.

Your IP address is


form_srcid: ScaryFacts

q: SELECT AUTHOR, MEMBER_NAME, IP_ADDR, POST_DATE, TOPIC_ID, t1.FORUM_ID, POST, POST_ID, FORUM_VIEW_THREADS from ib_forum_posts AS t1 LEFT JOIN (ib_member_profiles AS t2, ib_forum_info AS t3) ON (t1.forum_id = t3.forum_id AND = t2.member_id) WHERE MEMBER_NAME like 'ScaryFacts%' and forum_view_threads LIKE '*' ORDER BY POST_DATE ASC


DB_result: Resource id #7

Date: 2006/08/22 11:18:55, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
First post from a 2-week lurker...

I just wanted to thank all of you who have taken the time to post facts and *real* information for lurkers like me.

I am not a scientist, but I stumbled here looking for a discussion of ID v. Evo a couple weeks ago and have devoured the AFDave thread.  Even if Dave is not convinced by facts and refuses to support his "hypothesis", I have benefited greatly from the info.

I came to this with only the most basic understanding of evolution with a science background that ended with AP Physics, Bio and Chem as a high school senior.  Your consistently informative posts and linked references have given me the beginnings I needed.

One of these days I may even have learned enough to post something beneficial myself!

Keep up the good work.


Date: 2006/08/24 02:30:15, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Let me see if I follow this thinking…

Hitler thought Darwinism was a good idea.  Hitler was evil.  Therefore Darwinism must be evil.

OK, let’s apply this to something else Hitler thought was a good idea.

Hitler thought everyone having their own car was a good idea. Hitler was evil.  Therefore individual auto ownership is evil.

Date: 2006/08/24 03:15:43, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Darwin put God out of business?

The operative word here is "business."  The key to raising money and maintaining power in the non-profit world of the church and church related groups is to get a simple to understand, sound-bite-able, crisis de jour.

People will give attention and money when they believe their sky is falling.  Or is threatened to fall.  Putting out a mailer to your supporters saying “We’re doing great.  Every obstacle to the advance of Christianity has been overcome.  You’ve got nothing to worry about.”  Doesn’t get much attention.

But making Darwin your enemy, telling everyone about the “vast scientific* conspiracy” out to destroy our faith, gets headlines, cash and power.

This is simply a form of marketing.  It is used by almost every group or company imaginable.  In the case of so-called Christians I find it reprehensible because at its core is a lie.

A good, headline producing faux-threat can bring in tons of cash for 3-6 months.

So these groups sit around looking for the “next big threat” to cash in on.  Terry Schiavo was a huge cash cow and that’s all she meant to these vampires.   The tape made it look like she was alive—though her autopsy proved otherwise—it was a simple case to make.

Evolution is complicated to explain.  It has some implications most people don’t like.   But the fallacious arguments against evolution are simple to understand.  They get air time.  They raise money.  They comfort the masses.

“Evolution is just a theory”
“Evolution makes us no more than an accident”
“Evolution is polluting the minds of our children”
“It’s not YOUR fault your children are immoral, it’s evolution—it taught them they are just animals so they act like animals.”

And, oh yes:  “Darwin would Put God out of Business”

Is a god who depends on lies to maintain his position really God?  “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.”

(*substitute any of the following:  left-wing, media, liberal, right-wing, fundamentalist, gay, straight, etc.)

Date: 2006/08/24 07:46:35, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Name that film for a pilsner!

Kung Pow: Enter the Fist

Date: 2006/08/24 07:59:59, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
If I may be so bold to make a suggestion?

From now on all replies to AFDave could be taken from dialog from Kung Pow.  Here are some examples:

Master Betty:  "I spanked you as a baby, and I'll spank you now BITCH."


Master Tang: "Please forgive Wimp Lo. He is an idiot."


Ling: "You think losing is winning."


Master Tang: "Pay no attention to Wimp Lo, we purposely trained him wrong... as a joke."

AFDave forgive me for piling on, but when you look at the quotes from KP:ETF compared to this thread the similarities are just, um, striking.

Kung Pow Quotes

Date: 2006/08/25 11:42:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I suspect that the probability of finding an intelligent, educated, sane, honest person who didn't believe in the ToE, is the same as the probability of finding a rabbit skeleton in Cambrian shales.

The key word there is "educated."

Studying evolution has never been a priority for me.  I had a business to run, kids to raise, etc.  When Behe came out with "Black Box" I didn't read it, I read Christianity Today's review.

Like most people--religious or not--I enjoy the warm, fuzzy feeling of being told my pre-conceived notions are, in fact, correct and that someone with a PhD agrees with lil ol me.

While I am working on educating myself--inquiring minds want to know--I suspect I represent a large number of US Christians who are plenty open minded, but who believe (assume?) the people behind AiG and the ID movement really do know what they are talking about.

We believe they are sincere and have intellectual integrity.

After a couple weeks of investigation it appears to me that many of these people sold their integrity (soul?) for a few pieces of silver.  Or power.  Or so “Daddy” God will love them.

When I came here and saw the title of AFDave’s “UPDATED” thread, I was overjoyed.  Finally I could see a rational discussion of the science behind evolution and see where creationists and Darwinists disagreed and why.  As I read page after page it became apparent there is a total lack of intellectual integrity in almost everyone prominent in the ID movement.

At first I found it amusing, now I just think it’s sad.

(Forgive the whining...)

Date: 2006/08/25 11:52:41, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Reading Panda's Thumb will also slowly erode any respect you have for ID/Creationists.

Too late.  The respect meter is on "E".

Date: 2006/08/25 12:52:30, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Can I ask why you originally thought that AIG et al., had authority on the issues under discussion?

True confessions, huh?

As a younger man I was much less cynical.  I truly believed people who presented themselves as Christians could be trusted to tell you the truth

Because of this belief, when I heard many of the creationist claims I took them at face value without checking them out.  I wasn’t sure the creationists (like Ham) were correct about everything, I figured the minor differences I would find if I DID investigate would be “debatable” and that the creationists claims were substantially supported by the science.

Over the years I heard rumblings about evolution being “fact” rather than “theory,” but I never investigated.

When Behe came out with DBB, the sound-bite made sense.  “Some structures, like the eye, are more than the sum of their parts.  They are irreducibly complex.  Therefore, God must be the designer.”

It fit with my pre-conceived beliefs, it calmed my fears.  The warm milk of unconscious incompetence gave me many good nights’s sleep.

There is more in my background that likely prejudiced me in favor of blindly accepting rather than critically investigating, but I was fat and happy.

I suspect most people—even those with an education in areas other than science—are likely to share many of my same problems.  The motivation to investigate evolution is just not there.  What good can come of it?  What happens if you find out everything you’ve been taught is a lie?

It’s like the matrix—do you really want to know the truth?

Date: 2006/08/25 14:22:20, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Stevestory:  Consider what is regularly taught in churches across the world--specifically in fundy churches...

"If someone tells you you're an idiot rejoice, for great is your reward in heaven."

When you point out the fallacious arguments made by a fundy he is conditioned to respond with the calm pride that he is suffering with Christ.

Yeah, right.

Date: 2006/08/25 15:28:40, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
don_quixote said:
now that you're 'on the outside looking in' so to speak, what do you now feel when you see irrational creationist propaganda being disseminated to people who are not in a position to doubt it?

I've been sitting here wondering for two weeks how to get a rational discussion of evolution as contrasted/compared to Judeo/Christian thought.  I truly believe it would be beneficial to countless Christians, and I believe the majority here on the board would be helpful, but I'm not sure how to make that happen.

Date: 2006/08/26 03:19:44, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Thanks for the encouragement Ichthyic.

I read the PT post.  Zombie cockroaches.  Now that’s good eatin’

While I have so far been able to reconcile what I have learned about evolution with my faith, and will (hopefully) continue to do so, I think some of the things being said right now in the public debate will soon be devastating to those who believe.

Imagine you wanted to convince a large number of shallow thinking people their faith was futile.  You might take this approach:

1. Gain their trust by becoming “one” of them.  (Though you alone know you are actually living under a lie.)
2. Give them a black or white litmus test of their faith—if evolution is true, there is no “God.”
3. Over a period of time convince your followers of the “truth” of your argument.
4. As your followers begin to see the “real” truth (that evolution is true),  they immediately buy in to the second part of the equation:  “There is No God”

Here’s the real problem I see with AFDave and his ilk:   He is setting up for everyone who buys his BS a faulty if/then statement:

“If the earth is billions of years old, then the Bible and the God of the Bible isn’t real”

Unlike my illustration above, Dave is likely a true believer.  That may explain his breaks with rational thought each time someone “proves” him wrong.  “It’s only a flesh wound.”

Date: 2006/08/26 10:28:24, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
OK, so I have been trying to get my brain around how natural selection works.  I’ve been over at UD and at PT reading up on the Thomas Challenge.

It seems to me Salvador is missing the point—but it may be that I am…he says:

Salvador Cordova at UD:
Computers can compute certain things faster than us, that is why they exist to help us. For Thomas to argue that evolution is smarter than humans because computers can compute faster than humans is a non-sequitur.

It seems to me the “speed” of the computations simply allows the results of millions of generations to be reduced to a reasonable time period.  If the speed of the computations were slowed down to replicate hand computations, the result would still have been the same—the Steiner and MacGuyvers would still have emerged—it would just have taken much longer.

Doesn’t the experiment actually demonstrate evolution is able to produce very complex results that have the appearance of design, though it takes many generations (i.e.: a long time) to make it happen?

Date: 2006/08/26 11:29:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

Yes it does. Of course, such a result ruins Salvador's precious ID notions. So he goes around saying anything he can think of which cast doubt on the results. Usually these statements fall into two categories:

1 The fitness function musta snuck in the answer.

This is simple for him to demonstrate--ask for the code then show how to the code is flawed.

Your second point:
2 The fact that humans (were involved in the experiment /  manufactured the equipment) means this was really an ID experiment.

On this one I think perspective is everything.  If I understand ID they are saying "natural selection, like all the properties of the universe, is the result of an Intelligence beyond ours creating the properties."  

If I am correct in that, I understand why they believe any experiment is the result of intelligent human design.  They believe the only way to get apparent design is to have a designer somewhere in the loop.

Thomas designed his software with a specific end in mind:  Solving Steiner.  In the ID mind God designed all the physical properties of the universe with the intention of "creating" us.  At least, that's my understanding.

Of course when they see RANDOM events producing apparent design with a sufficient number of generations, that's a different matter.

Date: 2006/08/26 12:18:28, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
If man has no ultimate purpose other than to exist, then how do we avoid absolute despair in life? How do we truly enjoy or even experience anything?

How are those two ideas related?

While I’m confident there is selection pressure against those who tend to think in these suicidal/homicidal terms, there are many reasons why “simply existing” can be a blast!

There is intrinsic joy in many things we experience—falling in love, having children, personal accomplishment.  Taking something disorderly and putting it in order.

Depressed people cannot see the intrinsic joys of life, but that is typically a temporary condition.

There are, however, a number of people who are not able to be satisfied with an 80 year run of being “regular.”  For whatever reason they must believe they are “more special” than the other 6 billion humans.  Sometimes these people strive for posterity—“people will always remember my name after I’m gone.”  Sometimes it is striving to be “more special” to God in an eternal heaven.

I have always suspected this comes from our mating behavior.  To survive and reproduce we needed to be noticed above the other possible mates.  We want to be the Alpha, to get the best possible mate.

That makes Joel’s argument more like: “If I can’t be ‘more special’ than other men on the planet, if my existence is just like everyone else’s, then why go on?”

Of course, as usual, I could be wrong.

Date: 2006/08/26 12:54:27, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Wesley Elsberry:  
Once you've got that, then you can move on to such things as thermodynamic depth.

Big words, small print.  It makes my brain hurt.

Two questions:

1.   Logical Depth simply means that if one looks at a complex system the complexity of the system is a direct indication of the time required to produce the system.  Is this substantially correct?

2.  Thermodynamic Depth indicates that complex systems leave a "paper trail" as they become more complex and in complex systems there is evidence remaining of their less complex states.  Again, is this substancially correct?

(And remember--small words.  I'm from the South.)

Date: 2006/08/27 05:04:24, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Over the last few weeks I have begun looking at the claims the ID folks and Evo folks make.  As a Christian I was pre-disposed to the ID claims—after all, if ID “fits” the scientific facts, it has far fewer negative consequences to me on a personal level.

What I have consistently found is ID folks appealing to speculation, mined quotes, irrelevant analogy, willful half-truths and flat out dishonesty.  At the same time I have seen the Evos point to studies, established science and peer review.  I have even seen them question their own results when things didn’t turn out as planned.

So, when you ask which I would choose of the above options it really looks like this to me:

A) Teaching 2+2=5 in math classes
B) Teaching that some people believe 2+2=5 in a humanities class in the context of religious mathematics, etc.
C) Opposed to both

Forgive my sarcasm, but I feel lied to.  While I have had the motivation to look a little deeper, millions of people are being deceived into ignorance.  At some point the deceived (and their children) will realize they’ve been lied to and will be ill prepared to integrate their faith and their newfound truth.

Date: 2006/08/27 07:35:05, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Sorry, thought it was obvious - c.

Date: 2006/08/30 06:26:29, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Dave, you convinced me.  I came here googling evolution verses intelligent design.  I have read every post in this thread.  I came here with an open mind for the most part—I had never researched the science behind the claims of evolution, ID or even creationism—but I am a life long Christian.

Coming here has led me to a number of other sites to do more reading.  I have been to UD and PT and a host of blogs and educational sites.

Heck I even watched your “watchmaker” video.

While not a trained scientist, even I was able to quickly see faults in your arguments as well as your unwillingness to provide evidence to support your claims.   It was also obvious you were unwilling to accept any evidence contradictory to your argument.

My first thought was “well, there are illogical ideologues all over the place—I need to go to the leaders in ID and see what they are saying.”

That’s when I realized the truth.  The leaders in the ID movement are using the same ad hominem, the same quote mining, the same false analogies. It wasn’t just you, Dave, it was those held up to be “experts.”

Now, I am convinced.  IDists and YECists are lying to people.  And whether you accept it or not, so are you.

Date: 2006/08/30 09:24:51, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
(guys I think you mean 200 years)

FYI, Cicero used it first (or, at least, a version):

Date: 2006/08/31 06:34:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Cordova quoting Jerry Coyne at UD:
if truth be told, evolution hasn’t yielded many practical or commercial benefits

I suspect from what I have read here this isn't accurate.  Can someone give me some examples of the practical or commercial benefits of the science?

Date: 2006/09/01 09:05:38, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
WWJD - What Would Jesus Drive?

Date: 2006/09/01 10:19:05, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Silly me, I forgot Jesus already  has a car just look at the pictures.

Date: 2006/09/02 14:29:11, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I think we *have* made a bit of progress in dealing with Dave

Whether or not you have made progress with Dave, you guys and gals have been a tremendous help to me.  While not everything I am learning here is "comfortable", it has still been an almost addictive learning curve forcing me to re-evaluate my belief system.

I know some of you likely have been frustrated when you have carefully structured a 500 word post only to have Dave ignore it, but those posts have been incredibly informative to me and (I suspect) dozens of other lurkers.

One of these days I will give you my complete history and you will realize just how big a deal this is.

Heartfelt thanks.

Date: 2006/09/03 08:10:50, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Gotta love this:

If the Bible is wrong when it tells us it is infallible, then it contradicts itself.

Here's the thread...

Who can argue with fundy logic like that?

Date: 2006/09/03 08:32:46, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
When I first began reading this forum, just as the What-Would-Jesus-Design crowd feared, I lost my religion.

Lucky for me when I moved the couch to vacuum, I found it again.

It's always the last place you look.

Date: 2006/09/03 15:10:02, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I don’t know of a Christian out there—including me—who doesn’t believe “yeah, I agree.  There are stupid (or bigoted, or intolerant, or illogical) Christians out there.  But I’m not like that.”

Of course, we can’t all be right.  I suspect that at one time or another I have been all of those things.  (Heck, there was that night in Phoenix when I was ALL of those, but I digress…)

Humans act out.  Christians are no exception.  And I’m not going to use that bumper sticker excuse for bad behavior:  “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven”

But here’s the rub I have been dealing with for the last several years:  What does a 21st century Christian look like?  How would a Christian live in a 21st century western culture?  

It seems to me that non-Christians might be the best people to ask—Christians have waaaaayyyyy too many “oughts” to get an honest answer and the non-Christians seem to have a better picture of the ways real Christ-ies act.

Christianity doesn’t have a very illustrious history (when looked at objectively.)  The billion or so people who currently profess the faith have far too few notable exceptions to societal norms.  In some areas Christian performance is below societal norms.

I suspect there are many Christians who have lurked over the AFDave thread and have had some of the same reactions I have—that much of what our “brothers and sisters in Christ” are telling us are obvious lies.  Many of the lurkers won’t ever post here.  It’s a little intimidating for the non-scientist.

If there is one thing I respect about AFDave is his courage to take a stand for what he believes.  Sure, you guys fed him his balls with gravy, but he at least put it out there.  I’m actually thankful he did that.  The thread is teaching me a ton.

I guess the point here is that there are Christians out there who are trying not to be ignorant church-bots.  We want to learn the truth—even if it challenges our long-held beliefs.  Any god who is scared of truth isn’t God*.  

(*note the effective use of capitalization)

Date: 2006/09/05 11:11:54, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
The sort of arrogant I-know-what's-really-going-on-and-you-can't-change-my-mind-with-the-facts attitude is just part of the brainwashing menu.

Much like organized religion.

(Oh, wait, did I say that out loud?  I seem to have lost my inner monologue...)

Date: 2006/09/06 11:49:58, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
This is hilarious--it seems has their own AFDave.

OK, which one of you guys is Winterherz?

Take a look, just don't step in the stupid.

Date: 2006/09/07 06:30:17, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I just love basking in the "truthiness"

Date: 2006/09/07 12:04:29, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
"Jo0oOel...I want to taste you...Love meeee"

It's cruel to pick on the weak for your own amusement.

(Unless it's really funny and they deserve it.)

Date: 2006/09/07 20:12:46, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

And official statements ("no one could have predicted anything like this happening") in the immediate aftermath certainly didn't inspire confidence in the official story either.

Everyone seemed surprised.  When I heard about it my first thought was "why weren't they prepared for this?  Didn't anyone read Tom Clancy?"  TC used this exact scenario in one of his books.  I think it was called "Rising Sun" or something like that.  Vintage early 90's.

But I guess its a little like the anthrax scare--scientists had warned for a couple decades about how simple it would be to pull off that type of attack.  They did nothing until a couple people died and the outcry of the public was great.

I don't know (obviously) who did the anthrax thingie, but I have often thought about the ruthless logic behind the attacks.  No one can get anything done any more without some sort of public outrage.

Last year Popular Mechanics did a pretty good series on the  9/11 conspiracy theories.  Here's a link:

Date: 2006/09/08 06:35:34, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
OK guys, I'm out of my depth (which is not too surprising.)

Read the latest at

Then popped over to see the entire article UD refers to at PsyOrg

The ID folks seem to be jumping in their jeans (witty pun) over how this destroys another "long held belief" of you evil evos.

But here's the questions I have--being a layman I really don't have a good background so I am counting on you:

1.  Just because the gene "jumped" to another chromosome, why can that not still be random?  To prove it is not random wouldn’t you have to document that other genes jumped and that all the genes jumping resulted in positive, not negative, results?

2.  If the jumping genes produced a variety of fly that can, when mating, produce sterile offspring, I wouldn't think the ID folks would consider that an evidence of "Intelligence"--would I intelligently create a flaw in my design?

3.  Could not these changes have resulted from selection pressure and random mutation?

4.  Does the mechanism of speciation have any bearing on the ID v. RMNS debate?  How does this "back door" to speciation change anything for ID?

Remember, I am a layman so type slowly using small words.  Thanks.

Date: 2006/09/13 17:07:53, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Argy and Jeannot,

A belated thanks for the answers on page 212 or so--I had to take a couple days off looking for a kidney (don't ask.)


Date: 2006/09/21 16:21:19, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I became a lurker as a result of the AFDAVE stuff on Google.  Before you "split" the thread, ask someone who has some SEO experience how that would affect things.

Date: 2006/09/21 16:31:48, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
SteveStory--Don't encourage me to post at UD--my wife already told me she is sick of my rants resulting from reading that stuff.

Date: 2006/09/21 17:14:48, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
HA!  Now you know how I feel when people talk about paleosols.  SEO is jargon for Search Engine Optimization--sorry to use jargon.

Date: 2006/09/25 10:18:14, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
To have a healthy society you must have an enduring social contract.  Otherwise people like to be nasty to one another to gain the best mating partner or scarce resource.  Throughout history there have always been voices calling for social reform against the “evil” in society.  Typically these voices have been tied to a particular religious belief system.

In the west the social contract was underwritten by Judeo-Christian Scriptures.  Those scriptures were pointed to for a definition of evil and justice.  There is also innate in those scriptures the idea of Justice—that the universe is always watching and evil, even hidden evil, will be punished.

I suspect all cultures that thrive use some justification for their own social contract.

The real success of the west is likely capitalism, a rather non-Biblical concept.  Christians are taught the “most noble” way to live is with minimal consumption, giving all possible to the common good.  Which seems much more like communism.

I separate my personal faith from institutionalized Christianity simply because the two are very different animals.  “Christianity” as an institution exists to fulfill all sorts of social needs and desires.  It’s a type of civic organization.  It deals mostly with the outward—where we go, what we do.  

Christ taught much more about the quality of a person’s life:  How what is inside causes us to act outside.  Followers of Christ give to the poor not because society or an institution demands it, they give because they see another human in suffering and hope to alleviate that suffering.  It's inside them and they can do no other thing.

Compassion is not unique to Christ’s teachings; I certainly know compassionate atheists.  But compassion was unknown to me personally until I came to know the teachings of Christ.  Maybe many of you are “good” people.  Me, I’m still learning and Christ’s teachings have been the only ones able to make that change in me.

Just ask my wife.

Date: 2006/09/27 11:44:37, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Altabin @ Sep. 27 2006,16:43)
I tried to make my first ever post today to UD - it would have been the first post on the "Jonathon Wells uncovers the secret atheist conspiracy" thread.  It never appeared, nor did the polite request about its whereabouts I made an hour or so ago.  It was not nearly as scathing as Carl Sachs' recent posts - and not nearly as funny either, so it's no great loss - I just don't get their moderation policy at all.  Honestly, I think that the reason Carl's posts keep getting through is that they really can't understand the notion of irony. :)

I was moderated on my first post--it took 10 hours or so to show up--and have been unmoderated ever since. I've only made a few posts, and I don't have the education, insight or wit of the rest of the brood here, but I'm trying.

I did get a rebuke from JAD.  Maybe that's progress.

Date: 2006/10/01 13:26:17, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (carlsonjok @ Oct. 01 2006,19:04)

...for a Klondike bar?

Date: 2006/10/02 07:59:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (deadman_932 @ Oct. 02 2006,13:51)
Let me try to give you an analogy that even you might be able to see, AirHead.

Suppose some guy comes up to you and wants to argue that the Gospels were all faked, and  he "knows" this.

You listen to his claim and he starts ranting about things that have nothing to do with the gospels, they sound bizarre and twisted, like some weird version of the book of Mormon combined with Wicca.

You question the guy and discover he doesn't KNOW the Gospels and has in fact only looked them over superficially once or twice, flipping through them and not really reading them.

How would you feel about the guy's arguments that the gospels were all fraudulent, given his level of "knowledge?"

This is how most of your arguments sound to me, and I suspect that others here feel pretty much the same.

Would you mind if I posted a link to this quote (or used this quote with a reference) elsewhere?

This is a huge problem as I try to talk to Christians who seem to think they can easily refute evolution without having the slightest idea what they are talking about.  This analogy is perfect for them.

Date: 2006/10/02 08:23:48, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Thanks Dead_Man.

Just one more thing...I want to encourage you guys and gals to keep this up.  I know many of you are likely frustrated but the lurkers (and pseudo lurkers like me) are learning tons.   With each new volley we get another piece of the puzzle.

And since you are trying to make it understandable to Dave, it's understandable to the rest of us.  Which is pretty cool.

Date: 2006/10/03 12:07:12, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 03 2006,17:51)
Dammit, I work so hard on my beautiful graphic, improvius goes to all the work of making it work for me and no one even says yay or boo. I am not going into computer graphics now and it is all your faults.

Also, there is a different mutation rate when you are dealing with sexual selection as opposed to cloning.

Awww...the pretty colors...

Date: 2006/10/05 10:51:33, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Thanks Grey Wolf.  Very helpful.

(Edit:  Referring to the definitions you posted earlier--even easy for me to understand.)

Date: 2006/10/05 11:06:34, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
*Supporting* or *attacking* religious belief is inappropriate on this discussion board. A variety of other fora are more appropriate for such discourse.

I wonder which category Dave's posts fall into--supporting religious belief or attacking it?

Date: 2006/10/06 13:03:29, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Arden Chatfield @ Oct. 06 2006,17:48)
Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Oct. 06 2006,11:13)
Kurt Wise, Dembski's replacement at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, is now a consultant for the "Answers in Genesis" Creation Museum in Florence, KY. SBTS is just thrilled about it, too, featuring a page about Wise's views and new affiliation:




Looks like Rob Pennock's "Tower of Babel" was not just ID critic excess, eh?

Lots of good stuff in that article after that quote, too:


[snip]As believers examine science, the most important thing they can remember is to always pay attention to Scripture above any scientist, Wise said.

AFDave in a nutshell, no?

Is it just me, or does this essay have a strong hint of "we admit all this Young Earth literalism doesn't make any sense at all, but believe it anyway, 'cuz God'll get real pissed otherwise"?

There was a Christian discussion board I visited some weeks ago and began posting to the "Bible and Science" thread.

I wasn't being trollish, but I did ask some tough questions.  So did a very few others.

One of the toughest ones to get an answer to was this:

If you believe the earth is 6,000 years old and Genesis is a literal, historical account, is God intentionally misleading His people with His creation?

The more we look at the Creation, the more we are convinced it speaks of being ancient.  Is God intentionally misleading us?

I don't think the big problem with fundys is their belief in a young earth.  I think the big problem they have is their belief in their own interpretation of an "infallible" book.  Everything else is just a natural outgrowth.

After a week or so they closed the Science and Bible area and now won't let anyone post there.  Big surprise.

Date: 2006/10/11 11:11:58, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Possibly helpful page--it lists several reviews of the PP.  took 30 seconds to Google:

Date: 2006/10/11 13:00:28, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Oct. 11 2006,18:45)
I can't tell if this is a spoof:

if it's not, we might be hearing less from Joel in the future.

It's too boring to be a spoof.

Date: 2006/10/13 14:50:22, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
This made me think of the oxymoron of creation science.  Plus it was really funny.

Science shows the danger is everywhere!

Date: 2006/10/13 15:30:43, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (ericmurphy @ Oct. 13 2006,21:18)
Quote (ScaryFacts @ Oct. 13 2006,19:50)
This made me think of the oxymoron of creation science.  Plus it was really funny.

Science shows the danger is everywhere!

I looked at that site, and I couldn't find a single statement that appeared to be factually incorrect. The statements thereon were much better supported than what you typically read at AiG's site. Which in my opinion makes it much better science than AFDave's brand of Creation "Science."

"many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler...until it was too late.

Many will be in comfortable oblivion about DHMO...until it is too late."

(BTW...has Dave ever realized why a couple people keep quoting him on this?)

Date: 2006/10/13 15:45:27, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
"I was providently invited to have tea with the Provost and had the opportunity to give him the pro-ID side of the story before a public gathering of Asian students. "

Did he detect design in the setting up of the meeting?

Date: 2006/10/14 07:58:03, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 14 2006,13:25)
If it weren't for the AFdaves and Uncommon Scent types, there wouldn't be much here to discuss. A quality Loki can make a good canvas for an issue to paint itself out on.

The assumption is that if AFDave didn't exist we would have to invent him?  The reality is he DOES exist.  And so do hundreds of others just as enlightening.

I don't see the need for the lokis here. I suspect if AFDave gives up, someone just as entertaining will come to take his place.

Don't be surprised to see posts on pro-YEC sites pointing to GoP's "outing" as evidence the evil Darwinists are just trying to use dishonesty to prop up their crumbling theory.

Date: 2006/10/14 09:56:35, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (carlsonjok @ Oct. 14 2006,15:38)
While I don't remember who exactly has said it, I do seem to recall most folks have said that they only continue to respond to Dave in order to offer sound scientific reasoning to the lurkers. While, I have not necessarily been silent on this thread, I am not necessarily all that different than the lurkers. My science education was limited to what got me through the first year or so of engineering school, which was chemistry and basic physics.  I have learned alot of new things on this thread and I can state, unreservedly, that insults, profane or otherwise, contribute nothing to the persuasiveness of the arguments.  

If you truly remain engaged in the thread in order to help the lurkers, then put aside the profanity, insults, and cute names for Dave, because it doesn't help.

I am in much the same position--ignorant and learning much from this thread--but I do believe the "venting" done by many who respond to Dave's blather IS helpful.

If Dave's continuously inane posts were treated as if they had any substantive value, the utter stupidity of many of his arguments would be lost on the uninformed (like me.)

When I see the responses to Dave punctuated by words like “stupid” and “air head” they serve to show just how far removed from reality Dave’s arguments lie (intended).

Date: 2006/10/14 13:03:33, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (carlsonjok @ Oct. 14 2006,18:20)
Quote (ScaryFacts @ Oct. 14 2006,14:56)
When I see the responses to Dave punctuated by words like “stupid” and “air head” they serve to show just how far removed from reality Dave’s arguments lie (intended).

While you and I may be learning alot from this discussion, the real target audience are those lurkers who come here not predisposed to accept scientific reason over biblical literalism.  For those folks, it is important that Dave's arguments and logic are challenged in a direct, understandable and, yes, forceful manner.  But, there is a big difference in attacking the argument and attacking the person.  When one goes from saying "that argument is nonsensical" to saying "you are an idiot", they are playing right into his hands. He'll never win the argument on substance, but by baiting folks into acting with petulance he doesn't have to.  The minute someone in a debate loses control, they have lost. And, Deadman, you may not have really lost control, but to an outsider (even one predisposed to accept your expertise), it sure looks that way.

So, if you feel his arguments are so inane that they don't deserve a civil response, don't respond at all.  But, if you can tear them to shreds without attacking him personally (and it has been done), have at it.  Dave has said as much that your personal derision validates him.  And a certain ex-associate professor from Vermont says the same thing. Think about it.


I agree there are those who will be offended by the ad hominem, and your argument makes sense.  Maybe the attacks are too strong and are out of place.

Point well taken.

I’m not sure those who are pre-disposed to believe Biblical literalism will be persuaded by this thread whether or not it has the aforementioned insults.

After 30 years of dealing with fundys I believe they fall into three groups:

* Those who are "true believers" and will drink the kool-aid no matter what anyone else will tell them

*  Those who are open to other ideas, but psychologically are not prepared to face the consequence of those ideas so when presented with mountains of fact simply cannot allow themselves to see it

* Those who have the intellectual and spiritual strength/honesty to be able to accept new ideas and then integrate them into their belief system (or not)

The first group will likely use the verbal barrage on Dave as evidence of the utter evil of AI.  The second group, again, cannot fathom life outside of their card-house of faith.

The third group are those who come here knowing their beliefs could be mistaken.  They are willing to weigh their beliefs versus the new information they encounter here.  I suspect most of them will find the information they need despite the personal attacks, but I could be wrong.

I don't think Dave believes he is lying.  I don't believe most YEC's or OEC's believe they are lying.  I think most are true believers who are regurgitating the pabulum they were raised on.

I do, however, believe there are many leaders in the YEC/OEC camps who simply MUST know they are lying, but are willing to do so anyway--either for the sake of ego, power, money or some other hidden motive.  That they have deceived so completely Dave and his ilk is immoral.  That they do so in the name of Christianity is obscene.

Date: 2006/10/17 11:40:27, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Thank Dog @ Oct. 17 2006,17:28)
What is the role of a research professor in a seminary? The mission of the institution is to prepare students for Christian ministry. Does he contribute more than an occasional chapel talk?

Why does the seminary not only want but NEED a research professor in this particular area?

Simple:  The best way to raise development money in a Christian environment is to create a controversy, claim someone is suppressing the truth and cry "not enough funds" to fight the good fight.

While I am not on their mailing list, I suspect alumni, donors and churches have received more than a few solicitations from the school.

Date: 2006/10/17 11:51:55, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Hey Dave, maybe I can ask you a question more in line with your expertise.  Looking at the Bible we find in Genesis 2:7 a systematic presentation of how man was created by God:
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

Here are my questions:

1.  How long do you believe God took to go from dust to body to breathing into Adam the Breath of Life?

2.  How do you believe the animals began--just like man as dirt or did God use some different procedure?

3.  Do you believe it makes man more noble to be made originally of dirt or of amino acids?

Since I am asking what you believe, there isn't any "right or wrong"--I'm just interested in how you think about these types of questions.

Date: 2006/10/17 12:13:02, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I have written for Christianity Today and several of their sister publications and I found the folks at CTi to be sincere and not simply interested in publishing "the party line."

But here's the problem:  Once they fact check and see that Dembski, et. al. seem to be who they claim to be, the editors don't have the science background to know whether what they publish has any real scientific base.

I would encourage those who see scientific flaws in what they publish to send a "letter to the editor"--if they get several with the same types of criticism they will publish a representative one or two in their next issue.

Date: 2006/10/17 14:48:08, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 17 2006,20:32)
Yes, yes ... this is pretty much how MANY of the arguments have gone ...

1) Very little attempt to refute the individual points
2) Lots of "Quoteminer!  Wikipedia is unreliable! You don't understand science!  Blah blah blah!" ... and finally
3) You're a blankety, blank blank with a blankety blank blank !!  

You're helping Steve's team a lot, Arden, by being so obtuse ... keep up the good work!

Yes, yes ... this is pretty much how MANY of the arguments have gone ...

1) Dave gets questions he can't answer so he ignores them
2) Someone finally gets so fed up with his duplicity they break down and call him a  blankety, blank blank with a blankety blank blank !!  ... and finally
3) Dave declares victory

Date: 2006/10/17 17:32:56, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Hey, heads up, Dawkins in on Colbert tonight.  Not sleeping sure pays off.

Date: 2006/10/18 11:12:57, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (don_quixote @ Oct. 18 2006,16:52)
As a most-of-the-time-lurker, I would just like to thank you guys. Whenever I read these threads, I invariably learn something new (and I have a good chuckle too!;). Of course, one has to have an open mind and humility in order to learn.

What he said  :)

Date: 2006/10/18 15:03:09, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ved @ Oct. 18 2006,20:36)
What, no thread for Richard Dawkins on the Colbert Report yet? I was tuning in regularly and last night and saw it. It's on again right now, Eastern Time. Also found:

on YouTube

I mentioned it last night on the UD thread.

Date: 2006/10/18 15:05:50, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Occam's Aftershave @ Oct. 18 2006,20:45)
It's all about the "O"    ;)

(obscure reference to stupid US TV commercial, I'll explain if anyone asks)

The most annoying series of commercials ever.  I don't know why, but they make me feel like I need a shower.

Date: 2006/10/19 03:29:39, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Oct. 19 2006,02:49)

Any ideas?

No, but odds are that we'll soon find out that it is, somehow, my fault.

Soon to be Posted at UD:

As part of the Great Darwinist Conspiracy, Wesley Elsberry took his elite team of programmers (the same ones that he used to create his diabolical GA) to plant a virus on the internet with one purpose in mind:  Making access to UD impossible.

First, it delisted us from Google.  Now the virus has progressed to making UD load more and more slowly.

Now you see why I wanted to bankrupt him—it’s the only way to stop the Great Darwinist Conspiracy from suppressing the truth.

Date: 2006/10/19 06:32:21, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Someone correct me if I am wrong here, but it seems to me the fine tuning argument falls apart pretty quickly.

The only way we can observe this universe to be fine tuned to produce us is because if it was just slightly different we wouldn't be around to observe it.

i.e.: Any universe producing intelligent life would, by definition, be "fine tuned" to produce that particular life form.  If it were different either no life would be around to observe it or the life forms it produced would be different than we are.


Edit:  After reading this it didn't seem clear.  I am really asking why this argument is illogical--obviously brighter minds with lots of letters after their names see this as a huge issue.  I'm just not seeing the why.

Date: 2006/10/19 07:15:48, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (JohnW @ Oct. 19 2006,12:52)
Ms or Mr Facts

(Scary gets up, farts, belches, chugs his beer, adjusts his package and responds...)

They call me MISTER Facts.

Gee, I’ve got to testosterone up my posting style.

Thanks for the explanations.  Let’s see if I get this right…if the number of universes approaches infinity then the probability of one of those universes having the particular configuration for the development of life would approach 1.

If there is a single universe the probability would be almost zero.

But we know there are multiple universes—remember that Star Trek where there was a parallel universe and Spock had a goatee?  I’m pretty sure that settles it.

Date: 2006/10/19 10:11:52, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 19 2006,15:13)

Excellent, thoughtful post.  Bravo.

Date: 2006/10/20 08:22:07, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (N.Wells @ Oct. 20 2006,14:08)
Anything is okay as long as it doesn't involve hunams evolving from animals.

Somehow being formed from dirt (Genesis 2:7) makes us more noble?

Date: 2006/10/20 09:06:29, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I have spent the last several years working with search eninge optimization and placement.

Google does not de-list sites for just "any ol" reason. In fact it's pretty tough to get delisted.

We know Google can find because using the command

provides incoming links pointing to UD.

But we also know the site was delisted because using the command

returns no results.

My guess is that someone at UD tried to spoof Google using one of a number of high risk techniques (techniques we used to refer to as "black hat") and got caught.  It's not unusual.

There are a couple magic keys to ethically get to the top of Google for a particular search phrase, and they're not difficult to implement.  There is no reason why UD can't get the top position for "intelligent design."

(Of course, using the same techniques could make them number one for a number of other terms...wink...wink...)

Date: 2006/10/20 13:55:36, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Drew Headley @ Oct. 20 2006,19:42)
Ah, I see information theory has come up again. Let me remind AFDave what science has to say about information theory.


Great post Drew.  I think I might have even grasped the concept.  Thanks.

Date: 2006/10/20 16:26:13, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (deejay @ Oct. 20 2006,20:02)
Hello all:

Long time lurker, first time poster ;)  

I hope to contribute to the uncommonly dense thread soon.  First, however, I was hoping that Steve could expand on his judgment that Easterbrook is the worst science reporter ever.  I'm not sure I'd go that far, but I find Easterbrook to be quite annoying in many ways.  For example, when he decided that global warming was a reality, he made it seem like no one's opinion on the subject mattered more than his.  Also, he writes a regular football column for whose word total he pads with whatever random thoughts are on his mind.  At the end of last season, when the column was on, he criticized past efforts in Georgia to label biology textbooks with stickers that evolution was "just a theory" and a similar movement in Utah.  But his spin on the issue was that the whackos who want to label textbooks were giving the "serious" work of intelligent design a bad name.  So in the end, the net effect was to give ID a whiff of legitimacy barely a month after the Dover trial.  Annoying, sure, but I'd love to hear other transgressions from Easterbrook regarding science.  I do know, for example, he's dismissive of dark matter, but that's not my field.  Thoughts, anyone?

Welcome Deejay,

There are many here more able to address your issues/questions, but at least I can welcome you.


Date: 2006/10/21 10:12:01, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ogee @ Oct. 21 2006,13:30)
It doesn't falsify fine-tuning, but it does falsify the creationist assertion that fine-tuning implies "God did it".


Not to butt in on your ongoing fued with GoP, but I wanted to clarify something about the above.

The fine tuning argument is agnostic, it doesn't tell us anything about the likelyhood and unlikelyhood of a creator.  True?

Date: 2006/10/21 10:20:38, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 21 2006,16:13)
There is no record of a flood and there is verification of c-14 dating to 50,000 years i think. Also various other dating methods are actually calibrated using these scales.

(Emphasis Added)

Which proves Dave's point--if c-14 dating is wrong, then it is used to "calibrate" the other methods, it propagates the error.

Don't you scientists know anything?

Date: 2006/10/21 14:02:47, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 21 2006,18:00)
No, c-14 is calibrated as are other decay related dating methods by using annually stratified phenomena which are cross-referenced by event between themselves. I appreciate you trying to help Davey out though.

Am I off my nut here or did I not just give a simple way to know that, if you are concerned with evidence, that Earth is much older than 6 or 7 thousand years?

Did that stuff just fly over the hedge? No one picked it up and Dave has not responded. Hmmm.   ???

I could go into quite a bit of detail into the cross calibration events and methods for counting annual deposits. Is it less fun than the genetic stuff? It it just chopped liver?


I was being facetious.  Didn't you catch it by the tone of my voice?  Sorry I wasn't more clear.

Then again...maybe your explanation kept Dave from using the argument?  Who knows.

I'll use a smilely next time. ;-)

And, yes, your explanations for the age of the earth are crystal clear to everyone but Dave.

Date: 2006/10/21 14:18:28, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (alicejohn @ Oct. 21 2006,19:03)
You guys are incredible.  It would be an honor to meet ericmurphy someday.  But in my opinion, you guys have been played.

Welcome, AliceJohn, glad you "uncloaked."

And I agree with you--this is a bunch of pretty impressive people.

I have learned a ton here.


Date: 2006/10/22 06:52:31, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (deadman_932 @ Oct. 22 2006,12:46)
Russell: I agree, it's a valid hypothesis. However, the data seem to indicate that Dave Hawkins IS a real person who MAY be the person posting here.
The sad fact MAY be that Dave Hawkins is simply exactly the kind of knucklehead you mentioned.
It takes a cornucopia of stupid to produce the posts "AFDave" has left here, pungently reeking of his lies, quotemining, false accusations, plagiarism, backing down on bets, refusals to respond to direct questions, etc., but it may just well be that AFDave is the real ignorantly hubristic deal

Haven't we all known an AFDave?

Date: 2006/10/22 07:47:08, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Russell @ Oct. 22 2006,13:29)
polls consistently indicate that somewhere around half of Americans seem to subscribe to a creationist position, making the "afdave" persona somewhat credible. But I believe the overwhelming majority of those are "casual creationists" - folks who don't know any of the science, don't care to, and don't pretend to care to.


You could certainly be correct.  It would fit the facts.  But I still have met too many people (even educated ones) who seem unable to grasp the most basic of facts when those facts run counter to their faith.

Case in point:  I was discussing evolution with my MD a couple weeks ago.  He read Black Box when it came out ('97?) and told me he was impressed by Behe's science.

I suggested he look at PT to see what scientists are saying about ID and how Behe's "science" falls apart.

His response made it obvious he didn't care about the facts.  Behe confirmed his faith and that's as far as he wanted to explore.

Warm milk makes for pleasant dreams.

Date: 2006/10/22 08:16:12, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
One more thought...

Even if AFDave is the real Dave Hawkins, he still may make a "fake" confession at some point in the near future.  It's likely the only way he can save face.

We'll see.

Date: 2006/10/23 08:41:32, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 23 2006,12:55)
Be careful how arrogant you act.  Pride goeth before a fall.  I'm not finished investigating this thing yet.  Don't be too quick to declare victory!

Ironic, no?

Date: 2006/10/23 10:18:11, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 23 2006,15:53)
Oh and don't forget ... White noise contains more information than a Winston Churchill speech.

Someone can correct me if I am wrong, but I believe this is correct...

Shannon described information as the "uncertain" parts of a message.  i.e.:  When a message is sent only the parts unknown or undecipherable to the recipient need to be sent.

Since white noise consists of the most random information without predictable parts, it must be represented by the greatest amount of information.

I think Dave is confused over the word "information."  Shannon *defined* information as entropy while Dave seems to think it is the decoded message the recieved on the other end.

Date: 2006/10/23 10:53:40, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Thank Dog @ Oct. 23 2006,16:46)
This is the end of my Thank Dog incarnation. See you in the next life.

31 posts?  That's 217 in dog posts.

Date: 2006/10/23 15:22:35, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 23 2006,20:46)
When you've realized the truth of my sayings, we can go seed some furrows.

Isn’t proselytization forbidden on this board? Shame on you BWE.

Date: 2006/10/24 17:07:14, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Oct. 24 2006,23:01)
Did someone say "costumes"?

A friend of ours has the ultimate Halloween party each year (her home is decorated year-round), and I'm considering going as Elizabeth Short--a.k.a. The Black Dahlia--partly so that I can correct the factual errors in that horrible flick.

Is your costume one piece or two?

Date: 2006/10/25 10:13:56, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 25 2006,16:07)
Which is why...them.

Maybe the earth is like my wife and just stopped counting the birthdays:

"How old are you this year earth?"

"5,999 and counting..."

This information theory thing with Dave is interesting.  While I have thought Dave (at times) reflects intelligence, his posts on this topic seem as if he is finding it impossible to grasp the concept.

Kinda like me and string theory...

Date: 2006/10/25 11:04:24, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (carlsonjok @ Oct. 25 2006,16:39)
Well, in fairness, it isn't exactly intuitive.  Without getting too far into my biography, I have spent much time managing business operations and one thing I am fond of saying is that I need information, not data.  For workaday folks, like myself, the word "data" means a pile of numbers and "information" implies meaningful content extracted from the data.  In the context being used here, the distinction is turned on it's ear.

Of course, I did understand the explanation regarding compressibility and why white noise has more information than a recorded speech.  But, then again, I don't have a stake in not going where the discussion is leading either.

Maybe that's the problem.  Maybe Dave has trouble grasping concepts that are counter-intuitive.  As you mentioned, once it was explained to you it made sense, but you didn't have a vested interest in it being otherwise.

But I think it's possible it's just not easy for some people to grasp a concept beyond their own "gut feeling" or "common sense."  I have met a number of technical types who have trouble thinking abstractly.

I'll bet you could get many liberal arts college students to swear a rock will fall faster than a feather in a vacuum.  "It just makes common sense."

Words mean things and I suspect one can't have even a basic discussion of everything from genetics to geology if one doesn't take time to grasp the meanings of the terms.

If one is discussing "information theory" it probably makes sense to first know the definition of "information."

Date: 2006/10/25 13:00:05, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Richardthughes @ Oct. 25 2006,18:04)
It was satire, zero.

Find the pattern in this:

Date: 2006/10/25 13:17:04, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (ericmurphy @ Oct. 25 2006,18:58)
Why does Dave do this?

Could it be Dave is the incarnation of "The Straw Man"?  He appears real, but is easily dismissed.

Date: 2006/10/25 17:20:55, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 25 2006,23:02)
So what does this do for your advocacy of ToE?  I put "correct" in quotes for your sake because according to your theory there is no such thing as "correct" sequences, right?

This isn't where the ToE is defended, it is where your hypothosis is defended.  I began reading this thread back in August hoping for you to show how the Biblical account can be reconciled with current science.  What I have found, instead, is a staggering lack of evidence presented by you in support of the Biblical account.

Please understand what I am saying:  I came here rooting for you.  I wanted the Biblical account to be reconciled with the facts.  You have completely disappointed me and any other lurkers who were reading this with the same hope.

Your posts have consistently demonstrated the lies propagated in the name of Christ.  How can you not see the lies and obfuscations?

Date: 2006/10/26 06:33:25, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 26 2006,11:17)
Would that it were so. I think some of the money might go to propogate someone else's idea of god rather than mine. I think mine is a little unorthodox.

I tried organized religion, now I'm trying disorganized religion.  I prefer the latter.

Most of the time/energy/resources of organized religion go to supporting the infrastructure.  A very small amount goes to actually DOING anything.

No one doubts Christ's impact was radically different than most men.  The role of his church is, supposedly, to help others be like Christ.

I doubt anyone would argue that thousands of Christ-like individuals would have a positive impact on the world.

The problem is this:  The organized church doesn't produce people who act like Christ.  It can't be fixed.

Oh, and to keep this post completely on topic:

Origins of religion?  There's a Darwin shaped hole in each of us...

Date: 2006/10/26 07:01:16, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Lou FCD @ Oct. 26 2006,12:54)
so please don't play the martyr card.

That's I got a shoppers card in the mail from K-Mart.  Just before I read your post I told my wife now I have an official "K-marter card."

K is the sound of "Ch" as in Christ.

OK, this post is likely excessively annoying...

No hugs of lips for me.

Date: 2006/10/26 08:26:43, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 26 2006,13:03)
There's a Darwin shaped hole in each of us...
now that's an interesting statement. Are you saying something like "ignorance is bliss?"

If one is searching for bliss alone, then ignorance is the fastest way to get there.

That's why organized religion works so well and is so well funded--you pay your dollar and you get socially digestable bliss, packaged to fit into whatever world view you happen to prefer.

If, on the other hand, your faith is truly about changing your life and benefiting the lives of those around you, ignorance will never work.  You have to ask tough questions.  You have to accept inconvenient truths.

For creationists, you have to look at facts--like Darwin--and determine if your faith is consistent with the known universe or if you made it all up.

I have been able to reconcile my faith with what I know thus far.  It hasn't always been easy and it certainly has not been comfortable.

But then again, becoming a better human being never is.

Date: 2006/10/26 08:38:07, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Lou FCD @ Oct. 26 2006,14:32)
After a few minutes reflection, I believe that my comments may have been more self-referential than I would have cared to admit.

Great post Lou.

One of the things that amazes me about the people here is their openness and honesty.  It's refreshing.

Date: 2006/10/26 09:46:08, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Oct. 26 2006,15:37)
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 26 2006,13:07)
Is there any way to see all comments by a single poster?

I wish there were, but I have not found such a thing.

Go to Google and type in:


it will give you all of the pages where the poster posts or is mentioned.  It's not perfect, but at least it's something.

Date: 2006/10/26 10:07:51, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (BWE @ Oct. 26 2006,15:46)
A rough idea I worked on for a while for a children's book. I believe strongly in the metaphor as a tool of understanding.

Pretty cool.  You should publish it.

I have thought for some time I would like to create stories and songs for my future grandchildren to teach them things about our family, morals, faith, fidelity.

Date: 2006/10/26 12:21:37, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Did you know Uranus atmosphere is methane?  Gotta love it.

Date: 2006/10/26 14:35:30, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

[Chosen One kicks Wimp-Lo in the face. Wimp-Lo does a pose]
Wimp Lo: Ha! Face to foot style, how do you like it?
Chosen One: I'm sure on some planet your style is impressive, but your weak link is: this is Earth.
Wimp Lo: Oh yeah? Then try my nuts to your fist style!

Edit: Reference

Date: 2006/10/26 15:00:35, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

Does this number sequence mean anything in your world?

0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144, 233, 377, 610, 987, 1597, 2584, 4181, 6765, 10946, 17711

Date: 2006/10/26 15:10:39, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (ericmurphy @ Oct. 26 2006,21:05)
Rats. I was really hoping Dave would take a stab at this one.

Master Tang: Pay no attention to Wimp Lo, we purposely trained him wrong... as a joke


Date: 2006/10/26 15:23:58, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Master Tang: Please forgive Wimp Lo. He is an idiot.

Source: ibid

Date: 2006/10/26 16:17:01, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Wimp Lo: I'm bleeding, making me the victor

Source: ibid

Date: 2006/10/26 16:21:41, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (hereoisreal @ Oct. 26 2006,22:12)
No, but it must in yours or you would have been
your time.

It is called a fibonacci sequence.  It is a naturally occuring sequence in things like the chambers in nautilus shells and the number of sunflower seeds.

Since you are so into numbers I thought you might find it interesting and God-related.

Date: 2006/10/26 17:13:26, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Oct. 26 2006,22:56)
OMnG, this is so deliciously sick, I can't believe that I thought of it...

But I'll have a photo taken of me as Liz Short...
...with my friends forcing my head into a vise, as in the film...
...and I'll e-mail it to Bill Dembski. :O

(I mix my metaphors a lot.)
It's Dembski's fault that I'm this way!  :D

First, that's sick, yet surprisingly entertaining...

Second, tell Herbertzork I like his poetry.  Does "Shattered" apply to, um, dismemberment?

Just askin'

Date: 2006/10/26 17:46:03, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Oct. 26 2006,23:34)
Does "Shattered" apply to, um, dismemberment?

I asked him, and he said (I'm quoting), "Oh, I suppose so. It was really early in the morning."

!!! (If you're a Dahlia murder buff, you get that... and then you wig out...) ScaryFacts, what have I uncovered... ;)

So he only thinks of dismemberment in the mornings?

Hmmm...I would learn to sleep with one eye open--or get up first.

There are times when the, uh, "urges" are difficult.  When I take my meds I can control them.

Though I ran out of the meds in March.

but it's nothing to go to pieces over...


OK, OK, before you call the FBI, I was just kidding!

I am somewhat of a Dahlia buff, first heard about it when I was pretty young--maybe in my early teens--and it stuck with me.  I still can't handle the pictures.  Have you kept up with it (other than the movie)?

Date: 2006/10/26 17:50:42, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (hereoisreal @ Oct. 26 2006,23:24)
No, but I have found, and you can check my writeings,
every living thing, and some that are not, like
crystals and snowflakes, are symmetrical or have
parts that are symmetrical just like the
center of heaven.

That's not by chance.

I have found an analogy between "Soloman and
all his glory" and a lilly. So Jesus knew what he
was talking about.

Also everyone knows how to turn water to wine
but how do you turn wine to water, like Gideon's
analogy of the wet and dry fleece?

How does God arm a gideon (doubter) for the
battle of Armageddon?
Do a miracle, then do another exactly backwards,
like an image or fold.



I actually went to your site and read of all your coincidental god-like musings.

Why do you see symmetry as evidence of God?

Date: 2006/10/26 18:18:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (hereoisreal @ Oct. 27 2006,00:15)
The mercy seat is symmetrical, which is the center
of heaven, center of the holy place where he will
meet the priest once a year forever.

Gen 3:24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.


Exd 25:18 And thou shalt make two cherubims [of] gold, [of] beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat.


Exd 25:19 And make one cherub on the one end, and the other cherub on the other end: [even] of the mercy seat shall ye make the cherubims on the two ends thereof.


Exd 25:20 And the cherubims shall stretch forth [their] wings on high, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and their faces [shall look] one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubims be.


Exd 25:22 And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which [are] upon the ark of the testimony, of all [things] which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.


The mercy seat in I John is certainly a picture of Christ's redemption, but how do you go from that to your numerological assumptions--especially since you are using English rather than Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek?

Date: 2006/10/26 18:30:10, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Wimp Lo: Take a close look. 'Cause I rule, baby.
Chosen One: And who do you rule, the large-dark-nipple people?

Source: ibid

Date: 2006/10/26 18:39:39, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (argystokes @ Oct. 27 2006,00:35)
Oh, man, you're about 4 months behind.  Did you catch the first set of Kung Pow! references in this thread?  So appropriate, so classic.

I just gave up on trying to post anything substantial on this thread.  If someone esle suggested Kung Pow I missed it.

Date: 2006/10/26 18:50:11, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (hereoisreal @ Oct. 27 2006,00:37)
God is a God of today, now.


which means what?  You have to provide some kind of relationship between your musings and reality if you wan to have anyone listen to you.

If God is showing you consistent connections between these random experiences and the Bible then you need to be able to demonstrate it non-subjectively.

Date: 2006/10/27 07:57:17, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (k.e @ Oct. 27 2006,13:37)
For him the wool is so firmly pulled over his eyes that to even remotely consider the implications of rate of change and time would mean instant death for his projected ego ...his god other words.

Dave is risking far more than his ego.

Consider:  All of Dave’s friends, family, his entire social and emotional support network is tied up with his faith.  It’s very common for Christians to live their lives isolated from all meaningful outside contact.

To accept the fact of evolution means Dave no longer has any life.

Is it any wonder he struggles to comprehend?

Date: 2006/10/27 08:17:51, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Oct. 27 2006,12:18)
No fear, I won’t call the FBI. :D

Yes, I’ve kept up—and I’m convinced that the guilty party is Jack Anderson Wilson (a.k.a. Arnold Smith).

Severed by John Gilmore is the best source in my opinion (it has the photos, and they ain’t pretty).

I like George Hodel.  Though it's up for grabs, I like his house with a secret room, the fact he is a doctor, the wire tap transcripts, the lack of ability to control his sexual appetite, etc.

I think too much has been made over the false identification of the pictures his son found.  They weren't Elizabeth, but they were of a woman who looks like Elizabeth.  Men tend to like a certain "type" of woman.

Me?  I prefer red heads.  And in one piece.

Date: 2006/10/27 08:37:56, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (hereoisreal @ Oct. 27 2006,10:14)
ScaryFacts, "non-subjectively"

I don't even know what it means and I can't find
it in the dictionary.  It should be right next to
Have you really,really looked at your hands?
It's really a scarey fact.  The plan of salvation
is to treat everyone like they "might" be Jesus.

"Lord, we didn't even know you."



ps I sent you an E.  I liked your, "We've got to..."

"non-subjective" i.e.: obviously, verifiably true from everyone's perspective.

Many of your observations simply don't make sense to the rational mind.

I once heard a woman proclaim she was healed of cancer during a church service.  She claimed when she went to her doctor he could find no evidence of her breast cancer she had only a week before.

At the time I was trying to verify supernatural experiences so I approached her to see if I could get a copy of her medical records showing cancer then no cancer.

But she didn't have any medical record to show she had cancer.  She claimed she found a lump she just "knew" was cancer but after prayer she went to her Doc and he couldn't find any.

Did she have cancer?  Maybe.  She certainly believed she did.  Will anyone ever know?  Nope.

About sending a message for you to's not the kind of thing I do for a number of reasons.

Date: 2006/10/27 08:49:41, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Oct. 27 2006,14:22)
AFDave, if you had a sudden flash of insight and realized that evolution was true, would that have any impact on your position in the church, or your relationship with friends or other community members? Just curious.

Losing your entire emotional, spiritual and physical support network is always difficult, but in some cases it can result in full-blown psychosis.

And trust me, Steve, if Dave embraces evolution he will no longer have a part in the church.  It will either be immediate or (more likely) it will be gradual as people begin to distance themselves from him.

The key for anyone in that type of situation is to have support from family.  Hopefully if Dave takes the leap his wife will leap along with him.

If not, it could be very troubling.

Date: 2006/10/27 10:05:11, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Russell @ Oct. 27 2006,15:48)
Why come back day after day, month after month, and have your nose rubbed in reality? Why say such patently absurd things as "ToE is fringe science"? It's gotta be a joke, or some weird form of masochism.

I suspect it is because Dave, unlike many Christians, has the capacity to understand the basic implications of what science is saying and doesn't have a way to integrate that recognition into his life.

It becomes the unscratchable itch.

I've seen it many times before in adult victims of childhood abuse.  They surround themselves with reminders of abuse--maybe even working with abuse victims--while constantly protesting how wonderful their own childhood was.

The truth of their experience is in the front of their mind while they try to suppress it.  No matter what evidence they are presented, they deny the evidence is real.

Typically it comes out and they face the facts.

Offenders often do much the same thing when confronted with their abuse.  The typical response to "Did you molest ____" is not "No!" but instead "I don't remember."

I think any of us would certainly remember molesting a child.

In more extreme cases sociopathic offenders will blame the victim saying they were seduced by the child.

That's revolting.

If Dave can find a way to integrate the truth of evolution into his life he will likely accept it.  If he finds, instead, that "golden fact" that allows him to deny evolution in his own mind, he will likely stop posting or stop posting on anything other than the "golden fact."

Of course there is the third option I mentioned above...

Date: 2006/10/27 11:12:20, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
The same just happened to me--though I suspect it's innocent.  They are likely just moderating more agressively.

Many of the latest topics had the potential to be offensive to many Christians.

Date: 2006/10/27 11:17:37, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Richardthughes @ Oct. 27 2006,17:13)
Post anything noteworthy?



Thank you for making a thoughtful post.

Actually, fertility rates are dramatically affected by political instability/political policy.

If, as a result of political corruption, there are less resources available for the people, husbands are more likely to desert their families and women are more likely to abort or abandon a child they cannot afford to feed and shelter.

Even in a stable government where resources are scarce (China), selective abortion and abandonment are a significant problem.

A reader on another board (who has a funny cap) also forwarded this study to me:

This documents the more the population of a country identifies themselves as religious, the higher the rate of STDs, abortion, homicide and teen pregnancy.

We often assume countries like the US have been profoundly affected in our behavior by our faith.  Sometimes the data does not bear that out.

I have not read anywhere the correlation documented between faith and fertility rate.  If you have a source I would be interested in seeing it.

I don't have a problem saying I believe Christianity is generally good for a society.  I don't, however, think it is the single most important societal influence as Colson seems to imply.

Political and economic stability are likely the most important factors in fertility rate.

I added the "cap" part for this board.  Thanks Richard.

Date: 2006/10/27 11:30:53, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Lou FCD @ Oct. 27 2006,17:02)
Janie is ALWAYS down with the Big O.

Just so y'know.

Her O is real

Date: 2006/10/27 11:48:57, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Henry J @ Oct. 27 2006,17:46)
Re "I recall though, at one point Davetard announced that anyone from PT is automatically banned."

IOW, he noticed that people who regularly read PT are more apt than most to recognize the errors in his posts.  :p

My posts just showed up, so it was just a moderation thing.

Date: 2006/10/27 15:32:50, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 27 2006,19:07)
Uh, yes ... if I became convinced ToE was true, I'm quite sure I would also then believe the Bible was just a book of man, not of God.  Yes, I would then quit helping K4T and probably take my family to the Country Club on Sunday instead of church.

All of which I would be quite fine with me ... because of course IF Toe were true, then that would be the smartest thing I could think of to do.

(But don't get excited ... I'm much farther from believing ToE is true than I was when I came here.)

I suspected as much.

Dave, you think in black and white terms.  Many fundamentalists do, and have been taught to think that way.

If the theory of evolution is true that doesn't necessarily negate belief in God--even the God of the Bible.  There is a full range of ways to reconcile the two.

Can you accept the idea that Biblical literalism is not essential for salvation?

Here's why I ask...

The canon of scripture was not formally settled until the 17th century.  Luther didn't believe several of the books eventually included in the canon were inspired including James and Revelation (I think he also rejected Jude, but I would have to look it up.)

If you accept literalism as essential for salvation then how was salvation possible before the 17th century? Also how was Luther saved?

Now if literalism isn't essential for salvation, then isn't there room for differing interpretations without jeopardizing salvation?

Date: 2006/10/27 15:55:18, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (PhilVaz @ Oct. 27 2006,20:19)
Your conversation and commentary on the UD blog is very funny btw. My evolution/ID articles page here:

Phil P



Read a couple of your articles.  Interesting stuff.

Date: 2006/10/27 16:20:04, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Oct. 27 2006,18:48)
At this point, being new and all, I just want to interject that I didn't mean to hijack the thread...

(I almost typed threat. ?)

Cute little Cthulhu toy/costume idea at my blog. But is it? (Is it a costume, I mean, not is it a blog.)


Pretty funny.

And I don't think this thread has anything "on topic."

I think for this halloween I will dress up as a 43 year old white balding guy.  With a really hot wife.  Yeah, that's the ticket.

Date: 2006/10/27 16:56:24, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

Hail Steve!

Date: 2006/10/28 09:15:03, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (k.e @ Oct. 28 2006,14:42)
Is this the Tom Schneider  you were quoting to support your pathetic 'information' claims THE SAME ONE WHO SAID


Date: 2006/10/28 09:29:51, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ichthyic @ Oct. 28 2006,03:16)
I do wonder why Stevestory invited "0" back for another spin at the wheel of insanity.

did he forget 0 did the same thing here about a year ago?

I also wonder why you all find folks that have obviously gone completely off the deep end amusing.

Zero's musings have roughly the sanity level of AFDave's, so I owe him just as much attention.

Date: 2006/10/28 13:42:17, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Occam's Aftershave @ Oct. 28 2006,19:14)

Let me guess – your common sense and intuition told you so.  Right?   :D  :D  :D

Excellent, well reasoned post OA.

Date: 2006/10/28 14:39:34, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ichthyic @ Oct. 28 2006,20:31)
I just decry the trend towards turning ATBC into a theatre of the macabre.

I'm obviously in the minority, however.

You have far more seniority than I so please understand I say the following with due humility...

I have always understood the best and most active forums are a combination of fact, opinon and humor.  If a thread is slightly off-topic or "just for fun" it adds to rather than detracts from the forum.

My 1/50th of a dollar.

Date: 2006/10/29 11:15:02, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Richardthughes @ Oct. 29 2006,13:20)
Sorry you got canned, Scaryfacts. Dave has snowflake issues, as we've seen before.

I can't believe I got banned because of my religious beliefs...pretty interesting.  Hmmm...I'm a Christian, I am openly so, I have some issues with pop-Christianity and organized religion, but how does that have any bearing on whether I can discuss ID?

Oh, I get it.  It's because ID is a RELIGIOUS movement.

Wow, that's some heavy duty thought-control shite.

Date: 2006/10/29 11:29:12, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Drew Headley @ Oct. 29 2006,15:52)
To clarify things, I emailed Dr. Schneider to get his opinion on the issue. The question I asked was whether a signal constructed from white noise could convey information to a receiver.


The email was a great idea, I wish I had thought to do it myself. But it still won't work.  You see, Dave can't comprehend the concept.  No matter how many words you try to use, the concept gets lost in Dave's internal noise.

Ironic, no?

Date: 2006/10/29 15:27:37, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Frisbee carries on the good fight:

frisbee // Oct 29th 2006 at 7:51 pm


When a snowflake is first observed it looks designed for what? If there’s no answer to that then it doesn’t look designed to an engineer unless it’s obviously artificial in nature.

Which, of course, begs the question as to, who, or how, one is to determine if there is a “what.”

There are plenty of for “what’s” behind a snowflake. Life on earth would be a heck of a lot different if snowflakes weren’t “designed” the way they are.

So, are they designed, or not?

Link to Comment

Also, just in case Frisbee is "watching," thanks for protesting my ban.

Date: 2006/10/29 17:30:09, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 30 2006,00:18)
It's kind of embarrassing when you laugh at someone for not knowing something, then it turns out that they actually DID know it and you didn't.  :-)

Yes, Dave, it is.

Date: 2006/10/30 09:20:49, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Somebody help me out with this one because it seems too simple from my perspective so I am likely missing something.

The new article at UD:

Seems to say things like crystals can self-organize based on their natural properties, but cannot self-order because they lack any sort of logical properties.

(I know, laymans terms, but that's the gist of it from my perspective.)

But doesn't natural selection provide the "logic"?  If it survives and reproduces then doesn't that order the results over the long haul?

Someone with a better grasp can make it clear to me.  Or at least try.  I'm an undereducated southern boy.

Date: 2006/10/30 14:25:33, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (REC @ Oct. 30 2006,17:50)
...Selective pressure is blown off. All in all, the paper presents a question without an answer in the damndest confusing terms possible...

Thanks REC.

Date: 2006/10/30 18:35:54, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Gee, thanks BWE, that's just what I wanted to see...

Date: 2006/10/31 06:40:39, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
5. Ekstasis // Oct 31st 2006 at 7:47 am

So, how did we ever get to this sad state of affairs in academia? We started with Plato’s Academy, where free and open discussion of ideas and inquiry was encouraged, and each person could contribute or ask questions.

And now, as evidenced by the article, we have come to a situation more akin to Socrates’ final days, where the thought and idea police were continously on the lookout for dangerous and incorrect ideas that may upset the sensitivities of the elite and powerful.

Comment by Ekstasis — October 31, 2006 @ 7:47 am

Ironic, no?

Date: 2006/10/31 06:47:38, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Russell @ Oct. 31 2006,12:26)
Do you believe Hitler died in his bunker in 1945? If so, was it "historical records with geneological tables" that persuaded you? Or was the the post-facto forensic work?

I knew all you evil Darwinists secretly love Hitler.

Date: 2006/10/31 11:31:47, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (bwee @ Oct. 31 2006,17:20)
I'll help you out here Dave. I am an as yet unknown creationist who will help you to prove that ice cores do NOT show how old Earth is! The Bible does! And how do we know this?? Because it SAYS SO!!

Thanks for posting bwee.  A couple of questions from a fellow Christian...

1.  Since 1/3 of 110K years is still 10-15x the Biblical number, how do you reconcile that with the Biblical account?

2.  Where did the water for the universal flood come from and where did it go?


Edit:  Math.  Golly, it was bad...

Edit2:  What is your reference for the above quotes?

Date: 2006/10/31 11:50:21, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (bwee @ Oct. 31 2006,17:40)


(You are likely a loki, but I would still like to see where you are getting this tripe to at least point out how unsupported it is...)

Date: 2006/10/31 12:14:05, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (argystokes @ Oct. 31 2006,17:59)
Um, dudes, who was it that was pushing for a discussion of ice cores?  Who was it that challenged Dave that he could beat him in an argument no matter which side he took?  And the new "creationist" is named bwee?

Bee dubs, come out from under that mask!

They can't be the same person--bwee wears glasses and BWE doesn't:

Date: 2006/10/31 16:28:26, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (dougp59 @ Oct. 31 2006,21:25)  Where we fish for the truth on the theory of evolution.  Take our 7 question quiz, post on the blog, e-mail the author.

Our site now ranked #1 on page 1 of search results on Google and Yahoo using keyword phrase "Evolution Sucks"  We rank higher than the Simpsons "Evolution Sucks" episode!  



Come here with some humility and an open mind and these folks will teach you more than you can imagine about evolution.

Try it.  You might be surprised.


EDIT:  Why not post your 7 questions here and ask for responses.  Again, you might be surprised.

Date: 2006/10/31 18:13:40, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ichthyic @ Nov. 01 2006,00:10)

You would think this is some young kid, but according to his blog he is a 46 year old father of three.  Makes you wonder.

Date: 2006/10/31 18:28:08, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Nov. 01 2006,00:19)
DougP53, are you a Young Earth Creationist, or an Old Earth Creationist?

His blog states he is a YEC:

Date: 2006/11/01 04:57:59, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Zachriel @ Nov. 01 2006,08:50)
On Joseph's Blog, I have pointed out a wide variety of different and specific predictions from Common Descent, including from genetics, phylogenetics, microbiology and paleontology. Though genetics is considered the strongest evidence, the easiest to understand, and often the most dramatic, is the paleontological evidence.

Thank you for patiently addressing Joe's claims.

He really fell apart about half way through and just fell back on name calling and denial.  You did well.

I learned a ton.

Date: 2006/11/01 08:54:17, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (bwee @ Nov. 01 2006,14:30)
Very good info that utterly decimates the evos theory of an old Earth.

I found this book at the link as well bwee:

It for ages 8 and up and appears to have pretty pictures.  Gosh I wish the rest of you guys would make science as simple as bwee.

Date: 2006/11/02 08:01:26, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Edit:  Moved to New Thread

Date: 2006/11/02 08:16:44, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
I read the first chapter and I had a couple questions.  Since I am pretty much a novice at this stuff I appreciate all the things you guys patiently explain to me.

On page 8 Dembski provides a list of the differences between chimps and humans.  Here are some things I believe are correct, someone tell me if I am off base or not:

1. Chimps, like man, should have continued to evolve making today’s chimps somewhat different than the common ancestor.
2. Physical dissimilarities are not significant.  The real significance is in the genetic findings (like a broken vitamin C gene.)

Thanks in advance.

Edit:  Russells post answers #2:

Date: 2006/11/02 08:39:57, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (jeannot @ Nov. 02 2006,14:26)
1. They have.
2. Physical dissimilarities are very weak, except... hairs? Regarding morpho-anatomy, chimps are not closer to gorillas than to us.

Thanks Russell, thanks Jeannot.

What amazes me is how I have no real education in biology, yet hanging around AtBC and PT has taught me enough to recognize these things, yet people like Dembski seem to miss them.  I have to believe it is willfull ignorance or willfull deception.

The hairs issue: Are you referring to the difference between Chimp hair and humans?  It is my understanding that humans have hair designed for swimming while chimps do not (IIRC.)

Date: 2006/11/02 09:28:01, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (guthrie @ Nov. 02 2006,15:20)
I suggest replacing the word "designed" with the word "optimised".  That would help remove any doubt about design and designers from the statement.

Thanks Guthrie, sorry for the mis-type.  Yes, optimized is a better word to use, especially in this context.

Date: 2006/11/02 10:08:24, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (JohnW @ Nov. 02 2006,16:04)
Well, no.  But I'd love to know how much they spend each month on fire extinguishers and replacement pants.

What?  Fire extinguishers and pants?  What do those two have to do with each other?  It's like you are implying their pants are...Oh, wait...I get it.  LOL.

Date: 2006/11/02 10:22:02, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Glen Davidson @ Nov. 02 2006,16:02)
Physical dissimilarities would be important if complete novelty were discovered...<snip>

Thanks Glen for your informative post.  I do appreciate it!

Date: 2006/11/02 16:58:02, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Denyse is crying persecution by Google…

On approximately the 19th of September, the blog operated by Bill
Dembski and friends  Uncommon Descent
was delisted from the Google search index.

No reason has ever been given for why the site was delisted, despite requests for reinclusion.

This blog has tens of thousands of legitimate links, especially from trusted institutions of higher education.

This blog had been around for well over a year.

This blog has a Google PageRank of 6/10 (meaning it is considered quite important, even by Google)

The blog is run by a nationally recognized scholar and author [Dembski]

Unlike most things you guys discuss here, this is one I have some experience in.  My expertise is in search engine marketing and I do this every day for my various web sites.

It is difficult to get “delisted” from Google without doing something to try to “trick” Google into giving you a higher listing than you deserve.  Google lists hundreds of thousands of “trash” sites, so the idea that Google has an axe to grind with UD is worse than silly.

My best guess is Dembski tried some tactic he learned somewhere else to try to trick Google and got caught.

I guess it will probably help their fundraising efforts if they claim persecution by the big, bad Google monster.

Edit:  You DON'T get delisted for duplicate content--which seems to be the peg UD is hanging its hat on.

Date: 2006/11/02 17:12:52, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Nov. 02 2006,23:07)
Why Scary, it's almost like you're suggesting that A Reader From Waco, Texas, might have done something unethical to promote himself, and then blamed evolutionists for the fallout. Perish the thought.

I have suspected as much since I first heard they were delisted, but when I read the stuff someone (you?) posted about the "reader from waco" I had little doubt.

The level of ignorance about how Google or search marketing in general works at UD surprises me--it's not that complicated, and most successful bloggers I know have this stuff down.  With a PR of 6 UD could dominate a bunch of search terms if they chose to go about it the right way.

Of course if one sees himself as above instruction from others....

Date: 2006/11/02 23:25:59, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Occam's Toothbrush @ Nov. 03 2006,05:17)
Federal penitentiary isn't much of a bully pulpit.

Maybe he's the Nelson Mandella of Creationists?

Date: 2006/11/03 08:34:21, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Nov. 03 2006,13:03)
Who are you, Borat?

Billat: Creationist Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of IDistan

Date: 2006/11/04 08:59:04, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Nov. 04 2006,14:44)
Still not banned!

I wonder if Patrick doesn't have permission to ban anyone.

Quote (Kristine @ Nov. 04 2006,14:44)
Get off my flying carpet and walk home.

If I had a flying carpet I wouldn't need a car either.  Plus I'm not sure how much CO flying carpets contribute to the environment.  It also takes an entire acre of Brazillian rain forest just to make ONE flying carpet.

Date: 2006/11/05 07:38:36, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Kristine @ Nov. 05 2006,13:35)
Oh, it be like dat, uhh?

Links be broken 'n s**t.

Yo, "Teacher click here" don't work, ayyight? Like you don' know? Fool, God be over at my place, chillin' and eatin' nachos. Fool.

Kristine channeling Mr. T.

Date: 2006/12/01 18:15:10, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Very helpful post--one minor correction on non-proportional fonts...

I think you had a typo in the font name--courier.

Date: 2006/12/01 18:40:19, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Bebbo @ Dec. 01 2006,16:58)
There are several people at UD who seem to think that atheists/materialists are not much more than the devil incarnated. The ironic thing is that some posters there have suggested it's only a religious belief that stops them committing all sorts of heinous crimes.

The reason I believe most fundamentalists (or at least fundy leaders) ass-u-me atheists must be grandma murdering, orgy loving, drunken homosexuals is their own "obedience" is rooted in fear of the judgment of God rather than any rational and reasoned morality.

I truly believe most of them would live completely differently if they lost their faith.  They fail to see any reason for moral behavior beyond eternal punishment.

The sad thing is the Christian view of morality is one that begins internally and manifests itself on the outside, while the morality tales and verbal assaults referred to as sermons today are designed to create people who look externally like Christians but are internally immoral.

I don't need a sermon to tell me how to love someone.  If it's in me then I do it.  If it's not then I won't.

Date: 2006/12/04 16:15:33, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Dave, as a Christian, let me break down the arrogance revealed in your post and offer possible alternatives:

Quote (afdave @ Dec. 04 2006,11:35)

Using a meaningless cliche to excuse arrogance is, well, arrogant.

Possible alternative:  Gee, I'm sorry.  I do act arrogantly and I apologize for my offensive behavior. (Please note the lack of bolding and caps.)

Quote (afdave @ Dec. 04 2006,11:35)

If I ever am momentarily arrogant (we all are sometimes)

When you offend someone, take responsibility rather than excusing offensive behavior as "something eveyone does but I might do only momentarily."

Try this instead:  "You know, many people tell me I'm arrogant.  I guess I must be.  Sorry.  I really need to work on that."

Quote (afdave @ Dec. 04 2006,11:35)

God humbles me with bloopers like this ... "Reminder them of their illogicalness and they go bonkers!"

"Reminder them?"  Pretty funny ... boy, I do get to typing fast sometimes!

Arrogant:  When confronted with your arrogance, claim it is God working a "greater good" in you.  You didn't type something stupid, it was the Hand of God working with you, his precious child.

Humble:  "I type stupid things all the time--just look at this thread.  I appreciate you guys being willing to put up with me."

Quote (afdave @ Dec. 04 2006,11:35)
Seriously, though, I think what comes across as arrogance to you is really just confidence in my mind.  And I'm sure I should try to be more humble, but the fact is that I am an extremely confident (some would say cocky) guy.

When many people tell you you are arrogant, you are.  Try being humble and accepting that you are far from confident and are overcompensating with cockiness.  

Quote (afdave @ Dec. 04 2006,11:35)

Now why do I say I'm a beggar who has found bread?  Well, I mean that I was just a guy like you who is going through life looking for answers to all the various questions of life, when it gradully dawned on me that all the answers were right under my nose!  This beggar had found bread!  I had finally found the truth that makes sense of everything!  This is exciting stuff, guys. Now why would I not want to share that with everyone?

This is the height of arrogance.  It's akin to telling someone "I was just like you until I became 'enlightened.'  Poor you, you're still a beggar who can't see the bread all around him."

Instead, try this:  "You guys demonstrate day after day you are intelligent thoughtful people.  I have found my faith explains many things for me and here's why..." then actually give reasoned logical arguments to support your belief while humbly considering the positions of others.

Hope this helps.

Edit:  Steve, didn't catch your post before I posted this.  Hope it is civil.

Date: 2006/12/04 16:56:44, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

I blamed Wesley for getting Uncommon Descent delisted as he was republishing all our content in what might have appeared to google to be a naughty scheme to build page rank.

Now in yet another delisting we find Wesley getting the blame. Once is a coincidence, twice is suspicious…

Comment by DaveScot — December 4, 2006 @ 2:02 pm

Let's apply this reasoning...

DaveScot is banned from PT for threatening to hack their weak security.

Then UD gets delisted for some mysterious reason.  Then "someone" hacks TO.

Once is coincidence, twice is suspicious.

Date: 2006/12/04 19:17:26, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 04 2006,18:37)
All nations should have complete and total jusidiction over it's citizens.


Date: 2006/12/04 19:30:16, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (Ichthyic @ Dec. 04 2006,19:19)
...unless you carry a really big stick.

then you can impose jurisdiction on all other nations with smaller sticks.

The winners never get tried for war crimes.

Date: 2006/12/04 19:35:59, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (phonon @ Dec. 04 2006,18:09)
We are the arsonists. We started the fire.

I thought we didn't start the fire. Either Billy Joel is wrong or Dembski is wrong. Since only the good die young and it's still rock and roll to me, and since CSI is a pile of crap, it must be Dembski that's wrong. Well, you may be wrong, but you may be right.

Are you an uptown girl or a downtown man?

Date: 2006/12/04 20:34:46, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 04 2006,20:11)
I scored a 34%, which is good?  Actually I left quite a few unanswered.  All and all it was pretty mindless.

Mindless? Yes. That's the point.  Anyone who doesn't score highly on this test is certainly mindless.

At what point do you believe giving up personal liberties or taking others personal liberties by force is a good thing?

If I don't like what you are doing, but you have broken no laws, how long can I confiscate your property?  Lock you in prison without trial?  Keep you from contact with anyone outside the prison?

Date: 2006/12/05 07:30:04, Link
Author: ScaryFacts
Quote (stevestory @ Dec. 05 2006,03:07)
Politics, based on human nature, just doesn't percieve long-term, slowly growing threats, with even a fraction of its sensitivity to sudden disaster. So the fisheries problem, like global warming, will worsen and worsen.

When I was still in short pants (I'm 43 now) we were taught a great deal about the constitution and the rights we have in the US.  I was amazed how little of this was taught at my children's school.

In the US and probably everywhere else the lack of understanding of liberties makes it easier for the "leaders" to manipulate the populace.  Add to that the switch from news to newsertainment and adding the profit motive to news makes reliable journalism virtually non-existant.

The people are ignorant and easy prey.

As far as personal liberties go...

I believe we have two seperate catagories of liberties:  Public and Private.

In public you are welcome to have a camera follow me all over London.  In private you are not welcome to put a hidden camera in my bedroom without a judge deciding you have probable cause.  There is a huge difference between the two.

I also believe that optional activities (like flying on a plane or getting a driver's license) can have additional requirements which are hardly an infringement on personal liberties.  Suspending habeas corpus is something else entirely.

My biggest fear, however, is not wire taps or private cams.  My biggest fear is data mining by the government.  Who owns the records of my Google searches?  Me or Google?  What is required of the government if they want to identify me and see what I have been searching for?

I fear the "Minority Report" scenario where social scientists, psychologists and governemtn determine the likelyhood a crime is about to be committed by monitoring individual user's search activities and looking for patterns--much like is done with Carnivore now.

It's only a matter of time.

Date: 2006/12/05 08:19:09, Link
Author: ScaryFacts

Good post.

Sometimes I get discouraged thinking I have so few fingers and so many dikes.

But then I recall history.  Bad governance has always existed.  Eventually greed and gluttony result in collapse and the people get back their power.  Though the process is not very pretty.  I can't speak for the UK, but I suspect the US will implode (as in financial collapse) in the next 50 years.

Though some have been making that prediction for the last 50 years.

I don't see how our cold indifference to the world, our superior mindset and imperialism without reward will not bankrupt us physically and morally.  If we expand our responsibilities (as in Iraq) we must also have an expansion of our resources.  Instead, Iraq has been a drain on our economy.

Having said all that, I am still happy I live in the US.  I can live anywhere I have an internet connection and I choose to stay here.

In my mind there are two things, if implemented, would save the US from itself:

  • Eliminating campaign contributions and even "soft money" contributions and federally funding campaigns instead
  • Creating 2 term limits for every political position

    This would return the power of the government to the people.  Unfortunately the people who run things now are the ones who would have to implement these reforms.  It ain't gonna happen.

    Edit: Clarity--added "instead"
  • Date: 2006/12/05 13:29:01, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Since everyone seemed to be avatar crazy, I decided to make one.  Enjoy.

    Date: 2006/12/05 15:40:50, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Stephen Elliott @ Dec. 05 2006,15:03)
    I do not particularly mind being filmed when out in a public place if muggers, rapists, murderers etc are more likely to be caught and taken out of the general community.

    On the other hand, I do not want excessive intrusion into my private life by anyone.

    I agree, but our government wants far more personal data than publically available and is using "fear of terrorists" to get it.  When asked for accountability, they insist they cannot allow others to view the information or the terrorists win.

    The plan to "liberate" Iraq began in the 1990's put together by conservative group PNAC.  It was urged to Bill Clinton but was not acted upon until Bush.

    It's interesting to see the number of PNAC's recommendations that have been implemented under Bush.  I don't believe it is a conspiracy, but I do believe there is a certain neocon group think.

    Date: 2006/12/05 16:09:58, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    PaV at UD

    To me, at least, it is becoming increasingly apparent that science as a discipline has lost that essential quality which made science’s authority seem impregnible: objectivity. We increasingly live in a world where everything, including science itself, has been politicized. We’re witnessing the Fall of the Scientific Empire.

    The parallels to the ID-NDE debate are transparently clear.

    Yes, the parallels ARE clear.

    Date: 2006/12/06 15:22:43, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Mr_Christopher @ Dec. 06 2006,15:01)
    What happened to the jesus wars that started this thread?

    I wondered that myself.  I wasn't posting for a couple weeks and by the time I found the thread it was far from on topic.

    I would love to have a discussion with the folks here about the implications of contemporary science on religious faith--not a senseless YEC debate, but a real discussion.  I have tried that before on "Christian" boards, but it is impossible for them to be civil.

    Date: 2006/12/07 13:55:06, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Dec. 07 2006,08:36)
    True story.  Sucky part of that for them is that I was one of the faithful.  I really just wanted to reconcile what the Bible was teaching, I wasn't in any way questioning my faith... until I got the run-around.


    It was also the beginning of several years of internal turmoil (not to mention the beginning of the end of my BJU career), for which I am now grateful, but wish never to repeat.

    It’s been five years since I left the church (and my 18 year long job as a pastor) and I am still trying to reconcile many things in my mind.  You mention you were “one of the faithful.”  I prefer the word “sincere.”  I see very few in the church who are there for sincere and intellectually honest reasons.  That’s one of the reasons I left.

    I can readily accept the Bible as errant, but I do believe it is a reliable account of man’s understanding of his relationship with the Judeo/Christian deity.   Perspective is everything.

    The reasons I choose to remain a Christian despite what I have seen and experienced in the church are two-fold:

    First, the principles work in my own life.  Keeping a Sabbath has allowed my wife and I to raise two incredible young men—both of whom are sincere, thinking, compassionate and strong.  Loving others has helped me to build relationships that are strong and mutually beneficial.

    Second, (at the risk of sounding like Zero) I have had numerous experiences which lead me to believe there is a “spiritual existence.”  I don’t have a complete grasp of that spiritual “place,” but I am confident it exists.  In my own life I have been able to grasp that place through worshipping the Christian God.  (That is not to say others may have been able to grasp that place through other means.)

    (If anyone is interested I would be happy to post some of those experiences at my blog and we can discuss them.  There are hundreds of them documented in my journals over the last 25 years.  Some could obviously be subjective, but many are difficult to explain.  I am not an evangelist, but I would like my thinking on this matter critiqued and you guys seem more than able to discuss logical fallicy.)

    Date: 2006/12/07 14:38:16, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 06 2006,19:27)
    So on the topic of science and religion, speaking as one with a foot in both worlds, for the vast majority of people I deal with on a daily basis (forgive the anecdotal quality) there is no real conflict and one does not have much impact on the other.

    In short, people have more important things going on in their lives then the contemplation of abstract ideas that have little or no practical impact on their everyday lives.

    In my experience the people I see on a daily basis are somewhat concerned with reconciling the two.  A sincere, Bible believing Christian is a little dismayed to discover Behe’s Black Box was bad science.  Behe had allowed them to reconcile evolution (which most thinking people accept) with their belief in a creator.   When the leg is taken off the stool it’s a tough balancing act.

    Some simply ignore the differences, and go on in ignorant bliss.  Some do not.

    And as for “abstract ideas that have little or no practical impact on their everyday lives”…

    Possibly this isn’t what you mean or I am misinterpreting it.  Christianity demands a daily level of commitment and science impacting the reality of its teachings certainly impacts thinking Christians every day.

    My 1/50th of a dollar.

    Date: 2006/12/07 16:37:56, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (keiths @ Dec. 07 2006,16:02)
    Wow.  It must have been wrenching to leave after 18 years as pastor.
    Thanks Keiths for your kind words.  Yes, it was difficult, but (mostly non-Christian) friends helped ease the transition.  Now I see it as an amazingly positive step for my family and, surprisingly, my faith.
    Quote (keiths @ Dec. 07 2006,16:02)
    I'd certainly be interested in reading and commenting on them.

    I'll post some when I get a chance and I will let you know.

    Date: 2006/12/07 17:36:57, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Thanks for the encouragement guys.

    Before I share some of the supposed “supernatural” experiences I’ve had, I thought it might be good to think through how experiences can be evaluated.

    When I relate an experience, there are several possiblities:

    1.  It is truly a supernatural experience.
    2.  It is coincidence/natural process which I misinterpreted
    3.  I’m lying
    4.  I’m deceived (either by my own psychosis, my unintentional superimposing after the fact some details that weren’t really present or by other’s intentional plan)

    I think that pretty much covers the possibilities, but if there are others feel free to let me know.

    Date: 2006/12/07 19:01:34, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 07 2006,18:11)
    two points, the vast majority of christians have no clue who Behe is and they probably think "Darwin's Black Box" is a perverted bumper sticker rather than a book.  Second, hard science doesn't have a practical impact on most people in daily life.

    The vast majority of people are uneducated and read at a 7th grade level.  That doesn't represent most of the educated evangelicals I know.

    Back when Black Box came out I was regularly writing for a number of evangelical publications and Behe's positive reviews were everywhere.  He is still regularly referred to as the "Christian" alternative to "godless" evolution.

    Possibly you don't have much regular contact with Christians who are both educated and sincere, but those I have experience with are fully aware of the implications of contemporary science on their faith.

    Date: 2006/12/07 20:35:43, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Dec. 07 2006,20:12)
    SF, as an objective measure we could look at Behe's book sales and estimate from there.  I'll see of I can come up with that number.

    Because of the way evangelical "group think" functions, I suspect a better measure would be the number of Google mentions of Behe v. some other measure.  Most Christians would have heard about Behe via a medium like Christianity Today, their pastor, etc. and not purchased the book.

    But the number of Google mentions is only relevant when it is compared with some other objective measure--"is Behe more prominent than...?"  I'm not sure what to compare him to.

    The same would be true for book sales.

    Date: 2006/12/07 20:46:27, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    TRoutMac: … I'm a newcomer to UD and I have relatively little knowledge of the specifics of genetics and so forth, but I am a fervent supporter of ID


    Date: 2006/12/07 21:20:01, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (keiths @ Dec. 07 2006,21:08)
    I know your reference to "psychosis" was for comedic effect, but it's still worth stressing that perfectly normal, mentally healthy people are nevertheless subject to self-deception.

    Actually it WASN'T for comedic effect, though I appreciate the assumption of mental health.  The reason I included it was simply I acknowlege that as one possibility.  As I share some of the experiences I have had, it is possible some will believe I must be crazy.

    Maybe I am, though the history of my experiences doesn't fit the DSM-IV prognosis for any kind of psychosis.  I am just trying to be intellectually honest with myself.

    The purpose of me asking others to evaluate my thinking is simply to keep self deception as far away as possible.  I truly believe in living honestly.

    Date: 2006/12/08 04:51:30, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    If Dembski is considered influential in the ID movement, this Google fight might give a representation of how influential Behe is:

    Behe "intelligent design" v. Dembski "intelligent design"

    The Fight

    The results are almost identical.

    Also consider who testified in Dover--Behe is certainly considered by many Christians to be the "science guy" behind ID.

    Date: 2006/12/09 14:42:51, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Kristine - Got a 404, might want to check the link.

    And the destruction continues. The son of our praise band bass player, a freshman in high school, came home a couple of weeks ago and announced to his dad that science has proved that we are the product of “evolution” and that he no longer believes in God.

    Gil's Article

    How does a high school freshman lose his faith when he sees the truth of evolution?  Let's see:

    1.  He has been taught by leaders in his faith that if evolution is true, God doesn't exist.

    2.  He was not taught any positive reasons for belief, just reasons not to believe

    3.  He doesn't have any knowledge of "grownups" who have any better answers or experience in their faith than what he has seen in his own, young, life

    How many of these are the fault of the materialists?

    Luckily, Gil will come to the rescue.

    Date: 2006/12/09 15:16:42, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Kristine @ Dec. 09 2006,15:51)
    I meant to send you to a 404, toots. I looked up that page especially. Of all the posts at UD, that's my absolute fav!

    I bow before your superior comedic intellect.

    Date: 2006/12/09 16:27:58, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Dec. 09 2006,16:30)
    One of my Kentucky snake-handling relatives, the kind of person which makes me think AFDave is authentic

    Hey, don't be so tough on us snake handlers!  That's me, on the left.  Please note that Elmer--he's my brother on the right--lost his arm to a 'rattler.  And HE still KEEPS THE FAITH.

    If it ain't KJV, it ain't Bible.

    Date: 2006/12/09 16:42:25, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Dec. 09 2006,17:27)
    Quote (ScaryFacts @ Dec. 09 2006,15:42)

    And the destruction continues. The son of our praise band bass player, a freshman in high school, came home a couple of weeks ago and announced to his dad that science has proved that we are the product of “evolution” and that he no longer believes in God.

    Reminds me of Gillus Dodgenus, writing on Ye Olde Uncommonne Descente Blogge in 1712:

    And the destructionne continues. The son of our praise band lute player, a freshman at university, came home a forte-nighte ago and announced to his father that science has proved that the Earthe orbits the Sonne and that he no longer believes in God.

    Dear Sir, thou maketh me to revolve upon the boards, chorteling mine arse off of

    Date: 2006/12/09 16:45:57, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Kristine @ Dec. 09 2006,12:54)
    I think they have a soft spot in their hearts for me, I really do.

    And a hard spot in their...oh, nevermind, it was too obvious.

    Date: 2006/12/11 06:40:43, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Dec. 11 2006,04:00)
    When will the earth be 6001 davey?
    If you can say it's 6000 years old, you must know when it'll be 6001? Or will it be 6000 years old forever? That would be a miracle!

    Maybe the universe is like my wife--all the evidence points to her being 43, but she remains perpetually 29.

    Date: 2006/12/11 10:33:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Interesting article over at Red State Rabble today - seems Behe has had his feet to the fire about his testimony that astrology fits his definition of a scientific theory.

    Date: 2006/12/12 13:23:21, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Hooligan's post was closer to the actual Bible than those who wrote in to correct him.  And to say that putz is simply a word for fool belies an ignorance of its background.  Putz is slang for penis.  Calling someone a putz is the same as calling them a "dick head."

    I can't think of any Bible verse where Jesus called someone a dick head, though maybe the IDists have now created their own version.

    Edit:  Though, upon further consideration, they may not be experts in the Bible or law, they probably are experts in narcissistic dick heads.

    Date: 2006/12/12 13:34:01, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    C. If you seriously believe that what Jesus would do is support a judical decision that flies in the face of free expression and serious scientific debate, I suggest you pop out a New Testament and re-read the words of Jesus before making any further poorly-considered estimates of what he would or wouldn’t do. As I recall, he said something about the truth setting you free. Censuring debate via judical fiat seems contrary to that notion.

    No Terry, you might want to re-read the words of Jesus before you quote mine him.  Here’s the context of your “quote”:

    “If you hold to my teachings you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”

    Nothing about free expression, nothing about scientific debate.  It’s about holiness and propriety.  Calling people dick heads probably falls outside that standard.  It’s amazing to me that you creationists seem to have so little knowledge of the Bible which is foundational to your beliefs.

    Date: 2006/12/12 13:58:44, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    DaveScot // Dec 12th 2006 at 2:44 pm

    Jones has a lot of chutzpah kvelling like a maven and macher when all he did was schlep the ACLU brief out as his own like a common gonif. No mench is he, the mamser!

    A pisher nudnik with a schlock spiel. Talking out of his tuchus like some kind of shamus.

    But in all fairness I’m not sure that makes him a putz.  

    Comment by DaveScot — December 12, 2006 @ 2:44 pm

    Dave's not one to use vulgar name calling.


    William Dembski // Dec 12th 2006 at 2:47 pm

    Okay, I changed putz to schlemiel. Satisfied?

    How about: "As a Christian Seminary Professor I used a word I shouldn't have and I apologize for any who were offended."

    Date: 2006/12/12 19:38:01, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Kristine @ Dec. 12 2006,19:52)
    You will likely find broken trust and heartache in love or business or law or politics.
    When that should happen, rather than give in to disillusion, remember that Jesus’ sacrifice was real and that He loves you.

    The place where I found broken trust and heartache wasn't in love or business or law or politics, it was in organized religion.

    It seems disturbingly easy to find it there.

    Date: 2006/12/12 21:08:20, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (alicejohn @ Dec. 12 2006,20:59)
    For Dave: For all you hold dear, please end this thread.  If God created the universe 6000 years ago, it could ONLY have happened by an immeasurable and unobservable miracle.  God certainly is capable of such a thing, but there is no science that supports it.  It has been pointed out to you several times a weakness in the theory of evolution is not proof that God did it in 6000 years.  Not one person on this thread will deny you the right to believe in a 6000 year old Earth: just keep it out if science class.  Your main two problems then will be to explain to your sheep why God created the universe with apparent age (you should have no trouble with this for most of the sheep) and to find another way to overthrow the government of the United States.

    Excellent thoughtful and appropriately moderate post.  Thanks alicejohn.  Now if only Dave will realize the wisdom in your words.

    This is becoming more and more of a train wreck.

    Date: 2006/12/12 22:27:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I wondered why I found DaveScot surprisingly attractive, now I know.  No more tofu for me!

    Date: 2006/12/15 12:04:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Louis @ Dec. 15 2006,12:50)
    So how do we do it?

    Human nature being what it is, people in the US won't give up their SUV's until it becomes so expensive to drive them they must switch to public transportation or to (heaven forbid) bicycles.

    The only way I can see this happening is if we tax private use gas until it reaches a tipping point.  The problem I have with that plan is simply I don't think the government needs any more of my money.

    Another benefit of having high transportation costs would also be the increase in cyber-commuting.  I get to work from home as a writer and my commute consists of walking from the bedroom to the den.  Not too much gasoline used to get there.

    Date: 2006/12/15 18:31:47, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I live outside of any "real" city on a hobby farm, so we need vehicles to accomplish some of the tasks we need to get done.  I ride my bike to the Wal-Mart Collective (we were assimilated several years ago) and it's only a couple miles.  I jury rigged a milk carton over the rear wheel of my bike so I can buy some groceries, etc.

    But when I need hay or wood or just about anything else for the farm I have to take the truck to the store to pick it up.

    I've heard the predictions of price leaps when we a certain reserve point, but I also wonder how much our affluence will act to counter the influence.

    We'll see.

    Date: 2006/12/15 22:01:21, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Dec. 15 2006,22:50)
    I'm eventually going to have to resign my commission, because there's no proper response to this which doesn't involve lots of cursing and spitting.

    Try this:

    Fiddlesticks.  You're dummer than a bag of hair. You are an unworthy sack of monkey puss.  I hope your naughty parts turn green and fall off.

    Date: 2006/12/16 22:45:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (blipey @ Dec. 16 2006,22:21)
    I'd like to nominate Joe G. as the new Tardiest Tard in Tardville.


    I just went over to JoeG's blog via your link.  It is like a train wreck.  I couldn't look away.  Oh the humanity.

    I second your nomination.

    I would also like to nominate his Intelligent Reasoning blog for "most ironic blog title of the year."

    Is it possible that UD is where people with serious inferiority problems go to feel important?

    Date: 2006/12/17 22:24:09, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I thought this might be appropriate response to the Judge Jones flash...enjoy Dembski, the dancing elf:

    (If someone wanted to add some vocals we can do that too...things like "I detect design--just look and how designy it is. Fart.")

    Date: 2006/12/25 20:06:37, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I live north of Knoxville, TN.  Born in Tonawanda, NY (outside Buffalo), moved to Terre Haute, IN, college in Cincinnati then 20 years in rural Kentucky.

    Date: 2006/12/26 19:04:17, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Age 43.5

    I'm also interested in what everyone does professionally.  I have been a technical writer for the last seven years.

    Date: 2006/12/26 19:32:36, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Those videos are impressive, they just need one more bad-ass mofo:

    Date: 2006/12/26 21:11:16, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Dec. 26 2006,20:55)
     I'm betting that your technical writing pays an awful lot more than my exotic-pet writing does.    ;)

    Yeah, I'm loaded.  While just the other day Bill and I were out on my yacht and he said to me “Kevin, you know I wish I had been a writer like you instead of doing this whole ‘Microsoft’ thing.  You really have the life.”

    I was just about to make a smart comment when my assistant ran up with an urgent call from Trump.  He needed some advice about what to do on the Miss USA fiasco.  Then, talk about co-incidence, Warren Buffet called Bill (they’re old friends) trying to get my number for some investment advice.  I got off the phone with ‘The Donald’ and Bill handed me his phone.

    Yeah, this technical writing, it’s the best.

    Date: 2006/12/27 11:24:36, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Using a generation of 15 years, average life expectancy of 30 years, 50% mortality before age 15, and one child per year for each female for 15 years, I come up with about 1.5 million living descendants in 180 years.

    And, yes, I realize this is a completely impossible scenario--it would be hard to imagine all females remaining fertile while nursing, traveling great distances, etc.

    It also makes the maximum labor pool very small:  750K total males.  Half would still be children under 15 and you have to figure those over 15 have some who are unable to work due to some disability.

    Let’s say that leaves 300,000 men.

    But it would take most of those men to grow the crops for all those hungry babies.  That means you are looking at a maximum labor pool of less than 75,000—and probably much lower.

    Edit:  Longevity has little impact on this scenario unless individual women were giving birth to MORE than 15 children.  I don't think even the Bible paints that picture.

    Date: 2006/12/28 17:29:26, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Dec. 28 2006,17:54)
    C'mon ... gimme some real objections.  Don't like my population formula?  Gimme your own then.  Show me how I'm wrong ... specifically.  

    I already did the calculations.  It looks really bad for you Dave.

    Here's the permalink:

    But since you like the Bible as source material, consider population growth as represented in the Bible during the very period the pyramids were being built.

    Exodus 1:1 tells us that only 70 descendents of Jacob/Israel entered Egypt.

    Versus 10-12 tell us they were made slaves and increased EVEN MORE under slave conditions:


    10Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.

    11Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses.

    12But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel.

    How many did they grow to?  According to Exodus 38:26, they eventually grew to over 600,000 men over 20.

    This implies a total population of 2 million.

    But here's the key, infallible Dave, how long did it take to go from 70 (not just 8) to 2 million?  Your Bible tells us in Exodus 12 it was a total of 430 years.

    So, starting with 8 times the number of original "breeders" it still takes 430 years to get to a couple million.

    Explain why the Bible in Exodus 1:7 calls this "explosive growth":

    7And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with them.

    when it pales in comparison to the explosion you say happened in just 180 years?

    Is the Bible wrong or are you?

    Date: 2006/12/28 18:07:09, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Hey, I play too.  Unfortunately, so does my 21 year old son--so my guitar money went to buy his Martin acoustic and PRS electric.  Oh, and the amps.  All the amps.

    So I keep playing my Takamine.

    Favorite group?  Bare Naked Ladies.

    Other groups I like (all oldies but goodies):

    BTO (when they weren't stoned), Blue Oyster Cult, ZZ top, Grand Funk Railroad, CCR, Dobbie Brothers, Chicago

    Hobbies:  I practice the ancient art of Fee Shin, wieght lifting (when I was younger I called it "body building" but at 43 it's more like "fat control"), playing my guitar, hiking, travel (hotel camping), drinking to quiet the voices in my head.

    Date: 2006/12/31 09:34:00, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I think the thread has done its job well enough--now it's beginning to look a little sad.  There is no way Dave really believes he is "winning" all these arguments (except for the AiG funding) and he is making himself look like a complete fool.

    I would recommend closing the thread.

    Date: 2006/12/31 13:41:37, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Dumb as...

    ...a sack of hair
    ...a box of rubber brains
    ...a Kentucky creationist museum
    ...a baboon dog

    Date: 2006/12/31 20:46:00, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    If it means anything to you all...

    I came here trying to find out if my faith in creationism had any basis in science.  I had heard about intelligent design and supposed the people behind it were honest, sincere, Godly people.

    When I read AFDave’s initial “hypothesis” I believed he was going to demonstrate each of the points to be plausible.

    Of course, months later, it’s obvious that isn’t true.

    But I want to say thank you to all those who provided references to refute his uninformed arguments.  It helped me to see how utterly impotent and dishonest the claims of creationists truly are.


    Date: 2006/12/31 20:56:44, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Dec. 31 2006,21:41)
    "Dave's thread helps ToE supporters"


    You ought to be ashamed of your conduct and dishonesty.  You bring dishonor on Christianity with your boastful ignorance and outright lies.  It is because of people like you that others have a tough time telling the unsaved about Christ.

    Rejoicing in your insolence and pride is disgusting.  You are one of the most insincere and dishonest people I have ever met and your morality pales in comparison to those of the "atheists" who have countered your arguments.

    Do you have any clue how you have humiliated Christianity?  The only comfort I have is knowing the non-Christians here have enough sense to see you as not representing Christians as a whole.  They see you as an aberration.

    You need to spend much more time learning the character of Jesus and much less time with Ken Ham.

    Kevin Scott

    Date: 2006/12/31 21:53:33, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Dec. 31 2006,22:36)
    Scary Facts ... you seem to have a Casper Milktoast concept of Christianity ... have you never heard of how Jesus talked to the Pharisees?  There are some people here at ATBC who act like Pharisees and need some tough talking.  On the other hand, there are some decent people here too and you'll notice that I do not talk forcefully or sarcastically with them.

    And I have never lied at this forum ... not even once.

    I think you have some serious thinking to do about who are the "good guys" and who are the "bad guys" in this modern culture war.

    You appear to have swallowed many fallacies.


    Where to begin...

    You have little understanding of the "character" of Jesus, especially in dealing with non-Christians.  I didn't come to your thread wanting evolution to be reality.  Instead I thought you would demonstrate the reality and honesty of a creationist view point.

    Based on your vacuous arguments and the documented research by your adversaries it has become obvious to me evolution best explains the data we have available to us and your YEC falls apart completely.

    Dave I have spent 25 years studying the Bible.  Only recently have I gone back to my science/math roots to explore things like evolution.

    What I have found from "Christian" sources is dishonest and baseless.  Just as I have seen from you.

    We are not in a "culture war" as you represent it--this is a question of honesty and dishonesty.  The question is really about whether we can accept reality or not and how that fits with Biblical faith.

    You provide only denial as a basis for faith.  Many will read your words and lose their faith.  Fortunately for me I had a basis for my faith outside of literalism.  Many do not.

    You claim to have never lied.  I beg to differ.  Your dishonesty is obvious for any neutral observer.

    How dare you do this in the name of Christ.  It's appalling.

    The Lord Rebuke You,

    Kevin Scott

    Date: 2007/01/01 10:03:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (heddle @ Jan. 01 2007,09:11)
    On that basis I claim that Fred Phelps (our example) is not a Christian, and should he not repent I fully expect that he’ll rot forever in he77. But I could be wrong, as I stated in that thread. However, based on biblical instruction, I am going to treat him as a non-Christian until such time he demonstrates the fruits of the faith he claims.

    Dr. Heddle,

    With all due respect...

    Calvin tortured and murdered several dozen people in the name of Christ--by your definition was Calvin a Christian?

    Date: 2007/01/01 16:38:15, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    I am sure I missed several people in the following poem.  Sorry if it was you.  I tried to include as many names as I could remember.

    Now, keeping in mind my disclaimer, here is the:

    Ode to AFDave's Creator God Hypothesis

    One day the Hawk found a magic scroll
    With magic reading glasses beside
    And he read and read and read and read
    To learn the truth inside

    And as he read he understood
    For the very first time
    That up was down and down was up
    And to not teach this was a crime

    So he began to teach his truth
    Seen only through glasses and scroll
    To little children, just 8 years old
    And forums he did troll

    The Hawk then took his magic scroll
    And flew it to the bar
    To tell scientists and lurkers there
    The truth he learned afar

    He challenged them to debate him on
    The preachings of the scroll
    Telling storied Steve and Dr. Murph
    This truth would save their soul

    So people came from far and wide
    To witness the debate
    ke assembled himself from rhyme
    Kristine shimmied in late

    Lou showed up with both the girls
    Ambiguous sexuality and all
    Old Man in the Sky was there
    Occam’s toiletries joined the ball

    Deadman brought an ancient skull
    Shirley brought a hug
    Arden looked like Fred Murtz
    Dickie Hughes brought a pet bug

    Louis flew from 'cross the pond
    Mike came from project Steve
    And Steve brought his long pin head
    Russell said he'd have to leave

    JuJuquisp came as the bat boy
    Along with at least one crank
    And just to guarantee expertise
    Came Rev. Dr. Flank

    Bob OH Bob was there as well
    Along with his friend Faid
    Blipey was their backup
    Or at least that's what he said

    Several came without a name
    People like BWE
    another two without a name
    MCC and GCT

    Icthyic came with smell of fish
    Seizure stopped his salad tossing
    Carlsonjok rode in on his steed
    Stopped at every crossing

    Midnight Voice spoke loud and clear
    At any time of day
    Stephen Elliot used his real name
    Jeannot, French to the fray

    Crabby brought apples by the ton
    To strengthen and refresh
    The Keiths all came down from the hills
    Hundreds in the flesh

    The knighted earl of dirty toes
    Brought his funky self
    JonF came without his H
    Left home on the shelf

    Wesley with his fuzzy face
    Agreed to host the competition
    And lurkers gathered round the ring
    To watch Hawk try his mission

    Up is down and down is up
    Proclaimed Hawk to the crowd
    No one can prove me wrong
    No one here I vow

    Dr. Murph with oversized head
    To protect his mighty brain
    Said Hawk you hold it right there
    You talk like you’re insane

    I’m not insane I know it’s true
    It’s written on the scroll
    look through these magic glasses
    And this truth you will also know

    Dr. Murph with patience great
    Began at the beginning
    Showing the Hawk why up is up
    It left Hawk’s brain a spinning

    Take off the glasses on your nose
    Pleaded Murph to Hawk’s thick brain
    Without the glasses you will see
    It’s always been the same

    But if up is up and down is down
    Where does that leave my god?
    The magic of the scroll proclaims
    Up is up is just façade

    So on and on the debate did rage
    Through spring, summer and fall
    ‘till finally storied Steve stepped in
    This has gone on far too long

    Hawk has no evidence or facts
    Nothing new since debate arose
    And with those glasses cannot see
    Anything beyond his nose

    As Hawk looked through his glasses thick
    It looked just the opposite to him
    Everyone else could see he lost
    His glasses proclaimed a win

    The lurkers just shook their heads
    A few of them did uncloak
    Feeling sorry for the Hawkish man
    Having pity on the bloke

    So Hawk flew way to his special place
    The Truth 4 Kids big hall
    And everyone else let an empty sigh
    Hawk didn’t learn anything at all

    So let this be a story now
    To people young and old
    Up is up and down is down
    No matter what the scrolls

    Date: 2007/01/01 17:47:51, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (argystokes @ Jan. 01 2007,18:39)
    Icthyic came with smell of fish
    Seizure stopped his salad tossing


    Argy - UGH!  Sorry I missed you.  I may have to add a stanza with anyone I missed.

    Edit:  Thanks as well Deadman

    Date: 2007/01/02 08:27:13, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Dr. Heddle,

    Possibly you thought my question about Calvin was meant as a jab to be taken rhetorically.  I was truly asking for your opinion.

    I tend to believe Calvin did not display any level of Christian fruit and, while he may have been correct in some of his scholarship, he himself was not a Christian.

    And about predestination and election:  What are your thoughts on determinism?

    Date: 2007/01/02 10:27:26, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    The pattern held up was that of the Old Testament, although Christians were supposed to enjoy Gospel liberty. In November, 1552, the Council declared that Calvin's "Institutes" were a "holy doctrine which no man might speak against." Thus the State issued dogmatic decrees, the force of which had been anticipated earlier, as when Jacques Gouet was imprisoned on charges of impiety in June, 1547, and after severe torture was beheaded in July. Some of the accusations brought against the unhappy young man were frivolous, others doubtful. What share, if any, Calvin took in this judgment is not easy to ascertain. The execution of however must be laid at his door; it has given greater offence by far than the banishment of Castellio or the penalties inflicted on Bolsec -- moderate men opposed to extreme views in discipline and doctrine, who fell under suspicion as reactionary. The Reformer did not shrink from his self-appointed task. Within five years fifty-eight sentences of death and seventy-six of exile, besides numerous committals of the most eminent citizens to prison, took place in Geneva. The iron yoke could not be shaken off. In 1555, under Ami Perrin, a sort of revolt was attempted. No blood was shed, but Perrin lost the day, and Calvin's theocracy triumphed.


    Under his control people who disagreed with his theology were tortured and killed.

    I have read your argument that “this was a different time” and that Calvin had the backing of leaders in the protestant church.  But I disagree with that assessment.  Calvin was a highly educated, intelligent and deliberative man.  If you claim he was so in love with Jesus (and presumably filled with the Holy Spirit, obedient to God) then how did he miss the compelling fruits of the Spirit which would have precluded such actions?

    Supposedly as the Spirit works in us we are not “conformed to the pattern of this world, but transformed by the renewing of our minds” just so we can know God’s will (Rom 12:1-2)  Unless I am misreading your point you are insisting his despicable conduct was totally forgivable since he was simply a product of his time.

    Did this brilliant theologian lack the ability to be transformed by the Holy Spirit?

    This is where you and I differ, and I believe it is at the heart of the argument of “fruit inspection”—we can arbitral ally overlook some sins and not others.  Theocracy or not, I don’t believe anyone today would see this as Christian behavior.

    So Dr. Heddle, do you believe torture and execution are a valid way to deal with heresy?  As Calvin’s apologist you have to not only show why it was a perfectly Christian thing to do in the 16th century and why it is not a Christian thing to do today.

    I admit there may be other options, but at this point I am not seeing them.  I am perfectly open to hear any other options you may have.

    About free will and determinism…

    I wasn’t trying to imply that Calvinism negated free will.  Instead, I believe determinism is likely the best interpretation for the variety of scriptures that picture God choosing us and us choosing him as well as Romans 9-11.

    I would appreciate your feedback on this idea.

    Years ago I was reading CS Lewis’ “Letters to Malcolm” when I came across this quote—it has always stuck with me.  To paraphrase:  If God answers prayer at all, He must do so from the foundations of the earth.

    I have come to believe (and I think this is consistent with the scriptures) that we have “true” free will (not simply the “illusion”) in that we can make any choice at any time.  However, based on all the things that have happened before (from the foundations of the universe/multiverse) our choice is predictable by an omniscient God.

    This depends on several supernatural events since true omniscience is precluded in our current understanding of physics, but I do believe it fits the scriptures.

    If my thinking on this is total hogwash, be happy to say so.  I not a theologian nor a physicist.  I do, however, know what the Bible says.

    Date: 2007/01/02 11:18:06, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but I find it interesting that we all agree the only thing Dave has won was the point about AiG's finances and Dave immediately creates an avatar to celebrate his win.

    If Dave "won" all those other arguments, why didn't he create a Portuguese avatar or a dog avatar or a Grand Canyon avatar?

    Again, I'm probably reading too much into it.

    Incorygible and Improvius – Sorry I missed you two as well as Argy with my poem.  I’ll put in an edit.

    k.e. and BWE, thanks for the kudos.   It was fun to write.

    Date: 2007/01/02 13:02:59, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 02 2007,13:53)
    'cause he doesn't know how to draw a Portugese Dog?

    I will at least say this:  The avatar makes his point pretty clear--clearer than anything else I've seen.

    You gotta give him kudos for that.

    Date: 2007/01/02 14:05:29, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (heddle @ Jan. 02 2007,12:11)
    First, the blurb you quoted recognizes that the state carried out these actions and Calvin’s role is difficult to ascertain.

    While I agree Calvin’s role is more civil than spiritual here, this account is consistent not only with what I have read elsewhere, but I believe with things you have written yourself.
    Quote (heddle @ Jan. 02 2007,12:11)
    Second, although I trust the Catholic Encyclopedia, in fact I think it a tremendous resource,—it’s still the Catholic Encyclopedia, and so it will have its own natural bias, as do we all. It will not be predisposed to paint the reformers in a favorable light, although I believe it does an admirable job of being objective.

    Agreed, and I had the same thought myself.  One of the problems with church history is most of it came through the custody of the Roman Church, which was not always pre-disposed to treat reformers fairly.

    But I didn’t see anything in this account which seemed inconsistent with others I’ve read—I used this one because it was online and I didn’t have to dust off any books!
    Quote (heddle @ Jan. 02 2007,12:11)
    Calvin was transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit, as far as I can judge—which again I can only base on his good works—but he should not be held to a standard of perfection.

    Moses was a bad husband.  David a bad father, adulterer and murderer. Paul was possibly a bad husband.  Were they servants of God?  Without question.

    Was Calvin a Christian?  That’s the problem with looking at issues this way—you are convinced by the totality of his life he must have been; I respectfully see the opposite.

    Does a man have to be perfect?  No.  Somewhere there is a line—you don’t have to be a perfect husband, but you can’t live in adultery, etc.  I don’t think any of us knows exactly where that line is.

    And a major difference between David and Calvin is David’s repentance.

    Certainly most of Christendom agrees with your assessment, which likely means you are correct.  Still, I see so many non-Christians pointing to things like this to say “see, look who these Christians are—genocide, rape, torture…”

    I’ll let this go and go back to reading Phil 3:15.


    Date: 2007/01/02 14:26:18, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Larry gives Denyse a Bible lesson...

    Date: 2007/01/02 15:11:58, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Well if they're proud of the traffic at UD, see this comparison between AE and UD:

    Date: 2007/01/02 15:46:31, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 02 2007,16:19)
    I am sorry I don't know who posted this because it was compilation thread.  I am not sure if we want to get into theology here, since for many on this forum a literal interpretation of the Bible is not a conclusion.  I offered up a theory as too why the light got there.  In actuality I have no idea.  But regardless, the stars were created on a single day, that is pretty clear in the Bible.  Regardless of how they were created in order to see them and hold to a literal interpretation of the Bible than apparent age had to be included in the creation.  Just as Adam was created as an adult and the animals were created as alive not just as hatchlings with no parents.

    If this is your response then you aren't ever going to discuss science--it appears all you have is scientifically unsupported theology.  Why do you believe the stars were created in a literal 24 hour day?  The scrolls tell you.  What evidence do you have?  The scrolls say so.  Why doesn't the observed world fit your belief?  Beats you--all you know is the scrolls.

    I would recommend you go to one of the many Christian forums.

    If, on the other hand, you can point to genuine observation that provides for a 6K old earth, light before sun, life beginning as fully formed humans, etc.  We will listen intently to your evidence.  If you are about handwaving and scripture quoting you need to go back to the AFDave thread and spend time reading--these guys have refuted already the YEC arguments.

    Up is up and down is down
    No matter what the scrolls

    Date: 2007/01/02 17:49:41, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 02 2007,08:42)
    I believe the Davey Doodles thread has sprung a leak.

    Could somebody put a cork in it?

    Maybe Janie or Kate would be willing to put their finger in the dike?  I'm sure it wouldn't be the first time.

    Date: 2007/01/03 10:38:16, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,09:59)
     But if you are a Christian, I think the only road you can lead is one in which you hold to a literal interpretation of the Bible.  I have no qualms with the science around us not matching with the Bible.

    What is the basis for your infallible interpretation of your infallible Bible?

    I often ask literalists if Herod was indeed a fox because Jesus said he is in Luke 13:32.

    They typically reply:  Of course not—it’s obviously meant to be figurative.  Herod was a person.

    But then I ask:  Why then do you think it’s not figurative when you have an account of a snake talking in Genesis 3?  Do you really believe Satan was a physical snake?  Do you believe all snakes are Satan or his demons today?  Where do you see the literally interpreted Bible saying at some point Satan stopped being a snake?

    I do believe the Bible is a reliable record of man’s experience with and understanding of the Judeo/Christian God.  I believe it is reliable mostly because the canon was not settled until the 17th century and that meant the books that were eventually canonized had, over hundreds of years, become known throughout the church as those that best represented their faith.


    Up is up and down is down
    No matter what the scrolls

    Date: 2007/01/03 11:10:22, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Kristine @ Jan. 03 2007,11:16)
    Here's the shimmy, I mean, the skinny. (Arden merits a shimmy.)  ;)

    This is amazing...

    I make a nice living as a writer.  (I know, I know but most people read at a 7th grade level--even some editors--so I continue to make money.)  I have found Denyse's writing to be hard to follow and disjointed.

    Now I know why:  She's writing science article and books without any real science training.  Being able to write is an important skill, but shouldn't the scribe in residence for ID have some background in the "sciencys"?

    Date: 2007/01/03 15:29:24, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Warning:  Impossibly long post ahead

    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,13:53)
     You may believe that but your belief is not biblical.  II Timothy 3:16 states, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God".  The scripture was inspired or in Greek theopneustos, or literally "God breathed". The Bible was settled immediately after it's writing.  It was scripture the second the pen began to write on the parchment.  It was not written by the will of man, "but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." (2 Peter 1:21).  It is not a record of man's experience, but a record of God from God.

    A few of points...

    First:  When both Paul and Peter wrote these passages, what books were they referring to?  Especially considering some of the New Testament had not yet been written.

    Second:  If they became scripture the moment they were penned, why was there any further debate over which books to include in the canon?  (More on this in a minute)

    Third:  "God Breathed" is an accurate translation for the Greek in II Tim 3:16, and Christians are taught that really means "God Dictated"--the autographs (the original writings) were dictated word by word from God.

    However there is no other passage in Koine NT we can look at and see a parallel to give us further insight into the meaning of "God Breathed."  It might mean "God Inspired" which is far different than "God dictated."

    (Note:  There not being another occurrence in the NT is based on my memory from Greek class 25 years ago—if I am wrong feel free to correct me and I will examine the other passage.)

    And once one has read through the Bible many times it becomes obvious there are stylistic differences between the various authors, why would this occur with God dictation?

    Different writers call God by different names.  Some books are written in a distinctly Greek style while others come from a Hebrew mindset.

    The common argument here goes something like this:  Well, God dictated his words to the writer, but the writer “filtered” them through his own mind.

    Hmmmm…so that means exactly what I contend:  Men wrote as they experienced God.  It was their understanding of what God was saying and doing around them.

    Fourth:  When Peter writes “God Inspired” how to you take the leap to say it means “God dictated”?  Why can’t it mean what it says? They were inspired by God to write.

    On my 10th wedding anniversary I was so moved by my wife that I was inspired by her to write a love song.  Did she dictate the words because she was the inspiration or did the words describe how I viewed her?

    Fifth:  Who was right about divorce, Moses or Jesus?

    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,13:53)
    We did not need to wait until the 17th century nor was it settled in the 17th century.  The Old Testament was self authenticated by Christ, through His use of the scriptures while on earth.

    One of the common arguments “proving” the inspiration of the Pentateuch are the quotations Jesus makes from it in the Gospels.  The argument is:  Because Jesus quoted from Moses, it proves Moses writings were scripture.

    Just look at Moses’ and Jesus’ teaching on divorce:



    Deuteronomy 24
    1 If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, 2 and if after she leaves his house she becomes the wife of another man, 3 and her second husband dislikes her and writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, or if he dies, 4 then her first husband, who divorced her, is not allowed to marry her again after she has been defiled. That would be detestable in the eyes of the LORD. Do not bring sin upon the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance.



    Matthew 19:7-9 7"Why then," they asked, "did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?"

    8Jesus replied, "Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hearts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. 9I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery."

    So all those folks who were following Moses “inspired” commandments were actually committing adultery according to Jesus.

    Sixth:  While I don't have time to document them today, any neutral observer can see many contradictions in today's Bible.  They were either there in the autographs or they were later added through scribal errors--but either way it means the omnipotent God did not preserve his inerrant word.

    (If anyone wants me to document dozens of controversial passages I will be happy to do so later – I’m supposed to be writing for money today…)

    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,13:53)
    The New Testament Cannon was agreed upon long before the 3rd century A.D, and in many cases was self authenticated by the apostles by quoting from earlier New Testament Scriptures.  The apocrypha and Gnostic gospels were never in question, not even at the Council of Nicea.

    Even to the 3rd century CE, Origin questioned the value of Paul’s letters (though he did believe Paul’s teachings were authoritative) and there was no clear consensus on the New Testament canon.

    The earliest NT canon is dated between 170 and 400 CE (scholars disagree on date), but contains some books which are not a part of our current canon and leaves out some that are.

    Eusebius (c. 300) wrote that James, Jude, II Peter, II & III John were still in dispute as to their authority. At that time the authority of Revelation and Hebrews were still in dispute among the church fathers.

    Even into the 9th century the book of Revelation was not accepted by a large number of Christians as part of the canon. (See the Catalog of 60 and the Stichometry of Nicephorus.)

    During the reformation Luther (16th century) argued against Esther, Hebrews, James, Jude and Revelation being inspired.

    The Council of Trent made the Roman Catholic canon official in 1546. Interestingly, this vote was far from unanimous. To these Christian leaders, the canon was not obvious.

    In 1870 Vatican I added previously disputed passages to Mark, Luke and John.

    This is all pretty easy to Google, but here are a couple of links:

    Imagine you went in a time machine to 1520 and made that statement to Luther—“unless you accept Esther, Hebrews, James, Jude and Revelation as divinely inspired then your faith is not Biblical”—which is what I believe you said to me.

    If you are going to create litmus tests for salvation, why not use scripture? I don’t know of any verse teaching inerrancy as necessary for salvation—especially considering the length of time without an official canon and honest dispute about the content of the canon.

    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,13:53)
    While the Da Vinci Code might have been good fiction it was not an accurate potrayal of scripture.

    Awe, shucks, you just destroyed my faith…you mean Jesus didn’t have any kids?



    From the earliest days of the Christianity, most of the books in the New Testament were recognized as scripture. Only a handful were ever the subject of any real debate: Hebrews, James, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Jude and Revelation.

    We have a list of books that represents the canon near the end of the second century. It was discovered by L. A. Muratori in 1740. The beginning is missing, and the first book mentioned is the gospel of Luke and it’s called the third, so it is reasonable to assume that it included Matthew and Mark as the first and second books. From this we see what books are in the canon around A.D. 200. The four gospels, Acts, Paul’s thirteen letters, Jude, two epistles of John (the second of which is possibly what we now consider the second and third.) Revelation, and a second Revelation due to Peter. This book is known to have been read in some churches –its graphic treatment of the state of the damned might be the basis for Dante’s Inferno.

    All disputes were settled by the fourth century. In AD 363 The Council of Laodicia listed all the New Testament books except Revelation. In AD 367 Athanasius of Alexandria cited all 27 New Testament books in a (bishop's) letter. And in AD 397, the Third Council of Carthage became the first ecumenical council to list all 27 books.

    Not sure where Scary comes up with the 17th century.

    One correction--it was the 16th century (as above).

    I think the difference between you and I is one of interpretation--you take the earliest listings of canonical books and because they are substantially intact, you say the canon was settled.  But there was serious debate (as I've noted above) about some of the books even at the time of the reformation.

    But even if the canon was settled by 300 CE, it still negates the argument that one must believe these particular books were divinely dictated in order to have Christian faith.

    Date: 2007/01/03 18:02:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 03 2007,18:31)
    I am indeed jealous fellas. I went to the doctor today and the pretty young nurse of course made me get on the scale.

    Thirty frickin' pounds heavier than before I got hurt.

    That sucks.

    It's no wonder the girls have all the bloggin' mojo.  They get all the blog traffic, all the fun fundy trolls, all the interesting conversations, and all the hot sex.

    I get an ever widening ass.


    I know a hawt chick in Philly who's into big butts.  I'll PM her number to you.

    Date: 2007/01/03 19:13:08, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 03 2007,19:26)
    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 03 2007,12:53)
    You may believe that but your belief is not biblical.

    Says you.  (shrug)

    Is it your opinion that not only is the Bible infallible, but YOUR INTERPRETATIONS OF IT are also infallible?  Sorry, my fundie friend, but I simply do not believe that you are infallible.

    Thanks for the defense Lenny.  I do appreciate it.

    I don't really understand the need so many Christians have to jump right in and say things like this without taking any time to explore who the person is they are attacking.  At least he didn't do what usually happens when I get around fundies--they usually tell me I'm going to ####.

    When I read dgszwebda's comment I was certainly offended.  But I don't want an apology, I would rather he just answer the comments in my post.

    But I expect after reading this he will still just apologize--or maybe not, you never know.

    Date: 2007/01/03 19:28:11, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 03 2007,19:15)
    2) My wife would kill me, you, and the big butt chick.

    Oh, uh, tell your wife my butt loving friend is, uh, a physical therapist, yeah, that's it, and, uh, I was just, uh, thinking she could help you with your, uh, pain.  Of course I, uh, thought your wife would, uh, be there as well, you know?  I mean, that was all I was, uh, saying.

    I mean, uh, your wife doesn't own firearms, uh, does she?

    Did I say that I've moved from Knoxville?  Yeah, really far away, I'm, uh, doing research in Antarctica.  Yeah, that's it.  I'll send you a card.  Yeah.

    Date: 2007/01/03 19:38:05, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (ericmurphy @ Jan. 03 2007,20:24)
    And what happens when observation conflicts with the Bible, as it almost always does? We accept the Bible's account over our own senses why? Because our faith tells us so? But where does our faith get its information? From the Bible. How do we know what the Bible says is true? Our faith tells us so.

    Maybe we should have a thread exploring just these issues.  Almost all of the Christian forums have one, but as soon as you say, "Yeah, but the evidence is..."  You are told you're apostate.

    It gets old pretty quickly.

    But I do know I am not the only one here with Christian faith and a thread might allow us to honestly see how to reconcile some of our faith with observed nature.  Those who don't want to hear our Christian blatherings can avoid the thread.  Those who have an axe to grind get a place to vent.

    Lou:  Yeah, I know.  It's only a matter of time.

    Date: 2007/01/03 19:58:09, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts


    [insert juvenile man-joke here]

    Ha, Ha


    Date: 2007/01/03 21:34:55, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (blipey @ Jan. 03 2007,22:14)
    Do any YEC whackos read any responses to any other YEC whackos?

    Couldn't we just round them all up and put them in the same rubber room?  We could play continuous loops of science lectures.  Either they'd listen or they wouldn't, and an almost infinite amount of energy could be redirected to usefulwork.

    Alternately, dgszweda could read the GoP Geocentric Crap Thread or the AFdave BS Thread.

    Or, he could ignore everything that has gone on before and continue to wallow in willful ignorance.  There's money to be had in choice B.


    I agree (to a degree), but I am also aware of my personal history.  I was, years ago, a Biblical literist.  The final nail in the coffin of literalism for me was coming to AtBC.  While there are the AFDaves out there, you will also find people who are able to see truth v. falsehood--which is why I suggest a thread for Christians or other religious people interested in the truth of evolution.

    My 2 cents...

    Date: 2007/01/03 21:39:47, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Jan. 03 2007,19:59)
    "LouFCD? I'm ScaryFacts aka Chris Hansen. Big Butt Chick is 17. So uh, what are you doing here? Why don't you take a seat over there."

    17 is 1 year over the age of consent in Tennessee.  Just a thought.

    (I can't sleep so I might as well make meaningless posts)

    Date: 2007/01/03 21:53:40, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 03 2007,22:39)
    As per Scary's suggestion, I thought I'd give it a go, but I remember a poll long ago that tells me there aren't too many christians on this site so I don't expect this to go far.

    As for myself, I don't see or accept the conflict between science and religion so I have no trouble in my faith.

    It could all come down to semantics.  YECs, it would seem, should have serious difficulties with most modern science and have to exercise a fair amount of denial.  As per the poll, these represent the vast minority with, I think, only one active poster and that's Dave.

    Just the concept of reading the bible literally is debatable when there arises question of translation, context and historical accuracy.  So I would expect a large variety of view points just from the christians not too mention the remaining majority.  The unfortunate consequence will be the abuse from this majority that will probably keep many from posting or at least posting honestly.  That is to be expected.

    I would suggest, in keeping with the theme of the site, we limit the analysis to science associated with evolution or biology and possibly including cosmology and the origin of life.  This should be sufficiently broad without straying to far.

    Anyway, as a christian and a scientist, I would be happy to comment upon any science that some might consider a problem for my faith.  Please, Scary, join me and we'll see how far this goes.

    Thanks Skeptic,

    I'll post some stuff tomorrow--it's beyond my ability to think critically tonight.  I may post some stupid stuff on other threads, but I want to post something substantial here.

    Date: 2007/01/03 21:58:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Jan. 03 2007,22:52)

    No, seriously Lou, it's safe.  I don't know who this "Chris Hansen" guy, I've already taken a hit for you...

    Date: 2007/01/03 22:03:15, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Mike PSS @ Jan. 03 2007,20:40)
    Go away to the U.P. for the New Year and everything changes.  Gotta get this post in quick before the end times comes.

    Oh man, Mike, the UP is one of my favorite places on earth.  January?  Hope you bring your tire chains!  I'm jealous.

    Date: 2007/01/04 06:09:32, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 03 2007,22:39)
    As for myself, I don't see or accept the conflict between science and religion so I have no trouble in my faith.

    Based on what I have seen among Christian boards as well as my own experience, there is a tremendous tension between Christianity and science.

    In the US a brand of evangelical Christianity is the norm.  As such there is a ton of popular media directed toward Christians.  On a regular basis this media puts out comforting words to sincere Christians saying things like:  “You know the things you’ve been hearing about evolution?  Well it turns out real scientists aren’t even sure about it.  Plus it can be mathematically proven that we were designed.”

    Most Christians—even educated ones—are ignorant of the real biological sciences so this type of thing is easy to accept.  In addition they are often taught a false dichotomy of “if evolution is true there is no God.”

    But in some cases (like mine) people decide to look just a little deeper.

    When they do they see the lies being propagated in the name of Christ, it does provide a challenge to one’s Christian faith.  Those without a basis for their faith outside of literalism and popularism truly struggle.

    I’m hoping a thread like this one will genuinely discuss how to resolve some of those issues (and acknowledge some are never going to be resolved.)

    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 04 2007,01:09)

    This depth and breadth and all-encompassing power can only ALSO be approached only by one other cognitive construct: Science. This is why I keep the two separate and don't let them me, they're matter and anti-matter, but that's just MY view.

    At some point for me the cognitive dissonance between the two was just too loud to ignore.  I had based my entire life since I was 17 on the truth of Christianity.  Gave up a full ride to Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology to pay my way through Bible college, took my family to live in the poverty of Appalachia.  (I don’t mean to make it sound like these were awful things—we’ve had a great life—but the stakes were pretty high for me.

    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 04 2007,01:09)
    I'll add that I have yet to find any reason to make my "religious" views known to ANYONE, save myself. This has the tendency to disassociate it from the innate human drive towards power -- the desire to get other beings to think and do what you want them to -- and I think this is an acceptable position for me to hold.

    This is pretty much my stance.  One of the things I hated about ministry was being the morals instructor/enforcer.  The way evangelicals practice their faith today the minister is trying to impose Christian behavior from the outside.

    I always had the opinion if you are a Christian you ought to know not to treat your wife like crap—you shouldn’t need someone to tell you.

    Now that I am out of ministry I enjoy being responsible for my own faith and not everyone else’s.  I’m OK with God whether someone else agrees, disagrees or doesn’t even think about me.

    And power—even in small congregations—is a real issue in Christianity.  I’ve often said if you’re a nobody in life you can always find fame as a pastor.  It’s the easiest gig to get.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,04:05)
    If you really see no conflict between religion and science then you deliberately ain't looking, to be blunt. Granted the science/religion clash is not the whole deal, rather one sliver of a larger epistemological conflict between different human mechanisms of acquiring knowledge about the universe. The TRAGIC thing is that thus far, the only mechanism humans have discovered that in any reliable sense does allow us to acquire even only provisional knowledge of the universe is that which is best typified by what we call science.

    If God exists—and I believe He does (note the caps)—then His existence is consistent with accurate science, at least in my view.  I don’t believe He set up a lying universe.

    I don’t expect to ever understand all of God nor of science, but denial is not an alternative.  I am willing to say I have my own reasons for maintaining my faith, but I do try to integrate scientific reality with it as well.  Denial is intellectually lazy and cannot, by its very nature, lead to deeper “faith.”


    As I was about to post I caught you comment.  Yes, it is possible this will end up being about insults.  But what I have found on this board is that, in the main, if you treat people with respect they give it back.

    I think the title of this thread is somewhat unfortunate--I don't think we need to debate whether there are intellectually honest anybodys, of course there are.  If we approach this thread from the idea of "we don't know everything about our faith but are trying to see how we can combine faith and science into a consistent whole"  I believe it will be helpful to everyone.

    Sure maybe Louis, Lenny et al will put in some jibes, but then again, maybe sometimes we deserve them.

    You have to admit framing the debate as "are there intellectually honest Christians" maybe wasn't the smartest way to label this thread.

    Date: 2007/01/04 08:04:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 04 2007,08:26)
    So, that all said, my perspective on whether you can have an intellectually honest christian/muslim/pagan/hindu/whatever depends on their take on the belief. If they believe the stories in theor books then I have to say no, you can't.

    I respectfully disagree.  Or at least I think I do.  I am not a literalist, but I do believe the Bible to be reliable.  I am not immune to considering positions that seem to be the opposite of what I believe the Bible is saying.  If you are saying literalists cannot be intellectually honest, then I agree.  If you’re saying one must accept the Bible as total mythology to be intellectually honest, then I disagree.

    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 04 2007,08:26)

    My suspicions were confirmed and so far, it's 100%. Those who appear normal yet profess faith, it's a code word. It means something on the continuum between "I Like to hang out with other people and do things in my community" and I" like this stuff. What did you say it was again?"

    I don’t believe I fit into either of those camps.  First, I don’t attend a church.  I don’t believe organized religion is the way to go—it involves too many power and money issues.  I hang out with some Christians (many of them pastors) on an informal basis, and  I discuss with them the same types of things I discuss here.

    Second, I have a pretty good grasp on my own belief system which I am constantly refining in the light of new experiences/information/study.  I don’t really depend on others to define my belief system.

    I guess over time it will become obvious if these two things are actually true for me or if I am just deluded.

    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 04 2007,08:26)

    Wow, this staying up all night thing makes me goofy. Well, it's bedtime g'Night all.

    I’ve been up most of the last two days—I can emphathize.

    Date: 2007/01/04 08:57:17, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 04 2007,09:04)
    Quote (blipey @ Jan. 03 2007,21:14)
    Do any YEC whackos read any responses to any other YEC whackos?

    I enjoy the people who come onto these threads offering no real substance but like to call people names.  The intolerance from such a group of people who espouse tolerance is stunning.

    With all due respect...

    If you expect, as a Christian, to have even a remote possibility to tell non-Christians about your faith you will need to develop a thicker skin.

    You came here, to a science board, saying science is wrong and your proof was the Bible and that no matter what observable nature says you are going to trust the Bible is infallible.

    After telling me I don't have Biblical faith you then fail to respond to my reasoning well written and thoughtful post.

    You can call names but when others do the same to you, you get offended.

    Please understand that when you come to this board and say "evolution is full of problems" with no more than your faith, you might as well be saying "2+2=5"

    Without taking time to develop a relationship with the people on this board you aren’t going to be treated seriously any more than a first time visitor to your church would be treated seriously if they came in saying “your Bible is wrong.”

    You even have the balls to say you didn’t have time to read the refutations to many of your arguments already thoughtfully presented by numerous contributors.  It takes time for us to make thoughtful, meaningful posts.  You ignore them.

    Humility comes before honor.

    Date: 2007/01/04 09:30:23, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 04 2007,08:59)
    I don't know any Id'ers and I don't know any of the Creation Scientist who are on the witness stand.  Maybe they believe what they are saying.  I they are not intending to deceive than they aren't lying.  They may be misinformed or not presenting the facts correctly.

    If one represents himself as an expert in a field to a large group of laymen then presents falsehoods as if they are true it may not technically be lying, but it is certainly deceptive in the worst possible way.

    Diploma mill, honorary doctorates do not create expertise.  Doctorates in philosophy or theology do not qualify one to speak as an expert in biology.  Yet, because many of the "leaders" in the creationist movement have a Dr. before their name and claim to be Christians, the church, in general, treats them as well meaning, qualified experts.

    No one sees their OWN false teacher as a false teacher.

    If a person wants to teach "creation science" then they have a responsibility to either get the credentials or to openly admit they have no background and are just a layman.  To do less is hardly Christian.

    Quote (dgszweda @ Jan. 04 2007,08:59)
    You are asking me to make a personal judgement call on something I haven't read about or a person I haven't met.

    Yet you were perfectly willing to do that in my case.

    Date: 2007/01/04 11:40:23, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Let me clarify something several of you asked about.  When I said coming to AtBC was the final nail in the coffin of literalism for me, I wasn’t meaning to indicate I was a complete literalist until I came here in August.  Twenty years ago, after getting out of Fundy U I was certainly a hard-core literalist in the “Day-Age” tradition.  College students typically see things as black/white so I fit into that nicely.

    Then I got out into the “real” world working with “real” people and I began to see more possible variety of interpretation for many things.

    When you are a pastor and you truly care about the people you are ministering to, debates about literalism, homosexuality, creation v. evolution really don’t come up very often.  You spend much more time helping a guy repair his marriage after an affair or helping the truly poor or getting a prostitute off drugs.

    Ten years ago when Darwin’s Black Box came out I didn’t have much interest in reading the book, but I read several detailed reviews in Christian periodicals and they seemed to make sense.  Without doing the research myself, it seemed Behe had reconciled creation with science.

    By this time I also began to see how some passages fundies taught were literal were likely allegorical—which wasn’t a big deal for me since the Bible uses allegory on a regular basis.  I began to see the first three chapters of Genesis as obvious allegory, though I don’t recall ever discussing it with anyone.  Again, it just didn’t seem that important compared with the other things I was doing.

    I think AFDave refers to this as “comfortable oblivion”—I figured Behe et al had done the hard work of reconciling science with an evangelical view of the Bible so I didn’t worry about it.

    This past summer I read a book on the evolution of conscious thought and I first began to understand how RM+NS worked (at a very basic level) and that’s what brought me to AtBC.  The big change for me when I got here was realizing how baseless and overtly dishonest many of the leaders in the creationist movement truly are.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,07:41)
    It's pretty clear that "Christianity" means very different things to different people who claim to subscribe to it. For that matter, words like "religion", "faith", "God", etc. are so fuzzily defined that discussions like this never really get anywhere.

    You may be right, but I tend to think the discourse can be positive for anyone wishing to explore new areas of the spiritual.  You guys and gals tend to be logical and methodical and will tell me an idea is crap if it is.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,07:41)
    Science thrives on precision - both in the narrow sense of measurements and in the broader conceptual sense of framing questions. I've never had the impression that was much of a priority in religion. In fact, to be frank, it seems to me usually the opposite: that religion thrives on never being pinned down, on always being able to say to any logical contradiction: "but that's not what I mean".

    One of the things I am trying to do in my life know is to present (mostly for my own benefit) the reasons why I believe the things I do.  While they may not be precise in the quantitative sense, they do fall, I believe, more into the realm of “investigative proof” where one can say their faith is “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:36)
    What do you mean by "god" and "religion"? I would argue that science has shown that many definitions of "god" have no basis in fact. Note the word MANY not the word ALL. It is possible to imagine a god concept which is consistent with what we currently know about science for example.

    My understanding of God is based on the traditional Judeo/Christian deity as pictured in the Old and New Testaments.  While there will always be some debate on every specific characteristic of this god, the broad strokes a pretty well agreed upon:  Omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:36)
    "Religion" based on faith or revelation alone falls into that category of epistemological methods that are anathema to reason and thus science.

    If the Bible is reliable (as I believe it is) Christians should not only have the revelation (Bible) but also consistent objective evidence of God working in real ways in their midst.  I will write more on this, but if you go here you can see the type of things I am talking about:

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:36)
    Skeptic, and any other religious person reading, I apologise for my initial cynical skepticism, it was entirely unwarranted. It won't happen again.

    For the record, I was no way offended.  And skepticism is good—faith without question isn’t very strong faith.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 04 2007,10:56)
    Contrary to the majority viewpoint here, I consider myself to be an intellectually honest Christian and, since I have been lumped in with the AiG people (rightly so) I would be interested in hearing why Scary Facts thinks I am not (and they are not) ... maybe start with ONE of your biggest specific gripes.  (I already have heard your speel, Deadman)

    It is particularly interesting to hear that SF says he used to be a Biblical literalist, but is no longer since coming to AtBC.  I would be interested in what key items he found at ATBC changed his mind.

    David I was not trying to single you out as intellectually dishonest.  I think those who take a literalist view of scripture are either:

    1. Ignorant – In the real sense of the word:  They just don’t know how many impossible to reconcile ideas are in the Bible
    2. Intellectually Dishonest/Deluded – Because of their world view they cannot grasp the inconsistencies produced by literalism
    3. Lying – They know the things they are saying aren’t true, but they continue to say them for sake of money, ego, power, etc.

    I’m not going to place you, as an individual, into any of these three because I just don’t know which you would fit into.  If there is a fourth option I would be happy to entertain it.

    Why do I say they must be intellectually dishonest?  The evidence for common descent, ancient earth, local (versus global) flood, etc. is overwhelming.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:58)
    If however your god hypothesis is not open to falsification on current evidence then there's a different discussion we can have. If your god hypothesis is not open to falsification at all, then that's yet another conversation. It all depends on what you mean by "god"

    First, I don’t have a “god hypothesis” – I am just like everybody else, trying to figure some things out.  The definition of god is a moving target (as you noted) so coming up with a way to “falsify” god is not going to happen.  Man would just come up with a new god consistent with whatever falsified the old god.  Kinda like when Coke tried that new formula.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:58)
    Also, just what do you mean by denial?

    Not you, Christians.  (see above)

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:58)
    What I DO care about is that, if we are going to claim that X is part of reality, we have some reasoned, evidenciary basis for doing so. There are many, hopefully obvious reasons, for why that is. And no, it really isn;t because I am prejudiced against god, a philosophical materialist, or any number of asinine straw objects I know a decent bloke like you won't resort to!

    I agree completely.  I want to come up with a way of looking at spirituality consistent with the evidence I have—mostly personal—from my own life.  You can accept it or reject it, it matters little to me, but I want to see if I am just deluded or if the weight of the evidence produces a “reasonable” belief.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:58)
    If you are claiming that your god is something we don't/can't fully understand then sorry chum but that's really not cutting any mustard. It's the argument from personal incredulity and the argument from mystery added together. It proves, demonstrates and illuminates nothing. Saying something is mysterious or unkowable by fiat is the end of inquiry not the beginning. Perhaps your not saying that, perhaps you mean something different by "denial", enquiring minds want to know!

    A couple of things:

    First, when I recommended we have a thread it was not to prove or disprove any hypothesis—I’m not sure I would be the one to define it and I don’t think we have yet looked enough at extra-Biblical evidence to make any predictions, etc.

    Second, if the Judeo/Christian picture of God is substantially correct then we ought to be able to learn much about him.  What I mean when I say “I don’t expect to ever completely understand God” is more like “I know much about quantum mechanics, and I’m confident I can learn more, but I don’t think I’ll ever completely understand it.”

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,10:58)
    Yours in hopeful anticipation of a genuinely excellent discussion with a genuinely rational and intelligent human being ;-)

    If I find one, I’ll let you know.  I don’t have any here with me today.

    Edit: Just for clarity - I didn't mean there aren't any rational and intelligent human beings at AtBC, I was talking about "here" as in "my den"  i.e.:  I'm not a rational or intelligent human being.  Sorry I wasn't more clear the first time.
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,11:16)
    What's interesting to me is that someone so (apparently, at least) reasonable and rational as "Scary Facts" could have, until quite recently, been a co-religionist with afdave. The transition between flat-out wrong and fully open to the light of reason and the discipline of science (two different, though related, things, by the way) seems so radical, it's hard to fathom.

    Which is why I wrote the above.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,11:16)
    (Likewise, incidentally, the reverse transition: from sensible, rational, reality-based community member to flat-out fundamentalist. I wonder, for instance, about afdave's new boyfriend, Sanford. Maybe he wasn't much of a scientist, as opposed to technical tinkerer, before his conversion. Either that, or I have to ascribe it to a radical psychological or neurological breakdown. Generally, I'm pretty skeptical of the story you see over and over in fundamentalist literature: "I was a convinced atheist/secular humanist/evolutionist/whatever until one day...")

    People adopt or reject a philosophy not because of reason but because of emotion.  Typically they have a deep seated need to have the psychological pay off that particular philosophy offers.  Maybe his mother died and on a sub conscious level he needed to believe she went to heaven.  Who knows.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,11:16)
    Elsewhere in this forum I have described a position I call "insomesensism". I like to think that for religious people who are open to any and all science, or for that matter for religious people who just don't care about science, but do humanitarian work, their religion is "in some sense" true. Frankly, I can't figure out how some of what I think are the basic tenets of Christianity can be true. But who cares? I'm not trying to convince or unconvince anyone. I like to think it's a good exercise in philosophy and humility for me to remind myself that I may be wrong, and believers may be right, about Christianity "in some sense" that I just completely don't get. That's "insomesensism" from the perspective of the nonbeliever; that's how a nonbeliever can view a believer with not just tolerance, but respect. The other side of "insomesensism" is on the part of the believer: without trying to figure out how a nonphysical god could sire a human son, or other such seemingly scientifically dubious propositions, a believer might just note that he/she is a product of a culture that is organized around this religion, that culture is - thus far anyway - viable and valuable and productive of all sorts of wonderful things, and so that religion must "in some sense" be true. Or, again from the believer's perspective, perhaps he/she might just have a strong religious "feeling", and - knowing that the feeling is real, just as love of another human can undoubtedly be real without having anything to do with correct/incorrect, accurate/inaccurate, right/wrong - he/she might conclude that there must be something to it; it must "in some sense" be true.

    As I have said elsewhere I had certain experiences while taking the Judeo/Christian path that lead me personally to believe the God of the Bible exists.  That doesn’t mean I’m write or that the experiences I’ve had were caused by a Christian deity.  Possibly I was mistaken, mislead or there is some other option—like a previously unknown common consciousness.

    Just to be clear…

    When I suggested a thread I wasn’t secretly trying to convert the atheists by my rapier wit logical argument.  I just wanted to have a place where we could discuss spiritual issues as related to science.  I am personally disgusted when a Christian says “Oh, I’m here just to learn” when in reality they are planning the whole time to convert those who haven’t asked for their religious input.

    Edit:  That was supposed to be "right" not "write"

    Date: 2007/01/04 12:13:36, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    Before I reply to your posts, please give me your defintion of inerrant.  Specifically:

    * How you view the autographs
    * What MSS you believe are inerrant (if any) or authoritative (in not inerrant)

    It will be either late tonight before I can get to this or in the morning.  Sorry for the delay.


    Date: 2007/01/04 13:51:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,14:29)
    ...a genuinely rational and intelligent human being ;-)

    If I find one, I’ll let you know.  I don’t have any here with me today.
    Hmmm... I guess we nonchristians are not welcome on this thread. Oh well. Have an uplifting conversation among yourselves, Christians!

    Golly, I take a break from writing to see what's going on and find I have offended Russell.

    I understand there have been a lot of jabs on the AFDave thread, but that was not my intent.

    Just for clarification I was making fun of myself--I meant, literally, "I don't have any genuinely rational and intelligent human beings here with me, in my den."

    The group here at AtBC are some of the most rational and intelligent people I have ever seen.  I'll try to be more careful

    Date: 2007/01/04 19:55:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Despite Skeptics’ gloomy prophecy, it seems as if this thread is generating some interest.  Good, I’m glad everyone is here to help me sort out my muddled mind! (No sarcasm—I really do appreciate it.)

    Maybe this thread should be renamed “The Thread of Impossibly Long Posts”  one more long post to follow…

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,17:48)

    Omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence

    Ouch! That's quite a burden. Can god then create a rock so heavy he cannot lift it?*

    Bohr:  “Who are you to tell God what to do with his rocks!”

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,17:48)
    So why should we treat such a malleable concept which has no explanatory power (by the very virtue of being so malleable) with any respect over and above a similarly malleable concept? Why is your faith in your god any more or less valid than my muslim chum's faith in his god?

    If all your claim of god existing is based on is your faith in god and "seeing him work in your life" type anecdote, you have to admit that other people have similar faith and anecdote which is diametrically opposed, and mutually exclusive to your own. How does an independent observer distinguish between the two claims? By their results doesn't work because how "nice" or "nasty" something is, or how nice or nasty believing is it is doesn't have any reflection on whether or not it is representative of reality i.e. true.

    I don’t believe my understanding of God is any more reasonable or authoritative than any of the other major religions.  I do believe the major religions have a little more authority than the FSM because the ancient religions have been somewhat vindicated in their principles by hundreds of years of followers who found value and truth through their teachings.  That doesn’t make them right, it just gives them a little more validity than a random religious thought.

    Science always begins by an observation coupled with curiosity.  How did that happen?  Why?

    While I don’t believe I can prove the reality of God, I am trying to find possible explanations for things I have personally observed.  I am imposing on you all to help me in my quest.  Suckers. (LOL)

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,17:48)
    * The point is not to stump you with this question but to demonstrate the logical incompatibility of such infinite concepts. If god is all powerful he can do anything. If god is all knowing he can conceive of anything. etc. The answers "why would he want to?", "god is not subject to mortal logic" etc are a total abrogation of the theist's responsibility to support their claims and an overt admission that they understand how ludicrous such combined concepts are.

    Other than Bohr, I don’t have an answer (as you already know.)   This type of thinking is why I truly want your feedback.

    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 04 2007,17:48)
    You ARE a rational and intelligent person, not because on some things you agree with me but because it comes across in your posts. It's like how we all know that AFDave's an ego ridden arrogant arse, Skeptic's an occasional obliviot, Heddle is a bright bloke using his rectum as a snorkel and GoP is a revolting scumbag. Agreement is immaterial. My best friend is a christian and pretty much every bit as much an atheist as I am. I'm an atheist and pretty much every bit as christian as he is! Figure that one out ;-)

    Thanks.  I appreciate you saying that.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:17)
    > God does not contradict science, but a belief is God is not consistent
    > with the scientific viewpoint (i.e. it is not a falsifiable
    > hypothesis, there is no evidence etc.).

    I freely admit the things that I believe are tough to find “falsifiable.”  However my goal in this discussion is to have you help me evaluate whether my interpretation of the experiences I have had is even reasonable.

    I truly respect the things I have seen you all write in the last several months.  You know how to think—that’s rare.

    It’s possible we will come to a point where you can say to me “if your interpretation is true, then ‘this’ should have happened.  It didn’t.  Therefore you need to adjust your interpretation.”
    I’m sorry if this sounds selfish, juvenile or naïve.  I am more than willing to give as good as I get.  I’m just not sure I have as much to offer.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:17)
    Religion/ethics, on the other hand, also has a constrained area within which it can operate.

    Agreed, but I wonder if there aren’t some predictions we can make if the Bible is reliable.  For example:  the Bible pictures Christians (as a group) as having the regular intervention of God in their lives.  If you find a group of people who are practicing Christians, there ought to be a track record of “beyond a reasonable doubt coincidental” answers to prayer.

    I understand I am not giving you a quantifiable scientific prediction, but if one looks at it much like a jury looking at evidence in a case, possibly there is enough evidence to at least propose that faith is reasonable.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:41)
    (1) it's not just the fundies who want this to be all about "evolution proves there is no God".  The evangelical fundies want it every bit as much.  As I've often said, the evangelical fundies and the evangelical atheists simply aren't that different.  They both present the very same basic argument (they both want science to support their religious/philosophical opinions), and just choose different sides of the same coin.

    Good point.  
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:41)

    (2) when people learn about evolution and subsequently give up their fundamentalist religion, that is largely because THE FUNDIES HAVE TOLD THEM TO DO SO.  So the fundies have no right to bitch and complain when people simply accept at face value what the fundies themselves have told them -- "if evolution happens, then there is no God".

    I have tried to explain this to many fundies, but they just can’t see it.  I think I even made a similar post to AFDave.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:41)
    (3) those who do indeed have a faith that is based outside of literalism (or, as I like to put it, those who worship a God instead of a Book About God --and are smart enough to know the difference), don't have any gripes with science.  The only ones who DO have a gripe are those who DON'T have any basis for their faith outside of their literalism (or, as I call them, the ones who idol-worship a Book About God instead of a God, and are too stupid to tell the difference -- like, ya know, AFDave).

    Even if that is true (as it was for me) it is still a shock when you realize the things you have trusted in (via Behe, Dembski, et al) are either incredibly naïve or outright liars.  Last study I saw showed 25% of the US accepting some type of creation.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,19:41)

    So, my message to all the non-fundie Christians out there is simple;   don't preach -- ORGANIZE.

    I wonder if the majority out there, because it is not a “cause” for them, are too apathetic to take up the reigns.

    Quote (stephenWells @ Jan. 04 2007,19:52)

    I would strongly disagree. De gustibus et de coloribus non est disputandum, but that doesn't make statements of taste, or moral judgements incompatible with a scientific worldview, it just makes them not amenable to investigation by science. Belief in a god, however, involves proposing the _existence_ of a specific entity with specific properties.

    We will see, you may be right.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 04 2007,20:41)
    Quote (ScaryFacts @ Jan. 04 2007,11:40)
    I think those who take a literalist view of scripture are either:

    1. Ignorant – In the real sense of the word:  They just don’t know how many impossible to reconcile ideas are in the Bible
    2. Intellectually Dishonest/Deluded – Because of their world view they cannot grasp the inconsistencies produced by literalism
    3. Lying – They know the things they are saying aren’t true, but they continue to say them for sake of money, ego, power, etc.

    Here I must disagree, to an extent . . . For most fundies, their Biblical literalism is, quite literally, an inescapable part of the way they view the world.  One does not come from the other --- BOTH reflect each other.


    I agree—I would put them under the # 2 “Deluded” category.

    Date: 2007/01/04 20:23:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Steverino @ Jan. 04 2007,20:24)
    What a full of sh!t statement.  While you may believe you have been touched or can attest to God in your life, the fact remains you have absolutely no proof other than your emotional desire to believe God has touched your life.

    Your "witness" is nothing more than an appeal to an emotion.

    One of the things I believe hurts the cause of Christianity are people who come to "save the lost" and take no time to build relationships or wait for anyone to ask them for reasons for their faith.

    They barge in, preach an unkind, prideful message and then leave.  Somehow it scores them salvation points.

    I'm thankful almost everyone on this board understands that is an aberration rather than dogma.

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:00:19, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Novice alert:  I have no clue what I am talking about

    It seems to me Wesley's statement was perfectly clear--it doesn't introduce "new" material, but combines existing material in a new way creating novel material.

    Isn't that clear or is it just me?

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:09:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Lou will tell you Blogger sucks, but if you just want a place to disseminate information it works pretty well, gets indexed on Google quickly and is FREE.

    The best option of paid hosting is Word Press.

    I use both and they are both easy to use.  Word Press is easier to customize and has more features, but hosting isn't free so there is a minor cost involved (at least I pay for hosting--it's possbile if you host at it's free--ask Lou)

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:13:53, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 04 2007,22:12)
    You know I have plenty of time on my hands, so if you'd like, I'd be happy to do the setup for you.

    We could even set up a dummy blog for you to try out for a while, if you want.  Testdrive kinda thing.

    Moderator suck up

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:20:16, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 04 2007,22:12)
    Hosting by is free, Scary.  I paid an extra $15, just to be able to change the font size and link colors and such.  Still can't edit the template, but there are a pretty good handful to choose from.
    If wordpress is free then I reluctantly agree with Lou--it's your best option.  (durn it.)
    Quote (Lou FCD @ Jan. 04 2007,22:12)

    Nice call, though.  Your prediction was much better than any of Pat  Robertson's!

    Of course.  I serve the "Coke God" - he's the real thing.

    you're still a boot licking suck up.

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:26:46, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:19)
    That doesn’t make them right, it just gives them a little more validity than a random religious thought.

    the moon is made of green cheese, my friend, and the earth is flat.

    Maybe you were just joking, but if not...
    Don't you think a major religious movement involving millions or billions of people that has gained ground over hundreds of years might have some beneficial teachings for humans versus the FSM?  Doesn't the fact that this number of people have found some value in the teachings make its principles and practices worth considering as valuable more than the FSM?

    Edit: Verb Tense - Remember, I'm fromTennessee

    Date: 2007/01/04 21:48:50, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:36)
    a flat, geocentric earth was firmly (terra firmly) believed by millions of humans for hundreds (thousands?) of years, and doubtless many were convinced of various values to believing as such.

    With all due respect (and I mean that—you have written some very impressive things…)

    You are making the mistake with equating geocentrism with Christianity.  Geocentrism was a small sub-set of Christian belief.

    Christianity has become—right or wrong—a central belief for a billion people and has survived for 2,000 years.  That speaks to a value far higher than the FSM.

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:36)

    The FSM is FAR from a random invention; it had very specific construction and purpose, and arguably has much value as well.

    Come back in 1,000 years and see if it has a following.

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:36)

    the same could be said of dianetics, yes?

    Dianetics is less than 100 years old and (according to what I have read) is losing members.  If it survives for several hundred more years it will be because it provides some psychological benefit to the adherents.  Which it may.

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:36)

    my point, which you seemed to have missed, is that the length of duration of a belief system is not necessary relevant to it's veracity or validity.

    It's simply not a safe argument to make.

    I disagree.  While I acknowledge this is a controversial argument, natural selection applies to religious belief as well.  Those beliefs that produce benefits for the adherents survive. Those that don’t die out over time.

    You pulled an edit on me!

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:36)
    note that this doesn't bear at all on whether one can logically rationalize the separation of a religious belief system with scientific endeavor or not, i just think you should consider that a long history is not a good indicator of veracity.

    I never claimed--in fact I explicitly renounced--a number of believers makes the religion correct.  My argument is that it makes the religion valuable to its adherents--more valuable than religions that have few or no adherents.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:07:51, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:55)
    You are making the mistake with equating geocentrism with Christianity.  Geocentrism was a small sub-set of Christian belief.

    geocentrism and flat earthism may indeed have been a small subset of xian belief at various times, but i wasn't limiting it to xians, as the world has been and still is a far larger place than just xians.

    Granted, but I was specifically talking about religious belief.

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:55)

    substitute hinduism or buddhism and it gets longer and larger.

    get my point yet?

    I know the posts on this thread are long, so it’s possible you missed my earlier point that I apply the same standard to Hinduism and Buddhism.  I would consider both as more valuable than the FSM because of the number of followers over the years.

    Please do not assume I am a “Christ-centerist” who assumes the only valuable religion is Christianity.  I have never said that (at least not in the last several years.)

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:55)
    no need, it's purpose has and continues to be served every time somebody invents a theoretical construct like this... and the FSM certainly isn't the first construct of its like, nor likely the last.

    What theoretical construct are you imposing on me?  Go back to what I have written and show where I have suggested Christianity is the superior religion or even that Christianity is the best religion.

    If it survives for several hundred more years it will be because it provides some psychological benefit to the adherents.  Which it may.

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:55)

    ask Tom Cruise.


    Don't you think a major religious movement involving millions or billions of people that has gained ground over hundreds of years might have some beneficial teachings for humans versus the FSM?

    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,22:55)
    sorry, but you seem incapable of grasping my point for some reason, and i see no need to belabor it because, as i said, it's a bit tangential to the core of what you really seemed to want to discuss.

    Your point is?????  It seems your point is to assume Christianity is superior to other religions is silly.  I agree.  You need to read my posts.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:14:01, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,23:04)
    to avoid discussing the prevalence of geocentrism (let alone flat earthism), a quick check of wiki answers the basics, but I'm sure there are far more elaborate treatises:

    In astronomy, the geocentric model of the universe is the theory that the Earth is at the center of the universe and the Sun and other objects go around it.

    Belief in this system was common in ancient Greece. It was embraced by both Aristotle and Ptolemy, and most Greek philosophers assumed that the Sun, Moon, stars, and naked eye planets circle the Earth. Similar ideas were held in ancient China.

    had nothing to do with xianity, see?

    So?  I agree with this.  I think you have projected onto my belief system something from someone else.  I don't believe the number of people adhering to a belief makes it true, just that the belief system--even flat-earth-ism--must have had a psychological value to the people who believed it or it would not lasted long.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:23:31, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Steviepinhead @ Jan. 04 2007,23:08)
    Yeah, but...

    I didn't think we were discussing--though, heck, we can if you want--the benefits to the believers of a given belief-system, or--

    --the "fitness"/survival/longevity of the belief system, but

    whether or not the belief system is, on some basis--perhaps not clearly defined as yet--"compatible with" or "at odds with" science/logic/evidence, something along those lines.

    Clearly, as I think Ichthy is trying to say, a set of beliefs may last a long time, be of benefit (in some personal identity stabilizing or social utility sense) to its believers, and still--with regard to the validity of its postulates--be "wrong."  Maybe not without value or social benefit, as Christianity arguably has been and still is, but proposes reality-incongruent notions, as let's-say-f'rinstance davey's literalist worldwide-flud-6k year old-natural selection don't work-ism does...

    I have nowhere (that I am aware of) stated that the numbers of people who adhere to a particular belief system equate the veracity of that system.  If that were true I would be a Muslim.

    That is obviously false—millions of people can be wrong.

    My point was simply to negate the idea that the FSM is just as valid a belief system as Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianty.  Not because they are right and the FSM is wrong, but because over hundreds of years millions and millions of people have found these systems of belief to be beneficial.

    Look, I know most of you are used to fundys coming here and berating you for not accepting Jesus.  That’s not what I am saying, please do not project that on me.

    What I am saying is simple:  Religions survive because people find some value in the practice of that religion.

    By nature that means those religions that survive have value to their adherents.  That’s all I am saying.

    Please do not project onto me what other people have said. While that’s understandable based on what you guys deal with here, it’s not accurate.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:27:28, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 04 2007,17:05)
    From someone who is not embarrassed to produce this:  
    Most of you haven't read much, you just like to criticize others .
    , I'm not expecting much. But  
    You missed the voice for ginomai.  The voice is passive.  I am not sure where you received your verbs from.  I would suggest studying it a little more and looking it up in a Greek Lexicon with Strong's reference numbers.  That might help you some.
    It's the smugness, see. That's the really off-putting thing about afdave, too. Not only off-putting, but very unChristian, I would think. Not the sort of thing Jesus would be proud of.

    mea culpa on ginwskontes. I am a little rusty. The scriptural passage used ginwskontes (no second gamma) which threw me. As would Faid, I would expect "knowing" to be "gignwskontes". But on ginetai - I think we can trust Faid. He is, you know, Greek. And you do know what "deponent" means, don't you? I mean, you did use the word, albeit incorrectly, in your little Greek lesson, above.

    A tip of the hat to you, Russell and Faid for the Greek.  Don't tell our young friend, but my Greek is more than rusty.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:47:37, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Steviepinhead @ Jan. 04 2007,23:35)
    Yeah, but Scary, with all respect, is "validity" the proper word for distinguishing FSMism from major-world-religion of your choice?  I'll give you that FSMism hasn't got the track record to put its benefits (or detriments, but let's not go there, quite yet) up against Christianity's.  But that's not in issue, is it?

    You seem to be still looking for "value" or "benefit," but that's not "validity" in my dictionary...

    I agree.  Upon looking at what I wrote, I did use the word "validity".  What I mean is "value".  And to be honest, until this moment I thought that one was relatively equal to the other.

    My bad.

    Quote (Steviepinhead @ Jan. 04 2007,23:35)

    If the question of the thread so far (and, again, I'm fine with adding questions) is compatability of religion with science, and science would question the validity of (some exemplar) religion's beliefs or postulates, then how does social or personal value help Christianity out?

    Isn't a vague enough, absent enough, "all-powerful" but do-nothing-much-that-can-be-demonstrated (or differentiated from people acting from other good or charitable motives) god about the same, from science's standpoint, as an undemonstrable, undifferentiatable FSM?

    Or, if one starts claiming that one's God does do things--outside one's own head and heart--in the real world, doesn't one quickly--or at least eventually--risk running up against science?

    I'm not sure the theme of the thread has been yet defined.  If I had started it I would have pondered the topic for a long time.  My real concern is to try to reconcile my observations with some scientific context.  I feel somewhat between the proverbial rock and a hard place that I wasn't given time to consider how to frame arguments/points ahead of time.

    But that's cool--maybe I would have spent years in my head turing over possible scenarios.

    Date: 2007/01/04 22:56:08, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 04 2007,23:48)
    My point was simply to negate the idea that the FSM is just as valid a belief system as Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianty.  Not because they are right and the FSM is wrong, but because over hundreds of years millions and millions of people have found these systems of belief to be beneficial.

    holy crap.

    I refuse to repeat myself (further).

    I leave you to it.

    Your personal incredulity isn’t a convincing argument.  If you believe the FSM religion has provided or will provide as much value as the major ancient religions of the world the burden of proof is on you to show the long-term value of your belief system.

    If you are simply offended by Christians I empathize, but it's not a convincing argument.

    Show me why my reasoning is faulty--if you can I will quickly admit I was wrong.

    Edit: Ichthyc if I am missing something, feel free to enlighten me.  I really want to hear it.  I know I may be dense, but I have no desire to live in anti-intellectual "bliss."  I'm not here to convert you, I'm here to convert me.  I'm human, but I will try to be as open as possible to what you have to day.

    Date: 2007/01/04 23:01:19, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Wesley R. Elsberry @ Jan. 04 2007,23:52)
    I use WordPress for my personal weblog, the Austringer. I like it.

    We use Movable Type for PT. At this point if I were starting PT over I'd probably go with WordPress and a caching plugin.

    Gee, Wes, you're the best.

    (See Lou, I can suck up too--and I sucked up to WESLEY, not just Steve...)

    Date: 2007/01/04 23:19:04, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)
    Quote (ScaryFacts @ Jan. 04 2007,21:48)
    Geocentrism was a small sub-set of Christian belief.

    Heck, EVERYTHING is just a subset of Christian belief.  I can't think of a single thing that is universally accepted by all "Christian" churches, denominations, sects and groupuscules.

    This is a tangent—the real issue was whether longevity and popularity of a particular religious belief gives it reason for more consideration than one with no longevity or popularity.

    Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam all certainly fit that scenario—FSM does not.
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)

    Suppose we grant absolutely without a doubt that god exists.  Would that automatically validate every command that God gives?
    Obviously not, unless the god you picture was infallible and we knew what he actually said and had the proper interpretation of those words.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)
     Or, is God himself constrained by external rules of morality that he himself must follow (and, therefore, NOT all morality comes from God).  (That's a question specifically for the fundie nutters out there -- yes, AF, I'm looking at you.)

    I have no clue what God’s morality is.  Just because I have a certain view of morality doesn’t mean I have any understanding of a Divine morality.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)
    Suppose, then, we grant absolutely without a doubt that  *no* god or gods exist.  None.  Zip.  Not a one.  Would that then invalidate the "Christianity" that says we should love our neighbor as ourself, and do unto others as we would have them do unto you?

    I can’t speak for anyone else, but I would live exactly the same.  I see the immediate value of the way I live today.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)
    Does the fact that tortoises and hares don't talk, invalidate the messages of Aesop's fables?

    Figurative language flows through Aesop’s fables as well as the Bible.  Snakes don’t talk.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,00:03)
    So, when people here talk of "Christianity", which part specifically do they refer to --- to the message, or to the presumed divine authority behind that message?  

    And if there were *NO* divine authority behind the message at all, would it make any difference to that message's acceptibility?  Why or why not?

    Christianity either works or it doesn’t.  For me it works, with seemingly supernatural results.  If Christianity didn’t work (with supernatural results) I would have abandoned it years ago.

    Date: 2007/01/04 23:38:12, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 05 2007,00:28)
    Christianity either works or it doesn’t.  For me it works, with seemingly supernatural results.  If Christianity didn’t work (with supernatural results) I would have abandoned it years ago.
    "Works": what does that mean?
    "Supernatural results": what results? in what way "supernatural"?

    It works in terms of the results I have seen in my own life and family.  I have written about this previously on another thread, but keeping a Sabbath, following the instructions about morality and teaching my children to do the same has produced a remarkable family in spite of all sorts of adverse conditions.

    When it comes to the supernatural, I am in the process of writing up some of my experiences on my blog.  One or two aren’t going to be convincing, but the overwhelming evidence is, for me, beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Right now the I have only written up one of the dozens of seemingly supernatural experiences I have had in pursing the Judeo/Christian deity.  I guess I need to post less here and more there to cover more of them.  To see what I mean by supernatural you can view my current log entry—I have dozens of these types of accounts.

    At some point the number of “coincidences” becomes faith beyond a reasonable doubt. You can tell me whether or not you agree.  Feel free to comment on my blog.

    Date: 2007/01/04 23:59:35, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 05 2007,00:51)
    Christianity either works or it doesn’t.  For me it works, with seemingly supernatural results.  If Christianity didn’t work (with supernatural results) I would have abandoned it years ago.

    ... you could substitute dianetics and be speaking with Tom Cruise.

    hence the reason i mentioned it.

    nuff said.


    Of course.  That's exactly what I have been saying.  No one religious belief is necessarily better than any other.

    If you have some sort of grudge toward Christians, why not save it for those who are trying to push Christianity down your throat, I'm not.

    Date: 2007/01/05 00:18:06, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ Jan. 05 2007,01:13)
    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 05 2007,01:01)
    and I think I could with most people, except stevestory, who as an "authority" figure, I wish to demonize as cruel and tyrannical in order to foster a sense of common hatred. (Hi, steve! :)  )

    Ever consider that maybe I'm just a figurehead? Maybe EricMurphy or Arden Chatfield or Russell is the real moderator, but they installed me as eye-candy so you'd all be distracted.

    See. Now you don't know who to suck up to.

    (Takes another swig off a 40 oz Icehouse)

    Yep. That's what I am. Eye-candy.

    Gee steve, you sure are wise and you are the best moderator ever - I wish I was half the man you are.

    Date: 2007/01/05 08:11:02, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 05 2007,07:25)
    but keeping a Sabbath, following the instructions about morality and teaching my children to do the same has produced a remarkable family in spite of all sorts of adverse conditions.
    Not only would I echo Ichthyic about dianetics, etc., I would bring to your attention my family, and lots of others I know, who are raising wonderful kids, fighting the good fight, etc., etc. with no religion. (Unless, of course, we're going to nonsensically define absence of religion as a religion. Don't laugh; it's a common creationist trope.)

    As for the supernatural, as you probably guessed, I'm skeptical.

    I feel as if some of you are adding to something I'm not saying.

    When I say "Christianity has worked for me and my family" that's all I said.  I DIDN'T say "Christianity has worked for me and my family therefore it is the one true religion™"

    I know Christians regularly come here trying to "prove" Christianity to you, so I understand those who automatically assume every Christian is out to do that.

    I assure you, I'm not.

    Dianetics, atheism, et al work for others.  Good.  It doesn't change what I stated which is "Christianity works for me."

    As for the supernatural...

    I would hope you're more than skeptical.  It's a foolish thing to claim I've had supernatural experiences in the midst of so many who think rationally and have spent their lives looking for the natural explanation for everything.  Possibly you will see a natural explanation and convince me it best fits my experiences.

    We'll see.

    Date: 2007/01/05 08:21:49, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,08:05)
    But I must ask again --- when you say "Christianity" works for you, which part are you referring to?  Do you mean the "do unto others" and "love thy neighbor" part?  Or do you mean the "God  . . . Bible  . . . Jesus  . . . Heaven" part?

    Short answer…”yes.”

    I mean trying to read the Bible, trying to apply the principles to my life and seeing the results.  That includes the “do unto others” parts as well as the “eventual eternal life” parts.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,08:05)
    I have the sneaking suspicion that there are two different views of "religion" here, that one side is using one, the other side is using the other, and both sides literally have no idea what the other side is talking about.  (Further, I suspect that the fundies and the hyper-atheists are, once again, both using the very same view.)

    “Religion” is a pretty nebulous term and I don’t think I’ve used it.  I guess if I were to define it from my perspective it would be “a value system one attempts to use as a pattern for living and interacting with others.”

    Date: 2007/01/05 08:31:11, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    One key element you need for Wordpress is MySQL.  Not all hosting accounts have that as an option so make sure to ask.

    Install is simple.


    Date: 2007/01/05 09:28:35, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 05 2007,10:03)
    I seem to have not only failed to make my point, I seem somehow to have conveyed the exact opposite of what I had intended. Let me try again.

    I'm not talking about the relative virtues of Christianity versus dianetics or Islam, or Wicca, or any other particular system that identifies itself as a religion. I'm talking about the relative virtues of religion versus no religion. (And I hope we don't need to argue about whether the absence of a religion itself constitutes a religion.)

    Sorry I misunderstood Russell.

    I believe the best system for living (religious or no) is one in which you can be honest about who you are.  For most people religion causes them to try to hide and pretend they are something they are not.  In that sense I see religion as harmful, producing guilt and shame that wouldn’t be present without it.

    At the higher end of the IQ scale I suspect most people find their own way—religious or not—of living honestly with themselves.

    But religious belief certainly has some good results as well, and probably results in our society as a whole that are positive.  (I think GoP was going to prove that a while back, wasn’t he?)

    So, to me, the question becomes not “religion v. no-religion” but “can you honestly live in your own skin?”   Some people do that through religious belief, some do that through entirely non-religious means.

    (That's a long non-answer to your question.)

    Date: 2007/01/05 11:40:10, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    [quote=Lou FCD,Jan. 05 2007,09:53][/quote]

    One more thing...if you need help installing I would be happy to do it for you.  It's no problem 'tall.


    PS:  Lou, like my new siggy?

    Date: 2007/01/05 14:08:34, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I write fairly often on search positioning for Google, and I have a couple ideas:

    In terms of future searchers online, we want to make sure whatever pages we place the thread (or a downloadable pdf, etc.) have the keywords prominently in the title tag of the page as well as in headlines on the page.

    In an online version it would be helpful (again search wise) if major keyword related topics were also given their own pages.  Most forum and blog software does that automatically, but I am thinking more about if we place the material as searchable or as a download.

    Some keyword phrases we should target should be:

    Dave Hawkins
    Kids 4 Truth
    Answers in Genesis
    Institute for Creation Research

    That way when people are looking for these topics, this thread (or a portion of it) will pop out.

    Date: 2007/01/05 14:52:36, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Can't we work together on this using an online source? (I'm thinking the MS Office thingie online--whatever it's called?)

    Then we could all work a little and index the whole 11K posts in very little time.

    Date: 2007/01/05 16:58:38, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 05 2007,16:25)
    I'm willing to work on this. Scary says he is.

    Um, yeah, about that...I was seeing myself more in a management/consultant position.

    Date: 2007/01/05 18:44:54, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 05 2007,01:01)
    I'm not surprised that intelligent, rational people can discuss loaded concepts without resorting to character assassination and underhanded tactics and I'm glad to see civility.

    Just a quick note of thanks…I know many Christians come here and feel persecuted.  Despite the fact I often propose possibly nutty ideas, you guys and gals have consistently been gracious.  I do appreciate that.

    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,08:22)
    The fundies, in particular, fall into the "word" trap.  For them, The Words are, literally, all that matters.  They in all seriousness worship a Book About God, not a God.

    This is a great post Lenny.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 05 2007,13:18)
    So. Aren't you glad you read all that? Hello? Is anyone there?  What I'm curious about is: how do thoughtful Christians deal with these questions? Let's just home in on the central one. What does it even mean for a "will" or a "mind" to exist independently of a brain, however broadly defined or analogized. That covers not only the central question of God, but the next obvious question: what, if anything, is meant by "soul"? (Other than synonym for "mind", which - at least among us carbon-based life forms - cannot exist without the support of an actively metabolizing body.)

    Russell, thanks for making a thoughtful post.  I read this earlier today but didn’t have time to respond.  So I stewed on it all afternoon.

    Lately I have given this a great deal of thought.

    First, I’m not convinced God does “supernatural” things as we generally define that term—things that suspend the natural laws of the universe.  In my own life almost everything I see and have previously (up until today) described as “supernatural” are actually very natural things but weirdly coincidental. (Hat tip to MarkG)

    For instance:  I get up and pray because I need to pay a bill I have no money for, and then get that exact amount unexpectedly in the mail.   The check was written and mailed days before I even prayed, and absolutely no physical laws were violated.

    The reason I tend to think of them as “divine intervention” has to do with all too common coincidence.  If it happens occasionally, no big deal.  If it happens constantly, that’s something else entirely.  (More on that in a minute)


    Is it possible the “soul” (as people throughout history have described it) is far different than we assume?  What if we all share a common consciousness that has yet to be discovered and explored?   If it is possible the universe will someday produce energy based life forms, isn’t it possible there might be some level of energy that some people are able to tap into (in a very limited fashion)?


    Determinism may also hold the key to “natural” answers to prayer.

    I expect this type of thing will be either discovered or refuted as we gain a better understanding of quantum mechanics, string theory, etc.

    Third, I don’t know that the Bible teaches the soul can survive without the body.  The picture we are presented with of the resurrected Jesus in the Bible is of a very literal, physical body.  He ate, drank, walked and talked with others.  He made it a point to demonstrate he was physical rather than a ghost.

    Later Paul, some 30 years after Jesus’ death, had to reassure Christians that they would have a new body, just as Jesus had a new body, even if they had died.

    The oldest book of the Bible is Job, an ancient morality play.  One of the remarkable things about Job was where Job says:  “Even after I die, I know I will see God in the flesh.”  The belief in a “new body after death” is a very ancient idea.

    But this begs a VERY HUGE question:  If Christian teaching on this is accurate, then what happens between death and resurrection?  Deadman regularly goes and digs up decayed bodies.  Where are their souls?

    This is one area where I don’t have an answer and I have to accept with some faith.   Possibly we will one day advance science to the point where the answer is explained or refuted.  

    MarkG came by my blog and made a great which I replied to.  I think it has some bearing here:

    MarkG said...
    Is the probability of winning the lottery less than that of your friends bringing over a particular desert?

    How many people pray that they win the lottery? If someone did so, and won, would it be due to God's intervention, or just luck?

    The probability that SOMEONE will win the lottery is pretty good. The probability that a particular person will win the lottery is pretty small. In the US the probability that someone who wins the lottery has at one time or another prayed they would win is probably also pretty good.

    No, I wouldn't claim it was divine intervention.


    If the same person wins the lottery 5 times in one year and, in fact, never bought a ticket that didn't win I would assume somehow they had found a way to cheat or there was some type of unknown force behind it.

    Also, I don't know how many times you have prayed for things, but how often has God not delivered? Do you keep count of those times?

    For a period of time between 1984 and 2000 I kept track of specific, measurable prayer requests as well as keeping a record of how many of those were answered positively, negatively or inconclusively over the next 24 hours.

    It totaled tens of thousands of prayer requests. Overall the numbers showed around 93% were answered in the positive and less than 5% were in the negative.

    However, even though some might find that impressive (especially those inclined to believe), when you look at the hard data it is less so. Many of the requests were based on activities I would be doing that day and would likely have resolved the same way whether I had prayed or not.

    So while I am glad I kept those records, they are hardly as conclusive as many would think.

    For me, proof of the power of prayer would have to include something completely unnatural (e.g. regrowth of a limb). Both ice cream cake and fudge exist, and people have been known to take desert round to people's houses, when invited; it's only polite. I don't know how popular ice cream cake is in the U.S., but I suspect it's not rare? Same goes for the hot fudge topping, or is it a bizarre combination that only you and your friends like? Either way, no laws of nature have been broken in this event, so I would put it down to coincidence.

    I am going to post something about the supernatural at AtBC because I had a bit of a brainstorm and I want you guys to check me out on it. More at AtBC.

    I agree that coincidence is a possibility. And I know I haven't written up any more of my experiences other than this one, but at some point if this type of thing occurs regularly, one begins to say it defies reasonable coincidence.

    As I said, winning the lottery 5 times in one year would be so improbable as to cause us to look for another possibility than luck.


    If your friends had brought ice cream cake alone, would you have thanked God? What about if they had brought chocolate cake?

    However, if God did intervene to make your friends bring that particular desert, one has to wonder why he didn't intervene to prevent the starvation of the many people that died whilst you were eating it.

    If there had been no hot fudge, then I would have recorded in my journal that my prayer had not been answered. I still would have been happy, but on those types of things I wasn't giving God any slack--if there is a god and he is behind this stuff, he's able to stand up to scrutiny.

    Why do people starve and die? Why doesn't a supreme being put a stop to it?

    Beats me. Anyone who tells you they have an answer (besides "there is no god") is lying to you. That's just one example of stuff (even Bible stuff) I find very difficult to explain.


    I hope I don't come across as snarky. I really like your posts on AtBC, and see you as a reasonable person. However, in this case, I think you're seeing what you want to see.

    No, you didn't come along as snarky. Look, even though I believe there is some explanation for the experiences I've had, when a Christian approaches me and tries telling me of this "miraculous answer to prayer" I get the heebie jeebies. Typically it is less than convincing.

    I knew when I decided to talk about this stuff at AtBC people would be critical of my thinking--that's exactly what I was hoping for.
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,19:26)
    I did find it deliciously ironic, though, when *I* was pointed to as someone who treats *you* as being a fundie. . . . .

    Lenny, I don’t recall doing that myself, but if I did it was the Jim Beam talking.  Please accept my apologies.

    Date: 2007/01/05 19:54:25, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 05 2007,18:21)
    Not hard, but certainly tedious.

    11K posts at 2 minutes each is at least 400 labor hours (or labour hours for my friends across the pond.)


    Date: 2007/01/05 21:01:47, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 05 2007,21:25)
    you're not helping the volunteer effort with numbers like that, accurate or no.


    Ichthyic you were just in comfortable oblivion about the AFDave project--until it was too late.

    Date: 2007/01/05 23:51:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Kristine @ Jan. 05 2007,22:50)
    When I lurked at UD and saw the hit tip (what, no hand kiss?) for the creationist monster exploding, I wanted to go to bed and pull the covers over my head (except that there's a creationist monster in our closet...) :D

    Traitor...what have you done?  (I think DaveScot has a crush)

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:07:12, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 05 2007,18:27)
    There is not only no evidence for any religion but there is contraverting evidence.

    Good post, BWE.

    I (obviously) disagree that we have no evidence.  While I know I am going out on a limb here, there is no doubt in my mind that I personally have experienced “coincidences” so often as to be beyond a reasonable doubt.  (I still have to start writing those things up, and I think you may not agree once I do, but I do believe most rational people will at least see why I  say it is evidence.)

    Is it hearsay?   Technically, I suppose, but that does not negate its value.

    By the way…you wrote up a really cool view of life and death for you back a month or two ago.  I couldn’t remember what thread it was on, but if you know where it is, it might be good to post it again on this thread.  I felt it was well written and clearly presented your beliefs.

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:19:05, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Jan. 05 2007,20:52)
    Let me share this essay, which I wrote perhaps 15 years ago:
    I was brushing my teeth, or doing something else as ordinary, when suddenly struck:  I am arches of experience emerging from the workings of my body, a transparent structure of color and action, transacting with an environment that is itself built of both awareness and physicality.  A reality that includes body and experience.  I am a tower of mental and physical homeostasis and balance, built of many rooms of knowing and behavior, a structure of self.

    I never thought before about brushing teeth being a transcendental experience.

    Bill, this is great post.  I am beginning to think you (and others) may be correct that our “soul” is not independent of our bodies.  As I mentioned in an impossibly long post earlier:  Christianity teaches the necessity of a physical body post resurrection.   If we didn’t need a body, it seems to me this teaching wouldn’t be so important.

    But as I also mentioned, this begs a huge question about where is the soul between death and resurrection.  I don’t have any real insight there yet.

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:31:10, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Steviepinhead @ Jan. 05 2007,20:55)
    So, I'm happy to kick all this around with Scary

    Ha, my plan is coming together perfectly:

    Pretend not to be a fundy to gain the trust of the atheists [check]
    Gain their trust by pretending to be rational [check]
    Tell the atheists you want their input [check]
    Over time gently destroy their false reasoning
    Pretend to become a fundy with them
    Have them all move to my compound in Guyana

    OK, on a more serious note...

    Steve, thanks for at least not pointing and laughing.  I apreciate your willingness to discuss these issues with me.

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:34:29, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (deadman_932 @ Jan. 05 2007,21:42)
    I won't and ya know what? I'll say suck my dick to anyone that does try that stupid crap. NO ONE knows what this shit means.

    Gee, Deadman, don't hold back, tell us what you really think.

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:43:51, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 05 2007,21:33)
    Every time I've seen someone like Scary come into an evolution-creation forum (ANY forum), it always ends the same way.  Every time.  The fundies jump all over him because "people who don't believe the Bible are just atheist devil-worshippers".  And the hyper-atheists jump all over him because "supernaturalism is stupid and religion is for retards".

    Thanks for defending me Lenny.

    When I left the church I experienced the loss of my home, my friends as well as my job and income.  Dealing with people here is a walk in the park.  Trust me, nobody’s going to run me off unless I want to leave.

    Date: 2007/01/06 06:54:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 05 2007,22:32)
    I think Mr. Facts might well agree with me.

    I do agree which is why I immediately apologized when you made it clear to me that wasn’t what you were saying.

    Though I want to make something else clear:  I attempt to be considerate, polite and appropriately humble.  But I have no trouble sticking up for myself.  Heck, just this morning I was bathroom walled—and I didn’t even use profanity.  I hope no one is worried about hurting my feelings.

    And please, call me Scary, everyone does.  No need for formality here.

    Date: 2007/01/06 07:11:15, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (The Wayward Hammer @ Jan. 05 2007,23:03)
    Much of this reminds me of Paul Tillich or even Bishop Spong.  I think Scary is more in the Marcus Borg camp - which I think is a good place to be!

    …Borg's basic thesis is that man over the years has experienced the reality of God and man's sacred writings are a response to that experience.  They are true without necessarily being factual.

    Hammer great, thoughtful post.

    I’m not ready to go as far as Tillich or Spong, though you never know where I will eventually arrive.  Borg is possibly closer to where I am today (literally, I am questioning everything day by day) though I am not quite ready to picture God “in everything” quite yet.  I have some growing to do.

    But you are correct in my view of scripture, though I haven’t completely settled "scriptural" in my mind just yet.

    Quote (The Wayward Hammer @ Jan. 05 2007,23:03)
    I still struggle myself with what is "real" and how we know what real is.  But I do know that religion as we have it today is about power, not faith.

    Exactly.  I couldn’t agree more.

    Quote (The Wayward Hammer @ Jan. 05 2007,23:03)
    Maybe I will end up like Martin Gardner - believing because it comforts me to do so.

    Isn’t this the reason anyone has any faith at all?  We seek a god, a faith, a system for living because it gives us some emotional payoff we feel we need.  If, like Lenny, we are an apa-theist there’s no motivation.

    Date: 2007/01/06 07:23:04, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (skeptic @ Jan. 06 2007,02:23)
    The invalidity (my word, lol) I'm referring to arises from the application of knowledge gained through rational means to evaluate an irrational experience.  Maybe irrational is the wrong word here but events beyond the natural laws can not be assessed rationally.

    There is a basic assumption that God (or god) as defined by the Bible acts in supernatural ways, but I don’t believe this is scripturally supported.

    Follow my reasoning here (and tell me if I am crazy):

    If you accept God is, on some level, the creator, then you also believe he established the natural laws of the universe.

    Isn’t it possible such a god would also operate according to the laws he established?  If so, then it is possible using natural observation we can learn about his universes and God himself.

    Date: 2007/01/06 08:04:54, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,08:21)
    I am willing to help work to make your thread more accessable so others won't be led astray by your ignorance and dishonesty.
    My ignorance and dishonesty?  Which is demonstrated by my Galileo-like determination to promote a minority view because it is more consistent with observation in spite of its unpopularity in academia?  That kind of ignorance and dishonesty?

    You really don’t want to go here with me, but since you brought it up and since I obviously hit a nerve with you, I will.  Just be prepared—I have walked longer and deeper with Christ than you can possibly imagine.

    You prideful, evil adulterer.  You have no clue what it means to truly serve Jesus.  You see yourself as Galileo?  How impossibly narcissistic.  I’m confident your father likely had some idea of humility when he tried to share the Gospel, costing him greatly, but you chose (instead) to take the path of least resistance.

    Are you proud of that Dave?  Are you proud you chose monetary and social security over missions?  Are you proud that you have had a comfortable life while alienating those who otherwise you could tell about Christ?

    Where were you when those of us on the front lies were praying because we had no food for our children?  Where were you when we were helping prostitutes get off drugs?  Where were you when we had to ride a bike for months to the store because we couldn’t afford to fix our car?

    Oh, I’m sure you tithe.  Big f-in deal.  Try giving 100% for Jesus for a couple decades then we will have something to talk about.  You prideful, self-absorbed fool.

    How dare you disrespect those who have made far greater sacrifices for Christ than you can possibly imagine.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,08:21)
    Scary ...          
    David I was not trying to single you out as intellectually dishonest.  I think those who take a literalist view of scripture are either:

    1. Ignorant – In the real sense of the word:  They just don’t know how many impossible to reconcile ideas are in the Bible
    2. Intellectually Dishonest/Deluded – Because of their world view they cannot grasp the inconsistencies produced by literalism
    3. Lying – They know the things they are saying aren’t true, but they continue to say them for sake of money, ego, power, etc.

    I’m not going to place you, as an individual, into any of these three because I just don’t know which you would fit into.  If there is a fourth option I would be happy to entertain it.

    Why do I say they must be intellectually dishonest?  The evidence for common descent, ancient earth, local (versus global) flood, etc. is overwhelming.
    "I am not going to place you, as an individual, into any of these three because I just don’t know which you would fit into."

    Yet you did just that and you invoked "The Lord rebuke you!" at least twice.  Yet I'm the dishonest one?

    The reason I didn’t characterize you as one of these was simply because I wasn’t sure whether you were deluded or simply lying to preserve your own fragile ego.    I still don’t know which category you fit into.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,08:21)

    Scary ...          
    "Let not those who seek you be ashamed because of me."  You may want to consider that verse--it's in the Psalms.  I am embarrassed because you consider yourself a Christian.  Your level of dishonesty and denial demonstrates a level of immaturity that is embarrassing.

    I am willing to help work to make your thread more accessible so others won't be led astray by your ignorance and dishonesty.

    You can try to use your "but you're still my friends" and "I just hope you come to know the creator in 2007" crap but the reality is you have so polluted this board that you cannot have any credible witness.

    Implication? ... "I'm a far better representative of Christ than you are, Dave" ??  

    "Yet my avatar says ..."

    "Jesus rose from the dead ... and all I got was this lousy avatar!"  ????  Helllllooooo???

    Do you not realize that the Resurrection of Jesus literally changed the world?  I mean literally?  Do you not realize that Christianity would have been a non-starter were it not for the Resurrection?  Do you not realize that because of the Resurrection, a "minor sect of Judaism" in a remote corner of the vast Roman Empire, ended up conquering that empire with the Truth and with Love, not with the sword?  Do you not realize that the Resurrection was the pivotal event that made possible all the glories of Western Civilization which you now enjoy?

    And yet, you have the gall to make light of the Resurrection with your avatar and pretend that "all you got was this lousy avatar" ??

    You got far more, my friend ... I guess you just don't realize it.

    I don't have to compare myself with anyone else to have security in my salvation.  However, because you bring it up, I am a better Christian than you.  I have absolutely no problem saying that.  Of course, you set the bar really low.

    I know what I received at Jesus resurrection.  It’s painfully obvious to even the non-Christians that you have no clue.  If you have no sense of humor I can’t help that.  I am fine with God—much more in tune than you.  And I have no problem saying that.

    Dishonest charlatan, the Lord rebuke you (That’s 3 times.)

    Edit:  Dave, none of the questions in this post are rhetorical--if you are going to reply to this, make sure to answer my questions.  Idiot.

    Date: 2007/01/06 08:12:45, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I just replied to Dave over at the bathroom wall.  I don't know enough curse words to describe how I feel about him--I have never wanted to cuss someone out before.

    Is it wrong to start drinking at 9:12am?

    Date: 2007/01/06 08:47:07, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,09:34)
    If you'll notice, there was no "lecture" about what Christianity means ... just pointing out that it seems hypocritical (in any religion) to say ...

    "I won't put you in the "dishonest" category."

    Then he turns around and does just that.

    Idiot.  I will happily put you in the dishonest category if you insist.  Idiot.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,09:34)
    And it seems hypocritical to act like he's a better Christian than me, yet make light of something very sacred and important to many Christians--the resurrection.

    Isn't there something in the OT about "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain" ??

    Do you think Jesus != God? and so it's OK to "take his name in vain" by joking about His resurrection?  Was God just kidding when he made those commandments?  Or did they really not come from God?

    Not accusing ... just asking.

    Idiot.  Which is more holy—to say what you believe are exactly the right words or to love and care for others?  Idiot.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,09:34)

    Scary ...      
    You really don’t want to go here with me, but since you brought it up and since I obviously hit a nerve with you, I will.  Just be prepared—I have walked longer and deeper with Christ than you can possibly imagine.

    You prideful, evil adulterer.  You have no clue what it means to truly serve Jesus.  You see yourself as Galileo?  How impossibly narcissistic.  I’m confident your father likely had some idea of humility when he tried to share the Gospel, costing him greatly, but you chose (instead) to take the path of least resistance.

    Are you proud of that Dave?  Are you proud you chose monetary and social security over missions?  Are you proud that you have had a comfortable life while alienating those who otherwise you could tell about Christ?
    So missionaries in poverty are better than rich Christians?

    Where were you when those of us on the front lies were praying because we had no food for our children?  Where were you when we were helping prostitutes get off drugs?  Where were you when we had to ride a bike for months to the store because we couldn’t afford to fix our car?

    Oh, I’m sure you tithe.  Big f-in deal.  Try giving 100% for Jesus for a couple decades then we will have something to talk about.  You prideful, self-absorbed fool.

    How dare you disrespect those who have made far greater sacrifices for Christ than you can possibly imagine.
    So I have to be poor to be a good Christian?  Weren't many of the Founders of America rich?  Were they lesser Christians?

    Edit: Yes, they were.  You have fattened yourself in the day of slaughter.  It's in James, you should look it up.  Idiot.

    You avoided each of these questions fool.

    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,09:34)
    I know what I received at Jesus resurrection.
    And what was that?

    As Jesus said to those who asked him about John, “I’ll answer once you answer my questions.”  Hypocritical idiot.

    Edit: The Lord rebuke you (that's 4.)

    Date: 2007/01/06 09:07:31, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 06 2007,09:51)
    Yes! It would be wrong.
    It would be allowing a completely irrelevant, ineffectual, nonentity to induce self-destructive behavior.

    Not, of course, that I think there's any real, non-joking possibility that you're really about to hit the bottle. But now that ID/creationism is riding into the sunset, and the danger of the most fringy of the wing-nuts to influence anyone who's not already a lost cause approaches zero, the most satisfying experience they can aspire to is to piss you off.

    Meditate on my sig:

    Thanks Russell for keeping me in reality.

    Date: 2007/01/06 10:01:33, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Since we are at the bathroom wall...

    Dave has no clue who Jesus was/is or how to follow his teachings.  He is so insecure in his own psyche he can't even begin to grasp concepts of self-sacrifice, compassion without reward, commitment without payoff.

    He is no better morally than the most morally bankrupt person on earth--everything he does is deisgned to appease his own deficient ego.  That's the height of selfishness.

    He can't even understand those who have forgone material reward as being more committed than those who (like him) have "served Jesus" while filling their own coffers.


    Date: 2007/01/06 10:21:33, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    OK, I'm not done with my rant (apologies to everyone but Dave)...

    Dave, if you are such a f-in good Christian, do this:  Sell all you have, quit your job and give to the poor.

    Do that for 20 years.

    Not only have I done this, most sincere Christians I know have put themselves into this position.  This is what your dad did, no?

    When will you make a real sacrifice for your own faith?

    Your Christianity costs you nothing so it is worth nothing.  F-in idiot.  Jesus dies for you and all you do is tithe put up a website?  You're a pantywaist pretending to be a Christian.

    If you have balls this sacrifice is no big deal.  If you don't do this then I don't want to hear another f-in thing from you--you have no real faith.

    F-in idiot.

    Date: 2007/01/06 10:39:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Faid @ Jan. 06 2007,11:24)
    You shouldn't take dave much seriously, Scaryfacts. Remember: He believes in a God who rewards those who follow his commands (even when those are to eradicate an entire nation), and condemns to eternal torment those who do not worship and suck up to him, even if they have done nothing but good in their lives.

    Dave's god is a grumpy, petty, jealous god. He is a god with issues, for people who have issues. And oh boy do they have issues- remember dave's post about the 18-wheeler smashing through someone's head (I think it was argy)? I was startled then- I was wondering how anyone could type something like that, even as a lame joke.

    Now I know.

    While I understand Dave's narcissism, he challenged me individually.  Maybe it is just my ego, but I found that irresistible.  He's an idiot.  Worse yet, he's an idiot who can't comprehend the very basics about his professed faith yet pride fully attempts to instruct those who do.

    I wasn't going to let that go.  Maybe I should have, but I didn't.  Even as I write this his banality is almost overwhelmingly compelling.

    Date: 2007/01/06 16:40:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (afdave @ Jan. 06 2007,15:30)
    My dad did not sell all he had and give to the poor.  

    Idiot.  I'm glad you can recall anecdotes about how your FATHER sacrificed for his faith.  My challenge was to ask what YOU were sacrificing.  Idiot.

    You are a pilot with a plane.  Isn't it just possible you may be valuable on the mission field?  Sure you can live in luxury in the day of slaughter, but you could do so much more.

    Are you proud of having chosen luxury over missions Dave?

    Your dad didn't buy your salvation.


    The Lord rebuke you (that's 5).

    Date: 2007/01/06 17:00:10, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    I have spent the last day giving AFDave the replies some Christian had to provide him.  I'm sorry you had to witness the ugliness, and now that Dave has open comments on his board I will take any further rants there.

    I have taken my medication and am feeling much better.

    (No electrons were harmed in the creation of this message)

    Date: 2007/01/06 18:16:44, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ved @ Jan. 06 2007,18:26)
    Scary, no problem.

    For a while now I've wanted to give you props for having such an even keel in this world, no matter what your beliefs. Oh, and regarding your post on dave's blog, you do know that not all here are "non-Christians"... Our dear Wesley is one. I'm (not) surprised dave didn't mention it or try to appeal to him on that basis.

    Funny, I had been picturing you and dave as D&D mages, duking it out with magic I can't relate to. Anyway, cheers from this atheist!

    Thanks Ved, I hope you can still believe I can have an even keel.

    The particular accusations I sent Dave's way were calculated.  They are the particular things his brand of Christianity highly values.  I (stupidly) thought it might just get through.  I understood he was incabable of hearing any science contrary to his interpretation of the Bible--but I thought he could at least respond to the Bible itself.

    Of course I was wrong.  Silly me.

    And I do know there are many Christians here as well as a number of non-Christians like yourself who are reasonable, rational human beings.  My points were intended for a very limited audience--Dave.

    (I use the word "limited" to refer to size as well as mental capacity.)

    Date: 2007/01/06 20:55:05, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Tiny Me

    Hiding deep inside my mind, lives my tiny me
    Tiny lives in tiny house inside my brain you see

    Tiny’s house has tiny door, window but no view
    All he sees is curly brain, spongy grey in hue

    But Tiny has a vital task, does it every day
    He keeps me from the scary facts, he locks them all away

    He has a box of mom, he has a box of dad
    Not every thought about them, just ones that are bad

    He has a box of lost fist fights, and stickings of the pins
    He has a box of old dog bites, and banging of the shins

    Another box holds Grandpa’s death, brought on by heart attack
    Another holds stood up dates named Beth, and failure in the sack

    But his biggest blackest box of all, sits high upon the shelf
    Even Tiny won’t say what’s inside—can’t deal with it himself

    When I get too close to what’s boxed, Tiny let’s out piercing squeal
    And tells me now don’t be shocked, what’s in the box ain’t real

    Tiny whispers really close—there’s really nothing inside
    And tells me stories grandiose, building up my shattered pride

    As Tiny lulls my mind to sleep, with stories even greater
    I don’t have to think about the keep, not now maybe later

    So I go through life pretending to be, greater than I am
    Disabled to the truth you see, I’m a deeply wounded man

    Another mediocre poem from Soylent Green - ItsPeopleDammit

    Date: 2007/01/06 21:40:19, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I'm not sure if this is what is being proposed right now, but I am wondering if the easiest thing to do is to create a MySQL database containing a link to each post as well as a list of keywords for that post.

    Then all we do is allow people to search by keyword and the output ends up being a list of links to the individual posts.

    We can even host it on the same server as Antievolution provided there is a little MySQL space left--we can easily create a search box or link to a search page.

    That way we don't have to process every post, just create a spreadsheet with the link and the keywords and since the posts are sequential we can likely write a little script/macro to create the links so we don't have to manually type those in.

    Does this make sense?

    Edit:  Maybe one of you brilliant developer types could even create a program to spider the thread, sequentially pulling up the posts, then creating a list of keywords for that post.  I think I could do it in PHP, but I'm not very advanced.  If we could write the script then processing the whole thread would only take a few minutes.

    Date: 2007/01/07 00:08:17, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (k.e @ Jan. 07 2007,00:59)
    Oh yeah absolutely, that was the main point of course.

    The beauty is that once the whole text file of the thread is available to Copernic the process is extremely fast. A real time saver.

    Does anyone know if google notes extracts a text/html file of a thread as a continous file?

    We can get either using by choosing ALL then clicking the print link.  From there we can either choose HTML or Text to export the file.

    Date: 2007/01/07 11:42:22, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 07 2007,11:57)
    Now, I have a question. Well, two questions.
    First of all, do you allow for the possibility that the bible can be wrong in any particular? Or would you say that wherever it appears to be wrong, that must mean it's being incorrectly read? (e.g. something meant metaphorically being read literally).

    Not only can the Bible be factually wrong, it’s demonstrably factually wrong—and in ways that are tough to attribute to scribal or translation errors.  This is by far not the bulk of the Bible, but if one believes the autographs were inerrant the least contradiction with fact would negate the whole.

    Since I don’t accept the “God dictated” version of belief I am able to admit problematic passages but still accept the whole as reliable.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 07 2007,11:57)
    Then second, if one rejects the notion that one's "soul"* survives the death of one's body, and if one rejects the idea of transmigrating to a new body, can one - by your understanding of the term - be a "Christian"*?

    There are various definitions (in my mind) of “Christian.”  I don’t define it for anyone else, and I’m not in a place to make a judgment on whether someone fits that description unless I know what definition they claim to subscribe to.  Here are the definitions as I see it:

    Philosophical Christians:  Those who agree with living the philosophy represented by Jesus and the Christian tradition.  They may or may not accept Jesus’ divinity, resurrection or any afterlife.   They still consider themselves followers of Christ.

    Naturalist Christians:  They not only subscribe to the philosophy of Christianity, but they believe in Jesus’ death as atonement for sin.  They don’t, however, necessarily subscribe to any of the seemingly supernatural accounts found in the Bible.  They may or may not believe in some kind of afterlife.

    Supernaturalist Christians:  They believe in at least some if not all of the miracles presented in the Bible.  They consider the death, burial and bodily resurrection of Christ as true and the basis of their faith.  They believe in an afterlife.  Most would consider Christianity as the “one true religion.”  Most would accept the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and personal salvation.

    Literalist Christians:  Believe the autographs were god dictated.  Literalism is the one true faith and the Bible contains non-negotiable rules for living and salvation.  This includes believing in the death burial and resurrection of Jesus, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, personal salvation, an unseen world of angels and demons and God’s direct, daily interaction with man.

    I think what you describe would be a person who fits into the first group.  Under these definitions I would fit into the third group, though I wish I could come up with a better name.

    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 07 2007,11:57)
    *I guess a simple yes/no answer to this question is possible. However, it may require an explicit definition of the terms "soul" and "Christian".

    The meaning of soul has been debated for centuries.  I don’t think I would do any better at defining it, though in my thinking I typically use the word to mean “consciousness” or “our true self”—the thing that makes us more than bags of meat.

    [Russell:] I could see how Jesus's helpful hints for harmonious well-being (individually and socially) were all points well taken. But it was continuously emphasized to me that this was all integrally connected with a whole suite of supernatural wonders (like Jesus had no human father, could go head-to-head with The Amazing Kreskin with magic tricks, not only revivified but became immortal, that I myself and other true believers would also be immortal...)  None of that ever seemed credible, to the extent that I could even figure out what they even meant by it.    
    [Rev. Dr.:] As noted, there are indeed Christian churches who neither assert nor accept **any** of these things.
    In a quick scan of previous posts, I don't see a list of such churches. I imagine the Unitarian/Universalists would qualify, and maybe they - or a subset of them - consider themselves "Christian". But I was under the impression that nearly all people who call themselves Christian do subscribe to some, if not most, of these beliefs - the whole "afterlife" thing being central.

    I would certainly agree that MOST people who consider themselves Christian—and certainly those who attend an organized church—would consider most of these non-negotiable.

    Date: 2007/01/07 12:56:48, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    POST 10,000

    Date: 2007/01/07 14:54:09, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Stephen Elliott @ Jan. 07 2007,14:57)
    Just back from visiting familly and a tad drunk.

    Most of us find our families more tolerable slightly inebriated.
    Quote (Stephen Elliott @ Jan. 07 2007,14:57)
    I considered myself to be a Christian but now I am not so sure. It was pointed out to me here, PT and other blogs that I am not. After some consideration, maybe they are right.

    Did you fit into any of the categories I noted above?  In the broadest sense “Christian” simply means someone who follows the example and/or teachings of Christ.

    Date: 2007/01/07 19:38:15, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Russell @ Jan. 07 2007,19:39)
    This "afterlife": you say it probably requires a body, if I read correctly. A body has to exist somewhere in time and space, I think. So does that imply that "heaven" has a physical location?

    Based on the teachings of the New Testament I believe physical bodily resurrection is taught.   I would think this also necessitates a heaven which is a physical location.

    But I’m not sure we understand enough yet about the multiverse to know the various plains of existence.  Maybe in order to understand the Bible we also have to study quantum physics.

    Maybe someone well versed in QM can comment on what possibilities are out there consistent with nature.  It's possible I am spouting foolish talk.  I don't know.  When it comes to QM i am at the stage of unconcious incompetence--I don't know what I don't know.

    Date: 2007/01/08 10:36:33, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ Jan. 06 2007,18:20)
    As for Scary, my most sincere advice to him would be:  stop looking for external sources and external validation, and just look inside.  Everything you're looking for, is there.

    While I can be self-deceived, I don’t believe I am seeking external validation any longer.  As a younger man I certainly was—and as a pastor it’s somewhat an occupational hazard to seek not only God’s approval but the approval of the congregation you attempt to entertain each week.

    Now I’m pretty comfortable in my own skin.  I would struggle if my family or friends rejected me as somehow not a decent human being, but so far that hasn’t been an issue.  I rarely have any guilt or shame because I typically see myself as living consistent with my own values.

    Date: 2007/01/08 10:45:23, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (curious @ Jan. 07 2007,12:38)
    I have heard from one of my philosophy teachers (alas, he knows Greek, both ancient and some Septuagint, and I do not), that the Greek word for "soul" 'psuche' is only used in the gospels and no where else in the bible. However, this is the same word, used quite a bit before, by Plato (esp. in the Phaedo and Republic) in his theory of forms/soul. This helps crystallize the notion that soul and body is more of a fabrication from Plato, rather than matthew, mark, luke or john.

    Or it could be Plato got it right and the writers of the Gospels had become familiar with the concept.  For your philosophy teacher to say it was “fabricated from Plato” is intentionally putting a “spin” on the use of the word which doesn’t necessarily follow.

    Date: 2007/01/08 11:01:00, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (bystander @ Jan. 07 2007,23:00)
    If so I would have thought that the John Edwards of the world would be blasted from the pulpits, or is it just a case of Christians (You even hear of pastors saying that someone is with God when they die) not knowing their religions.

    A couple of reasons why this stuff happens…

    While pastors are typically well versed in theology, when they teach their congregations they are much more likely to preach either practical Christian morality talesn(how to deal with stress, how to love unlovable people, etc.) or popular social issues akin to their particular prejudices (politics, homosexuality, etc.)

    I’m confident John Edwards has been railed against by a number of pulpits.

    As to putting people with God—I think most pastors are not careful with their words and often revert to “popular” concepts without thinking through the real implications.  People want to believe they go immediately to heaven when they die.

    Date: 2007/01/08 12:18:13, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (curious @ Jan. 08 2007,12:35)

    Hum, I guess my post was a bit unclear, but I was meaning to only attribute the strong possibility that Plato's terminology was used in the gospels to my teacher. The latter "fabrication" suggestion is my own, which is something like: 'The concept of a "soul" is historically convoluted and likely did not originate with christ's teachings per-se, but rather a synthesis from Plato's ideas and the very early church'.

    I understood your point, and I do believe religious thought is a combination of observation, revelation and imitation.  I don’t doubt some of the early Christians were familiar with Plato and could easily have borrowed from him.

    I didn’t think you were wrong, I’m just trying to not use language that is loaded so that we don’t confuse emotional responses with rational thought.  (At least, not too often!)

    Date: 2007/01/08 12:37:58, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 07 2007,17:40)
    I can see the similarities between creation myths and can understand that they are attempts to explain what the authors did not understand. I can also catalog the phenomena that the authors did not understand and the supernatural explanations given for these phenomena. A partial list:* gravity –god, * geologic processes –god, * relativity or the absence of a reference point –god, * light speed and the implications of telescopes –god, * climate –god, * dna –god, * the Americas –ummm, * the size and age of the cosmos –god.

    These phenomena are now partially understood by applying the scientific method to them. What's more, the science is accessible to anyone willing and able to repeat the experiments. If you were to repeat the experiments, you should get the same results. And, strangely, none of them end up needing anything specific from god. As Carl Sagan said "We grow up in isolation. We need to teach ourselves the cosmos."

    BWE this is a great post.

    As I mused last week I began considering the idea that God (in the Judeo/Christian sense) may not act supernaturally i.e.: Outside of natural laws.  If you look at some of the “miraculous” passages of scripture, at least some of them are consistent with nature.

    In addition in my own experience I have seen what I would consider God’s operation, but it was often accomplished through process with “coincidental” results rather than “miraculous” results.

    When the Jews read Genesis 4,000 years ago, did they know a rainbow was caused by light refraction or did they see it as a supernatural event?  All the Bible tells us is God telling man to be reminded of him each time they see a rainbow—not that the rainbow never existed before the flood.

    God holds “all things together” (Col 1:17) seems a lot like a reference to gravity.  Would Paul have known that in the first century?  Am I reading more into this than was intended?  Possibly, but Paul is talking about the creation of the natural world.  Gravity is certainly a force involved in the creation and preservation of the universe;

    Date: 2007/01/08 13:38:51, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (argystokes @ Jan. 08 2007,13:53)
    Actually, Paul is talking about the forces that hold atoms together, known as Jebons:

    Thanks, Argy, it's all clear to me now.  That Jack Chick fellow is one brilliant guy--the logic is overwhelming.

    "Thou almost persuadest me to become a Baptist."

    Date: 2007/01/08 18:05:14, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Jan. 08 2007,16:04)
    And if you follow the links to the "people" who review the books, check out what appears to be a subtle bias

    Did you see this guy's profile OldMan?

    Profile for ADarwinResearcher (gotta love that moniker) i.e.:  THE PROFESSOR

    Date: 2007/01/08 19:02:28, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (creeky belly @ Jan. 08 2007,13:30)

    This is probably the best flash example I have for imagining the multiverse/multi dimensions. It took me two or three times to get it.
    The tenth dimension

    Thanks CB.  It was clear and fairly easy to understand.  I was encouraged because I could see my concept of a "god who works inside natural law" seemed like it would fit--if you were a consciousness existing at the 10th dimension (according to the flash) you would be able to interact in an infinite number of universes and the infinite paths of existence within each one.

    So far, so good.

    But of course, I wanted to learn more.  So I just spent the last couple hours reading what I could find about string theory, quantum mechanics, etc. and it seems this flash--while simple to understand--doesn't really represent the ideas most physicists think will eventually develop into a cohesive theory.

    I will have to read more to have even a basic understanding, but it seems many physicists have discounted this particular flash as being misleading.

    Date: 2007/01/08 19:12:58, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ Jan. 08 2007,20:05)
    So I just spent the last couple hours reading what I could find about string theory, quantum mechanics, etc.

    two whole hours?


    I'm an Evelyn Wood graduate.  Not only that, I took AFDave's course in "How to Know More than the Experts on Any Subject in just 15 Minutes a Day."

    I just sent a correction to Wiki on their "String Theory" page--those stupid Phd's and their faulty science.

    I'm sure I'll get a nobel.

    Date: 2007/01/08 21:40:48, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (lkeithlu @ Jan. 08 2007,22:14)
    Quote (GCT @ Jan. 08 2007,19:35)
    Quote (lkeithlu @ Jan. 08 2007,17:53)
    On the other hand, will someone teach me how to put quotes in the cute little boxes?  

    The easiest way if you are quoting someone is to go to their comment and look in the upper right.  There should be a "quote" button.  Click and enjoy.

    Like this? I can't see it in the preview, but I hope it comes out right. Thanks for the help!

    If you hit the preview button TWICE it will show you the quoted portions in the preview.

    Steve:  These 4-5 posts might go well moved to the "Board Mechanics" thread, no?

    Not to say that all mechanics are bored, though I'm sure some are.

    Date: 2007/01/09 00:54:29, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Bob O'H @ Jan. 09 2007,01:23)
    Is trepanation a common thing amongst mechanics?

    Thanks for increasing my vocabulary.  "Trepanation"?  I'm from the south sir--use words I can undersand please.  I'm barely literate.

    Date: 2007/01/09 12:39:27, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (creeky belly @ Jan. 09 2007,04:07)
    I would agree, but I think it's a simple way of thinking about a branching universe, not necessarily in being the direct analog of ours, but the general concept of moving around a multiverse can be likened to this. I know specifically the M-theory branch of string theory posits 11-dimesions (to unify the 5 types of 10-d theory), so to say that a single point in 10-d is all that there can ever be is misleading. It's thought that the reason gravity might be the weakest interacting force (I'll go against DaveScot on this one) has to do with the possibility of the force being spread out over more dimensions than the other forces.  This is all conjecture until we actually see the escaping graviton, but it would be a start (they're hoping to catch one at the LHC).
    There's many popular books on this and even a three part Nova special with Brian Greene, if you were so inclined. It's very similar to the flash animation in the sense that it gets the point across while being slightly misleading.


    Sorry if I sounded as if I knew something I don't.  I meant it when I said I would have to do a ton more reading before I knew anything about QM, string theory, etc.

    Thanks for taking the time to patiently enlighten me.

    If I hear you right, you are saying the discrepancies between what is commonly accepted and this flash are minimal?  That would be cool since at some level I did grasp the flash.

    I'll pick up some books.  This seems pretty interesting.

    Do you have any books you would recommend?  I have read BHOT and not yet Briefer--though I will pick up the latter this week.

    Date: 2007/01/10 19:06:42, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I've actually worked a little this week, so I have not been keeping up with the thread.  I will catch up over the next day or so.

    In the mean time:

    Are you just a figment of my mind
    Constructed to give me absolutes and absolution
    When I heard you speak was I talking to my self
    When you answered prayer was it just dumb luck

    Are my prayers just prophylactic phylacteries
    Hedging my bets and covering my ass
    Filed away like stacks of heavenly confetti
    Waiting for the triumphant parade that never comes

    Are you able to be measured like atoms on a pin
    Are you purely natural living in another dimension
    Curled to the tightest circle and as long as infinity
    Planck small yet beyond my understanding

    When a star exploded in the infinite past
    Throwing its dust throughout the ether
    Is that the moment my life was determined
    All my prayers answered my faith created

    Were my prophetic words just lucky guesses
    Made without conscious thought from me
    Did I just need an authority to give me reason
    For poor self esteem, guilt and shame

    But how many times can I win the lottery
    Before somebody knows I cheated
    Is there a point where evidence convicts
    And once convicted might I find freedom

    How can I ignore the record of my life
    I didn’t control the events I was witness to
    You are elusive—I know you better than most
    But I really don’t know you at all

    Another poem from Soylent Green - ItsPeopleDammit™

    Edit:  Before you think this is a slightly veiled plea for attention let me correct you--this is an OBVIOUS plea for attention.

    Date: 2007/01/14 06:06:18, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    The folks here at AtBC have NEVER treated me with anything but respect, and I have felt welcomed, not discriminated against.

    I have noticed that those who are treated poorly are those who tend to treat others poorly.

    Date: 2007/01/15 22:12:05, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Louis @ Jan. 14 2007,17:16)
    ....although many of them read the Daily Mail.....hmmmm

    Tough one. Nope, no, I was right you get the creationists, we get the Daily Mail readers. At least we can distract them with Gillian McKeith talking about faeces and the fact that due to progress and immigration etc "THINGS MAY CHANGE"

    Of course The Sun is a much better publication--I always find something interesting on page 3.

    Date: 2007/01/18 21:00:40, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Golly, I go away for a couple days and you guys turn this place into a party shack.  Can't your mother and I go away and trust you not to make a mess of the place?

    You're all grounded.

    Date: 2007/01/19 19:03:22, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Hovind doesn't make a very sympathetic defendant - still 10 years for stupidity sees pretty steep.

    Date: 2007/01/29 00:35:15, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Hey guys and gals,

    I apologize for not carrying my part of the load here.  I will get caught up at some point, but I have been very busy with writing I needed to get done to make some cash.

    I'll get back to it.


    Date: 2007/01/29 00:41:26, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 23 2007,11:42)
    Where did Skeptic and Scary go?

    BWE, in all honesty I had to use my brain for monetary endevors, and I didn't have the grey matter to come here and give coherant posts.  That's the bottom line.

    You guys are great because you cause me to think. Do I believe?  Why do I believe?

    That's exactly the reason I came here in the first place.

    Date: 2007/01/29 00:46:59, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (BWE @ Jan. 22 2007,18:30)
    Why is xian any different from any other book?

    It's not.

    Here's my tack:

    Almost everyone who experiences something they believe is transcendent had some methodology associated with it.  For Lenny it's counting backwards from 9.  For me it has been Christian rituals of fasting, prayer and worship.

    One methodology is not necessarily any better than another, all we can do is testify to what has worked for us and what results we have recieved.

    Date: 2007/05/28 17:30:18, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Haven't you guys heard of the Reef of Babel?  It's in the Bible--God confused the language of dolphins to prevent them from completing the Reef of Babel.

    Why even bother researching variety in sea mammal language when God has already told us in His inerrant Word?  Research to find answers we already know is just a waist of money we could be using to build a $27 million underwater creation museum to show the Truth to dolphins everywhere.

    Geez, I come back after months of silence only to find you guys have completely given up your religion.

    Date: 2007/05/28 18:18:39, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ May 28 2007,18:43)
    Hey, I thought you were going computer-less for ten days or some such.  I think you're an addict.

    I am addicted, just not to the internet.

    Actually Friday week (for those of you not from the south that means not this past Friday but the one before) I decided not to post for a couple days.  I've felt crappy and just wanted a break.  But I've been posting or commenting all week Lou, there just hasn't been enough "action" with Janie and Kate this week for you to hear much from me.

    Computers I got--I think we have 6 total I could use, though my lap top needs to get fixed so I can post in relative comfort.

    Date: 2007/05/28 18:48:04, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    I guess I would look at things slightly differently.

    You all need to know that AtBC “converted” me.  While I had been in the process for quite some time, until I came here I pretty much accepted there was a harmony between science and the Bible.  While I couldn’t have articulated the harmony, like most evangelicals I ass-u-me-d guys like Behe had it figured out.

    After all, while I knew some Christians would lie and mislead to make a point, certainly someone with the prominence of a Behe would be honest.

    I came here after reading a book on evolution of the brain.  I was fascinated with how evolutionary processes could create the brain we have today.  It made me curious about how other processes evolved and even how scientists like Behe put together science and the Bible.

    When I came here I expected a few things:  I expected Christianity would likely not be really popular, but I was cool with that.  I expected there would be a number of Christians here who were able to reconcile conservative Christian thought with science.  I expected to find people like Behe would be respected as honest scientists even though I expected some to disagree with them.

    Of course I was surprised at what I did find.

    I watched as intelligent design was painstakingly demonstrated to be based on poor science.  I saw the obvious lies being parroted and even created by leading "Christians."  

    I was also treated with a HUGE amount of respect even when I would ask basic questions or talked about my faith.

    All of the things I would expect “good Christians” to do when trying to reach the “unconverted” were demonstrated to me, mostly by the non-Christians here.  I found the people here to be willing to listen to new ideas, debate kindly and even change their minds if their conclusions were demonstrably in error.

    Should you share science with the unconverted?  I would say “yes” if they actually are seeking answers.

    Oh yeah, to everyone here, “A BIG THANKS!”

    Date: 2007/05/28 20:15:31, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Albatrossity2 @ May 28 2007,20:46)
    But that's a tough diagnosis. How do you tell if they are

    1) "seeking answers"
    2) trying to convert you
    3) unable to reject the years of Xtian indoctrination to which they have been subjected?

    Some of these folks (e.g. Dembski) seem incapable of listening. Others (e.g. FtK) seem incapable of understanding, even if they could listen. Almost all of them seem quite willing to believe things that are demonstrably and obviously wrong, due to some sort of hard-wired acceptance of the bizarre statements that they have heard since childhood...

    If someone is determined to believe something that is obviously bogus, it is a waste of time to try to even make conversation about it. How do you figure that out in advance, and avoid wasting the time? I have never been able to do that!

    It's not as difficult as you may think.

    When you point out an obvious problem with their understanding, so they respond with a reasoned argument supporting their understanding, a recantation and acceptance or parroted rhetoric?

    The first two indicate someone who is possibly able to learn.  The last indicates someone who will not be persuaded no matter what you demonstrate.

    I have the same frustration when I have gone to Christian boards and asked hard questions.  It becomes pretty obvious who is interested in learning and who is not.

    There is a belief among some of us Christians that we ought only to share our faith when we are asked.  I do understand trolls will "ask" when what they really want to do is "teach," but there are those who are sincere.

    Date: 2007/05/28 20:23:45, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    The premise of the argument "why should you be doing 'A' when you could be doing 'B'" is a fallacious one.

    Imagine applying that to other issues:

    "You shouldn't be trying to cure breast cancer when you could be working on AIDS."

    "You shouldn't be protesting the war in Iraq when you could be protesting for justice in Darfur."

    My thought is this:  Do what you feel you can do, what you have passion and energy for.  That's where you can make a difference.

    My undereducated 2 cents.

    Date: 2007/05/28 21:04:57, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (stevestory @ May 28 2007,21:31)
    "You shouldn't be working for McDonalds for $6/hr when you could work for Microsoft for $25/hr."

    It's not fallacious at all. The economists call it Opportunity Cost. You have to be careful when applying it, but it is very important sometimes.

    By the way Scary, I think you understand this notion without being aware of it. That's why you picked similar things to choose from. One deadly disease vs another, and one protest vs another. Choosing between roughly equal options is a special case where the Opportunity Cost is at a minumum.

    I didn't make my point well:

    I have taught business courses on opportunity cost and understand the concept fully.  The fallacy of opportunity cost is we rarely weigh the actual cost and benefit.  Rather, we look only to one criteria rather than the entire realm of factors.

    Why does someone with the ability to earn $25 per hour choose to take a job for $6?  Because he sees a bigger payoff for his time in peace of mind.  The “real” goal might be peace of mind rather than income.

    When we ask “should I cure cancer—which I have a passion for—or devote myself to AIDS—which I don’t?”  The answer is obvious.  Both are important and the one you have the best chance of accomplishing is the one that stirs your passion.

    What do you have passion for?  Even if it is not the objectively most important "cause" in the world, it is the one where you will be most successful.

    There are hundreds of thousands of boards you could moderate Steve, yet you choose this one.  I could argue your time could be much better spent moderating boards on "bigger" issues, maybe global warming or to encourage nuclear power, but you wouldn't have the passion to do it well.

    Passion, IM(not so)HO, is the key to effective advocacy in any area.

    Date: 2007/05/28 21:07:41, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Plus I must be right because Lou says I'm write (see my siggy.)  You can't overlook my clear endorsement from Lou.

    Date: 2007/05/28 21:34:08, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ May 28 2007,22:09)

    What do you have passion for?

    nice addition.

    hadn't even considered that yet.

    It's because it's on the front burner of my brain-top range.  (It's one of those Jenn-aire jobs where I can grill as well as--oh, never mind...)

    I am in a distressing yet perfect position.  The proverbial Chinese "dangerous opportunity":

    At 43 I need to choose what I will do with the next section of my life, and I have absolutely no idea.

    So when I talk about following your passion it's really just parroting the advice I keep reading, hearing, etc.

    Funny thing is, I can't seem to find anyone who is willing to pay me to schtupp my wife.  Off camera of course.

    Date: 2007/05/28 22:07:07, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ May 28 2007,22:47)
    At 43 I need to choose what I will do with the next section of my life, and I have absolutely no idea.

    get out in the world, and something will inevitably present itself that will interest you.

    barring that, volunteer work is a good filler.

    ever volunteered your services to help out at your local school?  either in teaching, or maybe with the school board itself?  I tried substitute teaching for a while, which was kinda interesting, if a bit on the low pay side.

    volunteer to help clear brush around the neighboorhood if you live in the boonies.

    volunteer in habitat restoration projects.

    volunteer to help out with NGO's like the national center for science education.

    or just laze here with us on the couch until an idea pops in your head.

    that last one actually worked for me.  I've got a couple of things on the burner based on private conversations I've had with people I met right here in this very bar.

    just some luck and I'm off.

    btw, only one year younger and in was in the exact same position as you a couple years back.

    may be again if neither of the things I'm working on pan out.


    My redhead has the same opinion--mostly the laying on the couch until something comes up--but I am more of a planner (good or bad) and I want to have a PLAN dammit.

    I have done just about every kind of volunteer stuff one can do, so my psyche is meta-aware of the possibilities there.

    Leaving ministry was tough and finding a replacement is tough.  I was working for the "Eternal God of the Universe", it's tough to give that up and feel good just being normal.  I know that sounds egotistical, please understand that's not how I mean it--I accomplished viritually nothing (by anyone's standards) as a pastor, and being normal is a goal of mine.

    Just not always sure how to be normal.

    Date: 2007/05/28 22:39:36, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts


    Date: 2007/05/29 21:09:38, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts

    You have found conclusive proof of the UNIVERSAL TRANSITIONAL FOSSIL


    Date: 2007/05/29 21:37:52, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Lou FCD @ May 29 2007,22:22)
    Unhelpful, but funny.

    Came across it whilst looking for my bone...

    um... yeah.


    You have something all over your hands.  What is that?  It looks like...too much time.

    Date: 2007/05/29 21:46:43, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Henry J @ May 29 2007,22:32)
    Re "Kids, do you want to use silly "Human Reason" or God's word,"

    The problem of course with "God's word", is deciding what person or persons get the privilege of deciding what God's word is.


    The question is like the classic:  "When did you stop beating your wife?"

    If they phrased the question differently and more honestly:

    "Kids, do you want to use scientific method, rational thought and observable evidence or an acient often contradictory document?"

    I know most of you readying this board already said this to yourself, but I just had to say it out loud.

    Date: 2007/05/29 21:52:46, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Richard Simons @ May 29 2007,21:17)
    as a regular train user there are ways to guarantee an undisturbed journey in a good seat

    My uncle recommended keeping people away by leering at them, beckoning and saying 'Come here' in an evil tone.

    Annual or even semi-annual bathing, talking (loudly) to yourself and sleeping at the convention center beneath the enterance veranda awning seems to do wonders for me.

    At least with the tourists.

    Date: 2007/05/29 21:56:12, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Back on topic:  Does anyone know if the "tours" are guided by real people (who can take questions) or are just driven along by a group of "World of Tomorrow" style pre-recorded messages?

    Edit:  I am about 4-5 hours away, but would make the trip if I had the opp to actually ask questions of those in charge.  (And if my redhead was willing to be waiting for me afterwards...)

    Date: 2007/05/30 15:49:24, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Stephen Elliott @ May 30 2007,12:08)
    They both resulted in lively dialogue.

    I wrote an article last year starting with the sentence "I hate a lesbian."

    The premise was not that I hate lesbians, but that I hate just one in particular, not because she is a lesbian but because she is a jerk.

    I suspect it's the same with every religion, or non-religion, or academic discipline:  There are great people and jerks everywhere.

    When we start saying a particular belief system should be illegal--or "converting" people to or from that belief should be illegal--we are typically picturing the jerks who hold that belief.

    But jerks make the world go round.  Without extremism we might just forget how imporant liberties are.  We need Nazi protestors to remind us everyone--even inbred white a55 holes--has a voice and we do too.

    It's a very short walk from permantly giving up the liberties the Patriot Act took away and theocracy.


    Oh and I wouldn't be in the least offended or even surprised if someone told me they didn't believe Jesus was divine or even existed.  I also wouldn't feel a need to "convert" them or argue with them.

    Most non-Fundy Christian sects don't place the premium on "salvation by pleasing the manic-depressive Daddy God who is ready to smite them any instant" that fundy sects do.  Personal peace in my own faith is not bought by your agreement with me.

    Date: 2007/05/30 16:11:11, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    You know, this is why Christians won't come here and participate.  LOLcreationists?  Isn't that a little imature for such a serious topic?  What juvenile humor.  I guess when you run out of good arguments you resort to making fun of your adversary.

    What's next, a flash video of Dembski and his crew complete with fart noises?

    No one on the creation side would...oh, shoot, never mind.

    Date: 2007/05/30 22:43:43, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (Ichthyic @ May 30 2007,19:02)
    What's next, a flash video of Dembski and his crew complete with fart noises?

    no, that was first.

    kinda the point, but then I'm just pointing to your point, pointedly, like someone else pointed out in a different point.

    Thanks for noticing Ichy.  I thought I was being witty, but everyone seems much more concerned with flirting with Kristine than giving me the ego boost of laughing at my jokes.

    Thanks for pointing that out.

    You're a good Christian.

    Date: 2007/06/02 23:17:00, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Quote (djmullen @ June 02 2007,20:48)
    Hey Dave, try this:  Set up fifteen pool balls and try to knock the last ball into a hole by hitting the first ball.  You can't do it except by sheer luck because each time one ball hits the next ball, any error in its trajectory is magnified.  By the time you get to the fifteenth ball, the magnification is so great that the random motion of the molecules in the first pool ball is enough to completely destroy your aim.  Remember Heisenberg's uncertaintly principal?  It'll get you in the end and it's all at the atomic level or higher.

    Maybe I'm off base here--and I know DT is--but I am thinking the problem with the pool ball illustration is that, given a complete understanding of the forces acting on the initial ball, as well as the precise locations and forces acting on each subsequent ball, there is no randomness.  What we perceive as randomness is just lack of understanding, no?

    I mean, if one had a complete understanding of the forces (which we may not) does that not mean we could predict with absolute certainty the outcome?

    The HUP only applies because we have limited knowledge, no?  That we cannot know both the position and momentum at a given "time"?  But if we could find both for a given particle at a given time then randomness would not be a part of the equation.

    But what stops us from knowing both?  Is it because by measuring one we alter the other?  But isn't it possible to, with advanced quantum physics, to be able to predict the effect the measurement will have on the particle and also predict the momentum?

    I know I am likely missing something basic here, but it makes sense to my tiny, uneducated brain.

    The reason I make the point is I am becoming more and more convinced in determinism as a likely view of the universe.

    Date: 2008/09/16 08:45:02, Link
    Author: ScaryFacts
    Coming very late to the party.  I haven't posted here in months.

    My background:  I was a fundamentalist minister for 18 years before leaving ministry in 2001.

    Christian ministers typically have very little interest (let alone training) in science.  They also believe those who are on the forefront of the ID movement are honest, intelligent, science informed Christians who have investigated and found that the Biblical account best represents the science--or at the least the science does not contradict the Biblical account.

    Many of them truly believe science is prejudiced against a theistic world view.

    In addition many would lose their job, home and complete social circle if they rejected literalism.  That's a huge emotional obstacle to overcome--and most ministers are not consciously aware of that tention.  It's easier to keep the status quo.

    If a minister begins to question his party's line, he will feel threatened and isolated.

    Initiatives like the CLP allow ministers to know they are not alone, that there are others who have accepted contemporary science and "lived to tell about it."  Over time they can begin to see there are many so-called "experts" who are supressing truth in the name of Christianity.

    I know many on this board see fundamentalists as being unreachable with any common sense.  For the most part that's likely accurate.  But always keep in mind that most fundamentalists are born and indoctrinated into their beliefs and some, when given the chance, are able to later see the error of their ways.

    Any nudge you can give them is good.