Posted by: Hope | April 29, 2008

A Prayer, A Movie, and A Thought

…all lead to my current decision on religion. It isn’t much of a decision, but surely SOME of you will look at it as a little bit of improvement.

The other day I went and checked out the movie Expelled which features Ben Stein and his search n the subject of Intelligent Design and Evolution. I don’t want to turn this post into a movie review, but I truly do feel that it was an intriguing movie. It really got me thinking and John and I actually had a progressive conversation after watching the movie. And for once, actually–for the first time ever–we found ourselves agreeing with each other!!! Now those of you that know where we’ve been and started off, you know that we NEVER agreed on anything under the category of “Religion”. And to be honest? It felt really good to finally agree with him on something. I think it really did show a little hope for a strong future in our relationship, and I cannot express to you how glad that makes me.

So with a lot of thought and reflection I have decided that I do believe there is a god. This is NOT to say that I believe in the Christian God, I yet have a lot to ponder on that. But as of now it only seems logical to me that a god, (whether or not we can actually have contact with this god I am unsure right now) created the original cells in which began the process of evolution. The chances of those cells and the earth etc. etc. being so perfectly created to fit to where we could actually live (I’m sure there are more intelligent people out there that could word that a lot better than I just did, but hey…I’m not the messenger, just the thinker) as human beings is so slim that is like 1/1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 and another like 9+ zeros.

Now honestly, can you tell me that just “happened” by chance? I truly don’t think so.

So yes, this is the only progress I’ve made. I’m not sure how long or how short it will be until anything else is decided. I’ll be sure to let you know when/if I do.

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Responses

  1. Sure I can.

    It’s the same way the collision between the Milky Way and Andromeda is down to chance.

    It’s the same way the fact that wasps pillage the nests of bees and eat their young evolved due to chance.

    It’s the same way that a lancet fluke can take over the mind of an ant and cause it to walk to the top of a blade of grass in order to be accidentally eaten by a cow evolved due to chance.

    If all of this was by design, it suggests a pretty malevolent designer. I prefer the naturalistic explanation that has absolute simplicity building up into a complex system over time. Fragile, beautiful, treasured, and revered existence, despite the occasional shortcoming that crops up every once in a while.

    Also, the chances aren’t as big as you might think. They can largely be accounted for by natural processes that reduce what would otherwise be total improbability to something that is much more easily attained over galatic time scales.

    Meanwhile, Stein’s anti-science documentary makes some pretty severe and misleading allegations about the scientific community. See more at Expelled Exposed.

  2. Sounds like quite a revelation. I pray you continue to grow in your knowledge of God.

  3. I’m sorry Ubi, but I simply just do not agree. Have you ever studied the human body, or any form of science dealing with what it takes for a human to live? I’m willing to bet you have–or at least have had some form of contact with the magnificence of it.

    Human life is way too complex for it just to “happen”….everything would have to come together at the right time, at the right place, and in the right order. It’s just not going to happen. It’s not a process of trial and error–you’ve got one shot.

    I can’t seethings just “building” up to form what we know as human life today. Its just not going to happen.

  4. I can’t seethings just “building” up to form what we know as human life today. Its just not going to happen.

    So if you don’t understand something, it must therefore be false?

    You’re misunderstanding me greatly – perhaps intentionally.

    You’re right that human life is way too complex to just “happen”. I’m not saying that. I’m saying that it grew and developed very slowly over time on the geological scale – millions of years, in fact.

    It is entirely far fetched to believe that modern lifeforms could just spontaneously happen – which is exactly my problem with the accounts of intelligent design and creationism. That’s what they say.

    Evolution, on the other hand, holds that life changes slowly over time, and this agrees with observed instances of speciation and provides a very elegant explanation about how, from very simple begginings, life could increase in complexity, slowly and gradually, to become the otherwise improbable creatures that we are today.

  5. Sorry about that… WordPress has been weird lately.

    “I can’t seethings just “building” up to form what we know as human life today. Its just not going to happen.”

    So you don’t understand it, therefore it can’t be true?

    You’re original point is a very good one; modern life is indeed far to complex to just have happened by total chance. That’s the very problem that evolution addresses. Namely, how did all this improbable life come about?

    Intelligent Design and Creationists say that all this improbability is justified by something even more improbable – an Intelligent Designer or Creator. This doesn’t even begin to solve the problem of explaining the complexity of life. In actual fact, it makes the problem even worse.

    The main idea behind evolution is that things started out as very, very simple – much, much less improbable than they are now. And that from that initial state of simplicity, they have gradually become more and more complex, taking time on a galactic scale to give rise to the first replicator of life, and then passing through time on the geological scale until we arrive at the modern case of complex life that would – by any other means – be extremely unlikely indeed.

    To put it another way… Rolling twelve dice in a row and getting a six each time is pretty damn improbable. But if you don’t do it all at once and build it up over time, it becomes much easier.

    So roll one die until you get a six, then keep it. Then roll the next die until you get a six, then keep that too. It’ll take you on average no more than (12 x 6) = 72 attempts to get a string of twelve dice each showing a six, as opposed to the (12^6) = 2,985,984 tries it probably would have taken you to get twelve dice all at once.

    The idea of a gradual trend towards complexity over long periods of time makes things extremely more likely to have occured than if they had happened all at once by total random chance.

    Additionally, evolution agrees with observed instances of speciation. We can actually see evolution working in the world, right in front of us.

    Just because you don’t understand something doesn’t make it false.

  6. As the title of your previous post says, prayer can do a lot

  7. Is there a Designer? Hmmm
    The argument starts with the major premise that where there is design, there must be a designer. The minor premise is the existence of design throughout the universe. The conclusion is that there must be a universal designer.
    Why must we believe the major premise, that all design implies a designer? Because everyone admits this principle in practice. For instance, suppose you came upon a deserted island and found “S.O.S.” written in the sand on the beach. You would not think the wind or the waves had written it by mere chance but that someone had been there, someone intelligent enough to design and write the message. If you found a stone hut on the island with windows, doors, and a fireplace, you would not think a hurricane had piled up the stones that way by chance. You immediately infer a designer when you see design.

    When the first moon rocket took off from Cape Canaveral, two U.S. scientists stood watching it, side by side. One was a believer, the other an unbeliever. The believer said, “Isn’t it wonderful that our rocket is going to hit the moon by chance?” The unbeliever objected, “What do you mean, chance? We put millions of manhours of design into that rocket.” “Oh,” said the believer, “you don’t think chance is a good explanation for the rocket? Then why do you think it’s a good explanation for the universe? There’s much more design in a universe than in a rocket. We can design a rocket, but we couldn’t design a whole universe. I wonder who can?” Later that day the two were strolling down a street and passed an antique store. The atheist admired a picture in the window and asked, “I wonder who painted that picture?” “No one,” joked the believer; “it just happened by chance.”

    Is it possible that design happens by chance without a designer? There is perhaps one chance in a trillion that “S.O.S.” could be written in the sand by the wind. But who would use a one-in-a-trillion explanation? Someone once said that if you sat a million monkeys at a million typewriters for a million years, one of them would eventually type out all of Hamlet by chance. But when we find the text of Hamlet, we don’t wonder whether it came from chance and monkeys. Why then does the atheist use that incredibly improbable explanation for the universe? Clearly, because it is his only chance of remaining an atheist. At this point we need a psychological explanation of the atheist rather than a logical explanation of the universe. We have a logical explanation of the universe, but the atheist does not like it. It’s called God.

    There is one especially strong version of the argument from design that hits close to home because it’s about the design of the very thing we use to think about design: our brains. The human brain is the most complex piece of design in the known universe. In many ways it is like a computer. Now just suppose there were a computer that was programmed only by chance. For instance, suppose you were in a plane and the public-address system announced that there was no pilot, but the plane was being flown by a computer that had been programmed by a random fall of hailstones on its keyboard or by a baseball player in spiked shoes dancing on computer cards. How much confidence would you have in that plane? But if our brain computer has no cosmic intelligence behind the heredity and environment that program it, why should we trust it when it tells us about anything, even about the brain?

    You can’t get more in the effect than you had
    in the cause.

    Another specially strong aspect of the design argument is the so-called anthropic principle, according to which the universe seems to have been specially designed from the beginning for human life to evolve. If the temperature of the primal fireball that resulted from the Big Bang some fifteen to twenty billion years ago, which was the beginning of our universe, had been a trillionth of a degree colder or hotter, the carbon molecule that is the foundation of all organic life could never have developed. The number of possible universes is trillions of trillions; only one of them could support human life: this one. Sounds suspiciously like a plot. If the cosmic rays had bombarded the primordial slime at a slightly different angle or time or intensity, the hemoglobin molecule, necessary for all warm-blooded animals, could never have evolved. The chance of this molecule’s evolving is something like one in a trillion trillion. Add together each of the chances and you have something far more unbelievable than a million monkeys writing Hamlet.

    There are relatively few atheists among neurologists and brain surgeons and among astrophysicists, but many among psychologists, sociologists, and historians. The reason seems obvious: the first study divine design, the second study human undesign.

    But doesn’t evolution explain everything without a divine Designer? Just the opposite; evolution is a beautiful example of design, a great clue to God. There is very good scientific evidence for the evolving, ordered appearance of species, from simple to complex. But there is no scientific proof of natural selection as the mechanism of evolution, Natural selection “explains” the emergence of higher forms without intelligent design by the survival-of-the-fittest principle. But this is sheer theory. There is no evidence that abstract, theoretical thinking or altruistic love make it easier for man to survive. How did they evolve then?

    Furthermore, could the design that obviously now exists in man and in the human brain come from something with less or no design? Such an explanation violates the principle of causality, which states that you can’t get more in the effect than you had in the cause. If there is intelligence in the effect (man), there must be intelligence in the cause. But a universe ruled by blind chance has no intelligence. Therefore there must be a cause for human intelligence that transcends the universe: a mind behind the physical universe. (Most great scientists have believed in such a mind, by the way, even those who did not accept any revealed religion.)

    How much does this argument prove? Not all that the Christian means by God, of course—no argument can do that. But it proves a pretty thick slice of God: some designing intelligence great enough to account for all the design in the universe and the human mind. If that’s not God, what is it? Steven Spielberg?

  8. Hey Hope,

    I just wanted to say also that I’m happy for you. I too pray and hope that you continue to seek and grow in your search to find/understand God.

    Some food for thought: 1 Corinthians 2:14-16

    Keeping you in thoughts and prayers.

  9. “The main idea behind evolution is that things started out as very, very simple – much, much less improbable than they are now. And that from that initial state of simplicity, they have gradually become more and more complex, taking time on a galactic scale to give rise to the first replicator of life, and then passing through time on the geological scale until we arrive at the modern case of complex life that would – by any other means – be extremely unlikely indeed.”

    I know AND believe in all of this. All I am saying is that I believe that there has to have been something (intelligent designer, god) that created those original cells that began in the beginning. Even the simplest of cells. It couldn’t have just came from thin air. It doesn’t make sense.

    But then of course my next question is: Well, then where the hell did god, or that intelligent designer come from? Which I cannot answer….I didn’t make it that far in my train of thought.

    But ok, let me clarify this then. You say that with gradual process these things would come to form its complexity in which it is today to where it is able to live. What happened to the other cells that didn’t do so hot? They just kind of died off and went away, or what?

    But even with all of this, which I do agree on, and it does make sense. I do believe in evolution–and yes, you’re correct we can see these things today. The only thing that brought me to my train of thought is the problem of where that very original cell came from.

    If we had a logical answer for this, that I could actually find plausible..then maybe that could lead me to the thought process that ok–there isn’t a god that did this, but this, this, and this is where it started and came from.

    But that is the problem. We don’t have an answer for this problem, and it leaves people (like me speculating) and going straight to the thought “well, shit, it had to of come from somewhere”

    Do you catch my drift now?

  10. Yep.

    In 1953, Stanley L. Miller and Harold C. Urey put together a science experiment to see if they could create the building blocks of life. They put together a closed apparatus containing methane, ammonia, hydrogen, and water. They repeatedly heated and cooled the water, forming water vapor and causing that vapor to condense. This is believed to be a good approximation of the early earth’s atmosphere. The ran electric current through the gas to simulate lightning in that atmosphere.

    After a week, 10-15% of the carbon in the closed system had formed orgainic compounds. 2% of the carbon in the system had formed amino acids. Amino acids and organic compounds represent the building block of life.

    There have been further experiments based on this idea. In 1961, Juan Oro found that amino acids could be made from hydrogen cyanide and ammonia in an aqueous solution, including incredible amounts of adenine – one of the four base pairs of DNA and RNA.

    This demonstrates that all the pieces of the puzzle of life could very easily have been present – indeed, over the geological timescales involved on the earth these compounds could have been availible in abundance. The only question that remains is how these pieces were assembled into the puzzle of a replicator. This field of study is known as abiogenesis.

    The jury is still out on which of the theories of abiogenesis is correct – if any. However, there’s an abundance of plausible naturalistic explanations availible that are waiting to be validated or falsified.

    And you’ve forgotten that the interesting thing about the naturalistic explanation of the diversity of life is that we can burn the candle at both ends. We can look at existing life forms and see how they split and diverge.

    So we can go through the origin of our planet in totally naturalistic terms up until the first replicating life form assembled itself. And we can go back from the present day, down to the trunk and roots of the tree of life, until the point where the first replicating life form assembled itself. There’s a question mark on that area at the moment – but a plethora of naturalistic answers that could easily fit the gap. The only difficulty at present lies in validating or falsifying those theories.

    So objective evidence shows that the probability for a naturalistic origin of life aren’t as high as your intuitions are telling you.

  11. Damnit! That should read:

    So objective evidence shows that the probability for a naturalistic origin of life are much higher than your intuitions are telling you.

    Stupid uneditable comments. 😛

  12. In response to Space:

    The argument starts with the major premise that where there is design, there must be a designer. The minor premise is the existence of design throughout the universe. The conclusion is that there must be a universal designer.

    Let’s have a look at the major presence first. Here’s some of your examples.

    1. S.O.S. on the beach.
    2. Moon rocket.
    3. The human brain.
    4. Anthropic tuning.
    5. Love cannot have evolved.
    6. Complexity coming from ‘less complexity’ violates causality.

    Now, the reason we know that things like 1 and 2 are designed is because we can go and see them being designed and built. We know they were designed because of objective evidence.

    We know that the human brain isn’t designed because we can see, objectively, how brains came to be evolved the way they are.

    Interesting point you made about brains in the plane analogy:

    or instance, suppose you were in a plane and the public-address system announced that there was no pilot, but the plane was being flown by a computer that had been programmed by a random fall of hailstones on its keyboard or by a baseball player in spiked shoes dancing on computer cards.

    It’s strange, but brains really do malfunction in these kinds of ways. There are many forms of mental illness that arise from exactly these kinds of malfunction. Also, there are all kinds of optical illusions that can demonstrate the ability of the brain to malfunction in it’s assessment of information even in the case of healthy brains. Malfunctioning brains are exactly what we’d expect if our brains had been produced through natural selection. So your own argument on the brain/plane analogy only works against you.

    Your response to the anthropic tuning argument is actually a fair one – the scientific community does a bad job of explaining this. The multiple-universes theory covers it, but it’s not very persuasive to people who aren’t into quantum physics.

    To give an example – I always thought the moon’s rotation was suspiciously fine tuned. The moon has to rotate once per lunar orbit in order to keep exactly the same side facing us. That’s uncannily precise. Additionally, the moon’s orbit is elliptical, meaning that the moon has to speed up and slow down in its rotation to do this. If it didn’t do this, the heliocentric model of cosmology may never have been taken up or, if it had been, probably would have been overturned much sooner and the entire history of mankind would have been changed. That’s amazingly ‘fine tuned’, right?

    I thought this was an amazing example of fine tuning for years. But eventually I found out that there’s a reason for the apparent ‘fine tuning’ of the moon’s rotation. It’s called tidal locking.

    So yes, the universe appears to be fine tuned. And no, we don’t know exactly what it is yet – we’re still at the point I was at before I found out about tidal locking.

    The second thing to point out in the anthropic coincidence argument is that nature just does what it does. It doesn’t need fine tuning. What needs fine tuning are our mental models of how nature behaves, such that we can predict it with accuracy. So nature itself isn’t fine tuned – it’s our models of nature that are fine tuned.

    As for the evolution of love, check out The Model for the Enlightened Cognition of Compassion.

    As for the final argument you made for design, that ‘complexity cannot come from less complexity’, this is demonstrably false on the most basic level. Snowflakes are infinitely more complex than water vapor – yet water vapor can be very clearly shown to form complex water crystals as it condenses at low temperature. Every snowflake on the planet is a falsifying observation to the hypothesis that complexity cannot arise from something simple.

    I think that’s everything you said refuted. If I missed anything, just point it out – I’m sure I can refute that too.

  13. Sorry Ubi, haven’t had a whole lot of time to respond lately.

    I knew about the first experiment you mentioned, not the others.

    I don’t really know what to tell you in the short amount of time that I have.

    I guess you’re just giving me things to think about, and I thank you for that. Your time hasn’t gone to waste.

    –Hope

  14. No problem, take all the time you need.

    Also, I know I come over a little strong sometimes. It’s just that when I argue a case for something, I only really enjoy it if I can give it all I’ve got. It’s just not fun otherwise. And of course I welcome criticisim in like kind.

    Hope to hear from you again in the future.

  15. I would like to comment on your discussion of the odds.
    “The chances of those cells and the earth etc. etc. being so perfectly created to fit to where we could actually live (I’m sure there are more intelligent people out there that could word that a lot better than I just did, but hey…I’m not the messenger, just the thinker) as human beings is so slim that is like 1/1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 and another like 9+ zeros.”

    The problem, as I understand it, relates to whether you are predicting a happening or observing something that already happened.

    I rode the subway yesterday and ten people sat on the opposite side. Each person was probably equally likely to be male or female. If I were to predict the gender before I entered the subway car, I would have a 1 in 2 chance of being right for the first person, a 1 in 4 chance for the first two. For ten people (2,4,8,16,32,64,128,256,512,1024), I would have basically 1/1000 in getting all the genders right.

    The subway had ten cars. The result is not 1/10,000 but (1024,2048,4096…basically 1,2,4…again) around 1 in 500,000.

    Seoul has eight subway lines, each with many trains. The odds of guessing the gender correctly for every car is vanishingly small.

    Any combination you can think of is going to be wrong.

    Does that mean the cars are empty?

    No.

    After it happens, we can tabulate the gender of all the people on the subways but the odds of getting that combination?

    one in one!

    If you imagine that the goal of evolution is to create humans, the odds of that happening are indeed tiny, but no evolutionary scientist says humans were the goal.

  16. I understand what you’re saying. I wouldn’t expect anything less than your best….then its pointless otherwise, right? It’s not only not “fun”…but it doesn’t truly teach anybody anything if you don’t share your knowledge. I say if you know something about it…you ought to share it, or else its just waisted knowledge.

    Thanks for the support!
    Hope

  17. Well, what ARE the options here in all this? Really only TWO. It all depends on your premises and presuppositions. Everything comes down to ONE OF TWO ALTERNATIVES, summed up like this:
    1. Once upon a time…perhaps two and half billion years ago,<—( scientists keep changing the numbers here ) under a deadly sun, in an ammoniated ocean topped by a poisonous atmosphere in the midst of a soup of organic molecules, a nucleic acid molecule came ACCIDENTALLY INTO BEING that could SOMEHOW BRING ABOUT the existence of another like itself.(And we won’t even get into the idea that here was all this matter in the first place–I guess that was always here? Or something comes from nothing…hmmm )

    OR we have:

    2. “In the beginning, GOD CREATED the heavens and the earth….”(Genesis 1:1) and “BY FAITH we understand that the worlds were framed by the WORD OF GOD….so that which is seen does not owe its existence to that which is visible”….Hebrews 11:3
    Two choices are here. Pick the first choice and you are left with no God, no heaven, no hell, or for that matter, any confidence in humanity and its future.
    Pick the second and you see all natural history as divinely guided towards Man’s coming; with moral responsibility (with a probable judgment on the horizon as well.)
    So I guess people are free to take their pick here.
    We are either: (1) The product of a cosmic crap game; or (2) Imagineered by WISDOM, LOVE, and POWER beyond comprehension. Those are the options; accident or design, chance or creation. You either have three impersonals: Time, Chance and Matter, adding up to Impersonal Man and Impersonal Universe; or you have Pre-existent PERSONALITY imposing order on creation, giving meaning to love, truth and dignity. Both sides have their “prophets or spokesmen” and both have their followings.Both have serious meanings and endings to those who follow them. I simply submit them for your consideration.

  18. Space:

    Firstly, it’s misleading to suggest that there are only two options. There are others – such as the worldview that everything is an illusion, or even the option of rejecting worldviews altogether.

    Secondly, it’s misleading to emotionally color Option 1 as negative and Option 2 as positive in the way you’ve done.

    For example, I could very easily do this:

    Option One: Mankind is free to shape its own destiny.

    Option Two: Mankind is the eternal slave of a totalitarian, celestial dictator.

    Now, this would be a trivial way of making an emotional argument in favor of the naturalistic worldview. It’s not a particularly good argument at all. I’m just using this to highlight the inadequacies of the argument you just made.

    Thirdly, regardless of which of these options we might prefer, does our preference matter? Just because it would be nice to believe something, that does not make it true. Sometime the truth sucks – this doesn’t make it any less true.

    I prefer hard truth over soothing lies.

  19. Lone Ranger and Tonto
    The Lone Ranger and Tonto are camping in the desert, set up their tent, and are asleep. Some hours later, The Lone Ranger wakes his faithful friend.
    “Tonto, look up and tell me what you see.”
    Tonto replies, “Me see millions of stars.”
    “What does that tell you?” asks The Lone Ranger.
    Tonto ponders for a minute.
    “Astronomically speaking, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets.
    Astrologically, it tells me that Saturn is in Leo.
    Time wise, it appears to be approximately a quarter past three.
    Theologically, it’s evident the Lord is all powerful and we are small and insignificant.
    Meteorologically, it seems we will have a beautiful day tomorrow.
    What it tell you, Kemo Sabi?”
    The Lone Ranger is silent for a moment, then speaks.
    “Tonto, you Dumb Hoss, someone has stolen our tent.”
    The above joke is a good lesson in missing the obvious. Chances are that you were surprised by the Lone Ranger’s response. However, the first sentence of the joke tells you that the Lone Ranger and Tonto were camping in a tent. It should have been clear at Tonto’s first response that he was missing the obvious.
    Likewise, those who have already decided that God does not exist and that all processes must have a naturalistic explanation, do not see the obvious evidence that the universe was designed, rather than happened by chance. As discussed on another page, rational explanations for the creation of the universe come down to two main possibilities:
    Design by an intelligent being
    Happened by random chance
    What are the differences between the two creators?
    ==========
    Characteristic
    God
    ==========
    Transcendence
    Yes
    Eternal
    Yes
    Creation of Universe
    Designed
    Intelligence
    High
    —–Or—–
    ===========
    Characteristic
    Super Universe
    ===========
    Yes
    Transcendence
    Yes
    Eternal
    Yes
    Creation of Universe
    Random
    Intelligence
    Stupid

    What we see in the table is a comparison of the two possible types of creators. Both creators must possess certain characteristics in common, such as being eternal and being transcendent to this universe. However, the naturalistic creator must be “stupid” and must have created our exquisitely-designed universe through some sort of random process. For some reason, the atheist chooses to believe that the universe arose randomly by the action of a stupid creator, instead of seeing the obvious – that a well-designed universe would most likely come into being through the actions of an intelligent designer. Let me give you an example. I show you a computer and ask you to make your best choice as to how it came into being:
    Designed and put together by intelligent human beings.
    Random computer parts were put into a large box and the parts soldered randomly by spraying molten lead into the box as it was rotated. This process was continued many times until the computer happened to be produced.
    Well, its your choice. Have you checked your tent lately?

  20. A skilled stage magician can make it seem like he saws a lady in half. It is obvious that he has done this – but it is not true. So it follows that just because something is obvious, it doesn’t have to be true.

    Therefore, just because it is ‘obvious’ to you that the universe has to have had an intelligent creator, this isn’t neccesarily true. To be sure, we have to investigate what’s going on – we have to go back-stage to the magic show.

    Back-stage, we find out that the magician didn’t really saw the woman in half – he used clever, non-magical means such that cutting the box in half would trigger our mental model of the lady in the box such that it would seem to us that the lady had been sawn in half.

    The naturalistic worldview is what we find when we go backstage in the universe. We can see that the universe isn’t really designed by an intelligent creator – it’s just that there are non-supernatural mechanisims functioning in the universe that just so happen to trigger our ‘design recognition’ brain function such that it seems to us that the universe was designed.

    Also, the naturalistic worldview doesn’t take that everything is random – indeed, there is much (though not all) about the universe that is deterministic, which is the opposite of random. That’s kind of the whole point.

    So the best you can do is accuse us brights of trying to spoil the magic show for you because you prefer the illusion to the reality – which is, in fact, the case.

  21. Progress. Good.

  22. P.S. At my new website I wrote an article that talked about a discussion that I had with some young people from our church. I asked this question; If God created the heavens and the earth then he must be_______________________.
    You can check out their answers (and mine) in my latest. The question might be a good one to ask now that you’ve decided he’s there. Look around you. What must the God who is responsible for all of this be?

  23. Hey, Hope, haven’t talked to you in a while 🙂

    I would highly recommend you take a look at Niel Shubin’s Your Inner Fish: A journey into the 3.5-billion-year history of the human body. It’s really an excellent book that shows quite well how at least certain aspects of evolution happen. You can read excerpts and listen to interviews about the book with a minute amount of Googling, too. The book really is an eye opener in that it shows just how incredibly solid the science of evolution is.

    Let me just stress one thing, though: complexity is one of the natural outcomes of evolution. Attempting to use complexity as an argument against evolution is like attempting to use the statement, “things fall,” as an argument against gravity.

  24. […] I really enjoyed your post – “A Prayer, A Movie, and a Thought“.  Can you describe what happened and how this impacted your view of […]


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