idebunkforme

Debunking the web, one uneducated corner at a time.

Category: Science

The question which creationists refuse to answer

Why do creationists focus on a handful of people who say that evolution is wrong, while ignoring the thousands upon thousands of biologists who can explain how evolution is scientific, and the thousands of experiments demonstrating evolution, and the overwhelming evidence supporting evolution?

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The most beautifully elegant argument based on science

To commemorate Charles Darwin’s 205th birthday, I present the most beautifully elegant argument ever made that is based on science. It is the final paragraph of his well-known book, On the Origin of Species.

It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, with various insects flitting about, and with worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these elaborately constructed forms, so different from each other, and dependent on each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by laws acting around us. These laws, taken in the largest sense, being Growth with Reproduction; Inheritance which is almost implied by reproduction; Variability from the indirect and direct action of the external conditions of life, and from use and disuse; a Ratio of Increase so high as to lead to a Struggle for Life, and as a consequence to Natural Selection, entailing Divergence of Character and the Extinction of less-improved forms. Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.

In this single paragraph, he summarizes his book and presents that every living organism on earth is not only related, but their populations are mutable, and one day every species will be no more while others arise and continue on.

What did Darwin mean by “survival of the fittest?”

Too often, I’ve seen people argue that “survival of the fittest” refers to the fittest organisms, and thus is perfectly in line with eugenics. However, this is not what Charles Darwin referred to in his book .

In Chapter IV of the book, entitled “Natural Selection; or the Survival of the Fittest,” Darwin clearly says that the phrase “survival of the fittest” is a rephrasing of natural selection. In fact, he argues it’s (emphasis my own):

Can it then be thought improbable, seeing that variations useful to man have undoubtedly occurred, that other variations useful in some way to each being in the great and complex battle of life, should occur in the course of many successive generations? If such do occur, can we doubt (remembering that many more individuals are born than can possibly survive) that individuals having any advantage, however slight, over others, would have the best chance of surviving and procreating their kind? On the other hand, we may feel sure that any variation in the least degree injurious would be rigidly destroyed. This preservation of favourable individual differences and variations, and the destruction of those which are injurious, I have called Natural Selection, or the Survival of the Fittest. Variations neither useful nor injurious would not be affected by natural selection, and would be left either a fluctuating element, as perhaps we see in certain polymorphic species, or would ultimately become fixed, owing to the nature of the organism and the nature of the conditions.

Clearly, Darwin uses “survival of the fittest” to refer to the fittest traits, not organisms. And thus doesn’t argue for eugenics at all.

Edited to include more of Darwin’s passage for full context

A rebuttal to “Why the theory of evolution does not make sense” on Where Fear Meets Faith

User @FearandFaith posted a link, http://markbarham.wordpress.com/2013/06/30/why-the-theory-of-evolution-does-not-make-sense/, on Twitter today, and asked where he or she was wrong. Here’s a quick rebuttal of obviously wrong arguments from that blog post.

It fails to explain how life started.

Evolution is not about the origins of life. That would be abiogenesis. Evolution explains the diversity of life on earth. Evolution also fails to explain how gravity works or what the composition of atoms are, but these do not invalidate evolution. Neither does its lack of being abiogenesis invalidate it.

Even if life does arise spontaneously and independently it needs to then consume and reproduce. To do this it must already have a ‘program’ written within its DNA that instructs it how to do this.

We already observe simple chains of RNA self-replicating and self-assembling in nature. No need to program reproduction in the first organism, then. And for consuming, simple vesicles need only to allow certain molecules to permeate its protective layers, and these molecules can be used to aid it in reproducing. Those channels would be simple chemistry, not the result of programming.

Given that 1) and 2) have happened, it is then a mystery how complex features in creatures arise.

It isn’t a mystery. Complexity arises from reproduction with error and the resulting offspring continuing to reproduce.

Darwin himself remarked that the problem of explaining how, for example, the eye arose turned him cold.

Terrible quote mine. Here’s the full passage from Charles Darwin in Origin of Species:

To suppose that the eye, with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree. Yet reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a perfect and complex eye to one very imperfect and simple, each grade being useful to its possessor, can be shown to exist; if further, the eye does vary ever so slightly, and the variations be inherited, which is certainly the case; and if any variation or modification in the organ be ever useful to an animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, can hardly be considered real. How a nerve comes to be sensitive to light, hardly concerns us more than how life itself first originated; but I may remark that several facts make me suspect that any sensitive nerve may be rendered sensitive to light, and likewise to those coarser vibrations of the air which produce sound.

In looking for the gradations by which an organ in any species has been perfected, we ought to look exclusively to its lineal ancestors; but this is scarcely ever possible, and we are forced in each case to look to species of the same group, that is to the collateral descendants from the same original parent-form, in order to see what gradations are possible, and for the chance of some gradations having been transmitted from the earlier stages of descent, in an unaltered or little altered condition. Amongst existing Vertebrata, we find but a small amount of gradation in the structure of the eye, and from fossil species we can learn nothing on this head. In this great class we should probably have to descend far beneath the lowest known fossiliferous stratum to discover the earlier stages, by which the eye has been perfected.

In the Articulata we can commence a series with an optic nerve merely coated with pigment, and without any other mechanism; and from this low stage, numerous gradations of structure, branching off in two fundamentally different lines, can be shown to exist, until we reach a moderately high stage of perfection. In certain crustaceans, for instance, there is a double cornea, the inner one divided into facets, within each of which there is a lens shaped swelling. In other crustaceans the transparent cones which are coated by pigment, and which properly act only by excluding lateral pencils of light, are convex at their upper ends and must act by convergence; and at their lower ends there seems to be an imperfect vitreous substance. With these facts, here far too briefly and imperfectly given, which show that there is much graduated diversity in the eyes of living crustaceans, and bearing in mind how small the number of living animals is in proportion to those which have become extinct, I can see no very great difficulty (not more than in the case of many other structures) in believing that natural selection has converted the simple apparatus of an optic nerve merely coated with pigment and invested by transparent membrane, into an optical instrument as perfect as is possessed by any member of the great Articulate class.

He who will go thus far, if he find on finishing this treatise that large bodies of facts, otherwise inexplicable, can be explained by the theory of descent, ought not to hesitate to go further, and to admit that a structure even as perfect as the eye of an eagle might be formed by natural selection, although in this case he does not know any of the transitional grades. His reason ought to conquer his imagination; though I have felt the difficulty far too keenly to be surprised at any degree of hesitation in extending the principle of natural selection to such startling lengths.

It is scarcely possible to avoid comparing the eye to a telescope. We know that this instrument has been perfected by the long-continued efforts of the highest human intellects; and we naturally infer that the eye has been formed by a somewhat analogous process. But may not this inference be presumptuous? Have we any right to assume that the Creator works by intellectual powers like those of man? If we must compare the eye to an optical instrument, we ought in imagination to take a thick layer of transparent tissue, with a nerve sensitive to light beneath, and then suppose every part of this layer to be continually changing slowly in density, so as to separate into layers of different densities and thicknesses, placed at different distances from each other, and with the surfaces of each layer slowly changing in form. Further we must suppose that there is a power always intently watching each slight accidental alteration in the transparent layers; and carefully selecting each alteration which, under varied circumstances, may in any way, or in any degree, tend to produce a distincter image. We must suppose each new state of the instrument to be multiplied by the million; and each to be preserved till a better be produced, and then the old ones to be destroyed. In living bodies, variation will cause the slight alterations, generation will multiply them almost infinitely, and natural selection will pick out with unerring skill each improvement. Let this process go on for millions on millions of years; and during each year on millions of individuals of many kinds; and may we not believe that a living optical instrument might thus be formed as superior to one of glass, as the works of the Creator are to those of man?

If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down. But I can find out no such case. No doubt many organs exist of which we do not know the transitional grades, more especially if we look to much-isolated species, round which, according to my theory, there has been much extinction. Or again, if we look to an organ common to all the members of a large class, for in this latter case the organ must have been first formed at an extremely remote period, since which all the many members of the class have been developed; and in order to discover the early transitional grades through which the organ has passed, we should have to look to very ancient ancestral forms, long since become extinct.

Darwin not only made the argument that the eye is very complex, he tackled how it likely arose immediately following this.

The eye of made of several complex components (retina, lens, eyeball, nerves etc), each of which is useless by itself.

Incorrect. Many reptiles, for example, have a pineal eye, which is light-sensitive cell atop their heads. Most do not contain lenses or retinas, and those which do have very limited use of them. They also do not use rods or cones for light sensitivity. Yet they are, at the most basic level, eyes.

. . . each creature we see today seems to be specifically and supremely well designed to exist in its environment, despite the fact we would expect the number of anomalous effects to increase, not diminish as time went by.

Hundreds, if not thousands, of species go extinct every year. What we see as “specifically and supremely well designed to exist in its environment” is adaptation. Those which don’t adapt to the environment die off. We only have the winners of the game of evolution, and we lose the ones which could not compete as well.

There must be an optimum level of adaptation to the environment.

There is no sound reason given for this argument. Just . . .

It would not benefit my cat to learn to walk on two legs like myself. It is a far more agile and sophisticated hunter on four, than I could ever hope to be. Moreover, moving from a four legged stance to a two legged stance requires a pretty massive redesign of the whole skeleton, muscles and nerves, which must happen more or less spontaneously as a gradual transformation would leave the hybrid creature with a shuffling, limping gait which would severely impede its attempts at hunting or avoiding being hunted. Homo sapiens prodigious brain may make a Shakespeare possible, but it is difficult to see how it makes it more of a hunter than a wolf pack, who, with their smaller and more limited brains, use the teamwork techniques that is so often vaunted as being an example of human ingenuity. For that matter, birds and primates also use tools, for example to break open nuts. It would appear that other creatures have developed the abilities that it is traditionally said are unique to man’s enlarged brain and therefore the reason for his evolutionary ascent. In fact, it is the size of his enlarged brain which makes birth so difficult amongst humans, and, until recently, the risk of death to mother and infant so high. Our large brains means we have a Darwin and a Leonardo Da Vinci, but not necessarily any evolutionary advantage.

Humans went from knuckle walkers to walking upright. Our large toes went from being opposable to being inline to help power each step when walking bipedally. We lost strength in muscles to gain heightened motor function in our hands. Larger brains mean we had to consume more protein. With each change, there’s a gain and a loss. If the gain doesn’t increase the ability to produce viable offspring, the trait likely doesn’t propagate in the population. Those large brains, for example, allowed humans to overcome the elements, build societies thanks to agricultural achievements, and enable us to retain the advancements made by the giants of the past.

To be fair, we have no idea how the mechanics of evolution work.

To be fair, we really, really do. We understand so much about evolution that we can apply its principles to other fields, such as engineering and computer programming. We can modify organisms to help feed more people in a quicker amount of time. We can produce better medicine and fight more diseases. We can even identify inherited diseases far sooner thanks to our understanding of genetics.

Except for the Darwin quote above, these were the obvious issues found with the linked blog post. So many things wrong with so much ignorance espoused. Will the author correct these glaring issues, or will he or she be intellectually dishonest and ignore these rebuttals?

Ernst Mayr quote-mined full passage

A creationist by the name of Peter Allan (@centristslife) argued that evolution is wrong by quote-mining Ernst Mayr.

His quote mine? “What one actually found was nothing but discontinuities. intermediates between species are not observed”

Here’s a better context of that quote from Ernst Mayr’s What Evolution Is.

New types often appear quite suddenly, and their immediate ancestors are absent in the earlier geological strata. The discovery of unbroken series of species changing gradually into descending species is very rare. Indeed the fossil record is one of discontinuities, seemingly documenting jumps (saltations) from one type of organism to a different type. This raises a puzzling question: Why does the fossil record fail to reflect the gradual change one would expect from evolution?

All of his life Darwin insisted that this is simply due to the unimaginable incompleteness of the fossil record. Only an incredibly small fraction of organisms that had once lived are preserved as fossils. Often the fossil-bearing strata were on plates that were subsequently subducted and destroyed in the process of plate tectonics. Others were strongly folded, compressed, and metamorphosed, obliterating the fossils. Only a fraction of the fossil-bearing strata is presently exposed at the Earth’s surface. But it is even highly improbable that any organism ever becomes fossilized at all, since most dead animals and plants are either eaten by scavengers or decay. They become fossilized only when, immediately after death, they are buried by sediment or volcanic ash. Fortunately, occasionally a rare fossil is found that fills the gap between ancestors and modern descendants.

Yet Another Rebuttal to Mohamed Alsous (@meta4malsous) on Twitter

Mohamed Alsous (@meta4malsous) on Twitter finally replied to another point in my takedown of his “dismantling of atheists.”

As you can see, he’s bypassed point two. He insists others admit that, if they don’t respond to a claim of his, it means that they must admit that he’s right. Hypocrisy in action.

Here again are his responses. My responses will be in red.

Me: The big bang theory the most popular theory to the beginning of the universe, factors in an energy or infinitely dense matter that somehow for some reason exploded, yet never (and cannot) explains How energy entered into this equation? What caused the explosion..? Such questions that when thinking about point to an intelligent designer. And we know this from edward hubbles experiment which later concluded to the big bang that the universe had a beginning, now where does the beginning come from..? How could it even come in to play without any matter/energy present? Well my friends that leaves you utterly quiet because God, a source ABOVE the natural laws not bound by them is the only answer.

Him: It didn’t explode. It expanded. While matter and antimatter annihilated each other. This does not require an intelligent designer, merely a considerable understanding of the models put forward to explain all available evidence. You can’t put a placeholder into the mix, stating it’s your god, and it becomes valid until there’s a better explanation, when that god does not explain anything at all. How did your god do this? Where did that god come from? Without these, the premise of this god adds complexity and more unknowns to explaining the universe, which would be the opposite direction the scientific method leads our understanding.

That is absolutely false, the big bang is the explosion of an infinitely dense matter (singularity) This is said to have created – Time, energy, and matter. This also refutes when the moron said energy was eternal because this is the first time energy can be traced back to it. Anyway, you said all available evidence, lol please share some? As i stated earlier the big bang contradicts all laws of science which is why it still remains a theory, and im not discrediting the big bang i think it’s the best theory (as it’s stated in the quran) but science cannot explain how the universe didn’t continue exploding, HOW IT EVEN EXPLODED..? there was no energy before the big bang, from where does an explosion that creates the whole universe come, from nothing? How did the newly created particles form planets, and from those planets a planet that support life? NOT only that, a planet that revolves are the sound in order to maintain temperature. Science is completely baffled by that. Why doesn’t the earth just stay stationary, it has no mind of its own. Yet you’ll conveniently say oh well it just happened by chance, just like evolution, just like the big bang, just like any other anomaly you can’t find an answer too. Sorry bro i don’t believe in constant miracles over and over again without someone doing them. Anyone can tell you an intelligent design is a better assumption then chance by chance happening over again in our favor. Whether u admit it in arrogance or not is your own doing. My God as well as your God explains it quite clearly in the quran actually. Take a look at it sometime.

Yes, he’s calling me a moron in his reply, after reiterating that the big bang erroneously was an explosion. It was an expansion. See point two on this page for further explanation.

The big bang also did not create energy. The energy present was from conversion of particles into energy, and also the heat from the origins of the universe. These, again, were explained to him, yet he creates a straw man, yet again, to try to defeat. As you can see, he argues that I say one thing which is refuted by something else I said, when he gets both statements wrong.

He also demands evidence, yet all he produces when asked for evidence are quotes from the Quran. Rather than rewrite what’s already easily available (in fact, the first link returned on Google for big bang evidence), I will just offer TalkOrigins’ collection of evidence for the big bang.

Just the fact that he argues a science “still remains a theory” automatically discounts any arguments he has about science. To say such a thing, being ignorant about what theory means in science, shows that his opinions on any science are meaningless. Because of this, I’ll skip his opinions on science until he can demonstrate an understanding of the basics of science.

And, really, this paragraph is useless to respond to further, as he reiterates that the big bang was an explosion ad nauseum.

When describing the creation of the “heavens and the earth,” the Quran does not discount the theory of a “Big Bang” explosion at the start of it all. In fact, the Quran says that “the heavens and the earth were joined together as one unit, before We clove them asunder” (21:30).
Following this big explosion, Allah “turned to the sky, and it had been (as) smoke. He said to it and to the earth: ‘Come together, willingly or unwillingly.’
{Another scientific miracle that smoke, a clear, scene after the big bang occurred.} dense-less, cloud was the BEST way to describe the
They said: ‘We come (together) in willing obedience'” (41:11). Thus the elements and what was to become the planets and stars began to cool, come together, and form into shape, following the natural laws that Allah established in the universe.

As stated in another reply, the earth did not exist in any capacity at the beginning of the universe. Heavier elements that comprise the earth would still be billions of years away. Insisting that the Quran explains the origins of the universe while ignoring this point is a sign of either intellectual dishonesty or wishful thinking.

The initial state of the universe was not smoke. It was plasma. Dense, extremely hot matter so unstable that it could not bind to other particles until it cooled down.

And he presents no evidence that the quotes are based on reality. Quoting the Quran does not establish any credence to their validity. Especially when Mohamed attempts time and time again to turn poetic swaths into scientific knowledge.

The Quran further states that Allah created the sun, the moon, and the planets, each with their own individual courses or orbits. “It is He Who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon; all (the celestial bodies) swim along, each in its rounded course” (21:33).

The Quran could state that Allah predicted American Idol, it doesn’t mean that it actually happened. Independent verification is needed, and so far, none has been presented. Planetary orbits were known in Ancient Greece, as far back as the 4th century BCE. Definitely not divine revelation.

Expansion of Universe

The Quran also does not rule out the idea that the universe is continuing to expand. “The heavens, We have built them with power. And verily, We are expanding it” (51:47)

Who knew that the universe expanded 1400 years ago Lol? Edward hubble discovered it in the 20th century.

Unfortunately for Mohamed, I went to read the passage here. And it does not have the context he claims it does. 51:24-51

Has there reached you the story of the honored guests of Abraham? –

When they entered upon him and said, “[We greet you with] peace.” He answered, “[And upon you] peace, [you are] a people unknown.

Then he went to his family and came with a fat [roasted] calf

And placed it near them; he said, “Will you not eat?”

And he felt from them apprehension. They said, “Fear not,” and gave him good tidings of a learned boy.

And his wife approached with a cry [of alarm] and struck her face and said, “[I am] a barren old woman!”

They said, “Thus has said your Lord; indeed, He is the Wise, the Knowing.”

[Abraham] said, “Then what is your business [here], O messengers?”

They said, “Indeed, we have been sent to a people of criminals

To send down upon them stones of clay,

Marked in the presence of your Lord for the transgressors.”

So We brought out whoever was in the cities of the believers.

And We found not within them other than a [single] house of Muslims.

And We left therein a sign for those who fear the painful punishment.

And in Moses [was a sign], when We sent him to Pharaoh with clear authority.

But he turned away with his supporters and said,” A magician or a madman.”

So We took him and his soldiers and cast them into the sea, and he was blameworthy.

And in ‘Aad [was a sign], when We sent against them the barren wind.

It left nothing of what it came upon but that it made it like disintegrated ruins.

And in Thamud, when it was said to them, “Enjoy yourselves for a time.”

But they were insolent toward the command of their Lord, so the thunderbolt seized them while they were looking on.

And they were unable to arise, nor could they defend themselves.

And [We destroyed] the people of Noah before; indeed, they were a people defiantly disobedient.

And the heaven We constructed with strength, and indeed, We are [its] expander.

And the earth We have spread out, and excellent is the preparer.

And of all things We created two mates; perhaps you will remember.

So flee to Allah. Indeed, I am to you from Him a clear warner.

And do not make [as equal] with Allah another deity. Indeed, I am to you from Him a clear warner.

The expansion is done by people, not by any deity. Another dead end for his claims of divine revelation.

Furthermore a God does not complex anything, in fact it provides insight and reason as to why the universe was created, why it maintains itself as such with the orbits, and it not continually collapsing on its self over and over again. And explains why so many anomalies can happen, such as the 5 – 10 examples i gave of extreme examples in my earlier argument. You make things complicated when u try to take God out of the equation which is why you have so many holes in your theories, because a lot of the anomalies in science don’t make sense, such as the big bang, such as the earth rotating around the sun in order to maintain life, such as gravity, such as every single organism in the earth able to find its sustenance on earth.

And the insight and reason into these are . . . ? The “fine-tuned” argument was already debunked.

And things get less complicated when a deity is removed from the equation. With a deity, the explanation is pushed back onto another level; this requires the how, and also what that deity is, exactly. Where did it come from? How does it operate? And so forth. It doesn’t answer any questions, since “godidit” doesn’t explain anything.

As stated earlier, the earth does not rotate around the sun. It revolves around the sun. It rotates on its axis. And how are any of these points unable to “make sense” in science?

“Indeed, within the heavens and earth are signs for the believers.
And in the creation of yourselves and what He disperses of moving creatures are signs for people who are certain [in faith].
And [in] the alternation of night and day and [in] what Allah sends down from the sky of provision and gives life thereby to the earth after its lifelessness and [in His] directing of the winds are signs for a people who reason.” (43: 2-5)

Allah points out sign after sign, convenience after convenience that you’ve brushed off, not only that,you deny that and say it’s all by chance? That is the most foolish thought of them all.

Another straw man. No one’s arguing that things are by chance. In the previous reply, it was stated that the quote from Stephen Hawking was mined, and that he explained that the timing was due to natural laws, and not a lucky happenstance. Quoting from the Quran does not explain anything, and mostly it is an attempt to reinterpret what men wrote to be something more than it really is.

“These are the verses of Allah which We recite to you in truth. Then in what statement after Allah and His verses will they believe?” (43:6)

Note that he never addressed my questions about where his god comes from. Like point 2, he can’t answer it without admitting he is wrong. He cannot declare that science is full of holes for not having all the answers, and not have all the answers for his hole-less explanation of his deity.

He also has refused to update his previous response that had a straw man argument in it as well, even after admitting that it was. He’s still missing the rest of my replies of my original post. It does appear that he simply cannot refute real science, and disappears into his ignorance and mining quotes from the Quran to try to prove that the Quran is really divine revelation.

Debunked, again.

I suggest that, instead of wasting my time, Mohamed Alsous actually researches science first, and stops posting utter nonsense and quotes from the Quran. If he can demonstrate without quoting from the Quran that his deity exists and is capable of the stories in the Quran, then I’ll listen. Otherwise, it’s just another useless reply.

Another Rebuttal to Mohamed Alsous (@meta4malsous) on Twitter

This is a reply to a rebuttal from TwitLonger of one of my earlier points.

His post is in gray. My original response is in blue, new response in red.

This is false. We have a pretty good understanding of how the universe began, if one defines the universe as the visible spacetime we currently reside in. The big bang theory best explains, based on all available evidence, the origins of spacetime. We have the background radiation, the redshift of galaxies moving apart, and the mathematics that, when we reverse this movement, shows a singularity when everything once occupied an infinitely hot, infinitely dense point before time and space. The natural laws we observe only work in the universe we can observe. We can’t observe spacetime before it began to exist.

From where did the energy for the big bang to occur happen? Don’t tell me you know because then you should have already won some great prestige by now. Because even the big bang theory itself contradicts the law of conservation of energy and matter, hence it remaining a theory not being established as a fact, I would however like to note i do agree with the big bang theory SOLEY, because the Quran mentions it as the beginning of the universe: (Mentioned 1400 years ago by the way)
Quran 21:31 Do not the unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were a closed-up mass (ratqan), then We clove them asunder (fataqna)? And We made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?”

The energy likely always was. The model of the singularity is everything that was before spacetime. Just as theists love to claim that their god had always existed, it is possible that, before spacetime, everything in the singularity always was. Since, well, there is no time before spacetime.

The quote from the Quran would be wrong. The earth did not exist at the beginning of the universe. The atoms that comprise the earth didn’t exist at the beginning of the universe. They were forged in stars that died over billions and billions of years. This is, yet again, a poetic attempt to explain the unknown that is being manipulated to try to match what science discovers, if one ignores that it is vague and, as stated earlier, flat out wrong on its premise.

Here we have the clear catalyst of the big bang, without GOD, this COULD not have happened there was no energy for this to have happened otherwise.

Mohamed assumes there was no energy. But energy is produced from the annihilation of matter and antimatter, which is what caused the expansion of the big bang. The creation of these particles from the singularity had energy in the form of heat. So there is still no need of any deity to explain these aspects.

Now what else does that verse say? From every living thing was made from water. Cells are 80% water. And cells are the basic structure of all life but u already knew that. Who knew these 2 facts 1400 years ago…?

This would be fascinating, had Thales in the 6th century BCE not already theorized that water was the principle element of everything, including living creatures. It would also be more fascinating if Surah 15:26 didn’t say, “We created the human being from aged mud, like the potter’s clay.” Or Surah 30:20 didn’t say, “Among His proofs is that He created you from dust, then you became reproducing humans.” These aren’t revelations, but copying from earlier texts. The Bible, for one, describes creating man from the dust of the earth.

This shows that Mohamed Alsous (@meta4malsous) again seems to be copying his arguments and not really understanding how to defend them.

In Reply to Mohamed Alsous (@meta4malsous) on Twitter

This is a reply to this tweet: https://twitter.com/meta4malsous/status/283354267119661057, and the TwitLonger: http://www.twitlonger.com/show/kfiigo.

His post remains in gray. My replies are in red.

You claim, and whine, and beg for the evidence to be presented to you, yet any time your theories come under scrutiny such as, Umm idk?

When someone makes a claim against our collective knowledge, then yes, evidence is required for anyone to accept such a claim. Science is well-established. All one has to do is pick up the appropriate journals, do the experiments yourself, and discover that yes, those theories and facts and laws are valid.

1. You have no understanding nor even guess as to how the universe was started, your own natural laws work against every single theory you try to come up with

This is false. We have a pretty good understanding of how the universe began, if one defines the universe as the visible spacetime we currently reside in. The big bang theory best explains, based on all available evidence, the origins of spacetime. We have the background radiation, the redshift of galaxies moving apart, and the mathematics that, when we reverse this movement, shows a singularity when everything once occupied an infinitely hot, infinitely dense point before time and space. The natural laws we observe only work in the universe we can observe. We can’t observe spacetime before it began to exist.

2. The first law of thermodynamics, states that if things are left un attended to, they resort to becoming chaos. Let’s apply that law, the universe, THE BIGGEST open system known to us, is completely ordained, maintained, and and perfectly suited for what it does. So why doesn’t the universe go into chaos? Who’s maintaining it because the universe is indifferent to what happens in it, killing all life forms, blowing up planets, nothing has significance to it as it has no mind. So then why does it stay orderly?

Um, no. The first law of thermodynamics states that matter and energy cannot be created or destroyed, only that they change forms and can flow into other systems; any closed system’s total energy will remain the same. What you’re thinking of is the second law of thermodynamics, which states that in any closed system, entropy tends toward equilibrium. The universe itself is not an open system, unless you’re aware of another universe that actively trades energy with our own? The universe is tending toward chaos, a heat death, that will take many billions of years to achieve. There is no one needed to “maintain it,” since your arguments thus far show ignorance of the basic physics of the universe.

3. The big bang theory the most popular theory to the beginning of the universe, factors in an energy or infinitely dense matter that somehow for some reason exploded, yet never (and cannot) explains How energy entered into this equation? What caused the explosion..? Such questions that when thinking about point to an intelligent designer. And we know this from edward hubbles experiment which later concluded to the big bang that the universe had a beginning, now where does the beginning come from..? How could it even come in to play without any matter/energy present? Well my friends that leaves you utterly quiet because God, a source ABOVE the natural laws not bound by them is the only answer.

It didn’t explode. It expanded. While matter and antimatter annihilated each other. This does not require an intelligent designer, merely a considerable understanding of the models put forward to explain all available evidence. You can’t put a placeholder into the mix, stating it’s your god, and it becomes valid until there’s a better explanation, when that god does not explain anything at all. How did your god do this? Where did that god come from? Without these, the premise of this god adds complexity and more unknowns to explaining the universe, which would be the opposite direction the scientific method leads our understanding.

4. The fine tuning of the universe is the clearest most explicit proof to the being of a creator, you’re celebrity stephen hawking notes in his book, had the big bang lasted more than one quintillionth of a second longer, there would be no life as we see today. That’s point a.
b. Ratio of Electrons:Protons 1:10^37
Ratio of Electromagnetic Force:Gravity 1:10^40
Expansion Rate of Universe 1:10^55
Mass Density of Universe1 1:10^59
Cosmological Constant 1:10^120

Try better grammar, please. It’s “your celebrity,” not “you’re celebrity.” And Stephen Hawking would be capitalized. His argument is that the rate of expansion was due to the density of the very early universe. Thus, it wasn’t fine-tuning, but the natural result of physical properties of the universe. These numbers are irrelevant to any fine-tuning argument, because there is nothing for anyone to compare these against. What if the universe had slightly different values? What would it look like? How would we know? Thus, an argument of fine-tuning is based on faulty logic and unfalsifiable arguments.

The value on the right indicated the MAXIMUM deviation allowed for the constant on the right, these are values learned in physics. Please tell me how all 6 of the previously stated values are at basically perfectly suited for us to be living in, anyone of these values if corrupted immediately would destroy life as we know it.

As stated above, there is nothing to compare these to, so there’s no way to determine that they’re perfectly suited for us to be living in. Perhaps there’s another set even more ideal for life to originate. From our understanding, it took about ten billion years for the only lifeforms we’ve ever known to arise in this universe. Is that really the most perfectly suited universe for life to originate? How can we tell?

Let’s take a look at the sun, the source of warmth for us, is approximately 150 x 10^6 km from us, had it been at most 5,00 miles closer or further we would have either burned or froze, What keeps the sun from moving YET at the same time keeps the earth rotating around it so it fully covers all parts of the globe by it?

Is that 5 miles or 5,000 miles? If so, then we’d have burned or froze already if your argument is valid. The earth’s distance from the sun changes 3.1 million miles over the course of the year. Yet, we’re still here year after year. In fact, the earth could be tens of millions of miles closer or farther away from the sun, on average, and still be comfortable for life to arise.

The sun is moving. It’s spiraling around the outskirts of the Milky Way, which itself is moving through space.The earth doesn’t rotate around the sun, but it does revolve around it. Rotate is a spin around an object’s axis.

5. The presence of gravity, the gravitation pull on earth as i’m sure you’ve noticed is perfectly suited for us, not pushing us so hard we can’t move, and not so light that we are flying, Yet in space there is no gravity as you already knew. The gravitational pull is also RIGHT at the core of the earth meaning it pulls all in every direction so that everyone on earth is influenced by it. Now wait, in the presence of the big bang, how could an explosion create an on going permanent force? Ok you may argue matter can be clung together threw particles but where is your argument for a force coming into being that perfectly suits us in our living environment.

Gravity on earth could have been the same as on the moon and still life would have arisen. Gravity is not an essential factor in life. Experiments have been happening on the International Space Station and the Mir before that to germinate plants in microgravity. Thus, gravitational pull is nonessential to life existing.

The big bang is the expansion of the singularity into what is now spacetime. It is an event, not a sentient force. The properties of the physical universe existed when spacetime existed. And since it’s already been shown that gravity is not necessary for life to arise, gravity is not a force that “perfectly suits us in our living environment.”

That my friends is a handpicked few points that i have put together to illustrate my point in a few minutes, i have not even gotten started on the consistency of nature/ genetics/ statistics against evolution, etc.
Get Up.

Then you’ve failed on every single one. I assumed, as your tweet stated, that this would have dismantled us. There wasn’t even a single valid argument. You may want to get up yourself, and try to get an education in the subjects you argue are wrong. That may help you have a more comprehensive discussion.

Your Daily Dose of Creationist Stupidity

Today, we have a creationist moron with 167 subscribers (at the time of this posting) challenges Richard Dawkins to debunk his claim. That claim? Since Darwin was not a Christian while on the voyage of The Beagle, evolution did not start with an objective foundation, and therefore cannot be science. And if Dawkins does not respond to this creationist’s challenge, it’s the nail in evolution’s coffin.

Not shitting you.

So, Atheism+…

There’s this thing, started pretty much on Freethought Blogs.

It’s called Atheism+.

It’s, pretty much, secular humanism. Here, let me show you.

  • care about social justice
  • support women’s rights
  • protest racism
  • fight homophobia and transphobia
  • use critical thinking and skepticism
  • rooted in the world of experience
  • objective
  • equally accessible to every human who cares to inquire into value issues

One of those lists is a list of values for secular humanism. One of those lists is a list of values for atheism+. Can you tell which is which?

However, those who are promoting atheism+ as a “good idea” have now started to show their colors why. It’s nothing more than a way to weed out undesirables. Those atheists who aren’t good atheists. Who aren’t atheist enough. Sorry to burst their bubbles, but atheism’s about one thing, and atheists can have different values in other areas. No one gets to define otherwise.

The list above comes from Richard Carrier’s blog, where he signs off, “In the meantime, I call everyone now to pick sides (not in comments here, but publicly, via Facebook or other social media): are you with us, or with them; are you now a part of the Atheism+ movement, or are you going to stick with Atheism Less? Then at least we’ll know who to work with. And who to avoid.”

Sickening that people who are supposed to be skeptics and humanists would be so black-and-white, us-versus-them, no? Even more sickening are some of the comments on this post.

Tom says:
August 20, 2012 at 4:04 pm

I’ll stick with the original atheism, thanks.

Richard Carrier says:
August 21, 2012 at 9:46 am

So, one vote for douchery. Got it.

Is that what this movement will become? With us, or you’re a douche? Label yourself an atheist+ or to hell with you?

Greta Christina argues that atheism+ is a better term to use than humanism because “atheist” and “atheism” are better known terms and invoke more energy in supporters. This is not a great defense for why people should be labeled one thing instead of another.

After all, how many creationists completely screw up what evolution is? Or the big bang? The way we combat this ignorance is with education and advocacy. If secular humanism is not getting enough exposure, give it more exposure. Don’t relabel it with “atheism” just because more people will know what atheism is. Atheism+ isn’t atheism. It’s atheism PLUS humanism, or just secular humanism.

She also argues that if people in the atheist community are tired of the misogynists and move to humanism, then it doesn’t solve the problem. The same argument applies that if you move yourself from the label of atheist to atheist+, there are still misogynists in the atheist movement. I don’t see how anything has been resolved by starting a new movement, other than “agree with us or be a pariah!”

Jen McCreight wants people to brainstorm what atheism+ should be about. Here, again, will be a very big problem for the movement to go forward. Unless it becomes a hierarchy, a bureaucracy, or like secular humanism, an organization, who decides what atheism+ will be about?

What if Person A dictates that atheism+ should be concerned with the plight of those in Africa, while Person B is against any foreign aid and says that’s not part of atheism+? Will this split, like how atheism+ is trying to make atheism a better ideology? Will there be atheism+ and atheism++?

What if, for “animal welfare,” you have Person C who argues that atheism+ should be concerned with humane treatment of all animals, while Person D is PETA-level, no testing on any animals for any reason, no pets, no meat, etc.? What then?

Who gets to decide at what levels atheism+ concerns itself with these topics? What if Person E declares himself an atheist+ but feels like trickle-down economics works? He would support causes that are detrimental to the economy, cause harm to the less fortunate, and still be part of atheism+.

No matter how many topics one tries to cover under one umbrella, there are other areas which can’t be covered. You can still have right assholes in atheism+ who disagree with your ideals. So why the schism? Why the advocacy for this new type of atheism?

Be atheists. But also be more than that. Don’t be lazy and use a label that won’t be understood, that can be butchered and torn in many directions, that will have no leadership (or if it does, will become very similar to religious organizations), and that will do nothing more than to show yourself as someone who follows and not leads.

Atheism+ is a nonsensical ideology that is just a kneejerk reaction to prominent assholes in the atheist movement. It’s not a solution. It’s not going to fix any problems. And it’ll just cause more drama in a drama-filled online community.

I’m not going to label myself an atheist+. It doesn’t mean that I don’t agree with all of their positions on social issues. It doesn’t mean that I’m a douchebag, an asshole, or whatever else an atheist+ wants to toss my way. It simply means that I won’t put a label on myself that others can determine what it means.

I’m an atheist. I’m for women’s rights. I’m for social justice and equality. I’m against the death penalty. I’m against government and corporate corruption. I’m against homophobia, transphobia, racism, classism, ageism, or anything which discriminates on physical or social attributes.

I let my actions, my words and my support of these ideals show who I am. Not a label.

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