Reality vs. Ken Ham

The USA has a major problem with Creationism. Now before you all (Y’all?) descend on me calling me a commie secret muslim (This seems to be a major problem) you have to realise that I actually quite like America. I just feel that a lot of it is wasted on Americans who don’t seem to appreciate what they have. That the crass commercialism and the vapidity of populist American culture makes them ignorant of their own achievements and their own incredibleness that they are forced to make things up and lie to themselves.

The second time I went to the USA I made a trip to the Scripps Aquarium. Oh for those who have been, you would know whose office is near enough to the Scripps Aquarium. I have had the dubious pleasure of seeing Duane T. Gish (AKA Thermodynamics Disproves Evolution because there is an increase of net complexity and no source of energy! AKA the man who never learnt about photosynthesis or indeed noticed the giant ball of nuclear fire in the sky). It was my first “taste” of Creationism.

I was pretty lapsed at this point and began to debate evolution on forums, but I kept getting exposed to more and more creationists as time went by. My initial atheism may have been born out of the sheer madness of the violence perpetrated by Hindus and Muslims on each other but I cut my atheist teeth on creationists.

And Zack Kopplin reminds me of the things I fought for. And Zack reminds me that I have met people from the old areas where evolution wasn’t taught. People who forever would be ignorant of science because they were taught applied theology instead. People who genuinely believed in 6000 year old planets and 4000 year old floods and the like. I remember things like Dr. Dino and his museum piece of a giant. I was a kid but remember laughing at those silly things while people like Hitchens and Dennet and Dawkins fought against such silliness.

And now Zack Kopplin has come under the firing line of the always amusing Ken Ham. [Read more…]

We are all made of Stars

Gideon’s response from the House of Gideon is up. It’s just bad as a whole. It’s not a difficult argument to counter.

“And, throughout the Bible, it says that death is the result of sin. Why would there be a final judgment if everyone were already in Heaven or the pit? There is a hellfire mentioned in execution of the unrepentant at the end of time, however, the word translated as “hell” in the Bible, simply means “grave”.”

Think for yourself, blind faith is ultimately blind. It shows a fear of death, rather than a fear of dying. I am not afraid to die, but I fear the process. Yes even you Gideon will die one day and leave the world a sadder place for those who knew you.

If there is no judgement only oblivion then I haven’t really lost anything by not believing. Gideon and me will both share the same oblivion, only I would have tried to atleast leave the world a better place for my children and for the children of others. Gideon merely just wants to leave the world so he can go to some eternal paradise which he probably gets for not using the very sin that defines as human.

“this is just another version of that same lie that Satan told Eve, when he told her she wouldn’t die if she disobeyed her creator. Just as the eternal torment bullshit is merely another way of denying the purpose God had in removing all possibility of the existence of an immortal sinner, by barring Adam from the Tree of Life, so the doctrine of successive lives simply accentuates the idea that man can perform his own expiation without an intercessor, given enough time.”

Actually it’s a doctrine to encourage people to be good rather than believe blindly in god. In hinduism there are parables of men teaching god a thing or two about humility and compassion. Of the dying villain Karna whose last action is to give a beggar his own gold teeth. Of the sage who risks pollution by associating with the unclean. Karma is there to encourage you to be the best you can be rather than blindly follow rote ritual. And it’s best applied in the buddhist and jain sense as they aren’t are more philosophy  than faith that Karma and Dharma are the idea that if you are good and do good things then good things will generally happen to you.

And a doctrine of faith is faulty. As I said, plenty of serial killers exist whose belief in god would mean they go to heaven while their victims would not. This isn’t a good god. This is an evil god. One who must fall and the problem with the declaration of omnipotence is that your god isn’t as powerful as humans. In fact most of his miracles seem childish in comparison to science or indeed nature itself.

One can also see this heinous belief as the underlying foundation for the specious belief of evolution being the case for man’s origin. Given enough time, man can do anything… WITHOUT God, of course

It’s not. I don’t believe in Karma. I am an atheist you know. I don’t believe in any religion. In the same way that Gideon does not believe in Zeus. And evolution is the cause. It’s why the DNA code is nearly universal in all life and it’s why we share the majority of our DNA, anatomy and body tissue types as apes to the point where we regard eating apes as akin to cannibalism with all the attendant health risks due to consumption of similar proteins. This isn’t even up for debate this is fact in much the same way that gravity is a fact.

In a nutshell, all humans cease to function, physically and metaphysically, at death. The invigorating, yet unconscious life force returns to God, Who bestowed it, and the body returns to it’s elemental components -dust.

The soul you say? Prove it? Your consciousness is a product of your brain. This has been proven empirically in that your consciousness (AKA your soul) is altered based on how your brain functions and can be altered with medicine, disease or injury.

The soul is actually a philosophical construction because people didn’t understand brain physiology. Many people actually thought of it as a radiator rather than as a computation organ. 

Even if it means oblivion, friends, I’ll welcome it, because it won’t be nothing. We’ll be alive again in a thousand blades of grass, and a million leaves; we’ll be falling in the raindrops and blowing in the fresh breeze; we’ll be glittering in the dew under the stars and the moon out there in the physical world, which is our true home and always was. That’s what I think of life. 

There is no soul, no other life bar the one we have now. And it is upto us to make the best of it and do the best we can. There is countless beauty and there is no limit to our artifice. I would rather soar like an eagle than grovel on the ground scared of what I do not understand.

Only the followers of Abraham forget that the original sin can be construed as a gift. If the bible were true, then god merely kept humans in a state of grace much like how women in Saudi Arabia are kept in a state of grace. The Garden of Eden is nothing but a gilt cage. We were not banished, we broke out. The Jews realise that and revere knowledge. They treat the garden as a metaphor for growing up. Elegant solution to a problem since people like yourself treat the acquisition of knowledge as a failing in mankind and actively seek to reduce the amount of knowledge you acquire.

The very defining thing of humanity is our ability to accrue and utilise knowledge. That we can attain grace and wisdom through learning. That we live amazing lives. Your belief is nothing less than the cessation of that ability to strive for change and to instead live our lives no different from the cows we keep for food. 

We don’t hate you, we pity you because you chose to be blind rather than walk in the light of wisdom and understanding. I leave with another quote from Pullman.

“This is not a Kingdom but a Republic, in which we are all free and equal citizens, with — and this is the important thing — responsibilities. With the responsibility to make this place into a Republic of Heaven for everyone. Not to live in it in a state of perpetual self-indulgence, but to work hard to make this place as good as we possibly can.”

We no longer live in the Kingdom of God, we live in the Republic of Man.