Just a Little Common Sense

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Posts Tagged ‘Creationism

Irreducible Complexity Has Been… Reduced. To Nothing.

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One of my favourite YouTubers, QualiaSoup, has put out another great educational video, addressing the “Intelligent Design” (=Creationist) argument of so-called “irreducible complexity”, which claims that evolution cannot be true since they are things that are so complex that they could not have come about by a gradual process like evolution by natural selection. The video dismantles the argument beautifully in very simple terms; it’s easy to understand and, more importantly, it’ll empower you to counter the argument yourself next time you come across it in a discussion.

One more thing: If you like QualiaSoup’s vids, be sure to check out his brother, too. He goes by the username TheraminTrees and produces videos of a very similar style which are just as brilliant.

Debunking Creationist Claims is a Waste of Time

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Debunking creationists is a waste of time unless you do it publicly, on a large forum. This has to do with the Creationist’s intentions and tactics. We need to realize that they are not really interested in changing your mind in particular – they go only for a large number of people. Any people. Any “soul” that is “saved” is a success to them, and numbers is what matters here. This means that most creationists will not engage you seriously, but rather spend their time “saving” five less skeptical people instead of the one die-hard skeptic who has had his heart already hardened by Satan. Understanding this mind-set is crucial, because it makes a huge difference to how one should approach engaging them.

There is a statistical certainty at the heart of all creationist propaganda: The larger the number of people exposed to their ideas, the more will be among the crowd who are susceptible to their lies, ignorance and misrepresentations. If you can stand up and debunk all their arguments, they won’t care. They’ll simply move on to the next person willing to listen.
It has been shown time and time again that creationists tend to simply ignore the debunking of their claims – it is not important to them. As long as they can use a claim to “save” souls, they will continue to use it to do so.

Since their main concern is “saving” people, the arguments and all the pretend-science is only a means to an end. Their actual respect for the argumentative weight of scientific arguments is incredibly low. Hence, they will simply ignore what you have to say. Their mind-set is such that you cannot by scientific arguments change their views, since to them science is only one of many tools to employ to “do the lords work”. They hold it in low regard. So if you try to engage their arguments at their scientific face-value, showing them to be complete rubbish, they will simply laugh at how seriously you take all this science-stuff and how little you know about what (to them) is the real, important truth.

So if you ever engage in a discussion with a creationist, the listeners are what really matters. Your scientific arguments will not convince the creationist, but you might engage the common sense of the audience, inform them enough to vaccinate them against creationist propaganda.

Thank You, Switzerland!

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Harun Yahya, whose real name is Adnan Oktar, is pretty much the Kent Hovind of the muslim world. His book, called the “Atlas of Creation” is an accumulation of pictures – fossils on one page, a living creature of similar shape on the other, and the assertion that life hasn’t changed at all. Therefore of course, Allah is the creator, Muhammad his prophet, and the Quaran his holy word. Two things are interesting about the book: Its enormous production cost (over 700 high-gloss color pages) and free distribution (copies were given to huge numbers of schools and universites) and secondly, the incredible incompetence of its author. Throughout the book, he is mistaking blatant mistakes such as mistaking a snake for an eel and fisihng lure for a fly. Oh yeah, he’s been convicted of various crimes, too.

On May 28th he was scheduled to give a talk at the Kongresshaus in Zürich. He didn’t actually give the talk himself, but just sent one of his minions, which totally doesn’t make a difference because just anyone can give a talk on creationism. There’s only a handful of “arguments” that need to be repeated over and over and over and over again.
The talk was heavily advertised, as can be expected from a ministry that is able to produce an enormous number of high-quality, large format picture books in nine languages and give them away for free. What they didn’t know was that the audience consisted in part of an organized, 70-people flash mob who, after a while just got up and left. You can watch the video of the people leaving here, or the complete lecture (part one of eight) here.

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