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Interesting article on the 'deconversion' of a Young-Earth creationist

Discussion in 'Physical & Life Sciences' started by pitabread, May 23, 2019.

  1. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    Path Across the Stars

    The was linked from the Panda's Thumb a few days ago. It's a well written and fascinating account of a young-Earth creationist who eventually was confronted with astronomical phenomena that they couldn't put into a YEC framework.

    A few points that stood out to me from this article included this commentary on professional creationist organizations:

    In We Believe In Dinosaurs, Ken Ham is caught on film saying, “You should listen to our PhD experts talk, even though you won’t be able to understand anything they say,” and his slip keenly illustrates the underlying strategy of the movement. Creationism doesn’t have to prove anything; it only has to maintain a veneer of scientific respectability. Their goal is control, abusing science to safeguard their authority. As long as they can maintain that their pseudoscience is “just as plausible” as the mainstream alternative, their power to interpret Scripture unchallenged remains protected.
    This comment on the sciences:

    As the years passed, I spent more and more time reading everything I could about geology, biology, and astrophysics. My limit for inter-library loans was always full. I was looking for a pattern, a reason why astronomy and geology and evolutionary biology seemed to be so good at making predictions and lined up so well with other areas of science.
    And finally this comment on the deconversion from creationism:

    My deconversion from creationism was the result of years of learning new information and exposing myself to different ideas.
    The aricle is a good read and I highly recommend it.
     
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  2. Ophiolite

    Ophiolite Recalcitrant Procrastinator

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    I am bemused as to why YECs do not recognise that the evolution of the universe, first in a physical sense, then in a biological sense, and now - through humanity - in a cultural sense, is a much more glorious and awesome Act of Creation than a six day glitzy extravaganza.
     
  3. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    That does not mean a necessary strategy at all. He could be saying in effect,..."You should listen to our PhD experts talk, even though you won’t be able to understand anything they say, (because thy are way over my head as well)”.

    Your accusation has a bit of a conspiracy element to it that's without sufficient warrant.
    Try to stick with the substance instead of attacking the person.
     
  4. Ophiolite

    Ophiolite Recalcitrant Procrastinator

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    That wasn't an attack on the person, it was an attack on the person's technique. At best it means his style is ambiguous - not a great recommendation for someone whose career relies upon his ability to communicate clearly to the public.
     
  5. Occams Barber

    Occams Barber Newbie Supporter

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    Thanks Pitabread.

    If it takes this much effort to convince an apparently intelligent young man that a fundamentalist view of Creation is scientifically impossible, then I see little hope for the less well informed majority of Creationists.

    Reminds me of my youth when I was forced to put aside Fred Hoyle and Steady State Theory in favour of Big Bang. Now that was a deconversion from which I am still recovering.
    OB
     
  6. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Georges Lemaitre is proud of you.
     
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  7. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    FYI, I'm not the author of that quote. I simply quoted it from the linked article.

    That said, I do agree with the sentiment expressed in that quote. My experience with creationist organizations like Answers in Genesis, Creation Ministries, and so on, is that they put out a lot of material that sounds "science-y" to the layman but falls apart under rigorous scrutiny. That they put out such material in an effort to sound authoritative and compete with mainstream science seems like a fair assessment.
     
  8. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't lose hope. Trends in creationism show a decline in creationist beliefs over time.

    The inverse correlation between belief in creationism versus education, and knowledge of science and evolution, are running afoul of the trend in global education and the move towards a more educated populace. Education seems to be the antithesis of creationism.

    Over time, creationist beliefs seem doomed to the fringe. Unless creationists change tactics, I don't see how these trends will change.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2019
  9. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    I realized it wasn't your writing and you were quoting but it was done as if you endorsed it's content.
    What I don't understand is that you, being an agnostic, would even care about the Young Earth Creation view at all unless there actually is a God. That YE/OE issue is more of an in-house debate amongst Christians.
     
  10. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    Creationists have a history of trying to interfere with public education and spreading anti-science propaganda. That makes it a public issue not confined to Christianity.
     
  11. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    I was just asking why you were interested in the debate as an agnostic. Not why are you in it. Of course you're free to take part.
    If memory serves me right, it was the evolutionists that interfered with the Creation view in the public school system back in the 1920s or so.
     
  12. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    My interest in the debate has nothing to do with my philosophical beliefs. More than anything these days, it's because I'm interested in biology and I find these debates any easy excuse to read up on the subject.

    That, plus I enjoy arguing. ;)

    If you're thinking of the Scopes trial, that would be incorrect. The Scopes trial was a result of a Tennessee law which prohibited the teaching of evolution. During which the defendant, John Scopes, was found guilty of violating the law by teaching evolution.

    This was a prime example of creationists trying to prevent the teaching of biological evolution in the classroom.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2019
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  13. essentialsaltes

    essentialsaltes Stranger in a Strange Land

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    Maybe, but the earth actually has a verifiable age agreed upon by experts in the relevant sciences. The earth is billions of years old.
     
  14. essentialsaltes

    essentialsaltes Stranger in a Strange Land

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    Your memory could use some refreshing. Science readily adopted evolution in the 19th century. And science was understandably taught in science classes afterwards.

    In 1925, Tennessee passed the Butler Act. "The Butler Act was a 1925 Tennessee law introduced by Tennessee House of Representatives member John Washington Butler prohibiting public schoolteachers from denying the Biblical account of mankind's origin."

    Thus, the Butler Act (which led to the Scopes Trial) was politicians interfering with the scientific view in the public school system back in the 1920s or so.
     
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  15. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    The inhouse debate among Christians is for different reasons. They both believe God created creation and the natural order of things but one compromises with the evolutionary theory and the other believes God took six days as Scriptures state.
     
  16. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    Sciences classes? We were having the theory of evolution crammed down our throat in the third grade in the '50's. I'd call that brainwashing, not giving us an alternative view.
     
  17. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    With respect to science, there are no scientifically legitimate alternative views.

    If you're upset that you weren't able to learn religious ideas in lieu of science, well, too bad. In science class, they should be teaching science.
     
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  18. crossnote

    crossnote Berean Supporter

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    I wasn't upset, I grew up in an atheistic home and had humanism spoon fed to me in the public school system, so I was overly joyed years later to find out the theory of evolution was an agenda driven lie. There actually is hope beyond the grave through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
     
  19. pitabread

    pitabread Well-Known Member

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    Well that's not true. The theory of evolution is part of the foundation of the science of biology, and it's an applied science to boot. Companies even have filed patents for practical applications of the theory.

    The idea the ToE is an "agenda driven lie" is nothing more than a piece of creationist propaganda so that creationists don't have to think about conflicting information.

    But don't take my word for it. See what creationist Todd Wood has to say on the subject: The truth about evolution
     
  20. Jonathan Walkerin

    Jonathan Walkerin Active Member

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    The thing with alternative views as opposed to reality is that there can be infinite number of them

    For starters

    List of creation myths - Wikipedia

    How do you propose to choose which bits of fantasy are offered as alternative to current scientific knowledge ?
     
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