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Atheist Experience
Show on creationism/evolution

Good day,

I ran across your podcast and listened to all available. I have also listened to all available Atheist Viewpoint podcasts. I noticed when there is discussion regarding creationism and evolution it is either/or.

I am Greek Orthodox and believe in creationism and evolution. (I can offer explanation if there is interest without condescension) Have you ever had a show where both were addressed as a union instead of addressed as seperate beliefs? Do you know of any other atheist podcasts that may have addressed such a belief?

Although I am not an atheist I do respect the thought provoking views you present, not only non-faith based but politically and socially.

I appreciate any information you may have.

I did not see the podcast you're specifically addressing, but maybe this explanation will be helpful:

I know that on the AE show, it has been said repeatedly that many Xians are not opposed to evolution. When I am on, and a Xian creationist calls to attack evolution, my first response is to make sure the Xian caller understands that belief in evolution does not equal atheism--and I will point out that many Xians are agreeable to evolutionary ideology. To me, the issue is moot, since I don't think that evolution has any bearing on whether or not there is a god (I don't think evolution is an argument against god--but is an argument against _literal_ creationist doctrine, which is not applicable to all Xians)--UNLESS a Xian claims that if evolution is true, it negates their model of god; but I have never put forward that evolution is an argument for the nonexistence of god.

This isn't exactly what you're expressing, however. You're saying that creationism and evolution can be combined into a single model. I have met other Xians who do this. Basically, anyone who isn't a literalist can accomplish this pretty easily. The only problem they could ultimately run into that I can see is that they are then in a precarious position of having to determine how much of their Bible they believe is metaphor/shorthand vs. literal. And I don't know that there is a way to do this without relying solely on guessing. However, again, any of that is moot, since "how literally someone reads their Bible" does not support or negate the existence of a god or gods.

Anyway, to sum up. I do think we're aware of combined views of evolution and creationism here at ACA; but we often encounter Xian callers who want to put forward an either/or argument--and the host/cohost who defends evolution is generally put in that position by the Xian apologist, and not the other way around. So far as I know, the AE cast has long been willing to point out to creationist-only callers that other Xians don't see a conflict in combining evolution with their religions beliefs.

Thanks for writing!

> The only problem they could ultimately run into that I > can see is that they are then in a precarious position > of having to determine how much of their Bible they > believe is metaphor/shorthand vs. literal.

True. Non-creationist Catholics (the majority position in Catholicism in my personal experience) generally handle this by stating that the Bible is primarily a theological work, not primarily an historical or scientific work. The line is drawn there: the Bible is theologically error free, but may contain error to the extent it records non-theological, purely human matters. To the extent an historical event affects doctrine (e.g., the Resurrection), then it must have been recorded correctly, of course, but to the extent the historical event is irrelevant, or to the extent the "historical" event could be a metaphor for a theological teaching (e.g., the creation stories), literal belief is not required. It is one attempt to draw the line at a reasoned location.

The Catholics pretty much have a good system there, then. The Bible is only relevent theologically; and the Vatican tells us what is theologically relevant. Interesting parsing. And no thinking required. It's like religious auto-pilot for the lay person.

The Theory of Evolution is completely unbiblical.

However, it does not rule out the possible existence of God.

It's only unbiblical to Xian literalists. I would agree with that statement. But as Walter and ProvokeThought pointed out, many Xians believe the Bible and see no conflict with evolution. However, I would feel pretty confident assuming none of them are literalists.

NobodyMan wrote: "The Theory of Evolution is completely unbiblical."

Of course it's unbiblical, you idiot! It's a scientific theory. The bible, or any other religious text, is completely irrelevant.

Anyone care to debate "Evolution" versus "Abrupt Appearance?" If anyone feels up to it and desires to take the "Evolution" side of the debate, I will defend the "Abrupt Appearance" side. It would be most interesting and thought provoking. Though I ask there be no name calling or bad attitudes, but simply a desire to come exchange ideas in order to put our own ideas up for scrutiny by others and see if they can stand the light of day.

Evolution is up for scrutiny by the scientific community every day, as is every other scientific field of inquiry. It survives because it is quite simply the best explanation for the diversity of life on earth. It stands up to the light of day quite very well.

"Abrupt appearance", "intelligent design", et al, are not science. If you need a recent, and embarrassingly public, dismantling of these ideas, Google Kitzmiller v. Dover.

Rational Jen,

Both Atheism and Theism have survived scrutiny for centuries, surviving scrutiny is no proof of anything, especially when both sides begin with their own presuppositions. Both sides are able to make anything fit into their paradigm.

I am afraid you misundestand my intent, and read a purpose into it that is not there. I am not making any stand that Abrupt Appearance should be considered science, or should be taught in science class. What I am interested in, in finding someone willing to actually debate the issue, not someone who simply takes a scientists word for it.

If you are not up to the challenge there is no need to answer, I am looking for someone up to the challenge. My desire as always is to challenge the paradigms of the day which do not in my estimation, stand the test of truth.

Besides, there are a thousand things we can easily label as "scientific" which are not true at all.

The case is not that Abrupt Appearance is scientific, but that Evolution is not truly scientific. Evolution is pseudoscience.

(No need for anyone to reply who has nothing other than a "I don't agree" reply.)

Closed Mind said: "The case is not that Abrupt Appearance is scientific, but that Evolution is not truly scientific. Evolution is pseudoscience."

Then it's clear that you don't even understand what science is, much less anything about evolution. Why would anyone take the time to debate someone who can't even be bothered to understand basic concepts from 10th grade biology.

But just out of curiousity, what, exactly, is your understanding of the theory of evolution? I'm not talking about evidence for it, or even what you think is evidence against it. I want to know what you think you know about its central ideas and the mechanisms by which it works?

Dear Rational Jen,

Thank you for your reply.

Basically, the belief in Evolution is the belief that lower life forms evolved into higher life forms through mutations selected by natural selection, or survival of the fittest.

Nice to know you take everything your biology textbook says at face value, never to be questioned.

Do you realize you are demonstrating exactly WHY so many have fallen for the paradigm? Has it ever occurred to you to possibly investigate what you have been told? You might be very surprised.

And by the way, I do indeed understand exactly what science is, and the need for falsifiable theory. The evolution paradigm can be fit to anything found, because it is a presupposition; no matter what is found or learned, the evolutionist presuposes the theory of evolution is true, and will only see what is found in that light.

For example - take the idea of vestigial organs. The evolutionist points out an organ they believe is vestigial, and serves no further purpose. When a purpose for the organ is found, the evolutionist is not daunted or set back at all, they simply then respond by pointing out how wonderful that evolution always finds a purpose.

Any similarity in species is proof of evolution.

Any difference in species is proof of evolution.

Now, if you have nothing more than accusations and insults, please do not waste my time further. I am very interested in your opinion, not in your ability, or seeming non ability to actually share your rationale.

@Rational_Jen: Sorry for stating something obvious: "...evolution is unbilical..."

Yet, can you consider something scientific if it cannot be sensed empirically?

*Sorry about my grammar - English isn't my native language.

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