November 8, 2011
Evolution, faith, Politically Correct, pop culture
atheism, Bible, Charles Darwin, Christian, Existence of God, God, Organizations, Pharo, Theism
Actually the lecture was much bigger than “what is my role?” This subject has ground shaking significance for human existence.
Religion and the purpose of Government
My notes on the Paul Cleveland lecture
Is there divine revelation? Christianity says revelation happens in the Bible. What does natural law give us? Well, let’s find out.
Am I self-aware? Are you self-aware? The unavoidable answer is ‘Yes.’ This truism does not even require proof. If a person denies self awareness then that person confirms their self-awareness. They have confirmed their irrationality also. More
October 31, 2011
apologetics, Arts, biochemistry, Cellular complexity, Christianity, India, Movies
If you are attuned to biochemistry and other sciences I believe you will enjoy this man’s story. The video quality is not that good, ie, the vocal is off and I believe it is because of what they are doing with the background. This guy however, has a great story that I love. Take a listen now. Hear his story.
August 1, 2011
Apologetics, Evolution, faith, God
Alvin Plantinga, Anselm, Dean Zimmerman, Existence of God, God, Modal logic, Ontological argument, philosophy
Dean Zimmerman and Alvin Plantinga discuss the ontological argument for the existence of God. After Kant‘s, and others’, critiques of Anselm, most philosophers regarded the ontological argument as a failed argument for theism–perhaps useful for theology, but not useful for demonstrating that God exists. However, in the 20th Century, Alvin Plantinga and others reworked the argument by incorporating modal logic. Plantinga’s version of the argument, while often confusing to non-philosophers, is relatively uncontroversial among philosophers today in terms of its logic and conclusion. By admitting the possibility of God, a standard theorem of modal logic leads to the conclusion that God exists. Atheists are quick to respond by denying the possibility of God in order to side-step the argument’s conclusion. But is it rational to make such a bold claim? That God cannot possibly exist?
June 17, 2011
Christian, church, Evolution, faith
Charles Darwin, Darwin Day, Evolution, Natural selection, Oceania, Origin of Species, spontaneous generation
Image via Wikipedia
This is old but we are coming back to it because it is so important to the education of children around the world. What do you thoughts on the feasibility of evolution? Charles Darwin? Darwin Day? But, does natural selection explain everything? What of spontaneous generation? Has SG been proven? Let your thought be know. Comment below.
February 6, 2011
Alfred Russel Wallace, August Weismann, Biology, Charles Darwin, Evolution, Michael Behe, On the Origin of Species, Stephen C. Meyer
I have seen this budding–or maybe I should say blooming. Meyer and Behe have documented some fantastic things going on in the cell. So much they conclude makes sense to me.
Alfred Russel Wallace, co-discoverer of evolutionary theory, broke with Darwin over Wallace’s increasingly pronounced conviction that blind material forces lack the power to generate intricate biological structures. Wallace pointed to, among other things, the origin of life itself as a mystery that Darwin’s idea seemed incapable of resolving. Reading science historian Michael Flannery’s fascinating and concise new biography, Alfred Russel Wallace: A Rediscovered Life, I wondered about the degree to which advances in other scientific fields played a role in Wallace’s dawning doubts about materialist evolutionary thinking.
After all, despite the fact that the two men announced their theory of natural selection in the same year, there was a 51-year gap between the publication of The Origin of Species (1859) and that of Wallace’s magnum opus The World of Life (1910). A lot can happen in a half century. Of all the latter book’s eerie foreshadowings of contemporary ID theory, eeriest of all may be Wallace’s chapter on the cell, pointing the way to arguments that would later be articulated in full by Michael Behe and Stephen Meyer.
I wondered specifically about microscopy and asked Professor Flannery if, between 1859 and 1910, there was a significant advance in the power of microscopes to see into the cell that might account in part for Wallace’s emphasis on the cell as evidence for ID. It wouldn’t be the first confirmation we’ve had that intelligent design, of which Wallace is effectively the founder, gains in persuasiveness with the increase of scientific knowledge, whereas the more we know, the more Darwinism fails to persuade. Professor Flannery kindly responded:
I think the question embedded here is why or how was it that Wallace was able to have a more intricate view of the cell than Darwin. The answer is a complex one. The short answer is, yes, microscopes in 1910 were much better than in 1859. But I think the answer also has to do with advances in the whole field of cellular pathology ushered in by Rudolph Virchow (1821-1902) and cytology in general. Indeed modern pathology begins with Virchow. By the 1880s scientists like German zoologist Karl August Mobius began to delineate structures later developed and known as organelles.
At the same time microscopy was surely aided by the introduction of the microtome for making thin section and dyes for selective staining. Walther Flemming, a German cytologist, used the new analine dyes and improved microscopes to discover chromatin; these combined to form larger threads named chromosomes in 1888 by Waldeyer. Also by 1893 we got August Kohler‘s illumination technique that vastly improved microscopic analysis (we didn’t have the electron microscope until 1931).
There is also Wallace’s appreciation of the work of August Weismann (1834-1914). Weismann really laid to rest the pangenesis theory (one of Darwin’s pet theories). Weismann demonstrated that genetic information cannot pass from soma to germ plasma to the next generation (known as the Weismann barrier and a key to the modern neo-Darwinian synthesis). This is mentioned on page 82 of my book. Now Weismann is highly regarded among Darwinists and indeed Ernst Mayr ranked him second only to Darwin himself. But I think where Weismann saw random mutation, Wallace saw information and order. Of course too by 1900 Hugo de Vries and Carl Correns rediscovered Mendel.
So a lot indeed happened between 1859 and 1910.