Archive for May, 2008

Religion and Darwin.

May 27, 2008

Some time back, a blogger called Sandwalk otherwise known as Larry Moran (a Professor in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Toronto) wrote a comment about evolution, Darwinism, and fundy religion.
He said:

I agree that the middle ground position of Theistic Evolution is untenable [Theistic Evolution: The Fallacy of the Middle Ground]. In my case it’s not because the Theistic Evolutionists (e.g., Ken Miller, Francis Collins, Simon Conway-Morris) are giving up too much religion; it’s because they are giving up too much of science.

In typical IDiot fashion, Denyse O’Leary continues to use the term “Darwinism” to define her enemy. But if we overlook that particular bit of dissembling for the moment, she has a point. Science in general, and evolutionary biology in particular, tells us that there’s no meaning or purpose in the universe. Theistic Evolutionists say that there is but they have no evidence to back up their claim. That’s anti-science.

Denyse and I agree that Theistic Evolutionists are trying to have their cake and eat it too.

Many materialists take a similar view.

There were a lot of comments! One which made me a bit sad:

Theo Bromine said…

I am no longer a theistic evolutionist, but I did recently find it very useful that they exist: I was arguing with a creationist (at this event:, and he was whining about how all he wanted was to have equal time devoted to teaching evolution and YEC, since both are “religions”. Eventually, I got him to agree that the fact that there are Christians (not to mention Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists etc) who accept evolutionary science. Then he had to admit that perhaps there is a difference between the acceptance of evolution on scientific grounds, independent of religion, as compared to his view (that YEC is true because the bible says so). 5 minutes later, another pastor joined the conversation, and stated that teaching evolution is bad because it is “a faith-killer” – not that that is necessarily be a bad thing, but I prefer the gradual approach myself.

So I have, at last, left a comment of my own:

MunchyRat said…

The saddest for me, was the bit:

…another pastor joined the conversation, and stated that teaching evolution is bad because it is “a faith-killer”

…which is (I suggest) only true of a feeble version of faith which relies on fairy-tales to support it.

Faith – as defined by those Believers I respect – is a personal awareness of an outside power, person, or force. It isn’t credulous acceptance of the literal meaning of aged (if ageless) poetry and metaphor.

There’s some kind of Biblical reference which such “pastors” should be pointed at. I refer to “…a Pharisee named Gamaliel,” who can be found in Acts 5:38.

“Men of Israel, consider carefully what you intend to do to these men. Some time ago Theudas appeared, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men rallied to him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and led a band of people in revolt. He too was killed, and all his followers were scattered.

38 Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. 39 But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”

That’s faith. You can’t have faith if something as feeble as false preaching about “what evolution means” can destroy it.

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Muspronts… and dyslexia!

May 23, 2008
Grateful thanks to Lexify’s Weblog for this one…

It’s nice to see “word blindness” in the pages of someone who sells helpful products! – it makes you feel they know what the problems are like. And so, without having in any way assessed Dyslexia Manual Games we report on something which could, actually, be the Dyslexia Games Manual!Teaching Expertise sells it, and wrote:

Dyslexia Manual Games

‘Out of every 10 people you know, one will be dyslexic’ British Dyslexia Association. Dyslexia Manual Games will support your pupils with dyslexia and help to develop their literacy skills

‘This condition should not hinder young people’s education and life chances. Sadly, it all too often does. We need to be better at identifying pupils with dyslexia and then supporting them. ‘Schools Secretary Ed Balls.

According to the BBC, children with dyslexia are to receive extra help in some schools in England under a £3m pilot scheme. The government says half of pupils in 10 areas will be given catch-up reading lessons or one-to-one help from dyslexia specialists.

At this point, there’s a brief explanation of what dyslexia is; after which, the product name changes:

Dyslexia Games Manual is a range of games will develop auditory and visual awareness necessary to improve word-attack skills, while also providing over-learning, revision and reinforcement of vital literacy skills. The games are photocopiable sheets and come in a A4 ringbound folder.

See Lexify’s Weblog for more…