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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Epigenetics - The Proof that Darwinism is simply an Atheist Religion...plus a Dawkins/Lennox debate!!!

"Religion drives science, and it matters." - Cornelius Hunter


I do feel bad about Richard Dawkins. He seems to be relatively honest and makes statements many Darwinists fear to make. It is puzzling that he has admitted to the complete statistical impossibility of Darwinism and yet he persists on, a true believer, not swayed by arguments or evidence from his position. This has been damaging in debates with Creationists, which is why(apparently) he avoids them now. He will still debate theologians (and lose). Score was 324 to 136 against the Dawkins position at Cambridge University...hardly a bastion of Christianity! To post that one would be fish in a barrel, so I prefer the Dawkins/Lennox debate.



To me, both Dawkins and Lennox presented their actual viewpoints.  Lennox did not pin down Dawkins about Natural Selection but on the other hand he did not go down the road marked "evolution is really natural selection and speciation" either. I posted the video because I thought Dawkins did a better job than usual of presenting his side of the argument.  I would agree that in doing so he exposed the weakness inherent in it.  Both men have faith positions.  Some who watched the debate preferred Dawkins!   But Lennox does give us a good reason for having a logical and intelligible Universe and Dawkins does not.  He appeals to future discoveries to prop up his belief system, while it is the Christians and Deists who discovered how logical and artful the Universe really is and devoted time to study it because they trusted a Logical God made all things logically.

  

I find it odd that Dawkins just accepts that a random, uncaused, unwitting series of inexplicable accidents has created a logical world which "looks designed?"   If your mother made you a supper of steak and potatoes, would you say it "looks prepared" but turn away from it because you could not immediately prove that it was?  Darwinists run away from logic by resorting to the rather cowardly concept of the "argument from incredulity."   I would bet you that most parents have quickly learned that their young children would hide behind that argument if they knew of it!   This way of avoiding the issues of design and logic and information and fine-tuning and mathematical precision in the Universe is completely unimpressive to me.   If you will throw logic away when it suits your pet belief system, you are standing on air.   God is a far better argument than *poof* both now and tomorrow.

My faith depends on a God who is recorded in history, a Messiah whose life and death and resurrection is recorded in history and whose message to humanity, the Bible, is not only the basis for Western morality and law but also contains wisdom for living and meaning for that life one leads.  Dawkins never explains why he would expect a logical Universe to come from accidental and illogical places, nor does he even give any reason for us to believe that secularists are close to explaining existence, life, information or sentience.  Dawkins is an atheistic believer in evolution by faith.  


Darwinism is mostly an attempt to do away with God.   Charles Darwin's primary motivation was to explain away a God who was, in his opinion, unjust and illusory.   Much of this was due to an upbringing in which to be "a Christian" was a matter of church attendance and not much else.   It was part of being respectable but otherwise the Christianity Charles experienced in his early years was much like an overcoat that one put on before going outside.  Then, when his beloved daughter died young, his dislike and distrust of the concept of God turned into a quest.   The desire to find a way to displace God drove him to write his first book and, contrary to popular myth, we know from his letters and notes that he was certain that must write a book to support the assertion of his grandfather:


"that in the great length of time, since the earth began to exist…would it be too bold to imagine, that all warm-blooded animals have arisen from one living filament…possessing the faculty of continuing to improve by its own inherent activity, and of delivering down those improvements by generation to its posterity."  Erasmus Darwin, Zoonomia


His grandfather was Erasmus, a doctor and an author who wrote a book, Zoonomia, which was an ambitious attempt to describe the natural world but also an anti-Creation tome.   In fact another grandson, Francis Galton, founded Eugenics.   The family certainly has had an amazing effect on modern society and I do not mean in a good way.   Erasmus was an abolitionist and yet the efforts of his grandsons have led to mass murders and religious bigotry against people of various colors and creeds for about 150 years.  Charles Darwin's notes indicate he was writing in favor of evolution before he even had a mechanism for the process.  He found it in the assertions of a Creationist and, turning it on its head, converted devolution into evolution and the world has suffered immensely for it.

If there really was a time machine, I would like to think that Darwin would come to this century, look at the evidence, and go back to his desk and toss his manuscript into a drawer, never to be published.  I would like to think that he was an honest man who was influenced by a number of factors that led him to pursue a quest to provide a replacement for God as Creator.  He did not see real Christianity lived out by his family and so God was a strawman to him, an unfeeling and unjust Deity responsible for suffering and misery throughout human history because He allowed it to happen.   He did not consider the fact that mankind chose to sin and God, in allowing free will, also allowed people to choose to do evil.


If Charles Darwin were alive today, I believe he would, just as Anthony Flew, reject evolution and accept Deism and Creation by God.   Since Flew renounced atheism and evolution at an advanced age, we cannot pretend to know he became a Christian as well.   After some research I believe he had simply changed worldviews but not to the extent of a conversion to Christianity as some claimed.  

But Flew rejected Atheism and evolution on the evidence.  I wonder if Richard Dawkins actually does even look at the evidence with an open mind...but rather has sealed his beliefs so that they are safe from any evidence, reasoning or new discoveries?

How about you? 

Read this, below and consider your position carefully...if you are willing to think?


Plant's Epigenome as Varied as Their Environments

A Big Challenge

Cornelius Hunter


You probably remember that an organism’s DNA is collectively referred to as the genome and that it contains genes that code for proteins. What you may not know is that the genome is tagged here and there with small molecules helping to determine which genes to express. These small molecules are collectively referred to as the epigenome and one recent study found a tremendous variation between the epigenomes in the same species of plant collected from different locations around the world. As one researcher explained:

We looked at plants collected from around the world and found that their epigenomes are surprisingly different. This additional diversity may create a way for plants to rapidly adapt to diverse environments without any genetic change in their DNA, which takes a very long time.

In other words, different specimens of a given species of plant, all with the same genome, had significantly different epigenomes.

Epigenetics is another example of how the species do not appear to have evolved. Evolution may be true or false, but the scientific evidence presents a great many challenges to the idea. Recall that under evolution the idea is that random biological changes that naturally occur and are inheritable, such as mutations in the germline, might luckily sometimes be an improvement to the organism’s fitness. In those cases the organisms with the change would likely be successful and procreate, thereby passing on the change to future generations.

But epigenetics challenges all this. First, the tagging of DNA does not naturally occur as mutations do. In order for an epigenetic change to occur and have any effect, there must be a small army of coordinated molecular machines that are working according to the same code. Some machines attach the tags according to external, environmental signals. Other machines remove or move the tags, again according to other signals. And yet other machines interpret the tags, thus influencing which proteins are expressed.

This is far more involved than a random mutation occurring that just happens to improve slightly how the organism works. In fact epigenetics would involve literally hundreds (and that is conservative) of changes required before any benefit would be realized.

The tagging machines not only need to be built, or adapted from other machines, but they need to know where in all the genome to place the tags. Likewise for the machines that remove and move the tags. In other words, it is not good enough merely to evolve the machines. They somehow much know where to place the tags given a spectrum of environmental signals.

And then the machines that interpret the tags would have to do so correctly. They would have to know what the tag means. So again, not only must these machines have evolved or adapted, but they must know what they are doing.

That is astronomically unlikely to occur according to our knowledge of science.

But that is not all. For even given such a miracle, such epigenetic tags would not be inheritable. And yet they are. So there are even more machines that must have arisen by chance to preserve the tags when the cell divides.

This brings us to yet another set of problems with epigenetics: the machinery described above is not inheritable unless is evolves in the germline. But in the germline it doesn’t do anybody any good. Only when it is a passed on to the progeny can it help.

But even then the epigenetics capability likely won’t help because this capability gives the organism the ability to respond to a wide range of environmental conditions—conditions that probably won’t even occur in the organism’s lifetime.

In other words, we must believe that an astronomically unlikely capability arose by chance and though most of it wasn’t helpful, it was preserved anyway. Then, in future generations, when a particular environmental shift occurred, the epigenetics came to the rescue.

These problems are highlighted by the new research discussed above, showing how the epigenetic tagging can be so different in the same species of plant, in different locations around the world. Those environments are very different, so the tagging is very different.

But the origin of the epigenetics machinery would have had to anticipate all these different environments, long in advance.

Simply put, this just doesn’t make much sense under evolution. Epigenetics goes against the evolutionary model. Not surprisingly, evolutionists resisted the early epigenetic findings. And when the findings became undeniable evolutionists downplayed their significance.

But these findings are an obvious and dramatic falsification of evolutionary expectations. And this problem comes after several other, equally vexing, problems, many of which were at least somewhat understood in Darwin’s time.

Epigenetics is an example of how the science does not bode well for evolutionary theory. But in evolution the science does not carry the day. The science represents a research problem to be worked out. Otherwise evolution is protected from such show-stoppers because evolution is known to be a fact from non scientific considerations. We may not know how epigenetics and a dozen other contradictions could have evolved, but we know they must have evolved.

For what about all the designs that make no sense, and all the designs that are harmful? No creator would have intended or created such a world. It must have evolved. That was Darwin’s argument and that remains the conviction today. As Stephen Jay Gould once explained:

Odd arrangements and funny solutions are the proof of evolution—paths that a sensible God would never tread but that a natural process, constrained by history, follows perforce. No one understood this better than Darwin. Ernst Mayr has shown how Darwin, in defending evolution, consistently turned to organic parts and geographic distributions that make the least sense.

You see evolution is, quite literally, a religious theory. Sometimes people say evolution is a religious theory because it is so unlikely and therefore requires faith to believe it. Others say evolution is a religious theory because it is driven by atheism.

No, evolution is a religious theory because it entails religious claims about God. Claims that, to a great many people, seem to be a given. These claims, as in Gould’s quote above, are taken to be so obvious that they are in no need of explaining or defending. In fact, they aren't even religious. They simply are.

And so evolutionists do not understand the objection. They do not understand why their theory would be considered to be religious. Are they not simply reasoning according to evidence and science?

Meanwhile, the science shows evolution to be astronomically unlikely.

Religion drives science, and it matters.

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"Religion drives science, and it matters."  Succinct truth!

have a nice day

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