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> Open Letter To Atheist-scientists And Their Followers
Sarielite
post Jun 18 2009, 08:12 AM
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PZ Myers is on a roll today, and has two posts on his web site about the development of dinosaurs into birds. The anti-evolution contention is that, while dinosaurs and birds both underwent a process known as bilateral digit reduction (i.e. they lost some of their fingers as they evolved), the remaining digits are different on dinosaurs and birds. Birds have digits II, III, and IV while dinosaurs seem to have I, II, and III. In other words, dinosaurs would have to have "regrown" their first digit and lost their fourth before evolving into birds.

PZ tackles this by pointing out that "anatomists initially assigned digit numbers I, II, and III to bird limbs on the basis of their form, but later had to revise that to II, III, and IV on the basis of embryology." He goes on to say that "Dinosaur digits are assigned numbers I, II, and III on the basis of their adult form (which is admittedly much less ambiguous than adult bird digits!)…but what about their embryology?" Because we don't have access to dinosaur embryology, we can't rule out the possibility that dinosaurs might exhibit II, III, and IV digits instead of I, II, and III.

The embryology of the primitive tetrapod hand shows that the IV digit--the ring finger--is the primary axis of the development of the hand. The ring finger is the extension of the limb, and digits grow in-sequence along the interior axis (i.e. first III, then II, then the thumb, or I) and the exterior axis (V, or the pinky finger). In other words, because of its importance in the development of the hand embryonically, it's very unlikely that dinosaurs lost their IV digit. This would indicate that dinosaurs exhibit, at the very least, I, II, and IV digits (and no III digit).

The second post by Myers is about the fossil remains of Limusaurus inextricabilis, a Jurassic ceratosaur, that has a vestigial I digit as well as a full complement of II, III, and IV digits. It truly is a "transitional form" that anti-evolutionists shrilly declare do not exist. It shows that saurian tetropods started with (at least) I, II, III, and IV digits and proceeded to lose the I (thumb) digit. Meanwhile, the II digit acquired much of the morphology of I digit.

The whole thing is really interesting. To me, at least.


Sources:
Digit Numbering and Limb Development
Limusaurus Inextricabilis


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Sarielite
post Jun 19 2009, 12:54 PM
Post #32


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QUOTE
I find it an amusing property of modern theologians and their defenders: the more you let them talk, the less they actually say. So now their deity is responsible for the freedoms I enjoy. A convenient claim, I suppose, insofar as it’s reasonably unlikely to be overturned by some physicist or other in the next five years. And people do generally like freedom. I expect certain purveyors of windy bafflegab such as that your guest is now spinning are rather counting on this. Hoping, perhaps we might like therefore to keep them and their notions of a magical freedom-lovin’ deity around a bit longer.

Now once, of course, this god of theirs was responsible for rainbows and flowers and puppy dogs’ tails. This, clearly, is no longer credible, so this decade, it’s freedom. And never mind the very real human beings, believing and not, who fought for those freedoms and defended them and expanded them over the centuries. And never mind that this same deity once seemed to preside, oddly enough, happily over slavery and tyranny, the divine right of kings and the burning of heretics. No doubt this was simply our misunderstanding. Our god was always for freedom, see. Sadly, we just got the message recently.

But this, of course, is typical theology: if your superstition is criticized, and you cannot answer, move it somewhere else, and insist that’s always where it was. Your critics, you can then also insist, are ‘naive’ and ‘gullible’ to have given you grief in the first place. Yes, we believers, we’re for freedom, friends… and who could be against that? Unlike that nasty Hitchens man and those atheists, who are all so arrogant, so fond of bombing Iraqi children. And never mind that the Bush administration that actually prosecuted said war was loaded to the brim with believers. And never mind that militant bible verses were stenciled on the very reports of the military planners who saw to the dropping of those bombs.

Your guest tries to claim the ‘new atheists’, as he refers to them, are misguided in their criticisms. Always saw myself as an old atheist myself. But whatever you call me, let me be clear: I, for one, do not assume the clearing away of the vines of muddy old superstitions must necessarily lead to any kind of paradise. It’s just rather a gimme, to ask that people stop fooling themselves, and stop wasting their time with such charlatans as your guest and the theologians he defends, and with their muddled, obfuscatory dance of hazy, meaningless noise. And the more I hear such men speak, the more I think I should keep asking exactly that.


[The Accidental Weblog]


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Fremen Bryan
post Jun 23 2009, 12:06 PM
Post #33


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QUOTE (Sarielite @ Jun 9 2009, 03:09 PM) *
Not your entire argument. You're clearly placing the Christian mythology above those of other traditions, which means that you believe that it has some special insight into the nature of the universe. The "many faces, one god" argument is a fairly common one, but one that's profoundly insulting to anyone who believes differently than you: how would a Muslim feel if you said that his religious experience was simply a subset of yours, or a Taoist who has no specific beliefs relating to the origin of the universe and shares none of the moral strictures of Christianity. Were I a believer of any faith, I imagine I'd be a bit insulted.


Most of the posts I have made to this thread have nothing to do with religion but rather I focused on more science oriented reads that support believing in a Creator, like the man who cracked the human Genome or the former atheist professor who now believes the Universe was Created. What you call 'Christianity' is Roman and would more rightly be called 'Churchianity' or 'Paulianity' which I do not identify with (especially going to church, paying them money, and recieving absolution from a 'priest'). The REAL Teachings of Jesus the Nazarite (Numbers Ch. 6) the Revolutionary urge people to leave organized religions and instead go into the wilderness, onto a mountainside or by a lake, to Commune with God (which is why the organized religious leaders, who were loosing money and power as a direct result of Jesus Teaching, engineered the Crucifixion). Christianity as it is known today is almost word for word the exact opposite of what the Christ (i.e. Anointed One) taught. What is more, i have never placed Islam (Arabic: God's Will) as a 'simple sub-set' of Christianity whatsoever, and the Bible that I read (The 'Kofk' or King of kings Version) has the Torah/Tanoch 'Old Song' (of Moses) Testament'/Covenant; the 'New Song' Testament/Covenant (of Jesus), AND the (True, Holy) Koran/Qur'an of the prophet Muhammed, United into One Book, just as these three Faiths/People should be United into One Brotherhood of Believers, as indeed ALL of their different Scriptures tell them to do. What is more, I do not have any problems with the Teaching in the Tao Te Ching (The Way of The King, The Way of Heaven) which is in perfect harmony with the (True) Teaching of Christ and the (True) Teaching of Buddha. The REAL followers of Jesus the Nazarite the Revolutionary did NOT call themselves 'Christians' either, they were 'Gnostics' and 'Essenes' and called themselves 'Followers of The Way'.

This post has been edited by Fremen Bryan: Jun 23 2009, 12:12 PM


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Fremen Bryan
post Jun 24 2009, 12:13 PM
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QUOTE (Sarielite @ Jun 16 2009, 09:52 AM) *
The New York Times has an interesting write-up on some advances in developing artificial proto-life. Apparently fatty acids will spontaneously arrange themselves into double-layered spheres that will grow larger as more lipids are added until some point when they divide. These membranes also allow small molecules in, but will not let larger compounds out, meaning that they represent a viable container for RNA and other proteins.

There's more, but I'd rather let the article speak for itself rather than paraphrasing or copying the full text here.

Link: New Glimpses of Life's Puzzling Origins


It has taken your silly scientists all of these years to observe this, yet this is word for word the exact process that Walter Russell describes in detail over 60 years ago.


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Sarielite
post Jun 30 2009, 05:19 PM
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QUOTE (Fremen Bryan @ Jun 23 2009, 12:06 PM) *
Most of the posts I have made to this thread have nothing to do with religion but rather I focused on more science oriented reads that support believing in a Creator, like the man who cracked the human Genome or the former atheist professor who now believes the Universe was Created.


I disagree: The assertions made by the original author, to whom you gave implicit support, was that Christianity represents the truth and anything else can be dismissed as atheists being "arrogant".

QUOTE (Fremen Bryan @ Jun 23 2009, 12:06 PM) *
What is more, i have never placed Islam (Arabic: God's Will) as a 'simple sub-set' of Christianity whatsoever, and the Bible that I read (The 'Kofk' or King of kings Version) has the Torah/Tanoch 'Old Song' (of Moses) Testament'/Covenant; the 'New Song' Testament/Covenant (of Jesus), AND the (True, Holy) Koran/Qur'an of the prophet Muhammed, United into One Book, just as these three Faiths/People should be United into One Brotherhood of Believers, as indeed ALL of their different Scriptures tell them to do. What is more, I do not have any problems with the Teaching in the Tao Te Ching (The Way of The King, The Way of Heaven) which is in perfect harmony with the (True) Teaching of Christ and the (True) Teaching of Buddha. The REAL followers of Jesus the Nazarite the Revolutionary did NOT call themselves 'Christians' either, they were 'Gnostics' and 'Essenes' and called themselves 'Followers of The Way'.


There's a lot you're leaving out there: Sikhs, Zoroastrians, Shintoists, Wiccans, and all the other innumerable religions out there not covered by your pantheon. And you're totally failing to see why conflating Christianity (whatever you want to call it--following some collection of Christ's teachings) with other religions like Buddhism, Islam, or Judaism is profoundly insulting to people who ardently believe in those cosmologies.


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Fremen Bryan
post Jul 1 2009, 12:07 PM
Post #36


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QUOTE (Sarielite @ Jun 30 2009, 05:19 PM) *
QUOTE (Fremen Bryan @ Jun 23 2009, 12:06 PM) *
Most of the posts I have made to this thread have nothing to do with religion but rather I focused on more science oriented reads that support believing in a Creator, like the man who cracked the human Genome or the former atheist professor who now believes the Universe was Created.


I disagree: The assertions made by the original author, to whom you gave implicit support, was that Christianity represents the truth and anything else can be dismissed as atheists being "arrogant".

QUOTE (Fremen Bryan @ Jun 23 2009, 12:06 PM) *
What is more, i have never placed Islam (Arabic: God's Will) as a 'simple sub-set' of Christianity whatsoever, and the Bible that I read (The 'Kofk' or King of kings Version) has the Torah/Tanoch 'Old Song' (of Moses) Testament'/Covenant; the 'New Song' Testament/Covenant (of Jesus), AND the (True, Holy) Koran/Qur'an of the prophet Muhammed, United into One Book, just as these three Faiths/People should be United into One Brotherhood of Believers, as indeed ALL of their different Scriptures tell them to do. What is more, I do not have any problems with the Teaching in the Tao Te Ching (The Way of The King, The Way of Heaven) which is in perfect harmony with the (True) Teaching of Christ and the (True) Teaching of Buddha. The REAL followers of Jesus the Nazarite the Revolutionary did NOT call themselves 'Christians' either, they were 'Gnostics' and 'Essenes' and called themselves 'Followers of The Way'.


There's a lot you're leaving out there: Sikhs, Zoroastrians, Shintoists, Wiccans, and all the other innumerable religions out there not covered by your pantheon. And you're totally failing to see why conflating Christianity (whatever you want to call it--following some collection of Christ's teachings) with other religions like Buddhism, Islam, or Judaism is profoundly insulting to people who ardently believe in those cosmologies.


Timothy who is the original author said: -


"Much of so-called Judeo-Christian philosophy-nonsense is garbage and I
do not mind if any such hypocrites disagree with me."

And, Christ (means Anointed or Enlightened One) represents the Wisdom of All-Ages, inspite of the apualing ignorance of people who follow the religion (completely opposite of Christ's Teachings) of "Chrstianity" - which is not what I follow. People who are members of the religion Islam know that Jesus is the Mahdi, and many ethnically Jewish/Judahish people accepted Yahshua as the Meshach or Messiah. There really is no conflict in the TRUE Teachings of these Faiths, yet I do NOT agree with all so-called 'religions', as many of them ARE complete nonsense ~ But I am not activiely seeking to destroy those I do not agree with, either. I know that I left several traditions out, because they are very numerous, yet all of the GOOD ones are strikingly similar in appearance and practice. Here is a quote to ponder, by a Wise-man:-

Put every great teacher together in a room, and they'd agree about everything, put their disciples in there and they'd argue about everything.


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Fremen Bryan
post Jul 6 2009, 11:31 AM
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As I said, all of the GOOD Spiritual Traditions are very similiar in practice and appearance. For instance, in India for thousands of years 'Holy men' wander for years not cutting their hair as a devotion to their Deity, known as Sadhus. (Note the similarity in the underlined below with the Vow of the Nazarite in Numbers Ch. 6*, which is a Vow of Seperation).

From wikipedia:-
The Sanskrit terms sādhu ("good man") and sādhvī ("good woman") refer to renouncers who have chosen to live a life apart from or on the edges of society in order to focus on their own spiritual practice.[2]

The words come from the Sanskrit root sādh, which means "reach one's goal", "make straight", or "gain power over".[3] The same root is used in the word sādhana, which means "spiritual practice".









In the America's the Native American Indians traditionally never cut their hair, believing that it IS a persons Spirit (save for some tribes like the Warrior tribe Mohawk who cut some of their hair, and some Hopi who cut their bangs so they can 'Watch for the return of Pahana'). Native American Indians also wear face paint, and smoke pipes. Though these different cultures are on different land-masses and seperated by an vast ocean are united in many of their common-beliefs and practices, and were a group of wandering Sadhus to stumble across a Hopi village, I believe there would be Peace between them (especially because Hopi means "People of Peace").








Another similar practice of not cutting ones hair/locks is the Nazarite Tradition found in the Torah, which presumably dates back to BEFORE the Torah was ever written down (by Moses from God, on the mountain top), since the Patriarchs Noah and Enoch were said to be Nazarites, like the Bible records Samuel Samson and Jesus all being (though with Jesus a mistranslation occured and Nazarite was changed to Nazarene or of Nazareth over the ages {and note that the village of Nazareth didn't exist until around 400 A.D.). John the Baptist and his followrs were said to be ascetic Nazarites and many of the ancient Essenes were as well. Also, many Rastafarians take the Nazarite Vow, as a devotion to the One Holy God (though not all Nazarites are "Rastas"). Note how much these Nazarites look like Sadhus.











(modern day) Essene Nazariah and Rastafarian HiYah

Jesus was not a christian, but a Nazarite (see Numbers ch. 6). James the Just (Jesus' brother) is said to have had locks to his ankles.


Also note that when a Nazarite breaks their Vow, the hair is shaven, and they then look like Buddhist Monks for a time:-



Then there is the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH!) who is said to have had long hair (in the Hadith), and many sects of Islam forbid the cutting of the beard as well. Sufi Mystics seen here and Dervishes keep their hair wrapped up in turbans (much like Rastas who wear a "Tam") as many middle-Eastern religions do, and in fact some sects in the middle-East only allow men to uwrap their hair in private with their spouses.



Also in Islam, from wikipedia we read:-

In Senegal, the Baye Fall, followers of the Mouride movement, a sect of Islam indigenous to the country which was founded in 1887 by Shaykh Aamadu Bàmba Mbàkke, are famous for growing locks and wearing multi-colored gowns.[6] Cheikh Ibra Fall, founder of the Baye Fall school of the Mouride Brotherhood, claims that he was "the first dread in West Africa".

(end quote).

Before I said that the Hopi are "People of Peace" - So are the followers of Islam, for the traditional greeting among Moslems is "Peace be upon you" - as is the traditional greeting among "Essenes" - as is the traditional greeting/well-wishes of the "Hippies" who are "People of Peace" (Hippie and Hopi sound very much alike as well). Hippies are known for their long hair. Some hippies, like Cat Stevens, converted to Islam.









From essene.com we read:-

Pythagoras & the Nazareans

Pythagorean Connection to Mt. Carmel

We know from ancient documents that both Essenes and Pythagoreans shared many things in common. Both were vegetarian, both wore white, and both were deeply immersed in Qabbalistic studies. Pythagoras was nicknamed "the long haired one" which further links him with the northern Nazarean Essenes who were all Nazarites (long hairs). History has preserved for us a link between Pythagoras and the Mt. Carmel Essenes:

"In Phoenicia he (Pythagoras) conversed with the prophets who were the descendants of Moses the physiologist, and with many others, as well as the local heirophants . . . . After gaining all he could from the Phoenician Mysteries, he found that they had originated from the sacred rites of Egypt, forming as it were an Egyptian colony. . . . On the Phoenician coast under Mt. Carmel, where, in the Temple on the peak, Pythagoras for the most part had dwelt in solitude . . . Mount Carmel, which they knew to be more sacred than other mountains, and quite inaccessible to the vulgar..."(Life of Pythagoras by Iamblichus)


Josephus, writing between A.D. 75 and A.D.85, tells us that the Essenes were Pythagorean in lifestyle.

"The sect of the Essenes maintain that Fate governs all things, and that nothing can befall man contrary to its determination and will. These men live the same kind of life which among the Greeks has been ordered by Pythagoras."


* * *

Josephus also records his mentor being a Nazarite, which is in the Book of Numbers, and Pythagoras just so happened to be obsessed with Numbers! :-) Also I believe that the oldest known Biblical artifact which was a tiny tiny scroll smaller than a cigarette that was found in a Hebrew tomb had the final verses of the chapter the Nazarite Vow is in, which is a Blessing for the Children of Jackob/Israel. Beyond physical appearance, if a religion or Spiritual Tradition or even somebodies personal belief system is that of Peace, surly they will have no problem getting along with followers of other schools of thought whose tradition and center pillar is Peace. Even armed militant groups who are at war are at war to acheive Peace/comfort for themselves, which is the Universal desire.

*King of kings Version Bible, Book of Numbers:-

6:1 And the "I AM" spoke unto Moses, saying,
6:2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When either man or woman shall separate [themselves] to vow a vow of a Nazarite, to separate [themselves] unto the "I AM":
6:3 He shall separate [himself] from wine and strong drink, and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink, neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes, nor eat moist grapes, or dried.
6:4 All the days of his separation shall he eat nothing that is made of the vine tree, from the kernels even to the husk.
6:5 All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head: until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth [himself] unto the "I AM", he shall be holy, [and] shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow.
6:6 All the days that he separateth [himself] unto the "I AM" he shall come at no dead body.
6:7 He shall not make himself unclean for his father, or for his mother, for his brother, or for his sister, when they die: because the consecration of his God [is] upon his head.
6:8 All the days of his separation he [is] holy unto the "I AM".
6:9 And if any man die very suddenly by him, and he hath defiled the head of his consecration; then he shall shave his head in the day of his cleansing, on the seventh day shall he shave it.
6:10 And on the eighth day he shall bring two turtles, or two young pigeons, to the priest, to the door of the Tabernacle of the Congregation:
6:11 And the priest shall offer the one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt offering, and make an atonement for him, for that he sinned by the dead, and shall hallow his head that same day.
6:12 And he shall consecrate unto the "I AM" the days of his separation, and shall bring a lamb of the first year for a trespass offering: but the days that were before shall be lost, because his separation was defiled.
6:13 And this [is] the Law of the Nazarite, when the days of his separation are fulfilled: he shall be brought unto the door of the Tabernacle of the Congregation:
6:14 And he shall offer his offering unto the "I AM", one he lamb of the first year without blemish for a burnt offering, and one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish for a sin offering, and one ram without blemish for peace offerings,
6:15 And a basket of unleavened bread, cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, and wafers of unleavened bread anointed with oil, and their meat offering, and their drink offerings.
6:16 And the priest shall bring [them] before the "I AM", and shall offer his sin offering, and his burnt offering:
6:17 And he shall offer the ram [for] a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the "I AM", with the basket of unleavened bread: the priest shall offer also his meat offering, and his drink offering.
6:18 And the Nazarite shall shave the head of his separation [at] the door of the Tabernacle of the Congregation, and shall take the hair of the head of his separation, and put [it] in the fire which [is] under the sacrifice of the peace offerings.
6:19 And the priest shall take the sodden shoulder of the ram, and one unleavened cake out of the basket, and one unleavened wafer, and shall put [them] upon the hands of the Nazarite, after [the hair of] his separation is shaven:
6:20 And the priest shall wave them [for] a wave offering before the "I AM": this [is] holy for the priest, with the wave breast and heave shoulder: and after that the Nazarite may drink wine.
6:21 This [is] the Law of the Nazarite who hath vowed, [and of] his offering unto the "I AM" for his separation, beside [that] that his hand shall get: according to the vow which he vowed, so he must do after the Law of his separation.
6:22 And the "I AM" spoke unto Moses, saying,
6:23 Speak unto Aaron and unto his sons, saying, On this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them,
6:24 The "I AM" bless thee, and keep thee:
6:25 The "I AM" make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:
6:26 The "I AM" lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.
6:27 And they shall put My name upon the children of Israel; and I will bless them.

*



This post has been edited by Fremen Bryan: Jul 7 2009, 12:00 PM


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fish
post Jul 8 2009, 03:29 AM
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If you don't believe in GOD.
Who do you thank when everything goes right for you?
Being an atheist is like self denial, you know there's
something there but you just can't grasp it!.
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Zach2
post Nov 22 2009, 05:33 PM
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If this is all true then why would He not put it into the world in a way that the everyman can understand? Just a thought. I don't know of any proof either way so I would have to go with Occams razor on this one.


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