From: Bruce Salem
To: All Msg #93, Jul-13-93 07:51PM
Subject: The Big Lie Re: Creation as a Scientific Theory
Organization: Stanford Univ. Earth Sciences
From: salem@pangea.Stanford.EDU (Bruce Salem)
The following quotes should be put in one of the more important
FAQ files for this group. Morris' quotes comprise one of the core
depections at the basis of Creationism: That it is science and not a
religion in disguize. It also documents a willful depection aimed
at the political processes of this nation which try to prevent religion
from being used in a devisive fashion.
To one of the older regulars of this group. Bob Bales, the
quotes by Morris put your contention that Creationism is a science
which doesn't need appeal to religion in the catigory of a Big Lie, and
go on to provide the agenda for the lie.
In article <19930713095928KGA@UNCMVS.OIT.UNC.EDU> KG Anderson
>I have a copy of an ICR publication entitled _Impact: Vital articles
>on Science/Creation_ from July 1980. Actually, I only have a
>photocopy of pages i-iv, which consist of an article by Henry Morris
>entitled "No. 85--The Tenets of Creationism".
>Further down, under "Tenets of Scientific Creationism," Morris writes:
>"Although people are finite and scientific data concerning origins are
>always circumstantial and incomplete, the human mind (if open to the
>possibility of creation) is able to explore the manifestation of that
>Creator rationally and scientifically, and to reach an intelligent
>decision regarding one's place in the Creator's plan."
Meaning that Creationism is "science" which conforms to the idea
of Creation, which in turn is a purely religious notion. So in this way
Creationism is the answer to the problems posed by an alternate cosmogeny
in which religion takes precident over science.
>Morris: "For example, creationists should *not* advocate that
>Biblical creationism be taught in public schools, both because of the
>judicial restrictions against religion in such schools and also
>(more importantly) because teachers who do not *believe* the Bible
>should not be asked to *teach* the Bible. It is both legal and
>desirable, however, that *scientific creationism* be taught in
>public schools as a valid alternative to evolutionism."
Here is the political strategy of the lie. If it is a lie
that there is no religion in Creationism, then it is also a lie that
Creationism is a "science" which does not appeal to reliigous assumption
even without direct reference to God or the Bible. This is a way to
sneak religion into the public schools even if people who teach or
are taught in the public schools do not accept the religion. Also,
a religious doctrine misrepresented as science has no reason in
science curricula. This is the main reason for defeating the "equal
time" statutes, that religionists are lying when they say that
Creationism is a science free from religious baiss. It is a pseudo-
science based on reliigous beliefs.
>What Morris doesn't explain, however, is how one can arrive at any
>sort of creationist interpretation of the fossil record without the
>"hint" provided by Genesis 1.
It would not matter what scripture was used to support the
idea of Creation as promogated by Morris and other Creationists. It is
that a supernatural intervention is necessary to cause the diversity
of life which is seen and to keep the universe running. This is one kind
of theism, or at least pollytheism if many Gods were used. We have seen
a few Hindus post the same ideas here, but some Christians have the greatest
access and a built in power trip which overrepresents them here.
Science cannot incorporate the above idea of Creation as such.
Science cannot confirm or deny supernatural agents. All it can do is
to find the alturnative natural explainations, evolution being one.
For the first time in history, science presents a workable challenge
to the nonopoly heald on ideas about origins based on supernatural
Creation myths with religious basis.
While science finds that events lumped together in the Biblical
creation can be regarded to be widely separate in the history of the
universe, it does not answer the possibility of an ultimate origin
or of a theistic intervention or teleology. Rather than forcing the
issue of the presupposition that science can vindicate this or that
theistic belief, it might serve this group better to develop the
consequences of such beliefs not by retelling dogma but by exploring
whether theism really yields anything meaningful. I think that it
cannot because of massive internal contradictions and prejudices
about the nature and importance of Mankind. I am not an atheist because
I find the theism/anti-theism dialectic to be meaningless. It yields
no basic ideas but seems to act as a straw man for a whole host of
assumptions and prejudices:
1) Man is different from all the other animals and plants in
a fundelental way.
2) Spirituality is a public and historical force.
3) There is some agency in the Universe which cares about
the well-being of well intentioned, or self-important humans. It
also asseses the virtue of each individual.
4) There is a universal standard of right and wrong.
5) There is a universal moral reckoning.
6) Outcomes are shaped by Intentions. What happens to people
happens for reasons having to do with their virtue, or should.
7) Without such universal and transcendant standards enforced
by some supernatural agent, our security as individuals or a society
8) Nature, natural processes, are all dissapative, and none of
the values we hold dear have anything to do with these.
9) Our status is special.
10) We are here for reasons associated with the need to believe
in a supernatural agent which is concerned for our wishes and hopes, and
therefore our belief about our origins must be entwined with the mandate
we feel we have from that agent for our own well-being under the moral
cade given by that agent.
I want people to consider that no dire consequenses flow from
the denial of each and every one of these statements. No theist, no
Creationist, no anti-evolutionist, has ever presented a decent argument
in this group which supports the necessity or the truthfulness of these
propositions. I assert that while noone may demonstrate their falsity
that noone can demonstrate their necessity except by appeal to authority,
dogmatic or otherwise.