Creation or Evolution?

The heretical astrophysicist Hilton Ratcliffe penned this excellent opinion in his latest book (second edition) and put it up on his Facebook page.

 

Another excerpt from Stephen Hawking Smoked My Socks – the second edition (being written while I wait for the first edition to be published):

To suggest that any complex biological organism – it really doesn’t matter if it’s fish or fowl – could have come about from a billion-year sequence of random chemical reactions in some kind of prenatal soup in such a way that it evolves from atom to elephant is quite outrageous. Considering the functional detail and modular interdependence of any living being, and bearing in mind that it must have had the ability to reproduce itself from the outset or it would have been extinct upon the death of the first generation, and moreover, that it carries by dumb chance a blueprint of itself with a complete set of instructions that command equally dumb chemicals to build another one just like the progenitor; all this stretches the bounds of reason and credulity almost to breaking point. 

But the alternative does nothing settle the conundrum of origins. To suggest that you and I came about because of the intervention of an omnipotent, omniscient divine intelligence that planned the whole caboodle from scratch and set us loose in a preconceived, precarious environment with deadly traps and ghastly predators in some kind of macabre game presumably for its own amusement, is even more preposterous. Adding details to this deity, like humanoid form, gender, love, anger, cruelty, and maliciousness, is to tempt the clutches of insanity. So, while there remain a surfeit of daunting, unanswered questions in either solution, we are left with no option but to choose the less improbable, or to admit our ignorance. 

I submit that the only reasonably valid point of view with respect to the ultimate questions of cosmology is agnosticism.

It seems Hilton and I are of the same mind concerning this topic, though I don’t know whether he accepts the holographic paradigm as I do.

About Louis Hissink

Retired diamond exploration geologist. I spent my professional life looking for mineral deposits, found some, and also located a number of kimberlites in NSW and Western Australia. Exploration geology is the closest one can get to practicing the scientific method, mineral exploration always being concerned with finding anomalous geophysical or geochemical data, framing a model and explanation for the anomaly and then testing it with drilling or excavation. All scientific theories are ultimately false since they invariably involved explaining something with incomplete extant knowledge. Since no one is omniscient or knows everything, so too scientific theories which are solely limited to existing knowledge. Because the future always yields new data, scientific theories must change to be compatible with the new data. Thus a true scientist is never in love with any particular theory, always knowing that when the facts change, so too must he/she change their minds.
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2 Responses to Creation or Evolution?

  1. Why does it matter what an astrophysicist thinks about chemistry and confuses with biology? It’s not where his training lies. Personally, I listen to the chemists about chemistry and the biologists about biology. If I’m going to take an astrophysicists word on something, it will be on astrophysics.

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  2. fabio says:

    It is difficult to deny Darwinism because it is still a dominant paradigm in biology, thus, seldom a serious refutation would be done following scientific rigor. Usually the struggle against Darwin comes from theist sectors that cyclically uses the same arguments. I was astonished to read pamphleteer books against Darwin with the same arguments written either in the 1930’s or now. Also ideas such as the ones from Behe about “irreducible complexity” were already exposed by creationist Paley and discussed by Darwin at his time. There is a site in Australia, Talkorigins, that posted a review from Orr, who criticizes how biologists must waste their time in refuting creationist theories created by religious concerns while they could be employing their time in more serious researches, including about missing points of Darwinism.
    Wondrously, soviet scientist Lysenko, nearer to Lamarck than to Darwin, attempted to develop an alternative point of view. Unfortunately he was demonized, because he was Stalinist, but his work should be red with less prejudice, since he was a pupil of Mitchurian.

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