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Re: Teaching Evolution

Anyway, during our conversation,
>while she was fondling the big sharks tooth, she actually suggested to me
>that God planted all this evidence, that He created the entire fossil record
>in place where we find them today, as a way to tempt us, or test our faith.
>  It was only when I heard this that I realized the extreme  narrow mind set
>of the creationist.  How does one argue with a statement like that?  More to
>the point, Why does one argue with a statement like that.  

Actually, this argument is probably one of the few honest creationist
arguments out there, and it is, of course, utterly unanswerable because it
not only has nothing to do with science, it absolutely negates science.  I
thnk the only way to answer it is to point out that scientists, to do any
science at all, must assume that the data they collect have some meaning,
and that as soon as we conclude that a divine hand has, in effect, tricked
us, we can no longer rely on scientific research to tell us anything about
any subject - a bit of a stretch, I suggest, for all but the most
close-minded fundamentalist (and we seem to have a lot of those lately,
don't we?).

I suspect that, however, a theologian might have arguments that would even
sway your aunt.  Remember, her theory makes God out to be a liar.  If she
says the devil is responsible, then as a Catholic I believe she is guilty of
Manichean heresy which imputes creative powers to the devil (I may have thta
wrong but I'm an agnosti Jew so what do I know?).

Remember that God's trickery must extend still further, to things like
stratigraphic geology, stellar red shifts (in fact just about everything
astronomers and cosmologists study), for her view to be correct - in fact
most of the observable universe would have to be a gigantic delusion.  Well,
maybe it is, who knows?

But I prefer, as a summing up, the statement of a genuinely religious
scientist, Albert Einstein, who refused to believe that God plays dice with
the universe.
Ronald I. Orenstein                           Phone: (905) 820-7886 (home)
International Wildlife Coalition              Fax/Modem: (905) 569-0116 (home)
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