Did evolution happen??????????

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Did evolution happen??????????

Yes
24
73%
No
9
27%
 
Total votes : 33

Postby mattie » Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:26 am

One of the other questions that has always perplexed me is: if God really does exist, then why did he create us? Most Christians say that he did this to test us all, but this is a very poor explanation IMO. Why would a creator be interested in testing human nature? What would be the point? You can't tell me it is part of some social experiment.

Surely he also knew that human nature being as it is would create divisions in society, with some people in the world living thoroughly miserable lives of poverty, crime and squalor. Putting all of the blame onto human behaviour is not completely fair IMO, as he must have had the foresight to know that his creation would cause misery for many people.

Also, if God exists then why did he create a world full of natural disasters. I know some are caused by man and global warming, but what about volcanoes and earthquakes? They are not caused by climate change.

I'm not saying that I 100% don't believe in God, but I think there are just too many questions that need answering. People cite the beauty of nature as proof that God exists, but surely something else that we can't yet explain could have created the universe?

I know I've digressed from the original topic, evolution, but for some reason I can't post in the other religion thread.


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Postby Kentigern » Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:51 am

Most Christians say that he did this to test us all, but this is a very poor explanation IMO. Why would a creator be interested in testing human nature? What would be the point? You can't tell me it is part of some social experiment.


I agree that this is a very poor statement, but I disagree that the majority of Christians believe this. I believe that God created us as unique individuals to enjoy our company for eternity if we so desire. God didn't have to do this - he could equally survive with out us - but God created us so that he could love us, and so that we could freely choose to love him in return.

God created us in his own image with free will. God created us in a way such that we can freely choose whether to respond to the love he shows us or not. Christians believe that God showed his love for us by taking human form and allowing himself to be killed by us despite the fact that he had done nothing wrong. By dying in this way and rising from the dead he saved us from those times when we fail to respond to God's love with love for others.

Humans have always inflicted suffering on others and failed to love. We inflicted suffering and death on God in Human Form (Jesus!). However because God in human form had done nothing wrong, he is able to forgive us for these times we fail to love as long as we seek forgiveness and resolve to do better in the future.

Many Philosophers and Christians have chewed over the problem of suffering, and many will continue to do so. I believe that the suffering of others, either from human disasters or Natural Disastors, presents us with an oppertunity to respond to God's love for us by loving these people and helping to alleviate their suffering. God as man sacrificed himself for us on the cross, in the same way we have to sacrifice our own desires to show love for others. Doing this helps us discover our real selves and brings peace both to others and ourselves.
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Postby mattie » Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:33 am

But the Bible was written by men, and therefore, contains many flaws. Not least the fact that it seems rather sexist and strange (in places).

I personally find the thought of being judged by God when we die more frightening than the thought of not having an afterlife and just dying into a black, nothingness. Frankly, who wants a superior being to analyse every inch of our soul anyway? It just seems odd to me that people even want this. Surely death is preferable to judgement from God?


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Postby Kentigern » Mon Aug 28, 2006 12:01 pm

The bible was written by men, but Catholic Christians certainly (and possibly other Christians as well) believe that the writers (who were humans with faults like me and you) were inspired (possibly without them knowing it) by God to write what they wrote, and thus it is free from falsehood.

Yes the bible does seem strange in places. The bible must be read in context. I am not a fan of taking random bible quotes out of context and quoting them. The bible has to be read in context. What happens in the Old Testament has to be read in the context of what happened in the New Testament to help it make sense. When reading any section of the bible one has to read it in context with everything else. The New Testamnet should be read in context with traditions passed on to us from the apostles who wrote it. Catholic Christians believe that the Bible, the Churchs teaching Authority and the traditions handed down from the Apostles contain all that is necesary for salvation. These cannot contradict each other, and therefore when reading the bible, one has to read it in the context church teaching and the traditions. When looking at the traditions, one has to look at them in context with the bible and church teaching. When looking at church teaching, one has to look at it in the context of the bible and tradition.

As for Judgement, you seem to have an image of an uncaring God who is like a nasty supreme controller and dictator. I believe that the judgement we will face will be a loving Judgement. God is a loving and just God. In a way it can be seen as us making a choice. When we look at God do we want to choose God for Eternity or do we want to choose an absence of God (and an absence of all that is loving and good) for eternity? The way we live our lifes will predetermine the choice we will make when we face God as we make this choice in our daily lifes in deciding whether to do right or wrong. Yes it may be terrifying to set eyes on God, but that is because he loves us all perfectly and we all fail to respond to his love by loving him in loving others.

What appeals to me in Christianity is God's love for us. So often I completely fail, but I am anxious to respond to that love He has for me and so make to world a better place. I want to try and build his kingdom here on Earth. I will never suceed, but I hope to lay a couple of bricks for others to build on! I believe that heaven has been promised to me if I want it, and yes I believe that it will be wonderful. However I struggle to comprehend it or understand it or how it will work. It is a mystery to me that I will discover after death. For the moment I want to respond to God's love as best I can. When someone loves you, you want to love them back. It is this idea I am talking about, and this is how I try to live my life, though I fail so may times!
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Postby mattie » Mon Aug 28, 2006 12:13 pm

I'd like to think that I'll leave the world knowing that I have made it a better place, however small that improvement may be. At the moment, I don't think I am capable of achieving this. All I seem to do is keep myself to myself and spend basically all of my time on the Internet or playing word games. :roll:

I also hate it when people change religious teachings to suit them and their lifestyle. I know it might sound weird, but I don't believe in sex before marriage or anything like that, for example. I know that might make me extremely strange, and would probably attract derision from anyone in my age group (I'm nearly 24). Perhaps, it's because I went to a Catholic Secondary school for quite a few years and also used to go regularly to Sunday school when I was quite a bit younger. I stopped going for some reason.


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Postby Kentigern » Mon Aug 28, 2006 12:54 pm

I also hate it when people change religious teachings to suit them and their lifestyle.


So do I. And I think you will find that there are maybe more people than you might expect who would agree with you about sex before marriage.

I'd like to think that I'll leave the world knowing that I have made it a better place, however small that improvement may be. At the moment, I don't think I am capable of achieving this. All I seem to do is keep myself to myself and spend basically all of my time on the Internet or playing word games.


Remember that Rome wasn't built in a day. In setting out to make the world a better place you want to take one small step at a time. Here are a few suggestions.

At home you can do small bit's of housework to help your family. Things like washing up, dusting, vacuuming. These are small acts of love and concern you can show for others. You may already do this.

You have talked about life at university in another post. I know that you find interacting with people hard. You sound like the kind of person who would rather have a small number of close friends and not a large circle of not-very-close friends. That is rather like me. I notice you don't have as MSN address from your profile. Have you considered signing up for MSN and adding contacts from DT? This will give you the oppertunity to talk to people, and allow other people to talk to you. This will help you get to know others, and help others to get to know you better.

I really do think you should make an effort to join a society of some description if you can. Perhaps you might want to join a society that helps other people? If you look hard enough you may find groups of people at your university who do a bit of work with the homeless or those in need.

Also use your time on the internet to learn about what isn't right in the world. Is there an issue that annoys you? Is there anything you could do about it?

There is a group of Catholic Monks who have a rule that all their Guests are to be treated as Jesus himself. See people as unique human beings. Treat all people with love (by this I mean doing what is in their best interests), whether you agree with them or not, whether they seem like nice people or not. Living this way sets an example to others, and helps make the world a better place.

Most importantly try to be yourself. Try to discover what you are good at, and what your limitations are. Use those talents you have to help others and be of service to others.

I hope this is useful!
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Postby mattie » Mon Aug 28, 2006 2:58 pm

Thanks. :D :) :D I've just set up an MSN account. My MSN address is is now in my profile. Anyone can add me to their list of contacts if they want.


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Postby intowiz » Wed Aug 30, 2006 10:04 pm

the question the top of this page i hope no ones minds my answer. to me i believe something that was said in a comic called preacher. ijn this comic god is just a brat asshole who wants peaple to love him thats how he has power i humans were to say frown you to the christian god hed fade away. no belief no power. gods personality in my view is love me give me attention or ill burn down your town kill your kids with locusts and turn your wife into salt.
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Postby happy_go_lucky » Wed Aug 30, 2006 10:35 pm

evolution happened and i suggest you read some mendal and darwin mendal wrote his theorys first but died and it was lost until after darwin wrote and died then mendals theorys where found and basically was consie missing peices from darwins work evolution most deffinatley happened theyre is loads of evidence in fact a whole world of evidence to prove it
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Postby Kentigern » Thu Aug 31, 2006 1:24 am

gods personality in my view is love me give me attention or ill burn down your town kill your kids with locusts and turn your wife into salt.


I am afraid I completely disagree with this view point.

Your post made it sound like God needs us humans. This is not true. If we argue that God is an all powerful God, and is eternal; i.e. he always has existed and always will; then it follows that it shouldn't matter one iota whether we humans exist or not. If God depended on us humans for his existance, then we would be as powerful as God and we would be Gods ourselves. We are clearly not!

I disagree with your view on God's personality. What makes you think that he is a meglomaniac who gets stroppy if we don't give him respect and makes life unpleasent for us? The truth is quite different.

God loves all of us. It doesn't matter whether we are Christian, Muslim, Aetheist, Agnostic, Whatever. He loves us. God is a good God. He always acts in our best interests. God wants us to respond to his love for us by loving. However he has given us free will so that we can freely choose whether to love or not.

Your post refers to incidents in the Old Testament. You must remember that when the Old Testament was writeen people had a flawed understanding of who and what God was. The Old Testament, as I have said before, is the story of God graduly revealing himself to a particular subset of people. It is only in the New Testament that God finishes revealing himself and makes his revelation available to all people.

However the stories you refer to make a useful point. God wants us to respond to his love by loving. God has given us commandments that teach us how to love. God has created humans to love, and to be loved. Loving and being loved is what brings human beings lasting joy in this world and the next. Therefore Gods commandments are a recipe for happiness. Disregarding God's commandements means that we will go along a path that will not bring us lasting joy. This is because disregarding God's commandments means taking a path that does not involve loving and being loved. Seeing as human beings are designed to love and be loved, this means that we inflict unhappyness on ourselves and others because we are not functioning like we were designed to function.

In both the stories you mention a person or persons does something that goes against God's commandments (insructions on how to love). These stories could be considered metaphorical. The consequences demonstrate that disregarding God's instructions brings unhappiness on the person involved and on others as well. It is not God who inflicts the unhappiness though as a punishmnet. In each case by failing to love the humans involved inflict suffering on themselves and on others.

Suffering is a mystery As I said above, many philosophers and thologians have argued about it and will continue to argue about it. Suffering however does challenge us to love and act in he best interests of those suffering!
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Postby Bladen » Wed Nov 01, 2006 10:02 pm

Apes and monkies today are decendents of what man once was. The species evolved, some went down one road (the apes) the others went down another (humans) evolution can happen for survival purposes, or spontaneously. Apes still exist because they're decendened from the line of creatures that evolved fieerently from the line that evolved into humans.

it did happen indeed because... look at all the evidence. There have been remains of a pre evolved species found in Africa. Humans lived in Africa until approximately 10,000 years ago when some of them emigrated, they bred, note that the population was high. Evolution isn't a pop like magic and you're not a monkey anymore, slowly traits add on to the species, they change slowly over the course of a few hundred thousand years it's only when these changes are so drastic they no longer resemble what they once were that they are of a new species.

God may exist or not, I don't care, he can do the hula or moonwalk and I still wouldn't care, I just don't believe because I do't need to or have to.

use the almighty www.wikipedia.org for more info, this was from the top of my head.
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Postby parnassus » Thu Nov 02, 2006 2:25 am

As I have already said, I agree with you that evolution is a perfectly viable theory. It almost certainly did happen. But (and I'm glad to see you've realised this) that doesn't preclude the existence of God.

God may exist or not, I don't care, he can do the hula or moonwalk and I still wouldn't care, I just don't believe because I do't need to or have to.


You don't have to, that's true. No one would ever force you into believing. But 'need to'? That's another story. Before you can even begin to answer this question, you need to ask at least another three:

1.) Who am I?
2.) What does it mean to need something or someone?
3.) Who is God?
"This above all, to thine own self be true." - Polonius, Hamlet.
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Postby Hermionefan5 » Mon Nov 06, 2006 11:16 pm

parnassus wrote:Religion and science can go hand in hand. But why are we assuming that evolution and the Adam-and-Eve story are the only two options here?

ChocFC, you have touched on evolution's Achilles' heel. No one knows why apes still exist as apes if evolution really occurred. But nor do we know why Neanderthal men died out, as there is concrete proof of their existence. There are holes in human understanding of evolutionary theory, not in evolution itself. I think it is a plausible hypothesis, even if we haven't found the missing pieces of the puzzle. Although I would have liked a 'don't know' option (because we can never know) I voted yes.

For me, the creation story of Genesis is meant to be interpreted figuratively. God created the world in seven days...but how long is a day in the eyes of Someone who has been around forever? If you accept that a human understanding of the word 'day' might not reflect God's, then evolution becomes possible in Judeo-Christian and Islamic thought.

Although I am interested in the way the world came about, I don't think it is all that significant. Far more important is what we do with the earth now that we've got it.


You hit the nail on the head, Vicky. :)
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Postby intowiz » Fri Nov 17, 2006 10:31 pm

hey i know what will solve this
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution
for those of you who still dont understand evolution read this.
i believe in evolution because its alot more fisable.
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Postby parnassus » Sat Nov 18, 2006 1:35 am

Jason, no one here is saying that evolution didn't happen. We're just pointing out that belief in evolution and belief in creation aren't mutually exclusive. They are compatible. It's not a question of religion versus science. In ancient times mythos and logos were treated as different but nonetheless complementary facets of human understanding. It is not for nothing that the ancient Greeks dubbed science 'natural philosophy'.
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