Tuesday, 12 July 2011

The Evolutionary Donkey...

Further to my last blog, and indeed on the subject of evolution, i would like to further help those who feel it is necessary to disbelieve their own eyes, ears and sense of smell. Ok, the last bit was a joke, but so is the continued belief in creation, so if you can't beat 'em.... ;)

What i would first like to point out that evolution is not supported by proof, but as with many things we know to be true, it is supported by evidence. Mountains of it, in fact. This evidence supports the process of natural selection as proposed by Charles Darwin so strongly, that it's impossible to say that, given the wealth of evidence, that creation could have occurred.

The first observation of Mr Darwin that led to his abstraction from the general consensus of the time was that mockingbirds from several of the geologically new Galapagos islands though of the same species, showed small changes in their appearance that clarified which island they lived upon. This, with other evidence, such as newly extinct animal bones, which shared armour with armadillos, and, again, slight differences in the shells of the same species of turtle, that the locals could identify again from which island they came, further illustrated that something was not quite as it had been understood to have occurred. When considering the platypus and marsupials, he commented that it was "as though two creators might have been working alongside each other".

This first and foremost showed the start of a trend that was to uncover the wealth of evidence I am now discussing. Answers to questions were now becoming obvious, questions surrounding various primitive bones and fossils that already at that time had been uncovered, not only those of Dinosaurs.

There are many many examples of transitional examples now in the fossil record, including large scale transitions such as from reptiles to birds and reptiles to mammals, and also intermediate intricate developments such as the many fossils of hominids and, as mentioned in my previous blog, horses and wolves to dogs. Fossils, though not proof, are good pieces of evidence since they are suggestive of what Darwin predicted and they confirm the theory much in the same way that the very same evidence disproves the idea of creation, which further supports the theory of evolution. This evidence allows the disbelief that all animals were created as they are today, originally.

Theists will find fault in transitional fossils in a number of ways. The will claim that a transitional fossil is not proof of a relationship since you can't prove it is an ancestor of any later organism, which is true to some degree, but since it is suggestive of an evolutionary relationship it is simply doing what science does rationally; dealing with supporting evidence rather than claiming proof. This argument from theists demonstrates a lack of understanding of how science works, whilst simultaneously showing their ignorant closed minds by failing to udnerstand how a theory can be shown to be accurate, whilst maintaining a completely unsubstantiated story of creation, without any supporting evidence. Beggars belief, eh?

Theists will also sometimes claim that transitional fossils are not transitional at all. For example, with archaeopteryx, some have claimed that it is a true bird, despite it's obvious relationship to reptiles, that modern birds do not possess. Archaeopteryx is as best transitional fossil example as can be seen with your own eyes, since it directly related to both reptiles and birds; having characteristics of two completely different species to itself, whilst not necessarily being a direct ancestor of either, since it might have been a branch of evolution that simply died out, similar to Neanderthals.

The direct misunderstanding of transitional fossils, coupled with their fear of displeasing their god, makes little room for debate since they are misinformed, or are simply not well read on the subject. My own personal experience also, is that theists will simply not take in what is right before their eyes since it will disagree with what they believe already, and completely have "faith" that what they think, or, sorry, are brainwashed with and since theists have an emotional involvement with what they have been told, they are not using their brains to maximum ability. Human brains thrive on flexibility; having a closed mind stifles your personal development since you fail to develop an understanding of something that already you have your stance upon, one that was given to you by someone who indoctrinated you into your beliefs.

Another misconception is that atheism and evolution is in the same league as one another. This is wrong. Atheist is a theological position on the existence, or at least, non-existence of a god. The latter is a field of scientific interest.

Further misconceptions regarding evolution is that theists often will say, sarcastically, "so you think that humans used to be monkeys"?

Laughable eh?

This only serves to further illustrate what i just said, a complete misunderstanding of evolution. The fossil record shows that we humans shared a common ancestor with some of the primates; the great apes. DNA supports this, with our closest extant relatives being Chimpanzees and Bonobos, Orang-Utans and Gorillas. Transitional forms support this. Just even looking at evidence available today supports this; our skeletons, our shared teeth formation, our brain size in relation to our bodies, our skulls, opposable thumbs. the fact we also have an appendix, though unused now in humans, that it is still used by our closest relatives because of their mostly herbivorous diets. Our chromosome (the organised structure of DNA and protein in all cells) sequence of 23 pairs, rather than 24 pairs as with the other primates, and the fact that humans show a fused second chromosome, which shows a link between us and the other great apes, since it is suggestive that we formerly had, also, 24 pairs. We retain the genetic code for "tails", which is seen in embryonic development, and indeed occurs naturally occasionally as an accident of nature. Primates also have slower development rates than other similar sized animals, depending for much longer upon their parents for successful survival to adulthood, and we all reach sexual maturity much later than most other similar sized mammals, but share longer lifespans also. Also many may life in solitude, male-female pairs, or in groups of socially dependent groups. Our shared ability to make use of tools. All the great apes practise homosexual behaviour commonly, and show remarkable similarities in their differentiation of temper, and emotional output, to humans.

All of this supports the "theory" of evolution, whilst, again, providing evidence against the theory of creation, as described in holy books of the many religions.

Now, i'll also just touch on the big bang. This also is a theory, partly based on fact. The fact that everything in the universe is observed to be moving further away (currently), supports the idea that everything must have been at one point condensed to a possible atom sized point, though this is remarkable to imagine, it is supported by evidence. Atheists, and evolutionists aren't strictly related to the big bang, but do obviously see the evidence to support it, they don't simply think everything came from nothing. There are many scientific theories on what came before the big bang too, for example string theory. Or Einstein's suggestion that the universe could possibly expand and subsequently shrink one another after each other. Of course, there are many of the religious who scoff at the idea that everything came from nothing.... Whilst accepting that their god did!?

Clearly what is most important in this discussion, is that the two theories that are possible, is creation and evolution. Since i have put forward some pieces of evidence for the former, i should like to offer some evidence for the latter, from a book, written by primitive idiots who felt it necessary to control the world, give answers to then unanswered questions, the bible.

God created the heavens and earth, that may or not have been flat at the time, he then made Adam from some dust, and his wife from his rib and they were so stupid that they had barely taken their first breath before they caused god to smite the whole of humanity to be born in a state of sin. I say god, since he also created the devil, and accordingly is ultimately responsible for the whole she-bang. God of course knowing everything knew this would all happen, and despite flooding the whole earth in order to start again, failed miserably in his divine plan, to be worshipped devoutly by everything and everyone. This worked for the churches marvellously of course, and clearly if genesis didn't exist, control might have been harder. Tadaaa.

In contrast to Darwin's theory, the above theory has no evidence to support it, apart from a book written by men, and of course faith.


That is all x

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