Re: A word of appreciation

From: Vernon Jenkins <>
Date: Mon Sep 27 2004 - 16:30:39 EDT


Thanks for these observations. You will find my responses interspersed


----- Original Message -----
From: "bivalve" <>
To: "ASA" <>
Sent: Friday, September 24, 2004 7:51 PM
Subject: Re: A word of appreciation

> > (2) I asked for opinions about estimating the significance. <
> A major difficulty is that this is an a posteriori observation. It would
be just as interesting to have Genesis 1:1 generating e, the golden ratio,
the square root of 2, the fine structure constant...

Agreed. But when a large number of empirical observations suggest that the
number structure attending the Bible's first verse is indeed rather special
then I'm sure you would agree that raising these objections about the
evaluation of pi in particular is hardly convincing. David Siemens chose to
follow the same path, but then quickly withdrew from further dialogue when I
pointed out that the presence of this fundamental constant was merely the
'icing on the cake'; that, in fact, there was a good deal more to be
> There is a 100 percent chance that the formula will generate a number
based on a selected verse.
> The chance that this number is interesting depends on the total number of
interesting numbers, plus an allowance for the number of acceptably simple

Perhaps I should point out that the fine structure constant is also
represented in Genesis 1:1. See the details at

> Although the proof that every number is interesting is facetious, one can
find interesting patters related to almost any number.

The kind of patterns that are the rarest, and most interesting of course,
are those based on numerical geometry. It is these mathematical absolutes
that represent the true basis of my thesis concerning Genesis 1:1. You may
find the essential features listed as items #1- #13 of my page

> Similar difficulties often apply to probability claims regarding
evolution. Until we know how many different possible ways there might be to
make a functional equivalent, we cannot calculate the most relevant
probabilities. For example, there are over 6 billion DNA sequences that
have produced humans so far-still small relative to the total number of base
pairs involved, but large relative to the probability of generating a single
selected arrangement of bases that long.
> Another difficulty is that pi can be generated by relatively simple
formulas from other sources. For example, if I remember correctly, the
probability of a stick of a certain length landing on a crack when tossed
onto a regular grid is a function of pi. Similar logic could thus be used
to conclude that divination using randomly tossed objects is an
authoritative source of revelation.

I don't understand the point of this statement. 'Buffon's Needle' is a
simple Monte Carlo procedure for the estimation of pi. Where is the 'similar
logic' that would support divination?

> Analagously, claimed evidence of design in nature fails to tell who the
designer is. My invertebrate class lecture just covered some extremely
complex and intricate systems that the text admitted are challenging to
explain evolutionarily. However, these are the life cycles of flukes, and
no ID advocate that I know of has claimed that an intelligent designer is
responsible for the elaborate series of events necessary to get our guts
infested with worms. Starting from that piece of "evidence", one might
suggest a designer resembling a Hollywood mad scientist.

David, if you were prepared to carefully examine the evidence offered at the
URLs above I suggest the identity of the Author of this most remarkable
combination of words ever written would be quite obvious.

> Dr. David Campbell
> Old Seashells
> University of Alabama
> Biodiversity & Systematics
> Dept. Biological Sciences
> Box 870345
> Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0345 USA
> That is Uncle Joe, taken in the masonic regalia of a Grand Exalted
Periwinkle of the Mystic Order of Whelks-P.G. Wodehouse, Romance at
Droitgate Spa
Received on Mon Sep 27 16:58:20 2004

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