RE: [asa] Yes -- the YECs are still winning

From: George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
Date: Mon Mar 30 2009 - 14:02:35 EDT

Can we not liken today's YEC conflict with 17th century's Geocentric
(capitalized for its absolute center idea) model? It was very clear to the
Church, based on their interpretation of scripture, that the Earth was the
absolute center of the universe; the lack of parallax was strong objective
evidence against an alternative moving Earth, along with other "obvious"
evidentiary observations.

Eventually, however, new objective evidence overwhelmed the
Aristotle/Ptolemy/Aquinas and, ta-dah, a better scriptural interpretation
emerged that recognized that the Bible was not presenting a Geocentric
model. Further, it did not dismiss a literal interpretation for Genesis.

It would be wrong for ASA to claim YEC is absolutely wrong. Subjective
views can trump objective science. George is correct that we can not prove
YEC wrong because there is the possibility that the universe was made very
recently. [I like the "Last Thursday" supposition.] For a change to take
place for a subjective view, the view must be found as unlikely by the
holder, and will, thus, finally elect to send it off to Sillyville where it
belongs. YEC views should have already shipped their ideas out, but, they
are unwilling to do so since that would mean compromising their literal
interpretation of scripture. Such an action would be downgrading the Bible
to an unacceptable level. They see themselves as people of strong faith,
and indeed, they are. I am personal friends with many of those within our
church that hold to the YEC view, and many are the best servants within our
church. They have a right to hold to scripture tightly, regardless of the
consequences. Regrettably, I believe their views are quite detrimental to
the Christian faith due to the degree of conflict that has come from very
strong and objective evidence.

For the case of the Geocentric model, better observations produced greater
illumination upon the scriptures themselves. The election to downgrade this
contribution by what we now call modern science was a lesson that should
have been learned. Is not history repeating itself?

Is there not the possibility that a literal Genesis (1 & 2, at least) is
benefited by today's findings? How can we look upon the image of AB Aurigae
[http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080326123135.htm] that
demonstrates a planet that could be described as "without form" and in a
"void". Further, there is reasonable evidence that demonstrates that
protostellar accretions disks could look blue - watery blue. What if
Genesis 1 is indeed an eye-witness account, similar to Revelations, where
John simply (very simply) wrote what he saw? What if there were 6 days of
these observations by, possibly, Moses and not sequential historical days in
the making of our universe; 6 snapshot accounts dating from ~ 4.5 billion
years ago of the highlights that serve to give us an idea of what was in the
past, as well as more importantly, establish God as the sole creator,
contrary to any other religious influences (eg. Egyptian).

I will love to see two debate teams form to tackle this modern view (ie
M-Genesis). If there is any plausibility to it, it would present an avenue
for YEC folks to take that overcomes their huge disharmony with science, and
allow them to give off their high horse (now seen as taxidermied by more
than just scientists).

Is not the ASA a great place for nascent interpretations to arise? If not,
where do you recommend I go?

"Coope"

-----Original Message-----
From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
Behalf Of Ted Davis
Sent: Monday, March 30, 2009 9:44 AM
To: wjp; Michael Roberts
Cc: D.F.Siemens@ame8.swcp.com; asa@calvin.edu; GMURPHY10@neo.rr.com
Subject: Re: [asa] Yes -- the YECs are still winning

>>> wjp <wjp@swcp.com> 3/30/2009 10:03 AM >>> writes:

I have no idea what someone means by the "appearance of age."
All our knowledge of what is called the natural world is
completely founded upon appearances.

The only way to make sense of this is presume that such a person
can distinguish "appearances" from non-appearances. And what would that
be? "Objective" reality? Does anyone truly believe that they have
grasped "objective" reality?

I can only interpret such views as paradigmatic evidence of a
naive realism. All appearances must be interpreted to make
any sense to us at all. It is not the appearances that might
"lie" but man that lies, as he has from the beginning.

****

Ted disagrees with Bill, and the heart of our disagreement IMO has to do
with "naive realism" vs what many call "critical realism." Realism
maintains the actual, real existence of a world external to ourselves, a
world that can in fact impinge on our mental world with "facts" that alter
our perceptions of reality. A critical realism also recognizes the human
component in the creation of our picture of reality, but without denying the
reality of that reality outside ourselves. It's "both/and," not
"either/or." Yes, I do believe that we can grasp "objective reality," such
as the objective reality that other minds are reading what I have just
written. Much of what we "know" about the natural world is, IMO, similar in
character to what we know about ordinary experience.

As for "appearance of age," such a term implies that we actually can make
reasonable distinctions between genuine and false reality. If such a
distinction has no actual merit, then we might as well give up judging
people as mentally incompetent when they seriously insist that they are
Napoleon Bonaparte, or that there are German soldiers under their bed (as a
relative of mine used to tell me, in all fear and seriousness).

Ted

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Received on Mon Mar 30 14:04:02 2009

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