The worst thing about creationism

Of all the things about creationism, perhaps the worst is simply its lack of beauty. It teaches – nay, encourages – people to be content with a small Universe. It teaches that it is okay, even good, to look up at that deep band of stars that comprise the Milky Way and to say, “Meh. What else is there?” This is what believers in special creation are taught. They believe, most arrogantly, that there is nothing greater out there than their concept of an ever-shrinking, ever-so-tiny god.

Reason, rationality, and science encourage one to sit outside on one of those warm summer nights, pure awe undaunted by the anonymous fears lurking in the dark. They say, Look! there’s so much to be known. Don’t ever be satisfied with the Universe you know. They teach, “Wow! What else is there?” They teach that it is not good but stupendously great to wonder – and it is even greater to tear that wonder asunder and leave it in shattered little pieces so to discover that, yes, there are still deeper wonders. That is the prize of knowledge. Creationism rejects this beauty.

Of course, none of this says whether one or the other is true. Reality dictates that (and reality has a strong bias toward the truths of science). What this does suggest, however, is that something so vile, empty, and ugly as creationism or petty, little humanoid gods has no place among the robust beauty of science and reason and rationality.

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21 Responses

  1. why does it have to be creationism or atheism? can’t a person see God’s hand without wanting to deny evolution?

    Sheesh, there i go, judging people by my own rules – i forgot some people actually believe the bible’s real, lol.

    That’s a stunning picture

  2. Couldn’t help but thinking my post (link below) is the flip side of something you wrote in yours:

    “Reason, rationality, and science encourage one to sit outside on one of those warm summer nights, pure awe undaunted by the anonymous fears lurking in the dark. They say, Look! there’s so much to be known. Don’t ever be satisfied with the Universe you know.”

    I wrote about how the fact that there’s no “safety in the knowledge” makes me palpitate in fear. Your post rather completes my puzzle: the prospect of not having that terrible knowledge that human experience is forever incomplete is enough to turn minds into creationism – and that follows with the emotional baggage that leads creationists to do despicable things in the name of their delusions:

    It’s self protection.

    I don’t want to leave a link to my blog in this comment, but if you want to know what I was talking about, the name of the post was “Searchlights”

  3. I don’t mind at all if you link to your post.

    You’re right, it is self protection. And that’s no more than cowardice. Life is disconcerting. Refusal to acknowledge that fact will force a person to maintain that notion, naggingly, for all time, wholly unresolved.

    I’ve always enjoyed the line by Mark Twain:

    I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.

  4. I shuddered when I read that quote.

    I have this “linking phobia” because sometimes spam detectors (like Akismet) shoot down comment links.

    I really love Mark Twain quotes, although the hearsay that he was antisemitic (and me being ethnically Jewish) always makes me squirm a bit when I read his quotes. I hope I’m just misinformed about him in that respect. I guess I’ll always have a touchy spot for antisemitism.

    I think there’s a more important conclusion to have from the fact that it’s self-protection: that creationists deny reality due to evidence, but due to emotion and fear. That is enough to try and tackle the problem they pose for science and reason from an entirely different angle. The refutation that a lot of science-minded atheists practically obsess about in the tewbs is good for atheists who would like an answer to the “problems” creationists display – but the creationists themselves will only be bought if you strike something entirely different. If you somehow can convince a creationist that the world will not fall apart without God, you would have the equivalence of “beating an Agent” in the Matrix.

    If there is a way to circumvent the deeply-rooted dread that creationists have of a godless universe, then that way includes a precious capacity for harvesting reason out of faith-ridden minds.

  5. Fairly asinine sort of post. So you don’t like creationists? Big deal. I’m betting everyone here already knew that .. :shrug:

  6. Yes. That was the point.

  7. The only thing asinine is missing the point of the post (all one can expect from a creationist, Mr. Theologyonline) and then say the post is just about hating creationists.

    It’s got more into it, but intellectually disabled twats like you will never see through it.

    Sad.

  8. Dude .. calm down. So you don’t like me .. can you at least remain civil for a decent amount of time .. or at least until I say something worth slamming me about :)

  9. Don’t flatter yourself. I don’t even know you. This only goes to show that creationists see differences of opinion (i.e, I see your arguments as stupid and thus reflective of you as “an intellectually disabled twat”) as a personal affront.

    The flipside is true, also. You believe in God or whatever it is the pastor tells you because you believe he’s a great guy who wouldn’t lie to you.

    It’s all in a day’s work for slavethinkers like you.

    Oh, and you forgot your projection mod on, since being uncouth was your innovation, not mine.

    If you had something constructive to say, you would deserve something other than mockery on my part.

  10. Dear, oh dear…. :|

  11. Friedenker, “Methinks thou protesteth too much.” As a third party observing the “discussion” between yourself and Stripe, I am only just recovering from stumbling backwards in reaction to the vitriolic remarks on your part.

    In my 72 years of shuffling across this wonderful old planet we lovingly call “Earth”, I have learned that nearly always when one of the combatants turns his “arguments” in support of his own beliefs, into a personal attack against his adversary, that one or another of a couple of factors has come into play in that persons motivation: 1) He has private doubts about his own particular position in his belief subject; or 2) He feels he is incapable of advancing his argument to a successful outcome. In either of these positions it is too often seen as being easier and beneficial for ones own self-esteem, to demean their adversary rather than risk the loss of a continued debate.

    Your posture against Stripe comes across as rude, nasty, uncultured and unnecessary, and portrays you as a whimpering ninny yourself.

    Oh, and re your last line: “If you had something constructive to say, you would deserve something other than mockery on my part.” In re-reading your postings I fail to detect even a smidgen of “constructive” writing in your constant bleating against creationists.

    Come on man! You’re entitled to believe anything your wish, but the correct way to support that is evidential, not by repetitive bashings of opposing views.

    I take my license to fire off these volleys at you from the position of one who has not expressed an opinion pro or con on the issue…only on how the discussion is being conducted.

  12. Captain Storyteller, Stripe had nothing of worth to add here. He completely missed the point of the post. Then he proceeded to miss the point of Freidenker’s response to him. None of this is merely about disliking creationists (or more accurately, creationism). None of this is personal. He just doesn’t get it.

    As for content, Freidenker gave his views on the lack of comfort that science gives us. Then he pointed out that this may be one aspect of the problem of creationism. People want comfort. Creationism offers that.

    I wouldn’t normally speak for a fellow blogger like this, but he seems to have taken his site down, so I have no way of contact to bring him to his own defense.

  13. Michael,

    Thank you for demonstrating a sense of “justice and fair play” by responding to my little diatribe as proxy. It’s encouraging to see that kind of loyalty among like-minded peers.

    Point(s) well taken. I am not oblivious of the “asinine” comment that served as the catalyst which sent Freidenker into ballistic mode, either. His name-calling and smug remark certainly justified a response. My comments were directed at the “…creationists see differences of opinion (i.e, I see your arguments as stupid and thus reflective of you as “an intellectually disabled twat”) as a personal affront.” as much as to his over-the-top anger-laden comeback. To take a glib comment…albeit a thoughtless, stupid one…and draw conclusions relative to the entire community of…in this case…creationists, is a mark of sheer bias and bigotry.

    Apart from all that, I was just passing through and felt like engaging in a good argument with someone I felt would be a sturdy adversary.

    Sorry if I got too much lint on you when I shook out my blanket.

  14. I haven’t taken my site down, merely moved it to a normal wordpress server (I self-hosted my blog for a while, then reminded myself that I’m a college undergraduate with loans to repay, and a backwater blog is definitely pork for me)

    Anyway, CS – with all due respect, Mr. Stripe is not the first cheeky creationist I’ve run into who arrogantly misses the point and jabs, as-if-politely, at anything that doesn’t follow his pet dogma. I find that infuriating, and I also find that entirely, completely, deserving of nothing but anger and disdain. Creationism is not only stupid, it’s also dangerous, and people who are contaminated by it deserve mockery, pity, help… not respect.

    If someone (creationist or otherwise) came and asked questions regarding origins or somesuch, I would patiently explain to the best of my capablities what is it that science has taught us in the past centuries. Once someone reads a substantial post such as this and just waves it off saying “you dislike creationists” – I can see he does nothing than pounce at the author for not belonging to the same tribe. That irks me, as you can see. The difference between him and me is that I am not gentle in my pouncing. Veiling in tropes does not change the fact that one is demeaning or insolent,

    and I will not shy away from using harsh words against a perpetrator of wrongdoing.

  15. CS – also

    I often boil my blood a bit too fast, mostly with creationists, but not only. It is a personal misgiving about my personality that I admit and am ashamed of.

    When someone truly annoys me (like Stripe when he missed the point of the post and merely handwaved it as “hating creationists”) – I got mad. It’s a blight on the author’s efforts, it’s a blight on the truth, and it’s incredibly arrogant and ignorant.

    I’m a young fellow who practically raised himself (having two deaf parents who mostly needed my help, not vice-versa) – and Israel is a VERY uncivilized place to grow. So I am a bit rude, I admit it. Thanks for pointing that out.

    One little but, though – even though my comment was laced with profanity, it DID have some substance. Stripe completely ignored it. However rude and vitriolic I was in my comment, it is still possible to regard its substance, which Stripe most demonstrably did not.

  16. Fredenker, my man. You’re a moron.

    This post (I just re-read it after all these months) had nothing of value to say and said it from a completely anti-Christian perspective. My initial response was right on the money.

    But if it’s substance you’re looking for then look no further than its last paragraph:

    …none of this says whether one or the other is true .. this does suggest .. that .. creationism .. has no place among .. science .. reason and rationality.

    So. Can you point to the “rationality”, “science” or “beauty” in the rest of the post and show how its author’s mad ranting somehow eliminates creationists from being able to stand in awe of God’s marvellous creation?

    Then perhaps I might be willing to retract my calling you a moron. :)

  17. I bet you would retract your calling me a moron once you retract believing in the Christian version of god.

    And it’s “Freidenker”.

    In my opinion, if something is anti-christian, it’s got value already. But I guess we differ on that opinion.

    :-) Peace.

  18. There you go Fredmaker. You’re conversing civilly with a creationist. Fairly painless, ain’t it? :)

  19. There’s a difference between conversing with civility and offering a modicum of respect to creationist ideas.

  20. Is that like the difference between intolerance and acceptance? ;)

  21. Ah, creationist victim games. So much fun:
    Awwww poor wittle cweationist babies with the sad-sad in the boo-boo :( Awww wittle babies didn’t do nuffin wong, evewybody so mad at me with the poo-poo. Awww :(

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