The image of the Virgin Mary is reported to have been seen on a tree stump in the village of Rathkeale, and thousands of people have flocked there. And yes, this is quite absurd.
But is it more preposterous to believe that that piece of timber, and the willow tree from which it came, and the eye that beheld the wood, arrived in this world entirely by accident?
For in this, the 150th anniversary of the publication of ‘The Origin of Species’, that is what we’ve been endlessly told this year.
Before Darwinian dogmatists sneer the words ‘intelligent design’ and ‘creationism’, let me declare that I embrace neither concept. But nor do I reject them.
There it is. I’ve been talking about it for awhile now, and here’s a prime example. It’s a New Creationist
I’ve been reading up on this subject recently, especially Ernst Mayr, Dawkins and Darwin, and what strikes me most is the sheer act of Darwinian faith which is required for us to accept that natural selection was the prime engine that conjured the vast complexity of modern life from its birthplace in the methanogenic oceans of the pre-Cambrian.
It actually doesn’t take any faith whatsoever. There is ample evidence for evolution, and specifically for natural selection. The only way the author of this piece would think it took faith to accept evolution would be if he was really a sneaky, coy creationist.
Now life as we know it depends on proteins. But even a relatively simple molecule such as insulin, consists of 51 conjoined amino-acids, with a molecular weight of 5808: nearly 6,000 times the weight of a hydrogen atom. And an average living cell contains 100 million protein molecules, involving perhaps 20,000 varieties of protein.
Do you remember those problems back in grammar school where you’d need to pick out the irrelevant part? Suzy and Tom went to the store at 7 in the morning. Tom got 2 packs of gum and a soda. They both returned at 4:30 later that day. For how long were Suzy and Tom gone? It isn’t important that Tom bought anything. No one cares. So in turn, one wonders why the author told us the weight of insulin, not to mention that weight versus a particular atom. Maybe he’s trying to compare complexity. If so, he failed.
Moreover, there are several hundred thousand types of protein, all of them impossibly complex. How were these made by accident? To say that such order is implicit in all of nature — as some scientists do — is begging the question, the equivalent of saying matter is intrinsic to materials.
There’s the problem. This guy thinks it was all “by accident”. He also seems to think, as creationists commonly do, that complex molecules have always existed in the form in which we see them. That is not the case. Evolution is a slow, gradual process. Until creationists understand that – and they usually willfully do not – no progress can be made with these people.
This logically means that there must have been many competing proto-life forms. Just one — apparently the one that depends upon DNA — survived. But how did the dear old double helix come into existence? For DNA doesn’t function at all unless complete. It’s either the final, impossibly complex but useful article, or it’s incomplete and utterly useless. So, no simple evolution here.
Competing lifeforms would not last long in an environment where other lifeforms already exist. That’s one reason we don’t see life spontaneously come into existence – the formation of any molecules will be quickly used up by existing life.
This guy goes on to state the common creationist idea that life must exist complexly immediately upon its inception. Again, no. Interestingly, this all seems like a non-sequitur: many life forms should exist, but only one does, so how did it come into existence, it couldn’t because it’s complex. Weird.
Human-triggered speciation has never occurred, despite separations of thousands of years. The dingo of the Australian desert is five millennia removed from the Arctic wolf; yet they can still interbreed. Similarly, Northern Dancer could have bred with a Connemara.
Dogs? Or all this?