How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

Spin-off from "Dialog on 'Creationists read this' "

Incl. intelligent design, belief in divine creation

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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2721  Postby romansh » Jan 15, 2019 10:19 pm

Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves


We seem to share this same world view.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2722  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 15, 2019 10:24 pm

romansh wrote:Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves


We seem to share this same world view.


I'd put it differently: We seem to agree on the above statements regarding ancient religion. It matters not the smallest bit to me what the ancients thought they were doing. If you disagree that these statements reflect facts, then our worldviews diverge considerably. I think you do disagree that these are facts, and we have not much more to say to each other on the matter.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2723  Postby Hermit » Jan 15, 2019 10:27 pm

Bickering concerning semantics coming up in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...

Although I do agree that everyone has a world view, "Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves" covers only a small part of it. It's also modular.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2724  Postby romansh » Jan 15, 2019 10:35 pm

Cito di Pense wrote:
romansh wrote:Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves
We seem to share this same world view.

I'd put it differently: We seem to agree on the above statements regarding ancient religion. It matters not the smallest bit to me what the ancients thought they were doing.

To the first sentence we are agreed.
The second sentence I am mildly curious how these religions may have formed, but I would agree it is of no great import.
Cito di Pense wrote: If you disagree that these statements reflect facts, then our worldviews diverge considerably. I think you do disagree that these are facts, and we have not much more to say to each other on the matter.

I am not disagreeing here. I am not sure why you would think that Cito.
My apologies for somehow misleading you.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2725  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 15, 2019 10:37 pm

Hermit wrote:Bickering concerning semantics coming up in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...

Although I do agree that everyone has a world view, "Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves" covers only a small part of it. It's also modular.


Modular refers sensibly to stuff like pre-fab housing, Hermit. Avoid jargon unless you're fearful of making yourself plain. As I already stated, no one has to adopt gnostic atheism if he lacks the inclination. The reasons for adopting agnostic atheism are, I am sure, quite diverse, so it behooves the agnostic atheist who wants to split hairs to be a bit more forthcoming.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2726  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 15, 2019 10:38 pm

romansh wrote:
My apologies for somehow misleading you.


I don't think you misled me, romansh. You just didn't make your position very plain.

romansh wrote:
The second sentence I am mildly curious how these religions may have formed, but I would agree it is of no great import.


We know enough about how ancient religions formed to conclude that gods are characters in stories as opposed to entities about whose epistemic or ontologic status we should hem and haw in serious tones. When I converse with someone like Jayjay, this is what informs the sorts of questions I would ask him, and that's the point of the discussion you and I are having. If some theist decides to label gnostic atheism as some sort of ideology, that's entirely his business, but theists are not alone in these sorts of shenanigans.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2727  Postby Hermit » Jan 15, 2019 11:41 pm

Cito di Pense wrote:
Hermit wrote:Bickering concerning semantics coming up in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...

Although I do agree that everyone has a world view, "Gods are the invention of pre-scientific people, observing that the earliest written religions were concocted by pre-scientific people who surely were either inventing the stories themselves" covers only a small part of it. It's also modular.

Modular refers sensibly to stuff like pre-fab housing, Hermit. Avoid jargon unless you're fearful of making yourself plain. As I already stated, no one has to adopt gnostic atheism if he lacks the inclination. The reasons for adopting agnostic atheism are, I am sure, quite diverse, so it behooves the agnostic atheist who wants to split hairs to be a bit more forthcoming.

I knew you'd be up for the bickering. :mrgreen:

World views are modular in so far as you can switch various components in and out. You can be a libertarian feminist, a socialist feminist, libertarian misogynist, socialist misogynist, etc.

Your turn. :P
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2728  Postby Thommo » Jan 15, 2019 11:45 pm

Which gods though? Is the God of Joseph Smith (who lived in the scientific age) pre-scientific?

What about L Ron Hubbard's God?
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2729  Postby felltoearth » Jan 16, 2019 12:46 am

Cito di Pense wrote:
Modular refers sensibly to stuff like pre-fab housing, Hermit.


And synthesizers.

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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2730  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 16, 2019 3:06 am

Thommo wrote:Which gods though? Is the God of Joseph Smith (who lived in the scientific age) pre-scientific?

What about L Ron Hubbard's God?


I see: the problem is that modern people continue to practice theism or to adopt and modify religious traditions. Is anybody worried that those gods exist or are in some way innovative? This is onlyl telling you why I don't identify as an agnostic atheist.

There should have been lawsuits over theft of IP. They should have called it something else. In some cases, they did! Lamers! You and I should call it the set of all members of the empty set, which will certainly fool some of the people some of the time.

This is all beautifully brought home by JJ's adaptation in calling it "the creative potential of the biosphere".

Don't be fooled by imitations! Some people even ask what's wrong with identifying 'god' as 'one's highest ideals'. I mean, really! at that point, why not just call it something else? How is gnostic atheism contingent on the disappearance of theism? One guess is all you get.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2731  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 16, 2019 6:16 am

Hermit wrote:
World views are modular in so far as you can switch various components in and out. You can be a libertarian feminist, a socialist feminist, libertarian misogynist, socialist misogynist, etc.

Your turn.


Ah, yes! I recognize the practice of parading around empty labels and -isms the same way theists do when they ask strangers what their religion is. It's a shitty worldview. I guess you could say my worldview includes a tendency to resist empty labeling.

Instead of having one's reliance on labeling limit one's worldview, one can let one's worldview limit one's reliance on labeling. See what you can concoct in the way of a slightly less-shitty worldview.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2732  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jan 16, 2019 7:42 am

Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote: I gave an example of new functionality, as the human capacity for speech. Creation is the appearance of something new.


You're adapting terminology from engineering (innovation, new) to processes not demonstrated to be other than natural, and by means of which you appear to be assuming design. I don't accept such terminology because it quite evidently assumes its conclusion of design. You continue to describe physiology and anatomy using engineering metaphors, such as functionality. From whose perspective are we to evaluate this functionality? Yours, with your vast engineering expertise about which you have just boasted emptily? Is this functionality in relation to some purpose? The term can be used with neutral connotation; to clear the air, simply declare that you are using the term without connotation of design.


Let me work through that backwards. Firstly, I didn’t boast “boast emptily”. I just called you on the assumption in your passage: “If you resent the authority of people with scientific training, by all means go your own way in ignorance and write stories and poetry to entertain your vanities.”.Nor did I claim “vast engineering expertise”; I just said my first degree was BSc (Eng). I am a professional land surveyor not an engineer.

Secondly, the concept of “functionality” is not specific to engineering, it’s about what things do. When you press the “SIN” function on a calculator it calculates the ratio of opposite/hypotenuse side lengths in a right angled triangle. An organ like the liver has a function that is just as unproblematic. Animals and plants embody piled layers of function that thousands of scientists have spent hundreds of years discovering.

The term “new” is also not specific to engineering. The historical appearance of “new” functionality in nature must currently dwarf that achieved by engineers. You don’t want to accept such terminology? Yes, that’s bizarre but it’s just part of the blindness that you have unnecessarily been drawn into.

Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I tried to explain before, that that the word “design” is freighted with an unhelpful assumptions.


Well, trying to smuggle in design by stealth is not working for you, Jayjay. I suggest you stop denying that this is what you're doing. The metaphor of functionality paired with your use of the term creative makes clear what you are up to. You lack respect for your audience, or you would stop repeating tedious prevarications like this. What you're doing is a pile of fundamentally dishonest shit. That what fundamentalism is, Jayjay: It's fundamentally dishonest shit.


You have some hardihood saying I’m trying to smuggle in “design” when I just disavowed that word. “Functionality” is not a metaphor. The palaeontological record is one of massive creation. If you want to remove it from discussion of life then you cut your head off to spite your finger. It’s crazy stuff.

I tried to argue earlier, that Paley although he was a Christian, he was expressing what in ancient Jewish conception, would have been an impious attempt to identify God. Absolutely fundamental to the Jewish view was the notion of hierarchy, and in Western Christianity, that had been whittled away by Paley’s day to where mankind could “prove” the existence of God. I’d like t explore that more, not fall back into the early 19th century concepts.

Cito di Pense wrote:Again, you're treating biological competition as some kind of game, and assuming rules that have been injected for the purpose of having a game to play.
The part you leave out is how and why you value this perspective; my guess is that it's because you're injecting religion into it. Try not to insist that you're right because you're right.

If you explain more clearly what the hang you are on about I’ll try to respond.

Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I don’t think I have given you grounds for assuming I don’t have “scientific training” myself. I have a four year engineering degree from a top university in my country and an MSc from another. Apart from my industry experience, I had 29 years full time university teaching experience. In the coming semester I have contracts to deliver courses at two universities. While officially retired I have done language edits on many journal articles and theses from PhD level down in a wide range of Science and engineering areas. So although there are surely a number of posters here with better science education than mine, I’m in the mix.


You're practicing in a field (biology) in which you have no demonstrated competence. You haven't demonstrated competence in engineering, here, either, so I can treat your latest testimonial as nothing but another story you're telling. The point is that, if you don't have professional expertise in biology, you probably shouldn't assume your engineering expertise, if you possess it, is of any value in pursuing arguments in biology that are really the domain of biology experts. In fact, you've slathered your attempts to comment on biology with banal engineering metaphors, and it makes you look like another blowhard who treats his expertise in one field as a license to portray himself as a know-it-all. It's not uncommon to see this, but it's fucking idiotic.

Your purported credentials are no good, here. The reception of your argument is going to be gauged on how good an argument it is.

Ha, I just called you on your sneer about “the authority of people with scientific training”
Cito di Pense wrote: The whole problem with proselytizing this point of view to me and others who enjoin your assertions in this thread is that a person cannot force himself to believe what you do simply because you claim you have 'argued' for it. That's a strategy fit for selling to a bunch of hayseeds. You lack respect for your audience, but you've made that much very clear.

Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:How much respect are you showing to me Cito?


For what do you demand respect, Jayay? Some purported expertise in engineering you have never demonstrated to me? Your so-called arguments are idiotic and metaphorical. You haven't shown much expertise in creating appropriate metaphor, either.

I put back in blue your quote that gave context to my query.
Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:Let’s just stick to discussion of the phenomena.


As soon as you desist from injecting your pathetically stupid design metaphors into the discussion of phenomena that are not obviously other than naturally-occurring, we can begin to discuss these phenomena rationally. Until then, I'll treat your discourse as idiotic proselytizing for a theistic viewpoint. I need violate no terms of the user agreement to tell you exactly what I think of your approaches to both science and apologetics.

Jayjay4547 wrote:You are rambling there, Cito.


If you don't have a more cogent response than that, I'll just assume you were blown away by my knowledge of earth history. I'd feel bad if you weren't matching me ramble for ramble on the topic of sweat glands.

What’s this Cito? Sweat glands? Actual things with functions? Tell me more!
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2733  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 16, 2019 8:33 am

Jayjay4547 wrote:When you press the “SIN” function on a calculator it calculates the ratio of opposite/hypotenuse side lengths in a right angled triangle.


No, Jayjay, that's not what your calculator does, because you didn't input the lengths of the sides of the triangle for which you've instead input the appropriate angle -- if, that is, you are pressing the button for the sine function on your calculator. It computes an approximation to the sine function for the given angular argument by computing the result of a truncated infinite series in the input angular argument and you can use that to compute a side length when you have an angle and the length of another side. The result the calculator gives you is the same as the ratio of the side lengths, but that is not how the calculation is performed. You can take it for granted that your audience knows the geometric definition of the sine function. Get back to me when you can show you know anything about functionality that you don't just pull straight out of your arse.

Jayjay4547 wrote:I am a professional land surveyor not an engineer.


You mean, you have training in using the technical capabilities of surveying equipment. In fact, if your surveying equipment is computerized and laser-ranged (as I expect it to be here in the 21st Century) the trig functions are being computed by infinite series in the input argument. I wouldn't trust you to do a hand calculation any farther than I can toss your compass and alidade.

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I tried to explain before, that that the word “design” is freighted with an unhelpful assumptions.


Well, trying to smuggle in design by stealth is not working for you, Jayjay. I suggest you stop denying that this is what you're doing. The metaphor of functionality paired with your use of the term creative makes clear what you are up to. You lack respect for your audience, or you would stop repeating tedious prevarications like this. What you're doing is a pile of fundamentally dishonest shit. That what fundamentalism is, Jayjay: It's fundamentally dishonest shit.


You have some hardihood saying I’m trying to smuggle in “design” when I just disavowed that word.


So you say, Jayjay, but I don't expect much honesty from you on this particular matter. God-botherers lie for Jebus all the time, and so I think you're lying about what you are or are not trying to smuggle in. Try something stronger than heartfelt testimonials to flummox this reader. For example, stop talking about 'creation' as if you were a creationist.

Hardihood? What fricking language is that? I had to look that one up in my Funk & Wagnalls to find that it's designated as "archaic" or "dated". Get with the program, fella.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2734  Postby zoon » Jan 16, 2019 9:22 am

Jayjay4547 wrote:..
What’s this Cito? Sweat glands? Actual things with functions? Tell me more!

Are you saying here that in your view, sweat glands have a function: to help regulate the temperature of the individual?

If this is your view, then what difficulty do you have with the view that they evolved through natural selection? A chance mutation in one gene of one individual made that individual slightly more likely to have damp skin and stay cooler in the heat, so that individual survived and had more descendants with the same mutation, and the mutation is eventually carried by most of that population. Over hundreds of thousands of years further chance mutations which improved thermoregulation appeared, and again gave the individuals carrying those mutations a better chance of surviving and passing on those genes. This process is not self-creation, since nobody's creating anything, but it does lead to the appearance of functionality. It's also a process without apparent purpose, since the functionality appears with no need for any guiding intelligence.

Again, I don't see why you consider that the process of evolution by natural selection, as I've very roughly outlined it above, would be incompatible with your version of theism, since you say that you do not expect God to make any purposes he may have apparent to us mortals. There's no apparent guiding purpose behind the functionality which evolution by natural selection produces, and you don't expect to see any apparent guiding purpose in God's creation, so why do you go to the trouble of arguing with the consensus of scientific opinion?
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2735  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 16, 2019 9:33 am

zoon wrote:you don't expect to see any apparent guiding purpose in God's creation, so why do you go to the trouble of arguing with the consensus of scientific opinion?


Well, that's the 64 buck question, zoon. Jayjay can't leave the atheists and the scientific consensus alone, and yet, he won't say how the alternative he's offering even produces information it does not already have in its database.

It's a lot of trouble to go to in order to generate arguments that are no less stupid than the arguments of theists Jayjay implies are not nearly as sharp as he is.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2736  Postby Hermit » Jan 16, 2019 10:51 am

Cito di Pense wrote:
Hermit wrote:
World views are modular in so far as you can switch various components in and out. You can be a libertarian feminist, a socialist feminist, libertarian misogynist, socialist misogynist, etc.

Your turn.

Ah, yes! I recognize the practice of parading around empty labels and -isms the same way theists do when they ask strangers what their religion is. It's a shitty worldview. I guess you could say my worldview includes a tendency to resist empty labeling.

Instead of having one's reliance on labeling limit one's worldview, one can let one's worldview limit one's reliance on labeling. See what you can concoct in the way of a slightly less-shitty worldview.

The labels you declare to be empty are not. I just didn't bother going into detail. The fact remains that you can plug various components, which I called modules in or out of world views. I provided examples. You can have world views that combine the module of libertarianism with the module of feminism, libertarianism with misogyny, socialism with feminism, socialism with misogyny and so on. That is why we can have the module of atheism combined with that of racism, sexism and many other -isms as well, or theism combined with racism, sexism and many other -isms for that matter. World views are modular.
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2737  Postby Cito di Pense » Jan 16, 2019 11:26 am

Hermit wrote:The fact remains that you can plug various components, which I called modules in or out of world views. I provided examples.


Is that a fact? In that sentence up there, "plug" and "module" are metaphors intended to make it sound as if you're addressing a technical problem purely by means of physics-envy. Tell me again how not-empty your labels are.

If you don't like that, tell me about the components of the modules, as if you're some kind of authority.

Hermit wrote:That is why...


Ooh. 'Splain it all to me, again! I love it when you 'splain stuff. I feel so safe in your arms.

:rofl: :clap: :dance: :rofl: :clap: :dance: :rofl: :clap: :dance: :rofl: :clap: :dance:
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2738  Postby Thomas Eshuis » Jan 16, 2019 11:30 am

romansh wrote:
Hermit wrote:
romansh wrote:Just curious amongst your list ... are there any strong or positive atheists?

I don't know, but my guess is that very few atheists claim to know that supernatural entities do not exist. Also, I don't much care. (A)gnosticism and (a)theism are not mutually exclusive.

Image

Theism and agnosticism are not mutually exclusive either.

But you avoid my point. Atheism within the term can have the ideology that no God exists. So when we say atheism is not an ideology we should have a caveat.

The only thing all atheists have in common is the lack of belief in gods. As such, it is not an ideology.
"Respect for personal beliefs = "I am going to tell you all what I think of YOU, but don't dare retort and tell what you think of ME because...it's my personal belief". Hmm. A bully's charter and no mistake."
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2739  Postby Thomas Eshuis » Jan 16, 2019 11:31 am

romansh wrote:
Hermit wrote: Learn to read.

Learn to explain yourself

It was youy Romansh who failed to read the part of Hermit's post where he already pointed out that theism and agnosticism are not mutually exclusive and then responded by making that exact statement.
"Respect for personal beliefs = "I am going to tell you all what I think of YOU, but don't dare retort and tell what you think of ME because...it's my personal belief". Hmm. A bully's charter and no mistake."
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Re: How atheist ideology messed up the human origin story

#2740  Postby Thomas Eshuis » Jan 16, 2019 11:39 am

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote: I gave an example of new functionality, as the human capacity for speech. Creation is the appearance of something new.


You're adapting terminology from engineering (innovation, new) to processes not demonstrated to be other than natural, and by means of which you appear to be assuming design. I don't accept such terminology because it quite evidently assumes its conclusion of design. You continue to describe physiology and anatomy using engineering metaphors, such as functionality. From whose perspective are we to evaluate this functionality? Yours, with your vast engineering expertise about which you have just boasted emptily? Is this functionality in relation to some purpose? The term can be used with neutral connotation; to clear the air, simply declare that you are using the term without connotation of design.


Let me work through that backwards. Firstly, I didn’t boast “boast emptily”. I just called you on the assumption in your passage: “If you resent the authority of people with scientific training, by all means go your own way in ignorance and write stories and poetry to entertain your vanities.”.Nor did I claim “vast engineering expertise”; I just said my first degree was BSc (Eng). I am a professional land surveyor not an engineer.

Secondly, the concept of “functionality” is not specific to engineering, it’s about what things do. When you press the “SIN” function on a calculator it calculates the ratio of opposite/hypotenuse side lengths in a right angled triangle. An organ like the liver has a function that is just as unproblematic. Animals and plants embody piled layers of function that thousands of scientists have spent hundreds of years discovering.

The term “new” is also not specific to engineering. The historical appearance of “new” functionality in nature must currently dwarf that achieved by engineers. You don’t want to accept such terminology? Yes, that’s bizarre but it’s just part of the blindness that you have unnecessarily been drawn into.

QED point 3 and point 4.

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I tried to explain before, that that the word “design” is freighted with an unhelpful assumptions.


Well, trying to smuggle in design by stealth is not working for you, Jayjay. I suggest you stop denying that this is what you're doing. The metaphor of functionality paired with your use of the term creative makes clear what you are up to. You lack respect for your audience, or you would stop repeating tedious prevarications like this. What you're doing is a pile of fundamentally dishonest shit. That what fundamentalism is, Jayjay: It's fundamentally dishonest shit.


You have some hardihood saying I’m trying to smuggle in “design” when I just disavowed that word. “Functionality” is not a metaphor. The palaeontological record is one of massive creation. If you want to remove it from discussion of life then you cut your head off to spite your finger. It’s crazy stuff.

I tried to argue earlier, that Paley although he was a Christian, he was expressing what in ancient Jewish conception, would have been an impious attempt to identify God. Absolutely fundamental to the Jewish view was the notion of hierarchy, and in Western Christianity, that had been whittled away by Paley’s day to where mankind could “prove” the existence of God. I’d like t explore that more, not fall back into the early 19th century concepts.

QED point 3 and 4.

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Cito di Pense wrote:Again, you're treating biological competition as some kind of game, and assuming rules that have been injected for the purpose of having a game to play.
The part you leave out is how and why you value this perspective; my guess is that it's because you're injecting religion into it. Try not to insist that you're right because you're right.

If you explain more clearly what the hang you are on about I’ll try to respond.

It's pretty clear what Cito is saying. You keep injecting teleological language into your arguments because you're intent on arriving at creationism.
That's neither rational, scientific nor supported by the facts.

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Cito di Pense wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I don’t think I have given you grounds for assuming I don’t have “scientific training” myself. I have a four year engineering degree from a top university in my country and an MSc from another. Apart from my industry experience, I had 29 years full time university teaching experience. In the coming semester I have contracts to deliver courses at two universities. While officially retired I have done language edits on many journal articles and theses from PhD level down in a wide range of Science and engineering areas. So although there are surely a number of posters here with better science education than mine, I’m in the mix.


You're practicing in a field (biology) in which you have no demonstrated competence. You haven't demonstrated competence in engineering, here, either, so I can treat your latest testimonial as nothing but another story you're telling. The point is that, if you don't have professional expertise in biology, you probably shouldn't assume your engineering expertise, if you possess it, is of any value in pursuing arguments in biology that are really the domain of biology experts. In fact, you've slathered your attempts to comment on biology with banal engineering metaphors, and it makes you look like another blowhard who treats his expertise in one field as a license to portray himself as a know-it-all. It's not uncommon to see this, but it's fucking idiotic.

Your purported credentials are no good, here. The reception of your argument is going to be gauged on how good an argument it is.

Ha, I just called you on your sneer about “the authority of people with scientific training”

A complete non-sequitur response that fails to refute the point being made. :naughty:

Jayjay4547 wrote:
What’s this Cito? Sweat glands? Actual things with functions? Tell me more!

QED point 3 and 4.


Also this entire response demonstrates points 1 and 2. :coffee: :roll:
"Respect for personal beliefs = "I am going to tell you all what I think of YOU, but don't dare retort and tell what you think of ME because...it's my personal belief". Hmm. A bully's charter and no mistake."
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