ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

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ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

We debate origins of the Universe, life, Earth, humans, religion, atheism, using common sense, evolution, cosmology, geology, archaeology, and other sciences, to repel biblical creationism and other religious beliefs.

Location: Oxford University, England
Members: 4184
Latest Activity: on Sunday

The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

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Discussion Forum

On the scientific miracles of Qur'an

Started by Rounaq Biswas. Last reply by Daniel Gotro Jun 26. 25 Replies

Modern Humans Interbred with Neanderthals in Europe

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Gerald Payne Jun 25. 3 Replies

DNA Links Kennewick Man to Native Americans

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by John Jubinsky Jun 20. 11 Replies

Evolution is a FACT, not a theory.

Started by Idaho Spud. Last reply by Gerald Payne Jun 14. 26 Replies

The new website called 'Grand Ideas'.

Started by Rounaq Biswas. Last reply by Grinning Cat Jun 11. 2 Replies

On Abolishing Religion

Started by Rounaq Biswas. Last reply by sk8eycat Jun 10. 64 Replies

Genetically Engineered Fungi are Part Human and Part Yeast

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Donald L. Engel May 23. 1 Reply

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Comment by Park Bierbower on December 31, 2010 at 6:34am
As far as origins of life is concerned, one of my favorite resources is sciencedaily.com and you can find a wealth of information on the subject there.  If im not mistaken, there was a finding in the not to distant past that also had huge implications~ that radiation from the sun in space could create certain chemicals essential to life~ in the void.  Even if the question of a-biogenesis isn't perfectly explained here on the earth, I don't see a reason why a meteoroid laden with simple organic life couldn't have planted the seed when the earth was at its primordial peak.
Comment by Terrence Lee Reed on December 31, 2010 at 6:16am
Here is a short video that gives a quick summary of abiogenesis:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6QYDdgP9eg
Also Reference:
http://genetics.mgh.harvard.edu/szostakweb/index.html
Comment by Bryon on December 31, 2010 at 1:55am
as far as Miller-Urey is concerned, it is not invalidated as a mater of fact, further examination of the results of the original experiment and subsequent experiments have revealed it was far more successful then originally thought.
Comment by Bryon on December 31, 2010 at 1:47am
The Teaching Company - Origins of Life - Robert M. Hazen. Hazen is a leading researcher working in this field for the Carnegie Institution and George Washington University I think. This Lecture will gives a record of much if not most of the research, experiments, and leading hypothesis with vivid detail of results. Check it out, it is fascinating.
Comment by Tony Davis on December 31, 2010 at 12:14am

Mike,

Thanks for the reply.  I actually mentioned this experiment but I also told him (perhaps prematurely but I don't think so) that there are tons of studies and lots and lots of scientific brain power going into this problem.  BUT, even if there were not a single scientist looking at it today, and even if we can't explain it conclusively, this does not by extension mean "GOD DID IT".

 

Also, and I hate to demonstrate my ignorance here but  what the heck, I heard somewhere (can't remember where) that the Miller-Urey study was discredited for some reason.  Any insight on this?  I hope this was bad information as I am often using it as an example!

 

Thanks again!

Tony

Comment by Tony Davis on December 30, 2010 at 11:28pm

OK, so THIS query actually does relate directly to the origins of life, etc...  I just had an interesting night of drinking and catching up with an old friend who I've not seen in years..  I mentioned writing a book; he asked about what; I told him; and he brought up the Ben Stein movie "Expelled".  Well, I'd had a couple and immediately told him how disappointed I was with Ben Stein, having been a long time fan of his.  I pointed out that he was quite dishonest about his perspectives and misrepresented the facts in many instances.  The one thing my friend kept harping on was "Why is there nobody doing research on how life started in the first place?"  I pointed out that this is not Stein's major contention and that he argues, ad naseum, about the supposed weakness in evolution....  OK, sorry for rambling, as I said, I was out drinking with an old friend and probably had a few more than I should have before posting here, BUT, can anyone point me to scientific research that is being done on abiogenesis?  For some reason he is convinced that science is so focused on evolution that nobody gives a rat's ass about how it all started in the first place.  I assured him that legitimate scientists are looking into this but I don't have any examples of peer reviewed literature to point him to.

 

Thanks in advance and I apologize if I rambled a bit much.

 

VR,

Tony

Comment by Marc Draco on December 29, 2010 at 6:43pm
Anyone else having trouble posting to Fa*ebook with an invalid API key?
Comment by Geraldo Cienmarcos on December 28, 2010 at 1:39pm

3 items of interest to free thinkers:

Your Brain: A User's Guide

New books "Self Comes to Mind" and "On Second Thought" examine the origins of consciousness, and the unconscious pulls that influence our behavior.
LEARN MORE 

http://www.miller-mccune.com/science-environment/your-brain-a-users...

== == ==
PROTEUS
2004NR 60 minutes available on Netflix.com

Director David Lebrun's animated documentary film examines the work of ERNST HAECKEL, the German biologist-artist who dedicated his life to finding and documenting the connection between the disparate worlds of art and science. Drawing on Haeckel's fascinating lithographs of the tiny undersea organisms called radiolarian, Lebrun's poetic film brings the biologist's visions to life and further explores the artistry of the natural world. Haeckel was a naturalist and an artist who became a champion for the theory of evolution. He adhered to a philosophy of "Natural Mysticism" the idea that the essence or spirit of "God"  permeated all life whether single cell organisms to humans -- something non-theists would probably call physics or chemistry.
    Documentary, Science and Nature Documentaries, Art & Design
http://www.nightfirefilms.org/proteus_home.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Haeckel
See also the external links at the bottom of Wikipedia page.

== == ==
The Fixation of Belief
Charles S. Peirce
Popular Science Monthly 12 (November 1877), 1-15.

"If liberty of speech is to be untrammeled from the grosser forms of constraint, then uniformity of opinion will be secured by a moral terrorism to which the respectability of society will give its thorough approval. Following the method of authority [reason] is the path of peace. "

text on line
http://www.peirce.org/writings/p107.html

Web text with hyperlinks and notes:
http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl201/modules/peirce/peirce00.html

Charles Sanders Peirce (C.S. Peirce) (1839-1914), American logician, mathematician, scientist, philosopher, founder of pragmatism
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Sanders_Peirce

Comment by Tony Davis on December 28, 2010 at 7:46am

For any who care to read it (and hopefully critique it as well) I just posted an article which addresses St. Anselm's Ontological Argument at

http://www.examiner.com/skepticism-in-washington-dc/skeptical-of-ch...

VR,

Tony

Comment by david perry on December 25, 2010 at 7:33pm
"why is the US so different from us? We share so much; why this huge difference; Is it fundamentalism at the grass roots level, ie schools teaching creationism myths against the orders of school boards (this cannot and does not happen in here), or is it all because of Republican values/tea party, or is FoxNews. Curious."

Yes.
It is political more than it is religious. What sort of people are going to be more amenable to propaganda: the reasonable well-educated sort that are capable of thinking for themselves, or authoritarian fundamentalist types that don't tend to question any authority(of any kind)and will accept the way things are on "faith"?
There is an obvious correlation between the decline of education in the US and the increase of fundamentalist xtianity. It is my opinion that this decline has been deliberately engineered to create a population less inclined towards critical thinking. It is why they seemed to be so threatened by the atheists movement(such as it is).
There's just so much going so wrong all at once: an out of control military, wholesale theft of wealth, environmental degradation, all of which made possible because too few people are asking enough questions and then even fewer answers are demanded. It isn't just Fox, virtually all commercial media tow the party line, hell they own it, it does what it's told.
Not completely on point, but there's this:
http://www.alternet.org/story/149316/cutesy_geico_gecko's_ad_fight_is_a_deeply_disturbing_symbol_of_our_economic_decline,
and I also just read this:
http://www.veteranstoday.com/2010/12/18/gordon-duff-gov-jesse-ventu...
 

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