Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Response to Rabbi Adam Jacobs' "The God Test"

Here is my response to "The God Test" questions.

1) No, teaching animals to eat humans is stupid because they may easily make the leap to attacking people to eat them. That's why we avoid that. We also don't eat other humans because you get terrible diseases that way. Look up kuru and Creuzfeldt-Jakob disease.

2) I'd try to get along in hopes we could do something to survive. For a tsunami in particular­, all that would be needed was a raft to take us to deeper water for the duration. If we were going to die for sure, however, I would not really care much about what the other person did. (I'd like to note, however, that it's an evolutiona­ry response to life or death situations to try to procreate. Those who do so are more likely to have their genetic material propagated into the future.)

3) I totally don't follow the logic on this one. The majority of people do feel love, and it has evolutiona­ry advantages­. Since we experience it positively and our consciousn­ess is the sum of our experience­s and instincts, love is valuable. This applies to morality and beauty too, and the sense of shared experience and community we get from art. Creativity can mean survival. These are evolutiona­ry advantages that feel "good" to us because they are advantageo­us to us as a species. The best way for humanity to survive becomes the "good" we strive for. Rather than losing their meaning, virtues such as kindness, selflessne­ss, love and generosity become essential.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Welcome, new island!

The Canary Islands are experiencing the birth of a new island, with a resurgence in undersea volcanic activity at El Hierro. Recent video of the eruptions from the surface is available here.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Science in America

I just wanted to point out that New Scientist, from the UK, has a feature running on science in the US. It has a good variety of information and editorials on topics from respect for scientists as a profession to acceptance of evolution. Check it out!

Censoring creationist failure

So, a creationist and a scientist have a debate. Scientist wipes the floor with creationist, who then decides that he will not allow the record of the debate to be publicly released, not even with his presence and words removed. Does that mean science "wins"?