Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Wanderers 2008.9.30

The Four Horses of the Apocalypse
by Sharlene Lindskog-Osorio

Duane Ray is presenting about Creationism versus Intelligent Design versus Science, projecting slides he's put a lot of work into.

Duane started his talk by claiming the Quaker's George Fox College is "a creationist college" although not militantly so.

He's not talking about cults per se (he gave some examples of what he's not talking about, including some disturbing pictures), but more about mainline American religious people who consider the Bible a literal account of creation.

Bishop James Ussher
(1581 - 1656) gets a lot of credit for fixing the start of Planet Earth at October 23, 4004 BCE (a Saturday evening). Dr. Henry Morris (1918 - 2006) is also an influential thinker. Ken Ham from Australia is another articulate spokesman for creationism. Tim LaHaye (Revelation Unveiled) and Jerry B. Jenkins (Left Behind stories) are likewise contemporary popularizers of these born again views.

Bucky dome! (one of the slides -- about 620K year old ice cores).

Duane started down the "born again" path at age 15, then swerved into science (the way he sees it). He still has a lot of respect for the vibrancy and slick PR used by many creationists, which he considers effective, even though he isn't buying any of it, studies their materials to better his own counter-intelligence.

Duane took us through a complicated end times scenario, re the antichrist, horsemen of the apocalypse, seven trumpets, seven bowls, the thousand year reign of Christ etc. Creationism is in a lot of ways about ethics, using the raw material of empirical field data as grist for its mill, giving a cosmological basis for decrying homosexuality, other Wild West lawlessness.

Duane's discussion of how evolution operates was not specifically about humans and their intelligent / cultural methods for adapting quickly. That isn't the focus of Darwinism to begin with. Genes are not memes.

I'm not sure what Duane would say about Stuart Kauffman's rap, which sounds somewhat like Terry's.

I didn't say much during Duane's talk, other than to stick up for the rights of those picturesque old time Mormons and ethnic diversity. Other Wanderers helped Duane fix a couple typos in his slides.

Good seeing Dick Pugh again.

:: apocalypse now ::
(aftermath, Hurricane Ike)