Friday, November 17, 2006

Jesus Was Eaten by Dinosaurs!

I (vaguely) remember having difficulty with the concept of 'history' when I was a small child. I imagined the past as some sort of undifferentiated place containing everything and everyone that wasn't here 'now'-- a kind of Parmenidean 'being', static and frozen. In the past, I imagined, cowboys co-existed with dinosaurs. Of course I had only a vague notion of 'linear time' and almost no notion of the age of the world and the universe. And of course at that early age I wouldn't have been able to articulate it like I just have.

It seems that creationists/intelligent design proponents have similarly childish concepts of space and time. Today, for example, I read a blog entry in which the writer exclaimed "Dinosaurs are in the bible!". I can't bring myself to comment on the actual details of the post, but feel free, dear reader, to follow the link and see for yourself what I'm talking about.


  1. Salamaat,
    Interesting. One thing that runs across religions, is the tendency for us to want to use our "books" to explain every single phenomena on earth. The bible isn't a scientfic book (neither is the Quran, talmud, etc). All of them are *guides* to belief which should in turn inform our conduct, ethics etc.

    But I have often wondered about the dichotomy between creationism and evolution. Why does it have to be either/ or? Couldn't God have *willed* the big bang and everything else is history?

    Science explains what is; and I respect the field highly...I don't think it necessarily has to conflict with religion.

    anywayz sorry for rambling.

  2. Hi Maliha,
    There was no rambling in your comment!
    First of all, any self-respecting skeptic/atheist will admit that, really, he's only a 'strong' agnostic (because there is no disproof for the existence of God).
    I agree with you that science explains what is--it explains that which can be measured, quantified, etc.; it is descriptive and not prescriptive. I think most scientists are quite happy to work with the 'is' and leave the 'oughts' to philosophers, theologians, etc.
    I'm not sure, Maliha, if the creation/evolution debate rages within Islam. Within Christianity it's really a kind of sad joke. Most of the scientists are Christians (whose opinions are very similar to yours), whereas the creationists generally pretend to be scientists.