Friday, February 28, 2014

There's a book...

One (hopefully) final thought on the Bill Nye v Ken Ham debate. During the Q and A segment, Nye was asked a question that basically asked where the first matter came from. Nye honestly answered that we don't know, but that's an exciting question. Big questions like that are what drives scientists to get up each day, drive forward and try to discover the truth is. What came before the Big Bang? We don't know yet, but we're trying to figure it out using the exciting journey we call science.

Ken Ham's rebuttal was to to say that "There's a book called the Bible that tells us where life, matter, and the universe came from". He then went on to recite the first words of Genesis. He also said that it's the only book of it's kind. That he can think of no other book that tells of that kind of information.

This is where I wish Nye would have mentioned the other books that offer tier claims of where life, matter and the cosmos came from.

Seeing how Christians seem to always want to distance themselves from Islam, I would have mentioned that the Qur'an offers the very same creation story. That's no surprise since Islam is pretty much act three of the Jewish/Christian/Islam trilogy. So should obedience to Allah be taught in school then? But there's no need to stop there...

I could get a book that tells of the Sumerian creation myth that the goddess Nammu literally gave birth to heaven and Earth. I could get a book that Babylon creation myth that the god Marduk killed an old goddess/monster called Tiamat, and created the world from her dismembered body.

Perhaps we could grab a book and give some time to the creation story that comes to us from China. The story goes that there was a cosmic egg that eventually hatched and gave birth to Pan-gu. The two halves of the egg (yin and yang) then went on to form the Earth(yin) and the sky(yang). Pan-gu held up the sky as he grew, until the sky was 30,000 miles from Earth. He then died and his body became the elements in the universe, the animals, the weather, and celestial bodies. And humans? One version says that Pan-gu's fleas because mankind upon his death.

Books on Egyptian myths will tell of Atum creating a hill in the chaotic waters. He then spat out Shu (god of air) and vomited out Tefnut (goddess of moisture). Shu and Tefnut created Geb (the Earth) and Nut (the sky) to order the chaos. But Shu and Tefnut got lost in some of the remaining darkness. When Atum found them, the tears that he wept became human kind.

How about another Aftrican creation story? Bumba was lonely and not feeling very well. In fact , being the only being and feeling sick for millions of years was pretty tough. His stomach was feeling so bad that he eventually vomited up the Sun. Then he vomited up the Moon. The stars were the next addition to his celestial sick bucket. After that he vomited up the Earth, and finally he heaved up nine animals and humans. From there, he sat relieved and watched the animals and humans populate the Earth. Creation and evolution in one?

Then there is the Norse story that Odin, Vili and Ve slayed the giant, Ymir. They then created the Earth from his flesh, mountains from his bone, trees from his hair, and rivers and oceans from his
blood. The stars? They made them from his hollowed out skull.

So we have books telling of creation by way of spoken word, murder and dismemberment, vaginal birth, vomit and other magical ways. So Ham is incorrect when he says that the Bible is special in this regard. Yes, there is a book. But there are also several other books. All of them different, but the same
in one respect. There's no evidence for their claims.

Science may not know what came before the Big Bang yet. However we do know that the science and evidence supports the Big Bang theory.  But that doesn't mean that you can plug the Bible into any remaining void any more than you can plug Bumba into that void. Science wants facts, not unsubstantiated claims. And Ham's insistence that Biblical creation is science just goes to prove that he has no idea what science is.

-Brain Hulk

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