February 8th, 2013
05:36 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Friday, February 08, 2013

By Arielle Hawkins, CNN

Here's the Belief Blog’s morning rundown of the top faith-angle stories from around the United States and around the world. Click the headlines for the full stories.

From the Blog:

CNN: Catholic Bishops not satisfied with Obama’s contraception compromise
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops does not support the Obama administration’s revised proposal for providing insurance coverage for contraception, saying it falls short of addressing concerns about religious freedom.

President Barack Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday, February 07, 2013.

CNN: Picking up a bagel instead of a partisan fight
Translation headsets squawked in four languages at the early morning breakfast in Washington, mixing in with the sounds of stirred coffee and clinking china in the immense ballroom at the Washington Hilton. For the 61st time, the president came to pray with the U.S. Senate and House prayer groups at the National Prayer Breakfast. It is an event that is equal parts prayer and politics, where members of both parties laud one another about a temporary political truce, lay down their partisan ammunition, and pause to pray together.

CNN: Religion, readability and the presidency: a historic combination
Employing faith, whether calling for nationwide prayer or healing the nation by quoting scripture, is a presidential tradition as old as the office itself. The nation’s first president, George Washington, was also the first to call for a National Day of Prayer, one of “fasting, humiliation and prayer” to “acknowledge the gracious interpositions of Providence.” President Barack Obama continued this tradition on Thursday when he attended the National Prayer Breakfast, a longstanding Washington event that has hosted every president since Dwight Eisenhower.

CNN: Mecca redevelopment sparks heritage concerns
An Ottoman-era portico in Mecca's Grand Mosque has become the latest battleground in a conflict between those who want to preserve the city's architectural heritage and Saudi authorities pushing for redevelopment. The 17th century portico - one of the oldest parts of the Grand Mosque, Islam's holiest - is being removed by Mecca authorities as part of an expansion project to create more space for soaring numbers of pilgrims.

CNN: Lutheran pastor apologizes for praying in Newtown vigil
A Lutheran pastor has apologized after being chastised by his denomination's leader for offering a prayer at an interfaith vigil for the victims of the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Pastor Rob Morris, who leads the Christ the King Lutheran Church in Newtown, violated the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod's rule against taking part in joint worship services, said the synod's president, Pastor Matthew C. Harrison.

Belief on TV:

Photos of the Day:

A worshipper burns incense while offering prayers at the Yonghegong lama temple in Beijing on February 8, 2013. China is preparing to welcome the lunar new year, or spring festival, which falls on February 10.

Calligraphers write down best wishes for the lunar New Year or Tet in Vietnamese, for customers outside the Temple of Literature in downtown Hanoi on February 8, 2013. Vietnamese will have from this week-end a nine-day long Tet holiday, the longest ever lunar New Year holiday provided by the Vietnamese government.

A Hindu woman prays on the shore of the confluence of the Yomuna and the Ganges river at the Sangam during the Maha Kumbh festival in Allahabad on February 7, 2013. The Kumbh Mela in the town of Allahabad will see up to 100 million worshippers gather over 55 days to take a ritual bath in the holy waters, believed to cleanse sins and bestow blessings.

Enlightening Reads:

Washington Post: Obama adviser Joshua DuBois to leave Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships
President Obama announced Thursday at the National Prayer Breakfast that Joshua DuBois, head of his Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships would be leaving the post, effective Friday. DuBois was 26 when he was chosen by the president to serve as director. Obama has often mentioned the inspiration he finds in DuBois’ daily Scripture e-mails, making the faith-based office director an informal spiritual adviser to the president.

BBC: Timbuktu's art of saving its manuscripts
Since Islamist militants were driven out of urban centres in northern Mali by French-led forces, there have been conflicting reports about the documents in Timbuktu, some of which date back to the 10th Century. However, the majority of the manuscripts in the new South African-funded institute appear to have been protected.

Religion News Service: Fasting like an Old Testament prophet gains followers during Lent
Amy Lester has followed Jesus for decades, but her keen appreciation for his sacrifice on the cross came only recently when she started eating like the prophet Daniel. During Lent, which starts Wednesday (Feb. 13), the 40-year-old mother of two keeps a type of Daniel Fast, which involves eating only food from seeds (vegetables, fruits, unleavened grains), drinking only water and practicing daily devotions. Devotees say the Daniel Fast brings them closer to God by enhancing self-control, purging bad habits and improving health. It bears echoes of ancient tradition. Forgoing meat, dairy and sweeteners for a season makes the Daniel Fast resemble Orthodox Lent, which restricts consumption of meat, dairy, and oils in the run-up to Easter.

The Guardian: Church of England's house of bishops to allow female clergy into meetings
The house of bishops of the Church of England, which makes up a third of the General Synod, has decided to allow senior female clergy to attend and speak at its meetings until women are legally permitted to become bishops.

Catholic News Agency: Vatican official rejects claims that he endorsed same-sex unions
Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, denounced media assertions that his recent comments show Vatican support for homosexual unions. The archbishop said he was “very surprised” by reports claiming that some of his recent statements signaled an “openness” on the part of the Church to same-sex unions.

The Guardian: Churches and synagogues 'priced out of civil partnership ceremonies'
Religious institutions in the United Kingdom have been priced out of offering civil partnership ceremonies by high licensing fees, according to Unitarian ministers and liberal rabbis. Councils are charging churches and synagogues up to 16 times more for a three-year license to hold civil partnership ceremonies than for a permanent license to conduct marriages, Guardian research has revealed.

Quote of the Day:

I know that all Americans, men and women of different faiths, and yes those of no faith that they can name are nevertheless joined together in common purpose, believing in something that is bigger than ourselves and the ideals that lie at the heart of our nation's founding that as a people we are bound together. And so this morning let us summon the common resolve that comes from our faith. Let us pray to God that we may be worthy of the many blessings he has bestowed upon our nation. Let us retain that humility not just during this hour but for every hour. And let me suggest that those of us with the most power and influence need to be the most humble.

- President Barack Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast on February 7, 2013.

Opinion of the Day:

CNN: My take: Science, faith communities unite to protect millions from disease
Dagfinn Høybråten is a vice president of the Norwegian Parliament and chairman of the GAVI Alliance Board. GAVI is a public-private partnership that works with governments, vaccine producers, faith-based organizations and others to expand access to vaccines and immunization. Høybråten writes that “faith and science are also coming together around the world to promote healing and equality in the form of access to vaccines.”

Join the conversation…

CNN: Boy Scout leaders to vote on ending ban against gay membership
The polarizing debate over whether Boy Scouts of America should allow gay members could culminate with a vote on a new policy Wednesday. But no matter which way the vote goes, activists on both sides aren't going to be satisfied. The controversy pits leaders of religious groups that sponsor about 1 million Boy Scouts against activists who want the organization to end its ban on openly gay Scouts and Scout leaders.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (235 Responses)
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  3. God: a Barbie doll for the mind

    Lie4Him is again using the time-honored con game tactic of peppering your discussion with technical terms obscure specifics that give him the illusion of authority on the subject. However, he is not a scientist, nor does he even have B.S. credentials in any science field (he often flumbles Geology and Biology into being the same subject). Moreover, his "facts" are extremely cherry-picked, and the authorities he is using (also to give apparent legitimacy to his lame position) lack credibility as well.

    You cannot find a legitimate expert in the relevant fields who have come to his conclusions. Because they are gibberish hiding behind a con game veneer of pseudo-authority. This is what happens when people with an ideological agenda try to pervert science into serving their ideology, instead of accepting the actual results.

    Ironically, it reveals a desperate need by some religious people to prove God with science, which is a failure of faith. If you need evidence, you don't have faith but instead have doubt. All Lie4Him has proven is that his faith is weaker than he wants to admit.

    February 9, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
    • Akira

      He is a she, and you are absolutely correct; she hasn't gone to any college at all. In her case, Google is her best friend. That, and her good buddy Douglas, who helps in all capacities of her posting 'knowledge'.

      February 9, 2013 at 9:55 pm |
  4. Live4Him


    Well, its a new week so it's time for a new topic to be discussed. This week, we'll be discussing radiometric dating. How did the experts reach the conclusion that the earth was millions of years old? Most people not in the geological field believe this determination came from radiometric dating techniques. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    Geology When the field of geology was first getting started, geologists were looking at the numerous layers (strata) that appeared in the cliffs. Many of the features that were found were originally assumed to be caused by the Biblical worldwide flood. At that time, there wasn't a stated Biblical age of the earth, so they presumed that the earth was an infinite number of years old. This was known to be illogical so it was accepted to be somewhat less than infinite, but still a very long time.

    ChristianityThen, James Ussher published a chronology of the Biblical timeline, stating that creation was on October 23, 4004 BC. This 6000 year history was much too short for geologists to accept. So, with this estimate, the race was on to determine the age of the earth.

    Physics In 1779, Comte du Buffon used the cooling rate of a sphere to determined the age of the earth to be 75,000 years old. In 1862, Lord Kelvin (as he was later known) improved upon his work by using physics. He assumed that the Earth had formed as a completely molten object and determined the number of years needed to cool to it's present temperature. Using this method, he initially determined the age to be 400 million years, but subsequent revisions increase his precision and adjusted his estimate down to just 20 million years. Other physicists duplicated his experiments and came to similar conclusions.

    Evolution At the same time, Charles Darwin had revived the Greek's theory of evolution. Adherents to this new philosophy also realized that even 20 million years, much less the 75,000 years, was much too short for evolution to have occurred.

    Unification So, there were three conflicting sciences on the age of the earth. All of them conflicted with the Christian view. Was reconciliation possible with these three differing views? Salvation came from the discovery of radioactivity. In 1896 radioactivity was discovered and nine years later it was determined that radioactive materials generated heat. This heat could melt an equal weight of ice in less than an hour. Geologists were quick to point out that this heat undermined the physicists assumptions which were used in their calculations to determine the age of the earth.

    Radiometric Dating With the discovery of radioactivity, came the co-discovery of radiometric half-lives. A half life was the period of time needed for a radioactive material to decompose into its stable daughter element. For example, radioactive carbon (i.e. Ccarbon-14) will decay into a stable form of carbon called Carbon-12. While some radioactive materials have a short half-life (C14 – 5,730 years), others like radioactive potassium have a long half-life (K40 – 1.3 billion years). Assuming that there is a fixed ratio of parent-daughter elements at the beginning and that there is a steady decay rate, experts theorized that they could use this decay rate to determine the age of an item.

    Carbon Dating Carbon is a part of our atmosphere. When carbon is high up in the atmosphere, sunlight can cause C14 to form from C12. Because C14 will decay over time, a ratio between C14 to C12 will develop. Carbon is a part of every living organism – as carbon dioxide. Plants absorb it while animals will expire it. Since C14 is a part of the atmosphere, every living organism should have this same ratio of C14 to C12 in its cells. Once that organism dies, new C14 will no longer enter that organism. Thus, the C14-C12 ratio will gradually fall as the C14 decays. With these assumptions, the C14-C12 ratio can be used to date how long ago that living organism died. Because of its short half-life of 5,730 years, accuracy tapers off so that effective dating is limited between 30,000 years and 60,000 years (depends upon the method used).

    Dating Failures So, how accurate is the carbon dating method? There have been a number of failures to accurately date dead organisms. For example, a freshly killed seal was dated to have died 1,300 years ago, while as fresh water snail was dated to have died 27,000 years ago. These issues exposed the problems with the underlying assumptions of radiometric dating. Subsequent research has postulated that the oceans act like a C14 sink, raising the C14-C12 ratio.

    Carbon Dating Calibration Over time, small fluctuations in the C14-C12 atmospheric ratio occur. These fluctuations require some method of calibrating the radiometric dating results to ensure accuracy. Using dendrochronology (i.e. counting the tree rings), radiologists can fine-tune the results of the measurements to yield a calendar date. However, this is limited to a living tree. The oldest living tree is named Methuselah. This bristlecone pine is approximately 4,850 years old. Therefore, carbon dating accuracy is limited to less than 5,000 years ago.

    Potassium (K-Ar) Dating Failures Using the recent island of Surtsey to calibrate the potassium argon method, a scientist found the age of the lava to be many millions of years old. Later, it was postulated that atmospheric argon had diffused back into the cooling lava, yielding the excessive age. Another example was the island of Haualalai (Hawaii) which formed in 1800-1801. It was dated to be 1.6 million years old by the Potassium-Argon dating method. So, it was clear that long-term radiometric dating methods needed to be calibrate too.

    Long-Term Radiometric Dating Calibration According to Frank Rhodes, the only known method of calibrating long-term radiometric measurements is by using fossils.

    Fossils are the most important single method of correlation. Fossils are the remains of, or direct indication of, prehistoric animals and plants. Although they are influenced by environment of deposition, similar assemblages of fossils generally indicate similarity of age in the rocks that contain them.
    Rhodes, Frank H.T. – Geology, Western Publishing Company, 1972, pg 72

    So, they use radiometric dating to determine the age of a fossil, while using fossils to calibrate the results. Talk about circular logic!

    Sorry about the long post, but wanted to include all the important details.

    February 9, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Ever wonder why you have to be sooooo selective in gathering your "evidence" for your position? If you were as thorough in research as your post implies, you'd not have posted that nonsense as the FULL facts WEAKEN your claim rather than strengthen it. Keep cherry picking, it's the method for you, it seems.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
    • The Truth

      Thanks for showing everyone what a moron you are. This is an example of being faced with the evidence that completely blows apart the bible account of creation by billions of years but you are going to stick to it because science can only come up with approximate dates within a few thousand years based on both the fossil ages and the potassium-argon or rubidium-strontium testing done of the material found around the fossil.

      Your argument is basically that if science cannot prove to the millisecond how old something is then there is a margin of error, and no matter how small that margin, you will claim your version that is way outside the margin must be possible if not probable. It reminds me of a scene from Dumb & Dumber:

      Lloyd "Hit me! Just give it to me straight! I came a long way just to see you Mary. The least you can do is level with me. What are my chances?"
      Mary "Not good."
      Lloyd [Gulps] "You mean, not good like one out of a hundred?"
      Mary "I'd say more like... one out of a million."
      Lloyd "So you're telling me there's a chance. Yeah!!"

      February 9, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Really-O? : Oh, oh...I'm marginal. ... have also put the lie to some of the nonsensical "data" she uses (U-Pb dating ... I wonder if this shifts me to the "ignore" category?

      This is the typical 'you' – a lot of offensiveness with some attempts at a logical argument. In your dispute on U-Pb dating, I requested actual studies and the evidence supporting your conclusions that it is reliable. To date, I haven't seen any evidence presented by you.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Free Nuts

      For creationists Eve is Adam Adam poked himself.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Moby Schtick : Ever wonder why you have to be sooooo selective

      You seem to have a short term memory. Do you remember what you requested? So why bother posting?

      Moby Schtick February 9, 2013 at 1:02 pm Please put me on your ignore list. thanks.

      @The Truth : Thanks for showing everyone what a moron you are.

      I guess you need to be added to the ignore list too.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Because I am (and was then) smart enough to know that you can't ignore me. Thanks for proving my hypothesis correct. 🙂

      February 9, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
    • Die4Us

      Please, your heavenly jew on a stick is waiting for you, go, go quickly.
      When are you posting your new list?

      February 9, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • TANK!!!!

      So.......you're telling us not to rely on radiometric dating because of singular erroneous uses of the method? Should we throw out all of mathematics as well because someone somewhere has written '1-1=2' before? You'll need to go through the papers that presented the erroneous results, identify the methods used, whether they differ from the established methods, and prove that ALL instances where radiometric dating has been used to derive absolute dates used those erroneous methods. If you're serious about letting the evidence take you where it may, how about you start digging up those papers and doing PROPER analyses?

      Then again, when you dedicate your life to spouting creationist propaganda, what time do you have for proper argument formulation?

      February 9, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • Really-O?

      Look, there are many, shall we say, problematic posters on this blog; let's take Chad, for example: Dishonest; juvenile; smarmy; willfully ignorant; lacks a formal education; prejudiced; a bigot. All that taken into consideration, and it's quite a handful, one thing I can say about Chad is he is not a lunatic. Live4Him, however, lives on the lunatic fringe. To believe the things Live4Him believes, one must not only deny most scientific knowledge from numerous fields (physics, geophysics, geology, chemistry, biology, etc.), but also be a rabid paranoid conspiracy theorist and believe that all those who practice science professionally belong to some kind of scientific iIlluminati conspiring to "keep the real truth" from the ignorant masses. That is lunacy.

      By the way...regarding resources for radiometric dating – I'd recommend you start with an introductory geophysics text. You can find one at your local university or community college library. You know, the places you supposedly obtained the "education" that allows you to accept insane ideas. There, do I qualify for the "ignore" list now? (badge of honor)

      February 9, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • Really-O?

      This is, as far as I recall, only my second interaction with Live4Him. It took only one or two posts, not threads, for me to recognize that Live4Him is a loon. I know I jumped queue and do apologize to all of you who worked long and hard to make the "ignore" list.


      February 9, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • Science

      Cheers Really-O?

      Love your education dig .

      February 9, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Really-O? : regarding resources for radiometric dating – I'd recommend you start with an introductory geophysics text.

      I tell you what, with your great knowledge on radiometric dating, why don't you tell everyone on the forum how it works. In actuallity not in theory. Start with the scientist in the field and explain the step-by-step process – unless you don't know what happens.

      @Really-O? : It took only one or two posts, not threads, for me to recognize that Live4Him is a loon. I know I jumped queue and do apologize to all of you who worked long and hard to make the "ignore" list.

      Ad hominems and lack of content, with lots of conjecture will get you branded as a troll very quickly.

      February 9, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • Really-O?

      @Live4Him –

      Regarding radiometric dating: It's really not that complicated – radioactive isotopes decay into other isotopes at a constant rate (the decay constant). For example, Uranium-235 decays into Lead-207. By comparing the ratio of U-235 to Pb-207, one is able to determine the age of the U-235 inclusion and, therefore, the age of the sample. I don't work in a geophysics lab, so I can't tell you how the U-235 and Pb-207 are teased from the sample, but, as told you earlier, that information is freely available at your local university library. Spend some time there...you might be able to disabuse yourself of you inane, and insane, ideas.

      I don't know how many times this has to be said...insults are not argumentum ad hominem. Argumentum ad hominem is dismissing an argument by attacking the person presenting the argument rather than addressing the argument. When I call you a loon, I'm not dismissing one of your arguments, I'm simply insulting you (and stating the obvious). See? Easy peasy.

      Do I get bumped to first class now?

      February 9, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Really-O?

      DOH! I allowed myself to respond to Live4Him. Why, oh why, is my will so malleable?

      February 9, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Live4Him

      L4H: how it works. In actuallity not in theory ... Do I get bumped to first class now?
      @Really-O? : radioactive isotopes decay into other isotopes at a constant rate (the decay constant).

      Do you think you described the theory or the actual process? You described the theory. You DON'T know how the process works. Thank you.

      @Really-O? : When I call you a loon, I'm not dismissing one of your arguments, I'm simply insulting you (and stating the obvious).

      And this technique is called a argumentum ad hominem – or argument against the person (rather than the premises presented).

      February 9, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Really-O?

      Damn it...I'm going to allow myself to do it again.

      What "process" are you talking about? Do you mean fission? The facts regarding decay (facts are the pesky little things that comprise scientific theories) are not extraordinarily difficult to comprehend (again, the library), but I'm not a nuclear physicist and don't pretend extensive knowledge on the subject (as I'm certain you also do not); however, I know with certainty that nuclear physicists do exist and do have extensive knowledge on the subject and, using that extensive knowledge, can make prediction regarding fission and decay with astonishing accuracy. They're the experts, not you or I. I admit that. You do not. You are delusional.

      And you still don't understand argumentum ad hominem. Not sure how much more I can help you.

      February 9, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • Really-O?

      That's it. I'm out. Live4Him, you're a delusional young-earth-creationist. No amount of reason or evidence will suffice to change you're paranoid mind. You're beliefs are irrelevant in the modern world. My one hope is that you don't have children because instilling your insane ideas in a child would result in a serious handicap...it could even be considered a form of child abuse.

      February 9, 2013 at 4:34 pm |
    • Really-O?

      "your paranoid mind", not "you're paranoid mind". I hate that.

      February 9, 2013 at 4:36 pm |
    • Really-O?

      Hey, Live4Him – where does the Scientific IIlluminati meet?


      February 9, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Really-O? : Uranium-235 decays into Lead-207

      Since you REALLY don't know how the process works, let me explain it to you. The scientist in the field selects a RANDOM specimen and places it in a preservation environment to prevent contamination. Since the goal is to date the strata, rather than this one specimen, multiple specimens are usually sent in from diverse locations across the strata. This is packaged carefully and sent to the radiometric dating laboratory. The lab technician takes the specimen(s) out of the packaging and begins the test. He will take samples from the specimen(s) sent in by the scientist. These samples are then processed (i.e. crushed, burned, etc.) to release the isotopes. These are then analyzed by the system to determine the ratio of the parent to daughter elements within the sample. This ratio will yield a precise 'date'. Other samples from this same specimen are also taken, each yielding a slightly different date.

      Next, a statistician will analyze the results from all the specimen samples to determine an age range. These results are then sent back to the scientist in the field. If these results correlate to the fossil evidence, then all is well and good. If they don't, then a brouhaha results like in the case of the KBS Tuff.

      So, how is it that the initial results of the KBS Tuff had an error range of about 18 million years (212-230 MYA), but then it was revised down by about 219 million years to reach an age of 1.9 MYA? And why was it adjusted in the first place? It was because modern man was found below this tuff and EVERYONE knows that modern man didn't evolve until at most 2 million years ago!

      Last, Uranium-235 is a very rare substance, so it is rarely used for radiometric dating.

      BTW – I'm heading out for today.

      February 9, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
    • Really-O?

      You just described a shopping trip with a few vague "sciencey" sounding phrases thrown in-

      "These samples are then processed (i.e. crushed, burned, etc.) to release the isotopes" – Really? Crushed, burned, etc.?

      "These are then analyzed by the system to determine the ratio of the parent to daughter elements within the sample" Is that right? "Analyzed by the system"? Could you be a bit more nebulous?

      "Next, a statistician will analyze the results from all the specimen samples to determine an age range." Do tell. What specific statistical test would be used? Considering you don't understand the difference between standard error and confidence interval, I wonder if you'd hazard a guess.

      And your KBS Tuff rant has been addressed previously ad nauseam.

      Just remember, Live4Him, your nutty ideas are irrelevant in the modern world. You're simply delusional (look it up).

      February 9, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
    • ME II


      Would you provide an expanded quote of Rhodes' book or a link to the text? The only similar book I could find was "Geology (Golden Guide)" Frank Rhodes, St. Martins' Press. (http://www.amazon.com/Geology-Golden-Guide-Frank-Rhodes/dp/1582381437)

      Additionally, the quote doesn't actually mention radiometric dating or calibration, but an expanded quote may reveal that reference.

      February 9, 2013 at 5:47 pm |
    • Science

      add to your bio maybe

      Well maybe they should not have created the wedge !!!
      The wedge strategy is a political and social action plan authored by the Discovery Insti-tute, the hub of the intelligent design movement. The strategy was put forth in a Discovery Insti-tute manifesto known as the Wedge Docu-ment,[1] which describes a broad social, political, and academic agenda whose ultimate goal is to defeat materialism, naturalism, evolution, and "reverse the stifling materialist world view and replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic

      February 10, 2013 at 9:02 am |
  5. Live4Him

    These forums tend to lack civility and respect for others of differing viewpoints. Additionally, I've realized that when I get on these forums that I always attract a crowd like the victim of a shark feeding frenzy. As such, I get too many posts to answer, while keeping with my philosophy and motivations. Due to time limitations, I cannot answer all of them. Because of this issue, I intend to limit my response to a select list of individuals and do my part in cleaning up the incivility on this blog. Before I share this list, let me tell you about myself to obviate questions about me personally. I've composed a list of personal attributes to reveal myself to those who are interested. Beyond this list, I do not intend to discuss.

    Upbringing: Christian, turned away from God at 17, Christian Apologist for 13+ years.
    Background: Raised in a small town in Florida. Live near Charlotte, NC. Happily married for 13+ years.
    Personality: Introvert, like Biblical Paul – shy in person and bold in writing. Very orderly and objective in thought processes. Not easily offended.
    Education: College, some MDiv in seminary (SEBTS) but didn't graduate. Personal attributes and considerations would limit job prospects
    Areas of knowledge: Engineering (college), statistics (college/daily), computers (college/daily/teach), Christian apologetics (college/daily/teach)
    Philosophy: Want the truth regardless of where it leads. Willing to meet others if need be. Don't want to consciously lie or offend others. I'm representing Christ.
    Religion: Christian. Dislike all religious organizations but Southern Baptist comes closest to my beliefs.
    Motivation: Want to serve Christ. Willing to serve by sharing my passion with others. Passionate about apologetics.
    Moniker: Live4Him: Phil 1:21 "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain". Once used liv4him_always 11+ years ago. Do not go by any other monikers.

    I've decided to categorize those on the forums into four groups: 1) Favored: Those whose posts tend to be respectful, and maybe mentally stimulating, even while they may differ in viewpoint; 2) Neutral: Those whose posts are mentally stimulating, but trend to the disrespectful occasionally; 3) Marginal: Those whose posts are frequently disrespectful and usually lack objective issues; 4) Ignore: Those whose posts are almost always disrespectful and lacking in objective issues. Those who feel they must besmirch my moniker will tend to fall into the latter two categories. The issues raised by those in the favored list will always be addressed. The further down a person falls in this list, the less likely their post will be answered. I will adjust this list daily, according to the responses that were received that day. Any not on this list will depend upon their initial posts for the day. Any posts from a suspected identity theft post will be ignored. Those on the list are not in any specific order, as I just scanned the blog for monikers.

    Favored . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Neutral. . . . . . . . . . . .Marginal. . . . . . . . .. . .Ignore
    December . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ME II. . . . . . . . . . . . . .Akira . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Science
    myweightinwords . . . . . . . . Doc Vestibule. . . . . .End Religion. . .. . . . . . niknak
    lunchbreaker . . . . . . . . . . . . Damocles. . . . . . . . . .Really-O? . . . . . . . . . . lionlylamb
    fred. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Primewonk . . . . . . . Chuckles. . . . . . . . . . . HotAirAce
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . alias. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Freeman. . . . . . . . . . . truth be told
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .hawaiiguest. . . . . . . . . TANK!!!!
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¿¿lol. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . hal 9001
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tommy
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Billy
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bob
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jesus
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Atheism is ...(all variations)

    February 9, 2013 at 7:01 am |
    • Die4Us

      Please, your heavenly jew on a stick is waiting for you, go, go quickly.
      PS: Intresting that the christian religions needs 2000 years of apologies to defend their beliefs. You think if the bible babble were true it would be self evident and not have to be re-interpreted over and over and over.......

      February 9, 2013 at 7:23 am |
    • niknak

      I am on the ignore list?!?

      I have never once said a derogatory word to or about you, and have been very civil.
      The only thing I have ever called you on is for you to provide any kind of proof of your claim that god exists.

      Maybe all you want to hear from is others like you so you all can preach to the choir.
      Sorry, but if you come on here and make a claim of fact but have nothing to support that fact, then I am going to bring that up.

      But I found out long ago in Sunday school, the quickest way to get banned is to question the "facts" the religious people put forth.
      So I am not surprised you have banned me from being part of you raindeer games.
      I guess I should count myself lucky, because had this been 500 years ago, you would have had me stoned to death for blasphemy.

      February 9, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      This is beyond hilarious!

      You spent time concocting this little bio and putting anonymous posters into categories??

      Why worry about eternal life? You don't have any life now.

      February 9, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • Over 40,000 denominations of insanity

      LMAO! @Tom Tom who nails it.

      February 9, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • December


      Aw, thanks. I saw somebody tried the "I've got your IP address" lie on you, too. I'm learning to just ignore some posts and posters.

      February 9, 2013 at 11:39 am |
    • Die4Us

      Please, your heavenly jew on a stick is waiting for you, go, go, quickly.
      I hope I will make your next ignore list. You remind me of another mythical figure...
      He's making a list
      He's checking it twice
      Going to find out who is
      Naughty or nice.....

      February 9, 2013 at 11:50 am |
    • niknak

      Nonsense Deceminator,
      Am I on your ignore list too?
      I will be so hurt if I am.
      Not going to heaven, and not in your like circle, now that is hell....

      February 9, 2013 at 11:52 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Yes niknak, you are there. I consider it a badge of honor to be on this idiot's list, that it indicates we are asking questions that Lie4ImaginaryFriend, and his ilk, cannot answer.

      February 9, 2013 at 11:58 am |
    • niknak

      I am beginning the question who is more stupid, HotAir, us or them.
      Because we keep going on and aksing and wasting our time when we know they will never answer, because if they could they would have done so eons ago.
      Some people just can't let go of the security blanket, not matter how rediculous it is.

      February 9, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
    • December

      > niknak

      Ever since I've started praying for you... you've gotten better. Always funny how it works that way, hu?

      February 9, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @December : I saw somebody tried the "I've got your IP address" lie on you, too. I'm learning to just ignore some posts and posters.

      They try their games all the time. Eventually, you will learn that conversing with these types is a case of 'casting the pearl'.

      @niknak : I am on the ignore list?!? Whatuppwitdat???

      Did you forget your comments so soon?

      niknak February 9, 2013 at 10:33 am I have never once said a derogatory word to or about you
      niknak February 9, 2013 at 1:43 am Fundies suck the big one.
      niknak February 9, 2013 at 10:57 am I would rather reach out and strive for xtian celebacy so you fundies will die off sooner.
      niknak February 9, 2013 at 10:58 am Phuck the bible.

      February 9, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Please put me on your ignore list. thanks.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
    • Really-O?

      Oh, oh...I'm marginal. I suspect that is because I've not only called Live4Him a lunatic fringe young earth creationist whose ideas are worthy of nothing more that ridicule, but have also put the lie to some of the nonsensical "data" she uses (U-Pb dating and "dinosaur soft tissue" for example) and called her out for her blatant dishonesty. Hmm...I wonder if this shifts me to the "ignore" category?

      February 9, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Really-O?

      @Live4Him –

      Get over yourself, you nutty narcissist.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      I guess I feel hurt that I didn't make the list.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • TANK!!!!

      Why would you ignore lionlylamb?

      February 9, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Die4Us

      Please, your heavenly jew on a stick is waiting for you go, go, quickly.
      Now why put someone on your ignore list and then respond to them, a little white lie. Penance is due. Compared to some niknak is very well mannered on this blod.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
    • Science

      I am on the list cool

      Young earth creationism does not work period

      February 9, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
    • Really-O?

      I feel the need to be clear – I disputed Live4Him's conspiratorial rejection of radiometric dating (U-Pb decay was my focus). My post makes it sound like I "put the lie" to U-Pb radiometric dating, which is certainly not the case.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Science

      Uranium lead dating cool stuff

      February 9, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
    • Damocles

      Ehhhhh...... (I want to make another sound, but it doesn't translate well to the internet). Look, l4h, I'm flattered to be on the neutral list, but I can't take you seriously anymore so go ahead and drop me down to whatever comes after Ignore. Super-duper ignore or something.

      February 9, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • niknak

      No, I remember each one very well.
      And not one of those was posted to you.
      They were general comments, mostly in jest.
      Sorry that once someone goes down the belief path they lose their sense of humor, along with their critical thinking skills.

      February 9, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • niknak


      I have gotten better?
      Me thinks I have been the same at it ever was, but maybe my mind's eye is different then what the neighbors think.

      I personally don't think prayer does anything but waste time, but it is yours to waste, so I hope it works out for you.

      February 9, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • niknak

      I thought I was on the ignore list.
      Have I been upgraded?
      If so, where do I stand now?
      Just so I can know and all.

      February 9, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Bet

      This looks like the notes we used to pass in elementary school.

      February 9, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • Akira

      You and December may ignore me all you want; you are a 48 year old female whose family is all from the Rochester, NY area, and you have absolutely no education beyond HS, let alone teach anything in computers.
      If you actually did, you would know how absurd your notion was that I had to somehow go into your residence to obtain you IP address.
      You and December/Douglas are, in fact, carrying on a long-distance relationship; I should know, having been influential in you two hooking up in the first place.
      Your completely made-up biography is only an attempt by you to gain some credibility; it is all one gigantic fabrication, similar to your other little character, "Chick-a-dee", but at least you didn't give yourself Multiple Sclerosis, like you did with her.
      You are a liar, and a dishonest proponent for the word of Christ. He would absolutely tell you to knock it off.
      Please, do ignore me; I couldn't care less.
      However, every time you post a lie about yourself, I will enlighten people here.
      That goes for December/Douglas, also; you both are the most disingenuous people I have ever seen.
      Have you looked up disingenuous yet? You once chastised me for calling you that online, thinking it made you look stupid in December/Philip/Douglas's eyes. But of course you'll deny that, too.
      Keep lying. I'll keep outing you.

      February 9, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
    • Akira

      Not to mention, you have quite the high opinion of yourself and your worth on these blogs. Your narcissism and ego are quite out of control, aren't they?
      Don't break your arm trying to pat yourself on the back, Miss Mary. You are not all that. If fact, you're not any of that.

      February 9, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • Science

      To L4h

      COPY and PASTE in bio maybe


      Well maybe they should not have created the wedge !!!
      The wedge strategy is a political and social action plan authored by the Discovery Insti-tute, the hub of the intelligent design movement. The strategy was put forth in a Discovery Insti-tute manifesto known as the Wedge Docu-ment,[1] which describes a broad social, political, and academic agenda whose ultimate goal is to defeat materialism, naturalism, evolution, and "reverse the stifling materialist world view and replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic

      February 10, 2013 at 8:40 am |
    • VanHagar

      Ignored again!

      February 10, 2013 at 11:10 am |
  6. Live4Him

    @lunchbreaker : It is well known that Antarctica had a warmer climate in the past. The reason for that is that the continent was not always centered on the south pole. That has nothing to do with a worldwide flood.

    I'm sorry that I missed this yesterday. It got mixed in with all the noise and I overlooked it. Hopefully, you will see it later today.

    If you look at the timeline of the Pangea breakup for the continent of Antarctica, you will notice that this continent was near or below the Antarctic Circle throughout the evolutionist’s dino era. This would indicate that Antarctica would be a frozen wonderland rather than a tropical or subtropical environment – unless something in the past that would have allowed the heat to be distributed the earth's Polar Regions and is no longer in place.

    February 9, 2013 at 6:48 am |
    • Science

      Another timeline go figure interactive No reply needed FACT take it up with NBC

      For all creationists and bible thumpers !!!

      Earth’s timeline works better than the bible's timeline

      Trace our planet's geological and biological ages



      Interactive timeline

      February 9, 2013 at 7:00 am |
    • Die4Us

      Please, your heavenly jew on a stick is waiting for you, go, go quickly.

      February 9, 2013 at 7:03 am |
  7. Science


    Published on Jan 13, 2013

    Program Description
    Over 60,000 years ago, the first modern humans—people physically identical to us today—left their African homeland and entered Europe, then a bleak and inhospitable continent in the grip of the Ice Age. But when they arrived, they were not alone: the stocky, powerfully built Neanderthals had already been living there for hundred of thousands of years. So what happened when the first modern humans encountered the Neanderthals? Did we make love or war? That question has tantalized generations of scholars and seized the popular imagination. Then, in 2010, a team led by geneticist Svante Paabo announced stunning news. Not only had they reconstructed much of the Neanderthal genome—an extraordinary technical feat that would have seemed impossible only a decade ago—but their analysis showed that "we" modern humans had interbred with Neanderthals, leaving a small but consistent signature of Neanderthal genes behind in everyone outside Africa today. In "Decoding Neanderthals," NOVA explores the implications of this exciting discovery. In the traditional view, Neanderthals differed from "us" in behavior and capabilities as well as anatomy. But were they really mentally inferior, as inexpressive and clumsy as the cartoon caveman they inspired? NOVA explores a range of intriguing new evidence for Neanderthal self-expression and language, all pointing to the fact that we may have seriously underestimated our mysterious, long-vanished human cousins.

    Science & Technology



    February 9, 2013 at 6:24 am |
    • paullev

      Decoding Neanderthals was superb and overdue – many of its ideas have been around for decades. See, for example, The Siilk Code http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0091W43JW

      February 12, 2013 at 8:23 pm |
  8. Science

    For all creationists and bible thumpers !!!

    Earth’s timeline works better than the bible's timeline

    Trace our planet's geological and biological ages



    Interactive timeline

    February 9, 2013 at 5:55 am |
  9. niknak

    Fundies suck the big one.

    I know, strong 2 am post.

    February 9, 2013 at 1:43 am |
  10. lionlylamb



    February 8, 2013 at 9:09 pm |
    • lionlylamb



      The just above video shows that a magnet being dropped thru a copper piece of pipe slows down the magnets rate of free falling thru the pipe's inert core. Could this type of magnetic interference reacting between the copper pipe and the magnet be showing up as an electrical pulse in the above "FREE ENERGY CAPACITOR ELECTRODE" video?

      February 8, 2013 at 11:53 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.