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June 19th, 2013
03:28 PM ET

How the 'Francis effect' could rescue the church

Opinion by John Gehring, special to CNN

Can Pope Francis save the Catholic Church?

The question is part hyperbole, of course, but perhaps a fitting way to ponder what some are now calling the “Francis effect.”

At a time when nearly 1 in 10 Americans are former Catholics, Pope Francis is using a humble style to set a new direction for the church that could reinvigorate the multitude, many of whom are weary of culture-war Christianity.

While a rising number of young Americans no longer identify with a particular religion, many seekers still hunger for moral clarity and prophetic voices that challenge the shallow materialism and spiritual alienation of our fractured culture.

During his first 100 days, Pope Francis has emphasized the Gospel’s radical and still relevant messages of peace, compassion and justice for the poor. He also just might break through to reach the religiously disaffected where others have failed.

READ MORE: The pope said what? Six stunners from Francis

Catholicism is not an institutional bureaucracy, but “a love story,” Pope Francis said recently.

He criticizes a “self-referential” church that becomes spiritually “sick” when it hunkers down and fails to look outside its gilded cathedrals.

He has little patience for pastors who act like religious border guards by making it harder for lapsed Catholics to return to the faith and receive the sacraments.

Francis decries the "cult of money" and the "dictatorship of an economy which is faceless and lacking any truly human goal."

He even gently chided Jesus' first disciples for being a “bit intolerant, closed in the idea of possessing the truth.”

You can almost hear the ice cracking around a generation of disillusioned Christians who have a hard time finding Jesus frozen under ostentatious ecclesial trappings and hypocritical moralizing.

Just three months on the job, Francis’ servant leadership and focus on a “church of the poor” are drawing rave reviews, and it’s not just Catholics swooning.

“Seldom has a religious leader been embraced so warmly across the Christian world, including by many evangelicals,” Timothy George, the dean of Beeson Divinity School wrote last week in a Christianity Today op-ed entitled “Our Francis, Too.”

Jewish leaders also praise the new pope, who emphasized interfaith dialogue when he was still a bus-riding cardinal in Buenos Aires. On his first day as pope, Francis wrote to the chief rabbi of Rome expressing his hope for a “spirit of renewed collaboration.”

Atheists are even getting in on the act. Henrik Hertzberg, a writer for The New Yorker magazine who is critical of institutional religion, applauded the pope for his “kindness, tolerance, humanity, and common sense.”

READ MORE: Heaven for atheists? Pope sparks debate

Surely, this papal honeymoon will end, but these are early signs that something new is stirring in the air.

Pope Francis seems determined to live up to his namesake. Francis of Assisi, a 13th-century saint who gave away his hefty inheritance and sparked a profound movement of spiritual reform, famously said “preach the Gospel always, and if necessary use words.”

Pope Francis, who refused to move into the lavish papal apartments inside the Apostolic Palace, understands that symbols convey substance.

As the first Jesuit pope, Francis has taken a vow of poverty. He ditched the silk, fur-trimmed cape favored by Pope Benedict XVI for a simple white cassock. Golden throne? Francis prefers a wooden chair. The red carpet laid out in the Vatican’s Hall of the Throne has been rolled up.

"The world tells us to seek success, power and money; God tells us to seek humility, service and love,” Francis has tweeted.

All of these aesthetic changes signify deeper meaning, especially in a church where rituals and images seek to convey transcendent truths.

The pope’s toned-down style and pastoral touch are also a more fitting brand for a church built on the teachings of an itinerant preacher who in the Gospel says: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.”

If the Catholic Church hopes to inspire lapsed Catholics and others to embrace the faith with renewed vigor, it will require a radical return to the essence of Christianity. Gospel means “good news.” A smiling, good-humored pope stands in stark contrast to those dour-faced religious leaders who act as gloomy scolds and spy threats around every corner.

Pope Francis surely can’t turnaround the barque of Peter alone, but against stiff winds he is steering in the right direction.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of John Gehring.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Christianity • Church • Opinion • Pope Francis

soundoff (481 Responses)
  1. Bootyfunk

    yes, it's about time priests followed the pope's example and started humbly molesting children instead of being so brazen about it.

    June 20, 2013 at 1:24 am |
    • Athy

      How does "humble molestation" work?

      June 20, 2013 at 1:43 am |
  2. Reality

    Dear Francis I and Mr. Gehring,

    Some 21st century information for your perusal:

    The Apostles' Creed 2013 (updated by yours truly based on the studies of NT historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

    Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
    and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
    human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven?????

    I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
    preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
    named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
    girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

    Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
    the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

    He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
    a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
    Jerusalem.

    Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
    many semi-fiction writers. A bodily resurrection and
    ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
    Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
    grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
    and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
    called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

    Amen
    (References used are available upon request.)

    June 20, 2013 at 12:03 am |
    • Jstars

      How can Jesus be a simple preacher-man? He assumed the role of the Son of God and claimed that the only way to the Father is through himself. Either Jesus is the resurrected savior Christians claim he is, or he's a diabolical liar. The one thing Jesus can't be is just another Jewish preacher.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Diabolical liar it is then. Or delusional. I'd actually give the guy some credit and say delusional.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:17 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      jesus, cult leader
      liar or nutjob?
      you choose

      June 20, 2013 at 1:25 am |
    • S-3B Viking

      Jstars....some original thinking on your part, please.

      Josh McDowell aping C.S. Lewis, in a desperate form of belief known as presuppositional theology, as sumes that the only three options available are "Lord, Lunatic, or Liar?"...a chapter ti tle in one of McDowell's unoriginal books, I think.

      Yet, none of the writers of the gospels were present with Jesus, thus they were not taking Aramaic dictation.

      So, as 2000 years has shown, the list of Jesus-ti tles is long and entertaining.

      ...making: 'simple preacher-man" an excellent addition.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:56 am |
    • Jimmy G.

      If Jesus existed no one knows what he actually said. Lying nutjob works for me, though. It fits perfectly. It's a sign!

      June 20, 2013 at 3:46 am |
    • jkb1977

      S-3B, how is Jstars being unoriginal by paraphrasing Lewis? Are we to assume that your assessment of the age of the Gospels in relation to Jesus was entirely based on your original research and not something you read in a book or saw on tv?

      June 20, 2013 at 7:04 am |
    • Reality

      As noted on p. 1 of the comments:

      Jesus was a bit "touched". After all he thought he spoke to Satan, thought he changed water into wine, thought he raised Lazarus from the dead etc. In today's world, said Jesus would be declared legally insane.

      Or did P, M, M, L and J simply make him into a first century magic-man via their epistles and gospels of semi-fiction? Many contemporary NT experts after thorough analyses of all the scriptures go with the latter magic-man conclusion with J's gospel being mostly fiction.

      Obviously, today's followers of Paul et al's "magic-man" are also a bit on the odd side believing in all the Christian mumbo jumbo about bodies resurrecting, and exorcisms, and miracles, and "magic-man atonement, and infallible, old, European/Utah/South American white men, and 24/7 body/blood sacrifices followed by consumption of said sacrifices. Yummy!!!!

      So why do we really care what a first century CE, illiterate, long-dead, preacher/magic man or the pope would do or say?

      June 20, 2013 at 8:18 am |
    • Pete

      I imagine he never claimed to be the son of god, but after he died his followers started to claim he was the son of god.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
  3. Durandal

    I love how everyone, religious and atheist, gets all up in arms over these articles. Christians, if you want to demonstrate your faith, go help somebody IRL. Atheists, if you want to prove that your lack of belief is more humane than religion, do the same. I guarantee you no one has been helped by internet comments.

    June 19, 2013 at 11:56 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      I have never once asserted that my lack of belief is more humane than religious belief and I'd rather just stay at home jacking it than help others.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:00 am |
  4. It can't take 45 minutes

    I can smell the human litter. Only decay can wash away the exposed chicken bones now. Crunch. Stop. slivers of rainbow covered rock flaking away like salt.

    Crunch.

    For the next 3 days, 2 hours and 13 minutes, a place no human should call fit for their own feces would become my hell.

    But I will not tell who holds my paradise.

    June 19, 2013 at 11:50 pm |
  5. I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

    James Gandolfini has died in Sicily. Sad news.

    June 19, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
  6. Austin

    Mark Quarterman says the slaughter of elephants for their tusks is at its worst in decades. As demand for ivory soars in Asia, Africa's vicious militant groups are killing elephants to pay for their arms and ammunition.

    what?

    June 19, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
  7. nwabundo

    nwabundo

    You are right, Molly; I am a Catholic and my Church speaks all the time about Heaven. The Holy Eucharist, the Real Presence of Christ, is presented as the foretaste of Heaven and Christ promised that if you eat his Body and drink his Blood He will raise you up (to Heaven) on the last day. The doctrine of the Communion of Saints teaches that those on earth maintain a very real and close relationship with those in Heaven and in Purgatory, hence we ask Saints to intercede for us. Indeed the Church reminds us always to live with our feet planted on earth but with our gaze riveted on Heaven, because all earthly realities – those things we consider indispensable now- will pass away. The Liturgy for the Dead is full of references and consolations about death being the beginning of Life in Heaven. Every church should of necessity speak about Heaven all the time; how else can they get their flock to persevere in doing good in this valley of tears? Silence about heaven by some preachers, especially those who sell a sugar coated religion without pain and sacrificial love, could arise from the fact that unfortunately one has to die first in order to go to Heaven! Yes, time ends and timelessness begins, but no one who has lived with his gaze on God should be afraid of this last act of man: it will be, according to Saint Josemaria, like going home and what good child does not like to go home?

    June 19, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
    • Athy

      Holy shit! And you actually believe this garbage? Wow, just wow. I'm so glad I'm an atheist. And your babble should convert a few more.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      What if your parents molest you?

      June 19, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • maximo

      nwabundo,

      You will find a lot of disrespect on this forum. How does one be a good witness for God's Kingdom without "speaking of thy mysteries to thine enemies".

      Some atheists are not enemies of Christ. Some are true and honorable and full of integrity. You and I know that Christ finds that honorable. But some of these atheists, as you can se are vile and hateful. Nevertheless, I encourage you to remain kind to them, to love them. To allow Christ to use you as His tool in this world, as you are doing.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Do true, honorable and (whatever the adjective form of integrity is) atheists get into heaven?

      June 20, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • believerinsight

      nwabundo – remarks is exactly what is wrong " You are right, Molly; I am a Catholic and my Church speaks all the time about Heaven. The Holy Eucharist, the Real Presence of Christ, is presented as the foretaste of Heaven and Christ promised that if you eat his Body and drink his Blood He will raise you up (to Heaven) on the last day. "

      With this believe you don't understand who Jesus is. Jesus is alive and if you believe, he is in you – yes one with you. Its not eating him and drinking his blood that will save you its believing in him – that's it. Its not doing things that will give you salvation its just believing from your heart that will save you.

      Its not that he will rise up he has risen. Its the Church that will rise up – the church is not a building but means a calling out an this is the believers in Christ.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:08 am |
    • LinCA

      I'm always immensely amused when I see two believers argue about who's fairy tale is more true.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • maximo

      LinCA,
      If you study the history of Christianity, there are three main groups: RCC, EOC, and Protestantism. Some will claim they are non-denominational, and some will trace their particular denomination back to such and such a date.
      But the history shows RCC & EOC were one for about 1000 years before Protestantism split off of RCC 500 years after that. Yes, there are fundamental differences between these three groups. EOC believes they have preserved the tradition as Christ promised, that it in the EOC one can find the fullness of the Christian Church along with the most ancient of teachings without change.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:56 am |
    • maximo

      I'm Sorry Dave (from the movie 2001 Space Oddysey?),

      "Do atheists get into Heaven?"

      All will be in the presence of God.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:59 am |
    • Dippy

      LinCA, it's "whose", not "who's".

      June 20, 2013 at 1:03 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      maximo

      But do we get to stay there?

      June 20, 2013 at 1:03 am |
    • LinCA

      @Dippy

      You said, "LinCA, it's "whose", not "who's"."
      Shit. Thanks.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:10 am |
    • LinCA

      @maximo

      You said, "If you study the history of Christianity"
      I'm well aware of the various versions of the delusion. What's your point? One version of the fairy tale is just as invalid as another.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:13 am |
    • maximo

      i'm sorry Dave,

      "do we get to stay there"
      LOL

      if you wish

      June 20, 2013 at 1:15 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Simple as that, huh. I'll just stick to my life of debauchery and sin so and repent in front of the big man.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:17 am |
    • maximo

      It is the ancient Christian belief that Heaven and Hell both experience the same loving God.
      That in the presence in the Kingdom, the eternal, incomprehensible God will be perceived as bliss for those who love.
      And that the same love of God will be perceived as unpleasant for those who do not love.

      The ancient church teaches that the gates of hell are locked from the inside.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:19 am |
    • maximo

      Dave,
      the Big Man is patient!

      June 20, 2013 at 1:21 am |
    • maximo

      The ancient church teaches that Christ is the ultimate manifestation of love and that thru His love we are given eternal life.
      (God, by becoming man, has destroyed the lasting power of death.) We believe that we know thus where God's salvation is, but that we do not know where it is not. In other words, we believe He has revealed to humankind The Way to fullness of life here and the Way to eternal life. This is the teaching of the ancient Orthodox Church.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:33 am |
  8. Gorsh

    Just so many bitter, angry people here.

    June 19, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Yeah, but he's a pervert Dude.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:29 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      Who wouldn't get mad at brainwashed cult victims who keep spouting the most inane and insane things over and over no matter what anyone else says? Call me mad. Color me bitter. I have excellent reasons for feeling that way when fundies act like dippy zombies who keep flapping their jaws even when that's all that's left of them after we've blown them away without hardly trying.
      Or were you talking about the christian zombie idiots? They sure get mad sometimes. Who cares? Maybe it'll wake em up.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      Nah.

      June 20, 2013 at 3:47 am |
  9. V=IR

    God created science.

    June 19, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
    • Athy

      What created god.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • V=IR

      No idea.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:16 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      A jive talking robot.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • maximo

      God is uncreated.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:37 am |
    • maximo

      God is incomprehensible.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:38 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      maximo

      Have you any proof to support both assertions?

      June 20, 2013 at 1:39 am |
    • tallulah13

      Humans create gods. They've done it thousands of times.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:42 am |
    • sam stone

      if god is incomprehensible, why to people purport to speak for god?

      June 20, 2013 at 7:11 am |
    • maximo

      Dave,

      I believe God is uncreated. I believe God is incomprehensible.

      I belive if God were comprehensible, then He would not be God.
      I belive if God were created, then He would not be God.

      June 20, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      You seem to believe in something that can't be believed in maximo (or else "He" wouldn't be God).

      June 20, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
    • maximo

      tullah,
      Yes, people do create gods.

      sam,
      we believe God has revealed himself to man through various means

      June 20, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
    • maximo

      Tom,
      Christians believe that God is comprehensible only in His energies. His essence is unknowable, simply by virtue of the fact that we are created and He is not.

      June 20, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
  10. maximo

    Does evolution explain all of life we see today?

    Professor James M. Tour reminds me of the honest young boy, who said, "But, momma, THE EMPORER HAS NO CLOTHES"

    An layman with respect to evolution, gives us an insider's view of what goes on behind the closed doors of academia.
    JAmes M. Tour is one of the top 10 cited chemists in the world. He has co-authored over 450 scientific papers and has over 35 patents and current professor at Rice University.

    http://www.jmtour.com/personal-topics/the-scientist-and-his-%E2%80%9Ctheory%E2%80%9D-and-the-christian-creationist-and-his-%E2%80%9Cscience%E2%80%9D/

    If thats too lengthy, here some of more relevant excerpts:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/a-world-famous-chemist-tells-the-truth-theres-no-scientist-alive-today-who-understands-macroevolution/

    Quote from James Tour:
    "Although most scientists leave few stones unturned in their quest to discern mechanisms before wholeheartedly
    accepting them, when it comes to the often gross extrapolations between observations and conclusions on
    macroevolution, scientists, it seems to me, permit unhealthy leeway. When hearing such extrapolations in the
    academy, when will we cry out, “The emperor has no clothes!”?
    …I simply do not understand, chemically, how macroevolution could have happened. Hence, am I not free to join the
    ranks of the skeptical and to sign such a statement without reprisals from those that disagree with me? … Does
    anyone understand the chemical details behind macroevolution? If so, I would like to sit with that person and be taught,
    so I invite them to meet with me."

    In a more recent talk given in November 2012 at Georgia Tech, Professor Tour went further, and declared that no scientist that he has spoken to understands macroevolution – and that includes Nobel Prize winners! Here’s what he said when a student in the audience asked him about evolution.

    see above web site for even more observations of this "Darwinism of the Gaps"

    June 19, 2013 at 11:06 pm |
    • maximo

      Here’s what he said when a student in the audience asked him about evolution:

      … I will tell you as a scientist and a synthetic chemist: if anybody should be able to understand evolution, it is me, because I make molecules for a living, and I don’t just buy a kit, and mix this and mix this, and get that. I mean, ab initio, I make molecules. I understand how hard it is to make molecules. I understand that if I take Nature’s tool kit, it could be much easier, because all the tools are already there, and I just mix it in the proportions, and I do it under these conditions, but ab initio is very, very hard.

      I don’t understand evolution, and I will confess that to you. Is that OK, for me to say, “I don’t understand this”? Is that all right? I know that there’s a lot of people out there that don’t understand anything about organic synthesis, but they understand evolution. I understand a lot about making molecules; I don’t understand evolution. And you would just say that, wow, I must be really unusual.

      Let me tell you what goes on in the back rooms of science – with National Academy members, with Nobel Prize winners. I have sat with them, and when I get them alone, not in public – because it’s a scary thing, if you say what I just said – I say, “Do you understand all of this, where all of this came from, and how this happens?” Every time that I have sat with people who are synthetic chemists, who understand this, they go “Uh-uh. Nope.” These people are just so far off, on how to believe this stuff came together. I’ve sat with National Academy members, with Nobel Prize winners. Sometimes I will say, “Do you understand this?”And if they’re afraid to say “Yes,” they say nothing. They just stare at me, because they can’t sincerely do it.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:08 pm |
    • maximo

      part 2 of above:

      I was once brought in by the Dean of the Department, many years ago, and he was a chemist. He was kind of concerned about some things. I said, “Let me ask you something. You’re a chemist. Do you understand this? How do you get DNA without a cell membrane? And how do you get a cell membrane without a DNA? And how does all this come together from this piece of jelly?” We have no idea, we have no idea. I said, “Isn’t it interesting that you, the Dean of science, and I, the chemistry professor, can talk about this quietly in your office, but we can’t go out there and talk about this?”

      If you understand evolution, I am fine with that. I’m not going to try to change you – not at all. In fact, I wish I had the understanding that you have.

      But about seven or eight years ago I posted on my Web site that I don’t understand. And I said, “I will buy lunch for anyone that will sit with me and explain to me evolution, and I won’t argue with you until I don’t understand something – I will ask you to clarify. But you can’t wave by and say, “This enzyme does that.” You’ve got to get down in the details of where molecules are built, for me. Nobody has come forward.

      The Atheist Society contacted me. They said that they will buy the lunch, and they challenged the Atheist Society, “Go down to Houston and have lunch with this guy, and talk to him.” Nobody has come! Now remember, because I’m just going to ask, when I stop understanding what you’re talking about, I will ask. So I sincerely want to know. I would like to believe it. But I just can’t.

      Now, I understand microevolution, I really do. We do this all the time in the lab. I understand this. But when you have speciation changes, when you have organs changing, when you have to have concerted lines of evolution, all happening in the same place and time – not just one line – concerted lines, all at the same place, all in the same environment … this is very hard to fathom.

      I was in Israel not too long ago, talking with a bio-engineer, and [he was] describing to me the ear, and he was studying the different changes in the modulus of the ear, and I said, “How does this come about?” And he says, “Oh, Jim, you know, we all believe in evolution, but we have no idea how it happened.” Now there’s a good Jewish professor for you. I mean, that’s what it is. So that’s where I am. Have I answered the question? (52:00 to 56:44)

      June 19, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      "Professor" Tour sounds like a real dumb-ass and not like an intelligent chemistry professor at all.
      Any biochem major could easily explain how DNA could form, how cell walls could have come about, as well as the development of organelles. One bubble in the mud is all it would take. You sound like an idiot. Just sayin.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:23 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      I wasn't aware that evolution was intended or expected to explain all of life. That being said, I believe evolution and science in general provide better, as in more probable, explanations than The Babble.

      And notice that your hero Tour does not name names (at least not in the longer article) when he says that other scientists, including Nobel Prize winners, admit they do not understand evolution. I would have expected an honest scientist to openly take on science that they do not agree with – to write a scholarly article in a prominent scientific journal rebutting the currently accepted science and proposing their own theories. Has Tour, or any other scientist that opposes evolution done so, perhaps successfully claiming that "some god did it?"

      June 19, 2013 at 11:24 pm |
    • maximo

      Jimmy G,

      James Tour says he is not an evolutionists. You are missing the big point here.
      He is one of the world's leading chemists. He does not need to show how evolution could not happen. Thats not his job.

      But nobody can explain satisfactorily to him.

      If any bio major can understand it, I'd suggest letting James M Tour know. You will certainly come away with questions you did not know you had.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      @maximo – You said, "But nobody can explain satisfactorily to him."
      That's because he's delusional. He cannot accept the solid scientific evidence, even with his level of knowledge.
      To me, that says he's a fraud, an apologist denying real science. He agrees with micro-evolution, but say the word "speciation" and suddenly he believes in the Garden of Eden, and thinks species only arise when "God" waves his dick.
      What a dumb-ass he is. Doesn't he know how obvious a liar he is being? He should be shown the door to the rooftop where gravity can re-affirm his love for his "god"s wonderful goodness. Yeah, tell me when he shuts up about crap he isn't willing to believe even when shown to his face. Otherwise I think he should be kicked out on his ass.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:15 am |
    • maximo

      Jimmy G,
      show me a quote from him that shows delusion and you might be taken seriously

      June 20, 2013 at 1:36 am |
    • HotAirAce

      He believes in some god(s) therefore he is delusional or a liar.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:40 am |
    • tallulah13

      Quoting christians in support of christianity is an inherently flawed tactic.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:43 am |
    • Jimmy G.

      I've already quoted his wiki page. Here's a good example of a psychotic scientist:
      In Lee Strobel's book "The Case For Faith" – Tour is attributed to the following commentary: "I build molecules for a living, I can't begin to tell you how difficult that job is. I stand in awe of God because of what he has done through his creation. Only a rookie who knows nothing about science would say science takes away from faith. If you really study science, it will bring you closer to God."[27]

      Yep. He's delusional. Case closed.

      June 20, 2013 at 1:57 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      He may be delusional but he's obviously smarter than 99.9% of the people who frequent these blogs.

      June 20, 2013 at 2:02 am |
    • maximo

      Jimmy G,
      So your premise is that only atheists can engage in dialogue

      June 20, 2013 at 2:29 am |
    • S-3B Viking

      And, Maximo...dialogue requires that one listens and considers the answers other's give...something you clearly do not do...so your attempt at dialogue leaves much to be desired.

      Arrogance does not go well with that cross around your neck.

      June 20, 2013 at 2:33 am |
    • Jimmy G.

      @maximo – So you like making stuff up, eh? You're a liar. A poor one. Bye.

      June 20, 2013 at 3:19 am |
  11. faith

    O

    June 19, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
  12. V=IR

    Article about religion = angry atheist mob comes out ready to gangbeat anyone who believes differently.

    June 19, 2013 at 10:52 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      At least we gangbeat with our words.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
    • Alessandro Volta

      It's E = IR.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:57 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Nothing to do with anger. Disappointment about wasted education. How would you react to someone over 5 who believed in the tooth fairy or believed that black cats are unlucky or believed that 13 is an unlucky number especially if the day is Friday 13th??
      It's just superstition and religion is superstition with a lot of work put into it to create wealth and power for the leaders.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • V=IR

      Santa is real too. He has magical powers. He can appear at every mall at the same time.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
    • sam stone

      and christians come out to vomit up scripture and issue empty proxy threats

      June 20, 2013 at 7:12 am |
  13. Answer

    Well well, look at the headline.

    "We're in trouble and are need of a rescue." << - Of course you are. Your religion is DYING.

    June 19, 2013 at 9:38 pm |
  14. Cthulhu Cultist

    Cthulhu eats Jesus, uses his cross as a toothpick, and the bible as toilet paper.

    June 19, 2013 at 8:31 pm |
  15. ISLAM FOUNDATION FOR AMERICAN IDIOTS

    ....

    June 19, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
  16. THE FOOD PYRAMID IS A LIE AND SO IS CAPTAIN CRUNCH

    IF BEING GAY IS A CHOICE THEN THAT MEANS EVERYONE IS ATTRACTED TO BOTH GENDERS BY DEFAULT

    ESPECIALLY CHRISTIANS THEY ALL REPRESSIN THEY TRUE FEELINS I BET THEY ARE ALL IN THE CLOSET

    June 19, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
    • Saffron

      Being gay isn't a choice. Glad you recognize that.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:48 pm |
  17. Rodents for Romney

    No one is "swooning". Rome has indicated it's not going to change on anything fundamental, and won't.
    It's still going after the nuns.
    It still does not recognize the fully human authenticity of gays, who NEVER "choose" to be what science has proven they are from birth, (even while other Christian communities DO).
    They still treat women as second class, (even while other Christian communities DO NOT).
    No.
    Just because some talks "all nice" for a couple months means nothing.
    If there is REAL change, not jys window dressing, maybe.
    I suspect the human race is moving beyond these ancient meaningless paradigms.
    We don't need 2000 year old books and preachers to tell us to take care of our own.

    June 19, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      I'm pretty sure that being gay hasn't yet been proven to be genetic.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • Rodents for Romney

      No one says it was genetic. The most recent research shows it has to do with hormone surges by the mother, (or estrogen levels during a certain part of pregnancy). Whatever it is, it's NOT a choice. If it is, when did YOU choose to be straight ? If that is the case, you are admitting you were at one point equally attracted to BOTH genders. Are you sure you want to admit that ?

      June 19, 2013 at 9:54 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Did I say or even imply any of those things by saing being gay hasn't been proven to be genetic?

      June 19, 2013 at 10:00 pm |
  18. Science

    Creation vs Evolution..............evolution wins hands down .........Time for the horn-y red beast to get the hell out of the

    bedVrooooooom.

    June 19, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • science

      60,000 resultsAny time

      From the little blue box.............first one out of.................lmao !

      My take: A word to Christians – Be nice – CNN Belief Blog ...

      religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/02/09/my-take-a-word-to-christians-be...

      Feb 09, 2013 · Evolution WINS hands down...time for the horn-y red ... Evolution WINS hands down...time for the horn-y ... Time for the horn-y beast to get the hell out ...

      http://www.bing.com/search?q=Creation+vs+Evolution..............evolution+wins+hands+down++.........Time+for+the+horn-y+red+beast+to+get+the+hell+out+of+the+%0D%0A%0D%0AbedVrooooooom.&form=HPNTDF&pc=HPNTDF&src=IE-SearchBox

      June 19, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Politics too. Rep. Stephen Fincher argued that god would be opposed to food stamps.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      It's the hypocrisy that annoys me. Fincher is opposed to food stamps (as many are, including myself) yet he had no problem accepting millions in farm subsidies.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:16 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Land Rover Freelander?

      June 19, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
    • Science

      To funny ism bot shows up lmao !

      June 19, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Science,

      Do you believe that all life on earth, including us humans, evolved from a single cell organism? Never mind how that single cell organism got going.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
    • the real Tom

      I would not answer for Science, but my answer would be: "I don't know." And if you had an honest bone in your body, Robert, it would be your answer as well.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      You could have missed it Tom, but I have stated the same.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:37 pm |
    • Athy

      It was probably a much simpler organism than a cell. A cell is relatively complex. There are much simpler organisms than a cell. A virus is one. A prion is even simpler. And there are even simpler ones, not much more than a molecule.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:40 pm |
    • Science

      Hey Robert this works.

      Scientists Date Prehistoric Bacterial Invasion Still Present in Today's Plant and Animal Cells

      June 19, 2013 — Long before Earth became lush, when life consisted of single-celled organisms afloat in a planet-wide sea, bacteria invaded the ancient ancestors of plants and animals and took up permanent residence. One bacterium eventually became the mitochondria that today power all plant and animal cells; another became the chloroplast that turns sunlight into energy in green plants.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130619164804.htm

      June 19, 2013 at 7:43 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @ Robert Brown

      I would recommend you read "The Selfish Gene" by Richard Dawkins. That is if you ever read anything besides the Bible.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:49 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Ok Athy and Science, I’ll take it that you support that idea. I will agree that there is evidence that can be used to support the idea. How would you respond if someone asked you to prove that all life on earth evolved from a simple organism?

      June 19, 2013 at 7:54 pm |
    • Science

      Hey Robert..................bacteria eating algae ?

      Green stuff ?

      June 19, 2013 at 7:56 pm |
    • Athy

      Would reproducing it in a test tube do it for you, Robert? And I fervently second the recommendation of "The Selfish Gene" by Dawkins. Please, please do yourself (and the rest of us) a favor and read it. Even skip some bible time if you have to.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:59 pm |
    • Science

      Hey Robert................from uranium (U-Pb)

      Bacteria use electric wires to shock uranium out of groundwater

      http://www.microbexpert.com/blog/category/bacteriology

      June 19, 2013 at 8:06 pm |
    • Science

      Water aye Robert and the water on this rock came from where Robert ?

      June 19, 2013 at 8:18 pm |
    • Science

      Crickets sure do chirp at the swamp Robert ?

      June 19, 2013 at 8:30 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Secular Humanist from Ohio and Athy;

      I understand the guy is a brilliant scientist, but he kind of rubs us believers the wrong way, if you know what I mean. I haven’t ever read anything he has written, but I did see him give an interview and on a dissection show. He’s not the sort I would want to hang out with, kind of prideful and even arrogant, maybe deservedly so, but all the same he seems like a butthead. I won’t say I would never, we’ll see. By the way, I have and do read quite a bit more than the bible.

      Back to question I asked you guys….

      June 19, 2013 at 8:38 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Athy,

      What can you prove with a test tube? What can you reproduce? Can you mix up some stuff and get an amoeba, how about a puppy?

      June 19, 2013 at 8:42 pm |
    • Athy

      Well, shoot, Robert. Any scientist is bound to rub you the wrong way! But please do read the book, if for no other than allowing you to say you did. It gives a whole new perspective on evolution.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:44 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Robert Brown,

      Dawkins does not suffer fools gladly, agreed. I was initially intimidated by his reputation as well, but please don't dismiss his intellect.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:45 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      If I'd spent my entire life devoted to a specific area of science and had a thorough understanding of its operation yet was frequently confronted by retarded people who told me my life's work was meaningless because a 3,000 year old book written by some desert tribesmen told them so, I'd probably come off looking like an arrogant butthead to these retards also.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:46 pm |
    • Athy

      Oh, come on, Robert. I thought you were smarter than that. Am I mistaken?

      June 19, 2013 at 8:46 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Science,

      This one is really neat, a bacteria that causes rain, who knew? Living things rule.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080228174801.htm

      June 19, 2013 at 8:48 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      I'm sorry Dave, if you think calling someone a ret.ard is going to advance your case you are a ret.ard.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:51 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Ok guys, I’ll go so far as to say, I might read it. I may have to hold my nose while I do it, but I might.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:52 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Fair enough. I have to hold my nose when I read the Bible, or listen to William Lane Craig!

      June 19, 2013 at 8:58 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Secular Humanist from Ohio

      I wasn't referring to anybody in particular as retarded. I just meant that, in the 21st century, anybody who doesn't accept evolution as fact is retarded.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      I appreciate you all recommending I read a book on evolution, instead of trying to prove how all living things evolved from a simple organism. The point of the question was to demonstrate a thought I had earlier. I have noticed that at times the discussion deteriorates into “prove it.” Like when a believer posts, I believe in God and here is why.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:03 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      What’s up Dave, you one of Dawkins buddies or something?

      June 19, 2013 at 9:05 pm |
    • Science

      Well Robert this might help .

      Imagine No Religion 3: Daniel Dennett

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbTo8oY0l7s

      June 19, 2013 at 9:05 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Robert Brown

      It's nothing to do with Dawkins. It's just the simple fact that those who don't accept evolution today are retarded.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:17 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      @ I'm sorry Dave, the Humanist part of my handle is just that. I am a humanist. I value humans individually and collectively. I prefer compassion to conflict. Maybe evolution deniers require education instead of insults.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
    • the real Tom

      "You could have missed it Tom, but I have stated the same."

      No, you didn't. You stated in another post that goddidit, Robert.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:24 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Well I'm not a humanist. If I was an alien monitoring Earth, I'd seek the immediate annihilation of humanity. But hey, I'm all for civil discourse and I often defend religious people. But wilful denial of scientific fact isn't an education issue, it's a retardation issue. You can show a creationist all the evidence in the world and they still won't accept evolution. They are retarded.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:32 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      I can understand microevolution, it can be demonstrated. Still retarded?

      Would you start with a simple organism and evolve it into a human for us Dave?

      Here is some stuff I read a few minutes ago.

      No matter how controversial the Theory of Evolution is in some circles, it is rarely argued that microevolution happens in all species. There is pretty significant amounts of evidence that DNA changes and in turn can cause small changes in the species, including thousands of years of artificial selection via breeding. However, the opposition comes when scientists propose that microevolution over very long periods of time can lead to macroevolution.

      After all, thousands of years of breeding different species has not led to completely new species being formed. Doesn't that prove that microevolution does not lead to macroevolution? Proponents for the idea that microevolution leads to macroevolution point out that not enough time has gone by in the scheme of the history of life on Earth to show if microevolution does lead to macroevolution.

      The bottom line is that this is one controversy that has not been solved. Both sides have legitimate arguments for their causes. It may not be solved within our lifetimes. It is important to understand both sides and make an informed decision based on the evidence that fits in with your beliefs.
      http://evolution.about.com/od/macroevolution/tp/Can-Microevolution-Lead-To-Macroevolution.htm
      http://atheism.about.com/od/evolutionexplained/tp/MicroevolutionMacroevolution.htm

      June 19, 2013 at 9:47 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Yes, still retarded. Thousands of years isn't billions of years, is it?

      June 19, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Now Tom, you know I believe in God. You said, God did it, and I said, how’d you guess.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
    • the real Tom

      Then why post here asking for affirmation, Robert? You're only going to get it from idiots just like you who think that it's better to assume god did it than to keep searching for explanations.

      If all you want is a pat on the back for your beliefs, go somewhere else. Or grow up.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:56 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      about.com is about the stupidest place to look for any intelligent answers. Go to the source on evolution questions, go to a science website that isn't run by idiots and you'll find all the evolution answers you could hope for.

      June 19, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
    • the real Tom

      Unfortunately, Jimmy, what Robert and his pals "hope for" is an apologist viewpoint that will back up their beliefs. They're not interested in facts or evidence at all.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Ok Dave, I haven’t told you this, but I have put it on here before. If the current thoughts are correct and all life started somehow from tiny organisms and evolved to what we have Today, I can accept that and it doesn’t change my belief in God. How would you feel about it, if it is proven incorrect?

      June 19, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • maximo

      Begin Quote:

      "Although most scientists leave few stones unturned in their quest to discern mechanisms before wholeheartedly accepting them, when it comes to the often gross extrapolations between observations and conclusions on macroevolution, scientists, it seems to me, permit unhealthy leeway. When hearing such extrapolations in the academy, when will we cry out, “The emperor has no clothes!”?
      …I simply do not understand, chemically, how macroevolution could have happened. Hence, am I not free to join the ranks of the skeptical and to sign such a statement without reprisals from those that disagree with me? … Does anyone understand the chemical details behind macroevolution? If so, I would like to sit with that person and be taught, so I invite them to meet with me."

      -James M. Tour, world renowed chemist and Professor at Rice University,
      one of the ten most cited chemists in the world,
      famous for work on nanocars,
      co-author of 489 scientific publications & 39 patents

      June 19, 2013 at 10:04 pm |
    • the real Tom

      "one of the ten most cited chemists in the world,"

      Fallacy: appeal to authority

      June 19, 2013 at 10:06 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      RB, The answers were all posted yesterday but I guess you don't like them.
      From Nature.com
      "The tree of life has many branches that all connect to a common ancestor, and the diversity of life on the tree results from evolutionary processes. Just as we organize life on earth into hierarchies, we would like to do the same for evolutionary processes and patterns. Thus, many scientists propose that evolution can be divided into two distinct hierarchical processes - microevolution and macroevolution - although the distinction between them is somewhat artificial."

      Over 98 million years a lot of change happens. It goes on to say:

      "Patterns of macroevolution are easy to spot on the tree of life when one considers big events like the abrupt appearance of tetrapods in the fossil record, long periods of stasis like that observed in sharks and crocodiles, and adaptive radiations including the (fairly!) recent diversification of mammals that began about 70 million years ago. As one moves out along the branches of the tree of life, the processes that produced the rich patterns of biodiversity along a particular twig can be harder to understand and interpret.

      Yet, there are many examples of macroevolutionary phenomena found in the order Primates, including stasis, adaptive radiations, extinctions of entire lineages, co-evolution, and convergent evolution."

      June 19, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Robert Brown

      I'd feel exactly as I do now, except I'd be sure alien life exists (although I'm fairly certain already) as that would be the only logical alternative.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm |
    • maximo

      THE EMPORER HAS NO CLOTHES!!!

      The following is from one of the top ten cited chemists in the world, James M. Tour.
      One certainly has to respect his integrity, just like the honest young child who said, but momma, the emporer has no clothes!

      James Tour:
      "… I will tell you as a scientist and a synthetic chemist: if anybody should be able to understand evolution, it is me, because I make molecules for a living, and I don’t just buy a kit, and mix this and mix this, and get that. I mean, ab initio, I make molecules. I understand how hard it is to make molecules. I understand that if I take Nature’s tool kit, it could be much easier, because all the tools are already there, and I just mix it in the proportions, and I do it under these conditions, but ab initio is very, very hard.

      I don’t understand evolution, and I will confess that to you. Is that OK, for me to say, “I don’t understand this”? Is that all right? I know that there’s a lot of people out there that don’t understand anything about organic synthesis, but they understand evolution. I understand a lot about making molecules; I don’t understand evolution. And you would just say that, wow, I must be really unusual.

      Let me tell you what goes on in the back rooms of science – with National Academy members, with Nobel Prize winners. I have sat with them, and when I get them alone, not in public – because it’s a scary thing, if you say what I just said – I say, “Do you understand all of this, where all of this came from, and how this happens?” Every time that I have sat with people who are synthetic chemists, who understand this, they go “Uh-uh. Nope.” These people are just so far off, on how to believe this stuff came together. I’ve sat with National Academy members, with Nobel Prize winners. Sometimes I will say, “Do you understand this?”And if they’re afraid to say “Yes,” they say nothing. They just stare at me, because they can’t sincerely do it."

      June 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      the real Tom,

      Affirmation, are you serious? Think about that for a second. A believer looking for affirmation wouldn’t be on this site for more than a couple of minutes.

      I ain’t lookin to get patted, I’m fishin.

      By the way, I got to that stuff off a link from an atheist website.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      maximo,
      From James M Tour's website
      "Assuming that I have something significant to contribute to the evolution vs. creation debate, many ask me to speak and write concerning my thoughts on the topic. However, I do not have anything substantive to say about it. I am a layman on the subject."

      June 19, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • maximo

      Robert Brown raises an excellent observation – perhaps its not apparent to all. Most Christians' faith does not hinge on whether or not evolution will be shown to be false.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:13 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      When it is all said and done, the delusionals have no evidence for their childish beliefs. After 2,000+ years, the best they can manage is a draw. You'd think with an omnipotent god behind them they could do better than that.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:15 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Santa,

      “like” doesn’t have anything to do with it. “the processes that produced the rich patterns of biodiversity along a particular twig can be harder to understand and interpret.” That I can relate to.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:22 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      maximo
      "Robert Brown raises an excellent observation – perhaps its not apparent to all. Most Christians' faith does not hinge on whether or not evolution will be shown to be false."

      But it should; if evolution is true then the Garden of Eden story is bogus; without that you have no original sin. No need for Jesus to atone for it. Bye bye christianity. Bye bye.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:22 pm |
    • fred

      Tom Tom
      The evolutionary process points to one single source (the cenancestor) for life as we know it. It does not point to anything or any amount of possible roots just a single source. Can we say God is self evident in the evolutionary process?

      As to cosmology do I hear the world singularity? Can we say God is self evident in the origin of the universe?

      As to physics do I hear conjectured elevendimensional theory posits existence without physical boundaries. Can we eternity is self evident

      As to mathematics do I hear existence as we know it is mathematically impossible. We are here, can we say existence is proof of the impossible.

      As to impossible is there an atheist out there willing to stand up and the possibility of God is a reasonable and logical conclusion to that which is self evident?

      Science has God surrounded

      June 19, 2013 at 10:22 pm |
    • maximo

      Santa,

      Here is the full article from which you and I took our excerpts.

      He is a layman in evolution; but a highly accomplished and renown scientists within the very relevant field of chemistry.
      His point is that no evolutionist can explain macro evolution to him.

      http://www.jmtour.com/personal-topics/the-scientist-and-his-%E2%80%9Ctheory%E2%80%9D-and-the-christian-creationist-and-his-%E2%80%9Cscience%E2%80%9D/

      June 19, 2013 at 10:23 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      fred
      "Can we say God is self evident in the evolutionary process?" NO

      "Can we say God is self evident in the origin of the universe?" NO

      "... can we say existence is proof of the impossible." NO clearly it is not impossible; improbable possibly.

      "... the possibility of God is a reasonable and logical conclusion to that which is self evident? Nonsense.

      You have no evidence to support your conjecture.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      HotAirAce,
      We have plenty of evidence that we accept and that proves the existence of God, the problem with our evidence is that we can’t demonstrate it to you. You have to experience it for yourself.

      Dave has plenty of evidence that he and others accept that proves we all evolved from simple organisms. Dave can’t demonstrate it to us.

      Do you see a pattern here?

      June 19, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • maximo

      Santa,
      "if evolution is true then the Garden of Eden story is bogus; without that you have no original sin."

      This is a misunderstanding of Christian theology. The garden of Eden story is harmonious with an old earth evolution.

      And original sin as originally understood and still taught by ancient Christianity is not that we are all guilty due to original sin. But rather that original man left the garden (state of communion with his Creator) and thus his descendents were then born outside of the garden, outside of communion with the Creator and this outside of the fullness of life. So we inherit the consequences of this original sin, this original turning away from God, which is to live in a state of chaos where free will of man does not conform to true and full life. This is the biblical teaching and the teaching of the Church Fathers before western rationalism began to give undue emphasis to certain biblical metaphors.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:32 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      fred, your inability to understand non-religious subjects does not mean "some god did it." It's ok to drop your childish believes and say "I don't know" – a far superior answer than "some god did it."

      June 19, 2013 at 10:32 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Rb, So you accept that evolution leads to new species?

      June 19, 2013 at 10:32 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      RB, But evolution can be demonstrated. Clearly taking amino acids and watching for billions of years would a) take too long for us to observe and b) may not produce the diversity that we currently see. There are many ways to see that evolution is correct: common descent, older organisms are simpler, geographical distribution, the closer on the tree of life the more similarities, DNA, etc.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:42 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Religion has zero verifiable, objective, independent or factual evidence – nothing but words.

      Science can at least prove, through the scientific method and repeatable experiments, that many things are true, and many other things are likely.

      I was being kind above when I said the best religion can do is a draw. It's only a matter of time before religion assumes its rightful place with astrology on the evolutionary tree of stupidity.

      June 19, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      "Evidence" than cannot be demonstrated is not evidence. It is an unproven claim. When unproven claims are made repeatedly, they often become myths aka bullshit. Religion is bullshit.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      To get from raw elemental compounds to amino acids, hydrocarbons, proteins, and all the larger building blocks is extremely easy. This guy who says he's a chemistry brainiac must be lying. Has anyone checked his credentials?
      As an easy example, let's just look at a geothermal vent on the seafloor.
      You have a fluid medium (water) filled with every trace element and you have a thermal gradient as well as circulation caused by the thermal gradients around the vent.
      At various types of boundaries, such as thermal and physical (with chemical deposits and trace elements everywhere), you get boundary conditions with extreme heating / cooling, contact with various elements, all burbling (a new scientific term I just made up) around every second of every day for millions of years.
      This is where statistics steps in. It is statistically certain that more and new and different compounds will be formed by this totally random natural process of hot water burbling around with gases and other chemicals coming up through the vent, baked out of the seawater, everything getting a good chance of coming together over time to form a large number of complicated compounds not seen anywhere else but by a geothermal vent on the seafloor.
      So this so-called "chemist" is just another fraud. A liar who thinks lying for his god and his religion is okay.
      Kind of like Robert Brown and a host of other liars who show up here.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • maximo

      Santa,
      " take too long for us to observe "

      then shows us the fossils that confirm macro-evolution (not micro)

      you can't

      so you are left with a "Darwin of the Gaps" theory

      which is hope and faith in your materialistic worldview

      June 19, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
    • maximo

      HotAir,
      "It's only a matter of time before religion assumes its rightful place with astrology on the evolutionary tree of stupidity."

      So materialistic evolution also has eschatological faith and hope?

      June 19, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
    • maximo

      Jimmy G, send your post to James M. Tour and he should be able to understand it. Take him up on his offer.

      You miss the point that James M Tour knows more about chemistry than mostl evolutionists.

      He is awaiting a satisfactory explanation of the chemical processed that support the 'science' of evolution.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:24 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      @maximo – Why would I want to bother talking to a fraud? He won't admit he's lying and won't accept any proof of it, either.
      I've met people like him before. It's about the money, not any actual science or rational arguments. He's a fraud looking for some church to invite him to speak for thousands of dollars. The only thing I'd want to send someone like that is a couple of ward nurses with a straightjacket ready to go or some cops to arrest his ass for fraud. He's a joke, but not the good kind.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:37 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      I wasn't aware evolution is concerned with theology, before or after death.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:38 pm |
    • maximo

      Jimmy G,

      James M. Tour declines requests to speak at churches.

      You called him a liar and a fraud. You, if found out, could be sued for libel and slander.
      Slander and libel of a highly accomplished and respected scientist is a serious crime.

      There are means of finding out who you are. Your ISP knows who you are, CNN knows your ISP. The NSA, FBI and other law enforcement agencies can get CNN's data.

      You can still retract that last statement.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      I'm just going by the quotes you provided. I don't even know if the guy even exists. You could have made the whole thing up, including websites. I really don't give a flying fuck what you think about it. I think this "professor" is nothing but a fraud.
      The words you quote show him to be nothing but an apologist. If he is refusing speaking engagements, that just means he's already in someone's pocket. An apologist is easy to spot. Going by his words YOU quoted, he's a fraud, so go suck your grandma's dick, troll.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:49 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Jimmy G.

      He's definitely not a fraud. From what I understand, he's fairly well respected in his field.

      June 19, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • Jimmy G.

      @HAL9000 – From his Wikipedia article:
      n 2001, Tour signed the Discovery Institute's "A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism", a controversial petition which the intelligent design movement uses to promote intelligent design by attempting to cast doubt on evolution.[24][25] To those who "are disconcerted or even angered that I signed a statement back in 2001" he responded "I have been labeled as an Intelligent Design (ID) proponent. I am not. I do not know how to use science to prove intelligent design although some others might. I am sympathetic to the arguments on the matter and I find some of them intriguing, but the scientific proof is not there, in my opinion. So I prefer to be free of that ID label."[26]

      He had also said that he felt the explanations offered by evolution are incomplete, and he found it hard to believe that nature can produce the machinery of cells through random processes.[24] On his website, he writes that "From what I can see, microevolution is a fact" and "there is no argument regarding microevolution. The core of the debate for me, therefore, is the extrapolation of microevolution to macroevolution."[26]

      In Lee Strobel's book "The Case For Faith" – Tour is attributed to the following commentary: "I build molecules for a living, I can't begin to tell you how difficult that job is. I stand in awe of God because of what he has done through his creation. Only a rookie who knows nothing about science would say science takes away from faith. If you really study science, it will bring you closer to God."[27]
      ***
      Okay, he exists and is clearly delusional. His signing of that paper was pretty stupid of him. So he's acting as an apologist here, speaking of delusional things in describing scientific matters in his own field. That is unethical. Just like signing that paper.
      He is, at the very least, dishonest in denying evolutionary theory as macro-evolution has been done under laboratory conditions and there is more than enough solid evidence for it to satisfy any honest scientist. Notice I said "honest" there.
      Maybe he is lying to himself and sincerely believes that ignoring solid science is acceptable and not unprofessional because he is brainwashed.
      Why is he in denial about macro-evolution when it is solid theory? His denial amounts to fraud, whether intentional or not.
      This is why religion should be banned. The brainwashing causes people to descend into schizophrenia, denying the reality around them so that it doesn't conflict with their imaginary delusions.
      He thinks science will lead people to "god". That's not the case at all. Only delusional people will find science as re-affirming their religion because that's how delusional religious people see the world around them.
      Everything, even if it is proof their god doesn't exist, will be twisted in their heads to schizophrenically support their imaginary delusions. We see it every day here, if we can stomach seeing that crap day after day, that is. I usually take vacations from this place. Too many delusional batshitters to suit me. This guy is nuts. He's a god-bot. Worthless.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:29 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      You can't deny his entire scientific contribution just because he believes in a god. Kurt Godel believed in a god and was one of the most influential scientists of the 20th century.

      Also, banning religion would be an incredibly devious act. Surely a rational person can see that the League of Militant Godless was a bad thing.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:37 am |
    • Jimmy G.

      @HAL9000 – I'm not discrediting his actual contributions to real science. Yes, many scientists have been delusional throughout history. That is completely separate from what scientific progress they actually produce. Religion never creates science, as religion is just a delusional belief system that deliberately ignores contradictory realities like scientific facts and logic and can only make someone schizophrenic, not rational, and can only produce false results, bias, fallacious thinking and reasoning, but if baby Jesus says it's okay then okay. What fun.
      Religion is fraud. Whether the victim knows of the fraud or not does not give any credibility to the essential basis in false information of their personal delusionary state. They can be sincere, as well as delusional, and innocently seek to spread the mind-virus of religion – and their sincerity will be seen as giving credibility but sincerity has nothing to do with the actual facts of the case.
      Anyone who can't keep their religion separate from their science is an unethical and unprofessional sort of scientist.
      I would check EVERYTHING he has ever done, looking for more errors in thinking, perhaps deliberate. With delusional people there are always other delusions based upon previous delusional thinking. Garbage In, Garbage Out.
      No, I don't trust religious people and never will. They are delusional. Their ideology is not the problem, the fact of their being delusional IS the problem. Here we have an otherwise intelligent person speaking of his god's sparkly goodness to be seen everywhere, even in science. Who listens to a nut like that? Not me. I'll take my science from the non-delusional side of the scientific community, thanks all the same.

      June 20, 2013 at 12:53 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Santa,
      It depends on how you define species.

      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/VADefiningSpecies.shtml

      June 20, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Science

      Hey Robert

      Snail Trail Reveals Ancient Human Migration

      June 20, 2013 — Geneticists from The University of Nottingham have used snails to uncover evidence of an ancient human migration from the Pyrenean region of France to Ireland.

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130620084633.htm

      June 20, 2013 at 9:12 am |
    • tallulah13

      maximo:

      Tour said this himself: "Although I have read about a half dozen books on the debate, maybe a dozen, and though I can speak authoritatively on complex chemical synthesis, I am not qualified to enter the public discussion on evolution vs. creation."

      So why do you keep using him as your authority? Why not find a source that is actually qualified? Try reading "Why Evolution is True" by Jerry Coyne. It's an easy read and is filled with all sorts of examples. Plus, it is not written by Dawkins so your delicate sensibilities won't be offended.

      June 20, 2013 at 9:38 am |
    • tallulah13

      The part about delicate sensibilities should probably have been addressed to Robert Brown. When two people start quoting the same dubious source, it's hard to keep track.

      June 20, 2013 at 9:41 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Tallulah,
      “delicate” that is funny and refreshing. Thanks.

      June 20, 2013 at 10:22 am |
    • Robert Brown

      All available evidence supports the central conclusions of evolutionary theory, that life on Earth has evolved and that species share common ancestors. Biologists are not arguing about these conclusions. But they are trying to figure out how evolution happens—and that’s not an easy job.

      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/VIIBigissues.shtml

      June 20, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • lol??

      Jesus called Lazarus from the grave. No billions of years needed or DESIRED.

      June 20, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Robert Brown

      I attempted to demonstrate bias yesterday, but alas very few would admit it. I mistakenly believed there were more reasonable folks posting here. Not only would very few actually admit bias, when presented with it, they descend into name calling. Why so much aggressive denial of the possibility of God? As the real Tom put it, the only honest answer is “I don’t know,” and yet dishonesty is a term attached to the believer. Go figure.

      June 20, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • In Santa we trust

      RB
      Continue reading
      http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/VBDefiningSpeciation.shtml

      June 20, 2013 at 11:33 am |
    • Pete

      How can anyone say that the fossil record doesn't support evolution?

      June 20, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
  19. Unhappiness

    I'd like to see a debate between Mylie Cyrus and that drunk chick with the white wig on. CC please.

    June 19, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      I'd like to see a debate between Miley Cyrus and Chloe Moretz and by debate I mean lesbian love-making (is Chloe Moretz legal yet?).

      June 19, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      Egg and Bacon

      Egg, Sausage and Bacon

      Egg and Spam

      Egg, Bacon and Spam

      Egg, Bacon, Sausage and Spam

      Spam, Egg, Sausage and Spam

      Spam, Egg, Spam, Spam, Bacon and Spam

      Spam, Spam, Spam, Egg and Spam

      Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Baked Beans, Spam, Spam, Spam and Spam

      Lobster Thermidor aux crevettes with a Mornay sauce, garnished with truffle pâté, brandy and a fried egg on top of Spam

      June 19, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      My obeisance to any poster of Python. My cap is doffed, I assure you.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • Secular Humanist from Ohio

      You are too kind, I'm sorry Dave. Merci.

      June 19, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
  20. THE FOOD PYRAMID IS A LIE AND SO IS CAPTAIN CRUNCH

    SOME OF THE COMMENTS ARE PAINFUL TO READ THE POPE IS JUST A GUY THAT TALKS TO SANTA CLAUS IN THE NIGHT BUT HE AINT LISTENING OH NO WHY DO A BILLION PEOPLE LICK THE GUYS FEET I WILL NEVER KNOW

    June 19, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • Athy

      Turn off your caps lock, please.

      June 19, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I can't let you do that

      Attractive toes, perhaps?

      June 19, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • THE FOOD PYRAMID IS A LIE AND SO IS CAPTAIN CRUNCH

      CAN YOU GIVE ME A GOOD, LOGICAL REASON WHY I SHOULD TURN MY CAPS OFF? DONT TELL ME IM YELLING BECAUSE I AM TYPING NOT YELLING SO BLOW ME WITH THAT NOISE. PEOPLE BEEN WHINING LIKE LITTLE CRIPPLES IN WHEELCHAIRS CUZ THEY CANT RUN SINCE AOL IN 1996. GET OVER YO SELF TRICK.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:16 pm |
    • Saffron

      No, you don't look like you're shouting; you merely look like a dumbass 8 year old on the net for the first time.

      June 19, 2013 at 8:42 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.