Evolution Intelligent Design

Michael Behe muses on design and COVID-19

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COVID-19
A coronavirus, by CDC/ Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM / Public domain.

He stands by what he wrote on Ebola virus six years ago:

The bottom line is that, while of course the virus is dangerous, the situation can be compared to a strong storm on the ocean. The waves may be huge and the surface roiling, but the deeper waters continue as they always have, essentially undisturbed. In a similar way, although superficially it changes very rapidly, some researchers think that the coronavirus and many other virus types have remained basically the same for tens of millions of years…

So, do I think viruses were designed? Yes, I most certainly do! The viruses of which we are aware — including the coronaviruses, Ebola, and HIV — are exquisitely, purposively arranged, which is the clear signature of intelligent design. Well, then does that mean the designer is evil and wants people to suffer? No, not necessarily. I’m a biochemist, not a philosopher. Nonetheless, I see no reason why a designer even of such things as viruses should be classified as bad on that basis alone.

I started this post with an analogy of a storm on the ocean. Certainly, if we were on a ship in a powerful storm, we might be excused for thinking storms are bad. But in calmer moments we understand that on balance the ocean is very good and that, given an ocean and the laws of nature, storms will arise from time to time. What’s more, we just might get caught in one. In the same way, most viruses do not affect humans and may well have a positive, necessary role to play in nature of which we are currently unaware. (I would bet on it.) From time to time a storm arises in the virosphere and affects humans. But that’s no reason to think either that viruses weren’t designed or that the designer of viruses isn’t good.

Michael Behe, “Evolution, Design, and COVID-19” at Evolution News and Science Today

Ebola six years ago? Ebola six years ago? Behe, M. J. 2014. Evolution and the Ebola virus: Pacing a small cage.

110 Replies to “Michael Behe muses on design and COVID-19

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    , some researchers think that the coronavirus and many other virus types have remained basically the same for tens of millions of years…

    this is of related interest:

    Viral novelty doesn’t surprise Elodie Ghedin of New York University, who looks for viruses in wastewater and in respiratory systems. More than 95% of the viruses in sewage data have “no matches to reference genomes [in databases],” she says. Like Abrahão, she says, “We seem to be discovering new viruses all the time.”
    Elizabeth Pennisi, “Scientists discover virus with no recognizable genes”
    https://uncommondescent.com/evolution/what-a-virus-with-no-recognizable-genes/

    Darwinian common descent idea does not work with viruses, because viruses are a completely different system, not made of cells. Most people don’t realize that, but to explain the origin of viruses, it is like to explain the origin of life like thousands times over and over again, if not hundred-thousands times … Because most viruses are unique (a biologist would use the term – polyphyletic – many evolutionary origins)
    https://uncommondescent.com/evolution/what-a-virus-with-no-recognizable-genes/#comment-692576

  2. 2
    martin_r says:

    in regards to viruses,

    let me repeat the following:

    Viruses are the most abundant organism on Earth, viruses outnumber bacteria 10 folds.
    yet, evolutionary theory can not explain the origin of the most abundant organism on Earth (viruses).

    Also, the common descent concept does not work with viruses, because viruses are a completely different ‘system’, not made of cells.

    And it get worse: each virus is unique, so it is like to explain the origin of life thousands of time, over and over…

    A few quotes from a mainstream virology-blog at Virology.ws

    “In a phylogenetic tree, the characteristics of members of taxa are inherited from previous ancestors. Viruses cannot be included in the tree of life because they do not share characteristics with cells, and no single gene is shared by all viruses or viral lineages. While cellular life has a single, common origin, viruses are polyphyletic – they have many evolutionary origins.”

    “No single gene has been identified that is shared by all viruses. There are common protein motifs in viral capsids, but these have likely come about through convergent evolution or horizontal gene transfer.”

    “Cells obtain membranes from other cells during cell division. According to this concept of ‘membrane heredity’, today’s cells have inherited membranes from the first cells that evolved, and provides evidence that cells are derived from a common ancestor. Viruses have no such inherited structure.”

    http://www.virology.ws/2009/03.....e-of-life/

  3. 3
    ET says:

    We could debate whether or not a virus, any virus, is an organism. It doesn’t have the ability to reproduce. There isn’t any metabolism. And growth is only with respect to the population may grow, as long as there is a host.

  4. 4
    Seversky says:

    So, do I think viruses were designed? Yes, I most certainly do! The viruses of which we are aware — including the coronaviruses, Ebola, and HIV — are exquisitely, purposively arranged, which is the clear signature of intelligent design. Well, then does that mean the designer is evil and wants people to suffer? No, not necessarily. I’m a biochemist, not a philosopher. Nonetheless, I see no reason why a designer even of such things as viruses should be classified as bad on that basis alone.

    So viruses were designed? Viruses like:

    Ebola
    Zika
    Polio
    Rabies
    Yellow Fever
    Dengue
    Measles
    Hantavirus
    Marburg
    Hepatitis
    Influenza
    Smallpox
    Rotavirus
    HIV

    To name but a few.

    I have to say your designer has an odd way of demonstrating his affection for us.

    How far would he have to go before you began to suspect he might not be as favorably disposed towards us as you like to think?

  5. 5
    kairosfocus says:

    Viruses are dependent on cells and seem to therefore be derivative. Is there good reason to reject such an inference?

  6. 6
    martin_r says:

    Seversky, you wrote:

    “How far would he have to go before you began to suspect he might not be as favorably disposed towards us as you like to think?”

    so do you finally accept that we and the viruses were designed ? that is a huge progress.

  7. 7
    martin_r says:

    Kairo @5

    you wrote:
    “Viruses are dependent on cells and seem to therefore be derivative. Is there good reason to reject such an inference?”

    you can make up thousands of stories – you guys always been very skilled storytellers …

    BUT PLEASE SHOW US SOME SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE ….
    SHOW US HOW LIFE ORIGINATED
    FINALLY SHOW US HOW PHOTOSYNTHESIS EVOLVED
    SHOW US HOW THOUSANDS OF UNIQUE KINDS OF VIRUSES ORIGINATED…

    2019: In an unprecedented global survey of the viruses in Earth’s oceans, an international team of scientists has now expanded the number of known marine virus populations to nearly 200,000, most of which don’t match any previously characterized family of virus

    In other words, they discovered 200,000 new kinds of viruses never seen before !!! 200,000 !!!!
    Your absurd theory can’t explain the origin of one type of virus, let alone 200,000 :)))))))))))

    Kairo, isnt it strange?

    EVERYTHING HAPPENED IN THE DEEP PAST AND FROM THAT MOMENT, NOTHING…

    SUDDENLY, WHEN WE ARE ABLE TO OBSERVE THESE THINGS, EVERYTHING STOPPED EMERGING :)))))

    i am tired of all your stories and fairy tales – “how it might” ….

    You guys have been telling stories for 150 years… after 150 years, it is time to PROVE SOMETHING…
    And the only thing you guys have proved is, that biology is so sophisticated, that only mentally ill person can believe that these things arose by coincidence after coincidence after coincidence….
    especially in 21st century …

  8. 8
    martin_r says:

    and once again, let me very briefly repeat a scientific fact:

    evolutionary theory can’t explain the origin of the MOST ABUNDANT ORGANISM on Earth – the viruses.

  9. 9
    Truthfreedom says:

    @4 Seversky

    I have to say your designer has an odd way of demonstrating his affection for us.

    From the naturalist POV, affection is an evolutive ‘trick’ to enhance social cohesion for the purpose of achieving… nothing really.
    So what is the value of that affection you are mentioning?
    – A consistent naturalist knows his/her feelings are a waste of time. A trick or a spandrel, very useful mechanisms to achieve… to achieve…to achieve… no-thing.
    No directive, no goal, no purpose,. No-thing.

  10. 10
    Seversky says:

    It’s a small point but it seems to have escaped the attention of some that the theory of evolution was not – and is not – intended as an explanation of the origins of life.

    As for purpose, if God can conceive a purpose why can’t we?

  11. 11
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky at 4, after listing several pathogenic viruses, states,

    “How far would he have to go before you began to suspect he might not be as favorably disposed towards us as you like to think?”

    To which Martin_r at 6 responds,

    so do you finally accept that we and the viruses were designed ?

    As Martin_r alluded to, Seversky simply has no evidence that viruses could arise by evolutionary processes. In fact, as Martin_r alluded to, “Darwinian common descent idea does not work with viruses,” since “More than 95% of the viruses in sewage data have “no matches to reference genomes [in databases],””

    Furthermore, as has been pointed out time and again to the Darwinists here on UD and elsewhere, Darwinists simply have no evidence that unguided material processes can create even a single protein,

    Origin: Probability of a Single Protein Forming by Chance
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1_KEVaCyaA

    Nor do Darwinists have any evidence that Darwinian processes can transform one protein of an existing function into new protein of a new function,

    “Enzyme Families — Shared Evolutionary History or Shared Design?” – Ann Gauger – December 4, 2014
    Excerpt: If enzymes can’t be recruited to genuinely new functions by unguided means, no matter how similar they are, the evolutionary story is false.,,,
    Taken together, since we found no enzyme that was within one mutation of cooption, the total number of mutations needed is at least four: one for duplication, one for over-production, and two or more single base changes. The waiting time required to achieve four mutations is 10^15 years. That’s longer than the age of the universe. The real waiting time is likely to be much greater, since the two most likely candidate enzymes failed to be coopted by double mutations.
    We have now addressed two objections raised by our critics: that we didn’t test the right mutation(s), and that we didn’t use the right starting point. We tested all possible single base changes in nine different enzymes, Those nine enzymes are the most structurally similar of BioF’s entire family We also tested 70 percent of double mutations in the two closest enzymes of those nine.
    Finally, some have said we should have used the ancestral enzyme as our starting point, because they believe modern enzymes are somehow different from ancient ones. Why do they think that? It’s because modern enzymes can’t be coopted to anything except trivial changes in function. In other words, they don’t evolve!
    That is precisely the point we are making.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....91701.html

    Right of Reply: Our Response to Jerry Coyne – September 29, 2019
    by Günter Bechly, Brian Miller and David Berlinski
    Excerpt: ,,, Coyne argued. Proteins do not evolve from random sequences. They evolve by means of gene duplication. By starting from an established protein structure, protein evolution had a head start.
    This is not an irrational position, but it is anachronistic.
    Indeed, Harvard mathematical biologist Martin Nowak has shown that random searches in sequence space that start from known functional sequences are no more likely to enter regions in sequence space with new protein folds than searches that start from random sequences. The reason for this is clear: random searches are overwhelmingly more likely to go off into a non-folding, non-functional abyss than they are to find a novel protein fold. Why? Because such novel folds are so extraordinarily rare in sequence space. Moreover, as Meyer explained in Darwin’s Doubt, as mutations accumulate in functional sequences, they will inevitably destroy function long before they stumble across a new protein fold. Again, this follows from the extreme rarity (as well as the isolation) of protein folds in sequence space.
    Recent work by Weizmann Institute protein scientist Dan Tawfik has reinforced this conclusion. Tawfik’s work shows that as mutations to functional protein sequences accumulate, the folds of those proteins become progressively more thermodynamically and structurally unstable. Typically, 15 or fewer mutations will completely destroy the stability of known protein folds of average size. Yet, generating (or finding) a new protein fold requires far more amino acid sequence changes than that. Finally, calculations based on Tawfik’s work confirm and extend the applicability of Axe’s original measure of the rarity of protein folds. These calculations confirm that the measure of rarity that Axe determined for the protein he studied is actually representative of the rarity for large classes of other globular proteins. Not surprisingly, Dan Tawfik has described the origination of a truly novel protein or fold as “something like close to a miracle.” Tawfik is on Coyne’s side: He is mainstream.
    https://quillette.com/2019/09/29/right-of-reply-our-response-to-jerry-coyne/

    Dan S. Tawfik Group – The New View of Proteins – Tyler Hampton – 2016
    Excerpt: To the extent that Tawfik’s selection experiments were successful, it is because mutations were localized and contextualized. Mutation had a key but confined role. If evolution proceeded, the prevailing architecture of the active sites and protein shapes nonetheless remains intact. Changes were not to central structures, but to peripheral loops. A great deal of flexibility was discovered. Still, it is hard to see how any of this could build proteins—that is, in the sense of building their fundamental shapes, or scaffolds; and build proteins in terms of explaining the key catalytic strategies of each active site. Even in the impressive demonstration of a transition through nine orders of magnitude, in which a full exchange of a promiscuous activity for the primary activity was seen, the overall geometry of the protein was unchanged, and, although substrates had changed, the fundamental active site strategy stayed the same. ,,,
    “Modern neo-Darwinism and neutral evolutionary treatments,” remark Leonard Bogarad and Michael Deem, “fail to explain satisfactorily the generation of the diversity of life found on our planet.” It is not that they did not evolve, they say, but that “… most theoretical treatments of evolution consider only the limited point-mutation events that form the basis of these theories.” Their sober conclusion is that “point mutation alone is incapable of evolving systems with substantially new protein folds.”60,,,
    “In fact, to our knowledge,” Tawfik and Tóth-Petróczy write, “no macromutations … that gave birth to novel proteins have yet been identified.”69
    http://inference-review.com/ar.....f-proteins

    Nor do Darwinists have any evidence that Darwinian processes can create new protein “complexes with more than two different binding sites-ones that require three or more proteins.”

    “The immediate, most important implication is that complexes with more than two different binding sites-ones that require three or more proteins-are beyond the edge of evolution, past what is biologically reasonable to expect Darwinian evolution to have accomplished in all of life in all of the billion-year history of the world. The reasoning is straightforward. The odds of getting two independent things right are the multiple of the odds of getting each right by itself. So, other things being equal, the likelihood of developing two binding sites in a protein complex would be the square of the probability for getting one: a double CCC, 10^20 times 10^20, which is 10^40. There have likely been fewer than 10^40 cells in the world in the last 4 billion years, so the odds are against a single event of this variety in the history of life. It is biologically unreasonable.”
    – Michael Behe – The Edge of Evolution – page 146

    In fact, as John Sanford has shown in his book Genetic Entropy, and as Michael Behe has shown in his book “Darwin Devolves”, Darwinian processes are far, far, more likely to degrade a preexisting function in order to gain an adaptive advantage than Darwinian processes are ever likely to create anything new, i.e. Behe’s “First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: “Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.”

    “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: “Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.”
    – Behe
    https://evolutionnews.org/2010/12/michael_behes_first_rule_of_ad/

    Since Darwinian processes can’t even transform one protein of a preexisting function into new protein of a new function, nor build up the functional complexity of proteins past Behe’s “edge of evolution”, then it is not surprising that Darwinists do not even have any evidence that Darwinian processes can transform one type of bacteria into another type of bacteria, nor transform prokaryotic into eukaryotic cells, much less do they have any evidence that it is possible to transform one multicellular organism into another multicellular organism. As Alan Linton noted, “Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organism”

    Scant search for the Maker
    Excerpt: But where is the experimental evidence? None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of 20 to 30 minutes, and populations achieved after 18 hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another, in spite of the fact that populations have been exposed to potent chemical and physical mutagens and that, uniquely, bacteria possess extrachromosomal, transmissible plasmids. Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organisms.
    – Alan H. Linton – emeritus professor of bacteriology, University of Bristol.
    http://www.timeshighereducatio.....ode=159282

    Since Darwinists have no real time empirical evidence that Darwinian evolution is even remotely feasible, Darwinists, as Seversky has done here in this tread with his comment, i.e. “How far would he have to go before you began to suspect he (God) might not be as favorably disposed towards us as you like to think?”, Darwinists will often, as Seversky has done here, resort to theologically based arguments.

    In short, Seversky is resorting to the theologically based “argument from evil”. Yet the ‘argument from evil’ is a blatantly self refuting argument for an atheist, such as Seversky, to make.

    For evil to even exist in the first place, as Seversky is presupposing in his argument from evil, then there necessarily must be an objective moral standard of good that has been departed from. As C.S. Lewis noted, “My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?”

    “My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?”
    – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

    And as David Wood puts it in the following article, By declaring that suffering is evil, atheists have admitted that there is an objective moral standard by which we distinguish good and evil.

    Responding to the Argument From Evil: Three Approaches for the Theist – By David Wood
    Excerpt: Interestingly enough, proponents of AE grant this premise in the course of their argument. By declaring that suffering is evil, atheists have admitted that there is an objective moral standard by which we distinguish good and evil. Amazingly, then, even as atheists make their case against the existence of God, they actually help us prove that God exists!,,,
    https://www.namb.net/apologetics/responding-to-the-argument-from-evil-three-approaches-for-the-theist

    In short, if good and evil exist, as the atheist necessarily presupposes in his ‘argument from evil’, then it follows that God necessarily exists:

    If Good and Evil Exist, God Exists: – Peter Kreeft – Prager University – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xliyujhwhNM

    And as Michael Egnor states in the following article, Even to raise the problem of evil is to tacitly acknowledge transcendent standards, and thus to acknowledge God’s existence. From that starting point, theodicy begins. Theists have explored it profoundly. Atheists lack the standing even to ask the question.,,,

    The Universe Reflects a Mind – Michael Egnor – February 28, 2018
    Excerpt: Goff argues that a Mind is manifest in the natural world, but he discounts the existence of God because of the problem of evil. Goff seriously misunderstands the problem of evil. Evil is an insoluble problem for atheists, because if there is no God, there is no objective standard by which evil and good can exist or can even be defined. If God does not exist, “good” and “evil” are merely human opinions. Yet we all know, as Kant observed, that some things are evil in themselves, and not merely as a matter of opinion. Even to raise the problem of evil is to tacitly acknowledge transcendent standards, and thus to acknowledge God’s existence. From that starting point, theodicy begins. Theists have explored it profoundly. Atheists lack the standing even to ask the question.,,,
    https://evolutionnews.org/2018/02/the-universe-reflects-a-mind/

  12. 12
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky is hardly alone in making a self-refuting theologically based argument for evolution. Darwin himself, as well as modern day Darwinists, (since they have no real time empirical evidence) are also heavily reliant on these self-refuting theologically based arguments for evolution.

    Charles Darwin, Theologian: Major New Article on Darwin’s Use of Theology in the Origin of Species – May 2011
    Excerpt: The Origin supplies abundant evidence of theology in action; as Dilley observes:
    I have argued that, in the first edition of the Origin, Darwin drew upon at least the following positiva theological claims in his case for descent with modification (and against special creation):
    1. Human beings are not justified in believing that God creates in ways analogous to the intellectual powers of the human mind.
    2. A God who is free to create as He wishes would create new biological limbs de novo rather than from a common pattern.
    3. A respectable deity would create biological structures in accord with a human conception of the ‘simplest mode’ to accomplish the functions of these structures.
    4. God would only create the minimum structure required for a given part’s function.
    5. God does not provide false empirical information about the origins of organisms.
    6. God impressed the laws of nature on matter.
    7. God directly created the first ‘primordial’ life.
    8. God did not perform miracles within organic history subsequent to the creation of the first life.
    9. A ‘distant’ God is not morally culpable for natural pain and suffering.
    10. The God of special creation, who allegedly performed miracles in organic history, is not plausible given the presence of natural pain and suffering.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....46391.html

    Methodological Naturalism: A Rule That No One Needs or Obeys – Paul Nelson – September 22, 2014
    Excerpt: It is a little-remarked but nonetheless deeply significant irony that evolutionary biology is the most theologically entangled science going. Open a book like Jerry Coyne’s Why Evolution is True (2009) or John Avise’s Inside the Human Genome (2010), and the theology leaps off the page. A wise creator, say Coyne, Avise, and many other evolutionary biologists, would not have made this or that structure; therefore, the structure evolved by undirected processes. Coyne and Avise, like many other evolutionary theorists going back to Darwin himself, make numerous “God-wouldn’t-have-done-it-that-way” arguments, thus predicating their arguments for the creative power of natural selection and random mutation on implicit theological assumptions about the character of God and what such an agent (if He existed) would or would not be likely to do.,,,
    ,,,with respect to one of the most famous texts in 20th-century biology, Theodosius Dobzhansky’s essay “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution” (1973).
    Although its title is widely cited as an aphorism, the text of Dobzhansky’s essay is rarely read. It is, in fact, a theological treatise. As Dilley (2013, p. 774) observes:
    “Strikingly, all seven of Dobzhansky’s arguments hinge upon claims about God’s nature, actions, purposes, or duties. In fact, without God-talk, the geneticist’s arguments for evolution are logically invalid. In short, theology is essential to Dobzhansky’s arguments.”,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....89971.html

    In fact, although Darwinists often claim that theology has no place in science, it turns out that evolutionary biology itself is crucially dependent on these faulty theological presuppositions.

    Damned if You Do and Damned if You Don’t – Steve Dilley- 2019-06-02
    The Problem of God-talk in Biology Textbooks
    Abstract: We argue that a number of biology (and evolution) textbooks face a crippling dilemma.
    On the one hand, significant difficulties arise if textbooks include theological claims in their case for evolution.
    (Such claims include, for example, ‘God would never design a suboptimal panda’s thumb, but an imperfect structure is just what we’d expect on natural selection.’) On the other hand, significant difficulties arise if textbooks exclude theological claims in their case for evolution. So, whether textbooks include or exclude theological claims, they face debilitating problems. We attempt to establish this thesis by examining 32 biology (and evolution) textbooks, including the Big 12—that is, the top four in each of the key undergraduate categories (biology majors, non-majors, and evolution courses). In Section 2 of our article, we analyze three specific types of theology these texts use to justify evolutionary theory. We argue that all face significant difficulties. In Section 3, we step back from concrete cases and, instead, explore broader problems created by having theology in general in biology textbooks. We argue that the presence of theology—of whatever kind—comes at a significant cost, one that some textbook authors are likely unwilling to pay. In Section 4, we consider the alternative: Why not simply get rid of theology? Why not just ignore it? In reply, we marshal a range of arguments why avoiding God-talk raises troubles of its own. Finally, in Section 5, we bring together the collective arguments in Sections 2-4 to argue that biology textbooks face an intractable dilemma. We underscore this difficulty by examining a common approach that some textbooks use to solve this predicament. We argue that this approach turns out to be incoherent and self-serving. The poor performance of textbooks on this point highlights just how deep the difficulty is. In the end, the overall dilemma remains.
    https://journals.blythinstitute.org/ojs/index.php/cbi/article/view/44

    Darwinists, with their vital dependence on faulty theological presuppositions, instead of on any substantiating scientific evidence, in order to try to make their case for Darwinian evolution are, as Cornelius Van Til put it, like the child who must climb up onto his father’s lap into order to slap his face.

    “In other words, the non-Christian needs the truth of the Christian religion in order to attack it. As a child needs to sit on the lap of its father in order to slap the father’s face, so the unbeliever, as a creature, needs God the Creator and providential controller of the universe in order to oppose this God. Without this God, the place on which he stands does not exist. He cannot stand in a vacuum.”
    Cornelius Van Til, Essays on Christian Education (The Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company: Phillipsburg, NJ, 1979).

    Of supplemental note, in keeping with the Christian’s presupposition that we live in a ‘fallen world’, there are now reason to believe that viruses. (and bacteria), and contrary to popular belief, start out as being beneficial and then, from time to time, degrade into being pathogenic.

    Trillions Upon Trillions of Viruses Fall From the Sky Each Day – Jim Robbins – April 13, 2018
    Excerpt: Whatever the case, viruses are the most abundant entities on the planet by far. While Dr. Suttle’s team found hundreds of millions of viruses in a square meter, they counted tens of millions of bacteria in the same space.
    Mostly thought of as infectious agents, viruses are much more than that. It’s hard to overstate the central role that viruses play in the world: They’re essential to everything from our immune system to our gut microbiome, to the ecosystems on land and sea, to climate regulation,,,. Viruses contain a vast diverse array of unknown genes — and spread them to other species.,,,
    In laboratory experiments, he has filtered viruses out of seawater but left their prey, bacteria. When that happens, plankton in the water stop growing. That’s because when preying viruses infect and take out one species of microbe — they are very specific predators — they liberate nutrients in them, such as nitrogen, that feed other species of bacteria.,,,
    Viruses help keep ecosystems in balance by changing the composition of microbial communities. As toxic algae blooms spread in the ocean, for example, they are brought to heel by a virus that attacks the algae and causes it to explode and die, ending the outbreak in as little as a day.,,,
    The beneficial effects of viruses are much less known, especially among plants. “There are huge questions in wild systems about what viruses are doing there,” said Marilyn Roossinck, who studies viral ecology in plants at Pennsylvania State University. “We have never found deleterious effects from a virus in the wild.”
    A grass found in the high-temperature soils of Yellowstone’s geothermal areas, for example, needs a fungus to grow in the extreme environment. In turn, the fungus needs a virus.,,,
    Tiny spots of virus on the plant that yields quinoa is also important for the plant’s survival. “Little spots of virus confer drought tolerance but don’t cause disease,” she said. “It changes the whole plant physiology.”
    “Viruses aren’t our enemies,” Dr. Suttle said. “Certain nasty viruses can make you sick, but it’s important to recognize that viruses and other microbes out there are absolutely integral for the ecosystem.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/13/science/virosphere-evolution.html

    Viruses: You’ve heard the bad; here’s the good – April 30, 2015
    Excerpt: “The word, virus, connotes morbidity and mortality, but that bad reputation is not universally deserved,” said Marilyn Roossinck, PhD, Professor of Plant Pathology and Environmental Microbiology and Biology at the Pennsylvania State University, University Park. “Viruses, like bacteria, can be important beneficial microbes in human health and in agriculture,” she said.
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150430170750.htm

    Not All Viruses Are Bad For You. Here Are Some That Can Have a Protective Effect – CYNTHIA MATHEW – AUGUST 2019
    Excerpt: Some viruses can actually kill bacteria, while others can fight against more dangerous viruses. So like protective bacteria (probiotics), we have several protective viruses in our body.
    Protective ‘phages’
    Bacteriophages (or “phages”) are viruses that infect and destroy specific bacteria. They’re found in the mucus membrane lining in the digestive, respiratory and reproductive tracts.,,,
    Recent research suggests the phages present in the mucus are part of our natural immune system, protecting the human body from invading bacteria.
    Phages have actually been used to treat dysentery, sepsis caused by Staphylococcus aureus, salmonella infections and skin infections for nearly a century. Early sources of phages for therapy included local water bodies, dirt, air, sewage and even body fluids from infected patients. The viruses were isolated from these sources, purified, and then used for treatment.
    https://www.sciencealert.com/not-all-viruses-are-bad-for-you-here-are-some-that-can-have-a-protective-effect

    NIH Human Microbiome Project defines normal bacterial makeup of the body – June 13, 2012
    Excerpt: Microbes inhabit just about every part of the human body, living on the skin, in the gut, and up the nose. Sometimes they cause sickness, but most of the time, microorganisms live in harmony with their human hosts, providing vital functions essential for human survival.
    http://www.nih.gov/news/health.....gri-13.htm

    We are living in a bacterial world, and it’s impacting us more than previously thought – February 15, 2013
    Excerpt: We often associate bacteria with disease-causing “germs” or pathogens, and bacteria are responsible for many diseases, such as tuberculosis, bubonic plague, and MRSA infections. But bacteria do many good things, too, and the recent research underlines the fact that animal life would not be the same without them.,,,
    I am,, convinced that the number of beneficial microbes, even very necessary microbes, is much, much greater than the number of pathogens.”
    http://phys.org/news/2013-02-b.....tml#ajTabs

    The Microbial Engines That Drive Earth’s Biogeochemical Cycles – Falkowski 2008
    Excerpt: Microbial life can easily live without us; we, however, cannot survive without the global catalysis and environmental transformations it provides. –
    Paul G. Falkowski – Professor Geological Sciences – Rutgers
    http://www.genetics.iastate.edu/delong1.pdf

  13. 13
    Truthfreedom says:

    @10 Seversky

    It’s a small point but it seems to have escaped the attention of some that the theory of evolution was not – and is not – intended as an explanation of the origins of life.

    -How one thing develops and how that same thing has being originated are not intimately related?

    As for purpose, if God can conceive a purpose why can’t we?

    Of course we can. My life’s goal is to harm as many people/ animals as possible.
    There it is. A purpose.

  14. 14
    ET says:

    seversky:

    It’s a small point but it seems to have escaped the attention of some that the theory of evolution was not – and is not – intended as an explanation of the origins of life.

    And yet how life originated dictates how it evolved. It is only if blind and mindless processes produced life from non-life would we say that those same processes produced its diversity. And the contrary PoV is if life was intelligently designed then it evolved by means of intelligent design. Meaning organisms were intelligently designed with the ability to adapt and evolve.

    So the OoL is key to evolution. But we all understand why evos don’t want people to understand that basic fact

  15. 15
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Biological warfare is prohibited by the Geneva conventions because it was recognized as evil. Mike Behe is just telling us he doesn’t have that same level of ethics.

  16. 16
    bornagain77 says:

    And JT, just how does an atheist, since he denies the reality of God, account for the existence of evil?

    “My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call a line crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. What was I comparing this universe with when I called it unjust?”
    – C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

  17. 17
    ET says:

    Jim Thibodeau, Thank you for proving that you have reading comprehension issues. Do you really think that your ignorance is an argument? Really?

  18. 18
    EricMH says:

    No reason the designer of harmful viruses has to be benevolent. Intelligent design is ambivalent about intentions and nature of said designer. All ID can do is detect that design happened.

  19. 19
    ET says:

    We are forgetting evolution. Even the best of viruses can mutate to become harmful or lethal.

  20. 20
    Truthfreedom says:

    Biological warfare is prohibited by the Geneva conventions because it was recognized as evil. Mike Behe is just telling us he doesn’t have that same level of ethics.

    Hahaha. ‘Biological warfare’ is ‘Natural Selection’ in action. Naturalists are funny.

  21. 21
    asauber says:

    “Biological warfare is prohibited by the Geneva conventions because it was recognized as evil.”

    What method do the Geneva conventions use to determine what’s evil?

    Andrew

  22. 22
    john_a_designer says:

    And as we all know, evil people in charge of evil societies all obey international law. Yeah, right.

  23. 23
    Truthfreedom says:

    -Who are we to oppose ‘Natural Selection’? ‘Coronavirus has rights!’
    No rhyme, no reason, no purpose.
    Jim Thibodeau, nothing matters, remember?
    Stuff happens.

  24. 24
    john_a_designer says:

    Here is a possible stop gap measure that could be used to combat the coronavirus pandemic while we wait on the development of a vaccine, which is at least a year away.

    When it comes to creating treatments for Covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, the first line of defense may be a century-old technology: purified blood plasma.

    Medical literature published during the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 includes case reports describing how transfusions of blood products obtained from survivors may have contributed to a 50% reduction in death among severely ill patients…

    More recently, plasma-derived therapy was used to treat patients during outbreaks of Ebola and avian flu. And on Wednesday the Japanese drug maker Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. said it was developing a new coronavirus drug derived from the blood plasma of people who have recovered from Covid-19. Its approach is based on the idea that antibodies developed by recovered patients might strengthen the immune system of new patients.

    https://www.statnews.com/2020/03/05/how-blood-plasma-from-recovered-patients-could-help-treat-coronavirus/

  25. 25
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    I see no reason why a designer even of such things as viruses should be classified as bad on that basis alone.

    If the Designer of this virus turned out to be a US Army biologist working under the secret orders of Barack Obama, I suspect Behe would, with Lightning Speed, change his tune about seeing no reason the designer is bad.

  26. 26
    Ed George says:

    EricMH

    No reason the designer of harmful viruses has to be benevolent.

    I agree. If there is a designer, it certainly has not demonstrated that it has our best interests at heart.

    Intelligent design is ambivalent about intentions and nature of said designer.

    Which is the major thing keeping ID from being considered a serious scientific endeavour.

    All ID can do is detect that design happened.

    Yet it has failed to do so with respect to biological life.

  27. 27
    ET says:

    Jimbo the psychic.

  28. 28
    ET says:

    Acartia Eddie:

    If there is a designer, it certainly has not demonstrated that it has our best interests at heart.

    How do you know? You don’t know what are best interests are.

    Which is the major thing keeping ID from being considered a serious scientific endeavour.

    That doesn’t follow. We don’t know the intentions of most ancient designers and yet we are fully able to detect and study their designs. Clearly you don’t know anything about investigating.

    Yet it has failed to do so with respect to biological life.

    Only in the very limited minds of the willfully ignorant. And all you do is avoid discussing the evidence like it was lethal. Which is true as it would probably kill you to even attempt to discuss it.

  29. 29
    ET says:

    It’s very telling that evos are OK with separating abiogenesis from evolution, but when Intelligent DESIGN separates the DESIGN from the designer, they wet themselves in objection.

    We don’t even ask about the intentions or nature of the designer until DESIGN is determined to exist. And we get to those by studying the DESIGN in question, along with all relevant evidence. And, according to “The Privileged Planet”, one intention was to Create a universe that can be explored and discovered. That inference is based on the evidence laid out in the book.

    That said, it is more than nuts to think that blind, mindless and purposeless processes- those with no intention whatsoever, can produce coded systems from the bottom up. There is no way to test the claim. And it goes against our knowledge of cause-and-effect relationships.

    And yes, that extends to viruses. Nature can’t produce them from scratch. Maybe as remnants of a once-living organism, though. So Dr. Behe may be wrong in that aspect.

  30. 30
    bill cole says:

    And yes, that extends to viruses. Nature can’t produce them from scratch. Maybe as remnants of a once-living organism, though. So Dr. Behe may be wrong in that aspect.

    Given what Behe showed at the Texas A&M debate w/ Swamidass the bacteriophage looks designed as a stand alone structure. It is a purposely arranged set of parts that injects its genetic material into bacteria in order to self replicate

    11:45 in he discusses the bacteriophage. https://youtu.be/6Pi5UoZkn4g

  31. 31
    martin_r says:

    Bill Cole @30

    i am a mechanical engineer, Biology is my hobby.

    How much faith do i have to have to believe that T4 bacteriophage self-designed by some blind unguided natural process? I don’t have so much faith. Atheists obviously do have.

    Biologists will never show you how these things self-assembled from scratch.

    What biologists are good at, is story telling. Biologists – natural science graduates – believe in miracles, because biologists never made anything.

  32. 32
    martin_r says:

    a special message to Richard Dawkins and associates…

    The corona virus. Where is your ‘bad design’ ?

    in 21st century, we developed very advanced technologies, our robots fly to Mars, but, a tiny viral particle which can’t be seen with naked eyes or a light microscope, that tiny particle just set the whole World up-side-down.

    What i see, is a very clever design …

    and, what we humans can do against it, is only sit and wait how it ends :))))

  33. 33
    bill cole says:

    Hi Martin

    How much faith do i have to have to believe that T4 bacteriophage self-designed by some blind unguided natural process? I don’t have so much faith. Atheists obviously do have.

    Although I think adaptive mutations are possible the virus sequence is almost certainly designed given that they can build the sophisticated protein capsules with their DNA using bacterial transcription translation equipment.

  34. 34
    Ed George says:

    Martin

    The corona virus. Where is your ‘bad design’ ?

    Designed for what? If it is for the long term survival and proliferation of the virus then COVID-19 isn’t particularly well designed.

  35. 35
    bornagain77 says:

    Jim Thibodeau and Ed George’s supposedly ‘scientific’ argument for the Darwinian origin of pathogenic viruses has this logical structure:

    1. If God exists He would not allow pathogenic viruses to exist.
    2. Pathogenic viruses do exist.
    Conclusion: Therefore God does not exist and Darwinian evolution must be true.

    The problem with this supposedly ‘scientific’ argument for the Darwinian origin of pathogenic viruses is that it is not a scientific argument at all. It is, obviously, a Theological argument that presupposes to know the exact intentions and purposes of God. Ed George even went so far as to say that not knowing the exact intentions and nature of God “is the major thing keeping ID from being considered a serious scientific endeavour.”

    Really Ed George??? Really???.

    The fact that Darwists themselves constantly confuse their Theological arguments as being scientific arguments is what in fact “is the major thing keeping Darwinian Evolution from being considered a serious scientific endeavour.”

    Moreover, the theology that Darwinists employ to try to support Darwinian evolution is fundamentally flawed.

    As laid previously, in the logical structure of their theological argument, Darwinists presuppose that “If God exists He would not allow pathogenic viruses to exist.” Yet, where do they get that Theological presupposition from? It certainly does not follow from the Bible. For instance, these verses say that God is control of it all, i.e. Both good and evil!

    Haggai 2:17
    I struck all the work of your hands with blight, mildew and hail, yet you did not return to me,’ declares the Lord.

    Jeremiah 11:11
    Therefore thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring evil upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them.

    Deuteronomy 30:19
    I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:

    Isaiah 45:7
    “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.”

    Shoot, God himself allowed Jesus Himself to die a horrid Crucifixion on a cross

    The Silent Witness – Forensic Analysis (of the Shroud of Turin)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5QEsaNiMVc

    Thus, wherever Darwinists got their particular theological presupposition of “If God exists He would not allow pathogenic viruses to exist”, that Theological presupposition certainly does not come from the Bible in general or Christianity in particular.

    In their faulty theological presupposition, Darwinists are basically presupposing that there should not be any pain, suffering, or death, whatsoever in this world.

    Basically, Darwinists are presupposing that we ought to be living in a heavenly paradise already where there isn’t any pain, suffering, or death.

    I don’t know where they get their theological presupposition from. Again, it does not follow from Christianity,

    Revelation 21:4
    ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

    In fact, I don’t know of any religion on the face of the earth that presupposes that we ought to already be living in a heavenly paradise.

    Christianity certainly does not presuppose that. Christians have always held that we live in a fallen world that must be ‘endured’ and ‘overcome’.

    Matthew 24:13
    But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

    Revelation 3:21
    To the one who overcomes, I will grant the right to sit with Me on My throne, just as I overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

    Thus in conclusion, besides the fact that Darwinists have no ‘scientific’ clue where something as ingenuously designed as the bacteriophage virus came from,

    Michael Behe – 2020 – Bacteriophage – 11:45 minute mark
    https://youtu.be/6Pi5UoZkn4g?t=700

    ,,, besides that, Darwinists also, in their theological argument, make a theological presupposition that no religion on the face of earth presupposes as being true. Namely, no religion on the face of earth presupposes that we already live in a heavenly paradise.

    In short, Darwinian evolution is devoid of any scientific evidence and is also devoid of a coherent Theological foundation.

    To needle Ed George for his incoherent phrase,

    not knowing the exact intentions and nature of God “is the major thing keeping Darwinian Evolution from being considered a serious scientific endeavour.”

  36. 36
    martin_r says:

    ED Goerge @34
    you wrote
    “Designed for what? If it is for the long term survival and proliferation of the virus then COVID-19 isn’t particularly well designed.”

    it is pretty clear, that viruses were made to regulate/control a population (e.g. a population of bacteria, or a population of bats, or, humans).

    e.g. the often mentioned T4 bacteriophage regulates the population of bacteria.

    And i agree with those scientists who say that viruses are not alive. Yes, i agree, viruses are not alive, they are just another type of a nano-machine, in this case, to regulate a population. In biology, we see various types of nano-machines all the time (not alive too).

  37. 37
    Truthfreedom says:

    @26 Ed George

    … with respect to biological life.

    Of course there is abiological life in the non-sensical world of the darwinist.

  38. 38
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77 @ 11

    As Martin_r alluded to, Seversky simply has no evidence that viruses could arise by evolutionary processes.

    In the absence of a Designer, what other explanation is there?

    Furthermore, as has been pointed out time and again to the Darwinists here on UD and elsewhere, Darwinists simply have no evidence that unguided material processes can create even a single protein,

    Not yet.

    A hundred years ago we had no inkling that billions of neutrinos are passing through every square centimeter of our bodies every second. Now we do. Who knows what science might uncover in another hundred years, let alone another million years?

    In fact, as John Sanford has shown in his book Genetic Entropy, and as Michael Behe has shown in his book “Darwin Devolves”, Darwinian processes are far, far, more likely to degrade a preexisting function in order to gain an adaptive advantage than Darwinian processes are ever likely to create anything new, i.e. Behe’s “First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: “Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.”

    If any of that were true, we would not be here arguing about it. All life would have gone extinct long ago In fact, you’d have to ask how life ever got started in the first place if DNA is so prone to degradation.

    Since Darwinists have no real time empirical evidence that Darwinian evolution is even remotely feasible, Darwinists, as Seversky has done here in this tread with his comment, i.e. “How far would he have to go before you began to suspect he (God) might not be as favorably disposed towards us as you like to think?”, Darwinists will often, as Seversky has done here, resort to theologically based arguments.

    In case you hadn’t noticed, my argument was not in support of evolution. It was highlighting the inconsistency of the popular notion of an infinitely good and benevolent God with the existence of deadly pathogens which He must have designed or allowed to come into existence through natural processes. Something you have great difficulty in explaining.

    In short, Seversky is resorting to the theologically based “argument from evil”. Yet the ‘argument from evil’ is a blatantly self refuting argument for an atheist, such as Seversky, to make.

    Calling it the argument of evil still doesn’t get you off the hook as far as reconciling the existence of behavior we call evil with the existence of a loving God who could put a stop to it in an instant if He chose or explaining why He ever allowed it to happen in the first place.

    For evil to even exist in the first place, as Seversky is presupposing in his argument from evil, then there necessarily must be an objective moral standard of good that has been departed from.

    For evil to exist in a universe entirely created by a god, it was either directly created by that god or allowed to happen by him/her/it.

    And I don’t need some objective moral standard to know that the rape and murder of a child is wrong. Neither should you. The Golden Rule or empathy is all you need.

    And as David Wood puts it in the following article, By declaring that suffering is evil, atheists have admitted that there is an objective moral standard by which we distinguish good and evil.

    Nonsense. All you need is to experience suffering and know that it is something you would prefer to avoid and would not wish on others.

    In short, if good and evil exist, as the atheist necessarily presupposes in his ‘argument from evil’, then it follows that God necessarily exists:

    Good and evil are, like beauty, in the eye of the beholder. They don’t entail a god or any mythical objective moral standards.

    And as Michael Egnor states in the following article, Even to raise the problem of evil is to tacitly acknowledge transcendent standards, and thus to acknowledge God’s existence. From that starting point, theodicy begins. Theists have explored it profoundly. Atheists lack the standing even to ask the question.

    Egnor can believe what he wants but discussing the problem of evil does not entail acknowledging transcendent moral standards or that the notion of such standards necessarily entails the existence of the Christian God. They simply don’t follow.

    As for theodicy, theologians have made good livings out of concocting ingenious explanations for the inconsistencies, discrepancies and outright contradictions that riddle the faith. Neither atheists nor anyone else needs “standing” to see that.

  39. 39
    Seversky says:

    >Bornagain77@ 12

    Of supplemental note, in keeping with the Christian’s presupposition that we live in a ‘fallen world’, there are now reason to believe that viruses. (and bacteria), and contrary to popular belief, start out as being beneficial and then, from time to time, degrade into being pathogenic.

    You know you should really give up on this nonsense about the “Fall”. It’s a fatally-flawed argument.

    If God is the all-knowing, all-powerful perfect being Christians claim He is then He designed Adam and Eve in full knowledge of what they were and how they would behave. Yet He punishes them for being how He designed them to be and doing what He designed them to do. If what happened in the Garden of Eden was wrong then it was His fault not theirs. Yet they carry the can for it and so do their descendants in perpetuity. Now tell me how that is just or fair.

  40. 40
    martin_r says:

    Seversky, i got a simple question, will you reply ?

    isn’t it embarrassing, that your atheistic evolutionary theory can’t explain the evolutionary origin of the MOST ABUNDANT organism on Earth (viruses) ?

  41. 41
    bornagain77 says:

    Martin_r at 40,

    Seversky’s irrational hostility towards God has made him incapable of being embarrassed by the gargantuan scientific shortcomings of his Darwinian worldview. Case in point, his replies in post 38 and 39.

  42. 42
    bornagain77 says:

    ^^^^^^^^^^
    For instance, is response to the fact that “Darwinists simply have no evidence that unguided material processes can create even a single protein,”, Seversky, without a hint of embarrassment, states for all the world to see,

    Not yet.
    A hundred years ago we had no inkling that billions of neutrinos are passing through every square centimeter of our bodies every second. Now we do. Who knows what science might uncover in another hundred years, let alone another million years?

    Yet neutrinos, in and of themselves, have been used to falsify ‘realism’, which is the materialistic belief that a physical reality can exist completely separate from our measurement and/or conscious observation of it.

    Massive neutrino experiment undermines our sense of reality – Adrian Cho – Jul. 12, 2016
    Excerpt: The researchers observed the strong correlations predicted by Leggett and Garg, as they report in a paper in press at Physical Review Letters. “As we expected, it’s a very obvious effect,” Formaggio says. The data underscore that the neutrino has no flavor until it’s actually measured, he says.
    The result is not surprising, Garg says, as neutrino oscillations are inherently quantum mechanical. Still, he says, it “probes the conflict between the quantum and classical worlds in a new regime.”
    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/07/massive-neutrino-experiment-undermines-our-sense-reality

    Thus, contrary to what Seversky seems to believe, experiments with neutrinos have actually falsified Seversky’s materialistic worldview.

    Moreover, neutrinos play into the fine-tuning of Big Bang nucleosynthesis

    What would happen if neutrinos did not exist?
    That depends. What else are you changing?
    If you’re not changing anything else, then that would have a huge impact on particle stability (e.g., muons and free neutrons would both be stable).
    Oh, and there would be the small matter of the CNO cycle and Proton–proton chain reaction no longer working, which means there wouldn’t be stars like the Sun.
    Which is actually moot, because if free neutrons were stable, Big Bang nucleosynthesis would have resulted in the Universe being made almost entirely of Helium-4, which is largely inert.
    So, basically, the Universe today would be a bunch of hot, dense, glowing clouds of ionized Helium-4, with sparse, cold, ionized Helium-4 interspersed between them.
    Not very interesting, but then again, there wouldn’t be anyone around to complain.
    https://www.quora.com/What-would-happen-if-neutrinos-did-not-exist

    Thus we should rightly thank God for neutrinos since if they weren’t around we would not be around.

    But I guess Seversky thanking God for neutrinos would kind of defeat Seversky’s entire purpose for mentioning neutrinos in the first place. 🙂

  43. 43
    john_a_designer says:

    Notice how the Covid 19 virus seems to be targeting the infirm and elderly. Maybe viruses are just nature’s way of “culling the herd.” Maybe then we should just let nature take its course. The young and fit are going to survive and develop immunities. The elderly, sick and infirm– well…

    That appears to be the view of bioethicist Ezekiel Emanuel who has said he doesn’t to live beyond the age of 75:

    Here is a simple truth that many of us seem to resist: living too long is also a loss. It renders many of us, if not disabled, then faltering and declining, a state that may not be worse than death but is nonetheless deprived. It robs us of our creativity and ability to contribute to work, society, the world. It transforms how people experience us, relate to us, and, most important, remember us. We are no longer remembered as vibrant and engaged but as feeble, ineffectual, even pathetic.

    Though he wrote this back in October of 2014 he was thinking of how we should respond to pandemics like we’re in the midst of now

    What about simple stuff? Flu shots are out. Certainly if there were to be a flu pandemic, a younger person who has yet to live a complete life ought to get the vaccine or any antiviral drugs.

    A big challenge is antibiotics for pneumonia or skin and urinary infections. Antibiotics are cheap and largely effective in curing infections. It is really hard for us to say no. Indeed, even people who are sure they don’t want life-extending treatments find it hard to refuse antibiotics. But, as Osler reminds us, unlike the decays associated with chronic conditions, death from these infections is quick and relatively painless. So, no to antibiotics.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/joe-biden-coronavirus-adviser-ezekiel-emanuel-wants-to-die-at-75/

    Sounds a lot like eugenics, doesn’t it? Indeed, the fact is that eugenics never went away. It just got relabeled– something the secular progressive left is good at doing.

  44. 44
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @Seversky #39

    An inability (or unwillingness) to grasp a reductio-ad-absurdum argument seems to be a common feature of the theist mindset.

  45. 45
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    Jim Thibodeau and Ed George’s supposedly ‘scientific’ argument for the Darwinian origin of pathogenic viruses has this logical structure:

    Don’t erect that strawman too night. It might hurt someone when BA(Don Quixote)77 knocks it down.

    The only claims I have made are that if viruses are designed it can’t be by a designer who has our best interests at heart, and that COVID-19 is not a particularly well designed virus.

  46. 46
    Ed George says:

    Sev

    Egnor can believe what he wants…

    Egnor May be a good surgeon but I stopped taking anything he says seriously when he claimed that all mass shootings are caused by Democrats.

  47. 47
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    There’s a rabbi in Israel who is saying this virus is God’s revenge for gay pride parades.

    https://deadstate.org/israeli-rabbi-coronavirus-is-gods-revenge-for-gay-pride-parades/

    Nobody could possibly base any kind of modern ethics on this kind of nonsense. There’s a reason that the fastest growing group in America is people leaving this absurd stuff behind.

  48. 48
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @John_a_designer #43

    Do you live in a cave or something?

    Is eugenics why liberals champion the poor, the lower class, the minorities, the uninsured sick?

    That’s the opposite of eugenics, John boy.

    It’s conservatives that seem to be into “winner take all”.

  49. 49
    john_a_designer says:

    You left out abortion. Why is that.

    P.S. Please spare us the smugness.

  50. 50
    Truthfreedom says:

    @Jim Thibodeau

    Nobody could possibly base any kind of modern ethics on this kind of nonsense.

    Says who? Your opinion is just that, your opinion. And not a very intelligent one. There is not an objective basis for ‘morals’, so your emotions and baseless assertions are useless.

    There’s a reason that the fastest growing group in America is people leaving this absurd stuff behind.

    Oh. The old appeal to numbers fallacy. Is this waste of time, 5-year-old level of reasoning all that you’ve got? Very sad.

  51. 51
    ET says:

    Acartia Eddie:

    The only claims I have made are that if viruses are designed it can’t be by a designer who has our best interests at heart, and that COVID-19 is not a particularly well designed virus.

    But you are a proven imbecile who couldn’t support what you claim if your life depended on it

  52. 52
    Truthfreedom says:

    @44 Pater Kimbridge 44

    An inability (or unwillingness) to grasp a reductio-ad-absurdum argument seems to be a common feature of the theist mindset.

    Says the materialist with his self-refuting, proven absurd, unable to explain reality philosophy. But hey Pater, faith is faith. And materialism is fanatic.
    https://strangenotions.com/naturalisms-epistemological-nightmare/

  53. 53
    Truthfreedom says:

    Materialists rely on appeal to numbers and appeal to emotions fallacies like the champions they are. And never forget special pleading, because hey, cute materialists have reason even when they do not have reason, and their materialism deserves to be revered.
    https://strangenotions.com/naturalisms-epistemological-nightmare/

  54. 54
    Seversky says:

    Martin_r@ 40

    Seversky, i got a simple question, will you reply ?

    isn’t it embarrassing, that your atheistic evolutionary theory can’t explain the evolutionary origin of the MOST ABUNDANT organism on Earth (viruses) ?

    …yet.

    No.

  55. 55
    ET says:

    At least seversky admits that his position is part of science.

  56. 56
    Truthfreedom says:

    @54 Seversky

    …yet.

    Promissory materialism, a. k.a. ‘materialism-of-the-gaps’.

  57. 57
    Ed George says:

    I hope that all churches do their part in avoiding the spreading of this virus and cancel all services.

  58. 58
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77@ 42

    Yet neutrinos, in and of themselves, have been used to falsify ‘realism’, which is the materialistic belief that a physical reality can exist completely separate from our measurement and/or conscious observation of it.

    You should try reading the science to understand what they are trying to say rather than cherry-picking quotes that conform to your pre-existing religious beliefs.

    They are saying that quantum systems can exist in two or more superposed states and only collapse into the one we observe when we observe it.

    They are not saying that nothing, not even quantum systems, exist at all until we observe it, probably because they understand that it’s an absurd proposition. If nothing exists until we observe it what are we observing in the first place?

    These observations do not falsify realism.

    Thus, contrary to what Seversky seems to believe, experiments with neutrinos have actually falsified Seversky’s materialistic worldview.

    Neutrinos are as much a part of the material world as any other observable phenomenon.

    But I guess Seversky thanking God for neutrinos would kind of defeat Seversky’s entire purpose for mentioning neutrinos in the first place.

    I might have thanked God if he’s told us about neutrinos rather than leaving us to find out about them ourselves.

    I might have thanked God if he’d warned us about the bubonic plague in the Middle Ages and explained how to treat it.

    I might have thanked God if he’d told us all about COVID-19 in advance so that we could get ahead of it.

    But He didn’t. In any of those and many other cases. So even if He’s actually there, He might as well not have been.

    Maybe God is a quantum phenomenon. He both exists and doesn’t exist at the same time. He’s only there when you look, a bit like an illusion.

  59. 59
    Seversky says:

    Ed George@ 46

    Egnor May be a good surgeon but I stopped taking anything he says seriously when he claimed that all mass shootings are caused by Democrats.

    Agreed. Personally, I find clinical neurologist Steven Novella makes a lot more sense.

  60. 60
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, I did read the article and it is you who is cherry picking only the parts you want to listen to.

    You apparently do not understand what the Leggett and Garg inequality is all about

    In contrast to the spatial Bell’s inequalities, which probe entanglement between spatially-separated systems, the Leggett-Garg inequalities test the correlations of a single system measured at different times. Violation of a genuine Leggett-Garg test implies either the absence of a realistic description of the system or the impossibility of measuring the system without disturbing it.

    Again,

    The researchers observed the strong correlations predicted by Leggett and Garg, as they report in a paper in press at Physical Review Letters. “As we expected, it’s a very obvious effect,” Formaggio says. The data underscore that the neutrino has no flavor until it’s actually measured, he says.
    The result is not surprising, Garg says, as neutrino oscillations are inherently quantum mechanical. Still, he says, it “probes the conflict between the quantum and classical worlds in a new regime.”

    Of related note to Leggett,

    Do we create the world just by looking at it? – 2008
    Excerpt: In mid-2007 Fedrizzi found that the new realism model was violated by 80 orders of magnitude; the group was even more assured that quantum mechanics was correct.
    Leggett agrees with Zeilinger that realism is wrong in quantum mechanics, but when I asked him whether he now believes in the theory, he answered only “no” before demurring, “I’m in a small minority with that point of view and I wouldn’t stake my life on it.” For Leggett there are still enough loopholes to disbelieve. I asked him what could finally change his mind about quantum mechanics. Without hesitation, he said sending humans into space as detectors to test the theory.,,,
    (to which Anton Zeilinger responded)
    When I mentioned this to Prof. Zeilinger he said, “That will happen someday. There is no doubt in my mind. It is just a question of technology.” Alessandro Fedrizzi had already shown me a prototype of a realism experiment he is hoping to send up in a satellite. It’s a heavy, metallic slab the size of a dinner plate.
    http://seedmagazine.com/conten....._tests/P3/

  61. 61
    ET says:

    LoL! So because mankind chose the route of knowledge that makes God bad? It’s our responsibility to figure out nature. And thankfully we were intelligently designed with the ability and resources to do so.

  62. 62
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @Seversky a lot of people get confused into thinking observation means, like, eyeball. Used in QM it really means an interaction with an element outside the system. If your QM system gets hit by a photon and it raises an atom’s energy level, that’s an “observation”. No consciousness required. But there’s a lot of woo woo babble that confuses people who don’t know any QM.

  63. 63
    Truthfreedom says:

    @59 Seversky

    Agreed. Personally, I find clinical neurologist Steven Novella makes a lot more sense.

    This is the neurologist that says that:
    ‘our perception of reality is an illusion, but an illusion that resembles reality’.
    Sorry, but it makes zero sense. I wouldn’t trust such a person at all.
    https://mindmatters.ai/2019/07/tales-of-the-mind-a-neurologist-encounters-the-house-of-mirrors/

  64. 64
    Truthfreedom says:

    @62 Jim Thibodeau

    But there’s a lot of woo woo babble that confuses people who don’t know any QM.

    Trust me. Philosophy is NOT your field of expertise.

  65. 65

    #62

    An observation creates a record within an established medium, which is discontinuous to a function within a system. You can’t name an unambiguous instance of observation that is not. There certainly may be some “woo woo babble that confuses people”, but in your case, I wouldn’t be pointing any fingers.

  66. 66
    bornagain77 says:

    Jim Thibodeau states,

    If your QM system gets hit by a photon and it raises an atom’s energy level, that’s an “observation”. No consciousness required. But there’s a lot of woo woo babble that confuses people who don’t know any QM.

    The scenario that Jim Thibodeau is referring to is known as ‘decoherence”. Apparently unbeknownst to Jim Thibodeau, in his rush to label the falsification of ‘realism’ by quantum mechanics as “woo woo babble that confuses people”, is that decoherence has now been falsified as the explanation for quantum wave collapse by ‘interaction free measurements’. As Richard Conn Henry explains, “A common way to evade the mental universe is to invoke “decoherence” – the notion that “the physical environment” is sufficient to create reality, independent of the human mind. Yet the idea that any irreversible act of amplification is necessary to collapse the wave function is known to be wrong: in “Renninger-type” experiments, the wave function is collapsed simply by your human mind seeing nothing. The universe is entirely mental,,,, The Universe is immaterial — mental and spiritual. Live, and enjoy.”

    The Mental Universe – Richard Conn Henry – Professor of Physics John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: The only reality is mind and observations, but observations are not of things. To see the Universe as it really is, we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things.,,, Physicists shy away from the truth because the truth is so alien to everyday physics. A common way to evade the mental universe is to invoke “decoherence” – the notion that “the physical environment” is sufficient to create reality, independent of the human mind. Yet the idea that any irreversible act of amplification is necessary to collapse the wave function is known to be wrong: in “Renninger-type” experiments, the wave function is collapsed simply by your human mind seeing nothing. The universe is entirely mental,,,, The Universe is immaterial — mental and spiritual. Live, and enjoy.
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/The.mental.universe.pdf

    Interaction-Free Measurements
    In physics, interaction-free measurement is a type of measurement in quantum mechanics that detects the position, presence, or state of an object without an interaction occurring between it and the measuring device. Examples include the Renninger negative-result experiment, the Elitzur–Vaidman bomb-testing problem [1], and certain double-cavity optical systems, such as Hardy’s paradox.,,,
    Initially proposed as thought experiments, interaction-free measurements have been experimentally demonstrated in various configurations, 6,7,8,,
    6. Kwiat, Paul; Weinfurter, Harald; Herzog, Thomas; Zeilinger, Anton; Kasevich, Mark A. (1995-06-12). “Interaction-Free Measurement”. Physical Review Letters. 74 (24):
    7. White, Andrew G. (1998). “”Interaction-free” imaging”. Physical Review A. 58 (1):
    8. Tsegaye, T.; Goobar, E.; Karlsson, A.; Björk, G.; Loh, M. Y.; Lim, K. H. (1998-05-01). “Efficient interaction-free measurements in a high-finesse interferometer”. Physical Review A. 57 (5):
    – per wikipedia

    As the following interaction free measurement article explains, “its presence can be detected without interacting with a single atom.”

    Interaction-free measurements by quantum Zeno stabilization of ultracold atoms – 14 April 2015
    Excerpt: In our experiments, we employ an ultracold gas in an unstable spin configuration, which can undergo a rapid decay. The object—realized by a laser beam—prevents this decay because of the indirect quantum Zeno effect and thus, its presence can be detected without interacting with a single atom.
    http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2.....S-20150415

    As well there is now known to be “retrocausality” in Quantum Mechanics that completely undermines the reasoning behind atheists invoking decoherence in the first place, (i.e. that reasoning being atheists trying to save a classical view of the world that is compatible with their atheism). As the following article states, “a decision made in the present can influence something in the past.”

    Physicists provide support for retrocausal quantum theory, in which the future influences the past
    July 5, 2017 by Lisa Zyga
    Excerpt: retrocausality means that, when an experimenter chooses the measurement setting with which to measure a particle, that decision can influence the properties of that particle (or another particle) in the past, even before the experimenter made their choice. In other words, a decision made in the present can influence something in the past.
    https://phys.org/news/2017-07-physicists-retrocausal-quantum-theory-future.html

    The following video also explains why decoherence does not solve the measurement problem: i.e. The irresolvable dilemma of deriving the “Born rule” within the MWI is discussed at the 4:30 minute mark of the following video,

    The Measurement Problem in quantum mechanics – (Inspiring Philosophy) – 2014 video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qB7d5V71vUE

    Even Steven Weinberg himself, an atheist, rejects decoherence as a viable explanation for quantum wave collapse:

    The Trouble with Quantum Mechanics – Steven Weinberg – January 19, 2017
    The trouble is that in quantum mechanics the way that wave functions change with time is governed by an equation, the Schrödinger equation, that does not involve probabilities. It is just as deterministic as Newton’s equations of motion and gravitation. That is, given the wave function at any moment, the Schrödinger equation will tell you precisely what the wave function will be at any future time. There is not even the possibility of chaos, the extreme sensitivity to initial conditions that is possible in Newtonian mechanics. So if we regard the whole process of measurement as being governed by the equations of quantum mechanics, and these equations are perfectly deterministic, how do probabilities get into quantum mechanics?
    One common answer is that, in a measurement, the spin (or whatever else is measured) is put in an interaction with a macroscopic environment that jitters in an unpredictable way. For example, the environment might be the shower of photons in a beam of light that is used to observe the system, as unpredictable in practice as a shower of raindrops. Such an environment causes the superposition of different states in the wave function to break down, leading to an unpredictable result of the measurement. (This is called decoherence.) It is as if a noisy background somehow unpredictably left only one of the notes of a chord audible. But this begs the question. If the deterministic Schrödinger equation governs the changes through time not only of the spin but also of the measuring apparatus and the physicist using it, then the results of measurement should not in principle be unpredictable. So we still have to ask, how do probabilities get into quantum mechanics?,,,
    http://quantum.phys.unm.edu/46.....inberg.pdf

    Perhaps the simplest way to invalidate decoherence as a viable explanation for quantum wave collapse is to note that a photon is able to survive all the way to detection at the retina.

    If decoherence really explained the measurement problem, then how is it remotely possible that a photon is able to survive all the way to detection at the retina whilst avoiding being ‘decohered’ by its interactions with the billions upon billion of molecules in the eye? The following paper found that the human eye can detect the presence of a single photon, the researchers stated that “Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”,,,

    Study suggests humans can detect even the smallest units of light – July 21, 2016
    Excerpt: Research,, has shown that humans can detect the presence of a single photon, the smallest measurable unit of light. Previous studies had established that human subjects acclimated to the dark were capable only of reporting flashes of five to seven photons.,,,
    it is remarkable: a photon, the smallest physical entity with quantum properties of which light consists, is interacting with a biological system consisting of billions of cells, all in a warm and wet environment,” says Vaziri. “The response that the photon generates survives all the way to the level of our awareness despite the ubiquitous background noise. Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”,,,
    The gathered data from more than 30,000 trials demonstrated that humans can indeed detect a single photon incident on their eye with a probability significantly above chance.
    “What we want to know next is how does a biological system achieve such sensitivity? How does it achieve this in the presence of noise?
    http://phys.org/news/2016-07-humans-smallest.html

    The retina detecting a single photon simply should not even be possible if decoherence were truly the explanation of quantum wave collapse.

    Moreover, they are now seeking to “probe our understanding of quantum reality” by using human eyes themselves as detectors.

    The Human Eye Could Help Test Quantum Mechanics
    Experiments to confirm we can see single photons offer new ways to probe our understanding of quantum reality
    By Anil Ananthaswamy on July 10, 2018
    Excerpt: Now, “there’s absolutely no doubt that individual photoreceptors respond to single photons,”,,,
    In 2016 a team led by biophysicist Alipasha Vaziri, then at the University of Vienna, reported using single-photon sources to show “humans can detect a single-photon incident on their eye with a probability significantly above chance.”
    Kwiat’s team,,, wants to improve the statistics by doing a much larger number of trials with many more subjects.
    – per scientific american

    I am extremely confident that the results of using humans themselves as detectors, will be, as the experiments always have been in the past with quantum mechanics, extremely disappointing for atheistic materialists.

    Thus in conclusion, the only confusion with quantum mechanics as “woo woo babble that confuses people” is with Jim Thibodeau himself when he, (whether purposely or through ignorance), invoked the now refuted mechanism of decoherence to try to ‘explain away’ the ‘spooky’ findings of quantum mechanics that falsify his materialistic worldview.

    Supplemental notes:

    How Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness Correlate – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4f0hL3Nrdas

    Quantum Physics Debunks Materialism (v2)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wM0IKLv7KrE

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    Verse:

    Colossians 1:17
    He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

  67. 67
    Truthfreedom says:

    @66 Bornagain77:

    Apparently unbeknownst to Jim Thibodeau…

    Jim Thibodeau does not understand QM. It is patently clear.
    Nor does he understand philosophy.
    But according to he himself, he is nothing more than a purposeless hyped-up monkey, a residue of ‘evolution’ that can not even trust his thought processes (confirmation bias, blind spots, reality is ‘not real’, morals are a ‘trick’…etc, etc)
    -At least he understands what naturalism entails. Lunacy.

  68. 68
    Truthfreedom says:

    @57 Ed George

    I hope that all churches do their part in avoiding the spreading of this virus and cancel all services.

    For those who are stressed/ feel anguish, I have found some words of encouragement:

    The human race is just a chemical scum on a moderate-sized planet, orbiting around a very average star in the outer suburb of one among a hundred billion galaxies. We are so insignificant…
    Stephen Hawking

    The universe and life are pointless…
    Jerry Coyne

    Humans have always wondered about the meaning of life…life has no higher purpose than to perpetuate the survival of DNA…life has no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference. Richard Dawkins

  69. 69
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @Truthfreedom #68

    I have some actual words of encouragement from the methodological materialism of science.

    1) So far, it looks like at least 97% of people will survive being infected with the virus.
    2) We have gotten pretty good at creating vaccines, and there are a number of candidate vaccines that are being tested right now for the corona virus.
    3) Proper hygiene and social distancing can help you avoid infection until a vaccine is available.

    It’s not a promise of everlasting life, but nobody really expects THAT.

  70. 70
    Truthfreedom says:

    @69 Pater Kimbridge

    I have some actual words of encouragement from the methodological materialism of science.

    – So only if you believe in philosophical materialism can you practice science?
    https://strangenotions.com/the-big-problems-with-naturalism/
    – Another very interesting point: according to you, prolonging a pointless life is something ‘good’/ ‘remarkable’. Makes zero sense.

  71. 71
    Truthfreedom says:

    @ Pater Kimbridge

    So far, it looks like at least 97% of people will survive being infected with the virus.

    -Thank the immune system, which is the result of ‘mindless processes’ and that is so ‘imperfect’ according to naturalists.

  72. 72
    Ed George says:

    Thankfully, most churches have cancelled all services. Given the older demographics of church attendees, and the fact that COVID-19 is most deadly for the elderly, this is a wise move. For any that refuse to cancel services after government instruction to prevent gatherings, I hope that they are charged with public endangerment and gross negligence.

  73. 73
    Truthfreedom says:

    @Ed George

    For any that refuse to cancel services after government instruction to prevent gatherings, I hope that they are charged with public endangerment and gross negligence.

    Good to know you support homosexuals and promiscuous people who spread AIDS and other STDs charged with public endangerment and gross negligence.
    They have killed and harmed millions.

  74. 74
    Truthfreedom says:

    *being charged*.

  75. 75
    ET says:

    Eddie George is clueless. The ban is for gatherings of 500 people or more.

  76. 76
    Ed George says:

    TF

    Good to know you support homosexuals and promiscuous people who spread AIDS and other STDs charged with public endangerment and gross negligence.
    They have killed and harmed millions.

    If a person knows he/she has an STD and has unprotected sex with someone without informing them, they are charged. There have been plenty of examples. A pastor who proceeds with services when informed of the serious risks involved should also be charged. Especially if the state has imposed bans on gathering of that size. Or are you going to argue that this violates religious freedom?

  77. 77
    ET says:

    I haven’t seen a church service with 500 or more people since my Dad died. I doubt it’s an issue

  78. 78
    bornagain77 says:

    Pater Kimbridge at 69 falsely claims that nobody really expects life after death,

    It’s not a promise of everlasting life, but nobody really expects THAT.

    Pater Kimbridge is either ignorant or else he is purposely lying. The fact of the matter is that most Americans (3/4ths of the population) have consistently believed in life after death.

    Paradise Polled: Americans and the Afterlife
    Excerpt: Americans’ belief in an afterlife is very stable across the decades, showing little variability since 1944,,, belief in life after death remains roughly in the range of seven in ten. (73% as of 2014)
    https://ropercenter.cornell.edu/paradise-polled-americans-and-afterlife
    Graph since 1944
    https://ropercenter.cornell.edu/sites/default/files/Beliefs-about-heaven-hell-life-after-death.gif

    Moreover, whereas atheists have no compelling evidence for all the various extra dimensions, parallel universe and/or multiverse scenarios that they have put forth, Christians, on the other hand, (as is shown in the following video), can appeal directly to the higher dimensional mathematics behind Quantum Mechanics, Special Relativity and General Relativity to support their belief that God upholds this universe in its continual existence, as well as to support their belief in a heavenly dimension and in a hellish dimension.

    Quantum Mechanics, Special Relativity, General Relativity and Christianity – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4QDy1Soolo

    As well, Christians can appeal to recent advances in quantum biology to support their belief in a soul that is capable of living beyond the death of our temporal-material bodies

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    As Stuart Hameroff states in the following article, the quantum information,,, isn’t destroyed. It can’t be destroyed.,,, it’s possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body. Perhaps indefinitely as a soul.”

    Leading Scientists Say Consciousness Cannot Die It Goes Back To The Universe – Oct. 19, 2017 – Spiritual
    Excerpt: “Let’s say the heart stops beating. The blood stops flowing. The microtubules lose their quantum state. But the quantum information, which is in the microtubules, isn’t destroyed. It can’t be destroyed. It just distributes and dissipates to the universe at large. If a patient is resuscitated, revived, this quantum information can go back into the microtubules and the patient says, “I had a near death experience. I saw a white light. I saw a tunnel. I saw my dead relatives.,,” Now if they’re not revived and the patient dies, then it’s possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body. Perhaps indefinitely as a soul.”
    – Stuart Hameroff – Quantum Entangled Consciousness – Life After Death – video (5:00 minute mark)
    https://www.disclose.tv/leading-scientists-say-consciousness-cannot-die-it-goes-back-to-the-universe-315604

    Verse:

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

  79. 79
    Truthfreedom says:

    @76 Ed George

    Or are you going to argue that this violates religious freedom?

    A loaded question is a question with a false or questionable presupposition, and it is “loaded” with that presumption.
    The question “Have you stopped beating your wife?” is a loaded question that presupposes that you have beaten your wife prior to its asking, as well as that you have a wife. If you are unmarried, or have never beaten your wife, then the question is loaded.

  80. 80
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77@ 60
    Since you insist on quote-mining, take this quote:

    Do we create the world just by looking at it? – 2008
    Excerpt: In mid-2007 Fedrizzi found that the new realism model was violated by 80 orders of magnitude; the group was even more assured that quantum mechanics was correct.
    Leggett agrees with Zeilinger that realism is wrong in quantum mechanics, but when I asked him whether he now believes in the theory, he answered only “no” before demurring, “I’m in a small minority with that point of view and I wouldn’t stake my life on it.” For Leggett there are still enough loopholes to disbelieve. I asked him what could finally change his mind about quantum mechanics. Without hesitation, he said sending humans into space as detectors to test the theory.,,,
    (to which Anton Zeilinger responded)
    When I mentioned this to Prof. Zeilinger he said, “That will happen someday. There is no doubt in my mind. It is just a question of technology.” Alessandro Fedrizzi had already shown me a prototype of a realism experiment he is hoping to send up in a satellite. It’s a heavy, metallic slab the size of a dinner plate.
    http://seedmagazine.com/conten….._tests/P3/

    and tell us what you understand “realism” to mean in the context of quantum mechanics. To assist you, I found this discussion:

    When physicists doing work in quantum measurement, decoherence, Bells’ inequalities etc. use the term “realism” what exactly do they mean?

    I’m looking for answers targeted towards, say, someone whose had formal education in physics, including multiple years of QM, but is not well versed in the literature in this sub-domain.

    I see popular accounts of some results in this field describing the conclusions of experiments as, to paraphrase, “disproving realism” and I’m suspicious that physicists are using this term in a localized manner that does not carry with it all of the implications that the term “realism” has in ordinary English.

    (…)

    Unfortunately, exactly how you define realism sometimes depends on whether or not you are trying to disprove it.

    For instance you might label a theory as having realism if measurements passively reveal a preexisting property. And there is a lot to unpack there. First we will review some quantum mechanics.

    Basically if you measured the z^ component of a spin 1/2 system twice in a row then the second time you will get the same result as you got the first time.

    The actual state after the first measurement is one that must give that result for that kind of measurement (the z^ component of that spin 1/2 system). You don’t have to debate realism for this, it is just what Quantum Mechanics predicts. The state sometimes perfectly and reliably predicts a particular measurement outcome.

    So lets now discuss another example. First you measure the z^ component of a spin 1/2 system and then instead of doing another z^ measurement you measure the x^ component of the same spin 1/2 system. Now you get a result of ±?/2 but now you can bring realism in since multiple results are predicted.

    One approach is common if you want to disprove realism. You say that realism means the system that just underwent a measurement of the z^ component of a spin 1/2 system actually has

    a spin of +?/2 for a x^ component of the spin, or
    that it has a spin of ??/2 for a x^ component of the spin.
    And furthermore, that a x^ measurement, if done now, would reveal that property. You need the last part about revealing, since you can’t just throw the word actual around without some experimental consequences or else it is meaningless.

    And now you can argue that realism makes predictions. And they are predictions that disagree with Quantum Mechanics. But that’s exactly how you define realism if your goal is to disagree with Quantum Mechanics.

    If you don’t want to disagree with Quantum Mechanics, you can still have realism. You just have to say that measurements change the state of the system rather than passively revealing something.

    For instance in Bohmian Mechanics they can be realists about position, and then they say that spin measurement outcomes are determined solely by the spin state of the system, the type and calibration of device used, and the position.

    So someone using Bohmian Mechanics could say they have realism because they were a realist about enough things to totally determine the results (states and position), but they didn’t try to be a realist about other things (like components of spin) besides the things that were enough to determine all the results.

    And no one one should try. Because the results you get for different measurements (e.g. two z^ and an x^) can depend on the order you do them (z^, z^, x^ always have the two z^ agree with each other, and z^, x^, z^ can have the two z^ disagree with each other). So clearly what we call a measurement is an interaction that changes the state and not a passively revealing of knowledge. It can change a state from an eigenstate of ?^z into an eigenstate of ?^x. You can not expect noncommuting operators to passively reveal preexisting eigenvalues, that would not make sense for the noncommon eigenvectors.

    It’s not so different than the colloquial idea that things appear a certain way becasue they already were a particular way and that the correspondence is pretty tight.

    In Quantum Mechanics when you have multiple results possible for one state, it’s hard to have a tight correspondence. If you add something in addition to a state to make a tight correspondence you can get something just like realism … if you want. But you can’t have more than is needed to determine the results because then you go beyond a tight correspondence to an inconsistent theory.

    So Bohmian Mechanics as an example has to stop with states and position and doesn’t have spin measurements passively reveal preexisting components of spin. It just has a state and a position.

    One other point, if you argue there is no physical reality underpinning our observations then what we see is no more than a figment of our imagination – or an illusion – exactly as Coyne or Novella and others have pointed out. Is that what you believe?

  81. 81
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, it seems that you need far more help in understanding what realism means in quantum mechanics than I do.

    You tried to help me understand what realism means in quantum mechanics by referencing an article on Bohmian Mechanics. Yet Bohmian mechanics has been falsified:

    A Critique of Bohmian Mechanics
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pn2hoU4jaQQ

    A particularly straightforward falsification of pilot wave theory, i.e. Bohmian mechanics, is that it simply doesn’t mesh with Quantum Electrodynamics, (i.e. Quantum Mechanics as applied to Special Relativity), which is regarded as one of our most precisely tested theories ever in the history of science.

    Bohmian mechanics, a ludicrous caricature of Nature – Lubos Motl – July 15, 2013
    Excerpt: There’s no way out here. If you attempt to emulate a quantum field theory (QED) in this Bohmian way, you introduce lots of ludicrous gears and wheels – much like in the case of the luminiferous aether, they are gears and wheels that don’t exist according to pretty much direct observations – and they must be finely adjusted to reproduce what quantum mechanics predicts (sometimes) without any adjustments whatsoever. Every new Bohmian gear or wheel you encounter generally breaks the Lorentz symmetry and makes the (wrong) prediction of a Lorentz violation and you will need to fine-tune infinitely many properties of these gears and wheels to restore the Lorentz invariance and other desirable properties of a physical theory (even a simple and fundamental thing such as the linearity of Schrödinger’s equation is really totally unexplained in Bohmian mechanics and requires infinitely many adjustments to hold – while it may be derived from logical consistency in quantum mechanics). It’s infinitely unlikely that they take the right values “naturally” so the theory is at least infinitely contrived. More likely, there’s no way to adjust the gears and wheels to obtain relativistically invariant predictions at all.

    I would say that we pretty much directly experimentally observe the fact that the observations obey the Lorentz symmetry; the wave function isn’t an observable wave; and lots of other, totally universal and fundamental facts about the symmetries and the interpretation of the basic objects we use in physics. Bohmian mechanics is really trying to deny all these basic principles – it is trying to deny facts that may be pretty much directly extracted from experiments. It is in conflict with the most universal empirical data about the reality collected in the 20th and 21st century. It wants to rape Nature.

    A pilot-wave-like theory has to be extracted from a very large class of similar classical theories but infinitely many adjustments have to be made – a very special subclass has to be chosen – for the Bohmian theory to reproduce at least some predictions of quantum mechanics (to produce predictions that are at least approximately local, relativistic, rotationally invariant, unitary, linear etc.). But even if one succeeds and the Bohmian theory does reproduce the quantum predictions, we can’t really say that it has made the correct predictions because it was sometimes infinitely fudged or adjusted to produce the predetermined goal. On the other hand, quantum mechanics in general and specific quantum mechanical theories in particular genuinely do predict certain facts, including some very general facts about Nature. If you search for theories within the rigid quantum mechanical framework, while obeying the general postulates, you may make many correct predictions or conclusions pretty much without any additional assumptions.
    https://motls.blogspot.com/2013/07/bohmian-mechanics-ludicrous-caricature.html

    Of humorous note:

    “When Bohm expressed “hope” that violations of QM (Quantum Mechanics) would be found later and hidden variables supported, Bohr responded that the strange sentence is almost isomorphic to “I hope that 2×2=5 will be proven at some point which will have a good effect on our finances.”
    https://motls.blogspot.com/2015/12/how-term-copenhagen-interpretation-got.html

  82. 82
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77@ 81

    Seversky, it seems that you need far more help in understanding what realism means in quantum mechanics than I do.

    I asked what you understood to be the meaning of “realism” in the context of quantum mechanics and whether you believe that, in the absence of a physical basis for our perceptions of reality, all we are left with is an illusion, as others have argued.

    You replied with yet another quote, this time from a Czech theoretical physicist, Lubos Motl, offering a somewhat acerbic critique of Bohmian Mechanics which does not answer either of the questions I asked. if you want a different perspective, try the entry on Bohmian Mechanics in the online Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

    If you don’t want to answer the questions that is your choice. I will simply point out that neither of us are quantum physicists and that these issues are far beyond the competence of either of us. For you to argue that quantum phenomena point to the existence of the Christian God or souls is as ill-founded as if I were to claim the same phenomena disprove the existence of your God. As far as I’m able to tell the science does not support either claim. Any assertion to the contrary is either misleading or made out of egnorance.

  83. 83
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, funny you yourself brought up, as the main body of your post, Bohmian Mechanics to try to ‘help me’ understand realism in quantum mechanics and yet when I show Bohmian Mechanics is patently absurd, you get huffy because I did not answer a question you asked after your referenced article.

    Perhaps you should not let your emotions dictate your posts?

  84. 84
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Motl is a major proponent of string theory, and pretty much thinks anybody who doubts it is an idiot.

  85. 85
    Truthfreedom says:

    @80 Seversky

    …then what we see is no more than a figment of our imagination – or an illusion – exactly as Coyne or Novella and others have pointed out.

    Could you please explain how does the above quote make sense? (I wouldn’t trust coyne’s non-sensical ramblings at all).
    -What we see is ‘a figment of our imagination’?

  86. 86
    bornagain77 says:

    Jim Thibodeau, Motl is hardly the only major theoretical physicist who has a very strong ‘belief’ in string theory.

    String Theory
    A Controversy in Ten Dimensions
    Major Actors
    Supporters

    Thomas Banks
    Professor at University of California Santa Cruz studying the foundations of string theory and M-theory. He received his Ph.D. from MIT in 1973. In 1997 he and others formulated explicit mathematical expressions describing the dynamics of M-theory.

    Peter Goddard
    British mathematical physicist and one of the earliest physicist to work on string theory. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge in 1971, and is currently the director of the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. He was awarded the Dirac Prize in 1997 in part for his pioneering work in string theory.

    Michael Green
    British theoretical physicist at the University of Cambridge. He received his Ph.D. from there in 1970. While lecturing at the University of London in the mid 1980’s, he and John Schwarz established the foundations of superstring theory.

    Brian Greene
    American theoretical physicist and professor at Columbia Universty. He received his Ph.D. from Oxford University in 1987, and since has become one of the most recognizable proponents of string theory in the popular media. His 1999 book The Elegant Universe and the subsequent NOVA documentary did much to popularize string theory and the controversy surrounding it.

    David Gross
    American particle physicist and string theorist at the University of California in Santa Barbara. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in 1966, and developed heterotic string theory while serving as a professor at Princeton University. At Princeton he also did seminal work in formulating the theory of quantum chromodynamics, for which he was awarded a Nobel Prize in 2004.

    Steven Gubser
    American string theorist at Princeton University. He received his Ph.D. from the same institution in 1998. That year, he, Klebanov, and Polyakov published an influential paper detailing the application of the AdS/CFT correspondence towards deriving meaningful results in quantum field theory.

    Gerardus ‘t Hooft
    Danish theoretical physicist at Utrecht University. He made seminal contributions to the study of string theory dualities in the early 1990’s, and developed an early version of the holographic principle. Additionally, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1999 for his earlier work on the mathematical foundations of more conventional quantum field theories.

    Igor Klebanov
    Russian string theorist and particle physicist at Princeton University studying the relationship between string theory and quantum field theories. In 1998 he, Gubser, and Polyakov published a highly cited paper showing the power of the AdS/CFT correspondence to produce useful results.

    Juan Maldacena
    Argentinian string theorist and professor at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1996, and two years later proposed the AdS/CFT correspondence. He was awarded the Dirac Medal in 2008.

    Emil Martinec
    American string theorist and particle physicist at the University of Chicago. He received his Ph.D. from Cornell in 1984, and worked with David Gross to develop heterotic string theory in 1985.

    Luboš Motl
    Czech string theorist who has recently left academia. HEe runs a blog called The Reference Frame in which he defends string theory against the arguments of its critics. In 2006 he, along with Joseph Polchinski, defended string theory against criticisms levied against it by Lee Smolin in his book The Trouble with Physics.

    Yoichiro Nambu
    Japanese-American physicist currently at the University of Chicago. He received his D.Sc. from Tokyo University in 1952, and since then has made seminal contributions to many areas of particle physics. In 1969, he was one of the first to realize that Veneziano’s dual resonance model of the strong interaction could be interpreted as a theory of vibrating strings. In 2008 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for his work on the origin of mass in particle physics.

    Holger Nielsen
    Danish theoretical physicist who was the first to realize in 1969 that Veneziano’s dual resonance model of the strong interaction could be interpreted as a theory of vibrating strings.

    Joseph Polchinski
    American string theorist at the University of California in Santa Barbara. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1980, and in 1995 he introduced D-Branes into string theory, the first to recognize that they were a fundamental component of the theory. He is also a vocal opponent of the criticisms against string theory leveled by Lee Smolin and Peter Woit. He was awarded the Dirac Medal in 2008.

    Alexander Polyakov
    Russian theoretical physicist currently at Princeton University. He worked on the foundations of string theory in the early 1980’s, and in the 1990’s made seminal contributions to the study of dualities in string theory. In 1998 he published a key paper with Gubser and Klebanov on the application of the AdS/CFT correspondence to quantum field theory. Additionaly, was awarded the Dirac Medal in 1986 for his contributions to quantum field theory.

    Joël Scherk
    American theoretical physicist who, in 1974 realized, along with John Schwarz, that string theory was capable of describing gravitation. He died unexpectedly in 1980.

    John Schwarz
    American string theorist and professor at the California Institute of Technology. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley in 1966. He made key contributions to early string theory with both Joël Scherk and Michael Green.

    Nathan Seiberg
    Israeli-American string theorist at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He received his Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute in Israel in 1982. In 1998 he and Ed Witten detailed the importance of non-commutative geometry to M-theory.

    Andrew Strominger
    American string theorist at Harvard University. He received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1982, and in 1996 he and Cumrun Vafa used string theory to derive fundamental results about black hole thermodynamics.

    Leonard Susskind
    American string theorist and cosmologist at Stanford University. He received his Ph.D. in 1965 from Cornell University, and in 1979 was one of the first to realize that Veneziano’s dual resonance model of the strong interaction could be interpreted as a theory of vibrating strings. Later, he developed a version of the holographic principle using the AdS/CFT correspondence, and is a proponent of using the anthropic principle as a resolution to the string theory vacuum probelm.

    Cumrun Vafa
    Iranian-American string theorist at Harvard University. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton Universty in 1985. He and Strominger applied string theory to describe black hole thermodynamics in 1996. In 2008 he was awarded the Dirac Medal.

    Gabriele Veneziano
    Italian theoretical physicist and string theorist. His 1968 dual resonance model of the strong interaction was the first string theory to be discovered, and thus he is regarded as a founder of the field.

    Ed Witten
    American mathematician and theoretical physicist at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He received his Ph.D. in physics in 1976 from Princeton University. He has made landmark contributions to string theory from the 1980’s to the present day, most notably the development of M-theory in 1995. He was awarded the Fields Medal in 1990 for his contributions to mathematics and mathematical physics.
    http://web.mit.edu/demoscience.....ctors.html

    That is quite an impressive list for Motl to be associated with.

    Thus that Motl strongly believes in string theory, and yet finds Bohmian mechanics to be absurd, is certainly not a defense of Bohmian mechanics. It merely shows that he is strongly committed to finding a purely mathematical theory of everything.

    Moreover Jim Thibodeau, since you, an atheist, apparently find string theory to be absurd, exactly what is your mathematical solution to unifying QED and Gravity into a theory of everything if you do not have string theory? You are basically left with nothing without string theory or something akin to it.

    As a Christian, I have my own theory, that does not rely solely on mathematics to find the ‘theory of everything, but instead rightly relies on the Mind of God that ‘breathes fire into the equations’ that describe our universe so as to find the ‘theory of everything:

    KEEP IT SIMPLE – Edward Feser – April 2020
    Excerpt: Mathematics appears to describe a realm of entities with quasi-­divine attributes. The series of natural numbers is infinite. That one and one equal two and two and two equal four could not have been otherwise. Such mathematical truths never begin being true or cease being true; they hold eternally and immutably. The lines, planes, and figures studied by the geometer have a kind of perfection that the objects of our ­experience lack. Mathematical objects seem ­immaterial and known by pure reason rather than through the senses. Given the centrality of mathematics to scientific explanation, it seems in some way to be a cause of the natural world and its order.
    How can the mathematical realm be so apparently godlike? The traditional answer, originating in Neoplatonic philosophy and Augustinian theology, is that our knowledge of the mathematical realm is precisely knowledge, albeit inchoate, of the divine mind. Mathematical truths exhibit infinity, necessity, eternity, immutability, perfection, and immateriality because they are God’s thoughts, and they have such explanatory power in scientific theorizing because they are part of the blueprint implemented by God in creating the world. For some thinkers in this tradition, mathematics thus provides the starting point for an argument for the existence of God qua supreme intellect.,,,
    https://www.firstthings.com/article/2020/04/keep-it-simple

    Not only was science born out of Christian presuppositions, but science also finds its ultimate resolution for the quote unquote ‘theory of everything’ in Christ’s Resurrection from the dead.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/how-christianity-aided-modern-science/#comment-695211

  87. 87
    martin_r says:

    seversky

    so, you decided to BELIEVE that one day scientists will figure out where the MOST ABUNDANT organism on Earth (viruses) comes from, because right now they are clueless, because the common descent idea does not work with viruses.

    So, Seversky, please explain to me, you are A BELIEVER too… so what exactly is the difference between you and me ? (except the fact that you believe in miracles)

  88. 88
    Truthfreedom says:

    @ Seversky
    Is COVID-19 ‘a figment of our imagination’?
    According to coyne and novella, it is.
    Wow.
    An imaginary pandemic.
    Darwinism is nuts.

  89. 89
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @Seversky My general rule is that I will only talk about quantum mechanics with people who have actually calculated Eigenvalues in multidimensional vector spaces, changed quantum numbers from n, l, ml, ms, etc.

    The reason is there is so much woo nonsense out there that the average person just has no idea what quantum mechanics entails. 🙂

  90. 90
    Truthfreedom says:

    @88 Jim Thibodeau

    The reason is there is so much woo nonsense out there that the average person just has no idea what quantum mechanics entails. ????

    Meaning: you do not have a clue and you do not understand QM.
    It is pretty obvious, your posts say it all.
    Nor do you understand philosophy.
    Oh, but you posted a smiley 🙂
    That means you won!
    Look, I won 3 times! 🙂 🙂 🙂

  91. 91
    Truthfreedom says:

    @90 Jim Thibodeau
    What does QM entail?
    Enlighten the plebes, please 🙂
    (I added a smile, did I ‘won’?)
    Jim, we all left kindergarten long ago.
    Try harder 🙂 (look, I won again!)
    Maybe next time you will offer an actual argument (I am not holding my breath).

    Meanwhile, take a look, materialism is irrational:
    https://strangenotions.com/the-big-problems-with-naturalism/

  92. 92
    Truthfreedom says:

    *Did I ‘win’?* 🙂

  93. 93
    bornagain77 says:

    I guess JT esteems himself to know more than Anton Zeilinger does about quantum mechanics:
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/how-christianity-aided-modern-science/#comment-695226

  94. 94
    Truthfreedom says:

    Jim Thibodeau and MatSpirit are amazingly, jaw-droppingly stupid.
    You have to see it to believe it.

  95. 95
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @90 Jim Thibodeau
    What does QM entail?
    Enlighten the plebes, please

    “There is no royal road to geometry.”

    From where I was academically when I decided to study it, it took me probably seven years to get a real comprehension of it. And I still can’t really visualize an electron. But I’m afraid for you the journey would be longer.

    On the bright side, it takes considerably less time to get to where special relativity makes a kind of intuitive sense!

  96. 96
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Sucks having no edit button. 😀

    @90 Jim Thibodeau
    What does QM entail?
    Enlighten the plebes, please

    “There is no royal road to geometry.”

    From where I was academically when I decided to study it, it took me probably seven years to get a real comprehension of it. And I still can’t really visualize an electron. But I’m afraid for you the journey would be longer.

    On the bright side, it takes considerably less time to get to where special relativity makes a kind of intuitive sense!

  97. 97
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    I would say it only took two or three years to be able to visualize how time slows down with speed. But then time slowing down with gravity is a short step away.

  98. 98
    bornagain77 says:

    Jim Thibodeau and exactly how does special, (or general relativity, or quantum mechanics for that matter), support your atheistic worldview?

    We now know from special relativity, that time, as we understand it, comes to a complete stop for a hypothetical observer travelling at the speed of light.

    To grasp the whole concept of time coming to a complete stop at the speed of light a little more easily, imagine moving away from the face of a clock at the speed of light. Would not the hands on the clock stay stationary as you moved away from the face of the clock at the speed of light? Moving away from the face of a clock at the speed of light happens to be the very same ‘thought experiment’ that gave Einstein his breakthrough insight into special relativity. Here is a short clip from a video that gives us a look into Einstein’s breakthrough insight.

    Einstein: Einstein’s Miracle Year (‘Insight into Eternity’ – Thought Experiment 55 second mark) – video
    http://www.history.com/topics/.....racle-year

    That time, as we understand it, comes to a complete stop at the speed of light, and yet light moves from point A to point B in our universe, and thus light is obviously not ‘frozen within time’, has some fairly profound implications.

    “The laws of relativity have changed timeless existence from a theological claim to a physical reality. Light, you see, is outside of time, a fact of nature proven in thousands of experiments at hundreds of universities. I don’t pretend to know how tomorrow can exist simultaneously with today and yesterday. But at the speed of light they actually and rigorously do. Time does not pass.”
    Dr. Richard Swenson – More Than Meets The Eye, Chpt. 11

    The only way it is possible for time not to pass for light, and yet for light to move from point A to point B in our universe, is if light is of a higher dimensional value of time than the temporal time we are currently living in. Otherwise light would simply be ‘frozen within time’ to our temporal frame of reference.

    And indeed that is exactly what is found. “Hermann Minkowski- one of the math professors of a young Einstein in Zurich—presented a geometric interpretation of special relativity that fused time and the three spatial dimensions of space into a single four-dimensional continuum now known as Minkowski space.” and “Einstein fully acknowledged his indebtedness to Minkowski, whose interpretation greatly facilitated the transition to general relativity.”

    Spacetime
    Excerpt: In 1908, Hermann Minkowski—once one of the math professors of a young Einstein in Zurich—presented a geometric interpretation of special relativity that fused time and the three spatial dimensions of space into a single four-dimensional continuum now known as Minkowski space. A key feature of this interpretation is the definition of a spacetime interval that combines distance and time. Although measurements of distance and time between events differ for measurements made in different reference frames, the spacetime interval is independent of the inertial frame of reference in which they are recorded.
    Minkowski’s geometric interpretation of relativity was to prove vital to Einstein’s development of his 1915 general theory of relativity, wherein he showed that spacetime becomes curved in the presence of mass or energy.,,,
    Einstein, for his part, was initially dismissive of Minkowski’s geometric interpretation of special relativity, regarding it as überflüssige Gelehrsamkeit (superfluous learnedness). However, in order to complete his search for general relativity that started in 1907, the geometric interpretation of relativity proved to be vital, and in 1916, Einstein fully acknowledged his indebtedness to Minkowski, whose interpretation greatly facilitated the transition to general relativity.[10]:151–152 Since there are other types of spacetime, such as the curved spacetime of general relativity, the spacetime of special relativity is today known as Minkowski spacetime.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spacetime

    One way for us to more easily understand this higher dimensional framework for time that light exist in is to visualize what would happen if a hypothetical observer approached the speed of light.

    In the first few minutes of the following video clip, which was made by two Australian University Physics Professors, we find that the 3-Dimensional world ‘folds and collapses’ into a tunnel shape as a ‘hypothetical’ observer approaches the ‘higher dimension’ of the speed of light. Of particular interest is the ‘headlight effect’ that can be visualized at the 3:06 minute mark of the video.

    Optical Effects of Special Relativity – video
    https://youtu.be/JQnHTKZBTI4?t=186

    Relativistic aberration
    Relativistic aberration is the relativistic version of aberration of light, including relativistic corrections that become significant for observers who move with velocities close to the speed of light. It is described by Einstein’s special theory of relativity.,,,
    One consequence of this is that a forward observer should normally be expected to intercept a greater proportion of the object’s light than a rearward one; this concentration of light in the object’s forward direction is referred to as the “searchlight effect” (or headlight effect).
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relativistic_aberration

    What is very interesting is that many of the characteristics found in heavenly Near Death Experience testimonies are exactly what we would expect to see from what we now know to be true about Special Relativity.

    For instance, many times people who have had a Near Death Experience mention that their perception of time was radically altered. In the following video clip, Mickey Robinson gives his Near Death testimony of what it felt like for him to experience a ‘timeless eternity’.

    ‘In the ‘spirit world,,, instantly, there was no sense of time. See, everything on earth is related to time. You got up this morning, you are going to go to bed tonight. Something is new, it will get old. Something is born, it’s going to die. Everything on the physical plane is relative to time, but everything in the spiritual plane is relative to eternity. Instantly I was in total consciousness and awareness of eternity, and you and I as we live in this earth cannot even comprehend it, because everything that we have here is filled within the veil of the temporal life. In the spirit life that is more real than anything else and it is awesome. Eternity as a concept is awesome. There is no such thing as time. I knew that whatever happened was going to go on and on.’
    In The Presence Of Almighty God – The NDE of Mickey Robinson – video (testimony starts at 27:45 minute mark)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=voak1RM-pXo

    And here are a few more quotes from people who have experienced Near Death, that speak of how their perception of time was radically altered as they were outside of their material body during their NDEs.

    ‘Earthly time has no meaning in the spirit realm. There is no concept of before or after. Everything – past, present, future – exists simultaneously.’
    – Kimberly Clark Sharp – Near Death Experiencer

    ‘There is no way to tell whether minutes, hours or years go by. Existence is the only reality and it is inseparable from the eternal now.’
    – John Star – NDE Experiencer

    As well, (exactly as we would a-priorily expect from special relativity), Near Death Experiencers also frequently mention going through a tunnel to a higher heavenly dimension:

    Ask the Experts: What Is a Near-Death Experience (NDE)? – article with video
    Excerpt: “Very often as they’re moving through the tunnel, there’s a very bright mystical light … not like a light we’re used to in our earthly lives. People call this mystical light, brilliant like a million times a million suns…”
    – Jeffrey Long M.D. – has studied NDE’s extensively

    The Tunnel and the Near-Death Experience
    Excerpt: One of the nine elements that generally occur during NDEs is the tunnel experience. This involves being drawn into darkness through a tunnel, at an extremely high speed, until reaching a realm of radiant golden-white light.

    In the following video, Barbara Springer gives her testimony as to what it felt like for her to go through the tunnel:

    “I started to move toward the light. The way I moved, the physics, was completely different than it is here on Earth. It was something I had never felt before and never felt since. It was a whole different sensation of motion. I obviously wasn’t walking or skipping or crawling. I was not floating. I was flowing. I was flowing toward the light. I was accelerating and I knew I was accelerating, but then again, I didn’t really feel the acceleration. I just knew I was accelerating toward the light. Again, the physics was different – the physics of motion of time, space, travel. It was completely different in that tunnel, than it is here on Earth. I came out into the light and when I came out into the light, I realized that I was in heaven.”
    Barbara Springer – Near Death Experience – The Tunnel – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gv2jLeoAcMI

    And in the following audio clip, Vicki Noratuk, (who has been blind from birth, besides being able to ‘miraculously” see for the first time during in her life during her Near Death Experience), Vicki also gives testimony of going through a tunnel:

    “I was in a body, and the only way that I can describe it was a body of energy, or of light. And this body had a form. It had a head, it had arms and it had legs. And it was like it was made out of light. And it was everything that was me. All of my memories, my consciousness, everything.”,,, “And then this vehicle formed itself around me. Vehicle is the only thing, or tube, or something, but it was a mode of transportation that’s for sure! And it formed around me. And there was no one in it with me. I was in it alone. But I knew there were other people ahead of me and behind me. What they were doing I don’t know, but there were people ahead of me and people behind me, but I was alone in my particular conveyance. And I could see out of it. And it went at a tremendously, horrifically, rapid rate of speed. But it wasn’t unpleasant. It was beautiful in fact.,, I was reclining in this thing, I wasn’t sitting straight up, but I wasn’t lying down either. I was sitting back. And it was just so fast. I can’t even begin to tell you where it went or whatever it was just fast!” –
    Vicki’s NDE – Blind since birth –
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e65KhcCS5-Y

    And in the following quotes, the two Near Death Experiencers both testify that they firmly believed that they were in a higher heavenly dimension that is above this three-dimensional world, and that the reason that they have a very difficult time explaining what their Near Death Experiences actually felt like is because we simply don’t currently have the words to properly describe that higher dimension:

    “Regardless, it is impossible for me to adequately describe what I saw and felt. When I try to recount my experiences now, the description feels very pale. I feel as though I’m trying to describe a three-dimensional experience while living in a two-dimensional world. The appropriate words, descriptions and concepts don’t even exist in our current language. I have subsequently read the accounts of other people’s near-death experiences and their portrayals of heaven and I able to see the same limitations in their descriptions and vocabulary that I see in my own.”
    Mary C. Neal, MD – To Heaven And Back pg. 71

    “Well, when I was taking geometry, they always told me there were only three dimensions, and I always just accepted that. But they were wrong. There are more… And that is why so hard for me to tell you this. I have to describe with words that are three-dimensional. That’s as close as I can get to it, but it’s really not adequate.”
    John Burke – Imagine Heaven pg. 51 – quoting a Near Death Experiencer

    That what we now know to be true from special relativity, (namely that it outlines a ‘timeless’, i.e. eternal, dimension that exists above this temporal dimension), would fit hand and glove with the personal testimonies of people who have had a deep heavenly NDE is, needless to say, powerful evidence that their testimonies are, in fact, true and that they are accurately describing the ‘reality’ of a higher heavenly dimension that exists above this temporal dimension.

    I would even go so far as to say that such corroboration from ‘non-physicists’, who know nothing about the intricacies of special relativity, is a complete scientific verification of the overall validity of their personal NDE testimonies.

    Luke 23:43
    Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

    2 Corinthians 12:2-4
    I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell.

    Supplemental note: The reality of a soul that is capable of living beyond the death of our material bodies is now strongly supported by advances in quantum biology:

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    Verses:

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

    Matthew 6:33
    But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

    Supplemental quote: ‘How You Think About Heaven Affects Everything in Life,’

    Texas Pastor John Burke Says Near-Death Experiences Are ‘Amazingly Biblical’ (Video) – Oct 25, 2015
    ‘How You Think About Heaven Affects Everything in Life,’ Says Gateway Church Pastor
    http://www.christianpost.com/n.....eo-148156/

    In conclusion, special relativity is of great comfort to Christian Theists in that it strongly points to a heavenly eternal dimension that exists above this one.

  99. 99
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @TruthFreedom I’m sorry for whatever has gone wrong in your life that is causing you to act like this, but if I can do anything to help, I will. I don’t have much money free at the moment, given current conditions, but if there’s anything that I can do to help, please email me at my name here with no space at yahoo.com. Maybe you just need a little bit of assistance, and then you can once again be a positive force in the world. I’m willing to help, just let me know.

  100. 100
    bornagain77 says:

    And do tell Jim Thibodeau, just how do you expect to help Truthfreedom with your nihilistic/atheistic worldview?

    Atheism, a worldview that is devoid of any real meaning, beauty or purpose, for life is a severely impoverished, even severely depressing, worldview for anyone to have to hold. Indeed, such an impoverished view of life goes a very long way towards explaining exactly why Christians report being much happier than atheists are,

    ‘Believers are happier than atheists’ – Jonathan Petre – 18 Mar 2008
    People who believe in God are happier than agnostics or atheists,
    A report found that religious people were better able to cope with disappointments such as unemployment or divorce than non-believers.
    Moreover, they become even happier the more they pray and go to church, claims the study by Prof Andrew Clark and Dr Orsolya Lelkes.
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1581994/Believers-are-happier-than-atheists.html

    and also explains why Christians have significantly fewer suicide attempts than atheists do,

    Of snakebites and suicide – February 18, 2014
    RESULTS: Religiously unaffiliated subjects had significantly more lifetime suicide attempts and more first-degree relatives who committed suicide than subjects who endorsed a religious affiliation.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....d-suicide/

    and also explains why Christians report having greater life satisfaction than atheists do,

    Associations of Religious Upbringing With Subsequent Health and Well-Being From Adolescence to Young Adulthood: An Outcome-Wide Analysis
    Ying Chen, Tyler J VanderWeele – Sept. 10, 2018
    Excerpt: Compared with no attendance, at least weekly attendance of religious services was associated with greater life satisfaction and positive affect, a number of character strengths, lower probabilities of marijuana use and early sexual initiation, and fewer lifetime sexual partners. Analyses of prayer or meditation yielded similar results. Although decisions about religion are not shaped principally by health, encouraging service attendance and private practices in adolescents who already hold religious beliefs may be meaningful avenues of development and support, possibly leading to better health and well-being.
    https://academic.oup.com/aje/advance-article/doi/10.1093/aje/kwy142/5094534

    and also explains why Christians having less mental and physical health issues than atheists do,

    “I maintain that whatever else faith may be, it cannot be a delusion.
    The advantageous effect of religious belief and spirituality on mental and physical health is one of the best-kept secrets in psychiatry and medicine generally. If the findings of the huge volume of research on this topic had gone in the opposite direction and it had been found that religion damages your mental health, it would have been front-page news in every newspaper in the land.”
    – Professor Andrew Sims former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists – Is Faith Delusion?: Why religion is good for your health – preface

    “In the majority of studies, religious involvement is correlated with well-being, happiness and life satisfaction; hope and optimism; purpose and meaning in life; higher self-esteem; better adaptation to bereavement; greater social support and less loneliness; lower rates of depression and faster recovery from depression; lower rates of suicide and fewer positive attitudes towards suicide; less anxiety; less psychosis and fewer psychotic tendencies; lower rates of alcohol and drug use and abuse; less delinquency and criminal activity; greater marital stability and satisfaction… We concluded that for the vast majority of people the apparent benefits of devout belief and practice probably outweigh the risks.”
    – Professor Andrew Sims former President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists – Is Faith Delusion?: Why religion is good for your health – page 100
    https://books.google.com/books?id=PREdCgAAQBAJ&pg=PA100#v=onepage&q&f=false

    and also explains why Christians live significantly longer than atheists do.

    Can attending church really help you live longer? This study says yes – June 1, 2017
    Excerpt: Specifically, the study says those middle-aged adults who go to church, synagogues, mosques or other houses of worship reduce their mortality risk by 55%. The Plos One journal published the “Church Attendance, Allostatic Load and Mortality in Middle Aged Adults” study May 16.
    “For those who did not attend church at all, they were twice as likely to die prematurely than those who did who attended church at some point over the last year,” Bruce said.
    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/06/02/can-attending-church-really-help-you-live-longer-study-says-yes/364375001/

    Study: Religiously affiliated people live “9.45 and 5.64 years longer…”
    July 1, 2018
    Excerpt: Self-reported religious service attendance has been linked with longevity. However, previous work has largely relied on self-report data and volunteer samples. Here, mention of a religious affiliation in obituaries was analyzed as an alternative measure of religiosity. In two samples (N = 505 from Des Moines, IA, and N = 1,096 from 42 U.S. cities), the religiously affiliated lived 9.45 and 5.64 years longer, respectively, than the nonreligiously affiliated. Additionally, social integration and volunteerism partially mediated the religion–longevity relation.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/study-religiously-affiliated-people-lived-religiously-affiliated-lived-9-45-and-5-64-years-longer/

    Can Religion Extend Your Life? – By Chuck Dinerstein — June 16, 2018
    Excerpt: The researcher’s regression analysis suggested that the effect of volunteering and participation accounted for 20% or 1 year of the impact, while religious affiliation accounted for the remaining four years or 80%.
    https://www.acsh.org/news/2018/06/16/can-religion-extend-your-life-13092

    It seems readily apparent that, contrary to what Jim Thibodeau believe, Jim Thibodeau. an atheist, is the one who is seriously in need of help.

  101. 101
    Truthfreedom says:

    @96 Jim Thibodeau
    So you do not understand QM.

  102. 102
    kairosfocus says:

    MR, a lot has happened. I simply noted the implication of how viruses are replicated, by hijacking the machinery of cells. KF

  103. 103
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: It is estimated that at each viral replication for COVID-19, perhaps six errors aka mutations occur. I suspect, for want of cross checks and error correction. The result is that the coded info will wander all over an island of function. KF

  104. 104
    Truthfreedom says:

    @102 Kairosfocus:

    I simply noted the implication of how viruses are replicated, by hijacking the machinery of cells.

    According to this darwinian priest :

    … life has no higher purpose than to perpetuate the survival of DNA

    we conclude then that the COVID-19 is now achieving its ‘higher purpose’.
    But then, this same priest
    says:

    life has no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference. Richard Dawkins.
    So this priest is clueless and, if you care to inspect the darwinian orthodoxy , you understand it makes no sense.

  105. 105
    Truthfreedom says:

    … life has no higher purpose than to perpetuate the survival of DNA … Richard Dawkins

    -But COVID-19 has no DNA, it is a ssRNA virus.
    Maybe viruses are not ‘part of life’?
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.usatoday.com/amp/5038734002
    What are viruses then?

  106. 106
    Truthfreedom says:

    If there is ‘no purpose’ in life, how is that we humans have the ‘purpose’ of ending the coronavirus ASAP?
    – Wait, maybe we are not ‘natural’?
    – Or it could be that ‘naturalists’ CAN NOT INTERPRET ‘NATURE’ and their ideology is a non-sensical mess?

  107. 107
    Truthfreedom says:

    Look at this:

    Something that many people don’t think much about viruses is that, like every other organism on Earth struggling for survival, they evolve, or mutate.

    – We can not say if viruses are ‘alive’ but they ‘struggle for survival’? Oh my. More non-sense.
    – ‘Struggle’ indicates goal/ purpose.

    In fact, research has shown COVID-19 has mutated repeatedly in ways to boost its survival.
    https://towardsdatascience.com/machine-learning-for-biology-how-will-covid-19-mutate-next-4df93cfaf544

    -No goal and not alive BUT ‘boost’ and ‘survival’.
    Naturalism has not a leg to stand on.
    A barrage of contradictions only supported by blind dogma.

  108. 108
    Truthfreedom says:

    ___
    More on this crazy darwinian religion:

    Using K-Means and PCA, were able to identify five main clusters of mutations in the coronavirus. *Scientists developing vaccines for the coronavirus can use the cluster centers to gain knowledge about characteristics of each cluster. We were able to visualize the clusters in two dimensions using principal component analysis, and found that the coronavirus has a very high rate of mutation. This may be what makes it so deadly.
    https://towardsdatascience.com/machine-learning-for-biology-how-will-covid-19-mutate-next-4df93cfaf544

    Well, according to this other darwinian priest:

    We have no more extrinsic purpose than a squirrel or an armadillo. Jerry Coyne

    – Thanks to this old nutty now we know that at least ‘we have more purpose than COVID-19’. Or not? Who knows.
    – All life is ‘purposeless’ but we humans ‘have more purpose than COVID-19 but the same purpose as squirrels’?
    Goodness gracious.

    *a. k.a. meat-robots according to the same mentioned priest:

    Your decisions result from molecular-based electrical impulses and chemical substances transmitted from one brain cell to another. These molecules must obey the laws of physics, so the outputs of our brain—our “choices”—are dictated by those laws.
    https://www.chronicle.com/article/Jerry-A-Coyne-You-Dont-Have/131165

    No merit then for those ‘scientists’. They are ‘obeying’ laws.

  109. 109
    Truthfreedom says:

    And according to this darwiniannguy Novella: ‘we do not perceive reality, it is only our imagination’. Yes, ‘reality’ is not there.
    People, do not worry, COVID-19 is not ‘real’:
    https://mindmatters.ai/2019/07/tales-of-the-mind-a-neurologist-encounters-the-house-of-mirrors/
    BEWARE. DARWINISM IS A DANGEROUS CULT.

  110. 110
    Truthfreedom says:

    Pray Darwin:
    – ‘Thank you evolution for our imperfect, almost good Immune System that is fighting against the COVID-19 to help us’. For no purpose. Amen.

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