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“Created in the image of God” as securing human rights

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Remember mathematician Jason Rosenhouse: Multiverse is a “done deal,” Occam’s razor doesn’t apply? Further to that (and noting in passing the new idea of dumping falsifability), Moshe Averick notes at The Times of Israel:

Jason Rosenhouse is a Professor of Mathematics at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. In a recent post on Evolution Blog, Dr. Rosenhouse makes a rather astounding statement about the relationship between one’s views on human origins and the value one places on human life:

“Answers about our origins have no implications at all for questions of meaning and value. Arising through blind, uncaring forces in no way implies that life is not awesomely precious, and being made in the image of a transcendent designer in no way implies that it is.”

More. But that makes no sense. As Rabbi Averick points out:

Contrast this with the view of an Orthodox Rabbi such as myself: “Precious and beloved is man who was created in the image of God. Exceeding love was bestowed on him by being informed explicitly [in the Torah] that he was created in the image of God.” (Babylonian Talmud) The most revolutionary idea in the history of mankind was the Torah’s clear assertion that man was created in the image of the infinite, transcendent Creator of the universe, that he can transcend his own material existence and grasp, as it were, eternity. Finally, there was an escape from the degrading, chaotic world of pagan mythology. It also forms the basis of the American Revolution: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that all men have been endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights.” Let’s face it, any self-respecting atheist should choke on these words. He would claim that it is a violation of the separation clause of the Constitution to read the words of the Declaration of Independence in a public school! I hope that non-believers will not obfuscate the issue by citing parts of the Torah or Judaism that they disagree with or think are inhumane. Feel free to reject the rest of the Torah if you like – that discussion is for another time and place – the issue on the table is how one views the origin of human beings and the implications of such. More.

Reading this is interesting to me, your news writer, because the earliest non-family influence on my life was a child who suffered with Down syndrome (Johnny, 1948-1957). Search the Web for routine mockery of US Alaska governor Sarah Palin’s son, who lives with that genetic disorder.

Apparently, some people think that mockery is a normal reaction to that disorder. But is it at all likely that those same people believe that a given individual has the gifts or mission he or she does as a result of a greater plan?

No. I doubt it too. It is a form of practical atheism. It should be identified as such. Fine with me, I am a free speech journalist. But don’t let’s kid ourselves. Incidentally, recent influences on my own life have been seniors (80s/90s) with late life cognitive disorders, who nonetheless offer wisdom. It is all worth mature spiritual reflection in which direction Rabbi Averick wisely points. Much recommended is Moshe Averick’s book The Confused, Illusory World of the Atheist – O’Leary for News See also: String theory coming unstrung even among science writers?

as to:
“Answers about our origins have no implications at all for questions of meaning and value. Arising through blind, uncaring forces in no way implies that life is not awesomely precious, and being made in the image of a transcendent designer in no way implies that it is.”
The disconnect in logic, especially for a mathematician, is breathtaking. In a purposeless universe it is impossible for any life in that universe to have ‘real’ purpose!!! Any purpose that atheists imagine they have for their life can only be illusory since, according to the atheist’s worldview, nothing exists for any purpose in the first place. Much like the ‘illusion of mind’ that the atoms of the atheist's brain have foisted off on the atheist, purpose itself must also be illusory in the atheist’s worldview:
The Absurdity of Life Without God by William Lane Craig Excerpt: First, there is no ultimate meaning without immortality and God. If each individual person passes out of existence when he dies, then what ultimate meaning can be given to his life? Does it really matter whether he ever existed or not? It might be said that his life was important because it influenced others or affected the course of history. But that shows only a relative significance to his life, not an ultimate significance. His life may be important relative to certain other events. But what is the ultimate significance to any of those events? If all of the events are meaningless, then what can be the ultimate significance of influencing any of them? Ultimately it makes no difference. http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2149706/posts Jennifer Fulwiler: Scientific Atheism to Christ - video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aw8uUOPoi2M What caused Jennifer Fulwiler to question her atheism to begin with? It was the birth of her first child. She says that when she looked at her child, the only way her atheist mind could explain the love that she had for him was to assume it was the result of nothing more than chemical reactions in her brain. However, in the video I linked above, she says: "And I looked down at him, and I realized that’s not true." "Consequently atheism turns out to be too simple. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be a word without meaning." CS Lewis – Mere Christianity
Indeed, if an atheistic materialist were to ever live consistently in his worldview, he should, because of the lack of any real meaning for his life, seek solace in the oblivion of alcoholism. At least then he could numb the pain that a sober look at his worldview entails:
The absurdity of life without God (1 of 3) by William Lane Craig https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJqkpI1W75c The Future of the Universe Excerpt: After all the black holes have evaporated, (and after all the ordinary matter made of protons has disintegrated, if protons are unstable), the universe will be nearly empty. Photons, neutrinos, electrons and positrons will fly from place to place, hardly ever encountering each other. It will be cold, and dark, and there is no known process which will ever change things. --- Not a happy ending. http://spiff.rit.edu/classes/phys240/lectures/future/future.html Psalm 102:25-27 Of old You laid the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You will endure; Yes, they will all grow old like a garment; Like a cloak You will change them, And they will be changed. But You are the same, And Your years will have no end. "We have the sober scientific certainty that the heavens and earth shall ‘wax old as doth a garment’.... Dark indeed would be the prospects of the human race if unilluminated by that light which reveals ‘new heavens and a new earth.’" Lord Kelvin
Phillips Craig & Dean - When the stars burn down (Blessing and Honor) - Lyrics https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaj7YQZbvcY
Supplemental notes:
The Galileo Affair and “Life/Consciousness” as the true "Center of the Universe" Excerpt: I find it extremely interesting, and strange, that quantum mechanics tells us that instantaneous quantum wave collapse to its 'uncertain' 3D state is centered on each individual conscious observer in the universe, whereas, 4D space-time cosmology (General Relativity) tells us each 3D point in the universe is central to the expansion of the universe. These findings of modern science are pretty much exactly what we would expect to see if this universe were indeed created, and sustained, from a higher dimension by a omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, eternal Being who knows everything that is happening everywhere in the universe at the same time. These findings certainly seem to go to the very heart of the age old question asked of many parents by their children, “How can God hear everybody’s prayers at the same time?”,,, i.e. Why should the expansion of the universe, or the quantum wave collapse of the entire universe, even care that you or I, or anyone else, should exist? Only Theism, Christian Theism in particular, offers a rational explanation as to why you or I, or anyone else, should have such undeserved significance in such a vast universe. [15] Psalm 33:13-15 The LORD looks from heaven; He sees all the sons of men. From the place of His dwelling He looks on all the inhabitants of the earth; He fashions their hearts individually; He considers all their works. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1BHAcvrc913SgnPcDohwkPnN4kMJ9EDX-JJSkjc4AXmA/edit The Scale of The Universe - Part 2 - interactive graph (recently updated in 2012 with cool features) http://htwins.net/scale2/scale2.swf?bordercolor=white The preceding interactive graph points out that the smallest scale visible to the human eye (as well as a human egg) is at 10^-4 meters, which 'just so happens' to be directly in the exponential center of all possible sizes of our physical reality (not just ‘nearly’ in the exponential center!). i.e. 10^-4 is, exponentially, right in the middle of 10^-35 meters, which is the smallest possible unit of length, which is Planck length, and 10^27 meters, which is the largest possible unit of 'observable' length since space-time was created in the Big Bang, which is the diameter of the universe. This is very interesting for, as far as I can tell, the limits to human vision (as well as the size of the human egg) could have, theoretically, been at very different positions than directly in the exponential middle.
“Answers about our origins have no implications at all for questions of meaning and value. Arising through blind, uncaring forces in no way implies that life is not awesomely precious
Pretty amazing assertion, but I'd love to see the logic unpacked. In an unintended universe without meaning, on a speck orbiting a minor ball of flaming hydrogen within the purposeless whole, a delusionary sentient product of randomness and mechanics claims true meaning and worth. Like a grain of sand on a beach screaming, "I can't get no respect!". But the beach isn't listening.
Modern science directly implies that the world is organized strictly in accordance with mechanistic principles. There are no purposive principles whatsoever in nature. There are no gods and no designing forces that are rationally detectable…. Second modern science directly implies that there are no inherent moral or ethical laws, no absolute guiding principles for human society. Third, human beings are marvelously complex machines. The individual human, becomes an ethical person by means of two primary mechanisms: heredity and environmental influences. That is all there is. Fourth, we must conclude that when we die that is the end of us… Finally, free will as it is traditionally conceived- the freedom to make un-coerced and unpredictable choices among alternative possible courses of action-simply does not exist….there is no way that evolutionary processes as currently conceived can produce a being that can be truly free to make choices”. -- William Provine -- Cornell professor of history and biology in “Evolution and the Foundation of Ethics”
I love most people Mung. So that's going to include some religious people. But that's all orthogonal to the science of ID, surely? rich
rich, why do you hate religious people? Mung
Denyse, why do you make ID so religious? rich
"Life is awesomely precious" can we all at least agree to this? humbled

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