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When you have 3.6 Billion adherents

Published November 27th, 2010 by Bobby Henderson

When you have 3.6 Billion adherents to your faith, we can start talking about teaching your ideas in school. When you think you’re right or not the decision on whether or not to teach creationism in school should come from the majority and the fact is 82.3% of Americans are christian and therefore believe that the earth was created by God and only 11.6 are unaffiliated with a religion, of which only a fraction are atheist or agnostic. Take out the agnostics because if they’re really agnostic they won’t care what’s being taught in school, and we’re talking about a small number of really loud people that are trying to force their beliefs on the rest of the country. How messed up is that. I’m not going to force my beliefs on you. I think that’s why they did the whole separation of church and state thing, so that a certain belief system, Evolution included, would not be forced upon the population. So teach evolution, go ahead, I know for a fact that Brigham Young University and Brigham Young University Idaho, two christian schools teach evolution in their required classes, but if you’re going to teach one THEORY, and I emphasize theory not fact, then give credence to other theories that bare any social impact on our society. Like how about a theory that more than 50% of the world subscribes to? Anyway, peace be the journey, I give you credit for some funny stuff, like pirates and global warming, but don’t pretend to take nothing seriously if you actually do have very serious agenda.
–Jordan

All religions go through a phase of perceived fakeness. Funny you bring up BYU.  Mormonism got a lot of criticism for years because Joseph Smith used seer stones to find the location of their original scriptures and translate them from unknown languages.  Some might say that sounds like BS.  But with time and pressure it becomes a religion.  Not unlike the formation of rocks.  I am a scientist first, remember.



477 Responses to “When you have 3.6 Billion adherents”

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  1. Christian B says:

    First of all, 3.6 billion Christians? I love how people spout numbers trying to impress but which have no bases in any truth. There are 2.1 billion Christians with a margin of error of 200 million, you still overshot. But no worries, you only overshot it by a BILLION. So even if we accept your little majority rules idiocy, you’d realize that Christianity isn’t even a 50% majority, nullifying pretty much your entire argument. And what, should we teach that Thor governs the tides? I mean, it’s a theory so we should be allowed to teach it? How about we teach the theories that have the most concrete evidence backing it. Or we can teach that gravity is directly controlled by the amount of ingrown toenails in existence around the world at one time, which by the way is around 13 billion.

    • Allison says:

      You counted toenails?

      • Keith says:

        Does that take into account the number of toes people have? Some have toes missing whereas others have an abundance on each foot (a phenomenon quite common in some areas of Kansas, I am told). More toes, the greater the chance of getting more than one ingrown toenail.

    • TheFewTheProudTheMarinara says:

      That would explain the phenomenon of “under toe”.

  2. Gabi says:

    Jordan:
    As a Christian, I am going to point out a few things in your post that are incorrect. 1: In saying that 82.3% of Americans are Christians, you are not saying how many out of those actually think that intelligent design should be taught in schools. And, I can assure you, that number is the one that matters and is not as impressive (although, it is also much too high to reflect well on our country and its level of ignorance) as the statistics you posted. Statistics that I suspect are trumped up anyway. 2: by capitalizing THEORY, you point out that evolution is, indeed, a scientific theory. The problem is, no real scientist would ever argue otherwise, because they don’t have to. Theory as it is used in colloquial language and theory as it used in science are NOT THE SAME. Where you think “theory”, scientists think hypothesis: an idea that is yet to be TESTED. A scientific theory is supported by years (and, in evolution’s case, centuries) worth of evidence and countless cycles of peer review. It has long moved past the hypothesis, or idea, state. So, in terms of science, theory is as good as fact. Or, are you going to tell me you don’t agree with atomic theory as well? 3: The problem with intelligent design is not targeted at its religious basing, but rather the FACT that a) it cannot be tested true and b) it cannot poke holes in evolution. Because when intelligent design was proposed, they HYPOTHESIZED that certain things could only be made by a divine Creator because they were just too perfect and wouldn’t work any other way. Unfortunately for them, evolution proves just the opposite; it shows that if you take away a part of an organism, it will not stop working, it will just work in a different way. And its functions will continue getting retooled as different needs arise, sometimes functioning one way and then changing to function another way. To conclude, evolution is as close to fact as possible and intelligent design is “creationism in a tuxedo”, a faith matter NOT a science matter.

    • TiltedHorizon says:

      I tip my hat to you Gabi, well done.

    • Atsap Revol says:

      GABI,

      Excellent!

      Atsap Revol

    • Rev Toni Rigatoni says:

      Thanks Gabi, nice post.

    • stylusmobilus says:

      Pretty much sums it up. I certainly have nothing to add.

    • Bad Kitty says:

      Oustanding. Here, here!

  3. Baby RAmen says:

    So evolution has tons and tons of information and years and years of research backing it, and you’re not an evolutionary scientist so you don’t know everything about evolution, and Intelligent Design has, for all intents and purposes, a book that as you say a lot of people believe in. The problem seems to be that Intelligent Design is easy to accept and understand, unless you really think about it and pry deeper into it because then it just gets confusing, and evolution is hard to understand and challenging. I’ve talked to people who believe in ID and have said that if evolution was proven true they would stop believing in ID and believe in evolution, I don’t know what else these specific individuals are waiting for, it seems to have enough evidence to convince a jury that it actually happened. I’m curious to see what it actually takes for these people to believe in evolution, is God himself gonna have to tell you that evolution is true?

    • Atsap Revol says:

      I hate to see the word BELIEVE associated with science. Believe is a word that goes with Santa Claus, The Tooth Fairy, The Easter Bunny, and Religion.

      AR

      • Midnight Rider says:

        I bet those kids in high school don’t really care that much whether evolution or creationism is taught in school. Is it seriously going to have an impact on a teenager? Will teaching a child ID make them run to the store and buy a bible? Chances are small. Will teaching a child evolution make them run to the store to buy some matches to burn their bible and declare their atheism? Probably not. Though it is quite a wonderful debate on this website, I don’t feel that teaching either creationism or evolution will have a lasting impact on the majority of individuals. Unless someone is really interested in one side or the other (science or religion) to begin with, then it is doubtful after learning about both theories that a child will be inspired either way. Really it is much ado about nothing. It is time and money not-well-spent by lobbyists on either side.

        So there! hahahaha.

        • TJ says:

          I’m a high school student and I care what I’m taught. If I wanted to learn Intelligent Design I’d go to church because it’s a religious theory and in America we separate church and state so we keep the church stuff like the Bible, Prayer, and Intelligent Design in church and the state stuff in state. Scientifically Evolution is the accepted theory so in a science class that’s what I want to learn. It’s not like I’m taking Bible studies 101, I’m taking Biology so that’s what I want taught to me.

        • wulff says:

          Rider, we don’t care if ANY religion or philosophy is taught in schools, only that are taught in the proper PLACE in school. Science classrooms are no place for a discussion of ID or Creationism.

        • Zuri says:

          That’s what I’m saying. Making some 12 year old sit in a classroom and teaching them evolution won’t make them run home and throw out the children’s Bible their now dead grandma bought for them eight years ago. They might run home and ask their parents how evolution could be true, but them mom and dad will just assure them that the Bible is right, and because she’s a kid and has been taught Christian ways all her life, she’ll believe them. Or, if they’re the more moderate types like mine, they’ll say something like “Evolution is true, but God made it happen,” etc. You’re not going to get your views through to a room full of 5th graders, they’ll just resent you.
          Take it from a 6th grade “agnostic theist” (I think that means someone who believes the existence of God is unknowable, but they still believe one’s out there.) Am I right?

  4. Honore de Ballsack says:

    Hey, Jordan, you’re a fucking idiot who misuses the word ‘theory’. Your entire argument is invalid.

  5. Zero One says:

    The really funny thing about this is that the Flying Spaghetti Monster IS taught in schools. As a matter of fact, it is most likely taught in every Ethics and Philosophy class anywhere, because it is a key point in the Ontological Argument and is a modified version of Gaunilo’s argument of a perfect island that must exist as it is perfect.

    • Big Guy says:

      The FSM is not taught in schools! You are wrong and you will pay for your transgression. You will burn in hell for eternity. Only Christianity offers a perfect island, it is known as Gilligan’s Isle.

      • Zero One says:

        You’d be right, if you weren’t so wrong. FSM IS taught in schools and my school is proof of that. Which school, you ask? New College, Durham, England. Just because you’re so stuck up in your own bigoted ways doesn’t mean that the rest of us are.

        Also, if you’d actually bothered to look up Gaunilo’s perfect island, you’d have noticed that it is a thought experiment, not an actual island.

  6. Carbonara says:

    “Like how about a theory that more than 50% of the world subscribes to?”

    Okay, so according to your definition of good/bad, right/wrong, Hitler was a good guy, yes?

    News item from History:

    “New York Times, 19 August 1934
    Berlin, Monday, Aug. 20—Eighty-nine and nine-tenths per cent of the German voters endorsed in yesterday’s plebiscite Chancellor Hitler’s assumption of greater power than has ever been possessed by any other ruler in modern times. Nearly 10 per cent indicated their disapproval. The result was expected.”

    Right and wrong are not things decided by a plebiscite. Because everyone believes something, it means only that everyone believes something; whether or not that “something” is true, is an entirely different question.

  7. Bad Kitty says:

    82.3%? Really? Where you get your numbers?

    I think a larger group in the US are AFRAID of questioning the moral majority…want to believe in something…and feel PRESSURE to conform. I’m not an atheist, but if I say to someone that I doubt the existence of God or don’t care about religion, I’m automatically labeled and there’s “got to be something wrong with you.”

    I think if people were allowed to speak openly and honestly about religion without that pressure (in the US), I think you’d see a number more like 50% or less who truly believe in God.

    It’s still an uncomfortable topic for most folks…kinda like that “Emperor’s New Clothes” story we were read as children.

    I met my fiancee on eHarmony, and I was finally honest, putting “Spiritual but not religious” as my religious preference. And a miraculous thing happened. I met a very intelligent guy, and we have interesting discussions about religions of the world. We are interested in religion, but not believers in the ridiculous crap that organized religion has become. And I don’t spend my Sundays trying to pretend that I’m someone I’m not. I’m finally comfortable in my beliefs, and not judged!

    Science is not the place for the “stories” of the Bible. Creationism shouldn’t be taught in schools as science. Should it be taught? Sure, why not…but in a SURVEY course of ALL the religions of the world. It’s a Social Studies topic, NOT SCIENCE.

    • Rev Toni Rigatoni says:

      I agree with everything you say BK. As you are probably aware, the FSM came into magnificent noodly existance in order to ensure that religion, in any disguise, is kept out of science classes; sure, as you say, teach comparative religion in social studies or humanity classes (i’m sure that doing so would produce less religious fundamentalism as a result), but it should not, in any cicumstances be presented as factual or even as a possible alternative, it simply isn’t.

      Like you, I’m sure that a large number of church goers are conflicted over their beliefs, tied into the lie by family or peer pressure or afraid of rejection by their community and friends. Take away the true believers and those who don’t believe but choose the lifestyle for social reasons and I’m sure that would still leave a sizable number of people both in the States and here in the UK, worldwide probably, that are simply afraid to say ‘I don’t believe’, are afraid to challange the establishment for fear of being rejected or ridiculed. Many people in the public eye here in the UK and in the States are openly and publicly declaring themselves atheists and we the ordinary folk so to speak, should follow suit. We don’t have such large audiences as the likes Richard Dawkins, Stephen Fry, Bill Maher and many others like them but we still have a role to play. This site and many others go a long way to encouraging people to ‘come out’ as atheist or agnostic but every one of us here needs to take the message into our lives outside of this site and let the poor trapped minority know that they are not alone, that they can question the established beliefs and superstitions that have held back science and humanity for centuries.

      I assume you are new to this site BK as I don’t recall seeing the name before, so welcome to our community, you will be a great allie I’m sure.

      May the sauce be with you,

      The Reverend.

    • Atsap Revol says:

      BAD KITTY and REV. TONI

      Both thoughtful contributions to this site. I too think that many people who are seemingly religious are just posing as such to avoid social disapproval. However, I also think that this facade is beginning to collapse, especially with young people. When it does, the fundamentalists will be like the Emperor with their bare asses at last exposed.

      Atsap Revol

  8. Anonymous the Pastafarian says:

    Many non-Athiests do believe in Evolution.

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