Arrggh!

imagesThe proponents of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster argue, much as the Intelligent Design folks argue, that one theory is as good as another and we should leave it up to a mythical eighth-grader to decide the rules of the universe.

Here is an example of the FSM argument:

It seems strange that Evolution is singled out as “just a theory” when there are so many basic ideas in science that remain unproven, yet are still taught as fact. The objections to teaching Evolution have only illustrated this point further: Alternative theories must be taught in order to give our young students’ minds a broad foundation. The Intelligent Design proponents make a compelling, and totally legitimate, argument that if a theory has not been proven, then one suggested theory is just as good as another.

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FSMism For the True Believer

imageYou may have heard that a resident of one of the fine establishments for convicted criminals in Nebraska has had his religious freedom abridged by a U.S. District judge who ruled that Pastafarianism (also known as, and referred to in court documents, as FSMism) does not qualify for Constitutional protection.

In making his ruling,  John Gerrard provided an excellent summary of Pastafarianism for the unfamiliar:

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Biblical Illiteracy

FSMThe latest double issue of Newsweek (dated 01-06-2015) contains some interesting facts about the Bible and the Bible’s unassailable adherents, especially in the United States. Although Newsweek presents better and more up-to-date evidence for issues that have (for some) been common knowledge for years, it’s still refreshing to see a major publication validating (yet again) your own understanding and belief.

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The Eye

Famously, Charles Darwin wrote in The Origin of the Species:

To suppose that the eye, with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree.

Many proponents of the Flying Spaghetti Monster in the Sky have used this pronouncement to suggest that even Darwin was not fully committed to the preposterous idea of evolution, but if the creationists had read a little further, Darwin continues:

Yet reason tells me, that if numerous gradations from a perfect and complex eye to one very imperfect and simple, each grade being useful to its possessor, can be shown to exist; if further, the eye does vary ever so slightly, and the variations be inherited, which is certainly the case; and if any variation or modification in the organ be ever useful to an animal under changing conditions of life, then the difficulty of believing that a perfect and complex eye could be formed by natural selection, though insuperable by our imagination, can hardly be considered real. How a nerve comes to be sensitive to light, hardly concerns us more than how life itself first originated; but I may remark that several facts make me suspect that any sensitive nerve may be rendered sensitive to light, and likewise to those coarser vibrations of the air which produce sound.

It strikes me that the operative word here is “reason.” In the non-debate between science and religion, science relies on reason and intelligence whereas religion doesn’t.