Re Sean’s Quotes Hello Sean “There you go. If I understand you …

Comment on A “Christian Agnostic”? by ken.

Re Sean’s Quotes

Hello Sean

“There you go. If I understand you correctly, you seem to believe that the Biblical God is nothing more than a human construct and that the real God, if he does exist, is no more empirically detectable than any other human construct or view of God – or garden fairies for that matter.

Pardon me for saying so, but when it comes to a belief in the existence of a God that is rationally detectable, you seem to be much more atheistic than agnostic.

In a lot of ways that’s a better position to be in compared to the position of “having no idea.” You have what seem to be very clearly defined ideas regarding the detectable existence of a God or God-like being. You simply don’t believe in such a being at this point in time. Yet, if you one day see evidence for such a being, that you are actually able to understand and appreciate, you seem to be open to changing your mind. That’s good!”

That is totally correct my friend. That is where I am currently at but open to change if indeed I become convinced or decide to take a leap of faith towards Intelligent Design. As you know I’m intrigued by that idea and prepared to support further inquiries in that regard.

~

“As I’ve tried to explain to you before, it is impossible for anyone, including you, to completely remove personal bias from one’s understanding or interpretation of the available empirical evidence. In fact the very process of science itself requires one to make leaps of faith beyond what can be absolutely or definitively proven. One cannot separate faith from science or give one supremacy over the other since they are intimately intertwined and dependent upon each other – as Dr. Kime has explained much more eloquently than I.”

Sean, this is where I agree, but respectfully disagree as well. Let me explain further. As I stated in previous posts I think everyone has personal bias and sees things through their subjective, and sometimes subliminal personal lens (i.e. my father being a Deist- does this make me open or susceptible to ideas of Intelligent Design- quite possibly and I recognize it!) Epistomology 101 – are we all disconnected brains in jars hooked up to a computer thinking we are experiencing a reality that is but a dream? The Matrix movies-quite fascinating actually- are premised on this type of notion. So in this context I agree with you.

But that is not the bias that I am talking about. The bias I am talking about is theism or atheism and I believe that an agnostic can be objective in that regard. I also think that scientists can do this if they can separate faith or non faith from their observations. In my opinion science is the objective barometer of reality that over time, over rules human subjectivity to the greatest degree possible. And I believe honest agnosticism is the most objective means to look through the lens of science without theistic or atheistic bias.

Am I perfect or without personal bias? Goodness NO! Just ask my teenagers who catch me on every inconsistency or parental hypocrisy that I utter! ๐Ÿ™‚ Can I look at the question of God, and more importantly the Nature of God, dispassionately and objectively? I think so but can only judge my view subjectively. Thus it up to unbiased others to rule on that. Oh where to find a jury of unbiased peers?

I hope that distinction helps.

“As far as I can tell though, you’re a good soul. I hope you don’t mind my questions as they are sincere and are not intended to be pejorative or personal in any way. I very much like and even envy your style and hope one day to get together. If you’re ever up in the Redding area, do look me up.”

Thank you kindly. You have always treated me with the greatest of respect and I do hope I have done likewise. That fact is far more important than what you and I think about the Ultimate Reality. I have great admiration for your work and am prepared to support it in a number of ways. That is not just lip or blog service. Although this may not be the most appropriate venue (obvious to the more frequent attacks on my POV as of late!) I’d happy to correspond with you through private email. To that extent I give Shane my permission to provide same to you.

I would love to meet with you alone, with you and Wes, with you, Wes and Erv, or any combination thereof, to discuss matters asundry. Erv, that applies to you as well. Could we all meet as gentleman, let our ideological hair done a bit and see if there is any room to advance the collective good of the Adventist faith? I’d gladly come to sunny California to do so ๐Ÿ™‚

Your agnostic friend
Ken

ken Also Commented

A “Christian Agnostic”?
Re Bob’s Quote

“But we can “observe” that the making of complex systems (and books, and works of art and science) is done by “creators” every day – observable, repeatable, testable. A mechanism proven to work.”

Hi Bob

Thanks for your comments.

This may surprise you but I’m actually intrigued by the design argument. My Dad is a Deist although I’m not of that bent, at least not yet! The laws of nature, i.e. gravity, that even allow the universe to exist are pretty marvelous. Did they arise as a result of a random quantum fluctuation or was their Grand Designer behind it all. If so what is or was the nature of such designer based on what we empirically observe about our universe?

The problem I have with intelligent design within our universe and especially regarding life on earth is theodicy. I do understand how the concept of original biblical sin accounts for the loss of perfection, but I have a very tough time understanding why a God would cause such destruction of his creation based on the disobedience of the literal eating of an apple. I just can’t rationally fathom how the eventual and natural demise of our solar system can be based on Man’s fall. Empirically, through science we can now view the death, and birth, of stars. Was this all caused by eating forbidden fruit?

Thus one must ask: why would a good, compassionate God create a Universe, and sentient life, that suffers and dies? Age old problem, that in my estimation has been allegorically resolved through the Genesis narrative.

Let’s move on to evolution. Micro evolution does not seem to be a problem for anyone. Life does adapt to its environment through genetic change. In my mind the issue becomes what happens over billions of years. After considering everything I have read to date I cannot honestly see an overwhelming case for a young earth. Moreover I have not read or heard anything yet that such a view can be scientifically supported by anyone without a biblical creationist bias. Given enough time great change will occur as evidenced by the vast diversity of life spread over every niche of our planet. Were there kangaroos on the Ark, or did they evolve in an isolated part of the world from whence they could not spread?

I don’t think evolution is a fraud or a hoax. Too many educated people of faith believe and accept it for it to be an atheist conspiracy. Have their been mistakes made and will they continue to be made? Are there dishonest scientists? Certainly. They are fallible humans, just like you and I, after all. But the issue is what does the weight of all the multidisciplinary evidence indicate?

Hope that helps

Your agnostic friend
Ken


A “Christian Agnostic”?
Re Sean’s Quote

“So, while it might superfiecially seem reasonable that given enough time, “microevolution” will simply add up to produce “macroevolution”, this simply isn’t true when one stops to consider the statistical probabilities involved at higher and higher levels of functional complexity – again, its an exponentially increasing problem for RM/NS.”

Could you please direct us to the links towards these studies? I’m interested in whether they contemplated modular vs. linear molecular evolution.

Thanks
Your agnostic friend
Ken


A “Christian Agnostic”?
Hi Wes

Could you please answer my previous inquiry? Thiis goes towards the issue of whether the perception of design is empirical or influenced by faith. I want to understand why your view of the Kebs Cycle as a sacrosanct design influences your faith in Genesis 1. As I said to you earlier the quid pro quo is that I will answer any of your questions pertaining to my agnosticism.

“Wes, in light of Sean’s comments I’m interested in yours as to whether
the Krebs Cycle is irreducibly complex or may have evolved from a series of enzymatic cascades?”

Thanks
Your agnostic friend
Ken

Thanks
Your agnostic Ken


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Hi Bob

I asked once before and I’ll ask again: what is your background and expertise in biology?

Your agnostic friend
Ken


Creeds and Fundamental Beliefs
Re: What every human being on the planet believes?

Empirically, as i don’t have blind faith I could know this, perhaps it could only be a divine being that could do so. ๐Ÿ™‚

Always open to correction though to those that know the absolute truth,

I remain,
Your agnostic friend
Ken


Dr. Ariel Roth’s Creation Lectures for Teachers
Re Sean’s Quote

“Yes, I am suggesting that our scientists should also be theologians to some degree. I’m also suggesting that our theologians be scientists to some degree as well. There should be no distinct dividing line between the two disciplines…”

Hello Sean

First of all, thank you Holly for your comments. You have always treated me with civility and charity for which I am most grateful.

Secondly, on reflection, I do hope I was not strident or offensive in my recent remarks. I am a guest here and should behave with the utmost respect regarding my Adventist hosts. After all I was proposing the Chair of ID at an ‘Adventist’ institution! What gall and temerity from an agnostic!

However something Dr. Kime said struck a very strange chord in me: that a Chair in ID at Harvard would be a quantum leap ( forward – my edit) while such a Chair would be a step backward at LSU. I’ m very sorry Wes, but for me to honestly investigate reality such double standard is not acceptable.

I am sad today, because I think I’m coming to the end of my Adventist journey. I really did see ID as a sort of bridge between your faith and objective inquiry about a ‘Grand’ Design. (apologies Mr. Hawkings). Oh Wes , perhaps I am ontological Don Quixote after all, comically tilting towards immovable Adventist windmills. ๐Ÿ™ .

However all is not forlorn because I’ve made excellent friends of the heart here. ;). I won’t forget you.

Good luck in your pursuit of God.

Goodbye
Your agnostic friend
Ken


Dr. Ariel Roth’s Creation Lectures for Teachers
Re Sean’s Quote

“Public association is one thing. Private association is another. While many do not feel at liberty to publicly associate themselves with our work here (for obvious reasons), most who still believe in SDA fundamentals (and who are aware of the longstanding situation at LSU and other places) feel that our work in providing enhanced transparency for what is being taught to our young people in our schools was/is necessary on some level.”

Hi Sean

The irony here is that those that are supporting institutional enhanced transparency are hiding behind cloaks of anonymity. That’s not how you, I, Wes, Bob Ryan, Wes, Bill Sorenson and many others here behave. Imagine if Jesus hid behind a cloak and didn’t proclaim his nature. What legacy of respect would he have left?

Conviction requires courage period.

Your agnostic friend
Ken


An apology to PUC
Dear Sean and Shane

Why has the SDA Church not published a scientific text on origins, compliant with FB# 6, to be taught at all Adventist Institutions? Can you really blame the institutions if such texts are not available? Or if they are why are you not promoting them as standardized texts.

Sean, as a leading advocate for overwhelming evidence supporting six day day recent creation, why don’t you simply write and publish a textbook and submit it to the GC for approval? After all you constantly refer to your website as containing such source material.

Just a thought.

Cheers
Ken