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Evolution vs Creationism...what do you believe?

Do you believe in Evolution?

  • Yes

    Votes: 43 78.2%
  • No

    Votes: 11 20.0%
  • Not sure

    Votes: 1 1.8%

  • Total voters
    55
  • Poll closed .

missy

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OK my dh and I were discussing this a few months ago and I didn't believe his statistic so I did a bit of research and I have to say I went :errrr: :errrr: :errrr: when I read the numbers.

42% of Americans don't believe in Evolution.
http://www.gallup.com/poll/170822/believe-creationist-view-human-origins.aspx


Of the other countries polled only Turkey ranked lower than the USA.
http://www.livescience.com/963-lags-world-grasp-genetics-acceptance-evolution.html


In U.S., 42% Believe Creationist View of Human Origins

PRINCETON, NJ -- More than four in 10 Americans continue to believe that God created humans in their present form 10,000 years ago, a view that has changed little over the past three decades. Half of Americans believe humans evolved, with the majority of these saying God guided the evolutionary process. However, the percentage who say God was not involved is rising.

his latest update is from Gallup's Values and Beliefs survey conducted May 8-11. Gallup first asked the three-part question about human origins in 1982.

The percentage of the U.S. population choosing the creationist perspective as closest to their own view has fluctuated in a narrow range between 40% and 47% since the question's inception. There is little indication of a sustained downward trend in the proportion of the U.S. population who hold a creationist view of human origins. At the same time, the percentage of Americans who adhere to a strict secularist viewpoint -- that humans evolved over time, with God having no part in this process -- has doubled since 1999.

Religiousness, Age, Education Related to Americans' Views

Historically, Americans' views on the origin of humans have been related to their religiousness, education, and age.

Religiousness relates most strongly to these views, which is not surprising, given that this question deals directly with God's role in human origins. The percentage of Americans who accept the creationist viewpoint ranges from 69% among those who attend religious services weekly to 23% among those who seldom or never attend.


Educational attainment is also related to these attitudes, with belief in the creationist perspective dropping from 57% among Americans with no more than a high school education to less than half that (27%) among those with a college degree.
Those with college degrees are, accordingly, much more likely to choose one of the two evolutionary explanations.

Younger Americans -- who are typically less religious than their elders -- are less likely to choose the creationist perspective than are older Americans. Americans aged 65 and older -- the most religious of any age group -- are most likely to choose the creationist perspective.

Americans Less Familiar With "Creationism" Now Than in 2007

Americans' self-reported familiarity with evolution as an explanation for the origin and development of life on Earth has stayed roughly the same over the past seven years. Seventy-nine percent of Americans say they are very or somewhat familiar with it, leaving 19% not too or not at all familiar.

However, significantly fewer Americans claim familiarity with "creationism" than did so seven years ago. In 2007, 86% were familiar, including 50% who were very familiar. Now, 76% are familiar, with just 38% very familiar. In short, even though the adherence to the creationist view has not changed over time, familiarity with the term "creationism" has diminished.

Sixty-four percent of those who are very familiar with the theory of evolution choose one of the two evolutionary explanations for the origin of humans, compared with 28% among the smaller group of Americans who report being not too or not at all familiar with it. The majority of those not familiar with evolution choose the creationist viewpoint.


These relationships do not necessarily prove that if Americans were to learn more about evolution they would be more likely to believe in it. Those with less education are most likely to espouse the creationist view and to be least familiar with evolution, but it's not clear that gaining more education per se would shift their perspectives. Many religious Americans accept creationism mostly on the basis of their religious convictions. Whether their beliefs would change if they became more familiar with evolution is an open question.


Implications

Between 40% and 47% of Americans over the past 32 years have said the creationist explanation for the origin of human life best fits their personal views. These Americans tend to be highly religious, underscoring the degree to which many Americans view the world around them through the lens of their religious beliefs. Those who adopt the creationist view also tend to have lower education levels, but given the strong influence of religious beliefs, it is not clear to what degree having more education or different types of education might affect their views.

A number of states have been embroiled in fights in recent years over the degree to which evolution and creationism should be included in their public school curricula. Residents in the South are more likely to believe in the creationist view of the origin of humans than are those living in other regions, making it clear why the fights to have creationism addressed in the public schools might be an important political issue in that region.

Still, few scientists would agree that humans were created pretty much in their present form at one time 10,000 years ago, underscoring the ongoing discontinuity between the beliefs that many Americans hold and the general scientific consensus on this important issue.



U.S. Lags World in Grasp of Genetics and Acceptance of Evolution

A comparison of peoples' views in 34 countries finds that the United States ranks near the bottom when it comes to public acceptance of evolution. Only Turkey ranked lower.

Among the factors contributing to America's low score are poor understanding of biology, especially genetics, the politicization of science and the literal interpretation of the Bible by a small but vocal group of American Christians, the researchers say.

American Protestantism is more fundamentalist than anybody except perhaps the Islamic fundamentalist, which is why Turkey and we are so close,” said study co-author Jon Miller of Michigan State University.


The researchers combined data from public surveys on evolution collected from 32 European countries, the United States and Japan between 1985 and 2005. Adults in each country were asked whether they thought the statement “Human beings, as we know them, developed from earlier species of animals,” was true, false, or if they were unsure.

The study found that over the past 20 years:

The percentage of U.S. adults who accept evolution declined from 45 to 40 percent.
The percentage overtly rejecting evolution declined from 48 to 39 percent, however.
And the percentage of adults who were unsure increased, from 7 to 21 percent.
Of the other countries surveyed, only Turkey ranked lower, with about 25 percent of the population accepting evolution and 75 percent rejecting it. In Iceland, Denmark, Sweden and France, 80 percent or more of adults accepted evolution; in Japan, 78 percent of adults did.

The findings are detailed in the Aug. 11 issue of the journal Science.

Religion belief and evolution

The researchers also compared 10 independent variables—including religious belief, political ideology and understanding of concepts from genetics, or “genetic literacy”—between adults in America and nine European countries to determine whether these factors could predict attitudes toward evolution.

The analysis found that Americans with fundamentalist religious beliefs—defined as belief in substantial divine control and frequent prayer—were more likely to reject evolution than Europeans with similar beliefs. The researchers attribute the discrepancy to differences in how American Christian fundamentalist and other forms of Christianity interpret the Bible.

While American fundamentalists tend to interpret the Bible literally and to view Genesis as a true and accurate account of creation, mainstream Protestants in both the United States and Europe instead treat Genesis as metaphorical, the researchers say.

“Whether it’s the Bible or the Koran, there are some people who think it’s everything you need to know,” Miller said. “Other people say these are very interesting metaphorical stories in that they give us guidance, but they’re not science books.”

This latter view is also shared by the Catholic Church.

Politics and the Flat Earth

Politics is also contributing to America's widespread confusion about evolution, the researchers say. Major political parties in the United States are more willing to make opposition to evolution a prominent part of their campaigns to garner conservative votes—something that does not happen in Europe or Japan.

Miller says that it makes about as much sense for politicians to oppose evolution in their campaigns as it is for them to advocate that the Earth is flat and promise to pass legislation saying so if elected to office.

"You can pass any law you want but it won't change the shape of the Earth," Miller told LiveScience.



Paul Meyers, a biologist at the University of Minnesota who was not involved in the study, says that what politicians should be doing is saying, 'We ought to defer these questions to qualified authorities and we should have committees of scientists and engineers who we will approach for the right answers."

The researchers also single out the poor grasp of biological concepts, especially genetics, by American adults as an important contributor to the country's low confidence in evolution.

“The more you understand about genetics, the more you understand about the unity of life and the relationship humans have to other forms of life,” Miller said.

The current study also analyzed the results from a 10-country survey in which adults were tested with 10 true or false statements about basic concepts from genetics. One of the statements was "All plants and animals have DNA." Americans had a median score of 4. (The correct answer is "yes.")

Science alone is not enough

But the problem is more than one of education—it goes deeper, and is a function of our country's culture and history, said study co-author Eugenie Scott, director of the National Center for Science Education in California.

“The rejection of evolution is not something that will be solved by throwing science at it,” Scott said in a telephone interview.

Myers expressed a similar sentiment. About the recent trial in Dover, Pennsylvania which ruled against intelligent design, Myers said "it was a great victory for our side and it’s done a lot to help ensure that we keep religion out of the classroom for a while longer, but it doesn’t address the root causes. The creationists are still creationists—they're not going to change because of a court decision."

Scott says one thing that will help is to have Catholics and mainstream Protestants speak up about their theologies' acceptance of evolution.

"There needs to be more addressing of creationism from these more moderate theological perspectives," Scott said. “The professional clergy and theologians whom I know tend to be very reluctant to engage in that type of ‘my theology versus your theology’ discussion, but it matters because it’s having a negative effect on American scientific literacy."

The latest packaging of creationism is intelligent design, or ID, a conjecture which claims that certain features of the natural world are so complex that they could only be the work of a Supreme Being. ID proponents say they do not deny that evolution is true, only that scientists should not rule out the possibility of supernatural intervention.

But scientists do not share doubts over evolution. They argue it is one of the most well tested theories around, supported by countless tests done in many different scientific fields. Scott says promoting uncertainty about evolution is just as bad as denying it outright and that ID and traditional creationism both spread the same message.

“Both are saying that evolution is bad science, that evolution is weak and inadequate science, and that it can’t do the job so therefore God did it,” she said.



Bruce Chapman, the president of the Discovery Institute, the primary backer of ID, has a different view of the study.

"A better explanation for the high percentage of doubters of Darwinism in America may be that this country's citizens are famously independent and are not given to being rolled by an ideological elite in any field," Chapman said. "In particular, the growing doubts about Darwinism undoubtedly reflect growing doubts among scientists about Darwinian theory. Over 640 have now signed a public dissent and the number keeps growing."

Nick Matzke of the National Center for Science Education in California points out, however, that most of the scientists Chapman refers to do not do research in the field of evolution.

"If you look at the list, you can't find anybody who's really a significant contributor to the field or anyone who's done recognizable work on evolution," Matzke said.

Scott says the news is not all bad. The number of American adults unsure about the validity of evolution has increased in recent years, from 7 to 21 percent, but growth in this demographic comes at the expense of the other two groups. The percentage of Americans accepting evolution has declined, but so has the percentage of those who overtly reject it.

"I was very surprised to see that. To me that means the glass is half full,” Scott said. “That 21 percent we can educate."

Maybe I am naive but I am surprised to find that so many people don't believe in Evolution. I mean they think the world is 10,000 years old. That is the biggest surprise of all. I get not being 100% sure that evolution is the only work at play and the book "The God Delusion" is a very interesting read. The author Richard Dawkins even has the tiniest bit of doubt that it is only evolution at play because there really is no satisfactory explanation for how everything started.


Anyway I found all of this incredibly interesting and wanted to share it here and see what PSers think. Thanks for getting this far and reading this very long post.
 

AGBF

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When I saw only the title of the thread, before I read its content, I was sure it was started by kenny. I have to say that you raised an interesting topic, missy. My father just woke up with his hand in a splint and there are four roofers in my house. I will not even attempt to grapple with this issue now. But you were brave to raise it. And you raised it very intelligently.

Big hugs,
Deb :wavey:
 

missy

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AGBF|1456491919|3995965 said:
When I saw only the title of the thread, before I read its content, I was sure it was started by kenny. I have to say that you raised an interesting topic, missy. My father just woke up with his hand in a splint and there are four roofers in my house. I will not even attempt to grapple with this issue now. But you were brave to raise it. And you raised it very intelligently.

Big hugs,
Deb :wavey:
Oh no Deb, what is going on with your father? What is wrong with his hand? I am sending bucket loads of healing dust to your dad for a swift and complete recovery! Also good luck with your roofers. I hope the job goes smoothly and that the end result is perfect.
Big (((hugs))).

And LOL about thinking Kenny started it. I am hoping for a thoughtful and respectful discussion.
 

OreoRosies86

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This sums it up for me!

_2170.jpeg
 

monarch64

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I believe in evolution with a side of "never say never." :bigsmile:
 

missy

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monarch64|1456493101|3995977 said:
I believe in evolution with a side of "never say never." :bigsmile:
Ha yes this is where I am too. I agree with Dawkins in that science gets us almost all there but how did it all begin? That is the billion dollar question but yes 100% agree in evolution.

Elliot86 said:
This sums it up for me!
LOL yes that is the good thing about science. It is exists whether or not one believes in it.

Global warming that's another topic. Perhaps one that we should start. I believe in climate change but not necessarily "warming" per se.
It's complicated. My dh is in the environmental field and it is just not cut and dry as some politicians would have us believe. :read: There are those pesky politicians again. :wink2:

Don't forget to vote in the poll OK? I'm curious to see the PS statistics on this topic.
 

AGBF

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I have done a few morning chores and returned for a few minutes of recreation. Thank you for the good wishes for my father. He fell the night before last. I did not, then, realize he had hurt his wrist. He reopened a wound on his right arm that had been very deep from two falls ago that was reopened on his last fall. (He was hospitalized for both those falls because they involved other health issues: cardiac ones and and ones involving anemia that required transfusions). I cleaned and bound up the wound on his arm and another on his leg and planned to get his doctor to get a visiting nurse back to check them in the morning. But in the morning the cleaning woman found his wrist was swollen and hurt. I felt terribly guilty that I had missed it and not brought him to the hospital immediately. So I called an ambulance. After a thorough work-up of all his issues it was splinted and he was sent home. The doctor saw no breaks and thinks it is sprained, but says one cannot rule out breaks that no one can see. In the meantime my daughter had to go to a college class at night, so I got a good male friend to come down and stay with my father while I took her to school. The two guys had supper together. I just had time to throw together some meat loaf and mashed potatoes between hospital and house because my friend relieved me at the ER so I could go home and get ready to take my daughter to school! Since there is a dumpster in the driveway and no roof on the house, getting my father to the ambulance was a challenge. Everything is!

Sorry for the threadjack!!!
 

monarch64

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Deb, glad to hear your dad is doing ok. Hope he is on the mend soon and that it doesn't turn into anything serious. (Where is the fingers-crossed emotie??) Hugs.
 

Karl_K

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both, that they are not mutually exclusive.
I believe that evolution happens because it was created that way.
Evolution happens but there is 0 evidence that man evolved from apes(that pesky missing link that anyone who studies it will quickly find out about) and I believe that man was created as man.
That the animals and man and even plants are related because they were designed using the same building blocks and creator.
Without getting too far into religion that is about all I can say.
 

missy

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monarch64|1456494208|3995981 said:
Deb, glad to hear your dad is doing ok. Hope he is on the mend soon and that it doesn't turn into anything serious. (Where is the fingers-crossed emotie??) Hugs.
For Deb and her dad.

fingerscrossed.jpeg
 

missy

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Karl_K|1456494520|3995985 said:
both, that they are not mutually exclusive.
I believe that evolution happens because it was created that way.
Evolution happens but there is 0 evidence that man evolved from apes(that pesky missing link that anyone who studies it will quickly find out about) and I believe that man was created as man.
That the animals and man and even plants are related because they were designed using the same building blocks and creator.
Without getting too far into religion that is about all I can say.
Thanks Karl for sharing. I would love it if you could expand upon what you wrote if possible but understand if you don't wish to get into it.
 

monarch64

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Thanks for the fingers-crossed emotie, Missy! (Not quoting in the interest of wasting valuable internet space!) :lol:
 

Karl_K

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missy|1456494684|3995989 said:
Karl_K|1456494520|3995985 said:
both, that they are not mutually exclusive.
I believe that evolution happens because it was created that way.
Evolution happens but there is 0 evidence that man evolved from apes(that pesky missing link that anyone who studies it will quickly find out about) and I believe that man was created as man.
That the animals and man and even plants are related because they were designed using the same building blocks and creator.
Without getting too far into religion that is about all I can say.
Thanks Karl for sharing. I would love it if you could expand upon what you wrote if possible but understand if you don't wish to get into it.
I cant within the rules of the board and it is not something that I much care to debate. I have studied it extensively and continue to do so with interest.
My findings work for me and I don't have any interest in converting anyone to my way of thinking on the issue.
 

Karl_K

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Deb, thoughts and prayers outgoing for your dad.
 

House Cat

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Without reading the other responses because I want to give my own...

I believe that evolution does not cancel out the existence of a designer/maker or God. I believe evolution displays God's genius.
 

missy

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Karl_K|1456495527|3995996 said:
missy|1456494684|3995989 said:
Karl_K|1456494520|3995985 said:
both, that they are not mutually exclusive.
I believe that evolution happens because it was created that way.
Evolution happens but there is 0 evidence that man evolved from apes(that pesky missing link that anyone who studies it will quickly find out about) and I believe that man was created as man.
That the animals and man and even plants are related because they were designed using the same building blocks and creator.
Without getting too far into religion that is about all I can say.
Thanks Karl for sharing. I would love it if you could expand upon what you wrote if possible but understand if you don't wish to get into it.
I cant within the rules of the board and it is not something that I much care to debate. I have studied it extensively and continue to do so with interest.
My findings work for me and I don't have any interest in converting anyone to my way of thinking on the issue.
I respect that Karl and I didn't start this thread to convince others to think the way I think. Instead I started it because I was curious to see what others thoughts are about this topic and why they think the way they do. Thank you for contributing what you have.
 

missy

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House Cat|1456495825|3996002 said:
Without reading the other responses because I want to give my own...

I believe that evolution does not cancel out the existence of a designer/maker or God. I believe evolution displays God's genius.
Thanks House Cat. I also believe evolution doesn't cancel out the possibility of a higher being. I am just uncertain about the details of that higher being.
 

House Cat

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Deb, I don't know how you do it. I am sending prayers for you and your dad.
 

stracci2000

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I used to work with a guy who said that dinosaurs were only 10,000 years old, and God put them on earth to confuse man, as a test.
I nearly fell off my chair!
 

VapidLapid

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Evolution and creationism are not two sides of an argument, they are not two sides of the same coin. One is science, the other is superstition.

Deb, I hope your dad recovers quickly and easily.
 

chrono

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Deb,
Wishing your father a quick and full recovery.

Yes to evolution and there are some timing/date/age conflicts if one believes that evolution and the belief in a higher are not mutually exclusive.
 

missy

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stracci2000|1456499149|3996035 said:
I used to work with a guy who said that dinosaurs were only 10,000 years old, and God put them on earth to confuse man, as a test.
I nearly fell off my chair!
Ha, exactly! It boggles the mind.


VapidLapid said:
Evolution and creationism are not two sides of an argument, they are not two sides of the same coin. One is science, the other is superstition.

Deb, I hope your dad recovers quickly and easily.
IYO Vapid. There are many who believe otherwise. I of course am a woman of science so you know where my thoughts are though I do think there is room for questions and perhaps a little faith is necessary in the equation. Just saying.


Chrono said:
Deb,
Wishing your father a quick and full recovery.

Yes to evolution and there are some timing/date/age conflicts if one believes that evolution and the belief in a higher are not mutually exclusive.
I can see where one might believe that they are not mutually exclusive. Have you read the book I mentioned in the first post? There are questions that cannot be answered based on science alone.
 

chrono

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We, humans, are still learning more about the world around us, improving and sometimes changing our Science theories. I find it scary that my niece is not taught evolution at all in her Christian-based private school, but that's going off a tangent.
 

kenny

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I believe what there is evidence for, evolution.
 

missy

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AGBF|1456494092|3995980 said:
I have done a few morning chores and returned for a few minutes of recreation. Thank you for the good wishes for my father. He fell the night before last. I did not, then, realize he had hurt his wrist. He reopened a wound on his right arm that had been very deep from two falls ago that was reopened on his last fall. (He was hospitalized for both those falls because they involved other health issues: cardiac ones and and ones involving anemia that required transfusions). I cleaned and bound up the wound on his arm and another on his leg and planned to get his doctor to get a visiting nurse back to check them in the morning. But in the morning the cleaning woman found his wrist was swollen and hurt. I felt terribly guilty that I had missed it and not brought him to the hospital immediately. So I called an ambulance. After a thorough work-up of all his issues it was splinted and he was sent home. The doctor saw no breaks and thinks it is sprained, but says one cannot rule out breaks that no one can see. In the meantime my daughter had to go to a college class at night, so I got a good male friend to come down and stay with my father while I took her to school. The two guys had supper together. I just had time to throw together some meat loaf and mashed potatoes between hospital and house because my friend relieved me at the ER so I could go home and get ready to take my daughter to school! Since there is a dumpster in the driveway and no roof on the house, getting my father to the ambulance was a challenge. Everything is!

Sorry for the threadjack!!!

Deb, you are the most wonderful daughter and mother and I'm sending lots of healing vibes to your dad. Thank you for the update and please feel free to post away. No such thing as a thread jack IMO. We want to know how your dad is doing. Hugs.
 

missy

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Chrono|1456500942|3996057 said:
We, humans, are still learning more about the world around us, improving and sometimes changing our Science theories. I find it scary that my niece is not taught evolution at all in her Christian-based private school, but that's going off a tangent.

I agree that is scary. That is an incomplete education IMO. And perhaps no wonder there are 42% of Americans who don't believe in evolution.


kenny said:
I believe what there is evidence for, evolution.
Yes agreed. How did it all begin however? There are no concrete answers for that.
 

azstonie

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And I guess someone got here early on with a big bag of sparkly and sprinkled diamonds and gemstones all around too. ;))
 

kenny

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missy|1456504303|3996087 said:
kenny said:
I believe what there is evidence for, evolution.
Yes agreed. How did it all begin however? There are no concrete answers for that.
I don't know.
Nobody does.

"No concrete answers for that?" No biggie.
Just because one can think up a big question does not mean there simply must be an answer.
We just don't know lots of stuff.
Why can't people just answer, "I don't know." ?
Let's be patient, maybe for generations, and wait for research to find answers ... if ever.

But what's no biggie to me is a very big biggie to billions.

People of all times, in all places, and of all cultures have been making up answers to unanswerable questions, but pretending/insisting they didn't make them up.
They have a special word for this, faith.

They don't tell their kids, "These answers were made up, but we believe them anyway because the narrative feels so good."
Rather they teach their kids that they'll go to Hell (another made-up thing) if they question and think critically and only believe what there is evidence for.

It works great ... till they get powerful enough to gain political clout to force their teachings on everyone, even those that believe in different made-up things, or those who only believe what there is evidence for.
 

missy

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Kristie, :lol: If only. 8)


Kenny, I agree. We don't know. And we all know who wrote the bible. Men. It's a good story. Entertaining.

And to answer your question I want to know because I'm curious. Just like my kitties. I also am aware of the saying about curiosity. Doesn't stop me though from wanting to know. I realize we don't have the answers and probably won't have them during our lifetime but in the meantime I will enjoy trying to figure things out.
 
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