Ep 9 – Creation

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The bible is very specific about the details on how our universe and planet was formed.  You may be asking yourself, yeah, so what?  The bible is just a bunch of fairy tales.

This may be true but believe it or not, there are people that actually believe the bible is the errant word of God and the creation story told in Genesis chapter one actually happened.  If you are listening to this podcast, chances are you don’t believe in this non-sense, and why should you; it goes against what science has demonstrated for years.

If you had no knowledge of the bible and I walked up to you and starting spouting the creation account in Genesis chapter one, you’d probably think I was crazy.  Religious leaders know it is much more difficult to convince adults to believe this crap so they target the weakest minds among us, children.  Religious leaders know that children have very vivid imaginations and that if they hook children early and get them to buy into these beliefs, they will be less likely to question them later on.

In today’s Sunday school I am taking an actual Sunday school lesson on creation that is taught to children and comparing it to what science has to say.  I will break down each verse, give you the Christian perspective as taught to children and then the actual scientific explanation, you know, the stuff that has evidence.

Briefly, science is reproducible and falsifiable.  The results I obtain from an experiment, someone else should be able to replicate them based on my methods.  If they cannot, my methods are flawed or my claims are false.  I cannot make a claim that cannot be falsified.  An example would be saying that invisible flying pink elephants protect my car when I drive to work, that is why I never get in an accident.  How can someone else reproduce that?  Falsify it?  If you say I need to test for these invisible elephants and I say only I can test them, my statement cannot be falsified.  If you cannot reproduce or falsify my statements, then what I am doing is not science.

I pulled these lesson plans off the interwebs.  Here is the fundamental message for this lesson:

Why is the sky blue? Where do babies come from? Why do dogs bark?  These are questions that every young child ask.  Preschool through Grade School children are constantly discovering God’s creations as they explore the natural world.

In the beginning, there were no blue skies, no cuddly babies or barking dogs.  There was nothing at all.  But God began to create.  God spoke and out of nothing came the sun, the moon, the earth, the mountains, the valley’s, the plants and the animals.  God’s loving hands created everything around us.

Awww, that is such a nice message for children to hear.  Where do babies come from ask the little boy?  Why God says the pastor.  Why is the sky blue questions the little girl? God responds the pastor.  Why is the Universe 13/7 billion years old? Quiet YOU!  Saying this once will not due, you have to hammer in the message over and over again, repeat it constantly or your indoctrination won’t take, rise and repeat, always repeat[1].

Now the real fun begins, you start teaching children the actual creation story but you can’t just grab your KJV and start reading; their feeble minds won’t understand something so complex so you have to scale it down to their level.

In the beginning there was no earth or sky or sea or animals.  And then God spoke in the darkness:  “Let there be light!”  And right away there was light, scattering the darkness and showing the infinite space.  “That’s good!” said God.  “From now on, when it’s dark it will be ‘night” and when it’s light, it will be ‘day’.”

The evening came and the night passed and then the light returned.  That was the first day.

Let’s interpret this statement.  There was no light, anywhere, just blackness.  Then God spoke and everything lite up like the sky on the fourth of July.  Where did this light source come from?  Was it light from God’s gleaming white robe?  His piercing blue eyes?  Light has to have a source.  Last time I checked, the vast majority of space is just dark, empty space.

Let’s contrast this with what science has to say, which fits our understanding of the natural universe.  13.73 billion Years ago all matter in the universe began in a very tiny, hot and compacted point.  When the Big Bang occurred, it let loose a huge amount of energy, The Universe immediately started to get bigger and bigger.  As the Universe cooled, energy changed into particle of matter and antimatter.  These two opposite particles destroyed each other but some matter survived and these stables particles turned into protons and neutrons.  As the temperature dropped, the protons and neutrons came together and formed hydrogen and helium nuclei.  After 300,000 years of cooling, atomic nuclei could finally capture electrons to form atoms.  Soon the Universe filled with hydrogen and helium atoms.  Gravity would eventually pull these atoms together to form galaxy and solar systems. The difference between creationism and science, we have observable evidence to validate the Big Bang Theory [2].

Moving on to day number two:

On the second day, God made the earth and over it He carefully hung a vast blue sky.  He stood back and admired His creation.  “That’s good too!” said God and the second day was over.

I can picture God hanging the Earth in space and stepping back with His finger on his chin and a quizzical look on his face and thinking “something is missing?  I got it, SKY!”  He grabbed his tape measure, a blue piece of fabric and some string and hung the sky over the Earth.  Satisfied with his job well done, he goes and takes a nap, ready for day number three.

A cute as this story is, the actual science behind our atmosphere is a little more complicated.  When the Earth was formed some 4.5 billion years ago, its atmosphere was made up of mostly nitrogen and other elements, not to friendly to animal like us.  The prevailing theory is that a storm of meteorites hit our Earth bringing with it gas and water rich materials [3].  The next step was differentiation which is where the less dense gas molecules rose to the surface.  Volcanic eruptions ejected methane, water vapor, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, sulfur dioxide and ammonia.  Most of these gases were broke down by the radiation from the Sun; the remaining oxygen created our ozone and protects Earth from harmful ultraviolet rays [4].  Again, evidence supports this claim that is the power of science.

God wakes up on the third day, admires his handy work but something is still missing:

The next morning God looked around and thought, “the earth needs to be a bit more organized.”  So, He put all the water in one place and all the dry land in another.  When He had finished that, God made plants to cover the land.  Dandelions and daffodils appeared.  All sorts of trees and grasses began to grow.  “It’s looking great”, said God and that was the end of the third day.

Now we have God moving the land around, making a mountain range over here, and a valley over there, a desert here and an island there plus drawing all the lakes, rivers and oceans.  Then He goes and takes another nap.

The early Earth has a hot place, mostly made up of iron.  As comets carrying ice slammed into the Earth, the melting ice released steam into our atmosphere.  With the Universe being a cold place, the Earth finally began to cool which turned the silica into solid rock.  Also, the steam began to turn back into water and as it fell down these early rocks, created the first oceans.  Eventually, these rocks would erode and made sand, dirt and clay.  The water pressed these together creating new sedimentary layers.  During this time, the atmosphere was mainly carbon dioxide.  Soon, long strings of amino acids formed living cells that used carbon dioxide for energy.  Oxygen was the by-product of these amino acids.  This was the beginning of our plant life.  Soon other organisms formed and used oxygen as energy.  This started the process of cells evolving into more complex organisms.  With the Earth’s core still mainly melted iron, the silica crust floats on top of it causing the land to drift around slamming into each other and then breaking apart.  This has happened several times and we are currently in a floating apart stage [5].  SCIENCE!

So far science is kicking some serious ass not let’s go back to God, I think He is up from his latest siesta.

On the fourth day, God looked around and though, “the daylight still needs a bit more work and the night is just too dark.”  So, He made the sun to light the sky during the day and the moon and stars to add a bit of sparkle to the night.  He hung them in the sky and stepped back to look at his work.  “This is coming along very well,”  said God.

Hmmmm, I thought we already had light?  This must be a typo; there is no possible way that the sun, stars and the moon came after land, water, plants and animals.  Let me flip through my bible here (page sounds). Genesis 1:3, and god said let there be light.  Alright now let’s see, Genesis 1:16 and god made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars too.  Son of bitch, it does say light came before the sun and stars.  Well, as I have already pointed out, the Earth would not be here if it were not for the Sun.  Also, the moon is not a light; it merely reflects the suns light.  If God created the Universe in this way, the evidence he has given us clearly contradicts this account.  Maybe God can redeem himself after a nice long nap:

The next day, God turned his attention to the water he had collected in the oceans.  “I want these waters teeming with life!”  As soon as He said it, it was so.  In no time, there were millions of small fish darting through the shallow water and huge fish swimming in the ocean.  God made birds, too.  He sent them soaring through the air.  “Ahh, that IS good!, “said God.  The dusk fell over the water and the sky grew dark and that was the end of the fifth day.

Oh boy, this just keeps getting worse.  Here is a brief evolutionary timeline for Earth’s history:

3.8 Billion years: simple cells, 3.4 billion years stromatolites demonstrating photosynthesis, 2 billion years complex cells, 1 billion years multicellular life, 6000 million years simple animals, 570 million years arthropods, 550 million years complex animals, 500 million years fish and prot-amphibians, 475 million years land plants, 400 million years insects and seeds, 360 million years amphibians, 300 million years reptiles, 200 million years mammals, 150 million years birds, 130 million years flowers, 65 million years non-avian dinosaurs died out, 2.5 million years of the genus Homo, 200,000 years of anatomically modern humans, 25,000 years since the disappearance of Neanderthal’s, ten years ago, smartphones…enough said!

This cannot possible get any worse.  God, you better come with you’re A game on this one.

On the sixth day, God added creatures to the land.  He made lions and tigers and bears.  He made rabbits and sheep and cows.  He added everything from ants to zebras to the land.  But He still felt something was missing.  So God added Mankind to enjoy and take care of all that He had created.  God looked around and was happy with all He had made.

(large sigh) Well, what else can I say?  Six days of work and this is what God came up with?  He better have done some serious revising on the seventh day.  Maybe there is something about how he made all the evidence look contradictory to his creation account to test our faith or it was just a big joke and that he really did it the way we have discovered it through science.  He is the creator of all, He can do that right?  The most important day is next, bring it home Big Guy.

After six days, the whole universe was completed.  On the seventh day God had a nice long rest and enjoyed looking at all He had made.

(Insert cricket sounds)  What the fuck?  He rested?  That’s it?  He took a fucking break?  Seriously?  Well, I guess it does take a lot of work to create something, you expend a lot of energy but you’re God, you are above space and time, why do you need a break?

So many contradictions compared to what science tells us and that is just the first creation account.  Is this what you want children to learn in school?  This bullshit of an ancient story about creation from Bronze Age sheep herders or do you want your children to learn solid science based on facts and evidence?  I know what I am teaching my kids, what about you?