My Coversation with a Christian about Christianity, Origin of Life, Dinosaurs, Evolution, and Morality


I am an Atheist, though I'd rather be considered an Rationalist. Recently I have decided to "come out" as an Atheist and, so far, it has been a real positive experience. I have found a number of people who share the same thoughts and views and I have been fortunate in that my family (Christians), have not removed themselves from my life.

I am a fan of posting, as they say in politics, "controversial" images and posts on Facebook. After posting an, I will admit, over generalized meme, someone I know commented which sparked a, lets call it, discussion. What he said, as shocking as it might seem to you, I have heard many times by Evangelicals. However, this was the first time it was from someone I actually knew.

This is why I have recently decided to come out and try talking about religion more. Beliefs influence your actions and for me personally I want to have as many true beliefs and and as little wrong beliefs as possible. This isn't the choice for everyone. Many people are happy believing something for no good reason or lack of evidence. But this kind of thinking can be very harmful to society. Take a look at the discussion below, and you will see what I am talking about.

I edited the post a little bit (misspellings and grammar).

Christian so you’re saying our government is progressing? Getting better? Also confused, what are the Christian dark ages?

Steve Hayes The point I am making here doesn't necessarily have to do with the progress of our government, but more about what happens when those in charge use the bible or religion as it's source for its laws and mindset.

I am sure you have heard of the Dark Ages, but if not I'll help you out. This was when, basically, science was outlawed, to the extent that if you were doing something that the church deemed blasphemous you were killed. This is when we hunted for witches because the bible says to kill witches, homosexuals, those who commit adultery, and the list goes on. If you were not a believer in god you were killed.

In addition this was also the time when the Crusades were going on. So we were killing both our own people and the people of other nations in the name of god. Following god’s laws was one of the worst times in history (IMO).

Christian I agree that a belief system shouldn't be forced. As for the witches pretty sure we could do with them. Your correct in that the Bible says to kill them, in the Old Testament. New Testament is a bit more forgiving/lenient. As far as I know, no one is hunting people down for spreading false doctrine or being gay. Although I don't agree with their practices the Great Word says "judge not least yee be judged". I believe there isn't a better set of laws laid forth for mankind to abide by. The farther we get from it the more chaotic the world will be. This is the reason for the Flood. (Noah Ark)\

Christian The Lord looked upon the world and said that "all are LOST, all are have become together worthless and bearing no fruit”. I worry for YOU friend, for my Bible says in the coming days, "EVERY KNEE SHALL BOW" I disagree with your propaganda but not going to "unfriend you" take care man. Maybe see ya @high school reunion

Steve Hayes If you are saying that the Old Testament doesn't apply and the New Testament changed everything, let me remind you what Jesus said in the New Testament.

"For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass away from the law, till all things be accomplished." - Mathew 5:18

In other words, all of the laws God dictated in the Old Testament are still to be adhered to. The only laws that were modified were the ones dealing with sacrifices because God though enjoyed the smell of burning blood, no longer required sacrifice.

"Then burn the entire ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the LORD, a pleasing aroma, an offering made to the LORD by fire."Exodus 29:17-19

New Testament is forgiving? Actually it's just as bad if not worse. The idea of thought crimes is introduced in the New Testament. Infinite reward and punishment (Heaven and Hell) comes from the New Testament. Jesus introduces thought crimes, such as thinking of another woman sexually.

Jesus also talks about slavery. (Passing slaves down in the family for they are money and slaves being loyal to unkind masters)------Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)

The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it. "But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given." (Luke 12:47-48 NLT)

Christians who are slaves should give their masters full respect so that the name of God and his teaching will not be shamed. If your master is a Christian, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. You should work all the harder because you are helping another believer by your efforts. Teach these truths, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them. (1 Timothy 6:1-2 NLT)

Old Testament (buying slaves and beating them with rods) -----However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way. (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)

When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

As for homosexuality, actually yes people are killing them. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/feb/08/uganda-gay-death-senten...)
Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill - Often referred to as the "Kill the Gay" Bill

Here in America from the Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/02/anti-gay-hate-crimes-murde...)

Sorry best set of laws for mankind? You have got to be kidding me. The bible is a horrible place to get your laws from. It’s immoral and teaches you to hate and discriminate.

When beat slave with rod and other slavery in the bible
http://www.evilbible.com/Slavery.htm

Eating shellfish (how is this helpful in society?)

“These you may eat, of all that are in the waters. Everything in the waters that has fins and scales, whether in the seas or in the rivers, you may eat." - Leviticus 11:9

Women not allowed to speak in church------"...women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church." - 1 Corinthians 14:34-35

Beat, Stone, and Kill unruly children------“If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and, though they discipline him, will not listen to them, then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gate of the place where he lives, and they shall say to the elders of his city, ‘This our son is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.’ Then all the men of the city shall stone him to death with stones. So you shall purge the evil from your midst, and all Israel shall hear, and fear." - Deuteronomy 21: 18-21

"For anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death; he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood is upon him." - Leviticus 20:9

"Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him." - Proverbs 13:24

If a woman is raped she must marry her rapist------"If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father. Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her." - Deuteronomy 22:28-29

Noah’s ark - there is no evidence of this ever taking place. Besides the lack of evidence, why does god result in using genocide if he is omnipotent? Why didn’t he just snap his fingers and fix the problem. And the world is lost eh? Isn't he also omniscient, meaning all knowing? So he already knows what is to come, which means he already knew that man was going to be so bad and yet did nothing to stop it or change it to be the way he wanted it?

My propaganda? Dictionary defines propaganda as "Information, esp. of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view." I am not giving any propaganda, I am giving the fact that we did not advance and went backwards in science during the age in which the bible ruled the lands is, indeed, a fact. So I am not misleading anyone because the information I presented is true.

Seems to me Christian that, no offense, you haven't read your bible. That's what made me an atheist. Your bible is full of contradictions and is straight up wrong. A few more examples? How about how old the earth is? Your bible says 6000 to 10000 whereas science says it's billions. Your bible also says that the earth is flat, the sun stopped for 3 days and that the sun revolves around the earth. That's just for starters. The bible is immoral and teaches you to hate others who don't think like you.

Here is a challenge for you Christian.

Name one thing good that cannot be achieved by purely secular means. In other words name something good that can only be done by people of faith.

Now name something bad that can only be done by a person of faith in the name of faith.

Why is it that it that you can name one after another for the second question but have none (if any) for the first?

Christian The Bible doesn't teach you to hate different types of people. God made a law; this is his world since he created it. So if the man upstairs says being gay is disgraceful and punishable than let it be so. Same goes for everyone while growing up right? Your father’s house, his rules. Also ya the Bible says the earth is less than 10k old. So far there is no Evidence to contradict this in ANY form. Evolution is a government funded RELIGION. Why? Because a long time ago it was said that Christians are the greatest threat to the way they want to shape the coming society. I have read the bible threw and threw. You’re taking single lines out of context.

Christian When I used the word propaganda, I was referring to the picture you posted of the graph. The graph depicts an unequal scale favoring the point you’re trying to make, however factitious it is. Christian dark ages, also propaganda in nature. "Dark ages" is a negative term to give anything.

Christian Times were way different back when the Lord inspired these guys to write. The concern about a woman being raped is that she will not be desirable So since the desire would never arise from another man, the man must keep her. Women in those days only cared about being a wife and mother really.

Christian Noah’s ark, years ago a couple men hiked Mt.Erarat. found the ark and brought a piece of it back. Anything these days Christian related is unpublished, unwatched, and discredited without regard for facts. Ever looked at the instructions on how to build the Ark? Pretty damn in depth instructions for a hoax. Besides the proof lay all over the world that it took place. The Grand Canyon is a prime example. Millions of years for that punny lake couldn’t erode that canyon. The Flood did that in a matter of days.

Steve Hayes Really the bible doesn’t teach you to hate? You just said yourself that you don't think that homosexuality is ok and that it was justified for the killings because your god says it’s ok. It teaches you that people who do not believe in the thing as you do not deserve to live. People who don't believe what you believe are bad people, "sinners". Don't even try to sit there on a high horse saying that the bible doesn’t teach you to hate. How many times do you see religious protesters holding up signs that say things like "God hates fags"? So to put it simply, you discriminate because your god tells you that it’s wrong whereas I have no problem with what other people in the bedroom or what gender other people fall in love with. I hope you read that again and really think about how you sound. It’s called an argument from authority. You do what you’re told instead of thinking for yourself. Here is a quote to help you understand that.

"Morality is doing what is right regardless of what you are told.

Obedience is doing what your told regardless of what is right"

Right, so you misused the word propaganda to try and discredit the fact that when the bible was used to run the lands that scientific growth came to a halt. As I said before propaganda is the intent to mislead. As for calling it the Dark Ages, guess what Christian, that’s what history has deemed it. Not me. I am not just putting a title on it that is what you learned about in your history books.

Times were different back then? You can’t be serious. You are defending rape? You are telling me that you think that it is totally acceptable for the woman to be force to marry the man who raped her? How exactly is THAT moral? How is that punishment to the man who raped her? Don’t sit there and try to talk about being desirable and that’s why they had to marry. That’s complete bullshit. It is immoral and wrong. And where do you get the idea that they wanted to be mothers and wives? Do you not look up things in history man? The who reason for marriage in the first place was a form of trade. You would trade your virgin daughter in exchange for land, goats, money you name it. You might want to check your facts.

/sigh Noah’s ark again... You do know they have claimed to find Noah’s ark like 40 times now right? That piece of the ark they say was found on the mountain was false. They guy who made it came out and said he used a bunch of house hold materials, including teriyaki sauce, to make it look old. You can find out more about how many times the Ark has been "found" herehttp://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CH/CH500.html

So you said that you think the earth is 10000 years old? So can you explain dinosaurs? How about the fact that we can trace back evidence of life billions of years ago? You are claiming that Science is wrong about how old the earth is and the bible is correct? I don’t know what creation books you have been reading dude, but you might want to pick up an actual science book and check your facts. As a matter a fact, I would love to see the scientific evidence you have that claims to say the opposite.

And Evolution... so you are one of those too I see. Evolution is a scientific fact. Evolution is the change over time and it has been proven. I would LOVE to see the evidence that Evolution is a government religion... Again, you might want to check your facts man. The theory of evolution is as much a fact as the theory of gravity, theory of relativity, etc. Before you try and go saying that the word theory means guess, you are wrong. In scientific terms a theory is the graduation level. It’s the highest level of understanding or the best known explanation of whatever it is it claims. It DOES NOT mean it is an absolute truth. Again, it’s the best understanding we have with the facts and evidence available.

Again man please goes check your facts. You try and make it sound like Christian findings are somehow hidden from the public. 80% to 85% of Americans are religious in one way or another. Christianity is the most popular of all those religions. So to try and say that something as important as the Ark being found was just shoved under the rug is just ridiculous. None of the claims have ever produced any evidence of the truth of the Ark.

Steve Hayes Oh and as fort those statements being out of context, that's a load of craps too. There is no context that is ever ok to own another human being, force someone who was raped to marry the rapist, harming and killing others because they don't think the same you, beating and killing children, resulting to genocide when you don't get your way. Go ahead man, show me the light where any of that is within context and is totally acceptable.

Christian I’m truly glad that your passionate about you believe in. Seriously. Most people don't even have an opinion. As for religion, Christianity, Government and Evolution it appears well never convince each other it’s any other way. If you truly want to hear some arguments with Science based theories/Bible quotes/etc. I have some videos I’d love to show ya from Dr. Kent Hovind (think that's how to spell his name) he was a science teacher for like 15years. He know all about the theory of relativity and so on

Christian Also, no I don't believe a man should go unpunished for rape. I’d rather kill someone and spend 10-20 in prison then let them walk. As for killing gay people, I think that's a bit extreme. I think it’s disgusting but each to his own

Steve Hayes Kent Hovind yes I know who he is. He has the creation museum that has humans and dinosaurs existing together. Kent Hovind has been proven wrong countless times and shown that he has no idea what he is talking about. Same with Ray Comfort (the banana argument guy). I can go into more about how bad it is that you try and use Kent as an" expert", but I'd prefer you do your research.

Steve Hayes Killing gay is extreme? According to you it's completely justified to kill gays. It’s a law from your god and as you said, if it's his world, who are you to not follow his orders?

Christian Kent Hovind hasn't been proving wrong in any aspect. People are always going to deny their creator but that's each person’s problem when they face him come Judgment day. And ya id be justified for the gays, but who am I to judge. "Every knee shall bow" and answer for their sins. Only I’ll be forgiven. .

Christian Of course humans walked with dinosaurs. Look around you man! There can only be to answers for how the world got here. Either someone made it or it created itself. The second being entirely impossible. For you would have to have stellar evolution to create the plants/stars/moons from absolutely nothing. Matter can neither be created or destroyed....look it up. Then you have to have organic evolution. Micro and macro evolution. How many kinds of plants do you think there is in the world? How many sea creatures? How many birds? All these came from some ridicules "Soup" and generated a male/female larvae/egg/sperm/baby? Then managed to survive with no food/water/heat long enough to mature? Then these animals would have to produce enough young in the right conditions and reproduce. If only 1 male or 1 female spewed you'd lose that species. Ever look at the planets? If they all exploded from unknown source, they would all be spinning in the same direction.

Steve Hayes Once again you are incorrect on many of your arguments. Firstly, no humans did not roam with dinosaurs. There are no fossil records or any evidence that this is true. There is however evidence that proves that dinosaurs are millions of years old and we have transitional forms where we can follow the changes of many species. Why don't you give me your evidence that humans and dinosaurs walked the earth together?

You are making a ton of arguments from ignorance. There are not just two ways like you assert and just because you can't come up think of any other ways doesn't mean you get to say god did it. Telling me to look around as if trees, birds, the grass are proof of some creator because you don't understand how life adapts and grows. I've heard the intelligent design argument (or watch maker) and it has yet to provide any evidence. Again, an argument from ignorance.

Clearly you don't understand evolution. The big bang is not a part of evolution, that's abiogenesis. Evolution is the change over time of life that already exists from generation to generation. Evolution isn't it claiming to have answers for our origin or that it can create life out of nothing. As for earth, again if you look to a science book, it explains that the earth had formed, roughly, 4.5 billion years ago. The solar system including earth was the result of a solar nebula that collapsed from the formation of the sun. Over the course of millions of years (currently it is estimated to be between 10-20 million years) dust and gas began forming into the earth’s molten core. As the crust of the core cooled earth thus began being formed.

As for the planets spinning in different directions, again, this has already been explained by science. If you must know, the "backwards" planets and moons are in no way contrary to the nebular hypothesis I mentioned above. Part of the hypothesis is that the nebula of gas and dust would accrete into planetessimals. Catastrophic collisions between these would be part of planet building. Such collisions and other natural processes can account for the retrograde planets and moons.

The only moons that orbit retrograde are small asteroid-sized distant satellites of giant planets such as Jupiter and Saturn, plus Triton (Neptune's large moon) and Charon (Pluto's satellite). The small retrograde satellites of Jupiter and Saturn were probably asteroids captured by the giant planets long after formation of the solar system. It is actually easier to be captured into a retrograde orbit. The Neptune system also contains one moon, Nereid, with a highly eccentric orbit. It appears that some sort of violent capture event may have taken place. The Pluto-Charon system is orbiting approximately "on its side," technically retrograde, with tidally locked rotation. As these are small bodies in the outer solar system, and binaries are likely to have been formed through collisions or gravitational capture, this does not violate the nebular hypothesis.

Uranus is rotating more or less perpendicular to the plane of the ecliptic. This may be the result of an off-center collision between two protoplanets during formation. Venus is rotating retrograde but extremely slowly, with its axis almost exactly perpendicular to the plane of its orbit. The rotation of this planet may well have started out prograde, but solar and planetary tides acting on its dense atmosphere have been shown to be a likely cause of the present state of affairs. It is probably not a coincidence that at every inferior conjunction, Venus turns the same side toward Earth, as Earth is the planet that contributes most to tidal forces on Venus.

As far as I know we do not have any evidence of something coming from nothing. Including your god. Your god is something right? If he is something than he must have had beginning, by your own logic something cannot come from nothing, so where did your god come from? Besides that, I am not claiming, nor is atheism by the way, that something can come from nothing. It’s very possible that the universe has just always existed. The real truth is that we do not yet know the answer to that question. Or at least, we of rational minds. You claim to have the answer. God right? May I see your evidence?

Steve Hayes As for Kent Hovind... Man you really need to learn more about his credentials and his "arguments". Here is some help.http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Kent_Hovind

Christian Dude there have been findings of human foot prints walking next to dinosaurs. A guy from Berkley (known evolutionist) refused to even look at the prints when he showed up. He then reported having "not seen any proof". Seek and yee shall find. You found your answers and I have mine. That's why they call it a religion, requires one to have faith. You call your privately funded, humanist views facts and I’ll stick to what makes more sense. Basically Atheism means there's no point to life. Who is to say that killing/rape/theft should be punishable if there is no Lord God? Everyone in this world is gonna die, never to live again and just become dirt so anything goes. Why not run around doing whatever ya like? Might as well get that dumb ass tattoo I call the sinners motto "live life to the fullest"... ... which I guess I believe they should...their going to hell for all eternity so might as well enjoy the 10min they have in this life haha

Steve Hayes Christian I have asked you over and over for evidence, and you have yet to provide any. I am done trying to have an actual discussion/debate with you about your beliefs. Instead of answer the questions and discussing information I provided above, you instead continued proselytizing spouting off your beliefs trying to attain the moral high ground.

Atheism is the rejection of the belief that one or more gods exist. It does not say by any means there is no point to life. It does not dictate my values or moral beliefs. I use logic, reason, and evidence.

Steve Hayes: Atheist
- Does not and has not killed anyone
   - No homosexuals
   - No children
   - No men or women
- Does not and has not raped anyone
   - No men or women
   - No children
- Does not steal
- is an honest person- is a loving person
   - loves his family more than you love your magical sky daddy. And I would NEVER put anyone before my family or friends like your “loving” god tell you to do. “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me." - (Matthew 10:37)

How ignorant are you to try and say that I have no point to life. I have many reasons for living, every one of them just as valid as yours. The difference is I believe that we have just this one life to live and there is no after life. With one life to live it makes reality infinitely more valuable and all the more reason to be a good person. I'm not trying to live this life scoring brownie points with some god whom says I deserve to be tortured for eternity, not because I was a bad person, but because I don't claim I'm powerless without him and accept Jesus as my savior from sin (something your god invented himself). According to your god I am going to hell and you think that I DESERVE it. The fact that I am a good person means nothing unless I believe what you believe.

And yet you question my morality?

Christian Already explained it. Gave you the answers yet you keep asking the same questions. If he created it he can make whatever rules/laws/commands he sees fit. Doesn’t matter if you like it, understand why or agree. Doesn't matter if you think, or society thinks you’re a decent person. Also I don't need to "try to attain moral high ground" it’s already assumed without saying.

Views: 4716

Tags: Abiogenesis, Christianity, Evolution, Morality

Comment by Strega on October 22, 2012 at 9:36pm

You know, it might be fun to point this guy to the tale of the prodigal son.  As I remember it, the son that stayed loyal and obedient to his fathers wishes got nothing, but the one that went off and had a blast elsewhere, then came back to the fold, got a massive party thrown and a bunch of extra hugs.  So tell Christian that you are contemplating returning to the religious fold on your deathbed, because that way whilst he will be pretty much taken for granted up there, you will have a massive welcoming party to look forward to.

I never did get the moral of that story.  Hats off to the kid who's test paper asked "Who was upset when the Prodigal Son returned" and who answered, "the Fatted Calf".   Kudos, kid.

Comment by Katrin Schwarz on October 22, 2012 at 9:57pm

Good job.  Keep stirring up the cognitive dissonance.  The Bible is a perverse book, so forcing Christians to face up to this fact is potent method of kicking the stagnant mind back into gear.

Comment by Reg The Fronkey Farmer on October 23, 2012 at 8:12am

Another example of how religion poisons a person and steals from him any chance of thinking for himself. What a shame.

Many Christians don’t take the time to learn any Science that may contradict their special book. The attitude is “why read other books when all the answers are in this Book”. Science is frowned upon. Take Evolution for example. Many Christians say that they don’t believe in Evolution because God created man in the form he is in now.

 However it does not matter if they do not believe the TOE for it is not a matter of faith. It is only a matter of understanding that is gained through education. They don’t even want it taught in schools. They just deny it. They best “science” they can come up with is “intelligent design” which is rubbish from a scientific perspective. However the TOE is a fact.  

It means that the Genesis account is not true. We are evolved creatures that crawled from the sea. If they took the time and made the effort to study the TOE it would mean having to deny their only Science book as being the truth and whatever would flow from that understanding.

Comment by SteveInCO on October 23, 2012 at 9:16am

The attitude is “why read other books when all the answers are in this Book”.

The astounding thing is the number of those with that attitude, who haven't read it.  If I were convinced a book that (relatively) small had all the answers in it, I'd read it cover to cover multiple times.

Comment by SteveInCO on October 23, 2012 at 9:26am

If he created it he can make whatever rules/laws/commands he sees fit. Doesn’t matter if you like it, understand why or agree.

(That quote is from the Christian, in the last paragraph)

Yes that is the essence of Xian moral theory.  It's good because God said so.  Thus I don't consider all the times God tells the Israelites to wipe out their neighbors a bible contradiction, because the real commandment of the bible is "Do whateverthefuck god tells you to do."  (They are, however, proof that by any rational criteria god is a moral monster.)

I went to a talk given by some philosophy professor, as part of a celebration of Darwin Day at the University of Colorado, and the professor actually said that according to Christian theory, 'It's either good because god said it was, or god knows what's good and says so' (not an exact quote but the gist of it), and then went on to say he doubted anyone actually believed in the first alternative.  Well he's wrong, the first alternative is what any religious conservative actually believes. 

The more "liberal" Christian will pick and choose out of the bible what he thinks is good.  Then claim his morality comes out of the bible.  But he cannot answer the question of how he chose what was good and what was bad by reference to the bible itself, so he's clearly using some sort of extra-biblical moral judgement to judge the bible itself.  And thus the bible is not really his source of morality.  But given what the Christian quoted in the original post said, that line of reasoning doesn't apply to him, and you won't be able to point out he doesn't in fact get his morality out of the bible.

Comment by Jimmy Russell on October 23, 2012 at 7:48pm

Thats some scary stupid ignorance right there.  Even more scary than that is there is no way to deal with it.  Oh natural selection how I miss you so much. 

Comment by Colleen on October 24, 2012 at 12:32am

Also I don't need to "try to attain moral high ground" it’s already assumed without saying.


I'm in stitches from laughing too hard (and maybe a crying a bit because I know too many people like this exist).  This statement just too good.  I love it when people end up confirming the very thing that they're trying to refute.  Makes your job so much easier.


You did a good job Steve.  This person is just not curious or interested in anything beyond what he thinks he knows.

Comment by Dr.Grixis on October 24, 2012 at 6:48pm

On a sidenote, anyone that mentions the Dark Ages does risk the ire of (amateur) historians. Historically speaking the "Dark Ages" do not exist, almost all of the great Cathedrals were built in Europe for instance. 

Comment by SteveInCO on October 24, 2012 at 10:30pm

Dark Ages?  Well there is a distinction between the Dark Ages and the Medieval period.

Medieval times are considered to run from approximately 500-1500 CE (fall of the western roman empire through the (re)discovery of America by Europeans) though some draw the starting line at 300 CE, about the time Xianity took hold in the Roman Empire.  But the medieval period is generally subdivided into shorter periods.

The period from 500-800 AD I still commonly seen referred to as the Dark Ages; sometimes I've seen 300-1000 given, or 500-1000.  The biggest reason for this is that records available to us today are quite sketchy, literacy was extremely rare, and even government was very disorganized.  The 800 end date is popular because it corresponds roughly to the beginnings of Charlemagne's empire, which at the time was thought of as the beginning of recovery from the disorder that followed the collapse of the Roman empire.

[Now I am not a historian nor do I play one on TV, but I'd go so far as to declare 180 or 192 (not 300) through 476 to be the Declining Roman Empire, 476 to 800 to be the Dark Ages, and 800-1000 to be the beginning of recovery.  The fact that people disagree on the beginnings and ends of the dark ages to me indicates some significantly different periods of history here.]

1000-1300 is the "high middle ages" and 1300-1500 is the "late middle ages" edging into the Renaissance.

Anyhow if you look at it this way, the dark ages did exist, and predate the great cathedral building of the high and late middle ages--so there's no contradiction.

Comment by archaeopteryx on October 27, 2012 at 4:09pm

Steve - two things - first, orange and teal will show up on a dark background much better than red and blue - I'm sure you can change the HTML to those colors, if you need them, I can give you the numbers.

Also, you indicated you hadn't yet seen anything about the universe coming from nothing. Google, "Krause/something from nothing" for a fascinating video of exactly how the universe came from nothing, through quantum fluctuations.

Kent Hovind is a joke in search of a punch line.

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