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Category Archives: Darwinism

Oil industry given Darwinism lesson on adapting to survive in North Sea – Energy Voice

Posted: August 25, 2017 at 4:10 am

The North Sea oil industry has been given a lesson on Charles Darwins theory of evolution by natural selection.

Executives, geologists, operators, investors and developers were schooled on the subject at the Oil and Gas Authoritys Technology Forum in Aberdeen.

The booked out event drew more than 180 people, who were told that technology was critical to unlocking every last drop of oil held in the UK continental shelf (UKCS).

It comes ahead of the November deadline for the 30th licensing round, focussed on mature areas of the UKCS some of which were last offered for licensing more than 40 years ago.

The November deadline is expected to bring about the most significant offshore round in recent decades.

And Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) operations director Gunther Newcombe said adapting technology to fit the remaining North Sea resources would be seen as a major factor in who is awarded what acreage.

He set the scene to the plenary session, when he said: Do we have a lot of potential remaining in the UKCS still remaining? Absolutely yes.

Another good backdrop to this is that production is up, hopefully 1.7million barrels of oil equivalent per day by the end of this year and also production efficiency is up to 73%.

Weve got 14 or so new developments coming on stream this year so its quite a vibrant UKCS here that we have in the 30th round.

Theres still plenty of yet-tofind- potential out there.

And technology will be one of the key drivers to unlocking that potential.

One of the things that the OGA wants to do is really drive technology into, not just exploration, but right through development and into production. And we will certainly be looking more and more at companies to engage with technology and apply and adapt technology in the UKCS.

The 30th round has more than 800 blocks on offer , equating to roughly six times the size of Wales.

In that space there is 140 discoveries on offer with around 2.3billion barrels of resource discovered in those areas.

And Newcombe said the OGA expects technology to be included in the applications for the round.

He said: Part of the marking system for the licensing round will be about what technology you are going to offer, adapt and deploy.

Seismic technology and imaging of the subsurface are obviously critical to reducing risk. Trying to get that well cost down is also incredible important.

Geosteering is critically important. We are seen a lot of development in the Southern North Sea in that area in particular.

And also adapting other technologies in the area of wells.

So its about getting the cost in the right place and seeing your reservoirs and seeing your tracks.

He added: You need to tie back these things obviously so if youve got infrastructure there efficient tiebacks is important, looking at in a different way.

For example hot taps to having different types of pipeline like spool pipelines for instance to try and get some of these tiebacks hooked up.

Many of the discoveries are in the standalone environment so we need to look at in a different way rather than having these gold plated structures. Are there smaller things that we could use and adapt for smaller pools? Again, being versatile and being to able to adapt technology to the resource is really important.

More than 35 exhibitors from SMEs to major service providers including PGS, Baker Hughes, a GE company, Amplus and Western Geco, showcased at the event in Aberdeen yesterday.

Chris Pearson, OGTC Small Pools Solution Centre Manager, added: This is another first for the OGA and OGTC. We are working collaboratively with an innovative and supportive group of companies to make the license round a success.

The showcase event highlighted how technology solutions can significantly lower the entire life-cycle cost for UKCS field developments. We can be both incremental and disruptive in our approach to how we deploy the solutions. This approach can make this stable and mature basin an attractive investment opportunity.

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‘Radical’ new biography of Darwin is unreliable and inaccurate – New Scientist

Posted: at 4:10 am

Charles Darwin wrote many letters during his voyage of discovery on HMS Beagle

Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

By John van Wyhe

Charles Darwin: Victorian mythmaker, by A. N. Wilson, John Murray

A. N. Wilson is a prolific author who has written more than 45 books, including many biographies of subjects ranging from Queen Victoria to Hitler. His latest, a biography of Charles Darwin, begins with the startling sentence: Darwin was wrong. Wilson argues that Darwin offered to the emergent Victorian middle classes a consolation myth there was something inexorable, natural about their superiority to the working class.

This book provides an appallingly inaccurate rendition of Darwins theory and its scientific context. According to Wilson, Darwin told his contemporaries that their land-grabs in Africa, their hunger for stock-market wealth in the face of widespread urban poverty, their rigid class system and their everlasting wars were not things to be ashamed of, but actually part of the processes of nature. The theory is not science, Wilson concludes, just another offering in a bazaar of ersatz religions.

Wilson maintains that Darwins theory is wrong and not the basis of current knowledge. He believes Darwinism was about extreme gradualism over geological time. But Darwinian gradualism simply means that one animal cannot all of a sudden give birth to a completely different species. The current view of life on Earth is precisely one of changing lineages branching from common ancestors. This, and not the speed of change, is the core of Darwins theory.

The other component of Darwinism, according to Wilson, is that evolutionary progress happens by conflict. Here is the common misunderstanding that the de facto struggle that occurs because some animals live and some die means conscious fighting. And Darwins theory is not about progress, it is about change.

Darwins theory of evolution by natural selection, as any competent reference work describes, is about the differential survival of individual living things based on tiny differences between them. This differential survival (or selection) in effect filters living things to become adapted to a changing world. DNA evidence indicates that all living things are related genealogically on a vast ever-branching tree of life. This is Darwinism. Wilson instead erroneously describes variations in species, not individuals, and he mocks a Darwinian scenario in which the short-necked ancestors of todays giraffes were supposedly panting to reach those leaves, but without success. This is not Darwinism, this is Lamarckism.

Wilsons book contains numerous and serious factual errors such as if Darwin were correct, there would be hundreds, thousands of examples of transitional fossils. There are. Darwins first grandchild did not die in childbirth as Wilson states. A fragment of Wallaces letter to Darwin from when Wallace was living in Ternate does not survive. Darwin believed that his own theory made it impossible to believe in the Bible. Not so. The first 50 pages of Darwins evolution notebook are not missing, they were located and published by 1967. (Wilson copied this claim from a conspiracy-laden essay, Darwin, Coleridge, and the Theory of Unconscious Creation, published by Loren Eiseley in 1965, two years before Darwins pages were published.)

Wilson claims Darwin never persuaded the scientific community in Britain during his lifetime that one species could evolve into another. In fact, Darwin was world famous for having done so. There are very, very many more. Footnotes lead to incorrect references and many dates are quite wrong. Its hard to see how any care for either historical or scientific accuracy could result in such a book.

Throughout, Wilson bashes Darwin for supposed arrogance, dishonesty and incompetence and trots out a long line of old anti-Darwin myths: for example, that Darwin stole ideas from Edward Blyth, whom Wilson mistakes for an evolutionist. (This too is borrowed from Eiseley.) Wilson invents and condemns a towering ambition Darwin had to be a universal genius. And eugenics and Nazi race laws are also blamed (incorrectly) on Darwin.

The book claims to be a radical reappraisal of one of the great Victorians, a book which isnt afraid to challenge the Darwinian orthodoxy. The result is one of the most unreliable, inaccurate and tendentious anti-Darwin books of recent times.

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The Multiverse Is Science’s Assisted Suicide – Discovery Institute

Posted: at 4:09 am

In 2015,Wiredtold us that physicistswere desperate to be wrongabout the Higgs boson. They yearned to push the Standard (Big Bang) Model of the universe in new directions. But the unmindful particle acted just like the model said it would act, obeyed every theorized rule.

In the silence that followed, asking for evidence for these physicists proposed infinity of universes (the multiverse) felt like assaulting a victims feelings. At theGuardian,Stuart Clark laterinformed usthat Brexit and Trump are nothing compared to the alternate universes some astronomers are contemplating. Really? Regional political upsets vie with a multiverse?

Astronomers, Clark tells us, pin their hopes on the Cold Spot, a cool patch of space from the early universe: We cant entirely rule out that the Spot is caused by an unlikely fluctuation explained by the standard theory. But if that isnt the answer, then there are more exotic explanations. Indeed. There are more exotic explanations for almost anything.

Eugene LiminsistedatThe Conversationin 2015 that parallel universes are science: Whether we will ever be able to prove their existence is hard to predict. But given the massive implications of such afindingit should definitely be worth the search. Very well, but some people research ghosts on the same basis. What makes the multiverse quest science but the ghost hunt anti-science, once evidence no longer matters as much as it used to?

Cosmologists sense the problem and strive to rescue their multiverse from the nagging demands for evidence. Pop science media offer a window into major trends.

One is cosmic Darwinism. Lee Smolin has advocateda cosmic versionof Darwinian natural selection in which the most common universes will be those most suitable for producing black holes, as our universe does. Is Darwinism the cause? In The Logic and Beauty of Cosmological Natural Selection (Scientific American,2014), Lawrence Rifkinadmittedthat the main problem with the hypothesis is lack of direct evidence:

But keep in mind that from a direct evidence perspective, cosmological natural selection is no worse off at this point than proposed scientific alternatives. There is no direct evidence that universes are created by quantum fluctuations in a quantum vacuum, that we live in a multiverse, that there is a theory of everything, or that string theory, cyclic universes or- brane cosmology even exist.

Then why should we not set all such speculations aside? There is no obvious need for hurry.

Darwinism, as in natural selection acting on random mutations, is a theory developed by Darwin and his followers to account for complex, specified information in life forms on this planet. Whether it iscorrect or notwhen used as intended, if it is applied to an undetected multiverse, it becomes philosophy (metaphysics).

An anecdote suffices. As Michael Egnor has observed here, philosopher Joseph P. Carter told us in theNew York Timesthat the universedoes not careabout purpose. Evolutionary psychologist Michael E. Price disputes that view atPsychology Today,insisting that in a multiverse natural selection can create purpose. His position is denied by most of natural selections advocates in biology. But, riffing on Smolin, Price explains that life is more likely than black holes (or anything else) to be a mechanism of universe replication. If this kind of ungrounded assertion is the best naturalism can do for us now, why do we encourage it?

Physicist Ethan SiegelcounselsatForbesthat we must not doubt the Multiverses existence without considering the very good, scientific reasons that motivate it. But very good scientific reasons are precisely what we lack, unless the term scientific reasons now includes immunity toexperimental and observational tests.Similarly, physicist Brian Coxtold usin 2016 that the idea of multiverses is not too big a leap from cosmic inflation. But he is dealing with leaps of the imagination, not of physics discoveries.

Earlier this year, skeptical mathematicianPeter Woitfretted withscience writerJohn HorganatScientific American,The problem with such things as string-theory multiverse theories is that the multiverse did it is not just untestable, but an excuse for failure. Commenting elsewhere on Zeeya MeralisA Big Bang in a Little Room(2017),he notedthat she contemplates the possibility that string theory and inflation may be conspiring against us in such a way that we may never find evidence for them, and just have to trust in them as an act of faith. He woulddescribe it asa scientifically worthless idea.

With a clash of world views, where to begin?Woitand Horgan assume that post-modern science is a quest to understand reality, just as traditional science has been. It is not.

For many people today, post-modern science is more of a quest to expressan identity asbelieverin science,irrespective of evidence. Cosmologist Paul Steinhardtgot a sense of thisin2014,when he reported that some proponents of early rapid cosmic inflation already insist that the theory is equally valid whether or not gravitational waves are detected. It fulfilled their needs. In 2017, cosmologist George Ellis, long a foe ofpost-modern cosmology,summed it up: Scientific theories have since the seventeenth century been held tight by an experimental leash. In the last twenty years or so, both string theory and theories of the multiverse have slipped the leash.

We have so much more data now. But it provides no evidence for a multiverse. Thats nothing unusual historically (thinkphlogistonandetherfor great ideas that did not work). We used to just adjust. But today, increasing numbers of science-minded people demand a post-modern science that adapts to their needs. After all, we evolved to survive and pass on our genes, not to understand reality.

As a result, many cosmologists and science writers speak as if the multiverse merely awaits routine administrative clearance to morph into textbook science, absent evidence. Characteristically, they see themselves as fighting aconservative(fuddy-duddy) establishment whichclings toa role for mere evidence.

Fine tuningof our planet and our universe for life sets limits onmerebelief by challenging us to calculate probabilities. The multiverse is deeply attractive by comparison because it dissipates evidence. Itconjures unimaginablyinfinite, unproven, and incalculable probabilities. AsNew Scientistputs it,We merely inhabit one out of the infinite selection. That feels so right just now.

The multiverse has only ever existed, so far as we know, in the mind of man. Its most promising research programs,stringtheoryandearly rapid cosmic inflation theory,have bounced along on enthusiasm alone, prompting ever more arcane speculations for which there may never be any possibility of evidence.

But like so many other empty ideas, the multiverse has consequences. If we accept it, we abandon the view that science deals with the observed facts of nature. We adopt the view that it tells us what we want to believe about ourselves. In other words, the multiverse is sciences assisted suicide.

Image: Infinity Room, by Helsinki Art Museum, The Broad [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

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Early Review of AN Wilson’s Anti-Darwin Biography Could Have Been Predicted – Discovery Institute

Posted: at 4:09 am

We havent yet seen a copy of A.N. Wilsons forthcoming anti-Darwin book, which isnt out in the United States until December 12. See David Klinghoffers post, Ouch: A Slashing New Anti-Darwin Biography from Darwins Own Publisher. However, if all you knew was that the biographer and literary critic has written a book titled Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker, and a preview op-ed titled Its time Charles Darwin was exposed for the fraud he was, the response would be predictable.

The book could be good, or it could be bad. Were agnostic. But Darwinists defend their man ferociously, and the offense is worse coming not from a creationist but someone who, given class loyalties, ought to be on their side. A creationist they would simply ignore. Its the class treachery angle that really stings them.

Thus we have an early review for New Scientist, Radical new biography of Darwin is unreliable and inaccurate, by historian of science John van Wyhe who edits the website Darwin Online.

Excerpts from the review:

This book provides an appallingly inaccurate rendition of Darwins theory and its scientific context. According to Wilson, Darwin told his contemporaries that their land-grabs in Africa, their hunger for stock-market wealth in the face of widespread urban poverty, their rigid class system and their everlasting wars were not things to be ashamed of, but actually part of the processes of nature. The theory is not science, Wilson concludes, just another offering in a bazaar of ersatz religions.

Wilsons book contains numerous and serious factual errors such as if Darwin were correct, there would be hundreds, thousands of examples of transitional fossils. There are. Darwins first grandchild did not die in childbirth as Wilson states. A fragment of Wallaces letter to Darwin from when Wallace was living in Ternate does not survive. Darwin believed that his own theory made it impossible to believe in the Bible. Not so. The first 50 pages of Darwins evolution notebook are not missing, they were located and published by 1967. (Wilson copied this claim from a conspiracy-laden essay, Darwin, Coleridge, and the Theory of Unconscious Creation, published by Loren Eiseley in 1965, two years before Darwins pages were published.)

Throughout, Wilson bashes Darwin for supposed arrogance, dishonesty and incompetence and trots out a long line of old anti-Darwin myths: for example, that Darwin stole ideas fromEdward Blyth, whom Wilson mistakes for an evolutionist. (This too is borrowed from Eiseley.) Wilson invents and condemns a towering ambition Darwin had to be a universal genius. And eugenics and Nazi race laws are also blamed (incorrectly) on Darwin.

Wilsons competence or incompetence on Darwin remains to be seen with our own eyes.

Having said that, John van Wyhe is a Darwinian partisan so some of what he says is surely to be anticipated. His claims of thousands of transitional fossils supporting Darwins theory (contra Wilson) and that Darwins theory does not rely upon slow, gradual change are simply incorrect, as Jonathan Wells and Stephen Meyer have thoroughly explained. The Cambrian explosion really is a problem for Darwinism.

The reviewer is too quick to dismiss the influence of Darwinian theory on Nazi ideology (see Richard Weikarts books) and its social implications (see John Wests Darwin Day in America). Van Wyhe is also wrong to criticize Wilson for claiming that Darwins theory made it impossible to believe in the Bible. In his Autobiography,Darwin states his emerging belief in the unreliability of Bible and his rejection of design in nature clearly enough.

Yet van Wyhes criticisms of some factual errors, if accurate, make Wilsons book problematic. Some of the issues attributed to the book are more than just Darwinian talking points, e.g., incorrect dates, bad references, and other basic errors of fact which are, again, if correct, serious matters.

We noticed that, contrary to what Wilson wrote in the previously referenced newspaper article, Cuvier was not an evolutionist. And van Wyhe is correct in describing the giraffe stretching his neck as the iconic illustration of classic Lamarckian inheritance of acquired characteristics, not Darwinism, as he says Wilson suggests.

Also, it is true that the early notebooks of Darwin were discovered in the mid 1960s and published in 1965. They are not missing, as van Wyhe claims Wilson asserts.

The key is exactly what does Wilson say and how does he say it. We know well by now to be cautious of Darwins defenders. They are often cagey and misleading. So at this point, who knows?

Photo credit: Patche99z (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons.

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American lit, conservative thought and Trump – St. Augustine Record

Posted: August 20, 2017 at 6:18 pm

Bob Fliegel

St. Augustine

Remember Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau? Although most of us English majors met those two in American Lit 101, I hadnt given them much thought in the intervening 50-plus years. Until, that is, I had the following epiphany: They represent two pillars of modern American conservative thought.

Consider the thesis of what is arguably Emersons most famous work, his 1841 essay on Self-Reliance. Surely self-reliance is an admirable trait. How could it not be? Shouldnt we all be expected to strive, to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, to be self-made, to eschew the government dole?

Of course, the reality is that not everyone thrives under capitalism. Many falter and fail for any number of reasons. Some are unable to overcome physical or mental shortcomings, while others may see themselves as economically victimized by forces beyond their control. Still others are inept or just plain lazy.

Enter social Darwinism. In that view, the survival of the fittest extends beyond Darwins theories of natural selection to a similar premise of socio-economic survival. Some of us will succeed.

Some of us will not. Theres a putative fairness to this being allowed to play out without government intercession. Why should the less able be given a leg up? Is a level playing field an inalienable right? Are unequal outcomes always prima facie evidence of unequal opportunity?

Add Thoreaus essay Civil Disobedience of 1849, in which he endorsed the Jeffersonian notion that government is best which governs least, and you have the conservatives rejection of a.) government intrusion and overreach and b.) assistance programs they regard as only fostering continued dependence on government largesse.

Ronald Reagans compassion for the truly needy notwithstanding, conservatives have remained skeptical about that truly part. Although they extol the virtues of voluntary assistance to the disadvantaged, they certainly dont feel the same way about involuntary taxation to help those who cant fend for themselves. In fact, many believe program abuses have become so numerous as to warrant throwing that truly needy baby out with the bath water of welfare cheats.

President Trump does not appear to exemplify either of these two major conservative tenets. More precisely, his transactional approach to governance does not seem to be at all grounded in the thinking of their historical advocates.

The odds of his being even minimally conversant about the contributions of a Thoreau, an Emerson, or a conservative progenitor like Edmund Burke, are low indeed. No doubt his supporters would call that contention elitist. So be it. They would, of course, be wrong.

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How can I keep my employees from jumping ship? – New York Post

Posted: at 6:18 pm

I am the owner of a thriving small company. I make an extreme effort to support my employees, yet no matter how much I do, I rarely trust their loyalty. They tell me how happy they are and how grateful for learning so much, but then jump ship, chasing a shinier fish. Loyalty and building a place in a company is a thing of the past, it seems. Whats a small business owner to do?

Good help is hard to find is a common refrain, particularly from small business owners. Generally, I agree with that, which is why, when you are one of the good help you have a lot of leverage and employers are best-served to do what they can to retain such talent. Its harder for small business owners because of the limited career potential. It is your business, after all, not theirs, so if you are hiring people who have higher career aspirations than what you can provide, its unrealistic to expect them to stick around. Not everyone is a career climber, though, so maybe you need to hire more wisely. Find people who are looking for a steady job with good pay, benefits and a pleasant place to work. Youll have a better chance of retaining your staff.

I went through a 360-degree evaluation where my staff, peers and bosses filled out an anonymous evaluation about me, my traits, my performance, etc. I am mortified by the results. Our workplace is very competitive, and I am sure my peers sabotaged me because they want my job. I also dont think its fair that it is anonymous. How do I handle this and discuss it with my boss?

Someone needs a little more help than just a 360 evaluation! Before you go popping off about how the deck was stacked against you and the results are the forces of workplace Darwinism, you might want to dial back there a bit and take a long, hard look in the mirror. Usually there is a certified survey professional who sits with the individual and goes through the results and strategies for dealing with the feedback. Do that! Because unless you do work in a vipers den, chances are you have some things to work on. The fact that your employer invested time and money in this process usually means he or she sees something positive in you worth developing. Seize on that and go from there.

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Futures Tour: A charade of mediocre athletes play-acting as tennis pros – Economic Times

Posted: at 6:18 pm

By David Waldstein

A German of Chilean descent, an American with Russian parentage, a Pole and a Dutchman were arguing in English on a red clay tennis court on the outskirts of Prague.

As much as that may sound like the setup to a joke, it was just a moment in time on the International Tennis Federations Futures Tour, the lowest level of professional mens tennis, where thousands toil in relative obscurity with little hope of ever joining the sports elite.

The four men had disputed several previous calls in a contentious doubles match, and the German player, Laslo Urrutia Fuentes, fumed when Sander Groen, his Dutch opponent, fired an overhead slam directly at him as he stood defenceless at the net.

Urrutia called Groen arrogant and cocky, and the argument raged for several minutes, with Groen cartoonishly aping Urrutias movements. Another day on the tour, Urrutia said with a shrug a few hours later.

The scene was made even more absurd because Groen is 49, a curious age for a player on a tour named Futures. The tour was established to help young players navigate their way from the juniors to the top level of the professional ranks, the ATP Tour. Theoretically, players should know by their mid-20s whether they can make it as pros. But many just seem to keep playing.

With professional tournaments aplenty in roughly 75 countries, and no age restrictions, thousands of players enter hundreds of tournaments each year, despite the offer of very little prize money. Such conditions create fertile grounds for stagnation, frustration, petulant behaviour and match fixing.

Its a complete free-for-all at the lower levels of tennis, Kris Dent, the ITFs senior executive director of professional tennis, said in an interview this summer.

At best, the Futures Tour is a proving ground for elite prospects, a costly but potentially rewarding journey to fame. At worst, it is a cynical charade of mediocre athletes playacting as tennis pros, vulnerable to corruption.

That is why the ITF has decided to radically restructure the tour, beginning in 2019. It hopes to re-categorise about 90 percent of the players into a more streamlined amateur structure, leaving players like Urrutia with some hope that they can soldier on, at least until the Darwinism of the rankings system spits them out.

According to a recent ITF study, there were 14,000 nominally professional tennis players entering tournaments around the globe in 2013. But 6,000 of them, including many juniors, did not earn even $1. Given the costs of travel, coaching, conditioning, medical care and equipment, only 336 men and 253 women broke even; forget making a profit.

Thats quite astonishing for a sport that has almost $300 million in prize money, Dent said. These smaller tournaments have no TV, no sponsorships and no one paying any money to go see them, and they never will.

The plan is to funnel the top 750 men and 750 women into the Challenger Tour, where the total prize money at each tournament would equal $25,000 or more. Those would be the true professionals.

The remainder would play on the new Transition Tour, which would be restructured to favour promising young players through a new ranking system and to make it less costly. The ITF would continue to assess and possibly tweak the system to establish a major league and a minor league with a clear link between them.

The balancing act for the ITF is to continue to promote the sport globally so that there are still avenues to the top in places like Africa, Southeast Asia and South America.

It is not up to me to determine who makes it and who doesnt, Dent said. But we want a distinct majors and minors with a clear pathway to the top, a realistic transition from the juniors to the ATP and WTA tours. There is a large group that are semiprofessional, and I dont expect them to stay on the transition tour.

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Will Moroccan Schools Reintroduce Curriculum to Feature Human Evolutionary Theory? – Morocco World News

Posted: at 6:18 pm

By Amal Ben Hadda

Rabat The oldest Homo-sapiens discovered on June 2017 at JbelIrhoud near to Marrakech make unexpected adjustments in science. New hypotheses about human history are actually being considered and it is now believed that human beings have been around for more than 300,000 years.

While these new discoveries are shaking up the scientific community, we should ask ourselves why these theories of evolution are not being taught in Moroccan schools. Why is this scientific approach to revealing the origin of humanity not considered in the manuals programs?

From a religious perspective, some Muslim scholars support the study of human evolutionary theory. The different levels of human conception are mentioned in many verses in the Quran. However, the exegeses of these verses have been influenced by Talmudic interpretations of the Torah and have been accepted as authentic versions of the human genesis. As an example of this influence, there is the creation of woman from Adams rib. This version, interpreted from the Torah and resumed by mainstream Islamic exegeses, doesnt exist in the Quran.

In the original text of the Torah, the chapter Genesis shows in 1:27 that man and woman were conceived at the same level and no one is superior to another. However, this woman was diabolized by the patriarchal tradition. Only the version of the creation of woman from Adams rib named Eve is considered by the creationists as per the interpretations of the Genesis 2:23.

A neutral reinterpretation of the Quran is therefore necessary.The book Sharjarah Code Decoded by Imad Hassan discusses the conception of human beings as mentioned in the Quran away from the traditional beliefs.This work gives an interesting insight into how the Gods message could be manipulated by the interpretations of man. As Muslims, we should therefore accept scientific theories even if they seem to go against our beliefs.

Since science and religion coincide in the Moroccan classroom, human evolution as a scientific theory shouldnt be seen as a threat to the religious belief at school. Science class is a place to develop epistemological understanding and critical thinking.

It is important to note that human evolution isnt limited to the natural selection driver as per Darwinism. Intelligent design theory adds that the existence of an intelligent cause to explain empirically the complexity of the organisms instead of the law of chance. Conversely, radical Creationism is based on religious texts and suggests that human beings first came about through an incestuous relationship between siblings from a single couple and rejects any scientific finding against this belief.

The conflict between science and religion has a long history. The book Islams Quantum Question: Reconciling Muslim Tradition and Modern Science by Nidhal Guessoum explains the discord between religious beliefs and science on the one hand and between Muslim tradition and Islam on the other hand.However, the Muslim world is unfortunately more interested in the so called Al-Ijaz Al Ilmi commonly translated as Scientific miracles of the Quran.This belief system presents religious texts as miracles by misusing scientific discoveries and sometimes by improvising inconsistent argumentation.

In Morocco, mentalities are beginning to change. The seminarabout Scientific Miracles in the Quran and Sunnah, taken at the University of Fes in April 2017, demonstrates that Moroccan students are aware of scientific methods and do not just blindly believe religious arguments.

Scientific research is recommended by Islam and should be a top priority for Muslims. As the Quran encourages reasoning and rational thinking, there should be no controversy in teaching scientific theories in Moroccan schools. The curriculum in Morocco needs to adjust to accommodate the latest scientific updates so that Moroccan students have the opportunity to learn about them.

The question remains: will the Moroccan oldest Human find a place in the Moroccan schools manuals? Will these new scientific discoveries be a turning point for science in Morocco?

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not represent any institution or entity.

Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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Prohibition of dagga was racist – historian | DESTINY Magazine – DestinyConnect

Posted: August 18, 2017 at 5:17 am

The prohibition of dagga in South Africa in the late 1800s was racist and irrational, according to historian Craig Paterson

Paterson was testifying in the dagga trial on Monday at the North Gauteng High Court.

He said he had concluded that dagga was banned because it was mostly blacks and Indians who smoked it at the time.

He said the history of the prohibition of cannabis did not find ground in rationality, reason, science or good law-making, but rather in racism, irrationality, social Darwinism, poor politics and non-science.

Paterson said historical evidence showed that alcohol led to far more arrests and prosecutions than cannabis.

According to Paterson, a South African Indian immigrant commission report in 1887 paved the future for debates around cannabis in the country.

The focus of the report was based largely on labourer indolence.

The inference is that insanity wasnt the main concern, but rather it was labour, said Paterson.

Prohibition was called for in the 1870s and in 1949, the National Party requested a special commission into cannabis.

He said the commission retained the argument of moral degradation, which showed its tacit acceptance of racial hierarchy and racism.

He also referred to this as the use of social Darwinism.

During cross-examination, the state said it would discredit Paterson as an expert and added that the entire history mentioned in his testimony was irrelevant.

Outside court, a large group of anti-cannabis protesters sang songs and held up signs saying cannabis caused users to go crazy.

Protesters wore Gauteng Social Development T-shirts.

Gauteng Social Development MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza said she supported the picket against the legalisation, use and possession of cannabis.

We will continue to mobilise local drug action committees, NPOs, recovering service users, families, faith-based organisations, NPOs and as many people of Gauteng as possible to participate, said Mayathula-Khoza in a statement.

Dagga is a serious problem in our communities and it is a gateway to more harmful drugs. Dagga addiction causes misery in communities and the negative effects are long-lasting. The mental institutions are full to the brim with service users suffering from substance-induced psychosis.

The trial is expected to resume on Wednesday.

News24

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Curricula on Intelligent Design Are Urgently Needed And Here They Are! – Discovery Institute

Posted: August 16, 2017 at 6:21 pm

Editors note: We are delighted to welcome a new contributor to Evolution News,our colleague Daniel Reeves,Educational Outreach Assistant with Discovery Institutes Center for Science & Culture.

Representing Discovery Institute as an educational outreach assistant often means sitting at a conference book table and offering a selection of materials related to intelligent design readings that range from a brief overview of the corrosive social impacts of neo-Darwinism to 600-page technical breakdowns of complex biochemical systems. Ive watched, time after time, as students and professionals alike approach the table with visible enthusiasm only to leave feeling overwhelmed by the vast array and sheer quantity of information available on the subject. I can fully relate.

My own journey to learning about intelligent design began in high school, where I became particularly interested in the biodiversity of life and the glaring inadequacy of natural selection as an explanation for it all. A friend handed me a copy of Darwins Black Box, by Michael Behe, and I was hooked.

Soon, I learned of other titles and was knee-deep in Signature in the Cell an argument for design from the complex digital codes observed in DNA. By the time I had finished an undergraduate degree in biology and was getting acquainted with Discovery Institute, I had read another dozen or so books on the subject. My head was swimming with so many ideas that I didnt know where to turn next.

I wondered: How does this all fit together? What other arguments are out there for intelligent design? What are the counterarguments? What I wish I had to start with was a comprehensive curriculum providing a basic framework for all of the technical books and papers I would go on to read in the years to follow. Such a thing, to my knowledge, did not exist. But now it does.

Regardless of your level of study on the subject, there are now invaluable resources available to help make the multitude of current ID arguments accessible to you. Two are of special interest. Each is organized much like a textbook and comes with supplemental materials including workbooks and/or DVDs. Online companion courses are also offered for each of these, free of charge, to help the reader work through the material at her own pace. I trust that one or both of these resources will prove helpful in your own intellectual journey.

Published recently by Discovery Institute Press, Discovering Intelligent Design is a comprehensive curriculum presenting the biological and cosmological evidence in support of the scientific theory of intelligent design, as well as challenges to neo-Darwinism. Designed for readers ranging from middle-school students (in private or home schools, not public) to adults, this is a perfect place to begin your studies or to gain an overview of the arguments to date. Topics include the fine-tuning of the universe, solar system, and planet Earth, the irreducible complexity of biochemical systems, challenges to the traditional tree of life, and even strategies for engaging in the larger debate. With plenty of images, discussion questions, and accompanying videos, this curriculum stands to captivate students, professionals, families, youth groups, and more.

Or are you already comfortable with the basic framework of ID arguments? Delve deeper with The Design of Life, a beautifully illustrated college-level textbook that covers topics related to human origins, genetics, and macroevolution, the fossil record, the origin of species, irreducible complexity, and much more! Written by mathematician William Dembski and biologist Jonathan Wells, this book presents a compelling scientific case for the intelligent design of biological systems using critical analysis, clear explanations, and brilliant analogies. It will engage every reader, from trained scientist to curious layperson.

The textbooks are available for sale at the Center for Science & Culture bookstore. I hope these resources will serve you as they have me.

Photo: Daniel Reeves, via Discovery Institutes Center for Science & Culture.

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Curricula on Intelligent Design Are Urgently Needed And Here They Are! – Discovery Institute

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