Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Vatican conference on evolution begins in Rome

Dear reader, our blog has moved to a new address.

Do come on over (and change your bookmarks accordingly): rationalist.org.uk

We've already had the Church of England apologise to Charles Darwin for "misunderstanding" his work 150 years ago, and now the Catholic Church (which admittedly never dismissed him) are getting in on the "evolution and religion are compatible" act by hosting a five day conference on why, well, evolution and religion are compatible. It's taking place at Rome's Pontifical Gregorian University and, as the BBC report, it will see the American biologist Francisco Ayala explain why Intelligent Design is deeply flawed because "The design of organisms is not what would be expected from an intelligent engineer, but imperfect and worse. Defects, dysfunctions, oddities, waste and cruelty pervade the living world".

The Catholic Church has never really gone in for creationist nonsense in modern times and, while it's tempting to poke fun at this, it's actually quite nice to see the world's largest Christian church lending a bit of support to some scientific fact (it does amount to progress, after all). Not that they could resist having a go at atheists in the process. AP report that day one of the conference has seen Cardinal William Levada, head of the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (AKA the rebranded Inquisition), telling the audience that the idea that the theory of evolution disproves the existence of God is "absurd".

But, naturally, for any wisdom on this subject we must turn to the words of the Turkish creationist overlord Adnan Oktar, AKA Harun Yahya, who today issued a press release dismissing the conference, and threw in a startling prophecy for good measure (all block capitals are Oktar's own):
"Darwinists, unable to put up with the defeat, strived to keep the Darwinist dictatorship alive by continuing with their lies through demagogy methods, dismissing anti-Darwinist professors from schools and universities and keeping the state’s senior institutions under pressure. THEY HAVE EVEN TAKEN THE PAPACY UNDER THE PRESSURE OF DARWINIST DICTATORSHIP and OCCUPIED THIS INSTITUTION, as a consequence of which the Pope was forced to advocate a deviant opinion like the reconcilability of evolution with the explanations in the New Testament . . . Darwinist dictatorship has OCCUPIED all religious institutions, schools, universities, professors, educators and almost everyone in the states’ senior institutions. However, this dictatorial regime will not last for long, for, by Allah’s leave, the SECOND COMING OF JESUS (PBUH), HAS COME CLOSE."
Wise opinions.

11 comments:

AT said...

Who would've thunk that in a public conversation about evolution the Catholic Church - Ratzinger's Church, no less - would come out as the more progressive party.

Gotta give Oktar credit, it's no easy task.

Anonymous said...

I think my brain might have exploded. I never expected God's Rottweiler to be on the side of good and Darwin, having a staring competition with wacky Oktar.

Think all Catholic websites will be banned in Turkey now too - do Oktar's powers extend that far after practising with Dawkin's site?

The Heresiarch said...

Adnan Oktar really is the gift that keeps giving, isn't he? I'd love to see a reality TV show in which he, Bishop Williamson and Pastor Phelps were confined to a small island and kept under 24 hour surveillance. Maybe Geert Wilders could be persuaded to join them.

Anonymous said...

If you have no proof, no evidence the only thing you can do is to prevent people to talk. Because when some people start to tell about “THE TRUTH”, make them face off their lies,they SCARE!.. Evolutionsts scared of the truth in the conference. And they prevent Mr. Babuna’s speech. If they rely on themselves, if there is an evolution, if there is an transitional forms why do they scare? Why don’t they let him talk? Because there is NO evolution, there is NO evidence. They have been fooling the world for a long time. But Harun Yahya revealed the truth and flung the Atlas of creation in their teeth. There is nothing to say more. Evolution is dead.

Lainey said...

To the anonymous poster above, you say there is no evidence for evolution, but have you actually looked for it?
Go to your nearest national history museum and you can see (and sometimes touch) the fossils through the ages, the transitional stages are visible, evolution is so obvious when you have bones and pictures of embryos and fossils side by side, mapping the evolution of species.

mg said...

Lainey,
if you see any transitional form fossil in a musuem near you, why dont you take it to Mr. Yahya to win the big prize he offers?..That makes me think that you know deep inside that, the ones you think they are transitional forms are not transitional but full, completed species in fact.And you know very well that you can never win this prize!

kağan alp said...

what Adnan oktar done is sample of wisdom. he clearly sees what darwinism made this world and he shows us how rubbish darwinism theory is. before judging ı advise all world to read more about harun yahya's works and decide what is right.thanks

Andrew said...

"That makes me think that you know deep inside that, the ones you think they are transitional forms are not transitional but full, completed species in fact."

There's no difference between a 'transitional form' and a 'full, completed species'. All species are 'complete' in that they can happily survive on their own in the environment in which they live (or lived) - otherwise they wouldn't exist in sufficient numbers to leave fossils - and all species are transitional forms between their ancestors and their descendants.

Evolution isn't finished. It never will be (although if and when life is wiped out completely, it will of course be stopped). There's no goal it's been striving toward. It continually updates itself, like one of Google's 'perpetual beta' products.

A species can change from one thing to another, but it has to be a viable species at every point along the way, or that branch of it will die out.

Clare said...

Does this mean that in conspiracy terms atheists are the new free masons?

Ares said...

Having the Catholic Church accept and even endorse evolution is bad PR. Who wants to be associated with the Catholic Church? I admit to being a little harsh here, but maybe they deserve it?

No Catholic Evolution said...

Catholics have to assume that the Church Fathers and Doctors were correct. So they have to assume Creationism, a Young Earth, A literal Flood, Adam and Eve created from the dust of the earth on the sixth day of creation, etc. Here is a starting place: http://www.kolbecenter.org/the-traditional-catholic-doctrine-of-creation/