Friday, August 19, 2005

Evolution of The Middleman

34 years ago, as an 18 year old steeped in Christian religion and teaching, I found myself in doubt. I was not a bright student in high school (at least my grades would certainly indicate that I was hugely average) and if I even took a legitimate science course while I was there, I don't remember it. Perhaps my voyage through the 60's, with the deaths of grandparents and father, the crushing helpless feelings generated by assassinations of the Kennedy's and Dr. King, the division of a nation due to an unnecessary war in Southeast Asia and the ensuing divisions based on race and gender inequalities, left me foundering - alone.

I started opening my mind to possibilities other than those I had been force-fed on and after much study on my own, I started developing a new self. This new guy suddenly found that learning was not as boring as school had me believe. Not that I can legitimately blame my teachers. There were probably a lot of things at work on my confused mind at that juncture of my life. But I did take comfort and joy out of exploring new things on my own, even if I had not been able to find it in the classroom.

Sadly, for me, I never did the one thing which probably would have made my own life much more rich and rewarding. Once I had experienced the pure joy of learning, I should have given higher education another go. To those younger, who may stop by these pages, I strongly urge you to follow your educational interests - one way or another. Whether it be in attending college and university, technical schools or training courses and seminars. And always keep learning on your own.

I think most people in our country have very little science knowledge. Again, the science that I understand is based more on my own reading and research, including books, articles, movies, videos and web searches. I fully realize that not everyone is as interested in evolution and other science topics as I am, and that most of us have lives to live and little times for anything outside of our immediate fields and immediate side interests. This creates a huge problem. There are highly educated people in this country in the sciences, doing great work for all of us every day. They then see the statistics on what Average Joe believes, listen to public officials who often know as little as Average Joe, see the things that are written here on the web and, basically, go ballistic. When you "know that you KNOW" it is frustrating listening to what seems like the raving of lunatics. But it isn't, really. It's mostly people who just stick to their comfortable traditional teachings because they haven't learned what evolution really is and have relied on the misinformation of organized religion. And most scientists, many of them who are right here on the web, don't have the time or patience to tell them the wonderful stories that would enlighten. Probably what we need more of here are high school science teachers whose job it is to teach - patiently. I hope there will be more and more of them here in the future.

Meanwhile, I'll offer what little I have to offer in this area. While not qualified to teach anyone, I can certainly do a number of things to help people who are interested in being educated about evolution and other areas of science. First of all, I plan to offer numerous web sites I have found that have been helpful to me. Many are quite technical and others can be abrasive in their style, nevertheless, I think they are valuable for those who are willing to "tough it out" to learn. Others are extremely accessible to anyone with moderate, or even little, science background. Some are educational sites and others are blogs written in a style that is within the grasp of Average Joe. I will make myself available for questions - whether they are "reasonable" or not. I realize some will come to try to attack, but that's OK. I will always try to treat those with a level of respect and compassion that I may not feel. If nothing else, my discussions with those folks may help shed some light for others. If a question is beyond my scope of knowledge, I will diligently attempt to find a place that does have an answer to the question. Additionally, I'll be asking questions myself. I'm constantly finding things that look like inconsistancies or that the exact same data could be viewed a different way. Usually, an expert in the field of question can clear it up for me. Allow me to give context to the last couple of sentences for those who enjoyed extracting - just as there is no debate in the scientific community over the fact of evolution, I am not challenging the fact of it with my questions. I simply love to learn more and I learn more by challenging myself and others. Finally, I would beg the help of those of you who are professionals in the fields of biology, genetics, geology, paleontology, anthropology to give a little of your time here when you can. If you see a question posted in the comments that you can help on, please do. I only ask that you not be condescending in your responses to questions that may seem obvious or offered only as an absurd challenge. When you see statistics that indicate that 70% of your fellow citizens don't believe in evolution, understand then that you have work to do making your findings understandable to these people who live right in your neighborhoods, even if they aren't the ones you normally socialize with.

150 years ago Charles Darwin offered a beautifully simple explanation for how all life on our planet came to be as it is today, and for why 99% of all species that ever lived are no longer here. Some aspects of what he said in Origin of Species have been updated with new knowledge. But the basic idea of common decent through modification by means of natural selection has withstood the test of time and science. It's incredibly easy to understand its principles if one studies evolution even to a small degree. All life has a common ancestor. Homo Sapiens left Africa perhaps as recently as 70,000 years ago after having become a species about 150,000 years ago. Our ancestors prior to that were other hominids which seem to have developed and split off in a number of branches since about 7 million years ago, when they split off from other apes. It's a great story. But it's only a small piece of the greater story of evolution of all life on earth. I dedicate these pages to trying to help people as normal and unscientific as myself, to understand it. I realize that this could be a contentious site at times. That's not my goal here, but it will happen. In fact, I predict that a douchey troll who will post comments here and elsewhere in the Atheosphere will come along. If I have this premonition right, he'll be using the screen-name 'cl' and he will be one of the most annoying yet amusing little theists trolls ever to visits the Internet. But the real purpose of this site is for learning, and I'll gladly continue it as long as anyone finds it helpful or interesting.

4 comments:

Rosemary said...

I just found this site and I find it very interesting and I'll be reading it and others recommended here.
I am still thinking about Evolution and Creation and how it all began and I am thinking more about that after communicating with those in the Spirit World who once lived on Earth but now reside in the Spirit World (Everlasting Life) just as the Bible teaches us.
I don't want to preach religion or anything in particular I just know that since l985 I have been communicating with those in the Spirit World and I know for a fact when we leave this Earth Plane our Spirit leaves this Earthly Body and lives on in all it's intelligence in the After Life.
I know that a Spirit can be as small as a pinhead when they choose to, and they can appear to me as Ordinary sized when they want or they can apper as Giants if they choose to, and they can appear as any age they choose to, from when they were tiny babies until they are old men or women.
Few people believe that I can speak to the so called dead but I know this is true because since l985 I have had three of my relatives, and others appear to me and some of them were just ordinary people when they walked the Earth, and some were Famous notables when they walked the Earth.
Now what all this will do to Science should they believe it, I don't know but I am hoping that my communication with the After Life and talking to people that I knew who died in the 40's,50's 60's and other times will somehow be important to Science.
Since October 27, 2003 I too have been writing about my experiences in an aol journal and while some of the things I write about may seem like untrue fantacies to many people, I promise that every experience I write about in this Journal is the absolute truth no matter how preposterous it seems to others.
http://Journals.aol.com//Kitty1392/TwoWorlds/entries

Spanish Inquisitor said...

You are a god! Your prediction came true.

the chaplain said...

Even though you have awesome predictive powers, and may even be a god, don't even think about trying to get money, or roasted pigeons and goats, from me.

John Evo said...

@ SI - how did you stumble across that old prediction, SI? You know, I thought I had written it somewhere, but on threat of death I couldn't have told you where! That's why I just ask that people read my blog.

@ Chappy - If we ever meet in person, could you just give a little bow and a wink? I'll know exactly what you mean.