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Priest-Cosmologist Wins $1.6 Million Templeton Prize
New York Times ^ | 03/13/2008 | Brenda Goodman

Posted on 03/14/2008 5:08:51 AM PDT by iowamark

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To: hosepipe; cornelis; betty boop
cornelis: Infinity is pasture for poets. It’s a fence for the rest.

hosepipe: The pasture on the outside(of the sheep pens) is free and peaceful(Ps 23)..

Beautiful imagery. Thank you both!

To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers. – John 10:3-5

But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father's hand. I and [my] Father are one. – John 10:26-30

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou [art] with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. – Psalms 23:4

For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. – Colossians 3:3

To God be the glory!

101 posted on 03/17/2008 10:41:01 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl; betty boop; cornelis
[ As Jastrow pointed out, that was the most theological statement ever to come out of modern science. The first phrase of Scripture is "In the beginning, God created..." ]

Actually according to a couple of Hebrew scholars I know.. The word is retreated.. or updated... "remodeled" in our terms.. They could be right.. If so then there could have been "a society" of "something" pre-Adam.. Angel?.. whatever.. Its an interesting supposition.. At least they say the word created in some places in Genesis ch 1 could NOT mean created from nothing.. If the earth had to be remodeled then something could have happened(before Adam) to make that needed... for proto-humans..

Why not in scripture?.. need to know maybe..

102 posted on 03/17/2008 10:46:09 PM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: hosepipe

corr: re-created..


103 posted on 03/17/2008 10:50:45 PM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: MHGinTN; Alamo-Girl; hosepipe; cornelis; metmom
Now try to get your mind around the possibility that there is volumetric time, not just planar present and linear past

I like your speculation about this very much MHGinTN. To my way of thinking, your "volumetric time" corresponds to my own speculation about a fifth "timelike" dimension....

Of course, neither speculation is "scientific," strictly speaking. The scientific method -- methodological naturalism -- really has no way to reach such insights, which are inherently cosmological (and therefore, philosophical).

Thanks ever so much for writing!

104 posted on 03/18/2008 6:13:13 AM PDT by betty boop (This country was founded on religious principles. Without God, there is no America. -- Ben Stein)
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To: hosepipe; Alamo-Girl; betty boop; cornelis

I have a friend who’s very knowledgeable about Hebrew and he told me much the same thing some 30 years ago.

He said in the Hebrew, there’s a change in verb tense between the first and second verses of Genesis. In the first verse, it does indicate creation of something new, never created before.

In the second verse, it’s a remaking of what was there.

His speculation, and it makes sense to me, is that what happened between the first and second verses was the fall of Satan. When Satan fell, he deliberately destroyed the earth, likely in an attempt to thwart God’s purposes. So God had to make it habitable for man again. He remodeled it.


105 posted on 03/18/2008 6:38:13 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: cornelis; Alamo-Girl; hosepipe; MHGinTN; YHAOS; metmom; RightWhale; TXnMA
For Aristotle taught us, we cannot speak of any part without the whole, and as the whole of history has not yet achieved its final end, history as yet has no form. And what has neither form nor shape cannot be subject to definition according to the univocal categories of any science.

Oh, I so much admire Noah Waldman's comments here! The "essence of science" is to reduce observations to "neat positivistic formula." Scientific observations necessarily depend on direct sense experience. Yet there is so much in human experience that is inaccessible by and independent of sense perception.

There really are superpersonal objects and goals that neither require nor are capable of foundation by means of direct observation/sense perception alone. Such objects and goals have informed the conduct and progress of human life from time immemorial. These objects and goals refer primarily to nonsensory modes of human experience that are “superior in rank and worth,” as Ellis Sandoz put it, to the objects of sense experience — the domain of the scientific method.

As Sandoz says, “Inasmuch as such nonsensory experiences are constitutive of what is distinctive about human existence itself — and of what is most precious to mankind — a purported science of man unable to take account of them is egregiously defective.”

Such nonsensory modes of experience lie entirely outside the reach of the scientific method as presently constituted: methodological naturalism. But the fact that science cannot reach them does not mean they do not exist in Reality.

I appreciate Waldman's mention of Aristotle in this connection. Aristotle didn't lose sight of the "whole," the context in which natural phenomena occur. It's interesting that the methods of the "father of science" were supplanted by the "father of modern science," Sir Francis Bacon, who was motivated by the desire to expunge "philosophy" from science, thus to make it more "reliable." He inaugurated methodological naturalism, which is based on direct observation, replicable experiments, etc.

But Bacon misses something that Aristotle saw: that observation is limited precisely because we cannot see the whole, the context in which the visible/phenomenal things occur. As such, the scientific method as presently constituted is a very limited tool. I'm not saying it's not an important tool for the acquisition of human knowledge. But it is limited in the kinds of knowledge it can acquire, and therefore needs to be supplemented by other knowledge disciplines, preeminently philosophy and theology.

Thank you so much for writing cornelis!

106 posted on 03/18/2008 6:44:23 AM PDT by betty boop (This country was founded on religious principles. Without God, there is no America. -- Ben Stein)
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To: bezelbub; Alamo-Girl; cornelis; hosepipe; metmom; TXnMA; MHGinTN
So, what's your problem with uniformitarianism?

It's an "ism." That is, a construct of the human mind. It is an abstraction from reality, not reality itself.

107 posted on 03/18/2008 6:47:54 AM PDT by betty boop (This country was founded on religious principles. Without God, there is no America. -- Ben Stein)
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To: metmom; betty boop; Alamo-Girl; cornelis; Whosoever
[ When Satan fell, he deliberately destroyed the earth, likely in an attempt to thwart God’s purposes. So God had to make it habitable for man again. He remodeled it. ]

Oh! the judeo-christian fiction that could be written about that... even science fiction.. We have our hands full dicerning the bible we have.. bringing these(events) into the picture would be fool hardy.. that IF they happened at all.. {cough}.. (shineing glasses) trying to look credible..

108 posted on 03/18/2008 6:57:06 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: hosepipe

I said it was speculation on his part.

Just a *cough* theory *cough*.


109 posted on 03/18/2008 7:02:00 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: betty boop; bezelbub; Alamo-Girl; cornelis; hosepipe; metmom; TXnMA; MHGinTN
[ So, what's your problem with uniformitarianism? ]

Some girls like guys in uniforms?..
Whats the problem..

110 posted on 03/18/2008 7:06:08 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: metmom
[ I said it was speculation on his part. Just a *cough* theory *cough*. ]

I hear ya.. I would never speculate wildly like that..
But (shakeing finger) I might buy the book....

111 posted on 03/18/2008 7:09:09 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: hosepipe

He had other Scripture that supported his viewpoint.

It does make sense though. Why would something need remodeling in the first place if it were OK?


112 posted on 03/18/2008 7:14:00 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom
[ He had other Scripture that supported his viewpoint. ]

I know a few verse in Jeremiah... is one place.. where Satan is talked about..

113 posted on 03/18/2008 7:22:09 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: hosepipe

I think it was Ezekial where it talks about Satan (the King of Tyre).


114 posted on 03/18/2008 8:18:05 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

I think you’re correct.. Very few places is there a hint of pre Adam anything..


115 posted on 03/18/2008 8:40:35 AM PDT by hosepipe (CAUTION: This propaganda is laced with hyperbole....)
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To: metmom; hosepipe
If I can find the link, there is a talk given by Dr. Hugh Ross, Astrophysicist, regarding the teaching in Genesis. The essence of his talk is that the perspective of 'from where' God is describing the scene really makes the information contained in Genesis much more comprehensible. EX.: when the passage 'The earth was without form and void' refers to the where/when that earth had no land masses protruding up out of the waters. When the scriptures speak of light, the pahses of atmospheric clearing and the advent of bacterial life are being described. I'll see if I can find the net link to the talk he gave. You will both enjoy it!

BTW, the word 'bara' is used in Genesis to specify a completely new thing brought into existence which never was. The word shows up at the advent of the whole universe, at the segment where single cell life transmogrifies into 'multicelluar organisms', and when Adam has the Spirit breathed into him and he becomes a 'living soul'. It will be briefly covered in my coming book, if I ever get it finished.

116 posted on 03/18/2008 10:18:25 AM PDT by MHGinTN (Believing they cannot be deceived, they cannot be convinced when they are deceived.)
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To: hosepipe; metmom; MHGinTN; betty boop; TXnMA
Thank you all for sharing your insights!

Concerning the meaning of the first five verses of Scripture, since you are looking at the Hebrew language, I thought you might find these sources interesting. First, the King James version which was translated from the Masoretic text:

Lurkers: The Masoretic Text is the Hebrew text of the Tanakh (the Jewish Bible.) Compiled around the seventh century AD, it includes the additional notations necessary for vocalizing, or reading, the text. Protestants translated the Old Testament from this version rather than the Vulgate (Latin) which was translated from the Greek (Septuagint) which was translated from the Hebrew.

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that [it was] good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

Now for the mechanical translation from the Ancient Hebrew Research Project [which attempts to analyze the text in a secular, scholarly sense as if at the point of origin] - and in this case, word for word according the language of the day:

Mechanical

in the summit “Elohiym [Powers]” fattened the sky and the land, and the land had existed in confusion and was unfilled and darkness was upon the face of the deep sea and the wind of “Elohiym [Powers]” was much fluttering upon the face of the water, and “Elohiym [Powers]” said, light exist and light existed, and “Elohiym [Powers]” saw the light given that it was functional and “Elohiym [Powers]” made a separation between the light and the darkness, and “Elohiym [Powers]” called out to the light day and to the darkness he called out night and evening existed and morning existed one day.

And now for the poetic translation from the Ancient Hebrew Research Project - indicating based on their research, what those mechanical words would have meant back in the day:

Poetical

Filling the Void

1In the beginning the Mighty One filled the skies and the land 2because the world existed devoid and void. A chaotic void was over the face of the deep then the creative breath of the Mighty One hovered over the face of the water.

The Making of Light (Order out of Chaos)

3The Mighty One said "let order exist" and order came into existence. 4The Mighty One saw that the order was beautiful. The Mighty One made a separation between the order and the chaos. 5The Mighty One called the order day and the chaos night. There was an evening and there was a morning, a unified day.

And, in keeping with the Jewish viewpoint, here is an analysis from Jewish Physicist Gerald Schroeder, drawing from the Torah, Jewish mysticism and science:

The Age of the Universe

...

The Talmud (Chagiga, ch. 2), in trying to understand the subtleties of Torah, analyzes the word "choshech." When the word "choshech" appears in Genesis 1:2, the Talmud explains that it means black fire, black energy, a kind of energy that is so powerful you can't even see it. Two verses later, in Genesis 1:4, the Talmud explains that the same word -- "choshech" -- means darkness, i.e. the absence of light.

Other words as well are not to be understood by their common definitions. For example, "mayim" typically means water. But Maimonides says that in the original statements of creation, the word "mayim" may also mean the building blocks of the universe.

Another example is Genesis 1:5, which says, "There is evening and morning, Day One." That is the first time that a day is quantified: evening and morning. Nachmanides discusses the meaning of evening and morning. Does it mean sunset and sunrise? It would certainly seem to.

But Nachmanides points out a problem with that. The text says "there was evening and morning Day One... evening and morning a second day... evening and morning a third day." Then on the fourth day, the sun is mentioned. Nachmanides says that any intelligent reader can see an obvious problem. How do we have a concept of evening and morning for the first three days if the sun is only mentioned on Day Four? There is a purpose for the sun appearing only on Day Four, so that as time goes by and people understand more about the universe, you can dig deeper into the text.

Nachmanides says the text uses the words "Vayehi Erev" -- but it doesn't mean "there was evening." He explains that the Hebrew letters Ayin, Resh, Bet -- the root of "erev" -- is chaos. Mixture, disorder. That's why evening is called "erev", because when the sun goes down, vision becomes blurry. The literal meaning is "there was disorder." The Torah's word for "morning" -- "boker" -- is the absolute opposite. When the sun rises, the world becomes "bikoret", orderly, able to be discerned. That's why the sun needn't be mentioned until Day Four. Because from erev to boker is a flow from disorder to order, from chaos to cosmos. That's something any scientist will testify never happens in an unguided system. Order never arises from disorder spontaneously and remains orderly. Order always degrades to chaos unless the environment recognizes the order and locks it in to preserve it. There must be a guide to the system. That's an unequivocal statement.

The Torah wants us to be amazed by this flow, starting from a chaotic plasma and ending up with a symphony of life. Day-by-day the world progresses to higher and higher levels. Order out of disorder. It's pure thermodynamics. And it's stated in terminology of 3000 years ago.

The creation of time.

Each day of creation is numbered. Yet there is discontinuity in the way the days are numbered. The verse says: "There is evening and morning, Day One." But the second day doesn't say "evening and morning, Day Two." Rather, it says "evening and morning, a second day." And the Torah continues with this pattern: "Evening and morning, a third day... a fourth day... a fifth day... the sixth day." Only on the first day does the text use a different form: not "first day," but "Day One" ("Yom Echad"). Many English translations make the mistake of writing "a first day." That's because editors want things to be nice and consistent. But they throw out the cosmic message in the text! Because there is a qualitative difference, as Nachmanides says, between "one" and "first." One is absolute; first is comparative.

Nachmanides explains that on Day One, time was created. That's a phenomenal insight. Time was created. You can't grab time. You don't even see it. You can see space, you can see matter, you can feel energy, you can see light energy. I understand a creation there. But the creation of time? Eight hundred years ago, Nachmanides attained this insight from the Torah's use of the phrase, "Day One." And that's exactly what Einstein taught us in the Laws of Relativity: that there was a creation, not just of space and matter, but of time itself.

Einstein's Law of Relativity.

Looking back in time, a scientist will view the universe as being 15 billion years old. But what is the Bible's view of time? Maybe it sees time differently. And that makes a big difference. Albert Einstein taught us that Big Bang cosmology brings not just space and matter into existence, but that time is part of the nitty gritty. Time is a dimension. Time is affected by your view of time. How you see time depends on where you're viewing it. A minute on the moon goes faster than a minute on the Earth. A minute on the sun goes slower. Time on the sun is actually stretched out so that if you could put a clock on the sun, it would tick more slowly. It's a small difference, but it's measurable and measured.

If you could ripen oranges on the Sun, they would take longer to ripen. Why? Because time goes more slowly. Would you feel it going more slowly? No, because your biology would be part of the system. If you were living on the Sun, your heart would beat more slowly. Wherever you are, your biology is in synch with the local time. And a minute or an hour where ever you are is exactly a minute or an hour.

If you could look from one system to another, you would see time very differently. Because depending on factors like gravity and velocity, you will perceive time in a way that is very different. The flow of time varies one location to another location. Hence the term: the law of relativity.

Today, we look back in time. We see 15 billion years. Looking forward from when the universe is very small -- billions of times smaller -- the Torah says six days. They both may be correct.

What's exciting about the last few years in cosmology is we now have quantified the data to know the relationship of the "view of time" from the beginning, relative to the "view of time" today. It's not science fiction any longer. Any one of a dozen physics text books all bring the same number. The general relationship between time near the beginning when stable matter formed from the light (the energy, the electromagnetic radiation) of the creation) and time today is a million million, that is a trillion fold extension. That's a 1 with 12 zeros after it. It is a unit-less ratio. So when a view from the beginning looking forward says "I'm sending you a pulse every second," would we see it every second? No. We'd see it every million million seconds. Because that's the stretching effect of the expansion of the universe. In astronomy, the term is "red shift." Red shift in observed astronomical data is standard.

The Torah doesn't say every second, does it? It says Six Days. How would we see those six days? If the Torah says we're sending information for six days, would we receive that information as six days? No. We would receive that information as six million million days. Because the Torah's perspective is from the beginning looking forward.

Six million million days is a very interesting number. What would that be in years? Divide by 365 and it comes out to be 16 billion years. Essentially the estimate of the age of the universe. Not a bad guess for 3300 years ago.

The way these two figures match up is extraordinary. I'm not speaking as a theologian; I'm making a scientific claim. I didn't pull these numbers out of hat. That's why I led up to the explanation very slowly, so you can follow it step-by-step.

Now we can go one step further. Let's look at the development of time, day-by-day, based on the expansion factor. Every time the universe doubles, the perception of time is cut in half. Now when the universe was small, it was doubling very rapidly. But as the universe gets bigger, the doubling time gets longer. This rate of expansion is quoted in "The Principles of Physical Cosmology," a textbook that is used literally around the world.

(In case you want to know, this exponential rate of expansion has a specific number averaged at 10 to the 12th power. That is in fact the temperature of quark confinement, when matter freezes out of the energy: 10.9 times 10 to the 12th power Kelvin degrees divided by (or the ratio to) the temperature of the universe today, 2.73 degrees. That's the initial ratio which changes exponentially as the universe expands.)

The calculations come out to be as follows:

The first of the Biblical days lasted 24 hours, viewed from the "beginning of time perspective." But the duration from our perspective was 8 billion years.

The second day, from the Bible's perspective lasted 24 hours. From our perspective it lasted half of the previous day, 4 billion years.

The third 24 hour day also included half of the previous day, 2 billion years.

The fourth 24 hour day -- one billion years.

The fifth 24 hour day -- one-half billion years.

The sixth 24 hour day -- one-quarter billion years.

When you add up the Six Days, you get the age of the universe at 15 and 3/4 billion years. The same as modern cosmology. Is it by chance?

But there's more. The Bible goes out on a limb and tells you what happened on each of those days. Now you can take cosmology, paleontology, archaeology, and look at the history of the world, and see whether or not they match up day-by-day. And I'll give you a hint. They match up close enough to send chills up your spine.


117 posted on 03/18/2008 10:48:47 AM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop; Alamo-Girl
It's an "ism." That is, a construct of the human mind. It is an abstraction from reality, not reality itself.

Ah, I see, you aren't interested in science, only in philosophy.

118 posted on 03/18/2008 10:49:55 AM PDT by bezelbub
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To: bezelbub
Ah, I see, you aren't interested in science, only in philosophy.

Not true bezelbub. I'm just reminded of a famous line from Dirty Harry: "A man's got to understand his own limitations." Many scientists today claim that science can explain everything; which is in effect to say that the human mind, human reason is unlimited. But we know this isn't so.

We need science. But its method all by itself does not exhaustively explain the entire universe and man's place in it. Many scientists claim to be able to do this anyway. But then it's they who are practicing philosophy, "under the color of science."

119 posted on 03/18/2008 11:02:37 AM PDT by betty boop (This country was founded on religious principles. Without God, there is no America. -- Ben Stein)
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To: Alamo-Girl; betty boop; hosepipe; metmom

You folks might particularly enjoy listening to Hugh Ross at reasons.org, click on the Interviews and Lecturs, then choose the ‘Other Issues’ category and locate to click on the 10-30-1999 interview. The discussion is generated over Dr. Ross’s book The Genessis Question.


120 posted on 03/18/2008 11:51:39 AM PDT by MHGinTN (Believing they cannot be deceived, they cannot be convinced when they are deceived.)
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To: MHGinTN

Thanks MHGinTN! Will check it out!


121 posted on 03/18/2008 12:17:21 PM PDT by betty boop (This country was founded on religious principles. Without God, there is no America. -- Ben Stein)
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To: betty boop
Thank you so much for your outstanding essay-post, dearest sister in Christ!

But Bacon misses something that Aristotle saw: that observation is limited precisely because we cannot see the whole, the context in which the visible/phenomenal things occur. As such, the scientific method as presently constituted is a very limited tool. I'm not saying it's not an important tool for the acquisition of human knowledge. But it is limited in the kinds of knowledge it can acquire, and therefore needs to be supplemented by other knowledge disciplines, preeminently philosophy and theology.

So very true and well said.

122 posted on 03/18/2008 12:43:13 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: MHGinTN
Thank you so much for the recommendation!
123 posted on 03/18/2008 12:45:38 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop
Many scientists today claim that science can explain everything; which is in effect to say that the human mind, human reason is unlimited. But we know this isn't so.

Many? More than five? There is this Dawkins fellow...

But of course, most scientists never listen to philosophers telling them what they can do - and what they cannot.

124 posted on 03/19/2008 7:58:59 AM PDT by bezelbub
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