Wednesday, April 07, 2010
Who Is John Gault?
Well, he is a professor of physics at Missouri Valley College, a private, liberal arts college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church.
But he has some strange ideas about science. In a lecture entitled "The First Day of Creation, Light, and the Physical Laws":
He began by asking those in attendance about their beliefs regarding creation: was the universe created by a god or by chance? If by a god, did it take six days or billions of years? Is there a conflict between science and religion, and, if so, how strong of a conflict exists?
"Why is there a conflict?" he asked aloud. "... That's a question I want you to help me answer."
One cause of that conflict, he said, is that some believe evolution is a theory that opposes religious beliefs. But, he said, it does not.
He offered his personal belief that science and religion reinforce each other to the benefit of both. ...
Mentioning Genesis again, he said that Adam was created as an adult, so when the universe was just six days old, as told in the biblical story, Adam was 25 years old or more.
So, Gault asked, couldn't God have created the universe as an "adult?"
Gault used the analogy of walking into a room to find a lit candle sitting on a table in a puddle of wax. The presumption of the observer would be that it began as a taller candle, and the wax was brought into its current location by the burning of that candle.
But, he continued, wax simply may have been poured onto the table, and the candle set into that puddle.
An observer couldn't tell the difference between these two causes, Gault said, if the second option were performed correctly.
"All we can talk about is what we see today," said Gault.
A physics professor who denies the reliability of science? Like I said, very strange.
This is the first in a series of lectures:
Stephen Patton, professor of chemistry at MVC and organizer of the lecture series, said the series is aimed at students "who come from very conservative backgrounds and believe God created the world in six days, and then they come here and hear it's billions of years old, and this is to harmonize all that. There are many Christian positions. ... Evolution is not the property of atheists."
But suppose I had found a watch upon the ground, and it should be inquired how the watch happened to be in that place, I should hardly think of the answer which I had before given, that, for any thing I knew, the watch might have always been there."
Or possibly some joker left it there to trip me up?
Hey this trickster God things answers all problems!
Why are there two creation tales in Genesis - God was having a laugh!
Why did Lot's wife turn into a pillar of salt? God was playing a practical joke.
Voice from the burning bush? Ventriloquism.
You wait until the trickster God reverses the charge on the electron - that will be a real rib tickler!
Loki created the universe with a belly button knowing that Man (well, scientists) would be tempted to press it. When they do, the sun will extinguish.