1a: Glossary and Description of Terms I Use
I was once an avid supporter and believer in evolution. I was sure Darwin was right, and all of living nature formed through some sort of genetic changes that were selected to survive by natural selection processes. But then, in 2001, I had an eye-opening change of stance. That paradigm shift in my thinking took me on a path that brought me to the point of writing this blog. I wrote Ev-illusion for one purpose only: to make an objective and investigative analysis of the state of man’s scientific thinking on the origin of life, organisms, and mankind. I have always been fascinated by science, particularly astronomy and the origins of humanity and all living species. After 2001 I did an incredibly detailed and thorough study of evolution. This blog will detail my findings. I am not religious, nor part of any religious organization, or anti-evolution group. I hope that covers all of the bases. I do have an agenda; that of getting belief and fantasy out of the science that I find so incredibly fascinating and so puzzling: that of our origins. I realize I am not even a drop in the bucket in that endeavor. But I will be satisfied being only a part of a drop in that bucket.
During my research and search for truth, I got myself entangled in many debates on the subject of evolution with avid evolution believers. I debated online un
der the name stevebee92653. The debates made me even more skeptical of evolution than I was when I first had my “awakening”. I kept a log of my findings and the sites where I found them on a blog. In case you don’t know blogs, a blog is a kind of online diary or log. The information I put on the blog was really only for me. I made it so I could refer back to sites and information that I had dug out on my searches. However, a few avid evolution believers found my blog, and began arguing with some of my conclusions. My blog became a site of many intense arguments. I found quickly that
I needed some new vocabulary words so I could accurately communicate my thoughts with my opponents. So I coined a few words that would do the job. They came in handy and saved me from repeating the same material and lists over and over. For some reason, some of my new terms irritated the hell out of the evolution zealots, which in some ways made them even more enjoyable to use. All words are respectfully coined, and not meant to demean anyone at all. And, they describe the entities that they are intended to describe very accurately. So I will continue using them, even though probabilities are that they won’t be utilized in the worldwide biological community anytime soon. All words in the English Language were initially coined by one person before they caught on to become commonly used. I use all of my newly coined words in this book. This, my first “chapter”, is a glossary and explanation of why I coined the terms. So when you read the book and run into my terms, you will understand what I am trying to convey.
(1) Evolutionaut: When I first started writing this blog, I often used the term evolutionist to denote believers in evolution. Evolution believers universally hate that term. It’s commonly used by creationists and anti-evolution arguers to refer to evolution supporters. And it’s a term that is commonly detested by them. Evolution believers somehow think it represents them as “religious”, probably because of the –ist suffix. They see it as similar to the names of some religions such as Bapt-ist or Method-ist. Every time I got a complaint for the usage of the term evolutionist, I asked what they would like to be called. I never got an answer. Never. When discussing in any online chatroom, the names used are always pseudonyms chosen to keep the writer anonymous. Here is a dissertation by a commenter and moderator at http://www.rationalskepticism.org who calls himself Calilasseia. This person is quite famous in online evolution circles. He is a pretty big hero and attack dog, and is called on when evolution believers are having trouble debating their opponents. For some reason he is known as “The Blue Butterfly”. And if he is coming to get you, his fellow evolutionauts warn you. “Here comes the Blue Butterfly!” As if you are really in for it now. Calilasseia wrote a dissertation on http://www.rationalskepticism.org telling in no uncertain terms that evolution believers should NOT be called evolutionists:
Now, if there is one guaranteed way for a creationist to establish that he or she is here for no other reason than to propagandist for a doctrine, it’s the deployment of that most viscerally hated of words in the lexicon, namely, evolutionist. I have posted about this so often here……… now is the time to nail this one to the ground with a stake through its heart once and for all.
There is no such thing as an “evolutionist”. Why do I say this? Simple. Because the word has become thoroughly debased through creationist abuse thereof, and in my view, deserves to be struck from the language forever. For those who need the requisite education, there exist evolutionary biologists, namely the scientific professionals who devote decades of their lives to understanding the biosphere and conducting research into appropriate biological phenomena, and those outside that specialist professional remit who accept the reality-based, evidence-based case that they present in their peer reviewed scientific papers for their postulates. The word “evolutionist” is a discoursive elision, erected by creationists for a very specific and utterly mendacious purpose, namely to suggest that valid evolutionary science is a “doctrine”, and that those who accept its postulates do so merely as a priori “assumptions”. This is manifestly false, as anyone who has actually read the peer reviewed scientific literature is eminently well placed to understand. The idea that there exists some sort of “symmetry” between valid, evidence-based, reality-based science (evolutionary biology) and assertion-laden, mythology-based doctrine (creationism) is FALSE. Evolutionary biology, like every other branch of science, tests assertions and presuppositions to destruction, which is why creationism was tossed into the bin 150 years ago. When creationists can provide methodologically rigorous empirical tests of their assertions, the critical thinkers will sit up and take notice.
Furthermore, with respect to this canard, does the acceptance of the scientifically educated individuals on this board, of the current scientific paradigm for gravity make them “gravitationists”? Does their acceptance of the evidence supporting the germ theory of disease make them “microbists”? Does their acceptance of the validity of Maxwell’s Equations make them “electromagnetists”? Does their acceptance of the validity of the work of Planck, Bohr, Schrödinger, Dirac and a dozen others in the relevant field make them “quantumists”? Does their acceptance of the validity of the astrophysical model for star formation and the processes that take place inside stars make them “stellarists”? If you are unable to see the absurdity inherent in this, then you are in no position to tell people here that professional scientists have got it wrong, whilst ignorant Bronze Age nomads writing mythology 3,000 years ago got it right.
I think you get the idea how hated the word evolutionist is. I find it strange that he so derides the term evolutionist without the least bit of thought as to what a group of people who avidly support evolution should be called. I asked numerous evolution believers what they would like to be labeled. What term would they be satisfied with so I can refer to them. Not one time has that question even been addressed. So I coined the term evolutionaut. Evolutionaut is a combination of evolution, and –aut, a suffix meaning voyager or traveler. The suffix -aut is used in the words astronaut and Argonaut, both respectful terms. Astronaut means space voyager. So I refer to evolution believers as evolution voyagers, or evolutionauts which removes the –ist from any references to them. Evolutionaut is a perfectly respectful term that evolutionauts also hate. As a whole, they are certain it is some sort of degrading term. They think it was coined to make them look bad.
One avid evolution believer named Paul summed up his feelings about my new term this way
It seems a bit hypocritical for stevebee92653 to complain that someone has been unkind enough to mock him repeatedly for a stupid comment and just not let it go, given stevebee92653’s continuous use of language clearly intended to be insulting – such as referring to opponents as “evilutionauts” – which is just one example. stevebee92653, do you have any good reason why anyone should show you any consideration, or give you anything, beyond that which is required by the forum rules here? I can’t think of one – and you’ve more than made it clear how much respect should be shown in debates. You have also used the word “evilutionaut” in posts aimed at individual people here, where it is clear from the context whom it aimed at. I think the word is clearly intended to be insulting. It is implying that the person is “evil”. You don’t see “evOlutionaut” which would make more sense. (Me: The word IS evolutionaut! He is so filtered, he can’t see the actual spelling of a word I used frequently. I have NEVER spelled it with the prefix evil-.) It is also implying that the person is some kind of “space cadet” – out of touch with reality and suffering from some mental illness that causes fantasy delusions. It seems to me to be a personally directed insult.”
I explained the term to him and why I coined it:
I used the term “evolutionist” many times and was soundly scolded by evolutionauts for its use. I asked repeatedly for a better term and was never given one. So I coined the term “evolutionaut” which is composed of “evolution”….and “-aut” which means sailor or voyager. The word “evil” is only used in your poorly researched misspelling. No evil, no space cadet, no mental illness, and it is a very respectful term. So blow your nose, wipe your tears, and next time spend a little time researching your complaint before crying.
“It wasn’t about me being “sensitive” Steve. It was about the hypocrisy in YOU being sensitive about people just not letting it go when you made a transfinitely idiotic comment that will probably still be amusing people long after we are all dead. And I reject any explanation you want to give out of hand Steve. You are merely trying to rationalise a clear attempt to insult. Really, a far as I am concerned, nothing you say has any value outside the field of comedy. I am feeling distinctly apprehensive about booking my next dental checkup if this is what the dental schools are doing these days. I mean… the idea of reading all this from someone and then letting them put sharp objects into your mouth…”
Now you may get a hint of what discussion with evolutionauts is like. This demeanor of discussion is common. This is a very typical sample. Of course Paul has to be as insulting as he can in his answer. And, notice that he doesn’t come up with a term he thinks would be more respectful. So I will continue using evolutionaut as long as I do this gig. You will see it in practically every chapter of this book. Changing the term to something evolutionauts would like would be a cave in to their anger and demeaning. The term is not disrespectful in any way. I get a kick out of how they want to make it out to be.
(2) Ev-Illusion: The title of my book. And a term I coined to describe what evolution really is: an illusion. Ev-illusion makes people, and particularly students, think they see what really isn’t there. Evolution is much like the works of an illusionist or magician who can fool an audience into thinking a certain event happened that really didn’t. Once the audience is fooled with the first event, they can then be fooled by quite absurd and seemingly impossible follow up events. The ev-illusionist can tell the audience anything he wants once he has fooled the audience with the first impossibility. The audience will believe anything once they have fallen for the first illusion. Their brains have been “prepared” by the illusionist for follow up illusions.
When I was a kid I dabbled in magic tricks. One trick I had was the famous Chinese linking rings. Most people have seen it sometime in their lives. It’s really amazing performing a trick like this one and seeing how an audience can be fooled by such a basic illusion. When you know how it works you really wonder how anyone could be fooled. But I was fooled as well before I bought the trick. Chinese linking rings is a perfect example of how ev-illusion works. The illusionist’s technique is the same as the one ev-illusionists use: get the audience to believe the first impossible task, that of linking two rings which look to be continuous and unbroken. Once the audience believes the first “impossible” linking has been completed, they will then fall for every other step in the linking rings illusion.
The trick works like this: The illusionist shows two apparently solid and complete rings. He taps them, and slides them against each other to show they are solid. Of course there is an opening in one ring which is hidden by the illusionist’s hand. Unseen by the audience, he will slip one ring into another. He then holds the out the two “linked” rings, one on top of the other, and drops one. It falls with a “clank”, as if the two had just joined. The illusion is that two completely solid rings linked. He can then spin one inside of the other, ostensibly showing that the rings are linked and solid. Of course he continues to hide the small opening in one ring with his hand. The illusionist will then show the audience another set of two or three rings, which actually are welded together like a huge chain. He holds them out vertically, one on top of the other, then does the same drop, in just the same fashion as he did with the first unlinked rings. The drop makes a “clank” sound. It looks like he did the same exact thing that he did with the first two rings. He can then hand the actual linked and welded rings to the audience for inspection, keeping the first rings, one with the trick opening, on his arm. The audience gets to check the second or third set of rings which truly are welded, and cannot come apart. After he links the first rings and the audience believes what he wants them to, the rest of the trick is easy. They will fall for everything else. And they do.
The exact same scenario works with evolution. Once you believe the first absurdity, the first impossibility, you will fall easily for the others. That’s just the way the human mind and illusions work. Once you can believe a human heart/lung/blood/vessel system can form itself all on its own, just by random chance genetic errors that are selected for by natural selection, you will believe anything he says after that. You will believe that human consciousness can be formed by evolution. That brains can. That humans can. That double sliding double ball and socket joints, our jaws, can. That all species can. You will believe that this simplistic notion of animals procreating with or killing other animals selectively because of some advantage they have due to some odd mutation can develop every living entity and species in nature. You can fall for the illusion just like I did.
A leader or major speaker in the evolution movement. One who speaks to large audiences and is able to perform ev-illusion on them. Like a good magician, they are very skilled at what they do. Dr. Ken Miller, PZ Meyers, Richard Dawkins, and Eugenie Scott are great current examples. They do their ev-illusion, and the audience swoons. Here is how ev-illusionists work:
Step 1: Have a very credible demeanor as if your are “above it all”. Sound British, or at least very intelligent. Be or be like a college professor. Talk in echo-y lecture halls. No one will want to challenge you, whatever you say. The audience will be responsive, worshipful, intimidated, and even more enthusiastically on your side. They will laugh at your jokes, no matter how bad they may be.
Step 2: Group all skeptics together, no matter their reasons for being skeptical. Make fun and light of the least credible in the group so it seems like the whole group is equal to the buffoon. Demean their education, let them know that their challenges are “old and tired”, call them names, degrade their ability to think. Most in the audience will not want to be associated with any group of skeptics, and will willingly and enthusiastically slide over to your side. No one wants to look foolish.
Step 3: Make the audience think that they are witnessing an impossible event of your choosing (as in the linking rings illusion), or that an impossible event took place that you describe. Make them think they are seeing something that they are not. Fool them into believing an event took place that didn’t. Telling them that twenty pound fox-like animals evolved into 400,000 pound 100 ft. long whales is a good start. Or that theropod dinosaurs evolved into hummingbirds. Once they believe in just one single impossible event, they can be easily convinced the next impossible event they are given also took place. As each impossible event is displayed, the audience will be more and more easily convinced, until an entire series of impossible events of your choosing will be accepted by the audience without question.keptics together, no matter their reasons for being skeptical. Make fun and light of the least credible in the group so it seems like the whole group is equal to the buffoon. Demean their education, let them know that their challenges are “old and tired”, call them names, degrade their ability to think. Most in the audience will not want to be associated with any group of skeptics, and will willingly and enthusiastically slide over to your side. No one wants to look foolish.
(4) Groupthink: I coined the word groupthink to describe the group thinking, and group psychology displayed by evolutionauts. The basis for groupthink is the indoctrination that evolutionauts have undergone, unknowingly of course. They have all been successfully indoctrinated, and in doing so, must believe the most preposterous scenarios. Which they do without the slightest change of expression. They gobble it up and accept everything, no matter how absurd. And they will stand nose to nose with you and defend the absurdities without ever questioning those absurdities themselves. Why? I don’t get it. It is just a hint as to what indoctrination of any kind can do to
people. When I was a child I accepted the fable that a family built a big wooden boat and collected all of the animals in the world, and put them on that boat which saved the lives of all of nature. Why did I accept that story? My brain was young and immature, and ready to accept and lap up everything
I was told by adults that I revered and respected. But my thinking matured. I began to doubt the absurd stories I was taught. I questioned. And when I went to college, my thought processes were ready for a new more mature tale. I needed to know how humans came about. How all of nature formed. And just like a cookie fits a cookie mold, along came evolution. A perfect fit! I traded one belief system for another. Bible fables for evolution fables. I accepted that natural selection and friends built heart/lung systems, vision, us; a tale more preposterous than a family collecting and saving all the animals in the world. I had my second indoctrination. And that is what almost 100% of evolution indoctrinates have had; their second indoctrination. And they think and respond as a group. They say the same stuff; express themselves the same way. They communicate in plural pronouns. They commonly say “We think that……” “We can’t believe that….” It’s hard to imagine sitting in front of a computer all by myself and saying “We think…..” about any subject. But they commonly do it. An evolutionaut that says “I think….” is actually a very rare exception. And for this sameness, I have coined the term groupthink for them. Because that is what evolutionauts do. They speak as if they were one entity. I find it difficult to discern different personalities in their writing. One evolutionaut could just as easily be another. It’s difficult to tell the difference between any of them. Actually I thought groupthink was my own custom term. Actually a psychologist named Irving Janis coined the same term in 1972. His description of what the term means was spot on; exactly what I meant my version to be. So I will credit Janis with the origin of the term. In any case, it’s a valid term and it suffices for my use in this book and my other writings.
Here are the three laws of groupthink:
The first law: Every person in the group thinks exactly like all other memebrs of the group. Group members do not challenge what one member of the group says or thinks. Further, groupmembers cannot challenge the selected belief that brought the original formation of the group. For example, if the group is put together to defend evolution, no group member will ever, under any circumstances, challenge evolution or its tenets.
The second law: When communicating with non-group members, or individuals who challenge the philosophy of the group, groupmembers always communicate in plural pronouns. They never say blasphemous words such as “I think……” “I have found that……” They always use terms such as “WE think…..” WE believe…..”. Groupmembers are in a group. They are not individuals and cannot communicate as if they are.
The third law: every person in the group thinks every other person in the group wins all discussions and debates, no matter how absurd the other groupmember’s debate tactics and skills may be.
(5) Bio-System or bio-logical-system: I find it strange that this term confounds so many evolutionauts. It’s a term I coined as an abbreviation; a combination of “biological” and “system”; not too tough of a concept. The term “biosystem” is currently in use and is an accepted term in science dictionaries. Its definition can be commonly found online. The agreed upon definition from http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/biosystem “A living organism or a system of living organisms that can directly or indirectly interact with others. ” This term isn’t what I had in mind when I coined it independently. I needed a term that would cover this definition: interdependent utilitarian entities that originated from living organisms or exist inside of living organisms. So I coined a hyphenated version of the term: bio-systems. I most commonly use the term for interdependent groups of organs. A good example is a heart/lung/blood vessel/blood system is a bio-system (pictured left); the musculo-skeletel system is as well. Under my definition, a bird nest is also a bio-system, made up of many different small entities, such as mud, straw, twigs, all woven together in a complex system from a living organism meant to be home for the bird’s eggs and newborn. Bird nests are DNA coded into the brains of birds, are assembled strictly for the use of nurturing and protecting bird’s eggs and young, and the entities that make it up are interdependent. Each twig or straw is dependent on the others for support. If I wanted to make my term strictly to do with organs, I would have used the term “organ system” or “organ-system”. Bio-system has a much broader connotation. Of course words evolve just like nature does. (Evolution does occur in nature. It’s just that, as this book will show, evolution isn’t within light years of being powerful enough to form any bio-system.) Bio-system evolved to become bio-logical-system. I like my new version even better. The addition of the word logical separates my term from the highly accepted term of biosystem. It denotes the fact that there is an immense amount of logic in the designs of bio-systems. So, bio-logical-system is my new generation for this term.
(6) Evo-Denier or Evo-Skeptic: Of course that would be me. I both am skeptical of evolution, and I deny that it was able to form all of living nature. Generally these are people who think evolution is not real science, but a fable made up by pseudo-scientists. Why “psudo”? Because, they as a whole, support natural selection as the source of all of nature even though there is little change in the fossil record within species, and no bio-logical-system has ever been observed being invented, designed, assembled, and sustained by natural selection. Reason enough for me.
(7) Evo-Abiogenesis: This is a term that describes evolution’s version of the beginning of life on earth. It seems to have been confiscated by evolution to mean the dumb luck random formation of biochemicals and lipid micelles on the sea floor which then somehow miraculously came together and then became alive. The term abiogenesis without the prefix to me, and therefore in this book, simply means the formation of life from sterility on Earth from unknown causes.
(8) Natural Selection: Natural selection is the process whereby one organism is able to kill and consume another organism due to some genetic/mutational advantage the predator has over the prey. A secondary process is sexual selection, the choosing of a mate for the purpose of procreating. Environmental survival is also in the mix. But, by far the most pervasive foundation for evolution is the selective killing of one type of organism with lesser advantages by another with greater genetic/mutational advantages, and the repeat of this process over eons.
(9) Random Mutations: Accidental changes in the genetic codes of organisms. According to evolution, advantageous mutations remain in the population which are then “selected for” by natural selection.
(10) RM and NS: I frequently use this abbreviation for random mutations and natural selection.