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Sunday, April 30, 2017

Return of the Carnivorous Lorikeets

Remember a spell back when we posted about birds in the parrot family that got a notion to chow down on flesh? Scientists were startled by this news. Turns out, though, that they may not have been if they were paying attention to such strange goings-on around them.

Credit: Morguefile / wallyir
Years ago, when I played Dungeons and Dragons, I developed my on monster called the piranhakeet. You can tell I didn't take the game seriously. But I didn't realize that there was a modicum of science in my silliness.

Let's back up a mite. In the beginning, everything was created not only very good, but vegetarian. After the Fall and Flood, lots of changes happened. Critters developed a taste for other critters, and some for humans. And humans were given license to eat God's gift of tasty animals. But birds? Sure, some eat worms and bugs, but actual meat? It turns out that carnivorous birds have been around for longer than scientists thought — and not just parrots.
When Professor Daryl Jones of Griffith University, Australia, first heard of rainbow lorikeets eating meat, he was “shocked”. Rainbow lorikeets are a beautiful Australian parrot species (Trichoglossus haematodus) renowned for eating fruit (much to the dismay of orchardists!), as well as seeds, nectar, and pollen. In other words, 100% herbivorous. But two years ago the owner of a back yard bird-feeding station north of Brisbane reported that lorikeets were eating the mincemeat he’d left out for carnivorous birds, e.g. magpies, kookaburras, and butcher birds.
To chew on the rest of the article, click on "More meat-eating lorikeets (and other parrots, too)".

In the beginning, everything was vegetarian. After the Fall, then the Flood, meat eating was allowed. Some critters that people always considered vegetarian are turning carnivorous. What's happening?

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Bucking the Anti-Flood Consensus

Generally speaking, most evolutionists base their dogma on Lyell (a lawyer) and Darwin (a failed clergy student). Uniformitarianism (slow and gradual processes seen today are what always happened, even way back yonder) is the rule, since evolutionary doctrine requires long ages. Catastrophic flood geology is unacceptable because it brings old earth geologists uncomfortably close to considering the Genesis Flood. 


Dry Falls image credit: NASA / Goddard / Harrison Smith
Image usage does not imply endorsement of site contents
Every once in a while, geologists have no choice but to occasionally admit to catastrophic floods as probable causes for features observed by geomorphologists. J Harlen "Harley" Bretz wanted to figure out what went on in an area he called the Channeled Scablands over in the state of Washington, USA. Uniformitarian geologists were puzzled, and he proposed that huge floods were responsible. Took a long time for consensus-minded fundamentalist evolutionists to come around, but that is now the prevailing view. No, the Channeled Scablands area was not directly caused by the Genesis Flood, but the Flood did have a part to play. The real culprit was the Lake Missoula Flood — which some refer to in the plural. (For more about this, take a look at "Geology, Floods, and Fear of the Bible" and "Lake Missoula and the Genesis Flood".) So, what happened with Bretz and the consensus, anyhow?
National Geographic retells the lonely battle of J Harlen Bretz against the scientific establishment, and what made them so pig-headed.

Glenn Hodges tells in bold narrative how one man, not even trained in geology, figured out the Channeled Scablands in eastern Washington state. It’s a story we’ve told before, but this article in National Geographic, with Michael Melford’s stunning photographs, is a keeper. The headline and subtitle give a flavor of what’s below:
To keep reading, click on "The Lone Ranger vs the Big Science Consensus".

Bretz studied the odd landforms in Washington state and said they were caused by catastrophic flooding. The consensus of the science establishment rejected his ideas. How did his views emerge victorious?

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Yes, Jesus Rose from the Dead

Scoffers often say that the Bible is "fairy tales", which exposes their ignorance of historical documents, mythology, and the wording of fairy tales. Scripture is very specific, and does not read like mythology or the sacred texts of other world religions. When this is pointed out, mockers may demand, "Give me evidence that Jesus rose from the dead. But leave the Bible out of it, use neutral ground and extra-biblical sources". This child doesn't play by their rules, which actually means to admit that the Bible is false, and they have the "wisdom" to decide that Jesus is worthy of their worship. No, evidence must be presented in the proper framework.

Credit: Pixabay / Unsplash
While, there are extra-biblical sources regarding Jesus, the events in Jerusalem were unimportant to the Roman Empire. Not all that many accounts were written that still exist, unlike the quantity of biblical manuscripts. In addition to being God's revelation to us regarding creation, sin, righteousness, salvation, Judgement, and more, the Bible is also a book of history. If people can get over their prejudicial conjecture and the genetic fallacy, and are drawn by the Spirit beyond their spiritual blindness, they could see that there is a great deal of evidence that Jesus, God the Son, defeated death so that we can have life in him.
Unlike many world religions, Christianity’s origins are not shrouded in an unwitnessed, mythical past. The Christian faith centers on the person and work of Jesus Christ. His life and miracles were witnessed by thousands, and His sacrificial death on the Cross was also a public spectacle. Three days later, God raised His Son from the dead, and over the next forty days, Jesus appeared to hundreds of individuals.

Overstating the importance of the Resurrection is impossible. It conclusively demonstrated Christ’s power over the grave, secured our hope of eternal life, and proved that He truly was and is the Son of God. Because He rose, Christ also proved that every non-Christian belief system is false, and that He will eventually return to judge this world (Acts 17:30–31).
You, too, can join is in celebrating the risen Lord! Also, you can read the rest of the article (or download the MP3) by clicking on "Resurrection — No Doubt About It".


Is there evidence that Jesus bodily rose from the dead? Yes, a great deal. This proves that he is who he said, death is defeated, and there is life for those who have received him.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

The Miracle of Convergent Evolution

When critters have similar characteristics (such as echolocation in both bats and dolphins) but no close relative in Darwinspeak, evolutionists invoke the miracle of convergent evolution. This term gets bandied about by these owlhoots as an "evolution of the gaps" rescuing device, the gaps are in scientific knowledge.
Made at Add Letters, then modified
The idea of convergent evolution can seem plausible on the surface and spoken with authority, but it is almost a quick-draw excuse for things that cannot be explained in their paradigm. It's becoming increasingly ridiculous as well as illogical and unscientific from the get-go. 

Atheists and evolutionists will tell you that they believe in science and evidence. Common-ancestor evolution has precious little evidence, and convergent evolution has zilch. Zero. Zip. Nada. Then they say that we believe things without evidence. Hypocritical, methinks.



I reckon it's too much for Darwinists to consider that the Creator used the same design features, no, that's not naturalism, so it cannot be considered.
Why do they embrace convergent evolution so eagerly? Because it serves as a rescuing device for an important dogma of evolutionary theory. (A rescuing device is a completely fabricated conjecture devised to save someone’s theory from contrary evidence.)

Evolutionary theory holds that physical features shared by different creatures are strong evidence for evolution. To evolutionists, common traits are best explained by their descent from a common ancestor—not by a shared common design. Darwin taught:
Y'all can find out what Papa Darwin taught and read this extremely informative article by clicking on "Major Evolutionary Blunders: Convergent Evolution Is a Seductive Intellectual Swindle".

The idea of "convergent evolution" is spoken with authority when discussing common traits in diverse life forms. It is an overused rescuing device to cover up for lack of actual knowledge.

Sunday, April 02, 2017

Creation and Good Eatin'

Warning: Better strap on the feed bag before reading the linked article below (or hearing the audio), since it's about food and has a good chance of making you hungry. Even so, I wanted to grab a second lunch—

"Good thing you didn't, Cowboy Bob. I've seen your picture and you don't need it."

So anyway, as I write this, my wife and I finished up the leftover corned beef and cabbage from St. Patrick's Day, which is not a "traditional" Irish supper. When I was younger, I wasn't fond of cabbage or its relatives. Tastes change, especially when something is prepared in a way that is pleasing to the one consuming it.  There are many foods from around the world (many of which can be abused, as I pointed out above in that "conversation"). It may be surprising to see that God created them to be tasty, and even more so when enhanced with spices that he also gave us.


Food was created for nutrition and pleasure
Credit: Pixabay / TheAngryTeddy
There is an interesting interaction going on. Foods were designed to appeal to us, and we were designed to appreciate the flavors. It's a win-win situation. (Do people still say that?) None of that "evolved for a purpose" stuff that Darwinists insist on; we like it, it's made for us, and beneficial as well.
Confession time. On rare occasions (not to exceed once a month—other than around Christmas), this cut-the-grass-with-a-hand-pushed-reel-lawnmower workout warrior likes to swipe his way through the colorful confines of his wife’s Pinterest boards. I admit it; this social media powerhouse pulls me in. I’m a sucker for her jam-packed collections with such innocuous names as “Breakfast,” “Dinner,” and “Dessert.”

Those titles hardly do them justice. That’s because my wife’s mouth-watering online discoveries get my taste buds firing as I skim through beef barley skillet and peanut butter banana bread and French toast casserole. If she’s discovered it, that means we’ll be eating it soon. And with each tap, I can already taste the chocolate cheesecake, rosemary sweet potato fries, and ranch chicken pizza.

If you didn’t catch that . . . we like food.
To read the rest or get the free MP3 download, click on "Taste and See".

Another gift from our Creator is food. It's not just for nutrition, but designed to appeal to us, and we are designed to appreciate it.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Insect Sanitation Engineers

This is one of those posts that has interesting information, provided people can get over the "Ewww Factor" for a spell. I had a post about dung beetles, which are important sanitation engineers for the environment, but I reckon most people had to kind of steel themselves to read it. This is another of those.


Credit: Openclipart
One of the creatures that people wonder why God created is the cockroach, and some wish they'd just all die off. The revulsion probably comes from our mental images, memories, experiences, and such with the unpleasant ones that invade our dwellings. Even though there's a stigma, if there are cockroaches in your home, it does not necessarily mean that you are dirty or a bad housekeeper. Mayhaps the association comes from actually dirty living quarters where the nasty things have a grand hoedown. Even so, they're clever at getting into even the cleanest home — especially if you live near an infestation. Only five of the thousands of species are bothersome to humans.

Cockroaches are all over the world, so we'll have to get over the heebie-jeebies. It would help if we learned to appreciate some of their qualities. They are a high-protein food source for other critters — and some people like the crunchy bugs. In addition, they are beneficial for their environments, essentially helping with leaf litter. Some scientists are using cockroach biomimetics for robotic design.

Speaking of design, there is no evidence of cockroach evolution: they have remained the same over millions of Darwin years. Fact is, these things some of us love to hate (especially the five home-invasive species) have been designed by our Creator for specific purposes.
Discovering a cockroach infestation is a horrifying experience, and they are difficult to get rid of once established in a residence. Synonymous with filth and unsanitary conditions, some wonder, ‘Why would God create such a disgusting creature?’ Were they really part of God’s original ‘very good’ creation?

In fact, while they get a bad reputation from their pest cousins, there are thousands of species of cockroaches that do not infest homes, and actually play vital ecological roles. They also display indicators of ingenious design that robotics engineers are learning from.
I don't want to bug you, but I suggest reading the rest of the article. Just click on "The cockroach: nature’s garbage men".

If  people can get over the "Ewww Factor" for a spell, there are some surprising things about those sanitation engineers of the insect world, the cockroach. They're even being studied for applications in robotics!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Mind is Not the Brain

Today we're going to examine two articles on a similar theme, if'n y'all don't mind. Although secularists hold to methodological and philosophical naturalism (briefly stated, no God, even if the logical conclusion and the evidence leads to God), they still search for non-material concepts like free will and the soul. By doing this, they're inadvertently admitting that their worldview is inconsistent. Now secular scientists are obtaining evidence that we are not just "meat machines", and the mind/soul/consciousness is still operational.


Brain is not consciousness
Credit: Pixabay / PeteLinforth
The brain has two hemispheres that work together, and are connected by a kind of conduit. Doctors and scientists have been puzzled when people with damaged brains have rerouted, and then used other areas that are not damaged. What if that conduit is severed?
Experiments with split-brain patients in Amsterdam lend support to the idea that one immaterial being operates the physical brain, even when damaged.

The University of Amsterdam UVA News posted an intriguing headline: “Split brain does not lead to split consciousness.” Split brain refers to a condition when the corpus callosum, the “pipeline” between the brain’s two hemispheres, has been severed. Classic experiments seemed to show that the left side of the brain could only perceive objects on the left side, and vice versa, leading researchers to conclude that each hemisphere generated its own conscious identity. UvA psychologist Yair Pinto has run new experiments to show that is not entirely true. The experiments are difficult because of the rarity of people having the condition. Pinto had two subjects to work with, allowing a certain level of confirmation of his findings.
To finish this first article, click on "One Spirit Can Operate a Split Brain". Then, there's a related article waiting for your return.

See? Here's an introduction to the related article that I promised you. Cue the beginning of Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb": "Hello, is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me. Is there anyone home?"

Although 1955 was before my time, a classic Alfred Hitchcock Presents television story called "Breakdown" involves a man who was in a crash and people thought he was dead. He was alive, however, and trying very hard to communicate, almost to no avail. Patients with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) have been locked in and unable to communicate, and their loved ones wonder what's happening on the inside. One woman with ALS was connected to a computer and was able to have some motion and communication.

Taking it further, more communications experiments have been conducted with ALS patients, and the results are encouraging — especially when the patients answer questions.
Four ALS patients unable to move at all learned to communicate with their thoughts. Despite their condition, they all said they were happy.

What’s a person thinking when they cannot move a muscle? It’s a tragic question asked by family members of patients with ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), a degenerative disease that gradually robs them of movement. The patient can become ‘completely locked in’ where cannot even move their eyes, and exist in this state for years. Is the ‘person’ still there? Is he or she in pain or miserable? We may now have the means to answer those questions, thanks to new techniques developed in Geneva, Switzerland. Researchers describe how they overcame a limitation with standard EEG techniques, which might respond to involuntary eye movements rather than thoughts. At The Conversation, Ana Matran-Fernandez describes the procedure:
To read the rest, click on "The Mind Is Free When the Body Is Locked-In". Both of these articles indicate that the spirit is not just the brain, but the brain is used by the spirit. We were created in God's image. You have a spirit, and it will live on after you die. Do you know where that will be? You can be sure.

The spirit or consciousness is not simply the electrical and chemical impulses in the brain. Recent studies are showing that the materialistic approach to science does not properly address this.