Sunday, 13 April 2008

Genesis busted by a spruce

Scientists have found a cluster of spruces in the mountains in western Sweden which, at an age of 8,000 years, may be the world's oldest living trees.


"These were the first woods that grew after the Ice Age," said Lars Hedlund, responsible for environmental surveys in the county of Dalarna and collaborator in climate studies there.

"That means that when you speak of climate change today, you can in these (trees) see pretty much every single climate change that has occurred."

So, some trees that are 2000 years older than the age of the Earth (If you are a young earth creationist). I'm sure this won't be a problem for them because they'll claim that God created these trees "pre-aged" in the same way he made the stars with their light already reaching us.
But, hang on, what about the flood? A global flood of such catastrophic proportions that it was responsible for the Grand Canyon would have destroyed these trees.

These hardy little bushes are living proof that the Bible can not be taken as literal truth.


Rosie said...

somehow, even looking for bits and pieces to support evolution is playing down to the creationist level, as though we need to refute idiocy. There is proof...lots of it. It's know I didnt realise how much of a hold creationism has until I began to visit US sites. Scary isnt it! I'm a frequent vistor to PZ Myers blog(friend of Dawkins)
and Julia Sweeney as Douglas Adams says the garden is already quite wonderful enough without having to believe that there are fairies in it (or something like that!)

Adam_Y said...

I 'spose god could have made the trees elsewhere, like a divine nursery and transplanted them across 2000 years ago...

...or maybe not.

Randy said...

The part I find amusing is; every bit of "scientific" proof of the age of the world is somehow proof of "there is no God." Somehow, science has become "gospel truth" and anything of religion is "false". Hmmm. years ago it was "scientifically true" that the world is flat. What happened to that science? It was once "scientific fact" that the sun revolved around the earth. What happened to that science. So are we to believe that we are so enlightened that anything scientific is true.

Stew said...

randy - what's the matter with you?

8000 year old trees say nothing about the existance of god and I didn't say so. But it says heaps about the accuracy of the Bible. And Bible is held up as unerrant truth by many Christians.

So, if you insist, 8000 year old trees can go some way to cast doubt on the existance on one god, Yahweh, the viscious Cannanite god that Christians worship.

The cool thing about science, or "science" as you like to call it, is that science is foreverupdating and refining its model of how the universe is, based on the evidence at hand. If new evidence arises, then the models change to fit the data. Even the theory of evolution would be dropped if hard evidence showed it to be wrong (like a fossil in the wrong place)

Now religion, on the other hand CANNOT change. Because it cannot be seen to have be wrong, because perhaps then it might be wrong on other things and doubt is the enemy of faith.
Thus, fundie Christians will hold onto an unerrant Bible, in spite of it claiming that bats are birds, Pi equals 3, and the universe was created in 6 days.

So, what is enlightened about us is how excited and thrilled we are as each new scientific discovery reveals and refins or understanding of the true nature of the universe.

Randy said...

As a christian I would only want to dispute the Bible as unerrant. It has been re-written by man too many times to be unerrant. No religion is unerrant either, because man has his hands all over any religion. In my view that does not discount the possibility of God. nor does it discount the science of modern and ancient scientists. Science and God are not oppposites. If one is willing to open up to the possibilities that both God i.e. Intelligent Design, and evolution can co-exist, one might be more enlightened. One may even be viewed as liberal thinking and progressive. Don't ya think?

Stew said...

randy - now your talking!

My apologies for being snippy with my reply.

There is very little in science that can actively disprove god.

That is if we are defining god as some sort of mysterious kick-starter of things.

Where things get tricky tho is when we try and nail that god down to being one of the many gods described by various religions.

I don't have any problem with the concept of god, but I do find evidence for him a bit lacking. If ever I were presented with something tangible I could well re-assess the situation.

My lack of capitalisation is no disrespect by the way, I am not talking about Jehovah or Jesus or any specific god, but something more generic. It's when it comes to specifics (I the Lord your God am a jealous god etc etc) that I feel things really become illogical

Randy said...

There are two views, which when observed by someone with no bias whatsover, that seem a little far fetched: First the concept of "big bang" suddenly the earth appeared and whamo life began as a single cell and evolved to what we see around us today. second; God snapped His finger and made things happen is 6 days, then took a break and drank some wine and that's it.
There are huge amounts of grey area on both sides of the aisle. And both views require some faith. either faith in a god, or faith that science will someday fill in the blanks. Until either idea is proven 100%, we must make our choices ("if you choose not to decide you still have made a choice")... to believe in one or the other according to our own dictates.
Have a great day, and thanks for the stimulating conversation.