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AND GREAT WAS THE FALL OF IT!
Evidence of Didactic Decadence in the City of Churches
The Circular to Principals, 1988-2004
A Sad South Australian Spectacle
As we consider the worn-out world and the coming King, it is perhaps apt to ponder the action in one's own State, South Australia, where the wearied 'wisdom' of the sages is as aggressive towards educational liberty, as for those who have no basis but fickle belief, and hence use authority's domination to secure their desire. This is not to be found, as a phenomenon, in this Age alone, or the end of it.
It is however a specialised thing when in the City of Churches, as Adelaide was once called, we have such recidivism that the very foundational doctrine of creation is abhorred to the extent that it is pilloried, covered with extraneous dirt and, denuded of its biblical reality, both in terms of information and actual reality, set into the realm of the subjective.
It is as it was biblically forecast it would be, as the return of the Coming King, Jesus Christ draws near (cf. II Peter 3:3-5, Joyful Jottings 8, Answers to Questions Ch. 5).
That churches could suffer such outrage is one of the signals for which we look; but not all have done so. At present, two Presbyterian bodies are in action, Korean and Australian. For a little time, one of these was in conjunction with a Baptist element; yet we in our Presbyterian Church have pursued this matter, as now with the Evangelical Presbyterian Alliance. As to the actual belief position, it is notable that some years ago, the President of the Lutheran Church of Australia, S.A. District, released a letter*1 to the press. In this, a biblical approach to creation appears referring to the Lutheran Synod of 1972's statement in this field, and noting that it was still in force at the time of the letter, in 1989. Though not action at Governmental level, this at least was a public testimony of clear and correct biblical character (cf. SMR pp. 485ff., 179ff., TMR Appendix).
We have earlier made abundant reference, in TMR Ch. 8, to the debacle of liberty in South Australian Schools, in the Creation-Evolutionism arena. We revert because a fresh approach is being made to the current Government.
South Australia's Education Department in January 1988 put out such an affront to freedom both of teachers and children, an insult to the Bible, barb to the children of believers and indoctrination ensemble to non-believers that it needs thought... and action! It is to be hoped that the Government, at least now, will on further consideration remove this intrusion and partisan approach. It is called a Circular to Principals of Schools, and was entitled, Creationism and the School Curriculum.
What is happening here, has been seen in slightly different mode elsewhere in this nation; and may come with renewed force as a judgment if not confronted! Certainly things will get worse; but we are not the sponsors of ruin. In Queensland, the approach at last reference, was that since creation and evolution are well-known and presented positions, it is necessary for teachers to make this clear to the students. Below is a quotation from a letter in 1989 on this topic, from the Minister for Youth, Education and Sport.
"Evolution should be presented as a theory, not fact, and
creationism should be included
"In providing balanced discussion, teachers must acknowledge
One is currently seeking information from that State, to find to what extent this approach is still current.
Now in South Australia where we reside, what is the impact of this CIrcular to Principals ? we must ask, since it is still enforced. It is this. The Education Department as it was then called, an arm of Caesar, or the State if you prefer, has set forth this communication to School Principals which assaults what is precious, assails the minds of students and suppresses the teaching freedom of Staff in crucial respects. Its domineering dogmatism is reminiscent of the intimidatory decrees of some sovereigns in times past, in English history. The duress is palpable, inappropriate to thought, making a puppet of education. People who have no love or knowledge of God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ may not mind; I am not amongst them.
People who love freedom of enquiry may mind: I am amongst them. It is of course in the latter respect that one approaches this Government, though it is also to seek restoration of liberty of religion, so that one religious belief system, whether secular humanistic view, agnostic deism, absolute relativism or whatever else might be in mind here, or indeed some selection of its own syncretic type, is not given the dominance by decree, as here. Further, we approach this Government as Christian Ministers, in the name of Jesus Christ, and the response must consider that this is the origin of the protest.
FACTS AND FREEDOM
The Circular from the Education
Department characterises the Bible in a way that is astonishingly bold and
degrading to that book. The approach used towards it is unscholarly,
defamatory and presumptuous. It further suppresses free speech for schools in
vital respects in a way reminiscent of the 'subtleties' of Russia. As if this
were not enough, it misrepresents science in a way so startling that it
becomes fitting to note that even the famed Professor Karl Popper of London
University has deemed their dominant evolutionary protιgι not an example of
Even within the ranks of evolutionism, Professor Sψren Lψvtrup is only one of the most recent who has declared the concept of gradual advance by natural selection a myth, contrary to ALL observation, as well as a deceit, and an improper standard of 'orthodoxy' by which preference is given for research to those holding this concept (and recall, that Lψvtrup, though evidently greatly vexed by irrational dogmatism, is not a creationist! cf. SMR pp. 252Aff.).
Let us however return to the Circular itself. It widely sacrifices research and Staff by its outright exclusion of the rational alternative to irrational evolution, creation, in science; and its pre-judging of the issue out of the area of science.
Student interchange and interaction in these two ways are dictatorially, damagingly, and it appears protectively harassed if not positively excluded (depending on the case). Does evolution then need such dictates to protect its vulnerable underbelly, seen lolling in science for too long? If not, it is hard to see why authoritarian axe-work is needed to suppress a resistance which logic and evidence should be able to handle effectively - were the theory true!
Since it is not even in the domain of scientific method, however, it is plain that words are used to do what experiments fail to show. A fine state of affairs for a 'free' nation. This is gross prejudice and unreasoned discrimination.
In fact, throughout the world, reportedly hundreds of scientists with science-related doctorates (list provided with this document) are against this theory, and in fact are styled as biblical creationists in their position on this topic as scientists; but this is not the point. It is method, not manpower which is in view. Nevertheless, it is of interest to find a recent visitor to Adelaide University campus, Dr Dmitri Kouznetsov, to whom a whole issue of an internationally noted neuroscience magazine was devoted, have something to say on the topic.
Equipped with doctorates in science, medicine and philosophy, Dr Kouznetsov indicated that he had been forced to drop evolution in favour of creation, by the evidence. This happened some two years before he became a Christian.
Specialising in microbiology and mutagenics, he made it clear that he has met conservative mechanisms in living cells, amazing techniques evidently programmed or installed or instituted in them, which in fact steady or conserve the copying of cells; but never has he found any evidence of any increase in design complexity in cells; and this is the sort which would be relevant to evolution; but it is one which steadfastly refuses to show itself
Calling for an open education, where the preferences for theories on the part of old mentors are replaced by the open researches and enquiries of young minds, he exposes the dreadful tyranny of a misled establishment, bent on conforming, rather than aiding creativity and realism with evidence. Further, answering later the question, why do so many scientists hold to the evolutionary hypothesis, he gave this answer.
A survey of the scene, he says, shows that nearly all professionally placed evolutionists are supported, and given a high standard of living, by institutions fostering the closed mind evolutionary view; they are dependent on them, to a clear extent, in that setting. On the other hand, outstanding creationists tend to be expert in private industry, able to pursue their thought without this pressure.
It might be added that many might be out of pressure institutions at the outset, rather than being fired from them. The author of this article himself, once lecturing in a tertiary body, now a University, used evolution as an excellent example of what scientific method is not, because it seemed the best stimulus available in the field to illustrate this point. Told by the Head of the Department to cease using this illustration, because it was not convenient, he naturally brought his stay at what in this was a confined and unacademic body, to a close as soon as could be.
The truth cannot be sold at any price. It was pointed out, without any logical reply, that no objection had been sustained whatever, logically, to what was presented; nor at any time was it, and formal protest was entered at the manner of this misuse of freedom. It was just that it was 'not convenient'.
Cases are moreover mentioned in a recent Moody Monthly, where pressures are used instead of argument or logic, to 'control' academic staff; and one writer, expert in the matter, a counsel, indicated that a fever of such follies has come in recent years.
Report is to hand, here in Australia, of a lady at one tertiary centre, where Dr Kouznetsov has visited, who told the students formally that evolution(ism) was the position held there, and that they would be required to believe it! Shades of the Inquisition, and this in the interests of relativistic religion, in our country!
Is it this sort of reckless and irrational seeming tyranny, for which Australia fought two World Wars! When, 0 when will citizens realise that manipulation of truth and of history is one of the primary works of tyranny, as it develops. Freedom of speech and thought may be dispensed with; but the nation may die shortly thereafter. While we earnestly believe that the truth is as it is in Christ Jesus, the power of truth to stand unaided by mere force is one of its most endearing characteristics. Freedom is a great ally of Christianity; and naturally, where the latter is marked "to go," freedom must go first; but mark it, much will go with it.
Even Voltaire knew that counting of noses does not determine truth. The poor oppressed children are to be taught evolution in science (and this alone in this area) as if it had some relation there. See to the contrary on the disk provided, in The Shadow of a Mighty Rock (SMR), pp. 140-151, esp. 149-151, a listing of the types of evidence to the contrary, succinct and simple. This may readily be found from the Disk provided.
Thus they will be mistaught as to fact and, by example, as to method likewise: and this is science! It is like having girls in a finishing school taught prostitution. This is not science, and that bold name is here degraded... The methodology shown in the document is instead an appeal to authority and an abuse of statistics of the most painfully illogical kind.
HISTORY OF SCIENCE
It would be salutary to see this callow performance in the perspective of the history of science. Consider for example the ludicrous and once tenaciously held phlogiston theory, one which retarded science for so long, because it was 'obvious' and no one adequately countered or was... able to get the alternative out to the general level, because of the pragmatic and unscientific dogmatism of the devotees of the old theory.
In fact, this is a perfect case of what is happening in what is, in this regard, a benighted State. An unscientific theory is set up without permission for free and rational debate in science, where it is dogmatised. Anti-verifications are excluded thereby. This savours of totalitarianism, and education is a famous pathway for such a decline, whether it be conscious or subliminal.
Perhaps it is time to realise that the nation which fought for freedom with immense sacrifice in two wars is by no means safe... from within. Whatever the government, this species of conduct has vulnerabilities more readily mocked than rectified.
Freedom, free enquiry, with public results always in order, and free debate: these are replaced by a religiously discriminatory, profane preference which misuses the name of science, as it does the belief that follows the directions of the Bible. While this is obvious, we have prepared a substantial document demonstrating it, and showing in detail the lines of conflict drawn up between the Department and the Lord. All of these points are covered in principle and made clear in detail, with page by page, and point by point reference to this Circular, in the book being provided to the Government (a somewhat similar copy was given years ago also), pp. 188-276. The detailed reference to the document is present esp. from pp. 199ff., 222ff.. This volume is entitled, That Magnificent Rock (TMR).
Coverage of relevant principles concerning creation and evolutionism are to be seen also in Ch. 1, for which cause this book is provided. Detailed questions of recent science appear in Ch. 7 and in particular in Section E of it. Assumptions should not be made because popular, but because warranted; and the requirements are not statistical but logical. In this presentation therefore, while many things are characterised, they are all provided with warrant in firstly, the detailed criticism of the Criticism, in its own terms over many pages, and with the developments of the matters of fact and principle relevant to this. Beyond that, the major issues are brought out in both of the above Chapters, so that vague and unsubstantiated generalisation will be contrasted with precise factual realisations.
Further, for my part, concerned as the confusion and departure from scientific method, as well as religious intrusion in a militant definitional style and the lack of didactic integrity which the curriculum document fosters, along with many other efforts in the same direction by many elsewhere, I have published a trilogy of some 900,000 words, the work of many years. This deals logically with the certainty of Biblical truth, including creation, examining the evidence in detail, and the logic of the situation*2.
As may be seen above, it is now supplemented by a further volume given detailed attention both to the issues involved, their broader ramifications and the Circular, with exposure of its many methodological errors. Moreover, reference is there made to further perspective from the history of science. 96 other works have been published, many dealing in part with the same topic, the whole of which has been well received in terms of listings in various works of international biography. A trilogy, further, has been constructed, dealing with naturalism.
While to the sure, the South Australian extravanganza is a major concern, these and many related issues are taken far more broadly in these works.
It is apposite to place here a major disclaimer. We are not in the least concerned that this Government seek to have the work of this or that religion shown and in any specialised way, taught in its Class-rooms, for with Christianity for its part - unless the teachers were Christians, more harm than good might come through lack of spiritual understanding or expertise. There is a work for the Church, and it seeks to do it.
However, as to the Government, and its teaching arm, it is imperative for any teaching quality of note, that its characterisations of ANY religion be accurate and beyond criticism of an objective kind. This is opposed as any scholarly approach must be, to gratuitous assumptions simply misrepresenting some religion, through generalisations about all. We should at least expect some effort, however feeble, to resist major discreditings of objectivity, such as those in which the Circular indulges. This it does not only in transgressing against fact in the nature of biblical creation, but against the entire biblical perspective, while seeking to characterise 'religion in general', whatever that might be.
Further, it is not a specific religion's teaching on creation which is in point in our approach to this Government, that it be presented, but CREATIONISM, not least in view of its enormous advantages in terms of scientific method, readily demonstrable, over the mystique of evolutionism (cf. TMR 1, 8, SMR Chs. 1- 2 and in particular, SMR pp. 149ff., and see Secular Myths and Sacred Truth, Wake Up World! ... and Indexes on creation, and evolution). Moreover, the approach of creation in science should not be omitted lest majority replace logic, or minority, though considerable and of the highest order in science, become Suppression Item.
People have often loved to do this in history, from one perspective or another, and the experience of Lord Zuckerman in this field*3 is of particular interest here; but the current specialty is to assault what has long ruled with a vehemence that distorts, and an insistence which is comic, even in the education of the young. It is this specifically which indeed attests more of the theme, the worn-out world, which not only becomes afraid to indicate what stands logically against all attack, but does so after previously doing far better!
Yet again, our purpose is that didactic integrity arise from the depths, to show that education is the aim, not subservience to one element in the scope of scientific approach, currently fashionable, though some of the greatest scientists the world has ever known were explicit believers in creation in their approach, while many notable scientific scholars are creationists to this day, by the hundred.
As to the former category, some of these are readily discernible in casting the eye over the list in *4 below, covering interesting historical as well as contemporary facets! Such points do not establish, any more than other lists of others establish, the point at issue concerning creation or evolution. They do however establish the amazing gap in the SA educational approach, in omitting or distorting the presentation of views and grounds, not excluding what has not fashionable appeal to some, in the very face of brilliant and sustained work by many scientists over many ages including the present.
There is no desire to see evolutionism not even mentioned in the curriculum, since it is a current fad of philosophy, well-known in some scientific circles; and scientists being human, do have philosophies. It is rather that students being educated, might be given their stature as enquiring agents, and not made the dumping ground of a particular thesis, left ignorant of the actualities of scientific diversities, and positively misled concerning the claims of Christianity in particular, via generalisations, while by such means, the schools invaded with dismissive dogmatisms without even significant sign of ground or substance provided by those who so enforce it.
Nevertheless, if biblical teaching is to be mentioned, unlike the case exhibited in the Circular where it refers to the Bible, it should be accurate (cf. TMR pp. 277ff., and see Circular p.1, para 1). Here it makes a common error in speaking of species, when the Bible speaks of kinds, the meaning being readily clear from the examples there specified in Genesis 1. Even worse, it does not merely mischaracterise the Bible, but speaks here, after noting that book, of creationism in general! This is a dismal lapse from any form of accuracy. Indeed, it is a gross misrepresentation, for if some hold the species view, one does not know of them; and the Bible assuredly does not so present, or anything remotely like it. It is KIND that is characterised by continuity there.
What in fact, however, of the scientifically frequently held and supported presentation of creation ? This is held by many - some Christian, some of other religions, many Ph.D. scientists, some of no specific religious faith readily nameable. Positions vary as in evolution, in the general domain of the belief; but the Biblical one in particular is not as represented in the Circular.
It is not a matter, moreover, of what some think the Bible OUGHT to teach, by adding their thoughts to those found in it; but what it does teach. Whatever the source, accuracy is needed in characterisation. Finally, in teaching creation in SCIENTIFIC terms, such as those used by the hundreds of scientists who hold it, as listed*4, it is necessary to KEEP to the scientific point, and not to talk religion when the issue is science. Some secular people, however oddly, believe in creation, and some religious ones in evolutionism. The point in science is to set forth the contending positions, including major ones within evolutionism. As a past Principal and Headmaster, one is well aware that this, modestly put, but carefully set forth, could readily be done.
The only honest alternative is to AVOID the subject, which would not be the best of all possible educations that history has produced, just as the present option, must be amongst the most specific in giving a false example in the approach to scientific method, authority overtly determining 'the line'. Just imagine telling students that the authority for the school approach is statistics on how many scientists hold a given position; and then that many of these WITHIN the fashionable Camp chosen, disagree utterly in a basic question of HOW it happened, but that one or other of the positions will be given anyway. What an example to young scientists in the making! It is nothing short of a mockery of science.
Is anything better being done ? The improvement would need to be radical for the approach to become as education, properly so-called.
"IT'S OFFICIAL!" - THE NEW METHODOLOGY
has not been hibernating since 1988
The Department document is available and quite public ... and quite official. Even in 2004, after so many years to regain educational stability, one is advised from the office of the relevant Minister, that it is "being enforced"!
It has an additive provided after the initial January 5th date. This however does nothing to remove the blasphemy, the belligerence or the presumption, or to give grounds for the assertions first made, some of which are an insult to any educated person who values conscientious care in dealing with issues of contention. No debate is permitted to students at the free rational level; instead there is a paternalistic promotion by exclusion, in science, of a theory never based on observation in laboratory, of visible facts, duly leading in the first place to its formulation.
Darwin's lament over the horribly vacuous fossil record (to the point of his theory), as the famed Dr W. R. Thompson points out in his introduction to a popular edition of the old book, Origin of Species, scarcely given grounds by new evidence for remedy! The position deplored by Darwin, in terms of fossil record, says Thompson, is still not substantially changed today. Absenteeism is the rule, not the exception for what is required for verification.
'Neither Darwin nor any Darwinist has so far given an actual causal explanation of the adaptive evolution of any single organism or any single organ" (Objective Knowledge, 1972, p. 267).
The theory is, as Popper points out, not once verified - indeed, he says, it is not verifiable. We do not here find: from facts we move to theory, to tests, to verification (or otherwise) to confirmation, to more astute tests, to heightened verification. The case is the contrary. We move from presumptions, to rebellious evidence.
Our point is not to argue here the absurd mythology of this irrational theory, but to rescue children from a domineering substitute of authority for enquiry, of fictitious distortion for factual accuracy. Whatever one thinks of a position, it is important to attack what it is, not what it is not, if one plans such action! The errors of the theory are of course made available in TMR and the other works listed, for reference, but our immediate point is deliverance of the children from aggressive propagandisation, to the ampler fields of actual education, so that they might think without discrimination, and consider with reason, not the revelation of autocratic political directives, their mandate. However such political fiats are formed, when they are unveiled, it is the political realm which must take responsibility, for it has power to do otherwise.
The emphasis, then, on education must not alter the fact that the thing enforced, evolutionism vis α vis creationism in fact fails as a scientific statement as shown in SMR pp. 140ff., and frequently elsewhere. It fails because of method, duly noted. It fails because it is propounded without apparent verifiability; and where it could at least be given some relation to fact, it fails as in the case of the fruit fly Drosophila. This is so far, in its mutative generations and degenerations, from showing that increase in order and complexity leading to new 'design', which is relevant to the theory, actually occurred, that in fact it shows the X-ray bombardments over some 50 years led merely to variation in ways that suggested loss of virility or vigour in general character.
Any change such as knocking genes about, or stimulating them which might arise, was not the point. It would not be expected to make better designs, nor was this empirically shown.
In fact, you could perhaps improve the garage for your Jaguar, if you knocked in the mudguard where it would hit a petrol drum on the side of your garage, so that now it just missed.
This would be useful if you did not mind the loss of streamlining and were a slow driver with no business connections; but it would scarcely demonstrate your capacity to institute higher orders of mechanical design. This is the point; and it seems at times almost uniformly to be ignored, as if by a conspiracy of irrationality. The actual realities of the scientific testing in this matter are shown in Ch. 1 in That Magnificent Rock. In the current document, concerns are voiced, but in that one, reasons in detail are provided, with scientific data as relevant. Let us meanwhile look further at the record of this strange evolutionary theory.
What is supposed to happen developmentally is never seen, despite all mod cons in efforts to make it be so. What is present in practice are principles of precisely the opposite character: the disruption of information rather that its intriguing increase, by chance events over time: this we find, but that is not so helpful! The dispersal of form over time by chance events, we find, unless intervention occurs or a program of some kind is in operation.
This we find. That we do not. The only programs in view, as Denton point out in his "Evolution: a Theory in Crisis," are so technically advanced, even in a 'simple' cell, as to evoke awe and wonder: they resemble our most sophisticated efforts with computers and assembly lines at the micro-biological level, we find. . . except that those in the cells far surpass ours. The miniaturisation advantage over our non-living correlative efforts, the advantage of the biological over our own technology in this aspect is, Denton observes, of the order of 100,000,000 times. Moreover, as he also points out (p. 353):
"The concept of continuity of nature has existed in the mind of man,
never in the facts of nature."
Dr Denton is not a creationist, merely one noticing evidence. For this reason, his book is justly famed.
The observational base, the theoretical exposure of verificatory areas, the practical and confirmatory tests to verify, the appropriate principles, the absence of contrary principles... and the calm quiet assemblage of constantly confirmatory parallel facts... this we do not see for the fallen theory. All fails. As Malcolm Muggeridge, former Chancellor of Glasgow University put the matter: it will be regarded as the joke of the twentieth century, this obsessive devotion to evolutionary theory. A sad joke: a sad thing to see.
If you are going to educate, the DEFECTS of your chosen framework should be exposed, and those of your attack item, should not be invented. Vigour is in order, but vitiation of actualities is not to the point; unless, of course, you are giving an illustration of the way in which propaganda works, in which case this could be apt.
The cost in personal and social consequences, as this anti-Christian survival ethic is personally or socially applied by mistaught youngsters is scarcely able to be computed. Whatever the intention, this is not a hard outcome to consider; and whatever inconsistencies to the gratuitous assumptions of the theory some may prefer, not all like to defy reason when implementing the alleged doctrines.
Plague may break out - indeed is breaking out as many of its self-contained little biological prisms, men, increasingly become immoral prisons. Their assumptions are pouring in, and presumptions are pouring out through teaching propaganda and suppression, aggravating the already great human trend to folly. Now folly is taught, selectively! unscientifically! with the effrontery even to mention science in its company. If it is not always the desire of the teachers of this philosophy that people SHOULD survive in order to advance the imaginary and never visible 'advances' in life, yet there are those who will not wish to forego the opportunity to follow the ALLEGED way. This is not to take a moral issue with reality, but a REALITY issue with morals; for if what is taught is not sustainable, then the logical thust that some find in it, becomes the responsibility of the teacher.
The label of the whole concept of survival of the fittest as the path to 'creation' and new design structure, should read: 'Science falsely so-called'. . . It is not to be seen except in the minds of men.
Many scientists regard this intrusion of philosophy into science as a gross abuse of science, and in The Shadow of a Mighty Rock Ch. 2 with TMR Chs. I and 8, some of the reasons for this are shown, as touched on in many others of the works on this site.
The problems then with this dreadful directive in SA are these.
It is defamatory of religion, the Bible in particular: and it is so in an unscholarly and presumptuous fashion. Its generalisations on religion are contrary to biblical perspective, claim and procedure.
It is suppressive of free speech: in particular, of free, rational debate where the theory is taught, as it often is from my own experience in this State, in schools - in science.
It is distorting to argument, preceding its permission for talk in humanities on this point with assumptions of 'meaning statements' as distinct from providing rational challenge, to the Bible which specialises in facts, factual emphasis and challenge on the topic of fact from first to last (cf. John 3:11, Acts 4:20, 3:14-16, Isaiah 41:21ff., Mark 2:1-10, John 11, Luke 24:25-26, Matthew 24 and so on).
Pre-empting the floor, however, this authoritarian educational approach in the Circular, simply tells us the presuppositions to be in view, and then applies them, defying facts, inscribing definitions and proceeding with a presumption matched only by the ignorance of the assumptions. It is like saying, Listen! 2 plus 2 is REALLY 5; so this is how we shall educate children. It does not appear necessary or even expedient to do ANYTHING to establish the ghetto-blasting approach to the nature of truth, for this document.
IF in fact, of course, contrary to Christianity, for example, all religion really were not concerned with investigation of fact, quite crucially, and direct statement of reality, and if all were as relative as the document pretends, then the very relativity approach would be impossible, for it is presented as absolute truth in defiance of all self-contradiction. It is difficult to see how Communism in authoritarian dictates unconcerned with reality, ever did worse in education, except for the brute force.
Further, the document is propagandist, using repetition and repression to assist an untenable theory which would require no defence from such autocratic means, if facts spoke for it in the realm of austere and accredited scientific method, in such a way as to make it regular and creditable: they do not.
It is dangerous: diverting free and rational enquiry by mere effrontery, without the semblance of rationally sufficient grounds, so that error in science may be prolonged.
It is authoritarian, determining, by a few lines, matters that scholars toil over.
It replaces science with statistics, consulting what are in fact, personal preferences of some scientists in a quite standard use of the formal logical error of appeal to authority, as also in the use of the ad hominem error of logic. Those who hold a view of creation are set in a field of matters contrary to what they hold to be the case, quite gratuitously, by mere pretension.
It is pernicious: setting up an example of dictation from bureaucracy in place of determination by logic and scientific enquiry: it is thus unsystematic. In method, it prescribes for scientific method, what it is to find, so aborting it in its name.
It is clandestine in coverage: authoritarian pronouncements are made as if assured, to the total ruin of fair play, and then the Department declined to so much as send its text book writers or teachers to confront Dr Gish *3 when he came. If it is true, why not show it? Since it is preferred in this propagandist style, why not defend it? The Department has 'not' taken sides? This is what was claimed at the time, when the debate with Dr Gish was avoided. Not? well, if Hitler did not take sides against the Jews, well then... perhaps. No more one-sided document could well be imagined. The only way in which it does not take sides is this: that the other side is so misrepresented and dismissed in advance, that it is removed from sight altogether. In that way, there is no contest: the removal of the right is simply by fiat.
It is outrageous towards children, oppressed like the victims of industrial mines at tender ages in the Industrial Revolution. These children are not body broken, but brain-washed so nicely, so pleasantly by what in this is their dominating educational 'community', that to ludicrous lore, rather than scientific law they are moved. As Popper pointed out, there no law of evolution; and as the three major laws of science (cf. TMR pp. 226ff.) indicate, the statements of the Bible are, by contrast, exactly applied there!
Outrageous is this tragi-comic intrusion of the State into the field of religion, dogmatically creating a creed (it is easy to propound one from the Education Department document), without logic or clear ground: a monument to intrusive religious prejudice as to unscientific methodology - erected by the bricks of the broken wall that once stood for freedom!
It is this recidivism, this relapse, this return to the mystical fancies that are supported by nothing, demonstrable by nothing, contrary to the basic principles of science as formulated, as Professor Barnes' dicta so well exhibit, which is eloquent of current developments; nor is it confined to South Australia, though this case is one of particular vehemence in that it surges squalidly into religious definition.
This however is not alone. It is acting together with the frenetic fancifulness that mischaracterises what it assaults, and railroads even children to the fires, not leaving them any teaching expertise to follow in science their own belief systems, amply scientifically supported, which constitutes not merely an eloquent testimony to the wearing out of the wonders that have been, in the declivities of the present, but the subtlety of the approach. In the Circular, this does not ostensibly attack, but merely bends and pretends concerning its victim. This is a characteristic of many of the sects, which often do not openly contradict what they claim to espouse; but yet do so most amply.
If the Circular does this to the Biblical position, in referring to all religion, it becomes an aspect of the regime of false prophecy which had to precede the return of the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 24:24), both bold and deceptive. This is in no way to assume that anyone associated with this mischief DELIBERATELY sets out to accomplish such ends; or indeed to make any judgment in that field. It is however to note that the thing happening is inaccurate, a travesty of religion in its generalisation which covers things vastly disparate and sometimes wholly divergent from the rules invented, a philosophy which incorporates a belief system, and hence a discrimination against those who, not holding to that belief system, are subjected to two evils.
The first ? for some their belief-system is mischaracterised grossly by generalisation on the topic. The second ? for some, they must selectively heed and selectively receive teaching aid in the field of someone else's belief system ONLY, in the field of science. Moreover, they must NOT participate in class debate towards a decision or result, for it is specifically excluded in the belief system to which the Circular subscribes. Their position is demeaned, its relationship to science is mischaracterised and they suffer the loss of privilege or value as a result.
This is specifically excluded in the UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief*5, which is apparently law in this country. It therefore appears that this Circular is now, since the adoption of this law, illegal. This Declaration is by no means endorsed at this site! and there are indeed times when laws, as in ancient Rome, could be kept only by denial of truth. However, it would seem questionable when a Government continues to uphold a Circular from one of its Departments, when this contravenes law. If this is not so, it may be that someone will endeavour to show it! If it is so however, it is but one more reason why this Circular should be exhumed from its ground, and despatched.
Russia had laws which were a mockery of its action, in the field of religion. It was part of a belief-system with which they, in their particular way, persecuted. It is the modern touch: it looks good, but it is not what it looks. Millions were slain in a wonderful liberty on paper; but they were not slain on paper, but in the field. It is important to realise that the life of man is not a mere body (cf. It Bubbles... Ch. 9, Little Things Ch. 5, SMR pp. 348ff.). Anguish of heart and belief is crucial; and while all must suffer in such a world as this, to inculcate suffering by such means is something to be confronted.
So the sovereignty of the community, or the proletariat, or whatever, continues to be immersed in something which mocks the words, if not in this country, then in that; and so the world proceeds as if in a super-charged sports car to the results of its indifference to these values, and to accuracy, so that the confrontation with reality, when it comes, may come suddenly. It is such that is prescribed in the annals of prophecy (Matthew 24). It is such that hastens its wayward way.
*1 Thus although this is a publicly exposed statement on biblical creation, and not an action concerning the government, it is of great interest to note the Lutheran statement as it appeared in The Advertiser, in terms of the letter copied below. It is to be observed that this came over one year after the deluge of dogmatism set in, in the Education Department as seen in the Circular.
The fact that this position
was held statedly in this part of the Australian Lutheran field from 1972-1989
is impressive, and it may be still unchanged. Whether or not this is so, this at
least is testimony to some public expression in the field.
LUTHERAN CHURCH OF AUSTRALIA
SOUTH AUSTRALIA DISTRICT, INC.
137 ARCHER STREET, NORTH ADELAIDE, SOUTH AUSTRALIA, 5006
OFFICE OF PRESIDENT Office (08) 267 579C
Rev. David 0. Paech
Our Ref. DOP: nls\890403
December 15, 1989
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
GPO Box 339
ADELAIDE SA 5001
I hasten to correct a false impression conveyed in the
letter headed "Complementary",
Whatever is the attitude of other clergy, Lutheran clergy are NOT happy with "a developed theory of evolution". This because the Lutheran Church of Australia has spoken its attitude towards Genesis 1-3 at its General Synod in 1972, and still holds to that Statement.
The 3 page Statement (which is available on request) states "The Christian approach to Genesis is and must be determined by obedient and joyful confidence in Christ as God and Creator (John 1:1-14; Col.1:15-20) and in Scripture as His truthful Word".
Our Statement deals with "Basic Perspective, Literary - Historical Aspects and Sources, and Evolution". it outlines what the Lutheran Church rejects as invalid assumption and asserts that Genesis 1-3 teaches: 1. The Creation ex nihilo - a creation from nothing - as a six-day work on the part of God. 2. The creation by God of the first man, Adam, and the woman, Eve as mature, rational, moral and responsible beings.in the image of God. 3. The Fall through an act of disobedience and unbelief and the consequences of the Fall. 4. The promise of the Saviour.
As we approach Christmas this helps us to understand its signif.icance in terms of its real meaning: the centrality of Christ as Savi(fvr revealing God's goodwill towards us and the great bl:~ings available to all through Him.
(Rev.) David Paech
President, LCA S.A. District.
*2 See SMR Chs. 1, 2, 10.
Granted that Dr Gish is an eminently successful debater for creation on university campuses throughout the world, being granted indeed one hour television coverage in debate in the entire USSR television network when in that area. This however scarcely excuses the Education Department in South Australia for avoiding the debate, when alien material, instead of science, is forced on organisationally trussed up children: those not allowed, that is, to deal with the material rationally in science
Has then this Government been specifically elected to do what the Constitution prohibits the Commonwealth from doing, and has the position of political papacy, to determine the nature of religious truth, been accorded to it by some type of plebiscite or platform in a past election. If so, one has not seen the evidence presented; and if not, then this presumption is dangerous to truth, education and and an effrontery to all religion. Even if the election HAD proposed such summary religious definitional powers, the case would not in educational principle be much improved.
See SMR pp. 172ff., 204-207.
*4 The popular Web site, Answers in Genesis provides a list of biblical creationists, which presumably is simply an objective account of a fact: who believes this thing, or in the past cases, has attested such belief. This is seen below. Clearly those who are creationists in other domains would be another category as well.
Note: Individuals on this list must possess a doctorate in a science-related field.
Note: These scientsts are sorted by birth year.
A presentation which may be made to the Government, follows below, and this deals also with this legal aspect.
BRIEF ABSTRACT of a POSSIBLE MODE OF PRESENTATION
should the Government accord an INTERVIEW
touching the issue to schools of the
CIRCULAR TO PRINCIPALS (1988),
recently confirmed as still OPERATIONAL in this State
Quite simply creation is not allowed to be considered in science, though it fulfils scientific method as evolutionism does not; it is not allowed to be considered in debate in the realm of fact, anywhere else in the school curriculum. This is the position since 1988 in SA, probably illegal and surely slanted.
In fact, the UN Declaration concerning the Elimination of Discrimination in all forms of religion and belief, specifies that there must be no exclusion from any usage or benefit based on religion or belief.
When we had a Club in the University, one pointed this out to those controlling Clubs, and they saw the point that they could not seek to exclude, on the basis of their approach to our religion, our Club from using University room for our meeting. We used it. After all, this UN Declaration is law here.
In our present context, the point is this: ARE CHRISTIAN children and those OTHER CHILDREN whose religion or belief specifies creation by God, to suffer the following discrimination:
1) NO use of teacher expertise in conveying scientifically represented material on creation, such as multitudes of Ph.D. scientists hold, convey and consider more apt than any other option.
2) NO use of such scientifically prepared materials, so cited, in school libraries, with help from Librarian in order most aptly to find them, as with any other material.
3) LOWERED sense of social participation in Class on the topic the beliefs they hold, when eminent scientists hold, present and verify them repeatedly on many fronts, while they are made to feel that their beliefs are irrelevant to science. It is important to realise that the point here in view is NOT what given religion A or B teaches, but what in scientific method is the hypothesis of creation PER SE. That is, existing by action not from WITHIN our present system, but from OUTSIDE it, so that it can exist, with its verification in the 3 major scientific laws which mirror the concepts of a past creation, a running down of the same in many ways, and a life-to-life mode of transmission of life (Law of Conservation of Matter and Energy, Second Law of Thermodynamics, Law of Biogenesis).
4) NO exposure to experimentation to verify or fail to verify various theories in the area of the origin of the universe or life.
5) NO effort to create awareness of the diversity of opinion among evolutionary theories, so that some of the greatest of scientists have been attacking Darwinism in the most vital language, and dismissing it on scientific grounds, even though they are evolutionists (cf. academics and authors Hoyle, and Stephen Jay Gould of Harvard, both renowned scientists, and the latter perhaps the most famous of all biologist academics, of the last 50 years).
If it be held that students are incapable of critical assessment, the fact remains that critical
assessment of arguments is a component of school instruction, in order to assist students to
beware of propaganda, and to know something of its methods in many fields. .
If further it be held that it is hard enough to give them critically wounded Darwinism, then the first reply is this: Why give it, in view of its condition ? In fact, it is quite easy and one speaks here as a registered and experienced teacher and Headmaster to give a short account of the contention of Darwin and of Gould, and indeed of Denton. It is easier than some elements taught in Commercial Law or Mathematics.
6) NO balance, even with what precisely fits scientific method!
Thus, if, further, it be held that the current indoctrination is still to continue, then there is discrimination not only against those of a religious creationist belief, but against evolutionists of a diverse evolutionary view from whatever is being taught, for example, Darwinism. Again, it forwards not only secular concepts but those of some religionists discriminatingly: thus the Bishop in London, aghast at creationist teaching, has maintained that it undermined the teaching of Christianity. The thrust of such advocates, secular or religious, is forwarded without balance or knowledge. It means that any thought of freedom of learning is defunct, of non-discrimination in religion is defiled, that this appears decidedly unlawful in terms of Commonwealth Law and adoption of the UN ruling on Religious Discrimination.
7) SCANT justice: Since such things being discriminatory, are also bad teaching, which follows evidence, not blind dogma, it is an interference also with the Rights of the Child, as in the UN Declaration, precluding or inhibiting its desire for knowledge, while degrading some aspects of knowledge by authoritarian fiat.
8) SLANT: In addition, evolutionism being contrary in method, to what scientific method prescribes, by which what is not verified must be set aside or re-developed, this is again discrimination on the basis of religion or belief, demeaning a basic concept in various religions, while giving advantage to the religion or belief system outlined in the Circular, which is subjectivistic, and without stated ground, gratuitously contrary in claim to Christianity as to the objective nature of God and of His revelation, and to His action in space and time. This tends to establish a religion or belief by using schools for its dissemination. If this is the governmental purpose, it should be clearly stated before any future election, and noted at once to its public. It is not known that it has such a program; if it has not, it should INSTANTLY abandon it in this field, where it is currently operative, whether through oversight or indifference, or other cause.
In his Wonderful Life, contrary examples pointed out by Gould re gradualistic theories of evolution for progress are major in the field of Cambrian rock, and he has argued that it is inconceivable that such theories could last in view of this fact. His contentions there are major in the field of macro-change, Gould maintaining that it is not even conceivable how such changes could be made, the matter literally incomprehensible; while Hoyle considers it nonsense of a high order, how intelligence should be discounted in creation. Such views do not figure in the Curriculum agenda as exposed.
It needs broadening and more common sense coverage of realities, so that thought can freely course, not be put in an arrogant prison of the personal preferences of some parties in a merely dogmatic society. The point here is not to argue the necessities of the case, but to note the divergencies at the top level, the recklessness of ignoring these, their point, and the abuse of childrens education in not using these things as a stimulus to thought, rather than an opportunity for such blinkering of the child, that growth and welfare are crassly prejudiced. Licence for outrageously intrusive preference should not blinker children.
The teaching of information theory applied to the concept of new information proceeding down the generations is similarly contrary with the other scientific laws noted above, to the concept of increase. That is the exact opposite. The information theory teaching is natural decrease, whilst the contrary Darwinian contention is contradicted by information LOSS, as Gould also declares, from evidence in geological formations, deeming some 90% of information in designs in the early Cambrian field, to be now LOST, there being far less biological information present now than in earliest stages (op.cit. pp. 226-239). As often pointed out, it is difficult to use a method of LOSS to establish a procedure of GAIN.
Such religious attachment to mere preference in the face of scientific method appears wholly untenable in terms of non-discrimination, and hence illegal in this country. Hence it should cease.