Should evolution be taught in high school?

Feb 24, 2008 Full story: www.scientificblogging.com 175,466

Microbiologist Carl Woese is well known as an iconoclast. At 79 years of age, Woese is still shaking things up. Most recently, he stated in an interview with Wired that...

"My feeling is that evolution shouldn't be taught at the lower grades. You don't teach quantum mechanics in the grade schools. One has to be quite educated to work with these concepts; what they pass on as evolution in high schools is nothing but repetitious tripe that teachers don't understand." Full Story

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155742 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
And do not misplace "ignorance" with a seeker, learner, of the origins off life". Oh and too refer too my previous factual statement 'if Mr Willard Libby denounced his "so-called" method of carbon reading' then what else have these (Government funded scientists "got wrong" ).
OK Max Seeker, lets do a quick lesson on what evolution does and does not say.

Does evolution say there is no God? NO.

Does evolution attempt to explain the origin of life? NO.

Does evolution rely on the Big Bang for its validity? NO.

Does evolution endorse any political position whether liberal or fascists? NO.

Does evolution claim that anything goes morally, or alternatively does it make any specific moral recommendations? NO.

Does evolution rely on Carbon 14 dating? NO.

Evolution is simply a theory of how life, once it existed (and however it got here - evolution makes no claims about that), how it developed and changed in response to environmental pressures to create the diversity we see today. Its supported by multiple lines of evidence.

Just thought I would clear all that up before you went any further.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#155744 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
This is absolute total NONSENSE" for you are claiming to no someone that the rest off the world does not... This observance has never taken place. Evolution is a process of we're one species, "evolves" into another". This theory happens via a mutation of information being added
Usually many mutations over several generations. Also, the 'information' is usually just *changed*, not added.
.... you show me this "mutation" process were a creature of its own kind, has been observed "evolving" Into another kind. You cannot.... You also went onto say 'fossil records'.(The old carbon dating) malarkey!
Why do so many fundies talk about carbon dating as if it was the only dating method? Why do they always seem to think it is relevant to dating most fossils? Well, guess what? it is very far from being the only dating method. And it is completely irrelevant for dating anything over 50-100,000 years (depending on the technique). If you understood the method, you would understand why.
Well if you new anything about this method the gentleman who designed this way of measuring the age of "something" said that this way itself is (FLAWED)
Yes, raw carbon dating has its issues. They are dealt with via calibration with other methods. Now, what do you have to say about potassium-argon dating? Or rubidium-strontium dating? or fission track dating?
remember the seal lion they dated,(came up 250,000 years old..... It was still alive.
Yes, we understand that many sea animals do not get their carbon source from the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Instead, it comes from very ancient carbonate rocks (for seals, this is via shellfish, I believe). And yes, that is one thing that invalidates a C14 date.
Petrifaction this method can be carried out in a matter off days. Not thousands of years. But don't get me wrong i am not saying evolution is a total whitewash, I am saying this. Natural selection and the (survival of the fittest). Well Mr Darwin got it wrong" Oh and I read Francis S Collins book' with great detail". A man who findings changed the hearts of the hardiest Atheists such as Anthony Flew!
If you read Collins in 'great detail', then you know he considers creationists and IDers to be completely wrong. He understands that evolution happened-his own work has verified it many times.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#155745 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
And do not misplace "ignorance" with a seeker, learner, of the origins off life". Oh and too refer too my previous factual statement 'if Mr Willard Libby denounced his "so-called" method of carbon reading' then what else have these (Government funded scientists "got wrong" ).
He didn't 'denounce' it-he pointed out some of the flaws which were then corrected or dealt with. Nothing in science is perfect. Nothing is 100%. But again, this is irrelevant to the question of evolution because carbon dating is largely irrelevant to dating of important fossils (except very recent ones).

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#155746 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
Il say this about yourself". Certainly as a "person" and a total ass off a person at that, if you yourself believe in God, you certainly do not no him, for your heart speaks volumes in your "so-called" writings here!!! For someone as myself whom has been researching and seeking for such a small period off time, I know a lot" you with your pigeon busting out chest arrogance" well it is revolting I was almost sick in my mouth when I read your oily words.... Another point I shall stream too make is.
What a load of bile you have directed here. And you say atheists are hateful?
You are arguing with yourself here, who said that a greater mind, omnipotent, omniscience, omnipresent, transcendent believer did not believe in "evolution". The findings of the team spear headed by Francis Collins, was just flabbergasting too many scientists" the way that the DNA makeup rotates, in a right-angled manner and its perfectly positioned molecules,
And Collins argues against creationism and ID. He understands that evolution did happen.
(JUST AS THE SAME WAY, proteins, silicon, Quarks, and so on...... Are in our universe made 50 decade dedicated apologetic atheists such as Flew publicly announce the changing off his mind
"there is an intelligent being behind the cosmos" Hawkings was quoted as saying " If we can fully understand the universe, then we will fully understand the face off God"
You do understand the idea of metaphor, right?
Einstein himself was mis-quoted over and over (much too his rage as being an atheist). He himself said.
"At the very least I am a "Pantheist"
But Einstein did not believe in a personal deity and was quite clear about that. His idea of 'God' was simply the laws of physics.
So I I'n no way said that great minds and scientists, Are wrong in their findings this is the greatest question of man kind and always will be.... But the difference between someone like you and me, I's that my searchings will be with a smile and humility!!! Oh and I might add with the Holy Spirit as my guide.... Yours will be with arrogance, muttering too ones self, and a dim light that you will see from Time too time that you shall never have any idea what this may be!" Such a pity....
happy findings my grumpy growler lol.... Oh ps by the time i am at the stage you are in your "MR SEEKER" process I shall be the intelligence you dream off my friend. May the God of Judaism bless you.
You are not a truth seeker. You simply want to prop up your silly superstitions and biases. Go and actually read some science. Learn about how the universe *really* works. And you also might want to learn how to write coherently. Then come back and we shall have a discussion.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#155747 Oct 1, 2013
DanFromSmithville wrote:
<quoted text>I don't know what I am going to do. I hope they aren't going to drum me out.
Just say three Hail Marys and an Act of Contrition. That always worked for me. At least, that's what father said.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155748 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
Il say this about yourself". Certainly as a "person" and a total ass off a person at that, if you yourself believe in God, you certainly do not no him, for your heart speaks volumes in your "so-called" writings here!!! For someone as myself whom has been researching and seeking for such a small period off time, I know a lot" you with your pigeon busting out chest arrogance" well it is revolting I was almost sick in my mouth when I read your oily words.... Another point I shall stream too make is. You are arguing with yourself here, who said that a greater mind, omnipotent, omniscience, omnipresent, transcendent believer did not believe in "evolution". The findings of the team spear headed by Francis Collins, was just flabbergasting too many scientists" the way that the DNA makeup rotates, in a right-angled manner and its perfectly positioned molecules,
(JUST AS THE SAME WAY, proteins, silicon, Quarks, and so on...... Are in our universe made 50 decade dedicated apologetic atheists such as Flew publicly announce the changing off his mind
"there is an intelligent being behind the cosmos" Hawkings was quoted as saying " If we can fully understand the universe, then we will fully understand the face off God"
Einstein himself was mis-quoted over and over (much too his rage as being an atheist). He himself said.
"At the very least I am a "Pantheist"
So I I'n no way said that great minds and scientists, Are wrong in their findings this is the greatest question of man kind and always will be.... But the difference between someone like you and me, I's that my searchings will be with a smile and humility!!! Oh and I might add with the Holy Spirit as my guide.... Yours will be with arrogance, muttering too ones self, and a dim light that you will see from Time too time that you shall never have any idea what this may be!" Such a pity....
happy findings my grumpy growler lol.... Oh ps by the time i am at the stage you are in your "MR SEEKER" process I shall be the intelligence you dream off my friend. May the God of Judaism bless you.
Max, I came down on you hard because you displayed the unmistakable signs of someone who thinks he is about to surprise us all with his arguments. They are old and dead. If you are going to turn up here and say daft things like evolution = atheism and believe that errors in a C14 date make any difference to evolution it tells me two things.

One, you really know very little about evolution. And
Two, you are already overloaded with the dimwitted babblings of various creationist sources.

You began your run with the ridiculous declaration that a theory accepted by over 99% of trained biologists is a LIE. Don't be surprised if such ignorant arrogance is shot right back at you when you do it first.

Now if you want a reasonable and amicable discussion about any particular point of evolution that you have a disagreement with, i am happy to do that. But calling your opponents liars from the outset dows not win points.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#155749 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
This is absolute total NONSENSE" for you are claiming to no someone that the rest off the world does not... This observance has never taken place. Evolution is a process of we're one species, "evolves" into another". This theory happens via a mutation of information being added .... you show me this "mutation" process were a creature of its own kind, has been observed "evolving" Into another kind. You cannot.... You also went onto say 'fossil records'.(The old carbon dating) malarkey!...
And right there is where I stopped reading.

Hey, doofus!!! Radiocarbon dating is only good for about 50,000 YBP. It is *not* used to date fossils millions of years old. So you obviously have no idea what you are talking about so why not just be quiet and stop looking stupid?

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#155751 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
Il say this about yourself". Certainly as a "person" and a total ass off a person at that, if you yourself believe in God, you certainly do not no him, for your heart speaks volumes in your "so-called" writings here!!! For someone as myself whom has been researching and seeking for such a small period off time, I know a lot" you with your pigeon busting out chest arrogance" well it is revolting I was almost sick in my mouth when I read your oily words.... Another point I shall stream too make is. You are arguing with yourself here, who said that a greater mind, omnipotent, omniscience, omnipresent, transcendent believer did not believe in "evolution". The findings of the team spear headed by Francis Collins, was just flabbergasting too many scientists" the way that the DNA makeup rotates, in a right-angled manner and its perfectly positioned molecules,
(JUST AS THE SAME WAY, proteins, silicon, Quarks, and so on...... Are in our universe made 50 decade dedicated apologetic atheists such as Flew publicly announce the changing off his mind
"there is an intelligent being behind the cosmos" Hawkings was quoted as saying " If we can fully understand the universe, then we will fully understand the face off God"
Einstein himself was mis-quoted over and over (much too his rage as being an atheist). He himself said.
"At the very least I am a "Pantheist"
So I I'n no way said that great minds and scientists, Are wrong in their findings this is the greatest question of man kind and always will be.... But the difference between someone like you and me, I's that my searchings will be with a smile and humility!!! Oh and I might add with the Holy Spirit as my guide.... Yours will be with arrogance, muttering too ones self, and a dim light that you will see from Time too time that you shall never have any idea what this may be!" Such a pity....
happy findings my grumpy growler lol.... Oh ps by the time i am at the stage you are in your "MR SEEKER" process I shall be the intelligence you dream off my friend. May the God of Judaism bless you.
Oh, piss off. Noboby likes a whiner.

BTW, the word is "know", genius. Not "no". You've done that more than once. And the man's name is "Hawking" not "Hawkings", dummy.

No one dreams of your intelligence. Get over yourself.(And that is "of" and not "off".)

Level 9

Since: Sep 08

Everett, WA

#155752 Oct 1, 2013
One more note to our newest member Max:

Evolution does not depend upon radiometric dating. And though you mistakenly use the term carbon dating for all radiometric dating it is a far way from being "malarkey". You will not find a valid scientific objection to the process. There are liars who oppose it, and if you are incompetent you will get incorrect dates. But since when is it a surprise that being incompetent results in mistakes? All of us are incompetent in some aspects of life. That is why there are businesses that are based upon specialized learning, and that runs from automechanics to doctors.

Now back to radiometric dating. It was well known long before Darwin came around that the Earth was at least hundreds of millions of years old. All that radiometric dating does is to give solid numbers to what before then were estimates. Evolution was known to be true at least 50 years before radiometric dating came into existence.

What denying creationists hate about science is that every discovery in science tends to support evolution. The wonder that some scientists express about nature is never evidence against evolution. The belief in a god has nothing to do with whether evolution is correct or not.

Lastly when it comes to experts, the scientists who best understand the science accept it at rate higher than 99%. The less than 1% who oppose evolution can best be described as kooks.

Level 1

Since: May 12

Toronto, Canada

#155753 Oct 1, 2013
Iron Ranger wrote:
Absolutely NO "evolution" should be taught in schools.
The so-called theories of evolution have been shown to be false. Darwin made up a lot of "facts." He "filled in" when he had no proof.
God made us.
Don't be odd.
Get with God!
And what facts did Darwin "make up"? What did he fill in ?

“Wear white at night.”

Since: Jun 09

Albuquerque

#155754 Oct 1, 2013
MikeF wrote:
<quoted text>
Just say three Hail Marys and an Act of Contrition. That always worked for me. At least, that's what father said.
Padre is in the hospital in Mexico City and the substitute priest got sick at the last minute so we were invited to the noon mass at the Parish. The sermon was about confession and Father admitted he didn't speak Spanish so if we all came down and told him we were axe murderers we'd still get three Hail Marys. That's what I've been telling them all along.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#155756 Oct 1, 2013
15th Dalai Lama wrote:
<quoted text>
Padre is in the hospital in Mexico City and the substitute priest got sick at the last minute so we were invited to the noon mass at the Parish. The sermon was about confession and Father admitted he didn't speak Spanish so if we all came down and told him we were axe murderers we'd still get three Hail Marys. That's what I've been telling them all along.
Well, if the big guy hadn't confused all the languages, we wouldn't have this problem now would we? Another failure to plan ahead.

Pax vobiscum.

“The strength of science is”

Level 9

Since: Jan 11

founded in facts.

#155757 Oct 1, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
While chromosome duplication has been seen in plants I dont think we have any vertebrate examples. Gene duplication on the other hand is common. Some people have more copies of the amylase gene for example.
It is rare in animals. Most examples I am aware of are in frogs. Where I am, the are two species of Hyla. One is diploid and the other is a tetraploid. Apparently, the tetraploid species has multiple origins has arisen independently at two or three points.

I recently found out that dogs have multiple copies of the amylase gene compared to their wolf ancestors. It makes perfect sense in hindsight, to me, since they now eat at our table. Assuming it isn't something that would be purposely selected for, it strikes me as humorous that we have a natural selection side effect (co-effect?) to our artificial selection of the dog.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155759 Oct 1, 2013
DanFromSmithville wrote:
<quoted text>It is rare in animals. Most examples I am aware of are in frogs. Where I am, the are two species of Hyla. One is diploid and the other is a tetraploid. Apparently, the tetraploid species has multiple origins has arisen independently at two or three points.
I recently found out that dogs have multiple copies of the amylase gene compared to their wolf ancestors. It makes perfect sense in hindsight, to me, since they now eat at our table. Assuming it isn't something that would be purposely selected for, it strikes me as humorous that we have a natural selection side effect (co-effect?) to our artificial selection of the dog.
All very interesting!

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155760 Oct 1, 2013
15th Dalai Lama wrote:
<quoted text>
Padre is in the hospital in Mexico City and the substitute priest got sick at the last minute so we were invited to the noon mass at the Parish. The sermon was about confession and Father admitted he didn't speak Spanish so if we all came down and told him we were axe murderers we'd still get three Hail Marys. That's what I've been telling them all along.
I am waiting for you to change your handle to 15th Pope Benedict.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

Location hidden

#155761 Oct 1, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
You cant call that twins poly, by any stretch of imagination.
A chimera is twins that fused, but have two sets of DNA. Conjoined twins have identical DNA.
Conjoined twins are usually formed a single egg that splits, and develop in a single placenta.
A chimera is two eggs trapped in a single placenta.
Identical twins are same as the conjoined but develop in separate placentas. And just plain twins are like the chimera but develop in separate placentas.
But we both are probably wrong , and this deformation due to Diprosopus.
http://www.jultrasoundmed.org/content/29/3/50...
I agree. Looking at it again, it is clearly neither chimerism nor conjoined twins, but some sort of developmental issue.

Most true chimeras are just like those with 'ordinary' genetics. The only difference is that they have two distinct cell lines in their bodies. It is typical for say, the liver to be one cell line, and the blood a different cell line. Chimerism is typically only discovered when some other condition triggers an investigation (or, for example, tests for parentage determine that a mother is not 'related' to her children).

In some cases, hermaphroditism happens because two cell lines are involved in the development of the genitals. It is also possible that the testes or ovaries have both cell lines, which can produce an intersex condition. In any case, for chimeras, there is only one 'person' involved, but with two sets of genetics.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chimera_%28genet...

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155763 Oct 1, 2013
Max_80 wrote:
<quoted text>
And do not misplace "ignorance" with a seeker, learner, of the origins off life". Oh and too refer too my previous factual statement 'if Mr Willard Libby denounced his "so-called" method of carbon reading' then what else have these (Government funded scientists "got wrong" ).
Tell you what, you provide the quotes where Libby denounces his own method (carbon dating).

In the meantime, chew on this lot:

In the article Flew states that he has renounced his long-standing espousal of atheism by endorsing a deism of the sort that Thomas Jefferson advocated ("While reason, mainly in the form of arguments to design, assures us that there is a God, there is no room either for any supernatural revelation of that God or for any transactions between that God and individual human beings.").

-Philosophia Christi (published by the Evangelical Philosophical Society with the assistance of Biola University),

lets be clear about Jefferson:

"Jefferson cut and pasted pieces of the New Testament together to compose The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth (the "Jefferson Bible"), which excluded any miracles by Jesus and stressed his moral message. Though he often expressed his opposition to clergy and to Christian doctrines, Jefferson repeatedly expressed his belief in a deistic god and his admiration for Jesus as a moral teacher.....Jefferson variously refers to himself as "Christian" (1803),[5] "a sect by myself" (1819),[6] an "Epicurean" (1819),[7] a "materialist" (1820),[8] and a "Unitarian by myself" (1825).[9] Historian Sydney E. Ahlstrom associated Jefferson with "rational religion" or deism.[10]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Jefferson...

And round it off with a bit of old Einstein:

"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it."
- Einstein

Dukas, Helen (1981). Albert Einstein the Human Side. Princeton: Princeton University Press, p. 43. Einstein Archives 59-454 and 59-495

Thus we see Flew move form atheism to a kind of Deism. None of the thinking of Flew, or Jefferson, or Einstein would be incompatible with evolution, though of course it had not been thought of in Jefferson's time.

"Former Cambridge Professor Stephen Hawking told students at Caltech this week that, contrary to the feelings of many God enthusiasts, the universe did not require a deity to create, nor does it require one to continue existing."

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/04/18/prof-st...

Just a few names you mentioned plus the reference to Jefferson because Flew mentioned him. They are not saying what you seem to think they are saying.
Aunt Bee

Manchester, TN

#155764 Oct 1, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
OK Max Seeker, lets do a quick lesson on what evolution does and does not say.
Does evolution say there is no God? NO.
Does evolution attempt to explain the origin of life? NO.
Does evolution rely on the Big Bang for its validity? NO.
Does evolution endorse any political position whether liberal or fascists? NO.
Does evolution claim that anything goes morally, or alternatively does it make any specific moral recommendations? NO.
Does evolution rely on Carbon 14 dating? NO.
Evolution is simply a theory of how life, once it existed (and however it got here - evolution makes no claims about that), how it developed and changed in response to environmental pressures to create the diversity we see today. Its supported by multiple lines of evidence.
Just thought I would clear all that up before you went any further.
This is the best post yet! Now, if we can get believers a Creator and scientists who consider the Bible a book of fairy tales to agree to disagree with respect for what we have in common, wouldn't that solve the problem?

Christians are not qualified or justified in judging others and voicing their opinions on Hell and who will have his body and soul destroyed there!
Atheists are not helping the situation by calling Christians uneducated, ignorant, liars who are so stupid and cowardly they choose to believe in fairy tales so they can believe when they die they will go to "never never land" to live with Tinker Bell and Peter Pan!

Children deserve to be raised to respect the opinions and beliefs of all other peaceful, loving, decent people on the earth. They should be exposed to the truth of science and religion so they can make their own informed, educated choices in life.

If God is God (and I believe He is) He can take care of the details in every individual life.

In the end, we will know (or not) all the answers to all the questions that are still relevant. In the meantime, we are all engaged in a war against evil on the earth. people who oppose evil should stand together against the common enemy. We are not the enemy! Science is our friend. Christians are supposed to treat people with love and respect. So, why do we argue?

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Dubai, UAE

#155765 Oct 1, 2013
Aunt Bee wrote:
<quoted text>
This is the best post yet! Now, if we can get believers a Creator and scientists who consider the Bible a book of fairy tales to agree to disagree with respect for what we have in common, wouldn't that solve the problem?
Christians are not qualified or justified in judging others and voicing their opinions on Hell and who will have his body and soul destroyed there!
Atheists are not helping the situation by calling Christians uneducated, ignorant, liars who are so stupid and cowardly they choose to believe in fairy tales so they can believe when they die they will go to "never never land" to live with Tinker Bell and Peter Pan!
Children deserve to be raised to respect the opinions and beliefs of all other peaceful, loving, decent people on the earth. They should be exposed to the truth of science and religion so they can make their own informed, educated choices in life.
If God is God (and I believe He is) He can take care of the details in every individual life.
In the end, we will know (or not) all the answers to all the questions that are still relevant. In the meantime, we are all engaged in a war against evil on the earth. people who oppose evil should stand together against the common enemy. We are not the enemy! Science is our friend. Christians are supposed to treat people with love and respect. So, why do we argue?
We seldom argue with Christians per se. Only with fundamentalists who insist that there is no evolution and the earth is only 6000 or so years old. Yes, at times we call them uneducated because they come up with such silly bloody arguments and clearly don't know what they are talking about half the time. At times we call them liars because in many cases they have deliberately twisted and quote mined the results produced by real, hard working, hands dirty or buried in the lab for 20 years, scientists. Who usually do not work for large sums of money or become famous, but are interested in finding out the truth wherever it leads.

I do not believe in any of the miracles of the Bible either, but I do think a lot of what Jesus (the man) expressed or is attributed to him is a good moral guide. Not because Jesus said so or its the will of God, but because it makes sense as a moral code that can enable us to live well together. And that makes good sense whether you believe in the afterlife or not.

So good on you, I liked your post too.
KAB

United States

#155766 Oct 1, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
Conformational data is simply a matter of answering the questions honestly. Do you dare?
Dogen wrote:
Characteristics Associated with Cultic Groups - Revised
Janja Lalich, Ph.D. & Michael D. Langone, Ph.D.
http://www.csj.org/infoserv_cult101/checklis ....
Concerted efforts at influence and control lie at the core of cultic groups, programs, and relationships. Many members, former members, and supporters of cults are not fully aware of the extent to which members may have been manipulated, exploited, even abused. The following list of social-structural, social-psychological, and interpersonal behavioral patterns commonly found in cultic environments may be helpful in assessing a particular group or relationship.
Compare these patterns to the situation you were in (or in which you, a family member, or friend is currently involved). This list may help you determine if there is cause for concern. Bear in mind that this list is not meant to be a “cult scale” or a definitive checklist to determine if a specific group is a cult. This is not so much a diagnostic instrument as it is an analytical tool.
&#8234; The group displays excessively zealous and unquestioning commitment to its leader and (whether he is alive or dead) regards his belief system, ideology, and practices as the Truth, as law.
&#8234; Questioning, doubt, and dissent are discouraged or even punished.
&#8234; Mind-altering practices (such as meditation, chanting, speaking in tongues, denunciation sessions, and debilitating work routines) are used in excess and serve to suppress doubts about the group and its leader(s).
&#8234; The leadership dictates, sometimes in great detail, how members should think, act, and feel (for example, members must get permission to date, change jobs, marry—or leaders prescribe what types of clothes to wear, where to live, whether or not to have children, how to discipline children, and so forth).
&#8234; The group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader(s) and members (for example, the leader is considered the Messiah, a special being, an avatar—or the group and/or the leader is on a special mission to save humanity).
&#8234; The group has a polarized us-versus-them mentality, which may cause conflict with the wider society.
&#8234; The leader is not accountable to any authorities (unlike, for example, teachers, military commanders or ministers, priests, monks, and rabbis of mainstream religious denominations).
&#8234; The group teaches or implies that its supposedly exalted ends justify whatever means it deems necessary. This may result in members' participating in behaviors or activities they would have considered reprehensible or unethical before joining the group (for example, lying to family or friends, or collecting money for bogus charities).
&#8234; The leadership induces feelings of shame and/or guilt iin order to influence and/or control members. Often, this is done through peer pressure and subtle forms of persuasion.
&#8234; Subservience to the leader or group requires members to cut ties with family and friends, and radically alter the personal goals and activities they had before joining the group.
&#8234; The group is preoccupied with bringing in new members.
&#8234; The group is preoccupied with making money.
&#8234; Members are expected to devote inordinate amounts of time to the group and group-related activities.
&#8234; Members are encouraged or required to live and/or socialize only with other group members.
&#8234; The most loyal members (the “true believers”) feel there can be no life outside the context of the group. They believe there is no other way to be, and often fear reprisals to themselves or others if they leave (or even consider leaving) the group.
__________
JW meet all of the above.
If answering the questions honestly is all you require for confirmation, then JWs meet perhaps one of the cult criteria you provided.

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