2. AN IMPORTANT ASSUMPTION AND SOME PAINFUL DEDUCTIONS
In all that follows, i would like to suggest that ultimately there is only one accurate explanation for any piece of evidence or data and that is what actually happened.
Thus, at the simplest level, the universe exists, it came from somewhere.
As far as i can see, whatever evolutionists and creationists want to believe it only happened one way.
It seems clear to me that any answer must take account of all available data and evidence.
One of the problems that i notice is that it seems that most people ATTACH their interpretation to the evidence as though the interpretation is part of the evidence.
Something that seems very clear to me is that there is no human being alive today who was present before the first human being capable of speaking came into existence. Whether they were created or evolved or came to be as the conclusion of an evolutionary process of creation or whether they came into existence in some other way.
There is also no written record, written at the time, which provides a human eye witness account. There is not even a written record which claims to provide an eye witness account. Specifically, "the Bible" does not claim to provide an eye witness account by a human being of how the first human being came to exist.
Accordingly, there is no human eye witness account of HOW the first man came to exist that is offered by either side in the controversy.
There is an enormous amount of evidence that man does exist, that the universe exists, that animals and plants exist.
However, there is a great deal of dispute about how they got there.
There are allegedly physical remains, rock masses, deposits of material and remains that provide tangible evidence of the prior existence of living creatures that DID exist at some time, as evidenced by their skeletons, etc. This includes alleged evidence of creatures that have the appearance of being "intermediate" between apes and humans. It also includes alleged evidence of giants, artefacts supporting "Bible" stories, etc.
It seems to me that, provided these remains are physically verifiably in existence, it is not helpful to offer explanations that sound like they are ignoring the existence of these specimens.
Here i find what seems to me to be a very substantial dilemma.
I CAN verify that i exist, at least at the level that i can see myself, touch myself, hear myself talk, interact with other people. For the purpose of this article i choose to accept this as definitive evidence of my existence and your existence.
I can also verify at some basic level that the planet earth exists and that the universe exists. There are things that i can see, have seen and experienced. Depending on how much an individual person has physically travelled around the earth they will have more or less tangible evidence in this regard.
For the rest, i realised that i am reliant on what other human beings say.
By way of example, there are archaeological finds that support certain of my religious beliefs that i have seen on video. These finds are reported by a man i have met personally and who i believe to be trustworthy and a man of integrity. Yet i have NOT personally seen any of the evidence. I have not travelled to any of the sites he refers to. I have not spoken personally to any of his sources.
I ONLY have his word for it.
And, given that by his own admission some of what he reports is based on the evidence of other people and that he has not travelled to all the sites and personally inspected all the evidence that he cites, i ONLY have the word of his sources for that information.
In considering this data, i was forced to confront the reality that in the context of my understanding of the moon, the sun, the stars, the universe, in the context of my understanding of the seas, almost all animals and plants on earth, even my understanding of cities and places i have not visited, i am ENTIRELY dependent on what other human beings write, say, portray on television, etc.
Taking this further, it occurred to me that with regard to the ENTIRE body of evidence that any single human being uses to support their world view of creation, evolution or any other view, most arguments seem to me to be almost entirely dependent on what numerous other human beings have reported or on very narrow technical expertise which is not available to most of us.
I realised that even those human beings who are regarded as "most distinguished", "expert", etc only have personal exposure to a minute fraction of the total data that is available on the earth and, for the rest, they are dependent on the information that they receive from other human beings.
In addition to this, some of those who believe there IS a creator, claim to have had experiences with this creator and some of these claim to have some level of personal relationship with this creator and even claim that he speaks to them and they speak to him.
However, many of those who believe in a creator seem not to believe those who claim that this creator speaks to human beings today and even fewer, as far as i know, believe that it is possible to have a deep personal relationship with this creator today.
In other words, those who do believe in a creator do not seem to agree with one another on many many points. This seems to me to make it very difficult for those who do not believe in a creator to find a basis to reassess what they believe.
In fact, it seems to me that much of what is offered in argument against creation is actually argument against the beliefs of specific groups of people who believe in creation.
In addition, i realised a few days ago, that even though i claim to have a deep personal relationship with the Almighty and claim to hear his voice at some level, i have not heard him personally say anything to me about many of the issues that are addressed in this article. I also realised that what it has seemed important to me to address with him has not generally been associated with the subject of this article.
I therefore concluded that it is probably highly unlikely that there are many, if any, human beings alive today who claim to have a relationship with the creator who they allege exists, who have had any lengthy discussion with this creator with regard to the full scope of what is addressed in the debate with regard to creation versus evolution.
In fact, i concluded that, based on my life experience to date, most of the opinions of people who believe in creation is based on what other human beings have said and recorded, in particular, many of these people place a lot of reliance on "the Bible". And, the present editions of "the Bible" have been produced by human beings based on writings produced by other human beings.
Accordingly, once more, there is very little first hand evidence. It seems to me that whether one subscribes to evolution or to creation or to something else, it behoves us to acknowledge that almost everything we subscribe to is based on the opinions or teachings or ... of some person or persons who, for whatever reason, we personally hold to be relevant and authoritative.
One of the painful conclusions i reached in my deliberations is that the best i can say with regard to many things that i had believed at the time of starting this article pertaining to the debate regarding evolution versus creation is that i personally DO NOT KNOW - my opinions are based on third party reports and evidence which i have personally NOT touched, felt, seen or experienced.
It seems to me that this conclusion applies to every person on the planet. There are some to whom it applies less, since they have devoted decades of their lives to their particular areas of study. However, in the scheme of the entire picture of knowledge, they too, are largely reliant on what others have reported.