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Evolution, dinosaurs and faith: Navigating the world of discovery

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  • Skeptical new york, NY
    July 10, 2013 7:40 a.m.

    The way we use the word 'Theory' and the way a scientist uses the workd 'Theory' is very different. To keep things in perspective. Gravity is a 'Theory' in that we understand how it works, though we don't completely understand why it works. ( Strong force vs weak force for those that are interested in how nature works ).

  • Skeptical new york, NY
    July 10, 2013 7:32 a.m.

    Evolutionary Science produces products, medicine and saves lives. Who here dares not give vaccines to their children? You see, we enjoy all the benefits of science, yet will are willfully ignorant. That is the greatest sin.

  • Captain Kirk Lehi, UT
    June 21, 2012 10:52 p.m.

    @ The Greater Truth

    Still just hints and interpretations.

    I am not saying that you don't have good points.
    In fact my own personal belief is probably close to yours ... but I would never preach it over the pulpit nor would I feel someone is wrong for believing in evolution. We simply don't know and I wouldn't be that surprised if evolution is true.
    In the end, it just doesn't have much importance to our salvation and should not be a point of contention.

  • the greater truth Bountiful, UT
    June 21, 2012 7:11 p.m.

    RE: Captain Kirk

    There are several scriptures that hint at how it was created and more certainly that evolution is not it.

    2 Nephi 2:22
    Abraham 3:22-26

    We were created spiritually before we were created physically, our spirits look like us. we did not inhabit random bodies, we were an intentional creation. We existed before the earth was created, ponder that.

    Abraham 5:7 (see also genesis 2:7) And the Gods formed man from the dust of the ground, and took his spirit (that is, the man’s spirit), and put it into him; and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.

    Doesn't sound like evolution. sounds much more direct.

    Genesis 1:24 And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after HIS kind
    Genesis 1:25 And God made the beast of the earth after HIS kind

    "HIS" emphasized, not evolution, all animals, plants created and reproduce after an existing pattern, not random.

    No death in Garden of Eden. How does evolution explain that? It can't, with evolution death must exist.

    That's just a few scriptures. There are more.

  • the greater truth Bountiful, UT
    June 21, 2012 6:57 p.m.

    RE: Captain Kirk

    There are several scriptures that hint at how it was created and more certainly that evolution is not it.

    2 Nephi 2:22
    Abraham 3:22-26

    We were created spiritually before we were created physically, our spirits look like us. we did not inhabit random bodies, we were an intentional creation. We existed before the earth was created, ponder that.

    Abraham 5:7 (see also genesis 2:7) And the Gods formed man from the dust of the ground, and took his spirit (that is, the man’s spirit), and put it into him; and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.

    Doesn't sound like evolution. sounds much more direct.

    Genesis 1:24 And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after HIS kind
    Genesis 1:25 And God made the beast of the earth after HIS kind

    "HIS" emphasized, not evolution, all animals, plants created and reproduce after an existing pattern, not random.

    No death in Garden of Eden. How does evolution explain that? It can't, with evolution death must exist.

    That's just a few scriptures. There are many more.

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    June 20, 2012 11:21 p.m.

    2 Nephi 2:22 - About as silly and Platonically absurd as it gets.

  • A Chem Engineer Pocatello, ID
    June 20, 2012 10:51 p.m.

    2 Nephi 2:22. About as straightforward as it gets....

  • Captain Kirk Lehi, UT
    June 20, 2012 8:59 p.m.

    @LDS Liberal
    "By denying evolution,
    You are ineffect denying Eternal Progression.
    Perfecting is an evolutionary process."

    Garbage! LIke I told "The Truth" Nothing in scripture or revelation tells us how God created Man.
    It also doesn't tell us HOW we progress. We don't need to believe in the theory of evolution to believe in Eternal progression.

    You are just as wrong as "The Truth" but on the other extreme.

  • Captain Kirk Lehi, UT
    June 20, 2012 8:50 p.m.

    @The Truth
    Neither the scriptures nor modern revelation tell us how God created man. We don't know how he did it. Period.
    Maybe it was evolution, maybe it wasn't. Doesn't really matter to anyone's salvation.

    I think you should find another cause because you are getting too caught up in it. It's fine to have your opinion on this ... but you act as if to believe in evolution is heresy and it is not.
    If evolution is false then science will probably figure it out eventually. If it is true ... then so what? My testimony of God is not hurt by evolution or any other science.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    June 20, 2012 3:56 p.m.

    Lvalfre - yeah that is true too. I had to adjust my comment 5 times so that the moderators would approve it. Even this comment had to be changed to let it go through. Can't say any opinion that they don't agree with or they deny it.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    June 20, 2012 1:04 p.m.

    R Hilton: "But Evolution (with a capital 'E') is still only a theory..."

    Isaac, An Index to Creationist Claims, Claim CA201

    Bluviking: "Remember, scientists thought the world was flat for a long time, until they were proven wrong."

    Ibid, CA250

    sharrona: "designed, integrated, purposeful... information that cannot have originated by itself "...requires one to believe that natural physical elements... can randomly produce all the vast variety of living things."

    Ibid, CI generally, but especially CI101 and CI120, also CB102, CF002, CF003

    Also, remember that natural selectiion is not a random process. It is decidedly nonrandom (hence "selection"), though undirected. At least yopur encyclopedia example is more creative than the tired tornado in a junkyard assembling a 747 cliche.

    zoar63: "Assuming men evolved as science States what does that tell us about Adam and Eve of which the scriptures state were the first people on the planet."

    Well, maybe it tells us that the creation stories of Bronze Age goatherders, honed through generations of oral tradition before being written, make for lovely literature and metaphor, but should not be interpreted literally.

    I'm not seeing any new ideas from the evolution skeptics. Just the same old, same old.

  • LValfre CHICAGO, IL
    June 20, 2012 12:10 p.m.

    @Brahmabull

    "Thinkman - In response to your question to ironandclay - yes Hinckley did say that, but remember that mormons can always use the phrase "it was his opinion" when something goes against their arguement. So they will say that was Hinckleys opinion, Joseph Smith was giving his opinion when he taught that, it was never doctrine. It is how they get around all of the issues of their doctrine..."

    Didn't understand, don't know, and myths and folklore are other excuses when things no longer fit.

  • LValfre CHICAGO, IL
    June 20, 2012 11:58 a.m.

    @Ron Hilton,

    "But Evolution (with a capital 'E') is still only a theory, not an observable scientific fact, regardless of how much it may appeal to the secular atheistic mind."

    Religion is also a theory, not an observable scientific fact, regardless of how much it may appeal to a theistic mind.

    Notice how these things always appeal to those raised into church. How many people, with no prior exposure to religion, give it any serious thought and inquiry?

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    June 20, 2012 8:42 a.m.

    Thinkman - In response to your question to ironandclay - yes Hinckley did say that, but remember that mormons can always use the phrase "it was his opinion" when something goes against their arguement. So they will say that was Hinckleys opinion, Joseph Smith was giving his opinion when he taught that, it was never doctrine. It is how they get around all of the issues of their doctrine...

  • iron&clay RIVERTON, UT
    June 20, 2012 7:24 a.m.

    Tax exempt foundations like the National Science foundation put lots of money into Universities trying to support their erroneous theorys.

    Why?

  • sharrona layton, UT
    June 19, 2012 7:48 p.m.

    RE: Jeff, Logical reasons to believe the Biblical account of creation is a better explanation for origins than evolution.

    A.Creation is intricately designed, integrated, purposeful, and full of aesthetic beauty. These attributes can only be satisfactorily explained by virtue of an intelligent, personal, meaningful Creator, since the only alternative is randomness with no purposeful, orderly cause.

    B.The natural creation and all living creatures are filled with systematic information that cannot have originated by itself. Information requires intelligence. Increasing orders of information from simple levels of life to the most complex cannot be explained naturalistically because you can never get MORE information from LESS information.

    C.To exclude the purposeful intelligence of the Creator from the creation requires one to believe that natural physical elements are eternal and that those elements, left to themselves over time, can randomly produce all the vast variety of living things. Such false reasoning is similar to expecting the chemistry of paper to produce the knowledge of the encyclopedia to be written on it without the external application of intelligent creativity.

    .

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    June 19, 2012 7:07 p.m.

    RE: atl134

    I NEVER said the earth was 6000 thousands years old. never said it.

    The earth was organized (the meaning of "created") 600O years ago plus however long it took to organize, plus the time adam and eve were in the garden of eden.

    The earth was organized for man about 6000 years plus.

    What earth was before that, and what lived on earth before that, all while interesting is not relevant to our existance or salvation.

    Man did not evolve.

    I refer you to Helge's comment above.

    -
    -
    RE: LDS Liberal

    Progression is not evolution.

    An individual Progresses from one existance to a higher existance if that individual passes the previous existance, according to a plan or design to progress that individual to a higher existance, in any case the individual is eternal,

    in evolution an individual is nothing, the individual does not progress, it dies and ceases to exist other than passing something on to next generation, which is "supposedly" slightly different in some way, it cares nothing for the individual, it is random and improbable and has no set direction, it is going nowhere in particular.

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    June 19, 2012 5:15 p.m.

    Any religious person who accepts Evolution does not understand Religion; any scientist who accepts Religion does not understand Science. (This is chiasmus, so it must be true)

  • Helge Orem, UT
    June 19, 2012 3:42 p.m.

    For the LDS, the answer to this debate is patience. Apparent conflicts will be resolved when Christ returns, SOON. In D&C 101:32-34 we read,

    "Yea, verily I say unto you, in that day when the Lord shall come, he shall reveal all things —
    "Things which have passed, and hidden things which no man knew, things of the earth, by which it was made, and the purpose and the end thereof —
    "Things most precious, things that are above, and things that are beneath, things that are in the earth, and upon the earth, and in heaven."

    My faith is built on revelation. I know God made this world, that it didn't happen by chance. The interesting thing is that, in the scriptural accounts, things seem to become hazy before Abraham. It'll be fascinating for me to find out the details about fossils, etc., whe God reveals them. Many take the apparent conflict between Scriptural protology and the scientific exegesis of physical evidence as a reason to throw away religion altogether, and become atheistic materialists. They'll be mightily disappointed by the results of their choice.

  • scojos Draper, UT
    June 19, 2012 3:27 p.m.

    I wonder why the author(s) of this article didn't mention the discovery of DNA and its' use today to separate fact from faith only issues.DNA makes the faithful more reliable when it sciencetifically supports articles of faith that have renmained points of contention(s) betweeen the hard scientist and the hard faith only adherents. Surely everyone knows that the tracking of man across our land and other lands have now been documented so that we have a firmer knowledge of the evolutionary process of man since the invention of the wheel and the use of the horse. So I wonder why the author left that out?

  • zoar63 Mesa, AZ
    June 19, 2012 1:41 p.m.

    Brigham Young had an interesting theory on the origins of man that is found in the Journals of Discourses which means there is a third option to consider. He even went on to spurn the idea that man was created like an adobe brick and likend the creation of men to mothers answering a young childs question about where they came from and the mother replying, "from the cabbage patch."

  • Searching . . . Orem, UT
    June 19, 2012 1:35 p.m.

    Bluviking,

    Thanks for clarifying the church's stance on evolution. I'm sure that the biology professors at BYU appreciate it.

    As an organism adapts it changes from the original. When this continues for a few million years, the two adaptations become farther apart until they cannot produce offspring together. At that point, one may declared a different species than the other, although they had the same ancestor. Geological, biological, anthropological, genetic evidence all support evolution, and new evidence just strengthens evolution as an explanation of global diversity. Your "flat earth" example was interesting. The strength of scientific method is that everything can be questioned. Theories are advanced and other scientists test them and add to them and we slowly advance toward the truth. The Greeks around 600 BCE determined that the Earth is a sphere. Religious leaders debated against that for centuries before finally accepting it as truth. Which sounds more effective to you, a process wherein truth is slowly uncovered with an admission of incomplete knowledge, or a system based on ancient documents interpreted by men who claim it to be the source of all truth?

  • zoar63 Mesa, AZ
    June 19, 2012 1:23 p.m.

    Assuming men evolved as science States what does that tell us about Adam and Eve of which the scriptures state were the first people on the planet. Christ came to atone for the fall of Adam not the fall of pre Adamites. If God does use evolution then He must have decide this was not working out and went with Adam and Eve to begin the program of the Gospel plan. Species have been completely wiped out in the past and the survivors start anew.

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    June 19, 2012 12:53 p.m.

    "Of course, if you don't have a Gospel basis for your beliefs, than everything above doesn't matter..."

    Yep, you are right, what you said doesn't matter, at least as far as science and evolution goes.

  • Bluviking Rexburg, ID
    June 19, 2012 9:09 a.m.

    Remember, scientists thought the world was flat for a long time, until they were proven wrong.

    I think a lot of you have forgotten the definition of faith - some things don't make sense, but we have to believe that they some day will. Scientific discoveries that seemingly contradict revealed truth do not negate that truth, and, as has been stated, truth is truth wherever it is found. We just don't have all of it yet.

    "Surely no one with reverence for God could believe that His children evolved from slime or from reptiles...The theory of evolution, and it is a theory, will have an entirely different dimension when the workings of God in creation are fully revealed."
    (Boyd K. Packer, Oct. 1984 conference).

    Of course, if you don't have a Gospel basis for your beliefs, than everything above doesn't matter...

  • Bluviking Rexburg, ID
    June 19, 2012 8:54 a.m.

    I'm quite amazed at this article and comments. If you believe the scriptures and the modern-day prophets, there should be no question. If you don't, well...you believe what you want.

    "...their Church does not dispute evolution?" From the Church's website:

    "It is held by some that Adam was not the first man upon this earth and that the original human being was a development from lower orders of the animal creation. These, however, are the theories of men. The word of the Lord declared that Adam was “the first man of all men” (Moses 1:34)...all men were created in the beginning after the image of God; whether we take this to mean the spirit or the body, or both, it commits us to the same conclusion: Man began life as a human being, in the likeness of our Heavenly Father." (see lds.org/ensign/2002/02/
    the-origin-of-man?lang=eng)

    Does that give us all the details? No. The LAW of Adaptation is fact. The THEORY of evolution is not. Does that contradict the scientific evidence? No. Science is not absolute until it is proven true. (continued...)

  • timpClimber Provo, UT
    June 19, 2012 8:52 a.m.

    During my PhD studies in Zoology at the University of Wisconsin I too went through a period of wrestling with my LDS beliefs and evolution. After many hours of study, prayer, discussion with friends and colleagues I came to the conclusion that there is a God whose ways and thoughts are not yet mine and that there are some items I must take on faith until I am prepared to understand how He creates. I have spent the last 50 years in study of this earth and its living creatures and every day am filled with joy at learning a little more about His glorious intelligence and creativity. I hope to have lived a good enough life to be a junior member of His world creation team some time in the future. One last thought, what if evolution is but a telestial law?

  • Gemma, UK Leighton Buzzard, UK
    June 19, 2012 5:27 a.m.

    I love the scripture Isaiah 42:5. That tells me of a God who created bodies and breathed life into them and then allowed spirit children to inhabit human bodies that already existed and were animated. That certainly allows for evolution to be the means of forming those bodies. My own view is that Adam and Eve were the first 'humanoid creatures' to house spirit children but were not necessarily the only similar looking beings on the face of the earth.
    Incidently, I think that this scripture also holds truth about the origins of life (emerging from the ocean) and about the expanding universe.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    June 18, 2012 8:29 p.m.

    If you have a cell phone with a Global Positioning Satellite function, you are using the theories of Relativity and of radioactive decay. The same science of astronomy and cosmology that produces that device also tells us that the farthest galaxies are billions of light years away, and that the unvierse is 14 billion years old. The science that allows us to produce nuclear weapons and nuclear power also tells us that the earth is over 4 billion years old. The same nuclear science tells us that human remains in the Americas are over 10,000 years old, and the cave paintigs in Europe are two and three times that age. The facile interpretation of Genesis as meaning 7 24 hours days or even 7,000 years does not fit the ovserved facts we know in so many ways. Once you understand that, then you know that Genesis Chapter 1 is not meant to be a literal and complete acocunt of the universe. For that matter, it does not even mention the planets, which were known to the ancients.

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    June 18, 2012 5:23 p.m.

    LDS Liberal,

    You had me in your camp until you went the global warming route.

    Weather forecasters have a VERY hard time predicting the next 7 days let alone the next 7 years or 7 decades.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 4:52 p.m.

    R Hilton: "Actually there is a scientific theory for the Flood, developed by Dr.John Baumgardner, a geophysicist in plate tectonics...."

    Isaac, An Index to Creationist Claims, Claim CH430.

    Keep trying.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 18, 2012 3:48 p.m.

    I see a pattern….

    Those who are admit Evolution deniers,
    Also tend to also be Global Warming deniers, and Birth Certificate deniers.

    The Bible is the final defining source of any and all truth in the world –
    All Science is all fake and a lie, and Reasoning can be checked at the front door.

    If The Glory of God is Intelligence –
    And a man can not be saved in ignorance –
    then denying facts and data [intelligence] is self imposed damnation.

  • Jeff Temple City, CA
    June 18, 2012 2:14 p.m.

    I am troubled (a little--just a little) that several commentators have lumped Mormons in with creationists. I don't think Mormon ideas of the Creation and the ideas of creationists--as I understand them--are compatible.

    As I understand it, creationists (and some evolutionists, ironically) seem to believe in ex nihilo creation (creation out of nothing), whereas Latter-day Saints are taught explicitly that the Creation used previously existing matter (the form of the matter is not stated; merely that matter was used).

    By the same token, orthodox evolutionists believe that everything happened by chance, and life began spontaneously by accident.

    Mormons, therefore, fall between the two.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 2:00 p.m.

    @Ron Hilton
    Even if the study you cite is accurate and such a thing could happen... it is categorically impossible to have happened anywhere close enough to the last 10,000 years to have been plausible to have occurred during the time of Noah. Plus rapid submersion would be insufficient since for Noah's story to be accurate you need a mountain to come back out of it, so you'd also need rapid land emergence.

  • SDM2010 Las Cruces, NM
    June 18, 2012 1:10 p.m.

    I find it interesting that many faithful people base their world view on text written to an illiterate people that lived 4 to 5 thousand years ago who probably did not have a word for science. The way God created the world has nothing to do with Christian or Mormon Christian salvation, it simply is not part of any saving principles. Mormons may state that the specifics of the creation are very important to them but none of the saving covenants rely on a person taking an anti evolution stance. God just doesn't care what you think about the logistical details of creation.

    As for us Mormons who actually have had substantial training in physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics and the rest of the natural sciences, we will continue to advance SCIENCE and modern medicine using principles that allow us to make better drugs and treatments using methods based on evolutionary principles. When creationist can mathematically model the creation to exactly 6000 years ago then this could be a real discussion. Currently evolution can mathematically be modeled in the fields of biology, biochemistry, geology, physics, and about every natural science field and those models match up with observable facts.

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    June 18, 2012 1:10 p.m.

    Actually there is a scientific theory for the Flood, developed by Dr.John Baumgardner, a geophysicist in plate tectonics. He developed a computer model that predicts and graphically illustrates the rapid breakup and submersion of an original, less mountainous single land mass into colliding continents through runaway subduction of the ocean floor. According to his model, the gradual continential drift of today is just a faint echo of that cataclysmic event. It kind of helps one visualize what may be meant by "were all the fountains of the great deep broken up" (Genesis 7:11. There really are scripturally sound alternatives out there if you're willing to look beyond the scientific dogma of the academic establishment.

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:57 p.m.

    @uncle charles

    the very fact that you think the way evolution works is that a monkey would be the product of two humans procreating pretty much proves my point.

  • EPJ Grantsville, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:42 p.m.

    The Bible talks of the earth being created in six "days", but we don't know how long those segments of time were. In the Pearl of Great Price, Book of Abraham, chapter 4 tells more about the creation than is found in the Bible; this was revealed to and recorded by the ancient Prophet Abraham. In Abraham 4:18, we learn that the creation process was "watched" by God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ (the Gods), "until they obeyed". That implies some sort of "process" involved in the creation.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:41 p.m.

    @Ron Hilton

    @LDS Liberal
    11:12 a.m.
    ==========

    No I am not.

    Life has existed on the this earth for billions of years; per academia.

    Life was "Placed"; here from other worlds; per academia.

    There have been at least 2 cataclysmic life ending events to this planet, wiping out 95-98% of all life each time.

    After each event, life needed/commanded to multiply & "RE-plenish"; the earth.
    Per academia and religion.

    PreMortal & Immortal Adam & Eve were in the Garden of Eden for an UNDISCLOSED amount of time; per religion.

    The Fall and the Human existence of Mortality began ticking about 5,878 years ago; per the Mosaic calendar.

    There is no reason to debate Science vs. Religion; it"s not an either or;
    Truth is truth, no matter the source.
    And in this case - both are correct.

    Besides, We all know time is always RELATIVE to the observer; not a fixed or rigid scale - per Einstein's General Theory.

    Science tells us HOW,
    Religion tells us WHY.

  • Searching . . . Orem, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:34 p.m.

    wzagieboylo: "Question 2: Might it be possible that the concept of no death before the fall means that eternal beings were created from multiple previous generations of the "dust of the earth" and the final perfected creatures were endowed with eternal spirits? Yes."

    This was an early try of mine to reconcile the scriptural and scientific theories of origin. But the hominid fossil record goes so far back that I began wondering how God decided what needed to happen to make the process complete. Then, what of the others? Adam and Eve were perfect, but their brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces, nephews, etc. weren't? Did previous generation have spirits? If so, are those spirits considered inferior? Fossil records, cave paintings, and stone tools show that human life existed throughout the world at 6000 BCE. Descendants of those people are living today. What does it mean if they are not descendants of Adam and Eve?

    A later try was to look at Adam and Eve as the earliest covenant with God. It fits the temple account better than the Biblical account, but there are still a lot of questions that evolution simply answers better.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:28 p.m.

    @uncle charles
    "For all of those who believe man morphed/evolved from something else, please tell me when any human male and female has produced anything but a human?"

    Okay you don't know what evolution claims... the changes are gradual over tens of thousands to millions of years. For instance, go to any couple hundred year old castle in Europe. It'll probably be mentioned, right around when they're showing you the bedroom, that people were shorter back then compared to today.

    "So, it's actually pretty simple to know and understand that the theory of evolution regarding man is false doctrine."

    Or you know... there's a flaw with your scriptures or your understanding of them, but hey it can't possibly be that now can it? I mean since when in human history have scriptures ever been misinterpreted? Oh... right... see this is what happens when people claim to belong to a church that absolutely gets it all right, you have to eventually explain something that doesn't have the right backing in science.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:25 p.m.

    R Hilton: "Although I am not a biologist or an astronomer, I do hold degrees in Math and Engineering..."
    Uncle C: "So, when 2 humans have sexual relations and a dog comes out of the woman, please let me know."

    More data points in support of the Salem Hypothesis and Poe's Law.

    The creation/evolution debate has been around since before Lamarck (though it really took off after Darwin). There have been no anti-evolution arguments presented in this forum so far that have not been answered and rebutted repeatedly in the past. Succinct rebuttals to the standard arguments are available at Mark Isaak's thorough Index to Creationist Claims at the talkorigins website. If you have an argument NOT covered there, feel free to post it here.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:22 p.m.

    @the truth
    You're the one who has to explain neanderthals and all those fossils. Plus I take it you have to explain how a global flood can occur meteorologically. I have my answer with regards to scripture and it's called "Jesus loved parables, why can't God explain creation with one?", after all, people don't even understand science enough now to understand it all, why would people in the BC years be able to?

    "when you are spiritually ready and mature for greater understanding, you will no longer believe in silly things like evolution."

    So is the earth 6,000 years old? Were dinosaur bones buried there as a test of faith? Maybe when you grow up you will accept reality.

    @Ron Hilton
    "whereas the scriptures are clear that there was no death before the fall of Adam."

    They're wrong.

    "The worldwide flood of Noah was a major catatrophic event "

    There's no global flood, it's meteorologically impossible. Noah would die from excessive global warming, and excessive pressure (remember, can't swim at the bottom of the ocean unprotected), can't make that much water from nothing, also llamas exist far from the middle east.

  • Uncle Charles Where freedom and liberty reign, utah
    June 18, 2012 12:15 p.m.

    @Ron Hilton: excellent response to LDS Liberal and I agree with it.

    @LDS Lib: you indicate you can prove evolution from the scriptures. Please go for it.

    @Tolstoy: Those who believe in the evolution of man believe that man as we know it today evolved from something other than what we now are. All creatures on earth were commanded to reproduce within their own kind. So, it's actually pretty simple to know and understand that the theory of evolution regarding man is false doctrine.

    Ever seen a monkey come out when 2 humans procreated? didn't think so.

    What about a whale coming out when 2 birds procreate?

    As I said, pretty simple to understand.

  • Thinkman Provo, UT
    June 18, 2012 12:05 p.m.

    Ironandclay,

    Didn't Pres Hinckley say: “I don’t know if we teach that” when asked by Larry King about the LDS church teaching that as God is man may become and as man is God once was?

  • Tolstoy salt lake, UT
    June 18, 2012 11:59 a.m.

    @uncle charles

    You may not agree with evolution but at least make some attempt to have at least a very basic level understanding what you are arguing against.

  • wzagieboylo Nofolk, MA
    June 18, 2012 11:46 a.m.

    Question 1: Could God have created the world and man in a way consistent with the theory of evolution? Yes.

    Question 2: Might it be possible that the concept of no death before the fall means that eternal beings were created from multiple previous generations of the "dust of the earth" and the final perfected creatures were endowed with eternal spirits? Yes.

    Question 3: How can we know the real truth? Through theories and experiments? No Through revelation from God? Yes.

    Question 4: What if there is no God? That is the real question, isn't it?

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    June 18, 2012 11:12 a.m.

    @LDS Liberal

    You are confusing the age of the Earth with the age of (mortal) life on Earth. They need not be the same. You are also confusing breeds with species. Yes, there is evolution (adaptation) within a species. That is not the same as Evolution of Species as postulated by Darwin.

  • Enola BOUNTIFUL, UT
    June 18, 2012 11:08 a.m.

    From the church's official website and in the Bible Dictionary that is published with LDS scriptures:

    "Before the fall, Adam and Eve had physical bodies but no blood. There were no sin, no death, and no children among any of the earthly creations. With the eating of the “forbidden fruit,” Adam and Eve became mortal, sin entered, blood formed in their bodies, and death became a part of life. Adam became the “first flesh” upon the earth (Moses 3:7), meaning that he and Eve were the first to become mortal. After Adam fell, the whole creation fell and became mortal. Adam’s fall brought both physical and spiritual death into the world upon all mankind (Hel. 14:16–17)."

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    June 18, 2012 11:00 a.m.

    @LValfre

    Although I am not a biologist or an astronomer, I do hold degrees in Math and Engineering, and took classes at BYU in evolutionary biology and stellar evolution. What I took away from those classes was that evolution within a species (i.e. adaptation) is well-established, but evolution of life itself is just a theory, with many gaps. Even a single cell is an extraordinarily complex system, with no satisfactory theory as to how it could have spontaneously evolved. In contrast, stellar evolution (the formation of stars) is based on a rigorous mathemtical model and fits the observed astronomical data exactly. The "Galileos" of our time are those who question the "Evolution Orthodoxy" of the scientific establishment. You are fighting yesterday's battles. The corrupt religious establishment of the Great Apostasy has given way to the Restoration, which embraces scientific truth. But Evolution (with a capital 'E') is still only a theory, not an observable scientific fact, regardless of how much it may appeal to the secular atheistic mind.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 18, 2012 10:47 a.m.

    To all you 6,000 year old earth - Evolution deniers....

    How many DOGS did Noah put on the ark?

    And yet, how many SPECIES are there today?

    Evolution is a FACT - even with the Scripturtes.

    But go ahead, stick your heads in the sand, close your minds.
    You are only hurting yourselves.

    The rest of us will progress without you.

  • Sneaky Jimmy Bay Area, CA
    June 18, 2012 10:35 a.m.

    @The truth (and others)
    If God commanded people to reproduce after their own kind what did Adam and Eve look like?
    Did they look like people of Uganda, people of Korea or people of Norway? Did God create Poodles with a touch or wave of the wand? Finally, do you think God put old bones on the earth to trick you?

  • Uncle Charles Where freedom and liberty reign, utah
    June 18, 2012 10:35 a.m.

    For all of those who believe man morphed/evolved from something else, please tell me when any human male and female has produced anything but a human?

    Have 2 monkeys produced anything but a monkey?

    Dolphins?
    Turtles?
    Trees?

    All things were ORGANIZED spiritually before their physical state. We don't know how long that took nor is it necessary knowledge for anything of substance on this earth.

    So, when 2 humans have sexual relations and a dog comes out of the woman, please let me know. Until then, I'd suggest numerous endowment sessions and deep study of the first few chapters of Genesis, Moses and Abraham.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 18, 2012 10:34 a.m.

    By denying evolution,
    You are ineffect denying Eternal Progression.
    Perfecting is an evolutionary process.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    June 18, 2012 9:01 a.m.

    Article: "Roughly 30 percent of his students accept the notion of human evolution at the start of the semester, Ogden said. But by the end of the semester, it jumps to approximately 70 percent."

    The article does not say whether this is an intro biology class tha many nonmajors would take or if it is the senior level evolution class UVU offers. If the former, the figures are understandable, as nonmajors would be expected to have many misconceptions about evolution (as the comments here typify). If the latter, the figures are frightening and positively staggering. Ogden needs to post the Dobzhansky quote in giant letters in his classroom: Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution.

  • BCA Murrieta, CA
    June 18, 2012 12:20 a.m.

    Almost every president of the church has talked about man being on the earth for 6,000 years and there was no death before Adam. Even the scriptures talk about man's 6,000 year existence (D&C 77). This does not squarevat all with evolution. Let the word-twisting begin.

  • Aspiring Theist Sandy, UT
    June 17, 2012 8:26 p.m.

    I found it interesting that after taking the evolutionary biology class at BYU 30 percent of the students still did not accept the notion of human evolution. I would have thought less than 10 percent would have rejected the premise after taking such a course.

  • LValfre CHICAGO, IL
    June 17, 2012 8:25 p.m.

    @Ron Hilton,

    "I personally find it to be completely incompatible with the doctrine of the Fall, since evolution depends upon successive generations of mortal organisms, whereas the scriptures are clear that there was no death before the fall of Adam."

    Nobody is accountable to the doctrines though unless they share your faith and conviction. Some take it as they read it literally, some thinks it's all folly, and some pick and choose what they take (although religious texts are divine inspired and should be set in stone).

    For the purpose of science and exploration, holding onto strong religious views can disrupt the process. You need to be open minded and take the data as it is. Any bias, whether from religious conviction or personal beliefs/theories, can skew the research.

    Don't forget we actually had Galileo on house arrest for the rest of his life for exploring science objectively ... until he proved the world wrong.

    "Clearly the Earth is very old, based on incontrovertible astronomical data."

    How old do you believe the earth is? You're implying science has proved this. Do you follow science's current answer or the Bibles much lower number?

  • Ron Hilton Holladay, UT
    June 17, 2012 5:05 p.m.

    The Mormon church has no offical stance on evolution. Leading Church authorities have expressed divergent views on the subject. Evolution as adaptation by living organisms to their environment is an observed fact. Evolution as the origin of life is a theory, and a very weak one at that. I personally find it to be completely incompatible with the doctrine of the Fall, since evolution depends upon successive generations of mortal organisms, whereas the scriptures are clear that there was no death before the fall of Adam. Clearly the Earth is very old, based on incontrovertible astronomical data. The sky is littered with examples of solar systems in all stages of development and decay. But the biosphere may not be that old, and there is no comparable observable evidence for evolution. The worldwide flood of Noah was a major catatrophic event that would have thoroughly churned the biosphere and could account for the fossil record, including oil and coal deposits. There are many scientific anomalies with carbon and other radioactive dating methods that cast doubt on an evolutionary interpretation of the fossil record.

  • Bebyebe UUU, UT
    June 17, 2012 12:20 p.m.

    I challenge creationists to hold their own beliefs to the standard they hold evolution. Give me any evidence of creationism other than your 'feelings'.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    June 17, 2012 11:24 a.m.

    RE: Mukkake

    Tacit support?

    Parents let their children believe in santa clause, does that give their children tacit support of the belief in santa clause?

    BYU teaches it in biology because they must to get accreditation?

    Does it hurt to teach it? or hurt the students to learn it? No. if you are close to spirit the spirit will bear witness to the truth.

    Like when a child is ready to no longer believe in silly things like santa clause,
    when you are spiritually ready and mature for greater understanding, you will no longer believe in silly things like evolution.

    While Tyler above gives a nice reason to believe it, he doesn't take it far enough,
    and explain why Jesus could heal the lame and blind and dumb and leperous, with a touch or word,

    or move mountains or walk on water, or have complete control of the earth and the sun and the weather based on faith

    or raise the dead

    but God could not directly create man?

    man can create another human in 9 months but it takes God billions of years?

    or how evolution opposes God's command to reproduce after your own kind.

  • A voice of Reason Salt Lake City, UT
    June 17, 2012 10:35 a.m.

    Mukkake,

    Well you finally got a comment I liked. I don't exactly agree with comments where people say "too many Mormons" anything, unless it's coming from a General Authority (for my reasons). So I don't exactly see eye to eye there, but your acknowledgement about the LDS Church's attitude regarding science is often neglected. It's only logical to represent a position accurately when arguing against, for, or relating to it.

    As far as the point on evolution. I frequently argue against it... kind of. I don't have any claim or belief on evolution. I only maintain that it is indeed a theory. Just because one does not have the resources or time to adequately prove something today, and because the majority of the scientific community accept it- doesn't graduate it to an indisputable fact.

    And I don't argue against it because of some feeling of being threatened by it. I simply just don't accept people using one scientific method for one study, adopting a less strict one for another, and throwing them all completely out the door for yet another. It opposes the entire purpose of science at its core.

  • skeptic Phoenix, AZ
    June 17, 2012 9:17 a.m.

    To: the truth,

    Since you are in the know, please tell us who created your god, where did he/she come from: evolution, higher power, or just in man's evolved imagination.

  • Joe Smith Mountain View, CA
    June 17, 2012 8:55 a.m.

    Evolution can only explain minor changes. So for that, I can agree that God uses evolution. But anything more complex requires the steady hand of order and direction and DESIGN.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    June 17, 2012 8:43 a.m.

    RE: atl134

    Because it sounds good to you is not an doctrinal explanation.

    You give sound reasoning as why a PERFECT being would use an imperfect an improbable method when he is quite capable of doing otherwise.

    then must explain how creating cells, then fishies, then amphibians then lizards and monkeys, etc, is making man from after thier own image.

    then you must explain the scripture where God commanding all creatures to reproduce after their own kind.

    then must address all the problems with the ridiculous idea of evolution and all of its problems, a few of which I have mentioned before.

    Just saying God did it that way or it sounds good to you, or evolution proclaiming it MAY have been possible or COULD HAVE happened this way and imaging relationship between fossils is not sufficient reasoning.

  • iron&clay RIVERTON, UT
    June 17, 2012 6:37 a.m.

    I have found dinosaur raptor teeth in the southern utah desert and handled large footprints of dinos as they were found on the ceiling of coal mines in eastern utah.

    This earth seems to be a changing place through eons of time. It has been organized and re-organized multiple times.

    None of this physical evidence conflicts in any way with the teachings of the scriptures, Joseph Smith, and living Prophets and Apostles when speaking in official capacity. In fact it seems to support the idea that creation is really just organizing matter that is eternal.
    Gods organized and formed the earth.

    Church doctrine supports the theory that the earth will soon go through a baptism of fire and then become a celestial sphere. ... And just maybe through eons of time man can progress (evolve ) to become like Heavenly Father (God)

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    June 16, 2012 10:24 p.m.

    The Church takes no position on evolution. They neither dispute or support.

  • one day... South Jordan, UT
    June 16, 2012 7:59 p.m.

    to...the truth...
    I think it's time to relax a little bit.
    We need to think that everything that has been created coexist thanks to understanding the base of the law for what and how was created. God is not a magician, there are laws and power in the priest that we don't have access in this life or we don't have the understading to make those to work.
    Until then we can do all that WE CAN to understand those principles through study by faith and science, we don't need to get mad because somebody else wantys to review what science said.
    A lot of things will be explain after life.
    We should be gratefull to have people that is working to find those little pieces of this great puzzle called creation.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 16, 2012 7:26 p.m.

    @the truth
    "God can not directly create Man?
    My what low opinions of they must have of God and his power and abilities.
    What limitations they put on him,
    who created the universe,
    who can heal any disease or infirmity,
    or raise the dead,
    with a word or touch."

    Were you being dramatic or is your computer having a format issue? Anyway as one of those theistic evoltion believers who believes in God as well as the science of evolution I'll give my response to this. I would not say that God can't poof man into existence... I just think that's not what he did. Just because God can do something doesn't mean he did do that and the evidence clearly shows humans have been around more than 6000 years and that there's a line of succession that was taken to get to the current state of humanity. Besides, I find the gradual process to be more magnificent than poofing people into existence anyway (think of the rock formations down south that are hundreds of thousands if not millions of years old).

  • Tyler Holladay, UT
    June 16, 2012 6:32 p.m.

    I believe God is perfect in his knowledge of science. I don't not believe he is 'super natural;' instead, he understands how matter must be manipulated to do his bidding. I tend to think evolution as the way he created us in his image. It is an organized chaos that he knew how to start to reach the end he deemed right. Maybe I have not studied enough, but I do not see how this would contradict LDS Church teachings.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    June 16, 2012 6:31 p.m.

    Next you're going to tell me that the Earth is round and that babies don't come from storks. No thanks, Science!

  • Mukkake Salt Lake City, UT
    June 16, 2012 6:27 p.m.

    the truth:
    [The Church does not dispute evolution?
    The truth is no revelation has been given concerning the origin of man.]

    You just proved my point. They have not disputed it. More so, by allowing their flagship institution of high learning, BYU, to teach evolution, they have given it their tacit support.

    Nothing else you had to say was worth a response.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    June 16, 2012 5:41 p.m.

    RE: Mukkake

    The Church does not dispute evolution?

    The truth is no revelation has been given concerning the origin of man.

    As a result the Church has more important things to deal with that are actually important to eternal salvation.

    The fact is Evolution is very bad science encouched in very indefinite and dare I say it unscientific language,

    They assume relationships between fossils, they created imaginary trees of life that every things must be forced into or accounted for in some thought up way, all to fit a theory.

    It is the sargeant schultz of theories. Evolution knows nothing. But it supposes everything.

    It has become dogma, and any who dare question it, heretics.

    These believers in evolution and in God, make weak reconciliations to believe both.

    God can not directly create Man?

    My what low opinions of they must have of God and his power and abilities.

    What limitations they put on him,

    who created the universe,

    who can heal any disease or infirmity,

    or raise the dead,

    with a word or touch.

    Did God make man after his image or not?
    Did God command all creatures to reproduce after their own kind?

    Ye of little faith.

  • MoJules Florissant, MO
    June 16, 2012 4:43 p.m.

    Thank you for this article, being from the older generation, it was a struggle to sometimes resolve Scientific findings and religion. I believe that there has been a evolution of knowledge also. God doesn't give us all the answers and facts, and man sometimes puts a limit on God's work based on their human understanding and limitations. Sometimes the puzzles that just are so hard to conceive make me excited for the day when I will be able to have a full understanding and knowledge.

  • Mukkake Salt Lake City, UT
    June 16, 2012 4:43 p.m.

    I'm glad that the Deseret News published this article. Too many Mormons, usually the less educated ones, do not seem to understand that their Church does not dispute evolution. The same goes for the Catholic Church as well. Simpletons like Santorum also don't seem to understand that the Catholic Church has several high ranking priest-scientists that are vocal supporters of evolution.

    While I may not be a supporter of everything the Mormon Church and Catholic Church do and say, I will admit that they are generally pro-science, especially when compared with other christian denominations and other religions.