Thursday, January 03, 2008

Things Don’t Just Happen

I’ve been enjoying an abundance of presentations on the Discovery Channel, the History Channel and others showing how the Universe, the Solar System and Earth were formed or came about. Much of the information is based in theoretical speculation developed after careful analysis by our finest scientists through countless hours studying facts gathered by specialized equipment. I don’t claim to understand most of the physics, calculus or other scientific data which supports the theories presented; however I am willing to accept their findings with the stipulation that for all their accumulated details these findings all remain in the realm of theory and supposition rather than cold hard proven facts.

The Big Bang Theory is the starting point for most of the scientific community; an event which spontaneously explains how “it” all got started, a finite explanation which requires considerable bending of the known rules of math and physics from what I was able to gather. I don’t believe, not for even a miniscule portion of a nanosecond that anyone has the ability to explain the “beginning”; at least not “scientifically”. Theorize all day long something as grand and omnipresent as the Creation; however, once all that matter was released, galaxies with billions of stars expanding at phenomenal speeds in all directions, dark matter, quarks and anything else out there; the scientific data became measurable and to some degree, even predictable. I can thank these fine folks for the efforts used to illuminate that which truly is science; as long as they remember which is science and which is speculation.

Our own Solar System’s beginnings have been explained and shown as naturally occurring phenomenon of randomly gathered matter floating about in space which happened to come together, a fly speck among the universe around it; its formation explained as a natural occurrence of spontaneity happening without a dedicated plan or direction from a supposed Intelligent Designer. Little “red flags” are raised in my mind while entertaining these scientific theories, pieces which seemingly fit, or nearly fit and yet the gaps between what is known and what is supposed fails to satisfy my curiosity.

I own a magnificently engineered mechanical device, an antique pocket watch ( click on the picture to enlarge ). I marvel at the creative design, the finished product which reflects the intricate completion of thought by the maker of the watch; a means of measuring time precisely while at the same time provide an art form worthy of equal appreciation. My watch didn’t spontaneously manifest itself on my desk; the result of natural forces at work in the cosmos, it was created after careful thought and consideration of purpose.

John Pratt, an astronomer who enjoys comparing ancient calendars and making various computations based on observable astronomical events wrote an interesting article, The Planets Testify of the Creator, where he showed our Solar System as one immense time piece; a clock if you will. In a section called, A Miniature of History he explained:

“It turns out that 7,007 days is exactly seven periods of 1,001 days, each of which is in turn divisible by 7 (1,001 = 7 x 143). Evidence for design is suggested when the intervals divide exactly into units which the Lord seems to prefer. For example, we have been told the temporal existence of the earth will be 7,000 years, or 7 days of the Lord (D&C 77:6). We also know that the Lord divides periods into 12 parts, such as 12 hours in a day (John 11:9) or 12 months in a year. We know that all of history is also divided into 12 "hours" and that we are living in the eleventh hour (Mat. 20:6-9, D.C. 33:3).
Thus, the earth's temporal history of 7,000 years is divided into 12 periods, just as are the cycles of Venus.

This is the kind of order which argues most strongly that the solar system was created to be a precise timepiece. The atheist can continue to claim that all such alignments are chance coincidences, but such a posture becomes extremely unlikely, and much harder to believe than simply accepting that it was designed.”

Then again, some folks might suggest that my antique pocket watch could have been put together by a chimpanzee were there an infinite number of parts available and time enough to randomly assemble them; kind of like the room full of typewriters and monkeys, with enough time, could create Shakespeare’s, Romeo and Juliet. As John Pratt pointed out, “such a posture becomes extremely unlikely, and much harder to believe than simply accepting that it was designed”.

There are some who claim an artistic approach to the Creation, that everything happened with spontaneity. I like the way that word comes off the tongue, spontaneity; a one word poem which makes the spirit soar; however, its meaning becomes problematic with each passing dictionary.

1. proceeding from natural feeling or native tendency without external constraint.
2. arising from a momentary impulse
3. and directed internally ( self acting )
4. produced without being planted or without human labor ( indigenous )
5. developing or occurring without apparent external influence, force, cause, or treatment
6. not apparently contrived or manipulated ( natural )

If those clear and concise definitions don’t blur the words meaning, try some of these on for size; lifted from various “gifted individuals”.

“Spontaneity is the quality of being able to do something just because you feel like it at the moment, of trusting your instincts, of taking yourself by surprise and snatching from the clutches of your well-organized routine a bit of unscheduled pleasure.”

“Spontaneous’ means occurring as a result of unplanned impulse or without any apparent external cause. It is derived from Latin ‘sponte’ i.e. of one’s accord. It is instinctive and unpremeditated. It is a feeling that arises without any thought behind it. It is completely natural and does not involve any sort of planning. It can also be interpreted as an reflex action. It is self generated and it happens without any external reason. It is sudden and not manipulated. For example, “The hypnotist directs the man to spontaneously change his behaviour” or “Buying a car was a spontaneous act which he regretted later.” The word ‘spontaneous’ applies to what comes naturally rather than resulting from a forethought or promoting. Synonyms for ‘spontaneous’ are impulsive, involuntary, automatic. These adjectives mean acting or reacting without giving a conscious thought. ‘Spontaneous’ in a sentence: “We are all born charming, fresh and spontaneous and must be civilized before we participate in society”

“Spontaneity is the ability to act without thinking. It is the raw immediacy of action.”

Apparently I’m not alone in thinking the word Spontaneity’s meaning may be unclear, Raymond S. Ochs, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, St. John's University in a paper entitled, Thermodynamics and Spontaneity, came to the following conclusion after observing derivations obtained by various students in Chemistry who had applied the laws of Thermodynamics, especially as they relate to biology and biochemistry:

“Mathematics is hard, not because of the actual mathematical part of the problem but because of the semantics.”

I keep coming back to that word Spontaneity as I ponder the information being force fed regarding the origins of our Universe. The problem lies in semantics, the use of words which mean different things to each who hears or uses the language. If you listen to some folks they tell you the Earth, the Solar System and the Universe were the result of Spontaneity; the Big Bang. It’s convenient to toss away common sense and the laws of physics in order to prove a theory which cannot be proven while at the same time discount the possibility of a Creator, one who carefully organized and used matter and energy according to existing laws in order to provide an environment capable of sustaining all that was “created”.

David wrote in Psalms 53:1,2; “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good. God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God.” Sounds about the same as John Pratt’s line, “…The atheist can continue to claim that all such alignments are chance coincidences, but such a posture becomes extremely unlikely, and much harder to believe than simply accepting that it was designed”.

I prefer to believe, oh, there’s that faith based word which automatically discounts any discourse which follows; I prefer to believe in an infinitely intelligent Father in Heaven whose knowledge of the laws of science far exceed our limited understanding, a Creator who thought long and hard regarding the necessary environment in which to have His children demonstrate their desires to be obedient to Him. I believe the Earth, the Solar System and the Universe around them are His Creation; prove me wrong if you can.

Edited 1/08/08

I've linked with in order to share the photograph of my pocket watch with a larger audience. I've also added them to my sidebar to facilitate visiting their site.

Edited 1/12/08

On behalf of the editing team here at Photography Laureates, we would like to congratulate you for being selected for publication as part of our highly acclaimed photography anthology. As such, you are a finalist for the $6500 prize. As a laureate and talented photographer, you will have access to several networking opportunities aimed at exposing you to the photography community.

Your photograph was selected out of hundreds of competing entries and you will be published along with other talented photographers. Kyrta Reeve and John Warton, our 2 editors, have reviewed your photograph Pocket Watch Detail 01 and have selected it for its structure and composition:

No comments: