What might Einstein think about flat earth theories?


There are plenty of resources available to debunk the proposition that the earth is flat. Some of the ones I think are most helpful are listed  in the resources section below. So “Why even bother addressing this theory?” you might might wonder. I pondered that question myself for a time, and decided I should address it for the following reasons:

1. Creationists are often accused of believing “crazy” things. Some make the charge that we are no different from believers in a flat earth, and some accuse us of believing in a flat earth.  In response, what better way to show creationists in general, (and this writer in particular) doesn’t believe in a flat earth than by debunking it? Doing so also gives the added benefit of distancing creationists from flat earth believers.

2. While many have approached this by providing various evidences of why the earth must be shaped like a globe, and not flat like a pancake as flat earth believers claim, I have not seen any debunkers that approach it this way – namely by looking at the physics of such a system as Albert Einstein might. So for these reasons I throw my hat into the flat earth debunking ring. Since I am approaching this from the stand point of an investigation of the physics as Albert Einstein might investigate it, let me describe the approach he would probably take, and the primary theory we must understand.

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Cosmologists Today: Tilting at Windmills

I am I, Don Quixote!
The Lord of La Mancha, my destiny calls and I go.
And the wild winds of fortune shall carry me onward oh withersoever
they blow. Withersoever they blow.
Onward to glory I go!

So sings the title character of the hit movie and play Man of La Mancha based on the book Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is the name adopted by Alonso Quixano a likeable, less-than-affluent, well read fellow, well past his prime who lives with his niece in the Spanish village of La Mancha. He reaches a point where all his days “from dawn to dark ” are spent reading his favored books: those of  the tales of chivalry and the deeds of errant knights from days long ago.  However being past his prime, and “with little sleep and much reading his brains got so dry that he lost his wits.”[1].  He was so immersed in the tales that with his waning faculties, he lost the ability to distinguish between what was fact and what was fiction.  To the point where he believed that “the whole fabric of invention and fancy he read of was true…”[2]

And thus Quixano decides to adopt the distinguished name of Don Quixote de La Mancha, become an errant knight and go off in search of adventures to right wrongs and fight injustice. Perhaps the most memorable of which is when he comes upon some windmills which he imagines to be giants, and begins jousting with them from his aging and arthritic horse. It’s from this scene we get the phrase “tilting [or jousting] at windmills” which originally meant to fight against imaginary or unimportant enemies or issues. But as a Yahoo aficionado points out, figuratively it has come to mean “a futile activity.”[3]

Which brings us to the current state of affairs in cosmology. Many cosmologists these days are like Don Quixote – jousting at imagined problems that are a result of their imagined theories in order to obtain great glory. Continue Reading

The Expanding Big Bang Fairy tale

Back in August of 2015, I predicted the Big Bang magicians  (those who promote the big bang and go by various titles such as cosmologist, scientist, theoretical physicist etc.) would eventually propose a new fairy tale to explain yet another unexplained fact recently discovered about the wonderfully designed universe that we live in. That fact is the existence of  rings of galaxies, in concentric circles, spanning the mind boggling distance of 5 billion light years.  The Big Bang theory requires that the universe is homogeneous and isotropic – the same everywhere[1] so you should not see in it structures organized in a geometric pattern like concentric circles. Thus this discovery must somehow be explained and made to fit into the Big Bang theory somehow.

I discussed the discovery of this super structure and the problem it poses in an article titled  The coming Big Bang fairy tale where I also made both the above referenced prediction, and guaranteed we’d see a new fairy tale:

To close, let me borrow from the former president of the men’s warehouse:
Another big bang fairy tale is coming. I guarantee it.[2]

Continue Reading

Pulling Back the Veil – What Cosmologists are Hiding

The Hand of God (nebula) behind the Veil of Science

The Hand of God (nebula) behind the Veil of Science

(Or: Big Bang Magic Part 3:
Pulling Back the Veil on the five biggest questions about the universe)

Contrary to what you may have been led to believe, cosmology these days is not an objective science, devoted  strictly to the scientific explanation of the origin of the universe. There is an agenda that rules cosmology. An agenda that has nothing to do with science as confessed by Richard Lewontin: Continue Reading

More Big Bang Magic Tricks – Shadows and Waves

What casts no shadows besides vampires? Apparently, the big bang.

In theory, scientists are objective seekers of the truth, handling the data that is discovered with honesty and integrity.  Unfortunately particularly in sciences that have worldview implications, that is not the case. One of those sciences is cosmology – the science that attempts to determine the origin and development of the universe. With the possible exception of Darwinian evolution,  there are no sciences  that have larger worldview implications that cosmology.   Even without knowing how the origin of the universe came about, the psalmist is correct in his declaration “the heavens declare the glory of God.” (Ps 19.1)  Atheist cosmologists know that and have tried to mute that testimony by attempting to come up with a story of the creation of the universe that doesn’t involve God.  Because even if you haven’t formally studied apologetics or cosmology, everyone implicitly understands the Kalam Cosmological argument for the existence of God: Everything that begins to exist has a creator. The universe began to exist, therefore the universe has a creator. The only one powerful enough to create the universe is of course God, therefore God created the universe.

Such a simple, intuitive, easy to understand proof of the existence of God is anathema to atheist cosmologists because their own preferred theory of origins – the Big Bang theory – though incorrect nevertheless points to the fact that the universe had a beginning. Continue Reading

Intelligent Design’s Blind Side

Intelligent Design’s Blind Side

William Dembski is a leader in the Intelligent Design (ID) community, so I read with initial interest a recent interview he did with Sean McDowell titled How is the Intelligent Design Movement Doing? Interview with William Dembski.  which is posted on McDowell’s blog. That initial interest turned to dismay as the adversarial attitude Dembski has toward revealed truth in general and Young Earth Creationism (YEC) in particular was made apparent. When asked how he assesses the reception of ID within the church, Dembski states:

“I would say that the church broadly and even the evangelical community has — on balance — been somewhere between useless and downright counterproductive to the success of ID.”

A most unfortunate assessment given the potential ID has to impact a culture that has largely fallen under the sway of the junk science put forth to support the materialist religion known as Darwinian Evolution. Even more unfortunate is Dembski’s  apparent blindness to how he (and other ID advocates with similar positions) has caused such a reaction from the God fearing, Bible believing faithful they’d like to gain support from. To unravel this mystery for them, let’s start with what both ID advocates and YEC advocates are trying to achieve. Continue Reading

Dark Matter: The Big Bang’s Missing Link

Black holes – once again a candidate for dark matter. (Above: simulation of merging black holes. Click for animation)

 

“How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?”[1]
Sherlock Holmes

Holmes, the famed fictional detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle popularized that statement of logic, and highlighted the power of deductive reasoning for solving problems.  As fans of Sherlock Holmes know this adage is a key tool in the forensic tool kit for catching criminals.  Applied to science, it is also very helpful, but it cannot always be as conclusive with scientific theory as it is when narrowing the field of suspects in a crime. That is because of two ambiguous terms that science has a hard time precisely defining. Those are:

  1. Eliminate the Impossible
    This is a doubly difficult task for science, because it assumes you first have the knowledge to identify all possibilities, then secondly, have the ability to identify (via testing if it’s to be scientific) that which is  not possible. Only then can you know that you’ve eliminated the impossible. But when it comes to cosmology as physicist and creationist John Hartnett quips:

    “To make such a claim, you would have to know that you have ruled out all other possibilities. In such a case—remember this is not a laboratory experiment—you would have to be an all-knowing god.” [2]
    John Hartnett
     

  2. Whatever remains
    We tend to think that “whatever remains” is a single identifiable cause, but in fact, there could be multiple causes that make up “whatever remains”

So before coming out with any definitive statements,  scientists must be sure that they have carefully accounted for each of these two often difficult to identify variables. Unfortunately, that has  not been the case when it comes to  scientific speculation on Dark Matter. In that regard there are a lot of scientists jumping to the conclusion that dark matter exists, and is out there, waiting to be verified (in a lab) by scientists. Why is that? Let’s take a look at why scientists are so intent on proving that Dark Matter exists, and why it’s prudent to be skeptical about their whole approach to the existence of dark matter.

The Problem: The Universe is not behaving as (we think) it should

Scientists have identified peculiar behavior in the outer reaches of the universe. Not all galaxies are moving as they should. To visualize the problem, consider: Continue Reading

Age of the universe: 13.75 Billion years- Fact or Faith statement?

Scientists don’t actually measure time to determine the age of the universe. One method attempts to correlate passage of time given a certain amount of redshift in the light from a given star.


Do scientists accurately represent their ability to estimate the age of the universe?

Ever since the rebellion in the garden of Eden that sowed seeds of distrust against God and his word, there have been two groups of people: those who believe and obey the word of God and those who don’t. Among those who don’t believe it has become quite fashionable to smirk and be amused at the quaint beliefs of those bible believing unsophisticates – until of course  – evidence for those beliefs are found and confirmed. Here is the typical sequence:

1. A pronouncement is made that directly contradicts the bible – such as “King David didn’t exist because no archeological evidence can be found confirming his existence.”
2. Bible doubters jump on the band wagon and poke fun at those quaint bible believers – until evidence is found that confirms the Bible. In the case of King David, it was the Tel Dan Stele, a monument erected in the 8th or 9th century BC by one of the kings of Aram (ancient Syria) which bore the inscription “…of the House of David…”
3. An acknowledgement is made that the Bible was right (again) and off they go looking for some other part of the Bible to doubt.

In the case of King David,  all but the most obstinate doubters will agree with the myth hunters:

“When the inscription at Tel-dan was found, that put the debate to rest. It was clear that David did exist.”[1]

Today, one of the Bible truths most attacked by scientists in every field is the Bible’s proclamation that the entire universe was created in 6 days. This proclamation is strongly denied because if true, it means that neither the Big Bang nor Darwinian evolution can be true, because both of those require billions of years.  Therefore atheistic and materialistic scientists have a vested interest in keeping belief in a billions year old universe alive – it’s required for their worldview. And thus they take every opportunity to promote that godless belief. And so we regularly see such scientists either outright mocking Christian belief, or attempting to show why, according to their calculations, it cannot be correct. Here is one of those attempts made during the reboot of Cosmos, as narrated by the show’s host, Neil deGrasse Tyson:

“The crab nebula is about 6,500 light years from earth. According to some beliefs that’s the age of the whole universe. But if the universe were only 6,500 years old, how could we see the light from anything more distant than the crab nebula? We couldn’t. There wouldn’t have been enough time for the light to get to earth from anywhere farther away than 6,500 light years in any direction. That’s just enough time for light to travel through a tiny portion of our milky way galaxy.” 

“To believe in a universe as young as only 6 or 7,000 years old is to extinguish the light from most of the galaxy. Not to mention the light from all the hundred billion other galaxies in the observable universe.”[2]

This actually points to a bigger problem – the problem of distant starlight. And what the Big Bangers won’t tell you is that the Big Bang has its own distant starlight problem. I dealt with the distant starlight problem in the article “Which theory has the fatal flaw, Big Bang or Creation“, so I won’t cover that ground again here. In this article we’ll focus instead on the problems with the big bang proclamation of a 13.75 billion year old universe.[3]

As far as such scientists are concerned, people who believe in a 6,000 year old earth are like believers in a flat earth – hopelessly backwards and foolishly ignorant. But there is an important distinction to be made here. Believers in the Bible are not like believers in a flat earth. Besides the fact that the bible proclaimed the earth is round thousands of years before 1492 when Columbus sailed the ocean blue,[4] there is direct, clear evidence that the earth is round: photographs of the earth from space being one of them. This site is about rational reasons to believe, so for those really seeking the truth, that should be the end of the matter.

Now that we’ve established Christians believe because of strong, direct, evidence supported reasons, let’s apply the same standard to the age of the earth. Let’s have the scientists present direct, clear evidence that the universe is 13.75 billion years old as they claim. Direct evidence would be something like a clock that has been running since the beginning that we could consult, or an eye witness that existed for the duration that can give testimony as to the passage of time or the time frame.

Scientists will say something to the effect “a clock running since the beginning – that’s absurd. That would require the clock to exist in the beginning before anything existed which is clearly impossible. Likewise, a testimony would require an immortal being outside of time and space – which is also impossible.”  So  scientists have no direct, conclusive evidence of a 13.75 billion year old universe. What evidence do they have? Let’s come back to that question. First, let me point out that we do have an eye witness testimony of an immortal being outside of time of space  – that of God who said:

“For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day.”
Ex 20.11

Scientists of course do not accept that testimony- it’s not scientific. But please note that the Bible describes God as having the needed qualities: scripture testifies that God is both immortal (1 Tim 1.17,) and existed before any created thing, and thus is outside of space and time (Gen 1.1, John 1.1-3). (Note – scientist agree that space and time were both created – though they believe they were created in the Big Bang).

So Christians have the direct evidence of the God of Creation who testifies as to how long it took him to create the universe: 6 days.  Scientists have no direct evidence of a 13.75 billion year old galaxy.  So let’s return to the question above: exactly what evidence do they have as to the age of  the universe?

How Scientists Calculate the Age of the Universe

Since scientists cannot consult clocks to determine the age of the earth, and they can’t use tools like the much abused and misused radiometric dating process as they do for materials on earth.  Since the stars they want to measure are light years away, they have no physical samples to work with. What then, do they have to work with? Continue Reading

The coming Big Bang fairy tale


Like the above depiction of the Unisphere inside a ring of stars, the earth may be at a near the center of a concentric ring of galaxies.
New evidence suggests the earth may be at the center of a huge structure in space. That contradicts the Big bang, so prepare for a new big bang fairy tale to explain it.

 

New discoveries about the organization of the galaxies in space are challenging what big bang theorists have always believed about the the structure of the universe. The new evidence challenges the tenets of the popular but disputed  big bang theory down to its core. Even though the big bang was first proposed by a belgian priest named Georges Lemaitre, it is essentially a secular theory stating only naturalistic causes are responsible for the creation of the universe. That being the case there are two essential assumptions key to the theory which are required to maintain the appearance of the creation of the universe being an entirely natural event.

Those two key assumptions are that the universe is both homogenous and isotropic. “Homogenous” refers to the supposition that the matter in the universe is evenly distributed. “Isotropic” assumes that where ever you look and from whatever vantage point you look, the universe would look the same. Or as NASA puts it:

” …if you viewed the contents of the universe with sufficiently poor vision, it would appear roughly the same everywhere and in every direction. That is, the matter in the universe is homogeneous and isotropic when averaged over very large scales. This is called the Cosmological Principle.”1

These two principles are necessary to prevent the conclusion of special creation particularly in light of Hubble’s discovery in 1929 that resulted in the law that bears his name. That discovery – based on observing the red shift of galaxies2 – is that all galaxies are moving away from us. And the further away the galaxy is, the faster it’s moving. This is true in whatever direction you look – everything is moving away from us, and the most distant ones are moving fastest. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that fact appears to put us at the center of the universe. Hubble, an atheist, abhorred that thought. Putting our planet at the center of the universe is not the expected outcome of a lifeless, careless explosion. That is more like something a loving God who wanted us to have a good vantage point would do. How to over come that and keep the appearance of a naturalistic process?

Typical depiction of expansion of the universe – as an expanding balloon.

 

By assuming that the universe is both  homogenous and isotropic. Then the expansion of space can be described with the common balloon illustration.
Picture the universe as an expanding balloon (opposite). Like the galaxies visible on the surface – as the balloon grows larger everything on the surface moves away from each other – regardless of where you look, or where you are. 

Thus the big bang requires that the universe is both homogenous and isotropic.3

But the latest discovery by scientists indicates that the universe is neither homogenous nor isotropic. Instead of being the equivalent of an amorphous blob, scientists are discovering there is a distinct structure to the universe, and the earth appears to be in the center of it.

Regarding the structure of space, space.com reports: Continue Reading

Earth 2.0 and ETs: another scientific pipe dream

Some scientists need to be reminded that it’s ill-advised to count your aliens before they’re discovered.
 Artist conception of Kepler-452b with Earth for size comparison.
 Clouds, continents and oceans depicted on Kepler-452b are included though there is no evidence for them.

 

With the discovery of the earth like planet Kepler-452b, we have the opportunity for a valuable object lesson. Contrary to what scientists are hoping for – this will not be a lesson to Creationists that evolution is true and extra-terrestrial life has been found, thus validating evolution. No, the lesson this discovery affords is a demonstration of the foolishness of trying to disprove anything (much less the Bible) when:
1. Your primary evidence has yet to be discovered; and
2. You’re arguing from a scientific theory that flies in the face of the established laws of science.

The object for today’s lesson will be Jeff Schweitzer’s article in the Huffington Post, “Earth 2.0: Bad News for God“.  Schweitzer makes a number of mistakes common to scientists and others trying to debunk the Genesis account of origins. We’ll use his mistakes to identify these common errors so 1. You’re aware these are not unique earth shattering questions, they’ve all been handled before, and 2.  You can more easily identify them, and respond appropriately when next you see them. We’ll look first at the problem with his whole approach and in the process answer his objections. Schweitzer believes he has mounted a serious challenge to the Genesis account. He’s seriously mistaken.

 

1. Lack of Objectivity
Most people believe scientists are objective, impartial promoters of the truth –  whatever the truth turns out to be – because that is the image scientists have projected since the dawn of the modern scientific age. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Exhibit one: an example of a scientists who is biased and has obvious preferences as to what the truth is: Schweitzer himself.  Schweitzer can’t hide his obvious glee at the mere prospect of proving Bible believers wrong.

I would like here to preempt what will certainly be a re-write of history on the part of the world’s major religions. I predict with great confidence that all will come out and say such a discovery is completely consistent with religious teachings.1

“Preempt” the world’s religions? In other words he anticipates the world’s religions being wrong, and he wants to afford them no wiggle room to claim they were not, and thus this “preemptive” strike. An attempt to box them in; and to create the strongest case to say “see you’re wrong, and I told you so.” Hardly an objective position for a scientist. But Creationists and Intelligent Design theorists have been saying that the average scientist is neither objective nor unbiased for a long time. Creationist Ken Ham has been making this point for over a quarter century:

Many think of scientists as unbiased people in white laboratory coats objectively searching for truth. However scientists come in two basic forms, male and female, and they are just like you and me. They have beliefs and biases. A bias determines what you do with the evidence, especially the way in which you decide that certain evidence is more relevant or important than other evidence.2

One’s bias is of critical importance because it determines not only what evidence will be accepted3  but also the a-priori assumptions use in interpreting the evidence. For instance some look at the Grand Canyon and see a little bit of water acting over a long period of time (millions of years). Others see a lot of water (as in a world wide flood) acting over a short period of time. Same evidence, but a-priori assumptions determine how the evidence is interpreted. Clearly such assumptions are critical to one’s approach to both science and life.

2. Incorrect a-priori assumptions

Schweitzer is convinced that life exists out there in the universe, and one day we’ll discover it:

As I stated at the beginning, none of this will matter upon life’s discovery elsewhere.4

I make the case in the Waning, Great Scientific Hope  that the search for life on other planets is a hopeless one, with no chance of success. Why does Schweitzer consider it a certainty, and one day we’ll discover it? It’s based on his a-priori assumptions. Most scientists are naturalists – meaning they will allow only natural causes as scientific explanation. This forces them to adopt an anti-God, pro-Big Bang, pro-evolutionary world view which assumes: Continue Reading