Emmanuel Velikovsky

Discussion in 'Creation vs. Evolution' started by BrianT, Jul 22, 2003.

  1. BrianT

    BrianT
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    Anyone read any of his books/writings, especially those that deal with the history of the earth and/or Biblical themes?

    If so, whatcha think?

    Anyone know anything about his religious beliefs?
     
  2. Elena

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    EF He's a wacko
     
  3. Helen

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    He was not Christian at all. His data collection, however was thorough. It was his interpretations which were not good. Elena's judgment is not one I would hold, for the man was incredibly intelligent and very thorough in his work. However, when you start with the wrong presuppositions, you end up with the wrong conclusions -- sort of like evolutionists... :D

    But the man was not wacko, his data collection was terrific, and there is a lot we can learn from what he gathered in these areas, even if we don't agree with his conclusions.

    Yes, I have read most of his material I think. He collected a goldmine of information -- and when you take God's Word as your foundation and presuppositional truth, there are some interesting ideas that come out!
     
  4. NeilUnreal

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    I like what Carl Sagan said about Velikovsky. This is a paraphrase, since I don't have the source handy (I think he recounts the story in The Demon-Haunted World):

    "I always thought Velikovsky's planetary science and astronomy were rubbish, but his archaeology was pretty interesting. Until I met an archaeologist who told me: 'I always thought Velikovsky's archaeology was rubbish, but his planetary science and astronomy were interesting.' "

    -Neil
     
  5. Helen

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    I assume that means you haven't read his material yourself, Neil... [​IMG]
     
  6. NeilUnreal

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    Helen, I've read very little of Velikovsky's original work, mostly due to a lack of time. I saw a really nice older copy of "Worlds in Collision" at a local used bookstore -- it would be a great addition to my library. I have read secondary material from both his supporters and his detractors.

    I tried to convey my impression of Velikovsky in the quote from Sagan. It is that he was very intelligent, intelligent enough to learn more most people in a wide number of fields. Unfortunately, his failure to become an expert in any one field may have helped lead him astray. Since I've also taken a smorgasboard approach to knowledge in my own life, I view Velikovsky as a personal cautionary tale.* :D

    I think Sagan was making a related point: great minds can be brilliantly right but they can also be brilliantly wrong. Science is a congress of many minds, which can test the evidence and arrive at a verdict.

    -Neil

    *Actually, my in my younger years my scientific "wild side" was more Velikovskian. As I mellow, I'm becoming distinctly more Fortean.
     
  7. The Galatian

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    I've read his "Worlds in Collision". It was, as Sagan remarked, the work of a brilliant crank.

    The idea that planets can be jerked out of orbit and then slapped back into a stable orbit is one of the more amazing things he proposes.
     
  8. Elena

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    EF Perhaps wacko is too non-PC. The man was obviously intelligent, but I suspect he had some mental issues. There is nothing of significant value in any of his work.
     
  9. Helen

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    I'm wondering, Elena, if you have anything positive to say about anyone who you don't agree with.

    I disagree with a lot of what Velikovsky wrote, but the man was brilliant and, again, his thoroughness in data gathering was incredible. I find a great deal of value in much of the material he presents. His work has led me to find other references and other sources I might not have known existed as far as ancient civilizations go.

    He put some things together in a new and original way. Whether or not he was right or wrong in any particular thing does not take away from the value of what he did. His work was not junk, but neither was it Bible.

    You are all just jumping on a popular bandwagon in denigrating the man's work. I would loved to have known and talked with him. I have a feeling he knew much more than he ever wrote, and though some things, I know, that even made Einstein think. That is worth something right there.

    Quit being such snobs.
     
  10. Elena

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    EF Oh yes. Many of the people I disagree with scientifically I also respect. Velikovsky is not one of them. Neither are the majority of ye-creationists or people who 'create' journals (like theoretics to promote their own New Age agenda).. In terms of Velikosvky, intelligence is relative. I don't consider it 'intelligent' to develop bizarre hypotheses regarding planetary collisions. Now, the person developing this hypothesis may have been smart, but chose to follow (I suspect) some psychological demon when he developed the ideas portrayed in Worlds in Collision. Martin Luther followed similar demons when writing about the Jews. Bad ideas and bad science can arise from intelligent people. I also think it is very important to point out strawmen pictures of evolution (see 'what we lost' for a great example), bad science (M. Kluge has shown the folly of Setterfield's work) and others have shown the folly of people like Baumgardner. I think both Setterfield and Baumgardner are intelligent people. Unfortunately, they've let a personal psychological bias (ye-creationism) cloud their otherwise good science.
     
  11. Helen

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    Just for the record, Barry was not YEC when he started his research on the speed of light. It was the research which caused him to change.

    Kluge has persistently misunderstood Barry's work, then refused to contact him directly as he was invited several times to do, and then decided to try to email others who supported Barry's work and bully them into backing down on their support.

    Not good science no matter how you cut it. I have lost all respect for the man. And I have extremely little for the folks who ignore data so persistently in their faithful support of the lie of evolution. There is no possible way, biologically/genetically that evolution could happen. And when so much data lines up against something people still choose to believe in, then that is exactly what it is: a belief.

    What disturbs me are the number of people who say they are Christian but will prefer quoting Sagan or other anti-Christian sources and refusing to believe God Himself in His Word.

    That is a strange thing to me. Preferring men over God is not what I would want to be known for.
     
  12. Travelsong

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    What disturbs me is YEC's chanting this self righteous mantra. You believe God no more than I do, so stop insinuating that your faith is greater than those who hold to a different interpretation of Scripture than you do.
     
  13. Meatros

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    Velikovsky-He's simply not credible. I rank him up there with the guy who wrote Chariots of the Gods......But....

    If you had asked me in highschool-when I read both those books (the Velikovsky and Chariots), I'd have given my total endorsement. That was before I knew better however. Here's some pertinent info:
    Here's a Top Ten on why Velikovsky is wrong.
     
  14. NeilUnreal

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    Helen, perhaps the feelings of other Christians here towards Sagan, Gould, et al. are similar to your feelings about Velikovsky. Also it seems kind of strange to question our Christianity because we believe that one secular scientific source (Sagan) refutes another secular scientific source (Velikovsky) on a scientific matter. Sagan (et al.) clearly trump Velikovsky for scientific and factual reasons, and theology has no bearing on the matter.

    -Neil
     
  15. Helen

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    Neil, I didn't compare believing Mr. V. with Mr. S. I compared believing Mr. S. with believing God. Please don't get me wrong.

    On the other hand, Mr. V. did not write down his material while high on marijuana, either! Sagan gathered what data on his own? I personally have far more respect for Velikovsky than Sagan. But it is God whom I believe.
     
  16. NeilUnreal

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    I would swap the these two. :D

    But you'll get no disagreement on this. [​IMG]

    -Neil

    p.s.

    I suspected this was the case, but thanks for clarifying the context.
     
  17. Paul of Eugene

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    Without arguing the merits of the science, you realize that in many of our minds the exact opposite opinion is held concerning the denial of evolution and the age of the earth in the face of all evidence, all data, and in which direction belief triumphs over reason.
     
  18. Helen

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    All evidence? All data?

    Hardly.

    Data shows the speed of light has slowed, Planck's constant has become greater, and the mass of the electron has also become greater.

    Data shows that mutations have not been shown to cause any organism to depart from its basic type.

    Data shows that the negative mutations are building in the human race past our ability to deal with them.

    Evidence shows that there is no genetic way for a cell to either build or deal with a de novo protein.

    Evidence shows that when more than three traits are selected for at once, the population itself is in danger of extinction.

    Evidence shows that speciation can lead to endangered species, not more robust species.

    Evidence shows that paleontologists and anthropologists, desperate for both funding and recognition, have declared almost every new bit of primate bone found in Africa to be "a new ancestor of man", and that, in doing so, they are waging what appears to be an eternal battle with the geologists regarding strata ages in such important places as the Olduvai Gorge.

    Evidence shows that the evolutionists are so terrified of having evolution examined objectively in the schools that they are willing to lie about ID being religous, slander creation scientists, and resort to courtroom tactics to try to keep any challenges or open discussion of evolution out of the schools rather than letting the data and evidence speak for them.

    Evidence right here on the BB forum as well as other forums shows that those evolutionists who call themselves Christian are willing to take ANYONE else's word over God's when it comes to evolution!

    Evidence shows that the tactics used by some evolutionists to try to keep creation science down are slimey at best and illegal and unethical and immoral at worst.

    Yeah, I'll go with data and evidence. And, to return to the subject of the thread, I do appreciate Velikovsky's gathering of both, even though I disagree with his conclusions.
     
  19. Elena

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    EF Given all the strawmen arguments you've presented in this thread and 'what have we lost', I'd argue that you were a troll if you expressed anything other than admiration for Velikovsky.
     
  20. Paul of Eugene

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    Thanks, Helen, for replying. Things were starting to get boring around here. I need something to keep me alert . . . Did ya look at my web site and see the Australian pictures yet?

    Observational data shows that orbital speeds such as starts orbiting galaxies and binary pairs of stars are linked to the speed of light. So if the light was faster, so was the orbit of the earth around the sun, and we had all those billions of years anyway. And if light was "faster" yet all including gravity also reacted "faster", it would really make no difference anywhere!

    What a strange verbal construction - data shows that xx has not been shown??? Is that even possible? Lessee - how does that phrase go - "absense of evidence is not evidence of absence". Yes. That's it.

    We have the geological evidence that species and genus have risen over vast ages of time. We have the observation that the changes we could have time to observe do take place in accordance with evolutionary theory. No establishment of a "kind" barrier has ever been demonstrated, it is an article of faith, the kind of faith that impedes honest investigation. For example, what objective degree of genetic diferrences exist within the horse "kind" compared to the "kind" that includes humans and chimpanzees?

    Data shows the population of the earth is increasing, not fading away, and its going to take war, famine and pestilence to haul it back. These well known facts are inconsistent with such a notion.

    What about those bacteria that now have an enzyme to deal with nylon? What about those bacteria that develope the ability to deal with antibiotics, with new genetic material that did not exist before?

    How can evidence possibly show that? What if the three traits are merely enhancements instead of fatal flaws?

    So are you saying that since some species have gone extinct evolution isn't true? Where is the argument against evolution itself in this observation?

    It is normal in any science for the cutting edge to have areas of disagreement. This is not in any way an indication that the established areas are suddenly in jeapordy. Your remarks are perhaps filtered by what manages to get into the popular press.

    Hmmm. Do people debating around here seem terrified to you? Haven't I seen your own posts sometimes critical of the more extreme creationist claims? It's wrong to use courts to enforce the law of the land? If the data and evidence speak against evolution, then publish scientific papers to that effect.

    See if they stand the test of examination by knowledgeable scientists based on scientific merit alone.

    Hint: the anti-evolution rhetoric posted around here would fail to do the trick.

    God caused the starlight to come from billions of light years showing the universe is billions of years old. God caused the bones of fossils to be buried in such a way as to show a grand progression in the development of life over the eons. God caused the DNA of organisms to reflect an evolutionary past in terms of family resemblances and inherited vestiges.
    God caused the radioactivity that demonstrates the vast age of the earth. God decreed the laws of physics that have remained constant and allowed for life to develop and thrive.

    And you want me to argue with God about how He did it? Not me!

    By the way, I remain awed by your ability to make such claims and then say that God created stars on day one of Genesis one, when it plainly says he made the stars on day four. The demands of literalism seem to be less stringent when necessary, don't they!

    You wanna trade accusations about the ethics of scientists vs creationists? I don't. I prefer to discuss the merits of the evidence. I will concede that we are all human and capable of committing the occasional unworthy deed.

    Velekovsky is of interest only as a psychological specimen of an all to common type. I wouldn't trust the information he gathered, instead, go to the primary sources.

    WheW! That was a nice little bit of exercise. Woke me up, ready to take another call . . .
     

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