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Andrew Alden

Happy Birthday, World

By October 23, 2010

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October 23, 4004 BCE is the biblical date of creation, according to the calculations of Bishop James Ussher based on ancient documents. That would make today the Earth's 6013th birthday.

No one ever improved upon Ussher's scholarly work, which he published in 1650. Instead, geologic evidence superseded documentary evidence. Three hundred years later, we had figured out that Earth was almost a million times older than Ussher thought. Two fine books I've reviewed fill out this long story well: The Chronologers' Quest and Measuring Eternity.


October 24, 2010 at 10:49 am
(1) Jules says:

It is sad and scary that today a sizable portion of the population, including those who would be our leaders and educators, still believe in that younger date, which when looked at without naive acceptance shows it to be total irrational nonsense, regardless of the detailed documentation of one books generational chronology.

It is easier for the intellectually lazy to believe the fundamentalist “high priests” and disingenuous charlatans like Glenn Beck than take the effort to understand real scientific evidence.

October 28, 2010 at 9:18 am
(2) Hummingbird says:

Jules said:
“It is sad and scary that today a sizable portion of the population, including those who would be our leaders and educators, still believe ….”

It’s sad and scary that today a sizable portion of the population, including those who would be our leaders and educators still believe they have the mind and understanding of a creator.

If you don’t believe in a creator than your disagreeing with a “younger” date is understood… for obvious reasons. You have proof you can see that shows a much older date… fair enough.

If, however you believe in the older date because of scientific “proof”, then please address the fact that “time” as we know it is NOT constant……… like we once believed?

I’d also like to add that it is Truly Frightening to know that the vast majority of populations around the world, a number which grows exponentially….. will believe anything you tell them. Especially when “they saw it online”.

October 30, 2010 at 10:04 am
(3) Jules says:


You are alarmed that many “believe” they know the mind of a creator?
I would say there are millionsof people who constantly tell us what they confidently proclaim is in the creators minds. They populate and pollute our air waves, literature,politics and church podiums every week with their obnoxious and deluded proclamations.

There are plenty who just accept what is said by these reprehensibly ignorant hucksters in addition to what they read on-line.

Scientists do not proclaim to know the “mind of God”, but are constantly searching for answers by using the scientific method with data derived from the natural world. Nothing about the supernatural can be measured,quantified or tested, so for science it has no practical relavance.

Define what you mean about time not being constant.

Are you referring to the theory of special relativity? That has nothing much to do with radiometric dating the history of the earth or the cosmological methods used to date the universe.

My acceptance of the proofs that science are not because I am agnostic about belief in the traditional idea of a creator, but from studying cosmology, biology and the earth sciences which supply ample proof of how their conclusions were derived.

Most religions offers no physical proof for many of it’s assertions. Even the most scholarly of the apologsits for faith only see the universe as centered around human concepts and conceits. Science, especially cosmology has shown that the provinicial affairs of one planet do not define the whole context of the universe.

Religion is still stuck in a extremely narrow view of life and ignores the context of the almost incomprehensible size and age of the universe. In words that I probably use too often…much of religion is myopic, infantile, narcissistic and self-absorbed.

November 4, 2010 at 7:33 pm
(4) Dan says:

I thank God for science.

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