Evolution or No Evolution – is that even a question…

A while ago I stumbled upon a video which claimed to prove that evolution is real, or at least very likely. I decided to watch it, because though I do believe evolution is real, I don’t know any prove for it. Which might be good since I’m a firm believer. The video is not very long and explains it very well. You don’t have to be a science major to understand it. Clearly, since I am not one of those either. It’s interesting to watch.

 

As always I did what you should not do on Youtube: I scrolled down to read the comments. I picked out two completely different ones to show the contrast:
Evolution is a silly science fiction fairy-tale told by atheists in a sorry attempt to replace the true eternal word of GOD. All of the alleged so called evidence is imagined and can never be demonstrated or proven by visual assessment. They use their uncontrolled imaginations and delusions as their source of evidence.
If there IS a god of some kind then he obviously HATES humans, animals and the earth itself. Killing and suffering are non-stop on this planet, and have been for hundreds of millions of years. What kind of a cackling sadistic shithead would create such a world?
Obviously the first one comes from a creationist, the second one from an atheist. Now let’s take a closer look at both of them. The first person claims that evolution is the effect of imagination. He says it is ‘so called evidence’. Which I find pretty ironic seeing that the video does give a very good explanation as to why evolution is the most likely option. He also claims that this is all but an excuse to replace the true word of God. The scientist in the video states he believes in God as well. To me it doesn’t seem to be a thing of proving that God doesn’t exist. It’s about proving evolution is real.
The second comment is the opposite. I do agree for a part. If people really believe that God exists and created us the way we are today, then why did he make us such cruel creatures? He wants us to be good and forgiving, but if he’s so almighty then why did he give us evil? Isn’t it highly unlikely that someone  who created everything the way it is now would be happy with the result?
I also started looking around on Google to know more. And that is the moment where I got here. Someone asked if evolution is real. Someone answered in what seems a very logical and clear way. I think this part of one of the answers is something very interesting to keep in mind while talking about this topic:
A scientific theory is quite different from a fact. A theory doesn’t say THAT something happens (so the creationists are wrong here too), but attempts to explain HOW something happens. For example, the theory of gravity doesn’t say THAT gravity happens (we can see that much without any theory), but attempts to explain HOW gravity happens. Why do all massive objects exert a gravitational pull on each other? That’s what the theory of gravity seeks to answer.
The person saying this does believe evolution is real. Then there were other comments, like this one:
No, evolution is completely false. Although it doesn’t seam like it, but there really is not a single piece of evidence to support it. Scientists (BTW, creationists can be scientist too and some of the world’s greatest inventions were created by creationists (its all there, just search it)) who believe in evolution, when they see certain things, tend to just make the wrong types of assumption.
The typo there is not mine but his. Just sayin’.
Also this comment:
Absolutely not. Do you really believe we evolved from monkey’s or gorillas? (…) Is evolution logic? lets be honest. It is more logical for there to be a God than it is for us to form from a bunch of mollocules, or rain, or rock. and so on and so forth. (..) Not everything is meant for us to understand, but I know that God is real.
This was followed by the encouraging to read the Bible.
Of course.
But you see, this is the thing I hate. This girl from the comment above doesn’t seem to know what scientist say that evolution is. They don’t say we have evolved from monkeys, but we have a common ancestor. Seeing the physical similarities doesn’t make that so surreal. Plus: apparently 98% of our DNA is similar to that of a certain kind of gorilla. Plus: in the video above the guy clearly explains why it is so likely that we would share a common ancestor with the monkeys. That is one point that above all shows that this girl is not the one who should be commenting here.
Is evolution logic? Let’s be honest. It totally is when looking at the scientific facts, that as far as I know never claim that we have something in common with rain. Thank you very much.
Not everything is meant for us to understand – but creationist always need prove that is complete and cannot be ‘unproved’. They tend to say there is no proof for evolution.
On the other hand, what is their proof for the existence of God? Let me cite something I once read.
‘Everything that starts to exist has a reason. The universe started to exist. Therefore it has a reason. God exists’.
For people who throw away so much evidence because of little details that aren’t explicitly explained, I find this a sad way of reasoning. And that, people, is why I hate creationism. They close their eyes and just want to hear what they think is true. They don’t want to listen to anything else. They don’t to think about it. Why do they refuse to consider the fact that they might be wrong? I too have to admit that I’m not always right. But that’s okay as long as you are open to other opinions.
Also, they believe everything stated in the Bible is true. They believe a book. A book. With stories that you can never witness alive. How can they not see that that is a weird thing to do? I too could write a book. Why wouldn’t that one be true? And what evidence do they have for it to be true?
‘Because it is the Bible’ doesn’t count as evidence.
I do think it is possible to believe in God and evolution. It is possible that there is a God, but he’s clearly not almighty. Even if you believe he has created the world, then evolution might still be real. Maybe God finds it exciting to see how things evolve.
But above all you shouldn’t throw away clear indications just because you want to believe a book.
Via 9gag

Via 9gag

Also, creationists trying to defend themselves make a lot of typos. Man, even I am better at English and I’m not even a native speaker.
By the way, WordPress won’t allow any white space today. I’m sorry for the long, long text in just one part. That was not my intention at all.
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I need your help – a memory thing

Guys, I need your help. Recently a childhood memory came back to my mind and since that moment I have been wondering, wondering, but I cannot find the roots. The memory I’m talking of is a scene from a movie. I don’t know why I remember that particular part, but apparently it had an impact on me, since I only remember that. I must have been seven at the time or something…

So, I think the scene is from a Cleopatra movie – though I am not sure why I even think that. In this scene, the woman sits there among her servants. She wants to drink, so one of the servants takes the chalice (it was more of a chalice than anything else) and takes a sip – she’s the kind of servant who has to ‘test’ the food to see if it’s been poisoned. She then takes a cloth and cleans the edge of the cup. Then the woman who I believe was Cleopatra asks her why she did that. When the servant doesn’t answer, she commands her to drink again. The servant doesn’t want to at first but then drinks and dies – she tried to poison Cleopatra. Then the scene changes and there are white curtains blown by the wind.

This is what I remember from the movie, but so far I haven’t found this scene yet. I would love to see it again though, to see how much of my memory is true and why it had such an impact on me that about 12 years later on I still remember this. Can you please help me out?

Whether it's from this movie ornot, it's still an impressive dress she's wearing. Source.

Whether it’s from this movie ornot, it’s still an impressive dress she’s wearing.
Source.

Edit: it was in fact the movie of the picture – Cleopatra from 1963! And my memory turned out to be quite wrong. I remembered it really differently. The basics are the same, but the clothes, the setting, the angle were all different. It’s nice to see it again though, and it seems to be a good movie as well. Thanks to everyone helping me out on this one! You rock!

Sochi, And The Sport You Might Not Know

I don’t know how, I don’t know why. A sports fanatic I’m surely not, you all know I’m obsessed by anything dance, above all ballet.

But.

There’s a but.

Because when the Olympic Games are happening, I am for sure following. I don’t know any name, I barely know anything about the discipline probably, but I’m following. On tv, or on live stream, which I’ve now discovered. Somehow, it’s impossible to turn it off. As soon as I’m home, I put on the live stream and see what’s going on. Though I know so little about all sports, it’s actually very interesting. Especially the Winter Games have a lot of sports I haven’t even heard of. Mogul skiing? Skeleton? Biathlon?

For your information – mogul skiing is skiing on a bumpy slope, including some jumps that could break your neck when your landing goes wrong. Skeleton is done on a luge, with face forward. Biathlon is cross-country skiing (I would call it ‘upwards skiing’) in combination with shooting. All of these sports throw interesting questions on how they actually became a sport, and how they became an official Olympics sport. I have to admit though, that the winter sports are a bit bonkers and unknown. But don’t get me wrong, I love it. I’m a skier myself and I adore it. Thanks to these Games I can still enjoy the skiing somehow – last week is having a sort of revival. Just like I’m still wearing my skiing jacket to get the feeling back. Because there’s nothing better than a good slope.

The downside of this all is that I’m hooked, the live stream is always on though I’m not even always watching. Maybe it’s the fear of missing out. It seems like I get nothing done because it’s the games and I have to watch, or at least, listen. I seem to be slightly obsessed while throughout the year I don’t care about these sports. How is it possible that I’m taped too my screen? I want to be where the people are; I guess I assume everyone’s following the Games and that’s why I can’t turn it off.

Another upside: it makes me a little expert in unknown sports. “He totally nailed that 360 in the half-pipe snowboarding!”

As you know, the Games have not always been like they are now. Sports have been added and deleted from the official list. Ice dancing is one of the oldest disciplines, free style skiing on of the youngest I believe. there is one sport though that you will probably not know. It used to be a Olympics sport though, as odd as it may seem. Can you guess what it is?

Try again!

No?

It’s ski ballet.

I kid you not. It seems like a joke, but there’s footage, very serious footage of this below! (Im’ sure I looked less impressive on the slope…)

Thanks to Pointe Magazine.

June

It was Mooselicker saying I should write poems on every month, so thank him if you like these.

It’s June, the sun has returned
(And guess what, my legs were already burned)
But now I’m inside, finals coming up
And I’m so tired I can’t even use rhyme anymore…

The Blind Spots in History # 2: Hidden Holocaust Numbers

“The Holocaust(…) was the mass murder or genocide of approximately six million Jews during World War II, a programme of systematic state-sponsored murder by Nazi Germany, led by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, throughout German-occupied territory.”
That’s the definition Wikipedia gives. A few sentences later on, this is said: “Some scholars argue that the mass murder of the Romani and people with disabilities should be included in the definition, and some use the common noun “holocaust” to describe other Nazi mass murders, including those of Soviet prisoners of war, Polish and Soviet civilians, and homosexuals.”

During this post, I’ll use the term ‘Holocaust’ seeing it as the whole extermination of Jews, people with disabilities, gays, etc. Mostly (at least over here) the term is used in that way. People seem to define this often as the extermination of Jews ‘and gypsies, gays and so on’. But right here, we’re touching on the raw. It is most certainly true that many Jews were killed (the numbers are terrifying). But only a small amount of people seem to know all the numbers and all the facts.

You may have heard of the Polish citizens who put crosses in Auschwitz (I think it was over there). The world was somewhat shocked – they were putting crosses on a place where millions of Jews had died! Did no one wonder why they did so? There are reasons behind everything. These crosses were put there because the Polish people want the world to acknowledge the truth, the whole truth, and not just the truth we get to hear in history class.

This is the truth.
Six million Jews died.
Six million Polish citizens died.
Three million Polish Jews died. That’s nearly all of the Jews living in Poland at that point.
But there were also three million not-jewish Polish citizens who died. Which means that this isn’t just a jewish tragedy. But who knows about this numbers? I never heard of this before I went to university and had a class on Polish history. It’s like the world has buried this part. At some point people must have closed their eyes to this, so they only saw the jewish side of this story.

It was a tragedy as well for the Jews, of course. That’s pretty obvious. But after all, we shouldn’t keep our eyes closed because we pity them. Finkelstein, a Jew, wrote a book criticizing the exploitation of the Holocaust. He says it’s pretty impossible to say anything bad about the jewish faith or the Jews, because of what happened to them. But let us not forget that the entire Holocaust situation is too often used for jewish concerns. Who dares to say the Jews have no right to be in Israel? No one. I’m not saying they don’t have the right to live there, but they’re building a wall over there.

They’re building a wall and claiming the land.

We know what walls are. They don’t mean peace or fairness. Call me old-fashioned, but I think this is a bad thing. And the Holocaust should not be used as an excuse to do whatever you want. Do not exploit tragedies this way.

But above all I want to tell you that many not-jewish Polish citizens died as well during the Holocaust, and they are too often forgotten. The Polish people aren’t anti-Semitic because they’ve been putting crosses at the extermination camps. They just want to show the truth. They want the world to know the right numbers.

So spread the word.

I’ve got these numbers from my history class. If I’m mistaken somewhere, I sincerely apologise. Our professor knows a lot of Polish history and has done a lot of research over there. He knows what he is talking about, so any mistake is mine. The information on Finkelstein’s book comes from his as well, and from Wikipedia. I haven’t read it myself. I’m no expert at the Jewish concerns and Israel. But they are for sure building a wall.

You like Polish history? Michael Cargill is writing a story on the Warsaw Ghetto – an equally interesting and tragic part in Poland’s history. Plus: he has published paperback books! Just sayin’.

The Blind Spots in History # 1

2 April 2005. My family and I are returning from a holiday we spent skiing in France. We’re at nightfall, and we’ve just crossed the Belgian border. Though we still have to ride for a few hours, it feels like coming home. We can switch to a Belgian radio station again, right when the news reader starts talking.
“Today, pope John Paul II has died.”

The pope had died. That was everything the eleven year old me thought at that moment. Little did I know he was Polish, that I’d be studying Polish 7 years later on, that I’d be discovering things I never knew anything about. There are blind spots in history that should not be there. We should know the stories behind people and actions without ignoring some parts of it. We should uncover what’s been covered up somehow and spread the word.

Many people knew John Paul || as an old man who had trouble speaking. He was a pope, yes, but there’d been many more popes – what made him special? He was against abortion and gay marriage and all that – pretty predictable as he represents the catholic faith. But he was the first non-Italian pope in many, many years. Why was this ‘tradition’ broken after so many decades?

To answer that question, let’s go back in time. All of which I’ll be talking here, happened before I was born, or before I could somehow understand what was going on in the world and why. As a great deal of you are older than me, you probably already know a lot about this. But still.
Communism is our starting point. Everyone knows communism – due to this ideology (and stubbornness and stuff) the world has been divided for many years. It was the ruling ideology in Russia, but not only there. Russia was enormously powerful (though poor and hungry as well – weapons cannot be eaten…) and forced other countries as well to have a communist government. This is somewhat easily said, but it would take too long to explain that part of history. You get my point, though. Hopefully at least…

From 1944, Poland was a client state of the Soviet Union. This meant Poland got a communist government. This wasn’t considered fun. The main idea of communism is to live side by side, everyone being equal, everyone getting treated the same way. This all sounds very good. The point is, human beings are simply not able to live this way. There’ll always be leaders and followers. In reality communism was less about equality than about the government controlling the people. They used secret services of security. Communism became paranoia. There were still leaders and followers. There wasn’t really freedom after all.

People protested against that, somehow. It must have been a tricky thing to do, but still, some people didn’t shut their mouth to comply. (These people always get my respect… Can’t help it.) And with the pope supporting them (by being a pope and saying things you could interpret in two ways), in the end the people won. In March 1989, months before the Wall fell, communists and Solidarność, the famous Polish syndicate sat around the table together, and elections were organised. they weren’t entirely free, but still it gave Solidarność the opportunity to win. So Poland sort of defeated communism before any other country could in fact free itself.

‘John Paul II has been credited with being instrumental in bringing down communism in Central and Eastern Europe, by being the spiritual inspiration behind its downfall and catalyst for “a peaceful revolution” in Poland’, says Wikipedia. He gave speeches that encouraged people, he went back to Poland to show them he supported them. Or how to bring communism down without using violence. In the end, the people won. And that’s a great thing.

There are more blind spots I will tell you about. Perhaps you already know them, perhaps not – either way, there are many things people should be aware off. I’ll do my best to tell untold stories here.

Confession

I’ve got quite some things to confess, especially since we had a rather remarkable Thursday night, but I will not be confessing all my sins and mistakes here. There is one thing though I want to tell – maybe someone around here feels the same way. Let’s share our dolour!

You know, today is the 1st of December and people start to freak out with delightful decoration. Christmas trees, small, coloured lights and so on suddenly appear everywhere, and magazines start talking about how to dress during the Christmas dinner or New Year’s Eve. I didn’t realize it until I felt a sudden distaste turned up when seeing this stuff. I was casually reading a magazine and I saw all these things about The Holidays, and I stopped reading. I put the magazine away. I realized I don’t like this period. In fact, I start to hate it.
I mean, everyone seems to make a big deal out of Christmas and New Year’s Eve, but I think they’re overrated. You should celebrate Christmas with your family, but in fact I don’t know my entire family well enough to spend hours and hours with them, waiting for food of some kind. And New Year’s Eve isn’t that special at all. Last year, we were on a bus at 12:00 pm, and that was the best New Year’s Eve I’ve had so far. It was unexpected, everyone was kind, we saw all the fireworks. That was enough. The parties that night aren’t any better or more special than at other times. Why would that night be better than others? I’ve had some great nights already, on the most random days.
It’s like obligatory fun, but mostly I feel a bit lost during these days. Sometimes I’d rather hide and wait until it’s over. Everyone makes such a big deal out of it, and I wonder why… Plus: I’m not catholic, and I know most people here aren’t, so they just take Christmas as an excuse for presents and too much food. (Though some people also might like to spend time with their family of course.) I don’t need any presents, I won’t buy presents either. That’s the best way to avoid Christmas songs as well…

Next to that, this period is filled with dropping temperatures and darkness and snow perhaps. The best circumstances to hide, right? Maybe I can spend those days in my bed, thinking away the world or something. A cup of hot tea every now and then, and I’ll be just fine. No need to dress up for a party that will probably suck, no hours spent waiting for the next dish though you’re not hungry anymore. It’s fine for me to celebrate Christmas with my parents and brother, and to be in some cafe with some friends with New Year’s Eve. Let’s not make a big deal out of it, okay? No Christmas songs, no Christmas trees everywhere. Not necessary. A burning grate-fire will do.

https://i1.wp.com/media.rd.com/rd/images/rdc/slideshows/christmas-cartoons-slideshow-2008/1207-DaveCarpenter2-ss.jpg

OMG, they’ll excommunicate us!

 

Awarded, but lazy

It’s been a long time ago since I sat in front of the computer and wrote a decent post about an interesting subject or whatever. Could I have foreseen how busy life would get? Probably I should have known better. But okay.
Let me do a Guapo trick now: what’s been going on in the blogosphere? Edita was interviewed, go read it, it’s really worth it. Mistwalker made some great pictures, very intruiging. Mabel made a kick-ass (kick-head?) friend. Go check those out while I survive without posting ;).

I need to thank some people as well. Audrey en Lily have been so kind to give me awards, and that still makes me as happy as a child who gets a biscuit. So thank you thank you thank you! As usually there are rules and everything, but I’m so badass that I will not obey. What seven things could I tell you which you don’t know yet? Well, there are plenty of things in fact. I’ll give it a go.

1. I’m exhausted. Really exhausted. There used to be time when I thought going out until 3 am was exhausting. No I consider 3 am too early to leave already.

2. But it’s not entirely my fault. That’s just what happens when your friends go out such a long time.

3. I will not say I dislike it. Every Thursday I have the greatest time, and Friday I haven’t got any lessons, so that is fun.

4. Right now I’m working on a task for which I have to use the Russian keyboard. Do you have any idea how different that keyboard is from ours? I’d say, imagine qwerty being messed up completely. That’s what I feel like right now.

5. The task isn’t really done yet, but after five sentences I was tired of typing with only one finger.

6. It isn’t a useful task either.

7. I’m running out of songs to listen while doing this kind of stuff! Any recommendations?

I’m way too lazy (and busy) to gather stars or nominate people – you’re ALL nominated because I’m so kind ;).

O, and I fell really hard. Feel free to think of a cool story I can tell to explain the bruises! I was thinking of something mafia related. Or falling of an elephant. Anything! Let your fantasy run wild.

PS: No, I wasn’t drunk.

Bond, old Bond

Some random surfing got me to this video of Solitaire and James bond meeting each other in one of the many Bond films. I did my best to follow the Russian translation, but man alive, it was fast! Anyway, this video is so old and therefore cute…

Obama for the win – literally

Before you start reading this post, I should tell you that I’m not really interested in politics. Don’t be fooled. I do like to know a little bit what’s going on though, and it was quite impossible not to know elections were coming in the US… Someone here left a paper in the kitchen, so when I was eating my soup a few hours ago, I decided to read the part where they had collected English (or rather, American) pieces on the elections.
It definitely made my soup a whole lot more interesting. And it caused me to have reasons, motives to dislike Romney! Huzzah! In theory, I always get mad at people who deem before they know what they’re talking about. In reality, I’m often one of those people. I do my best to not do it, but it’s so subtle and small and you don’t always notice it, right?

Anyway, I started reading something written by a man who was quite pissed at Romney without losing his professionalism. I mean, he was not so much pissed as well ‘feeling very strongly about it’. As I was reading, I started to feel very strongly about it too. There’s a certain about birth control and abortion that always gets the debate going, right? Everyone is either for or against, and people who don’t share your opinion are immediately a bunch of idiots or retards and so on.
Okay, no, that’s a bit too harsh. But I do feel like everyone who does not share my opinion, has missed something. Maybe I’m just very non-believing and western and spoilt, but I don’t see why birth control would be a bad thing. Because face it, if birth control wouldn’t exist, we would have a bunch of babies that we should take care of. There’s a limit to the amount of people you really can take care of. There’s always a lack of money. Add all those ‘unwanted’ babies and there will be no more money left to take care of everyone, whether planned or not. And face this too: if we wouldn’t have had birth control, we’d possibly not have been where we are now – in a comfortable world with food and clothes for everyone.

The same counts for abortion more or less. I do understand that it feels like murder. Yes, it’s a child, it has the right to live just like we all do. But if you’re so pro ‘the right to live’, then end your wars now, at this very moment. Don’t be hypocrite – people in Afghanistan have rights too. yes, they’re human. O, and if you still have death penalty, then what’s the point of forbidding abortion? Don’t get me wrong- I’m for death penalty, in certain cases that is. Not the unlimited way it has been done for too long. Don’t just kill random people, right? Kill the ones who don’t deserve any better. Those people exist. Maybe they wouldn’t have lived if birth control or abortion would have been easier.

No, okay, that’s too bluntly. But you get my point – man alive, be consequent for god’s sake. I read even vetoed the right to use emergency birth control after a rape. Rape is this thing that people don’t see to be able to handle. Whenever a politician says something about it, it will cause debates and discussions everywhere. A dangerous place to be… Imagine how you would feel when this happens to you.

Next to all of this, I agree on the Belgian Facebook page: ‘Obama should win because he’s a chill nigger’. (NOTE: nigger isn’t necessarily a curse word here, especially here it isn’t meant to insult. Let’s have this right.)  Last but not least, I also see no point in trying to prove that Obama wasn’t born in the USA and stuff…

That’s as far as the political things will get here.