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04/06/2005 11:34:33 AM · #1
My entry in the Beginning challenge
161018.jpg
finished 18th, so I can't really complain, but looking at one "faith-based" comment and a rather peculiar votes histogram I get an impression that this photo turned out to be "controversial". I had not expected it coming (unlike my ealier entry), but apparently it was - look at the number of 1, 2's, and 3's! I think it is wrong to judge people's beliefs in a photo contest - but what can you do....

Anyway, I am sorry if my photo offendend anyone, it did not mean to.
And of course - thanks to all for many very nice comments! Always appreciated.

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 11:39:20.
04/06/2005 11:38:25 AM · #2
I read "the comment" and I am not sure the person meant that he/she was judging on faith basis or that some poeple might.....regradless.... well...you know.

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 11:39:11.
04/06/2005 11:49:15 AM · #3
That was a very clever idea and deserved to finish high. The religion comment was only an opinion (one I don't necessarily agree with), and you're right that it shouldn't matter. A good photo of Adam & Eve shouldn't score any differently than a good photo of the Big Bang. The challenge didn't specify a particular beginning, nor whether it had to be fact or fiction. It's worth noting that the commenter has an average vote given of 3.86. I suspect that at least some of those low votes stem from the graphic look of the image. A few people will clobber anything that starts to look like an illustration.
04/06/2005 12:01:56 PM · #4
Like scalvert was hinting at, you have to take into account how someone scores the whole challenge before you determine if the score they gave you is low. I also don't think the person judged you on their faith.

I don't believe in the big bang theory, but I liked your photo. You'll find I probably give out some of the lowest scores (must be my ex-teaching experience), but I make sure I vote on everyone's so that it's fair. I'll be honest, I gave you a 4. It's higher than my average but I thought the middle was just too white and it distracted me from the rest of the photo.

Congrats on the 18th place though. I think you did well on a tough theme.
04/06/2005 12:06:00 PM · #5
32 comments, only one of which references the issue of "creationism"; the rest are almost all strongly positive, but show an undercurrent of wishing the image had that vital WOW factor. Which is exactly my reaction to it, and why I gave it a 7 instead of higher; nicely done, but relatively "bland" all things considered. I see no reason to assume the lower votes are religiously-motivated; I'd think they were mroe of a reaction to the inherent artificality of the image. It seems like a LOT of people give low scores to anything that doesn't look strictly "real".

My own "Primordial Soup" had NINETY votes of 3 or less, and it's not technically a bad picture at all IMO, although whether or not you LIKE it is a matter of taste.

Robt.
04/06/2005 12:09:32 PM · #6
I'm in agreement with Robert, and looking at the histogram, I don't see it as being an unusual distribution of votes.

04/06/2005 12:16:40 PM · #7
Originally posted by kirbic:

I'm in agreement with Robert, and looking at the histogram, I don't see it as being an unusual distribution of votes.


Multi-peaked histograms are rare - I just looked through a bunch of entries to check. And I think to have the number of 1's significantly larger than 2's is highly unusual. Try to find another histogram like this (my three-peaked Road sign does not count :))

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 12:20:17.
04/06/2005 12:25:38 PM · #8
Originally posted by ltsimring:

Originally posted by kirbic:

I'm in agreement with Robert, and looking at the histogram, I don't see it as being an unusual distribution of votes.


Multi-peaked histograms are rare - I just looked through a bunch of entries to check. And I think to have the number of 1's significantly larger than 2's is highly unusual. Try to find another histogram like this (my three-peaked Road sign does not count :))


Here's a multi-peak compressed around the low end, with significantly more 3's and 1's than 2's...

146162.jpg

Of course, that's not fighting fair, this is a famously insane example of alienating voters, I believe...

Robt.
04/06/2005 12:30:45 PM · #9
Originally posted by ltsimring:

Originally posted by kirbic:

I'm in agreement with Robert, and looking at the histogram, I don't see it as being an unusual distribution of votes.


Multi-peaked histograms are rare - I just looked through a bunch of entries to check. And I think to have the number of 1's significantly larger than 2's is highly unusual. Try to find another histogram like this (my three-peaked Road sign does not count :))


LOO, actually your three-peaked road sign does count. It indicates there was very divergent reaction to your shot, so the histogram "spread off the scale" and the votes bunched up at the ends, since noone could actually give higher than a 10 or lower than a 1.

Here are a couple of mint that show the same effect:

[thumb]52260[/thumb] and 20040.jpg both show it on the bottom end, and...

157741.jpg has the same effect on the high end.

It is possible that a few (maybe two or three) of those ones you got were philosophically motivated. There's little doubt that that some religious images garner a few ones for the same reason. If so in either case, shame on those voters for letting personal beliefs get in the way of judging photography.
04/06/2005 12:45:08 PM · #10
Originally posted by bear_music:

I see no reason to assume the lower votes are religiously-motivated; I'd think they were mroe of a reaction to the inherent artificality of the image.

Robt.


I concur. I'm a bible-thumper and this is a good image with great color that I would've voted relatively high. Like Bear said :-)

As a P.S. people always assume us believers are opposed to everything science says when really, by believing that God created the earth/universe and reading the Bible, we know He is also the creator of everything studied within science. I see nothing in the Bible that suggests God didn't use a big ol' bang to get things rolling...He also used a lot of chemistry, physics, etc. If you get my meaning.

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 12:48:33.
04/06/2005 12:57:43 PM · #11
Unfortunately, Lori, believers like yourself are not the ones who get all the press. There is a huge anti-science movement amongst certain groups of evangelicals/fundamentalists. It's hugely disappointing to me as a science educator and general science geek. It's also a dangerous trend that threatens the integrity of education. Your own perspective is refreshing to hear.

Originally posted by GoldBerry:

I concur. I'm a bible-thumper and this is a good image with great color that I would've voted relatively high. Like Bear said :-)
As a P.S. people always assume us believers are opposed to everything science says when really, by believing that God created the earth/universe and reading the Bible, we know He is also the creator of everything studied within science. I see nothing in the Bible that suggests God didn't use a big ol' bang to get things rolling...He also used a lot of chemistry, physics, etc. If you get my meaning.
04/06/2005 01:10:59 PM · #12
Originally posted by strangeghost:

Your own perspective is refreshing to hear.


Appreciate it:-) Don't get me wrong, I plug my ears at the mention of evolution, which is entirely too much heresay that was never meant to even be an accepted theory as far as I know..just caught on accidentally. But yea, science is a major part of this world and of Creation...I've even seen some Christian scientists. Now THAT'S refreshing!

And I think the anti-science movement that you refer to would probably be in response to things like Evolution being taught as fact in schools from very early on. Just as an example. I can see why people would be upset but that doesn't mean we should write off everything on the entire subject.

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 13:13:08.
04/06/2005 01:20:38 PM · #13
What strangeghost said x 2.
04/06/2005 01:32:33 PM · #14
Originally posted by GoldBerry:

I concur. I'm a bible-thumper and this is a good image with great color that I would've voted relatively high. Like Bear said :-)

As a P.S. people always assume us believers are opposed to everything science says when really, by believing that God created the earth/universe and reading the Bible, we know He is also the creator of everything studied within science. I see nothing in the Bible that suggests God didn't use a big ol' bang to get things rolling...He also used a lot of chemistry, physics, etc. If you get my meaning.


As a Christian, I'll second that. You could easily have called this "Let There Be Light" and I would have given it the same score. In my prior life as an atheist, I believed Science and God are mutually exclusive - this is what most of today's scientists believe (although if you look at many of the great minds of the past century, they were believers - e.g. Einstein).

What I find amazing is how non-believers call ALL Christians "narrow-minded" and "intolerant" - oh the irony! :-)
04/06/2005 01:33:11 PM · #15
Originally posted by GoldBerry:

Originally posted by strangeghost:

Your own perspective is refreshing to hear.


Appreciate it:-) Don't get me wrong, I plug my ears at the mention of evolution, which is entirely too much heresay that was never meant to even be an accepted theory as far as I know..just caught on accidentally. But yea, science is a major part of this world and of Creation...I've even seen some Christian scientists. Now THAT'S refreshing!

And I think the anti-science movement that you refer to would probably be in response to things like Evolution being taught as fact in schools from very early on. Just as an example. I can see why people would be upset but that doesn't mean we should write off everything on the entire subject.


Frankly, I don't undersand why so many religious people take a stand at evolution. After all, if one accepts God in metaphysical form and not as a grandfatherly man sitting on a cloud, evolution can also be accepted as God's creation, no? And Big Bang, too... :) Or you really think that Eve was created from Adam's rib? It seems that religious people gradually accepted almost all scientific notions which they violently opposed initially - even the relativity theory - because they work. Hopefully, evolution will get accepted some day, too.
04/06/2005 01:54:06 PM · #16
Originally posted by ltsimring:

...Hopefully, evolution will get accepted some day, too.


150 years and counting, don't hold your breath, LOL.
I agree, BTW, there is absolutely no reason that acceptance of evolution and/or other physically testable and observable phenomena, e.g. big bang, are incompatible with with Christian (or other) religious belief systems.
Many of the greatest scientists of all time have been religious men/women. Many great religious leaders have also been supporters of science.

04/06/2005 02:19:20 PM · #17
I'll throw my hat into the ring, even though this argument is almost never won by either side. (I'm sure I'll get my share of flaming too.)

I am an engineer by profession, and consider myself decently educated. I am also a major Big Bang and Evolutionary theory opponent. I oppose the theories, not because I am a Christian, but because it is scientific crap. It is not science; it is just as much a religion as Christianity. (It takes just as much faith to believe that all the matter in the UNIVERSE was in a tiny spinning dot that decided to explode, or that all life came from rain falling on rock/chemicals for eons.) Yet, it is being pushed onto the public by the media. Go read a science related article on any major news website, and you will see how most stories related to evolution, fossils, etc, are stated as fact, not theory. That is the main complaint of many education reformists. I have seen current textbooks that still teach evolution evidence such as the Marsh horse series, speckled moths, finches, Haeckel's embryo drawings, etc, that has been scientifically proven to be false, hoaxes, or examples of micro-evolution (change within the species). Yes, moths and finches can change according to their environment, but guess what... they are still moths and finches. They did not become monkeys.

Why are scientists/educators so opposed to challenging the prevailing theories? Why not allow a sticker in a textbook stating that Evolution is a theory, not fact? Why not ask students to think about the evidence and challenge the theories?

-Chad
04/06/2005 02:28:34 PM · #18
Originally posted by cpurser:

Why are scientists/educators so opposed to challenging the prevailing theories? Why not allow a sticker in a textbook stating that Evolution is a theory, not fact? Why not ask students to think about the evidence and challenge the theories?

-Chad


Nice! That's what I was trying to say earlier (you did a better job). I esp. like what you said about it taking just as much blind faith to believe in the big bang "theory" as to believe in Creation. I love it!
04/06/2005 02:29:29 PM · #19
Originally posted by cpurser:

I'll throw my hat into the ring...


Come on! Everyone knows that we now know everything about everything! ;-)

I was going to state a similar position in this thread (although not as eloquently), but am trying very hard not to engage in these types of debates on this site - plenty of other forums for it. But I have no objections to others debating it here.

I'll just add this: If you read science journals or follow science at all, you find that quite often there are some fundamental theories that have been held as fact, that are suddenly disproved or called into question by new evidence. What most don't realize is that when you pull the foundation out from under a complex structure, the whole thing starts to crack and fall apart. IMO, people want to hold on to, or cling to, fractured theories because they support or endorse their chosen beliefs. :-)

edit: just removed some of the quoted part to conserve real estate.

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 14:32:15.
04/06/2005 02:32:19 PM · #20
Originally posted by cpurser:



Why are scientists/educators so opposed to challenging the prevailing theories? Why not allow a sticker in a textbook stating that Evolution is a theory, not fact? Why not ask students to think about the evidence and challenge the theories?

-Chad

Well said (I agree with your entire statement). I was going to try to add something to it, but I think you did a fine job.
04/06/2005 02:38:51 PM · #21
This is a controversial point of view, I know... but; into the breach.

While I accept that many people do believe in a god, it always seems to me to be a slightly lazy way of explaining the universe. No matter to what degree you accept scientific theory, to suggest that whatever is beyond the scope of your accepted understanding is "down to god" is akin to explaining everything by reference to "magic". Uncontestable, but also unhelpful.

Any explanation that includes "because god willed it so" is very unsatisfactory. In particular, there are a number of ancient mysteries that with the passing of time and greater understanding we have been able to explain. So why do we believe that the remaining mysteries can only be explained by reference to god? To suggest that there is no discoverable rational phenomenon for today's many mysteries is to suggest that we have reached the pinnacle of understanding - a claim made many times before and always proven wrong!

This is not to cast stones at the benefits that religions have provided over the centuries, in providing moral and ethical codes and support systems. It just seems that these roles could nowadays be provided through non-religous means, avoiding some of the pitfalls with which religion is burdened. I think that we may have outgrown the need for a religion.

Anyway - highly off topic, and probably going to make few friends.
04/06/2005 02:44:17 PM · #22
Originally posted by cpurser:

Why not allow a sticker in a textbook stating that Evolution is a theory, not fact? Why not ask students to think about the evidence and challenge the theories?

It's called the Theory of Evolution ... how much more of a disclaimer do you need? Perhaps we should be concentrating on upgrading English instruction and find out who's teaching that "theory" and "fact" are the same thing. So far, it only seems to be the groups opposing the teaching of Evolution at all who seem to suffer this confusion on a regular basis.

Personally, while I have trouble getting my mind around the Big Bang theory as much as any "normal" person, current models of cosmic (and local) evolution seem more likely to me than that there's some conscious, non-material entity "out there" who one week decides to create Earth, complete with a several-billion year fossil history in place.
04/06/2005 02:50:34 PM · #23
Originally posted by GeneralE:

... complete with a several-billion year fossil history in place.


With the no ability to check the accuracy of carbon dating except on a micro scale, it's tough for me to be confident in the macro "billion-year" measurements.

I'm not sure what I believe about the origin of the universe, speaking specifically of the theory of evolution...but the "billion year old" items we keep finding are hard for me to swallow.

I mean, it seems like we're trying to describe what a horse looks like based on a hoofprint...bad analogy...

Message edited by author 2005-04-06 14:51:08.
04/06/2005 02:56:36 PM · #24
God created the "Big Bang". So I thought the shot was okay within my Christian beliefs of the beginning. Worked for me.
04/06/2005 02:57:16 PM · #25
I'll stand by my opinion that the media, educators, government do not treat it as a theory. It is treated as fact.

Please notice that I did not put forth any arguments to the validity of the Bible, since it is impossible to prove the Story of Genesis. Hence it is a religion.

However, much of the evidence for evolution can be seen as evidence of Creation. It all depends on the initial assumptions.

-Chad
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