An Israeli Jew rejects “Why Evolution is True”

September 16, 2023 • 12:00 pm

My book Why Evolution is True has been translated into 18 languages, and one of them was Hebrew. I was pleased about that because many Orthodox Jews are Biblical creationists and I wanted them to at least have a shot at learning about the evidence for evolution.

In fact, I know of at least two American Orthodox Jews who accepted evolution (but then left the faith and were expelled by their families!) after reading the English version of the book.  They both told me they had no regrets. (I met them both at Randi’s The Amazing Meeting some years ago.)

Now that a Hebrew version is out, one of my Israeli readers managed to get two copies of it (not easy to procure!) and sent me this tale this morning:

I showed your (Hebrew edition) book to an intelligent young Jewish man living opposite me – he looked about 17 – 18 years old.

He is a student and shortly going to college.

He claimed he was happy with the ‘truth’ that the earth is less than 6,000 years old, and why would he want to consider anything that would detract from his ‘happiness’?

I suggested the possibility that his truth might not be the truth, but he rejected that possibility out of hand. His truth was most definitely the true truth..!

I offered to lend him the book for a few days but he politely refused, saying he had much preparation for college.

There are a lot of orthodox Jews in my area, and I’m considering delivering an A4 leaflet, English on one side, Hebrew on the other, with a basic explanation of Big Bang, stars formation, nucleosynthesis, planet formation, life, us.

But now wonder if such an action will result in unhappiness……?

It seems such a shame that otherwise intelligent humans are so far removed from aspects of critical thinking in their lives…

p.s.  the young student even went as far as saying you are not a ‘real’ Jew for even publishing such a book…!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, friends and comrades, is why I am sad every time I see a child being brought up as an ultra-Orthodox Jew. Am I a “real” Jew?  I’ll let others decide on their own. I’m certainly not a “religious” Jew, but you know the old joke:

Q; What do you call a Jew who doesn’t believe in God?
A: A Jew.

And as for the truth making them unhappy, well, they can always reject it.

(Remind me to tell you the story about the edition in Arabic.)

68 thoughts on “An Israeli Jew rejects “Why Evolution is True”

  1. Sigh … I like the joke at the end, apropos way to conclude.

    BTW Thanks for the Israel trip posts, I’m just swamped so can’t drop my comment on each. It’s utterly breathtaking and fascinating…. and I don’t know, there’s something … warm, homey, or comfortable, about it! Hard to articulate.

  2. I find it questionable that such a person as that student could be rationally identified as “intelligent” if he rejects scientific reality out of hand simply because it contradicts his ill-founded and unsupported religious beliefs. I despise the notion that because someone is “well-read” on ancient texts of mythical accounts of the world and accepts them as “trusth” that that person is somehow deep and wise. People can be “smart” in some areas and complete dunces in others and anyone who discards scientific reality cannot, in my estimation, be counted as genuinely intelligent no matter how much they know about anything else.

    1. A few years ago I talked to a biologist at the University of Potsdam (near Berlin). He remarked that there were a lot of Islamic students studying to become biologists. I asked him how they dealt with the theory of evolution, Oh they have no problem, they study the theory enough to pass the exams, but they don’t believe a word of it.

      1. That is a problem. Christian and Jewish believers are kinda innocuous (well, not always) and amenable to reason to a limited extend, but Islamic believers generally are not.
        I don’t know why that is, I’m at a loss there.

        1. Isn’t it because secularism has not made as many inroads as it has in the west? Didn’t Ayaan Hirsi-Ali say that islam needs a reformation?

    2. I disagree. Humans are very good at believing in things that have little or no evidence to support them. More intelligent people often find more sophisticated ways to attempt to justify their evidence-free beliefs. Skepticism requires a certain mindset and education and even people who call themselves “skeptics” usually have evidence-free beliefs that are obvious to those who don’t share them,

      I was a little surprised to learn that there are YEC Jews. I’ve only argued with YEC Christians and didn’t realize there were Jews that also believed that nonsense. I suppose it shouldn’t be a surprise, since the Old Testament is heavily involved in the argument.

      1. I agree (with you :). People are often described as “stupid” when what is really meant is that they have a wrong belief. Having a wrong belief can be due to many things other than being stupid. People are often not very rational.
        Maybe the student has that belief for an intelligent reason, actually; maybe he’s rationally afraid his family and friends would outcast him if he were no longer a YEC.

  3. When any (Christian, Islamic, theistic, some polytheistics) person of “strong belief” in The YEC (Young Earth Creationist) camp claims their “better ways of knowing” tells me how they believe in that verbage, I (1) bite my tongue (2) take some deep breaths and (3) attempt to gently and briefly explain how the facts of the sciences of Paleobiology and Paleogeology tend to converge on dates hundreds of millions and sometimes Billions of years ago.

    1. I think that happiness bit may be what’s behind a lot of the new crap going around. I’ll believe in what makes me happy, because it’s right. If it makes me sad, or think, or confused, it obviously isn’t the truth.

  4. PCC(e), PLEASE tell us the story about the Arabic translation of WEIT. By the way, a
    zillion thanks for taking us all along on your trip to Israel, as on your other voyages.

  5. I don’t understand why the 6,000 year old earth of Creation is somehow a “happy reality” and the reality of a 4.5 billion year old earth + evolution is a “sad reality”. Is it that complexity equals unhappiness, simplicity equals happiness? The counter-intuitiveness of religion will forever boggle my mind.

    1. I think it’s because the former comports with the Bible (look up the calculations of.Bishop Ussher), while the latter doesn’t, and therefore calls the whole Bible into question. That, at least, is why the two former Orthodox Jews gave up their faith. If evolution be true, they said, then how could they trust the stories of the Old Testament? And so they gave up their religion. And, they said, that was a struggle (in both cases their families rejected them.)

      1. Thanks for your additional comment. It also brings up the question of how much of religion is “this is what I believe” and how much is “this is what I was told to believe”. Kin selection is a powerful mechanism…ironic how an evolutionary adaptation enforces religious indoctrination.

      2. “(in both cases their families rejected them.)”

        Which of course is a powerful reason to resist reason and continue to place one’s faith in religion. Religious communities rarely promote free-thinking, sadly.

    2. Perhaps because the YEC has never entertained the idea of the nascence and evolution of life over billions of years seriously enough to appreciate its incredible richness. All they can see is what they’d lose if they no longer were a creationist.

      1. Well said, and sad for such individuals where the “Greatest Show on Earth” is purposely blocked from one’s own knowledge based on a small bit of “WOW” that the scriptures provide. I appreciate your word choice “nascence” since the fear of new experiences seems to be the problem with so many religious thinkers. Also that nascence can be had many times in life and for religious thinkers, it seems to happen only once, and usually before they have knowledge of evolution, geological time, space etc. and their frontal cortexes haven’t developed yet. Children and adolescents…get ’em while they’re young and all that.

        1. “Nascence” is onomatopoeic there, in a way. A quiet, soft, drawn-out word, suggesting long spans of time during which chemicals combined and recombined in fertile stews to produce life …
          Although parts of it may not have been quiet at all – lightning may have played a part in producing new organic compounds.
          “And the clouds thundered, ‘Let there be life!'”

  6. We are physical beings having a physical ‘experience’. Why people take up all the religious/spiritual tosh is an enigma. It seems such a bad use of our limited time, when there is a whole Universe and everything in it to explore.

    Thank you so much for keeping us posted on your exploration of Israel.

    1. It seems such a bad use of our limited time,

      A significant number of the religious, AIUI, take a line similar to “If I believe in ShivGoWeh-whoever, I will have eternal life” and therefore considerations of “limited time” just do not impinge on their thought processes.

  7. For anyone trying to convince someone like this young man, I can only suggest doing a baby step. Rather than having them make the huge leap to the actual age of the earth, and the common ancestry of life, etc., just try to show them that the earth is waaaay older than x-thousands of years. Just try for that, and then stop.
    Perhaps something fairly simple like an examination of a geological profile with sedimentary rocks. Show them records of petrified sand dunes, stacked on one another, with sand dune ripple marks and reptile tracks in on the exposed faces. These layers are flanked by tropical sea deposits and layers of ancient coral reefs, which is a very different kind of environment. and not a sign of a cataclysmic flood anywhere. All laid down over eons, which took time. Then consolidated into rock — more time. Then carved out by a canyon, which took still more time. The Grand Canyon would be an example.
    Or one could try for a review of the paleomagnetism record of the sea floor. This is far more technical, but even more unassailable in my opinion. The latter is probably why YEC stay the hell away from it.

    1. and not a sign of a cataclysmic flood anywhere

      It isn’t really relevant in Israel, where the evidence of post-glacial meltwaters, the slightly earlier drying of the Mediterranean ocean basin etc are all conveniently below sea level, but in NW Europe and a lot of NE-to-North USA a lot of the surface geology is … “mantled” is a good word … with glacial outwash plains, boulder clays etc which are related to flooding above and beyond what you see today from the rivers and rainfall of the current climate.
      Which doesn’t for one second validate YECs “Flood Geology”, but it did take some time to work out what had been happening in the Pleistocene. Agassiz got the basics figured out in the 1830s and 40s, but the YECs don’t want to hear that.
      One of my classmates (“Petroleum Geology”, rather than “Geology and Mineralogy”) adhered to a deranged Xtian sect (I forget which one – no alcohol, tea coffee, doctors or 7000 year old Earth) and went on to a career in water resource geology – working in precisely those glacial deposits that didn’t challenge his beliefs. He got his degree by remembering the conventional explanations, parrotting them as required, and not believing a word of it. Tellingly, he never “engaged” more than he had to with any of the disciplines where megayears are unavoidable.
      Oh, BTW, the YECs have at least one explanation for oceanic palaeomagnetic traces. They ignore the inconvenient fact that their proposal would have boiled the Earth dry in about 6000 BP and the oceans would still be raining out today. [SHRUG] Disconnected from reality.

  8. The trouble with maintaining the belief that ignorance is bliss is that you can never test it to find out if it is true.

  9. While I’m not Jewish, the Hitchensesque homunculus inside me would’ve had to respond to this young man’s stupidity and disrespect with snarky rebuttal. Something like ‘No boy, it is you who is not a real Jew. “Real” Jews understand the world and make profound contributions to it while you are destined to do no such thing, doing and saying the same things that Jews have for centuries on repeat. Congratulations, you’re living in 200 BC and worse, proud of it.

  10. People have the right to choose. I choose to follow and read this blog even if I don’t agree with all its assertions. As I hope folks would do the same out of respect for mine. There is critical thinking in the communities of faith, too, believe it or not. 😀

    1. Faith is not based on critical thinking, but on brainwashing, as happens in religious schools. And I consider brainwashing of children a crime. It results in, for example, not allowing abortion to women that carry a dead baby in their womb.

      1. The real meaning of “believing in God”, aside from various miracle-beliefs that may be associated with it, seems to be assigning authority and rightness and goodness to thoughts that the person believes are God communicating with them.
        Or, assigning authority and rightness and goodness to someone else’s thoughts and actions, such as a priest or a pope.
        So it seems like religious faith is inherently authoritarian.

    2. People do have the right to choose, in the sense that they can make up their own minds about things. But it is not that simple. People can have their own standards as to what constitutes a real Jew, or what is the real Church of Christ. For example, Boris Rodrigo believes that The Fifth Church of Christ, Cosmonaut is the only true church.

      However, there are issues with the choice to believe. For example, one might choose to believe that gravitational attraction is best approximated by a constant times the sin of the ratio of masses, the whole divided by distance to the power one-fourth. That belief is unlike a belief in the truth of some nonsensical statement.

      One approach is to clarify the statements that you believe, and ask oneself how, if at all, one would know if one were wrong. One may also wonder about the empirical consequences of rejecting an idea like evolution, or any other established theory of science. Rejecting such theories might not send you to hell (although I choose to believe it surely does), but it might present some difficulties in formulating standards by which we evaluate descriptions of the physical world. For example, why reject evolution? With what ideas does it conflict? Are the alternatives coherent? What has evidence? Given the ideas that one does accept, are there conflicting ideas with as little (or as much) evidence that one rejects? If so, why reject them?

      As to respect, one may have one’s own standards as to what constitutes respect and what deserves respect. One may choose not to respect.

        1. I do choose what to respect or not. I don’t respect people who are imposing or trying to impose their religious views on society, such as Pence with what he is proposing in his campaign.

          1. I haven’t decided on Pence myself. But isn’t your colleague having a conniption fit over a religious student not wishing to read their favorite book—how is that not pushing your beliefs onto someone else? It takes faith to accept science, too I don’t care for higher-than-thou attitudes either—I was broken of mine regarding science and faith.

            1. I have much respect and even admiration for a person who is ignorant about a subject but sincerely wants to learn the truth about it. I do not respect people who are proud to be ignorant. and do not want to try to figure out what’s true.

              I don’t mind people trying to convince others of the truth of their beliefs. That’s what people should do if they think they have found the truth about something. In fact I think this is admirable. However, I don’t mind being rude to such people when they show themselves to be completely ignorant (and proud of it) about criticisms of their belief.

              1. So you can say it directly—you think I’m rude for disagreeing, coming in on a conversation meant only for certain select people and you think my points have no merit.? I can handle that. It’s been an interesting learning experience discussing with–what-?—three or so people secure in themselves and highly critical of anyone else. I respect your views—whatever definition of respect you choose to convince yourself of and I bid you a fond adieu REALLY—Have a good day, Sir!

              2. Well said Lou. Ignorance is respectable, but declining to improve on ignorance is not respectable, especially when improved understanding has been openly and freely offered (in this case by PCCE).

                It’s too bad Jonathan misstated your position and then left in a huff. Missed opportunity for him.

              3. Jonathan, my comment was not at all directed towards you. I don’t know anything about you. In fact, your presence on this thread suggests you are interested in hearing viewpoints that might be contrary to your beliefs. That’s admirable; I suspect that if we knew each other, we would probably have lively and interesting (and friendly) discussions.

            2. But it doesn’t take ‘faith’ to accept science, that’s such an old, tired claim. Religious people often use this linguistic trick in a vain attempt to establish an equivalence between religion and science, but the two are poles apart. In science, we have a way of determining what’s right (or at least most accurate), and we do that by theorising and measuring.

              As the late, great Richard Feynman said: “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.”

              Religion has no equivalent of the experimental and scientific method, and therefore lacks any mechanism for determining what is correct and real, and what is not.

        2. I don’t respect beliefs that consistently produce bad outcomes. Why should I?

          28 United States have religious exemptions to child-abuse laws. If religious people were not violent toward their children, they wouldn’t need an exemption, now, would they?


          1. Yet folks will willingly allow adults to sexualize and abuse children—the government even advocates it! What some lawyer calls abuse may be nothing more than a pat on the buttocks. Alexander’s turn, now! 😀

            1. Seriously?

              Who are “folks”?

              The government advocates no such thing.

              “…nothing more than a pat on the buttocks.” Minimize that if you want, but my body is MINE, and I will decide who touches me. I won’t even begin to describe to you the trouble with that statement, because, clearly, you are coming from a place where you think that’s OK.



              1. Did my answer disappear-? Huh. Not all discipline is abuse. It’s that simple .And no, again you’re prejudging my viewpoint, the very thing you accuse others of doing. I respect your views. Have a good day! 😀

        3. Do you choose not to respect?

          As to respect, one may have one’s own standards as to what constitutes respect and what deserves respect. One may choose not to respect.

          I have a right to choose. I choose what constitutes respect, and may choose not to respect. It is that arbitrary.

          My point is that, while we may say that people have a right to choose, there are consequences to our choices, especially if we choose to reject a scientific principle. Choosing to believe the earth is 6000 years old might conflict with a serious study of geology. Choosing to reject evolution might conflict with a serious study of biology. A right to choose a different law of gravity might have practical consequences, unless you choose to believe your law while practicing Newton’s law 🙂

          However, notions like who is Jew, who a real Christian, and what constitutes respect or disrespect, are arbitrary. Therefore, they are much more open to irresolvable debate.

          1. I see your point. But is there a feasible alternative theory of gravity-? I know of no such alternative—unless by weak or strong forces—I ‘m not qualified for that kind of discussion! 😀

            1. But is there a feasible alternative theory of gravity-?

              Newtonian gravity, and general relativity which subsumes Newtonian gravity, are the best we have. Alternative theories like string theory are speculative and are not yet established empirically.

              Your phrase ‘feasible alternative’ brings us to the issue under discussion. If I interpret it to mean one that is scientifically meaningful, then it becomes an empirical question. My freedom to choose is limited by empirical bounds.

      1. “gravitational attraction is best approximated by a constant times the sin of the ratio of masses…”

        Given the contract of this discussion, the dual meaning of “sin” gave me a chuckle here!

    3. Yes but they’re not entitled to proselytize their own facts: for years creationists prevented the teaching of evoluion in the U.S. That was due SOLELY to religious doctrine. Saying “people have the right to choose” is true, but glosses over the fact that religionists do more than “choose”: they impose falsehoods on others, like Orthodox Jews do to their kids. I’m not sure how your last sentence is relevant here.

      1. Can’t help you. I’m talking from a position where I DON’T shove things down anyone’s face. And what is it your business how some people want to raise their kids—not that I have any, we had cancer instead. However, your judging neglects to take into account all the scientific and non-Jewish families and how strictly they treat their kids? When do parents have the right to raise’em as they want to? I don’t know–you’re the one bringing up the subject. I repeat—have a good evening with your opinions. HOWEVER–I heard in the discussion something about Israel ! Did someone travel there recently-?

  11. Viewpoints such as the young man’s always remind me of Thomas Mann’s dictum: “a harmful truth is better than a noble lie.” Although like Mark R., I don’t see what’s harmful about an old earth, evolution, etc. But the saying holds for all manner of religious infatuations.

  12. Characters like the young man in question, and the pious Hasidim stuck in their ways, always make me wonder about intellectual processing amongst Jews. The huge over-representation of Jews amongst Nobel laureates, atomic physicists, etc. is often ascribed to the millenia of near 100% (male) literacy. But until the 19th century, this literacy was mostly devoted to endless Torah study and pilpul, which would seem to yield only the Haredi mentality. Then—we experienced the Haskalah, and floodgates seemed to open: in a few generations, Jews like Franck, Born, Bohr, Einstein, etc. etc. appeared.

    Of course, the tradition of Jewish literacy tended to include multiple languages, due to commercial operations, the role of Jews as a minority within other cultures, and the
    international connections created by the 2000 years of diaspora. [A large branch of my family, Deutsche Juden from the Hapsburg Empire, came to the US supposedly already knowing seven languages.] I wonder whether growing up in a tradition of literacy plus multilingual proficiency actually affects the nervous system. I suppose the diaspora of the overseas Chinese represents another sort of case study.

    1. “I wonder whether growing up in a tradition of literacy plus multilingual proficiency actually affects the nervous system.”

      Yes, everything (the environment) affects the nervous system, i.e. brain.

  13. The world is largely populated with religious people (mainly Abrahamic) and for most of them critical thinking has no particular importance. The overriding goal of these people is to enter the ‘afterlife’ once they die, which they hope their prayers to god will entitle them to do. This would likely be the reason for their ‘happiness’ factor, which of course would be invalidated if they chose to accept a godless evolutionary origin instead.

    1. Well, yes. wishful thinking may be more pleasant for some people, but limits the resolution of problems we have in many areas, such as medicine. Self deceit is not a desirable way of living.

  14. Lots of religious people are not believers in an afterlife. Buddhists want to get free of the cycle of life and life and life. And religious Jews do include some who believe in an afterlife and a great many who don’t. It doesn’t play anything like the role in traditional Judaism that it does in Christianity. Look what Jerry Coyne has been seeing in Jerusalem. The grave (supposedly) which was empty when Jesus was resurrected. The concept is central in Christianity and not in Judaism.

    1. Sorry, but I don’t know what you’re trying to say here. My post has nothing to do with the afterlife; it’s an email explaining why a young Jew doesn’t want to read Why Evolution is True. And of course I know that the afterlife is much less important in Judaism than Christianity, though a small number of Jews believe in an afterlife.

      As for “Look what Jerry Coyne has been seeing in Jerusalem,” I can take that only as an accusation of religious ignorance on my part. If you’re trying to say that, be explicit about it. If you’re trying to say something else, please be clear about what your point is, for, to me at least, it has nothing to do with the post.

  15. The young student WAS gently challenged regarding the fact of of Israel having the highest number of Nobel prizes per capita. I also mentioned medicine and planes as being examples of areas where evidence was vital, but he seemed unwilling to consider them. But perhaps a seed of doubt has been sown? But when the cover-all answer ‘why should I challenge what gives me happiness’ is given it suggests to me that this a technique employed to assist young people if they ever meet non-believers like myself. Very sad.

    1. A British TV anchor used the same technique in an interview with a man calling for the end of the monarchy. The anchor stressed the pomp of the king’s coronation ceremony and demanded to know why the man wanted to take the fun away from people.

      When I picketed a government-sponsored creche about thirty years ago a bystander asked me why I wanted to deny people the opportunity to celebrate and have fun (as if they couldn’t do so around a creche on church property).

      The point of the technique is to evade a serious discussion by changing the subject. One way to answer the student’s reply is to point out that a challenge to beliefs that bring him happiness might bring him greater happiness.

  16. From:

    “Traditional Judaism firmly believes that death is not the end of human existence. However, because Judaism is primarily focused on life here and now rather than on the afterlife, Judaism does not have much dogma about the afterlife, and leaves a great deal of room for personal opinion.”

    If the boy mentioned in the story was deluded enough to believe that the earth was less than 6,000 years old, he will also likely have learnt about Biblical creationism and the prospect of an afterlife. However, he wasn’t specifically asked about the latter, which could more pointedly have explained the origin of his ‘happiness’ and dismissal of evolution. I think that many people are religious simply because – in the back of their minds – their faith may enable them to go somewhere after they die.

    Unfortunately, critical thinking is of limited use to those having an overwhelming desire to believe in religious fairy tales.

  17. He is a student and shortly going to college.
    I offered to lend him the book for a few days but he politely refused, saying he had much preparation for college.

    Why is he preparing to go to college? For the social and networking opportunities, I guess – it can’t be because he’s interested in learning.

  18. Thanks for your wonderful travelogue from Israel. For a little-travelled northern working-class English lad like me it is extremely interesting to see a world reflected back which is so different from my own.
    Fascinating post. It is astonishing how much people can be consumed by their cognitive dissonance. That young Jew who refused to read “Why Evolution is True”, was effectively saying “I have my own “Truth” which makes me happy”. This is absurd: how many “Truths” are there? It is astonishing how many people confuse “belief” with “truth”. On the other hand, I’m currently reading “How Religion Evolved: and Why it Endures” by Robin Dunbar and disturbingly for an atheist/humanist like me he suggests that there is evidence that religious people have higher happiness scores and live longer than non-religious people, which appears to be partly due to the effect of the close communities that religions engender, and this seems in a sense to support what the young Jew was saying. I suppose these findings create a challenge for humanist/atheist communities to build closer and more resilient societies. But in my opinion Truth – the real Truth – as hard as it is to find and reliably confirm, should be something we all need to seek. The alternatives are profoundly dangerous: our world is in a precarious state precisely because many people consistently and repeatedly misrepresent Truth to themselves. That’s why the young Jew was so utterly and profoundly wrong.

  19. I’m a software engineer as are most of my colleagues. They typically have scientific/computer science/mathematics degrees and are usually very well-informed on these topics. This means we get to have a lot of really interesting discussions on all sorts of areas in science, maths, and even philosophy. Unsurprisingly, evolution is the only subject that has led to stark disagreement between some of us.

    We have only ever discussed evolution once, as when we did, we got extreme pushback and disagreement from a particular colleague. The objection he raised was about fish ‘walking out of the sea’. So I explained how that can happen, but over immense periods of time. I have a whiteboard and used that to illustrate how fishes that live near the shore, or in rivers that turn to puddles in summer, can slowly evolve the ability to walk on their fins and breathe air through natural selection.

    I could see he was realising that this scenario was very plausible, so I offered to take an hour or two to explain to him how it all works in more detail. However, he point-blank refused to listen to me anymore, explaining that he didn’t want to know about it (which was incredibly frustrating). This is similar to the story about Chicago business leaders that Jerry reported in WEIT, i.e. people see that the evidence is real, but they wilfully refuse to believe it.

    Even though this guy was brought up in the UK, he has never studied evolution in high school (although it’s part of the curriculum!) and has spent much of his life involved in religious activities. In my opinion, such people are a lost cause in terms of their beliefs, because data and critical thinking run counter to nearly everything they’ve ever learned since being a toddler. They are simply taught not to accept science as an explanation! It doesn’t matter what the evidence says, if religion has already convinced them of something, there’s very little chance of persuading them otherwise.

    1. Sorry, I should have mentioned that the guy in question is a Muslim who lives in a predominantly Muslim neighbourhood and went to a Muslim ‘faith school’.

  20. I understand your frustration. I have debated with creationists in Facebook groups inviting them to listen to a podcast I made showing that there is an overwhelming and irrefutable amount of evidence to show evolution happened. (I won’t paste the link as I don’t have Jerry’s permission to post personal links) As far as I could tell, none of them listened to it. There seems to be a deep insecurity about such people; they can’t seem to face up to any truth claim that they find difficult or uncomfortable. Why such people bother engaging in discussion groups is beyond me, unless it is to proselytise about their own worldview.
    If only more people could be open minded enough to seek truth in the obvious way, by looking at evidence and following where it takes them.
    By the way, if he doesn’t think fish can crawl out of water, you could show him this video about mudskippers:

  21. I probably should have added that a fossil believed to be the ancestor of amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals, has been found in deposits from the Devonian Period (way before the dinosaurs). It is called tiktaalik. You could look it up for him.

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