Saturday, March 11, 2006

Baryogenesis: The Origin of Matter

This week we are going to attempt to tackle a rather difficult question: where did all the matter from the universe come from? This question is often asked by Creationists in an attempt to present God as a “viable option” though it is no more than a God-of-the-Gaps argument. What we will cover involves matter-energy relation, what baryons and anti-baryons are, the stages of the early universe, and finally, the matter dominance.

Baryogenesis: The Origin of Matter

Ancient Hebrew Concept of Earth
CP Violation

A quick google search should result in quite a bit on CP symmetry and violation, as well as baryogenesis.

15 Comments:

Blogger richard said...

Robert,

Hello again. Your most recent criticism of creationism was about the flood waters. The question was where did the water come from.

The response to this criticism is that you assume the topography of the earth today (with a note on the height of Mt. Everest) in determining how much water would be necessary for a global flood.

But the Flood was a massive, global event that altered the topography of the earth. If the earth were flattened out, both mountain and sea, there would be enough water to cover the earth about 1.7 miles deep.

The water didn't need to come from underground or from a water canopy in the sky or outside the atmosphere. The water was on the earth all along.

1:00 PM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

The problem with this claim richard is that the Earth's geology displays something different. Mountain layers do not come in huge upheavals that would suggest a global flood. Instead we see tiny increments of soil.

Look at the image at this web address: http://emeryville.wli.net/images/Graphic_41.jpg.

In order for Mount Everest to have grown 29,000 feet in only 6,000 years, we would expect to see the soil grow by almost 5 feet per year. That sort of accumulation is NOT observed in any sort of geological record. If you demand one gigantic upheaval it's even worse. Using today's normal accumulation rates to about 6,000 years ago, we find Mount Everest to still be about 28,000 feet tall. This means the global flood somehow managed to displace soil 28,000 feet high (a much greater volume of course). There is no mechanism by which the flood could have done this, without invoking a miracle.

Besides, a flood that covered every section of the Earth ubiquitously would not be able to carve the intricate waterways we see today. If the world was flat, as you stated it was when the flood occured, there is absolutely no reason for the varied topography we see today.

2:43 PM  
Blogger richard said...

I think geological observations are consistent with a global flood.

I see I was unclear on some things. I don't believe that mountains were formed by sediment deposits from the Flood. It was a major tectonic event. The mountains formed in the same way modern tectonic theory says they did, except that instead of millions or billions of years... it was a matter of months or years.

I can't go into it all here, but try searching for catastrophic plate tectonics on Answers in Genesis' website, or the name John Baumgardner (I think that's spelled correctly).

Also, I didn't mean to imply that the earth was comopletely flat at the time of the flood. That was just a statement to show that there is enough water on the earth now to cover the whole thing (contrary to your calculations about the necessary amount of water to cover the earth). No, I believe that the earth during the Great Flood did have some mountains and valleys, and ocean trenches, etc. Just not as significantly as we see today. What we see today was formed during the Flood.

The catastrophic plate tectonics theory suggests that the continents actually sunk down into the earth, and 'floated' back up again. Which would allow for the erosion from runoff that we observe in structures like the Grand Canyon (and the sedimentary layers formed with the runoff). I'm sure I'm being entirely unclear. I should just let you seek out the information instead of trying to present it cogently here.

Peace-

7:48 PM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

I checked out the paper you talked about by John Baumgardner. First of all, before addressing it, you need to realize AIG admits not to be looking objecitvely at the evidence, like real scientists do.

These guys instead conclude the Bible is literally true, and work from there. They make this clear in their statement, which you can find at http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/about/faith.asp:

It reads "(A) PRIORITIES
The scientific aspects of creation are important, but are secondary in importance to the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

AKA, scientific evidence is secondary to the Gospel, and if there is a confliction, evidence will be twisted in order to fit with the Gospel.

Addressing the article (I've read half, the rest will be addressed in another post): It is true that none of the Ocean crust appear to be older than 200 million years old. This is still about 200 million years older than Creationists state the Earth is.

Mr. Baumgardner tries to use the example of Venus to demonstrate rapid plate tectonics. First of all, there are other factors he leaves out. How does Venus exactly get so hot without undergoing the greenhouse effect for millions of years?

Most of what he tries to use as evidence in regards to Venus is addressed on Talk.Origins http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/venus-young.html.

This "catastrophic plate tectonics model" in no way compares to the Earth. Baumgardner cannot account for the thin layers of soil we witness. A ubiquitous layer of lava also did not raise any of the features on Venus. The tallest mountain there, named after James Clerk Maxwell, remains at the same height, unaffected by the rapid deposition of lava.

Anyways, it's my mother's birthday today and we are going out to celebrate. Hopefully I can finish the article and post again soon.

4:12 PM  
Blogger richard said...

Hi Robert,

I am familiar with AiG's position, and I do not grant that your description of it is enirely accurate.

Yes, AiG recognizes God's Word as the ultimate standard, and interprets observations accordingly. This is no different from what a scientist does, though. We interpret our observations in light of what is already known (or believed) to be true. But this is a far cry from 'twisting the evidence'.

It might be argued that God's existence is not proven. And I grant it. I presuppose God's existence in order to make any sense of the world we live in. Before you criticize my presupposition in God, though, recognize that you also presuppose many things. For example, the laws of logic, the possibility of rationality, or the uniformity of the universe. The last of which is the foundation the principle of induction is built upon. And without induction, there's really no such thing as science, is there?

I do agree that AiG does not interpret observations completely objectively. But neither does anyone else. Such neutrality is a myth, and especially so when investigating origins questions.

As for Dr. Baumgardner's theory, I don't want to argue the specifics. It may be right or it may be wrong, but I believe it is at least consistent with what we observe today. (the layers are explained by sediment being laid down as the Flood waters rescended. This actually explains the many, many miles of continuous layers observed in the southwest USA).

Happy Birthday to your mother. :)

9:21 AM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

There is a great difference between the way scientists interpret information and the way Answers In Genesis does.

The presuppositions you mentioned are all attained a priori (with the exception of course of the uniformity of the universe, which stems from the a priori principles of logic and rationality.) God however, and the Bible are all a posteriori (attained via the senses). One can assume the laws of logic and reason because they are known through reflection only. God however requires more than simple reflection. It involves sensory input and reflection.

Besides, comparing the presupposition of God versus logic is like comparing apples and oranges. Science works with ontological naturalism, that is, it does not work with the supernatural. AIG is manipulating science by trying to use nature to verify a supernatural entity.

So no, AIG is not far from twisting evidence at all. It is what they do. Interpretation of the evidence until it fits the Biblical view is twisting, because logically, it fits much more simply (that is, without requiring as many assumptions: realize that the assumptions made within evolution and science are all naturalistic, and by default will be much simpler assumptions than assuming the supernatural, seeing as science works only in the natural realm.) when viewed in terms on modern and accepted, geological, biological, and physical theories.

I do not yet see how Baumgardner's theory actually fits with the picture reality provides. As with many Creationist models, I'm sure his picture could be realized, but only with arbitrary tweaking (such as what we see with Dr. Russell Humphrey's model of a 6,000 year old universe.) They, and I am assuming this will be true for Baumgardner, rearrange the universe, throwing in certain factors, until finally they state their hypothesis is what actually occured.

I will continue to look at what Baumgardner has presented.

3:50 PM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

I would like to add a question: why do you not wish to discuss the veracity of Baumgardner's claim if you believe his is consistent with reality? Shouldn't you be able to defend his writings; or do you accept his model on faith?

10:37 PM  
Blogger richard said...

Robert,

Hi again.

I do not accept the dichotomy you present between 'scientists' and 'answers in genesis'. In our dialogue, when talking about 'scientists' I'll assume scietists that are functionally atheistic. Just so you know. That being said,

Of course there is a difference between scientists and AiG. The difference is in the presuppositions made. If you're willing to grant that, then I am quite satisfied.

All of your 'a priori assumptions' have no foundations without God. Why are the laws of logic valid? Why can we use the principle of induction? Morality is also one of these assumptions, but it hasn't been a focus in our discussion thus far.

AiG is not manipulating science, they are just interpreting the same observations in a different way, based on different presuppositions.

The reason I don't want to defend Baumgardner's thesis is, quite simply, because I am unqualified. I have a general understanding of it, and geology in general, but I think to actually discuss the merits and/or demerits of his theory beyond a very general level is outside my capabilities.
I am willing to discuss it on those basic, general levels though. I find it interesting that you have, without foundation, asserted that Baumgardner's model might work, but only with 'arbitrary tweaking' and 'throwing in factors' that will give him what he wants. You may very well be correct about that. But it is interesting that, (1), you would make this claim without understanding his model and reexamining the evidence in light of his suggested model, and, (2), that you would hold Dr. Baumgardner to different standard than scientists that you would largely agree with (scientists do such tweaking and factoring quite often to explain their results in a way that is consistent with their hypothesis).

3:30 PM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

Hello Richard,

I see that you just couldn't resist the Transcendental Argument for God. Here's a problem: your reasoning is circular. God is true because logic exists, and logic is a part of God. You start with your assumption and then seek to prove it true.

Asking why the laws of logic are valid is a question that is set up to fail. I would have to demonstrate the validity of logic using logic, which just leads in circles.

What do you mean you aren't willing to go into the specifics of Baumgardner's idea but will discuss the basics? If I point holes in his analogies and show that his ideas regarding plate motions are demonstrably false, you will ignore this because it's "in the details" but somehow accept a basic model — even though the same details you won't discuss, that you accept as validating his ideas, demonstrate Baumgardner's error?

Am I right in that you believe the science is the details, the Biblical apologetics is the "basics"?

5:12 PM  
Blogger richard said...

Resist it? Why would I even attempt such an impossible feat? ;)

However, your summary of the argument is in error. The proof of the Transcendental Argument is the impossibility of the contrary.

I have admitted to presupposing the Triune God of the Scriptures.

You said, "Asking why the laws of logic are valid is a question that is set up to fail. I would have to demonstrate the validity of logic using logic, which just leads in circles."

But this is only true in an atheistic worldview. The question is bound for failure if there is no God. I don't demonstrate the validity of the laws of logic by appealing to them. Rather, I appeal to the Creator God, from Whose nature those laws flow. I presuppose God, but you simply presuppose the validity of the laws of logic for no apparent reason. It is just because. You have presupposed a naturalistic worldview.

If you admit this, then I'm happy, and we can continue by performing an internal critique of each of our worldviews. We can assume them, and then ask which best addresses the world and experiences that we encounter, including logic, morality, and science.

"What do you mean you aren't willing to go into the specifics of Baumgardner's idea but will discuss the basics?"

Just that I can't deal with the intricacies of the argument, one way or the other. I do not mean that science is the details and Biblical apologetics is the basics. I simply mean that I do not have an understanding of the science involved here to a degree where I feel comfortable arguing it. If you are willing to limit our discussion of the theory to the basic science involved, I think I can show that it is, in the very least, consistent with the biblical history of the world.

I have said that Dr. Baumgardner may be wrong. I am not standing on the authority of his model to prove biblical creation. I am simply referring to it as one possible explanation of what we observe that is consistent with the biblical record.

6:51 PM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

"But this is only true in an atheistic worldview. The question is bound for failure if there is no God. I don't demonstrate the validity of the laws of logic by appealing to them. Rather, I appeal to the Creator God, from Whose nature those laws flow. I presuppose God, but you simply presuppose the validity of the laws of logic for no apparent reason. It is just because. You have presupposed a naturalistic worldview."

Richard, you do the exact same thing: you presume God for no apparent reason, other than the logically fallacious argument from ignorance (God-of-the-gaps). If your excuse is that God exists eternally (the whole, "it's his nature" thing), then I can likewise state that logic is eternal. Again, my view is logically simpler: you are assuming God, whereas neither of us has to assume the existence of logic.

"If you admit this, then I'm happy, and we can continue by performing an internal critique of each of our worldviews. We can assume them, and then ask which best addresses the world and experiences that we encounter, including logic, morality, and science."

Yes, I presuppose logic. But for good reason. Logic works — it's reasonable. The God of the Bible is not. He seems to me, much like a spoiled child. "You can choose what you wish, but if you don't agree with me, you bring upon yourself eternal damnation." That is utterly irrational. Or, somehow, an all-powerful God is still subject to his own nature. In other words, he is subordinate to his nature. A truly all-powerful God would be arbitrary, making the problem of evil more valid than ever before. Any God that is not arbitrary is not all-powerful. A simple contradiction when one tries to make sense of all the omni- aspects of the Christian God.

"I have said that Dr. Baumgardner may be wrong. I am not standing on the authority of his model to prove biblical creation. I am simply referring to it as one possible explanation of what we observe that is consistent with the biblical record."

Ah, but how can you assume it is consistent with science if you cannot form a valid opinion on it (because you will not discuss the intricacies of his theory)? How is it a "possible explanation" if you haven't examined the science behind his claims to see if it is actually scientific or not?

5:23 PM  
Blogger richard said...

"Again, my view is logically simpler: you are assuming God, whereas neither of us has to assume the existence of logic."

No, we both assume the existence and validity of logic. However, my theistic presupposition gives a foundation for that assumption. Your atheistic presupposition leaves you without any reason to assume the validity of logic. I assume the laws of logic (as do you), but they cannot justify themselves (which is what you are suggesting).

" Yes, I presuppose logic. But for good reason. Logic works — it's reasonable."

How do you know it is reasonable? The answer is that you appeal to logic. But your appeal to logic is in itself irrational. You have no reason to appeal to the laws of logic.

For that matter, where did rationality come from? If all that is is time and chance acting on matter… where did rationality come from? How did irrationality give rise to rationality?

You may deny with your words the rationality of the God of the Bible, but without Him as a foundation to stand upon, you could make sense of nothing.

" Ah, but how can you assume it is consistent with science if you cannot form a valid opinion on it (because you will not discuss the intricacies of his theory)? How is it a "possible explanation" if you haven't examined the science behind his claims to see if it is actually scientific or not?"

It may not be a good model. I have said as much. But my understanding of it at this point is that it is a model that is consistent with both our observations and the biblical account of the world. It's not that I am unwilling to examine the science behind the model, it's just that I am not capable of arguing the intricacies of it. If there is an error with the model, or new evidence arises to disprove it, I would have no difficulty rejecting the model. But, again, I am no expert in geology. I am a biologist, and if a biological topic came up, I would be more equipped to deal with the details. Although, I only have a BS in biology, and could very quickly go over my head.

But that is really beside the point, since our real disagreements lie in the assumptions we make before we even come to the interpretation of the evidence. And that's something I'm trying to address in these posts.

11:41 AM  
Blogger Lucretius said...

I am assuming you are into Presuppositionalist apologetics, richard?

"No, we both assume the existence and validity of logic. However, my theistic presupposition gives a foundation for that assumption. Your atheistic presupposition leaves you without any reason to assume the validity of logic. I assume the laws of logic (as do you), but they cannot justify themselves (which is what you are suggesting)."

The theistic view does not make logic any more valid than the atheistic view. Who cares if logic is part of God's nature. Why does that validate it? Does God automatically = validation? That is arbitrary (though I am sure you would attribute it to common sense.) On the contrary, it is common sense that logic is reasonable. It has worked for me in every affair thus far in my life in regards to decision making. I am making the very reasonable assumption that logic is valid.

"For that matter, where did rationality come from? If all that is is time and chance acting on matter… where did rationality come from? How did irrationality give rise to rationality?

You may deny with your words the rationality of the God of the Bible, but without Him as a foundation to stand upon, you could make sense of nothing."

What do you mean: where did rationality come from? It's a methodology that every human being uses to get around in the natural world successfully. The day you tell me how much space and time 'rationality' takes up is the day I will be required to give you an "origin." If we function rationally, we exist. Irrationally, we most likely will perish. It's how our brain has adapted to work.

But you see, your God of the Bible does not solve the problem either. You are assuming that everything, materially or not, has to have some sort of origin. Are you familiar with the quantum mechanical notion of vacuum particles? Even in this branch of science we can find events that do not have causes. Surely, you do not demand the same sort of cause-effect notion regarding non-material things, like ideas, as you do for material objects that exist in space and time.

"But that is really beside the point, since our real disagreements lie in the assumptions we make before we even come to the interpretation of the evidence. And that's something I'm trying to address in these posts."

Science is supposed to be based on ontological naturalism. Not the Bible. By interpreting science via the Bible, you are no longer in the realm of science, but pseudoscience. From the very beginning this is why AIG can be called nonsense. Though, when one looks at what the substance of their claims actually is, the attempts at science, too, fall apart quickly.

We will continue this discussion but I feel you are creating a double standard. You assume that the laws of logic are only valid if there is a God, and because I don't believe in God, therefore the laws of logic are invalid no matter what my response may be. Your own definition of "what is valid" has prevented you from accepting any other answer aside from the one you want.

9:35 PM  
Blogger H said...

"It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers [etc.]" Isaiah 40:22 (NKJ). FYI, they knew it was round, you grasshopper.

5:00 PM  
Blogger H said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:02 PM  

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