Evolving controversy

Evolution theory. It has been a subject close to my heart for many years. Why is it controversial now?

For starters, recently [first week of Jan 2018] in India Union minister Satya Pal Singh , who is the minister of state for human resource development had stoked a controversy saying that our ancestors have nowhere mentioned that they saw an ape turning into a man, thereby casting doubts on Darwin’s evolution theory.

In January 2018, he stuck to his claim that Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution of man is “not scientific” and called for an international debate on the issue to decide if it merits a place in school textbooks.

Blaming the media for fuelling a controversy over his statement, Singh said the issue calls for debate and not controversy. “In the last 100 years, many evidences have come out against the theory, in favour hardly anybody. It is not my statement. So many world scientists have said it,” Singh, the former Mumbai Police Commissioner, said.

I felt this is  good time to try to clear the murky atmosphere of Evolution.

What do I mean by evolution? It may be totally different from what you understand, so let me explain by defining it as I understand.

Evolution is a change in the characteristics of a living being over generations. 

Sounds simple, right?

The problem starts when people start assuming or rather over estimating the degree of change that this simple process can bring about.

For example, let us look at the dog.

Dog breeds

If you call this evolution, fine. I would agree. Dogs have been selectively bred by intelligent human beings to give them desired characteristics over hundreds of years.

But look at this picture

animalsEvolution

Creative Imagination

The above picture is what I call stretching your imagination 🙂

It is okay to think that dogs can evolve, but to think a dog can evolve into a cat? It just shows how ignorant these people are about the complexities of life and especially about genetics.

Let me explain in simple terms:

There are millions of species of living beings on earth [and the numbers are fast declining every day]

Each species is unique and cannot breed or produce viable offspring when mated with another, no matter how similar looking.

I believe that an intelligent being, popularly called God, created species and defined them some time in the past.

He also gave the creatures he created the ability to adapt and survive in this physical world that we inhabit. This is again a testimony to his wisdom, his ability to see beyond time and space, into the future, where he knew that we humans would be altering the world due to our greed and mindless consumption.

This ability to adapt and survive is being stretched beyond its designed parameters and hence we see species getting extinct these days.

However many species do adapt and survive, some better than others. For example pests like flies, cockroaches and mosquitoes seem to thrive in these conditions.

But there is a limit to how much a species can adapt or change, and that is written in its DNA by the one who made it in the first place.

The problem with us humans is that we like to think we are gods. That we can decide what is true. That we can simply issue a statement and it will change the facts:

For example, the United States National Academy of Sciences states:

Today, many religious denominations accept that biological evolution has produced the diversity of living things over billions of years of Earth’s history. Many have issued statements observing that evolution and the tenets of their faiths are compatible. Scientists and theologians have written eloquently about their awe and wonder at the history of the universe and of life on this planet, explaining that they see no conflict between their faith in God and the evidence for evolution. Religious denominations that do not accept the occurrence of evolution tend to be those that believe in strictly literal interpretations of religious texts.

— National Academy of Sciences, Science, Evolution, and Creationism[24]

The confusion caused by the definition of Evolution adds to this. If you go by the simple definition that I gave earlier of dogs, it is nothing but adaptation. If you try to go by the definition proposed by some over-imaginative “scientists”, it would mean something like the Creative Imagination picture I posted.

That, dear reader, is what mainly causes the controversy. The degree of change considered possible by this process of ‘Evolution’.

And of course among other things the refusal to consider that there even exists a loving and intelligent being who could have created you and me and the entire universe.

The God who created you and me so wonderfully, has also given you free will to choose absolutely anything. You can decide what or whom to believe. Ultimately it is a matter of the heart.

I do not want to give you enough scientific reasons to make you realize the fallacies of the 2nd picture, but I want to plant a seed of a desire to find out for yourself what is true. Because in that way the faith you find would be truly yours.

 

 

 

 

 

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Hackers, Cyberattack and other random processes

Researchers at Lancaster University, UK have taken a hint from the way the human lungs and heart constantly communicate with each other, to devise an innovative, highly flexible encryption algorithm that they claim can’t be broken using the traditional methods of cyberattack.

Information can be encrypted with an array of different algorithms, but the question of which method is the most secure is far from trivial. Such algorithms need a “key” to encrypt and decrypt information; the algorithms typically generate their keys using a well-known set of rules that can only admit a very large, but nonetheless finite number of possible keys. This means that in principle, given enough time and computing power, prying eyes can always break the code eventually.

The researchers, led by Dr. Tomislav Stankovski, created an encryption mechanism that can generate a truly unlimited number of keys, which they say vastly increases the security of the communication. To do so, they took inspiration from the anatomy of the human body.

In nature, different systems within a living organism often interact with each other, exchanging matter and energy. The interaction between two such systems (for instance, that of the human lungs and heart) can be described by a so-called “coupling function.”

aggies-anatomy-lungs-chiron-brain-heart-as-future-pineal-and-human-brain-twin-organs

Rather than relying on a single system for the encryption, the researchers decided to use two, and use the coupling function between them as the encryption key. Although somewhat laborious, this method has the advantage of creating an infinite number of possible keys, meaning that eavesdroppers cannot simply bruteforce their way into
sensitive information.

For the more technically minded, here’s how it all works. An information signal reaches the transmitter and is used as a parameter in the coupling function between two self-sustained systems, both generated inside the transmitter. The two signals are then sent over the public channel. At the other end, these two signals synchronize
with the receiver and, using a private key that contains information on the coupling functions, the algorithm can infer the original parameters and decrypt the  information.

The scientists say that their method is highly resistant from noise, that it can easily transmit several signals at once, and that it is highly modular, making it suitable to a wide range of applications.

A paper describing this patent-pending algorithm appears in the journal Physical Review X.

http://www.gizmag.com/human-biology-unbreakable-encryption/31504/?utm_source=Gizmag+Subscribers&utm_campaign=94c7968484-UA-2235360-4&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_65b67362bd-94c7968484-90398925

Life and its processes are really complicated. This somehow does not fit in with what is taught in schools these days, doesn’t it? We are taught that random mindless processes [taught to be Evolution] somehow created life in all its complexity. I guess it is time to revisit the foundations of our belief 🙂082113_1025_HighDefinit2.png

Fun with Liquid Nitrogen in Mumbai

Fun with Liquid Nitrogen in Mumbai
Imagine being able to have liquid nitrogen which is minus 196 degrees Celsius right in your home! For experimenting with, ofcourse. Nitrogen Utsav (56)The team with the various experiments they did.

They started with introducing themselves, Science Utsav, a company, started 4 years ago in Bangalore. Then they invited questions from the children and parents alike. The first experiment was one of pouring out liquid nitrogen into a plastic beaker and putting a fresh rose in it. Nitrogen Utsav (30) Nancy was told to crush the rose and it powdered in her hands!

After this there were various experiments with different objects like cricket ball, banana, chikoo, balloons and Amul cool Milk. Nitrogen Utsav (20)

Pouring Liquid Nitrogen

Pouring Liquid Nitrogen

Yes that is what some of us Mumbai Homeschoolers got to taste, literally of course, at Liquid Nitrogen Science fun organised by Science Utsav, a company that organises science themed birthday parties too.
We met at our home on the 14th of October 2015. There were around 35 of us including a few parents.

Frothy fountain

Puking Volcano

 We also got to see this Puking volcano!
IMAG6082

Pouring out Liquid nitrogenIMAG6118

Experiments in full swing.IMAG6132

Children lining up to get a taste of instant icecream made right before their eyes!

Everyone enjoyed and learnt a lot of physics, chemistry and biology as well! Three cheers to homeschooling and science Utsav!

Funny Science

I couldn’t stop laughing at Ashish Shakya’s tongue-in-cheek writing about the scientific advancements of our ancestors in India being proclaimed at the Indian Science Congress 2015:

This humour column was written 7,000 years ago!

IF THE PILOTS IN ANCIENT INDIA GOT BORED OF FLYING DOMESTIC, THEY COULD CHOOSE TO GO FOR AN INTERPLANETARY SPIN

Like most middle- class Indian kids, I first completed my engineering and then got around to figuring what I really wanted to do in life. So I’m the first person to admit that I know next to nothing about science. The only time I use my education is when my parents ask me to fix some busted gadget, and I, applying what I learnt as a telecom engineer, swiftly pick up a cellphone to call the repair guy.

Airplane invented by Indian kids, circa 5000 BC.

But as it turns out, I would’ve been clueless even if I’d actually paid attention in class because here’s a news flash: What we know about science is wrong. It is all a western imperial construct designed to overshadow our original achievements. Simply put, the Greeks, Romans, Arabs and Americans have all shamelessly Pritam’d our inventions.

I’m thankful to the various patriots who, of l ate, have been working really hard to enlighten us about this piracy. The most recent exposé took place at the 102nd Indian Science Congress, where leading scientists had all the logic smacked out of them by the glory of ancient India.

For example, you might think that the first airplane was invented by the Wright Brothers, after they got sick of booking tickets on IRCTC. But no. Captain Bodas, a retired flying instructor and a speaker at the Congress, pointed out that the first airplanes had been invented in Indian about 7000 years ago. Some of them were the size of jumbo jets and apparently they could move forward, backward and sideways, hover in mid-air, do barrel rolls and also Bharatnatyam.

These planes were also loaded with twenty missile systems. Now I don’t mean to brag, but I too designed similar fighter jets in school via the technical process of doodling in my textbooks. (I was inspired by scientific materials such as Swat Kats and Centurions, but clearly I should’ve paid more attention to Amar Chitra Katha.)

But that’s not all. We reportedly also had pilots in ancient India, who were prescribed a diet that alternated between buffalo, cow and sheep milk and wore special shockproof, waterproof, electricity-resistant suits made from the fibres of underwater plants. Their names have been lost to history, so let’s just call them Captain Shri Maverick and Goose.

If the pilots got bored of flying domestic, they could take their crafts for an interplanetary spin. No, really. It was claimed that the planes could go from planet to planet. To buttress this point, another speaker, Kiran Naik, said that proof of this lay in the fact that during ancient times, and I wish I were making this up, two kings were fighting on Mars when one of their helmets fell off. This is why you should take off your helmet before fighting on Mars.

He said that “If you Google ‘helmet on Mars’, that helmet clearly shows up”, because ancient India also invented Photoshop. Sadly, all these advances in aviation were squandered because as it turns out, the industry was run by Vijay Mallya’s ancestors.

Mr Naik then educated the audience about a bacteria that lives inside cows and converts whatever the cow consumes into 24 karat gold. Wow, that has to be the worst Tanishq ad ever. Picture a young, hopeful man going down on his knees as his girlfriend blushes with anticipation:

Guy: I cannot imagine a life without you. Will you marry me?

Girl: Yes, yes, a million times yes! (pause) Where’s the ring? *They hear a PLOP! In the distance*

Guy: Go get it yourself.

Seriously, I cannot get over the fact that India is home to bovine creatures that crap gold. But enough about Mukeshbhai.

Not all talks at the Science Congress were as eye- opening. The others were woefully bereft of fantasy and stuck to boring ol’ scientific temperament. I wonder what it was like for the scientists, including Nobel laureates and a Fields Medal winner, to sit back and listen to stories that essentially took a flamethrower to their life’s work. It’s like Sachin Tendulkar being told by a baseball player that his stance had been wrong all these years and also once an ancient Indian batsman hit the moon for a six.

I bet they feel smarter now and cannot wait for next year’s Science Congress. If I were them, I’d make travel arrangements right now. Where can I book a one-way ticket to 5000 BC?

This article appeared on 11 Jan 2015 Hindustan Times (Mumbai) ASHISH SHAKYA ashish.shakya85@gmail.com

Disclaimer: This is a humour column, meant solely for entertainment. Ashish Shakya is a stand-up comedian and not a real journalist, because he likes money.

A contradictory Zoo

The Hyderabad Zoo, like many other Zoos across the country, faces its greatest threat from visitors, who tease the animals, throw them junk like bottles and plastic trash with food, and in general create nuisance for others and the animals.

I was glad to see that this Zoo is really very beautiful. It has huge enclosures, spacious green open spaces, and enough of distance between the animals and humans.

Figure 1 Baboons and humans

Figure 2 Baby Jackals

The entire Zoo is situated next to a huge water body which maintains its greenery and abundant flora and fauna. How incredible to see the variety of creatures God has created, I thought to myself. The intelligent designer is truly outstanding, and I regretted not getting my Nikon.

As we neared the Tiger enclosure, I saw the magnificent animal jump into the water-filled moat around its enclosure. It soon came out holding a plastic water bottle in its jaws, and I realized that someone in the crowd had thrown the bottle into the water on purpose to attract the tiger. What a sight, to see the National animal being subjected to such indignity.

Why do I treat animals with respect and dignity? Because I believe what the Lord said:

God created human beings; he created them in His image, Reflecting God’s nature. He created them male and female. God blessed them: “Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge! Be responsible for fish in the sea and birds in the air, for every living thing that moves on the face of Earth.”

(Genesis 1:27-28 MSG)

That is why the park authorities put up tis board at the Hyderabad Zoo which said:

Figure 3 At Hyderabad Zoo

Why do people in general then treat animals so poorly? Has it got to do with what people are being taught in school?

I believe the Theory of Evolution has had a huge impact in influencing our worldview right from a tender age.

Evolution theory says we are evolved animals.

Unfortunately, people believe that and so start behaving without any respect for any authority, resulting in abuse of these magnificent wild animals.

The Zoo also seems to be sending contradictory messages, supporting the Theory of Evolution:

Figure 4 Deer mouse, living fossil?

This board shows a contradictory belief system to the one the Zoo authorities are so desperately trying to project, one that God created you and me and all creatures.

The six ruminant families are Bovidae (cattle, sheep, goat and antelope), Cervidae (deer), Tragulidae (mouse deer). Moschidae (musk deer), Antilocapridae (pronghorn), and Giraffidae (giraffe and okapi). They are in the suborder Ruminantia because they all have the unique ruminant stomach.

Most of the public are unaware that there are literally hundreds of different types of animals and plants which are alive and well and which are essentially unchanged from the way they appear as fossils. Such facts make it difficult to believe that these forms were separated by those imagined millions of evolutionary years.

These well researched links below make for a fascinating read.

http://creation.com/living-fossils-comptonia-limulus

http://creation.com/living-fossils-enigma

Hope this article makes some of you question evolutionary ‘assumptions’ and start thinking for yourself on these vital questions of life’s origins. Have a great time. Do feel free to share this article if you wish.