Give us detailed, testable, mechanistic accounts for the origin of life, the origin of the genetic code, the origin of ubiquitous bio macromolecules and assemblages like the ribosome, and the origin of molecular machines like the bacterial flagellum, and intelligent design will die a quick and painless death.
William A. Dembski
The fundamental problem in the origin of species is not the origin of differences in appearance, since these arise at the level of the geographical race, but the origin of genetic segregation. The test of species-formation is whether, when two forms meet, they interbreed and merge, or whether they keep distinct.
Of all the statements that have been made with respect to theories on the origin of life, the statement that the Second Law of Thermodynamics poses no problem for an evolutionary origin of life is the most absurd... The operation of natural processes on which the Second Law of Thermodynamics is based is alone sufficient, therefore, to preclude the spontaneous evolutionary origin of the immense biological order required for the origin of life.
When your heart flows broad and full like a river, a blessing and a danger to those living near: there is the origin of your virtue. When you are above praise and blame, and your will wants to command all things, like a lover's will: there is the origin of your virtue. When you despise the agreeable and the soft bed and cannot bed yourself far enough from the soft: there is the origin of your virtue. When you will with a single will and you call this cessation of all need "necessity": there is the origin of your virtue. Verily, a new good and evil is she. Verily, a new deep murmur and the voice of a new well! Power is she, this new virtue; a dominant thought is she, and around her a wise soul: a golden sun, and around it the serpent of knowledge.
A wonderful area for speculative academic work is the unknowable. These days religious subjects are in disfavor, but there are still plenty of good topics. The nature of consciousness, the workings of the brain, the origin of aggression, the origin of language, the origin of life on earth, SETI and life on other worlds...this is all great stuff. Wonderful stuff. You can argue it interminably. But it can't be contradicted, because nobody knows the answer to any of these topics.
A wonderful area for speculative academic work is the unknowable. These days religious subjects are in disfavor, but there are still plenty of good topics. The nature of consciousness, the workings of the brain, the origin of aggression, the origin of language, the origin of life on earth, SETI and life on other worlds... this is all great stuff. Wonderful stuff. You can argue it interminably. But it can't be contradicted, because nobody knows the answer to any of these topics.
The publication of the Darwin and Wallace papers in 1858, and still more that of the 'Origin' in 1859, had the effect upon them of the flash of light, which to a man who has lost himself in a dark night, suddenly reveals a road which, whether it takes him straight home or not, certainly goes his way. That which we were looking for, and could not find, was a hypothesis respecting the origin of known organic forms, which assumed the operation of no causes but such as could be proved to be actually at work. We wanted, not to pin our faith to that or any other speculation, but to get hold of clear and definite conceptions which could be brought face to face with facts and have their validity tested. The 'Origin' provided us with the working hypothesis we sought.
Thomas Henry Huxley
Our archaeological ancestry lost hair while growing sweat glands to reduce panting in the hot African sun. One outcome evolved the origin of our speech. Another conquered our ability to shut the hell up and listen. Now? Politicians grunting "On the Origin of Speeches" past one another.
I am the first prime minister of this country of neither English nor French origin. So I determined to bring about a Canadian citizenship that knew no hyphenated consideration....I'm very happy to be able to say that in the House of Commons today in my party we have members of Italian, Dutch, German, Scandinavian, Chinese and Ukrainian origin and they are all Canadians.
There is no objective reality. But there is only an illusion of consciousness, there is only an objectivication of reality, which was created by the spirit. The origin of life is creativity, freedom; and the personality, subject, and spirit are the representatives of that origin, but not the nature, not the object.
Man's origin was as spirit, not a physical body. These souls projected themselves into matter, probably for their own diversion. Through the use of his creative powers for selfish purposes, man became entangled in matter and materiality to such an extent that he nearly forgot his divine origin and nature.
Why would anybody be intimidated by mere words? I mean, neither I nor any other athiest that I know ever threatens violence. We never threaten to fly planes into skyscrapers. We never threaten suicide bombs. We are very gentle people. All we do is use words to talk about things like the cosmos, the origin of the universe, evolution, the origin of life. What's there to be frightened of? It's just an opinion.
All work, the genuine work which we must achieve, is that which is most difficult and painful: the work on ourselves. If we do not freely take upon ourselves this pre-acceptance of the pain and torment, they will be visited upon us in an otherwise necessary individual and universal collapse. Anyone disassociated from his origin and his spiritually sensed task acts against origin. Anyone who acts against it has neither a today nor a tomorrow.
The Latin words humus, soil/earth, and homo, human being, have a common derivation, from which we also get our word 'humble.' This is the Genesis origin of who we are: dust - dust that the Lord God used to make us a human being. If we cultivate a lively sense of our origin and nurture a sense of continuity with it, who knows, we may also acquire humility.
Eugene H. Peterson
Rights are not gifts from one man to another, nor from one class of men to another. It is impossible to discover any origin of rights otherwise than in the origin of man; it consequently follows that rights appertain to man in right of his existence, and must therefore be equal to every man.
Do these fuels result always and necessarily in one way from the decomposition of a pre-existing organic substance? Is it thus with the hydrocarbons so frequently observed in volcanic eruptions and emanations, and to which M. Ch. Sainte-Claire Deville has called attention in recent years? Finally, must one assign a parralel origin to carbonaceous matter and to hydrocarbons contained in certain meteorites, and which appear to have an origin foreign to our planet? These are questions on which the opinion of many distinguished geologists does not as yet appear to be fixed.
The Christian religion and Masonry have one and the same common origin: Both are derived from the worship of the Sun. The difference between their origin is, that the Christian religion is a parody on the worship of the Sun, in which they put a man whom they call Christ, in the place of the Sun, and pay him the same adoration which was originally paid to the Sun.
My one and only piece of relevant evidence [for an Aristotelian God] is the apparent impossibility of providing a naturalistic theory of the origin from DNA of the first reproducing species ... [In fact] the only reason which I have for beginning to think of believing in a First Cause god is the impossibility of providing a naturalistic account of the origin of the first reproducing organisms.
The great wheel of fire of ancient wisdom, silence and word engendering the myth of the origin, human action engendering the epic voyage toward the other; historical violence revealing the tragic flaw of the hero who must then return to the land of origin; myth of death and renewal and silence from which new words and images will arise, keeps on turning in spite of the blindness of purely lineal thought.
By marrying to soon, many individuals sacrifice their chance to struggle through this purgatory of solitude and search toward a greater sense of self-confidence. They glance at the world outside the family and with hardly a second thought grasp anxiously for a partner. In marriage they seek a substitute for the security of the family of origin and an escape from aloneness. What they do not realize is that moving so quickly from one family to another, they make it easy to transfer to the new marriage all their difficult experiences in the family of origin.
Augustus Y. Napier
In some socialist states well-performed work is rewarded with moral stimulants instead of material ones. However, the moral stimulants cannot be explained by materialistic philosophy. It is the same case with the appeals for humanism, justice, equality, freedom, human rights, and so forth, which are all of religious origin. Certainly, everybody has the right to live as he thinks best, including the right not to be consistent with his own pattern. Still, to understand the world correctly, it is important to know the true origin of meaning and of the ideas ruling the world.
The origin is nameless; the origin is absolutely quiet, it is not whirring about making noise. Creation is something that is most holy, that is the most sacred thing in life, and if you have made a mess of your life, change it. Change it today, not tomorrow. If you are uncertain, find out why and be certain. If your thinking is not straight, think straight, logically, Unless all that is prepared, all that is settled, you cannot enter into this world, into the world of creation.
Abstract: Careful review of a vast array of relevant evidence clearly leads to the conclusion that some unidentified flying objects are intelligently controlled vehicles whose origin is outside our solar system. All the arguments against the extraterrestrial origin seem to be based upon false reasoning, misrepresentation of evidence, neglect of relevant information, ignorance of relevant technology, or pseudo sophisticated assumptions about alien appearance, motivation, or government secrecy....
Stanton T. Friedman
It is a frequently cited fact that English has two sets of words for farm animals and their corresponding meats. The living animals are expressed with words of Germanic origin-calf (German 'Kalb'), swine (G. 'Schwein'), and ox (G. 'Ochse')-because the servants who guarded them were the conquered Anglo-Saxons. The names of the meats are of Romance origin-veal (French 'veau'), pork (F. 'porc') and beef (F. 'boeuf')-because those who enjoyed them were the conquering Norman masters.
When Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859, he exposed the world to a momentous discovery. For the first time in history, human beings were seen not as creatures of divine origin, but instead, as a product of nature, an animal like every other on the planet. Imagine yourself back in that amazing year. The day before Darwin's book was published, you wake up thinking yourself the image of God; the next morning you realize you have the face of a monkey. Not everybody immediately embraced this rude demotion from god to goat.
Originally man was made in the image of God, but now his likeness to God is a stolen one. As the image of God man draws his life entirely from his origin in God, but the man who has become like God has forgotten how he was at his origin and has made himself his own creator and judge.
I have been studying for forty years, which is to say forty wasted years; I teach others yet am ignorant of everything; this state of affairs fills my soul with so much humiliation and disgust that my life is intolerable. I was born in Time, I live in Time, and do not know what Time is. I find myself at a point between two eternities, as our wise men say, yet I have no conception of eternity. I am composed of matter, I think, but have never been able to discover what produces thought. I do not know whether or not I think with my head the same way that I hold things with my hands. Not only is the origin of my thought unknown to me, but the origin of my movements is equally hidden: I do not know why I exist. Yet every day people ask me questions on all these issues. I must give answers, yet have nothing worth saying, so I talk a great deal, and am confused and ashamed of myself afterwards for having spoken.
The 'pursuit of happiness' is such a key element of the 'American (ideological) dream' that one tends to forget the contingent origin of this phrase: 'We holds these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.' Where did the somewhat awkward 'pursuit of happiness' come from in this famous opening passage of the US Declaration of Independence? The origin of it is John Locke, who claimed that all men had the natural rights of life, liberty, and property- the latter was replaced by 'the pursuit of happiness' during negotiations of the drafting of the Declaration, as a way to negate the black slaves' right to property.
My laboratory is interested in the related challenges of understanding the origin of life on the early earth, and constructing synthetic cellular life in the laboratory. Focusing on artificial life frees us to explore novel chemical systems, but what we learn from these systems helps us to understand possible pathways leading to the origin of life. Our basic design for a synthetic cell involves the encapsulation of a spontaneously replicating nucleic acid, which acts as the genetic material, within a spontaneously replicating membrane vesicle, which provides spatial localization. We are using chemical synthesis to make nucleic acids with modified nucleobases and sugar-phosphate backbones.
Jack W. Szostak