Science

There is a shared DNA sequence between all living organisms on earth

There is a DNA sequence that is found present in all living organisms; you and the tiniest of bacteria share this sequence as a part of your genetic makeup. Scientists say this makes it the oldest bit of DNA in existence.

oldest dna sequence

“Arguably, the most remarkable DNA sequence on Earth is GTG CCA GCA GCC GCG GTA ATT CCA GCT CCA ATA GCG TAT ATT AAA GTT GCT GCA GTT AAA AAG. It is present in every single living organism – even in organisms not technically classed as alive such as giant mimiviruses. The reason the sequence is so widespread is that it existed in the common ancestor of all life. Carrying out a crucial process, it has remained unchanged for 3 billion years: the oldest fossil in your body.”

‘What a Wonderful World’ by Marcus Chown, pg. 48

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Theologians classify a human being as starting from conception, yet sometimes this “person” splits into two afterwards

TLDR; If we accept that a human being is formed at the “moment of conception” we run into a strange paradox: in some cases this “person” or “soul” splits into multiple “souls” or “persons” a few weeks later.

soul creation of twins

Most Christians I have met think that human life begins at conception, or the moment the male’s sperm fertilizes the females egg. It is at this moment, during the mixing of genetic material from the two parents that most theologians state the biological entity becomes a “person” or “human being” with its own soul.

 

Yet something strange happens in the next two weeks, this “human being” can then split to form two seperate fetueses. For you see, the process of Monozygotic Twinning (the biological act of creating twins) happens up to two weeks *after* the theologians say the fetus has a soul.

 

Does this mean that a second soul is then added to the fetus? (Which body does the first soul stay in?

Does this mean the original soul is split in two?

 

These are fascinating theological and philosophical questions that serve as reminders: things are not always as simple as they appear.

Charles Darwin was not an angry, evil, God-hating, atheist

Charles-Darwin-1-480x634When I was younger, I was a staunch young earth creationist who feverishly hated Charles Darwin. I considered him a liar, fraud, and an angry atheist. I even created a website, called “Darwin’s Deception.” Yet real story of Charles Darwin shows that he was not a villain, in fact, I would gladly call him a friend.

Darwin grew up in a religious family, went to religious schools, and even studied theology in college with the intent of being a Christian minister. He learned and accepted Creationism in his studies, and decided to take an excursion to “study God’s creation” and chronicle the evidences of God in nature. He was so immersed in Christianity that during his voyage, he would frequently quote Bible passages to the ill-mannered sailors, in hopes of leading them to repent.

During his studies of nature, he began to see that the real world did not reflect theology; there was bad design in nature, where he expected the perfect handiwork of a Creator, there was so much senseless and horrific suffering, where he expected a loving God who took care of his creation. This eventually culminated in Darwin abandoning his traditional Christian views, though he never became an atheist..

The pivotal moment in his life was his young daughter became seriously ill, and after many desperate prayers, she died. This sorrow crushed Darwin’s heart, and the hope in a God who answers prayers died in Darwin’s heart. Nonetheless for many years he continued giving alms to the poor, donating money to the church, and walking his family to their Sunday service, during which he would walk a beaten trail outdoors and contemplate the world around him.

Rather than being the angry, spiteful, God-hating atheist I expected, Darwin was a kind, humble, quiet man, whom rarely replied to the many attacks on his character; it was even said “dear Darwin never could nor would defend himself.” (1)

40% of all US deaths are caused by preventable issues

Up to 40% of all deaths in America are caused by preventable issues. If we were more careful about our lives, they could be lived longer and healthier.

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Go to a cemetery, look around you, 3-4 in 10 of these tombstones didn’t have to be there so early.
How do we change this?

  1. Quit smoking, don’t over-consume alcohol.
  2. Eat healthier, exercise more, lose some weight.
  3. Wear seat-belts, drive safely, don’t be reckless.
  4. See your doctor and get checkups, most cancers are treated with early detection (the 10 year survival rates for melanoma is 95% when found in the first stage and only 10% when diagnosed in the last stage)

 

Chicken evolved from dinosaurs; scientists find chicken DNA that codes for teeth

rare-chicken-16109

Biologist have long stated that modern birds evolved from dinosaurs, and that they shared the same common ancestor as alligators. Now we have proof.

As strange as the above sounds, scientists have discovered that chickens had leftover dinosaur DNA to grow alligator-like teeth. Using a virus to deliver a genetic mutation that turns on the ancient DNA scientists were able growing these teeth in chickens.

*Unfortunately the picture above is not real, we cannot (yet) make dinosaur-chickens.

See here for story and real photo: http://news.sciencemag.org/2006/…/mutant-chickens-grow-teeth

You are not you, but a thousand galaxies of cells

You are not you, but a thousand galaxies of living cells, all working in tandem, none able to comprehend your existence.

Indeed, there are more cells in your body than there are stars in a thousand Milky Ways. That is about 37 trillion cells for an average adult!

“if you pick volume or weight, you get drastically different numbers. Making matters worse, our bodies are not packed with cells in a uniform way, like a jar full of jellybeans. Cells come in different sizes, and they grow in different densities. Look at a beaker of blood, for example, and you’ll find that the red blood cells are packed tight. If you used their density to estimate the cells in a human body, you’d come to a staggering 724 trillion cells. Skin cells, on the other hand, are so sparse that they’d give you a paltry estimate of 35 billion cells.” (1)

If you could live forever and spend 24 hrs a day counting your cells, it would take you over a million years to finally count them.

Animals, are like humans, they seek out intoxication

Animals do drugs. Seriously.

“Everywhere scientists have looked, they have found animals who love to party. Bees stoned on orchid nectar, goats gobbling magic mushrooms, birds chomping marijuana seeds, rats on opium, also mice, lizards, flies, spiders and cockroaches on opium, elephants drunk on anything they can find-usually fermented fruit in a bog hole, but they’re known to raid breweries in India as well-felines crazy for cat-nip, cows loco for loco grass, moths preferring the incredibly hallucinogenic datura flower, mandrills taking the even stronger iboga root.”

“So prevalent is this behavior that researchers now believe, as UCLA psychopharmacologist Ronald Siegel wrote in his 1989 Intoxication: The Universal Drive For Mind Altering Substances: “the pursuit of intoxication with drugs is a primary motivational force in the behavior of organisms.” (1)

So now the only question is, are they committing immoral acts?