Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Guys You Don't Ask Science Questions

You get to be a Islamic cleric by studying the three key documents to the religion....the 'trilogy'.  To be kinda honest, if you went back more than a thousand years....your stamp of approval was that you could recite verse after verse with strictly memory and no document.

Beyond the three document phase, most of these clerics don't know anything else.  You wouldn't call them up for transmission knowledge for Fords.  You wouldn't ask them for advice on crops or gardening.  You wouldn't pose any stupid questions on fashion, nutrition, or plumbing.  And you wouldn't ask them to pick a decent Italian wine for dinner tonight.

I bring this all up because someone got a Saudi Islamic cleric to appear at a university lecture in U.A.E.  Oddly, one of the students decided to throw a non-Islam question at the cleric.  Maybe the student knew how stupid the guy was, or it was just an innocent just don't know.

The question was.....does the Earth move?

You could go and test a thousand kids in the sixth grade, and virtually every single kid would have a ten word answer, responding...yes, the Earth moves.  Some might note more science to the answer. Some might even give a demonstration of the magnificent feat.

In this case, the Islamic cleric answered....'no, the Earth doesn't move'.  He went into a long-winded piece, saying the Earth is a stationary device....that the sun revolves around the Earth....and if the Earth did move, how would airliners ever reach their destination?

So, you sit there and assemble this answer.  Some folks would say 'dumb, as rocks', and they might be correct.  But you be a cleric, you kinda have to limit your vast world of knowledge and keep things focused around the Quran (a 6th century product).  If Muhammad didn't note Earth movement, then it's not anything important to remember or analyze.

But this brings me to this odd topic of discussion.....there are tens of thousands of Islamic clerics out there who get various oddball questions thrown at them.  All you need is for the bulk of these guys to answer stupid science questions in this way.....for more educated Muslims to start laughing off their religion and just being pretenders.  They might not quit, but they reach a point where reality outweighs stupidity.

Luckily, he didn't say the Earth was flat, or that Nessie the Loch Ness creature was real, or that there is some interior Earth where aliens live.