August 20 - September 3: INTELLIGENT DESIGN
A 3-WEEK DOCUMENTARY SERIES
Please arrive at 7pm with finger-food snacks to share.
Grab a beverage and the film will roll at about 7:20. Discussion will follow.
August 20: The Privileged Planet
HOW OUR PLACE IN THE COSMOS IS DESIGNED FOR DISCOVERY
"For centuries scientists and philosophers have marveled at an eerie coincidence: Mathematics, a creation of human reason, can predict the nature of the universe, a fact physicist Eugene Wigner referred to as the “unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics in the physical sciences.”
In the last three decades astronomers and cosmologists have noticed another, seemingly unrelated, mystery. Contrary to expectations, the laws of physics seem precisely “fine-tuned” for the existence of complex life.
Could these two wonders actually be isolated pieces of a wider pattern? Both are prerequisites for science, yet what about the process of scientific discovery itself? What are its necessary conditions? Why is it even possible? Read any book on the history of science, and you’ll learn about magnificent tales of human ingenuity, persistence, and dumb luck. But that’s only part of the story, and not even the most important part. Our location is much more critical to science than it is to real estate. For some reason our Earthly location is extraordinarily well suited to allow us to peer into the heavens and discover its secrets.
Elsewhere, you might learn that Earth and its local environment provide a delicate, and probably exceedingly rare, cradle for complex life. But there’s another, even more startling, fact, described in The Privileged Planet: those same rare conditions that produce a habitable planet-that allow for the existence of complex observers like ourselves-also provide the best overall place for observing. What does this mean? At the least, it turns our view of the universe inside out. The universe is not “pointless” (Steven Weinberg), Earth merely “a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark,” (Carl Sagan) and human existence “just a more-or-less farcical outcome of a chain of accidents” (Steven Weinberg). On the contrary, the evidence we can uncover from our Earthly home points to a universe that is designed for life, and designed for discovery.
August 27: Unlocking the Mystery of Life
THE SCIENTIFIC CASE FOR INTELLIGENT DESIGN
Unlocking the Mystery of Life is a convincing and accurate documentary that you will want to share with your most scientifically critical-minded friends.
In 1859, Charles Darwin published, On the Origin of Species. In it, he argued that all of life on earth was the product of undirected natural processes. Time, chance, and natural selection. Since then, biologists have relied on such processes to account for the origin of living things. Yet today, this approach is being challenged as never before.
Unlocking the Mystery of Life is the story of top-notch, contemporary scientists who are advancing a powerful idea — “the theory of intelligent design.”
Using state-of-the-art computer animation, “Unlocking the Mystery of Life” transports you into the interior of the living cell to explore systems and machines that bear the unmistakable hallmarks of design. Discover the intricacy of a microscopic bacterial rotary motor, which spins at 100,000 rpm.
Within the nucleus explore the wonder of DNA, a thread-like molecule that stores instructions to build the essential components of every living organism. It is part of a biological information processing system more complex and more powerful than any computer network.
This compelling documentary examines an idea with the power to revolutionize our understanding of life… and to unlock the mystery of its origin.
“Extremely thought provoking (and a lot of fun to watch). Unlocking the Mystery of Life highlights the big questions about the origin of life here on earth.”
--Guillermo Gonzalez, Ph.D., Astrobiologist, Assistant Professor of Astronomy, Iowa State University
“This video does an excellent job of presenting some of the hot issues in modern biophysics. In recent years we have begun to really understand how the machinery of the cell works and no physicist who has studied this field can avoid a sense of amazement at the delicately balanced designs.”
--David Snoke, Ph.D., Co-Director Nanotechnology Center, University of Pittsburg
September 3: Darwin's Dilemma
THE MYSTERY OF THE CAMBRIAN FOSSIL RECORD
Shot on location in southern China, the Canadian Rockies and Great Britain, the powerful documentary Darwin’s Dilemma explores one of the great mysteries in the history of life: The geologically-sudden appearance of dozens of major complex animal types in the fossil record without any trace of the gradual transitional steps Charles Darwin had envisioned 150 years ago.
Frequently described as “the Cambrian Explosion,” the development of these new animal types required a massive increase in genetic information. “The big question that the Cambrian Explosion poses is where does all that new information come from?” says Dr. Stephen Meyer, author of the book Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design. Growing evidence suggests that the creation of novel genetic information requires intelligence, and thus the burst of genetic information during the Cambrian Explosion provides convincing evidence that animal life is the product of intelligent design rather than a blind undirected process like natural selection.
Darwin’s Dilemma recreates the prehistoric world of the Cambrian era with state-of-the-art computer animation, and the film features interviews with numerous scientists, including leading evolutionary paleontologists Simon Conway Morris of Cambridge University and James Valentine of the University of California at Berkeley, marine biologist Paul Chien of the University of San Francisco, and evolutionary biologist Richard Sternberg, a Research Collaborator at the National Museum of Natural History.
May 14 - games
May 21 - games
May 27 - movie: Facing the Giants
June 4 - dine out! dinner & fellowship at a local restaurant
June 11-25 - Conversation Corner: How to Share your Faith Without an Argument
July 2 - dinner & games
July 9 - dine out! dinner & fellowship at a local Italian restaurant
July 16 - movie: Hoovey
July 23 - games: Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?
July 30 - movie: God Bless the Broken Road
August 6 -games: Planet Earth
August 13 - questions & discussion