Jason Lisle: How To Improve Our Thinking

We found a new article by Jason Lisle — the creationist astrophysicist who used to be employed by Answers in Genesis (AIG), ol’ Hambo’s online ministry. For reasons which have never been explained, he left AIG a couple of years ago to become director of whatever it is that they call research at the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) — the fountainhead of young-earth creationist wisdom. Ooops — we just noticed that ICR has changed Jason’s title. He’s now described as their “Director of Physical Sciences.”

We know you remember Jason Lisle’s “Instant Starlight” Paper. That was Jason’s solution to the Distant Starlight problem. The problem — for young-earth creationists — is that the light we see from distant sources required literally billions of years to reach earth, yet the creationist’s universe is only 6,000 years old.

Now, at the ICR website, Jason tells us how to improve our minds. Isn’t that fantastic? You might consider this a supplement to something we wrote a few years ago: AIG’s Jason Lisle Tells Us How To Think. His new essay is titled Higher Thoughts. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us and his numerous bible references omitted:

The television show Limitless [which we’ve never seen] explores the fiction of unlocking the full potential of the human mind through medication. In the story, a miracle pill named NZT-48 supposedly allows the brain to work at superhuman efficiency, giving the user perfect recall and leaps of intuitive insight. In reality, there is no magical smart-pill. But there are ways to improve our thinking.

[*Begin Drool Mode*] Ooooooooooooh! [*End Drool Mode*] How can we improve our thinking? Here it comes:

To understand this issue, we need to go back to Genesis.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Let’s read on:

God created humanity, both our physical form and our immaterial spirit. So, we shouldn’t be surprised that the brain is remarkably well-designed and surpasses anything that humans have created. Somehow our mind — the seat of our consciousness — is able to use the synapses of the brain to draw inferences and conclusions. Indeed, our ability to reason is one aspect of our having been made in the image of God.

That sounds reasonable. Jason continues:

But we don’t always reason correctly. When Adam rebelled against his Creator, the Lord cursed the earth. This has resulted in disease, suffering, and ultimately death. The human mind did not escape the effects of the Curse. Our inability — and in many cases our unwillingness — to reason correctly is caused, either directly or indirectly, by the effects of the Fall. In some cases, the brain itself is the problem. It may not function as originally designed due to mutations or disease. But more often the problem is not with the brain but rather with the way we use it.

Ah yes, like everything else, our faulty thinking is because of Adam & Eve. Here’s more:

[W]hat we choose to fill up our mind is often the root of our faulty reasoning rather than any problem with the brain itself. Like King David, do you meditate daily upon God’s Word, filling your mind with truth? Or do you spend most of your time installing the malware of the world?

Well, dear reader? What kind of worldly trash do you put into your mind? Moving along:

Sinners do not think like God, and their ways are not God’s ways. Such rebellion displeases the Lord and destroys the individual. God designed our minds to operate within a biblical worldview. They cannot and will not function consistently and reliably with any other worldview. We are supposed to base our thinking and our ways upon God’s thoughts and God’s ways as revealed in God’s Word. Anything else is “shifting sand.”

Is Jason’s message sinking in, dear reader? Are you starting to realize how sinfully you have been thinking? Another excerpt:

The Lord reminds us in [scripture reference] that as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are His thoughts above our thoughts and His ways above our ways. We can’t ever reach God’s level of thinking, but we can, by God’s grace, learn to reason correctly — in a way that is consistent with His nature.

How? How can we do it? Jason explains that in his final paragraph:

If you want to reason properly, if you want your brain to work as well as it possibly can, then study God’s Word. Don’t just passively read it. Study it. Memorize it. Meditate on it. This has benefit in this life and for all eternity, for our thinking ability as well as our spiritual growth.

So there you are, dear reader. Now go, and do as Jason advises. Then you too can think as well as he does.

Copyright © 2016. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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24 responses to “Jason Lisle: How To Improve Our Thinking

  1. Mike Elzinga

    In his “solution” to the “Distant Starlight Problem,” Lisle claims that the speed of light is c/(1 – cos((θ)).

    In his “proof” that the solar system can’t be billions of years old, Lisle claims that the rate of recession of the Moon’s orbit is proportional to 1/r^6 because of the dipole-dipole interaction between the Earth and the Moon.

    These are examples of how Lisle’s mind works. This kind of “thinking” allows one to make up completely bogus “science” that is dead wrong and has absolutely nothing to do with the way things actually work in the universe.

    And Lisle isn’t alone in having achieved an “education from a Christian perspective.” Dembski makes up bogus probability arguments about molecular assemblies, takes logarithms to base 2, calls it “information,” and covers up his bogus assertions under hundreds of pages of pseudo-philosophy. Georgia Purdom thinks bacteria became “bad” after the Fall. Granville Sewell can’t even get units correct with plugging his bogus “X-entropies” into his diffusion equation. David L. Abel spews out self-cited papers full of pure garbage; and all of it funded by a bogus “institute” that has the same address as his little ranch-style house.

    I think the main question here has to do with whether certain types of religion make people mentally ill or whether people who are mentally ill gravitate toward certain types of religion.

  2. And on the TV you can find out that artificial apoaequorin helps you think, apparently without the need of a bible.

  3. And I have to point out that all of that “science” has no basis in anything that the Bible says. I will allow that one can find the age of the World something like 6000 years old. But nothing about the speed of light, bacteria, fixity of species. And nothing about the Bible being the sole, perfect source of truth about the natural world. People did not come to those conclusions by memorizing the Bible.

  4. If your adult thinking is continuously constrained and hobbled by the fairy tales that you were told as a child that’s pretty darn good proof that you were never a scientist.

  5. Two questions: 1) How much of a bribe did he pay to get his PhD, and 2) Where can I get some of the drugs he’s on?!?

  6. Mike Elzinga

    @ Charlie:
    Two questions: 1) How much of a bribe did he pay to get his PhD, and 2) Where can I get some of the drugs he’s on?!?

    Oh please don’t tell us that having what Lisle has would be an improvement! Yikes! 😉

  7. From what I’ve read, for the most part, scholars who actually DO study the bible conclude that Genesis is myth, and not to be taken literally.

    I suppose that’s what happens when one thinks correctly.

  8. Also, Lisle should be aware that encouraging people to actually read the bible – all of it – is the best way to turn people to atheism.

    The book of Genesis should have a parental advisory sticker on it. There are parts that even Ham might be uncomfortable with.

  9. @Ed: Indeed it is — reading the bible from end to end is what started me thinking it was clearly mythology.

  10. waldteufel

    Using the fine edge of Occam’s razor, I’ve concluded that poor Jason is simply insane. Whether being soaked in region was the result or the cause of his insanity is open to question.

  11. Sigh, Lisle got his degree fair and square. Creationists will live and work amongst us heathens to get credentials think will help their ministry. At least it’s a step up from Dr. Dino’s diploma mill dissertation.

  12. Lisle’s current “scientific” career adequately demonstrates where his kind of correct “thinking” leads.

  13. Mike Elzinga

    I find it difficult to give people like Lisle credit for getting their degrees “fair and square.” I think these characters have found a way to game the system by exploiting overloaded professors and taking on routine tasks in experimental groups where they are able to dodge responsibility for applying their knowledge in a way that exposes their ignorance of basic physics.

    Those of us who have been through the system are aware of the fact that this could happen; but those doctoral candidates who ask for and are given major responsibilities in ongoing research begin correcting any accumulated misconceptions the minute they are involved in research proposals and in building up the laboratory facilities to do their research. It is not possible to screw up at the high school level and make an experiment work.

    Lisle claims his degree is in astrophysics from the University of Colorado. Astrophysics; which means he is supposed to have had some fairly rigorous mathematical physics courses. How did he pass them? Colorado is a pretty good school. But how someone can claim to know something about astrophysics while completely mangling basic, undergraduate level physics calculations escapes me; unless these characters know the real calculations and are consciously deceiving their followers. Either they know or they don’t; and in their current positions, they are deceivers of either their followers or themselves or both.

    Lisle’s “calculations,” as well as those of Dembski and the rest of the ID/creationist crowd, are breathtakingly stupid and just plain wrong. These kinds of calculation started out stupid with Morris and Gish back in the 1970s and they continue to be just as stupid today. ID/creationists have systematically bent, mangled, and broken fundamental scientific concepts to fit sectarian dogma; but as a result, what they have produced has nothing to do with the real universe.

    Lisle is teaching his young followers how to remain uneducated for life. One can only hope that very few of the youngsters who come in contact with people like Lisle will have their educational opportunities cut off forever. I think what Lisle is doing is not just stupid and unprofessional; it is immoral.

  14. @Mike Elzinga: I agree 100% (and that’s mathematically correct).

  15. michaelfugate

    In a republican world, one would punish the PhD thesis advisors in a similar manner to how one punishes abortion providers. How could anyone sign off on a thesis by Lisle, Wells, Purdom, Gauger, etc.? Shouldn’t they be stripped of being able to mentor PhD students?

  16. Charles Deetz ;)

    Previously Lisle had been voted most likely to convert by someone in this board. I see this deeply biblical BS as a defensive front. He’s cornered with a plumb job at ICR.

  17. But how someone can claim to know something about astrophysics while completely mangling basic, undergraduate level physics calculations escapes me; unless these characters know the real calculations and are consciously deceiving their followers. Either they know or they don’t; and in their current positions, they are deceivers…

    As I have seen debating creationists on another website, their belief outweighs any scientific or rational or logical evidence. If the bible says it (or if they interpret the bible to say it) then it must have happened, no matter what the evidence that says otherwise.

    Next step–make up some plausible-sounding scenario for why the bible is correct and science is wrong. Ignore any evidence to the contrary. If you get pushed too much in debate, change to another plausible-sounding scenario. Rinse and repeat, not caring if you recycle back to the first one eventually or not. Its not as if evidence matters.

  18. MikeE: yeah, Lisle is a liar for Jesus, but a liar first. Lisle’s dishonesty qualifies him to only work for creationist outfits.

  19. I ‘like’ this, even if you don’t have a ‘like’ button.
    I was an Atheist, or at least a committed Agnostic, long before I researched an old book called ‘The Bible Unmasked.’ If a ‘God’, who created the Universe exists, he/she/it/they certainly don’t resemble the one that the ego and insecurity of folks like Lisle need. If a God created us, we’re more like an ant farm that gets glanced at every millennium, than the ‘He sees every sparrow fall’ one that they imagine.
    I tiptoed through Jonathan Sarfati’s Refuting Evolution, 1 & 2 with only a few face-palms, not actual audible guffaws. 🙂

  20. Dave Luckett

    All I can say is that I have read the Bible cover to cover while carefully considering scholarly commentary, memorised parts of it, and have “meditated” on it (I prefer to say that I’ve thought about it) for upwards of forty years, and I say Jason Lisle is full of it.

    That task is worth doing, because of the immense influence the Bible has had on Western history and culture, but it is a series of texts by human beings, written by human beings, limited by human nature, and it’s as miscellaneous as its sources can be. It is inspired (metaphorically) in some places, horrible in others, but no more so than any other human text.

    Didn’t you just love the bit where Lisle tells us “The Lord reminds us,,, that as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are His thoughts above our thoughts and His ways above our ways”? No, Jason. That isn’t God. Some bloke in Judea wrote that, in Hebrew, a long time ago, and we don’t need to be reminded, because it’s a commonplace apologia for why God doesn’t have to make any sense. It’s the get-out-of-logical-bind free card that you play when stumped. Here it’s being used to deny evidence and reason entirely. God can do or be anything, can’t He?

    That’s straight down the fundamentalist highway. All you need to do is pull that one, and off we traipse on the hunt for the wild omphalos, that rare and endangered beast.

    It’s rare and endangered because around four hundred years ago it became evident that it proves everything and nothing, so it’s useless, and was dismissed to the outer wilds. Alas, those are the realms that creationists are still roaming.

  21. If one is to take the Bible literally, the Primeval History of the earliest chapters of Genesis is quite different from that which the Fundamentalists would have.
    For example, the literal meaning of the first few verses has God beginning his creation with there being a pre-existing chaos of wind and waters. Not creation from nothing. Various plants and animals grow out of the water and land. The world that pictured is a typical Ancient Near Eastern flat earth under a solid dome holding the Sun, Moon and stars. No one who accepts the reality of air travel can take that literally. Actually, by about 2000 years ago, most lit4rate people could not take it literally and constructed a different story of the world and its creation. Today’s YECs are constructing their own world on their own authority.

  22. Eric Lipps

    Ah, yes. You’re thinking correctly if, and only if, you’re a fundamentalist Christian. (Fundamentalist Muslims, for instance, are going into the lake of fire, there to burn in agony for all time to come along with us Darwinist sinners. So much for God as a loving Father.)

  23. “the brain is remarkably well-designed and surpasses anything that humans have created”
    Yet that human brain is not capable of beating computers at chess and go, while they solve sudokus in a split second.

    “Sinners do not think like God”
    And every christian is a sinner by definition, including Jason, so he rebels against his god by writing this very article. Way to go, Jason!

  24. Of what use would reason be to an entity that is capable of unlimited magic. They claim that God created physical laws, so why would he need reason when he can change the laws anytime He wants? This is what happens when ignoramuses try their hand at apologetics.