NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TV'S UNDERSEA FAIRY TALES

A documentary called Built for the Kill has been screened on National Geographic TV. Its aim was twofold. On the one hand, the program described some of the techniques used by sea creatures to hunt or evade capture. On the other, it sent out a Darwinist message by describing some creatures as "programmed to kill" or "ruthless killers."

The flawless design in the creatures described in the documentary were portrayed as mechanisms "developed for survival," although no evidence of this was offered. This is a technique frequently encountered in broadcasts by National Geographic TV and similar Darwinist institutions. However, it is obvious that these descriptions lack any scientific basis, since looking at the features possessed by the creatures and saying "they developed these in order to survive" or sticking an evolutionary label on the design in living things is itself of no scientific value.

For instance, attempting to account for the shiny skin on the underside of the blue shark and the dark skin on the top by means of evolution, while failing to provide any evidence, merely reveals National Geographic TV's prejudices. Another fish, looking down, cannot make out the shark against the dark tones of the sea bottom thanks to the dark color of the shark's skin. The shark will similarly be camouflaged against the brightness of the sea surface stemming from the rays of the sun. If this is to be explained by evolution, then it must also be explained how the information for this camouflage design emerged by chance in the creature's DNA, and scientific proof must be given. Maintaining that this information came about by natural selection and random mutations, in the absence of any scientific evidence whatsoever, is merely Darwinist dogma.

On the other hand, this feature of the shark can be perfectly convincingly accounted for by intelligent design: the information regarding which areas of the shark's skin are to be which colors is present in its DNA. It is utterly rational and scientific to maintain that the encoding of this information came about not by chance but by conscious intervention.

The fundamental factor, which reveals the invalidity of the evolutionist claims put forward in the film, is the exceedingly complex nature of the design in the creatures discussed. The dolphin sonar dealt with in the documentary is one instance of this. Dolphins possess a special organ in their heads that allows them to send out sound waves and sense the echoes that reflect from physical bodies. These sound waves can penetrate some 30 cm beneath the sand and can be picked up in an amazing way by the dolphins as the environment changes (from water to sand and back from sand to water). In this way the dolphin plots a sort of map of what lies beneath the sand.

Another aspect indicative of the perfection in dolphin sonar is the way the U.S. Navy has imitated it in its own development of sonar. Since existing forms of sonar were unable to locate mines buried in the sand during the Gulf War, the U.S. fleet lost a number of ships. It then set out to use the dolphin wave range in the research it supported and to employ the dolphin's sensory technique in its own vessels.


The perfect sonar system in dolphins inspired many scientists and led them to make use of this system in marine technology. ASDIC, the first active sonar technology invented in World War II, was able to detect and track a submerged submarine at about 2,000 yards in good conditions. The sonar system, which humans only started to use in the twentieth century, has been used by dolphins for millions of years. All these perfect designs in nature are evidence for Allah's matchless artistry in creation.

 


Whitlow Au

Whitlow Au, a researcher from the Hawaii Marine Biology Institute in Kailua, together with his colleagues, managed to come up with such a sonar system four years ago. A computerized sonar device which monitored and decoded the echoes of the waves it sent was added to this artificial dolphin sonar. This sonar, developed by scientists, was subjected to a number of tests and produced very positive results, registering a 90% success rate in locating mines buried 40 cm under the sand. 1

As we can see, an advanced computer needs to be used in order to imitate the action of dolphin sonar. This animal's sonar faculty, which does what an advanced computer can do but in an even more efficient manner, and which is also far more compact than a computer, is a miracle of engineering. To maintain that such an organ emerged by mutations-which evolution depends on-is just as illogical as maintaining that a computer could emerge from the soil as a result of natural phenomena such as wind and rain. No rational person would obviously ever believe such a claim. Yet National Geographic TV glosses over this complex organ during its account of dolphin sonar by calling it "a product of evolution," without offering the slightest evidence.

Another creature whose complex design leaves the theory of evolution floundering is the angelfish. Thanks to its flat body, this animal buries itself in the sand to wait for its prey, and keeps a lookout with two eyes which protrude like periscopes. One of the creature's most astonishing aspects is that it can also detect the approach of prey thanks to an organ which senses electrical signals. When the moment comes, it suddenly lunges out of its hiding place and swallows its prey in a single gulp.

National Geographic TV employed the expression "it developed a sixth sense" during its description of this sense possessed by the creature. This sensory system contains a most complex design: the animal possesses an organ that perceives electrical impulses, nerves which carry the signals received by that organ, and, most important of all, a brain capable of transforming these signals into a meaningful map. Highly effective connections transmit the signals between the nerve cells. These connections have been designed to prevent the signals from being lost or diminished in any way. In short, there is a very detailed design and organization in the sensory system. Since even a simple ammeter for measuring electric currents requires a specific design, it is clear that this much more complex sensory system was also intelligently designed.

After describing all these complex systems, National Geographic TV claimed that they all emerged "by evolution," without feeling the need to offer any evidence for this. Yet again, this shows how dogmatically devoted National Geographic TV is to the theory of evolution. It feels no need to test the foundations of the theory. On the contrary, it seeks to account for the whole of nature in the light of the theory after having swallowed it verbatim.

Nor do the descriptions of some creatures in the program as "ruthless killers" actually reflect the truth. This expression is employed to impose the Darwinist dogma that there is a ruthless struggle for survival in nature and that living things are aggressive, selfish, and ruthless. Yet, the hunting that goes on among living things is not "ruthless killing." Animals kill only for food or self-defense. The method they employ is usually the swiftest, and thus the method that inflicts the least suffering. (For instance, a lion kills its prey by biting its throat.)

Conclusion

The magnificent hunting mechanisms and camouflage skills in living things cannot have come about by evolution. The complex design in animals and all other organisms can only be accounted for by intelligent design. National Geographic TV merely repeats Darwinist shibboleths as it describes natural phenomena. If the channel really wants to defend the theory of evolution, it must account for the origin of complex organs in evolutionary terms. Indeed, the reason why it makes do with offering accounts full of Darwinist slogans is that it is impossible to offer such an explanation.

1."Spotting Mines With Dolphins Sonar", http://sciencenow.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/1998/1016/2

 

TALES OF TRANSFORMATION FROM NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TELEVISION

National Geographic TV recently broadcast a documentary called Evolution -The Great Transformations. It mainly concentrated on the origin of whales, and devoted considerable space to evolutionist claims regarding their transition from the sea to the land, together with comments concerning at which stages such transitions might have come about. National Geographic TV's favored solution to the question of the origin of whales was an interesting one: It was proposed that dogs surviving by eating corpses on the sea shore decided to live in the sea in order to find a better supply of food. Over time their front legs turned into fins and they lost their back legs altogether, thus giving rise to whales. In these imaginary scenarios dreamed up by National Geographic TV accompanied by computer reconstructions, living things with completely different physical structures easily turned into other creatures: dogs into whales, for instance, or fish into land-dwellers. Yet what was related was totally based on imagination, and possessed no scientific significance or value. The drawings produced consisted of nothing more than the scenarios demanded by the Darwinist theory, which is entirely lacking in any scientific proof. In this article, we shall be explaining how the great transformations discussed on National Geographic TV never actually happened.

A Whale Story for the Very Young

The origin of whales, and of sea mammals in general, is a very important question from the point of view of the theory of evolution. The theory maintains that sea-dwelling creatures moved onto the land, where mammals evolved. This leads to an important question regarding the existence of marine mammals, one which is difficult to answer: If mammals evolved on land, how and why did they return to the sea?

Charles Darwin gave considerable thought to this question, which represented a serious dilemma for his theory, but failed to come up with a conclusion. On this point, which truly deadlocked his theory, he was forced to suggest a none-too-convincing ancestor. The animal Darwin suggested as the ancestor of whales was the bear. He said, "I can see no difficulty in a race of bears being rendered, by natural selection, more and more aquatic in their structure and habits, with larger and larger mouths, till a creature was produced as monstrous as a whale." 1

While applauding Darwin's imagination, evolutionists are now of the view that whales must have had some other ancestor. The latest creature suggested to fill this vacancy is a species of dog.

National Geographic magazine embarked on a campaign of whale propaganda in its November 2001 edition, publishing this inconsistent claim in a 14-page article, complete with illustrations. We published a detailed response to this "whale evolution" claim, revealing all its contradictions and inconsistencies, in a paper on our website, www.harunyahya.com. The whale story on the TV screens went no further than the scenarios in the magazine, and made no new claims.

For that reason, we shall not be going into scientific detail regarding those points, which invalidate these claims about the whale, recommending instead that our readers to turn to our original article. "A Whale Fantasy from National Geographic": http://www.harunyahya.com/70national_ geographic_sci29.php

The Problems with the Transition from Sea to Land and the Acanthostega Error

One of the so-called evolutionary transformations discussed on National Geographic TV had to do with the theory of the transition from the sea to the land. This theory suggests that fish emerged in the sea by means of evolution and moved onto the land some 370 million years ago. No scientific evidence can be produced to show how fish, whose organs and systems were completely suited to allowing them to live in the sea, could have survived on land, nor how they could have turned into other species. Instead of scientifically examining one of the fundamental dogmas of Darwinism, National Geographic TV glosses it over with a fairy-tale account.

The scale of the deception represented by this claim, so blindly defended by National Geographic TV, becomes even clearer upon examination of the fossil record.

According to Darwin, species evolved from a common ancestor, and this evolutionary process must have happened in stages. In the event of one species' evolving from another, there should be a great many intermediate forms between the two. The natural conclusion from this would be that the geological strata should be full of countless fossils displaying such intermediate characteristics. Yet, the situation in the fossil record is actually the exact opposite. Fossils appear to be divided into very clear categories, and species appear to have possessed their characteristic traits from the very beginning. New categories of living things always appear suddenly in the fossil record.

The efforts of evolutionist paleontologists all over the world have been fruitless, and the long-sought-for missing links have never been found. This demonstrates very clearly why no process such as evolution ever happened. National Geographic TV, on the other hand, covers up the dilemma that fossils pose for the theory and portrays the transition from sea to land as if it had actually happened. The TV channel refuses to accept the collapse of Darwinism, and therefore clings to the extinct species known as Acanthostega.

Acanthostega and What it Brings to Mind


When they only had fossils of Coelacanths, evolutionist paleontologists put forward a number of Darwinist assumptions regarding them;however, when living examples were found, all these assumptions were shattered.

Acanthostega is a sea creature with gills. Its age is estimated at some 360 million years. Jenny Clack, a paleontologist from Cambridge University, maintains that this fossil possesses a hand, and that on this hand there are eight fingers, for which reason it is an intermediate form between fish and tetrapods (four-footed land vertebrates). Taking this fossil as their starting point, evolutionists claim that instead of fish developing feet after moving onto the land, they first developed feet and then made that transition. Yet this claim is inconsistent. First of all, despite being an evolutionist, Clack clearly states that she does not know whether Acanthostega made the transition to the land or not. It is an error to regard a marine-dwelling creature with certain bone-like structures in its fins as a form that brought about the transition from sea to land. The fact that evolutionists are making this error shows how quickly they have forgotten their mistakes over the Coelacanth, which was discovered to be living up until 65 years ago.

Up until the end of 1930s, evolutionists portrayed the Coelacanth as an intermediate form. It was thought that the bones in the fins of this 200-million-year-old fossil turned into feet, which carried the creature when it moved onto the land. In 1938, however, they learnt to their great surprise that Coelacanth was still living. On close examination, it was revealed that these fish caught by fishermen off the coast of Madagascar had undergone no changes at all in the last 200 million years. Furthermore, the organ which evolutionists had believed to be a primitive lung turned out to be nothing but a fat-filled swimbladder. Moreover, a great many more Coelacanths were caught shortly afterwards, and evolutionists had to abandon forever the claim that the creature represented an intermediate form.

As can be seen from the Coelacanth example, as well as that of Acanthostega, marine creatures with bone-like structures are portrayed as intermediate forms, not because they might have been able to live on land, but because of evolutionists' prejudices.

Obstacles to the Transition from Water to Land

The profound physiological differences between land and marine mammals can be divided into five basic categories:

1. Weight-bearing: Sea-dwelling creatures have no problem in bearing their own weight in the sea. However, most land-dwelling creatures consume 40% of their energy just in carrying their bodies around. Creatures making the transition from water to land would at the same time have had to develop new muscular and skeletal systems (!) to meet this energy need, and this could not have come about by chance mutations.

 

2. Heat Retention: On land, the temperature can change quickly, and fluctuates over a wide range. Land-dwelling creatures possess a physical mechanism that can withstand such great temperature changes. However, in the sea, the temperature changes slowly and within a narrower range. A living organism with a body system regulated according to the constant temperature of the sea would need to acquire a protective system to ensure minimum harm from the temperature changes on land. It is preposterous to claim that fish acquired such a system by random mutations as soon as they stepped onto land.


Allah created every living (creature) from water. Some of them go on their bellies, some of them on two legs, and some on four. Allah creates whatever He wills. Allah has power over all things.
(Qur'an, 24:45)

3. Water: Essential to metabolism, water needs to be used economically due to its relative scarcity on land. For instance, the skin has to be able to permit a certain amount of water loss, while also preventing excessive evaporation. That is why land-dwelling creatures experience thirst, something sea-dwelling creatures do not do. For this reason, the skin of sea-dwelling animals is not suitable for a non-aquatic habitat.

4. Kidneys: Sea-dwelling organisms discharge waste materials, especially ammonia, by means of their aquatic environment. On land, water has to be used economically. This is why these living beings have a kidney system.

Thanks to the kidneys, ammonia is stored by being converted into urea and the minimum amount of water is used during its excretion. In addition, new systems are needed to provide for the kidney's functioning. In short, in order for the passage from water to land to have occurred, living things without a kidney would have had to develop a kidney system all at once.

5. Respiratory system: Fish "breathe" by taking in oxygen dissolved in water, which they pass through their gills. They cannot live more than a few minutes out of water. In order to survive on land, they would have to acquire a perfect lung system all of a sudden.

It is most certainly impossible that all of these dramatic physiological changes could have happened in the same organism at the same time, and all by chance.

1 - Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species: A Facsimile of the First Edition, Harvard University Press, 1964, p. 184

 

ERRORS CONCERNING HUMAN INTELLIGENCE FROM THE DISCOVERY CHANNEL

The documentary, Evolution: The Mind's Big Bang, broadcast on The Discovery Channel, set out a number of Darwinist claims on the subject of human intelligence and culture. Considerable space was devoted to the views of such unrepentant Darwinist scientists as Steven Pinker and Richard Dawkins. This paper examines these Darwinist views and sets out the distortions behind them.

The Discovery Channel's Darwinist Preconceptions About Language


Allah brought you out of your mothers wombs knowing nothing at all, and gave you hearing, sight and hearts so that perhaps you would show thanks.
(Qur'an, 16:78)

The documentary contains speculation about the origin of language that are based entirely on fantasy and prejudice. The social benefits conferred on man by language are described as the benefits conferred on individuals in the so-called process of evolution. The claim is then made that the socially most powerful might have been selected during the alleged evolutionary process.

The Discovery Channel is unable to offer any scientific proof for this claim, and deals with it in a fairy-tale manner. It takes man's ability to speak, and artificially pastes it onto natural selection, the classical idea at the heart of the theory of evolution. Needless to say, one-sidedly portraying a series of imaginary claims lacking in any scientific foundation as though they were scientific fact is not a scientific approach.

Language, which allows man to think and establish communication with others in a most perfect manner, is a miraculous ability unique to man. All human beings possess language-learning ability from the moment of their birth. A baby anywhere in the world can learn any language spoken anywhere in the world.

Structurally, language rests on complex grammatical and syntactical rules. An utterance consisting of two or three words might appear to be something really rather simple. However, in order for a person to produce it, a great many very complicated processes must be carried out within a very short space of time. Abstract concepts regarding the issue in question are brought to mind, appropriate words are chosen, and then the words are arranged in the right order. All of this must happen for the original thought to be communicated to someone else.

Frank Guenther of Boston University says, "Speech is easily the most complicated motor act humans carry out." 1 Guenther states that during speech the brain controls more than 100 muscles in the face, throat, chest, and abdomen, and emphasizes that all of this happens spontaneously without our needing to think about it. Guenther describes how a five-syllable word, including eleven discrete phonemes, takes most people less than a second to say. Furthermore, we do not have to worry about which muscles to tighten or loosen as we speak. Speech is literally a miracle.

Seeking to offer a Darwinist explanation of the origin of language, The Discovery Channel also deals with gossip in terms of natural selection. After stating that gossip comprises two-thirds of human conversation, the channel says that gossip is actually capital, and that the first person to learn how to do it acquired information that could be negotiated with others, for which reason gossip is an evolutionary benefit.

This claim about gossip is actually nothing more than fantasy, of course. Moreover, it is not even consistent, because gossip is not capital. If it were, then those who gossip most would today be the most respected individuals in society.

1- "Repeat After Me," Discover, November 2002

 

EVOLUTIONARY TALL TALES FROM THE BBC -II-

The second installment of the documentary, The Human Body, again consisted of evolutionist propaganda devoid of any scientific credibility. The errors in the documentary prepared by BBC are scientifically explained below.

BBC's Tall Tale about "Fish Gills Becoming Human Ears"

The BBC documentary maintained that human beings and fish had a common ancestor, and that traces can still be found in the human body which prove this. According to BBC, the human ear is one example of such a trace, and its origin is to be found in the bones beside the gills in the fish, with which we share (!) a common ancestor.

This BBC claim rests on the theory of "recapitulation," which has long since been discredited in the scientific literature. Since this matter has already been dealt with in the article "Evolutionary Tall Tales from BBC - I," there is no need to repeat it here.

The subject to be considered here is that the human ear possesses such a complex structure that it could never have evolved from a fish bone.

The Human Ear Possesses Irreducible Complexity

The significance of the irreducible complexity possessed by the human ear is this: The human ear is made up of several separate parts all coming together, and we are able to hear as a result of all these parts' working in harmony together. If one of these components is deficient, then we either become deaf or else our sense of hearing suffers serious damage. It is impossible for an organ possessing irreducible complexity to develop by stages, by chance, in a process of evolution. A brief résumé of how hearing actually takes place will enable this fact to be more clearly understood.

As is commonly known, the hearing process begins with vibrations in the air. These vibrations are enhanced in the external ear by about 17 decibels. 1



a) The three separate regions of the ear, the outer ear, middle ear and inner ear.

b) In this picture, which shows the middle and inner ear under magnification, can be seen the eardrum, three ossicles and the oval window connecting them. Sound waves striking the eardrum cause these ossicles to vibrate, thus causing the fluid in the next structure along, the cochlea, to move.

c) There are three areas in this cross section of the cochlea. In the middle are the organ of Corti and sound receptors.

d) This magnified diagram shows the tiny hairs in the organ of Corti. It is thanks to these hairs that sound signals reach the brain.

Sound intensified in this way enters the external auditory canal. This is the passageway leading from the external ear to the eardrum. One interesting feature of the auditory canal, which is some three and a half centimeters long, is the wax it constantly secretes. This liquid contains an antiseptic property which keeps bacteria and insects out. Furthermore, the cells on the surface of the auditory canal are aligned in a spiral form directed towards the outside, so that the wax always flows towards the outside of the ear as it is secreted.


The vibrations from an external noise cause the liquid in the inner ear to vibrate. The movement of this liquid sets the tiny hairs on the inner walls of the cochlea, shown in this picture, in motion. The movements of these hairs allow the sound of a violin, a television newsreader's voice or the wailing of a cat in the street to reach the brain in the form of electrical signals. Thanks to these flawless structures we are able to distinguish between millions of different sounds. Science has still not unravelled all the technical details of this system, which has been functioning flawlessly ever since the first human being. Here, we need to see the immaculate art of Allah, our Creator, and give thanks for the blessings He has bestowed upon us.

Sound vibrations that pass down the auditory canal in this way reach the eardrum. This membrane is so sensitive that it can even perceive vibrations on the molecular level. Thanks to the exquisite sensitivity of the eardrum, you can easily hear somebody whispering from yards away. Another extraordinary feature of the eardrum is that after receiving a vibration it returns to its normal state. Calculations have revealed that, after perceiving the tiniest vibrations, the eardrum becomes motionless again within up to four thousandths of a second. If it did not become motionless again so quickly, every sound we hear would echo in our ears.

The eardrum amplifies the vibrations that come to it, and sends them on to the middle ear region. Here, there are three bones in an extremely sensitive equilibrium with each other. These three bones are known as the hammer, the anvil, and the stirrup; their function is to amplify the vibrations that reach them from the eardrum.

But the middle ear also possesses a kind of "buffer," to reduce exceedingly high levels of sound. This feature is provided by two of the body's smallest muscles, which control the hammer, anvil, and stirrup bones. These muscles enable exceptionally loud noises to be reduced before they reach the inner ear. Thanks to this mechanism, we hear sounds that are loud enough to shock the system at a reduced volume. These muscles are involuntary, and come into operation automatically.

The middle ear, which possesses such a flawless design, needs to maintain an important equilibrium. The air pressure inside the middle ear has to be the same as that beyond the eardrum-in other words, the same as the surrounding atmospheric air pressure. But this balance has been thought of, and a canal between the middle ear and the outside world allowing an exchange of air has been built in. This canal is the Eustachian tube, a hollow tube running from the inner ear to the oral cavity.

The process whereby these mechanical motions begin to be turned into sound begins in the area known as the inner ear. In the inner ear is the cochlea, a spiral-shaped organ filled with liquid. The cochlea is linked to the stirrup bone by a membrane. By this connection, the mechanical vibrations in the middle ear are sent on to the liquid in the cochlea.

The vibrations which reach the liquid in the cochlea set up wave effects in it. The inner walls of the cochlea are lined with small hair-like structures, called stereocilia, which are affected by this wave effect. These tiny hairs move strictly in accordance with the motion of the liquid. If a loud noise is emitted, then more hairs bend in a more powerful way. Every different frequency in the outside world sets up different effects in the hairs.

But what is the meaning of this movement of the hairs? What can the movement of the tiny hairs in the cochlea in the inner ear have to do with listening to a concert of classical music, recognizing a friend's voice, hearing the sound of a car, or distinguishing the millions of other kinds of sounds?

Not even sound systems with the very highest technology can offer us the sound quality we enjoy when listening to a piece of music. The flesh and blood audio system in our ears is flawless. Scientists have still not fully understood this extraordinary system. Believing that such perfection could have come about by chance takes one no further than believing in fairy stories.

The answer is most interesting, and once more reveals the complexity of the design in the ear. Each of the tiny hairs covering the inner walls of the cochlea is actually a mechanism which lies on top of 16,000 cells. When these hairs sense a vibration, they move and push each other, just like dominos. This motion opens channels in the membranes of the cells lying beneath the hairs. And this allows the inflow of ions into the cells. When the hairs move in the opposite direction, these channels close again. Thus, this constant motion of the hairs causes constant changes in the chemical balance within the underlying cells, which in turn enables them to produce electrical signals. These electrical signals are forwarded to the brain by nerves, and the brain then processes them, turning them into sound.

Science has not been able to explain all the technical details of this system. While producing these electrical signals, the cells in the inner ear also manage to transmit the frequencies, strengths, and rhythms coming from the outside. This is such a complicated process that science has so far been unable to determine whether the frequency-distinguishing system takes place in the inner ear or in the brain.

Everything we have examined so far has shown us that the ear possesses an extraordinary design. On closer examination, it becomes evident that this design is irreducibly complex, since, in order for hearing to happen, it is necessary for all the component parts of the auditory system to be present and in complete working order.

Take away any one of these parts-for instance, the hammer bone in the middle ear-or damage its structure, and you will no longer be able to hear anything. In order for you to hear, such different elements as the eardrum, the hammer, anvil, and stirrup bones, the inner ear membrane, the cochlea, the liquid inside the cochlea, the tiny hairs that transmit the vibrations from the liquid to the underlying sensory cells, the sensory cells themselves, the nerve network running from them to the brain, and the hearing center in the brain-all of these parts must exist in complete working order. The system cannot develop "by stages," because the intermediate stages would serve no purpose.

The claim that an organ as complex as the ear should have been constructed in stages by an unconscious process dependent solely on random chance, such as evolution, is both unscientific and irrational. BBC must be aware of this impossibility, since it frequently repeats that this is a miracle that is very difficult to believe, and says: "Evolution shapes our bodies. It is hard to believe that it could bring all this about."

1 - Color Atlas of Human Anatomy, Harmony Books, New York, 1994, p. 70