- As mentioned in an earlier post, our common sense dictates to us that time is immutable - a clock placed on a ship or an airplane should run at the same pace as an identical stationary clock. Yet Einstein’s theory of relativity violates common sense in demonstrating that clocks advance at different rates when they are moving with respect to each other. The difference in rate is only appreciable when the relative motion of the clocks occurs at a speed close to the speed of light. As a result, an astronaut sent out on a journey on a spacecraft that can accelerate up to a speed close to the speed of light might return home one year older than when she left. However, the earth she returns to could be 100 years older and, under such circumstances, her entire generation would have died out.
- We observe that all functioning complicated machines have been carefully designed by intelligent engineers. Thus our common sense dictates that living things, which are fantastically complicated machines, must have been similarly designed. However, Darwin’s theory of evolution demonstrates that, in fact, living things were not designed, but evolved through a process of random variation and natural selection occurring over billions of years.
- We observe that alcohol abuse is the cause of much illness, death and social dysfunction. Our collective common sense thus dictated at one point in US history that alcohol should be prohibited. However, prohibition in practice fostered widespread crime and corruption and failed to eliminate alcohol consumption and, as a result, was ultimately repealed.
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