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Reason becomes unreliable precisely at that point where the will has gone astray. Illogic is not the cause but rather the effect of misbehavior. Analytic and creative powers which perform spectacularly in other circumstances become redirected into rationalization and self justification when the need arises.

This concept ought to be familiar to parents of small children whose offspring subject them to daily examples of (often transparent) mental gymnastics differing in degree of sophistication but not in kind from those of their more mature counterparts. Neither are criminologists and trial lawyers strangers to the practice of selective recall and convincing revisionism when people are confronted with well documented but unpleasant aspects of their past.

One whose life is disordered only in areas unrelated to a matter under discussion may do a capable job of dealing with it, given the available information and the innate capacity of his mental apparatus. On the other hand, one with enormous intellectual skills may stagger between elementary fallacies and frank dyslogic (however well disguised with suitably erudite verbiage) to consciously or unconsciously avoid exposure of a basic character flaw, improper action or ulterior motive.

An intellectually honest person needs to ask several questions to detect the potential for pitfalls: Have I considered the possibility that I may be wrong on this point? What would it take to convince me? If the evidence were clear would I be willing to change?

Is it common to retreat from a publicly and loudly proclaimed opinion? Would it be easy for a man to denounce an idea that formed the foundation of his career and reputation? Indeed is it even possible to willingly acknowledge evidence that one's entire life has been built on a lie?

I submit that some who evaluate the evidence for creation and against evolution do so with a strong aversion to the potential conclusion. Namely, they want to avoid at all cost the possibility that they may be responsible to a creator. That prejudice makes it impossible for them to accurately assess the case.

This is not a new idea. Paul wrote it to the church in Rome over 1900 years ago, but the truth is reconfirmed with each succeeding generation.

by Ross Olson

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