Van Til Tool

Using the Van Til Perspective as the tool to discover what life means and how it ought to be lived.

Thursday, October 13, 2005



By Forrest W. Schultz

A Review Of

Samuel J. Alibrando, Nature Never Stops Talking: The Wonderful Ingenuity
Of Nature, (Reedley, CA: Tsaba House, 2005) $15.99
ISBN-13: 978-0-97525486-4-9

I enjoy reading well-written accounts of interesting things in nature. The book under review here discusses interesting natural phenomena which are also very complex – or maybe I should say he brings the complexity to our attention. His purpose is not only to have the reader stand in awe at these phenomena, but also to show that their complexity refutes evolutionary theory. Since creation is the only alternative to evolution it is tempting to say that therefore the existence of God is thereby proven, but the author does not say so, which is wise, because God cannot be proven, because only on the basis of presupposing God can we be certain of knowing or proving anything at all, so that any attempt whatever to prove God is necessarily guilty of begging the question.

The contents of the book originally appeared in the columns of a small town newspaper and, for that reason, are purposely written in very simple English, yet without distorting or oversimplifying the subject matter.

Unfortunately, there are a few errors in the book, which should have been caught by the proofreading process because they are so elementary. For instance, the chemical identity of an atom is determined by the number of protons it has, not by the number of electrons, as the author claims. (pp. 43, 35) If the chemical identity were determined by the number of electrons, then whenever an ion was formed by the atom’s giving or receiving of electrons, this would mean that the atom had become a new element. This does not happen because the number of protons, which determines the atom’s chemical identity, remains constant during the chemical reaction in which the ionic bond is formed. On page 63 the author says that “atoms have different kinds of elements in their make up.” He surely means that atoms have different kinds of elementary particles in their make up. His definition of efficiency on page 80 is incorrect: efficiency is work output divided by work input. The relationship of the larva of the Ichneumon wasp to the caterpillar on which it feeds is one of parasite to host not that of predator to prey, as Alibrando claims (p. 94) There is an error in typography in the eighth paragraph on page 111. And, finally, it is redundant, not to mention that it sounds funny, to speak of “square” acres, as the author does on p. 161. Unlike the other area measurements, such as square feet, which are squares of a unit used to measure length, the acre is defined from the outset as a certain amount of area.
I recommend this book provided that these errors are corrected.


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