Stories about evolution

5 reasons why ‘The Predator’ will revive a franchise that flatlined long ago

It was in 1987 that the world was first introduced to an extra-terrestrial hunter with advanced weaponry, known as the predator. This humanoid alien has an active camouflage, thermal imaging, a high energy shoulder canon, wrist blades, a retractable spear, a lethal throwing disc, a net gun, along with the ability to self-destruct. Yet somehow, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Dutch was able to defeat this mighty warrior in the first movie of the franchise, which proved to be a huge hit. Predator is considered one of the best science fiction movies ever made. Unfortunately, the sequels didn’t prove to be as ...

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If US and Cuba can do it, can Pakistan and India make peace with history?

“I know the history, but refuse to be trapped by it,” so said President Obama on his epically momentous trip to Cuba – the first by a sitting US president since 1928. Leaving behind Republican rhetoric, hate speech and fear-mongering, for two and a half days Obama managed to block the noise, break protocol and made an overarching effort to mend fences with the old enemy by walking the streets of Havana, addressing the people of Cuba and indulging in baseball diplomacy. This journey was long overdue, one that was destined to wash away bitter memories and intense rivalry between the two nations. It proved that if there is a will, there ...

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The Tribe: No words to express its brilliance

No words, no music, no subtitles. The Tribe is a Ukrainian film which takes place in a specialised boarding school for the deaf. Sergey, the new student, is quickly inducted into a student gang partaking in crime and prostitution. After a series of horrendous events, Sergey falls in love with one of the student prostitutes and breaks one of the unspoken rules of obeying the hierarchy of the Tribe. The film is absolutely brutal in its depiction of violence and abuse. Without the use of dialogues or subtitles, the emotions and motivations of the characters appear utterly truthful and in some ...

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My revolution begins with my evolution

The rhetoric of revolution has gained significant momentum in our politics of late. While globally the word may still be reserved to define bloody upheavals and decade long struggles, our political enthusiasts have never shied away from labelling a transition of power with the ‘R’ word – irrespective of its eventual impact on the lives of the people. Whether it was a consequence of the arrival of a fiery cleric administering a large tea party in Islamabad, the heartthrob Kaptaan reaping rich dividends of his 17-year-long political struggles, or the disillusioning incompetence and corruption of the rulers passed, talk of change and a revolution ...

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Why do religious people distrust science?

There was once a thriving culture of reason and scientific thought in medieval Arabia. It was a region where religion was taken very seriously, however, science still flourished and took root. Many of the modern day scientific and technological advances can be traced back to that part of the world.  This article, however, is not about glorifying the past. It is an attempt to deconstruct the reason behind why modern day religious people, specifically Muslims, have a deep-rooted distrust for science, given that the Muslims from medieval Arabia were seemingly more open towards it. The answer may be a bit complicated, but not totally elusive. If ...

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Is science closer to the truth?

A dangerous notion appears to have invaded our minds; that science is merely a buffet of opinions, and it is entirely up to us accept the information that appeases us, and reject what we find unpalatable. That’s not how it works. When you go to a doctor’s office, you take his prescription and follow it precisely. You don’t argue with him about why he prescribed Bromazepam instead of Lorazepam, or announce that you’re going to take 12 tablets a day as opposed to two that the doctor has advised you. You acknowledge that your doctor, being an expert in medical science, ...

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Religion or science: That is not the question

The argument begins with this question: why should science and religion be kept separate? The answer depends on what you believe; however, let me present my case in favour of the separation of science and religion. Science is the study of nature and how it functions. The beauty of science is that when a theory is presented, scientists of that field do not immediately agree with the theoretical claims. Rather, they put the theory to intensive criticism and tests. In many cases, the theories are disproved on the basis of counter evidence or errors that are deduced. If the ...

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There is a Muslim in evolution class

Protest is becoming a fanatical obsession within Islamic discourse. In recent news, British Muslim students have been walking out and boycotting biology lectures that focus on the theory of evolution. Before we revert to citing the phenomenon of religious fundamentalism let us remind ourselves these are students that are clearly intelligent enough to study medicine in one of the most competitive universities within the country. Clearly, we must move beyond stereotypical divisions of ‘faith vs. reason’. This is a complex issue because the issue here is clearly not about intelligence, scientific curiosity, hard work or open enquiry. These British Muslim students have enrolled ...

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Waiting for evolution in Pakistan’s classrooms

When I was in class III, my school teacher showed us an unusual illustration in our science class. It was the classic drawing of the evolution of man, from monkey ancestor to homosapien, and I remember thinking back then: well, that makes a lot of sense, we look just like monkeys. There was no big debate in our science class. The teacher just taught us evolution (change via natural selection across successive generations in the heritable characteristics of biological populations), and we just absorbed the information and assumed it to be true. The narrative of how life came into existence ...

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Evolution is false…and the Sun goes round the Earth

The Express Tribune received this letter to the editor recently, and I have taken it upon myself not only to reproduce the letter in full, but to reply to it in full as well. The letter Dear Editor: What evolutionists stumble over in their beliefs about evolution is, given enough time, any change is possible.  The more time, the more plausible the theory.  Sounds so reasonable, doesn’t it? But that doesn’t address the more important  question that asks about the mechanism that causes change. There isn’t a scientist in the world who can explain or demonstrate the step-by-step mechanism that evolved, for ...

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