The Naica Cave of Crystals

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Eleventh Doctor
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The Naica Cave of Crystals

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Has anyone heard of these crystals before? Thoughts on the issues this brings up with Young Earth Creationism?

https://thenaturalhistorian.com/2017/02 ... ung-earth/
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Tea Ess
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I misread this as the Narnia Cave of Crystals at first. :P
The institute for Creation Research has ignored the Naica crystals. Creation Ministries International (CMI) wrote one small article in 2006 which claimed the crystals could have grown very quickly. Their evidence? They quote a mine superintendent who stated that under perfect conditions that these crystals could have formed in 30 to 50 years years. I have been able to confirm that reference but have found no evidence this person had any knowledge of crystal formation or was able to provide any evidence for his claim. He may have been sincere in this belief that the the crystals formed quickly but no experts that have visited the cave have ever suggested that these crystals formed that quickly.
Answers in Genesis (AiG) wrote about the Niaca crystals in 2011 after a study (Reference 1) was published that reported detailed measurements of the crystal structure and growth rates providing very strong evidence for very slow growth. AiG appears to draw directly upon the conclusions of a 700-word CMI news item to form their own conclusions.
Here is their conclusion regarding the origin of these crystals:
However these magnificent crystals formed, they formed within the few thousand years since the Flood. And given the stability of conditions needed to form them, the true time frame is likely many orders of magnitude smaller than that proposed in the latest study. How long is that? Likely closer to the 30 or so years originally suggested by the mining company geologist and superintendent of exploration in a Mexican newspaper article.
The AiG writer provides no observational evidence or any measurement of growth rate even under ideal conditions that would allow for such fast crystal growth. The author produces no chemical analysis which would suggest that the crystals have experienced different rates of growth in the past versus the present. But to provide assurance to their reader that they need not worry about these crystals the author accepts – without questioning or any substantiation – and promotes the initial reaction by a mine employee.
The title of the AiG article is “Crystal Rate of Growth Debated.” What debate? The article reports the 2011 research which details growth rates calculations and the characterization of the crystals. There is not debate about the numbers and subsequently a dozen other studies have confirmed the slow growth of these crystals. The debate the AiG article seems to refer to is the fact that a mine employee upon discovery of the crystals suggested that they may have grown in 30 to 50 years. How is that a debate? A suggestion not backed up by evidence versus years of study is not a debate.
This seems like a fairly typical creationist argument, honestly, especially coming from Answers in Genesis. It's anecdotal evidence from a singular person against the research of many scientists. Like the article says, it's not a debate. Creationists are disagreeing with this fact-supported conclusion with "well, this one guy said maybe it didn't happen like that."

Personally, I care so much less about the creation/evolution debate than I used to, and I've come to lean towards an old earth creation. AiG especially has turned me off YEC with how they often pretend this is a "Christians versus evolution" issue. Here's a blog post I appreciated from BioLogos on the Ark Encounter and YEC in general: http://biologos.org/blogs/deborah-haars ... -encounter
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Meh. I'm not inclined to reinterpret the Bible to fit science, but it's not that big a deal. It's not like we're trying to argue that Jesus didn't come back from the dead, or something like that. Scientists will do their thing, and if they agree with the Bible, great. If they don't, whatever.
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Eleventh Doctor
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That was a good post, thanks for sharing it. I too have come to care less and less for this debate, I was never huge into it in the first place. But I'm taking a geology course right now so it piqued my interest.
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"It's particularly ignorant to assume malicious or ignorant intentions behind an opinion with which one disagrees." ~Connie
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