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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2006
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Claim CE412:

The earth is near the center of the universe, at the bottom of a deep gravitational well. Relativistic effects result in billions of years passing in the rest of the universe while only thousands pass near the earth. This explains how multibillion-year-old stars and galaxies can exist in a universe only a few thousand years old.


Humphreys, D. Russell, 1994. Starlight and Time, Green Forest, Arkansas: Master Books.
Humphreys, D. Russell, 2002. Seven years of Starlight and Time.


  1. Gravitational time dilation, if it existed on such a large scale, should be easily observable. On the contrary, we observe (from the periods of Cepheid variable stars, from orbital rates of binary stars, from supernova extinction rates, from light frequencies, etc.) that such time dilation is minor. There is some time dilation corresponding with Hubble's law (i.e., further objects have greater red shifts), but this is due to the well-understood expansion of the universe, and it is not nearly extreme enough to fit more than ten billion years into less than 10,000.

  2. Humphreys tried to use clocks in the earth's frame of reference. But the cosmos is much older than the earth. Judging from the heavy elements in the sun and the rest of the solar system, our sun is a second-generation star at least. Billions of years must have passed for the first stars to have formed, shone, and become novas, for the gasses from those novas to have gathered into new star systems, and for the earth to form and cool in one such system. The billions of years before the earth are not accounted for in Humphreys's model.

  3. Humphreys's theory assumes that the earth is in a huge gravity well. The evidence contradicts this assumption. If the earth were in such a gravity well, light from distant galaxies should be blue-shifted. Instead, it is red-shifted.

  4. See Conner and Page (1998) and Conner and Ross (1999) for several other technical objections.

  5. There is a great deal of other independent evidence that the earth is very old.

  6. If there were any substance to Humphreys's proposal, at least some competent cosmologists would build on it and share in the Nobel Prize. Instead, they dismiss it as worthless.


Conner, Samuel R. and Hugh Ross. 1999. The unraveling of Starlight and Time.


  1. Conner, S. R. and D. N. Page, 1998. Starlight and time is the Big Bang. CENTJ 12(2): 174-194. (See also letters in CENTJ 13(1), 1999, 49-52).
  2. Conner, S. R. and H. Ross, 1999. (see above).

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created 2003-8-1, modified 2006-2-6