Purpose and design (Evolution)

by dhw, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 12:09 (824 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID (under “watching asteroids”): You are looking for a purpose behind a purpose! God's purpose in producing humans does not have to have a God reason behind it. I see his purpose in how He engineered the evolution of humans from monkeys 23 million years ago. See yesterday's entry. You want me to see into God's mind. I can't! Again you are asking a humanizing question about God.

According to you he also engineered the evolution of every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in the history of life. Of course I want to know the purpose, and of course nobody can see into God’s mind, if he exists, but you think you can, because you keep telling us that all he wanted was to produce humans. I am challenging that assumption.

DAVID: As an afterthought let me guide everyone to my entry about the appearance of a guided evolution for humans coming from monkey 23 million years ago. Our bipedalism makes us distinct from primates who aren't, and That is everybody but us!

Same again: you keep telling us that he guided EVERY life form, lifestyle and natural wonder, extant and extinct. Yes, we are different, but that does not mean we were his one and only reason for designing the weaverbird’s nest, the monarch’s lifestyle etc. etc.

dhw: If you are sure he has been pleased with his creations, why do you refuse to consider the possibility that he created them in the hope that they would please him, i.e. give him pleasure, i.e. enable him to enjoy them?
DAVID: He might well be pleased and have pleasure. That is beside the points I make as to his purpose. I don't care about God's thinking leading up to his choice of purpose, because I cannot find any evidence to support a supposition about it.

(Yesterday you were “sure” and “certain” – not even “might well be” – that he is pleased by some things and not by others.) The purpose IS the thinking, and it is what we disagree on! According to you, God thought: “I want to produce humans, so I’ll design millions of different organisms, lifestyles and natural wonders in order to keep life going until I get the one thing I want”, although he could get that one thing “without any difficulty”. I suggest he may have thought something else, and I have offered you four different hypotheses, including a very different purpose for evolution, directly linked to your certainty that he takes pleasure in his creations. How can a different purpose for evolution be “beside the point”?

DAVID: He may well be pleased with the results of his creations, but whether He really is or not in unknowable for us. Why conjecture? It is only an attempt to humanize him.

Your usual escape route, and as usual I have to point out that we can’t KNOW anything about God, including whether he exists or not. Your question “why conjecture?” makes nonsense of all our discussions on every related subject, and your “one and only purpose” is no less a conjecture than my “spectacle for enjoyment” conjecture.

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