Explaining natural wonders: bacterial intelligence (Animals)

by dhw, Monday, June 12, 2017, 12:29 (550 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Your arguments are mostly imaginative suggestions for what God might have done in conducting evolution.
Of course. So are yours!

DAVID: […] So I conclude that without concern for improvement there is a drive for complexity.
I disagree, but I’m happy to give them as alternatives, since the vital point is that there is an internal onward drive which explains why life did not stop with bacteria.

DAVID: You ask if God implanted that drive and let the organisms evolve in a free for all and I don't think He would give up that much control…
An “imaginative suggestion” for what God might or might not have thought/done in conducting evolution.

DAVID: …and the other consideration is I firmly believe some of what is produced in the complexity of lifestyles is too complex to occur without God's help. Which gets back to pre-planning or dabbling.

I can’t say I firmly believe in what is only a hypothesis. But your firm belief that organisms are incapable of working out their own lifestyle is purely subjective, and your firm belief that God “helps” them is simply an “imaginative suggestion”.

DAVID: My answer is still 'why bother' since it involved so many complex adaptations. Why take the hard path when there are easier ones?
dhw: Precisely. And you could ask the same question about the knotty weaverbird’s nest, the complexities of the monarch butterfly’s lifestyle and migration, and indeed about the labyrinthine path to homo sapiens. It is a question that undermines the whole theory that your God created the universe in order to produce homo sapiens.
DAVID: It undermines nothing. We do see the labyrinthine path. It can be accepted as God's method of evolution.

Anything can be “accepted” by anyone. The question is whether it makes sense or not. Even you can’t see why he takes the hard path, but you refuse to “accept” that there could be a different version of “what God might have done in conducting evolution”.

DAVID: Again, as many times before, you are asking human questions of God's motives, looking for human motives in God's thinking. He may well have none of your suppositions in his thought pattern. I don't know, as a human, why He bothered with whales, but I must accept that He did. I don't see any way the land animals invented themselves into whales. It involves massively complex somatic and physiological alterations.

Of course I ask “human questions” like yours (“Why bother?” “Why take the hard path?”) and look for motives which I can understand. And that involves trying to read his mind, just as you do with all your guesses. Even if you “must” accept that he bothered with whales, you don’t have to accept that he did so for the sake of human beings. Why not for the sheer delight in creating beautiful things? Just an “imaginative suggestion”, of course, but doesn’t it make more sense than not knowing why he bothered to create whales and yet at the same time claiming to know why he bothered to create the universe?


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