Explaining natural wonders: bacterial intelligence (Animals)

by dhw, Tuesday, June 13, 2017, 11:11 (955 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: 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: Not subjective. I know how cells work in biology. They are automatic.

Shapiro, Margulis, McClintock, Buehler also know/knew how cells work in biology, and they believe in cellular intelligence. And I can’t help wondering how many of your fellow scientists would agree with you that only God could possibly have designed the weaverbird’s nest, or taught the monarch butterfly how to navigate, or instructed the wasp to lay its eggs on the spider’s back.

DAVID: It undermines nothing. We do see the labyrinthine path. It can be accepted as God's method of evolution.
dhw: 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: If it is God's method it does not have to make sense. The whales present evidence that the simplest path is not always used, for reasons not clear to me, or you.

And so we are back to your acknowledgement that your version of God’s method does not make sense to you, and yet you are not prepared to consider any theistic alternative that does make sense. Dr David, you are suffering from a severe form of dogmatism.

DAVID: The evidence, again, is humans with their brains and consciousness are the most complex production of evolution, therefore a pinnacle, and a desired result. He created the universe to produce humans, without question.

They can be a desired result without being the one and only reason for God creating the universe. The whales can also be a desired result. The vast variety of life forms can be a desired result. And if humans are the pinnacle, that could be the result of your God having had a new idea after a few thousand million years, or experimenting because he didn’t know how to produce a consciousness like his own, or devising an autonomous inventive mechanism which gave rise to all the different species, lifestyles etc. and eventually (and perhaps inevitably) led to humans via a whole series of improvements, as exemplified by the evolution of hominins to homo sapiens. All of these theistic alternatives make perfect sense and fit in with the history of life as we know it. None of them demand faith in a dogma which even you admit does not make sense.

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