dhw: Evolution and humans: Neanderthal lungs larger (Evolution)

by dhw, Friday, November 30, 2018, 13:48 (208 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: Once more, NOBODY knows how speciation takes place. You have challenged the role of survivability in evolution, and you believe that your God changed pre-whale legs into fins before it was necessary, and then told pre-whales to enter the water. Why is that more commonsensical than the proposal that food was short on land but plentiful in the water, and so in order to survive, pre-whales entered the water, flourished, and their bodies changed accordingly? Nobody knows how, but this explains how survivability is integral to the evolutionary process, which is the current point at issue.

DAVID: You are simply repeating Darwin's theory that survival adaptations may cause new species. And I'm simply saying it is logical to view survivability as only helping existing organisms to survive and has no way of explaining the gaps we know exist.

Forget Darwin. You are talking to me. Nobody can explain the gaps, and I have agreed over and over again that we do not have the evidence to prove that the mechanism for adaptation is also capable of innovation. Now please tell me why your hypothesis that your God changed pre-whales’ legs to fins before there was any need to do so is more commonsensical than the proposal that there was a need for pre-whales to enter the water, and their bodies adapted accordingly in the quest to improve their chances of survival?

Under “whale teeth and baleens”:

QUOTE: When whales first evolved, they used teeth to chew their food, just like their land-dwelling ancestors. As time went on, many descendants of these early whales continued to chew their food, inheriting this trait from their predecessors. But as the oceans around them changed and animals evolved, entirely new feeding strategies arose, including baleen filter feeding, says National Museum of Natural History predoctoral fellow Carlos Mauricio Peredo, the lead author of the study who analyzed the Maiabalaena fossils.
Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-11-whales-lost-teeth-evolving-hair-like.html#jCp

A great example of the manner in which all kinds of changes take place in response to environmental change. Or do you think your God took away pre-baleen’s teeth and then told him to filter feed?

dhw: So if you think your God can invent a mechanism for humans which in turn produces free will, why shouldn’t he create a mechanism for other organisms which in turn produces free innovation?

DAVID: As usual you want to enter God's mind.

Yes. If your God is purposeful, I would like to know his purpose, and so I look at his work to try to understand his purpose. What is wrong with that?

DAVID: God has given animals a way to react to needs with instincts. Animals are conscious and make choices.

There is a big difference between instincts and conscious choices! So what we are discussing, in the context of evolutionary innovation, is whether he gave the cell communities (of which all animals are made) a way to react instinctively (preprogramming) or an autonomous way to restructure themselves.

DAVID: As for material innovation, that is changing material form, not a mechanism at the level of mentation (free will). Why does one process mean another?

The one doesn’t mean the other. You keep insisting that God remains in full control of evolution. We have an example of him deliberately sacrificing control (free will). If he deliberately sacrificed control in one instance, why should he not do so in another (equipping organisms with the means of controlling their own evolution)?

DAVID: God does what God does and I look at results, since His reasons are not clear. Why should they be? You are fascinated at the workings of a mind you believe doesn't exist, or that you can't imagine might exist as you remain agnostic.

I emphatically do not believe he doesn’t exist. And yes, I am fascinated by the workings of his mind if he does exist. And yes, I look at results as you do in my efforts to understand what might be the purpose you keep harping on about. (See my post under “Innovation, Speciation”.) You have concluded that only he could have designed 50,000 webs etc. etc. and he did so because his purpose was to specially design H. sapiens. I can’t see any logic in this. Instead, as you know only too well, I am suggesting that he may have given spiders the autonomous means to design their own webs – i.e. that he deliberately sacrificed control, and unlike your anthropocentric hypothesis, that would offer a logical (theistic) explanation of the result you and I look at: i.e. the long higgledy-piggledy history of life extant and extinct (though I also allow for occasional dabbling).

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