Divine purposes and methods (Evolution)

by David Turell @, Saturday, December 29, 2018, 19:23 (21 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: We know something drives evolution. I've always said survival doesn't. My above quote was simply referencing to that point, but was not clear to you, and I should have stated it more directly.

dhw: Thank you. I think we now agree that survival has a vital role to play in evolution, but the means of survival – all the innovations, lifestyles and natural wonders – are created by an unknown something.

Of course it has a role. Without survival evolution cannot continue, but contra Darwin it doesn't drive evolution.

dhw: Hypotheses include 1) direct design by a god or gods; 2) design by cellular intelligence which may or may not have been designed by a god or gods; 3) random mutations followed by refinements and natural selection in a process which may or may not have been started by a god or gods; 4) an atheistic form of panpsychism, with intelligence evolving from bottom up as opposed to the top-down intelligence of a god or gods. I hope that’s a fair summary of the options.

Fair enough.

DAVID: You are simply questioning God's chosen method with your own psychoanalysis of God's mind. I say He chose to do it this way because that is what the facts are.

dhw: If God exists, of course evolution was his chosen method, but the question is: method to do what?

Why do you constantly question the evolution of humans as God's purpose? That is what has happened and there is no visible reason for it. What we left behind in the other primates has evidence that they will do just fine, if we don't continue to crowd them out.

dhw: You continually assume that you know his purpose (us) and you know his method (direct creation through preprogramming and/or dabbling). Neither of these are facts. I agree that we are here (as are many other life forms) and are currently the most intelligent and powerful species, but not even you can explain why, if he is in full control and we are his sole purpose, he chose to specially design 3.5+ billion years’ worth of innovations, econiches, lifestyles and natural wonders so that organisms could go on eating one another until he could specially design us.

Once again you want to dig into His mind, with no way of knowing where to go in your thinking, but to create human inventions of His logic. We all can guess, since that it all we have. I interpret the evidence as I see it, and see logic in the diversity as providing energy to take the time to evolve. As for questioning His full control, that allows him to chose any method He wished. I don't know why you won't accept that. I do.

DAVID: [...] You have simply found a very few scientists who support your a priori view, while I view their verbiage as hyperbole about known biochemical facts in regard to reactions.

dhw: Firstly, I am not just talking about cellular intelligence! What percentage of scientists believe that there is a God whose sole purpose was to create H. sapiens, but who specially designed every innovation etc. before specially designing H. sapiens, and who specially changed legs into fins before sending whales into the water? Secondly, cellular intelligence is no more an a priori view than your own insistence that despite a 50/50 chance of “my” scientists being right, you are right. Their conclusions are based on a lifetime’s study of cellular behaviour, not on an a priori view. Thirdly, just to clarify,I offer this option as an alternative hypothesis to your own and to Darwin’s, to explain how evolution might work. It is not a fixed belief, but I think it merits very serious consideration.

You keep fussing about the time evolution took. Accept that it did. From a naturalist viewpoint like Darwin, there is no obvious reason for bacteria to advance to multicellular. Multicellular involves multiple problems which require design. Marked environmental challenges like mammals stuck in water require monumental design problems. The advance to humans required monumental design of skeletal posture as well has creating a brain like no other. As for a priori reasoning, not my case: I was agnostic until I studied evolution from as scientific standpoint, and I discovered there had to be a designer mind. So how unbelievable as it seems there has to be God. You understand that reasoning but can't accept it. Your problem, not mine. The history of evolution is a complete story and it presents the need for a designer. I've also had a lifetime study of cellular behavior and all I've ever seen in the studies is logical automaticity of response. You are the a priori guy. Be sure to look at pointy eggs and whales. What we are debating about is all in the information hidden in the code of the genome's black box . We know what it runs but not how, and it is obvious to me it contains all the intelligent responses to stimuli needed. The designer did all the needed thinking in the autonomous automatic design. You do not run your body as it survives. You use your body for your chosen activities, thanks to the autonomic system it has. You've admitted you have no answer for the requirement of design. Enjoy the pickets!

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