Divine purposes and methods (Evolution)

by dhw, Friday, January 04, 2019, 13:34 (556 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Again you question the history He created.

dhw: No, I question your interpretation of the history he created, as above. If he only wanted to design H. sapiens, why design millions of other life forms that have/had nothing to do with H. sapiens?

DAVID: Ask God. The point is I don't know why evolution looks like it does. I simply accept God's choice of method and see the need for a food supply, as you also do.

Unfortunately, neither of us can ask God (if he exists), which is why we can only speculate. All life requires food, and that is irrelevant to the question I asked. I have offered you alternative answers to the question you can’t answer (forms of experimentation), which in the past you have agreed are logical.

dhw: As for diversity, I did not say he loved anything - the word I used was "wanted", so why do you find it illogical to suggest that your God WANTED the variety provided by the ever changing bush of comings and goings that characterizes life’s history?

DAVID: You have humanistically invented a 'want' for Him to follow. You know God better than I do!

dhw: I offer various alternatives because I have no idea what your God wanted. It is you who claim to know that he “wanted” only to create H. sapiens, and it is you who insist that despite his full control, he “chose” the method (i.e. that is the method he “wanted” to use) of specially designing 3.5+ billion years’ worth of life forms extant and extinct which had little or nothing to do with H. sapiens.

DAVID: Humans are here. God wanting them to appear explains it.

Fine. Whales, elephants, mosquitoes and the duckbilled platypus are also here, and dinosaurs were here. God wanting them to appear explains it. The ever changing bush of comings and goings also appeared. God wanting it to appear explains it. So once more: why do you find it illogical to suggest that your God WANTED the variety provided by the ever changing bush of comings and goings that characterizes life’s history?

dhw: Humans are unique in their degree of consciousness (even you admit that other animals are conscious, but to a lesser degree.

DAVID: Minimizing the consciousness gap as usual. Conscious is vastly different from consciousness.

dhw: How can conscious be “vastly different” from consciousness? You agree that your dog is conscious/has consciousness, but has nothing like your own degree of it or of your self-awareness.

DAVID: And Adler wrote 'The Difference of Man and the Difference it Makes". You are still minimizing the difference.

There is no difference between having consciousness and being conscious, and I agree that the difference between human consciousness and animal consciousness is vast. How does that minimize the difference?

dhw: The fact that diverse organisms have to eat one another in order to survive does not explain why your God specially designed them to eat each other for 3.5+ billion years until he specially designed the only thing he wanted to design, which was you and me. I offered you two alternatives which do allow for humans as the goal (experimenting because he didn’t know how to do it, or humans as a late idea during the process of experimentation with all sorts of life forms). These are not embellishments – they are explanations of the gap which you yourself have admitted you can’t explain.

DAVID: Your dreamy suppositions do explain the history, but do not show a driving purpose, and I view God as being very purposeful. I don't have to explain the gap which you constantly demand. I accept the method and but have tried to explain it as it presents itself historically. My reasoning is perfectly logical based on a purposeful God.

I have never at any time seen your God as being anything but purposeful or very purposeful. Of course he had a purpose if he deliberately created life. Even if his one and only purpose was to create a being who – in your words – would think about him and have a relationship with him – you can’t explain why he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years creating millions of other unconnected organisms, lifestyles etc, but you agree that this gap is closed if he had to experiment in order to achieve his purpose (i.e. didn’t know how to do it) or if humans came as a late afterthought as he experimented to see what he could come up with through all these different life forms. You keep harping on about purpose, wrongly claim that my version of your God is not purposeful, and you offer the extremely human purpose mentioned above, but if I offer an alternative purpose (relief of his isolation), you say I’m humanizing him, and when I suggest he wanted to create the bush (= purpose) you say I “have humanistically invented a ‘want’ for Him to follow”, though you say that God wanting humans to appear explains their appearance. Do you not detect a hint here of double standards?

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