Divine purposes and methods (Evolution)

by dhw, Friday, January 11, 2019, 13:04 (546 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: My reasoning is from facts.
DAVID: I read God's mind logically, because I don't embellish with endless suppositions of what He might have thought along the way of conducting evolution.

dhw: Mind reading entails supposing what someone is thinking, and your reading of your God’s mind - let's spell it out once more - is that his sole purpose was to specially design H. sapiens, but for 3.5+ billion years he specially designed lots and lots of other life forms so that they could eat one another, and you can’t understand why he chose that method of specially designing H. sapiens. But you call it logical.

DAVID: Let's try my logical approach again: Humans are the current endpoint of evolution. You can't disagree with that. If God is in control, as I believe, it has to be His goal.

Your belief that your God is in total control is not a fact. In any case, it ignores the possibility that your God might have deliberately sacrificed control in order to see what might happen once he had set the process in motion. This is no more and no less “human” than your belief that his goal from the very beginning was to create H. sapiens: “I want to create a self-aware being, and I will give him free will – i.e. I will not control him.”

DAVID: We cannot know about a future goal. Since He is in control we must accept He chose to evolve us over 3.8 billion years, since that is what happened. I don't question why. You do. You look for all sorts of reasoning that God might have indulged in. Why bother if it is assumed He is in total control of events.

We needn’t bother about the future but now, all of a sudden, your assumption that he is in total control has become a fact! Even if he is in total control, you can’t ignore the fact that in your own hypothesis he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years to evolve (actually – according to you – specially design) millions of life forms, econiches, lifestyles and natural wonders as well, which brings us to your next problem:

DAVID: The one logical reason for diversity is the need to eat by setting up ecosystems or econiches for food supply.

So God says to himself: “My sole purpose is to specially design H. sapiens, but first I choose to design millions of different life forms etc. so that they can eat one another.” Why do you regard this attempt at mind-reading as a more logical reason for diversity than the various alternatives I have suggested: “I choose to design millions of different life forms etc. so that they can provide a rich spectacle for me to watch with interest”, or “I’d like to design a thinking being, but I’m not sure how to do it,” or “I’ve had a new idea – a thinking being”, or “Let me provide the mechanisms for evolution, and then see where it leads”? You even agree that these are logical interpretations of the facts, but you go on to say:

DAVID: I don't question God's form of methodology. You do as you look at possible human reasoning for setting up the evolution picture we know exists. Nothing illogical to me. Totally your problem. I cannot explain God's choices, just simply interpret what facts are presented.

The only facts are that life’s history has produced the diverse bush of species, and H.
sapiens is the latest. You don’t question your personal assumptions that your God exists, and if he does, that he is in total control,that his goal from the beginning was to specially design you and me, and that his method was to spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing millions of other life forms so that they could eat other. You don’t understand the methodology you have imposed on him, since it seems to contradict the total control and single goal you have also imposed on him, and yet it is not illogical to you. Your human reasoning leads you to reject my logical alternatives because we mustn’t “humanize” God by trying to read his mind – although it’s OK for you to do so – and God’s logic is different from ours (as if you knew). Maybe it isn’t!

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