Divine purposes and methods (Evolution)

by David Turell @, Friday, January 11, 2019, 23:11 (544 days ago) @ dhw

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.

dhw: 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.”

You've skipped the point that humans are the current endpoint, therefore an obvious goal. My belief is the starting point for my approach to the analysis of how God conducted evolution. You go on to invent human reasons for God's decisions. I don't.

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.

dhw: 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!

I've always stated God runs evolution. No change.

dhw: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:

No problem. It is history . I simply accept it.

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

dhw: 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.

dhw: 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!

You are sitting on the outside of faith looking in. Why should I question my belief God exists? That is your problem, not mine. I didn't impose a method on Him. He chose to evolve humans over time. That is the history. I accept it. 'Total control' means He has the right to chose His preferred method. I don't have to know the background of His logic. He has the right to choose His method. His logic might be like ours or different. No one knows.

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