Big brain evolution: our mutation rate is slowing (Evolution)

by dhw, Thursday, January 31, 2019, 12:25 (21 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: The only way God could get to humans if He wished to evolve them was to design all predecessors first! That is totally logical.

dhw: So your God, who according to you is always in control, said to himself: “I only want to specially design humans, but I want to specially design them by spending 3.5+ billion years specially designing millions of other life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders to eat one another and then in most cases to go extinct. Then I can say that instead of my specially designing humans (although according to one of my faithful, I did actually specially design their brains and their pelvises), they have evolved from trilobites, dinosaurs, whales, cuttlefish monarch butterflies and all my other special designs.”

DAVID: I don't think God did all the inventive human thinking you imply about His thought processes.

Then please tell me which of these “thoughts” runs counter to your hypothesis.

DAVID: […] I have no way of knowing why God chose to evolve. But I and you should accept the history, without saying God is illogical, which is what you always do by telling me I am illogical.

dhw: You have no way of knowing why your God should have inflicted the above procedure on himself, but you insist that the above were his thoughts.

DAVID: Why inflicted? God can do it anyway He wants. Don't apply thoughts to me that don't exist!

Your thought is that your God deliberately chose to take 3.5+ billion years to specially design the one thing he wanted to design, and you “have no way of knowing why”. So why do you insist that your thought is correct when there are other perfectly logical explanations for the historical facts?

DAVID: Your suppositions about God are all human thought. "God did it the hard way" is your thinking, again totally a human interpretation. He did it all stepwise. Start a universe and evolve its form. Create and evolve the Earth perfect for life. Create life and then evolve humans.

All fine until the last assumption. Why “and then evolve humans”? You have left out “and then evolve millions and millions of life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders extant and extinct that have nothing whatsoever to do with humans”. In fact, though, time and again you tell us these didn’t evolve anyway! According to you, the whale’s fin, the cuttlefish’s camouflage, the monarch’s flight path, and even the weaverbird’s nest all had to be specially designed, as did the human brain and pelvis.

DAVID: I start by recognizing God as the doer of evolution. It all follows that logically.

dhw: And I have suggested several alternative interpretations of your God’s logic which you have agreed are all logical, unlike your own. [These even include the possibility that his sole purpose was to produce humans.] One of these is that since evolution reveals a constantly changing spectacle of life forms, maybe your God’s purpose was to create a constantly changing spectacle of life forms. Hence the next exchange:

DAVID: Your suppositions humanize God. I've agreed, that if He thinks in a human way they are logical.

But you happen to know that he thinks in a way you can’t understand.

DAVID: I'm sure He watches everything He created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings.

dhw: Thank you for the image. It is you who are now using the word “enjoy”. Since you are sure, perhaps you will stop ridiculing the idea that the history of evolution is that of a spectacle in itself, as opposed to serving no purpose other than to provide 3.5+ billion years of food until your God could specially design the only thing he wanted to design.

DAVID: [..] You keep saying He wanted to do it as a spectacle. That term and human desire is my objection to your thinking about God. He views it as fulfilling His purpose.

dhw: Then let’s drop the word “spectacle”. You are sure that he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings. So it can hardly be beyond the bounds of possibility that what he created actually fulfilled his purpose of creating something he wanted to enjoy.

DAVID: I'm reasonably sure He is watching us with interest since we have free will He gave to us.

You are sure that he watches EVERYTHING he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, but you are only “reasonably sure” that he watches humans with interest since we have free will. It’s not possible in your view that the same sort of freedom might make all forms of life - your “everything” - interesting to him (i.e. cell communities using their God-given evolutionary mechanisms to create their own designs).

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