God and Evolution (Evolution)

by dhw, Saturday, February 02, 2019, 14:34 (430 days ago)

I am starting a new "God and Evolution" thread to combine your two posts and “big brain evolution” since both discussions are now about God and evolution and one follows on from the other.

DAVID (under “periodic table"): 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.

You ignored my response: "All fine until the last assumption. Why “and then evolve humans”? I shan’t repeat the rest of my response, in view of your two comments below:

DAVID’s comment: Let me turn your strange argument against you. Why did God bother to have the necessary elements appear over so much time, when if He is so powerful He could have done it all at once, and not wasted 13.78 billion years? We cannot know which of the two possibilities that must exist is the correct one : God can only do what He wants by evolution or He chose to do it this way. Analysis can go no further and yet you keep trying.

DAVID under (“evolving soil”): All the while that strange combination of fungi and algae called lichens were breaking down the rock, and still doing it! Why didn't an all powerful God just create Earth as it is today all at once? Same problem, with no answer. Yet all you want is the answer that doesn't exist!

You are again sticking the different parts of your hypotheses together in the hope of glossing over the illogicalities. So let me try again. For argument’s sake, I am accepting God’s existence, and that he must have had a purpose. I also accept evolution, and so evolution must have been his method of achieving his purpose. What I do NOT accept are your fixed beliefs 1) that he specially designed every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in the history of life and evolution (although I accept the possibility of dabbles), and 2) that his one and only purpose in designing billions of galaxies, solar systems, black holes, stars, and every single organism that ever lived was to design H. sapiens.

Repeated under “Big brain”:
DAVID: You know I view God designing every stage of evolution so humans appear from a stepwise process.

dhw: Yes, I know. And in order to maintain this view, you constantly block out the inconsistencies: 1) an always-in-control God who has one purpose (us) but spends 3.5+ billion years designing other things, and 2) you believe in evolution but insist that your God specially designs every species.

DAVID: Again it is you who questions God's choice of method. I accept it. Yes, theistic evolution is not your natural automatic evolution.

Once more: it is your interpretation of your God’s purpose and method of achieving his purpose that I question. There is no reason to contrast theistic evolution with “natural evolution”, and I don’t know why you insert the word “automatic”. If (one possibility:) your God created a mechanism enabling cell communities to work out their own ways to improve their chances of survival, then you have theistic, non-automatic, natural evolution.

dhw: […]I have suggested several alternative interpretations of your God’s logic which you have agreed are all logical.

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

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

DAVID: I don't try to understand it. I just interpret His mechanisms as I see them.

dhw: Why don’t you try to understand it? Why are you so convinced that your interpretation is correct, and that it is simply not possible for your God to think differently from the way you interpret his thoughts?

DAVID: Because it invents human thinking which may not apply, so why try?

Your own thinking “may not apply”, so why bother to tell us that your God’s one and only purpose in creating the universe and life was to design H. sapiens, and he decided that he would take 3.5+ billion years designing billions of other life forms etc. before doing it?

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

dhw: So, still sticking to a theistic explanation of evolution, you now agree that your God’s purpose in creating the bush of life might have been to enjoy watching the bush of life. And since you think he enjoys watching humans because we have free will, perhaps you will even agree that “freedom” (i.e. cell communities freely using their God-given evolutionary mechanisms to create their own designs) might make all forms of life - your “everything” - interesting to him. (I live in hope. :-) )

DAVID: No hope. I'm sure He watches, maybe in enjoyment.

I’ll settle for a “maybe”. That is sufficient to show that “maybe” he has what you call “human” thoughts, and “maybe” there is something wrong with your hypothesis that, while specially designing whale fins, cuttlefish camouflage, monarch’s flight paths and weaverbirds’ nests, his thought was: “I must improve their chances of survival so that life will survive for 3.5+ billion years until I can fulfil my one and only purpose of specially designing H. sapiens.”

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