David's theory of evolution: James A. Shapiro's view (Evolution)

by dhw, Thursday, January 16, 2020, 11:52 (1 day, 14 hours, 49 min. ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Since our concept of God differs widely, of course you don't like my view of God. Shapiro simply provides a possible way for God to Dabble, so we are not far apart.

The “concept of God” is too vague. Where we differ widely is specifically in your rigid adherence to your fixed beliefs relating to his purpose, ability and method that form your theory of evolution. Yes, Shapiro’s theory allows for God as the inventor of “natural genetic engineering” through autonomously intelligent cells, but it is poles apart from your insistence that the whole of evolution was preprogrammed or dabbled.

DAVID: […] Magically, multicellular organisms come organized that way by DNA instructions, no juggling. Designed by God.

dhw: […] You say they “come organized” because you believe that 3.8 billion years ago your God provided the first living cells with a programme for every undabbled symbiosis in the history of life. Shapiro suggests that the cells facilitate their own evolution. I would add that this may be reflected by the manner in which whole organisms also facilitate their own symbioses.

DAVID: See my new entry on alternative gene splicing, a mechanism designed by God. It fits Shapiro to a tee, but as I view it, it is all under automatic controls, especially for fetus formation

DAVID (on “alternative gene splicing”): Junk DNA is gone. The complexity of the human genome is only partially unraveled and what is revealed so far is an irreducible complex system that MUST be the result of design. It is highly controlled, especially in fetus formation or abnormal results will produce a defective fetus. This can only be the result of design. A designer is required.

I have no problem with the argument against junk DNA or in favour of design. Both perfectly logical. But the other aspect of this that intrigues me is the sheer versatility of the gene, and yes indeed, it fits Shapiro to a tee. That is to say, it fits the concept of autonomous activity by cognitive, sentient beings which facilitate their own evolution. But I agree that once the different forms of symbiosis have established themselves, they continue automatically, as in fetus formation.

dhw: Under “brain complexity”:
QUOTE: "In theory, almost any imaginable computation might be performed by one neuron with enough dendrites, each capable of performing its own nonlinear operation.
In the recent Science paper, the researchers took this idea one step further: They suggested that a single dendritic compartment might be able to perform these complex computations all on its own."

Dhw: Oh good heavens, couldn’t this mean that a single cell of any kind, e.g. a stem cell (not to mention a community of cells) might be capable of working out complex computations “all on its own”, i.e. without a 3.8-billion-year-old programme or a divine dabble?

DAVID: See the new entry on gene splicing.

Yes indeed. It all fits in perfectly with the concept of cells working out their own designs.


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