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

by David Turell @, Monday, February 17, 2020, 14:40 (52 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: You complain when I won't accept your theory, and you won't accept mine. We debate, differ.

dhw: Chalk and cheese. I grant you your 50/50 chance of God’s existence and am prepared to debate accordingly. But I have given you logical reasons for my non-acceptance of your theory/belief that an always-in-control God knows exactly what he wants, can get it any way he wants, and spends 3.X billion years designing anything but the one thing he wants. Your rejection of my theory (which is not a belief) is not based on anything logical but simply on your belief that a 50/50 possibility is actually a 100% impossibility.

You are simply praising yourself for not making a choice. For me the evidence is overwhelming.


DAVID: The complex advanced organisms need for change evolve across large gaps in form and function as we see across the gaps in the fossil record. The sudden appearance of the multitude of Cambrian animals is a complete refutation of your theory. These animals appeared without the appropriate precursors. Your theory describes changes in precursors and requires precursors. I await your thoughts!

dhw: And there was me thinking you believed in common descent. You should have told us from the start that you were a Creationist and not an evolutionist.

dhw: Furthermore, you did not answer my question: why is a God-designed intelligent cell theory more “wishful” that God-designed automatons? Please answer.

Common descent could easily be sen as a creation by God, rather than a free-for-all by self-designing organisms


DAVID: I've told you from the beginning I am a theistic evolutionist. God creates our evolution. The ID folks don't like me, as I keep bringing in a God they like to hide. With your 'theistic hat' on you are the same.

dhw: Yes, I offer you various alternative views of theistic evolution, all of which you accept as being perfectly logical, in contrast to your own, which has your God specially designing every branch of the bush of life in order to specially design just one.

Just as evolutionary history demonstrates, if one concludes God is in charge.


dhw: My answer is precisely the same as it has been ever since you raised the problem of gaps. That a major change in the environment (some folk think it was an increase in oxygen) triggered the Cambrian Explosion,

DAVID: Trigger means 'cause', remember? Oxygen increase only allows the possibility. The trigger is elsewhere.

dhw: Trigger can also mean to set something in motion: the break-in triggered the burglar alarm. An increase in oxygen would have set in motion the mechanisms for adaptation and innovation. In both cases the mechanism was already there, but it would not have operated if it had not been triggered by the new event. I have given you a possible answer to the problem of the gaps, so please stop pretending that I avoid the problem.

The bold is your problem. A burglar alarm is automatic, as designed. The appearance of more oxygen only allows for the possibility that a new action might take place. It is not a required response unless some process is pushing it.


dhw: ...and the intelligent cell communities of which all organisms are made – theist version: God designed the intelligent cell – found themselves in a new environment which presented them with new ways of using their bodies to establish new ways of improving their chances of survival. In short, intelligent minds can invent, and just as we know bacteria can edit their DNA in order to adapt, multicellular organisms can edit their DNA in order to innovate. You don’t believe this theory, which is your right. I don’t accept the biblical version of separate creation, but you do. That is also your right.

DAVID: Exactly our difference.

dhw: How does this make you an evolutionist?

Remember I view God as driving common descent.


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