Brain expansion (Evolution)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, June 17, 2020, 18:05 (169 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID (under “cerebellum”): In looking at the two paragraphs above, survival is not to be mentioned, yet there are, I assume implied, serious requirements for human life that must be faced. You can't have it both ways.

dhw: You chose to narrow the field to violin-playing, as if somehow that would disprove my theory that the pre-sapiens brain expanded in response to new requirements. In the pre-sapiens eras, survival would obviously have been the prime motive, so why bring in modern-era violin-playing as your example of new requirements?

Violin playing is an advantage gained by the huge brain, not anything to do with survival, which is my point. Violin playing is never a protection for survival. You've just jumped back into Darwin mode, survival of the fittest tautology


DAVID: A giant jump in brain cortex and prefrontal cortex volume (about 300+ cc from erectus to us) implies a need for a very strong response. You want it naturally to happen and I feel only a designer could create such a large change.

dhw: I don’t see why a designer should be incapable of creating a mechanism for large changes as well as small changes.

Again a judgement about who God is and what He might do. I've agreed to your IM mechanism many times but with God's guidelines onboard, which you always reject.


dhw: It would be more appropriate to ask why your God produced an oversized brain in the beginning! A mistake? Or what possible purpose could he have had? Do please answer. […]

DAVID: Bigger brain explained as allowing the appropriate complexification to occur to handle the new invention of activities humans developed like violin playing. Briefly it gave the bigger brain much more flexibility of response to the soul's new demands.

dhw: Thank you. At long last our theories are converging. Of course the bigger brain is better able to respond to the soul’s demands. That is why, in my theory, the brain expanded in the first place – it could not respond to the soul’s new demands because the existing capacity for response through complexification had reached its limit. In our earlier example, the dualist’s soul demanded implementation of the spear concept, and the brain had to expand to handle it; in your example it demanded implementation of the violin concept, and it was handled by complexification.

I don't see a convergence. Violin playing is a sideshow from the real advances. Only you think the brain can enlarge itself. All it can do from the evidence is complexify itself and shrink. How did your cell committees know to overly enlarge the sapiens brain so it could complexify?


dhw: Your response still hasn’t explained why your God would have produced a bigger brain than necessary, but my theory faces no such problem – complexification is so efficient that certain cells became redundant. My proposal does not, however, exclude your God. As with the rest of evolution, it allows for him to be the inventor of the whole system whereby cells/cells communities use their intelligence to respond to different requirements.

The cell intelligence is seen in massive automatic molecular reactions God gave them

dhw: You have left out my question: do you think the switch to large pelvises happened overnight? If not, how long do you think it might have taken?

DAVID: How large are the known time gaps?

dhw: That is not an answer.

DAVID: Of course it is. Each new hominin. homo species with larger skull appeared suddenly after hundreds of thousands of years

dhw: And do we have fossils from all of those hundreds of thousands of years? Do you think the switch to large pelvises happened overnight? If not, how long do you think it might have taken? I seem to have asked this question before.

All we have is gaps, and Gould felt they were important. In questioning gap size you are constantly avoiding that big pelvis must be simultaneous with big baby head appearance. Disagree?


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DAVID: Your usual misinterpretation: the instructions are set for a lifetime of antibody responses.

dhw: WHAT instructions? How to deal with every new infection? That = a divine programme for every infection for the rest of time. Do you think our ancestors already had the cure for Covid-19 in their immune system?

DAVID: Total misunderstanding. All diseases can be handled by several immune mechanisms; outright killing (engulfing bugs) and antibodies to kill or neutralize. The instructions are in all immune cells for these actions. No program for all possible present and future bugs. Anything that comes along can be dealt with by present limited responses.

dhw: You are simply telling us what an immune system does – it kills or neutralizes the enemy. But the enemies are all different! Our highly intelligent scientists are now trying to find a way to get rid of Covid-19 because the immune system’s library of responses – accumulated from all its past experiences – does not contain “instructions” on how to deal with the new enemy.

Of course our immune systems don't know it. It is a novelty!!! Yet we know herd immunity can develop. But we want human invented vaccines to speed the herd immune process. The instructions for herd immunity are there, just too slow to save more lives, so we step in.


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