Brain expansion (Evolution)

by David Turell @, Friday, July 10, 2020, 19:51 (470 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: Long stasis in sapiens denies your idea that a new idea caused the expansion. Where is the new artifact?

dhw: For the umpteenth time: nobody knows what the requirements were. We took artefacts as an example because they are the only material evidence we have. Do you really expect me to know precisely what events, discoveries, concepts preceded each expansion over the last two million-plus years? Stasis followed every expansion, so there could not have been any new event, discovery, concept that exceeded the existing capacity for complexification.

You have abandoned your original thought that an idea in a previous brain forced the new expansion as it was implemented by the new brain Progress!!

DAVID: Strange question. Two processes follow implanted instructions. Our brain shrinks, not expands. I realize I misread your answer above. I've told you previously the brain does not expand but it can add some neurons.

dhw: You have agreed explicitly that the brain shrank because the efficiency of complexification (an autonomous process) made certain cells redundant. Expansion entails the addition of neurons! The fact that this takes place within the confines of the existing sapiens skull does not alter the fact that the brain can expand itself. Both processes result from the “mechanism” you say your God implanted in the brain (bolded above) – a mechanism which acts autonomously and which I call cellular intelligence.

The addition of some hippocampal neurons has not expanded the brain, similar to past expansions. They are really part of the plasticity and complexification, all of which has only reduced brain size.

dhw: Once more, if the modern brain has the autonomous ability to complexify and expand some of its parts, why could it not have done so pre-sapiens?

DAVID: I'm sure God does it. Based on our brain the new cortex is somewhat oversized to allow plasticity and complexity from use. I don't think our arrival was that different from the past enlargements.

I like your last thought. It fits in perfectly with my theory.

DAVID: How God offers the instructions is always debatable. How do you think God does it?

dhw: You have only offered us the computer programme and dabbling. If you find these hypotheses as far-fetched as I do, it’s up to you to provide alternatives. Mine is that he does NOT offer instructions for every life form, natural wonder etc. in the history of life, but – theistic version – has created the mechanism (cellular intelligence) that enables all organisms “to develop their own uses on their own”, as you so aptly phrased it.

DAVID: And, as before, I think God runs a tight ship, and if He allowed self-inventions, they would be under strict guidelines. My view of God is not your view when you attempt to describe Him.

dhw: Your strict guidelines entail a 3.8-billion-year-old computer programme or direct dabbling for every single life form, natural wonder etc. as above. You have not come up with any alternative, but of course you are free to believe whatever you wish to believe.

Thank you, and in the other thread I show you that Behe and I both believe in DNA pre-programming. Dabbling would be the gene destruction Behe describes.

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