The simplest explanation? (Evolution)

by dhw, Wednesday, September 30, 2020, 11:28 (22 days ago) @ David Turell

I’ll leave out the quotes on which we agree.

QUOTE (Under: “How Cells know what to do” […] they also found that the delay between the two waves was close to the theoretically predicted optimum for allowing cells to extract maximum information from the waves. (David’s bold)

QUOTE: This mechanism of self-organization is remarkable for allowing robust and spontaneous communication of direction over large distances within cell layers. It demonstrates one way in which coordinated behavior can arise in our bodies helping them to heal and grow.

DAVID: The cells are programmed to follow mechanical and chemical signals. The bold exhibits exquisite design.

dhw: Of course they act as we do through mechanical and chemical signals, but that is the result of cells “extracting information” and knowing what to communicate.

DAVID: Yes, the cells can translate from instructional information they contain.

Or the cells can autonomously process information both from inside and from outside their community, autonomously communicate with one another and with other cell communities (“coordinated behaviour”) and autonomously take decisions on what to do next.

DAVID (Under “Genome and evolvability”): As usual I'm with Shapiro.

dhw: Then I wish you would take his theory of “natural genetic engineering” through cellular intelligence a bit more seriously.

DAVID: I accept Shapiro's theoretical attempts, but have seen no progress on that score.

What progress has been made on the theory that 3.8 billion years ago God provided all cells/cell communities with instructions on how to respond to all situations for the rest of time except for those which required his direct intervention (dabbling)?

QUOTE (under “Biological complexity”): "Cell plasticity is a property by which a cell can take on different and reversible identities. Cell plasticity is also essential for embryo development and for the correct function of the immune system. This property is also crucial in cancer as many cancer cells use it to gain resistance to chemotherapy and invade and colonize distant parts of the body.”

dhw: And so perhaps this is the key to evolution and to all your problems about “errors” and diseases and theodicy and so many of the issues that we keep discussing: cells that are free to take on different identities. And for theists no problem at all: God designed them, and they gave him precisely what he wanted - the great and ever changing bush of life.

DAVID: The bold is your interpretation. The cells follow instructions and stimuli to become changed.

See above re instructions, but what a shame that you can’t see all the other advantages of this simple explanation of evolution. It was you who said that the molecules were free to disobey your God’s instructions, and if you simply accept that maybe this was what he WANTED, as opposed to it being something forced upon him because there was no other way to design the system, you have a complete explanation of the great bush. By giving cells the freedom to take on different identities, he gave them the freedom to succeed or fail, to be nice or nasty, to adapt, to innovate….In fact, exactly the same as the freedom you think he has given us humans through “free will”. Theodicy is solved – all life goes its own way, i.e. he didn’t design coronavirus or the malaria parasite. A Garden of Eden would have been oh, so dull. The world we have is the world he wanted.


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