The simplest explanation? (Evolution)

by dhw, Wednesday, October 07, 2020, 11:17 (381 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: Moving out of Africa to Europe made eyes turn blue, among other colors:

DAVID: Darwin- based writing always points out purposeful adaptations with the assumption they just happened. They sure look directed to me.

dhw: So God stepped in to turn the eyes blue, did he? Or he programmed it 3.8 billion years ago? Don’t you think it’s just possible that this adaptation was the result of intelligent cells adjusting themselves to find the best way of coping with new conditions?

DAVID: I don't think cells are ever that intelligent. IMHO they can't think through the necessity for complex genome changes.

Out of interest, then, which of your alternative theories do you think more likely: that your God preprogrammed blue eyes (and other colours) 3.8 billion years ago, or stepped in to perform an operation on the eyes of the migrants?

DAVID: Shapiro does not state how that autonomous cellular intelligence developed. I chose to say God as source.

dhw: I am perfectly happy with your choice, and as you have told us that Shapiro is a practising Jew, I’m sure he would have no objection either. His goal and mine is to explain the process by which evolution works – i.e., as with the agnostic Darwin, to explain Chapter 2 of life, Chapter 1 being the origin.

DAVID: And I give you God.

No problem. The point at issue is cellular intelligence versus preprogramming and/or dabbling – as in the blue-eyed example above.

dhw: How do you “advance” a theory other than through research that supports or disproves it? I really wonder how further research can confirm that intelligent cells design species, or that there is a God who designs species.

DAVID: I always follow advances in research to reach conclusions. I've always told you the more complexity is found, the more it demands a designer. I'm convinced, others taking longer

You attacked Shapiro’s theory on the grounds that no one had “advanced” it. His theory does not preclude God. So are you really telling us that advances in research are advancing proof that God preprogrammed or dabbled every species directly, as opposed to designing a mechanism (cellular intelligence) which autonomously created new species – i.e. without “guidelines” from him?

dhw: We are not talking about God’s existence but about two different theories of evolution. We have no absolute proof of yours or of Shapiro’s, so please stop trying to discredit his theory for a reason which is equally applicable to your own.

DAVID: I do not accept the idea that organisms design advances in evolution using a mechanism from God. (dhw’s bold)

dhw: Repeating the fact that you don’t believe the explanation does not explain why you think it is not feasible! How would you react if an atheist dismissed your excellent arguments in favour of design with a bare “It's not feasible because I do not accept it”?

DAVID: I don't accept it under the valid reason the advances are too complex for a secondary mechanism to handle it. It must be direct design. You prefer God-lite for some weird reason.

“God-lite” is a silly expression. If God exists, he would do what he wants to do, and you are in no better position to tell us his nature or his wants than I am. For “some weird reason”, you want him to preprogramme or dabble 3.X billion years’ worth of life forms and their food supplies and their natural wonders although all he wanted to do is directly design humans, and every single one was part of the goal of evolving or feeding humans who weren't even there, and you want him to preprogramme or dabble bad bacteria and viruses, though he wishes us no harm. Now tell me what is “weird” about a God who wants to avoid the dullness of a Garden of Eden, and therefore creates a system that will run itself and produce the vast and ever changing bush of life which we know to be the history of the last 3.8 billion years. (See also “Theodicy”.)

dhw: So how would you respond if an atheist dismissed your excellent argument for design by telling you it is not feasible because he doesn’t accept it?

DAVID: The bolded question has no real answer. Atheists refuse to recognize God, no acceptance for no good reason in my view.

So why should I accept your dismissal of my argument if you fail to provide me with one good reason apart from the fact that you refuse to accept it?

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