Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Thursday, January 14, 2021, 09:18 (582 days ago) @ David Turell

Far out cosmology

DAVID: Amazing new methods, with findings both Dawkins and I can agree upon!!!

dhw: I should imagine you would even agree that there is life and reproduction on Earth, and evolution happened, and we humans are here, and we are conscious, and we need food. That does not make your respective faiths in a God (you) or in the power of science eventually to prove that there is no God (Dawkins) any less unscientific.

DAVID: Same point from me: scientific findings are the only facts we can use to theorize.

And same point from me: you and Dawkins derive totally opposite conclusions from the same facts, and you both share a blind, completely unscientific faith/hope that one day science will prove that your respective conclusions are correct. Meanwhile, you continue to shout each other down.


dhw: […] what evidence do you have that cell communities change IN ANTICIPATION of changing conditions?

DAVID: First the large gaps (Gould) ( gaps of phenotype and physiology) in evolutionary speciation. in the fossil record show us so far no bit by bit adaptations to reach speciation. The only logical solution is design in advance. The ID position is mine. The new complexities require an explanation, and it is design by a designing mind.

dhw: How can you call that evidence? You are merely repeating your belief and telling us that it is the only possibility! Of course innovation requires an explanation, but at least we KNOW that life forms change IN RESPONSE to new conditions. You are right to say that we do not have a continuous line of fossils from millions and millions of years ago tracing every single innovation from bacteria to humans. Nor would it be reasonable to expect such miracles of preservation. How does that prove that your God designed every innovation in advance of changing conditions? And design is not what I am querying.

DAVID: I stick to the point a designing mind is necessary

And that is not what I am querying. What evidence do you have that evolutionary innovations take place IN ADVANCE of (and not IN RESPONSE TO) the conditions they are designed to cope with?

DAVID: And secondly, new artifacts only found with new larger brains.

dhw: That is a different subject dealt with ad nauseam under “brain expansion”.

DAVID: It still is evidence.

It is no more “evidence” of your proposal than it is of mine, as repeated ad nauseam under “Brain expansion”: namely, that the brain enlarged AS A RESULT of having to implement new ideas (including making new artefacts, coping with new conditions, exploiting new discoveries etc.) – a process familiar to us from studies of how the modern brain RESPONDS to new demands. We really don’t need to go over all this again, do we?

Glass sponge lattice design

DAVID: A designing mind is what must have made this structural plan, better than any thought of by human engineers.

dhw: I love these natural wonders and am always grateful to you for such articles. Among other things, they ought to make us humans feel humble when we see the sheer ingenuity of the different life forms, with their endlessly inventive ways of ensuring survival. I can fully understand your argument for design, and we don’t need to go into details as to the hows, whos, whats and whys.

DAVID: Only a mind can make these designs.

It is possible that all life forms have “minds” of their own – not in the human sense, but in the form of cellular intelligence which, in turn, may be the product of the mind you call God. I don’t know why you want to go over the same old argument again. I only wanted to thank you, to express my humble admiration for such ingenuity, and to support your argument for design!

Magic embryology

QUOTE: None of this could happen without forces that squeeze, bend and tug the growing animal into shape. Even when it reaches adulthood, its cells will continue to respond to pushing and pulling — by each other and from the environment.

Once again we see that cells respond to the environment. The whole process is based on cooperation between the cells themselves, as they interact with the conditions in which they find themselves. We should bear in mind that every species is the result of millions and millions of years of such cooperation. Once the combination works, the cell communities settle into their particular pattern of conduct (so vividly illustrated here) until something new causes them to change (or to disappear).

DAVID: We see how it happens but have no idea what is guiding the developments, except the general knowledge it must come from the genome. Only a designing mind can create this process of embryological reproduction.

Or designing “minds” – the cells – which themselves may well have been originally designed by the single mind you call God.

45,000 year old cave art

DAVID: Look at the art. It is impressive.

I could only see one picture, but it certainly is impressive. Our ancient ancestors were clearly a lot more sophisticated than was once thought! Many thanks for this.

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