ID explained (Introduction)

by dhw, Saturday, January 30, 2021, 13:10 (556 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: You have left out the obvious: a first cause must be eternal and we may be the last and current iteration of His/Hers efforts.

dhw: Of course a first cause must be eternal, but that does not make a conscious first cause any more logical than an unconscious first cause. Your speculation that humans may be the purpose and last product of evolution has nothing to do with the illogicality of your belief that life and consciousness must be designed but were not designed.

DAVID: What is logical despite your circular reasoning, is an uncaused productive first cause must exist. Eternal means always.

Of course an uncaused first cause must exist, and of course eternal means always. But that does not make a conscious first cause any more logical than an unconscious first cause! I have listed three possible first causes (your eternal conscious God, an eternal unconscious universe of constantly changing energy and matter, and an eternal, vaguely panpsychist universe), and I find all of them equally unconvincing. You are taking us round in circles.

DAVID: Cellular intelligence means the cells have knowledge and can plan by thinking.

dhw: It certainly means they have knowledge, but it does not mean they plan in the sense of foreseeing the future. My proposal is that cells RESPOND to requirements.

DAVID: You haven't told us how they know to respond.

How often do I have to repeat that NOBODY knows how speciation happens, and NOBODY knows the origin of life or intelligence, but your God is one of the three possible first causes mentioned above.

DAVID: Remember 50/50: either so-called intelligent cells simply follow intelligent instructions or they have arranged their own intelligent processes.

dhw: Precisely. [...] If it’s 50/50, even you have no reason to reject it.

DAVID: I have a perfect right to choose one side, based on evidence.

Yes, of course you do. And Shapiro and I have a perfect right to interpret the evidence of intelligence as evidence of intelligence. Problems only arise when, for instance, we start discussing possible explanations for the history of evolution.

DAVID: The immerging understanding of the extreme complexity of a single operating cell demands a well-planned design by a designer.

dhw: Back you go to the origin! Our disagreement is over Chapter 2 of life, with your claim that your God’s sole purpose was to design H. sapiens, but he directly designed every life form that ever existed, 99% of which had no connection with humans.

DAVID: Silly. The connection is evolution starting from bacteria. It is not discontinuous.

We keep going over this. What is discontinuous is the branching out of evolution from bacteria to millions of DIFFERENT life forms, 99% of which have died out – literally reached a dead end – and have no connection with humans, although you claim that every single one of them was part of the goal of evolving humans! You have no idea why your God would have chosen this method of fulfilling his only goal, and we agreed to leave it at that. Now you are starting the silly dodging game all over again, and you even repeat it in the theodicy thread! :-(

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