Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Saturday, February 13, 2021, 12:20 (552 days ago) @ David Turell

Spiders lasso

dhw: So once more, please tell us why you think your interested God created all the life forms, including humans, and their food supplies.

DAVID: None of us know that answer. Theology is filled with guesses.

Nobody “knows” any of the answers, including whether God exists. That is why we theorize and test the logic of the different theories. You are sure he is interested. So what logic makes you sure he did not create life (including humans) in order to have something to be interested in? And why are you so insistent that he had a purpose, but then so scared of telling us what you think that purpose might have been?

Fin to limb genes

DAVID: [ignoring a question:) Answered in my new entry on DNA pre-planning.

dhw: Totally irrelevant to the questions I am asking. But I’ll rephrase them for you: what direction do you see in the 99% of preplanned, extinct life forms that had no connection with humans although humans were your God's one and only purpose, or in the preplanned bad bacteria and viruses that cause so much suffering?

DAVID: You've again ignored necessary food supply

For the thousandth time, ALL forms of life are part of the food supply for other forms of life, but that does not mean they were all part of the goal of evolving humans. Please stop dodging.

DAVID: I have said I'll wait to condemn bad bugs, which may turn out to have good purpose.

So what was the point in your raising the question in the first place if you are not prepared to offer an answer and yet dismiss a possible answer even though you agree that it is logical?


DAVID: I like Egnor's reasoning. You have a different approach I do not accept as a proper form of dualism as I view it.

dhw: His subject was free will, and he totally ignored the cause-and-effect argument against free will.

DAVID: Define your cause and effect rebuttal. Brain responses per Libet?

Sometimes I wonder if you even read my posts! February 9:

EGNOR: Sensitive states are sensation, perception, imagination, memory, and sensitive appetites (emotions), among others. These are tightly linked to matter and may be considered material powers. Human beings also have rational mental states, which are the powers of the intellect and the will. These abstract powers are immaterial — they are not caused by matter — and thus the will is not determined by the brain.

dhw: As usual, Egnor only tells half the story. His approach is all about dualism versus materialism. Has he never heard of the cause-and-effect argument against free will? Namely, that every decision we take is influenced by factors beyond our control – not just the brain but our whole genetic makeup, our upbringing, our environment, chance events etc. We have dealt with this subject over and over again, and belief in free will depends on what the will is supposed to be free from. The above makes the case against the concept. The argument in defence of the concept is that all the influences combine to make the unique person that is me, and nobody else takes my decisions.

Highest speed claw snapping

DAVID: Part of the always necessary food supply as I've stated. Each tiny econiche system supports other larger systems thus providing food for all. Without an energy supply chain life disappears.

dhw: Yes, we know that, and that has always been the case with every life form that ever existed.So do you think that 3.8 billion years ago your God pre-planned claw-snapping, or popped in to construct a special claw-snapability in order to provide humans with their food supply? My question is serious, because the only alternatives to your theory are random mutations and cellular intelligence.

DAVID: You have never told us where cellular intelligence comes from except possibly God. We both reject random mutations, so that leaves God in charge or cell intelligence out of nowhere or chance. Very weak.

Yet again, you refuse to answer my question. I’ll restate it in even more radical terms: Do you think an unknown, sourceless, intelligent being created a special programme for claw-snapping 3.8 billion years ago, or popped in to perform a claw-snapping operation on a few pre-claw-snappers, and did so as part of his goal to evolve humans and their food supply?

I don’t know often you want me to repeat the three explanations I have offered for cellular intelligence, but here they are again: your God, chance, some form of panpsychism. But I find all three equally unconvincing. Our discussion, however, centres on Chapter 2 of life, which concerns how evolution progresses, not how it originated. Hence the question which I have asked and which you have not answered.

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