ID explained: are cells intelligent (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Sunday, March 07, 2021, 15:27 (520 days ago) @ David Turell

The point is they are intelligently instructed:

"Researchers into antibiotic resistance must deal with the surprisingly complex ways bacteria “think” in order to counter them. For example, some bacteria may warn others while dying from antibiotics. But what about individual cells in our bodies?

"A skeptic might say that bacteria are, after all, individual entities like dogs or cats. There is evidence that individual life forms can show intelligence even with no brain. But dependent cells?

"Surprisingly, cells that are not independent at all but part of a body can also show something that looks like intelligence, as Michael Denton discusses in Miracle of the Cell (2020):

"No one who has observed a leucocyte (a white blood cell) purposefully—one might even say single-mindedly—chasing after a bacterium in a blood smear would disagree.

He references this classic video by David Rogers, from the University of New South Wales, called “Neutrophil Chasing Bacteria”:

"What one witnesses there seems to transcend all our intuitions: A tiny speck of matter, invisible to the naked eye, so small that one hundred of them could be lined up across the top of a pin, is seemingly endowed with intention and agency. It’s like watching a house cat chasing a mouse, or a cheetah chasing a gazelle on the African savanna, or indeed a man chasing down a kudu in the Kalahari.


"To be clear, most researchers do not think that white blood cells or bacteria are conscious, like dogs or cats. They are, however, often thought to be sentient (capable of feeling).

"At the very least, like complex machines, they are full of critical, interacting information. And sometimes, also like complex machines, they spookily manage to behave as if they were conscious.

"Except for one thing: Cells are vastly more complex than any machine we have built. So if we have seen a high level of artificial intelligence in action, perhaps we should not be surprised by cells, which are so much more complex, to the point where a cell can be viewed as a third infinity, the first two being the universe and the atom. But this third infinity is mainly one of information, not matter.

"Electrical engineer Perry Marshall looked into the question of cell sentience and intelligence and commented,

The huge realization I had when I started this was the incredible parallels between DNA and Ethernet, because I had written an Ethernet book. The similarities were almost scary. Encoding, decoding, error detection, error correction, checksums, layers. On and on.

In Marshall’s view, there is an intelligence behind the cell that is not the intelligence of the cell itself. He uses another computer analogy: “Even if a computer is automatically generating emails, they always originated from a conscious source.'”

Comment: Since we are on the outside of cells our answer is a 50/50 probability as to which interpretation is correct, that is, primary intelligent activity or following intelligent instructions?. All ID folks side with the latter.

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