Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Saturday, May 01, 2021, 11:55 (271 days ago) @ David Turell

We change ecosystems
DAVID: The importance of ecosystems cannot be overemphasized. Living organisms naturally form cooperative systems and our overall dominance upsets them with plant systems, animal systems or combinations. We have severely affected the Earth's evolution.

We are in agreement. But this leaves me surprised at your sceptical attitude concerning climate change, much of which is due to human activity (let’s forget about the bacterial contribution). I wonder if your God is watching with interest to see how far our specialness will lead us along the path of destruction and self-destruction!:-(

Tadpoles and the hypothalamus
DAVID: Since present stages of evolution are all based on past designs, this study of the earliest forms leading to what is contained in our present brains is not surprising. God pre-plans His stages.

As always I appreciate these articles. And as always, you can’t resist a final, authoritative statement. OK, my turn. God experiments. God learns as he goes along. God enjoys creating different forms for their own sake. Cell communities hard at work inventing their own ways of improving their chances of survival. Let’s have some good old agnostic balance…:-)

All human brains don’t react the same
dhw: My proposal is that multicellular organisms evolved as unicellular organisms found new ways of surviving by joining forces. This “naturally” turned into a symbiotic process, whereby new communities of cells joined together to find new ways of coping with or exploiting new conditions. Hence the vast bush of diverse life forms past and present. If God exists, he would have created the mechanism that enabled them to do this. Can you see anything in the known history of life that contradicts this theory?

DAVID: We disagree. God ran evolution directly. not secondhand, to produce the current bush.

I asked you if there was anything in the known history of life that contradicts my theory. “I disagree” plus reiteration of your own fixed belief is not an answer.

Brain and body sizes
DAVID: We don't know what causes the triggering of any aspect of evolution from a natural viewpoint.

dhw: If brain changes are triggered by environmental pressures, we have a logical thesis: that they respond to new conditions, either by adapting or by innovating.

I’ll leave out the quote about elephants etc, since you have ignored it. The writer thought our unique brain had developed because we cooked our food. I’ll reproduce my response to this, as it sums up the whole argument about how and why our brain expanded.

dhw: I would humbly suggest that there are a few other things we do and did that absolutely no other animal does/did: e.g. bipedalism, sophisticated weapons and tools, clothes, fire (not just for cooking), increasingly complex social structures, different methods of acquiring food etc. And I’m thinking that cooking did not “allow” the cerebral cortex to add more and more cells, but the cortex needed more cells during the process of discovering and learning how to use fire (just as modern illiterate women needed additional complexification of cells while learning to read). In other words, the brain did not get bigger BECAUSE Mr Man roasted the deer he had killed with his spear, and (David’s theory) it did not get bigger because God gave it new cells so that afterwards it could think of inventing spears and using fire. It got bigger, just as it now complexifies, by RESPONDING TO NEW REQUIREMENTS. Can you find any logical flaws in this argument and its conclusion?

DAVID: You want a natural explanation. Our brain is to complex for natural causes. It had to be planned by an extremely brilliant mind, that is by intelligent design by God.

You hate it when I apply logic to your own theories and find them wanting, but on this thread I have twice asked you to apply logic to my theories, and all I get is a repetition of your own beliefs. I have always allowed for your God having a role (in this case, as designer of the mechanism that granted autonomy in the first place). Bearing this in mind, if you find my explanations logical, please just say so. You've done it before, and it won’t kill you. ;-)

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