Evolution: more genomic evidence of pre-planning Part One (Evolution)

by dhw, Tuesday, May 04, 2021, 10:41 (10 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: The only evidence we have about the first sapiens brain is that it was much larger than previous brains and as it tailored itself to new uses it shrunk 150 cc taking excess neurons with it. I will grant you that all neurons until discarded had some useful activity. Discarded neurons means the brain came with an excess for future need.

I don’t know what you mean by “taking excess neurons with it”. The brain shrunk 150 cc BECAUSE complexification (“tailoring”) made certain cells unnecessary. Your last sentence simply means that anyone with a crystal ball would have been able to forecast that hundreds of thousands of years later, certain hitherto essential cells would no longer be necessary.

dhw: We don’t actually know which ones – they may NOT have been the cells that had been newly acquired by sapiens.

DAVID: You have forgotten only the hippocampus has the ability to add new neurons. And I view God has the lone ability to enlarge whole brains in new species.

Another of your many non sequiturs. The hippocampus example tells us that even now the brain is capable of adding new neurons in response to new requirements, and so there is no reason to assume that it did not do precisely that in the past. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the fact that we do not know which sapiens cells became redundant as a result of enhanced complexification, and so it is absurd to say that what were new cells at the beginning became unnecessary later.

dhw: So please stop making definitive statements about your God giving us “excess” cells at the start. What were then new cells could be hard at work today.

DAVID: So what happened to the missing 150 cc ???

You know what happened to them – they “went missing”!!! But you don’t know which cells became unnecessary as a result of enhanced complexification, and so it is absurd to claim that your God deliberately popped in, and deposited an extra 150cc worth of cells in the brains of a few Moroccans, and then exactly the same 150cc went missing 250,000 years later. In any case, you have agreed that the new cells must have been useful, in which case they can’t have been “excess”.

DAVID: You don’t understand the concept of light use of the first sapiens frontal lobes. How much abstract thought occupied them. Zilch?

dhw: You don’t understand the concept of cells RESPONDING to new requirements (as demonstrated in the modern brain). What do you count as “abstract” thought? Designing something that has never existed before has to begin with “abstract” thought (in pre-sapiens as well as in sapiens). If you mean philosophy, how the heck do you know what our predecessors thought? What concrete relics do you expect to find of philosophical thoughts that existed before the inventions of painting and writing?

DAVID: Do you think early sapiens discussed general relativity theory?

Most modern sapiens can’t discuss general relativity theory! Why do you think anything less than general relativity constitutes “zilch”? All generations build on the “thoughts” of their ancestors. How do you know that no early sapiens ever wondered how we got here?

DAVID: The original cells of sapiens new brain complexified by a God-given mechanism as they learned to use their new big brain. That is the "concept of cells RESPONDING to new requirements (as demonstrated in the modern brain)". We are in full agreement here.

You have already agreed that past brains would have functioned in the same way as modern brains, and that complexification proceeds/proceeded without any input from your God, using (theistic version) a mechanism designed by your God. Since the modern hippocampus has expanded autonomously (unless you think your God has dabbled with it), it is not unreasonable to assume that we now have past and present autonomous complexification and expansion. Your comment is far from clear, but you appear to have accepted that the mechanism would have functioned by RESPONDING to new requirements, as demonstrated in the modern brain (and in contrast to your God performing operations in ANTICIPATION of new requirements). In that case, we are indeed in full agreement. And if cells were/are capable of autonomously making their own decisions both then and now, there is no reason at all to dismiss the possibility that they were given the same ability right from the start of life. Obviously still a theory, but can you fault the logic?

DAVID: I don't accept your theory. God speciates is my belief. Please note our current brain can only add hippocampus cells. Other enlargements are rearrangements of existing neurons through complexification for heavy new use.

Yes, our current brains complexify autonomously, and the hippocampus has expanded autonomously. How does that prove that although (theistic version) your God gave our cells the autonomous awareness of requirements and the ability to make their own decisions, he could not possibly have given earlier cells the same autonomous awareness and ability to make decisions? And do you disagree that autonomous awareness of requirements and autonomous decision-making denote autonomous intelligence?

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