Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Sunday, May 09, 2021, 14:31 (160 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: I asked if you expected to find fossils of every single stage of every single life form over the last 3.8 billion years. Why do you think my bat theory is impossible?

DAVID: You can hope to fill the gap IF there is one.

You say you believe in common descent, and I’m asking why you think it’s impossible for bats to have descended from an earlier life form.

Biological complexity:
dhw: [..] If cells were free to fail, this suggests they were also free to succeed.

DAVID: I'm discussing molecular failure, and you jump to cell failure. Why?

dhw: Because molecules are part of the cell, and if molecules fail, cells may fail, and this may cause the diseases you say your God tried to prevent with backups which also fail. […]

DAVID: Of course cells are free to succeed. Your point?

You asked why I moved from molecular to cell failure, and I answered. My point is that if cells are free, your God must have given up control. That freedom lies at the heart of the theory of autonomous cellular intelligence.

DAVID: […] The article infers random Darwinian mutations to make the new aquatic species.

dhw: Please pinpoint any passage in the article that infers random mutations.

DAVID: Here: "“This is fundamental knowledge that helps us to understand how the huge diversity of life we see around us first evolved on our planet.” 'Helps understand' is not true. There had to be new information in new mutations. All the article presents is description of change. Pure Darwinist hope.

Your quote follows on from:
This has happened multiple times, with groups like whales, sea turtles, sea cows and crocodiles, all evolving from land-dwelling ancestors that have adapted themselves for a life at sea.”

No inference or mention of random mutations. Adaptation is not random, and what is wrong with the suggestion that adaptation to new environments helps us to understand diversity?

The obstetric dilemma
dhw: […] I find it more likely that as the brain grew, the pelvic cells tried to adapt to accommodate the new size.

DAVID: The pelvic cells knew the independent baby skull size had grown. Really? Whew.

How else do you think adaptation functions? Conditions change (bigger brain), and either the cells RESPOND (change pelvis) or the organism dies. You seem to think no Lucy-mother could ever have died in childbirth: your God had prepared everything, and from then on, childbirth was a doddle. Really? Whew!

Big Bang theory survives
dhw: We are still left with the question of what preceded the Big Bang.

DAVID: Preceded it? God. Not nothing. Big Bang is an instant creation of our universe.

If you say it was preceded by pure and eternal conscious energy (your God), why is that more likely than pure and eternal unconscious energy, or unconscious and eternal energy and matter constantly forming and reforming itself?

Huge new function
dhw: I like the “huge” in your heading. It fits in well with my proposal that cells are capable of autonomously making major changes to themselves using a perhaps God-given mechanism for self-modification.

DAVID: Why are your 'cells' so capable? I am pointing out a tiny protein alteration causes huge differences in function. Why is that possible? Magical? No, the biochemical system from God is so amazing it cannot be viewed as chance.

Where have I said it is chance? Where have I said it is magical? I have conceded that it may have been designed by your God.

DAVID: That tiny change presented a huge amount of new informational instructions of how to change a body form that can acted upon by the bodies cells to create the morphological change.

In plain English, the cells can make small changes to themselves which will result in major changes to the organism. Thank you for agreeing with me.

DAVID: How that really happens is a total black box to us and its significance is lost on you for its design significance. There is no 'perhaps'. A designing mind is required. What it is called/labelled doesn't matter. That is my simple approach.

Cellular intelligence is not a label but a theory to explain how evolution works. I have no objections if you accept the logic and believe your God designed the mechanism.

Erectus speech
QUOTE: "The available evidence then strongly suggests that erectus invented language more than a million years ago. In so doing, Homo erectus changed the world more than any creature since, including their grandchild, Homo sapiens."

At last some common sense. To my mind it is absurd to imagine that our predecessors did not have their own language in which to communicate. But I think the above quote is highly exaggerated. The world of erectus would still have been very much the same as that of his predecessors and of early sapiens. Our modern world of cities, technology, institutions, means of transport etc. would be totally unrecognizable to erectus. Language complexifies when new words and structures become necessary. Of course we use these once we have them, but I don't think language produces the new concepts it expresses.

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