Miscellany (General)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, May 19, 2021, 16:00 (67 days ago) @ dhw

Different species cooperate
DAVID: Note today's entries about bird brains and their intelligence which I fully accept. Octopi are very intelligent, considering their antics in study laboratories.

dhw: So why do you restrict their actions to “instinct”?

DAVID: The octopus helped the grouper. It was not clear in the description the grouper really helped the octopus.

dhw: How does that come to mean that the octopus acts through instinct and not intelligence?

From above: " Octopi are very intelligent, considering their antics in study laboratories." The octopus reactions may have been instinct with some simple reasoning. We can't read its mind. You always take a position to build up animal intelligence as part of a strategy to try to diminish human exceptionalism. You can't get rid of it.

Weird dinoflagellates
QUOTE: "It shows that nature can work in a completely different way than we thought,” says Salazar. “There are so many possibilities for what could have happened as life evolved.'"

DAVID: Perhaps common descent is not so 'common'.

dhw: Perhaps from the start cells were endowed with the means to design their own methods of survival, and that is why we have “so many possibilities”.

DAVID: The only facts we have are epigenetic minor adaptations. I have a God speciates theory to cover the gap of the black box we have about speciation.

dhw: Nobody knows how speciation takes place, but at least we have the fact that organisms are capable of making changes to themselves. What facts do you have to support your own theory?

Enough to create a belief in a required designing God

Bird brains’ similar neurons

dhw: Yes indeed. Each branch of existence goes its own way to create the vast variety of intelligent insects, birds, fish, mammals etc. plus food supplies, 99% of which diversified away from the bacteria-to-human branch and had no connection with it, thereby rendering absurd the hypothesis that every extinct form on every other branch was “part of the goal of evolving [= specially designing] humans” plus food supply.

DAVID: Thank you for accepting the very necessary food supply from the huge diverse bush.

dhw: You don’t need to thank me for accepting the obvious fact that all present and past life forms need/needed food! See below for the distinction between present and past.

DAVID: All natural, with no God in evidence running the process. When I offer this challenge from my belief view, you will slip in a little God lip service. I am not absurd for believing in God.

dhw: More silly straw men! The absurdity has nothing to do with your belief in God but lies in your belief that your God specially designed every food supply for every life form although the only part of the huge diverse bush he actually wanted to design was humans and their food supply. First you say that all life forms etc. were “part of the goal to evolve [= specially design] humans”, and then you agree that "extinct life has no role in current time", and past food bushes were for the PAST, not for the present.


The bold is your silliness that evolution is not a continuum of increasing complexity. What you quote is true fact when interpreted properly.

Conserved gene order
DAVID: Genomes show common descent. In evolution everything present has a relationship to the past.

dhw: Though you also believe that your God created species de novo (e.g. in the Cambrian). Yet another contradiction. But I agree that all branches of the bush go back to the same roots (= common descent). That does not mean that all branches were specially designed as part of the goal of specially designing just one branch.

Silliness in the bold. The common descent proof, even for the Cambrian is the initial and consistent use of DNA in all in initial forms from bacteria to us. My whole point is God creating species de novo.

Different types of neurons
DAVID: What this means is that when we discuss as 150 cc enlargement from erectus to sapiens we cannot know if some different kind of functional neuron was added to sapiens. So we know quantity but not true quality of the addition.

dhw: I suggest that the addition of functionless neurons would have been pointless. Common sense alone suggests that new neurons would have been needed to fulfil a new requirement.

I didn't say 'pointless'. What we don't know is if sapiens some different specialized neurons of greater reasoning capacity than erectus. 150 cc enlargement doesn't tell us.

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