Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Saturday, July 17, 2021, 14:03 (8 days ago) @ David Turell

Proper Big Bang view
dhw: I do not accept that the Big Bang provides “absolute proof” of God because nothing can provide “absolute proof” unless he pops in to introduce himself to us. […]

DAVID: If we absolutely prove the BB, and we recognize our universe did not come from nothing, its design, fine-tuned-for-life, demands a designing mind. You can accept some sort of chance event if you wish, but logically that is wishful thinking.

We would all accept that life and consciousness must have a source. The idea that the source of life and consciousness is sourceless life and consciousness could be called “wishful thinking”. You have never understood that for an agnostic, both explanations are equally difficult to accept. And your claim that proof of the BB provides “absolute proof” of God’s existence remains untenable. Do you really think that every scientist who believes the BB happened is also a staunch theist – or, if he/she is not, then they are total idiots?

Humans correcting errors
QUOTE: The results also suggest the brain has an unexpected ability to make new connections once a missing enzyme is restored." (dhw’s bold)

dhw: Aren’t you impressed by the way in which the cells of the brain are able to adjust themselves to new factors? Or do you think it’s part of a 3.8-billion-year-old programme for brain adjustment, or your God dabbling?

DAVID: God's intelligent design of the neurons and their instructions.

I can accept the theory that your God designed the first cells. I find it difficult to believe that 3.8 billion years ago, he gave them instructions to cover every undabbled evolutionary innovation, econiche, natural wonder, strategy and solution to all future problems. How else could your God have passed on his “instructions”?

Detergent defenses
dhw:. The article suggests that this was an evolutionary process. Sounds to me like a case of intelligent cells being confronted with new problems and using all their components to work out a solution.

DAVID: So your thinking cells designed the manufacture of the attacking molecule and their own self-protection mechanism all at once with complex biochemical designs.

Not all at once. My proposal is that defences are only invented once there is a new problem. And yes, I find Shapiro’s theory that intelligent cells are able to come up with all the complex biochemical designs needed for evolution and problem-solving more convincing than your theory bolded above.

DAVID: The article is pure Darwinism, which I ignore as I analyze from design standpoint. […] Your brilliant cells are like finding fairies in the dell. To do this the cells must recode DNA to create the new information/instructions. How do cells create new information?

I don’t know why you think the name Darwin automatically invalidates any argument. You argue not just from “design standpoint” (your God’s design of cellular intelligence, and intelligent design by intelligent cells are both from “design standpoint”) but also from your belief in the theory bolded above, though you prefer to gloss that over with terms such as “instructions”. Of course recoding and new “information” are required for all kinds of changes. Why do you think your God is incapable of designing a mechanism which can make these changes, and therefore he has to preprogramme every single one or do a dabble?

Slime mold
"'Our discovery of this slime mold's use of biomechanics to probe and react to its surrounding environment underscores […] how closely related intelligence, behavior, and morphogenesis are. [..] This work in Physarum offers a new model in which to explore the ways in which evolution uses physics to implement primitive cognition that drives form and function."[/b]

DAVID: […] I think the responses are automatic to what is sensed.

dhw: The authors could hardly make it clearer that they attribute changes in form and function to intelligence and “primitive cognition”. One up for Shapiro.

DAVID: And my take, as above, is just the opposite. The authors are Darwinists.

Please tell me whereabouts Darwin refers to the link between intelligence and morphogenesis, or to the “primitive cognition that drives form and function”. But thank you for your integrity in quoting yet more scientists putting a case contrary to your own.

Immunity system complexity
QUOTE: "When we are exposed to a pathogen, the immune system's B cells swarm to our lymph nodes, spleens, and tonsils. There, those cells mutate in germinal centers—microscopic boot camps that rush the B cells through volleys of mutations to produce the most potent antibodies for neutralizing the infectious agent. As long as a germinal center is up and running, B cells are free to mature and perfect their approach to fighting disease.

Cells having the ability to mutate (change themselves) and to ”perfect” their response to different demands is of course crucial to the theory of evolution by way of cellular intelligence. It is clear from this process that the solution to the problem is NOT already there: it is the mechanism for solving the problem that is there.

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