Miscellany (General)

by David Turell @, Sunday, August 15, 2021, 15:59 (362 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: How can an autonomous (without outside intervention) ABILITY to respond to new problems and create new solutions mean automatically obeying instructions?

DAVID: That is exactly what happens. Do you tell your stomach how to digest your luncheon curry?

dhw: I don’t tell my body to produce new antibodies either. We are describing the work of cells which operate independently of our conscious minds. Why have you ignored yesterday’s post, in which I wrote: “Of course many actions are automatic – it’s only when things go wrong or new problems arise that autonomous intelligence is required.” Now please explain how an autonomous ability comes to mean automatically obeying instructions.

The cell's autonomous ability comes from following the instructions algorithms to recognize foreign protein invasion and neutralize it, just as your stomach handled the curry independently of your consciousness, and autonomously.

The role of survival in evolution
DAVID: Survival is simply the onboard desire to stay alive. You don't know how speciation happens. My choice is God does it by design.

dhw: Nobody knows how it happens, but even if your God designs it, there is no escaping the fact that the quest to improve chances of survival leads to the physical changes which in turn lead to speciation. Please explain what other purpose you can see in your God’s transforming pre-whale legs into flippers before he told them to go into the water.

DAVID: Exactly what I think happened. He gave them flippers for a water existence.

dhw: So how does that come to mean that he did NOT give them flippers in order to improve their chances of survival in the water?

Not my meaning. Flippers are required for water survival and a fruitful life in a new environment

Retinal design allows prediction of movement
dhw: Please can you give us a reference from your reading where it is stated that the differences in degrees of vision, hearing and smell between different species were all designed at once, and that God performed operations on all species to change their bodies in anticipation of new conditions which did not yet exist.

DAVID: All I can respond is the ID tenet, that irreducible complexity means designed all at once. And all us ID folks accept God as designer. It really explains all the huge gaps in the fossil record that bothered Gould so much.

dhw: I am not disputing the fact that ID means intelligent design, and if that leads to belief in God, so be it. I have asked you specifically whether ID-ers believe that the differences in degrees of vision etc. were all designed at once. Do ID-ers believe that there is no such thing as development? That the human brain was designed from scratch and did not develop out of our ancestors’ brains, or that the dog’s extraordinary sense of smell did not develop from that of its predecessors? And do they all agree with you that your God operated on all the ancestors of every species to change their anatomies before there was any need for change?

Don't go off on tangents. Irreducible complexity is an underlying basic concept requiring design. To answer your wonder, they believe in stepwise evolution with design covering the huge gaps.

Back to theodicy: fixing genome mistakes
DAVID: Once again, the theodicy theory I follow is so-called (by humans) bad bacteria are simply useful bacteria in the wrong place. Try having your usual E. coli in your colon enter your peritoneum. all hell breaks loose.

dhw: So your all-powerful, always-in-control God specially designed them to be good, but he designed them in such a way that he couldn’t stop them from turning bad, though he did his best, and when he failed, he left it to humans to do what he couldn’t do.

DAVID: You can sneer, but it fits.

dhw: What fits? How can an all-powerful, always-in-control God with good intentions lose control of the organisms he designed, and even fail to find remedies to prevent or cure the appalling suffering caused by his loss of control?

God is not a puppeteer. We've discussed high-speed cellular reactions and possible errors and we see God inserted editing mechanisms. The living metabolism must depend on the giant protein molecules behaving properly. 99.9999% correct is a pretty good result. Look at your age and mine, and we made it this far with the errors happening. That is a firmly acceptable result, isn't it?

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