Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Monday, August 16, 2021, 09:11 (365 days ago) @ David Turell

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

DAVID: 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.

Why have you ignored what I wrote yesterday? “Of course many actions are automatic – it’s only when things go wrong or new problems arise that autonomous intelligence is required.” There is a world of difference between the established, automatic actions of properly functioning digestive processes and the intelligence needed to recognize new problems, process new information, and create new solutions. You have also omitted your own emphatic statement which I quoted yesterday:

dhw (4th August): Do you mean that your God planted instructions on how to create each new antibody for each new future threat? Or do you mean that he gave our cells the ABILITY to recognize each new threat and to respond to it by creating new antibodies de novo without him having to intervene”.

DAVID: You’ve got it!!! The latter portion of your comment is exactly what God did![/b]

dhw: You rejected instructions (which imply automatic obedience) and opted emphatically for an autonomous ABILITY (without intervention).

And now, having rejected the idea that your God planted instructions on how to create each new antibody, and instead opted for the autonomous ability to solve the new problems without any intervention, you are arguing that your God planted instructions on how to create each new antibody!

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: […] Flippers are required for water survival and a fruitful life in a new environment.

So you agree that your God gave them flippers to improve their chances of survival in the water, and yet such anatomical changes which lead to speciation apparently have nothing to do with improving chances of survival!

Retinal design allows prediction of movement
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. […] 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?

DAVID: 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.

The tangents are yours, since you refuse to answer my questions! Of course irreducible complexity is an underlying basic requiring design. Now tell me if your ID-ers believe that your God designed every degree of vision etc. all at once. And of course they believe in stepwise evolution with gaps. Now tell me if they believe that your God preprogrammed or personally dabbled all the individual anatomical changes that constitute speciation BEFORE any of them were required.

Back to theodicy: fixing genome mistakes
dhw: 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?

DAVID: 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?

Once again, you are trying to solve the problem of “evil” by telling us how wonderful everything is. Since we are taking “bad” bacteria and viruses and other forms of disease as our examples, I really cannot believe that as a retired doctor you are unaware of the appalling suffering caused by the bacteria and viruses and malfunctioning bodies in humans all over the world, the vast majority of whom do not live to your age or mine. Why, in your eyes, is their suffering a firmly acceptable result of your God’s deliberate designs (“bad” bacteria and viruses) or lack of control (his “editing mechanisms” frequently fail)?

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