Miscellany (General)

by David Turell @, Sunday, August 29, 2021, 18:41 (54 days ago) @ dhw

Part One

dhw: […] Autonomy apparently means obeying instructions.

DAVID: Final sentence is exactly my meaning. Proviso, either instructions in the first bacterial genome, or more likely dabbled instructions added all along the way.

dhw: Here is one definition of autonomy: “the ability or opportunity to make your own decisions without being controlled by anyone else” (Longman). Your definition of autonomy: “Obeying God’s instructions”. You are making a mockery of language.

So I'll change it to they act as if autonomous

DAVID: Each fully new species involved redesign at that new stage. Think of whale series.

I think of whale series as each species adapting its organs to the new environment, as opposed to your God creating each one from scratch. This is admirably illustrated by the latest discovery:

New amphibious whale
QUOTE: "They found that all parts of the tetrapod skeleton were under strong directional selection to evolve new adaptive features, but that the skull and jaws were evolving faster than the rest of the body, including the limbs.

These were not brand new skulls and jaws – all parts were adapting to the new surroundings. However, part of the adaptive process entailed innovations, which is why I keep emphasizing the difficulty of drawing a borderline between adaptation and innovation, since these innovations were part of the adaptive process:

QUOTE: "'We see several anatomical innovations in their skull related to feeding and food procurement, enabling a transition from a fish-like suction-based mode of prey capture to tetrapod-like biting, and an increase in orbit size and location" said Simões. "These changes prepared tetrapods to look for food on land and to explore new food resources not available to their fish relatives." (David’s bold)

DAVID: There are two ways to view this study, especially using my bolded comments. The Darwinist view describes a speedier selection process with no explanation of how that happens. In their view it just 'is' naturally.

dhw: Nobody knows how it happens, but the (comparative) speed is highly significant. I would suggest that it fits in perfectly with Shapiro’s theory of cellular intelligence (possibly God-given) both adapting and innovating in order to equip the organisms with improvements to its methods of survival.

DAVID: But note the rapid jaw changes in advance of actually hunting on land. Doesn't that suggest purposeful planning from a theistic viewpoint?

dhw: I think that is highly misleading. The transitional period would have entailed an initial combination of eating in the water and on land, but once the tetrapod started spending more of its time on land, the evolution of its jaws would have accelerated very quickly in order to improve the new method of survival. Surely if your God had done it, there would have been no need for jaws to evolve “faster than the rest of the body” – he would have simply performed the whole "redesigning" operation in one go. Or do you think he kept popping in to make improvements?

What made your bolded statement work naturally quickly? We don't have any intermediates to show us how, just an existing fossil of a transitional form with the usual gaps in form. I turn to God as the driver of change and you to nature. Since intense design is required, I'll stick with God.

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