More "miscellany" (General)

by dhw, Sunday, November 21, 2021, 11:02 (6 days ago) @ David Turell


dhw: Whether God does the designing in ADVANCE of environmental change, or the cell communities do it in RESPONSE to environmental change, makes no difference. In both cases, the purpose of the flippers is to improve chances of survival. I would suggest that the purpose is what drives any action. Wouldn’t you?

DAVID: Whose purpose is what is at issue. I see God's purpose in creating new species. Survival is simply a requirement for God to solve.

dhw: We are sadly edging back into your overall theory of evolution, which I was hoping to avoid now that we have shaken hands on dropping the subject. As I understand it, your reading of your God’s thoughts is as follows: “I wanner turn them pre-whales into a new species, because I wanner design human beings and their food. So I’m gonna operate on them pre-whales, take away their legs an’ give ‘em flippers instead. The flippers will help ‘em survive in the water though I’m not givin’ ‘em flippers to help ‘em survive in the water, but only because that will make ‘em into a new species.”

DAVID: Total distortion of my point. Design for survival is required in any new species in a new environment. But as God designs new species the requirement of survival is taken care of in the new design. You put it all backwards.

In some ways, yes I do. I propose that when conditions change, organisms RESPOND by making the physical changes that will improve their chances of survival. These are the changes that result in speciation. You switch it round, and have your God changing organisms IN ADVANCE of changing conditions, but you insist that – to use our concrete example – he changes legs to flippers because he wants to create a new flippered species. Speciation consists of changes in body form, and if the changes in body form are designed to improve chances of survival, then obviously improving chances of survival is the driving force behind speciation!

dhw: Please forgive the irreverent dialogue, and just see what sense you can make of the reasoning.

DAVID: It makes perfect sense when one admits God creates all reality and all history any way He wishes. Evolution seemed to have happened (per Darwin) so God evolved us

If God exists, then yes he created our reality, and yes he could do it any way he wished, and yes evolution happened, and yes we and every other life form evolved. How does that come to mean that your God changed legs to flippers in advance of changing conditions in order to ensure that the new species would have a better chance of survival, and yet the flippers – which were one of the changes in body form that constitute speciation – were not designed for the purpose of improving chances of survival? In other words, why do you separate the reason for changes in body form from speciation, which consists in changes of body form? And all this confusion is without even mentioning your theory that he changed legs to flippers solely for the purpose of designing humans and their food!

dhw: My alternative: some pre-whales had difficulty finding enough food on land, and so they went hunting in the water. There was much more food available there, and so the cell communities responded to the new movements required and restructured the legs into flippers as an aid to survival in the new conditions. Too complicated?

DAVID: No, too simple!! Phenotypic and physiological changers are too complex for simple cells to design. The complexity of design requires a designing mind, simple logic.

Perhaps cells are not as simple as you think. (Even you give odds of 50/50.) And perhaps your all-powerful God was capable of giving them the intelligence to do their own designing. Also simple logic.

Genome complexity
"There is a deeper, philosophical question here: How can such a complex molecular machine, crucial for the synthesis of proteins and hence life, be itself dependent on 75 different proteins for its function? Where did those proteins come from in the first place if there was no PIC to initiate protein synthesis? (DAVID’s bold)
"Or what came first—the chicken or the egg?"

DAVID: any reasonable person, reading this article, would recognize the need for design, so why not accept a designer at work? Not at the 'maybe' level of thought!

Thank you for yet another instance of design that cries out for a designer. There is, of course, no answer to the bolded question, and it represents the best possible argument for the existence of your God. But in answer to the same question and to your own, I can only ask: where did a conscious, universal mind come from in the first place? Back we go to “first cause”, and the enormous leap of faith required if one is to believe that a conscious mind capable of creating a universe together with all the complexities of life can simply “be”, and can have had no origin. This faith solves one mystery by creating another which is even more mysterious.

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