More "miscellany" (General)

by dhw, Sunday, May 15, 2022, 11:17 (46 days ago) @ David Turell


All covered on the other thread.

Free will

dhw: I didn’t mean to embark on yet another discussion – I only wanted to know if you approved of my definition or had one of your own!

DAVID: I still accept yours.

Thank you.

Octopuses self-destruct

DAVID: There is no clear reason for this happening. The oceans are huge, so a danger of overpopulation isn't present. Did God plan this? I view everything created is God's doing, but I cannot find a reason for God's actions here. I simply accept it.

dhw: Just as you can’t find a reason why your God would design all the life forms that had no connection with his one and only goal (H. sapiens), or why he designed his only goal in stages rather than directly. […] Maybe all these inexplicable actions with no apparent connection to your idea of your God’s goal might one day cause you to question your theory instead of telling us that it makes sense only to God.

DAVID: When will you realize I cannot give you God's reasons!!! I accept what God did and try to interpret. The 'inexplicable actions' are God's actions. He knows why He does/did what He does/did. I don't 'know why' and never will. We can only analyze and try to see reasons.

"When will you realize" that I am not asking for God's reasons but for yours? If God exists, of course he knows why he does/did what he does/did. You try to interpret the history (hence your anthropocentric theory of evolution), but it doesn’t fit in with your interpretation, and so instead of acknowledging that your own reasoning might be wrong, you assume that God’s reasoning only makes sense to himself!

New cell

DAVID: using lesser animals in research we find hints of what might exist in humans. That is the proper way to view evolution, as early developments can be used in the future.

dhw: Yes, the idea that cells and their communities use their perhaps God-given intelligence to gradually complexify, thereby advancing evolution, seems far more convincing to me than the idea that an all-powerful God with a single purpose (humans plus food) keeps dabbling away at “lesser animals” in order to prepare himself to design the only life form he really wants to design. Alternatively, of course, these “early developments” could be the consequence of experimentation as he slowly works out how to produce his one and only goal. Or he could be learning and getting new ideas as he continues to create. Just a few alternatives for you to ponder. :-)

DAVID: I have no desire to ponder at your level of implied criticism of what God did.

The wish for a free-for-all, enjoyment of creation and interest in the creations, experimenting, learning, getting new ideas...none of these alternatives are a criticism of God! They are all logical interpretations of what your God did. The criticism is of your theory, for which you can find no logical explanation.

DAVID: God does not need to experiment. He doesn't need new ideas.

I would not imagine God as being “needy”. Wanting, for instance, to create things, and being interested in what he creates, doesn’t make him needy, but seems to me to provide a very believable motive for his creation of life. How do you know he doesn't experiment or come up with new ideas?

DAVID: You have a total inconsistency of thought: your declaration God should have directly created us comes from an acceptance by you that God has full power to do as He wishes. That is what He did, for His own unknown reasons.

I have never said he “should have done” anything. It is you who claim that he is all-powerful and all-knowing and plans everything in advance as preparation for H. sapiens plus food, but you cannot understand why in that case he designed all the non-human life forms and foods etc. or why he didn’t design H. sapiens directly. That “makes sense only to God”. I suggest that there are alternative explanations which make perfect sense, but you refuse to budge from your rigid, senseless theory. (See the other thread.)

Genome complexity

DAVID: this is a giant structure that must be designed all at once to be properly functional. It is irreducibly complex. Since it controls cell splitting accuracy, it was present very early in life well before sexual reproduction appeared.

Just to restore the balance between us, this is a field in which I am in complete agreement with you. The astonishing complexity of cells “reeks” of design (you used the word earlier, and I like it).

Sturdy bird nests

DAVID: on the issue of nesting, birds are smarter than we are. It is not just the knots of the weaverbird. I still feel God helped.

I suggest that it’s not just birds that are smarter than we are in their own special way, but also countless other life forms including bacteria, and also including cell communities that combine their smartness to design evolutionary innovations. If God exists, I would suggest that his “help” would have consisted in designing the intelligence of the cells of which all life forms are made.

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