More "miscellany" (General)

by dhw, Friday, August 05, 2022, 08:24 (6 days ago) @ David Turell

Just right oxygen

dhw: I have used Denton’s example as an illustration of how intelligence (whether human or cellular) uses new conditions to improve chances of survival. You seem to think that your God is incapable of giving his creations the ability to do their own designing, although you have example after example of this autonomous ability.

DAVID: Where have I done this! I've agreed species do minor survival modifications, nothing more.

I didn’t say you had done it! You have missed the point of the above. According to you, we humans are God’s creations, and he has given us the autonomous ability to do our own designing (of which there are countless examples). So why are you so convinced that he could not have given the same autonomous ability to his other creations? It’s explained below:

DAVID: It assumes cell committees are brilliant designers of new species with complex altertions.

dhw: It proposes that cell communities pool their intelligence to do just that. If your God can endow humans with the autonomous ability to design rockets to the moon, why do you think he is incapable of endowing cells with the autonomous ability to change their structures in order to cope with or exploit new conditions?

DAVID: Must I repeat secondhand design is not worth the effort of creating instructions. The comparison of our brains to simple cell committees is a huge stretch of your imagination.

I am not comparing them! But our design of a rocket is not “secondhand”, so why do you use such a term for the human brain cells adding to their number when required, the whale cells designing a flipper (adaptation verging on innovation), the possum feigning death, the weaverbird designing its nest, birds migrating thousands of miles. And today we have the pitcher plant:
DAVID: a neat design, which could not be developed stepwise by an evolutionary process. Irreducibly complex means it was designed all at once.

So are you saying that God individually designed it because it was an “absolute requirement” for us and our ecosystems? Or could it be be an example of plant cells pooling their intelligence to design a particular means of survival?

Are we alone?

DAVID: the 'awful waste of space' comment reminds me of dhw's wonder as to why God made the cosmos so big and so complex with so many active forms when He only wished to have us. We don't know what God wanted to create. I don't follow our religions' proposing our singular specialness as only here on Earth. That there may be other colonies of very intelligent beings similar to us or otherwise, and that doesn't change my view of God in any way.

If God exists, then I agree 100% that we don’t know and can only speculate about what he wanted to create. However, your insistence that he only wanted to design sapiens and our food (in line with your hero Adler’s focus on our “singular specialness”) contradicts your theory that he individually designed countless life forms, lifestyles, ecosystems and natural wonders on Earth as “absolute requirements” in preparation for us, although the majority had no connection with us. But no amount of logic will change this view that you have of God. The possible existence of other intelligent life forms elsewhere in the universe would be perfectly in keeping with a God who enjoys creating (a view which you have proposed and then withdrawn), but I have to say that if other forms have failed to evolve beyond the most primitive, I’d be inclined to favour chance over design. I just can’t imagine your God wanting to create nothing but bacteria.


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