Pointy eggs and whales (Evolution)

by dhw, Monday, August 27, 2018, 10:09 (114 days ago)

Shifted from "Junk DNA", which is no longer appropriate.

dhw: I must confess that I’m not sure about most of the things we discuss, and I really have no idea of the history of pointy eggs. It is clear that the species would not have survived without them. And so we go back to your theory that your God preprogrammed or dabbled (= "helped") every innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in order to balance nature so that life would continue until he could produce the brain of Homo sapiens. But I’ll be a real devil here, and suggest to you that even if the murre had gone extinct, our brain would still have evolved. And so, as with the turtle, I wonder why your God bothered with murres and pointy eggs. Alternatively, he may have designed a mechanism that would enable organisms to work out their own ways to cope with the environment. In which case, congratulations to the cell communities of the murre for pointy-shaping their cloacae and not having to join the other 90%+ of organisms that couldn’t cope.

TONY: I know you live your life with purpose and certainty. But in this area of 'theory of the immaterial' you are hoist onto your personal picket fence with both feet planted firmly in mid air.

Yes, that is the nature of agnosticism.

TONY: Can you show me that 90% of the birds that laid round eggs on cliffs died? Also, can you show me the 10% of birds of this variety with round nests on cliffs that did survive? Or evidence that they ever laid round eggs on these cliffs? Or perhaps you could show me two of the same species of birds that have the genetic differences needed to go from round egg to pointy, with the round egg layer being an older specimen?

Of course I can’t. NOBODY knows how speciation took place, and that is why we have different theories. Can you show me evidence that out of the blue your God created birds with pointy-shaped cloacae? In any case, if I remember rightly, you DON’T believe he did. Your view of life is that God created species in the broad sense, but not variations within species. So do please let us have your own theory to explain the pointy-shaped eggs.

TONY: What about 10% of the whales that did not go into the water but survived? Where did they go? Where is the record of them? And don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process that took them from form A to form B.

I never said anything about 10% that didn’t go into the water. But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.

Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution

TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. We can manipulate DNA now, at will. Show me one, just one, scientist that has managed to make stepwise adjustments to DNA to take a creature from an amphibian to a reptile, or reptile to a bird or mammal. Hell, show me one that has managed to change one mammal into another. Hell, change one single celled organism into another single celled organism. Say, e coli to yeast.
In chemistry, we can prove the claims made by chemist by doing it. We have the technology now. So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

Agreed. I make a similar point at the end of the “brief guide”. But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”

--

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Monday, August 27, 2018, 17:50 (114 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: I know you live your life with purpose and certainty. But in this area of 'theory of the immaterial' you are hoist onto your personal picket fence with both feet planted firmly in mid air.

DHW: Yes, that is the nature of agnosticism.

The above quote was David.

TONY: Can you show me that 90% of the birds that laid round eggs on cliffs died? Also, can you show me the 10% of birds of this variety with round nests on cliffs that did survive? Or evidence that they ever laid round eggs on these cliffs? Or perhaps you could show me two of the same species of birds that have the genetic differences needed to go from round egg to pointy, with the round egg layer being an older specimen?

DHW: Of course I can’t. NOBODY knows how speciation took place, and that is why we have different theories. Can you show me evidence that out of the blue your God created birds with pointy-shaped cloacae? In any case, if I remember rightly, you DON’T believe he did. Your view of life is that God created species in the broad sense, but not variations within species. So do please let us have your own theory to explain the pointy-shaped eggs.

If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

TONY: What about 10% of the whales that did not go into the water but survived? Where did they go? Where is the record of them? And don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process that took them from form A to form B.

I never said anything about 10% that didn’t go into the water. But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.

Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution

That link will not open, but here is one of my own: The Evolution of Whales

I love the opening statement, which makes me both want to laugh and cry at the sheer lunacy:

"The first thing to notice on this evogram is that hippos are the closest living relatives of whales, but they are not the ancestors of whales. In fact, none of the individual animals on the evogram is the direct ancestor of any other, as far as we know. That's why each of them gets its own branch on the family tree."

And almost as laughable:

From the outside, they don't look much like whales at all. However, their skulls — particularly in the ear region, which is surrounded by a bony wall — strongly resemble those of living whales and are unlike those of any other mammal. Often, seemingly minor features provide critical evidence to link animals that are highly specialized for their lifestyles (such as whales) with their less extreme-looking relatives

So, this is how we got whales, but they aren't direct ancestors, and we have no trail of direct ancestry. How do we know? Cause they all got dem der ear holes bubba. Dey musta all been in da same family cuz dey all got da same ears. Don't matter that the other bits don't look nuthin like'n each other. Look at dem ears!

Please. Such claims are an insult to intelligent people everywhere.

TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. We can manipulate DNA now, at will. Show me one, just one, scientist that has managed to make stepwise adjustments to DNA to take a creature from an amphibian to a reptile, or reptile to a bird or mammal. Hell, show me one that has managed to change one mammal into another. Hell, change one single celled organism into another single celled organism. Say, e coli to yeast.
In chemistry, we can prove the claims made by chemist by doing it. We have the technology now. So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

DHW: Agreed. I make a similar point at the end of the “brief guide”. But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”

Because the evidence shows that they spring up from nowhere, with no direct ancestry. That is documented. See above. I claim that the evidence shows no direct ancestry because the evidence shows no direct ancestry. I am not the one making incredible claims based off ear holes.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, August 27, 2018, 19:10 (114 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained
edited by David Turell, Monday, August 27, 2018, 19:21

dhw: So do please let us have your own theory to explain the pointy-shaped eggs.


Tony: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

It is not diet, etc. It takes a specially shaped cloaca to make pointed eggs.

TONY: What about 10% of the whales that did not go into the water but survived? Where did they go? Where is the record of them? And don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process that took them from form A to form B.

dhw: I never said anything about 10% that didn’t go into the water. But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.

Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution


Tony: That link will not open, but here is one of my own: The Evolution of Whales

I love the opening statement, which makes me both want to laugh and cry at the sheer lunacy:

"The first thing to notice on this evogram is that hippos are the closest living relatives of whales, but they are not the ancestors of whales. In fact, none of the individual animals on the evogram is the direct ancestor of any other, as far as we know. That's why each of them gets its own branch on the family tree."


And almost as laughable:

From the outside, they don't look much like whales at all. However, their skulls — particularly in the ear region, which is surrounded by a bony wall — strongly resemble those of living whales and are unlike those of any other mammal. Often, seemingly minor features provide critical evidence to link animals that are highly specialized for their lifestyles (such as whales) with their less extreme-looking relatives


So, this is how we got whales, but they aren't direct ancestors, and we have no trail of direct ancestry. How do we know? Cause they all got dem der ear holes bubba. Dey musta all been in da same family cuz dey all got da same ears. Don't matter that the other bits don't look nuthin like'n each other. Look at dem ears!

Please. Such claims are an insult to intelligent people everywhere.

Use of phenotype similarity is a holdover from pre-DNA days. The entire conversion line needs genetic studies and we'll be closer to some truth about the issue. Note this genetic study article that totally rearranges bacteria:

https://phys.org/news/2018-08-scientists-bacterial-tree-life.html

"Bacterial classification has been given a complete makeover by a team of University of Queensland researchers, using an evolutionary tree based on genome sequences.

"The study, led by Professor Philip Hugenholtz from UQ's School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences and the Australian Centre for Ecogenomics (ACE), relied on a technique called metagenomics, where bacterial genomes are obtained straight from environmental samples, to create a more complete picture of the structure of the bacterial kingdom."

TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. We can manipulate DNA now, at will. Show me one, just one, scientist that has managed to make stepwise adjustments to DNA to take a creature from an amphibian to a reptile, or reptile to a bird or mammal. Hell, show me one that has managed to change one mammal into another. Hell, change one single celled organism into another single celled organism. Say, e coli to yeast.
In chemistry, we can prove the claims made by chemist by doing it. We have the technology now. So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

DHW: Agreed. I make a similar point at the end of the “brief guide”. But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”


Tony: Because the evidence shows that they spring up from nowhere, with no direct ancestry. That is documented. See above. I claim that the evidence shows no direct ancestry because the evidence shows no direct ancestry. I am not the one making incredible claims based off ear holes.

And turtles are the same problem.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 01:08 (114 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: So do please let us have your own theory to explain the pointy-shaped eggs.


Tony: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.


David: It is not diet, etc. It takes a specially shaped cloaca to make pointed eggs.

I think you misunderstand. I was referring to the parameters that trigger the formation of pointed eggs. Let's assume for a moment that the information on how to make both round and pointy eggs were available (I am not at all certain it is), then the question would be 'how would the organism know which instructions to use?' Perhaps the trigger is environmental, i.e. diet, temperature, EM field, etc.

TONY: What about 10% of the whales that did not go into the water but survived? Where did they go? Where is the record of them? And don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process that took them from form A to form B.

dhw: I never said anything about 10% that didn’t go into the water. But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.

Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution


Tony: That link will not open, but here is one of my own: The Evolution of Whales

I love the opening statement, which makes me both want to laugh and cry at the sheer lunacy:

"The first thing to notice on this evogram is that hippos are the closest living relatives of whales, but they are not the ancestors of whales. In fact, none of the individual animals on the evogram is the direct ancestor of any other, as far as we know. That's why each of them gets its own branch on the family tree."


And almost as laughable:

From the outside, they don't look much like whales at all. However, their skulls — particularly in the ear region, which is surrounded by a bony wall — strongly resemble those of living whales and are unlike those of any other mammal. Often, seemingly minor features provide critical evidence to link animals that are highly specialized for their lifestyles (such as whales) with their less extreme-looking relatives


So, this is how we got whales, but they aren't direct ancestors, and we have no trail of direct ancestry. How do we know? Cause they all got dem der ear holes bubba. Dey musta all been in da same family cuz dey all got da same ears. Don't matter that the other bits don't look nuthin like'n each other. Look at dem ears!

Please. Such claims are an insult to intelligent people everywhere.


Use of phenotype similarity is a holdover from pre-DNA days. The entire conversion line needs genetic studies and we'll be closer to some truth about the issue. Note this genetic study article that totally rearranges bacteria:

https://phys.org/news/2018-08-scientists-bacterial-tree-life.html

"Bacterial classification has been given a complete makeover by a team of University of Queensland researchers, using an evolutionary tree based on genome sequences.

"The study, led by Professor Philip Hugenholtz from UQ's School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences and the Australian Centre for Ecogenomics (ACE), relied on a technique called metagenomics, where bacterial genomes are obtained straight from environmental samples, to create a more complete picture of the structure of the bacterial kingdom."

"The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 01:32 (114 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

Tony: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

David: It is not diet, etc. It takes a specially shaped cloaca to make pointed eggs.


Tony: I think you misunderstand. I was referring to the parameters that trigger the formation of pointed eggs. Let's assume for a moment that the information on how to make both round and pointy eggs were available (I am not at all certain it is), then the question would be 'how would the organism know which instructions to use?' Perhaps the trigger is environmental, i.e. diet, temperature, EM field, etc.

My point is that the egg has to have a specific and the calcium shell which forms is molded by a specific shape of the cloacal walls, which involves a genetic control different from most birds with rounded eggs. You are interested in what influenced the genetics to change, but the teleological view is the change had to satisfy a significant purpose, a cliff slope, so I think God sets in. I don't think your triggers fit the means of it happening..

DAvid Use of phenotype similarity is a holdover from pre-DNA days. The entire conversion line needs genetic studies and we'll be closer to some truth about the issue. Note this genetic study article that totally rearranges bacteria:

https://phys.org/news/2018-08-scientists-bacterial-tree-life.html

"Bacterial classification has been given a complete makeover by a team of University of Queensland researchers, using an evolutionary tree based on genome sequences.

"The study, led by Professor Philip Hugenholtz from UQ's School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences and the Australian Centre for Ecogenomics (ACE), relied on a technique called metagenomics, where bacterial genomes are obtained straight from environmental samples, to create a more complete picture of the structure of the bacterial kingdom."


"The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Tony: Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 14:13 (113 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: NOBODY knows how speciation took place, and that is why we have different theories. Can you show me evidence that out of the blue your God created birds with pointy-shaped cloacae? In any case, if I remember rightly, you DON’T believe he did. Your view of life is that God created species in the broad sense, but not variations within species. So do please let us have your own theory to explain the pointy-shaped eggs.

TONY: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

An eggcellent answer. I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs. Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

dhw (re whales): But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.
Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution

TONY: That link will not open, but here is one of my own: The Evolution of Whales
[…]
So, this is how we got whales, but they aren't direct ancestors, and we have no trail of direct ancestry. How do we know? Cause they all got dem der ear holes bubba.

The website traces other anatomical similarities. Here is another which you will reject but which also focuses on other areas of the anatomy (including important vestigial structures). I’d be interested to hear whether your fellow theist David accepts or rejects the argument.
Whale Evolution
www.proof-of-evolution.com/whale-evolution.html

TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. […] So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

DHW: Agreed. […] But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”

TONY: Because the evidence shows that they spring up from nowhere, with no direct ancestry. That is documented. See above. I claim that the evidence shows no direct ancestry because the evidence shows no direct ancestry. I am not the one making incredible claims based off ear holes.

Sorry, but you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories. Now please show me your scientific evidence that organisms can spring from nowhere. You claim that the gaps in the record denote the direct actions of an unknown and unprovable supermind. Others claim that the gaps in the record denote the rarity of fossils. Please don’t tell me that your theory is more scientific than theirs.

dhw: But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died.

DAVID: 'Crisis' drove them into the water to which they quickly adapted on their own is pure imaginative just-so storytelling.

I eagerly await your response to my request under "God and Evolution" for your own explanation other than wooj-wooj or a world twiddling tour. Meanwhile, the websites suggest that the different stages to which you drew our attention took millions of years, not that they “quickly adapted”. Here is a story for you: Chapter 1: crisis: shortage of food on land, Willy & Co find food in water. Feed and return to land. Chapter 2: spend more and more time in water, resulting in more and more adaptations. Each stage is perfectly capable of surviving for hundreds of thousands if not millions of years as an organism in its right (see the different phases detailed by the websites, which you have never questioned before). Chapter 3: the different variants of whale we know today. Who knows if there will be a chapter 4, say 10 million years from now?

DAVID: (QUOTING RE BACTERIA) "The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Tony: Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 18:19 (113 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

dhw: An eggcellent answer. I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs. Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

My answer is God helped.


dhw (re whales): But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.
Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution

TONY: That link will not open, but here is one of my own: The Evolution of Whales
[…]
So, this is how we got whales, but they aren't direct ancestors, and we have no trail of direct ancestry. How do we know? Cause they all got dem der ear holes bubba.

dhw: The website traces other anatomical similarities. Here is another which you will reject but which also focuses on other areas of the anatomy (including important vestigial structures). I’d be interested to hear whether your fellow theist David accepts or rejects the argument.

I've seen a whole whale skeleton in Alaska. Those vestigial legs are obvious. God follows his previous blueprints for phenotype.

TONY: Because the evidence shows that they spring up from nowhere, with no direct ancestry. That is documented. See above. I claim that the evidence shows no direct ancestry because the evidence shows no direct ancestry. I am not the one making incredible claims based off ear holes.

dhw: Sorry, but you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories. Now please show me your scientific evidence that organisms can spring from nowhere. You claim that the gaps in the record denote the direct actions of an unknown and unprovable supermind. Others claim that the gaps in the record denote the rarity of fossils. Please don’t tell me that your theory is more scientific than theirs.

dhw: But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died.

DAVID: 'Crisis' drove them into the water to which they quickly adapted on their own is pure imaginative just-so storytelling.

dhw: I eagerly await your response to my request under "God and Evolution" for your own explanation other than wooj-wooj or a world twiddling tour. Meanwhile, the websites suggest that the different stages to which you drew our attention took millions of years, not that they “quickly adapted”. Here is a story for you: Chapter 1: crisis: shortage of food on land, Willy & Co find food in water. Feed and return to land. Chapter 2: spend more and more time in water, resulting in more and more adaptations. Each stage is perfectly capable of surviving for hundreds of thousands if not millions of years as an organism in its right (see the different phases detailed by the websites, which you have never questioned before). Chapter 3: the different variants of whale we know today. Who knows if there will be a chapter 4, say 10 million years from now?

Your just-so story implies gradual changes. The fossil story shows us giant gaps in form. Either the gaps are true or the fossils for your story are not available. Available current evidence is on my side.


DAVID: (QUOTING RE BACTERIA) "The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Tony: Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

dhw: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

Cellular intelligence is pure theory, not proven. Cells have no means of thinking.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 19:02 (113 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: If A then B programming. I don't know what the parameters are, but I would hazard a few guesses and say that perhaps certain dietary or environmental inputs (A) are the parameters that determine the output of the eggshape (B). I would also guess that when we find out what those inputs are, they will be ubiquitous between all pointy egg bird species.

DHW: An eggcellent answer. I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs. Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

It would most likely need to be something OTHER than the steep slope. When animals stand, they typically self-level. While it is conceivable that perhaps the same mechanisms that allow them to self-level while standing also trigger the changes to egg shape, I doubt it. The interesting thing would be to compare eggs cliff dwelling species that share no other environmental similarities (i.e. dessert cliffs vs. ocean cliffs). If all cliff dwellers do not produce pointy eggs, the trigger must be something else.

DHW: The website traces other anatomical similarities. Here is another which you will reject but which also focuses on other areas of the anatomy (including important vestigial structures). I’d be interested to hear whether your fellow theist David accepts or rejects the argument.
Whale Evolution
www.proof-of-evolution.com/whale-evolution.html

Does the anatomical taxonomy match the genetic taxanomy? If not, then it should be rejected. If so, it gains a little more credence in terms of a possible answer.

TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. […] So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

DHW: Agreed. […] But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”

TONY: Because the evidence shows that they spring up from nowhere, with no direct ancestry. That is documented. See above. I claim that the evidence shows no direct ancestry because the evidence shows no direct ancestry. I am not the one making incredible claims based off ear holes.

DHW: Sorry, but you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories. Now please show me your scientific evidence that organisms can spring from nowhere. You claim that the gaps in the record denote the direct actions of an unknown and unprovable supermind. Others claim that the gaps in the record denote the rarity of fossils. Please don’t tell me that your theory is more scientific than theirs.

No one knows because it has never been observed. Hence the hard rejection. It currently stands as a fairy tale from start to finish. Secondly, I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed. The observed complexity and increase in genetic information implies design and intelligence. It is an inference based on the observed evidence. The sum total accumulation of observed evidence implies a planned design, governing intelligence, and massive level of power that so far outstrips humans that we would call it 'god'.

DAVID: (QUOTING RE BACTERIA) "The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Tony: Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

DHW: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

That is logically incorrect. First, even the name 'conserved genes' starts with the assumption of common decent. If that assumption were not in place, the more appropriate term would be 'genetic similarity'. I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, August 28, 2018, 20:09 (113 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: Sorry, but you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories. Now please show me your scientific evidence that organisms can spring from nowhere. You claim that the gaps in the record denote the direct actions of an unknown and unprovable supermind. Others claim that the gaps in the record denote the rarity of fossils. Please don’t tell me that your theory is more scientific than theirs.


Tony: No one knows because it has never been observed. Hence the hard rejection. It currently stands as a fairy tale from start to finish. Secondly, I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed. The observed complexity and increase in genetic information implies design and intelligence. It is an inference based on the observed evidence. The sum total accumulation of observed evidence implies a planned design, governing intelligence, and massive level of power that so far outstrips humans that we would call it 'god'.

Completely mirrors my thoughts

DAVID: (QUOTING RE BACTERIA) "The research team then used these genomic blueprints to construct a giant evolutionary tree of bacteria based on 120 genes that are highly conserved across the bacterial domain."

Tony: Unfortunately, it starts with the same assumption of common descent.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

DHW: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.


Tony: That is logically incorrect. First, even the name 'conserved genes' starts with the assumption of common decent. If that assumption were not in place, the more appropriate term would be 'genetic similarity'. I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Wednesday, August 29, 2018, 11:56 (112 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

dhw: I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs. Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

DAVID: My answer is God helped.

No different from God dabbled. With a magic wooj wooj from on high, or did he summon all the birds to assemble and then fiddled with their cloacae?

TONY: It would most likely need to be something OTHER than the steep slope. […] If all cliff dwellers do not produce pointy eggs, the trigger must be something else.

Interesting, but now please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

dhw: I have offered an explanation of whale development, and you do not accept it. So please tell us how YOU account for the eight stages, if not by one of the two methods I've mentioned.

DAVID: There is no answer.

There is no answer. But you reject my hypothesis.

DAVID: Your just-so story implies gradual changes. The fossil story shows us giant gaps in form. Either the gaps are true or the fossils for your story are not available. Available current evidence is on my side.

There is no answer, but does available evidence really support your claim that 3.8 billion years ago your God preprogrammed eight stages of whalehood, or that he dabbled with all the pre-whales before they entered the water, and then over millions of years did seven more dabbles with all the intermediate whales to produce modern forms of whale? I suspect most current researchers would be flabbergasted to hear what they are supporting.

DHW (to Tony): […] you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories.

TONY: No one knows because it has never been observed. Hence the hard rejection. It currently stands as a fairy tale from start to finish. Secondly, I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed.

Nobody has ever observed the sudden appearance of a species fully formed! There are gaps. That’s it. Your confirmation bias tells you that the gaps denote species appearing from nowhere, specially created by your God. Evolutionists’ confirmation bias tells them that these are due to the rarity of fossils. Your theory is no more scientific than theirs.

TONY: The observed complexity and increase in genetic information implies design and intelligence. It is an inference based on the observed evidence. […]

I am not disputing – and never have disputed – the argument for design, which is one of two reasons why I as an agnostic do not reject the hypothesis of a God (the other being certain psychic phenomena). The current discussion between us is over common descent, not over the existence of your God.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

DHW: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

TONY: That is logically incorrect. First, even the name 'conserved genes' starts with the assumption of common decent. If that assumption were not in place, the more appropriate term would be 'genetic similarity'.

If, say, 90% of chimp genes are the same as human genes, why is it illogical to propose that they share a common ancestor?

TONY: I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

DAVID: Cellular intelligence is pure theory, not proven. Cells have no means of thinking.

I don’t know how often I have to repeat that it is a hypothesis precisely because although we have plenty of evidence that cells behave intelligently, we don’t know how far that intelligence can go in terms of innovation. NOBODY can explain speciation. Cells do not have brains. David, your constant insistence that thought depends on the brain is based on the materialism you reject elsewhere, and on your assumption that microorganisms do not have some kind of brain equivalent.

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Wednesday, August 29, 2018, 13:18 (112 days ago) @ dhw

Ok, trimming where needed for clarity and space.

dhw: I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs.

TONY: It would most likely need to be something OTHER than the steep slope. […] If all cliff dwellers do not produce pointy eggs, the trigger must be something else.

DHW Interesting, but now please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

Did you even READ my hypothesis? Remember that big long winded thing with all the bullet points? I hypothesize that they were originally programmed with the possibility of round to pointy, with specific triggers(input parameters) that would invoke the changes necessary to go from one type, to another.

DHW (to Tony): […] you asked me to show you “something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise”, and to show you the evidence “by reproducing the process. That is science.” Let me repeat: NOBODY KNOWS HOW SPECIATION TOOK PLACE. We only have theories.

TONY: No one knows because it has never been observed. Hence the hard rejection. It currently stands as a fairy tale from start to finish. Secondly, I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed.

DHW: Nobody has ever observed the sudden appearance of a species fully formed! There are gaps. That’s it.

Wrong. The cambrian explosion is just that, species appearing fully formed out of nowhere, and thus the basis for punctuated equilibrium. (As I keep pointing out and you keep ignoring.)

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

DHW: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

TONY: That is logically incorrect. First, even the name 'conserved genes' starts with the assumption of common decent. If that assumption were not in place, the more appropriate term would be 'genetic similarity'.

DHW: If, say, 90% of chimp genes are the same as human genes, why is it illogical to propose that they share a common ancestor?

That number has been steadily dropping and now hovers around 80%, and it largely depends on which part of the genome they compare. (You do know they don't compare the entire genome, right, only the bits they think are important)

Dr. Tomkins just published a new study, and as far as I can tell, it makes the most sense of any BLAST analysis done so far. In this study, he chopped up the chimpanzee genome into “slices” that were as small as 100 base pairs long or as large as 650 base pairs long. The chimpanzee genome is 2.9-3.3 billion base pairs long, so obviously these slices are incredibly small compared to the entire genome.

So, yeah, when you compare less than 1% of the genome we show a high degree of similarity (around 80%). Some studies suggest 70%. But NONE of these studies compare 100% of human DNA to 100% of Chimp DNA, and none of them compare folding either.

TONY: I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

DAVID: Cellular intelligence is pure theory, not proven. Cells have no means of thinking.

DHW: I don’t know how often I have to repeat that it is a hypothesis precisely because although we have plenty of evidence that cells behave intelligently, we don’t know how far that intelligence can go in terms of innovation. NOBODY can explain speciation. Cells do not have brains. David, your constant insistence that thought depends on the brain is based on the materialism you reject elsewhere, and on your assumption that microorganisms do not have some kind of brain equivalent.

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

DHW: As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!

Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Wednesday, August 29, 2018, 19:54 (112 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

TONY: No one knows because it has never been observed. Hence the hard rejection. It currently stands as a fairy tale from start to finish. Secondly, I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed.

DHW: Nobody has ever observed the sudden appearance of a species fully formed! There are gaps. That’s it.

Tony: Wrong. The cambrian explosion is just that, species appearing fully formed out of nowhere, and thus the basis for punctuated equilibrium. (As I keep pointing out and you keep ignoring.)

Thank you Tony. Cambrian forms are full blown from no predecessors. The new Chinese findings have delineated the Ediacarans much more fully and the Cambrian gap just gets bigger. I've presented it here.

DAVID: I think the conserved genes are God's primary blueprint.

DHW: And conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption. I have proposed that if God exists, cellular intelligence is his “primary blueprint”.

TONY: That is logically incorrect. First, even the name 'conserved genes' starts with the assumption of common decent. If that assumption were not in place, the more appropriate term would be 'genetic similarity'.

DHW: If, say, 90% of chimp genes are the same as human genes, why is it illogical to propose that they share a common ancestor?

Tony: That number has been steadily dropping and now hovers around 80%, and it largely depends on which part of the genome they compare. (You do know they don't compare the entire genome, right, only the bits they think are important)

Dr. Tomkins just published a new study, and as far as I can tell, it makes the most sense of any BLAST analysis done so far. In this study, he chopped up the chimpanzee genome into “slices” that were as small as 100 base pairs long or as large as 650 base pairs long. The chimpanzee genome is 2.9-3.3 billion base pairs long, so obviously these slices are incredibly small compared to the entire genome.


So, yeah, when you compare less than 1% of the genome we show a high degree of similarity (around 80%). Some studies suggest 70%. But NONE of these studies compare 100% of human DNA to 100% of Chimp DNA, and none of them compare folding either.

I've presented evidence over and over that the closest chimps get is 78%

TONY: I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

DAVID: Cellular intelligence is pure theory, not proven. Cells have no means of thinking.

DHW: I don’t know how often I have to repeat that it is a hypothesis precisely because although we have plenty of evidence that cells behave intelligently, we don’t know how far that intelligence can go in terms of innovation. NOBODY can explain speciation. Cells do not have brains. David, your constant insistence that thought depends on the brain is based on the materialism you reject elsewhere, and on your assumption that microorganisms do not have some kind of brain equivalent.

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

DHW: As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!


Tony: Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

If dhw accepted planning He would creep closer to God. For me planning and design are obvious. It is what changed my views.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Thursday, August 30, 2018, 08:09 (111 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW [re pointy eggs]: ...please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

TONY: I hypothesize that they were originally programmed with the possibility of round to pointy, with specific triggers(input parameters) that would invoke the changes necessary to go from one type, to another.

Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

DAVID: Your just-so story implies gradual changes. […] Either the gaps are true or the fossils for your story are not available. Available current evidence is on my side.

dhw: […] does available evidence really support your claim that 3.8 billion years ago your God preprogrammed eight stages of whalehood, or that he dabbled with all the pre-whales before they entered the water, and then over millions of years did seven more dabbles with all the intermediate whales to produce modern forms of whale?

DAVID: All we can do is make reasonable hypotheses based on available evidence. A designing mind is required. It is still chance or design, and even you reject chance.

That does not mean available current evidence favours your “just-so story” over mine.

TONY: I claim that the observed gaps denote gaps; the observed sudden appearance of species fully formed.

DHW: Nobody has ever observed the sudden appearance of a species fully formed! There are gaps. That’s it.

TONY: Wrong. The cambrian explosion is just that, species appearing fully formed out of nowhere, and thus the basis for punctuated equilibrium.

We observe gaps, not root types appearing out of nowhere! Punctuated equilibrium means long periods of stasis, broken by sudden bursts of creative activity. Nothing to do with out-of-nowhere. I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

SAMPLE QUOTES: This important period in the history of life extended over millions of years, plenty of time for the evolution of these new body plans (phyla) to occur.

Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.

DHW: […] conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption.

TONY: That is logically incorrect. […] .

DHW: If, say, 90% of chimp genes are the same as human genes, why is it illogical to propose that they share a common ancestor?

TONY: That number has been steadily dropping and now hovers around 80%, and it largely depends on which part of the genome they compare.

I don’t care what part of the genome they compare or if it's 90% or 80%. I'm asking why it is illogical to propose that the same genes may indicate they had a common ancestor.

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

DHW: As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!

DAVID: Parrots are not cells! They have brains. Straw man argument.

You have misunderstood. I said we judge intelligence by behaviour – whether it’s humans, parrots or bacteria.

TONY: Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

DAVID: If dhw accepted planning He would creep closer to God. For me planning and design are obvious. It is what changed my views.

We agree on design of some kind. I do not believe that your God changed organismal structures in advance of the environmental changes those structures would be used for. I’d be interested to know if Tony thinks his God controls the environment, and if he specially created root types in advance of or in response to environmental change.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Thursday, August 30, 2018, 13:10 (111 days ago) @ dhw

DHW [re pointy eggs]: ...please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

TONY: I hypothesize that they were originally programmed with the possibility of round to pointy, with specific triggers(input parameters) that would invoke the changes necessary to go from one type, to another.

DHW: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

Yes, this is precisely the idea behind my hypothesis.


DHW: We observe gaps, not root types appearing out of nowhere! Punctuated equilibrium means long periods of stasis, broken by sudden bursts of creative activity. Nothing to do with out-of-nowhere. I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

SAMPLE QUOTES: This important period in the history of life extended over millions of years, plenty of time for the evolution of these new body plans (phyla) to occur.

Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.

But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

DHW: […] conserved genes can be taken as evidence of common descent, not as a prior assumption.

TONY: That is logically incorrect. […] .

DHW: If, say, 90% of chimp genes are the same as human genes, why is it illogical to propose that they share a common ancestor?

TONY: That number has been steadily dropping and now hovers around 80%, and it largely depends on which part of the genome they compare.

DHW: I don’t care what part of the genome they compare or if it's 90% or 80%. I'm asking why it is illogical to propose that the same genes may indicate they had a common ancestor.

Because if they are 80% the same, then they are 20% different. Where would the 20% NEW information come from?

TONY: Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

DHW: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

I've been curious about this, but honestly do not have enough information to answer. Are they developing new resistances, or is there some underlying existing something that causes Billy to be vulnerable while Bobby is not. For example, we know that some people are genetically predisposed to diabetes because their genetics make their cells insulin resistant. Could what we be seeing be a small preexisting variation in organisms that make them already resistant, and by killing off all the Billy's all that is left is Bobby's, or are they adding new information? Or is there some function in their genes that changes its output based on some input that results in their resistance? I don't know.

DHW We agree on design of some kind. I do not believe that your God changed organismal structures in advance of the environmental changes those structures would be used for. I’d be interested to know if Tony thinks his God controls the environment, and if he specially created root types in advance of or in response to environmental change.

first, imagine each environmental state of the Earth as a stage in Earth's development. I believe he created organisms that could exist in the initial environment to change the environment to a new state, the next stage in Earth's development, and then repeated this process at each new stage, driving the development of the environment using the organisms natural biological processes. Like putting yeast in grape juice to get to the next desired stage of grape juice, wine! Without the addition of yeast, the juice just sours and becomes vinegar, so we add life to the juice to alter the outcome of the juicy environment to the desired result.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, August 30, 2018, 19:22 (111 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.


Tony: I've been curious about this, but honestly do not have enough information to answer. Are they developing new resistances, or is there some underlying existing something that causes Billy to be vulnerable while Bobby is not. For example, we know that some people are genetically predisposed to diabetes because their genetics make their cells insulin resistant. Could what we be seeing be a small preexisting variation in organisms that make them already resistant, and by killing off all the Billy's all that is left is Bobby's, or are they adding new information? Or is there some function in their genes that changes its output based on some input that results in their resistance? I don't know.

I commented on this in the past. There is a variation in resistance so some will survive, there is horizontal gene transfer, and there is also gene modification. All have been shown.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Friday, August 31, 2018, 13:37 (110 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW [re pointy eggs]:...please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

TONY: I hypothesize that they were originally programmed with the possibility of round to pointy, with specific triggers(input parameters) that would invoke the changes necessary to go from one type, to another.

DHW: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

TONY: Yes, this is precisely the idea behind my hypothesis.

Thank you. It’s a similar idea to David’s, except that he believes in common descent, and so his billions of computer programmes were installed in the very first cells, whereas presumably yours were “only” installed in the new root types, as and when he created them. Have scientists actually discovered these computer programmes, which in David’s theory produced the root types as well as all their variations, and have they observed these programmes at work?

DHW: We observe gaps, not root types appearing out of nowhere! Punctuated equilibrium means long periods of stasis, broken by sudden bursts of creative activity. Nothing to do with out-of-nowhere. I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

QUOTE: “Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.”

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.

DHW: I don’t care what part of the genome they compare or if it's 90% or 80%. I'm asking why it is illogical to propose that the same genes may indicate they had a common ancestor.

TONY: Because if they are 80% the same, then they are 20% different. Where would the 20% NEW information come from?

Nobody knows how innovation (= the difference) took place, which is why we have so many theories, including the theory that a mysterious power called God engineered it (which may be true). This does not mean that 80% similarity or sameness makes common descent illogical. The more similarities there are, the more logical common descent becomes.

TONY: Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

DHW: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

TONY: I've been curious about this, but honestly do not have enough information to answer. Are they developing new resistances, or is there some underlying existing something that causes Billy to be vulnerable while Bobby is not. For example, we know that some people are genetically predisposed to diabetes because their genetics make their cells insulin resistant. Could what we be seeing be a small preexisting variation in organisms that make them already resistant, and by killing off all the Billy's all that is left is Bobby's, or are they adding new information? Or is there some function in their genes that changes its output based on some input that results in their resistance? I don't know.

DAVID: I commented on this in the past. There is a variation in resistance so some will survive, there is horizontal gene transfer, and there is also gene modification. All have been shown.

I find it difficult to believe that your God preprogrammed the first bacteria with resistance to every single problem that would challenge them throughout the history of life on Earth past, present and future, although some of them would not inherit the right programme for resisting some of the challenges and would either die or would require a horizontal gene transfer. Tony’s list of possibilities is pretty comprehensive, and of course we don’t know. I myself find “developing new resistances” more convincing than preprogramming. Maybe that’s as far as we can go.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Friday, August 31, 2018, 17:09 (110 days ago) @ dhw

DHW [re pointy eggs]:...please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

TONY: I hypothesize that they were originally programmed with the possibility of round to pointy, with specific triggers(input parameters) that would invoke the changes necessary to go from one type, to another.

DHW: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

TONY: Yes, this is precisely the idea behind my hypothesis.

DHW: Thank you. It’s a similar idea to David’s, except that he believes in common descent, and so his billions of computer programmes were installed in the very first cells, whereas presumably yours were “only” installed in the new root types, as and when he created them. Have scientists actually discovered these computer programmes, which in David’s theory produced the root types as well as all their variations, and have they observed these programmes at work?


Yes. DNA is the code, and epigenetic changes are the various outputs that change depending on environmental inputs and are inheritable without rewriting the underlying program.


DHW: We observe gaps, not root types appearing out of nowhere! Punctuated equilibrium means long periods of stasis, broken by sudden bursts of creative activity. Nothing to do with out-of-nowhere. I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

QUOTE: “Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.”

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

DHW: The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.

Within the cambrian, but it doesn't state if there were pre-cambrian precursors.

DHW: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

TONY: I've been curious about this, but honestly do not have enough information to answer. Are they developing new resistances, or is there some underlying existing something that causes Billy to be vulnerable while Bobby is not. For example, we know that some people are genetically predisposed to diabetes because their genetics make their cells insulin resistant. Could what we be seeing be a small preexisting variation in organisms that make them already resistant, and by killing off all the Billy's all that is left is Bobby's, or are they adding new information? Or is there some function in their genes that changes its output based on some input that results in their resistance? I don't know.

DAVID: I commented on this in the past. There is a variation in resistance so some will survive, there is horizontal gene transfer, and there is also gene modification. All have been shown.

DHW I find it difficult to believe that your God preprogrammed the first bacteria with resistance to every single problem that would challenge them throughout the history of life on Earth past, present and future, although some of them would not inherit the right programme for resisting some of the challenges and would either die or would require a horizontal gene transfer. Tony’s list of possibilities is pretty comprehensive, and of course we don’t know. I myself find “developing new resistances” more convincing than preprogramming. Maybe that’s as far as we can go.

By that same logic, a recent article on plant pollination and imbreeding resistance shows that plants are immune all pollinating toxins except their own. How do they have that information?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, August 31, 2018, 19:36 (110 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

Tony: Yes. DNA is the code, and epigenetic changes are the various outputs that change depending on environmental inputs and are inheritable without rewriting the underlying program.


DHW: We observe gaps, not root types appearing out of nowhere! Punctuated equilibrium means long periods of stasis, broken by sudden bursts of creative activity. Nothing to do with out-of-nowhere. I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

QUOTE: “Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.”

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

DHW: The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.


Tony: Within the cambrian, but it doesn't state if there were pre-cambrian precursors.

You are correct. I don't accept the wording of the website. The recent Ediacarans from China were so strange they were thought originally to be plants and only recently have been accepted as animals. My entry: Friday, August 10, 2018, 20:16

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Saturday, September 01, 2018, 09:57 (109 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type…?.

TONY: Yes, this is precisely the idea behind my hypothesis.

DHW: […] Have scientists actually discovered these computer programmes, which in David’s theory produced the root types as well as all their variations, and have they observed these programmes at work?

TONY: Yes. DNA is the code, and epigenetic changes are the various outputs that change depending on environmental inputs and are inheritable without rewriting the underlying program.

Again I’m trying to understand. Your God specially created root types, and installed in their DNA was a computer programme for every single variant, with a solution to every single problem, except their last. Ditto my favourites, bacteria, though they haven’t yet had to face their last problem. I understand your explanation of how epigenetic changes work, but how do you know that this computer programme exists, and that the cells/cell communities of which organisms are made don’t work out each solution for themselves?

David: The possibility of finding such codes or guidelines might be possible when we fully understand all the layer of control in the genome, and we have basically just scratched the surface. We have finally gotten rid of the idea that the genome was simply a protein coding system.

Yes, atheistic materialists use the same argument when challenged with all the missing bits of the picture: eventually we hope to find them when we fully understand this, that and the other. Let me join in the fun: the possibility of finding that cells/cell communities are intelligent enough to work out their own solutions might be possible when we fully understand etc.

QUOTE: “Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.” (My bold)

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

DHW: The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.

TONY: Within the cambrian, but it doesn't state if there were pre-cambrian precursors.

See my bold.

DAVID: Twisted meaning of 'precursors'. If you study the Cambrians and compare the Ediacarans, and I have, there is no similarity except they both were living forms. Precursor here simply means predecessor. The gap has not changed since Darwin was puzzled over it.

I quoted a website that disagrees with you, but I’m in no position to argue. If the gaps are as large as ever, that still doesn’t prove that organisms can spring from nowhere. It simply tells us that there are unexplained gaps. To adapt your formula relating to the missing computer programme (codes and guidelines): The possibility of filling the gaps might be possible when we have fully understood how evolution works and have fully investigated every scrap of possible fossil-bearing material. We have basically just scratched the surface.

DHW: I myself find “developing new resistances” more convincing than preprogramming. Maybe that’s as far as we can go.

DAVID: Note I said there was a variation in resistance among individuals, as individuals vary in other ways. Our immune system allows us to develop immunity as we live. I assume bacteria have the same ability, although much less complex than our system.

Maybe there is a variation in intelligence among individuals, as individuals vary in other ways.

TONY: By that same logic, a recent article on plant pollination and imbreeding resistance shows that plants are immune all pollinating toxins except their own. How do they have that information?

Nobody knows, so take your choice between the various theories you listed – or just keep an open mind!

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 01, 2018, 15:20 (109 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

DHW: The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.

TONY: Within the cambrian, but it doesn't state if there were pre-cambrian precursors.

See my bold.

DAVID: Twisted meaning of 'precursors'. If you study the Cambrians and compare the Ediacarans, and I have, there is no similarity except they both were living forms. Precursor here simply means predecessor. The gap has not changed since Darwin was puzzled over it.

dhw: I quoted a website that disagrees with you, but I’m in no position to argue. If the gaps are as large as ever, that still doesn’t prove that organisms can spring from nowhere. It simply tells us that there are unexplained gaps. To adapt your formula relating to the missing computer programme (codes and guidelines): The possibility of filling the gaps might be possible when we have fully understood how evolution works and have fully investigated every scrap of possible fossil-bearing material. We have basically just scratched the surface.

The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Sunday, September 02, 2018, 09:09 (108 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?

I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them. I look for alternative hypotheses, such as cellular intelligence and a form of panpsychism, though even these are too tenuous for me to believe in. The Cambrian is a mystery that nobody has yet solved. Like yourself, I do believe in common descent, and if I believed in your God (and I do not disbelieve), I could certainly contemplate the possibility of a dabble, but I do not find that any more convincing than your God endowing organisms (cell communities) with an autonomous inventive intelligence of their own to create the innovations that mark the Cambrian. This hypothesis preserves common descent and explains the speciation gaps – but I recognize that it too has a massive gap: the lack of evidence that the intelligence of cell communities can extend beyond adaptation to innovation. That is why I keep emphasizing that it is a HYPOTHESIS, not a belief.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Sunday, September 02, 2018, 14:11 (108 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?

I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them. I look for alternative hypotheses, such as cellular intelligence and a form of panpsychism, though even these are too tenuous for me to believe in. The Cambrian is a mystery that nobody has yet solved. Like yourself, I do believe in common descent, and if I believed in your God (and I do not disbelieve), I could certainly contemplate the possibility of a dabble, but I do not find that any more convincing than your God endowing organisms (cell communities) with an autonomous inventive intelligence of their own to create the innovations that mark the Cambrian. This hypothesis preserves common descent and explains the speciation gaps – but I recognize that it too has a massive gap: the lack of evidence that the intelligence of cell communities can extend beyond adaptation to innovation. That is why I keep emphasizing that it is a HYPOTHESIS, not a belief.

Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 02, 2018, 15:25 (108 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?

I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them. I look for alternative hypotheses, such as cellular intelligence and a form of panpsychism, though even these are too tenuous for me to believe in. The Cambrian is a mystery that nobody has yet solved. Like yourself, I do believe in common descent, and if I believed in your God (and I do not disbelieve), I could certainly contemplate the possibility of a dabble, but I do not find that any more convincing than your God endowing organisms (cell communities) with an autonomous inventive intelligence of their own to create the innovations that mark the Cambrian. This hypothesis preserves common descent and explains the speciation gaps – but I recognize that it too has a massive gap: the lack of evidence that the intelligence of cell communities can extend beyond adaptation to innovation. That is why I keep emphasizing that it is a HYPOTHESIS, not a belief.


Tony:Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Monday, September 03, 2018, 01:11 (108 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?

I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them. I look for alternative hypotheses, such as cellular intelligence and a form of panpsychism, though even these are too tenuous for me to believe in. The Cambrian is a mystery that nobody has yet solved. Like yourself, I do believe in common descent, and if I believed in your God (and I do not disbelieve), I could certainly contemplate the possibility of a dabble, but I do not find that any more convincing than your God endowing organisms (cell communities) with an autonomous inventive intelligence of their own to create the innovations that mark the Cambrian. This hypothesis preserves common descent and explains the speciation gaps – but I recognize that it too has a massive gap: the lack of evidence that the intelligence of cell communities can extend beyond adaptation to innovation. That is why I keep emphasizing that it is a HYPOTHESIS, not a belief.


Tony:Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.


David: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

Aye, but it was in response to DHW's post.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Monday, September 03, 2018, 09:41 (107 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?
I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them.

DAVID: I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

It’s a shame that you didn’t comment on the parallel statements at the top of this post, but yes, this is a good summary.

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, September 03, 2018, 14:44 (107 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?
I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them.

DAVID: I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

dhw: It’s a shame that you didn’t comment on the parallel statements at the top of this post, but yes, this is a good summary.

The summary stands as a comment on the parallel statements.


TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

dhw: The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

Your supposed boredom for God is your usual humanized view of Him. My human version of Him is that He's got a universe to run, a Heaven to manage, more evolutionary changes to design, and at the same time put some mind to the next universe which will follow this one after it has stretched out of existence. After all universes are finite matter, and God is full of purpose for eternity.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Tuesday, September 04, 2018, 09:31 (106 days ago) @ David Turell

Dhw: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

DAVID: Your supposed boredom for God is your usual humanized view of Him. My human version of Him is that He's got a universe to run, a Heaven to manage, more evolutionary changes to design, and at the same time put some mind to the next universe which will follow this one after it has stretched out of existence. After all universes are finite matter, and God is full of purpose for eternity.

And who/what forces him to run the universe and heaven and more evolution and new universes? Could it possibly be that he himself wants to do all this? And if so, why do you think he wants to do it? What do YOU think is his purpose for eternity? Anyway, I’m pleased to see that you have left out your theory that the brain of Homo sapiens is his prime purpose.

TONY (in reply to my suggestion at the head of this post): That assumes that there is only small purpose and big purpose and nothing in between. A person that builds a house, might be planning a neighborhood, and is certainly planning for the various elements of the house to keep it standing upright, but what about all the choices in between, that neither keep the house upright nor add to the neighborhood directly?

Sorry, but I was responding to the post in which you complained that “we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. […] [We] forget that designers do not design without purpose.” Perhaps instead of drawing a human analogy you could comment directly on what I have proposed in relation to the purpose of everything (my macropurpose), not just our purpose (my micropurpose), and let us know what you believe to be the purpose of everything.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Wednesday, September 05, 2018, 18:55 (105 days ago) @ dhw

Dhw: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

DAVID: Your supposed boredom for God is your usual humanized view of Him. My human version of Him is that He's got a universe to run, a Heaven to manage, more evolutionary changes to design, and at the same time put some mind to the next universe which will follow this one after it has stretched out of existence. After all universes are finite matter, and God is full of purpose for eternity.

And who/what forces him to run the universe and heaven and more evolution and new universes? Could it possibly be that he himself wants to do all this? And if so, why do you think he wants to do it? What do YOU think is his purpose for eternity? Anyway, I’m pleased to see that you have left out your theory that the brain of Homo sapiens is his prime purpose.

TONY (in reply to my suggestion at the head of this post): That assumes that there is only small purpose and big purpose and nothing in between. A person that builds a house, might be planning a neighborhood, and is certainly planning for the various elements of the house to keep it standing upright, but what about all the choices in between, that neither keep the house upright nor add to the neighborhood directly?

DHW Sorry, but I was responding to the post in which you complained that “we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. […] [We] forget that designers do not design without purpose.” Perhaps instead of drawing a human analogy you could comment directly on what I have proposed in relation to the purpose of everything (my macropurpose), not just our purpose (my micropurpose), and let us know what you believe to be the purpose of everything.


I have commented before that, from my biblical perspective, I view creation as both a gift and a bit of a father/son project. From my perspective, that doesn't lessen anything as I am extremely grateful to be alive at all! That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Monday, September 10, 2018, 09:06 (100 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind […] In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

DHW: ...I was responding to the post in which you complained that “we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. […] Perhaps [you could] let us know what you believe to be the purpose of everything. (my bold)

TONY: I have commented before that, from my biblical perspective, I view creation as both a gift and a bit of a father/son project. From my perspective, that doesn't lessen anything as I am extremely grateful to be alive at all!

I’m sure all three of us regard life as a gift, and are grateful for it. A “bit of a father/son project” rather narrows the scope of “purpose”, as outlined below.

TONY: That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

I’m puzzled by this answer. You complained that we did not ask for the purpose of everything, as opposed to just our purpose. Now you seem to be offering us two purposes: 1) Your God teaching his son to attain “fullness”; 2) Your God creating fullness of life. By “everything”, I thought you meant the universe and all life, which would include every form of life that has ever existed, including our own. Perhaps, though, you could explain what you mean by “fullness”. Meanwhile, I have offered a theistic purpose (God’s wish to relieve his own boredom by creating an ever changing spectacle) in the paragraph with which I have opened this post. I’d be surprised if you agreed with it, but if you don’t, it would be interesting to know why, and it would be interesting to know how your God’s hoped-for attainment of Jesus’s "fullness" explains the billions of solar systems and the billions of life forms and natural wonders extant and extinct.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Monday, September 10, 2018, 17:14 (100 days ago) @ dhw

DHW: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind […] In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

DHW: ...I was responding to the post in which you complained that “we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. […] Perhaps [you could] let us know what you believe to be the purpose of everything. (my bold)

TONY: I have commented before that, from my biblical perspective, I view creation as both a gift and a bit of a father/son project. From my perspective, that doesn't lessen anything as I am extremely grateful to be alive at all!

I’m sure all three of us regard life as a gift, and are grateful for it. A “bit of a father/son project” rather narrows the scope of “purpose”, as outlined below.

TONY: That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

DHW: I’m puzzled by this answer. You complained that we did not ask for the purpose of everything, as opposed to just our purpose. Now you seem to be offering us two purposes: 1) Your God teaching his son to attain “fullness”; 2) Your God creating fullness of life. By “everything”, I thought you meant the universe and all life, which would include every form of life that has ever existed, including our own. Perhaps, though, you could explain what you mean by “fullness”. Meanwhile, I have offered a theistic purpose (God’s wish to relieve his own boredom by creating an ever changing spectacle) in the paragraph with which I have opened this post. I’d be surprised if you agreed with it, but if you don’t, it would be interesting to know why, and it would be interesting to know how your God’s hoped-for attainment of Jesus’s "fullness" explains the billions of solar systems and the billions of life forms and natural wonders extant and extinct.

Actually, allow me try breaking it down in point-by-point logic:

1: There is/was/will ever be, energy.
2: This energy, however it happened, became self-aware and grew in organization (lived)
3: As the organization (self-awareness) grew, it realized that growth and organization (life/fullness/self-actualization) is a purpose in and of itself.
4: It grew in its own fullness.
5: It reached a point where it realized that it could not grow further in isolation (became aware of the possibility of reproduction)
6: It reproduced for the first time. (First direct creation)
7: It helped its spawn grow its awareness.
8: It realized that, like it, its spawn would need to 'reproduce' to achieve fullness.
9: It realized that this process would have to continue infinitely, each new awareness growing and spreading.
10: Pondering the situation, it decided on a course of action that would accomplish both tasks, creating life/organization/self-awareness in a system that could continuously expand and grow infinitely(for all intents and purposes)
11: It worked through its offspring, allowing its offspring to grow along one trajectory, while it grew along another, possibly with the intent that at some point its offspring would start its own cycle while it continued to grow in new directions.

In this line of thinking, God is not only the progenitor, but also always at the head of the growth curve, always more advanced, always in the lead. The offspring, being aware of this, always follows the direction of its progenitor.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, September 10, 2018, 21:39 (100 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind […] In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

DHW: ...I was responding to the post in which you complained that “we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. […] Perhaps [you could] let us know what you believe to be the purpose of everything. (my bold)

TONY: I have commented before that, from my biblical perspective, I view creation as both a gift and a bit of a father/son project. From my perspective, that doesn't lessen anything as I am extremely grateful to be alive at all!

I’m sure all three of us regard life as a gift, and are grateful for it. A “bit of a father/son project” rather narrows the scope of “purpose”, as outlined below.

TONY: That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

DHW: I’m puzzled by this answer. You complained that we did not ask for the purpose of everything, as opposed to just our purpose. Now you seem to be offering us two purposes: 1) Your God teaching his son to attain “fullness”; 2) Your God creating fullness of life. By “everything”, I thought you meant the universe and all life, which would include every form of life that has ever existed, including our own. Perhaps, though, you could explain what you mean by “fullness”. Meanwhile, I have offered a theistic purpose (God’s wish to relieve his own boredom by creating an ever changing spectacle) in the paragraph with which I have opened this post. I’d be surprised if you agreed with it, but if you don’t, it would be interesting to know why, and it would be interesting to know how your God’s hoped-for attainment of Jesus’s "fullness" explains the billions of solar systems and the billions of life forms and natural wonders extant and extinct.


Tony: Actually, allow me try breaking it down in point-by-point logic:

1: There is/was/will ever be, energy.
2: This energy, however it happened, became self-aware and grew in organization (lived)
3: As the organization (self-awareness) grew, it realized that growth and organization (life/fullness/self-actualization) is a purpose in and of itself.
4: It grew in its own fullness.
5: It reached a point where it realized that it could not grow further in isolation (became aware of the possibility of reproduction)
6: It reproduced for the first time. (First direct creation)
7: It helped its spawn grow its awareness.
8: It realized that, like it, its spawn would need to 'reproduce' to achieve fullness.
9: It realized that this process would have to continue infinitely, each new awareness growing and spreading.
10: Pondering the situation, it decided on a course of action that would accomplish both tasks, creating life/organization/self-awareness in a system that could continuously expand and grow infinitely(for all intents and purposes)
11: It worked through its offspring, allowing its offspring to grow along one trajectory, while it grew along another, possibly with the intent that at some point its offspring would start its own cycle while it continued to grow in new directions.

In this line of thinking, God is not only the progenitor, but also always at the head of the growth curve, always more advanced, always in the lead. The offspring, being aware of this, always follows the direction of its progenitor.

I've always said pure energy first.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Tuesday, September 11, 2018, 00:01 (100 days ago) @ David Turell
edited by Balance_Maintained, Tuesday, September 11, 2018, 00:08

TONY: That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

DHW: I’m puzzled by this answer. You complained that we did not ask for the purpose of everything, as opposed to just our purpose. Now you seem to be offering us two purposes: 1) Your God teaching his son to attain “fullness”; 2) Your God creating fullness of life. By “everything”, I thought you meant the universe and all life, which would include every form of life that has ever existed, including our own. Perhaps, though, you could explain what you mean by “fullness”. Meanwhile, I have offered a theistic purpose (God’s wish to relieve his own boredom by creating an ever changing spectacle) in the paragraph with which I have opened this post. I’d be surprised if you agreed with it, but if you don’t, it would be interesting to know why, and it would be interesting to know how your God’s hoped-for attainment of Jesus’s "fullness" explains the billions of solar systems and the billions of life forms and natural wonders extant and extinct.


Tony: Actually, allow me try breaking it down in point-by-point logic:

1: There is/was/will ever be, energy.
2: This energy, however it happened, became self-aware and grew in organization (lived)
3: As the organization (self-awareness) grew, it realized that growth and organization (life/fullness/self-actualization) is a purpose in and of itself.
4: It grew in its own fullness.
5: It reached a point where it realized that it could not grow further in isolation (became aware of the possibility of reproduction)
6: It reproduced for the first time. (First direct creation)
7: It helped its spawn grow its awareness.
8: It realized that, like it, its spawn would need to 'reproduce' to achieve fullness.
9: It realized that this process would have to continue infinitely, each new awareness growing and spreading.
10: Pondering the situation, it decided on a course of action that would accomplish both tasks, creating life/organization/self-awareness in a system that could continuously expand and grow infinitely(for all intents and purposes)
11: It worked through its offspring, allowing its offspring to grow along one trajectory, while it grew along another, possibly with the intent that at some point its offspring would start its own cycle while it continued to grow in new directions.

In this line of thinking, God is not only the progenitor, but also always at the head of the growth curve, always more advanced, always in the lead. The offspring, being aware of this, always follows the direction of its progenitor.


David: I've always said pure energy first.

It occurs to me that the entity( God )may be God particularly because he can directly violate the law of first law of thermodynamics, creating energy/mass where none existed previously.
That literally makes God the possible source of infinite creation and destruction. If energy, mass, and information are equivalent at the quantum level, then he would also be a possibly infinite source of information, simply by being able to violate that law of physics.

Personally, I view the soul as energy in the form of a memory, stored energy, inert when not bound to an object, a dormant file on your computer; a tiny spark of energy on God's flash drive waiting to be accessed to do something. So if God can destroy the soul, the ability to destroy energy seen.

From a biblical perspective, "Fear not he that kills the body, but cannot destroy the soul." implies that there is something that transcends physical death, regardless of our beliefs on the form. When Christ says 'by the will of his father', he was literally using his Father's power(i.e. not power he created).

When life was 'put in to Christ', it could mean that he gained the ability to create energy in his own right, a defining hallmark thing he needed to learn to learn in some Godly rite of passage, or it could be that as a young God in training (think Teenage God) he needed guidance to balance some aspect of his Godly personality, or to test it, as we do with our teenage children. Not in terms of 'bugs in the software of creation' type test, but in a 'allow your child to demonstrate their depth of empathy/compassion/perserverence' type test to prove to themselves and others that they are worthy.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, September 11, 2018, 01:39 (100 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

TONY: That said, as any father would want to teach his son, perhaps this has also been in part to help his son attain fullness in his own right. Perhaps, being the first to exist, the first to know an understand anything, he realizes that life is, in and of itself, perhaps the greatest purpose there is, and sees creating a fullness of it as to be the highest calling he could aspire to. The bible refers to him as 'the living god', and it also mentions that his son did not have 'life in him' from the beginning, but through his endeavors it was put into him (though I also think limited human language muddies the water there).

DHW: I’m puzzled by this answer. You complained that we did not ask for the purpose of everything, as opposed to just our purpose. Now you seem to be offering us two purposes: 1) Your God teaching his son to attain “fullness”; 2) Your God creating fullness of life. By “everything”, I thought you meant the universe and all life, which would include every form of life that has ever existed, including our own. Perhaps, though, you could explain what you mean by “fullness”. Meanwhile, I have offered a theistic purpose (God’s wish to relieve his own boredom by creating an ever changing spectacle) in the paragraph with which I have opened this post. I’d be surprised if you agreed with it, but if you don’t, it would be interesting to know why, and it would be interesting to know how your God’s hoped-for attainment of Jesus’s "fullness" explains the billions of solar systems and the billions of life forms and natural wonders extant and extinct.


Tony: Actually, allow me try breaking it down in point-by-point logic:

1: There is/was/will ever be, energy.
2: This energy, however it happened, became self-aware and grew in organization (lived)
3: As the organization (self-awareness) grew, it realized that growth and organization (life/fullness/self-actualization) is a purpose in and of itself.
4: It grew in its own fullness.
5: It reached a point where it realized that it could not grow further in isolation (became aware of the possibility of reproduction)
6: It reproduced for the first time. (First direct creation)
7: It helped its spawn grow its awareness.
8: It realized that, like it, its spawn would need to 'reproduce' to achieve fullness.
9: It realized that this process would have to continue infinitely, each new awareness growing and spreading.
10: Pondering the situation, it decided on a course of action that would accomplish both tasks, creating life/organization/self-awareness in a system that could continuously expand and grow infinitely(for all intents and purposes)
11: It worked through its offspring, allowing its offspring to grow along one trajectory, while it grew along another, possibly with the intent that at some point its offspring would start its own cycle while it continued to grow in new directions.

In this line of thinking, God is not only the progenitor, but also always at the head of the growth curve, always more advanced, always in the lead. The offspring, being aware of this, always follows the direction of its progenitor.


David: I've always said pure energy first.


Tony: It occurs to me that the entity( God )may be God particularly because he can directly violate the law of first law of thermodynamics, creating energy/mass where none existed previously.
That literally makes God the possible source of infinite creation and destruction. If energy, mass, and information are equivalent at the quantum level, then he would also be a possibly infinite source of information, simply by being able to violate that law of physics.

Personally, I view the soul as energy in the form of a memory, stored energy, inert when not bound to an object, a dormant file on your computer; a tiny spark of energy on God's flash drive waiting to be accessed to do something. So if God can destroy the soul, the ability to destroy energy seen.

From a biblical perspective, "Fear not he that kills the body, but cannot destroy the soul." implies that there is something that transcends physical death, regardless of our beliefs on the form. When Christ says 'by the will of his father', he was literally using his Father's power(i.e. not power he created).

When life was 'put in to Christ', it could mean that he gained the ability to create energy in his own right, a defining hallmark thing he needed to learn to learn in some Godly rite of passage, or it could be that as a young God in training (think Teenage God) he needed guidance to balance some aspect of his Godly personality, or to test it, as we do with our teenage children. Not in terms of 'bugs in the software of creation' type test, but in a 'allow your child to demonstrate their depth of empathy/compassion/perserverence' type test to prove to themselves and others that they are worthy.

All I can say is a very interesting take.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Tuesday, September 04, 2018, 01:36 (107 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

DHW: The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

That assumes that there is only small purpose and big purpose and nothing in between. A person that builds a house, might be planning a neighborhood, and is certainly planning for the various elements of the house to keep it standing upright, but what about all the choices in between, that neither keep the house upright nor add to the neighborhood directly?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, September 04, 2018, 14:11 (106 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

DHW: The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.


Tony: That assumes that there is only small purpose and big purpose and nothing in between. A person that builds a house, might be planning a neighborhood, and is certainly planning for the various elements of the house to keep it standing upright, but what about all the choices in between, that neither keep the house upright nor add to the neighborhood directly?

Your comment mirrors my statements on balance of nature which provide the homeostasis for all life.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Wednesday, September 12, 2018, 23:57 (98 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?
I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them.

DAVID: I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

It’s a shame that you didn’t comment on the parallel statements at the top of this post, but yes, this is a good summary.

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

well, its kind of certain that religion has many traits wrong. I don't agree that "purpose" is to read its mind. that implies more than we know.

we are part of something larger and more complex than humans. that's just a fact. whatever we classify ourselves as we must classify large parts of the universe that way also. In fact, it's almost mandatory that we classify it as "far more than human".

So, for me, its about describing the universe the best way we can. Deny "god" at every turn is quite different than denying religion's ownership of reality to me.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 02:13 (98 days ago) @ GateKeeper

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?
I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them.

DAVID: I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

It’s a shame that you didn’t comment on the parallel statements at the top of this post, but yes, this is a good summary.

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

dhw: The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.


Gatekeeper: well, its kind of certain that religion has many traits wrong. I don't agree that "purpose" is to read its mind. that implies more than we know.

we are part of something larger and more complex than humans. that's just a fact. whatever we classify ourselves as we must classify large parts of the universe that way also. In fact, it's almost mandatory that we classify it as "far more than human".

So, for me, its about describing the universe the best way we can. Deny "god" at every turn is quite different than denying religion's ownership of reality to me.

We certainly part of something big. But I think by analyzing reality we can see purpose and method of design.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 10:34 (97 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID:


We certainly part of something big. But I think by analyzing reality we can see purpose and method of design.

to a degree you are correct. But we first have to classify the system we are in to agree on a general purpose. "alive" fits. We can calculate that notion and measure that notion, cruedly to be sure, but it's more valid than the counterclaim of "not alive". so the "purpose" is "to live" for me. "to know its mind" is just too far of a reach at this point.

What evolution shows is that the feedback systems on planet earth are "living". life forms are forming and going extinct to carry out the functions of just "being". Claiming anything past that past that is extrapolating just a little too far for me.

I would accept that "being" for a complex organism is to learn about its surrounding's. That claim includes 'to know it's mind". If the universe knows we are here, it would be happy for us to know it. Like we are happy our children understand us. But that doesn't mean "god", nor does it mean I have to run from that notion because of three letters, g, o, and d.

Again, I compare the interactions of lifeforms to proteins in a cell to support my beliefs in this matter. I think a grand purpose me be for a life form to make another earth, terraform, then ultimately to make another universe.

I am not certain of this conclusion, but its better than the militant sect of atheism's claims, deny everything to control religion, and it also seems more realistic than the big three's claims too. for me that is.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 15:39 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

DAVID:


We certainly part of something big. But I think by analyzing reality we can see purpose and method of design.


Gatekeeper: to a degree you are correct. But we first have to classify the system we are in to agree on a general purpose. "alive" fits. We can calculate that notion and measure that notion, cruedly to be sure, but it's more valid than the counterclaim of "not alive". so the "purpose" is "to live" for me. "to know its mind" is just too far of a reach at this point.

What evolution shows is that the feedback systems on planet earth are "living". life forms are forming and going extinct to carry out the functions of just "being". Claiming anything past that past that is extrapolating just a little too far for me.

I would accept that "being" for a complex organism is to learn about its surrounding's. That claim includes 'to know it's mind". If the universe knows we are here, it would be happy for us to know it. Like we are happy our children understand us. But that doesn't mean "god", nor does it mean I have to run from that notion because of three letters, g, o, and d.

Again, I compare the interactions of lifeforms to proteins in a cell to support my beliefs in this matter. I think a grand purpose me be for a life form to make another earth, terraform, then ultimately to make another universe.

I am not certain of this conclusion, but its better than the militant sect of atheism's claims, deny everything to control religion, and it also seems more realistic than the big three's claims too. for me that is.

I view your approach as descriptive, not explanatory, but perhaps you don't need a cause and an effect.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 21:29 (97 days ago) @ David Turell

you are correct. The traits (description) of this god thing are in question.

I feel claims that offer an explanation, a mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.

Talking about the start of the universe is pointless in settling "my god" and "my anti-god" debates. That conversation begins and ends with 'something started it or nothing started it." both have absolutely nothing supporting them. lol, "nothing" supporting them, too funny.

Nothing freaks me out more than "nothing" so lean toward 'something". Again, to your point, let's describe this 'something". We can only start by describing where we are in "space/time". I personally limit the discussion to 50 AU's.

How do we describe the system we are in to help us determine if spiritual people are more valid or less valid than those that make claims against them. I guess I am lucky, I have no stake in the answer. the universe is way cool the way it is, I don't care what some atheist or some theist try and push off as more 'real". Real is, what real is. statements of belief do not determine how the universe works for me.

the god-thing as some literalist teach is far less valid. Creating the earth in 7 days is embarrassing to me. If that god exists, I mean he wouldn't care, but it would have to be funny to him. I can see him saying "I wrote the rock record, its the only thing you have in my handwriting, and you ignored it!" but I digress.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 23:59 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GK: you are correct. The traits (description) of this god thing are in question.

I feel claims that offer an explanation, a mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.

Talking about the start of the universe is pointless in settling "my god" and "my anti-god" debates. That conversation begins and ends with 'something started it or nothing started it." both have absolutely nothing supporting them. lol, "nothing" supporting them, too funny.

Nothing freaks me out more than "nothing" so lean toward 'something". Again, to your point, let's describe this 'something". We can only start by describing where we are in "space/time". I personally limit the discussion to 50 AU's.

How do we describe the system we are in to help us determine if spiritual people are more valid or less valid than those that make claims against them. I guess I am lucky, I have no stake in the answer. the universe is way cool the way it is, I don't care what some atheist or some theist try and push off as more 'real". Real is, what real is. statements of belief do not determine how the universe works for me.

the god-thing as some literalist teach is far less valid. Creating the earth in 7 days is embarrassing to me. If that god exists, I mean he wouldn't care, but it would have to be funny to him. I can see him saying "I wrote the rock record, its the only thing you have in my handwriting, and you ignored it!" but I digress.

Seven days is only Biblical. Those of us here accept billions of years since the theoretical Big Bang. You are the perfect passive agnostic, happy not knowing and happy not to know. Fine with me. This website is perfect for you.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 11:00 (96 days ago) @ David Turell


Seven days is only Biblical. Those of us here accept billions of years since the theoretical Big Bang. You are the perfect passive agnostic, happy not knowing and happy not to know. Fine with me. This website is perfect for you.

Happy, sad, or any other emotion doesn't play into it. I am actually a little bummed about not knowing. I have accepted I die not knowing how the universe started and how life started.

What I do is check claims against what we do know. Claims that offer an explanation, mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't. That's it for me.

so, god claims, like biblical, ones don't hold up. Deny everything just isn't valid. I mean its ok to say peoples claims are not valid but I feel we should offer a counter claims if we are concerned about it to the point of visiting forums about this topic. Yeah, you guys do a great job. You guys seem to genuinely want to know how the universe works. other places are about pushing a statement of belief about god (yes or no)

I am happy with the notion that we are in the biosphere. The best descriptor I have seen for the biosphere is "life". I have a measurement and calculation that support that stance being the best I can do.

it offers an explanation for "spiritual people", they are feeling the life around them and it's much bigger than them. The mechanism is the stand model (homeostasis and many others). The biosphere as life predicts evolutionary changes. And the biggie, I can give my conclusion to people anywhere and they can record what they see. trained people understand it as valid.

I am in no way claiming "consciousness" yet. I see what people are saying. I can support that claim via the standard model, chemistry, physics, and biology, but for now, I just think we are surrounded by "alive" and some theist are misrepresenting and misunderstanding that and calling it this god thing.

I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Friday, September 14, 2018, 12:51 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper

Gatekeeper: I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?

They aren't afraid of theist, per se, but rather they are afraid of the answer to "what if the theist are right?" If theists are right, then we face accountability for our actions from a source with more authority than ourselves. If the theists are right, then there is some entity that not only has power, but authority. Authority to set and enforce rules, and subsequently reward or punish its subjects for keeping or breaking those rules. That is what they are afraid of.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 15:58 (96 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

Gatekeeper: I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?


Tony: They aren't afraid of theist, per se, but rather they are afraid of the answer to "what if the theist are right?" If theists are right, then we face accountability for our actions from a source with more authority than ourselves. If the theists are right, then there is some entity that not only has power, but authority. Authority to set and enforce rules, and subsequently reward or punish its subjects for keeping or breaking those rules. That is what they are afraid of.

This is where I have trouble with theistic views of morality. It smells of reward and punishment. Being good for the sake of being good without any outside judgement is more worthy than fear of judgement of how I've done. I know and follow what is required of me without any sense of coercion. In this way I'm still following Jewish thought in that there is no heaven or hell, just God's afterlife.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Friday, September 14, 2018, 16:58 (96 days ago) @ David Turell

Gatekeeper: I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?


Tony: They aren't afraid of theist, per se, but rather they are afraid of the answer to "what if the theist are right?" If theists are right, then we face accountability for our actions from a source with more authority than ourselves. If the theists are right, then there is some entity that not only has power, but authority. Authority to set and enforce rules, and subsequently reward or punish its subjects for keeping or breaking those rules. That is what they are afraid of.


David: This is where I have trouble with theistic views of morality. It smells of reward and punishment. Being good for the sake of being good without any outside judgement is more worthy than fear of judgement of how I've done. I know and follow what is required of me without any sense of coercion. In this way I'm still following Jewish thought in that there is no heaven or hell, just God's afterlife.

I don't believe in hell, nor do I believe in divine punishment, per se. Think of it in terms of immigration laws. If you immigrate into a country, you are required agree to follow the laws, and if you don't you can be deported. God's kingdom is a kingdom of life. You can freely choose to follow the rules or not. Failure to follow the rules (sin) results in deportation (death). As his domain is higher than any we control, being the creator of life, then he has the authority and the right to grant or revoke the privilege. Yet, typically, we are left to suffer the innate consequences of our actions. The rules provided are to protect us from ourselves and each other, not from him. He doesn't have to punish, natural cause and effect does that quite effectively on its own. This is what you would refer to as innate morality, or 'being good for the sake of being good without outside judgement'.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 20:20 (96 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

Gatekeeper: I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?


Tony: They aren't afraid of theist, per se, but rather they are afraid of the answer to "what if the theist are right?" If theists are right, then we face accountability for our actions from a source with more authority than ourselves. If the theists are right, then there is some entity that not only has power, but authority. Authority to set and enforce rules, and subsequently reward or punish its subjects for keeping or breaking those rules. That is what they are afraid of.


David: This is where I have trouble with theistic views of morality. It smells of reward and punishment. Being good for the sake of being good without any outside judgement is more worthy than fear of judgement of how I've done. I know and follow what is required of me without any sense of coercion. In this way I'm still following Jewish thought in that there is no heaven or hell, just God's afterlife.


Tony: I don't believe in hell, nor do I believe in divine punishment, per se. Think of it in terms of immigration laws. If you immigrate into a country, you are required agree to follow the laws, and if you don't you can be deported. God's kingdom is a kingdom of life. You can freely choose to follow the rules or not. Failure to follow the rules (sin) results in deportation (death). As his domain is higher than any we control, being the creator of life, then he has the authority and the right to grant or revoke the privilege. Yet, typically, we are left to suffer the innate consequences of our actions. The rules provided are to protect us from ourselves and each other, not from him. He doesn't have to punish, natural cause and effect does that quite effectively on its own. This is what you would refer to as innate morality, or 'being good for the sake of being good without outside judgement'.

Seems at times there is full agreement on this site.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 15:41 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper


David: Seven days is only Biblical. Those of us here accept billions of years since the theoretical Big Bang. You are the perfect passive agnostic, happy not knowing and happy not to know. Fine with me. This website is perfect for you.


GK: Happy, sad, or any other emotion doesn't play into it. I am actually a little bummed about not knowing. I have accepted I die not knowing how the universe started and how life started.

What I do is check claims against what we do know. Claims that offer an explanation, mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't. That's it for me.

so, god claims, like biblical, ones don't hold up. Deny everything just isn't valid. I mean its ok to say peoples claims are not valid but I feel we should offer a counter claims if we are concerned about it to the point of visiting forums about this topic. Yeah, you guys do a great job. You guys seem to genuinely want to know how the universe works. other places are about pushing a statement of belief about god (yes or no)

I am happy with the notion that we are in the biosphere. The best descriptor I have seen for the biosphere is "life". I have a measurement and calculation that support that stance being the best I can do.

it offers an explanation for "spiritual people", they are feeling the life around them and it's much bigger than them. The mechanism is the stand model (homeostasis and many others). The biosphere as life predicts evolutionary changes. And the biggie, I can give my conclusion to people anywhere and they can record what they see. trained people understand it as valid.

I am in no way claiming "consciousness" yet. I see what people are saying. I can support that claim via the standard model, chemistry, physics, and biology, but for now, I just think we are surrounded by "alive" and some theist are misrepresenting and misunderstanding that and calling it this god thing.

I actually am more appalled with people that deny such a notion because of a fear of religion. Why would people suppress such a simple notion because they are afraid of theist?

In this way we are similar. I don't accept any religion's interpretation of God's role in reality. I have my own.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Friday, September 14, 2018, 02:31 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper

Gatekeeper: you are correct. The traits (description) of this god thing are in question.

I feel claims that offer an explanation, a mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.

There comes a point beyond which you can not experiment, and never will be able to. This is the point of faith. No matter what you believe, when you reach that point you must answer the question in your own mind and heart. Science is our evidence in this spiritual court of law. It is the evidence that we have to work with. DHW thinks that you can not make a choice, and hence a good agnostic. However, not making a choice is also a choice. The choice is binary. Do you have faith (the assured expectation of things to come though not beheld) in materialisticality, or in spirituality. Note, this is religiously agnostic.

Talking about the start of the universe is pointless in settling "my god" and "my anti-god" debates. That conversation begins and ends with 'something started it or nothing started it." both have absolutely nothing supporting them. lol, "nothing" supporting them, too funny.

Actually, that isn't quite true, which is the problem. We had information. A quanta is not nothing; no matter how elegant the math, it is a quanta, and that is something, if only information of it's existence. Think about that. It only had information of its own existence. That it was not nothing, it was a quanta. Then there were quantum fluctuations, energy organizing, more and more rapidly, until suddenly, they reached a critical informational mass, suddenly making the transition from quanta into organized energy. When that singularity hit critical density, it transitioned from energy to matter, emanating outward. All of the rules of our system follow similar principles. Sub-atomic particles attach to each other, forming stable bonds and becoming atomic. Atoms for strong bonds and become molecules. And so on and so forth throughout the entirety of creation. A steady progression of periods of stability through strong and weak bonds, and creative chaos through the breaking of these bonds, like the shifting of synapses.

Nothing freaks me out more than "nothing" so lean toward 'something". Again, to your point, let's describe this 'something". We can only start by describing where we are in "space/time". I personally limit the discussion to 50 AU's.

Space, time, mass, energy, and information.


How do we describe the system we are in to help us determine if spiritual people are more valid or less valid than those that make claims against them. I guess I am lucky, I have no stake in the answer. the universe is way cool the way it is, I don't care what some atheist or some theist try and push off as more 'real". Real is, what real is. statements of belief do not determine how the universe works for me.

No, but belief informs action. Sometimes it frees you to take action, sometimes it prohibits actions, and sometimes it simply alters which action you take. Belief also changes your perspective. This is not to assign any particular morality to any particular ideological sect, but merely to say that what you believe to be true influences your behaviors.


the god-thing as some literalist teach is far less valid. Creating the earth in 7 days is embarrassing to me. If that god exists, I mean he wouldn't care, but it would have to be funny to him. I can see him saying "I wrote the rock record, its the only thing you have in my handwriting, and you ignored it!" but I digress.

The 'seven day' this is not even something bible scholars would agree with, since the hebrew word literally means 'period of time'. A better english translation might be 'epoch'. But then, the hebrew language didn't handle abstract words well.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 11:37 (95 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

TONY: There comes a point beyond which you can not experiment, and never will be able to. This is the point of faith. No matter what you believe, when you reach that point you must answer the question in your own mind and heart. Science is our evidence in this spiritual court of law. It is the evidence that we have to work with. DHW thinks that you can not make a choice, and hence a good agnostic. However, not making a choice is also a choice. The choice is binary. Do you have faith (the assured expectation of things to come though not beheld) in materialisticality, or in spirituality. Note, this is religiously agnostic.

The point beyond which we cannot experiment is the point at which all our discussions begin. First of all, just to clarify, DHW does not think YOU cannot make a choice. DHW himself cannot make a choice! I have no objection at all to anyone making a choice, provided their choice does not harm other people. “You must answer the question…” raises two points for me: 1) What is the question? 2) Nobody “must” answer any question, let alone one that is unanswerable! You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. If find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason). Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.

DAVID (to GK): Your view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time….

If ever. A round of applause from me. I always find it extraordinary that so many people think that because agnostics admit to not knowing the answers, they don’t ask the questions!

GK: […]I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events. the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

I’m not sure what you mean by the universe having “surroundings”, or by the observation about the universe being life itself. For me the question is whether the universe and its materials self-organized, which included life itself, or there is some form of intelligence that did the organizing.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Saturday, September 15, 2018, 13:32 (95 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: There comes a point beyond which you can not experiment, and never will be able to. This is the point of faith. No matter what you believe, when you reach that point you must answer the question in your own mind and heart. Science is our evidence in this spiritual court of law. It is the evidence that we have to work with. DHW thinks that you can not make a choice, and hence a good agnostic. However, not making a choice is also a choice. The choice is binary. Do you have faith (the assured expectation of things to come though not beheld) in materialisticality, or in spirituality. Note, this is religiously agnostic.

DHW: The point beyond which we cannot experiment is the point at which all our discussions begin. First of all, just to clarify, DHW does not think YOU cannot make a choice. DHW himself cannot make a choice! I have no objection at all to anyone making a choice, provided their choice does not harm other people. “You must answer the question…” raises two points for me: 1) What is the question? 2) Nobody “must” answer any question, let alone one that is unanswerable!

Choosing not to make a choice is a choice. It's a choice not to have faith in anything.

DHW You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. If find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason).

The fact that it can not explain so much, and never will be able to, is precisely why it is (admittedly in an unintuitive fashion) the best evidence.

DHW Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.

If you will note, the point I was referring to is the point of faith. Faith is "he assured expectation of things though not beheld". In short, it is believing without seeing. Choosing not to believe is choosing not to have faith, even if you follow it with the statement that you are not choosing to disbelieve. That is why I said it is a false third option.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 19:15 (95 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: The point beyond which we cannot experiment is the point at which all our discussions begin. First of all, just to clarify, DHW does not think YOU cannot make a choice. DHW himself cannot make a choice! I have no objection at all to anyone making a choice, provided their choice does not harm other people. “You must answer the question…” raises two points for me: 1) What is the question? 2) Nobody “must” answer any question, let alone one that is unanswerable!

Tony:Choosing not to make a choice is a choice. It's a choice not to have faith in anything.

DHW You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. If find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason).


Tony: The fact that it can not explain so much, and never will be able to, is precisely why it is (admittedly in an unintuitive fashion) the best evidence.

DHW Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.


Tony: If you will note, the point I was referring to is the point of faith. Faith is "he assured expectation of things though not beheld". In short, it is believing without seeing. Choosing not to believe is choosing not to have faith, even if you follow it with the statement that you are not choosing to disbelieve. That is why I said it is a false third option.

I'm with dhw. Choosing to be neutral is a valid option. It means abandoning the thought of first cause as a valid consideration.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Sunday, September 16, 2018, 09:15 (94 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: The point beyond which we cannot experiment is the point at which all our discussions begin. First of all, just to clarify, DHW does not think YOU cannot make a choice. DHW himself cannot make a choice! I have no objection at all to anyone making a choice, provided their choice does not harm other people. “You must answer the question…” raises two points for me: 1) What is the question? 2) Nobody “must” answer any question, let alone one that is unanswerable!

TONY: Choosing not to make a choice is a choice. It's a choice not to have faith in anything.

Why in “anything”? We are talking about the specific subject of your God’s existence, but yes, I choose not to have faith in a designer or in chance because I find each of them equally difficult to swallow. But you are right: choosing not to make a choice is a choice. I don’t think this will get us very far.

DHW: You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. I find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason).

TONY: The fact that it can not explain so much, and never will be able to, is precisely why it is (admittedly in an unintuitive fashion) the best evidence.

The best evidence for what? For the existence of an unknown, sourceless spirit that spawns other unknown spirits before spawning material cells?

DHW: Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.

TONY: If you will note, the point I was referring to is the point of faith. Faith is "he assured expectation of things though not beheld". In short, it is believing without seeing. Choosing not to believe is choosing not to have faith, even if you follow it with the statement that you are not choosing to disbelieve. That is why I said it is a false third option.

I have challenged your statement that science is the best evidence, and your answer is that faith is believing without seeing – the exact opposite of science. So for you clearly science is not the best evidence. And I have no idea why neither believing nor disbelieving is a false option.

DAVID: I'm with dhw. Choosing to be neutral is a valid option. It means abandoning the thought of first cause as a valid consideration.

Thank you for your first statement. No thanks for your second statement. My neutrality concerns the nature of the first cause: either it is your magical God or it is an impersonal universe that magically produced life. I find it impossible to choose between the two forms of magic.

GK: […]I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events. the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

dhw: I’m not sure what you mean by the universe having “surroundings”, or by the observation about the universe being life itself. For me the question is whether the universe and its materials self-organized, which included life itself, or there is some form of intelligence that did the organizing.

DAVID: Logically I strongly doubt inanimate material can self-organize into living matter. It is a matter of complexity. Life is so much more complex in organization than inanimate matter.

I should have been more specific with my “some form of intelligence”, because self-organizing does not preclude intelligence (I’m thinking of the atheistic form of panpsychism). I meant the single mind you call God.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 16, 2018, 15:10 (94 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: If you will note, the point I was referring to is the point of faith. Faith is "he assured expectation of things though not beheld". In short, it is believing without seeing. Choosing not to believe is choosing not to have faith, even if you follow it with the statement that you are not choosing to disbelieve. That is why I said it is a false third option.

dhw: I have challenged your statement that science is the best evidence, and your answer is that faith is believing without seeing – the exact opposite of science. So for you clearly science is not the best evidence. And I have no idea why neither believing nor disbelieving is a false option.

DAVID: I'm with dhw. Choosing to be neutral is a valid option. It means abandoning the thought of first cause as a valid consideration.

dhw: Thank you for your first statement. No thanks for your second statement. My neutrality concerns the nature of the first cause: either it is your magical God or it is an impersonal universe that magically produced life. I find it impossible to choose between the two forms of magic.

But there is no third option , and God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?


GK: […]I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events. the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

dhw: I’m not sure what you mean by the universe having “surroundings”, or by the observation about the universe being life itself. For me the question is whether the universe and its materials self-organized, which included life itself, or there is some form of intelligence that did the organizing.

DAVID: Logically I strongly doubt inanimate material can self-organize into living matter. It is a matter of complexity. Life is so much more complex in organization than inanimate matter.

dhw: I should have been more specific with my “some form of intelligence”, because self-organizing does not preclude intelligence (I’m thinking of the atheistic form of panpsychism). I meant the single mind you call God.

Now you have substituted the magical appearance of intelligence in any matter. The appearance of intelligence requires the origination of information which is not descriptive but organizational. Now you have three magics from which to choose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Monday, September 17, 2018, 11:33 (93 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: I'm with dhw. Choosing to be neutral is a valid option. It means abandoning the thought of first cause as a valid consideration.

dhw: Thank you for your first statement. No thanks for your second statement. My neutrality concerns the nature of the first cause: either it is your magical God or it is an impersonal universe that magically produced life. I find it impossible to choose between the two forms of magic.

DAVID: But there is no third option, and God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?

The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe). Neither was “made”. You understandably claim that our life and consciousness and all our powers are too complex to have arisen without a designer. And yet you claim that it is logical for life and consciousness, in the form of a living, conscious God (who remains hidden) with powers infinitely greater than our own, to exist without having been designed. Wonderland logic.

DAVID: Logically I strongly doubt inanimate material can self-organize into living matter. It is a matter of complexity. Life is so much more complex in organization than inanimate matter.

dhw: I should have been more specific with my “some form of intelligence”, because self-organizing does not preclude intelligence (I’m thinking of the atheistic form of panpsychism). I meant the single mind you call God.

DAVID: Now you have substituted the magical appearance of intelligence in any matter. The appearance of intelligence requires the origination of information which is not descriptive but organizational. Now you have three magics from which to choose.

Substituted for what? The choice is between your magically intelligent God and magically intelligent matter, either innately intelligent – panpsychism – or having originated by chance, though in both cases evolving. “Logically I strongly doubt” any form of magic, which is why I am an agnostic, but as I keep admitting, I am wrong one way or the other.

Xxxxxxx

TONY: The fact that [science] can not explain so much, and never will be able to, is precisely why it is (admittedly in an unintuitive fashion) the best evidence.

DHW: The best evidence for what? For the existence of an unknown, sourceless spirit that spawns other unknown spirits before spawning material cells?

TONY: It has been stated by all of us at some point or another, that the choice is between chance and design, not between chance and a particular designer.

I have not specified a “particular” designer. You have, in detail under “philosophy of science”, and in any case – as theists constantly point out – one can hardly have design without a designer.

DHW: I have challenged your statement that science is the best evidence, and your answer is that faith is believing without seeing – the exact opposite of science. So for you clearly science is not the best evidence. And I have no idea why neither believing nor disbelieving is a false option.

TONY: Faith is not the opposite of science. Science is what provides the "assured expectation of things though not beheld." The evidence of the world we CAN see assures us that there is something that we can not see both by its very limitations and the wondrous complexity which it can not explain.

Science is restricted to the material, observable world, and freely acknowledges that there are loads of things it cannot see or explain, such as the origin of life and of consciousness. So what is it the “best evidence” for? Your personal solution of the mysteries: faith in an unknown sourceless God whose first creation was Jesus Christ and whose purpose is his own growth and development? See "philosophy of science" on the same subject.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Monday, September 17, 2018, 12:54 (93 days ago) @ dhw

DHW: Science is restricted to the material, observable world, and freely acknowledges that there are loads of things it cannot see or explain, such as the origin of life and of consciousness. So what is it the “best evidence” for? Your personal solution of the mysteries: faith in an unknown sourceless God whose first creation was Jesus Christ and whose purpose is his own growth and development? See "philosophy of science" on the same subject.

Does it? I mean, science has pretty much tried to claim that it can explain everything as either some sort of chemical soup or fluctuating quanta.

The best evidence for me is when you have two unrelated quantities, regardless of type, that must interact in specified ways in an exact manner in order for their functions to be achieved. Flower's UV signalling and bees' vision, or a plant's inbreeding prevention mechanism, the human eye that has multiple processing modes to account for day and night vision, the interaction of four fundamental forces to make up the entirety of material reality(which has a spooky correlation with the 'four living creatures' referred to biblically, now that I think about it.)

By the way, your theory of panpsychism is not too terribly off base as for how I imagine God came into existence: slowly self-organizing energy. I just don't extend it to other structures because I think the time scales for that to happen would be prohibitive, and because it is far easier to imagine it happening once than it is to imagine it happening billions of times with harmonious results.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, September 17, 2018, 15:25 (93 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: Science is restricted to the material, observable world, and freely acknowledges that there are loads of things it cannot see or explain, such as the origin of life and of consciousness. So what is it the “best evidence” for? Your personal solution of the mysteries: faith in an unknown sourceless God whose first creation was Jesus Christ and whose purpose is his own growth and development? See "philosophy of science" on the same subject.


Tony: Does it? I mean, science has pretty much tried to claim that it can explain everything as either some sort of chemical soup or fluctuating quanta.

The best evidence for me is when you have two unrelated quantities, regardless of type, that must interact in specified ways in an exact manner in order for their functions to be achieved. Flower's UV signalling and bees' vision, or a plant's inbreeding prevention mechanism, the human eye that has multiple processing modes to account for day and night vision, the interaction of four fundamental forces to make up the entirety of material reality(which has a spooky correlation with the 'four living creatures' referred to biblically, now that I think about it.)

By the way, your theory of panpsychism is not too terribly off base as for how I imagine God came into existence: slowly self-organizing energy. I just don't extend it to other structures because I think the time scales for that to happen would be prohibitive, and because it is far easier to imagine it happening once than it is to imagine it happening billions of times with harmonious results.

I still view God as eternal and I think He has produced many universes over eternity and we folks just happen to be in this one.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Tuesday, September 18, 2018, 13:50 (92 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DHW: Science is restricted to the material, observable world, and freely acknowledges that there are loads of things it cannot see or explain, such as the origin of life and of consciousness. So what is it the “best evidence” for? Your personal solution of the mysteries: faith in an unknown sourceless God whose first creation was Jesus Christ and whose purpose is his own growth and development? See "philosophy of science" on the same subject.

TONY: Does it? I mean, science has pretty much tried to claim that it can explain everything as either some sort of chemical soup or fluctuating quanta.

My fault for bad wording. Science doesn’t claim anything. It is individual scientists who embrace materialism, but many individual scientists freely acknowledge their ignorance, as above. Meanwhile, getting back to the question of what science is the best evidence for:

TONY: The best evidence for me is when you have two unrelated quantities, regardless of type, that must interact in specified ways in an exact manner in order for their functions to be achieved. Flower's UV signalling and bees' vision, or a plant's inbreeding prevention mechanism...etc.

Yes, the fact that organisms interact and survive through precisely achieved functions suggests design. Does this mean that science is the best evidence for a sourceless conscious mind with the power to create (or instruct Jesus to create spirit workers to create) the material universe and material life?

TONY: By the way, your theory of panpsychism is not too terribly off base as for how I imagine God came into existence: slowly self-organizing energy.

This is very much the theistic panpsychist theory, along the lines of Whitehead’s process theology, in which God is a “process of becoming”. If I believed in God, I would regard this as far more convincing than David’s God, who seems to know and plan everything in advance. However, slowly self-organizing energy could also describe the slow dawn of consciousness within impersonal matter.

TONY: I just don't extend it to other structures because I think the time scales for that to happen would be prohibitive, and because it is far easier to imagine it happening once
than it is to imagine it happening billions of times with harmonious results.

We have no precedent by which to judge time scales, especially if the original mechanism for life, reproduction and evolutionary change is intelligent. Once you have that mechanism, self-organization will happen billions of times.

DAVID: God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?

dhw: The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe). Neither was “made”. You understandably claim that our life and consciousness and all our powers are too complex to have arisen without a designer. And yet you claim that it is logical for life and consciousness, in the form of a living, conscious God (who remains hidden) with powers infinitely greater than our own, to exist without having been designed. Wonderland logic.

DAVID: Of course the logic here is 'wonderland'. Logic requires God is eternal

Or logic requires that an impersonal universe is eternal.

DAVID: I still view God as eternal and I think He has produced many universes over eternity and we folks just happen to be in this one.

Or there have been many impersonal universes over eternity etc.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Tuesday, September 18, 2018, 15:38 (92 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?

dhw: The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe). Neither was “made”. You understandably claim that our life and consciousness and all our powers are too complex to have arisen without a designer. And yet you claim that it is logical for life and consciousness, in the form of a living, conscious God (who remains hidden) with powers infinitely greater than our own, to exist without having been designed. Wonderland logic.

DAVID: Of course the logic here is 'wonderland'. Logic requires God is eternal

dhw: Or logic requires that an impersonal universe is eternal.

DAVID: I still view God as eternal and I think He has produced many universes over eternity and we folks just happen to be in this one.

dhw: Or there have been many impersonal universes over eternity etc.

We only have evidence of a possible origin of this universe, and no evidence of multiple universes or previous ones. But your logical suppositions are correct, except for removing a first cause..

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Wednesday, September 19, 2018, 10:18 (91 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?

dhw: The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe). Neither was “made”. You understandably claim that our life and consciousness and all our powers are too complex to have arisen without a designer. And yet you claim that it is logical for life and consciousness, in the form of a living, conscious God (who remains hidden) with powers infinitely greater than our own, to exist without having been designed. Wonderland logic.

DAVID: Of course the logic here is 'wonderland'. Logic requires God is eternal
dhw: Or logic requires that an impersonal universe is eternal.

DAVID: I still view God as eternal and I think He has produced many universes over eternity and we folks just happen to be in this one.

dhw: Or there have been many impersonal universes over eternity etc.

DAVID: We only have evidence of a possible origin of this universe, and no evidence of multiple universes or previous ones. But your logical suppositions are correct, except for removing a first cause.

Once again, I have NOT removed a first cause. You quote what I write, and then ignore it! As above, now in bold, “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Wednesday, September 19, 2018, 15:04 (91 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: Of course the logic here is 'wonderland'. Logic requires God is eternal
dhw: Or logic requires that an impersonal universe is eternal.

DAVID: I still view God as eternal and I think He has produced many universes over eternity and we folks just happen to be in this one.

dhw: Or there have been many impersonal universes over eternity etc.

DAVID: We only have evidence of a possible origin of this universe, and no evidence of multiple universes or previous ones. But your logical suppositions are correct, except for removing a first cause.

dhw: Once again, I have NOT removed a first cause. You quote what I write, and then ignore it! As above, now in bold, “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Thursday, September 20, 2018, 12:17 (90 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 20, 2018, 18:03 (90 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.

Agreed, and you can't pick one.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 22, 2018, 10:57 (88 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.


yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 22, 2018, 16:19 (88 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)

Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 22, 2018, 21:18 (88 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?

for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?

its that simple. The "there is nothing more complex, no higher anything"-ers have the same legs as the fundy theists at this point, to me that is.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Saturday, September 22, 2018, 22:57 (88 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?

In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 22, 2018, 23:27 (88 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?

yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 23, 2018, 00:47 (88 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


David: Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


Tony: In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?


GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?

You really haven't answered my premise: a first cause is by definition the start of everything. Can you get something from nothing? I know the first cause is an unknown, but in your way of thinking must there be a first cause?

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Sunday, September 23, 2018, 12:05 (87 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


David: Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


Tony: In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?


GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?


You really haven't answered my premise: a first cause is by definition the start of everything. Can you get something from nothing? I know the first cause is an unknown, but in your way of thinking must there be a first cause?

I don't know enough to say there must be a first cause. The universe either started from 'something" or it started from 'nothing". If it started from something I have no idea what that something is. A lab technician making the universe isn't what I would use as my final conclusion, yet.

I think I told you, if I had to pick a start, I would go with the notion of "born". It just fits the observations the best for me. so my first cause would be "birth of the universe" from "life" before it. It's not much, but its all I gotz.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 23, 2018, 15:18 (87 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.


Tony: Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?


David: You really haven't answered my premise: a first cause is by definition the start of everything. Can you get something from nothing? I know the first cause is an unknown, but in your way of thinking must there be a first cause?


GK: I don't know enough to say there must be a first cause. The universe either started from 'something" or it started from 'nothing". If it started from something I have no idea what that something is. A lab technician making the universe isn't what I would use as my final conclusion, yet.

I think I told you, if I had to pick a start, I would go with the notion of "born". It just fits the observations the best for me. so my first cause would be "birth of the universe" from "life" before it. It's not much, but its all I gotz.

How does a universe start from nothing, which is one of your two choices? It seem to me you accept the 'now' but don't care to ponder about beginnings or why there was a start. Fair enough.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Sunday, September 23, 2018, 04:52 (87 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?


GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?

I am going to assume, for a moment, that you are using the default dictionary definition of biosphere. Unfortunately, I still have to answer your question with a question. The definition of biosphere excludes living organisms, being the region in which organisms live. So, I must ask if you are including or excluding other organic life when you use the term biosphere.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Sunday, September 23, 2018, 12:37 (87 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?


GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?


I am going to assume, for a moment, that you are using the default dictionary definition of biosphere. Unfortunately, I still have to answer your question with a question. The definition of biosphere excludes living organisms, being the region in which organisms live. So, I must ask if you are including or excluding other organic life when you use the term biosphere.

Standard definition. Humans are part of the biosphere.

"including inorganic parts" gets tricky. I need water, oxygen, and photons. They are inorganic. that just upped the complexity another step.

But I guess, for now, we can isolate the system, for ease of communication and understanding, to just the biosphere.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Sunday, September 23, 2018, 13:31 (87 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: “The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe).” You think your God “has produced many universes over eternity”, but if I suggest there may have been many universes over eternity, you say we have no evidence. True. And the evidence we have is of a “possible” origin of this universe, but even if the big bang theory is true, we have no idea what preceded the big bang. You say a conscious first cause. Maybe. And maybe an unconscious first cause.

DAVID: The complexity implies there must have been a conscious planning designer. Unconscious cannot design.

dhw: First cause unconsciousness somehow evolving consciousness is just as logical or illogical or believable or unbelievable as first cause consciousness somehow just being there, but they are both first causes.


Agreed, and you can't pick one.

GK: yup. People that force us to pick one or the other are the problem. The answer is clearly, a definitely, maybe, either or both. ;-)


David; Let's start with the premise that there is/was a 'first cause', not its type. Will you accept that much?


GK: for me, the first cause is an unknown. any conclusion on 'first cause", being "something" or "nothing" is a line of logic based on "nobody knows". It's a flawed conclusion and does nothing for the best descriptors he can have on how the universe works.

we are here now and we can safely assume we came from the universe. The best if/then statement I can come up with is "if we classify humans as alive and the universe is more complex, then how do we classify it?" non-life? really?


In what way do you suggest that the Universe is more complex than life? (Seriously, no sarcasm, I am just trying to wrap my head around what you actually believe, and sometimes language gets in the way.) At scale, how is it any more complex than solar-system sized Atoms?


GK: yeah, sorry 'bout the writing. I write as if I am talking I guess.

Lets start off with the basics. How can humans be more complex than the biosphere?


I am going to assume, for a moment, that you are using the default dictionary definition of biosphere. Unfortunately, I still have to answer your question with a question. The definition of biosphere excludes living organisms, being the region in which organisms live. So, I must ask if you are including or excluding other organic life when you use the term biosphere.


GK Standard definition. Humans are part of the biosphere.

"including inorganic parts" gets tricky. I need water, oxygen, and photons. They are inorganic. that just upped the complexity another step.

But I guess, for now, we can isolate the system, for ease of communication and understanding, to just the biosphere.

Ok. Well, water, o2, and photons are all non-organic, so of course they are included. So, the follow up question is how do you get from inorganic(relatively simple) to simplest organic(Highly complex), without adding more information? And if you do add more information, where does it originate?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, September 17, 2018, 15:06 (93 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: I'm with dhw. Choosing to be neutral is a valid option. It means abandoning the thought of first cause as a valid consideration.

dhw: Thank you for your first statement. No thanks for your second statement. My neutrality concerns the nature of the first cause: either it is your magical God or it is an impersonal universe that magically produced life. I find it impossible to choose between the two forms of magic.

DAVID: But there is no third option, and God is a much more logical option than the alchemy of inorganic sources from an 'impersonal universe'. As for your dislike of my second statement what made the impersonal universe but a first cause?

dhw: The choice is between a conscious first cause (your God) and a non-conscious first cause (an impersonal universe). Neither was “made”. You understandably claim that our life and consciousness and all our powers are too complex to have arisen without a designer. And yet you claim that it is logical for life and consciousness, in the form of a living, conscious God (who remains hidden) with powers infinitely greater than our own, to exist without having been designed. Wonderland logic.

Of course the logic here is 'wonderland'. Logic requires God is eternal


DAVID: Logically I strongly doubt inanimate material can self-organize into living matter. It is a matter of complexity. Life is so much more complex in organization than inanimate matter.

dhw: I should have been more specific with my “some form of intelligence”, because self-organizing does not preclude intelligence (I’m thinking of the atheistic form of panpsychism). I meant the single mind you call God.

DAVID: Now you have substituted the magical appearance of intelligence in any matter. The appearance of intelligence requires the origination of information which is not descriptive but organizational. Now you have three magics from which to choose.

dhw: Substituted for what? The choice is between your magically intelligent God and magically intelligent matter, either innately intelligent – panpsychism – or having originated by chance, though in both cases evolving. “Logically I strongly doubt” any form of magic, which is why I am an agnostic, but as I keep admitting, I am wrong one way or the other.

Granted, and logical.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Sunday, September 16, 2018, 16:22 (94 days ago) @ dhw

DHW: You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. I find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason).

TONY: The fact that it can not explain so much, and never will be able to, is precisely why it is (admittedly in an unintuitive fashion) the best evidence.

DHW: The best evidence for what? For the existence of an unknown, sourceless spirit that spawns other unknown spirits before spawning material cells?

It has been stated by all of us at some point or another, that the choice is between chance and design, not between chance and a particular designer.

DHW: Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.

TONY: If you will note, the point I was referring to is the point of faith. Faith is "he assured expectation of things though not beheld". In short, it is believing without seeing. Choosing not to believe is choosing not to have faith, even if you follow it with the statement that you are not choosing to disbelieve. That is why I said it is a false third option.

DHW: I have challenged your statement that science is the best evidence, and your answer is that faith is believing without seeing – the exact opposite of science. So for you clearly science is not the best evidence. And I have no idea why neither believing nor disbelieving is a false option.

Faith is not the opposite of science. Science is what provides the "assured expectation of things though not beheld." The evidence of the world we CAN see assures us that there is something that we can not see both by its very limitations and the wondrous complexity which it can not explain.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 16:12 (95 days ago) @ dhw

TONY: There comes a point beyond which you can not experiment, and never will be able to. This is the point of faith. No matter what you believe, when you reach that point you must answer the question in your own mind and heart. Science is our evidence in this spiritual court of law. It is the evidence that we have to work with. DHW thinks that you can not make a choice, and hence a good agnostic. However, not making a choice is also a choice. The choice is binary. Do you have faith (the assured expectation of things to come though not beheld) in materialisticality, or in spirituality. Note, this is religiously agnostic.

dhw: The point beyond which we cannot experiment is the point at which all our discussions begin. First of all, just to clarify, DHW does not think YOU cannot make a choice. DHW himself cannot make a choice! I have no objection at all to anyone making a choice, provided their choice does not harm other people. “You must answer the question…” raises two points for me: 1) What is the question? 2) Nobody “must” answer any question, let alone one that is unanswerable! You say the choice is between materialisticality and spirituality. If find this misleading, as is the surprising claim that science is our evidence. Science is only equipped to deal with the material world, and it is therefore highly debatable whether it can explain some of the things which are most precious to us as human beings and which are in some way connected to the unexplained phenomenon of consciousness (I include emotions, aesthetics, imagination, reason). Nor can science explain certain psychic phenomena, such as those in which the person concerned acquires information which he/she could not possibly have known at the time. I myself have no idea whether materials are able to CREATE these forms of spirituality, or they are part of a different reality which does not depend on materials, or materials themselves have some form of innate mental aspect (panpsychism) which has gradually evolved, or there is one superspirit that created the whole shebang out of its own energy. Only the last of these is “religious”. The only way I shall ever know is if these “spiritual” elements of myself survive the death of the body.

DAVID (to GK): Your view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time….

dhw: If ever. A round of applause from me. I always find it extraordinary that so many people think that because agnostics admit to not knowing the answers, they don’t ask the questions!

GK: […]I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events. the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

dhw: I’m not sure what you mean by the universe having “surroundings”, or by the observation about the universe being life itself. For me the question is whether the universe and its materials self-organized, which included life itself, or there is some form of intelligence that did the organizing.

Logically I strongly doubt inanimate material can self-organize into living matter. It is a matter of complexity. Life is so much more complex in organization than inanimate matter.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Friday, September 14, 2018, 09:55 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GATEKEEPER: How do we describe the system we are in to help us determine if spiritual people are more valid or less valid than those that make claims against them. I guess I am lucky, I have no stake in the answer. the universe is way cool the way it is, I don't care what some atheist or some theist try and push off as more 'real". Real is, what real is. statements of belief do not determine how the universe works for me.

DAVID: You are the perfect passive agnostic, happy not knowing and happy not to know. Fine with me. This website is perfect for you.

Why do you use the word “passive”? We agnostics are surrounded by theists and atheists who try to impose their views on us. You are happy enough to see us actively use reason to explain our rejection of atheism, but suddenly we become “passive” if we point out the illogicalities in your own beliefs! The very fact that we write about these matters is active, and I suspect that even you would much prefer to hear our more balanced views than to be subjected to those of the extremists on either side whose irrationality can be so damaging.

TONY (in reply to the above by GK): No, but belief informs action. Sometimes it frees you to take action, sometimes it prohibits actions, and sometimes it simply alters which action you take. Belief also changes your perspective. This is not to assign any particular morality to any particular ideological sect, but merely to say that what you believe to be true influences your behaviors.

I don’t think any of us would disagree that belief influences behaviour – sometimes positively, sometimes negatively. But GK’s point is that beliefs are not pointers to validity, to truth, to what is real and not real. And of course I agree.

GATEKEEPER (GK): yes. we don't know how the universe started. Something or nothing are our choices. Its assumed, by most people that understand, everything is natural. 'supernatural, by definition, only means something natural that we don't know about yet. (David's bold)

DAVID: No dictionary I can find uses your definition of 'supernatural'.

An interesting point. If we stick to semantics, David is right, but GK is going beyond semantics. Once people thought that thunder was caused by demons, but eventually the “supernatural” was explained as something natural that they didn’t know about. If we were to find natural explanations for the origin of life and consciousness, the same would apply, but if we were to find that a God exists and nature is controlled by his mind, then we would have to redefine our concept of nature. After all, he would be the one to define what is and isn’t “natural”!

DAVID: There must be some cause to explain why there is any thing or us existing.

True, but nobody knows it, and it’s not unreasonable to assume that nobody CAN know it. That doesn’t stop us speculating, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with someone saying he’s perfectly happy to remain in ignorance!

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 15:22 (96 days ago) @ dhw

GATEKEEPER: How do we describe the system we are in to help us determine if spiritual people are more valid or less valid than those that make claims against them. I guess I am lucky, I have no stake in the answer. the universe is way cool the way it is, I don't care what some atheist or some theist try and push off as more 'real". Real is, what real is. statements of belief do not determine how the universe works for me.

DAVID: You are the perfect passive agnostic, happy not knowing and happy not to know. Fine with me. This website is perfect for you.

dhw: Why do you use the word “passive”? We agnostics are surrounded by theists and atheists who try to impose their views on us. You are happy enough to see us actively use reason to explain our rejection of atheism, but suddenly we become “passive” if we point out the illogicalities in your own beliefs! The very fact that we write about these matters is active, and I suspect that even you would much prefer to hear our more balanced views than to be subjected to those of the extremists on either side whose irrationality can be so damaging.

Agnostics obviously differ in their approaches. You speculate and started this website. GK is content in his non-beliefs.

TONY (in reply to the above by GK): No, but belief informs action. Sometimes it frees you to take action, sometimes it prohibits actions, and sometimes it simply alters which action you take. Belief also changes your perspective. This is not to assign any particular morality to any particular ideological sect, but merely to say that what you believe to be true influences your behaviors.

I don’t think any of us would disagree that belief influences behaviour – sometimes positively, sometimes negatively. But GK’s point is that beliefs are not pointers to validity, to truth, to what is real and not real. And of course I agree.

GATEKEEPER (GK): yes. we don't know how the universe started. Something or nothing are our choices. Its assumed, by most people that understand, everything is natural. 'supernatural, by definition, only means something natural that we don't know about yet. (David's bold)

DAVID: No dictionary I can find uses your definition of 'supernatural'.

dhw: An interesting point. If we stick to semantics, David is right, but GK is going beyond semantics. Once people thought that thunder was caused by demons, but eventually the “supernatural” was explained as something natural that they didn’t know about. If we were to find natural explanations for the origin of life and consciousness, the same would apply, but if we were to find that a God exists and nature is controlled by his mind, then we would have to redefine our concept of nature. After all, he would be the one to define what is and isn’t “natural”!

DAVID: There must be some cause to explain why there is any thing or us existing.

dhw: True, but nobody knows it, and it’s not unreasonable to assume that nobody CAN know it. That doesn’t stop us speculating, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with someone saying he’s perfectly happy to remain in ignorance!

You are aware of the difference I noted.

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Thursday, September 13, 2018, 05:15 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

Dhw: The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?
I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them.

DAVID: I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

It’s a shame that you didn’t comment on the parallel statements at the top of this post, but yes, this is a good summary.

TONY: Just a thought, but what seems to be missing in this thought process is 'purpose'. Evolution requires no purpose, and offers no meaning. I think something deep in humanity rejects this purposeless idea of existence. Yet we do not extend the idea of purpose beyond our own existence to say, what is the purpose of everything, not just our purpose. We can recognize the need for a designer to account for the complexity, but forget that designers do not design without purpose.

DAVID: I've constantly brought up the issue of purpose and the need for a designer.

The case for design (but not necessarily by an individual designer called God) is not an issue between us. The issue of purpose has been discussed many times, but perhaps we haven’t discussed it with Tony. Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. But I think your interest lies in a macropurpose for life and the universe. Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path. I should add how delighted I am to be alive and to have the opportunity to enjoy the good, though it saddens me to observe the bad.

Gatekeeper: If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind – which David objects to, unless we agree to his own reading of the mind of God, whose purpose in creating the universe was apparently to create the brain of Homo sapiens so that we can have a relationship with him although he remains hidden. (David will correct me if this summary is wrong.) In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.


well, its kind of certain that religion has many traits wrong. I don't agree that "purpose" is to read its mind. that implies more than we know.

we are part of something larger and more complex than humans. that's just a fact. whatever we classify ourselves as we must classify large parts of the universe that way also. In fact, it's almost mandatory that we classify it as "far more than human".

So, for me, its about describing the universe the best way we can. Deny "god" at every turn is quite different than denying religion's ownership of reality to me.


By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 10:41 (97 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DAVID:

By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.

that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

what do we do now?

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Thursday, September 13, 2018, 13:03 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

DAVID:

By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

Gatekeeper: what do we do now?

We know that things are too complex, too organized, to have come about without design.

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 15:51 (97 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained


Tony: By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

Gatekeeper: what do we do now?


Tony: We know that things are too complex, too organized, to have come about without design.

Exactly

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 01:12 (96 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DAVID:

By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

Gatekeeper: what do we do now?


We know that things are too complex, too organized, to have come about without design.

we would have to investigate what you mean by design. "have to come about." Na, not for me. I don't agree with "has to". lets see what we do know through some questions.

Do we design the blood cells in us? Did our mother design us before birth? Did the biosphere design us? Was the biosphere designed by the universe? "born", maybe the universe was born. In the same sense as the things I listed above.

I do know, if we shoot just one proton, at the right angle, into a black hole we may produce another universe. Did we design it? Or were we just a protein in a reproduce cycle?

Pointy eggs and whales

by Balance_Maintained @, U.S.A., Saturday, September 15, 2018, 04:19 (95 days ago) @ GateKeeper

DAVID:

By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

Gatekeeper: what do we do now?


We know that things are too complex, too organized, to have come about without design.


Gatekeeper; we would have to investigate what you mean by design. "have to come about." Na, not for me. I don't agree with "has to". lets see what we do know through some questions.

It helps when you don't misquote. "..too complex, too organized, to have come about without design". To have, not have to. Completely different meanings.

Do we design the blood cells in us? Did our mother design us before birth? Did the biosphere design us? Was the biosphere designed by the universe? "born", maybe the universe was born. In the same sense as the things I listed above.

We do not. However, the information to build red blood cells, the information contained in our DNA had to originate somewhere BEFORE red blood cells could be produced. Also, you keep attributing sentience to the 'biosphere' and the universe. Is there some rationale behind that? Some logic or evidence?


I do know, if we shoot just one proton, at the right angle, into a black hole we may produce another universe. Did we design it? Or were we just a protein in a reproduce cycle? (bold mine)

How do you know? Have you created a universe? Witnessed it being done? Have the results been measured?

--
What is the purpose of living? How about, 'to reduce needless suffering. It seems to me to be a worthy purpose.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 13:09 (95 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

DAVID:

By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

Gatekeeper: what do we do now?


We know that things are too complex, too organized, to have come about without design.


Gatekeeper; we would have to investigate what you mean by design. "have to come about." Na, not for me. I don't agree with "has to". lets see what we do know through some questions.


It helps when you don't misquote. "..too complex, too organized, to have come about without design". To have, not have to. Completely different meanings.

Do we design the blood cells in us? Did our mother design us before birth? Did the biosphere design us? Was the biosphere designed by the universe? "born", maybe the universe was born. In the same sense as the things I listed above.


We do not. However, the information to build red blood cells, the information contained in our DNA had to originate somewhere BEFORE red blood cells could be produced. Also, you keep attributing sentience to the 'biosphere' and the universe. Is there some rationale behind that? Some logic or evidence?


I do know, if we shoot just one proton, at the right angle, into a black hole we may produce another universe. Did we design it? Or were we just a protein in a reproduce cycle? (bold mine)


How do you know? Have you created a universe? Witnessed it being done? Have the results been measured?

you hit a nerve. I wrote three pages ... for obvious reasons, I didn't post.

the short version.

1) yes, I misquoted, my apologies. But the point of my post still stands. There is no need for a designer as I use the word. Once we get to before the universe we are left with "something" or "nothing". I lean towards something, but that is where I stop.

I tend to speak to notions that we can see for ourselves. I limit the volume of space/time to the radius of 50 AU's. I ask myself, can that volume adequately explain what we are seeing on earth? There is no reason to go bigger until we agree on this region of space/time.

2), I actually claim the biosphere is life and it's interactions match those of a cell more than they match the most complex, nonliving, thing I know, the LHC. I have offered a calculation (the formula, I feel people should run the calculation themselves for teaching reasons) and a measurement.

3) The proton comment. You only plucked a word out of my sentence. I actually stated " I do know ... maybe ...". It was half a joke, like when we say "definitely maybe.". You kind of misquoted me like I misquoted you. :-)

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 15:43 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

Tony:By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.


Gatekeeper:that implies far more than we know. Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

what do we do now?

That tells me all you want is description, not cause.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 21:04 (97 days ago) @ David Turell

Tony:


That tells me all you want is description, not cause.

yes. we don't know how the universe started. Something or nothing are our choices. Its assumed, by most people that understand, everything is natural. 'supernatural, by definition, only means something natural that we don't know about yet.

It's like having a bunch of light bulbs, let's say 100*100. A bunch of them are turning on. I don't know how the bulbs got there, I only know that a bunch of them are going on. Now we have to describe what's going on.

well, we have a lot people that feel connected to the system around them. They are describing it as bigger and life. Ok, for me, I don't do GOD things and I don't do "anti-god" because of some personal emotional need. s I am free to just describe the system as it is.

Are these people are connected to something bigger and alive? well, I start at describing the system we are in.

let's start easy?

1) we know its bigger and more complex than us.

2) Is the system life, non-life? or in-between? a measurement and a calculation would help. Along with the understanding that claims that have an explanation, mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 23:54 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

David: That tells me all you want is description, not cause.


G ate Keeper (GK): yes. we don't know how the universe started. Something or nothing are our choices. Its assumed, by most people that understand, everything is natural. 'supernatural, by definition, only means something natural that we don't know about yet. (my bold)

It's like having a bunch of light bulbs, let's say 100*100. A bunch of them are turning on. I don't know how the bulbs got there, I only know that a bunch of them are going on. Now we have to describe what's going on.

well, we have a lot people that feel connected to the system around them. They are describing it as bigger and life. Ok, for me, I don't do GOD things and I don't do "anti-god" because of some personal emotional need. s I am free to just describe the system as it is.

Are these people are connected to something bigger and alive? well, I start at describing the system we are in.

let's start easy?

1) we know its bigger and more complex than us.

2) Is the system life, non-life? or in-between? a measurement and a calculation would help. Along with the understanding that claims that have an explanation, mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.

Note my bold in your comment. No dictionary I can find uses your definition of 'supernatural'.

su·per·nat·u·ral (so͞o′pər-năch′ər-əl)
adj.
1. Of or relating to existence outside the natural world.
2. Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces.
3. Of or relating to a deity.
4. Of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.
5. Of or relating to the miraculous.

https://www.thefreedictionary.com/Supernatural+phenomena

Supernatural is never natural in any way , now or in the future. There must be some cause to explain why there is any thing or us existing.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 10:41 (96 days ago) @ David Turell

David: That tells me all you want is description, not cause.


G ate Keeper (GK): yes. we don't know how the universe started. Something or nothing are our choices. Its assumed, by most people that understand, everything is natural. 'supernatural, by definition, only means something natural that we don't know about yet. (my bold)

It's like having a bunch of light bulbs, let's say 100*100. A bunch of them are turning on. I don't know how the bulbs got there, I only know that a bunch of them are going on. Now we have to describe what's going on.

well, we have a lot people that feel connected to the system around them. They are describing it as bigger and life. Ok, for me, I don't do GOD things and I don't do "anti-god" because of some personal emotional need. s I am free to just describe the system as it is.

Are these people are connected to something bigger and alive? well, I start at describing the system we are in.

let's start easy?

1) we know its bigger and more complex than us.

2) Is the system life, non-life? or in-between? a measurement and a calculation would help. Along with the understanding that claims that have an explanation, mechanism, make predictions, and are repeatable are more valid than those that don't.


Note my bold in your comment. No dictionary I can find uses your definition of 'supernatural'.

su·per·nat·u·ral (so͞o′pər-năch′ər-əl)
adj.
1. Of or relating to existence outside the natural world.
2. Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces.
3. Of or relating to a deity.
4. Of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.
5. Of or relating to the miraculous.

https://www.thefreedictionary.com/Supernatural+phenomena

Supernatural is never natural in any way, now or in the future. There must be some cause to explain why there is anything or us existing.

supernatural can only be natural to me. "outside of our natural world" is only means we don't understand it yet.

"seems to violate", well, it seems to violate our understanding because our understanding is limited. 'spooky action at a distance" and virtual particles are good examples. medical miracles are real-time examples of natural events being called "supernatural" as you are using the word.

But the biggie for me is that any event that takes place in this universe is following the rules of this universe. We just don't know what they are. Everything is "natural", meaning, all events follow the rules that this universe allow.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 15:34 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper

David: Note my bold in your comment. No dictionary I can find uses your definition of 'supernatural'.

su·per·nat·u·ral (so͞o′pər-năch′ər-əl)
adj.
1. Of or relating to existence outside the natural world.
2. Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces.
3. Of or relating to a deity.
4. Of or relating to the immediate exercise of divine power; miraculous.
5. Of or relating to the miraculous.

https://www.thefreedictionary.com/Supernatural+phenomena

Supernatural is never natural in any way, now or in the future. There must be some cause to explain why there is anything or us existing.


GK: supernatural can only be natural to me. "outside of our natural world" is only means we don't understand it yet.

"seems to violate", well, it seems to violate our understanding because our understanding is limited. 'spooky action at a distance" and virtual particles are good examples. medical miracles are real-time examples of natural events being called "supernatural" as you are using the word.

But the biggie for me is that any event that takes place in this universe is following the rules of this universe. We just don't know what they are. Everything is "natural", meaning, all events follow the rules that this universe allow.

You view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 21:06 (96 days ago) @ David Turell

David:


You view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.

I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, September 14, 2018, 23:14 (96 days ago) @ GateKeeper

David:


You view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.


GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.

I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 00:56 (96 days ago) @ David Turell

David:


You view is quite clear. You think all the laws of nature are natural, but I see you don't wonder where they came from.


GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?

lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 15:55 (95 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


David: I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?


GK: lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.

OK, you wonder but don't make guesses

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 16:22 (95 days ago) @ David Turell

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


David: I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?


GK: lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.


OK, you wonder but don't make guesses

in terms of eternal and finite, there is no pick one or the other. We can speculate on "if it's finite" and we can speculate on "if it is internal". both are equally valid at this point.

I can come up with a storyline for both. They are both valid because they are both based on unknowns. The one thing I can speculate on is our place in the region of space/time around our planet. I don't know how we got here past "star stuff" and it looks like we are formed from the biosphere.

If I had to make a guess, I think, "living" formed/produced us.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 19:24 (95 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


David: I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?


GK: lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.


David: OK, you wonder but don't make guesses


GK: in terms of eternal and finite, there is no pick one or the other. We can speculate on "if it's finite" and we can speculate on "if it is internal". both are equally valid at this point.

I can come up with a storyline for both. They are both valid because they are both based on unknowns. The one thing I can speculate on is our place in the region of space/time around our planet. I don't know how we got here past "star stuff" and it looks like we are formed from the biosphere.

If I had to make a guess, I think, "living" formed/produced us.

And you lightly skip over origin of life from an inorganic universe and Earth. How do you get to 'living'?

Pointy eggs and whales

by GateKeeper @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 21:42 (95 days ago) @ David Turell
edited by GateKeeper, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 22:14

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events.

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


David: I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?


GK: lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.


David: OK, you wonder but don't make guesses


GK: in terms of eternal and finite, there is no pick one or the other. We can speculate on "if it's finite" and we can speculate on "if it is internal". both are equally valid at this point.

I can come up with a storyline for both. They are both valid because they are both based on unknowns. The one thing I can speculate on is our place in the region of space/time around our planet. I don't know how we got here past "star stuff" and it looks like we are formed from the biosphere.

If I had to make a guess, I think, "living" formed/produced us.


And you lightly skip over origin of life from an inorganic universe and Earth. How do you get to 'living'?


lol, no, we don't know how life started. so let's start there.

there is nothing light about it. I am not sure we came from non-life. I think people just take the easy way out and think that atoms are like little marbles that form life. They are not little marbles. They are a complex set of interactions.

the universe is moving from more information to less information. The end being just photons not interacting with each other. So that implies the information on this planet came from a larger set of information.

lmao, There is nothing light about it.


**edit** less information per unit volume I should say.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Saturday, September 15, 2018, 23:36 (95 days ago) @ GateKeeper

GK: I do wonder, I am a science guy. I wonder every day of my life. I just understand that we do not know and will not know for some time. I actually don't care as much as I used to, the discoveries in the last ten years point the universe being life itself. we are just part of an endless series of events. (my bold)

the universe is quantum computing right now, in fact, it is quantum computing you and me. The question is "did it self-organize?" or "Does it have surroundings that formed it in the same manner the biosphere formed us?" both are unknowns, I accept that, but I do wonder.


David: I wonder about your statement that we are a result of an endless series of events. Are you accepting an eternal universe?


GK: lol, the quantum computing you and I is far more interesting, and its based on Knowns. I have no idea if the universe is eternal. whats eternal? 10^100 years? 10^1000^100000 years? eternal is a very, very, long time.

any guess on eternal or finite is based on unknowns.


David: OK, you wonder but don't make guesses


GK: in terms of eternal and finite, there is no pick one or the other. We can speculate on "if it's finite" and we can speculate on "if it is internal". both are equally valid at this point.

I can come up with a storyline for both. They are both valid because they are both based on unknowns. The one thing I can speculate on is our place in the region of space/time around our planet. I don't know how we got here past "star stuff" and it looks like we are formed from the biosphere.

If I had to make a guess, I think, "living" formed/produced us.


David And you lightly skip over origin of life from an inorganic universe and Earth. How do you get to 'living'?

GK: lol, no, we don't know how life started. so let's start there.

there is nothing light about it. I am not sure we came from non-life. I think people just take the easy way out and think that atoms are like little marbles that form life. They are not little marbles. They are a complex set of interactions.

the universe is moving from more information to less information. The end being just photons not interacting with each other. So that implies the information on this planet came from a larger set of information.

lmao, There is nothing light about it.


**edit** less information per unit volume I should say.

And, of course, I might ask where the 'larger set of information' came from. Your statement about origin of life implies we might have come from life. How so? We see early life coming on a rocky inorganic planet which had to see life originate to develop the organic mass of living material we now see. I'm not taking any easy way out in looking at OOL. And finally there may well be an entropy of the universe, but living matter practices homeostasis with consumption of energy totally opposite to the universe it lives in. Why did it appear? Obviously when the universe ends, life ends. But where was any life before the universe appeared? My bolded statement of yours still implies an eternal universe, no origin; if that is true there has to be an infusion of information each time a universe starts up.

Pointy eggs and whales

by dhw, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 11:43 (97 days ago) @ GateKeeper

dhw: Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. [...] Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path.[...] If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind […]. In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

GATEKEEPER: well, its kind of certain that religion has many traits wrong. I don't agree that "purpose" is to read its mind. that implies more than we know.

There seems to be a misunderstanding here. We are talking about the purpose (if any) of life. If God exists, you can hardly guess at his purpose without trying to read his mind. But of course we can’t know. If God doesn’t exist, I've made my suggestions above.

GATEKEEPER: we are part of something larger and more complex than humans. that's just a fact. whatever we classify ourselves as we must classify large parts of the universe that way also. In fact, it's almost mandatory that we classify it as "far more than human".

Agreed. But that does not mean the “something larger and more complex” has a conscious mind with a specific purpose for creating us. That is why I have offered alternatives of micro and macro purposes, atheistic and theistic.

GATEKEEPER: So, for me, its about describing the universe the best way we can. Deny "god" at every turn is quite different than denying religion's ownership of reality to me.

Nobody knows the origin, nature, purpose (if any) of the universe. All we can do is speculate, and we all draw different conclusions from the evidence at hand! Below are two theistic approaches. I remain fascinated but mystified. How about you?

DAVID: We certainly part of something big. But I think by analyzing reality we can see purpose and method of design.

TONY: By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.
xxxxxxx
I’ve just seen your latest post, which answers my question!

GATEKEEPER: Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

what do we do now?

We exchange ideas! Thanks for joining in.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, September 13, 2018, 15:50 (97 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: Briefly, as I see it, there is a difference between what we might call micro and macropurpose. For all living organisms, there is a clear (micro) purpose of survival, while humans have many additional, personal purposes. [...] Obviously if there is no God, there is no macropurpose. That doesn’t matter at all to me, since I am happy to follow my own path.[...] If there is a God, “purpose” requires an attempt to read his mind […]. In view of the astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history of comings and goings – with humans clearly offering the richest spectacle of all – I have suggested that if there is a God, his purpose might have been to create an astonishingly rich spectacle of an ever changing history etc. I can’t help feeling that an eternally conscious mind would be bored to oblivion if it had nothing to do all eternity long. Whether such a God has any purpose beyond that of the spectacle will only be revealed to me if there is some form of conscious afterlife.

GATEKEEPER: well, its kind of certain that religion has many traits wrong. I don't agree that "purpose" is to read its mind. that implies more than we know.

There seems to be a misunderstanding here. We are talking about the purpose (if any) of life. If God exists, you can hardly guess at his purpose without trying to read his mind. But of course we can’t know. If God doesn’t exist, I've made my suggestions above.

GATEKEEPER: we are part of something larger and more complex than humans. that's just a fact. whatever we classify ourselves as we must classify large parts of the universe that way also. In fact, it's almost mandatory that we classify it as "far more than human".

Agreed. But that does not mean the “something larger and more complex” has a conscious mind with a specific purpose for creating us. That is why I have offered alternatives of micro and macro purposes, atheistic and theistic.

GATEKEEPER: So, for me, its about describing the universe the best way we can. Deny "god" at every turn is quite different than denying religion's ownership of reality to me.

Nobody knows the origin, nature, purpose (if any) of the universe. All we can do is speculate, and we all draw different conclusions from the evidence at hand! Below are two theistic approaches. I remain fascinated but mystified. How about you?

DAVID: We certainly part of something big. But I think by analyzing reality we can see purpose and method of design.

TONY: By "denying God", I am of course referring to naturalism, which posits that all that we know comes from nothing and nowhere by any other means than those of a purely materialistic source. i.e. No God, no designer, just random chance and fluctuating quanta produced all that we see.
xxxxxxx
I’ve just seen your latest post, which answers my question!

GATEKEEPER: Based on what we know, "from nothing" is as valid as "from God." To me, because I have no stake in the answer, both are assumed to be "natural"

what do we do now?

dhw: We exchange ideas! Thanks for joining in.

Yes!!!

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 02, 2018, 15:22 (108 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: The gap is because the body types don't follow in any way. Quoting a Darwin site carries the message, "they must have evolved", without any semblance of proof. Typical Darwin declaration without thought and you present it, but do you believe it?

The gap is because the body types don’t follow in any way. “An unknown, unknowable, sourceless designer we call God must have created them out of nowhere.” Typical theist declaration without any semblance of proof, and you present it, but do you believe it?

dhw: I don’t think you have ever quite understood the reason why I am an agnostic. The explanations of life’s history offered by both theists and atheists are so full of Cambrian-style gaps that I cannot place my faith in any of them. I look for alternative hypotheses, such as cellular intelligence and a form of panpsychism, though even these are too tenuous for me to believe in. The Cambrian is a mystery that nobody has yet solved. Like yourself, I do believe in common descent, and if I believed in your God (and I do not disbelieve), I could certainly contemplate the possibility of a dabble, but I do not find that any more convincing than your God endowing organisms (cell communities) with an autonomous inventive intelligence of their own to create the innovations that mark the Cambrian. This hypothesis preserves common descent and explains the speciation gaps – but I recognize that it too has a massive gap: the lack of evidence that the intelligence of cell communities can extend beyond adaptation to innovation. That is why I keep emphasizing that it is a HYPOTHESIS, not a belief.

I do understand your point of view. That is why the point picket fence analogy. No firm foothold, no firm belief in 'why is there anything'. No firm belief in your own inventive theories. At least we agree life followed an evolutionary course with a degree of branching we can call common descent. We agree on descriptive terms , not cause and effect.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Friday, August 31, 2018, 19:12 (110 days ago) @ dhw

DHW: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

TONY: Yes, this is precisely the idea behind my hypothesis.

dhw: Thank you. It’s a similar idea to David’s, except that he believes in common descent, and so his billions of computer programmes were installed in the very first cells, whereas presumably yours were “only” installed in the new root types, as and when he created them. Have scientists actually discovered these computer programmes, which in David’s theory produced the root types as well as all their variations, and have they observed these programmes at work?

The possibility of finding such codes or guidelines might be possible when we fully understand all the layer of control in the genome, and we have basically just scratched the surface. We have finally gotten rid of the idea that the genome was simply a protein coding system


DHW: I can’t solve the Cambrian mystery any more than you can, but here is a website with answers you will reject and evolutionists will accept, both of you because of “confirmation bias”. Nobody knows the truth.[/i]

Does the Cambrian Explosion pose a challenge to evolution?
https://biologos.org/.../scientific-evidence/cambrian-explosion

QUOTE: “Scientists are now gaining a better understanding of what existed before the Cambrian Explosion as a result of new fossil discoveries. […] Some of the new fossil discoveries, in fact, appear to be more primitive precursors of the later Cambrian body plans. The discovery of such precursors shows that the Cambrian organisms did not appear from thin air.”

TONY: But do they have precursors or are the new forms that did not exist prior to the Cambrian?

dhw: The quote says they did have “more primitive precursors”.

Twisted meaning of 'precursors'. If you study the Cambrians and compare the Ediacarans, and I have, there is no similarity exc ept they both were living forms. Precursor here simply means predecessor. The gap has not changed since Darwin was puzzled over it.

DHW: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

TONY: I've been curious about this, but honestly do not have enough information to answer. Are they developing new resistances, or is there some underlying existing something that causes Billy to be vulnerable while Bobby is not. For example, we know that some people are genetically predisposed to diabetes because their genetics make their cells insulin resistant. Could what we be seeing be a small preexisting variation in organisms that make them already resistant, and by killing off all the Billy's all that is left is Bobby's, or are they adding new information? Or is there some function in their genes that changes its output based on some input that results in their resistance? I don't know.

DAVID: I commented on this in the past. There is a variation in resistance so some will survive, there is horizontal gene transfer, and there is also gene modification. All have been shown.

dhw: I find it difficult to believe that your God preprogrammed the first bacteria with resistance to every single problem that would challenge them throughout the history of life on Earth past, present and future, although some of them would not inherit the right programme for resisting some of the challenges and would either die or would require a horizontal gene transfer. Tony’s list of possibilities is pretty comprehensive, and of course we don’t know. I myself find “developing new resistances” more convincing than preprogramming. Maybe that’s as far as we can go.

Note I said there was a variation in resistance among individuals, as individuals vary in other ways. Our immune system allows us to develop immunity as we live. I assume bacteria have the same ability, although much less complex than our system.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Thursday, August 30, 2018, 15:39 (111 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: Does this mean that when your God created the root type, he put in a kind of computer programme for round AND pointy eggs (plus every other possible variation within that original root type), and when the murre settled on a slope, the computer programme automatically switched to pointy, thereby reshaping the cloaca? Just making sure I’ve understood, so please correct any misunderstandings.

DAVID: Your just-so story implies gradual changes. […] Either the gaps are true or the fossils for your story are not available. Available current evidence is on my side.

dhw: […] does available evidence really support your claim that 3.8 billion years ago your God preprogrammed eight stages of whalehood, or that he dabbled with all the pre-whales before they entered the water, and then over millions of years did seven more dabbles with all the intermediate whales to produce modern forms of whale?

DAVID: All we can do is make reasonable hypotheses based on available evidence. A designing mind is required. It is still chance or design, and even you reject chance.

dhw: That does not mean available current evidence favours your “just-so story” over mine.

Does your just-so story imply stepwise change on not? Why don't you answer the question?

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

DHW: As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!

DAVID: Parrots are not cells! They have brains. Straw man argument.

dhw: You have misunderstood. I said we judge intelligence by behaviour – whether it’s humans, parrots or bacteria.

TONY: Behavior is not as telling as choice. Can the organisms CHOOSE to do other than the prescribed chemical reactions? Do they show evidence of planning?

dhw: Most of the “cognitive” tests offer choice of some kind. Why are bacteria killed by antibiotics until they find modes of resistance? Are the “prescribed chemical reactions” that Billy will go glug and die, while Bobby finds a solution? There has to be choice. My view of evolution is that changes are not planned in advance but are triggered by environmental needs and/or opportunities.

DAVID: If dhw accepted planning He would creep closer to God. For me planning and design are obvious. It is what changed my views.

dhw: We agree on design of some kind. I do not believe that your God changed organismal structures in advance of the environmental changes those structures would be used for. I’d be interested to know if Tony thinks his God controls the environment, and if he specially created root types in advance of or in response to environmental change.

If by environmental change you mean entering water, that is different than climate change or Chixculub.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Wednesday, August 29, 2018, 19:22 (112 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: I would suggest that it is the environmental input (the steep slope) that determines the egg shape. Now please tell us how the birds come up with their pointy eggs. Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

DAVID: My answer is God helped.

No different from God dabbled. With a magic wooj wooj from on high, or did he summon all the birds to assemble and then fiddled with their cloacae?

TONY: It would most likely need to be something OTHER than the steep slope. […] If all cliff dwellers do not produce pointy eggs, the trigger must be something else.

Interesting, but now please tell us your own theory: Did your God preprogramme them to do it, do a dabble, or install a mechanism enabling organisms to adapt autonomously to their environment?

dhw: I have offered an explanation of whale development, and you do not accept it. So please tell us how YOU account for the eight stages, if not by one of the two methods I've mentioned.

DAVID: There is no answer.

dhw: There is no answer. But you reject my hypothesis.

DAVID: Your just-so story implies gradual changes. The fossil story shows us giant gaps in form. Either the gaps are true or the fossils for your story are not available. Available current evidence is on my side.

dhw: There is no answer, but does available evidence really support your claim that 3.8 billion years ago your God preprogrammed eight stages of whalehood, or that he dabbled with all the pre-whales before they entered the water, and then over millions of years did seven more dabbles with all the intermediate whales to produce modern forms of whale?

All we can do is make reasonable hypotheses based on available evidence. A designing nimd is required. It is still chance or design, and even you reject chance.

TONY: I understand your hypothesis is cellular intelligence, I have simply not seen enough evidence to support the level of intelligence you ascribe to cells. If such evidence comes to light, then I would certainly consider that it was perhaps the method God used.

DAVID: Cellular intelligence is pure theory, not proven. Cells have no means of thinking.

I don’t know how often I have to repeat that it is a hypothesis precisely because although we have plenty of evidence that cells behave intelligently, we don’t know how far that intelligence can go in terms of innovation. NOBODY can explain speciation. Cells do not have brains. David, your constant insistence that thought depends on the brain is based on the materialism you reject elsewhere, and on your assumption that microorganisms do not have some kind of brain equivalent.

DAVID: The so-called cell intelligence is based on definite evidence of what can be seen as logical responses of cells to stimuli. These responses can obviously be planned and automatic. They are shown to be a series of molecular reactions.

dhw: As with all our fellow creatures (e.g. the parrots you tell us about on another thread), we judge intelligence by behaviour. Behaviour always entails molecular reactions of some kind, as these are what enable organisms – including ourselves – to demonstrate intelligence!

Parrots are not cells! They have brains. Straw man argument.

Pointy eggs and whales

by David Turell @, Monday, August 27, 2018, 18:54 (114 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: I never said anything about 10% that didn’t go into the water. But if it all began with a local crisis,I would assume that any pre-whales stuck on land would have died. We have fossils that show different stages of development from pre-whales to whales. Here is a website that traces all the known stages.

'Crisis' drove them into the water to which they quickly adapted on their own is pure imaginative just-so storytelling.


Whale Evolution - AMNH
https://www.amnh.org/.../whales-giants-of-the-deep/whale-evolution

The website is blocked.


TONY: Show me something that can be repeated in a lab, step-wise. We can manipulate DNA now, at will. Show me one, just one, scientist that has managed to make stepwise adjustments to DNA to take a creature from an amphibian to a reptile, or reptile to a bird or mammal. Hell, show me one that has managed to change one mammal into another. Hell, change one single celled organism into another single celled organism. Say, e coli to yeast.
In chemistry, we can prove the claims made by chemist by doing it. We have the technology now. So show me the evidence by reproducing the process. That is science.

dhw: Agreed. I make a similar point at the end of the “brief guide”. But how does this prove scientifically that organisms can spring from nowhere, as opposed to springing from other organisms, and “don't tell me another damn fairy tale that has no objective evidence, no record, no traceable, documented process.”

Most of Darwin is fairy tales. Not his fault, but he had little real data to work with.

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