God and Evolution (Evolution)

by dhw, Saturday, February 02, 2019, 14:34 (198 days ago)

I am starting a new "God and Evolution" thread to combine your two posts and “big brain evolution” since both discussions are now about God and evolution and one follows on from the other.

DAVID (under “periodic table"): Your suppositions about God are all human thought. "God did it the hard way" is your thinking, again totally a human interpretation. He did it all stepwise. Start a universe and evolve its form. Create and evolve the Earth perfect for life. Create life and then evolve humans.

You ignored my response: "All fine until the last assumption. Why “and then evolve humans”? I shan’t repeat the rest of my response, in view of your two comments below:

DAVID’s comment: Let me turn your strange argument against you. Why did God bother to have the necessary elements appear over so much time, when if He is so powerful He could have done it all at once, and not wasted 13.78 billion years? We cannot know which of the two possibilities that must exist is the correct one : God can only do what He wants by evolution or He chose to do it this way. Analysis can go no further and yet you keep trying.

DAVID under (“evolving soil”): All the while that strange combination of fungi and algae called lichens were breaking down the rock, and still doing it! Why didn't an all powerful God just create Earth as it is today all at once? Same problem, with no answer. Yet all you want is the answer that doesn't exist!

You are again sticking the different parts of your hypotheses together in the hope of glossing over the illogicalities. So let me try again. For argument’s sake, I am accepting God’s existence, and that he must have had a purpose. I also accept evolution, and so evolution must have been his method of achieving his purpose. What I do NOT accept are your fixed beliefs 1) that he specially designed every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in the history of life and evolution (although I accept the possibility of dabbles), and 2) that his one and only purpose in designing billions of galaxies, solar systems, black holes, stars, and every single organism that ever lived was to design H. sapiens.

Repeated under “Big brain”:
DAVID: You know I view God designing every stage of evolution so humans appear from a stepwise process.

dhw: Yes, I know. And in order to maintain this view, you constantly block out the inconsistencies: 1) an always-in-control God who has one purpose (us) but spends 3.5+ billion years designing other things, and 2) you believe in evolution but insist that your God specially designs every species.

DAVID: Again it is you who questions God's choice of method. I accept it. Yes, theistic evolution is not your natural automatic evolution.

Once more: it is your interpretation of your God’s purpose and method of achieving his purpose that I question. There is no reason to contrast theistic evolution with “natural evolution”, and I don’t know why you insert the word “automatic”. If (one possibility:) your God created a mechanism enabling cell communities to work out their own ways to improve their chances of survival, then you have theistic, non-automatic, natural evolution.

dhw: […]I have suggested several alternative interpretations of your God’s logic which you have agreed are all logical.

DAVID: Your suppositions humanize God. I've agreed, that if He thinks in a human way they are logical.

dhw: But you happen to know that he thinks in a way you can’t understand.

DAVID: I don't try to understand it. I just interpret His mechanisms as I see them.

dhw: Why don’t you try to understand it? Why are you so convinced that your interpretation is correct, and that it is simply not possible for your God to think differently from the way you interpret his thoughts?

DAVID: Because it invents human thinking which may not apply, so why try?

Your own thinking “may not apply”, so why bother to tell us that your God’s one and only purpose in creating the universe and life was to design H. sapiens, and he decided that he would take 3.5+ billion years designing billions of other life forms etc. before doing it?

DAVID: I'm sure He watches everything He created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings.

dhw: So, still sticking to a theistic explanation of evolution, you now agree that your God’s purpose in creating the bush of life might have been to enjoy watching the bush of life. And since you think he enjoys watching humans because we have free will, perhaps you will even agree that “freedom” (i.e. cell communities freely using their God-given evolutionary mechanisms to create their own designs) might make all forms of life - your “everything” - interesting to him. (I live in hope. :-) )

DAVID: No hope. I'm sure He watches, maybe in enjoyment.

I’ll settle for a “maybe”. That is sufficient to show that “maybe” he has what you call “human” thoughts, and “maybe” there is something wrong with your hypothesis that, while specially designing whale fins, cuttlefish camouflage, monarch’s flight paths and weaverbirds’ nests, his thought was: “I must improve their chances of survival so that life will survive for 3.5+ billion years until I can fulfil my one and only purpose of specially designing H. sapiens.”

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Saturday, February 02, 2019, 19:04 (198 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: You are again sticking the different parts of your hypotheses together in the hope of glossing over the illogicalities. So let me try again. For argument’s sake, I am accepting God’s existence, and that he must have had a purpose. I also accept evolution, and so evolution must have been his method of achieving his purpose. What I do NOT accept are your fixed beliefs 1) that he specially designed every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in the history of life and evolution (although I accept the possibility of dabbles), and 2) that his one and only purpose in designing billions of galaxies, solar systems, black holes, stars, and every single organism that ever lived was to design H. sapiens.

Can you explain why we are here? I have a very different series of logical thoughts than
you do. If survival drives evolution as you believe (an irrational theory never proven), we have no need to be here battling on our computers, evolved way beyond survival necessity! We are a totally unexpected miraculous result. So once again you have questioned God's choice of method. Either He had to do it this way or He chose the method, no way of telling!


Repeated under “Big brain”:
DAVID: You know I view God designing every stage of evolution so humans appear from a stepwise process.

dhw: Yes, I know. And in order to maintain this view, you constantly block out the inconsistencies: 1) an always-in-control God who has one purpose (us) but spends 3.5+ billion years designing other things, and 2) you believe in evolution but insist that your God specially designs every species.

DAVID: Again it is you who questions God's choice of method. I accept it. Yes, theistic evolution is not your natural automatic evolution.

dhw: Once more: it is your interpretation of your God’s purpose and method of achieving his purpose that I question. There is no reason to contrast theistic evolution with “natural evolution”, and I don’t know why you insert the word “automatic”. If (one possibility:) your God created a mechanism enabling cell communities to work out their own ways to improve their chances of survival, then you have theistic, non-automatic, natural evolution.

There is not a smidgen of evidence organisms can act as you wish.

dhw: Your own thinking “may not apply”, so why bother to tell us that your God’s one and only purpose in creating the universe and life was to design H. sapiens, and he decided that he would take 3.5+ billion years designing billions of other life forms etc. before doing it?

Answered above. We can 't know if God is limited or not.


DAVID: I'm sure He watches everything He created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings.

dhw: So, still sticking to a theistic explanation of evolution, you now agree that your God’s purpose in creating the bush of life might have been to enjoy watching the bush of life. And since you think he enjoys watching humans because we have free will, perhaps you will even agree that “freedom” (i.e. cell communities freely using their God-given evolutionary mechanisms to create their own designs) might make all forms of life - your “everything” - interesting to him. (I live in hope. :-) )

DAVID: No hope. I'm sure He watches, maybe in enjoyment.

dhw: I’ll settle for a “maybe”. That is sufficient to show that “maybe” he has what you call “human” thoughts, and “maybe” there is something wrong with your hypothesis that, while specially designing whale fins, cuttlefish camouflage, monarch’s flight paths and weaverbirds’ nests, his thought was: “I must improve their chances of survival so that life will survive for 3.5+ billion years until I can fulfil my one and only purpose of specially designing H. sapiens.”

Again questioning God's method with no possible answer. And the issue always exists. Why are we here? Survival does not require it. I'll chose to believe it is God's choice.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Sunday, February 03, 2019, 10:26 (197 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: For argument’s sake, I am accepting God’s existence, and that he must have had a purpose. I also accept evolution, and so evolution must have been his method of achieving his purpose. What I do NOT accept are your fixed beliefs 1) that he specially designed every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder in the history of life and evolution (although I accept the possibility of dabbles), and 2) that his one and only purpose in designing billions of galaxies, solar systems, black holes, stars, and every single organism that ever lived was to design H. sapiens.
I have divided your next comment into three:

DAVID: 1) Can you explain why we are here? I have a very different series of logical thoughts than you do. 2) If survival drives evolution as you believe (an irrational theory never proven), we have no need to be here battling on our computers, evolved way beyond survival necessity! We are a totally unexpected miraculous result. 3) So once again you have questioned God's choice of method. Either He had to do it this way or He chose the method, no way of telling!

1) If God exists, then I would assume that whatever is/was here is what he wanted to be here: i.e. the higgledy-piggledy bush of evolution, including us. See below for a possible "why" in your own words.

2) There is nothing irrational in arguing that the purpose of fins, camouflage and migration is to improve organisms’ chances of survival, and purpose is a driving force (which you yourself have called an “immediate” driving force). We have agreed ad nauseam that NO multicellular species were “necessary” for life to continue, since bacteria have survived unscathed. They are all “miraculous”, as indeed are bacteria (which are also driven to change their structure in order to survive changing conditions). I would suggest that multicellularity initiated innovation. We don’t know how – hence the different theories, such as random mutations, cellular intelligence, divine dabbling, or a 3.8-billion-year-old library of instructions which apparently cells go into, with instructions telling them which of the billions of instructions to obey.
3) Once again I am not questioning your God, I am questioning your interpretation of his purpose and method.


DAVID: … theistic evolution is not your natural automatic evolution.

dhw: There is no reason to contrast theistic evolution with “natural evolution”, and I don’t know why you insert the word “automatic”. If (one possibility:) your God created a mechanism enabling cell communities to work out their own ways to improve their chances of survival, then you have theistic, non-automatic, natural evolution.

DAVID: There is not a smidgen of evidence organisms can act as you wish.

There is not a smidgen of evidence for your divine dabbling and/or your divine library of instructions. They are both unproven hypotheses. And there is no reason to contrast theistic evolution with natural evolution.

dhw: Your own thinking “may not apply”, so why bother to tell us that your God’s one and only purpose in creating the universe and life was to design H. sapiens, and he decided that he would take 3.5+ billion years designing billions of other life forms etc. before doing it?

DAVID: Answered above. We can 't know if God is limited or not.

Hardly an answer, but at least this removes your earlier insistence that your God is always in control. So now you accept that even if humans really were his one and only purpose, he might not have known how to produce them and therefore had to experiment. That is one of the various logical hypotheses I have offered you.

DAVID: I'm sure He watches everything He created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings.

dhw: So, still sticking to a theistic explanation of evolution, you now agree that your God’s purpose in creating the bush of life might have been to enjoy watching the bush of life. And since you think he enjoys watching humans because we have free will, perhaps you will even agree that “freedom” (i.e. cell communities freely using their God-given evolutionary mechanisms to create their own designs) might make all forms of life - your “everything” - interesting to him. (I live in hope. :-) )

DAVID: No hope. I'm sure He watches, maybe in enjoyment.

dhw: I’ll settle for a “maybe”. That is sufficient to show that “maybe” he has what you call “human” thoughts, and “maybe” there is something wrong with your hypothesis that, while specially designing whale fins, cuttlefish camouflage, monarch’s flight paths and weaverbirds’ nests, his thought was: “I must improve their chances of survival so that life will survive for 3.5+ billion years until I can fulfil my one and only purpose of specially designing H. sapiens.”

DAVID: Again questioning God's method with no possible answer. And the issue always exists. Why are we here? Survival does not require it. I'll chose to believe it is God's choice.

Stop dodging. You are always on about God’s purpose. Well, if you are sure he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, then it is possible that he created everything - not just humans - for his own enjoyment (your word, not mine), and that general freedom would enhance the interest. See above re survival.

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Sunday, February 03, 2019, 15:14 (197 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: I have divided your next comment into three:

DAVID: 1) Can you explain why we are here? I have a very different series of logical thoughts than you do. 2) If survival drives evolution as you believe (an irrational theory never proven), we have no need to be here battling on our computers, evolved way beyond survival necessity! We are a totally unexpected miraculous result. 3) So once again you have questioned God's choice of method. Either He had to do it this way or He chose the method, no way of telling!

dhw: 1) If God exists, then I would assume that whatever is/was here is what he wanted to be here: i.e. the higgledy-piggledy bush of evolution, including us. See below for a possible "why" in your own words.

Thanks for accepting what I believe following the 'if'


dhw: 2) There is nothing irrational in arguing that the purpose of fins, camouflage and migration is to improve organisms’ chances of survival, and purpose is a driving force (which you yourself have called an “immediate” driving force). We have agreed ad nauseam that NO multicellular species were “necessary” for life to continue, since bacteria have survived unscathed. They are all “miraculous”, as indeed are bacteria (which are also driven to change their structure in order to survive changing conditions). I would suggest that multicellularity initiated innovation. We don’t know how – hence the different theories, such as random mutations, cellular intelligence, divine dabbling, or a 3.8-billion-year-old library of instructions which apparently cells go into, with instructions telling them which of the billions of instructions to obey.

Generally agree

dhw: 3) Once again I am not questioning your God, I am questioning your interpretation of his purpose and method.

I know your questioning ignores just accepting history and instead trying on totally human versions of God. You don't want to accept humans as His prime purpose . I view it as His singular purpose.

dhw: I’ll settle for a “maybe”. That is sufficient to show that “maybe” he has what you call “human” thoughts, and “maybe” there is something wrong with your hypothesis that, while specially designing whale fins, cuttlefish camouflage, monarch’s flight paths and weaverbirds’ nests, his thought was: “I must improve their chances of survival so that life will survive for 3.5+ billion years until I can fulfil my one and only purpose of specially designing H. sapiens.”


DAVID: Again questioning God's method with no possible answer. And the issue always exists. Why are we here? Survival does not require it. I'll chose to believe it is God's choice.

dhw; Stop dodging. You are always on about God’s purpose. Well, if you are sure he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, then it is possible that he created everything - not just humans - for his own enjoyment (your word, not mine), and that general freedom would enhance the interest. See above re survival.

You constantly want God to be human in His reasons for creating and to make things for His enjoyment. Nothing on Earth knows about God but us. From that fact it is easy to reason that He might have wanted that relationship, but note, He is hidden, so it requires a special kind of relationship in which we must come to realize He has to exist. That is what theology is all about. You have not come to that realization.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Monday, February 04, 2019, 13:24 (196 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: 1) Can you explain why we are here? I have a very different series of logical thoughts than you do. 2) If survival drives evolution as you believe (an irrational theory never proven), we have no need to be here battling on our computers, evolved way beyond survival necessity! We are a totally unexpected miraculous result. 3) So once again you have questioned God's choice of method. Either He had to do it this way or He chose the method, no way of telling!

dhw: 1) If God exists, then I would assume that whatever is/was here is what he wanted to be here: i.e. the higgledy-piggledy bush of evolution, including us. See below for a possible "why" in your own words.

DAVID: Thanks for accepting what I believe following the 'if'.

It’s I who must thank you for agreeing that your God presumably wanted the higgledy-piggledy bush, including us (as opposed to his only wanting us). I am not opposed to his wanting us. It is the combination of your hypotheses that even you can't understand.

dhw: 2) There is nothing irrational in arguing that the purpose of fins, camouflage and migration is to improve organisms’ chances of survival, and purpose is a driving force (which you yourself have called an “immediate” driving force). We have agreed ad nauseam that NO multicellular species were “necessary” for life to continue, since bacteria have survived unscathed. They are all “miraculous”, as indeed are bacteria (which are also driven to change their structure in order to survive changing conditions). I would suggest that multicellularity initiated innovation. We don’t know how – hence the different theories, such as random mutations, cellular intelligence, divine dabbling, or a 3.8-billion-year-old library of instructions which apparently cells go into, with instructions telling them which of the billions of instructions to obey.

DAVID: Generally agree.

So please stop arguing that an immediate driving force is not a driving force, and that humans (like every other multicellular organism) were not “necessary”, and that means humans were your God’s one and only purpose.

dhw: 3) Once again I am not questioning your God, I am questioning your interpretation of his purpose and method.

DAVID: I know your questioning ignores just accepting history and instead trying on totally human versions of God. You don't want to accept humans as His prime purpose . I view it as His singular purpose.

Yet again: history is the existence of all life forms past and present, which I accept. Causes and purposes are speculation, and my questioning concerns the rationality of your guesses. Prime = there are others. Singular = only one. One moment your God is in full control and his singular purpose is to produce us, so why spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing so many other life forms, styles, wonders? The next minute you say that maybe he has limits: fine, that = he is not in full control, or maybe his singular purpose wasn’t us, and/or maybe he didn’t specially design all the other forms. Those are not “human versions of your God” – they are challenges to your reasoning, and the different, logical theistic hypotheses I have offered you are no more “human” than your God “choosing” to do it your way, even though you don’t understand why. But see below for the “human” follow up.

dhw; […] if you are sure he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, then it is possible that he created everything - not just humans - for his own enjoyment (your word, not mine), and that general freedom would enhance the interest.

DAVID: You constantly want God to be human in His reasons for creating and to make things for His enjoyment. Nothing on Earth knows about God but us. From that fact it is easy to reason that He might have wanted that relationship, but note, He is hidden, so it requires a special kind of relationship in which we must come to realize He has to exist. That is what theology is all about. You have not come to that realization.

I don’t “want” God to be human. You keep harping on about purpose, and how can you possibly speculate on purpose without using human terms? Maybe you are right that he wants us to realize that he exists, wants a relationship with us, wants us to admire his work (another of your ideas), and also enjoys his other creations (one of my ideas, which you are certain is correct). Nothing wrong with such “human” possibilities, so why pooh-pooh your own speculations as if they weren’t as “human” as mine? And yes, he is hidden, so we CAN only speculate. That is what theology is all about, but you have not come to that realization.

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Monday, February 04, 2019, 15:38 (196 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: So please stop arguing that an immediate driving force is not a driving force, and that humans (like every other multicellular organism) were not “necessary”, and that means humans were your God’s one and only purpose.

I have my view; you have yours.


dhw: 3) Once again I am not questioning your God, I am questioning your interpretation of his purpose and method.

DAVID: I know your questioning ignores just accepting history and instead trying on totally human versions of God. You don't want to accept humans as His prime purpose . I view it as His singular purpose.

dhw: Yet again: history is the existence of all life forms past and present, which I accept. Causes and purposes are speculation, and my questioning concerns the rationality of your guesses. Prime = there are others. Singular = only one. One moment your God is in full control and his singular purpose is to produce us, so why spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing so many other life forms, styles, wonders? The next minute you say that maybe he has limits: fine, that = he is not in full control, or maybe his singular purpose wasn’t us, and/or maybe he didn’t specially design all the other forms.

You have twisted all my logic again. I have clearly stated God may be unlimited or limited. History allows both possibilities since He chose to use evolution over 3.8 billion years Humans as the purpose fits either scenario.

dhw: Those are not “human versions of your God” – they are challenges to your reasoning, and the different, logical theistic hypotheses I have offered you are no more “human” than your God “choosing” to do it your way, even though you don’t understand why. But see below for the “human” follow up.

Stated like a true non-believer. I accept history as representing how God did it.


dhw; […] if you are sure he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, then it is possible that he created everything - not just humans - for his own enjoyment (your word, not mine), and that general freedom would enhance the interest.

DAVID: You constantly want God to be human in His reasons for creating and to make things for His enjoyment. Nothing on Earth knows about God but us. From that fact it is easy to reason that He might have wanted that relationship, but note, He is hidden, so it requires a special kind of relationship in which we must come to realize He has to exist. That is what theology is all about. You have not come to that realization.

dhw: I don’t “want” God to be human. You keep harping on about purpose, and how can you possibly speculate on purpose without using human terms? Maybe you are right that he wants us to realize that he exists, wants a relationship with us, wants us to admire his work (another of your ideas), and also enjoys his other creations (one of my ideas, which you are certain is correct). Nothing wrong with such “human” possibilities, so why pooh-pooh your own speculations as if they weren’t as “human” as mine? And yes, he is hidden, so we CAN only speculate. That is what theology is all about, but you have not come to that realization.

Of course we can only think of God in our human ways. There is no need for your final comment. I fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of theology. Even they over-humanize God.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Tuesday, February 05, 2019, 09:06 (195 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: So please stop arguing that an immediate driving force is not a driving force, and that humans (like every other multicellular organism) were not “necessary”, and that means humans were your God’s one and only purpose.

DAVID: I have my view; you have yours.

You “generally agreed” with what I wrote, and I am only trying to stop the otherwise endless repetition of the same old arguments followed by the same old responses. Those two issues should now be dead and buried.

DAVID: I have clearly stated God may be unlimited or limited. History allows both possibilities since He chose to use evolution over 3.8 billion years Humans as the purpose fits either scenario.

One day you clearly state that he is in full control, and the next you say that he may have limits. Let’s settle, then, for your clear statement that either is possible. If his powers are unlimited, then you yourself cannot understand why he needed to spend 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design (us). Possible explanation: we were not the only thing he wanted to design. He wanted the whole higgledy-piggledy bush (and as you say, enjoys/enjoyed it, like a painter who enjoys his paintings). If he has limits, that might explain why, in your scenario, he needed 3.5+ billion years to produce the only thing he wanted to produce: either he didn’t know how to do it, or – another possibility – he had no clear concept of “human” but the idea came to him later on in the course of his experiments.

dhw: Those are not “human versions of your God” – they are challenges to your reasoning, and the different, logical theistic hypotheses I have offered you are no more “human” than your God “choosing” to do it your way, even though you don’t understand why. But see below for the “human” follow up.

DAVID: Stated like a true non-believer. I accept history as representing how God did it.

History is confined to the fact that all the different life forms etc. exist/existed. All the hypotheses I have offered you offer theistic explanations of the history that are different from yours. Absolutely nothing to do with my agnosticism.

dhw; […] if you are sure he watches everything he created, like an artist enjoying his own paintings, then it is possible that he created everything - not just humans - for his own enjoyment (your word, not mine), and that general freedom would enhance the interest.

DAVID: You constantly want God to be human in His reasons for creating and to make things for His enjoyment. Nothing on Earth knows about God but us. From that fact it is easy to reason that He might have wanted that relationship, but note, He is hidden, so it requires a special kind of relationship in which we must come to realize He has to exist. That is what theology is all about. You have not come to that realization.

dhw: I don’t “want” God to be human. You keep harping on about purpose, and how can you possibly speculate on purpose without using human terms? Maybe you are right that he wants us to realize that he exists, wants a relationship with us, wants us to admire his work (another of your ideas), and also enjoys his other creations (one of my ideas, which you are certain is correct). Nothing wrong with such “human” possibilities, so why pooh-pooh your own speculations as if they weren’t as “human” as mine? And yes, he is hidden, so we CAN only speculate. That is what theology is all about, but you have not come to that realization.

DAVID: Of course we can only think of God in our human ways. There is no need for your final comment. I fully understand the strengths and weaknesses of theology. Even they over-humanize God.

My final comment was simply an echo of your final comment (now bolded), since you constantly admonish me - even to the point of “why bother?” - for trying to look into the possible nature, purposes and methods of your God, as if that was not an integral part of theology.

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Tuesday, February 05, 2019, 15:45 (195 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: I have clearly stated God may be unlimited or limited. History allows both possibilities since He chose to use evolution over 3.8 billion years Humans as the purpose fits either scenario.

dhw: One day you clearly state that he is in full control, and the next you say that he may have limits. Let’s settle, then, for your clear statement that either is possible. If his powers are unlimited, then you yourself cannot understand why he needed to spend 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design (us). Possible explanation: we were not the only thing he wanted to design. He wanted the whole higgledy-piggledy bush (and as you say, enjoys/enjoyed it, like a painter who enjoys his paintings). If he has limits, that might explain why, in your scenario, he needed 3.5+ billion years to produce the only thing he wanted to produce: either he didn’t know how to do it, or – another possibility – he had no clear concept of “human” but the idea came to him later on in the course of his experiments.

The bolds are wrong as I view the issues. I don't question His decision to evolve humans. It is not a decision by God I question or don't understand. That is your interpretation of my thinking. I accept it as what He decided to do. And I've said He might be limited in some way in evolutionary production, but I have always thought God had a clear-sighted goal of producing humans. I cannot explain our appearance out of an evolution process on any other way. We are over-evolved based on all the other creatures and plants we see in nature's balances. WE a re now the top predator, but the only one with compassion and introspection, about how we affect all the rest. And when we spot our mistakes, we do spot them and try to correct them. Chimps have no compassion over killing another chimp. Of course, Adler thinking.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Wednesday, February 06, 2019, 12:26 (194 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: I have clearly stated God may be unlimited or limited. History allows both possibilities since He chose to use evolution over 3.8 billion years Humans as the purpose fits either scenario.

dhw: One day you clearly state that he is in full control, and the next you say that he may have limits. Let’s settle, then, for your clear statement that either is possible. If his powers are unlimited, then you yourself cannot understand why he needed to spend 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design (us). Possible explanation: we were not the only thing he wanted to design. He wanted the whole higgledy-piggledy bush (and as you say, enjoys/enjoyed it, like a painter who enjoys his paintings). If he has limits, that might explain why, in your scenario, he needed 3.5+ billion years to produce the only thing he wanted to produce: either he didn’t know how to do it, or – another possibility – he had no clear concept of “human” but the idea came to him later on in the course of his experiments.

DAVID: The bolds are wrong as I view the issues. I don't question His decision to evolve humans. It is not a decision by God I question or don't understand. That is your interpretation of my thinking. I accept it as what He decided to do. And I've said He might be limited in some way in evolutionary production, but I have always thought God had a clear-sighted goal of producing humans.

The first bolded explanation allows for a God without limits, and the last two cover a God with limits. The first of the latter gives him a clear sighted goal, but his “limit” is that he doesn’t know how to achieve it. All three solve the problem you can’t understand: why he would have spent 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design.

DAVID: I cannot explain our appearance out of an evolution process on any other way. We are over-evolved based on all the other creatures and plants we see in nature's balances. WE are now the top predator, but the only one with compassion and introspection, about how we affect all the rest. And when we spot our mistakes, we do spot them and try to correct them. Chimps have no compassion over killing another chimp. Of course, Adler thinking.

Yes, we are special, but on Sunday I pointed out that no multicellular species were “necessary”, and all forms of life are “miraculous”. Your response was “generally agree”, but here we go again with the same old argument. We can’t explain the appearance of life itself or, once there was life, of ANY multicellular organisms. But two of the hypotheses you have bolded allow for your “singular goal” belief anyway. So I don’t know what you are objecting to.

I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis that humans were his singular purpose, that he specially designed every other life form etc., and he did so only for the purpose of getting them all to eat one another until he could specially design humans?

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 00:59 (193 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: One day you clearly state that he is in full control, and the next you say that he may have limits. Let’s settle, then, for your clear statement that either is possible. If his powers are unlimited, then you yourself cannot understand why he needed to spend 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design (us). Possible explanation: we were not the only thing he wanted to design. He wanted the whole higgledy-piggledy bush (and as you say, enjoys/enjoyed it, like a painter who enjoys his paintings). If he has limits, that might explain why, in your scenario, he needed 3.5+ billion years to produce the only thing he wanted to produce: either he didn’t know how to do it, or – another possibility – he had no clear concept of “human” but the idea came to him later on in the course of his experiments.

DAVID: The bolds are wrong as I view the issues. I don't question His decision to evolve humans. It is not a decision by God I question or don't understand. That is your interpretation of my thinking. I accept it as what He decided to do. And I've said He might be limited in some way in evolutionary production, but I have always thought God had a clear-sighted goal of producing humans.

dhw: The first bolded explanation allows for a God without limits, and the last two cover a God with limits. The first of the latter gives him a clear sighted goal, but his “limit” is that he doesn’t know how to achieve it. All three solve the problem you can’t understand: why he would have spent 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design.

I don't try to understand, which is your misinterpretation. It is your created puzzle that I don't have. I admit to all the same possibilities as you do, as any one possibility may be the right one. Your problem is evolution really happened and I believe God decided to do it that way for whatever possibility we can imagine. That way there is nothing to understand.

dhw: I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis that humans were his singular purpose, that he specially designed every other life form etc., and he did so only for the purpose of getting them all to eat one another until he could specially design humans?

You have sort of twisted my viewpoint. If the designer's purpose is through a stepwise evolutionary process from simple to complex, there are secondary issues that must occur to provide the continuity of effort until the goal is reached. Thus a group to be eaten and survival of each step is baked into the process. Totally logical.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 10:44 (193 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: One day you clearly state that he is in full control, and the next you say that he may have limits. Let’s settle, then, for your clear statement that either is possible. If his powers are unlimited, then you yourself cannot understand why he needed to spend 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design (us). Possible explanation: we were not the only thing he wanted to design. He wanted the whole higgledy-piggledy bush (and as you say, enjoys/enjoyed it, like a painter who enjoys his paintings). If he has limits, that might explain why, in your scenario, he needed 3.5+ billion years to produce the only thing he wanted to produce: either he didn’t know how to do it, or – another possibility – he had no clear concept of “human” but the idea came to him later on in the course of his experiments.

DAVID: The bolds are wrong as I view the issues. I don't question His decision to evolve humans. It is not a decision by God I question or don't understand. That is your interpretation of my thinking. I accept it as what He decided to do. And I've said He might be limited in some way in evolutionary production, but I have always thought God had a clear-sighted goal of producing humans.

dhw: The first bolded explanation allows for a God without limits, and the last two cover a God with limits. The first of the latter gives him a clear sighted goal, but his “limit” is that he doesn’t know how to achieve it. All three solve the problem you can’t understand: why he would have spent 3.5+ billion years designing anything but the one thing he wanted to design.

DAVID: I don't try to understand, which is your misinterpretation. It is your created puzzle that I don't have. I admit to all the same possibilities as you do, as any one possibility may be the right one.

Thank you. At last!

DAVID: Your problem is evolution really happened and I believe God decided to do it that way for whatever possibility we can imagine. That way there is nothing to understand.

I have no problem accepting that evolution really happened, and if God exists I have no problem accepting that he would have masterminded the whole evolutionary process. Since you now agree that all my hypotheses may be correct, we can end the discussion. My “problem” all along has been your fixed belief that only ONE possibility is correct – namely, that your God’s singular purpose was to specially design humans, but he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing billions of other life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders, and did so for the sole purpose of getting them to eat each other until he could specially design humans.

dhw: I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis [bolded above]?

DAVID: You have sort of twisted my viewpoint. If the designer's purpose is through a stepwise evolutionary process from simple to complex, there are secondary issues that must occur to provide the continuity of effort until the goal is reached. Thus a group to be eaten and survival of each step is baked into the process. Totally logical.

Once more you gloss over the whole issue of your God’s “enjoyment” of all his creations as a possible motive for creating them in the first place (with freedom of invention adding to the interest), and you scuttle back to the fixed belief which I have bolded above and which you find “totally logical”, even though you have repeatedly stated that you can’t explain it. I prefer your more open-minded approach in acknowledging that ALL the different bolded theistic hypotheses at the head of this post are possible, together with the hypothesis that the whole higgledy-piggledy bush was for his own “enjoyment” (your word).

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Thursday, February 07, 2019, 20:51 (192 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: I don't try to understand, which is your misinterpretation. It is your created puzzle that I don't have. I admit to all the same possibilities as you do, as any one possibility may be the right one.

dhw: Thank you. At last!

DAVID: Your problem is evolution really happened and I believe God decided to do it that way for whatever possibility we can imagine. That way there is nothing to understand.

dhw: I have no problem accepting that evolution really happened, and if God exists I have no problem accepting that he would have masterminded the whole evolutionary process. Since you now agree that all my hypotheses may be correct, we can end the discussion. My “problem” all along has been your fixed belief that only ONE possibility is correct – namely, that your God’s singular purpose was to specially design humans, but he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing billions of other life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders, and did so for the sole purpose of getting them to eat each other until he could specially design humans.

I'm still fixed but I accept your possibilities.


dhw: I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis [bolded above]?

DAVID: You have sort of twisted my viewpoint. If the designer's purpose is through a stepwise evolutionary process from simple to complex, there are secondary issues that must occur to provide the continuity of effort until the goal is reached. Thus a group to be eaten and survival of each step is baked into the process. Totally logical.

dhw: Once more you gloss over the whole issue of your God’s “enjoyment” of all his creations as a possible motive for creating them in the first place (with freedom of invention adding to the interest), and you scuttle back to the fixed belief which I have bolded above and which you find “totally logical”, even though you have repeatedly stated that you can’t explain it. I prefer your more open-minded approach in acknowledging that ALL the different bolded theistic hypotheses at the head of this post are possible, together with the hypothesis that the whole higgledy-piggledy bush was for his own “enjoyment” (your word).

We can end on this note. We view God differently.

God and Evolution

by dhw, Friday, February 08, 2019, 10:24 (192 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: I don't try to understand, which is your misinterpretation. It is your created puzzle that I don't have. I admit to all the same possibilities as you do, as any one possibility may be the right one.

dhw: Thank you. At last!

DAVID: Your problem is evolution really happened and I believe God decided to do it that way for whatever possibility we can imagine. That way there is nothing to understand.

dhw: I have no problem accepting that evolution really happened, and if God exists I have no problem accepting that he would have masterminded the whole evolutionary process. Since you now agree that all my hypotheses may be correct, we can end the discussion. My “problem” all along has been your fixed belief that only ONE possibility is correct – namely, that your God’s singular purpose was to specially design humans, but he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing billions of other life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders, and did so for the sole purpose of getting them to eat each other until he could specially design humans.

DAVID: I'm still fixed but I accept your possibilities.

An historic moment! Thank you.

dhw: I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis [bolded above]?

DAVID: You have sort of twisted my viewpoint. If the designer's purpose is through a stepwise evolutionary process from simple to complex, there are secondary issues that must occur to provide the continuity of effort until the goal is reached. Thus a group to be eaten and survival of each step is baked into the process. Totally logical.

dhw: Once more you gloss over the whole issue of your God’s “enjoyment” of all his creations as a possible motive for creating them in the first place (with freedom of invention adding to the interest), and you scuttle back to the fixed belief which I have bolded above and which you find “totally logical”, even though you have repeatedly stated that you can’t explain it. I prefer your more open-minded approach in acknowledging that ALL the different bolded theistic hypotheses at the head of this post are possible, together with the hypothesis that the whole higgledy-piggledy bush was for his own “enjoyment” (your word).

DAVID: We can end on this note. We view God differently.

Just to clarify, we have been discussing theistic interpretations of evolution. You have a fixed view of your God’s (singular) purpose and of the (to me illogical and incredible) way in which he implemented that purpose, as bolded above, and also incorporating the 3.8-billion-year old “library” of info and instructions. I have offered alternative views of the purpose, together with explanations concerning how he might have used the method of evolution in order to fulfil those alternative purposes. You have accepted that all of these are possible.

It would seem that we have now reached agreement on these issues, as well as on that of survival as an “immediate driving force” for evolution, and so I shall refer back to this post if any of these issues arise again. Pax!:-)

God and Evolution

by David Turell @, Friday, February 08, 2019, 15:37 (192 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: I don't try to understand, which is your misinterpretation. It is your created puzzle that I don't have. I admit to all the same possibilities as you do, as any one possibility may be the right one.

dhw: Thank you. At last!

DAVID: Your problem is evolution really happened and I believe God decided to do it that way for whatever possibility we can imagine. That way there is nothing to understand.

dhw: I have no problem accepting that evolution really happened, and if God exists I have no problem accepting that he would have masterminded the whole evolutionary process. Since you now agree that all my hypotheses may be correct, we can end the discussion. My “problem” all along has been your fixed belief that only ONE possibility is correct – namely, that your God’s singular purpose was to specially design humans, but he chose to spend 3.5+ billion years specially designing billions of other life forms, lifestyles and natural wonders, and did so for the sole purpose of getting them to eat each other until he could specially design humans.

DAVID: I'm still fixed but I accept your possibilities.

An historic moment! Thank you.

dhw: I’m sorry that having expressed your certainty that your God watches everything with the same enjoyment (your own word) as a painter enjoying his own work, you have dropped the subject of this being a possible purpose, and of general freedom - not just human freedom - enhancing the interest. May I take this as an acceptance (I don’t ask for belief) of the feasibility of my alternative to your own hypothesis [bolded above]?

DAVID: You have sort of twisted my viewpoint. If the designer's purpose is through a stepwise evolutionary process from simple to complex, there are secondary issues that must occur to provide the continuity of effort until the goal is reached. Thus a group to be eaten and survival of each step is baked into the process. Totally logical.

dhw: Once more you gloss over the whole issue of your God’s “enjoyment” of all his creations as a possible motive for creating them in the first place (with freedom of invention adding to the interest), and you scuttle back to the fixed belief which I have bolded above and which you find “totally logical”, even though you have repeatedly stated that you can’t explain it. I prefer your more open-minded approach in acknowledging that ALL the different bolded theistic hypotheses at the head of this post are possible, together with the hypothesis that the whole higgledy-piggledy bush was for his own “enjoyment” (your word).

DAVID: We can end on this note. We view God differently.

dhw:Just to clarify, we have been discussing theistic interpretations of evolution. You have a fixed view of your God’s (singular) purpose and of the (to me illogical and incredible) way in which he implemented that purpose, as bolded above, and also incorporating the 3.8-billion-year old “library” of info and instructions. I have offered alternative views of the purpose, together with explanations concerning how he might have used the method of evolution in order to fulfil those alternative purposes. You have accepted that all of these are possible.

It would seem that we have now reached agreement on these issues, as well as on that of survival as an “immediate driving force” for evolution, and so I shall refer back to this post if any of these issues arise again. Pax!:-)

Peace.

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