Skip to comments.Evolution debate persists because it's not science
Posted on 02/22/2009 10:58:04 PM PST by GodGunsGuts
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Nobody said anything about transitional limbs being useless
Uh, yeah, metmom did in #557: "what good would a partially formed limb that is transitioning from leg to flipper be?:
The answer can be *not much* or *just a little* which is not that same as *useless*.
Can't you guys ever not misrepresent what someone says?
I see. You weren’t using the common idiom “what good is...?” to express your opinion that something is useless. You were asking an honest question, hoping to learn more about the evolutionary process. Right.
Fortunately, allmendream has done a fine job of answering your question.
E=MC2 is simple though it sits atop a mountain of challenging math and physics!
Thank you so much for your encouragements, dearest sister in Christ!
"Evolution was a radical, even dangerous idea, and he didn't yet know enough to make it public."
Although evolution is all around us, it remains a "dangerous idea"?
If such cognitive dissonance wasn't tragic it would be a rather hilarious parody.
Obviously a seal is not hampered in its survival by having an intermediate limb that is transitional between a leg and a flipper, as it uses it for both a leg and a flipper in its partially aquatic lifestyle.
No. You ask a question. You get an answer. You complain that my answer made me look smart and educated and I was just creating a strawman and then mistakenly claiming that I was the one who brought it up.
And it is dangerous to some (not all) on both sides of the crevo debate.
Those whose most certain source of knowledge is sensory perception and reasoning those who do not have spiritual ears to hear - may receive the theory and extrapolate it as proof there is a natural explanation for everything and therefore Scripture or indeed any divine revelation witnessed by anyone is not real and not to be trusted. So for them, evolution may become their main reason to aver that God does not exist and thereby suffer the second death.
Conversely, some of those who say they believe in God and Scripture - may also accept and/or apply mortal reasoning to the words to conclude that if evolution were true then therefore God does not exist after all. For such a one, his faith in God hinges upon his own ability to comprehend Him and therefore, should he become convinced of the dangerous idea, he will deny God and likewise suffer the consequence of the second death.
But the cause, albeit on both sides, is the same, i.e. man rejecting any God he cannot comprehend with his own mortal mind. To both, God is merely a hypothesis He is not real to them.
No one who actually knows Christ is at risk:
Love Him. Believe Him. Trust Him.
To God be the glory, not man, never man.
That's Daniel Dennett's terminology, not mine. In general, I don't think scientific ideas are "dangerous." The problem I have with Darwinism is that, as a theory of biology, it is incomplete. For another thing, it assumes too much i.e., that "everything in nature supervenes on the physical," meaning that "matter in its motions" is all that there is; that biology reduces to chemistry; that a random system produces order; etc. Indeed, to me each and every one of these premises is questionable. Notwithstanding, many people do not want to question them.
But it's okay, for this sort of methodological reductionism is presumably useful to the conduct of science. As Christoph Cardinal Schönborn has written (in "The Designs of Science," First Things 159, January 2006),
If the Darwinist, taking up Descartes and [Sir Francis] Bacons project of understanding nature according only to material and efficient causes, studies the history of living things and says that he can see no organizing, active principles of whole living substances (formal causes) and no real plan, purpose or design in living things (final causes), then I accept his report without surprise. It is obviously compatible with the full truth that the world of living beings is replete with formality and finality. It comes as no surprise that reductionist science cannot recognize those very aspects of reality it excludes or at least, seeks to exclude by its choice of method.... [emphasis added]Schönborn's remarks regarding randomness are astute and to the point:
The role of randomness in Darwinian biology is quite different from its role in physics, quantum theory, and other natural sciences. In those sciences randomness captures our inability to predict or know the precise behavior of the parts of the system (or perhaps, in the case of the quantum world, some intrinsic properties of the system). But in all such cases the random behavior of parts is embedded in and constrained by a deeply mathematical and precise conceptual structure of the whole that makes the overall behavior of the system orderly and intelligible.Randomness in organic and inorganic systems is tractable by means of probability theory. As the mathematician Hillel Furstenberg points out (in Divine Action and Natural Selection, 2009), "Probability theory uses human ignorance systematically to create a useful scientific discipline. This in itself is something of a miracle. There remains, however ... a clash between our perception of chance events and the presence of intelligence."
The randomness of neo-Darwinian biology is nothing like that. It is simply random. The variation through genetic mutation is random. And natural selection is also random: The properties of the ever-changing environment that drive evolution through natural selection are also not correlated to anything, according to the Darwinists. Yet out of all that unconstrained, unintelligible mess emerges, deus ex machina, the precisely ordered and extraordinarily intelligible world of living organisms. And this is the heart of the neo-Darwinian science of biology....
Yet because chance events occur in nature does not mean there is no intelligence in nature.
Furstenberg usefully points out that "when the religiously inclined person attributes a chance event to Providence, he is regarding the event not as Divine whim, but as manifestation of Divine intelligence. It is seen as part of some larger scheme whose rationale escapes the human observer, but is confidently believed to be present. [Thus] there is no real clash here between our state of ignorance and the intelligent workings of an omniscient Deity."
If [the Darwinian biologist] takes a very narrow view of the supposedly random variation that meets his gaze, it may well be impossible to correlate it to anything interesting, and thus variation remains simply unintelligible. He then summarizes his ignorance of any pattern in variation by means of the rather respectable term random. But if he steps back and looks at the sweep of life, he sees an obvious, indeed an overwhelming pattern. The variation that actually occurred in the history of life was exactly the sort needed to bring about the complete set of plants and animals that exist today. In particular, it was exactly the variation needed to give rise to the upward sweep of evolution resulting in human beings. If that is not a powerful and relevant correlation, then I dont know what could count as evidence against actual randomness in the mind of an observer....To me, the "danger" in Darwinism consists of taking an incredibly reduced theory and then blowing it up into a complete cosmology of the universe. Strictly speaking, this is NOT science! But many people today are attracted to the theory because of the cosmology....
...I have simply related two indisputable facts: Evolution happened, and our biosphere is the result. The two sets of facts correlate perfectly. Facts are not tautologies simply because they are indisputably true. If the modern biologist chooses to ignore the indubitable correlation, I have no objection. He is free to define his special science on terms as narrow as he finds useful for gaining a certain kind of knowledge. But he may not then turn around and demand the rest of us, unrestricted by his methodological self-limitation, ignore obvious truths about reality, such as the clearly teleological nature of evolution. [emphasis added]
I particularly like the way Schönborn points out the "reduction" in methodological naturalism in general and Darwinian theory in particular: that it deliberately omits all consideration of formal and final causes in nature from its investigation. Only material and efficient causes fall within the scope of the method. By banning final causes, nature can be only "apparently," but not really purposeful. Ditto biological evolution.
Darwinist cosmology is as deracinated as it is nihilistic.... As such, it's the cosmology that is "dangerous," not so much the theory as science. JMHO FWIW.
Thank you so much for writing, Does so!
It strikes me as ironic that such a disciplined area of gathering knowledge would be so inclined to overstate its own findings.
Thank you so much for sharing your insights and those wonderful excerpts!
That seems to be the normal progression.... But jeepers, the flaw is in the first step the expectation that sensory perception gives us an exhaustive picture of reality, and that reason itself has no limits. Both presuppositions can be shown to be false.
But if we want to embrace such notions, really, we're in tough "ontological shape" because our epistemology is faulty. As you point out, to reduce the world to the competence of the human intellect to make man the measure, in other words is to falsify reality. And thereby, to falsify one's own position in it.
I gather it is the persistent desire to live in untruth that causes one to suffer the second death....
Thank you ever so much for your beautiful essay/post, dearest sister in Christ!
I gather it is the persistent desire to live in untruth that causes one to suffer the second death....
There's an understatement if I ever heard one. ;)
Well no, and you're not living on shelf ice out-running polar bears to survive either. Which also has nothing to do with the price of eggs in China too.
The point is that seals intermediate limb is not a fully...
NO, the POINT is there's no evidence to suggest it's an intermediate limb other than your sheer conjecture!
The only thing "useless" is your strawmen arguments allmendream.
Can’t you guys ever not misrepresent what someone says?
or not project, or not create endless strawmen...?
How about the evidence of how they walk on land and swim in water?
Obviously their limb is not of no use, as it was naively and ignorantly suggested an intermediate limb would be, it is of use both on the land and in the water.
But I see how a commitment to a preposterous model would enslave one to that dubious proposition.
You're the only one that came up with that useless strawman gem Einstein...I (and metmom) argued that there's no evidence suggesting it's intermediate in the first place, and nooooo, it's not evidence "how they walk on land and swim in water", after all WE use our limbs to walk on land and swim in the water, only the situation is in reverse, we do better our of water, our fingers and toes aren't webbed, etc. etc. etc.But this is certainly not evidence that ba-jillions of years ago we were water dwellers either.
But "no use", "useless"...all your silly constructs and no one elses...for instance, I think it makes a great flipper and is great for swimming.
But it sure doesn't do so good on land for much other than hobbling.
A seal has not gone the ‘full flipper’ route of the dolphin, nor does it have a fully terrestrial leg. A seal has a limb adapted for use on both the land and the ocean.
Obviously the survival of a seal is not detrimentally impacted by it having a limb that is neither fully a flipper of fully a leg. A seals survival is enhanced by it having a limb that is neither fully a flipper or fully a leg.
Do you ever fell like you’re beating your head agaisnt a brick wall when you are trying to convince someone that you didn’t say what they are convinced you said?
Earth to allmendream......
I never said that the limb was USELESS!!!!!! That’s what YOU read into it. You have been informed of that several times and yet persist in believing that’s what I said.
Reread the posts again and see what I said about it’s functionality. I never said that an intermediate limb was useless; I said that it is not very efficient as a fully formed limb for either being a land dweller or a water dweller.
So, since you keep harping on the seals limb being an intermediate limb, what creature is the seal an ancestor of?