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Evolution debate persists because it's not science
The Sun News ^ | February 23, 2009 | By Raymond H. Kocot

Posted on 02/22/2009 10:58:04 PM PST by GodGunsGuts

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To: betty boop; allmendream
Thank you oh so very much for your wonderful essay-post, dearest sister in Christ!

And thank you for bringing that article describing the fascinating amoeba experiment to the table.

For the discussion, here's another researcher discussing his hypothesis and experiments on cell intelligence.


601 posted on 03/01/2009 8:46:32 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl; allmendream
Oh thank you so very much for the ping to the excellent web site, Guenter Albrecht-Buehler on Cell Intelligence dearest sister in Christ!

It's fascinating to note that the inspiration, the raison d'etre of this site is coming directly from the medical sciences. Nobody's taking either the evo or the ID side here. The folk here seem to be interested in what actually works in nature, and are interested in finding out how and why. In short, there's nothing particularly "ideological" here....

I do hope that allmendream will read the contents at this link.

And as ever, dearest sister in Christ, thank you so very much for your kind words of support and encouragement!

602 posted on 03/02/2009 3:26:44 PM PST by betty boop
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; TXnMA; MHGinTN; YHAOS; hosepipe; metmom; GodGunsGuts; ...
Thus my point is reinforced about “purpose” and “randomness”. There is a purpose to the actions of the bacteria, even without cognition, and its purpose is to increase the random changes within its genome to generate an answer to the stress by utilization of natural selection of randomly generated genetic variation.

To me, allmendream, if you are trying to contort "purpose" so to include non-cognitive events, you are destroying the very idea of "purpose." Any purposive activity is a willed activity. An exercise of will depends on a rational appraisal — that is, a cognitive appraisal — of various opportunities/threats and a decisive choice about how to respond to them in an optimal way. And if there is a will, there is an agent whose will it is. Be it a bacterium, an amoeba, a man, or God Himself.

A good deal of the problem with speaking to persons of your conviction is you guys are so horrifically sloppy when it comes to basic language usage, not to mention epistemological rigor.

For example, you're happy to speak of "purpose" in nature if it involves a bacterium blindly increasing its survival value by randomly mutating as furiously as possible to overcome "negative messages" from the external environment.

But what signal triggered this activity? How did the beastie recognize then process the signal; i.e., get the message? How did the beastie then understand what to do with the message?

You suggest that each and every one of these questions is irrelevant because, as every good Darwinist knows, Nature has only apparent "purposes" (i.e., not real) purposes — and "apparent purpose" is only mentioned when convenient for (incoherent) discussion purposes. Your doctrine seemingly attests to the conviction that Nature cannot really/does not have/never will have any purposes at all. She's not only "blind," but STUPID.

And so the human mind, attempting to explore this hypothetical stupidity, is supposed to extract, by means of human reason, the laws of what, on your presentation, is totally unlawful in the first place.

Jeepers, if that isn't a good description of nihilist expectation, I don't know what is.

Anyhoot, I expect you think the evolution of life is a bottom-up process and a random one at that which, for all its randomness, somehow results in an ordered biota and an ordered universe as well.

Because to me it is so clear that "order" does not arise in a "random" system without an intelligent guide, let me offer a different perspective for your reflection if I may:

Depending on the direction in which one reads the next sentence, intelligence is a fractal property or/and an emergent property: ...Intelligent ecologies contain intelligent populations,which contain intelligent organisms, which contain intelligent cells, which contain intelligent compartments, which contain...and so forth. — G. Albrecht-Buehler, Cell Intelligence.

And what is "random" anyway, but a term admitting that some things are unpredictable because we do not yet understand their causes/mechanisms....

Just some food for thought my friend. Thanks so much for writing!

603 posted on 03/02/2009 4:22:05 PM PST by betty boop
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To: betty boop

There is a purpose to actions that happen without cognition.

We take breath without thinking about it, by unconscious action. Breathing serves a purpose.


604 posted on 03/02/2009 4:24:41 PM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: betty boop
Thank you so very much for your encouragements, dearest sister in Christ! And I do agree with you, there's not a hint of ideology on that website that I could see.
605 posted on 03/02/2009 9:33:48 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; TXnMA; MHGinTN; YHAOS; hosepipe; metmom; GodGunsGuts
We take breath without thinking about it, by unconscious action. Breathing serves a purpose.

But this "unconscious action" is not necessarily an "uninformed action."

606 posted on 03/02/2009 9:47:59 PM PST by betty boop
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; betty boop; MHGinTN; YHAOS; hosepipe; metmom
"We take breath without thinking about it, by unconscious action."

Try stopping -- and see how long it remains an "unconscious action"...

607 posted on 03/02/2009 9:56:49 PM PST by TXnMA ("Allah": Satan's current alias...!!)
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To: betty boop
Any purposive activity is a willed activity.

Exactly. A purpose is an intention and to purpose is to propose as an aim to oneself (Merriam-Webster). And that requires awareness and willfulness.

The term "apparent purpose" avoids that point.

For example, you're happy to speak of "purpose" in nature if it involves a bacterium blindly increasing its survival value by randomly mutating as furiously as possible to overcome "negative messages" from the external environment.

But what signal triggered this activity? How did the beastie recognize then process the signal; i.e., get the message? How did the beastie then understand what to do with the message?

Indeed. What is the signal that triggers the bacteria to change its rate of mutation?

Thank you so much for your wonderful essay-post, dearest sister in Christ!

608 posted on 03/02/2009 10:03:59 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: TXnMA

LOLOL!


609 posted on 03/02/2009 10:05:04 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: metmom

Another evolutionary bottleneck.

If groups as large as ones like the Amish are having difficulties because of (essentially) inbreeding, then how did all these evolutionary bottlenecks which allegedly reduced the population to a few thousand go on to produce healthy individuals?


Since I’ve been alive, almost half a century now, I’ve read and seen populations in Africa that are anything but healthy, because of some or all of the following:

war, pestilence, disease, poverty, natural disasters, not to mention inbreedindg and God only knows what else; teenage or even pre-teen girls hardly able to walk themselves, yet they manage to carry to term children that somehow live to be a few months old with swollen bellies, literally starving to death...by the sheer hundreds of millions for decade after decade.

As a whole to say there’s anything “healthy”, both individually and as a society, is a very cruel joke and yet it goes on and on since long before my time actually.


610 posted on 03/02/2009 10:21:53 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: metmom

Seems like they think they are somehow the only ones qualified to speak on the metaphysical when it concerns science even when they know (and admit) that they have no basis for any of their pronouncements.

The hypocrisy is staggering.


Liberals are like that. I don’t know of any group more self-absorbed.

I’m still trying to figure out why science must somehow be sterlized of God/religion/intelligence/design...there’s no place for God in the science class, blah blah blah...

yet scientists ask for public money to study the effectiveness of prayer.


611 posted on 03/02/2009 10:39:10 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: allmendream; metmom
Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life.

Except of course science class where He has no place?

God's glory is reflected in the heavens. The testimony of starlight is not all a trick and a lie but speaks to the grandeur of God; he is Eternal, and eternally patient, he is forbearing, and his forbearance is eternal. Do not lose sight of this one thing my FRiend, A day for God is as a thousand years, and a thousand years a day.

Why is it so all important children be told He has no place in science class to you?

Especially if it might be the one and only time that a child might understand His very existence, directly or indirectly?

After all, I've heard many a person exclaim the more they observe life and design and his creation in science endeavors, the more they came to believe in the existence of God!I've even read of people set out to DISprove God via science and came to the opposite conclusions!

Some people may not get it via a church or religious course or some other tidy traditional means, because it may not be at their disposal or available to them or *GASP* purposefully closed off to them (NEA public schools anyone????????).

This is very different from proselytizing or teaching religion in science class, rather a child having his world outside science class acknowledged and not so "at odds" with the rest of his understanding outside science.

In other words, imagine a young child where God is understood to be real, and then a teacher teaches him the first thing he needs to understand about science class is that He has "NO PLACE" there!

It need not be so 'either/or' in our minds allmendream, but this is exactly what's exploited today by godless liberals...science used as a tool to disprove God, and we all know it.

612 posted on 03/02/2009 10:54:39 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: allmendream

“(Science) is just as far out its league to suggest there is no purpose as it is to suggest there is no God or indeed anything supernatural. The scientific method does not apply to such questions, science does not have the right toolset to address such questions.” Alamo-Girl

Exactly correct, thus those that try to shoe horn theology into the scientific method are rather daft. Science doesn’t have the right tool set to address such issues.


These things were said about speaking over a wire and hearing another human voice thousands of miles away...it’s just “black magic” and so on.

And who is that decides for everyone again what is or isn’t “science” the “scientific method”, etc.?

And how about shoehorning godless liberal ideology, does that count?


613 posted on 03/02/2009 11:01:10 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: hosepipe

Well said, all of it!

It’s pretty simple, for the Christian, we understand there’s a world beyond this one, and science is “subservient”, “less than”, “less important”, to this “beyond”, which we do not and never will understand, not the other way around for heaven’s sakes!


614 posted on 03/02/2009 11:11:25 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: allmendream; metmom
A seal's front legs work just fine as legs.

Except of course when he's trying to outrun a polar bear on ice, hold young, open a shell,...

whoooo-WEE you're reaching very very badly allmendream!

615 posted on 03/02/2009 11:14:26 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: allmendream
Man did not live contemporaneously with dinosaurs.

And yet we hear all the time about an animal being referred to as a "living dinosaur".

616 posted on 03/02/2009 11:21:33 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: tpanther; DallasMike; Alamo-Girl; betty boop
"After all, I've heard many a person exclaim the more they observe life and design and his creation in science endeavors, the more they came to believe in the existence of God!"

...and this born-again physical chemist is one of them...

617 posted on 03/03/2009 5:17:30 AM PST by TXnMA ("Allah": Satan's current alias...!!)
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To: betty boop

It doesn’t need to be to show my point. The making of reproductive cells is something that takes place unconsciously and without cognition, it also serves a purpose.

There is purpose without cognition.


618 posted on 03/03/2009 7:02:57 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: tpanther

The premise was that an intermediate form between a full flipper and a full leg would be useless. A seals front limbs are most certainly intermediate between a flipper and a leg, and it is not useless at all.


619 posted on 03/03/2009 7:05:15 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: allmendream

The premise was that an intermediate form between a full flipper and a full leg would be useless. A seals front limbs are most certainly intermediate between a flipper and a leg, and it is not useless at all.


Pretty useless when it comes to escaping polar bears on ice, breaking open shells or holding their young...

And lemme guess, now all we gotta do is wait millions of years to see what you’re seeing.


620 posted on 03/03/2009 7:32:54 AM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: TXnMA

Congrats!


621 posted on 03/03/2009 7:35:08 AM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: tpanther
A seal escapes predators by swimming, making its legs perfectly adapted to getting to the ice and then swimming under it. Seals break things open with their teeth, and they don't need to hold their young as their young can swim and walk just fine.

An intermediate form is obviously not useless, making the idea that the transition from a full leg to a full flipper would involve a useless intermediate absolute hogwash.

622 posted on 03/03/2009 7:47:47 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: allmendream; tpanther
The premise was that an intermediate form between a full flipper and a full leg would be useless.

No, not useless. Just not adequate to do the perform the necessary functions as needed to insure the best chances for survival in either environment.

623 posted on 03/03/2009 7:48:25 AM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

So a seal’s front legs are not functioning as needed to insure the best chances for survival in both environments?

Maybe you think you know better than the seals, but they seem to be surviving just fine with an “inadequate” front limb.


624 posted on 03/03/2009 7:53:18 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: TXnMA
Praise God!!!

Thank you for sharing your testimony, dear brother in Christ!

625 posted on 03/03/2009 8:11:16 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; TXnMA; MHGinTN; YHAOS; hosepipe; metmom; GodGunsGuts
The making of reproductive cells is something that takes place unconsciously and without cognition, it also serves a purpose.

As you aver, allmendream! Again. And again.

My claim, however (FWIW) is that even unicellular organisms possess a form of basic awareness, a sort of "proto-intelligence."

BTW, you didn't say anything about Hontela's pet amoeba.... But then, you really haven't responded to any of the points I've raised recently. Sigh.

Anyhoot, I thought this was interesting:

...[T]he interactions between the molecules of any organism generally do not create the functions of the organism, but it is the other way around: The functions of the organism initiate and control the interactions between its molecules. The necessity for such control is obvious. Using the example of contractile proteins, the molecules can only polymerize, depolymerize or slide along each other, but they would not know when and with what force and when to stop. A signal-integrating mechanism is required.

Why should the situation be different for single cells? After all protozoa are in effect small, but quite universal organism and the above conclusion should apply to them as much as to a fly, a frog or the author of this website. Yet, the vast majority of today's biologists devote their efforts to prove the opposite, namely that specific molecular interactions create the cellular functions such as cell division, directed locomotion, differentiation, design of the extracellular matrix, adhesion to materials and other cells and so forth.

My research for the past 30 years or so was devoted to examine whether cells have such signal integration and control center(s). The results suggest that mammalian cells, indeed, posess intelligence. The experimental basis for this conclusion is presented in the following web pages.

The most significant experimental results are:
1. The motile machinery of cells contains subdomains ('microplasts') that can be isolated from the cell and then are capable of autonomous movements. Yet, inside the cell they do not exercise their ability....

2. The cell as a whole is capable of immensely complex migration patterns for which their genome cannot contain a detailed program as they are responses to unforseeable encounters. (Cell movement is not random.)

3. Cells can 'see', i.e. they can map the directions of near-infrared light sources in their environment and direct their movements toward them. No such 'vision' is possible without a very sophisticated signal processing system ('cell brain') that is linked to the movement control of the cell. (The larger their light scattering, the larger the distance from which aggregating cells came together. )

In addition there is the supporting theoretical consideration that the hiterto completely unexplained complex structure of centrioles is predicted in every detail if one asks what structure a cellular 'eye' should have....

An operational definition of the intelligent cell.
First a disclaimer. My work did not intend to join the ongoing efforts of philosophers, logicians and computer scientists to find a universal definition of intelligence. On the contrary, it did not question the common assumption that everybody can tell a mindless, mechanical gadget from an intelligent machine, and proceeded to ask which of the two categories apply to a living cell. Clearly, there are many different levels of intelligence, but I believe that most people consider a machine mechanical and mindless if its actions either do not seem to respond to signals or else always show an immutable set of reactions. On the other hand, we expect an intelligent machine to respond to signals in a large variety of ways, especially if the signals are unforeseeable, and if its responses offer solutions to problems, which were transmitted by the signals. Usually, this means that the intelligent machine contains at least 2 different machines, one which is mindless and carries out some mechanical labor while the other collects and processes signals and controls the action of the first. Therefore, we may use the following operational definition of an intelligent cell. An intelligent cell contains a compartment, which is capable of collecting and integrating a variety of physically different and unforeseeable signals as the basis of problem-solving decisions.

Are there reasons to think that cells are intelligent?
The prevailing wisdom of modern biology has it that cells are immensely complex, but rigidly operating chemical machines that derive their operating instructions internally from their genes and externally from chemicals and electrical signals emitted rigidly by other cells. Unable to believe that any machine can be designed that contains an instruction library which anticipates all the mishaps and glitches of a billion years of evolution without crashing over and over again, I began almost three decades ago to search for signs that the cell was actually a 'smart' machine. In other words, I looked for experimental evidence that cells contained a signal integration system that allowed them to sense, weigh and process huge numbers of signals from outside and inside their bodies and to make decisions on their own.

Under what circumstances would a cell reveal that it is 'intelligent'?
I thought that the best place to start searching was the field of cell movement. A moving cell has to operate its own body in sophisticated ways and, in addition, may have to navigate in space and time while dealing with numerous unforeseeable events, such as encounters with other cells and other objects that its genome could not possibly have anticipated. I think that cell motility, indeed, revealed cell intelligence. — Guenter Albrecht-Buehler, Cell Intelligence

Again, if you have the time allmendream, do check out the link. I think you'll find it very interesting.

Thank you so much for writing!

626 posted on 03/03/2009 9:23:11 AM PST by betty boop
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To: TXnMA; tpanther; DallasMike; Alamo-Girl; hosepipe; metmom
"After all, I've heard many a person exclaim the more they observe life and design and his creation in science endeavors, the more they came to believe in the existence of God!"

...and this born-again physical chemist is one of them....

And bb makes three!

627 posted on 03/03/2009 9:25:37 AM PST by betty boop
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To: betty boop
Yes I did. I said that “memory” in the case of an amoebae was a molecular state preconditioning it to certain actions and was not, in and of itself, evidence of awareness or cognition.

And as my numerous examples aver, actions take place without cognition that serve a purpose. Purpose and cognition are not linked.

628 posted on 03/03/2009 9:25:50 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: betty boop; allmendream
My claim, however (FWIW) is that even unicellular organisms possess a form of basic awareness, a sort of "proto-intelligence."

I agree. And the linked and excerpted website supports that point rather well.

The sub-text in my view is autonomy and semiosis, the unicellular organism is acting as a whole, communicating [Shannon] with its environment and internally, e.g. to decide and to move.

Thank you so very much for sharing your insights, dearest sister in Christ!

629 posted on 03/03/2009 10:19:18 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; TXnMA; tpanther; DallasMike; hosepipe; metmom
"How, therefore, we must ask, is it possible for us to distinguish the living from the lifeless if we can describe both conceptually by the motion of inorganic corpuscles?" — Karl Pearson, The Grammar of Science
630 posted on 03/03/2009 10:30:45 AM PST by betty boop
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To: betty boop
Indeed - and at the root, rocks and rabbits will both break down into quantum fields. Thank you so much for the quote, dearest sister in Christ!
631 posted on 03/03/2009 10:40:33 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: allmendream; metmom
A seal escapes predators by swimming, making its legs perfectly adapted to getting to the ice and then swimming under it. Seals break things open with their teeth, and they don't need to hold their young as their young can swim and walk just fine.

Which isn't at all what we were discussing. And again not walking "just fine" if they're walking along and suddenly find themselves on the menu of a hungry polar bear out on the open ice.

We were discussing transitional forms.

An intermediate form is obviously not useless, making the idea that the transition from a full leg to a full flipper would involve a useless intermediate absolute hogwash.

Yet another strawman because this too was never implied, the entire point remains, and you're still flailing about like a seal out of water trying to get away from a polar bear, trying to convince us walking on flippers is somehow proof of evolution.

632 posted on 03/03/2009 10:58:46 AM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: tpanther; allmendream

There’s a big difference between having a well established population where food is plentiful and predators are (relatively) scarce.

A transitional form which may be the first of it’s kind or one of only a few, doesn’t have the luxury of being able to get by like seals do.


633 posted on 03/03/2009 11:59:08 AM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Alamo-Girl; allmendream; hosepipe; metmom; TXnMA
The sub-text in my view is autonomy and semiosis, the unicellular organism is acting as a whole, communicating [Shannon] with its environment and internally, e.g. to decide and to move.

It seems to me likewise; an organism is alive as long as it's communicating. When it is no longer doing that, then it's dead. Pretty stupid simple, I'd say. But nonetheless true.

Thank you so very much for writing, dearest sister in Christ!

634 posted on 03/03/2009 1:00:09 PM PST by betty boop
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To: metmom

None of which detracts from the point that this intermediate limb of a seal is both a functional leg and a flipper and a seal survives just fine without it being fully a leg or fully a flipper.

A “transitional form” may be a species that numbers in the thousands and exists for hundreds of thousands of years. For example the Australopithocine existed for millions of years over a wide range, yet people point to it as a “transitional” form between knuckle walking apes and bipedal humans.


635 posted on 03/03/2009 1:01:06 PM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: allmendream; metmom

None of which detracts from the point that this intermediate limb of a seal is both a functional leg and a flipper and a seal survives just fine without it being fully a leg or fully a flipper.


“Functional leg” as long as you’re satisfied with that definition of functionality insofar as it hobbles around on the ice and that’s about it. It can’t outrun polar bears, can’t do much of anything but hobble.

But no matter there’s simply nothing whatsover in this world to say it’s “intermediate” other than sheer conjecture.

No telling how many ga-jillions of years we’ll have to wait and see if the seal makes it’s mind up and goes the flipper route or the leg route or just hires out otters to do the hunting for them and stays exactly as it is (as God created them in the first place).


636 posted on 03/03/2009 4:14:14 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: tpanther

And that made perfect sense to raving loons everywhere I suppose.

A seal doesn’t need to outrun a polar bear. Obviously seal survival hasn’t been dependent upon them outrunning polar bears. Obviously a seal is smarter than you about how to avoid a polar bear.


637 posted on 03/03/2009 4:17:00 PM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: allmendream

Of course a seal is smart enough to get away from polar bears, otherwise they’d not be around.

The point though, as it’s been staring you right in the face from the outset, is that their limbs aren’t “functional” beyond hobbling around on land. They’re not in some point along a ga-jillions year timeline in becoming flippers from legs or legs from flippers.

God made them the way they are. Period.


638 posted on 03/03/2009 5:42:21 PM PST by tpanther (The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing---Edmund Burke)
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To: tpanther
My legs are fully functional, but I cannot outrun a polar bear either. A seal gets around on land just fine for what it needs to do.

The point is that seals intermediate limb is not a fully terrestrial or fully aquatic limb, and yet they are perfectly adapted to their lifestyle as not fully terrestrial or fully aquatic.

So the argument that a multi purpose limb would be useless for either is bunk, as thousands of seals can tell you.

639 posted on 03/03/2009 6:05:18 PM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: allmendream; tpanther
So the argument that a multi purpose limb would be useless for either is bunk, as thousands of seals can tell you.

Can you evos do nothing more than create strawmnen to knock down to try to make yourselves look good or educated or whatever, to others?

Sheesh.

Nobody was talking about a *multi-purpose* limb. We were discussing transitional limbs which is not necessarily the same thing. Man's limbs are multi-purpose. Most creatures have limbs that are multi-purpose. Big deal. Multi-purpose does not mean transitional by default.

Nobody said anything about transitional limbs being useless either and yet you keep harping on that as if someone stated it. No one brought it up but you.

I said that a transitional limb does not function as well as a fully formed one for the purposes it's used for. A transitional flipper/limb isn't as useful for walking and running as a fully formed leg nor would it be as useful for swimming as a fully formed flipper. Watching seals lurch along on the ice demonstrates that.

640 posted on 03/03/2009 6:27:41 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: tpanther; allmendream; metmom
I don't understand why God would stick the seals with nonfunctional legs. Or if they're functional enough for God to use, why aren't they functional enough for evolution to produce?

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?:

641 posted on 03/03/2009 6:36:44 PM PST by Ha Ha Thats Very Logical
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To: Ha Ha Thats Very Logical; tpanther
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?

642 posted on 03/03/2009 6:43:02 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom; allmendream

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.


643 posted on 03/03/2009 7:29:05 PM PST by Ha Ha Thats Very Logical
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To: betty boop
Simple is good.

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!

644 posted on 03/03/2009 8:44:50 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop; allmendream; Alamo-Girl; xzins; CottShop; hosepipe; metmom
A good article in Smithsonian magazine: "Darwin was just 28 years old when, in 1837, he scribbled in a notebook 'one species does change into another'...'Cuidado', he wrote in Spanish—'careful'.

"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"?

645 posted on 03/04/2009 5:50:37 AM PST by Does so (White House uncomfortable? Sleeplessness? The 0bama will quit before 6 months are up.)
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To: metmom
OK, so when you ask a question about “what good would a partially formed limb that is transitioning from leg to flipper be?” then I deign to answer, I am the one who brought it up just to make myself look smart and create a strawman?

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.

646 posted on 03/04/2009 7:18:37 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: metmom
So when you ask about ‘the impossibility’ of chromosomal changes for the eleventh or twelfth time (while claiming you never got an answer from an “evo”), and I point out to you AGAIN how it is just a repackaging of the same information and not a third copy or the absence of a second copy of genetic material; will I be the one who brought it up just to make myself look good or educated or whatever and creating a strawman to knock down?

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.

Hilarious.

647 posted on 03/04/2009 7:23:18 AM PST by allmendream ("Wealth is EARNED not distributed, so how could it be redistributed?")
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To: Does so; betty boop; allmendream; xzins; CottShop; hosepipe; metmom; TXnMA; DallasMike
Although evolution is all around us, it remains a "dangerous idea"?

It would say it remains a dangerous idea when it affects the spiritual life of a man.

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:

But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. – Romans 8:9

Or to put it another way, when man holds himself up to be the measure of God, he makes himself his own “god” – and that makes him an idol worshipper and he will suffer the same fate as all idolators.

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. - Revelation 21:8

Man is not the measure of God.

For my thoughts [are] not your thoughts, neither [are] your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For [as] the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. – Isaiah 55:8-9

So whether one accepts or rejects the “dangerous idea” – the vital part is that he knows God is not a hypothesis. He lives. His Name is I AM.

Love Him. Believe Him. Trust Him.

To God be the glory, not man, never man.

648 posted on 03/04/2009 8:17:38 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: Does so; allmendream; Alamo-Girl; xzins; CottShop; hosepipe; metmom; TXnMA; GodGunsGuts
Although evolution is all around us, it remains a "dangerous idea"?

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] Bacon’s 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.

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....

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."

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."

Schönborn continues:

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 don’t know what could count as evidence against actual randomness in the mind of an observer....

...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]

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 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!

649 posted on 03/04/2009 10:45:34 AM PST by betty boop
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To: betty boop
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....

Excellent point, dearest sister in Christ!

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!


650 posted on 03/04/2009 11:03:43 AM PST by Alamo-Girl
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