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Re: [OriginsTalk] Directed or undirected?

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  • Charles Palm
    Jim in Vermont: DIRECTED OR UNDIRECTED? Gluadys and I have gone round and round about what it means to say (as evolutionary biologists do) that evolution
    Message 1 of 61 , Apr 3, 2012
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      Jim in Vermont: DIRECTED OR UNDIRECTED? Gluadys and I have gone 'round
      and 'round about what it means to say (as evolutionary biologists do) that
      evolution (as "explained" by Darwinian theory) is "random and undirected."
      Here's a link to a thoughtful essay by Jay W. Richards that addresses that
      point:
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2012/04/whats_in_a_word_1058121.html

      Signature in the Synteny:
      http://biologos.org/blog/signature-in-the-synteny/
      1 In some ways, comparing the DNA sequence between related organisms is
      like reading alternative history novels. The hypothesis of common ancestry
      between similar organisms makes a very straightforward prediction about
      their genomes: it simply predicts that they were once the same genome, in
      the same ancestral species. This hypothesis also predicts that these two
      genomes, having gone their separate ways in the diverged species, will have
      accumulated changes once they separated. Like an alternative history, each
      genome has the same backstory, and then a history independent from the
      other after the point of separation.

      2 18 million years ago, there were no humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, or
      gibbons on earth. Their last common ancestral species, however, was here.
      Just like for flies, we can trace the changes in the single-file-order of
      the genes for this lineage as well. Let�s examine human chromosome #1 and
      compare it to the order of genes in the gibbon with whom we share that
      common ancestor of almost 20 million years ago.

      3 Not unexpectedly, there is even one case of shuffling between
      chromosomes: some genes that existed as two contiguous blocks in the common
      ancestor 6 million years ago, have become joined into one block in
      humans�the now-somewhat-famous chromosome #2. This chromosome is made up
      of two blocks of genes joined together that are on totally separate
      chromosomes in chimpanzees and gorillas (see below). The fact that human
      chromosome #2 matches two ape chromosomes suggests that it resulted from a
      fusion between two smaller chromosomes like the ones we see as separate
      chromosomes in apes. This prediction was confirmed by DNA sequencing: we
      see all the chromosomal markers we would expect from a fusion event, and
      this evidence is now fairly well-known among followers of the
      creation/evolution discussion.

      Center for Science and Culture:
      http://www.intelligentdesign.org/whatisid.php The scientific method is
      commonly described as a four-step process involving observations,
      hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion. Intelligent design begins with the
      observation that intelligent agents produce complex and specified
      information (CSI). Design theorists hypothesize that if a natural object
      was designed, it will contain high levels of CSI. Scientists then perform
      experimental tests upon natural objects to determine if they contain
      complex and specified information. One easily testable form of CSI is
      irreducible complexity, which can be discovered by experimentally
      reverse-engineering biological structures to see if they require all of
      their parts to function. When ID researchers find irreducible complexity in
      biology, they conclude that such structures were designed.

      Jay W. Richards:
      http://www.evolutionnews.org/2012/04/whats_in_a_word_1058121.html What's
      in a Word?

      Charles P: Please excuse my substitution of CHROMOSOME #2 in place of
      FLAGELLUM.
      1 Now let's say that researchers spend years finding the pathway by which
      this would need to happen, and they determine that getting a working
      CHROMOSOME #2 from some CHROMOSOME #2-FREE species of COMMON ANCESTOR
      requires 153 independent mutations to happen simultaneously. None of them
      individually and no subset provides the POPULATION a survival advantage, so
      an unguided Darwinian process, which lacks the foresight to select that
      functional CHROMOSOME #2 and take the steps necessary to attain it, would
      almost certainly never accomplish the goal.

      2 However, (assuming theism) God could act directly, rather than through
      an additional physical process, to make sure these mutations take place
      when they need to, namely, simultaneously. Let's say that is what happened.
      So the best, correct and complete causal explanation for the origin of
      the CHROMOSOME #2 would be that God directly guided 153 mutations (without
      using another physical mechanism) so that the HUMANS would enjoy a
      functioning CHROMOSOME #2. This wouldn't just be intelligent design, but
      divine design. And given the tightly specified complexity of a CHROMOSOME
      #2 -- the function in this case is the specification -- it would be
      empirically detectable, even obvious, design: real design, real teleology,
      not an unguided Darwinian process.

      Jim in Vermont: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/OriginsTalk/message/28073 With
      that in mind, "the point" of intelligent design - like "the point" of every
      other science -is to improve mankind's store of knowledge, even if a
      "comprehensive examination" lies beyond the reach of a particular line
      of scientific inquiry. Biological research within the Darwinian
      evolutionary paradigm, for example, has given us some insights into how
      life came to be what it is, but it has fallen far short of providing a
      "comprehensive examination" of life's mysteries (that research doesn't, for
      example, examine how life came into being in the first place).

      Jim in Vermont: Intelligent design might provide us with insights that the
      Darwinian paradigm has failed to provide, and it would be quite arbitrary
      and presumptuous to insist that design-theoretic research into
      life's origin and evolution will lead to an epistemic dead end before that
      research has been given a fair chance to succeed (or fail).


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Al Young
      ... . . . . ... rifle. They are both pointing the same direction, the barrels are parallel to the ground and there is no wind. Then they are fired
      Message 61 of 61 , May 5, 2012
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        --- In OriginsTalk@yahoogroups.com, "gluadys" <g_turner@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        >
        > --- In OriginsTalk@yahoogroups.com, "stewart8724" art1st@ wrote:
        . . . .
        >
        > >
        > > Here's a question that I once had a prolonged dispute about.
        > > You have two guns set side by side, one is a pistol the other a
        rifle. They are both pointing the same direction, the barrels are
        parallel to the ground and there is no wind. Then they are fired
        simultaneously, Which bullet hits the ground first?

        They will both hit the ground at the same time. The downward vector
        (acceleration toward earth's center) components are identical as is the
        distance from the ground for both guns. The result would be the same if the
        rifle (or pistol) was fired horizontally and a rock was dropped from the
        same distance above the ground. This is a variation of the old monkey/rifle
        story wherein a monkey drops from a tree and a rifle is fired horizontally
        at it from another tree at exactly the same time. The monkey dies because
        the bullet and the monkey drop at the same rate.
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