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Creationism etc

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  • ted.wrinch
    There s an interesting lecture - to me at least - on Australian Broadcasing Corporation TV of Eliot Sober presenting a third option between the positions he
    Message 1 of 10 , Feb 8, 2012
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      There's an interesting lecture - to me at least - on Australian Broadcasing Corporation TV of Eliot Sober presenting a third option between the positions he describes as 'atheistic evolutionism', and 'theistic/creationist rejection of the theory of evolution' (http://fora.tv/2010/04/22/Elliott_Sober_Darwin_and_Intelligent_Design#fullprogram ). He calls this position the neutral one, where evolution (he used the term 'theory of evolution' where I'm abbreviating it to 'evolution') says nothing about the existence of God. He says further that resolving the battle between the creationists and atheists in some amicable manner is important for the future of America. We don't seem to care much about these sorts of issues in Europe and people tend to be enthusiastically atheistic supporters of evolution (pace Dawkins) or follow other perspectives.

      This Hindu perspective, from Wiki, old earth creationism, is interesting and has some similarities to Steiner's view (e.g. man has always existed, though not 'fully formed'):

      "According to Hindu creationism, all species on earth, including humans, have "devolved" from a state of pure consciousness. Hindu creationists claim that species of plants andanimals are material forms adopted by pure consciousness which live an endless cycle of births and rebirths.[2] Ronald Numbers says that: "Hindu Creationists have insisted on the antiquity of humans, who they believe appeared fully formed as long, perhaps, as trillions of years ago."[3] Hindu creationism is a form of old earth creationism. According to Hindu creationists the universe may even be older than billions of years. These views are based on the Vedas, which depict an extreme antiquity of the universe and history of the Earth.[4][5]"

      At the end of the lecture, Sober is asked whether evolution is consistent with the biblical image of the creation of man in God's image with a soul. He says it is and then get's a little uncertain and continues with the notion that though evolution seems true it *may* not be complete; in this context God may have intervened at some point to form the image of man and endow him with a soul; he's not saying he believes this, just that, in his view, evolution doesn't rule it out.

      I regard this as sophistry, a rearguard action by the hard science brigade to prevent revolt amongst the American populace, of whom, on Sober's statistic, 90% believe in a personal God (interestingly only 10% of Science Academy members do). It's equivalent to Gould's NOMA hypothesis: the non-overlapping magisteriums of faith and knowledge, religion and science. It's sophistry because, in the light of his claim to believe that evolution consists of a random, undirected process of mutation, pruned by a naturally selective 'survival of the fittest' (which latter is anyway a mere tautology and not scientifically provable one way or the other), there's no way for a shaping impetus, that could create a being like us, to take place. For such shaping to have occurred, mutation cannot have always been random and without direction, though that's the appearance it apparently has in the lab today. Actually, I'm not convinced that this latter is the case: much evidence for the previously derided Lamarckian theory - for instance in epigenesis - has been emerging in the the last few decades, which was always there, just had been ignored in the past.

      His position on the soul is that he does't know much about it and he *thinks* evolution says nothing about it. He gives the example of the Catholic conception of the soul being implanted in a human at birth. Boy is he being careful not to step on the Catholics' toes!

      Another questioner asks him about the argument of improbability and whether it disproves evolution (segment 22 in the video) - this is the same argument claimed to have been dismissed in that paper Diana-Der Staudi referenced in the debate with Charlie. But The argument he uses in the lecture is a different one: he says to consider the hypothesis that the tossing of a particular coin has the probability of falling a head or tail with probability 1/2 - it's a fair coin. Now consider tossing the coin a thousand times. The chance of a particular sequence turning up is 1/2 to the power 1000, an extremely low probability. Yet, he says, this is not a good reason to reject the hypothesis that the coin is fair. But no one would assume that it is a good reason: for a test of the fair coin hypothesis one needs to look at the total number of heads and tails, which should be roughly equal. On which point I notice that William A. Dembski, one of Sober's targets in writing that piece, says:

      "Probabilists distinguish between outcomes or elementary events on the one hand and composite events on the other. To roll a six with a single die is an outcome or elementary event. On the other hand, to roll an even number with a single die is a composite event that includes (or subsumes) the outcome of rolling a six, but also includes rolling a four or two.

      In the Caputo case, it's not the event E (Caputo's actual ballot line selections) whose improbability the likelihood theorist needs to compute but the composite event E* consisting of all possible ballot line selections that exhibit at least as many Democrats as Caputo selected."

      http://www.arn.org/docs/dembski/wd_anotherwaytodetectdesign.htm

      His notion of a 'composite event' is the same concept I'm describing with the idea of 'look[ing] at the total number of heads and tails'. To check the fair coin hypothesis one must look at the 'composite event' of all possible combinations of equal heads and tails. So, he's independently made the same analysis, and consequent discovery of error, of Sober's approach that I've just done. Just goes to show: the only way to know is to think it out for yourself, something I was never able to get anyone on the Hole to do: they prefer deferring to authorities ('Where's your PhD, Ted', Pete K)

      But the next question is how is his analogy is supposed to apply to evolution: what is he saying here: he doesn't elaborate and never did in the paper either. What I think he's trying to say is that coin tossing is analogous to mutations occurring within evolution, which is supposed to be random according to the theory. So the sequence of coin tosses is equivalent to the sequence of mutations within an organism. And the fair coin proposition is equivalent to the proposition that the mutations are random. But why are we supposed to be interested in proving that mutations are random when we assume this, or perhaps measure it in a lab?

      The questioner had asked about the apparent (im)probability of the sequence of mutations required to achieve an organism, which by definition is not random - it has achieved the goal of producing an (apparent) direction and order out of the supposed randomness of the initial situation. In the theory, of course, this 'direction' (quoted because the theory always says it's only apparent, and really random) is achieved by the Deus ex Machina of 'natural selection'…the struggle for existence in the 'environment' (where any teleological, purposive sounding words like 'struggle' are *supposed* to be merely analogical in some sense). But what is the 'environment'? Everything! All the bio-sphere, the lithosphere, the atmosphere …every damn thing. The whole thing, built on chance and driven by complexity is a 'we have no idea'. This is not to say that evolution hasn't and doesn't happen, just that the current 'theory' is a nice bed-time story that says everything is 'random and complex and what survives is what survives (the tautology of 'natural selection')'.

      T.

      Ted Wrinch
    • ted.wrinch
      This line of thought has other implications. Der Staudi has stated that creationism is wrong, calling its adherents stupid and knuckleheads (see WC message
      Message 2 of 10 , Feb 8, 2012
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        This line of thought has other implications. Der Staudi has stated that creationism is wrong, calling its adherents stupid and 'knuckleheads' (see WC message 7669 for a typical example). But most of the religiously minded people in the world, which means most of the world, are creationists of one kind of another, including orthodox Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Zoroastrians etc. Der Staudi has said on other occasions that he 'takes the spiritual in history seriously' and likes to buttress his credibility in this area by making statements like the below from time to time:

        "..most of the world's population believe in a wondrous variety of spiritual things"

        WC message 11815

        However, if he thinks creationists are 'knuckleheads' then this must be what he thinks of the members of creationist religions, such as the ones I've listed. This contradicts his profession of 'wonder' above, which is to say he is being hypocritical. So perhaps we can addd 'hypocriticalness' to the other attributes of the Zander-Staudenmaier method.

        T.

        Ted Wrinch

        --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "ted.wrinch" <ted.wrinch@...> wrote:
        >
        > There's an interesting lecture - to me at least - on Australian Broadcasing Corporation TV of Eliot Sober presenting a third option between the positions he describes as 'atheistic evolutionism', and 'theistic/creationist rejection of the theory of evolution' (http://fora.tv/2010/04/22/Elliott_Sober_Darwin_and_Intelligent_Design#fullprogram ). He calls this position the neutral one, where evolution (he used the term 'theory of evolution' where I'm abbreviating it to 'evolution') says nothing about the existence of God. He says further that resolving the battle between the creationists and atheists in some amicable manner is important for the future of America. We don't seem to care much about these sorts of issues in Europe and people tend to be enthusiastically atheistic supporters of evolution (pace Dawkins) or follow other perspectives.
        >
        > This Hindu perspective, from Wiki, old earth creationism, is interesting and has some similarities to Steiner's view (e.g. man has always existed, though not 'fully formed'):
        >
        > "According to Hindu creationism, all species on earth, including humans, have "devolved" from a state of pure consciousness. Hindu creationists claim that species of plants andanimals are material forms adopted by pure consciousness which live an endless cycle of births and rebirths.[2] Ronald Numbers says that: "Hindu Creationists have insisted on the antiquity of humans, who they believe appeared fully formed as long, perhaps, as trillions of years ago."[3] Hindu creationism is a form of old earth creationism. According to Hindu creationists the universe may even be older than billions of years. These views are based on the Vedas, which depict an extreme antiquity of the universe and history of the Earth.[4][5]"
        >
        > At the end of the lecture, Sober is asked whether evolution is consistent with the biblical image of the creation of man in God's image with a soul. He says it is and then get's a little uncertain and continues with the notion that though evolution seems true it *may* not be complete; in this context God may have intervened at some point to form the image of man and endow him with a soul; he's not saying he believes this, just that, in his view, evolution doesn't rule it out.
        >
        > I regard this as sophistry, a rearguard action by the hard science brigade to prevent revolt amongst the American populace, of whom, on Sober's statistic, 90% believe in a personal God (interestingly only 10% of Science Academy members do). It's equivalent to Gould's NOMA hypothesis: the non-overlapping magisteriums of faith and knowledge, religion and science. It's sophistry because, in the light of his claim to believe that evolution consists of a random, undirected process of mutation, pruned by a naturally selective 'survival of the fittest' (which latter is anyway a mere tautology and not scientifically provable one way or the other), there's no way for a shaping impetus, that could create a being like us, to take place. For such shaping to have occurred, mutation cannot have always been random and without direction, though that's the appearance it apparently has in the lab today. Actually, I'm not convinced that this latter is the case: much evidence for the previously derided Lamarckian theory - for instance in epigenesis - has been emerging in the the last few decades, which was always there, just had been ignored in the past.
        >
        > His position on the soul is that he does't know much about it and he *thinks* evolution says nothing about it. He gives the example of the Catholic conception of the soul being implanted in a human at birth. Boy is he being careful not to step on the Catholics' toes!
        >
        > Another questioner asks him about the argument of improbability and whether it disproves evolution (segment 22 in the video) - this is the same argument claimed to have been dismissed in that paper Diana-Der Staudi referenced in the debate with Charlie. But The argument he uses in the lecture is a different one: he says to consider the hypothesis that the tossing of a particular coin has the probability of falling a head or tail with probability 1/2 - it's a fair coin. Now consider tossing the coin a thousand times. The chance of a particular sequence turning up is 1/2 to the power 1000, an extremely low probability. Yet, he says, this is not a good reason to reject the hypothesis that the coin is fair. But no one would assume that it is a good reason: for a test of the fair coin hypothesis one needs to look at the total number of heads and tails, which should be roughly equal. On which point I notice that William A. Dembski, one of Sober's targets in writing that piece, says:
        >
        > "Probabilists distinguish between outcomes or elementary events on the one hand and composite events on the other. To roll a six with a single die is an outcome or elementary event. On the other hand, to roll an even number with a single die is a composite event that includes (or subsumes) the outcome of rolling a six, but also includes rolling a four or two.
        >
        > In the Caputo case, it's not the event E (Caputo's actual ballot line selections) whose improbability the likelihood theorist needs to compute but the composite event E* consisting of all possible ballot line selections that exhibit at least as many Democrats as Caputo selected."
        >
        > http://www.arn.org/docs/dembski/wd_anotherwaytodetectdesign.htm
        >
        > His notion of a 'composite event' is the same concept I'm describing with the idea of 'look[ing] at the total number of heads and tails'. To check the fair coin hypothesis one must look at the 'composite event' of all possible combinations of equal heads and tails. So, he's independently made the same analysis, and consequent discovery of error, of Sober's approach that I've just done. Just goes to show: the only way to know is to think it out for yourself, something I was never able to get anyone on the Hole to do: they prefer deferring to authorities ('Where's your PhD, Ted', Pete K)
        >
        > But the next question is how is his analogy is supposed to apply to evolution: what is he saying here: he doesn't elaborate and never did in the paper either. What I think he's trying to say is that coin tossing is analogous to mutations occurring within evolution, which is supposed to be random according to the theory. So the sequence of coin tosses is equivalent to the sequence of mutations within an organism. And the fair coin proposition is equivalent to the proposition that the mutations are random. But why are we supposed to be interested in proving that mutations are random when we assume this, or perhaps measure it in a lab?
        >
        > The questioner had asked about the apparent (im)probability of the sequence of mutations required to achieve an organism, which by definition is not random - it has achieved the goal of producing an (apparent) direction and order out of the supposed randomness of the initial situation. In the theory, of course, this 'direction' (quoted because the theory always says it's only apparent, and really random) is achieved by the Deus ex Machina of 'natural selection'…the struggle for existence in the 'environment' (where any teleological, purposive sounding words like 'struggle' are *supposed* to be merely analogical in some sense). But what is the 'environment'? Everything! All the bio-sphere, the lithosphere, the atmosphere …every damn thing. The whole thing, built on chance and driven by complexity is a 'we have no idea'. This is not to say that evolution hasn't and doesn't happen, just that the current 'theory' is a nice bed-time story that says everything is 'random and complex and what survives is what survives (the tautology of 'natural selection')'.
        >
        > T.
        >
        > Ted Wrinch
        >
      • Maurice McCarthy
        Concerning the non-randomness of variation, there was an experiment in the last 10 years on different strains of E. Coli and it was shown that the amount of
        Message 3 of 10 , Feb 9, 2012
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          Concerning the non-randomness of variation, there was an experiment in
          the last 10 years on different strains of E. Coli and it was shown
          that the amount of mutation increases when they are under stress, e.g.
          by making their environment a little more acidic. This illustrates
          that variation is not random. I'll try to dig out the reference. I
          don't know if the experimenter reached the conclusion that the
          colonies in each petrie dish were acting as wholes in a
          self-supporting manner.

          On another point, the genetic dogma of one gene one protein seems to
          have been bust by the results of the Human Genome Project, amongst
          other research. The same gene can make different proteins and
          causality on the bio-molecular level has been shown to act in two
          directions. The protein can affect the reactions supposedly coming
          from the gene.

          Bravo! They've crushed Dawkins physics envy by pursuing truth in the
          science. The selfish gene is shown to be a falsehood.

          Maurice
        • ted.wrinch
          Yes, and this is the tip of the iceberg (Steve Talbot s commentary and research is a solid, sober source for new insight, and an index to his articles can be
          Message 4 of 10 , Feb 9, 2012
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            Yes, and this is the tip of the iceberg (Steve Talbot's commentary and research is a solid, sober source for new insight, and an index to his articles can be found here: http://www.netfuture.org/ ). There's a lot more surprises awaiting the 'physics envy people', but who, according to the complacent opinion of our resident scholar on WC, aren't actually significant anyway:

            "The very idea that what
            scientists study can be reduced to physics -- of whatever kind -- is by no means
            a consensus held by scientists as such; lots of biologists and chemists and
            others refer to this idea disparagingly as "physics imperialism" (and not a few
            physicists find fault with it as well)."

            Peter Staudenmaier, WC message 12345

            The trouble, however, is that the issue is not really about the envy of the explanatory success of theory in physics but the fact that for comparable results higher up the ontological pyramid one needs to *change one's thinking*; it's really this that blocks the route to the necessary changes. It's hard uncertain work when you're working from the old, familiar paradigms of explanation of the physical world - maths and primary qualities - that have served so well for the last four centuries, towards the new. There's no guarantees that people will make the change - a typical example of the more dogmatic type of individual one frequently encounters can be seen on one of the blogs recommended by a WC denizen: see 'Guy Chapman''s comment at the end of the article at: http://www.james-gray.org/heavenly-beings-and-astral-forces/ . This individual suffers not only from 'physics imperialism' but also a remarkable arrogance, coupled to what must be an astonishingly narrow world-view. In my experience, there are many, many people like this in the West, who are unlikely to want to change.

            T.

            Ted Wrinch


            --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, Maurice McCarthy <manselton@...> wrote:
            >
            > Concerning the non-randomness of variation, there was an experiment in
            > the last 10 years on different strains of E. Coli and it was shown
            > that the amount of mutation increases when they are under stress, e.g.
            > by making their environment a little more acidic. This illustrates
            > that variation is not random. I'll try to dig out the reference. I
            > don't know if the experimenter reached the conclusion that the
            > colonies in each petrie dish were acting as wholes in a
            > self-supporting manner.
            >
            > On another point, the genetic dogma of one gene one protein seems to
            > have been bust by the results of the Human Genome Project, amongst
            > other research. The same gene can make different proteins and
            > causality on the bio-molecular level has been shown to act in two
            > directions. The protein can affect the reactions supposedly coming
            > from the gene.
            >
            > Bravo! They've crushed Dawkins physics envy by pursuing truth in the
            > science. The selfish gene is shown to be a falsehood.
            >
            > Maurice
            >
          • Maurice McCarthy
            Ted, The original paper on heretic mutation was earlier than I remembered. It was called The Origin of Mutants by John Cairns (Nature, 1988) who is or was
            Message 5 of 10 , Feb 9, 2012
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              Ted,

              The original paper on "heretic mutation" was earlier than I
              remembered. It was called The Origin of Mutants by John Cairns
              (Nature, 1988) who is or was working for Harvard Public Health. He
              acquired a strain of E coli with no enzyme to digest lactose and then
              fed them lactose to stress the colonies. I believe the results were
              like this (though this is from Cunningham's book quoting some chap
              called Wagner.)

              Of 787 natural isolates
              40% of old, lactose intolerant colonies increased their variation 10-fold
              13% of them increased their variation 100-fold
              when compared to non-stressed colonies

              The increase in variation disappeared when the same colonies where fed
              what they could digest properly. The research has been confirmed
              several times in the years since. The general conclusion was that
              variation is under genetic control which is likely a self-fulfilling
              presumption.

              Maurice
            • Maurice McCarthy
              Since evolution is a bivalent theory - created variations and only then natural selection - for some dull reason I ve imagined for years that genetics was
              Message 6 of 10 , Feb 9, 2012
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                Since evolution is a bivalent theory - created variations and only
                then natural selection - for some dull reason I've imagined for years
                that genetics was supposed to explain the creative constant upon which
                natural selection then works. Could not have been more wrong.

                To say that some thing is produced randomly can be taken as admitting
                that I have no idea how it happens, what its laws are. I'd always
                thought that the "modern synthesis" of natural selection, genetics,
                statistical methods and systematics (accurate, systematic
                classification of species) of the 1930's had dispensed with purely
                random notion of variation in 19th century Darwinism. Genetics was
                supposed to have saved Darwin's theory but it looks as though a
                certain 'hardening' of the modern synthesis in the 1940's led to the
                dogma of one gene, one protein which was especially rife in the
                1960's.

                It surprised me learn that Cairns work was so late in the day. MInd
                you its heresy may not be that mutation is shown to be non-random but
                that it gives a mechanism to reintroduce Lamarck's theory of inherited
                experience, at least in a certain sense.

                Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                chemistry. There is a "surplus of significance" not explained by these
                methods, to use the phrase of the late, great Francisco Varela.

                The biologist and complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman is of a similar
                opinion, finding that since matter is no longer thought of the
                uniform, inert concept of 19th century but a highly dynamic,
                self-maintaining system then complexity or "order for free" can only
                be prevented in highly constrained processed or simplified thinking.
                (Order for free is against the law of entropy, one of the most
                fundamental in physics, which says that every thing falls apart and
                disintegrates unless you stop it. The heat death of the universe is
                just that unstoppable process.)

                By no means are these thinkers alone. The soul is marching back into reality.

                Maurice
              • ted.wrinch
                The general conclusion was that variation is under genetic control which is likely a self-fulfilling presumption. Yes, Steve Talbot s work is full of
                Message 7 of 10 , Feb 10, 2012
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                  "The general conclusion was that
                  variation is under genetic control which is likely a self-fulfilling presumption."

                  Yes, Steve Talbot's work is full of description of this kind of self modification (he's re-organised the relevant articles onto the Nature Institute website http://natureinstitute.org/txt/st/mqual/ ,and has a culminating one here 'WHAT DO ORGANISMS MEAN? On Making the Genome Whole (Part 6)', http://netfuture.org/2011/Feb2211_182.html). This is non linear and cannot be described solely mathematically. He says in that culminating article:

                  "...Physicists have chosen to pull back from the actual phenomena they are confronted with, viewing them as far as possible through the lens of a language blind to those qualitative, phenomenal aspects of the world where we could expect to trace any sort of a meaningful because. The kind of world they describe reflects in part the restrictions they impose upon their looking.

                  So it is that they aim to describe the world of light and color in terms of colorless "waves" and "particles", or mere statistical non-representations — that is, in a way that makes as much (or as little) sense for someone without sight as for those with eyes to see; and they try to describe a world of sound that is indifferent to the presence of hearing ears. In general, they tell us what the world would be like if it were not like anything at all — certainly not like anything we can know through our senses, and therefore not like anything we can describe or even imagine.
                  …
                  Those who would like not only to re-engineer but also to understand the world have every right to ask: If the inorganic world readily accessible to our perception and theorizing is a world partly characterizable (unlike the living aspects of the organism) by ideas reduced toward a kind of grammar, what is the fuller "speech" implied by the presence of this grammar — the speech of qualitative phenomena from which alone such a grammar could be abstracted? What would we find if we looked where the physicist disdains to look — if we attempted to penetrate physical phenomena with a profound qualitative awareness of the sort that Galileo had already foresworn and the biologist cannot avoid?
                  …
                  Alluding to the void left by the physicist's withdrawal from phenomena into mathematical law, Stephen Hawking once asked: "What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe? The usual approach of science . . . cannot answer"
                  ...
                  The "difficulty" of the organism is really just the difficulty of reducing it to mere physics and chemistry. Yes, very difficult indeed — but that's because the organism is alive, as we are alive, and because every biologist instinctively understands this life as offering more than lessons in physics and chemistry. As for the "nonliving" world: we imagine it is simpler to understand only because we are bewitched by the precision and predictability of the physical laws we find implicit in things — things of whose nature we know almost nothing."


                  The re-introduction of Lamarck's ideas seems likely to happen all over the place. One thing Larmarckianism is is a breaking of the Central Dogma, which says that the genetic information contained in the cell's nuclear DNA can flow only from from there to proteins; there cannot be information flow back from the protein. Barry Commoner wrote a famous article critiquing this 10 years ago: http://www.commondreams.org/views02/0209-01.htm , He points out, amongst other things, that the Human Genome project, that purportedly was to tell us who we are, ourselves on a CD, was only allowed to gain the hype it had by ignoring lots of well established contrary evidence. One such piece of evidence was the work from as long go as '81 that showed that a given 'gene' can result in many different messenger RNA contents, and so many different proteins. And he says:

                  "Moreover, it has been known since the 1960s that the enzymes that synthesize DNA influence its nucleotide sequence. In this sense, genetic information arises not from DNA alone but through its essential collaboration with protein enzymes - a contradiction of the central dogma's precept that inheritance is uniquely governed by the self-replication of the DNA double helix."

                  The sociology behind the GM crop revolution is well described:

                  "'DNA (top management molecules) directs RNA formation (middle management molecules) directs protein formation (worker molecules).' [Ralph W.F. Hardy, president of the National Agricultural Biotechnology Council and formerly director of life sciences at DuPont] The outcome of transferring a bacterial gene into a corn plant is expected to be as predictable as the result of a corporate takeover: what the workers do will be determined precisely by what the new top management tells them to do."

                  The sociological pressure keeping the Central Dogma in existence is likewise described:

                  "Why, then, has the central dogma continued to stand? To some degree the theory has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a discordant fact, is a punishable offense, a heresy that might easily lead to professional ostracism."

                  ..
                  But beyond the traditional scientific economy of prestige and the generous funding that follows it as night follows day, money has distorted the scientific process as a once purely academic pursuit has been commercialized to an astonishing degree by the researchers themselves."

                  As this was the situation only 10 years ago, I hope that your:

                  "Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                  explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                  chemistry."

                  is right.

                  T.

                  Ted Wrinch

                  --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, Maurice McCarthy <manselton@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Since evolution is a bivalent theory - created variations and only
                  > then natural selection - for some dull reason I've imagined for years
                  > that genetics was supposed to explain the creative constant upon which
                  > natural selection then works. Could not have been more wrong.
                  >
                  > To say that some thing is produced randomly can be taken as admitting
                  > that I have no idea how it happens, what its laws are. I'd always
                  > thought that the "modern synthesis" of natural selection, genetics,
                  > statistical methods and systematics (accurate, systematic
                  > classification of species) of the 1930's had dispensed with purely
                  > random notion of variation in 19th century Darwinism. Genetics was
                  > supposed to have saved Darwin's theory but it looks as though a
                  > certain 'hardening' of the modern synthesis in the 1940's led to the
                  > dogma of one gene, one protein which was especially rife in the
                  > 1960's.
                  >
                  > It surprised me learn that Cairns work was so late in the day. MInd
                  > you its heresy may not be that mutation is shown to be non-random but
                  > that it gives a mechanism to reintroduce Lamarck's theory of inherited
                  > experience, at least in a certain sense.
                  >
                  > Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                  > explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                  > chemistry. There is a "surplus of significance" not explained by these
                  > methods, to use the phrase of the late, great Francisco Varela.
                  >
                  > The biologist and complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman is of a similar
                  > opinion, finding that since matter is no longer thought of the
                  > uniform, inert concept of 19th century but a highly dynamic,
                  > self-maintaining system then complexity or "order for free" can only
                  > be prevented in highly constrained processed or simplified thinking.
                  > (Order for free is against the law of entropy, one of the most
                  > fundamental in physics, which says that every thing falls apart and
                  > disintegrates unless you stop it. The heat death of the universe is
                  > just that unstoppable process.)
                  >
                  > By no means are these thinkers alone. The soul is marching back into reality.
                  >
                  > Maurice
                  >
                • ted.wrinch
                  To some degree the theory has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a
                  Message 8 of 10 , Feb 10, 2012
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                    " To some degree the theory
                    has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than
                    science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a discordant fact, is a punishable
                    offense, a heresy that might easily lead to professional ostracism."

                    "If the inorganic world readily accessible to our
                    perception and theorizing is a world partly characterizable (unlike the living
                    aspects of the organism) by ideas reduced toward a kind of grammar, what is the
                    fuller "speech" implied by the presence of this grammar — the speech of
                    qualitative phenomena from which alone such a grammar could be abstracted?"

                    These two quotes are perhaps the signal ones, describing the problem and what is needed to move forward. What is needed is the kind of thing Goethe made a start on two centuries ago. The world as a whole is still waiting for its continuing Central European Goethean revolution. But small steps have been taken from time to time since and the book 'The Marriage of Sense and Thought' is one such step made by scientists and anthroposophists Edelgals et al.

                    But what does the self-described 'radical scholar' Der Staudi say about this problem of scientific and academic self censorship and the need to find a new language for the organic. On the one hand he has declared the work by Edelglas et all 'unscientific' (WC message 21627) and on the other that he supports 'imagination and alternative forms of knowledge', claiming that they are already part of the academy, WC message 22046. This is not 'radical' or 'critical' behaviour it is timorous, conservative and backing of the status quo. It is also, of course, hypocritical and deceitful.

                    T.

                    Ted Wrinch

                    --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "ted.wrinch" <ted.wrinch@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > "The general conclusion was that
                    > variation is under genetic control which is likely a self-fulfilling presumption."
                    >
                    > Yes, Steve Talbot's work is full of description of this kind of self modification (he's re-organised the relevant articles onto the Nature Institute website http://natureinstitute.org/txt/st/mqual/ ,and has a culminating one here 'WHAT DO ORGANISMS MEAN? On Making the Genome Whole (Part 6)', http://netfuture.org/2011/Feb2211_182.html). This is non linear and cannot be described solely mathematically. He says in that culminating article:
                    >
                    > "...Physicists have chosen to pull back from the actual phenomena they are confronted with, viewing them as far as possible through the lens of a language blind to those qualitative, phenomenal aspects of the world where we could expect to trace any sort of a meaningful because. The kind of world they describe reflects in part the restrictions they impose upon their looking.
                    >
                    > So it is that they aim to describe the world of light and color in terms of colorless "waves" and "particles", or mere statistical non-representations — that is, in a way that makes as much (or as little) sense for someone without sight as for those with eyes to see; and they try to describe a world of sound that is indifferent to the presence of hearing ears. In general, they tell us what the world would be like if it were not like anything at all — certainly not like anything we can know through our senses, and therefore not like anything we can describe or even imagine.
                    > …
                    > Those who would like not only to re-engineer but also to understand the world have every right to ask: If the inorganic world readily accessible to our perception and theorizing is a world partly characterizable (unlike the living aspects of the organism) by ideas reduced toward a kind of grammar, what is the fuller "speech" implied by the presence of this grammar — the speech of qualitative phenomena from which alone such a grammar could be abstracted? What would we find if we looked where the physicist disdains to look — if we attempted to penetrate physical phenomena with a profound qualitative awareness of the sort that Galileo had already foresworn and the biologist cannot avoid?
                    > …
                    > Alluding to the void left by the physicist's withdrawal from phenomena into mathematical law, Stephen Hawking once asked: "What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe? The usual approach of science . . . cannot answer"
                    > ...
                    > The "difficulty" of the organism is really just the difficulty of reducing it to mere physics and chemistry. Yes, very difficult indeed — but that's because the organism is alive, as we are alive, and because every biologist instinctively understands this life as offering more than lessons in physics and chemistry. As for the "nonliving" world: we imagine it is simpler to understand only because we are bewitched by the precision and predictability of the physical laws we find implicit in things — things of whose nature we know almost nothing."
                    >
                    >
                    > The re-introduction of Lamarck's ideas seems likely to happen all over the place. One thing Larmarckianism is is a breaking of the Central Dogma, which says that the genetic information contained in the cell's nuclear DNA can flow only from from there to proteins; there cannot be information flow back from the protein. Barry Commoner wrote a famous article critiquing this 10 years ago: http://www.commondreams.org/views02/0209-01.htm , He points out, amongst other things, that the Human Genome project, that purportedly was to tell us who we are, ourselves on a CD, was only allowed to gain the hype it had by ignoring lots of well established contrary evidence. One such piece of evidence was the work from as long go as '81 that showed that a given 'gene' can result in many different messenger RNA contents, and so many different proteins. And he says:
                    >
                    > "Moreover, it has been known since the 1960s that the enzymes that synthesize DNA influence its nucleotide sequence. In this sense, genetic information arises not from DNA alone but through its essential collaboration with protein enzymes - a contradiction of the central dogma's precept that inheritance is uniquely governed by the self-replication of the DNA double helix."
                    >
                    > The sociology behind the GM crop revolution is well described:
                    >
                    > "'DNA (top management molecules) directs RNA formation (middle management molecules) directs protein formation (worker molecules).' [Ralph W.F. Hardy, president of the National Agricultural Biotechnology Council and formerly director of life sciences at DuPont] The outcome of transferring a bacterial gene into a corn plant is expected to be as predictable as the result of a corporate takeover: what the workers do will be determined precisely by what the new top management tells them to do."
                    >
                    > The sociological pressure keeping the Central Dogma in existence is likewise described:
                    >
                    > "Why, then, has the central dogma continued to stand? To some degree the theory has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a discordant fact, is a punishable offense, a heresy that might easily lead to professional ostracism."
                    >
                    > ..
                    > But beyond the traditional scientific economy of prestige and the generous funding that follows it as night follows day, money has distorted the scientific process as a once purely academic pursuit has been commercialized to an astonishing degree by the researchers themselves."
                    >
                    > As this was the situation only 10 years ago, I hope that your:
                    >
                    > "Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                    > explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                    > chemistry."
                    >
                    > is right.
                    >
                    > T.
                    >
                    > Ted Wrinch
                    >
                    > --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, Maurice McCarthy <manselton@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Since evolution is a bivalent theory - created variations and only
                    > > then natural selection - for some dull reason I've imagined for years
                    > > that genetics was supposed to explain the creative constant upon which
                    > > natural selection then works. Could not have been more wrong.
                    > >
                    > > To say that some thing is produced randomly can be taken as admitting
                    > > that I have no idea how it happens, what its laws are. I'd always
                    > > thought that the "modern synthesis" of natural selection, genetics,
                    > > statistical methods and systematics (accurate, systematic
                    > > classification of species) of the 1930's had dispensed with purely
                    > > random notion of variation in 19th century Darwinism. Genetics was
                    > > supposed to have saved Darwin's theory but it looks as though a
                    > > certain 'hardening' of the modern synthesis in the 1940's led to the
                    > > dogma of one gene, one protein which was especially rife in the
                    > > 1960's.
                    > >
                    > > It surprised me learn that Cairns work was so late in the day. MInd
                    > > you its heresy may not be that mutation is shown to be non-random but
                    > > that it gives a mechanism to reintroduce Lamarck's theory of inherited
                    > > experience, at least in a certain sense.
                    > >
                    > > Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                    > > explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                    > > chemistry. There is a "surplus of significance" not explained by these
                    > > methods, to use the phrase of the late, great Francisco Varela.
                    > >
                    > > The biologist and complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman is of a similar
                    > > opinion, finding that since matter is no longer thought of the
                    > > uniform, inert concept of 19th century but a highly dynamic,
                    > > self-maintaining system then complexity or "order for free" can only
                    > > be prevented in highly constrained processed or simplified thinking.
                    > > (Order for free is against the law of entropy, one of the most
                    > > fundamental in physics, which says that every thing falls apart and
                    > > disintegrates unless you stop it. The heat death of the universe is
                    > > just that unstoppable process.)
                    > >
                    > > By no means are these thinkers alone. The soul is marching back into reality.
                    > >
                    > > Maurice
                    > >
                    >
                  • Maurice McCarthy
                    Thanks for the links. I ll have a study. M
                    Message 9 of 10 , Feb 10, 2012
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Thanks for the links. I'll have a study.

                      M
                    • ted.wrinch
                      It s worth pointing out that any Lamarckianism, alternatively, any dilution of the Central Dogma, such as Commoner has amply illustrated exists, undermines the
                      Message 10 of 10 , Feb 10, 2012
                      • 0 Attachment
                        It's worth pointing out that any Lamarckianism, alternatively, any dilution of the Central Dogma, such as Commoner has amply illustrated exists, undermines the notion of random, directionless evolution. This is something else that Der Staudi uncritically and conservatively supports. But it tends to be a standard part of the far left atheist milieu, that he belongs to, and he is most likely unaware how far this notion is from that of a 'rational' biology, that he would otherwise profess to support. He is, in fact, behaving irrationally by supporting perspectives such as that of Sober's.

                        T.

                        Ted Wrinch

                        --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "ted.wrinch" <ted.wrinch@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > " To some degree the theory
                        > has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than
                        > science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a discordant fact, is a punishable
                        > offense, a heresy that might easily lead to professional ostracism."
                        >
                        > "If the inorganic world readily accessible to our
                        > perception and theorizing is a world partly characterizable (unlike the living
                        > aspects of the organism) by ideas reduced toward a kind of grammar, what is the
                        > fuller "speech" implied by the presence of this grammar — the speech of
                        > qualitative phenomena from which alone such a grammar could be abstracted?"
                        >
                        > These two quotes are perhaps the signal ones, describing the problem and what is needed to move forward. What is needed is the kind of thing Goethe made a start on two centuries ago. The world as a whole is still waiting for its continuing Central European Goethean revolution. But small steps have been taken from time to time since and the book 'The Marriage of Sense and Thought' is one such step made by scientists and anthroposophists Edelgals et al.
                        >
                        > But what does the self-described 'radical scholar' Der Staudi say about this problem of scientific and academic self censorship and the need to find a new language for the organic. On the one hand he has declared the work by Edelglas et all 'unscientific' (WC message 21627) and on the other that he supports 'imagination and alternative forms of knowledge', claiming that they are already part of the academy, WC message 22046. This is not 'radical' or 'critical' behaviour it is timorous, conservative and backing of the status quo. It is also, of course, hypocritical and deceitful.
                        >
                        > T.
                        >
                        > Ted Wrinch
                        >
                        > --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, "ted.wrinch" <ted.wrinch@> wrote:
                        > >
                        > > "The general conclusion was that
                        > > variation is under genetic control which is likely a self-fulfilling presumption."
                        > >
                        > > Yes, Steve Talbot's work is full of description of this kind of self modification (he's re-organised the relevant articles onto the Nature Institute website http://natureinstitute.org/txt/st/mqual/ ,and has a culminating one here 'WHAT DO ORGANISMS MEAN? On Making the Genome Whole (Part 6)', http://netfuture.org/2011/Feb2211_182.html). This is non linear and cannot be described solely mathematically. He says in that culminating article:
                        > >
                        > > "...Physicists have chosen to pull back from the actual phenomena they are confronted with, viewing them as far as possible through the lens of a language blind to those qualitative, phenomenal aspects of the world where we could expect to trace any sort of a meaningful because. The kind of world they describe reflects in part the restrictions they impose upon their looking.
                        > >
                        > > So it is that they aim to describe the world of light and color in terms of colorless "waves" and "particles", or mere statistical non-representations — that is, in a way that makes as much (or as little) sense for someone without sight as for those with eyes to see; and they try to describe a world of sound that is indifferent to the presence of hearing ears. In general, they tell us what the world would be like if it were not like anything at all — certainly not like anything we can know through our senses, and therefore not like anything we can describe or even imagine.
                        > > …
                        > > Those who would like not only to re-engineer but also to understand the world have every right to ask: If the inorganic world readily accessible to our perception and theorizing is a world partly characterizable (unlike the living aspects of the organism) by ideas reduced toward a kind of grammar, what is the fuller "speech" implied by the presence of this grammar — the speech of qualitative phenomena from which alone such a grammar could be abstracted? What would we find if we looked where the physicist disdains to look — if we attempted to penetrate physical phenomena with a profound qualitative awareness of the sort that Galileo had already foresworn and the biologist cannot avoid?
                        > > …
                        > > Alluding to the void left by the physicist's withdrawal from phenomena into mathematical law, Stephen Hawking once asked: "What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe? The usual approach of science . . . cannot answer"
                        > > ...
                        > > The "difficulty" of the organism is really just the difficulty of reducing it to mere physics and chemistry. Yes, very difficult indeed — but that's because the organism is alive, as we are alive, and because every biologist instinctively understands this life as offering more than lessons in physics and chemistry. As for the "nonliving" world: we imagine it is simpler to understand only because we are bewitched by the precision and predictability of the physical laws we find implicit in things — things of whose nature we know almost nothing."
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > The re-introduction of Lamarck's ideas seems likely to happen all over the place. One thing Larmarckianism is is a breaking of the Central Dogma, which says that the genetic information contained in the cell's nuclear DNA can flow only from from there to proteins; there cannot be information flow back from the protein. Barry Commoner wrote a famous article critiquing this 10 years ago: http://www.commondreams.org/views02/0209-01.htm , He points out, amongst other things, that the Human Genome project, that purportedly was to tell us who we are, ourselves on a CD, was only allowed to gain the hype it had by ignoring lots of well established contrary evidence. One such piece of evidence was the work from as long go as '81 that showed that a given 'gene' can result in many different messenger RNA contents, and so many different proteins. And he says:
                        > >
                        > > "Moreover, it has been known since the 1960s that the enzymes that synthesize DNA influence its nucleotide sequence. In this sense, genetic information arises not from DNA alone but through its essential collaboration with protein enzymes - a contradiction of the central dogma's precept that inheritance is uniquely governed by the self-replication of the DNA double helix."
                        > >
                        > > The sociology behind the GM crop revolution is well described:
                        > >
                        > > "'DNA (top management molecules) directs RNA formation (middle management molecules) directs protein formation (worker molecules).' [Ralph W.F. Hardy, president of the National Agricultural Biotechnology Council and formerly director of life sciences at DuPont] The outcome of transferring a bacterial gene into a corn plant is expected to be as predictable as the result of a corporate takeover: what the workers do will be determined precisely by what the new top management tells them to do."
                        > >
                        > > The sociological pressure keeping the Central Dogma in existence is likewise described:
                        > >
                        > > "Why, then, has the central dogma continued to stand? To some degree the theory has been protected from criticism by a device more common to religion than science; dissent, or merely the discovery of a discordant fact, is a punishable offense, a heresy that might easily lead to professional ostracism."
                        > >
                        > > ..
                        > > But beyond the traditional scientific economy of prestige and the generous funding that follows it as night follows day, money has distorted the scientific process as a once purely academic pursuit has been commercialized to an astonishing degree by the researchers themselves."
                        > >
                        > > As this was the situation only 10 years ago, I hope that your:
                        > >
                        > > "Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                        > > explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                        > > chemistry."
                        > >
                        > > is right.
                        > >
                        > > T.
                        > >
                        > > Ted Wrinch
                        > >
                        > > --- In anthroposophy_tomorrow@yahoogroups.com, Maurice McCarthy <manselton@> wrote:
                        > > >
                        > > > Since evolution is a bivalent theory - created variations and only
                        > > > then natural selection - for some dull reason I've imagined for years
                        > > > that genetics was supposed to explain the creative constant upon which
                        > > > natural selection then works. Could not have been more wrong.
                        > > >
                        > > > To say that some thing is produced randomly can be taken as admitting
                        > > > that I have no idea how it happens, what its laws are. I'd always
                        > > > thought that the "modern synthesis" of natural selection, genetics,
                        > > > statistical methods and systematics (accurate, systematic
                        > > > classification of species) of the 1930's had dispensed with purely
                        > > > random notion of variation in 19th century Darwinism. Genetics was
                        > > > supposed to have saved Darwin's theory but it looks as though a
                        > > > certain 'hardening' of the modern synthesis in the 1940's led to the
                        > > > dogma of one gene, one protein which was especially rife in the
                        > > > 1960's.
                        > > >
                        > > > It surprised me learn that Cairns work was so late in the day. MInd
                        > > > you its heresy may not be that mutation is shown to be non-random but
                        > > > that it gives a mechanism to reintroduce Lamarck's theory of inherited
                        > > > experience, at least in a certain sense.
                        > > >
                        > > > Still there are now many modern scholars greatly unhappy about an
                        > > > explanation of biological process based on the thinking of physics and
                        > > > chemistry. There is a "surplus of significance" not explained by these
                        > > > methods, to use the phrase of the late, great Francisco Varela.
                        > > >
                        > > > The biologist and complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman is of a similar
                        > > > opinion, finding that since matter is no longer thought of the
                        > > > uniform, inert concept of 19th century but a highly dynamic,
                        > > > self-maintaining system then complexity or "order for free" can only
                        > > > be prevented in highly constrained processed or simplified thinking.
                        > > > (Order for free is against the law of entropy, one of the most
                        > > > fundamental in physics, which says that every thing falls apart and
                        > > > disintegrates unless you stop it. The heat death of the universe is
                        > > > just that unstoppable process.)
                        > > >
                        > > > By no means are these thinkers alone. The soul is marching back into reality.
                        > > >
                        > > > Maurice
                        > > >
                        > >
                        >
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