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Okay, Now We're Making Progress!

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Posted by Mario Dovalina on July 6, 2002 02:48:48 UTC

We may actually be getting into an interesting debate here. It's refreshing.

***I don't think our views are as different as you think they are.***

Well, judging by the velocity with which you leapt at my throat a few posts ago, I think we have *some* differences. :)

***As far as I'm concerned we have already plenty of evidence that evolution theory is not supported by evidence, but manages to get away with it using clever arguments which are essentially meaningless.***

Sorry, ya gotta give examples. I won't take this as a serious challenge until you get specific.

*** So what the theory really says is that organisms that don't survive, don't survive, and organisms that do, do.***

That is a pretty glib interpretation, I think. A more accurate description is that species who pass their genes on pass on their characteristics, which eventually leads to speciation and adaptation to environmental factors. Now, you might cry "Well, of course, that's so obvious it could never be disproven, and so it's meaningless!" But evolutionary biology alone is not meant to explain WHY life developed or what is behind the evolution (guiding force or no) so much as just describe the process by which it happened. Of course, an actual person needs to have a WHY built into his worldview, so they tack on their own interpretations. Since evolution seems to support atheism and naturalism more than anything else, people equate it with that. But the theory itself is not antireligious, since it doesn't deal with the WHY questions. And just because it doesn't explain everything does not make it meaningless. It just makes it a PIECE of the puzzle.

***they include consciousness as an essential part of the explanation rather than as a superfluous by-product, which is what evolutionists claim. But I'm not selling my ideas, it took me years to develop them and I can't reasonably expect people to understand unfamiliar concepts in a few lines of text. Just look what happened to Dick Stafford.***

Well, again, you have to at least give me the jist of your idea. You can't just say "I have this great idea locked away couldn't explain it easily" and convince me with that. :) At least give me a premise to work off of. What happened to Stafford wasn't that people misunderstood him (which, sure, they did, but that's another matter) so much as it was that he couldn't fend off Yanniru, the Warrior King. At least, that's what I gathered.

***there are better explanations, and it's only the irrational, dogmatic attitude from our leading scientists which prevents those ideas from being explored.***

No true scientist dismisses a theory out of hand. But if you're saying that scientists discard theories that have insufficient evidence or supportive arguments, then well they should. And if you're referring to investigating consciousness, well, that's damn tricky. How would you go about objectively investigating a subjective phenomenon?

***take a look at Rupert Sheldrake's ideas and give me a good reason why his ideas should not be taken seriously.***

I'll take a look. Got any sites with good summaries of his ideas?

***Evolutionists are too concerned with defeating creationism to pay attention to anything else. I find that silly as creationism is already a dead horse***

No scientists take creationism as a serious scientific challenge to evolutionism, and in that sense it is a dead horse. But scientists (and me, very much so) view fundamentalism as a serious and dangerous threat to politics and science in general. I'm worried about fending them off for political purposes, not scientific ones. Fundies scare the hell out of me. I thought it was just a fringe group, but after half the people I talked to about religion my first year of college were fundies, I think there's a LOT more of them out there than we think.

***Why do organisms adapt to the environment rather than simply perish? If an organism is just a bunch of minerals what really distinguishes a bird from a rock?***

Ah, reductionism. My favorite argument on this subject. I am of the opinion that there is no platonic ideal out there fundamentally seperating a bird or a rock, or organic matter from inorganic. If you were to trace the development of life back to its origins, I suspect that there is no one point where you can say "okay, this is alive, but this isn't." I consider the distinction purely human. After all, where do you draw the line, even in the context of your own body? Are you alive/conscious? Is your liver alive? Is a liver cell? A DNA strand? A nucleotide? An amino acid? A complex carbon molecule? A proton? Why would a single celled organism have a consciousness to its own, and yet a cell in your liver would not?

***You may call those questions sophistry; I think dismissing them is just a clever way to solve a problem by pretending it doesn't exist.***

It's not sophistry any more, because now you actually specified some questions/problems. I get a teensy weensy bit peeved when folks just say "you're misguided" and leave it at that. But now we're making some headway.

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