Discussion in 'Why Science Is Wrong... About Almost Everything' started by Sciborg_S_Patel, Jan 7, 2016.
Don't waste your time... there's no point, it's usual Malf ball-bustery
No real point or side. Just thought she was funny.
I agree that evolution from natural selection of DNA mutations (the traditional "blind watchmaker" concept) would be disastrously inefficient in most cases - particularly in larger organisms that have much lower rates of reproduction.
However, I find it hard to know if the extra ways of evolution - epigenetics or the evolution of non-DNA based cellular mechanisms can offer a radical speed-up.
How exactly for example would these produce a Cambrian explosion of new life forms? I mean such an explosion involves multiple instances of organisms evolving extremely rapidly (one step?) into a radically new form. That seems to imply that there a process of preparing for such a transition - accumulating mechanisms that the parent life form doesn't need. Intelligent design might well do that - but explain how that works without intelligence!
I don't know what your concept of mind is. Do you think of it as an epiphenomenon of brain action, or do you think of it as something non-material? If mind evolves by completely different mechanisms because it is immaterial then I can see that this could make a big difference.
Personally, I don't think the human mind (working at its best) could possibly have arrived from any form of evolution that is driven by the needs of survival - that includes NS, but also (I think) any new-synthesis based on epigenetics. The human mind is capable of so much that is not relevant to survival. For that reason, I find the NDE story - that as we separate from the body, we see the brain as normally applying a brake on mental processes, which is then released - much more compelling.
I think the emphasis on intelligence is somewhat of a red herring. With or without it, generating new life forms still requires a mechanism. One example is hybridisation.
Isn't that a bit like saying evolution simply has to be explainable along materialistic lines? If it does need intelligence, who knows what one of those species generation events might look like - presumably not a mating with random crossovers of the genes. Maybe an entire organism is created from scratch and then reproduces normally subsequently?
Thanks for asking. In terms of science, mind needs to be addressed as a measurable phenomena. I am strongly against metaphysical materialism. However, mainstream methodological materialism works in practice and I can correlate with the simpler ideas of leading thinkers in research.
With modern information science we can be a specific and clear about the flow of useful info for organisms, as much as we can track food intake or respiration.
Eric Kandel says; "Mind is to the brain as walking is to legs—".
Mind is a term for an information process with inputs and outputs -- and like physics it has rules for interaction. Science-based process models measure output of mind, just like biophysics measures energy output.
Evolution cannot be modeled without the activity in the infospace of living things - where mechanisms are "virtual machines", information objects and network integration.
Well scientific materialism is fine when it actually delivers definite answers - preferably in terms of gadgets or treatments of undeniable benefit. My objection is with:
1) Promissory science, like that alternative (but materialist) biology that is currently gaining ground. Let it actually explain fast evolution before everyone assumes that it will. Evolution via mutation on DNA plus natural selection was claimed to be adequate to explain everything - gradually people are begining to realise it never was - so I'd rather science lost a lot of its arrogance.
2) Vague explanations that can't actually be turned into products or anything useful. This is not because I only value science in a utilitarian sense, but because I think Academia can persuade itself that it understands stuff - or is gradually approaching an answer - when in fact it isn't even close.
3) If the subject of study is anywhere close to the big bang (should it be real), or relates to other universes - let's get to grips with things closer to home (in both space and time) before indulging in highly speculative theories.
4) Science that depends on debunking large numbers of actual observations.
Not sure whether this is a good fit for this discussion but interesting, nonetheless:
Funnily enough, in the course of my researches, I found both pride and prejudice in bucketloads among the ardent Darwinians, who would like us to believe that if you do not worship Darwin, you are some kind of nutter. He has become an object of veneration comparable to the old heroes of the Soviet Union, such as Lenin and Stalin, whose statues came tumbling down all over Eastern Europe 20 and more years ago.
To argue against Darwinism is one thing (and relatively quaint, as nobody working in that field considers themselves 'Darwinists') but are you suggesting there's no evidence for common descent?
So just for the record (and from a source one would expect to be on your side of the fence on this subject), here's what Wikipedia says:
Ok. Dawkins (in 2003) is the exception to the rule. It wasn't the thrust of my point.
Pretty big exception, I would say ... probably the world's best known Darwinist.
I'll let David answer your main point, however.
I think the real problem is that evolution by natural selection doesn't make sense unless it is extremely gradual. I mean for one species to evolve into something utterly different over a very short time span, it would have to accumulate stuff in its genome ready for the shift, and I am sure it is obvious to you why NS can't help with that process.
Since the fossil record does seem to contain periods where large numbers of species appear very suddenly - the Cambrian in particular - something needs to explain how that is possible.
The more I think about change by natural selection, the less it seems to be a plausible explanation for major developments, and clearly from the links that Stephen has supplied, it is clear that a lot of biologists have reached the same conclusion. My point is that I don't think those 'heretics' have a clear set of ideas to replace evolution by natural selection - but they can point to a lot of complications - such as epigenetics. I think they believe they can solve the problem 'scientifically' more as an act of faith!
I see this context cellular mechanisms- one where physical cellular mechanisms are the only pathway to new and useful phenotypes - as exactly the the "range bound" thinking that leaves the issue unaddressed. The importance of epigenetic activity is not in its physical chemistry!!!!!!!!
Epigentics is a means of bio-signalling and is about COMMUNICATION on a long-term scale. The information that structures functional changes in organisms is prior and epigenetics is a system for adaptive change that carries information from events and environments into the strategic space of mental evolution. Darwin's view of evolution included Lamarckian ideas.
Darwin wrote about mental evolution. Darwinists - are those that study the actual ideas of Darwin and not those who came after with their own versions. I am a strong believer that there is a clear pathway for living things to unconsciously design themselves. (see Darwin on inherited instinct) The key isn't lucky mutations -- its regulatory systems that target real-world biological problems with the information processes powered by life itself.
I'm interested in how you might expand on this. By "unconsciously" do you mean without intent or by accident or by trial and error. I think I agree with you but I'm a bit stuck on that unconscious process. I think of all the things the human body does without the conscious direction of the personality - those bodily functions carry on regardless of wheher the person is asleep or even in a coma.
So do we assume that there is a sophisticated automated control program running in the brain or that there is a kind of consciousness at every level down to the individual cell (or a combination of both with other factors)? I read somewhere that cells have sensors on the outer wall which send signals back to the nucleus. Which, I gather, means that the cells can react and adapt according to external stimuli. So I find myself wondering whether this adaption is undirected reaction or perhaps intelligence-driven and proactive.
I mean that intent, surprise discovery and feedback-over-time; each and all inform the informational tools of living things. Best I steer you to how I have been informed and not ramble around with my own take on things.
Another crappy study gets retracted:
Can you boil that down to something I can actually understand?
What I was pointing out, was that epigenetic markers can get passed on to the next generation, but that as presently understood, these ultimately come off - there is no permanent heritable change.
Of course epigenetic marks signal something - the frequency of synthesis of the corresponding protein!
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