Discussion of everything related to the Theory of Evolution.
I've always understood evolution as being, in simplest terms, change. In biological terms, it describes how living things change to become better adapted to their environment. The force behind that is natural selection. Sometimes the terms natural selection and evolution are used interchangeably, but I still see evolution as the change and natural selection as the force behind it. The driving force behind evolution is natural selection, and the driving force behind natural selection is variety in the gene pool. I hope that answers your question because if it doesn't then I'm afraid I've misunderstood you in a very big way.
Generally speaking, the more people talk about "being saved," the further away they actually are from true salvation.
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Evolution is change and natural selection/punc. equ. are the two most popular mechanisms to explain this phenomenon on the macro scale within the TOE. The mechanisms are not forces but rather models used in an explanative fashion showing how the force may work. Evolution is a force just like gravity. At least that is my understanding, please correct me if I am wrong. And the force that drives evolution is usually described by evolutionists as blind, unconscious, undirected, and unmotivated just as all the other forces in nature. I think somebody briefly mentioned the undirected part. To ascribe to blind, unconscious, undirected, and unmotivated forces working to keep observable nature working is one thing, and I think under scientific guidelines is acceptable as gravity, whose force can safely be labeled as blind, unconscious, undirected, and unmotivated, has no connection to creating everything I see around me.
However, as soon as you label a creator, whether it be entity, non-entity, or anything for that matter, blind, unconscious, undirected, and unmotivated, or even if you labeled the "creator" intelligent, purposeful, and motivated, in both cases we deal with something outside the realm of science. Its the supernatural vs. the stupidnatural in creation vs. evolution and they both fail to pass the test. The problem with science investigating origins of life and the species is that there MUST be a creator of some sort. "Nature" or the environment are usually the two preferable subjects that serve as evolution's "creator". There is no way around it unless one chooses to be an athiest, and that is not a logical stance. Although, even an athiest has rationale about his "creator" expressed in the idea that he/she/it does not exist. That stance leads to just as much bias as any other. The required "creator" makes science unable to test origins of life or the species due to our bias about the "creator". Some think intelligence, some think stupidity, and some think non-existent, but they all fail the test.
The outcrop is easily detectable. An evolutionist or creationist do not accept contrary evidences. This is ultimately due to how each individual views their "creator" which brings bias into investigation whether it be done on a scientific basis or based on historical facts written in a book.
Do you think if someone with a new model describing the mechanism behind electrical attractions in atomic theory revealed his eperimentation/analysis to us that our biased view of a "creator" would cause an objection to the scientist's ideas? An evolutionist accepts that his/her "creator" uses natural selection, or any other possible mechanism, because they believe in their "creator" and that he/she/it used that mechanism, and, as a result, are inclined to accept evidence based on their preconceived notions of their "creator". This is not science, it is more like religion.
Alex, I think I disagree with you on that point. I think a "driving" force can be traced back beyond natural selection or variety of the gene pool. I think natural selection is just a mechanism of evolution, and variety in the gene pool is actually a bi-product of it.
If you read my too-long post, you'll see that I'm of the opinion that energy, primarily in the form of electromagnetic waves and particles from the sun is the fuel of life and evolution on earth, and that the changing environment is the primary mechanism or mode within which evolution operates. Furthermore, the chemical structures of the molecules life is based around is the final condition that enables evolution to occur.
This of course begs the question, what is the source of the latent energies to be found in the cosmos, but that's not applicable to evolution.
biotchr, I think you're looking for something that isn't there in the theory of evolution. I think you're viewing evolution as an inexplicable phenomenon, a force in and of itself.
That's really not what it is.
Evolution is a combination of the laws of physics and chemistry. There is no "force" that we can measure. I can't take your blood sample and say "ooh the evolution is strong with this one".
Evolution is simply an observable pattern, with complex cause and effect relationships.
It is not an entity, nor a force.
All life is an assemblage of molecules, minerals, and liquids. So is evolution the rule? Or the exception? That's actually kind of funny. It seems we might be approaching a chicken and egg situation. Which came first, evolution or life? But defining evolution as a chemical relationship, not necessarily as being directly reliant on "life" as we define it, can solve that riddle.
Anyhow I've gotten a little off track, and wandered into some random musings.
In short, Evolution does not ACT on organisms, it is a product of random chemical relationships. It is essentially the result of a randomly occuring feedback loop that amplifies and changes as it replicates.
*edit* I'll add in a part of our discussion in the other thread here:
The law of gravity must assume that the attractive force we associate with mass is not caused by a metaphysical factor, in order to seek to further understand it. If scientists had left the theory of gravity as it was, assuming that a creator could account for the unknowns, then Einstein would never have developed his theory of relativity.
Do you see what I'm saying? To analyze something scientifically, you must assume that it isn't simply "created" that way.
To assess the nature of rocks and minerals, one must stop assuming that they are there simply because they were put there by a creator.
Darwin took the first step when he stopped assuming that birds were on islands because God put them there.
Copernicus took the first step when he stopped assuming that god created Earth at the center of the universe.
Mendel took the first step when he stopped assuming that heredity was a function of a creator "creating"
As I said above, evolution is a recognizable pattern, and as we learn more about it, we realize that it's caused by a combination of many laws. I'm glad you use the example of wind, because the two can be correlated in many ways. Wind is not a law of physics, nor is it any sort of constant directional force. It is a biproduct of the thermodynamics of the earth and its relation to the sun. Furthermore, it is controlled by such things as salinity gradients of oceanic waters, gravity, geography, biological factors, and more. There are so many factors that go into wind (look up chaos theory) and weather, yet there are still GENERALLY recgnizable patterns. I'm in Idaho and generally we get wind from west to east or north to south. It varies capriciously at times though.
I can't take this analogy too far, as they are fundamentally different phenomenons, but I just wanted to point out the amazing complexity of evolution, and the fact that it in itself is not a law, but is driven by many.
Whether or not you view evolution as a force or not it still has a cause and effect relationship. By the way I dont see how something is not a force or part of a force if it has a cause and effect correlation. Maybe you can explain that to me. Since evolution has a cause, which you even alluded to, it still is connected to something outside of science. Remember there is SOMETHING at the root of our existence and that SOMETHING is responsible for the creation of life and the creation of the species within the TOE, if evolution is true. Any investigation into what this "SOMETHING" is or how the "SOMETHING" chose to create life and the species is OUT of the scope of science.
By the way it sounds like you use the "environment" as your "creator". You will deny this but the "environment" is still connected to "SOMETHING" that put us here. You are telling me that science has uncovered the way (TOE) in which "SOMETHING" has put us and everything around us here in existence. I dont buy it. Science is not to be used to uncover WHAT put us here nor HOW "SOMETHING" put us here. The "HOW" is especially important because it is connected with SOMETHING that put everything here including the species. How can one figure out "HOW" someone put us here without showing partiality to "WHO" or "WHAT" they think put us here. The "WHO" or "WHAT" causes the "HOW" (TOE) to fail the scientific method everytime whether the "WHO" or "WHAT" is intelligent or stupid, and the "WHO" or "WHAT" is demanded to exist by simple logic.
Again as I have said before, evolutionists persist on using science to study our origins of life and the species supposedly without any handywork from an oustide source. That premise is faulty to begin with because there is no such frame of reference to even associate this idea with. Science has no business in the business of our origins of life or species.
I was aware that my explanation of forces/mechanisms could be traced much deeper than natural selection, but in the interests of brevity I decided not to go there. However, I still think Astus's explanation was much better than my own.
Biotchr, it seems as if your entire objection to evolution is that it, like everything else, can be traced back to a creator. I believe the entire universe, and everything in it, was created by God. How God started life may be outside the realm of science, but if life developed naturally afterwards, then that evolution can be scientifically investigated. If what you say is true, then all of science is just a waste of time, because it can all be traced back to an original cause that lies outside of science.
Evolutionists insist on using science to study the origins of life because science does a very good job of it. Evolution qualifies as science just as much as Newton's theory of gravity or the germ theory of medicine because it can be tested and falsified. It has been tested many times and, as far as I know, has yet to be falsified. I have asked you before to cite a scientific objection, not just claim it isn't science. Please show us a falsifiable hypothesis that you think debunks or at least weakens evolution, and then we'll go from there.
Generally speaking, the more people talk about "being saved," the further away they actually are from true salvation.
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Actually any "scientific" inquiry into how God created life and the species is beyond science's scope due to the existence of God or whoever/whatever you believe in. The very existence of "SOMETHING" makes scientific investigation into how "SOMETHING/SOMEONE" put everything we see around us into existence impossible. You believe in "SOMEONE" (God) who uses evolution to create life and the species. I do not. God, or whoever/whatever you believe to be the "creator", allows for bias to enter into the interpretation/analysis stage and deems all scientific inquiry into the question of the origins of ANYTHING (including life and the species) invalid!
This brings me to my next point in response to your claims that I am condemning all of science. Everything cannot be traced back to a Creator. Gravity is gravity without any inclination or demand of a "creator". Atomic theory can be studied on the basis of charge without any "creator" in the picture. Same with all the other scientific aspects of our world EXCEPT anything having to do with the origins including the universe, earth, topics on the atomic level, life, and the species. Actually when taking into consideration other scientific studies it is easy to see how science and origins do NOT mix because SOMETHING put us and everything around us here. This automatically puts all aspects of origins out of the reach of science.
Now I think I'm the one being misunderstood. Yes, I believe God used evolution, but that doesn't mean I have to constantly refer to God when talking about evolution (although it seems like I do! ) For example, I could describe the ancestry of species as recorded in the fossil record, the dis/advantages of certain genetic traits, or the roles of mutation and recombination/sexual reproduction in producing genetic variety, and none of this mentions God. And my point about all of science falling apart if we trace back to God still stands. In your example about gravity, for example, I could ask, "Who created gravity?" As soon as you answer, "God," or anything similar, I could just say that you have a religious bias and claim that gravity is unscientific. If you don't answer, "God," I'll just keep asking, "Who/what made that?" until you do. That seems to be the logic you're using, since you're saying evolution is unscientific because it's cause is outside science. But just because it's original cause might be outside science doesn't mean evolution itself is as well. If I may be excused for rewording one of your sentences, evolution is evolution without any inclination or demand of a creator.
Once again, please present a scientific objection to evolution. Springer's question about how could feathers have evolved from reptile scales was a good question that we have yet to investigate. Perhaps we could discuss along those lines, instead of arguing about what is and isn't science?
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Which itself is an invalid statement since you assume that apart from a belief in God there is no bias, and I would hold that bias is ubiquitous. To claim a lack of any bias is hubris in the extreme. The stuff is like energy, its around in different forms, different amounts and different states, but its everywhere. I would claim that secular humanism is the dominant "religion" of a good many proponents of evolution and biases their analysis accordingly.
'It is futile to pretend to the public that we understand how an amoeba evolved into a man, when we cannot tell our students how a human egg produces a skin cell or a brain cell!'
Dr Jérôme J. Lejeune
We do not ask "who created gravity" when we test gravity, we study the effects of gravity. If you do study the origin of gravity, automatically you are out of the scope of science. ANY origins in any capacity carries with it the connection to SOMETHING that has put us here. All of the lines of evidences you speak of above are the products of a hypothesis passing through the scientific method when, in reality, it shouldnt. You believe your "creator" used the above techniques in creating everything we see around us, I dont. All of evolution's evidence is declared biased because of its connection to a "creator" of sorts that is demanded.
By the way you believe feathers evolved from reptilian scales not based on evidence but because you believe your "creator" used evolution to do it and therefore any evidences to the contrary are useless.
There is nothing "apart from a belief in God". We just use different names and ideas for "gods" including a most peculiar one called "nothing". I still have yet to figure out the logic behind that one.
I agree with your statement about bias being everywhere which is my central premise. Since we have bias concerning a "creator", which is demanded, we are unable to use science to delve into origins of life and of the species in any scientific fashion. Bias concerning about how the insides of an atom look, or how gravity works are MUCH different than bias in relation to a "creator" who has placed us here, in that, the "creator" is outside the limitations of science.
As for "secular humanism" that is an ufavorable topic for me because of my line of work. Humanism has destroyed my workplace by destroying the rights of authority over its subjects. Humanism ultimately makes the subjects subject to NOTHING other than to themselves. This mindset is wreaking havoc in our public school systems and until we destroy it's hold our schools will remain to be ineffective. What's ironic is that politicians are pushing for school "reform" when what school USED TO BE put us where we currently are. No school reform is needed, and no more money is needed. What we need is what we USED TO HAVE fifty years ago. Unfortunately it is now all but against the law to have that system now. Furthermore, until society is reformed, our schools will continue to fail. Schools havent changed, the morals of our cliental HAVE.
I agree with Jelaneen entirely.
Having said that, The TOE as a truly scientific theory does not recognize a "creative force" as being responsible for evolution in any way. You're mistaken in that perception biotchr.
That ends my participation in this line of conversation, as I've said all I can say.
Thank you for your patience and your willingness help me out. By the way one can deny a "creative force" behind evolution but there is no rationale behind it as SOMETHING put us here. That SOMETHING and the mechanism of that SOMETHING is out of the bounds of science.
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