Evolution discussion

Other discussions not related to the Permanent Portfolio

Moderator: Global Moderator

User avatar
dualstow
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 11787
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:18 am
Contact:

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by dualstow » Sat Aug 16, 2014 4:29 pm

Mountaineer wrote: Whether or not shi-tzus and mastiffs have micro-evolved from wolves (not a species change as they can still interbreed) does not seem to me to be proof of much of anything
When you look at those animals, is it such a stretch to think that man and other apes might share common ancestry just as different dog breeds do? Especially considering the overlapping DNA?
, in order for hearing to work, you need 3 "hearing bones" arranged just so, an eardrum held taught with the bones held in place against it just so, a way to transmit the vibration,  a way to transform the vibrations into nerve symbols and a part of the brain to understand these electrical impulses.

So the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.  I'm not coming from the place others on this thread are, but you have to seriously violate occams razor to believe anything other than this was designed.
Firstly, though, Occam's Razor is not absolute. It does not state that the explanation with the fewest assumptions is always the right one. On the contrary. Secondly, if there is a watchmaker (or an earmaker), then we have to find out who made the watchmaker. And that sounds more complaticated than evolution. We have evolution plus the guiding hand, as Mountaineer suggested, of an entity that started it all.

Finally:
A recently discovered intermediate form is the primitive mammal Yanoconodon, from 125 million years ago in the Mesozoic, in which the ossicles have separated from the jaw and serve the hearing function in the middle ear, yet maintain a slender connection to the jaw via the ossified Meckel's cartilage, which in more advanced mammals dissolves during development.[32]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution ... s_and_ears
Last edited by dualstow on Sat Aug 16, 2014 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
RIP Dusty Hill and be well, Bob Odenkirk
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 5:03 pm

doodle wrote:
Darwin was very concerned about the cambrian explosion, the fact that creatures of all types appear very suddenly in the fossil record.  He felt that the fossil evidence was just incomplete though, and that after additional digging, we'd find the transitional forms in previous layers.  But we haven't. 
This is wrong. There are transitional fossils. Also, one has to remember the specific conditions necessary to form fossils....they are somewhat rare.

I also don't know what happened before the Big Bang, or other such questions but why does one have to insert God into the equation? This is what humans have always done when we didn't understand something.....it's a stupid habit.
I see it the opposite way.  Humans, far from inserting God into everything, are actively attempting to redefine reality by coming up with purely naturalistic worldviews.  For thousands of years, people understood that the world was created.  The very first humans on earth possessed the creation story, and passed it down through the generations.  The creation itself obviously supported the creation story.  But this didn't work for humanists.  They needed a new story, one that didn't depend on God.    They didn't then just stumble across evolution as the fossil record was examined.  Evolution was, and remains, a desperate attempt to explain our existence in the absence of a creator.  There is a seemingly boundless faith in long timelines and random chance to explain everything in existence.  Despite repeatedly running into problems that don't support the theory, like the cambrian explosion or a lack of transitional fossils, evolutionists desperately cling to the theory and continue to present it as reality to society. 

Regarding transitional forms, there should be as many in the fossil record as there are recognizable forms.  Instead, we have the cambrian explosion which supports creation much more than it does evolution.  The big bang theory and present expanding universe both point to a beginning that makes no sense in a naturalistic framework.

For more on transitional forms, see this article:
http://www.rae.org/pdf/FAQ01.pdf
The number of intermediate varieties, which have formerly existed on the earth, (must) be truly
enormous. Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such
intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain;
and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my
theory.
Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 5:22 pm

So-called vestigial structures or organs is another interesting topic.  Humans, in our typical arrogance, have several times declared a human organ to be vestigial, only later to discover its purpose.  Examples include the spleen, appendix, tonsils. 
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
WildAboutHarry
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 1090
Joined: Wed May 04, 2011 9:35 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by WildAboutHarry » Sat Aug 16, 2014 7:21 pm

[quote=Desert]Regarding transitional forms, there should be as many in the fossil record as there are recognizable forms.  Instead, we have the cambrian explosion which supports creation much more than it does evolution.[/quote]

Dualstow has it right.  Fossilization for anything is a rare occurrence.  Soft-bodied things rarely leave fossils. 

And the concept of transitional forms is a human construct.  Life (and evolution) is a continuum.
It is the settled policy of America, that as peace is better than war, war is better than tribute.  The United States, while they wish for war with no nation, will buy peace with none"  James Madison
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 7:34 pm

WildAboutHarry wrote:
Desert wrote:Regarding transitional forms, there should be as many in the fossil record as there are recognizable forms.  Instead, we have the cambrian explosion which supports creation much more than it does evolution.
Dualstow has it right.  Fossilization for anything is a rare occurrence.  Soft-bodied things rarely leave fossils. 

And the concept of transitional forms is a human construct.  Life (and evolution) is a continuum.
Well, I agree that transitional forms are a human construct.  But you can't defend evolution without them.  If a life form gradually evolves from a fish to a land animal, we have to have millions of years of fish with little legs crawling the earth.  Maybe a fish with one leg, later a fish with two legs, etc.  Then a big hairy fish, and then finally Harry Brown. 
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
Benko
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 1862
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:40 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Benko » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:11 pm

Benko wrote:
dualstow wrote: But jaw parts can morph into hearing bones
The point is to use hearing as an example, in order for hearing to work, you need 3 "hearing bones" arranged just so, an eardrum held taught with the bones held in place against it just so, a way to transmit the vibration,  a way to transform the vibrations into nerve symbols and a part of the brain to understand these electrical impulses.

So the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.
This is the bottom line:

the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.

I have no clue what the explanation is, nor do I need to. I only know that  Darwinian evolution, as best I understand, can't really explain things like this which include the hearing mechanism, the visual system (from an anatomic point of view), and many other aspects from e.g. a physiological point of view.  So I'm left saying I don't know what caused this, but planning by whatever (god, aliens, skynet, Hal from 2001) seems more likely.  I'm open to other possibilities, but unless this is addressed, there is a whopping hole in evolution as an answer. 

NB:  I totally understand that evolution could certainly be true for everything and the answer to this solved at some later date and that this does not disprove evolution.  IT is just that for now, one can't say it answers al the questions either.
Last edited by Benko on Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
It was good being the party of Robin Hood. Until they morphed into the Sheriff of Nottingham
User avatar
doodle
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4626
Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:17 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by doodle » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:21 pm

The insertion of God as an answer as to how we got here is a cop out answer for something which we don't exactly know. In the meantime, there is plenty of hard evidence which points towards evolution and absolutely none which points towards the existence of God. It's perfectly fine for someone to say that they don't know how humans got here....or that the present theories are lacking.....it's a completely different story to give a faith based answer for which no evidence exists. Even if you could show that all the creatures appeared simultaneously it still wouldn't be evidence for a god.....it's just as plausible to say that aliens dropped them off here.
All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone. - Blaise Pascal
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:50 pm

doodle wrote: The insertion of God as an answer as to how we got here is a cop out answer for something which we don't exactly know. In the meantime, there is plenty of hard evidence which points towards evolution and absolutely none which points towards the existence of God. It's perfectly fine for someone to say that they don't know how humans got here....or that the present theories are lacking.....it's a completely different story to give a faith based answer for which no evidence exists. Even if you could show that all the creatures appeared simultaneously it still wouldn't be evidence for a god.....it's just as plausible to say that aliens dropped them off here.
I think I'd agree with your last sentence, except for all the other evidence for God's existence, and a decided lack of evidence for aliens planting life on earth.  I think you need to consider the various evidences of God's existence and look at them in their totality. 
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:55 pm

Benko wrote:
Benko wrote:
dualstow wrote: But jaw parts can morph into hearing bones
The point is to use hearing as an example, in order for hearing to work, you need 3 "hearing bones" arranged just so, an eardrum held taught with the bones held in place against it just so, a way to transmit the vibration,  a way to transform the vibrations into nerve symbols and a part of the brain to understand these electrical impulses.

So the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.
This is the bottom line:

the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.

I have no clue what the explanation is, nor do I need to. I only know that  Darwinian evolution, as best I understand, can't really explain things like this which include the hearing mechanism, the visual system (from an anatomic point of view), and many other aspects from e.g. a physiological point of view.  So I'm left saying I don't know what caused this, but planning by whatever (god, aliens, skynet, Hal from 2001) seems more likely.  I'm open to other possibilities, but unless this is addressed, there is a whopping hole in evolution as an answer. 

NB:  I totally understand that evolution could certainly be true for everything and the answer to this solved at some later date and that this does not disprove evolution.  IT is just that for now, one can't say it answers al the questions either.
I like this summary.  I lived with something similar for many years.  Evolution theory was terribly lacking.  The religious folks were crazy.  So I just left the issue of origins open in the back of my mind, but with a bent toward thinking that some sort of intelligence was likely involved.  But that last part nagged at me, and ultimately was at least partially involved in my conversion to a belief system I formerly hated at least as much as Doodle does now. 
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
WildAboutHarry
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 1090
Joined: Wed May 04, 2011 9:35 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by WildAboutHarry » Sat Aug 16, 2014 9:33 pm

Well, I agree that transitional forms are a human construct.  But you can't defend evolution without them.  If a life form gradually evolves from a fish to a land animal, we have to have millions of years of fish with little legs crawling the earth.  Maybe a fish with one leg, later a fish with two legs, etc.  Then a big hairy fish, and then finally Harry Brown.
You forgot the vestigial "e".  :)
It is the settled policy of America, that as peace is better than war, war is better than tribute.  The United States, while they wish for war with no nation, will buy peace with none"  James Madison
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sat Aug 16, 2014 9:37 pm

WildAboutHarry wrote:
Well, I agree that transitional forms are a human construct.  But you can't defend evolution without them.  If a life form gradually evolves from a fish to a land animal, we have to have millions of years of fish with little legs crawling the earth.  Maybe a fish with one leg, later a fish with two legs, etc.  Then a big hairy fish, and then finally Harry Brown.
You forgot the vestigial "e".  :)
LOL

Yes I did!
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
Snoopy
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 4:14 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Snoopy » Sat Aug 16, 2014 11:08 pm

If all life has indeed evolved from some giant bag of particles, then logically, no rational thought is possible.

Therefore, because one is even able to state the proposition, "God does not exist", he thus proves God's existence.
I just don't have time to get in a hurry.
User avatar
dualstow
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 11787
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:18 am
Contact:

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by dualstow » Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:27 am

Benko wrote: This is the bottom line:

the issue is that you need to evolve many many complicated things all of which work together (if engineered just so) but which are useless by themselves.

I have no clue what the explanation is, nor do I need to. I only know that  Darwinian evolution, as best I understand, can't really explain things like this which include the hearing mechanism, the visual system (from an anatomic point of view), and many other aspects from e.g. a physiological point of view.  So I'm left saying I don't know what caused this, but planning by whatever (god, aliens, skynet, Hal from 2001) seems more likely.  I'm open to other possibilities, but unless this is addressed, there is a whopping hole in evolution as an answer. 

NB:  I totally understand that evolution could certainly be true for everything and the answer to this solved at some later date and that this does not disprove evolution.  IT is just that for now, one can't say it answers al the questions either.
Benko, I like that last part because the earlier paragraph sounds like "I don't get it, therefore the explanation is not complete." I certainly don't understand every detail of evolution, though not for lack of trying. Science is of course an ongoing explanation, and I think we've only begun to crack the code. Significantly, though, I have seen enough evidence to be convinced.

There is the old argument that begins, "What good is five percent of an eye?" (Answer: better than zero percent!) And with hearing bones and other specialized parts, it is tempting to say they are designed by a sentient being rather than simple physical laws acting on biology (biophysics) over millions of years. Just as you leave it open that evolution could be the answer, I have to concede that there could be an alien designer. But then who designed the designer?

Speaking of simple physical laws, I love the opening to one of Richard Dawkins' books that talks about how the tide can arrange stones on a beach. He suggests that a primitive tribesman might look at the orderliness of it and draw the conclusion that a god made it happen, while we will smile smugly and explain how a completely natural process brought about that order. We may know a lot more than those primitive tribesmen but with hearing bones we might not totally grasp the "tide" that made them. But someone out there might.

Furthermore, the reason I chose hearing bones as a example is because while they may look like they were specifically designed for hearing, we can see that some of them were in fact jaw bones. Nature is not efficient in this way, but it loves redundancy and multipurposeness. That's why we swallow and breath with the same throat, whereas a designer could have circumvented the possibility of choking on tater tots.

Whether we were designed or evolved, it gives me a sense of wonder to think about how we came here from Nothingness.
Last edited by dualstow on Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
RIP Dusty Hill and be well, Bob Odenkirk
User avatar
Mountaineer
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4434
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:54 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Mountaineer » Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:19 am

Could someone give me an reasonable explanation for how two fish mutated at essentially the same time and in the same vast oceanic location to have lungs instead of gills, sprouted legs so they could crawl onto dry land and not drown, and then found each other, mated and produced more little fish-based things with lungs and legs to continue the process? 

And, a related followup question concerning DNA - if the mutated fish were able to reproduce fish-things that had lungs and legs, why don't we see evidence today of mutated humans mating and producing more mutated humans like them (e.g. a man and a woman, each a thalidomide product with deformed arms, do not seem to produce children with deformed arms ... at least I think that is correct.  Please pardon me if this is a poor example, I certainly do not profess expertise in biology.)?
http://www.thalidomide.ca/cause-second- ... h-defects/

... Mountaineer
Last edited by Mountaineer on Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
What you revere you resemble, either for ruin or for restoration. G. K. Beale
User avatar
doodle
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4626
Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:17 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by doodle » Sun Aug 17, 2014 6:10 am

Snoopy wrote: If all life has indeed evolved from some giant bag of particles, then logically, no rational thought is possible.

Therefore, because one is even able to state the proposition, "God does not exist", he thus proves God's existence.
Unicorns do not exist.....did I just prove their existence?
All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone. - Blaise Pascal
User avatar
doodle
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4626
Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:17 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by doodle » Sun Aug 17, 2014 6:21 am

Mountaineer wrote: Could someone give me an reasonable explanation for how two fish mutated at essentially the same time and in the same vast oceanic location to have lungs instead of gills, sprouted legs so they could crawl onto dry land and not drown, and then found each other, mated and produced more little fish-based things with lungs and legs to continue the process? 

And, a related followup question concerning DNA - if the mutated fish were able to reproduce fish-things that had lungs and legs, why don't we see evidence today of mutated humans mating and producing more mutated humans like them (e.g. a man and a woman, each a thalidomide product with deformed arms, do not seem to produce children with deformed arms ... at least I think that is correct.  Please pardon me if this is a poor example, I certainly do not profess expertise in biology.)?
http://www.thalidomide.ca/cause-second- ... h-defects/

... Mountaineer
And 4000 years ago your question would have been "can someone please explain how thunder and lightning exist?" I can't understand it and there is no perfect scientific evidence so therefore they must be created by the Gods. Just cause you cannot conceive of how something is possible doesn't mean it isn't. To a child, a magicians tricks look like true miracles and an especially amazing trick might even convince an adult that this person had superhuman powers.....however the truth is that they are quite simple once one is explained how it was done.
All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone. - Blaise Pascal
User avatar
Jan Van
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 717
Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2010 5:42 am
Location: Charlotte, NC

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Jan Van » Sun Aug 17, 2014 6:39 am

doodle wrote:
Snoopy wrote: If all life has indeed evolved from some giant bag of particles, then logically, no rational thought is possible.

Therefore, because one is even able to state the proposition, "God does not exist", he thus proves God's existence.
Unicorns do not exist.....did I just prove their existence?
God exists, he even has a Twitter account. And today at 2:14am He Tweeted...
@TheTweetOfGod wrote:Can't you all just get along? No. No you can't.
... which proves he has been reading this thread!
"Well, if you're gonna sin you might as well be original" -- Mike "The Cool-Person"
"Yeah, well, that’s just, like, your opinion, man" -- The Dude
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sun Aug 17, 2014 8:31 am

What good is 5% of an eye? 

This 5% of an eye would also of course have its downsides, probably additional energy consumption, reduced power to weight ratio, opening for infection, etc.  So somehow this 5% of an eye would have to deliver benefits exceeding its costs.  And also, 5% is the wrong question, because 5% of an eye would never appear in a single mutation.  In fact, 5% of an eye is an extremely complex system that would require (if one has faith in time and mutation) millions of years to form.  So we'd need to figure out how .005% of an eye was beneficial.  What would .005% of an eye look like?  Evolutionists believe that the eye preceded the brain, so let's start with the outer surface of the eye.  Perhaps it started as just an opening.  I think that's reasonable.  There were just a small hole in the outer surface of the creature that light could enter, along with microbes, etc.  What was the benefit of that small opening?  Of course there was none.  It was a negative mutation, just like the vast majority of mutations are, and it ended with the early death of the brainless creature, and the evolution of the eye was put on hold.  But the NEXT one, that one was successful.  And not just for a little while.  These little brainless creatures with small flaws in their outer shell managed to breed with one another and develop a slightly "smarter" little defect.  A few hundred million years later, we had the eye we all enjoy today.  And a brain to go along with it, fortunately. 
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
User avatar
dualstow
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 11787
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:18 am
Contact:

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by dualstow » Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:13 am

Desert wrote: So somehow this ... would have to deliver benefits exceeding its costs.

But is that how nature works? Or does a mutation just have to confer an advantage over the critter's peers, in say avoiding prey, attracting mates, finding food.
In fact, 5% of an eye is an extremely complex system that would require (if one has faith in time and mutation) millions of years to form.
... Perhaps it started as just an opening.
It's just an arbitrary number. It may have been started by Stephen Jay Gould. Can't remember.

I think most scientists agree that it likely started with a light-sensitive patch of skin or other exterior tissue. Nothing complex.
RIP Dusty Hill and be well, Bob Odenkirk
User avatar
Mountaineer
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4434
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:54 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Mountaineer » Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:42 am

doodle wrote:
Mountaineer wrote: Could someone give me an reasonable explanation for how two fish mutated at essentially the same time and in the same vast oceanic location to have lungs instead of gills, sprouted legs so they could crawl onto dry land and not drown, and then found each other, mated and produced more little fish-based things with lungs and legs to continue the process? 

And, a related followup question concerning DNA - if the mutated fish were able to reproduce fish-things that had lungs and legs, why don't we see evidence today of mutated humans mating and producing more mutated humans like them (e.g. a man and a woman, each a thalidomide product with deformed arms, do not seem to produce children with deformed arms ... at least I think that is correct.  Please pardon me if this is a poor example, I certainly do not profess expertise in biology.)?
http://www.thalidomide.ca/cause-second- ... h-defects/

... Mountaineer
And 4000 years ago your question would have been "can someone please explain how thunder and lightning exist?" I can't understand it and there is no perfect scientific evidence so therefore they must be created by the Gods. Just cause you cannot conceive of how something is possible doesn't mean it isn't. To a child, a magicians tricks look like true miracles and an especially amazing trick might even convince an adult that this person had superhuman powers.....however the truth is that they are quite simple once one is explained how it was done.
Does this mean you don't know how to answer my questions of Today?  Who knows what my question would have been 4000 years ago - except for the Creator whose truth is always there for us to hear.

...Mountaineer
What you revere you resemble, either for ruin or for restoration. G. K. Beale
Pet Hog
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 220
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 4:08 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Pet Hog » Sun Aug 17, 2014 2:09 pm

Mountaineer wrote: Could someone give me an reasonable explanation for how two fish mutated at essentially the same time and in the same vast oceanic location to have lungs instead of gills, sprouted legs so they could crawl onto dry land and not drown, and then found each other, mated and produced more little fish-based things with lungs and legs to continue the process?
The reason why no one can explain your idea of evolution is that it is not how evolution works.  Nobody is claiming that evolution occurs through two fish suddenly mutating during their adult lives and then they meet and have mutant fish sex.  Instead, mutant fish are born with the mutation in their DNA.  A pregnant fish can give birth to thousands of eggs.  It is possible that a single fish birthed two mutants at the same time (twins?).  They had a sexual advantage over their siblings and peers and then mated to produce thousands of offspring that featured the advantageous mutation.  Over a few generations, the mutant fish consumed all the resources and the non-mutants died out, being unable to compete with their superior brethren.  Maybe the sexual advantage was that they could use their fins as legs and so they could crawl one inch up a riverbed and eat some food unavailable to their peers.  Maybe after thousands of generations a lucky supermutant fish could crawl two inches up the riverbed and, consequently, use that advantage to wipe out the genes from all his ancestors and father a new strain of fish that only lived on and near riverbanks.
Mountaineer wrote:And, a related followup question concerning DNA - if the mutated fish were able to reproduce fish-things that had lungs and legs, why don't we see evidence today of mutated humans mating and producing more mutated humans like them (e.g. a man and a woman, each a thalidomide product with deformed arms, do not seem to produce children with deformed arms ... at least I think that is correct.  Please pardon me if this is a poor example, I certainly do not profess expertise in biology.)?
http://www.thalidomide.ca/cause-second- ... h-defects/
Thalidomide was a drug taken by mothers to overcome morning sickness.  That means that the gestating fetus had normal, non-mutated DNA before it was exposed to the drug.  The deformation arose from the interaction of thalidomide with a protein in the fetus's body that is responsible for limb growth.  Any mutation of the limbs did not result from a mutation of the DNA.  Therefore, any child of a thalidomide victim would have normal DNA.

By the way, mutated humans do mate and produce mutated offspring all the time.  That's exactly the mechanism of evolution!
User avatar
Mountaineer
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 4434
Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:54 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Mountaineer » Sun Aug 17, 2014 2:38 pm

Pet Hog wrote:
Mountaineer wrote: Could someone give me an reasonable explanation for how two fish mutated at essentially the same time and in the same vast oceanic location to have lungs instead of gills, sprouted legs so they could crawl onto dry land and not drown, and then found each other, mated and produced more little fish-based things with lungs and legs to continue the process?
The reason why no one can explain your idea of evolution is that it is not how evolution works.  Nobody is claiming that evolution occurs through two fish suddenly mutating during their adult lives and then they meet and have mutant fish sex.  Instead, mutant fish are born with the mutation in their DNA.  A pregnant fish can give birth to thousands of eggs.  It is possible that a single fish birthed two mutants at the same time (twins?).  They had a sexual advantage over their siblings and peers and then mated to produce thousands of offspring that featured the advantageous mutation.  Over a few generations, the mutant fish consumed all the resources and the non-mutants died out, being unable to compete with their superior brethren.  Maybe the sexual advantage was that they could use their fins as legs and so they could crawl one inch up a riverbed and eat some food unavailable to their peers.  Maybe after thousands of generations a lucky supermutant fish could crawl two inches up the riverbed and, consequently, use that advantage to wipe out the genes from all his ancestors and father a new strain of fish that only lived on and near riverbanks.
Mountaineer wrote:And, a related followup question concerning DNA - if the mutated fish were able to reproduce fish-things that had lungs and legs, why don't we see evidence today of mutated humans mating and producing more mutated humans like them (e.g. a man and a woman, each a thalidomide product with deformed arms, do not seem to produce children with deformed arms ... at least I think that is correct.  Please pardon me if this is a poor example, I certainly do not profess expertise in biology.)?
http://www.thalidomide.ca/cause-second- ... h-defects/
Thalidomide was a drug taken by mothers to overcome morning sickness.  That means that the gestating fetus had normal, non-mutated DNA before it was exposed to the drug.  The deformation arose from the interaction of thalidomide with a protein in the fetus's body that is responsible for limb growth.  Any mutation of the limbs did not result from a mutation of the DNA.  Therefore, any child of a thalidomide victim would have normal DNA.

By the way, mutated humans do mate and produce mutated offspring all the time.  That's exactly the mechanism of evolution!
Pet Hog,

Thank you for the reply.  It is very interesting, a very interesting hypothesis.  The second subject dealing with thalidomide makes sense.  I can buy that one as I expect it is reproduceable in a controlled experiment (Yuck to ponder the ethics of that one!).  The first, as I said, very interesting hypothesis.  But to me, it does not seem nearly as likely as God's story to us on how it happened (the fishes taken in the context of the whole universe and everything in it and how that universe operates on a razor's edge).  Thanks again for taking the time to respond.

... Mountaineer
Last edited by Mountaineer on Sun Aug 17, 2014 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
What you revere you resemble, either for ruin or for restoration. G. K. Beale
Pet Hog
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 220
Joined: Tue May 28, 2013 4:08 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Pet Hog » Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:39 pm

Mountaineer wrote: Thank you for the reply.  It is very interesting, a very interesting hypothesis.  The second subject dealing with thalidomide makes sense.  I can buy that one as I expect it is reproduceable in a controlled experiment (Yuck to ponder the ethics of that one!).  The first, as I said, very interesting hypothesis.  But to me, it does not seem nearly as likely as God's story to us on how it happened (the fishes taken in the context of the whole universe and everything in it and how that universe operates on a razor's edge).  Thanks again for taking the time to respond.
You are welcome.  I'm not a geneticist, but I believe my "very interesting hypothesis" is, in a nutshell, the theory of evolution, which, as far as I am aware, has not been disproved experimentally.

I have a question for you, Mountaineer -- and for anyone else who doesn't believe in evolution.  If you and I were brought back to life a million years from now, do you think we would we recognize every species of animal and plant on Earth, unchanged from how they look today?  Would there be any new species?  That is, will evolution occur in the future, even though it hasn't in the past?  I am presuming that God makes no interventions and that today's living creatures just keep on reproducing with their current DNA.
User avatar
Benko
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 1862
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:40 am

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Benko » Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:14 pm

Pet Hog wrote: You are welcome.  I'm not a geneticist, but I believe my "very interesting hypothesis" is, in a nutshell, the theory of evolution, which, as far as I am aware, has not been disproved experimentally.
Because there is no proof that it is wrong it must be true? 

Evolution explains a lot and to that degree "works".  But there are some whopping holes i.e. things that it seems very unlikely to be explainable by the same mechanism that explains the rest.  Anyone can be convinced of anything but that does not mean it is true.
It was good being the party of Robin Hood. Until they morphed into the Sheriff of Nottingham
User avatar
Desert
Executive Member
Executive Member
Posts: 3253
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2010 2:39 pm

Re: Evolution discussion

Post by Desert » Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:20 pm

dualstow wrote:
Desert wrote: So somehow this ... would have to deliver benefits exceeding its costs.

But is that how nature works? Or does a mutation just have to confer an advantage over the critter's peers, in say avoiding prey, attracting mates, finding food.
In fact, 5% of an eye is an extremely complex system that would require (if one has faith in time and mutation) millions of years to form.
... Perhaps it started as just an opening.
It's just an arbitrary number. It may have been started by Stephen Jay Gould. Can't remember.

I think most scientists agree that it likely started with a light-sensitive patch of skin or other exterior tissue. Nothing complex.
Yeah, I didn't intend to be offensive about the 5%, I just wanted to try to state just how complex the eye and optic nerve, etc. really is. 

And regarding a light-sensitive patch of skin, I think such a structure would be extremely complex.  Maybe not relative to other body structures, but still enormously complex.  Where does the faith in random mutation over long times come from?  It's an interesting theory, but it simply makes no sense to me.  And of course none of it begins to explain the formation of the first living, reproducing cell.  How in the world could that just happen?  A reproducing cell ... thing of the enormous complexity in that. 

By the way, I'm currently reading a book by atheist author Thomas Nagel called "Mind & Cosmos, Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False."  It's been a great read so far; I'll write a bit of a summary here when I'm done reading it. 

Edited to add this link with a brief description of irreducible complexity, and the complexity of a single celled organism. 
http://www.ideacenter.org/contentmgr/sh ... php/id/840

My take on evolution is basically this:
1.  The basic concept makes little to no common sense.  Mutations are overwhelmingly negative, not positive, and the series of positive mutations required to produce even small improvements in a life form are extremely unlikely.
2.  Evolution depends on the existence of reproducing life in the first place.  It's not sensible to believe that the level of complexity contained in a single-cell, reproducing organism somehow just happened from some sort of soup. 
3.  Evolution depends on long time frames to do the heavy lifting.  The more preposterous the claim, the more zeroes behind the number of years it forces.  But time by itself does not produce complex designs.  In fact, entropy increases over time, and order decreases over time. 
4.  Evolution was birthed by man's need to explain the wonder of ourselves and our surroundings in the absence of a designer.  It's the foundation of humanistic, materialistic thought.  There is a lot riding on it, and the huge secular "science" industry will do anything to support it and defend it, even in the face of huge problems or holes in the evidence.  But they must support it, because if it dies, there isn't much to take its place: we're then down to aliens or God. 
Last edited by Desert on Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter. 
- D.L. Moody

Diversification means always having to say you're sorry.
Post Reply