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Author Topic:   Darwin's Debt to Christianity
Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 111 days)
Posts: 2372
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 46 of 56 (471712)
06-17-2008 7:17 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by no1nose
06-17-2008 6:55 PM


Evolution is not Random
If I might step in,

Evolution as a whole is not random, although it contains random elements.

Mutation is random, although it operates within non-random physical laws.

Natural selection is very far from random. It is a continuing process where the successful survive and the unsuccessful disappear.

Going back to the topic at hand, I'm not sure what you are trying to accomplish here. It seems clear that Darwin's primary influence when developing his theory was the natural world that he studied on the Beagle voyage. Secondarily, he would have been influenced by the biologists who had gone before him, like Lamarck and Saint-Hilaire, as well as other thinkers and scientists, such as the geologist Charles Lyell. Compared to these factors, any influence that Darwin may have taken from the Bible pales into insignificance.

Even if we were to say that Darwin was influenced by Christianity, where does that get us? It would have been unthinkable for a man of Darwin's social class and education, living in England at that time, to have been unfamiliar with the Bible. It was omnipresent. The idea that Darwin's having been influenced by the Bible affects the credence accorded to evolution or the Bible itself, seems faintly absurd.


Mutate and Survive
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no1nose
Junior Member (Idle past 3671 days)
Posts: 29
Joined: 06-11-2008


Message 47 of 56 (471728)
06-17-2008 8:39 PM


If I might step in,
Evolution as a whole is not random, although it contains random elements.

Mutation is random, although it operates within non-random physical laws.

Natural selection is very far from random. It is a continuing process where the successful survive and the unsuccessful disappear.

Thanks for that.

Going back to the topic at hand, I'm not sure what you are trying to accomplish here. It seems clear that Darwin's primary influence when developing his theory was the natural world that he studied on the Beagle voyage. Secondarily, he would have been influenced by the biologists who had gone before him, like Lamarck and Saint-Hilaire, as well as other thinkers and scientists, such as the geologist Charles Lyell. Compared to these factors, any influence that Darwin may have taken from the Bible pales into insignificance.

Even if we were to say that Darwin was influenced by Christianity, where does that get us? It would have been unthinkable for a man of Darwin's social class and education, living in England at that time, to have been unfamiliar with the Bible. It was omnipresent. The idea that Darwin's having been influenced by the Bible affects the credence accorded to evolution or the Bible itself, seems faintly absurd.

Thats not the point at all. I wonder if you have read this thread from the start. If not please do and comment. If you have already read it from the start then said so and I will try to make my point more clearly.


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Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 111 days)
Posts: 2372
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 48 of 56 (471748)
06-17-2008 9:57 PM
Reply to: Message 47 by no1nose
06-17-2008 8:39 PM


So What is Your Point?
Hi no1nose,

I have been following this thread, since it is an interesting idea, but I am still none the wiser as to your intentions in drawing these parallels. Drawing a poetic comparison between Darwinism and Christianity after the fact is all very well, but it does not demonstrate a causal relationship. Even if it did, and we were all in agreement that Darwin had been significantly influenced by Christianity, what would that prove?

Added by Edit; By the way, if you use the little "reply" button in the bottom right hand corner of each post;

you can reply directly to that message. This makes it a lot easier to follow the conversation and helps avoid mix-ups about who is talking to who. Also, some members are also set up to receive email notifications when they get a reply.

Edited by Granny Magda, : No reason given.


Mutate and Survive
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Coyote
Member (Idle past 29 days)
Posts: 6117
Joined: 01-12-2008


Message 49 of 56 (471752)
06-17-2008 10:21 PM
Reply to: Message 43 by no1nose
06-17-2008 1:36 PM


An "observer problem?"
However the Theory of Evolution has no provision for the role of an observer even though the changes that take place are at the atomic level where quantum realities should dominate. When one surveys the natural world and the changes that do occur one must notice the trend toward beauty. If changes in the natural world were completely random then the world around us would have all the beauty of a junk yard. Beauty in the natural world implies that these changes are driven by an observer. The lack of a role for an observer is yet one more piece of evidence against the Theory of Evolution as a valid description of the natural world.

I am sorry to have to tell you this, but your comment is entirely subjective, if not total nonsense.

If you are going to argue against genetics, the fossil record, the work of tens of thousands of scientists worldwide, and 150 years of discovery, testing, and improvement, you are simply going to have to do better than this.


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.
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no1nose
Junior Member (Idle past 3671 days)
Posts: 29
Joined: 06-11-2008


Message 50 of 56 (471764)
06-18-2008 3:38 AM


I don’t have a problem with the science that is associated with Evolution. But I do disagree with the idea that mutations are chance events. At the most basic level mutations are a result of quantum physics. So for me the changes in living things are caused by quantum outcomes that are observer determined. This scenario has, for me, a better fit in explaining the way life changes in the real world than the idea of chance mutations.

Edited by no1nose, : No reason given.


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grandfather raven
Junior Member (Idle past 3369 days)
Posts: 27
From: Alaska, USA
Joined: 11-20-2007


Message 51 of 56 (471824)
06-18-2008 3:31 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by no1nose
06-18-2008 3:38 AM


neat hypothesis. how did you go about testing it?

[edit] and what does it have to do with Darwin *or* Christianity?

Edited by grandfather raven, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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no1nose
Junior Member (Idle past 3671 days)
Posts: 29
Joined: 06-11-2008


Message 52 of 56 (471838)
06-18-2008 4:25 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by grandfather raven
06-18-2008 3:31 PM


Life changes and I don’t have a problem with that. But the Theory of Evolution has some bad baggage assoiated with it. One of these is the idea of random mutations. For me the idea of observer determined quantum outcomes at the genetic level provides a feedback loop and would explain the changes that do happen much better than the idea of random.

Perhaps it could be tested statistically on the premise that conscious guided changes would achieve quicker and more direct changes in living things. And would produce far fewer mutations than if changes were purely by chance.

Edited by no1nose, : No reason given.


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Jester4kicks
Junior Member (Idle past 3419 days)
Posts: 33
Joined: 06-17-2008


Message 53 of 56 (471840)
06-18-2008 4:43 PM
Reply to: Message 52 by no1nose
06-18-2008 4:25 PM


Nose, I know I posted this on another board where you're also having this discussion, but I think the folks here might be more-able to address the issues you are presenting (and the points that I am trying to show you).

(Also, please don't think I'm following you around. I specifically avoided posting in this thread up until now so you didn't get that impression... although you have my gratitude for helping me find this forum!)

Anyway...

Maybe I'm seeing where you're getting confused now.

As you have said, quantum theory tells us that the state of an atom is indeterminant until it is observed by an outside source.

For anyone else here that is not familiar with this idea, look up Schrödinger's cat. To make it simple, the idea is that if you put a cat into a solid box with a vial of poison that will open 1 minute after you close the box, then at some point, the cat could be said to be both dead AND alive. The idea behind this is that the state of the cat's life is not known until you open the box and look.

However, Schrödinger wasn't trying to say that cats can be both alive AND dead at the same time. He was only trying to say that we don't know until we observe the status of the cat. (although if you're more familiar with the situation, you know he was also trying to point out the flaw he saw in the theory of other scientists)

Nose, to make your point, you seem to be applying this principle in such a manner as to suggest that, at any one moment, Schrödinger could have pointed at the box and said "the cat is dead", without actually looking inside (a determined quantum outcome without observation). Of course, this isn't possible... however, you are twisting that logic a little bit.

You seem to think that the observation drives the conclusion. This is incorrect. In quantum mechanics, the observation only identifies the conclusion. To elaborate; at some point in time, Schrödinger's cat would die inside the box. The fact that nobody witnessed the event does not change the fact that it happened. We only identify that it happened when we open the box. Our observation did not cause the death, it only identified it.

Now, as it has already been said, evolution is not random. Mutations in genetic code may be random (although some are actually quite orderly with the assertion of a particular gene's dominance)... however, no change in the genetic code (orderly OR random) will result in the evolution of the species unless the change facilitates survival or reproduction.

Now, please, don't just post up another tangent. You have people taking the time to intelligently address your ideas... you owe it to them to address their responses before taking off on another point.

Edited by Jester4kicks, : No reason given.


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no1nose
Junior Member (Idle past 3671 days)
Posts: 29
Joined: 06-11-2008


Message 54 of 56 (471842)
06-18-2008 5:10 PM


Also, please don't think I'm following you around. I specifically avoided posting in this thread up until now so you didn't get that impression... although you have my gratitude for helping me find this forum!)

What am I suppose to think? You are in fact stalking me. Because of that I am advised not to respond to any further posts from you. Period You must learn to give people a choice.


Replies to this message:
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Admin
Director
Posts: 12560
From: EvC Forum
Joined: 06-14-2002


Message 55 of 56 (471919)
06-19-2008 8:59 AM
Reply to: Message 54 by no1nose
06-18-2008 5:10 PM


no1nose writes:

What am I suppose to think? You are in fact stalking me. Because of that I am advised not to respond to any further posts from you. Period You must learn to give people a choice.

Here at EvC Forum, moderators decide who is participating appropriately in threads.

Also, when replying to a specific message, please use the little reply button that appears beneath it:

This allows the creation of forward and backward links between messages that make it much easier to follow a discussion.

If you hover your mouse over the "Gen Reply" button you've been using, you'll see this message: "Please do not use this button unless making a general reply. Instead use the small reply button beneath each message."

Please, no replies.


--Percy
EvC Forum Director

This message is a reply to:
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Mylakovich
Junior Member (Idle past 3607 days)
Posts: 20
From: Cambridgeshire, UK
Joined: 08-29-2008


Message 56 of 56 (480283)
09-02-2008 6:19 AM
Reply to: Message 55 by Admin
06-19-2008 8:59 AM


Like many others here you seem to labor under significant misunderstandings about fundamental aspects of science. Philosophy is all well and good, but any line of reasoning has to be eventually tied back to the empirical world before it can be evaluated. At some point you are going to have to study some biology to go with your musings before you will be taken seriously when you try to describe evolution. Besides, you might find it rewarding and satisfying to tie your ideas about historical influences to real information.
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