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Author Topic:   Key points of Evolution
Dr Adequate
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Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 331 of 356 (501976)
03-09-2009 4:49 AM
Reply to: Message 322 by alaninnont
03-04-2009 7:17 PM


I've been trying for the last couple of months to get a handle on the issue. I been reading some books, thinking, and visiting evolution and ID sites and am right now tending toward the existence of a creator as more probable than complete chance.

So apparently after a couple of months' research into the topic you haven't managed to find out what the theory of evolution is.

Shouldn't that be the first thing you find out about evolution?

What have you been doing instead?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 322 by alaninnont, posted 03-04-2009 7:17 PM alaninnont has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 332 by alaninnont, posted 03-10-2009 4:21 PM Dr Adequate has responded

alaninnont
Member (Idle past 2994 days)
Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009


Message 332 of 356 (502281)
03-10-2009 4:21 PM
Reply to: Message 331 by Dr Adequate
03-09-2009 4:49 AM


I have found out that the dictionary definition of evolution is quite different than the atheist's. I have found out that a lot of the discussion is about semantics. I have found out that evolution is not a huge determining factor in the points for or against a creator. I have found out that a center of the fight is not for or against evolution but between atheists and fundamentalist Christians. I've found out that the fight is largely a political one. And I've found out that I rather enjoy the intellectual stimulation. Now a bad harvest for two months of thinking.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 331 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-09-2009 4:49 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 333 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-10-2009 5:52 PM alaninnont has not yet responded
 Message 334 by Taq, posted 03-10-2009 6:46 PM alaninnont has not yet responded
 Message 335 by bluescat48, posted 03-10-2009 9:05 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 333 of 356 (502286)
03-10-2009 5:52 PM
Reply to: Message 332 by alaninnont
03-10-2009 4:21 PM


I have found out that the dictionary definition of evolution is quite different than the atheist's.

Why are you pretending that atheists have a special definition of evolution?

What do you claim that the difference is between that which an atheist would give and that which a dictionary gives? (Hint: I just checked in my dictionary and there isn't one.)

Why did you not notice that no definition of "evolution" involves the words "complete chance" in any way?

Why did you not try looking in a biology textbook to find an authoritative definition?

I have found out that a lot of the discussion is about semantics.

Yeah, that's creationists for you.

I have found out that a center of the fight is not for or against evolution but between atheists and fundamentalist Christians.

No, it's between fundamentalists of all religions and non-fundamentalists.

I've found out that the fight is largely a political one.

Yes. The fundies have nothing else.

And I've found out that I rather enjoy the intellectual stimulation.

You might find a biology textbook stimulating. You never know.

Now a bad harvest for two months of thinking.

Where did the thinking come in?

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 332 by alaninnont, posted 03-10-2009 4:21 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 7195
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 334 of 356 (502295)
03-10-2009 6:46 PM
Reply to: Message 332 by alaninnont
03-10-2009 4:21 PM


I have found out that the dictionary definition of evolution is quite different than the atheist's.

That is wrong. The general definition of evolution is different from the specific definition used for the theory of evolution.

I have found out that a lot of the discussion is about semantics.

Then you should not equivocate and use the wrong definitions.

I have found out that evolution is not a huge determining factor in the points for or against a creator. I have found out that a center of the fight is not for or against evolution but between atheists and fundamentalist Christians. I've found out that the fight is largely a political one.

Within the scientific community, there is not fight. The theory of evolution is universally accepted except for a few here and there who reject the theory on religious grounds.

The "fight" that one sees in school boards is between those who want a quality science education (which includes atheist and theist alike) and those who don't want their religious teachings contradicted by the science teacher.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 332 by alaninnont, posted 03-10-2009 4:21 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

bluescat48
Member (Idle past 1747 days)
Posts: 2347
From: United States
Joined: 10-06-2007


Message 335 of 356 (502310)
03-10-2009 9:05 PM
Reply to: Message 332 by alaninnont
03-10-2009 4:21 PM


Dictionary Def?
I have found out that the dictionary definition of evolution is quite different than the atheist's.

It might help if you give this dictionary definition of evolution and from which dictionary you got it. I might then be able to address it.


There is no better love between 2 people than mutual respect for each other WT Young, 2002

Who gave anyone the authority to call me an authority on anything. WT Young, 1969

Since Evolution is only ~90% correct it should be thrown out and replaced by Creation which has even a lower % of correctness. W T Young, 2008


This message is a reply to:
 Message 332 by alaninnont, posted 03-10-2009 4:21 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

  
alaninnont
Member (Idle past 2994 days)
Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009


Message 336 of 356 (502481)
03-11-2009 5:28 PM


What do you claim that the difference is between that which an atheist would give and that which a dictionary gives? (Hint: I just checked in my dictionary and there isn't one.)

Merriam-Webster’s - "a theory that the various kinds of plants and animals are descended from other kinds that lived in earlier times and that the differences are due to inherited changes that took place over many generations."

I get the sense that when atheists talk about evolution, they are defining it basically as change.

Why did you not notice that no definition of "evolution" involves the words "complete chance" in any way?

I wasn't talking about the definition of evolution when I said "complete chance."

Why did you not try looking in a biology textbook to find an authoritative definition?

During one of my graduate courses in microbiology we went through an university level biology textbook with our supervisor specifically to evaluate it for errors. You would not believe.... I know that's really not on the point but let me get back to what I said originally .... a lot of it is about semantics.

No, it's between fundamentalists of all religions and non-fundamentalists.

Could you eleborate? Do you mean non-fundamentalists in other religions? Are you including atheism as a religion? I have not seen a lot of the bile of atheists directed at other religons. That is likely because this is an American site (isn't it?) and other religions are in the minority. I wonder if there are the same intense discussions in countries where other religions predominate. Anyone know?

You might find a biology textbook stimulating. You never know.

I have found some interesting but rarely stimulating.

Where did the thinking come in?

I'll have to think about that one.


Replies to this message:
 Message 337 by Coyote, posted 03-11-2009 10:00 PM alaninnont has not yet responded
 Message 339 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-12-2009 2:43 AM alaninnont has not yet responded
 Message 340 by Vacate, posted 03-12-2009 5:53 AM alaninnont has not yet responded

Coyote
Member
Posts: 6012
Joined: 01-12-2008
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 337 of 356 (502517)
03-11-2009 10:00 PM
Reply to: Message 336 by alaninnont
03-11-2009 5:28 PM


Nonsense
I get the sense that when atheists talk about evolution, they are defining it basically as change.

What is this "atheists" nonsense, Kemo Sabe?

Evolution is a science that comes out the same no matter who does it--if they follow the scientific method. And most of the folks who do science follow one religion or another but have no problem with the scientific method and where it leads.

The only folks who come up with different answers are a small minority of religious fundamentalists who follow a literal interpretation of some ancient text--and they can't even agree with one another.

Perhaps those fundamentalists should stick to their idols and demons, and let science (which relies on evidence rather than revelations) progress as it has since it got out from under the thumb of religious zealots?

Good idea, eh?


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 336 by alaninnont, posted 03-11-2009 5:28 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Otto Tellick
Member (Idle past 148 days)
Posts: 288
From: PA, USA
Joined: 02-17-2008


Message 338 of 356 (502521)
03-12-2009 1:12 AM
Reply to: Message 299 by alaninnont
03-01-2009 10:03 PM


Getting back to the original topic...
Hi alaninnont,

Having seen your various responses, I'm wondering if you would be willing to comment on the opening questions posed in the Original Post (OP) of this thread (dating from Dec. 2006):

platypus writes:


1) One Family Tree unites all of life and
2) Species change through time and place

...
Of these two points of evolution, Dr. Roughgarden makes two claims.

1) These two ideas must be taught in every science curriculum.
2) Neither of these ideas are directly in conflict with the Bible.

What do you think? Do you consider it plausible or implausible that "one family tree unites all of life"? You seem to have spent some time looking at materials that discuss some relevant evidence. What is your assessment of the materials and evidence?

Do you consider it plausible or implausible that a person can sincerely claim a belief in the God of the Bible (or perhaps "belief in the Bible") and also accept the first two assertions as true? I'm not asking for your opinion about atheists. I'm asking for your opinion about understanding evidence, and how that relates to understanding the Bible.

And, since it was asked in the OP, do you have any problem with the notion that those first two assertions must be taught in every science curriculum?


autotelic adj. (of an entity or event) having within itself the purpose of its existence or happening.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 299 by alaninnont, posted 03-01-2009 10:03 PM alaninnont has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 341 by alaninnont, posted 03-13-2009 9:37 AM Otto Tellick has not yet responded

Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 339 of 356 (502524)
03-12-2009 2:43 AM
Reply to: Message 336 by alaninnont
03-11-2009 5:28 PM


Merriam-Webster’s - "a theory that the various kinds of plants and animals are descended from other kinds that lived in earlier times and that the differences are due to inherited changes that took place over many generations."

I get the sense that when atheists talk about evolution, they are defining it basically as change.

No.

I wasn't talking about the definition of evolution when I said "complete chance."

What were you opposing to creationism?

During one of my graduate courses in microbiology we went through an university level biology textbook with our supervisor specifically to evaluate it for errors. You would not believe....

I might. I've seen errors in textbooks too.

I know that's really not on the point but let me get back to what I said originally .... a lot of it is about semantics.

This is because the fundies find it even easier to twist words than to twist facts.

Could you eleborate? Do you mean non-fundamentalists in other religions?

Yes. I've seen fundamentalist Muslims and Hindus trot out the same rubbish as fundamentalist Christians.

Are you including atheism as a religion?

No.

I have not seen a lot of the bile of atheists directed at other religons. That is likely because this is an American site (isn't it?) and other religions are in the minority. I wonder if there are the same intense discussions in countries where other religions predominate. Anyone know?

I for one will point out the mistakes of Harun Yahya just like I'll point out the mistakes of Kent Hovind ... especially as they're the same mistakes.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 336 by alaninnont, posted 03-11-2009 5:28 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Vacate
Member (Idle past 2158 days)
Posts: 565
Joined: 10-01-2006


Message 340 of 356 (502526)
03-12-2009 5:53 AM
Reply to: Message 336 by alaninnont
03-11-2009 5:28 PM


I am not questioning the validity of the education you have recieved but I am very surprised to see some of what you have said given the field that you are in.

During one of my graduate courses in microbiology...

alaninnont writes:

My time on a university biology board was a shock.

Message 11 Points for a creator

You appear to have a degree and perhaps higher, but to say something as silly as "There have been no beneficial mutations documented that increase the complexity of the organism." ( Message 1 Points for a creator ) is stunning. I have questioned my wife on just such a claim and though still needing one more year for her degree in microbiology she is able to immediatley suggest examples to disprove your claims. So can I for that matter, I can give examples by using this site alone.

I get the sense that when atheists talk about evolution, they are defining it basically as change.

How do you define it then? How was it defined in your courses and textbooks? What is the difference between what you where taught in university biology classes that differ from what people here (atheists) have defined it?

Complex organs like the eye could not have evolved since there are many steps that give no benefit to the organism and there is no reason to continue along a path to build them.
Message 1 Points for a creator

You didn't take this in school? Perhaps you didn't. With your education however wouldn't answering such a question be fairly easy? It took me a few seconds to begin a search for your answer {Google-> Wiki->References at bottom of page} but as a biologist you use this as evidence against evolution without even checking if each step in the evolution of the eye has a benefit? Come on now, this is a typical creationist tactic and hardly fitting for a microbiologist.

We see the extinction of many species but no new species appearing.

Oh? Check your textbooks. Try a journal or two. How you managed to miss this while getting a degree is beyond me.

I've been trying for the last couple of months to get a handle on the issue. I been reading some books, thinking, and visiting evolution and ID sites and am right now tending toward the existence of a creator as more probable than complete chance.

The issue has been right in front of you the whole time you took your biology classes, sat on the biology board, conducted research, and reviewed others papers. Yet its only in the last couple months that "complete chance" didn't sound quite right to you? Then you figured that ID sites would provide you a better answer than your peers in the field of science that you trained in?

Though I can accept that you may actually have taken biology classes, I am forced to think that your school sucks.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 336 by alaninnont, posted 03-11-2009 5:28 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

alaninnont
Member (Idle past 2994 days)
Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009


Message 341 of 356 (502778)
03-13-2009 9:37 AM
Reply to: Message 338 by Otto Tellick
03-12-2009 1:12 AM


Re: Getting back to the original topic...
Having seen your various responses, I'm wondering if you would be willing to comment on the opening questions posed in the Original Post (OP) of this thread (dating from Dec. 2006):

platypus writes:

1) One Family Tree unites all of life and
2) Species change through time and place

...
Of these two points of evolution, Dr. Roughgarden makes two claims.

1) These two ideas must be taught in every science curriculum.
2) Neither of these ideas are directly in conflict with the Bible.

What do you think? Do you consider it plausible or implausible that "one family tree unites all of life"? You seem to have spent some time looking at materials that discuss some relevant evidence. What is your assessment of the materials and evidence?

Do you consider it plausible or implausible that a person can sincerely claim a belief in the God of the Bible (or perhaps "belief in the Bible") and also accept the first two assertions as true? I'm not asking for your opinion about atheists. I'm asking for your opinion about understanding evidence, and how that relates to understanding the Bible.

And, since it was asked in the OP, do you have any problem with the notion that those first two assertions must be taught in every science curriculum?

I'll bet your great as a meeting chairperson.

I tend to see everything in probabilities and therefore have no absolute answers in my head but here is what I am thinking at this point.

1) It is highly probable that early life was simple and as time went on, it became more complex. I'm not so sure about the tree part. With DNA segments appearing in different branches of plants and animals but not in their ancestors (HGT) I'm tending more toward the web model as more probable than the tree but haven't made up my mind yet. It is highly probable that living things are interconnected (ADD kicking in) although I'm wondering why the DNA code itself never evolved. It's not the most efficient system. Any ideas?
2. Highly probable although I'm still not sure as to whether the changes were limited to natural selection or included evolution.

Second Section
1)Yes, BUT with the inclusion of the point that the ideas in science are theories and are open to be evaluated and changed if necessary. I think that we are doing science a disservice by preaching the "atheistic evolution is the one true way and there are no others" doctorine. I include the word atheistic because I haven't heard of a curriculum in public schools that include a creator based evolution. This issue is a case in point. Each side's websites look convincing. A cursory glance could convince a casual reader either way. In my opinion it is critical that we teach analysis, logical thinking, and evalutation. Look at the case of the former Soviet Union. For 70 years the communists were in power. They demanded that atheistic evolution be taught in every institution with techniques that bordered on brainwashing. I googled a couple of surveys and the self-proclaimed non-believers in a creator currently stands at around 17 % in that country. This says to me that pushing a theory as the only true way backfires. We should be pushing thinking skills. Critical thinking is far more important. The internet, etc. is full of hoaxes and scams. An individual unprepared is a mark. (Getting down from the podium)
2. I'm not an expert on the Bible and therefore cannot reply to this with certainty but it seems to me that it would be in conflict with the literalists.

As to your other questions, I have a very methodical mind and am proceeding through this in an orderly fashion. I am at the state now where I feel, for a wide variety of reasons, that it is more probable that a creator (alien, god, God, gods, I'm not sure) had some involvement in the universe somewhere along the line. As to what kind of creator this may be, I'm still working on that. Again, I'm not an expert on the Bible but I could see a non-literalist believing in "God of the Bible" and still able to accept the first two assertions.

What's your opinion? Or did you post it somewhere. I haven't read through all the pages.

Edited by alaninnont, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 338 by Otto Tellick, posted 03-12-2009 1:12 AM Otto Tellick has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 342 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-13-2009 10:53 AM alaninnont has responded
 Message 345 by Richard Townsend, posted 03-13-2009 5:48 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15960
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 342 of 356 (502793)
03-13-2009 10:53 AM
Reply to: Message 341 by alaninnont
03-13-2009 9:37 AM


Re: Getting back to the original topic...
1)Yes, BUT with the inclusion of the point that the ideas in science are theories and are open to be evaluated and changed if necessary. I think that we are doing science a disservice by preaching the "atheistic evolution is the one true way and there are no others" doctorine. I include the word atheistic because I haven't heard of a curriculum in public schools that include a creator based evolution.

And I haven't heard of a curriculum in public schools that includes a creator-based periodic table.

So is it an atheistic periodic table?

How about the multiplication table? Electricity? Optics? Thermodynamics? Gravity? Are they all "atheistic"?

If so, I can only say ... man, those atheists are smart.

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 341 by alaninnont, posted 03-13-2009 9:37 AM alaninnont has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 343 by alaninnont, posted 03-13-2009 4:34 PM Dr Adequate has responded

alaninnont
Member (Idle past 2994 days)
Posts: 107
Joined: 02-27-2009


Message 343 of 356 (502842)
03-13-2009 4:34 PM
Reply to: Message 342 by Dr Adequate
03-13-2009 10:53 AM


Re: Getting back to the original topic...
And I haven't heard of a curriculum in public schools that includes a creator-based periodic table.

So is it an atheistic periodic table?

How about the multiplication table? Electricity? Optics? Thermodynamics? Gravity? Are they all "atheistic"?

By including these in the same category you are saying that there is a significant controversy over these ideas and that alternative explanations exist.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 342 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-13-2009 10:53 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 344 by Taq, posted 03-13-2009 5:34 PM alaninnont has not yet responded
 Message 346 by Dr Adequate, posted 03-13-2009 6:56 PM alaninnont has responded

Taq
Member
Posts: 7195
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 344 of 356 (502851)
03-13-2009 5:34 PM
Reply to: Message 343 by alaninnont
03-13-2009 4:34 PM


Re: Getting back to the original topic...
By including these in the same category you are saying that there is a significant controversy over these ideas and that alternative explanations exist.

That's just it. There is no controversy in the scientific community where evolution is concerned. There are no alternative scientific explanations for biodiversity.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 343 by alaninnont, posted 03-13-2009 4:34 PM alaninnont has not yet responded

Richard Townsend
Member (Idle past 2290 days)
Posts: 103
From: London, England
Joined: 07-16-2008


Message 345 of 356 (502853)
03-13-2009 5:48 PM
Reply to: Message 341 by alaninnont
03-13-2009 9:37 AM


Re: Getting back to the original topic...
'Each side's websites look convincing. A cursory glance could convince a casual reader either way.'

Agreed, if you're not briefed in the field, that's the case. But dig deeper and you'll find things are different. Behind the evolution material there are experiments and paper after paper after paper. Behind ID material - not much. Nothing that would pass muster as a peer-reviewed scientific paper. No explanation of what ID is, just criticism of the 'other side'. Try it - I've done it myself, it's illuminating.


This message is a reply to:
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