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Author Topic:   Does ID predict genetic similarity?
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 1 of 167 (669997)
08-07-2012 10:21 PM


I was having a discussion with someone about using genetic similarity as evidence for relatedness and this issue came up. It was suggested that genetic similarity is also compatible with ID as well as common descent so it is ambiguous as to relatedness. I agreed that it is indeed compatible with both ideas. However, I suggested that common descent predicted similarity while ID did not. Here is the logic I used:

If you compared two species with the following genes (letters represent individual genes):

A B C D E F G H I J K L - house mouse
A B C D E F G M I J K L - white rat

You could conclude that the two species are probably related since they only differ by one gene and this conclusion would indeed be compatible with either common descent or ID.

However, if the 2 species had the following genetic codes:

A B C D E F G H I J K L - house mouse
B D G M J L C A E I F K - white rat

Based on common descent you could conclude the two species were not related because common descent requires that the genetic sequence be similar. This is the very thing that is happening in the plant kingdom right now. Researchers are finding that plants that were once thought to be closely related cannot possibly be because there is too much difference in the genetic *sequence*. They are more similar to species in other genera.

You could not draw this conclusion with ID since the designer could have made these similar looking creatures with different genetic sequences (note that the same genes are all there, only the sequence is different). There is no requirement of ID that sequences be conserved. It would seem logical that a designer would make similar creatures with similar genetic codes, and if I were the designer, I would use modular components. But there is nothing that constrains the designer to do so. In fact, modular construction is really a very recent idea - within the last 100 or so years. Before that everything was made one at a time and each piece was unique.

So, genetic similarity may be compatible with both ID and common descent, but only common descent predicts genetic similarity.

Is this a “logical fallacy?” Do you agree there is a difference between evidence being “compatible” and evidence being “predicted” in the way I described above? Why or why not?

A follow up question is this: What other predictions does ID make or at least claim to make and how do they compare to the predictions that common descent makes?

HBD

(Intelligent Design please)

Edited by herebedragons, : used the term genetic code when I should have used genetic sequences

Edited by herebedragons, : No reason given.


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by PaulK, posted 08-08-2012 1:46 AM herebedragons has responded
 Message 4 by Taq, posted 08-08-2012 10:53 AM herebedragons has responded
 Message 10 by Genomicus, posted 08-12-2012 11:15 AM herebedragons has responded
 Message 22 by Genomicus, posted 08-13-2012 10:23 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 5 of 167 (670079)
08-08-2012 2:01 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Taq
08-08-2012 10:53 AM


It goes further than similarity. It is the PATTERN of similarity that matters. That pattern is a nested hierarchy.

Good point. I was trying to keep my illustration as simple as possible and I was trying to limit my discussion to that which was not controversial (arguing for macro-evolution is against that forum's rules). But that pattern applies to the species within a genus, so I could have expanded my example to include a group of organisms within a genus.

There is simply no reason that an intelligent designer would separately create species so that they fall into a nested hierarchy.

The point I made was although nothing prevents a designer from doing that, there is nothing that requires it either. So it is a matter of falsification, is it not? Anyway the designer wants to do it is acceptable, so how would you determine if it was not due to a designer?

After I made this point I was accused of automatically rejecting any possibility of a designer. I feel my position did not exclude the possibility of a designer, but it says that genetic similarities or nested hierarchies do not predict a designer. Your position does seem to go further and reject the possibility of a designer. Is there anything that would prevent an intelligent designer from designing organisms in the way we observe them? I would say NO, nothing prevents that, but it doesn't require it.

The problem grows for ID supporters if we assume an omnipotent designer. ID supporters will often claim that it "makes sense" to copy other designs. But does that hold true for an omniscient, omnipotent designer who has unlimited resources? NO. A designer with these attributes would expend as much energy starting from scratch as it would copying previous designs. Reusing designs only makes sense for designers like us who are limited in ability, knowledge, time, and resources.

I made this point too. The idea of mass production is a very recent development. Components are made in a modular fashion to save costs, reduce inventory, make assembly easier, ect. What benefit would this system have for an intelligent designer.

On the other hand, nested hierarchies are not unknown from nature outside of biological systems. The universe is ordered as such:
planet --> solar system --> interstellar neighborhood --> galaxy --> supercluster --> observed universe

also in ecology
biotype --> ecosystem --> ecoregion --> biome --> ecozone --> biosphere

Perhaps this would suggest that the designer prefers this type of organization. Also, even before modern manufacturing processes humans organized things into hierarchies, like:
peasant --> freeman --> local lord --> king

It could be argued that humans have been given that trait by the designer.

But I still don't see that ID predicts that organisms be organized in a nested hierarchy but it also doesn't exclude the possibility of a designer.

(since there aren't too many ID supporters on here anymore, I have to arguing both sides )

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

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 Message 4 by Taq, posted 08-08-2012 10:53 AM Taq has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by Taq, posted 08-08-2012 4:35 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 6 of 167 (670080)
08-08-2012 2:35 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by PaulK
08-08-2012 1:46 AM


Yea, I guess I kinda lumped them all into one category, which is not really accurate. It would be easier to sort out if there was one cohesive theory that described the ID position. But everyone seems to have there own little twist on what intelligent design means and how it is supported.

So I guess I would take any prediction that those in the ID camp feel that the ID argument makes.

but the fringe views in ID which include common descent do.

How do they justify this prediction, in your opinion?

I thought of another prediction that is often made: there will be biological systems such that their origin cannot be explained by naturalistic means. The reason it would make this prediction is that as a feature or process is brought into existence by the intervention of an intelligent agent the path of naturalistic process would come to an end at that intervention point.

Would you agree that ID actually does make this prediction?

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by PaulK, posted 08-08-2012 1:46 AM PaulK has responded

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 Message 7 by PaulK, posted 08-08-2012 2:48 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 8 of 167 (670084)
08-08-2012 3:08 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by PaulK
08-08-2012 2:48 PM


So I'd say that most ID supporters would agree and mean that a supernatural cause would be needed (although they might not say so) but some on the fringes might only mean that evolution involved some artifice, and some wouldn't agree at all.

Well that's about as vague as it gets

I guess it boils down to everyone has there own opinion as to what ID predicts and what it doesn't and I would have to ask just about every individual what it means. Kind of an anything goes category regarding origins.

Thanks

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

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 Message 7 by PaulK, posted 08-08-2012 2:48 PM PaulK has not yet responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 12 of 167 (670330)
08-12-2012 8:34 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by Genomicus
08-12-2012 11:15 AM


Re: Does ID predict genetic similarity?
Hi Genomicus, glad you found this thread. I was going to bump you but couldn't figure out how to.

Yes, that was a typo. I mean't genetic similarity. Although there are some anomalies, the genetic code is quite universal. I have already corrected my OP.

I looked over your 'Front loading predicts deep homology' topic, and I understand your position, but I was unable to come to a solid conclusion about whether it is an appropriate prediction or a post hoc conclusion.

Do you have any other ideas as to what predictions ID makes (in particular as compared to common descent)?

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by Genomicus, posted 08-12-2012 11:15 AM Genomicus has responded

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herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 13 of 167 (670335)
08-12-2012 10:46 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Taq
08-08-2012 4:35 PM


One important factor to point out is that any potential observation can be explained by ID, therefore none are. The fact remains that evolution predicts a specific pattern, and we observe that pattern. That is one leg up for evolution.

I understand your comment about any observation being explained by ID and for the most part agree, and that is the very problem I have with it. It goes back to being unfalsifiable.

But does common descent actually predict aspects like parallel evolution or convergent evolution or is this an explanation of an observation? If a common ancestor was designed or "pre-programmed" with certain genetic traits it would be predictable that the trait would arise in separate lineages. To be honest, I haven't given this idea much serious thought. I am just trying to think through things and considering both sides.

On the other hand, nested hierarchies are not unknown from nature outside of biological systems. The universe is ordered as such:
planet --> solar system --> interstellar neighborhood --> galaxy --> supercluster --> observed universe
also in ecology
biotype --> ecosystem --> ecoregion --> biome --> ecozone --> biosphere

Those are not based on shared and derived physical characteristics. Rather, they are based on scale.

Ok, good point. But there is no claim of common descent in these examples, only order and systematic organization. This could support the concept of a designer that appreciates these qualities and uses them into the designs. I would also suggest that they are indeed organized based on shared characteristics as well as scale. However, I didn't mean it to be a direct comparison with common ancestry, only to suggest that a case could be made that a designer would design in a very orderly, structured, systematic way.

It is impossible to exclude magic. The world could be 2 minutes old with an embedded history and embedded memories and we would never know it. However, there is no compelling reason to believe that a 2 minute universe is true.

I appreciate a good reductio ad absurdum argument as much as the next guy , but this is really not the point at all. There is a difference between magic and a supernatural force that is responsible for the formation of the universe.

quote:
magic:
The power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces.

quote:
supernatural:
n. Manifestations or events considered to be of supernatural origin.
adj. Attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.

Magic implies human attempts to influence events by spells, incantations, etc. And while I am sure there are some that treat the supernatural as magic, there is a distinction. If you merely mean that supernatural events are outside of scientific understanding or detection, then I totally agree.

In the same way, there is no compelling reason to think that a designer created life on Earth. However, there are compelling reasons to think that evolution did occur. That is the difference.

Sure there are compelling reasons to believe that evolution occurred, but I don't think that evolution answers all questions about our existence. Perhaps you do, but I sure don't. That doesn't mean that I think we need to appeal to the supernatural to explain something in the natural world we don't understand, but how can we dismiss the possibility outright?

My question is not so much "Did a designer create life on earth?" but "If a designer did create life on earth, what would we expect?" And I making the distinction between post hoc observation with predictions that we should be able to make if that were true.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by Taq, posted 08-08-2012 4:35 PM Taq has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 15 by NoNukes, posted 08-13-2012 12:38 AM herebedragons has responded
 Message 19 by Taq, posted 08-13-2012 1:11 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 16 of 167 (670357)
08-13-2012 10:20 AM
Reply to: Message 15 by NoNukes
08-13-2012 12:38 AM


This logic is not correct. The hierarchical organization of matter into planets, solar systems, galaxies, clusters and superclusters, observed universe [interstellar neighborhood deliberately omitted] is consistent with a designer who appreciates that particular organization, but it is not supportive of any such thing because it is not unique to a universe without a designer. In fact, for it to be supportive of the idea, you would need some significant hypotheses that are ruled out by such an order.

It is valid logic. Perhaps not as scientific evidence, but it is valid as a philosophical argument. This is basically how the conversation went.

Evo: "There is no reason to believe that a designer would create organisms so that they fell into a nested hierarchy."
ID: "Well, maybe the designer appreciates order and systematic organization."
Evo: "What makes you think that?"
ID: "All the examples, outside of biology, of order and systematic classification."
Evo: "True, I guess if there was a designer he could also design biological systems in an orderly, systematic fashion." (OK, so I made this last part up , but it should be a logical conclusion)

So, I believe there is a philosophical reason that a designer would create organisms so that they fell into a nested hierarchy.

Now, if ID tried to promote that philosophical concept to say "If there is a designer, then we should see order and systematic organization throughout the universe." (that would be the ID prediction) your comments would definitely apply. I made no such prediction.

While you may be able to artificial construct a counter example, I would submit that such a counter example is not an actual theory about which there is any debate.

I'm sorry, maybe this is just a matter of semantics, but the way this statement is phrased, it sets the rules for any counter example and then uses those rules to disqualify it. It says that any counter example is automatically an artificial construct and therefore cannot be an actual theory. I see these types of arguments from creationists all the time and they are annoying. A better way to phrase this would be "Sure you could come up with a counter example, but I would submit that any such counter example would be artificially constructed and therefore not an actual theory about which there is any debate." idk, maybe I'm just being petty, I knew what you were saying ... but I just don't like arguments phrased like that.

If you think about it, any classification system is "artificial" in that it depends solely on the criteria specified to define the classification system. Sure we try our best to classify things in a "natural" way, but we have to define what that "natural" system is. I would suggest that the problem with counter examples, whether natural or artificial, are that they are not predictors but merely observational explanations.

And yet no ID proponent or creationist would ever accept the argument that examples of unorder and unsystematic, or seemingly illogical choices, that might be indicated as consistent with evolution, are counter examples to a designer or creator.

I would say it goes both ways though. No proponent of evolution would ever accept the argument that examples of order and systematic, seemingly designed products are counter examples to a random, unguided process. We need predictions that are required of one explanation but incompatible with the other. The purpose of this thread is that I want to find out if ID presents any such theories.

This question cannot be answered without making assumption that we can know the purpose, motivation, and limitations of the designer. By manipulating our assumptions, and by including an opportunity for the designer to deviate from any assumption at a whim, ANY state of existence can be accommodated as consistent with a designer.

Given the unknowable nature of the designer, it seems unlikely that we could ever find a construction or quality that would strongly support detecting the designer through the designs. We wont find any tool marks that we might find on an arrow head.

But you are making the assumption that we cannot know or discover the qualities of the designer. There are philosophical reasons to accept the existence of an intelligent designer that brought life to this planet. There are philosophical reasons to believe we can discover the character of the designer. The challenge for ID proponents is to find a way to bridge the gap between philosophical rationale and scientific theory. A daunting task indeed, one that you are suggesting is impossible.

BTW, as of this point, I have not found enough reason to support Intelligent design from a scientific perspective. Maybe that will change in time, maybe not ... idk. I am pretty much taking the devil's advocate position on the subject just to generate some discussion. However, I must also admit that from a philosophical perspective, I do support ID but I am unable to turn that philosophical ideology into a scientific approach, and in fact, I am skeptical that it can be done ...


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by NoNukes, posted 08-13-2012 12:38 AM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 17 by RAZD, posted 08-13-2012 11:50 AM herebedragons has responded
 Message 20 by NoNukes, posted 08-13-2012 8:00 PM herebedragons has responded
 Message 21 by Coyote, posted 08-13-2012 9:37 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


(1)
Message 18 of 167 (670368)
08-13-2012 12:13 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by RAZD
08-13-2012 11:50 AM


Re: ID properly pursued
Thanks RAZD

Indeed, for me the question Is ID properly pursued? concludes that it is a philosophical pursuit that uses science to investigate these issues, but isn't itself science.

I remember you referencing that thread before and I believe I did look it over. I am sure it had some effect on how I think about ID, but I can't recall any particulars right now. I will go back and read it over when I get a chance.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 17 by RAZD, posted 08-13-2012 11:50 AM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 28 of 167 (670415)
08-14-2012 10:26 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by Taq
08-13-2012 1:11 PM


We observe that different species have different adaptations for the same function. For example, the design of the bird and bat wing are very different, but they serve the same function. The explanation for this observation is convergent evolution where the same selective pressures acted on different ancestors to produce different solutions to the same problem.

So you agree that the ToE does not predict convergent evolution, but merely explains the phenomenon?

As to the second part of the quote, we don't see the same trait evolving independently in different lineages. What we see are htings like the bird and bat wing. These are superficially similar adaptations, but they differ drastically in the details.

Perhaps I should have said that the same trait evolves independently in separate taxa. Homoplasy is common and can make classification difficult as sharing a trait does not mean the organisms are directly related. My point is not that this disproves evolution or automatically make phylogenies wrong, it is simple that the ToE does not actually predict homoplasy, rather it allows them and explains them. Do you agree or disagree? If you disagree, how does the ToE predict homoplasy?

From my point of view, cosmological bodies would suffer the same problem as cars when it comes to organizing based on shared characteristics.

Agreed. I will relent on this point. (it's not really the topic anyway)

Magic implies the supernatural. That is what it has always implied. It is MEANT to be kept outside of any attempt to test or verify. Calling something "supernatural" is just another way of saying "don't question it".

I agree that some use supernatural explanations as a synonym for "I don't know." It creates a dead end in learning. Where would we be if we thought that AIDS was produced by supernatural causes (which indeed some did)? We would have not tried to find a cure. But that is not my position at all.

When I was a kid I dug a hole in our backyard. It was about 4 foot deep so that I could almost completely stand up in it. I was convinced that just a few more feet and I would be through the Earth and into China. (But my mom found out about it and made me fill it in before I could complete the task). This is how I view searching for the supernatural with science; we say we have dug down 4 feet (maybe a better equivalent of our modern knowledge would be a mile deep) and we haven't found the supernatural yet, so there must not be any. And others say that with just a few more feet of digging we will find it. But, as much as we know about the universe, I don't think we have even scratched the surface.

So as far as science goes, I agree that science is the search for natural causes, not the search for supernatural causes. But philosophy is the search for answers to questions that science cannot answer. Science is NOT the end-all argument.

Why not start from a position with no beliefs, and then follow the evidence?

No one ever comes from a position of NO beliefs. Beliefs are foundational to our personalities, our attitudes, our behaviors. Everyone is indoctrinated with beliefs of one type or another at a very early age (some research suggest that our basic personalities and basic belief systems are formed by age 5). Some people cling to their beliefs more tightly than others. Some are willing to adjust or abandon their beliefs based on physical evidence.

Make no mistake that a person's philosophical views will influence one's scientific views and likewise; one's scientific views influence their philosophical views - they are never completely disconnected. What I disagree with is that one view should have the majority of influence over the other. Creationist hold that beliefs have decisive influence over science and are willing to deny the reality of scientific discoveries in order to maintain those beliefs. Philosophical naturalists hold that science (which by its very nature can only discover natural causes) should hold decisive influence over philosophical beliefs. My position is in the middle of those two extremes. I allow both views to influence the other.

But all this is really off topic. I don't need to justify the question "Does ID make predictions that the ToE does not?" That question does not even start with the assumption that there is an intelligent designer. It is asking a question about the "theory" of ID. Whether there are supernatural explanations or not is irrelevant. If ID is to be considered a legitimate science it needs to make predictions about physical evidence that we can discover and those predictions need to be contrary to what we expect to find with the ToE.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by Taq, posted 08-13-2012 1:11 PM Taq has responded

Replies to this message:
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herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 29 of 167 (670417)
08-14-2012 11:30 AM
Reply to: Message 20 by NoNukes
08-13-2012 8:00 PM


This is the objectionable part. This is not a conclusion reached logically; what you have done is simply attribute what is already known to a designer to whom you ascribe a desire to do things as you find them.

Thus your sentences are merely consistent and not supportive.

It seems you are confusing scientific validity with philosophical rationale. I did not propose that line of reasoning as scientific support of ID or of a designer. You start with the assumption that there is no way to know the what the characteristics of an intelligent designer would be should one exist. I start with the assumption that the character of the designer would be revealed in his designs. You can deduce some of the character traits of Monet by studying his paintings - for example: he was fascinated by the effects that different lighting conditions have on landscapes. In the same way, we can deduce characteristics of the designer by studying his designs.

What is actually objectionable is assuming a designer in the first place, no?

No, it does not. In essence I am saying that an ordered arrangement would exist with or without a designer, hence order is not evidence for a designer.

Sorry, I knew what you were saying, I was just being nit-picky about terminology. However, I did not intend it to be scientific evidence for a designer. If I implied that, my bad. I think you misunderstood me though. RAZD didn't seem to take it that way as he would have corrected me on that gaff. I think you are confusing philosophical reasons with scientific reasons.

You seem to be arguing my position rather than your own.

That's probably because from a scientific perspective I probably agree with you on most things, but it seems where we disagree is philosophically.

Scientists expect an ordered system to result from common descent and we know that certain deviations from order cannot possibly result from evolution. On the other hand, there is absolutely no design that cannot be created at a whim.

Another reason it seems I am arguing your position. This was my assertion in the OP. So it seems you are arguing my position

------
Let me ask you this question, from a philosophical perspective (not requiring the burden of scientific proof). Which is a more logical position?

A. A random, unguided process brought all the laws of physics into existence and established the extreme order we observe in the universe, or

B. An intelligent being brought all the laws of physics into existance and established the extreme order we observe in the universe.

I choose 'B'. Now I ask where does this philosophy overlap with science? At this point I don't know. Maybe not at all. That is why I started this thread. Where does the philosophy of ID overlap with science? The place it would overlap would, by necessity, need to make specific predictions that are contrary to the predictions that the ToE makes. Otherwise, it is merely explanatory.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by NoNukes, posted 08-13-2012 8:00 PM NoNukes has responded

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herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 30 of 167 (670420)
08-14-2012 11:50 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by Coyote
08-13-2012 9:37 PM


Re: Classifications systems
They may very well be wrong, and in need of correction or refinement, but it is an annoying habit of creationists and others who oppose the results of scientific investigation to use "assumption" and "classification systems" so as to imply they are wild-ass guesses. This is usually done because scientific investigations lead to conclusions which contract scripture, dogma, religious belief, etc.

I hope you didn't take this as my position as I wasn't trying to imply that classification systems were "wild-ass guesses" or that they were automatically wrong in any way. They are based on the criteria used to define them but I realize we do try to make that criteria mesh with reality. Any subjectivity that enters into this criteria would presumably be corrected over time. I like the term "model" and will use that from now on.

along with "that's just an assumption."

In the discussion I was having with a creationist that I mentioned in the OP, this is the argument he kept using over and over and over ... I gave specific examples of when it was perfectly logical to make an assumption, but he didn't want to hear those examples and just continued with the idea that all assumptions are illogical.


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by Coyote, posted 08-13-2012 9:37 PM Coyote has acknowledged this reply

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 59 of 167 (670545)
08-16-2012 9:02 AM
Reply to: Message 42 by Taq
08-15-2012 4:52 PM


No designer would limit themselves to a nested hierarchy. None. There is no rational reason to do so. Us humans don't even force our designed organisms into a nested hierarchy.

But isn't that assuming that the nested hierarchy we observe today was the same product the designer originally produced? Very few people still hold to the fixity of species (although there are still some ). Even in the most extreme case, if everything was created only 6000 yrs ago and rapidly diversified after the flood we would still expect a nested hierarchy of sorts, just with large discontinuities between "kinds". The further back you push the "creation event" the smaller those discontinuities would appear. Until, on the other extreme, you have a situation like genomicus proposes that the designer "front-loaded" the LCUA and then we would expect the exact nested hierarchy we observe today.

The nested hierarchy is a consequence of the process of inheritance with modification. I agree, as per my OP, that nested hierarchies favor common descent over ID because common descent requires (ie. predicts) nested hierarchies, while ID merely allows nested hierarchies, it doesn't require it. But I don't think the fact that life can be organized into a nested hierarchy excludes the existence or involvement of a designer.

It is an argument against a competent designer (i.e. God). It could be argued that poor designs are evidence of a poor designer, but given the theological views underpinning ID these arguments are rarely used.

Again, this is assuming that what we observe today is the same product that was initially designed. I think the issue of "poor design" says more about the nature of the material world than it does about the nature of the designer. If this world were designed to be perfect in every way, wouldn't it be more of a supernatural world? But instead, the material world is subject to degradation, decay and death. Could a designer have designed a perfect world? I suppose so, but instead he made it a material universe rather than supernatural.

I saw someone arguing that he didn't believe in a designer because he had gotten a cavity. He mused that a good designer would have given us titanium teeth that never decay. Really? That's the criteria for a good designer? its not a DNA molecule that can replicate and repair itself, be passed on to the next generation, mutate to allow for diversity, package itself so as to fit within a single cell, etc... I have pretty bad teeth myself, maybe its because I drink too much pop and eat too much candy...

But I think you hit on a major problem with the ID movement when you said "theological views underpinning ID". Rather than asking where does the philosophical ideals and the scientific ideals overlap they try to turn their philosophical ideals into scientific processes. And so far have failed to have those ideals accepted in the scientific realm.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Taq, posted 08-15-2012 4:52 PM Taq has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 61 by NoNukes, posted 08-16-2012 12:01 PM herebedragons has responded
 Message 62 by Taq, posted 08-16-2012 12:04 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 60 of 167 (670578)
08-16-2012 11:54 AM
Reply to: Message 47 by bluegenes
08-15-2012 5:41 PM


Re: Make up your minds!
Evolution can't choose to do without them. Why would your intelligent designer necessarily choose there to be principles? What binds him to do so?

Perhaps because this a physical universe. If there weren't principals how could it function? There is nothing to bind him to using the principals we observe. But why would he not be bound to establishing principals in designing a material, physical universe? If there were not principals a physical world could not exist.

My issue is that I have a philosophical position that there is a God, an Intelligent Designer. I can use scientific observations to understand certain characteristics of that designer. That should only be an issue with those that have the philosophical position that there is no God and then the difference of opinion becomes a philosophical argument, not a scientific one.

I don't think that science can possibly tell us everything about said designer because science is only capable of identifying natural causes, so the two ideals, philosophy and science, can only partial overlap. But at this "overlap" I would expect that the designer could be detected in the design.

So, I would have to agree with GDR that the fact that there are principals at all that govern the universe is evidence of a designer. Sure it is not conclusive evidence, but it is a better explanation than evolution IMO (I am referring to general evolution not specifically to biological evolution). Evolution cannot function without those principals in place, so therefore how could it have created those principals?

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 47 by bluegenes, posted 08-15-2012 5:41 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 70 by bluegenes, posted 08-16-2012 7:04 PM herebedragons has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


(1)
Message 100 of 167 (670821)
08-19-2012 10:06 PM
Reply to: Message 61 by NoNukes
08-16-2012 12:01 PM


Well, at least some people believe that earth once was a supernatural perfect world that has since fallen into its current state. Are you dismissing that possibility?

The common reason for the idea of a perfect creation is that there was no death before Adam's sin, which occurred about 6,000 years ago. I cannot at all reconcile this view with the evidence. Whether it was at one time a perfect world, one can only guess, but it seems that the world has pretty much been operating in pretty much the same way for a long, long time.

I don't have any issue with where people get their inspiration for their science. But after conception, I expect to see science done. I don't rule out the possibility that there is a way to identify a designed biological life form, but I'm skeptical that we can come up with a scientific procedure for doing so.

An acceptable answer, IMHO, to which I can agree. The trouble is that science deals with natural events and natural processes, so coming up with a procedure intended for natural processes to detect non-natural events is very problematic, to say the least.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 61 by NoNukes, posted 08-16-2012 12:01 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1517
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009


Message 101 of 167 (670823)
08-19-2012 10:27 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by bluegenes
08-16-2012 7:04 PM


Re: Make up your minds!
All of which misses the point. Neither principles nor a physical universe are predictions of an intelligent design hypothesis.

I didn't miss your point. You asked why would a designer be bound to using principals. That is what I responded to. A designer would be bound to using principals within a physical universe. How else could it function?

You seem to suggest that because a designer could design in any way he wanted that we cannot use observations to formulate a hypothesis. Not so. The principals of the physical world are not predictions of the ToE either, even though they are a requirement of evolution. I say that principals are a requirement of a designer also.

I agree that that the principals that govern the universe are not a prediction of an intelligent design hypothesis, but for a different reason. They cannot be tested and falsified. We can't test a universe with no principals or exclude certain ones. Principals are just that, principals. A designer would be bound to use them. Not necessarily the ones we observe, but principals none-the-less.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for. But until the end of the present exile has come and terminated this our imperfection by which "we know in part," I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

This message is a reply to:
 Message 70 by bluegenes, posted 08-16-2012 7:04 PM bluegenes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 102 by bluegenes, posted 08-20-2012 3:04 AM herebedragons has not yet responded

  
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