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Author Topic:   NvC-1: What is the premise of Naturalism in Biology?
PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 6 of 452 (875781)
05-06-2020 12:33 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Richard L. Wang
05-05-2020 4:07 PM


As others have observed there is no YES/NO question.

The other point of interest is that far from avoiding philosophy it is all about philosophy.

quote:
Today, the mainstream science is Naturalism, and the mainstream biology is Darwinian-Naturalism

Theists can and have operated within mainstream biology, including Theodore Dobzhansky, Kenneth Miller and Simon Conway-Morris. Thus, this point actually refers to methodological naturalism.

So, if the question is being asked about mainstream biology it ought to be:

What is the justification for practicing methodological naturalism in biology?

Which would be a question worth discussing, and in line with the assertion that God is required in scientific interpretation. Unfortunately it would go against the assertion that methodological naturalism and philosophy would not be discussed, but that was already contradicted.

If the question is really about why biologists who hold to philosophical Naturalism do so, then it gets into personal philosophies - so we still can’t avoid philosophy - and likely will involve a great deal of speculation about other people’s personal beliefs. I don’t think that is a very good topic at all.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-05-2020 4:07 PM Richard L. Wang has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 20 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-06-2020 4:59 PM PaulK has responded

  
PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 19 of 452 (875803)
05-06-2020 4:19 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by Richard L. Wang
05-06-2020 4:07 PM


Re: The DN’s premise – Life consists of matter only
Since the “DN” is a fiction you invented I suppose you can give it any premises you like.

But that is no way to get to the truth.

When you admitted to being wrong because you hadn’t asked a yes/no question as you had said you would, i was concerned that you hadn’t addressed the far more serious error that your question was based on a false assumption. Now I see that concern was more than justified.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 17 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-06-2020 4:07 PM Richard L. Wang has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 30 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-07-2020 4:21 PM PaulK has responded

  
PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 21 of 452 (875805)
05-06-2020 5:09 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by Richard L. Wang
05-06-2020 4:59 PM


Re: Dualism
quote:
Yes, some scientists believe in God in their spiritual world, but in their natural world, they think that science can explain all natural phenomena and God is not needed

Not necessarily, they could have a range of beliefs. Generally they will believe that science will dominate in their area of expertise - perhaps with rare exceptions. But that would seem essential to actually doing science. However even that allows for undetectable intervention by supernatural forces.

quote:
For example, Theodore Dobzhansky wrote his very famous assertion in 1973: “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.” In his scientific worldview, nothing in biology was created and God does not exist in his BIOLOGICAL WORLD. This is not methodological philosophy, this is his scientific worldview, which we discuss here.

That seems more an assessment of the evidence than a pre-determined conclusion. Moreover, it is not that God does not exist, more that God does not detectably intervene. To these scientists God absolutely does exist. Miller, for instance, believes that evolution functions because God set up a universe where it could and would occur.

quote:
Logically, such dualism should not exist: either God in their spiritual world does not exist, or their scientific worldview is incorrect.

No. If God exists he doesn’t have to act the way you want. There is no logical problem with that.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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PaulK
Member
Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 25 of 452 (875817)
05-07-2020 2:12 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by PaulK
05-06-2020 5:09 PM


Re: Dualism
Adding to my previous response, let me note what you said earlier in Message 1

Of course, Neo-Darwinism’s interpretation of evolution is an Atheistic theory. On the other hand, the Catholic Church recognizes the existence of evolution: in an address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences on October 22, 1996, Pope John Paul II updated the Church's position to accept evolution of the human body: “there is no conflict between evolution and the doctrine of the faith, …, some new findings lead us toward the recognition of evolution as more than a hypothesis.” does this mean Pope John Paul II recognizes an Atheistic theory? Absolutely not. In the same address, Pope John Paul II rejected any theory of evolution that provides a materialistic explanation for the human soul: “Theories of evolution which, because of the philosophies which inspire them, regard the spirit either as emerging from the forces of living matter, or as a simple epiphenomenon of that matter, are incompatible with the truth about man.” Pope Francis has stated on October 27, 2014: " The evolution of nature does not contrast with the notion of creation, as evolution presupposes the creation of beings that evolve.” (See: Evolution and the Catholic Church - Wikipedia)

That paragraph is your “proof” that “creationism” - as you define it - is not in conflict with evolution.

Pope John Paul II’s statement fully accepts that evolution is responsible for the biological form of the human body, excepting only the non-biological “spirit”. This is entirely in accord with Dobzhansky’s statement.

If your current position is true, John Paul II’s statement is self-contradictory. By leaving human biology to evolution he was denying God. Yet you cited that very statement as supporting your position that “creationism” was not in conflict with evolution.

Indeed your very assertion that your “creationism” does not conflict with evolution implicitly allows for Dobzhansky’s assertion. Yet you say that Dobzhansky’s assertion can not be true if God exists.

In short, it seems that the real contradiction is in your position.

Edited by PaulK, : Correct tag


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Replies to this message:
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PaulK
Member
Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 33 of 452 (875838)
05-07-2020 4:29 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Richard L. Wang
05-07-2020 4:21 PM


Re: Re – 19(PaulK): DN strictly controls science and education
quote:
DN is not a fiction I invented. DN is a very authoritative reality. DN strictly controls science and education. Can one teach creationism in classrooms of public schools? Can one publish creationism papers on scientific journals?

Again we come back to methodological naturalism - or certainly a closely related point. What you are arguing against is not the idea that whatever you call “creationism” is false but the idea that it is not science.


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PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 34 of 452 (875839)
05-07-2020 4:36 PM
Reply to: Message 31 by Richard L. Wang
05-07-2020 4:23 PM


Re: Re-25(PaulK) & …: Please waiting for a while, we’ll
None of which is relevant to the central point that you are labelling people as accepting DN even if they do not accept the supposed primary axiom of DN. Without any reason, it seems, other than to maintain your equation of DN with mainstream evolutionary theory.

This message is a reply to:
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PaulK
Member
Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 46 of 452 (875877)
05-08-2020 4:23 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by Richard L. Wang
05-08-2020 4:16 PM


Re: The DN’s premise (continued 2)
Since you’ve already admitted that you are actually opposed to evolution and naturalism is just a red-herring can I ask why you are continuing on this line of argument ?

Surely you should be getting down to the real issue - that you object to methodological naturalism, since it leads to conclusions that you reject.


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PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 55 of 452 (875923)
05-09-2020 4:29 PM
Reply to: Message 54 by Richard L. Wang
05-09-2020 4:23 PM


Re: Re-46(PaulK)&47(ringo): Evolution is a great theory
quote:
No, I’m not against evolution

Yes you are. You made that very obvious in Message 20

You do not accept that evolution can account for the features seen in biology.

You also insist that creationism must be accepted as mainstream science Message 30.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-09-2020 4:23 PM Richard L. Wang has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 68 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-10-2020 3:36 PM PaulK has responded

  
PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 62 of 452 (875949)
05-10-2020 12:56 PM
Reply to: Message 61 by Tangle
05-10-2020 12:52 PM


No, he’s funnier than most. I bet he doesn’t realise that he’s just agreed with the statement he was “disproving”.

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PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 73 of 452 (875971)
05-10-2020 4:15 PM
Reply to: Message 68 by Richard L. Wang
05-10-2020 3:36 PM


Re: Re –PaulK(55): Maybe you can say so, …
quote:
Because the evolution in my mind is different from Neo-Darwinism’s evolution

You’re being awfully slippery about this. First you quote Pope John Paul II’s statement. Then you tell us that such a view is impossible. Then you tell us that if creationism is not accepted as mainstream science it’s because the naturalists have a stranglehold on evolutionary theory (and to be honest it’s hard not to read that claim as including Young Earth Creationism).

Then there’s the whole issue of methodological naturalism. I know you don’t want to discuss it, but ignoring vital issues because you don’t want to talk about them is no way to get to the truth.


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 Message 68 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-10-2020 3:36 PM Richard L. Wang has not yet responded

  
PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 86 of 452 (875987)
05-11-2020 1:54 AM
Reply to: Message 76 by Richard L. Wang
05-10-2020 4:48 PM


Re: Re-GDR(64): The opposite of materialism is idealism, I don’t …
I’m going to comment that the first thread seems to be your ideas about the opposing position. Which are mainly your invention. That’s superfluous at best.

I’ll also ask right now what your proposed non-natural aspect of life actually is. Because if it’s information you aren’t actually disagreeing with a naturalist position yet (and I include what you’ve written in the second thread).


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PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 94 of 452 (876035)
05-12-2020 12:11 AM
Reply to: Message 67 by Richard L. Wang
05-10-2020 3:33 PM


Re: Re – Tangle(56&58&61): Let’s move on. Warning: I set up a trap ahead
Firstly it is apparent that this discussion is largely philosophical.

There is no real disagreement over the role of genes in passing information between generations. It’s a cornerstone of evolution - you’re more likely to find a creationist denying it.

The question of whether life consists of matter or whether life consists of matter and information has more to do with the ontological status of information. Information is an abstraction which raises the question of whether it can be even said to exist (because abstracts do not exist in the same way as concrete entities). It certainly raises the question of whether something can be said to consist - even partly - of information.

But also - even if information is somehow independent of matter (another philosophical question) - in this case certainly it is not. The information is carried by physical means and it’s transmission is carried out by entities obeying physical law. Indeed, if there are separate rules regarding information evolution itself would be a good candidate but it can still be boiled down to an outcome of physical interactions. And the various mechanisms of mutation show how physical events can change or delete or even add to the information present.

In short the claims do not reveal any scientific difference. If there is a substantive difference it isn’t scientific, it’s philosophical.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 67 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-10-2020 3:33 PM Richard L. Wang has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 108 by Richard L. Wang, posted 05-13-2020 10:52 AM PaulK has not yet responded

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 110 of 452 (876157)
05-13-2020 11:27 AM
Reply to: Message 105 by Richard L. Wang
05-13-2020 10:35 AM


Re: Methodological naturalism, metaphysical naturalism, philosophical naturalism …
quote:
On this topic, some people have talked a lot about methodological naturalism, metaphysical naturalism, philosophical naturalism, and their definitions

Of course they did. That is what this topic is about.

quote:
Take the origin of life on Earth for example. If I say that “science cannot explain the origin of life on Earth”, then ALL Naturalists will say “No, science can.”

I think that most would admit that we do not yet have a satisfactory scientific explanation. More, even philosophical naturalists are not committed to the idea that we ever will. It is certainly possible that it is too difficult a problem and that we have too little information to solve it (although there are certainly reasons to hope that we will).

Methodological naturalists can even believe that it was a miracle that never can be explained scientifically. Some, however, will think otherwise - Catholics might point out that their doctrine says that natural law is as much an expression of God’s working as a a miracle.

quote:
I won't talk about methodological naturalism, metaphysical naturalism, philosophical naturalism …

So, no more talk of DN.


This message is a reply to:
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PaulK
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Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 121 of 452 (876190)
05-14-2020 5:54 AM
Reply to: Message 115 by Admin
05-13-2020 1:56 PM


Re: We need a new topic and NvC-3 is a good one
My comments on this are that:

NvC-3 is at best badly mistaken and essentially sets up a strawman

The proposed topic for NvC-4 has already been adequately addressed in this thread.

NvC-5 is jumping the gun.

A rewrite of NvC-3 to show genuine differences might be appropriate, but the proposal as it stands is not a good start.

If Richard genuinely believes that information is independent of matter (which requires denying his assertion that “ Information needs matter as its carrier, and information can only be stored and transmitted by information-carrier.” Message 2) AND can produce a case that his ideas apply to evolution then we might have a usable topic.


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 Message 115 by Admin, posted 05-13-2020 1:56 PM Admin has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 124 by RAZD, posted 05-14-2020 5:09 PM PaulK has responded

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17034
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 125 of 452 (876233)
05-15-2020 2:14 AM
Reply to: Message 124 by RAZD
05-14-2020 5:09 PM


Re: DO We need a new topic (eg NvC-3) ... ?
The answer to the question is yes. A topic where Richard lays out his views and arguments rather than trying to pin positions on other people would be a good way forward.

quote:
One of the troubles I have with "information" is that all science is information, and people seem to jump over all preliminary definitions and descriptions to focus on evolution

If evolution is the topic then talking about information in the context of evolution is relevant. There’s a lot we don’t need to worry about. Including a lot of points that have come up here. Indeed the distinction between gravitation as a phenomenon and Newton’s description of it is exactly the sort of thing we don’t need to think about.


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 Message 124 by RAZD, posted 05-14-2020 5:09 PM RAZD has not yet responded

  
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