Frankly in order to take choice one requires huge faith, in that you have to believe that the chemicals required somehow came into existence in the first place.
We already know that. See the Recombination era and Big Bang nucleosynthesis then see stellar nucleosynthesis and that will cover the elements.
Then we needed to have all of the correct elements required ...
Elements (atoms - periodic table) covered above.
Then look up organic molecules in space or astrochemistry. Tons of the stuff that we see as simple organic compounds (molecules) spontaneously form in the thick hydrogen clouds of the stellar nurseries (It's what carbon does all by itself when a spattering of other elements that just happens to be hanging around - there really is a natural reason we are a carbon-based life form).
... result in sentient beings able to understand the process and also beings capable of understanding and responding to a moral code.
Ahh, yes. Evolution. Lovely stuff.
It still boils down to what you choose to believe.
And so it does. Now the chirality issue is on its way to being settled. This just takes away one more gap in which to hide a god. One less "ignorance" in which to claim majik.
You keep trying to use endless processes as evidence of the non-existence of a prime mover.
What endless processes? We know what a lot of the processes are, we are learning the answers to the ones we didn't fully understand, and we keep learning more about the ones we still do not fully understand. Nowhere in any of this has there been any kind of majik or USDA Prime mover evident or necessary.
It is not me trying to use "endless processes" to evidence some non-existence. The preponderance of the data on the processes we already know pretty much points in that direction as it is.
It is you who says that since we do not know all there is to know therefore there might be your Prime Beef in there somewhere. So there is still somewhere to hide your god. Good for you.
To hearken back to a discussion some time ago, you really do need our ignorance to harbor your faith. You're in luck. We will always be ignorant of something.
Religion requires ignorance. I am not questioning your personal level of intellect but, in general, oh, that really does work on so many different levels.
All of these theoretical processes are based on pre-existing conditions that are simply assumed to exist without explanation.
No they are not. Just because someone has not walked you through each step back does not mean the conditions are assumed or the explanation is missing. This is a number of years of college courses and a whole lot of outside reading to understand in the level of detail you seem to want.
The processes from Big Bang nucleosynthesis through stellar nucleosynthesis through quantum chemistry through stellar formation, planetary accretion, evidence of early earth environment and chemistry all show that the building blocks needed and the right conditions did indeed exist to a first approximation. We are as certain as we can be without having been there at the time. That is not assumption but the logical and evidenced extension of the data. These are facts.
We know the facts of how the building blocks formed, where they came from, how they got here and the conditions they were in at the time. Now a hypothesis of abiogenesis has gotten stronger by direct experiment with chirality. Not complete, but stronger.
Your contention that these pre-existing conditions are just weakly assumed is not correct.
I am simply saying that what has been presented isn't evidence that a prime mover(s) doesn't exist either.
Sure it is evidence. Not proof, for sure, since we cannot prove a negative, but the evidence we do have, and there is a lot of it, tells us that some prime something or other is not necessary. The processes we already know about, which are considerable, don't need one. The processes we are closing in on do not appear to need one. Why should anyone assume the processes we don't completely understand should need one?
Again, since no one can prove a negative the evidence does not "prove" your brand of initial poof-maker does not exist, it just very strongly indicates that one is superfluous to what we know has taken place.
All belief requires ignorance whether it be religion or atheism ...
I thought you were beyond this. This is the classic theist's mistake about atheism.
I are not atheist because I "believe" there is no god. I are atheist because I do not believe in your god, or her god, or this god here or that god there or any god anywhere. I are atheist because I do not believe.
I understand this is difficult for a theist to wrap their mind around since their whole world is wrapped up in belief and they cannot conceive of something as simple as "non-belief". The theist will then insist that I "believe" in no god even though the logic of this is inane. The theist must insist that the atheist has some kind of belief, even if it is a negative (thus illogical) one, so they can put the atheist in a position where the theist can negate this belief. It's difficult at best to negate something that isn't there.
The only way to turn an atheist is to make him believe. The problem, of course, is that the very things a theist would use to make the atheist believe are the very things that lead to non-belief to begin with.
Now, I will be the first one to admit that I am hopelessly ignorant about much more stuff than I do know. But one thing I do know is what I believe and what I do not believe. Being steeped in Western Empiricism I really do not "believe" in much of anything. I require at least some logic to even form a speculation. But as far as gods go, whether for or against, up or down, plus, minus or sideways, "belief" doesn't enter the thought process in any way.
So, no. While I agree belief requires ignorance, non-belief is somewhat oblivious since there is nothing there. Neither ignorance nor complete knowledge. Non-belief is no belief at all.
arguing that this is evidence to support the anti-theist position is no different than Faith's argument for evidence for inerrancy of the Bible, or for that matter making a scientific argument for ID.
First, and I don't want to be too cutting here because I really like the lady, the cited evidence for inerrancy are forced interpretations with badly stretched comparisons mixed with a large dose of illogical self-serving conclusions.
Second, ID can have no scientific arguments in its favor since it bears no resemblance to anything scientific and its proponents cannot seem to follow the methods of science in their analyses.
On the other hand, the breadth and depth of the scientific knowledge we do have, while certainly not even close to what's left out there yet to learn, I think is considerably wider and deeper than you care to admit. While the greater body of humanity may lack deep intellect most of the scientific practitioners are not that dumb. What we know we know very well indeed. Yet in all this knowledge of how stars, galaxies and universes work, how energy cycles, message cascades and protein formation work, of the thousands of processes we have studied in space, in the cell, in nature, in extraordinary detail, none require any majik or poofery. This is real hard scientific knowledge about the reality of our world, not the superficial scrambling for half-truths in bible study or ID.
In my opinion, and it is just my opinion, this is evidence, not conclusive by any means but evidence none the less, that we most probably will not find any majik or poofery in the processes we are studying or have yet to study.
Why should we expect anything different? Because some religious zealots, some charismatic David Koresh / Jim Jones types, scratched some stories onto papyrus 3000 years ago?
Yes, we know a great deal of the complexity of the cell and how some slime grew up to contemplate its own existence while developing a sense of altruism along the way and none of it, not even the merest hint, indicates any prime poof-maker involved. Quite the contrary. Such a thing is quite superfluous to the process as well as to the results.
You want to say we can not know for sure? I agree with you. But we can look to the evidence we already have and we can sure take a hint.
No. But the available evidence indicates you are probably in error so I have a strong level of confidence that you are wrong.
I's suggest that is based on the belief that there is nothing beyond natural causes for all that we perceive.
Again, wrong. The view is based on the fact that there is a logical connection, as we have seen in lesser but still noticeable ways in other species, between the incremental evolution of altruism and group cohesiveness/protection/survival of various social species. There is also the fact that there is no evidence and no logical reasoning that would justify entertaining your other mechanism as a cause.
If your other mechanism wants to play with the big boys then it needs to pony up and show itself worthy of consideration. There isn't any evidence or logical reasoning that would allow us to even assume your other mechanism exists let alone affect such a system. On what basis should we entertain this whim?
What you have is evidence that processes such as evolution appear to be self sustaining without outside intervention. There is no evidence that natural processes themselves are the result of a prime mover or not.
Excellent. You see where we are. Now take the next step.
Why should we entertain something different? Why should we throw any kind of prime anything into a mix that works just fine without it? Don't you have an Occam'sTM Razor? You really should have one handy. Why should we include something that has no evidence, without any logical reasoning, lacking any credence whatsoever? Why should we factor in a religious whim?
No, I'm not just talking evolution and other processes. I'm talking about the entire universe.
if you have two (or more) systems to study and one is simpler than the other(s) that you might benefit from trying the simpler one first.
We have two competing hypotheses. Evolution works because the natural processes work vs evolution works because the Prime Mover created it to work.
The first can be tested, the second carries an additional ontological entity and cannot.
While you are right that Occam's Razor (OR) cannot choose which hypothesis is correct it does tell you which hypothesis is "more likely" correct.
Defining OR as "choosing which is simpler" is common but incorrect. OR is a process of stripping away unnecessary or (as in this case) non testable ontological entities.
Cutting away the Prime Mover ontological entity from hypothesis 2 leaves the more ontologically parsimonious (common: simpler) hypothesis 1. Hypothesis 1 is therefore more likely to be correct. Hypothesis 1 is not shown to be true, OR is not a truth table analyitic, just more likely to be correct.
I stand by my correct use of OR and the result achieved in this specific case.
Why should this unnecessary and non testable entity be considered? By what logic or evidence does this religious whim gain any credence?
So now you've made your standard atheist argument for the absence of god/s based on your perceived absence of evidence ...
No, not a perceived absence of evidence but an actual, demonstrable and total lack of evidence. Unless, of course, you are holding something back from the rest of us.
No, it just suggests starting with the simple one first. Period.
Why is that RAZD? Because unburdened of its excess baggage the more parsimonious hypothesis is "more likely" to be correct. Period.
Many people will tell you they have perceived god/s, and they would disagree with your perception, so no, there is not a total lack of evidence.
Oh, come on RAZD. Peoples perceptions as evidence? You should know better.
The plural of anecdote is not data.
There is indeed a total, glaring, demonstrable lack of evidence (objective, recognizable, repeatable evidence not some flaky spiritual emotion-centered perception masquerading as "lets pretend it qualifies as" evidence) for any flavor, kind or style of supernatural anything.
If my "perception" of this absolute lack of evidence for anything supernatural is in error then show me. I'm willing to revise my stand.
No, don't answer. I know. Wrong thread. This is a good one. I will stop throwing sand in it.
does this explanation for chirality link the two threads together or are there other steps\blocks that need to be filled in?
One block that still needs a more robust explanation, unless I've missed something - again, is the formation of the mononucleotides. At present we can only artificially produce these pre-cursors to nucleic acids. We haven't been able, to my knowledge, to whip up a brew and have these things spontaneously pop out the way we can with the aminos, monomers and other organics.
This is critical if we are going to have the materials required to produce those first simple self-catalyzing, reproducing, short-chain RNAs.
Found something interesting. From 2011, Dr. David Deamer