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On intelligent design

I heard a researcher make the following comment in a recent mp3 lecture I was listening to: ??oeThe fact that all species use DNA as their means of copying and reproduction is the single most compelling proof of the theory of evolution.??

Juxtaposing that with the following: ??oeThe fact that computers all use transistors is the single most compelling proof that they came about by random mutations of silicon ore.??

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  • David 22/02/2008 7:06am (10 years ago)

    Interesting discussion. I need to review it sometime. I just want to point out an error by Mikel, which in no way undermines his argument. Both new world and old world monkeys do have tails. Although there is at least one new world monkey, the uakari, which has only a stump of a tail. The difference in tails between new world and old world monkeys is that the formers' tails are prehensile whereas old world monkeys' are not.

  • NItai 25/06/2006 4:15pm (11 years ago)

    I support ID but also the new theory of devolution. For more ifo visit:

    http://www.freewebtown.com/bhaktivedanta108

  • Mikel 07/12/2005 3:13pm (12 years ago)

    Hello there, this is getting interesting:

    First of all, there is a good article on New Scientists about the issue:

    ------------------------------------------------
    Can biology do better than faith?

    * 19:00 02 November 2005
    * NewScientist.com news service
    * Edward O. Wilson

    http://www.newscientist.com/channel/opinion/dn8254.html
    ------------------------------------------------

    Second, I will answer to the comments (by the way, I meant "slacker", not "sacker"):

    Frank-Peter: yes, you are right, I didn't understand it correctly, but anyway what Julian says is wrong. What the scientist was saying is that as all organisms share DNA in such an intricated way (as phylogeny and ontogeny shows), that probes that organisms derive from each other. And again, evolution is not a random process: it is not like putting one milllion chemical molecules in a soup and suddenly a human being appears. The natural selection (ammongst other processes) determines the process in a time scale that it is enormous, so it is a non-random very long process. There is thousands of evidence for that, but yet no one has given me a compelling evidence of an entity creating life at his or her will. This paragraph of the mentioned article is clearer than myself:

    "Yet biologists are unanimous in concluding that evolution is a fact. The evidence they and thousands of others have adduced over 150 years falls together in intricate and interlocking detail. The multitudinous examples range from the small changes in DNA sequences observed as they occur in real time to finely graded sequences within larger evolutionary changes in the fossil record. Further, on the basis of comparably strong evidence, natural selection grows ever stronger as the prevailing explanation of evolution."

    Visnu-maya:

    Er... well, if we are discussing something, you give counter arguments to what I say (preferably with evidence), and I give you counter arguments to what you say. Otherwise there is no discussion, there are two monologs. And, I must add, citing Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.4 is not convincing at all. Universities are full of big headed lecturers who make obscure terms for their own fame? What a discovery man, welcome to real world ;-)

    What's that spiritual reality?Can you be more precise?Are you saying that the spiritual reality is what drives evolution?Can you give real evidence of that?



  • Visnu-maya 06/12/2005 10:36pm (12 years ago)

    For Mikel-

    In this age...one who is very clever at juggling words will be considered a learned scholar.

    Intellectuality is another casualty of the bewildering age of Kali (age of Quarrel and hypocrisy). Modern so-called philosophers and scientists have created a technical, esoteric terminology for each branch of learning, and when they give lectures people consider them learned simply because of their ability to speak that which no one else can understand...Modern universities have very little wisdom, though they do possess a virtual infinity of technical data. Although many modern thinkers are fundamentally ignorant of the higher, spiritual reality, they are, so to speak, "good talkers," and most people simply don't notice their ignorance. (Srimad Bhagavatam 12.2.4)

  • Frank-Peter 06/12/2005 10:09pm (12 years ago)

    I believe that Mikel missed the critical point which Julian was trying to make with his juxtaposition: computers weren't created at random by silicon ore, but rather by intelligent beings, namely humans. Similarly, intelligent life in this universe (as well as other universes as we'll eventually come to realize) was also not created at random by a cloud of DNA, or whatever, but by a highly superior intelligence namely_______.

    submitted by an anonymous intelligence.

  • Mikel 06/12/2005 11:21am (12 years ago)

    More points (never let a sacker go into your blog!!!):

    1.- If Darwinism is wrong, why species distribution and charateristics correlate with geography? E.g. new world monkeys have all tails, whereas old world monkeys don't. The so called ring species are species that span the whole world, and there is a gradient of hybridation that can be followed: for example, british seagulls cannot breed with european ones and they are very different, but they can with seagulls from the west, because they are slightly different, so morphology changes in a gradient around the globe ..... till, voila! We find again in the other extreme the European seagulls. How can you explain that?

    2.-If creationism is true, the divinity behind it is a completely useless engineer: why build a horse leg starting from a hand- like structure instead of directly building a leg?Why give women such a painfull birth process due to bipedism?

  • Mikel 06/12/2005 10:54am (12 years ago)

    Another comment, this time answering to Harshad:

    You are missing two points:

    1.- The time scale of evolution is enormous.

    2.- Evolution is not random, natural selection forces a direction. So the analogy of the twister is again wrong: organisms don't evolve because of random mutations, (basically) evolve because the mutations that increase the fitness of them are "chosen" by natural selection from the pool of random mutations. If there is directionality complex structures can evolve without divine intervention.

  • Mikel 05/12/2005 6:05pm (12 years ago)

    Hello there is Mikel from the other table putting comments on your blog ;-)

    As usual I have something to say:

    1.- Even if the proof of DNA was wrong (which is not, but I will accept it for the sake of argument) it doesn't neccesarily follow that organisms were created by some kind of god-like entity. Thus, you need a proof that demonstrates that that kind of entity created the organisms, but you haven't (I'm still waiting for it).

    2.- Your critic on the proof of DNA is pointless: computers don't reproduce as organisms do, therefore obviously if they have the same transistors they have been put there by someone. But if organisms do reproduce, share the DNA, share genes, genes can be traced back, same genes do same functions (Homeobox genes in development in organisms as distant as flies as humans), all the organisms share the same genetic code, and a very long and painfully long list of evident facts, then organisms come from each other.

    3.-Creationists always intentionally mix the evolution (fact) and the evolution (theory). There are some facts and there is a theory that explains them. Of course that theory is incomplete (as every scientific theory always will be, like Popper pointed) but it has to be assessed in terms of explanatory power: Darwinian evolution explains loads of facts, from fossils to DNA including morphologic and etologic extremes. And from the fact that that theory is incomplete (as every healthy scientific theory should be) doesn't follow that other theories are true. For example we still don't know why there are jumps in the pace of the evolution, in how many levels evolution acts, etc. But all this "holes" by no means support the idea of some kind of metaphysical entity creating the organisms at his will. It's just a logical jump that you guys do because you want to believe in something, and you are ready to twist logic (and reality evidence) to fit your needs.

    4.-Creationists always do the same: just vagely suggest that evolution is wrong, but never give convincing scientific proof. They never say "God created the animals because such and such". Well, they do, but citing the bible or some kind of religious text doesn't count as scientific data.

    5.-Something that amazes me is that creationists never attack each other. So you accept that Ala created all the animals (even if Ala is a completely different god to yours) but you cannot accept scientific explanations. So it seems that for you as long as people has some kind of dogmatic and irratioinal religious thinking is fine, but if they try to be critic and assess the evidence properly, is wrong. That would me make me seriously think if I were you.

    6.-Man, I must admit that if what you say is true and organisms were created by some entity, that entity has got a brilliant sense of humour. He must be cracking just watching how all those poor humans are using rational thinking to infer a wrong conclusion from thousands of proofs put by him.

    Longest comment in your blog ;-)

  • Harshad 05/12/2005 5:58am (12 years ago)

    Sometime ago, I had come across the following link on the internet :

    http://www.aswatalislam.net/DisplayFilesP.aspx?TitleID=50002&TitleName=Harun_Yahya_-_Arabic

    It has some good videos against darwinism, and have been designed as preaching material by an islamic website. But its good to see that they bought out the correct facts. Worth giving a watch. It also covers this DNA part which you are talking about. I had seen somewhere in the video, that the probability of life evolving from DNA is the same as the probability of a giant twister entering a scrap warehouse and forming a boeing 747. Made me laugh...

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