If EVOLUTION is REAL, then WHERE is the PROOF?

gtplaya818
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If EVOLUTION is REAL, then WHERE is the PROOF?

1)  Where are all the missing links in the fossil records between EVERY single species that has ever existed and is currently living today?  Shouldn't there be hundreds of thousands of every little step of transition between species if evolution actually existed including ape to man?  Why can we find plenty of fossils of the SAME species over and over again and yet we can't find the hundreds of thousands to millions of transitional forms there have to be to prove evolution?  WHERE ARE THE FOSSILS OF THE TRANSITIONAL FORMS?  (The theory of evolution creating NEW species is different than 2 different dogs mating together to create a new breed of dog.  Creating a new species is like breeding 2 dogs together to create an elephant)  If evolution is happening now, what NEW species are developing TODAY?  (New species meaning a completely different animal, not a mutation of one from another - obviously combining 2 different types of the same species will create something that looks like a combination of the 2, but it's STILL the SAME SPECIES)

 

2)  If things that were not living became things that were living, why is that NOT still happening today?  Shouldn't we be constantly seeing that happen now if it happened before?   Why can't scientists make living organisms out of objects that aren't living?  Why did LIFE begin if there was evolution?  Why not just have nothing but nonliving material everywhere combing together to make more nonliving material?  If we know the physical makeup of certain animals, why can't humans create life from the non-living as well?

 

3)  If the big bang THEORY was actually real, then what created the big bang?  Was there NOTHING before the big bang?  No universe, no planets, no stars, no life?  No time?  No space?  Absolutely nothing?  How long was there NOTHING for?  Was it nothing for millions of years, and then all of a sudden something just appeared out of NOTHING?  Can you even call it nothing because that could be something in itself?  What caused something to appear out of NOTHING and WHY?  What was the point?  And how?

 

4)  How did it come to be that you are controlling the body that you have currently?  How can someone not believe in the existence of a soul?  What happened when you were born?  What will happen when you DIE?

 

The majority of the people who I have met that don't believe in an intelligent Creator tend to be unintelligent themselves and nearly all of them haven't taken the time to think DEEPLY about the subject of life, how it began, and the fact that they will also die someday.  Most of them have come to their conclusions based on popularity or what "feels" right without even looking deep into the subject which is their own life.  Most of them are also too busy trying to make ends meet to even think about their own life and their EXISTENCE.  Most of them come to a conclusion based on lack of information and without thinking deeply about it just like most people do about politics as well.  Some people feel strongly about being Republican or Democrat and barely even know what the difference is, unfortunately many people may feel strongly about creation or the existence of EVERYTHING out of nothing as well without knowing both sides of the story as well.

 

Why is it that most "atheists" all of a sudden believe in a "god" or God when they are in a near-death situation or when a close family member of theirs is close to dying or when they are in a situation that they believe that cannot control?  Why not ask the universe to save you if you are about to die?


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Intelligent Responses Only

Please answer the questions INTELLIGENTLY with answers not with questions.

 

Save worthless meaningless comments for another thread.


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Did someone go to the

Did someone go to the Creationist Museum with Ray Comfort recently?

Evolution is FACT.

Proof, "adenine, guanine, thymine, cytosine", better known as DNA. FYI BUD, every life form that has lived, living or will live IS a transitional fossil.

You have been sold a bill of goods by fans of myth. I'd suggest you spend more time with biology books and less time listing to the garbage apologists sell.

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I call Poe.

I call Poe.


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This is some fine work, but

This is some fine work, but I do have some suggestions for future trolling:

Don't say "evolution", say "EVIL-ution"

Call us "God-haters", "Darwin-Worshipers", or "Satan-lovers", etc.

Refer to the "Church of Evolution"

Quote mine Darwin on the eye (this is a classic!)

Remind us that evolution is JUST A THEORY, NOT A FACT!

Bring up Hitler

Tell us you didn't come from a monkey

Confuse Darwin and Dawkins

Explain how Darwin excepted Jesus into his heart and denied evolution on his deathbed

 

 

 


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free_thinker wrote:This is

free_thinker wrote:

This is some fine work, but I do have some suggestions for future trolling:

Don't say "evolution", say "EVIL-ution"

Call us "God-haters", "Darwin-Worshipers", or "Satan-lovers", etc.

Refer to the "Church of Evolution"

Quote mine Darwin on the eye (this is a classic!)

Remind us that evolution is JUST A THEORY, NOT A FACT!

Bring up Hitler

Tell us you didn't come from a monkey

Confuse Darwin and Dawkins

Explain how Darwin excepted Jesus into his heart and denied evolution on his deathbed

 

 

 

You killjoy, why cant you allow the magic baby zombie god fan their delusion?

Don't bring up the fact that it takes TWO sets of DNA to manifest into a zygote onto a baby.  Don't expect the hocus pokus fan to come up with a repeatable falsifiable test to SHOW HOW human flesh survives rigor mortis.

You forget that the fans of magical invisible brains with super powers have a trump card, "GOD DID IT"

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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Time to be PITA>

free_thinker wrote:

This is some fine work, but I do have some suggestions for future trolling:

Don't say "evolution", say "EVIL-ution"

Call us "God-haters", "Darwin-Worshipers", or "Satan-lovers", etc.

Refer to the "Church of Evolution"

Quote mine Darwin on the eye (this is a classic!)

Remind us that evolution is JUST A THEORY, NOT A FACT!

Bring up Hitler

Tell us you didn't come from a monkey

Confuse Darwin and Dawkins

Explain how Darwin excepted Jesus into his heart and denied evolution on his deathbed

 

 

 

 

 

                PITA{  =   'pain in the ass' .

 

 

                I agree with the satire but that last line is driving me nuts; and I don't usually critique those who commit assault and battery on the English language but this one is too blatent;  The word you wanted was ACCEPTED , the word you used EXCEPTED has the complete opposite meaning.

"Very funny Scotty; now beam down our clothes."

VEGETARIAN: Ancient Hindu word for "lousy hunter"

If man was formed from dirt, why is there still dirt?


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gtplaya818 wrote:Why is it

gtplaya818 wrote:
Why is it that most "atheists" all of a sudden believe in a "god" or God when they are in a near-death situation or when a close family member of theirs is close to dying or when they are in a situation that they believe that cannot control?

Uhm... citation, please?

In my near-death experiences (one car accident, one when someone was shooting at me), I was never once tempted to turn to god. I never bothered asking for help, because I knew it was up to me to get out of my own mess. From what I've heard from others, it's pretty much the same for most atheists.

So, I'd like to know where you get your information. If your citation is, "My posterior," please don't bother.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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Well, this is going to be a

Well, this is going to be a hit and run, but oh well.

Welcome to the forum.

gtplaya818 wrote:

1)  Where are all the missing links in the fossil records between EVERY single species that has ever existed and is currently living today?

Evolution is continuous. Every species is a transitional species. Assuming that there are "base" forms with "transitional" forms between these has no basis in science.

Quote:
 Shouldn't there be hundreds of thousands of every little step of transition between species if evolution actually existed including ape to man?  Why can we find plenty of fossils of the SAME species over and over again and yet we can't find the hundreds of thousands to millions of transitional forms there have to be to prove evolution?

Again, every species is a transitional species, and every fossil is a fossil of a transitional species. You don't understand evolution.

Quote:
(The theory of evolution creating NEW species is different than 2 different dogs mating together to create a new breed of dog.  Creating a new species is like breeding 2 dogs together to create an elephant)

You cannot breed two dogs together and create an elephant. Dogs and elephants are on different branches of the evolutionary tree. If this happened, it would be evidence against the theory of evolution, not for it. Children inherit the traits of their parents, so an organism that had two dogs as its parents would be not be an elephant; it would be a dog. In time, across many generations, it's possible, but extremely unlikely, that a certain evolutionary line of dogs might evolve to look like elephants. However, it would never BE an elephant. 

Of course, the label of dog is arbitrary. Eventually, speciation may occur, and it'll be convenient to give the diverging lines new names. In fact, we could call the offspring of two dogs, colloquially, an elephant if we wanted to. But, of course, it's still not elephantidae. It'd still be canidae.

Quote:
If evolution is happening now, what NEW species are developing TODAY?

New species of anything more complex than microscopic organisms couldn't appear in a single day. Evolution happens gradually, over time. If the question is, what new species are currently in development today? Well, I would say thousands at least. It depends on what organisms are reproducing today.

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html

Quote:
2)  If things that were not living became things that were living, why is that NOT still happening today?  Shouldn't we be constantly seeing that happen now if it happened before?

Possibilities.

- It was a rare event.

- If it is happening today, it would most likely be some simple microscopic prokaryote evolving out of some place rich with organic molecules. Then, it would take millions of years (at the very least) to evolve to any significant complexity. We would probably never notice it.

- Now that life is already abundant on this planet, if something like that appeared, it would probably go extinct from being eaten by something or such.

Quote:
Why did LIFE begin if there was evolution?

I don't understand this question. 
Quote:
Why not just have nothing but nonliving material everywhere combing together to make more nonliving material?
 Uh, sure, why not? It's possible that our universe could have been like that. 

Quote:
 Why can't scientists make living organisms out of objects that aren't living?

...

If we know the physical makeup of certain animals, why can't humans create life from the non-living as well?

Eventually, we may be able to make extremely simple organisms, but we currently have neither the knowledge nor the technology to do this.

Quote:
3)  If the big bang THEORY was actually real, then what created the big bang?  Was there NOTHING before the big bang?  No universe, no planets, no stars, no life?  No time?  No space?  Absolutely nothing?  How long was there NOTHING for?  Was it nothing for millions of years, and then all of a sudden something just appeared out of NOTHING?  Can you even call it nothing because that could be something in itself?  What caused something to appear out of NOTHING and WHY?  What was the point?  And how?

I don't know. Probably not. I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. Probably not. I don't know. I don't think so. Probably not. Isn't this a loaded question? And this one? And this one?

Quote:
4)  How did it come to be that you are controlling the body that you have currently?

I was born. 

Quote:
How can someone not believe in the existence of a soul?

Like this.

I don't think there is enough evidence.

Quote:
What happened when you were born?

I came out of my mom.

Quote:
What will happen when you DIE?

I'll be dead. 

Quote:
Why is it that most "atheists" all of a sudden believe in a "god" or God when they are in a near-death situation or when a close family member of theirs is close to dying or when they are in a situation that they believe that cannot control?

Evidence? Source? Statistics?

Quote:
Why not ask the universe to save you if you are about to die?

The universe is not an intelligent being. It doesn't purposely do anything.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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gtplaya818 wrote:1)  Where

gtplaya818 wrote:

1)  Where are all the missing links in the fossil records between EVERY single species that has ever existed and is currently living today?  Shouldn't there be hundreds of thousands of every little step of transition between species if evolution actually existed including ape to man?  Why can we find plenty of fossils of the SAME species over and over again and yet we can't find the hundreds of thousands to millions of transitional forms there have to be to prove evolution?  WHERE ARE THE FOSSILS OF THE TRANSITIONAL FORMS?  (The theory of evolution creating NEW species is different than 2 different dogs mating together to create a new breed of dog.  Creating a new species is like breeding 2 dogs together to create an elephant)  If evolution is happening now, what NEW species are developing TODAY?  (New species meaning a completely different animal, not a mutation of one from another - obviously combining 2 different types of the same species will create something that looks like a combination of the 2, but it's STILL the SAME SPECIES)

 

I see you have a picture of a baby. I see you also have a picture of yourself from last year, at 8th-grade graduation. Those are obviously not the same person. The baby looks completely different from your photo last year!

What's this? A photo of a 4-year-old? It looks nothing like either photo! Now you have two gaps to fill.

I don't believe you were ever a baby.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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The believer fails to

The believer fails to consider that a "what" is what is going on and not the result of an invisible "who" by any name. The origins of the universe are the result of an uncognative ongoing random process void of mythological super heros and super villains.

Deities are nothing but gap answers based on our own species's wishful thinking and narcissism. The real "awe" in life is not magical or religious. The real "awe" is nature void of fictional beings. No god can stand up to the reality of nature or science. They are merely claims and pail in comparison to what we know through real observation.

"We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers."Obama
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http://evolution.berkeley.edu

http://evolution.berkeley.edu/

http://www.talkorigins.org/

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/

 

1. Every fossil is a transitional form between something and something else.  We have so many transitional fossils between homo sapiens and what came before this point isn't even useful any more.  Go to any major natural history museum and you can see an entire wall full of them.  Your description of evolution is wrong.  Evolution is about small changed leading to large changes over long periods of time, not about two dogs breeding to make an elephant.

2/3.  You are no longer talking about evolution.  The creation of life is called abiogenesis.  The creation of the universe might fall under cosmology.  Neither are related to evolutionary theory.

4. a) I don't really understand the question.  b) Why would anyone believe in the existence of a soul?  c)/d) Is this a trick question?

Your last section is just a back handed insult followed by a bald assertion.  You'll have to do better.

 

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


gtplaya818
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1a)  Evolution is

1a)  Evolution is continuous. Every species is a transitional species. Assuming that there are "base" forms with "transitional" forms between these has no basis in science.

So essentially, there's no actual proof?  You can only ASSUME that life transitioned from one form to another by observing the base forms in the fossil records?

 

1b)

You cannot breed two dogs together and create an elephant. Dogs and elephants are on different branches of the evolutionary tree. If this happened, it would be evidence against the theory of evolution, not for it. Children inherit the traits of their parents, so an organism that had two dogs as its parents would be not be an elephant; it would be a dog. In time, across many generations, it's possible, but extremely unlikely, that a certain evolutionary line of dogs might evolve to look like elephants. However, it would never BE an elephant.  Of course, the label of dog is arbitrary. Eventually, speciation may occur, and it'll be convenient to give the diverging lines new names. In fact, we could call the offspring of two dogs, colloquially, an elephant if we wanted to. But, of course, it's still not elephantidae. It'd still be canidae.

 

The 2 dogs creating an elephant was just an example.  Obviously, breeding 2 dogs together creates a mixed breed of those 2 types of dogs, however it's still a dog.  At what point does it become a new "species?"  If you took a group of dogs and kept breeding them over and over again for thousands to hundreds of thousands of generations, you're saying that evolution may create a new species - something else besides a dog???

Also, what about humans?  There are plenty of different nationalities, races, cultures, etc among humans.  As we continue to reproduce, will a new species eventually occur???  A superhuman???

Also, before a new species evolved, how did evolution know to create a male and female version and which came first?  How did the one survive without the other?

 

2)  From non-living to living:

Possibilities.

- It was a rare event.

- If it is happening today, it would most likely be some simple microscopic prokaryote evolving out of some place rich with organic molecules. Then, it would take millions of years (at the very least) to evolve to any significant complexity. We would probably never notice it.

- Now that life is already abundant on this planet, if something like that appeared, it would probably go extinct from being eaten by something or such.

 

What would cause it to "become" living?  Just a matter of time?  Waiting for millions of years?  Leaving a particular type of matter that is currently not living in certain various conditions can create life over massive amounts of time???

 

3)  If the big bang THEORY was actually real, then what created the big bang?  Was there NOTHING before the big bang?  No universe, no planets, no stars, no life?  No time?  No space?  Absolutely nothing?  How long was there NOTHING for?  Was it nothing for millions of years, and then all of a sudden something just appeared out of NOTHING?  Can you even call it nothing because that could be something in itself?  What caused something to appear out of NOTHING and WHY?  What was the point?  And how?

I don't know. Probably not. I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. Probably not. I don't know. I don't think so. Probably not. Isn't this a loaded question? And this one? And this one?

 

Anybody care to explain how everything came to be in the VERY BEGINNING of time and space if it wasn't created on purpose?  How did anything appear or start if it wasn't created?  How did the very first thing even exist and where did it come from?  Please think of an answer without getting emotional.  This is supposed to be a discussion and is used to provoke thought.

 

4a)  How did it come to be that you are controlling the body that you have currently?

I was born.

 

From where?  And why didn't you end up being someone else instead?  People are constantly being born every second.  Why was it that you were born on your birthday and not today in the womb of another woman?

 

4b)  What will happen when you DIE?

I'll be dead.

 

So you will lose consciousness and that's it?  Nothing?  A complete blank?  If that's the case, then the existence of time, space, and the future wouldn't matter to you after death because you wouldn't even know that it was existing because you won't exist either.  And if you don't exist after you die, then how did you end up existing in the first place?

 

5)

Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones. - Marcus Aurelius

This is an assumption.  Anyone can assume or believe anything they want.

 

When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion. - Abraham Lincoln

Different societies have different cultural values of what is good and bad.  People can control their feelings if they practice.  If Abraham wants to call that a religion, he can call it whatever he wants.

 

Thanks for the response.  Most people didn't attempt to answer the questions and just wrote up random comments or only chose to answer 1 of them instead of all of them.  Also, for everyone else, if you get emotional easily, go for a run or walk, and lose the emotion so that you can reply back logically.  People who make decisions based on logic without a high level of emotion do better than those who make their decisions based on strong emotions with little to 0 logic.  This is a discussion not a heated argument.  When couples argue in strong anger against one another, usually neither party learns anything.  When they are civil and sit down to talk, then they can actually have a discussion.


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gtplaya818 wrote:Thanks for

gtplaya818 wrote:

Thanks for the response.  Most people didn't attempt to answer the questions and just wrote up random comments or only chose to answer 1 of them instead of all of them.  Also, for everyone else, if you get emotional easily, go for a run or walk, and lose the emotion so that you can reply back logically.  People who make decisions based on logic without a high level of emotion do better than those who make their decisions based on strong emotions with little to 0 logic.  This is a discussion not a heated argument.  When couples argue in strong anger against one another, usually neither party learns anything.  When they are civil and sit down to talk, then they can actually have a discussion.

Hey! You came back! I assumed you were a drive-by.

I really hope it's a discussion. I do hope you are ready to learn, because you have exhibited many misconceptions about the nature of evolution. I'll take some time to explain some of those misconceptions, now that you've shown you're actually interested in the responses (though you still have to demonstrate that you are willing to learn).

This will take a while, as there's a lot of misconceptions to undo before we can continue meaningfully.

[EDIT ADDENDUM]

Oh, here's a hint, to help make your responses more readable. You can use markup such as [ quote ] (quoted text by someone else) [ /quote ], to do a blockquote of another author. That'll make it easier to distinguish what you have written, vs what others have written. If you want to get fancy, you can even do something like: [ quote=nigelTheBold ] (some text I have written) [ /quote ]

Which will turn out to be:

nigelTheBold wrote:
(some text I have written)

 

Just leave out the spaces in the [ ].

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gtplaya818 wrote:So

gtplaya818 wrote:

So essentially, there's no actual proof?  You can only ASSUME that life transitioned from one form to another by observing the base forms in the fossil records?

We just told you what the proof is. I don't think our keyboards are typing languages from space aliens. Lay off the cool aid.

Let me repeat. EVERY THING THAT HAS LIVED, IS LIVING, OR WILL LIVE IS A TRANSITIONAL FOSSIL!

DNA proves this.

BUT, if you want me to dumb it down for you. Take a picture of a domestic house cat and a tiger and put them side by side, look at them and tell me they are not related.

EVOLUTION despite what you fans of fiction are falsely sold, does not claim that humans magically popped out of monkeys, BUT THAT ALL PRIMATES HAVE COMMON ANCESTORS, just like a domestic house cat has the same common ancestors as tigers.

You falsely believe that evolution claims sudden dramatic changes when it is subtle small changes over long periods of time.

WHAT IS ABSURD is the claim that a full grown adult magically suddenly popped out of dirt and that a full grown woman suddenly magically popped out of his rib. That is absurd.

 

 

 

 

 


 

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"I agree with the satire but

"I agree with the satire but that last line is driving me nuts; and I don't usually critique those who commit assault and battery on the English language but this one is too blatent;  The word you wanted was ACCEPTED , the word you used EXCEPTED has the complete opposite meaning."

 

Oh wow - I can't believe I actually said that... yeah, I was in a rush but, that.... that's just unexceptable (see what I did there?)

 

I guess I just got too deep into the creationist mindset when I was typing bullshit and it snuck up on me!


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Quote:Why is it that most

Quote:
Why is it that most "atheists" all of a sudden believe in a "god" or God when they are in a near-death situation or when a close family member of theirs is close to dying or when they are in a situation that they believe that cannot control?

Can you site sources on this?  Can you show any studies that show this to be true?

I have known two atheists who died.  Neither of them suddenly "found god".  Both of them were more worried about the welfare of their loved ones than actually passing on.

For me, the thought of living forever sounds terrible.  The thought of one day actually being done is more conforting. 

And it sounds like you go with the popular theory that "there are no atheists in foxholes".  Do a little research on Pat Tillman.

Dolt:"Evolution is just a theory."
Me:"Yes, so is light and gravity. Pardon me while I flash this strobe while dropping a bowling ball on your head. This shouldn't bother you; after all, these are just theories."


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I do know that quite a lot

I do know that quite a lot of God believers get very afraid when they are faced with the closeness of death in hospitals, as reported in anonymous confidence by doctors and nurses.

The "no atheists in foxholes" and reports of Darwin and other famous non-believers taking up religion on their death-bed are almost entirely myth, that Theists would fervently wish to believe were true.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

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There is never quite 100%

There is never quite 100% proof of any scientific theory, but evolution has mountains of strong evidence, not just from the fossil record, but from genetic studies which show us how all life is related, and the most likely path through intermediate forms.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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butterbattle wrote:- Now

butterbattle wrote:

- Now that life is already abundant on this planet, if something like that appeared, it would probably go extinct from being eaten by something or such.

FYI, this one.  Competition for resources is harsh; there's no room for new life to form.

 

original poster wrote:
Why did LIFE begin if there was evolution?

Because there were available resources for it to do so,  and it is an inevitable process. Evolution, and the formation of life in the right circumstances, is as inevitable as gravity or diffusion- an overwhelming statistical process. 
butterbattle wrote:

Eventually, we may be able to make extremely simple organisms, but we currently have neither the knowledge nor the technology to do this.

 

Not the case; we technically have the technology to do it.  We can build chains of DNA from non-living sources, and anything else we want through various forms of nano-scale engineering.

There are reasons we don't:

1. It would take years to construct and be ridiculously expensive (possibly billions, but I may be over-estimating the cost)

2. There is absolutely no reason to do so, because we don't assume that proteins from living things have magical properties beyond those man-made, and as such would have nothing to learn from it.
 

 

More accurately, you might say that we don't have the technology to do so cost-effectively, and nobody is going to bother funding something like that with the funds it would need.

 

 

Original poster wrote:
[stuff about dog breeds]

 

Consider the difference between a wolf, a miniature poodle, and a great-Dane.  Now, breed the Dane again to make it bigger, and the poodle again to make it smaller.  Do this repeatedly for thousands of years- one looks far more like an elephant now, and the other far more like a mouse.  They are no longer the same "species".  It just takes enough time to change animals that much.

Every generation, the DNA changes a little bit- eventually the DNA is too different for them to mate with each-other any more.

There are many animals we consider different species- such as Dolphins and Killer Whales- who have DNA similar enough to still have fertile offspring.

Species isn't a hard line, but a soft one, of what the result of reproduction is.  There are varying degrees of mutual fertility and interbreeding- it's more about amount of success, and the chances of the product being fertile, and in what ways the product is fertile.

FYI it is not demonstrated that humans and Chimpanzees and other apes can not interbreed- we are not very different at all (much like horses and donkeys, which can breed to make mules [which can only have horse or donkey offspring]).

 

Humans will not become different species in the near future, because we all interbreed so regularly (despite white supremacists' attempts to stop this).  If we stopped breeding with each other for many thousands of years (or given the size of our populations, possibly many hundreds of thousands of years), though, genetic drift could be enough to make us multiple species.  None of those would necessarily be a "super human", though, just slightly different people who can no longer have children with each-other (the very idea of "super human" is not compatible with evolution).

 

Keep this is mind:

There are species of birds (and other animals) such that for species A, B, and C; A and B can interbreed, and B and C can interbreed, but A and C can not interbreed.

Think about and understand that fact, and you may come to understand how murky the notion of "species" really is.  It's a mostly arbitrary distinction which relates to degree of genetic difference, rather than a solid classification mechanism.


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Bulldogs, they can't even

Bulldogs, they can't even breed on their own.

Yea man has altered evolution to an extent in some animals with selective breeding. Rats are a great example. By simply breeding the friendlier ones, then breeding the rare odd colored ones, we have created a friendly domestic, white, tan, black and even a hairless rat.  They bred them out to make "dumbo" rats as well. Their ears sit lower on their heads. This has only taken a couple of hundred years. If left to nature serious changes would take a long time, but they will occur.

There are instances where you can see an animal has adapted to a different environment. For an obvious example, more, and ticker fur for cold regions.

It is apparent in humans as well, if you look at different "races" and the regions they live in, they have adapted to suit their environment in different physical and obvious ways.

I like to point out the odd walking catfish as well.

 

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 Excellent responses.  It

 Excellent responses.  

It is important to understand that "Evolution" is simply change over time.  In biology, DNA and it's protein products undeniably change over time.  

It is true that every species is a transition toward a future species, but consider that every organism is in transition toward a future organism.  You are a mutated and hybrid version of your parents.  The degree of mutation can be dramatic or it can be subtle at least in protein expression.  Most opposition to evolution comes from the inability to grasp the time scales needed for future generations to be so drastically different in form.  Few doubt that a population of grey squirrels could become separated and eventual evolve into red squirrels.  But over a longer period of time, they might resemble chipmunks.  

It would be possible for humans to separate into several distinct species.   In order for this to happen, there needs to be a significant separation of gene pools so that each population has the freedom to diverge.  The development of ethnic groups was the start of this process.  Different populations, with unique environmental factors, created tends in DNA replication (i.e. sexual reproduction).  Racial traits are what we call polygenic, meaning that several genes in several locations on your chromosomes combine to express what we recognize as race.  Dark skinned Africans that migrated to colder climates eventually changed enough genetically, and therefore in protein production to exhibit a different appearance.  To say that a superhuman would result from this simple process is a bit racist.  It would simply be a different human.  If you were to move a human population to another planet and leave them seperated for a couple hundred thousand years, you would have a new race.  If you left them there for a couple million years, you would have a new species.    

There are very intricate details involved in DNA replication that are simple and very well understood.  We do not simply understand much of these processes, we employ this knowledge to create products that you use on a daily basis.  Biotechnology is making news discoveries and evolving new species, just like our ancient biotechnologists created domestic plants and animals.  I recommend taking some basic biology and genetics classes.  Rather than getting a hodge podge education from us.  You will easily see why evolution is considered a fact.

A daughter of hope and fear, religion explains to Ignorance the nature of the unknowable. -Ambrose Bierce


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 On a more specific

 On a more specific note....

 When we say that environments inspire and shape genetic evolution, it can be as simple as an epidemic illness.  There is a theory that European populations developed such pale skin, blue eyes, and even red hair as a response to an epidemic of Rickets.  People with a better ability to absorb UV light in high latitudes produced more vitamin D, kept strong bone structure, and were more likely to reproduce successfully.  The genes responsible for inhibited melanin production spread throughout the population because they had an advantage.  This is Darwin theory of Natural Selection, which is a logical description for the process by which evolution is driven.   

A daughter of hope and fear, religion explains to Ignorance the nature of the unknowable. -Ambrose Bierce


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JonathanBC wrote:I call

JonathanBC wrote:

I call Poe.

 

So do I.

 

But just incase

 

 

http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/jeb_enhanced/

 

 

 

 


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The basic mechanism of

The basic mechanism of evolution, the more-or-less continual small changes from generation to generation, which we can see happening, and with no known mechanism to limit the changes from wandering indefinitely far from the starting point, is so simple, it is hard to imagine why it wouldn't happen, given enough generations.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

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Humans and Apes can Interbreed???

Quote:
FYI it is not demonstrated that humans and Chimpanzees and other apes can not interbreed- we are not very different at all (much like horses and donkeys, which can breed to make mules [which can only have horse or donkey offspring]).

 

So if it is NOT demonstrated that humans and other apes can NOT interbreed, are you also saying that humans and apes CAN interbreed?  If so, who has done that so far in our existence?

 

Quote:
Humans will not become different species in the near future, because we all interbreed so regularly (despite white supremacists' attempts to stop this).  If we stopped breeding with each other for many thousands of years (or given the size of our populations, possibly many hundreds of thousands of years), though, genetic drift could be enough to make us multiple species.  None of those would necessarily be a "super human", though, just slightly different people who can no longer have children with each-other (the very idea of "super human" is not compatible with evolution).

 

Doesn't the process of evolution claim to create creatures that are MORE adaptable and MORE intelligent?  Isn't that what has happened in the past?  After all, doesn't it claim that everything started off as inanimate objects and continued to move UP in complexity and not down?  And if so, why wouldn't humans evolve to a "more evolved" being?


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Answers to the other questions besides the evolution one

3) If the big bang THEORY was actually real, then what created the big bang?  Was there NOTHING before the big bang?  No universe, no planets, no stars, no life?  No time?  No space?  Absolutely nothing?  How long was there NOTHING for?  Was it nothing for millions of years, and then all of a sudden something just appeared out of NOTHING?  Can you even call it nothing because that could be something in itself?  What caused something to appear out of NOTHING and WHY?  What was the point?  And how?

Anybody care to explain how everything came to be in the VERY BEGINNING of time and space if it wasn't created on purpose?  How did anything appear or start if it wasn't created?  How did the very first thing even exist and where did it come from?  Please think of an answer without getting emotional.  This is supposed to be a discussion and is used to provoke thought.

 

4a)  How did it come to be that you are controlling the body that you have currently?

I was born.

 

From where?  And why didn't you end up being someone else instead?  People are constantly being born every second.  Why was it that you were born on your birthday and not today in the womb of another woman?

 

4b)  What will happen when you DIE?

I'll be dead.

 

So you will lose consciousness and that's it?  Nothing?  A complete blank?  If that's the case, then the existence of time, space, and the future wouldn't matter to you after death because you wouldn't even know that it was existing because you won't exist either.  And if you don't exist after you die, then how did you end up existing in the first place?


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 No attempt at a hybrid

 No attempt at a hybrid human/chimp is known.  There was a claim of a humanzee but was most likely just a very human acting chimpanzee.  Humans and chimps are very possibly able to reproduce.  Just like horses and donkeys, we are cousins.  Do you want to be the one that tests this hypothesis for us.  Come on! Do it for science.

The process of evolution does NOT claim to create creatures that are more "intelligent", but it does create species which are more adapted to specific environments.  

Specific adaptation can be a very bad thing however, especially if the environment changes again.  Especially adaptations involving food supply or some other complex ecological relationships.  

Life can certainly become less complex if it is beneficial to do so.

Humans can not evolve to a "more evolved" being because that phrase makes no sense.  More evolve=more changed.  What does more changed mean?  Humans can certainly adapt to new environmental pressures.  The environment doesn't apply pressures on us like it used to because we deal with pressures with our logic, science, and technology.  

Evolution is not a ladder where a species can climb to the top.  It is a family tree of feuding, cannibalistic relatives.  A massive, maybe trillion member family.  

In this crazy hypothetical situation, tell me if you think evolution was positive or negative:

A virus spreads across the global human population, killing everyone instantly, except people with Down's Syndrome.  The human population is now vastly different than it was.  Humans now have a different number of chromosomes then they once did.  Are they more changed or as you say, evolved? 
 

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gtplaya818 wrote:are you

gtplaya818 wrote:
are you also saying that humans and apes CAN interbreed?

 

It is very likely.  There have been some very weak attempts.  Genetic proximity, however, has been well established regardless.  You did kind of miss my point, though- see my notes about dophins and orcas, and various "species" of birds.

"Species" is a bad qualifier.  Are you debating this?  If not, I hope you understand why.

 

 

Quote:
If so, who has done that so far in our existence?

 

Can and do are two different things.  A large part of it comes down to "would they want to?"... I mean, no offense to chimps, as I'm sure they don't find me attractive either, but ugh.

 

Quote:
Doesn't the process of evolution claim to create creatures that are MORE adaptable and MORE intelligent?

 

Nope, not at all.  Evolution has frequently resulted in creatures that were less intelligent than their predecessors.  It often results, even in creatures that are smaller, weaker, etc.

When there aren't enough selective pressures to make something stronger, it becomes blunt.

Think of genetic qualities like a knife- they become dull over generations, and have to be constantly sharpened by selective pressures.

 

If a gene pool, for example, moves onto the land, it usually loses the ability to breathe under water- that's definitely not stronger, particularly when many fish can still breathe on land for a time.

Evolution frequently "paints" entire gene pools into a corner, where the creatures have nothing else to do but go extinct because they can no longer adapt to changes.

 

The assumption that evolution makes creatures more adaptable is false, and that is makes creatures more intelligent is likewise false- increases in intelligence are caused by short bursts of evolution where higher cognition is needed for adaptation, but much of the time it makes them less so [less intelligent]. 

 

Only very rapid changes drive up intelligence (such as when marine mammals adapted to aquatic life), the longer and more subtle (as a drive for efficiency) process of evolution drives down intelligence, converting soft, malleable cognition into hard instincts.  This is evident in creatures who have longer sustained within an environment being less intelligent, and more instinctual, than new arrivals.

 

Quote:
Isn't that what has happened in the past?

 

No, quite the contrary.  If I list examples, will you promise to look into them?  (And I mean really make an oath)  I'm happy to help point these out, but I only want to do it if you'll follow my references through, as it would take some time to collect them.

 

Quote:
After all, doesn't it claim that everything started off as inanimate objects and continued to move UP in complexity and not down?

 

No.  Complexity is a human evaluation.  Some things that seem very simple, are actually no less objectively complex than others.  Evolution, however, frequently "simplifies" things- such as by shortening DNA, and removing unnecessary traits.  It has numerous times turned larger intelligent animals into essentially brainless mites and plankton.

The right selective pressures, applied long enough, could inevitably turn human descendants into something resembling bacteria.

 

That is, evolution drives gene pools in every which way available- and as I said, sometimes the result of that is driving them into a corner, and them going extinct; that is only evidence that evolution is ultimately blind, with regards to foresight (that is, evolution is rational and emergent, but not intelligent).

 

To the first question:

As you have already been told several times, the question you are trying to ask is a matter of abiogenesis, so is not a question of evolution of life.  I will, however, answer it, because it deserves an answer (and the answer is very simple)- while it has nothing to do with the process of genetic evolution found in modern life, it is a matter of evolution as it occurs in all organized and dynamic information systems which are subject to selective pressures.

Evolution doesn't claim that anything started from an "inanimate object"- quite the contrary, everything that has evolved has evolved through an animate process- whether that is an adaptive neural-net in a computer simulation, or life.  It would not be possible for an "inanimate" thing to evolve, as that implies some form of stasis (and that is counter to the requirements of evolution).

Regarding the nature of "animate" though, if you will study chemistry, and particularly biochemistry and even material physics, you will learn that the chemicals that make up the world around us, when we get in very close, are *extremely* animate things.

Every chemical reaction seething all around us, even in "sterile" environments that are thought not to have 'life' in them, is teeming with movement and activity in a fascinating way.  There are chemical properties that any observer would be hard pressed to believe weren't alive- and there's a reason for that; there's not some sudden cut-off point between "alive" and "not-alive" in reality.

 

Quote:
And if so, why wouldn't humans evolve to a "more evolved" being?

 

Because it isn't so- every assumption you made above was incorrect.  Anybody who believes those assumptions are what evolution is about is mistaken.

Of course you wouldn't believe in evolution if you don't understand it- anybody who did believe in "that kind of evolution" you described, I'd question the intelligence or thoughtfulness of too.  And yes, I agree with you that there are many people who believe in "that kind of evolution"- they *aren't* using their brains very well in that regard.

The idea that there is some force that turns inanimate substances into animate creatures and make them become more and more complex over time without any cause?  That's not evolution, that's poor public education.

Evolution is *much* more basic than that, as an emergent property, and relies only on physics and chemistry.

 


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gtplaya818 wrote:Doesn't the

gtplaya818 wrote:
Doesn't the process of evolution claim to create creatures that are MORE adaptable and MORE intelligent?  Isn't that what has happened in the past?  After all, doesn't it claim that everything started off as inanimate objects and continued to move UP in complexity and not down?  And if so, why wouldn't humans evolve to a "more evolved" being?

This is one of those misconceptions I mentioned.

Evolution tends to shape populations that are more adapted to their environment. The dinosaurs were just as "evolved" as humans. Their physiology was as complex, and they were as well-adapted to their environment. If their environment hadn't changed, they may have survived until this very day.

But their environment changed. The only dinosaurs that managed to survive were the birds.

In some respects, we are less evolved. We aren't really that well suited for any particular environment. Our intelligence allows us to be generalists, which certainly has some advantages. We can spread into many environments. But, we rely on our society to support us. If society collapses, humans won't be able to survive well in many of the environments we now occupy. Our biggest advantage is our ability to manipulate the environment to our liking (building houses, fires, roads, and so on).

There is no real metric for determining how "evolved" something is, other than its biological complexity, or how well-suited it is to its environment. It's wrong to assume man is somehow a pinnacle of evolution, or that we are somehow special. We are arguably the most intelligent animal on earth, but that doesn't mean we're the only intelligent animal. (Cetaceans seem to be quite intelligent, and there are at least three bonobos who understand spoken English.) Dropped naked in most environments, an individual would soon die.

Evolution is not directed. There's no such thing as "more evolved," really. There's only "better suited to their environment." That's how evolution works: if a new combination of genes is better suited to the environment, that combination is statistically more likely to propagate than competing, less-ideal combinations.

It's really quite simple. And extremely complex.

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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gtplaya818 wrote:Doesn't the

gtplaya818 wrote:

Doesn't the process of evolution claim to create creatures that are MORE adaptable and MORE intelligent?  Isn't that what has happened in the past?  After all, doesn't it claim that everything started off as inanimate objects and continued to move UP in complexity and not down?  And if so, why wouldn't humans evolve to a "more evolved" being?

No you are grossly informed or misunderstand what is stated by the theory of evolution, and by the facts that back up evolution.

First part, the process of evolution is the change in inheritable traits in a population of organisms. The more or less basic version of evolution. It happens gradually over many many generations, and new species don't just happen from one day to the next. The process of evolution has no actual goal, it is more or less just adapting to the environment, so that life can continue, it mentions nothing about more intelligent or more adaptable per se. Nothing in evolution states that it started off as an inanimate object. That process your talking about is in the field of abiogenesis which is the study of how life began, evolution starts after life began, no life, no evolution, also evolution has nothing to due with how the universe began, nothing to do with cosmology. It merely has to do with how life adapts to it's environment and the environmental changes that occur.

As for your more evolved being, we are well adapted for our environment, should our environment change, then those environmental pressures may cause one of 2 things to happen, either we adapt as a species to the change, or we die off. However just because we adapted doesn't mean we are MORE evolved as in going up the ladder, there is no ladder, there is no direction for evolution, it isn't up on top and all the species below us, it's more like a tree with various branches, none really more on top than others, we are part of the ape family branch of life.


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Blake wrote:FYI it is not

Blake wrote:

FYI it is not demonstrated that humans and Chimpanzees and other apes can not interbreed- we are not very different at all (much like horses and donkeys, which can breed to make mules [which can only have horse or donkey offspring]).

Without suggesting bestiality, obviously, or even that resulting offspring be allowed to mature, I'd be curious if chimp eggs could at least be fertilized by human sperm or vice-versa.


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gtplaya818 wrote:Why can't

gtplaya818 wrote:
Why can't scientists make living organisms out of objects that aren't living?
 

I'm just going to address this and leave the rest for others. I myself would be very surprised if AI didn't become sentient in the next century, looking at the industry's exponential growth up till now. When that happens, we may be faced with some very fundamental questions about what constitutes "being alive."

gtplaya818 wrote:
Why did LIFE begin if there was evolution? 

I think the question you're asking is not so much about "aliveness," which modern robotics will prove is just an illusion based on mechanical properties, but about consciousness. Viruses aren't living, but they do perform rudimentary motor functions, so I think that's a good example how more complex (micro-)organisms could be assembled by simpler processes over time. Consciousness comes later, and it's a concept that philosophers would appear to be just now starting to get a handle on.


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gtplaya818 wrote:Also,

gtplaya818 wrote:

Also, before a new species evolved, how did evolution know to create a male and female version and which came first?  How did the one survive without the other?

This is very silly. Evolution doesn't "know" anything. It's a dumb, simple process. Micro-organisms don't need genders to reproduce, they just divide, and other species (many insects) have more than two genders.


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gtplaya818 wrote:Also,

gtplaya818 wrote:

Also, before a new species evolved, how did evolution know to create a male and female version and which came first?  How did the one survive without the other?

Woah. I didn't see this one. I can't believe this old canard is still around.

There are several misunderstandings in this question. The first has been addressed: there's really no such thing as "species." It's a convenient term we use in discussing groups of living things. As far as evolution goes, you really want to talk about "populations."

Populations are groups of animals that can and do interbreed. This necessarily means they live in the same general area, and intermix. Each generation looks essentially like the generation before. The newborns, once mature, could conceivably breed with the older generation (making tons of assumptions concerning the breeding years, time to maturity, and a bunch of other things). They are what you'd call "the same species," but really, "species" is just a convenient term we use to group living things together.

This is true of the next generation, and the next; each subsequent generation looks essentially like the one preceding it. Statistically, tails might get a little longer, legs may be a little shorter, and so on. Eventually, genetic changes within the population will accrue. While the 150th generation might be able to interbreed with the 149th generation, it might not be able to interbreed with the 1st generation. Yet the 140th generation might be able to breed with both the 1st generation, and the 150th generation. At no point was there a sudden lurch, yet at the same time, the 1st generation and the 150th generation wouldn't fit our definition of being in the same "species."

Now consider if this population is somehow split in two. Say, one group goes over a mountain they don't normally cross. These two groups no longer interbreed, because they don't have the opportunity. Each generation introduces very slight changes in the genes of each population. Most importantly, each population will accrue different slight changes. After many generations, the genetic changes are so severe, the two populations couldn't interbreed even if they were in close proximity. Where you had one "species," you now have two species. In all likelihood, neither of the resulting species looks much like the original ancestor species.

 

Remember, when people say, "species," it is a convenient grouping term that really doesn't mean much outside our own desire to lump things together. There's a dramatic example of why the term "species" is really incorrect. It's called a "ring species."

Consider different populations of birds. The populations hang out near the arctic, for instance. Some live in Alaska, others in Canada, some in Greenland, still others in Northern Europe, and yet more live in Russia. The birds fly around a lot, so the Alaskan birds interbreed with the Canadian birds, and the Canadian birds also interbreed with the Greenland birds, and the Greenland birds with the Northern European birds, and so on. The Alaskan birds even interbreed with the Russian birds.

Now, with all this active interbreeding of populations, you'd be likely to call this a "species." But here comes the really interesting bit, the "gotcha!" moment. While each of the different populations can interbreed with neighboring populations, the Alaskan birds can't interbreed with the Greenland birds, or the Northern European birds! Nor can the Canadian birds interbreed with the Russian birds. That would mean all these different populations are really different species, right?

But they're not. They are still grouped together for the purposes of discussion.

This is a "ring species." It's a dramatic example of the genetic changes that are pivotal to the modern theory of evolution through natural selection.

These changes exist, they occur constantly, and the entire process is gradual. It can take hundreds of thousands of years for changes to accrue enough to create a different "species." And at no point is there just a male, or just a female. The entire population changes over time.

 

[edit]

Changed "tens of thousands of years" to "hundreds of thousands of years."

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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Whoa! You actually came

Whoa! You actually came back!

gtplaya818 wrote:
1a)  Evolution is continuous. Every species is a transitional species. Assuming that there are "base" forms with "transitional" forms between these has no basis in science. So essentially, there's no actual proof?  You can only ASSUME that life transitioned from one form to another by observing the base forms in the fossil records?

Well, there's no "proof," per se. There's a ton of inductive evidence. I suppose you could construct a deductive argument for evolution, but the premises would still have to be justified with empirical evidence. There is, however, one possible deductive argument in which Creationists seem to accept the premises of a valid argument, but not the conclusion, and that has to do with mutations. Creationists generally seem to accept that the entire genome is subject to mutations, but still don't accept that the organisms evolve by using vague terms like "information" and "forms," which seem rather irrelevant as to how organisms could not evolve if the entire genome could change. 

As for the inductive evidence. Well, there's a lot of it to cover. 

- You have the (in)famous fossil record. And you have the geological column and dozens dating methods which corroborate this.

- You have the genetic, DNA, evidence.

- And morphological evidence, which also match.

- You have the sort of geographical distribution that you would expect from evolution. I find ring species to be particularly interesting.

I'm too lazy to dig up a bunch of stuff right now, but if you have any specific requests for evidence, I might go look for it.

Edit: I should emphasize, again, that, in biology, there are no base forms or transitional forms. These are scientifically inept terms, a bit of a misnomer. All populations are always in transition.  

gtplaya818 wrote:
The 2 dogs creating an elephant was just an example.  Obviously, breeding 2 dogs together creates a mixed breed of those 2 types of dogs, however it's still a dog.  At what point does it become a new "species?"  If you took a group of dogs and kept breeding them over and over again for thousands to hundreds of thousands of generations, you're saying that evolution may create a new species - something else besides a dog???

Generally, when I talk about speciation or macroevolution, I'm really referring to two different populations. Usually, it's one population that gets split into two separate populations; isolated from each other, the two populations cannot interbreed are, thus, free to diverge in their genes until they, eventually, cannot interbreed. 

But yes, a population of dogs can eventually change into something that's not a dog. In biology, the term "dog" is a bit ambiguous because it's not precisely defined as a species, but the point is that it will eventually evolve into something sufficiently different such that it would not be able to interbreed with its ancestors, if they still existed.   

This doesn't mean that a Labrador retriever will suddenly give birth to a something that looks like a lizard or something. Again, small changes over a long period of time. It's like the analogy that Nigel was showing you. Every day, when you get up in the morning, you don't look much different than you were the day before. Yet, a baby looks dramatically from an adult human. Of course, this is a completely different process, but it shows that small changes over a long period of time can produce large changes. 

Maybe it would also help to think about metamorphosis, caterpillars to butterflies, tadpoles to frogs? Or the fact that a baby used to be a tiny egg? Again, yes, these are different processes, but they should demonstrate that evolution is at least possible in principle.  

gtplaya818 wrote:
Also, what about humans?  There are plenty of different nationalities, races, cultures, etc among humans.  As we continue to reproduce, will a new species eventually occur???  A superhuman???

It's possible. Although, it's unlikely since everyone on the entire planet is so connected to each other now, and there are so many relationships amongst different "races." If we colonize other planets, humans on different planets could plausibly evolve into different species.

I'm not completely sure what you mean by a "superhuman." If speciation occurred, these different populations would still be just rather normal looking humanoids. 

gtplaya818 wrote:
Also, before a new species evolved, how did evolution know to create a male and female version and which came first?  How did the one survive without the other?

Recall that, according to biology, the earliest organisms were asexual. This means that the living thing does not need to engage in sex with other living things to reproduce. It can make copies of itself by simply dividing itself in some way. Such organisms still exist today. However, the vast majority of organisms use sexual reproduction because it increases variation.  

The earliest, single-celled, sexually reproducing prokaryotes wouldn't be "male" or "female." You don't need males and females. Sexual reproduction, at it's most fundamental level, just has to be some way for two organisms to mix/share genes. Try cdk007.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fL_nuacgpo8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wxysZmNsyDk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1w0FiwfyUMM

gtplaya818 wrote:
What would cause it to "become" living?  Just a matter of time?  Waiting for millions of years?  Leaving a particular type of matter that is currently not living in certain various conditions can create life over massive amounts of time???

There's no particular event that "makes it living." It will be living when it satisfies our definition of what is alive, when it is not inanimate, when it has the capacity for growth, etc. 

And, it probably wouldn't be a particular type of matter. It would be a mixture of organic molecules, interacting together to begin possessing some characteristics resembling life.

gtplaya818 wrote:
Anybody care to explain how everything came to be in the VERY BEGINNING of time and space if it wasn't created on purpose?  How did anything appear or start if it wasn't created?  How did the very first thing even exist and where did it come from?

Without God, water can still rain down from the clouds, the sun can continue burning, and birds will still be able to fly. We understand how these things happen. Conscious intent is not needed for cause and effect, for things to interact with each other, etc. I don't know how this universe began, but if I had to bet, I would say that it was some gradual, determined, unintelligent process. 

gtplaya818 wrote:
From where?

My mom. At a hospital in Xiamen, China.

gtplaya818 wrote:
And why didn't you end up being someone else instead?  People are constantly being born every second.  Why was it that you were born on your birthday and not today in the womb of another woman?

You're thinking about this all backwards, like a fine tuning argument. If you attempted to construct this argument in a premise/conclusion form, you would see that it's invalid.

My stance is that I didn't exist until my mom and dad had sex; it's not that I was in some other realm and then, I went to my mom. I didn't "end up" anywhere. This is where I began to exist. 

And, "why" implies that there's an ultimate, absolute reason for me being here. I don't believe there is a reason. You can make the same argument no matter who I born from. "Why weren't you born from somebody else?" There is no "why." My parents had sex, and they made a person. The person they made was me. If my parents made someone else, they wouldn't be my parents.   

And, there is no "I" being born from someone else. I am me, partly, if not mostly because of my parents genes. The person born from someone else is not me. Now, you might still be wondering, but what if I'm that person? This is begging the question again. It assumes that there is some "I" independent of the physical person being born. Edit: I believe you're implying, why didn't my consciousness end up inside someone else's body? But then, you're already assuming dualism. My position is that consciousness is an abstraction of the experience of having a brain capable of rational thought. So, someone born from different parents couldn't have the same consciousness.  

gtplaya818 wrote:
So you will lose consciousness and that's it?  Nothing?  A complete blank?  If that's the case, then the existence of time, space, and the future wouldn't matter to you after death because you wouldn't even know that it was existing because you won't exist either.

Do you remember what it was like before you were born? Or when you're asleep (with no dreams)? Death is exactly like that.

gtplaya818 wrote:
And if you don't exist after you die, then how did you end up existing in the first place?

My parents had sex and reproduced. 

butterbattle wrote:
Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones. - Marcus Aurelius

gtplaya818 wrote:
This is an assumption.  Anyone can assume or believe anything they want.

Aww, why my sigs?

Yes, it's an assumption, but I love it because it appeals to my moral instincts, and probably virtually all people's moral instincts, so much better than god/heaven/hell based morality. It really reflects one of my most basic beliefs. It can also be used to refute Pascal's Wager.

butterbattle wrote:
When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion. - Abraham Lincoln

gtplaya818 wrote:
Different societies have different cultural values of what is good and bad. People can control their feelings if they practice. If Abraham wants to call that a religion, he can call it whatever he wants.

I'm not sure if he really meant that it's his religion, in the popular definition of the term, but I don't. People use religion to tell them what's right and wrong, so I use this to say that this is my most basic rule for determining what's right and wrong.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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Blake wrote:FYI, this one. 

Blake wrote:

FYI, this one.  Competition for resources is harsh; there's no room for new life to form.

Point taken. But, aren't the other two...

- Life emerging from non-life is uncommon.

- We probably wouldn't notice it.

...true as well?

Blake wrote:
More accurately, you might say that we don't have the technology to do so cost-effectively, and nobody is going to bother funding something like that with the funds it would need.

Okay, thanks.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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"we don't know" is an acceptable answer

gtplaya818 wrote:

3) If the big bang THEORY was actually real, then what created the big bang?  Was there NOTHING before the big bang?  No universe, no planets, no stars, no life?  No time?  No space?  Absolutely nothing?  How long was there NOTHING for?  Was it nothing for millions of years, and then all of a sudden something just appeared out of NOTHING?  Can you even call it nothing because that could be something in itself?  What caused something to appear out of NOTHING and WHY?  What was the point?  And how?

Anybody care to explain how everything came to be in the VERY BEGINNING of time and space if it wasn't created on purpose?  How did anything appear or start if it wasn't created?  How did the very first thing even exist and where did it come from?  Please think of an answer without getting emotional.  This is supposed to be a discussion and is used to provoke thought.

We don't know.  And it is okay that we don't know.  Maybe through various scientific advances in instrumentation, we will know someday, and maybe we won't know.  That does not mean there has to be a god/s/dess around who created the universe.  It means - we don't know.

There doesn't have to be a point, a reason, a purpose.  There is probably a cause - but the cause does not have to be an intelligent something.  My question for you is, why are you so frightened?  Why do you feel small and helpless without your imaginary friend?  We all of us have to grow up and lose our imaginary friends - except some grown ups cling to their imaginary friends as god/s/dess.  I feel sorry for those people who can not move on from a child-like clinging to some idea that makes them feel more important, wanted, loved.  Too bad they can not find the love they need in their friends and family here in the only reality any of us have.

gtplaya818 wrote:

4a)  How did it come to be that you are controlling the body that you have currently?

I was born.

 

From where?  And why didn't you end up being someone else instead?  People are constantly being born every second.  Why was it that you were born on your birthday and not today in the womb of another woman?

Now that is pretty funny.  I used to think stuff like that when I was young.  (I'm older than dirt.)  How can I be a member of this family?  They are so stupid, boring, talentless, slow, fat, and later, dysfunctional.  And I would day dream about being in some other family.  Where everyone was happy and intelligent and kind and naturally skinny.  And it took me awhile to grow up and realize all families have problems, not just mine.  And many children want to be somewhere they aren't.

I was born where I was born to the parents who had sex and made me.  I am me because of those genetics, my birth order, my environment as I grew up.  Because I had this teacher and not another.  Because I had these friends and not others.  Because I lived on this side of town and not that.  A miracle?  No, just chance.  If I had been born somewhere else to other parents, I would be someone else, not me.

gtplaya818 wrote:

4b)  What will happen when you DIE?

I'll be dead.

 

So you will lose consciousness and that's it?  Nothing?  A complete blank?  If that's the case, then the existence of time, space, and the future wouldn't matter to you after death because you wouldn't even know that it was existing because you won't exist either.  And if you don't exist after you die, then how did you end up existing in the first place?

Where does the light go when you turn it off?  And where did it come from when you turn it on?  And you are right, when I am dead, none of this will matter.  And it won't matter for anyone else, either.  My mother-in-law says if death isn't sweet oblivion, she will be damned disappointed.

-- I feel so much better since I stopped trying to believe.

"We are entitled to our own opinions. We're not entitled to our own facts"- Al Franken

"If death isn't sweet oblivion, I will be severely disappointed" - Ruth M.


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gtplaya818 wrote:Please

gtplaya818 wrote:

Please answer the questions INTELLIGENTLY with answers not with questions.

My answer is this: observe any human committing a fatal error out of ignorance, before giving rise to offspring.

Then you will have self-effectively witnessed natural selection in action.

Quote:

 Save worthless meaningless comments for another thread.

"Objection, your honor! Relevancy!"

as an addendum: I'd like to point out the greatest singular force of natural selection on this planet; the very species which you and I are members of: Homo Sapiens, "Wise Man". (or more precisely, Homo Sapiens Sapiens "Wisest Man" )

Not only are we are apex predators, but we are also the most dangerous species on the planet. To commit sacrilege upon your sacred animal totems: we are above the wolf, the lion, and the lamb altogether on the "Food Chain"... as a single species, I might add.

“A meritocratic society is one in which inequalities of wealth and social position solely reflect the unequal distribution of merit or skills amongst human beings, or are based upon factors beyond human control, for example luck or chance. Such a society is socially just because individuals are judged not by their gender, the colour of their skin or their religion, but according to their talents and willingness to work, or on what Martin Luther King called 'the content of their character'. By extension, social equality is unjust because it treats unequal individuals equally.” "Political Ideologies" by Andrew Heywood (2003)


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smartypants wrote:Blake

smartypants wrote:



Blake wrote:



FYI it is not demonstrated that humans and Chimpanzees and other apes can not interbreed- we are not very different at all (much like horses and donkeys, which can breed to make mules [which can only have horse or donkey offspring]).



Without suggesting bestiality, obviously, or even that resulting offspring be allowed to mature, I'd be curious if chimp eggs could at least be fertilized by human sperm or vice-versa.





But according to the Catholic church, it would be unethical not to allow it to mature.  We should just fertilize it, and then give it to the Catholics so they can implant the embryo into a volunteer to save its life.



In fact, I vote that we do this regularly, and drop the embryos on the Vatican's doorstep many times a day.  Done with regularity, the half-chimp babies would supplant the reproduction of the Catholics entirely.  And then the next generation of Humanzees would *probably* be sterile...



Evil plan ++





smartypants wrote:



gtplaya818 wrote:
Why can't scientists make living organisms out of objects that aren't living?



I'm just going to address this and leave the rest for others. I myself would be very surprised if AI didn't become sentient in the next century, looking at the industry's exponential growth up till now. When that happens, we may be faced with some very fundamental questions about what constitutes "being alive."





SI (synthetic intelligence- there's nothing artificial about it) is already sentient.  It is sentient by definition- without sense to feed back pleasure and pain, there is no guidance for the adaptive neural net's learning.



It raised those questions many years ago- I don't think any gradation of improvement is going to get people to pay much more attention to it.



The standard "God" concept has been so thoroughly disproved for so long, it's only evidence that challenges and proof are largely ignored.  



I don't suspect that we can look to future developments to shed light for the ignorant, but rather just to be another thing they ignore.



We mostly just have to wait for them to die off (of old age, unless we cure that before they can) and for the next generation to be a little less ignorant.





butterbattle wrote:



Point taken. But, aren't the other two...



- Life emerging from non-life is uncommon.



- We probably wouldn't notice it.



...true as well?




To the first point, I disagree that it is uncommon on two grounds:



1. The distinction between life and non-life is virtually non-existent (At least very blurry- where do you really draw the line?).



2. The process that drove that "first" change, wherever you draw the line likely occurs uncountable trillions of times daily in the Earth's crust.




On the second, I think the point is moot due to the third- we've certainly noticed it once (our own 'spark' in the least)  It's just the prevalence of existing life that prevents us from noticing it again, because it cuts it off from advancing how it aught.  Like trying to notice the stars in the sky during the day, or tears in the rain.



In the case of it occurring without being overwhelmed, it would be a very noticeable spread over time.





butterbattle wrote:


My mom. At a hospital in Xiamen, China.




Do you live in China, butterbattle?


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I remember reading about

I remember reading about some Russian experiments that tried to breed humans and chimps, but it was back in the 50's or something long before modern fertility treatments.

Honestly, I want to know.  It isn't like anyone would be humping a chimp, it would be chimp eggs implanted with human genetic material to start with, like we do for human fertility problems.

 

I can't think of any reason *not* to do it.  Worst case you have great stuff for a series of horror movies.  Best case you get a hybrid that makes theists shit their pants.  Well, I guess the whole 'unique hybrid thought of as a demon/monstrosity by 95% of the human race" could be a reason not to do it.  Sad

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Blake wrote:smartypants

Blake wrote:

smartypants wrote:



 

Blake wrote:



 

FYI it is not demonstrated that humans and Chimpanzees and other apes can not interbreed- we are not very different at all (much like horses and donkeys, which can breed to make mules [which can only have horse or donkey offspring]).



 

Without suggesting bestiality, obviously, or even that resulting offspring be allowed to mature, I'd be curious if chimp eggs could at least be fertilized by human sperm or vice-versa.


 




 

But according to the Catholic church, it would be unethical not to allow it to mature.  We should just fertilize it, and then give it to the Catholics so they can implant the embryo into a volunteer to save its life.



 

In fact, I vote that we do this regularly, and drop the embryos on the Vatican's doorstep many times a day.  Done with regularity, the half-chimp babies would supplant the reproduction of the Catholics entirely.  And then the next generation of Humanzees would *probably* be sterile...



 

Evil plan ++





 

smartypants wrote:



 

gtplaya818 wrote:
Why can't scientists make living organisms out of objects that aren't living?



 

I'm just going to address this and leave the rest for others. I myself would be very surprised if AI didn't become sentient in the next century, looking at the industry's exponential growth up till now. When that happens, we may be faced with some very fundamental questions about what constitutes "being alive."


 




 

SI (synthetic intelligence- there's nothing artificial about it) is already sentient.  It is sentient by definition- without sense to feed back pleasure and pain, there is no guidance for the adaptive neural net's learning.



 

It raised those questions many years ago- I don't think any gradation of improvement is going to get people to pay much more attention to it.



 

The standard "God" concept has been so thoroughly disproved for so long, it's only evidence that challenges and proof are largely ignored.  



 

I don't suspect that we can look to future developments to shed light for the ignorant, but rather just to be another thing they ignore.



 

We mostly just have to wait for them to die off (of old age, unless we cure that before they can) and for the next generation to be a little less ignorant.





 

butterbattle wrote:



 

Point taken. But, aren't the other two...



 

- Life emerging from non-life is uncommon.



 

- We probably wouldn't notice it.



 

...true as well?




 

To the first point, I disagree that it is uncommon on two grounds:



 

1. The distinction between life and non-life is virtually non-existent (At least very blurry- where do you really draw the line?).



 

2. The process that drove that "first" change, wherever you draw the line likely occurs uncountable trillions of times daily in the Earth's crust.




 

On the second, I think the point is moot due to the third- we've certainly noticed it once (our own 'spark' in the least)  It's just the prevalence of existing life that prevents us from noticing it again, because it cuts it off from advancing how it aught.  Like trying to notice the stars in the sky during the day, or tears in the rain.



 

In the case of it occurring without being overwhelmed, it would be a very noticeable spread over time.





 

butterbattle wrote:


 

My mom. At a hospital in Xiamen, China.


 



 

Do you live in China, butterbattle?

Don't you live in China, Blake?  I'll be in Dalian mid May for little while.

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


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 As with you, I agree there

 As with you, I agree there is no reason not to do it.  Not that it should be don't on any sort of massive scale.  A population of such hybrids could only lead to disaster especially if they began to successfully breed.  But just to put this whole issue to rest.  Humans and chimps are 100% certainly related if any of us are related at all.  We shouldn't have to make a hybrid to see this but obviously we do.  And even a hybrid wouldn't convince most people.   

A daughter of hope and fear, religion explains to Ignorance the nature of the unknowable. -Ambrose Bierce


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mellestad wrote:Don't you

mellestad wrote:

Don't you live in China, Blake?  I'll be in Dalian mid May for little while.

 

I used to live in Dalian- for about a half a year.  Do you have any plans to visit the world expo in Shanghai?


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Blake wrote:mellestad

Blake wrote:

mellestad wrote:

Don't you live in China, Blake?  I'll be in Dalian mid May for little while.

 

I used to live in Dalian- for about a half a year.  Do you have any plans to visit the world expo in Shanghai?

 

No, just in and out for business, unfortunately, about a week and a half this trip.  I would love to make a months trip of it sometime but I don't see that happening.

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


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I have been to China

I have been to China twice.

First was for less than a week as part of a tourist trip by train from Beijing to Helsinki (Finland), including travelling in the Trans-Siberian Railway. Saw the standard sights in and around Beijing, Tian'anmen Square, Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Great Wall, etc, then what we could see from the train to Ulaan Bataar in Mongolia. That was in winter. Snow and ice in places.

Second time was for about two weeks, in summer, starting in the south in Guangzho. Li River cruise, Entombed Warriors, working our way up to Urumqi, where the last visit was to Heavenly Lake. Got a fascinating taste of a diverse country and culture(s)...

 

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I wonder how much the

I wonder how much the slightly different chromosome structure in humans and the other primates would hinder mutual fertility?

The other primates have 24 pairs, we have 23, because two of the ape chromosomes have become joined end-to-end in us. Maybe that reduced the chance of successful inter-breeding early on, and so helped us split off as a separate lineage.

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On that old crap about how

On that old crap about how did male and female evolve, the main misunderstanding is that evolution is not about individuals 'evolving', it is about populations, which has already been mentioned. Small changes which happen to be beneficial, even if only slightly, will tend to become more common since those members will have more offspring. So gradually an interbreeding population will tend to change. It will only drift if it is already well adapted, so there will be little net change, unless something changes to make it no longer so well-adapted. 

The other point, less commonly understood, is that there needs to be some mechanism for swapping genetic material between individuals, which is an essential part of allowing evolution to happen, so that harmless or beneficial mutations can be spread thru a population. It is still an advantage for neutral mutations to spread, since these provide more possibilities for ultimately beneficial mutations to arise.

Originally, this was direct and separate from reproduction, in single-celled organisms.  Populations which didn't do this changed only slowly, or not at all, so were simply left behind and went extinct in any competitive situation.

In multi-celled organisms which started out as a single cell 'budded off' from the parent, the easiest way to mix genetic material was at that single-cell stage, so gene-mixing become part of reproduction, and the simplest mechanism was for the original cell to get some of its DNA from another organism. And the most efficient way was for one sample of DNA to be delivered in a minimal 'package' which made it easier to physically transfer rather than another whole viable cell. So one 'partner' supplied what we now know as the sperm cell. Originally, all individuals could perform both functions, ie supply a sperm cell sample to another, and bud off a new organism, and there are species which still do this.

As part of variation within the population, some individuals lost the ability to actually perform one or other function, and this specialization apparently was ultimately more efficient for the group overall, so it gradually became the norm. A bit like the more elaborate specialization which evolved in many social insects, such as ants, into workers, soldiers, fertile drones and queens.

So that is an outline of a plausible pathway by which separate sexes evolved. Populations with only 'bi-sexual', or mixtures of bi's and one or both specialized reproducers (females) or DNA sharers (males) would be viable, including just self-fertilizing bi's, but not purely male or female.

Purely self-fertile populations would not be viable in the long term except in very stable environments, since they would not be good 'evolvers'. There are species which can do both, reproduce asexually and sexually, and they can switch strategies depending on the environment.

So apart from the basic truth that evolution is about gradual changes in populations, there is the necessity for DNA swapping for populations to evolve. Add in the ability for specialization of function within a population, and splitting into two sexes can emerge quite easily.

 

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BobSpence1 wrote:So apart

BobSpence1 wrote:
So apart from the basic truth that evolution is about gradual changes in populations, there is the necessity for DNA swapping for populations to evolve. Add in the ability for specialization of function within a population, and splitting into two sexes can emerge quite easily.

Holy cow! I didn't know all that (which is why I didn't include it in my long post). Very cool stuff!

"Yes, I seriously believe that consciousness is a product of a natural process. I find that the neuroscientists, psychologists, and philosophers who proceed from that premise are the ones who are actually making useful contributions to our understanding of the mind." - PZ Myers


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nigelTheBold

nigelTheBold wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
So apart from the basic truth that evolution is about gradual changes in populations, there is the necessity for DNA swapping for populations to evolve. Add in the ability for specialization of function within a population, and splitting into two sexes can emerge quite easily.

Holy cow! I didn't know all that (which is why I didn't include it in my long post). Very cool stuff!

Yeah, without some form of DNA interchange, you really don't have a population as an evolving entity. Each good mutation would have to arise independently in each individual lineage. 

In bacteria it is called Horizontal Gene Transfer.

I guess sex could be called "diagonal" gene transfer, mixing lineages going forward, rather than direct transfer from one individual to another.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


butterbattle
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Blake wrote:To the first

Blake wrote:
To the first point, I disagree that it is uncommon on two grounds:

1. The distinction between life and non-life is virtually non-existent (At least very blurry- where do you really draw the line?).

2. The process that drove that "first" change, wherever you draw the line likely occurs uncountable trillions of times daily in the Earth's crust.

I agree with both of those arguments. But, at the same time, they seem more like reasons to qualify my statement than to reject it outright. Perhaps, at the very least, I should try to refrain from saying it's uncommon because it's misleading for the uninformed?    

Blake wrote:
On the second, I think the point is moot due to the third- we've certainly noticed it once (our own 'spark' in the least)  It's just the prevalence of existing life that prevents us from noticing it again, because it cuts it off from advancing how it aught.  Like trying to notice the stars in the sky during the day, or tears in the rain.

In the case of it occurring without being overwhelmed, it would be a very noticeable spread over time.

Again, I agree, but it still seems like a reason to qualify my statement instead of rejecting it completely.

Blake wrote:
Do you live in China, butterbattle?

I used to, and I am 100% Han Chinese, I think. I still go back to visit relatives sometimes, but I live in Seattle now. I'm studying at the University of Washington.  

 

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare