reply to post by sykickvision
Originally posted by sykickvision
This is one of the debates that never really ends.
No, the science is quite settled on it.
Both sides have compelling arguments.
Nope, only one side really does.
To me, it does appear as if there is something beyond perception that has slowly guided things into the way they are.
Pointless assertion. When I was a child it seemed to me that clouds put out coldness just like the sun put out warmth. I was wrong, just like you are.
There's absolutely nothing to show that anything but natural processes are forming lifeforms on this planet.
It happens via evolution AND an intelligent choice being made.
Except that there's no evidence for an intelligent choice being made.
Life would have never persisted if it hadn't cared about itself, even on the smallest scale.
You mean the survival instinct
? Instincts don't really take much thought.
Either you live, or you die, or you live & breed & THEN you die. Isn't there more to life than just the proliferation of the species? Sure the
species survives - but what about you? You die anyway. You reap none of the benefits.
So? That's not really an argument for anything. That's just another cerebrally advanced ape trying to shape meaning out of a meaningless existence.
Why did evolution stop (or greatly slow down) in insects?
Selection pressure decreased.
Dragonflies today are like dragonflies of yesteryear, only smaller. Same wings, same eyes, same legs. No doubt same habits.
A massive change in size is definitely an indicator of evolution...
And again, a lack of selection pressure slows down changes in populations. Eventually very few novel mutations become selectively better for survival
and the primary factor of evolution would be genetic drift.
Surely there could have been improvement on the design, something could have been done to make them sleeker, faster, more intelligent.
For the umpteenth time: Evolution isn't about making an organism better, more intelligent, faster, stronger, etc
. Evolutionary forces only work
to ensure survivability. If intelligence doesn't increase the likelihood of an organism surviving and reproducing, then there's absolutely no reason
for it to become a more prevalent factor.
What stopped the change? The world has changed a lot. Their environment has changed. Their food? Maybe not. So...why hasn't the food developed
skills to avoid the dragonflies better?
Some of it might have, but if one food supply evolves to get eaten less by one species it might get eaten more by another. There are some incredible
examples o camouflage in nature, but none of these adaptations are fool proof.
And animals don't have 'skills' that they can pass on. A 'skill' is an acquired trait. Animals, lacking language, are unable to pass on acquired
traits to later generations.
I know this makes little sense, as I've said before my brain works with ideas & pictures - not words.
No, you've explained it quite well. You just seem to lack an understanding of how evolution as a process works.
I really think that life left to random chance over time will end in no life at all.
Except that evolution isn't random chance. It's the nonrandom survival of species based upon random mutations.
Sometimes evolution works fast to ensure survival of a species, sometimes it seems to stop. Sometimes it either doesn't work fast enough or not even
Evolution isn't like a space heater than has a specific goal, it's just the name we give to the survival of species based upon their traits etc. It's
not something that can 'kick in' and just start working faster or slower.
If changes are random, then we should see roses with every imaginable scent - but they all smell like roses to me.
Again, the changes aren't random. Roses evolved their scent to lure in insects for pollination, the same with their flower shape and coloration. The
scents that don't attract insects for pollination don't reproduce, so the scent is selected out.
However, there are a wide variety of smells among flowers, just not roses. That's called speciation.
reply to post by theAmospProphecy
Originally posted by theAmospProphecy
I was merely trying to point out that the whole atheistic notion of happenstance is a statistical impossibility.
Um...no, it isn't. I actually posted a thread about 'statistical impossibility'. I used a game of 5 card stud poker as an example.
I'll just give you the first hand as dealt, not even the statistical probabilities involved in changing of cards and an entire game.
Let's say you're playing a game with 5 people and each person gets 5 cards at their first deal. That's 25 cards. The chances of this happening are
1/(52 x 51 x 50 x 49 x 48 x 47 x 46 x 45 x 44 x 43 x 42 x 41 x 40 x 39 x 38 x 37 x 37 x 36 x 35 x 34 x 33 x 32 x 31 x 30 x 29)
Which equals: 1/(9.78834558 × 10^39) or 1/9,788,345,580,000,000,000,000,000,000,000
That's just one hand in a game of poker. If you end up playing 50 hands in a night...well, the chances go up exponentially, but I don't want to have
to calculate that right now because I don't have a graphing calculator and I'm sure as hell not going to calculate it by hand. The probability of each
hand would be multiplied against the probability of the hand before it (which I've only calculated without the changing of cards) meaning that you'd
have a ridiculous number.
Another great example would simply be the probability of a deck of cards being in the order that they're in right now. That would be calculated at
1/(52 x 51 x 50 x 49 x 48 ... x 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1) (I'm not going to write out the whole longhand) or 1/52! = 1/(8.06581752 × 10^67) or (approx)
That's an insanely wild probability. You have a better chance of being struck by lightning several times after winning the lottery for the second time
and then having a soda machine fall on you. But you don't say that it's impossible for a deck to be in any given order at any given time, do you?
Improbable definitely doesn't mean impossible, insanely improbable things happen every single day.
moreover, every faith, including atheism, requires people to make a great many very non scientific leaps of logic.
Ah, the classic "atheism is a faith" gambit.
I'm sorry, but it's a skeptical position. Skeptical positions require absolutely no faith at all.
and because people will ask, the assumptions required of atheism are
Oh FSM, not this tripe again...
The entirety of atheism can be summed up in one statement: I disbelieve in the existence of any deity.
The rest of what an atheists does or doesn't believe is up to the individual.
that we are the single luckiest planet in our known universe
I'm sorry, that's assuming that the entire cosmos is barren and lacks another planet that can sustain life. Considering that there's a possibility
that the moon Europa may have life...so that statement is full of bovine fecal matter.
that, despite what we know about quantum particles, the laws of nature simply just ARE, and for some reason just have to be that way. (because every
religion has some organizing principal that requires a blind assumption for atheists its physics)
How is that an assumption of blind faith? Positing that the universe as we know it just is would be a fairly rational assumption. In fact, it's a far
more rational assumption than a deity formulating the laws of physics on a whim just for the existence of human life. That would be like a puddle in a
pothole stating that some guiding force created the pothole for the divinely ordained existence of that puddle.
At some point everyone has to simply say that some things just are, atheists simply choose to stop at 'the universe and its natural laws'...for now.
Hopefully that work on the theory of everything will sort that one out.
And how does 'what we know about quantum particles' affect how we think about physics? Quantum physics isn't someone saying "um....stuff is random",
as there are actually discernible observations that can be quantified from quantum physics.
One last thing
Richard Dawkins already demolished the ol' "Tornado assembling a jet plane" argument in The God Delusion
edit on 9/30/10 by madnessinmysoul because: added one last thing