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Author Topic: Is OSC your friend?
Rohan
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quote:
The God that us Mormons believe in is bound by rules. For instance, He cannot lie, and He cannot change his mind.
Boy, if you think all Mormons believe that, you should talk to more Mormons about it. I don't think it is a necessity for Mormons to believe that God is bound by rules (or that He cannot change His mind).

[ March 03, 2004, 07:38 PM: Message edited by: Rohan ]

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kacard
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Dear Rohan,
Tried to email you privately, but the email you provided in your registration is no longer current. Please update that for me [Smile]
You mentioned you were going to link to a thread in Nauvoo. That is something I won't allow. Hatrack and Nauvoo are two very separate communities. Nauvoo is meant as a place for members to talk to each other, not a place where their discussions are held up to non-members for discussion or ridicule as happens in so many other online religion forums (Beliefnet for example). That's why members have to sign the Nauvoo compact which indicates that they are a member before posting at Nauvoo. I know you are trying to be helpful to the discussion on Hatrack, but I can't let a link to Nauvoo be part of the that discussion. Let me know when you get this message, and I'll delete this post. Thanks, Kristine Card

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Jon Boy
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That book sounds interesting, skillery. I'll have to look into that.
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pooka
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What about other miracles, the "little" ones Jesus performed? I say "little" compared with the creation of the earth. Though with respect to the flood, I think the miracle is that it doesn't happen more often.
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Taalcon
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Kristine: So no linking for even those who would find the discussion interesting to READ?
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Papa Moose
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Taal, by a strict reading of the Nauvoo charter, no, if you can't agree to it you shouldn't even be reading the threads. Of course, there's no good way to stop a person from reading the threads, but who'd want to break rules to read from an LDS website? Talk about your irony.... *smile* Of course, The Bible ostensibly is the most often stolen book, so who can tell? (Haven't checked snopes or anything, so that info could just be urban legend.)

--Pop

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kacard
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I can't stop anybody from going to Nauvoo to read. But our kind of unspoken contract with Nauvoo is it will be a private place for discussion among members where they don't have to be in combat mode. If links are posted here, that opens the discussion to be something else entirely. What, people are going to read a link and then nobody is going to comment on it? Isn't that the point of a link, to then talk about it or refute it or ridicule it or something? That's not what we promised those who partake of the discussion in Nauvoo. Those discussion belong there, Hatrack discussions belong here. (We also started Ornery in hopes people would take there political discussions there--much good it did me [Smile] )

You can start any topic you want here -- though if something becomes disrespectful of anybody's religion you know I'll shut it down. And I've shut down LDS discussions that I felt were getting too intense because that's not what we want to have happen here.

So the answer to your question is -- no -- it would ruin the spirit of Nauvoo if I allowed links here. It would make those who post feel they were no longer just in the company of other members who understand where they are coming from and their deepest concerns. But instead they were once again under the microscope of the rest of the world and Nauvoo would be ruined.

[ March 03, 2004, 07:17 PM: Message edited by: kacard ]

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Taalcon
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Agreed, and respected [Big Grin]
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HonestAbe
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anyone smart enough to click a link is smart enough to do a search for that site, and posting the name of it is just short of linking it.
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kacard
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I never said it was a hidden site. Everyone who has been on any of OSC's websites for any length of time knows about all of them. You certainly missed the point.

[ March 03, 2004, 07:38 PM: Message edited by: kacard ]

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Rohan
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Sorry about that Kristine. I see your point, and I agree. I'll edit my original post as well. Again, mea culpa. [Smile]
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kacard
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Thanks Rohan! I'll probably leave mine up now cause of the posts that came afterwards. Thanks for understanding. You are way cool.
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porcelain girl
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i consider mr. card and his family to be my friends.
the cards (and their childred) are gracious hosts both in public and private circumstances.
i have always felt welcome at card's signings, i think he goes out of his way to show appreciation for the people that read and like his books.

i love the card family. especially that cute blonde with the bizarre sense of humor.

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Shepherdess
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Honest Abe--
Interesting post! I'm actually more used to hearing people say that the Genesis flood was plagiarized from other ancient legends.

Honestly, though, can't you have it both ways?
If those other ancient legends exist, then the writer of Genesis was stealing material. If they don't exist, then that's proof that the Flood never happened.
Perfect! [Evil Laugh]

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HonestAbe
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the writer of genisis? I don't know much about the history of the bible, who wrote it?

That post i made earlier with the Satans Rapid Deployment Force, it may be mocking, but the species and evidence is quite real. many of the "missing links" are there.

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A Rat Named Dog
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porcelain girl ó I'm not a blond anymore.
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Scott R
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Dog-- I can sell you some Rogaine to fix that. . .
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A Rat Named Dog
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I should post a recent picture, to dispel THAT idea [Smile] Maybe the cartoon of me on my website will be enough of an illustration ...
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scottneb
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Sweet website Dog!
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Narnia
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Wow Geoff. That's.........orange! [Smile]
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rivka
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*clicks wedding pictures link*

[Grumble]

*hits Refresh*

*hits Refresh*

*hits Refresh*

*hits Refresh*

[No No]

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Slash the Berzerker
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I don't need to see the pics. I lived it.
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rivka
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Slash, I already knew I wasn't as cool as you. Do you have to rub it in? [Cry]
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pooka
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kacard wrote:
quote:
(We also started Ornery in hopes people would take there political discussions there--much good it did me )
Wow, I feel so vindicated since I used to whine about the political discussions in BFFAC. And the folks there would say "it's not literally BFFAC, it's a catchall and we can post on whatever we want." Finally, I decided that if there were going to be political discussions, some conservative views should be in them. Hmm.
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blacwolve
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I feel like I'm friends with the Cards, but it's more of a one way friendship, however, on hatrack esp. that's not uncommon. I feel like I'm friends with a lot of people here I've never spoken to, at least I've spoken to the Cards.

[ March 05, 2004, 05:12 PM: Message edited by: blacwolve ]

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Narnia
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Ditto blacwolve. And I think that's valid. [Smile]
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Lord Detheroc
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As i finished the shadow series tonight i became overcome by depression. I had finally finished what i set out to do only 3 months ago...I finished the enders series as well as the shadow series. But im left with a hunger for more bean, more peter wiggin of the outside, and ive never grown tired of Ender.

Through these last 3 months i have felt ive gotten to know Card from his writings, the way his writing and development of plot and charachter can sway my own mood and feelings as a bystander. If i had a bad day, instead of reading 50 pages at night id read 100 and feel much better.

I cant say Card is my friend, yet his writings have been the best friend ive had over the last 3 months sadly enough, and i hope that there is more of Ender, Bean, or Peter in the future (*if there is something already in progress i have not seen or been informed of it would be nice to know).

Also this post is based on threads original topic, i began to read through the pages but got lost in the nonsense on page 1

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Narnia
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(have you read any of his other stuff? There is more great stuff where Ender came from.) [Smile]

Welcome to the forum! [Wave]

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lcarus
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quote:
But im left with a hunger for more bean
Taco Bell can help with that . . .

btw, Welcome!
[Smile]

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Lord Detheroc
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Thank you, what other series of OSC's do you suggest?
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Amka
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Alvin Maker series. Starts with Seventh Son.
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St. Yogi
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The Homecoming series. Starts with Memory of Earth.

And anything else you can find by Card. It's all good [Cool]

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Narnia
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It sounds like you would love the Alvin Maker series (what ^she said). His other single books are really addicting as well : The Worthing Saga, Enchantment, Lovelock (with Kathy Kidd), the first two Women of Genesis books...and all the short stories in Maps in a Mirror.

I haven't yet read the Homecoming series, so I can't recommend it to you yet, but that's a good one too!

This should keep you from being depressed at the absence of books for a while. (I know that feeling.) [Smile]

[ March 11, 2004, 01:11 PM: Message edited by: Narnia ]

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skeptic
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Yozhik asked me to reply to this thread. She described me as a "biology teacher". While that is my passion and occupation, I am also a biologist (M.S. plus 183 credit hours).

cochick wrote
quote:
"Well as far as evolution goes "Man was created in Gods Image" - I don't know about you guys but my ancestors didn't climb out of no primordal swamp or evolve from apes etc."
Evolution says that you and apes have a common ancestor, not that humans evolved from apes. This is a common misconception. You also share ancestors with every other living being on the planet including yeast, plants, and bacteria.

Taalcon wrote:
quote:
There's macro and micro evolution - belief in one doesn't necessitate the belief in the other.
It's good of you to note the difference. Most people are not aware of this. To add a definition, microevolution is evolution below the species level. In essence it is the change in gene frequencies within a species over time. This has been well documented. Microevolution is an indisputable fact. We rely on this to supply us with vaccines for influenza virus, to treat HIV infections, to control pest and pathogen populations in crops, and many other practical applications.

Macroevolution is evolution beyond the species level. It is the creation of new species, genera, and levels of characterization above. The key question here is: can one species diverge into two? In order to answer this question, we must define species. I'll use the biological species concept sensu Mayr which says that an organism is a different species from another organism if it cannot interbreed with another group of organisms. Based on this definition, I'll give you one well-documented case of rapid speciation. Because I'm a plant scientist, this comes from the Botanical world. O. lamarkiana, a species of flowering plant is a classical example. In a population of O. lamarkiana, a large individual was identified. This individual was vegetatively propagated, and was found to produce viable offspring with crossed with itself, yet be completely incompatibile with its' parent. In a single generation, this new species became completely genetically isolated from the parent population. The new species was called O. gigas. Chromosome analysis revealed that the plant arose by polyploidy. In essence, the plant did not undergo the reduction of chromosome number involved in meiosis, and thus doubled its' chromosome number. As a result, it was no longer fertile with its' parent, but fertile with offspring derived from vegetative propagation of itself. Genetic analysis of many plants supports the idea that speciation by polyploidy is common in the plant kingdom.

There are cases of rapid speciation in the animal kingdom as well. Fruit flies are the best studied examples I know of. I'm less familiar with the literature, but there was a study done by scientists at Cornell where two populations of fruit flies were separated for 30 years. When reintroduced to each other, reproductive barriers had arisen such that individuals from differing populations had less than 5% of their offspring survive in comparision to 95% for matings between individuals from the same population.

For further examples of observed instances of speciation, please visit the talk.origins website. Look up some of the journal articles cited on the web site and read them. If you have difficulty interpreting any of the terminology or statistics, email me. I'm a teacher and I love to teach (I don't mean to be condescending, just helpful--sorry If I come across as the former). I think you will find that macroevolution is also a testable idea which has been proven to be a fact (at least at the speciation level).

If you want to test macroevolution beyond the species level, I suggest that you compare genomic sequences of DNA. You can do this online at the National Center for Biological Information (NCBI)
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

Once you have compared DNA sequences of different species, and understand the mathematics of mutation and evolution, I think you will be convinced that evolution is a fact.

It may well be that, as my evolution prof. asserted, "evolution is god's way of creating the beautiful diversity of living things". If true, this neither denies the fact of evolution nor the beauty of creation.

-Skeptic

[ March 13, 2004, 07:29 AM: Message edited by: skeptic ]

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Amka
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Playing the devils advocate here:

I'm not sure I want to define macroevolution so narrowly as just speciation. I'm more concerned with the big jumps like: inanimate matter to primative reproducing cell with a genetic code, single celled organisms to multicellular organisms, fish to amphibians, etc.

What I want explained is how new organs, new cellular processes come about.

Moving away from debate about evolution I also want to state this: belief in evolution doesn't necessarily mean that one doesn't believe God created anything. There is the engine of evolution to consider: is it purely natural selection? Or might not there be selection by the will of God?

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pooka
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I do recall polyploid fertilization in plants, now that you bring it up. But plants are at somewhat of an advantage in being essentially hermaphroditic. Indeed, the emergence of AIDS could be pointed to as the creation/evolution of a new life form in our time.

So I'll revise my position to say that non-hermaphroditic organisms have not been shown to very often add an entire chromosome. Thanks for the heads up, Skeptic.

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skeptic
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Amka wrote:
quote:
I'm more concerned with the big jumps like: inanimate matter to primative reproducing cell with a genetic code, single celled organisms to multicellular organisms, fish to amphibians, etc.

What I want explained is how new organs, new cellular processes come about.

Inanimate matter to primitive reproducing cell is a large step indeed. Many models for how this might have happened exist. Iíll suggest you read John Maynard Smithís book The Origins of Life (Szathmary, E., Maynard Smith, J. (1999). The origins of life. Oxford University Press).
A cell is membrane-bound. If you put phospholipids into water, they spontaneously form spherical bilayers like membranes around cells. These are called coacervates (see http://www.daviddarling.info/encyclopedia/C/coacervate.html Clearly not living cells because they do not grow or divide, but they look like simple cells under the microscope.
RNA is probably the best candidate for the first genetic material. Like DNA, it can contain information in sequences of nucleotides. Like Protein, RNA forms complex 3 dimensional structures that can act as catalysts. RNA catalysts are called ribozymes. An autocatalytic group of RNAís inside a coacervate is one model. That ribozymes can mutate and have novel functions has been demonstrated ( http://www.mpibpc.gwdg.de/inform/MpiNews/cientif/jahrg5/9.99/scta.html ).

How do new organs come about? PBS produced a series called ďEvolutionĒ which my students find to be very accessible. One segment discusses the evolution of the eye. You can view it online here http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/library/01/1/l_011_01.html Keep in mind that this is a speculative model that fits the available evidence. This is not proof that the eye actually evolved this way.

How did fish evolve from amphibians? The PBS series did a pretty good job with this as well. It doesnít tell the entire story, but it does address how you could go from a fish to something with limbs similar to an amphibian. You can view it online here http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/library/03/4/l_034_03.html

The transition from single cellularity to multicellularity is an easy one to explain. In fact, many species of yeast are able to live as either a single-celled free floating organism, or as a filamentous multicellular organism depending on the amount of moisture in the environment. It only involves a very small number of genes involved in the separation of cells after division.

pooka wrote
quote:
So I'll revise my position to say that non-hermaphroditic organisms have not been shown to very often add an entire chromosome.
To minimally address your assertion, I will point to the many disorders caused by nondisjunction in humans. Down Syndrome is caused, in most cases, by an extra chromosome 21. Klinefelterís Syndrome is caused by being at least XXY, sometimes with more X chromosomes than that. Individuals are also known to show XYY, and other combinations of sex chromosomes. Now, these are not different species, but individuals in which additional chromosomes lead to changes in physical appearance. Addition, subtraction, inversion, and translocation are all types of chromosomal rearrangements. Here are some examples linking chromosomal rearrangements and speciation:

Chromosome rearrangement in yeast (which have sexes known as ďaĒ and ďalphaĒónot hermaphroditic) http://www.nature.com/nsu/000525/000525-11.html

Hereís one in rodents: Hereditas Vol. 139 Issue 1 Page 13 September 2003
Karyotype evolution in South American subterranean rodents Ctenomys magellanicus (Rodentia: Octodontidae): chromosome rearrangements and (TTAGGG)n telomeric sequence localization in 2n=34 and 2n=36 chromosomal forms

Hereís one that will really stir the pot. It covers the divergence of humans and chimpanzees from a common ancestor: http://www.evolutionpages.com/homo_pan_divergence.htm

[ March 12, 2004, 02:04 PM: Message edited by: skeptic ]

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mr_porteiro_head
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All the links for that PBS show are broken for me.
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Amka
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That is because skeptic accidently put a period at the end of them. Get rid of the period and they work.

That said, skeptic, I'm quite aware of many of the examples used. I am still not entirely convinced that natural selection could be responsible for such a thing. All that has been shown is the steps in evolution. The flaw in such an intellecutal field trip is to assume that these steps could only have been accomplished by natural selection.

There is a real problem with that assumption, and that is that there almost seems to be purpose. And we know that there can be no purpose in natural selection.

The eye is actually simpler than most examples, because the transitory steps are, in fact, better than what came before. However, where did the rounded, transparent layer in the eye come from?

Every computer simulation involves intelligent design. It only proves that evolution can happen, but humans select for the desired outcome.

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skeptic
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Links in my previous post should work now. Thanks for pointing out the error.
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skeptic
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Amka wrote:
quote:
The flaw in such an intellecutal field trip is to assume that these steps could only have been accomplished by natural selection.
I'd like for you to point out where, in my post I made such an assumption. In fact I pointed out that these were models of how these things might have happened. As for the underlying mechanisms, I'd include sexual selection, genetic drift and endosymbiosis as mechanisms of evolution.

quote:
And we know that there can be no purpose in natural selection.
The word purpose seems to imply someone with an idea about where the process ought to end up. The outcome (analogous to purpose without the need for an entity to guide it) of evolution is organisms better adapted to the environmental conditions in which the parent generation found itself.

quote:
It only proves that evolution can happen, but humans select for the desired outcome.
If evolution could happen the way the model describes, then it seems reasonable to believe that that was the way it did happen until a better model is presented.

I'd also like to address the intelligent design idea you brought up. There are two main problems with intelligent design. The first is that for it to be true, there must be a designer. To prove intelligent design, you must prove that the designer existed. I've not seen a convincing proof that such a designer existed. In fact, if one does, then I'd like to talk with him about misdesigning my carpal-tunnel so that I had to have it improved through surgery. This is the second problem with intelligent design. If you study organisms in any depth, you will find suboptimal design. The eye is an excellent example. It would be possible to engineer a more effective eye. The eye has a blind spot where the optic nerve runs through the retina. An intelligent designer would have placed the nerves behind the retina to optimize its receptive surface. Unfortunately, because the eye evolved from simpler structures in which neurons were in front of the retina, we are stuck with a suboptimal design that works well enough.

[ March 12, 2004, 02:34 PM: Message edited by: skeptic ]

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Amka
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Your problems with the designer assumes you know the motives and methods of the intellegent designer. What if the designer simply desired its organisms to have sight. It did not manufacture the organisms, as you'd like to imply. It simply dropped the purpose into the selection process.

There is no goal in naturalistic evolution. Organisms simply live long enough to reproduce or die. There is so much chance other than natural selection that the tiny, non-harmful mutations required can't even be selected for. They need to be immediately and substantially beneficial to the creature in order for it to be a trait that causes its owners to survive more often to reproduce.

I get really irritated when biologists speculate on the development of parts, and this speculation is taken as important evidence. The eye, for instance, requires photosensitive cells in the first place. Such a small thing, but... how did the cell come to have the ability to produce such a chemical? A retina is the next step, so an organism acquires it. An ability to decrease the opening so that images can be distinguished simply appears. A lens is more efficient, so that comes onto the scene. See? When you show the steps it is so obvious.

No, not to me. I still ask: how did those steps happen. Every one requires new structures, and most need new chemicals as well. Only small mutations happen, and none of those steps can harm the chances of the organism to reproduce. And they must be helpful or be such a common mutation that enough organisms have these new intermediate structures so that evolution to the next tiny step occurs. In many of those necessary micro steps, I fail to see how it could be beneficial.

Genetic drift is simply a way to show how populations can diverge, not how important evolutionary steps occur. Endosymbiosis is a fascenating occurance that can really only explain a few important occurances in primative evolution.

As to intellegent design: One does not have to prove that it exists in order to recognize the possibility of it presented within nature. In fact, it can be argued that the study of the history of life is a part of the evidence for the larger question of 'intellegent design or not?'. My assumption (of an intellegent designer) leads me to be able to explore more options than your implied assumption (that there is no intellegent designer), because along with every other mechanism I can try to determine if there was purpose or not, where you cannot even accept the possibility of purpose.

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Shepherdess
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Skeptic wrote:
quote:
If you study organisms in any depth, you will find suboptimal design. The eye is an excellent example. It would be possible to engineer a more effective eye. The eye has a blind spot where the optic nerve runs through the retina. An intelligent designer would have placed the nerves behind the retina to optimize its receptive surface. Unfortunately, because the eye evolved from simpler structures in which neurons were in front of the retina, we are stuck with a suboptimal design that works well enough.

Skeptic,
Would you call an engineer who is designing a robot an "intelligent designer?" I'm sure he would call himself one! When you talk about "suboptimal design", are you comparing the construction of your eye and the rest of your body to something you (or the most intelligent engineer on the planet) could create? I don't notice the blind spot because my brain was designed to compensate for the placement of the optic nerve, and it most certainly works "well enough" for me!

Skeptic wrote:
quote:
There are two main problems with intelligent design. The first is that for it to be true, there must be a designer. To prove intelligent design, you must prove that the designer existed. I've not seen a convincing proof that such a designer existed.

I see evidence of a designer all around me, in the same way I see evidence of a designer of a building--the person who designed life is just a lot smarter than the person who designed my house! I don't know who designed it or built it, but I know someone did, because its here.

It really all depends on your perspective and how you interpret the data with which you are presented. I prefer to believe that there is an engineer (who in comparison to us, is most certainly God) who designed this universe. Others prefer to believe that random processes created something that is far better than anything we can even understand, much less create ourselves.
The more I study the world around me, the more I'm convinced that human beings, intelligent designers though we might be, will never understand the complexity of even a single bacterial cell, or be able to create one, even with the millions of templates we see all around us.

So, either there's a God, or we're literally dumber than rocks (or RNA at any rate!).

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skeptic
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Amka wrote:
quote:
Your problems with the designer assumes you know the motives and methods of the intellegent designer. What if the designer simply desired its organisms to have sight. It did not manufacture the organisms, as you'd like to imply. It simply dropped the purpose into the selection process.
My problems with the designer assume no such thing. I donít have proof that such a thing exists. To accuse me of believing that I know the motives of something I donít believe exists seems ridiculous (not that I believe that a designer does not existóI simply have no evidence one way or the other). You obviously believe it exists without proof and that it wanted organisms to have sight, but didnít take the time to do the job right, even though it is omnipotent.

quote:
There is no goal in naturalistic evolution. Organisms simply live long enough to reproduce or die. There is so much chance other than natural selection that the tiny, non-harmful mutations required can't even be selected for. They need to be immediately and substantially beneficial to the creature in order for it to be a trait that causes its owners to survive more often to reproduce.
This is simply incorrect. You are arguing against a misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. Please read a textbook on evolution such as the one written by Futuyama. The fact that non-harmful mutations arenít selected for or against is vital to modern evolutionary theory. Mutations do not need to be immediately or substantially beneficial. In fact, most mutations are silent.

quote:
I get really irritated when biologists speculate on the development of parts, and this speculation is taken as important evidence.
Your irritation or lack thereof has no impact on the truth/untruth of an idea. Still, I did not present any speculation as important evidence. In fact, I pointed out that in answering your questions I was presenting speculation. I get irritated when people donít read what I wrote and accuse me of doing things that I havenít done.

quote:
See? When you show the steps it is so obvious.
Simply because I do not know exactly how something happened does not mean that it didnít happen by evolution. Alternative models are fine. However, if you are going to postulate a designer, then I want you to prove that a designer exists.

quote:
Genetic drift is simply a way to show how populations can diverge, not how important evolutionary steps occur. Endosymbiosis is a fascenating occurance that can really only explain a few important occurances in primative evolution.
This is simply not true. Genetic drift is at the heart of how speciation occurs. Most speciation events rely on some kind of isolation followed by genetic drift. Please read any basic evolution text.

quote:
My assumption (of an intellegent designer) leads me to be able to explore more options than your implied assumption (that there is no intellegent designer)
I never said that there was no intelligent designer. I simply said that I wanted to talk to him if he existed. Clearly the lack of an intelligent designer is a simpler model than a model that includes one. If you want a model that includes an intelligent designer, then I want you to explain how he came into existence, what his properties are, and provide some testable experiment which demonstrates his existence.

quote:
where you cannot even accept the possibility of purpose.
If you go back and really read what I wrote, you will find that your statement here is way beyond reality. You have responded to something you think I believe without evaluating what I wrote. I certainly can accept the possibility of purpose. Iím just sorry to see that you are so blinded by preconceptions that you donít read what I wrote.
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skeptic
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Shepherdess wrote
quote:
I'm convinced that human beings, intelligent designers though we might be, will never understand the complexity of even a single bacterial cell, or be able to create one, even with the millions of templates we see all around us.
I have to agree with you here. I'm glad you appreciate the complexity of a single bacterial cell. We probably will never understand them in their entirety or be able to create one. Still, it's worth some time trying.

[ March 13, 2004, 01:07 AM: Message edited by: skeptic ]

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Yozhik
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quote:
you cannot even accept the possibility of purpose
AFAIK skeptic is an agnostic, not an atheist. He is arguing purely from the viewpoint of what science can discover, while Amka's and Shepherdess' arguments involve faith. You're not playing under the same ground rules, therefore the discussion is likely to devolve into an apples-to-oranges comparison.

As for me, I believe that God is real. But I don't believe that his actions can be found or proven by scientific means. That's not what science is FOR.

(Also, I think that God deliberately didn't leave any proof for us. Otherwise we would have knowledge, not faith, and our agency would be compromised.)

I also don't believe in any type of "God-of-the-gaps" theory, i.e., "We don't understand how it happened so God must have done it." I see this approach as ultimately faith-destroying, because once we DO understand whatever it is, then whoops, there goes our faith.

quote:
The more I study the world around me, the more I'm convinced that human beings, intelligent designers though we might be, will never understand the complexity of even a single bacterial cell, or be able to create one, even with the millions of templates we see all around us.
I think we will. Maybe not me personally, but SOMEBODY, someday.
And it will be really, REALLY cool. [Smile]

[ March 13, 2004, 02:16 AM: Message edited by: Yozhik ]

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skeptic
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Yozhik wrote:
quote:
AFAIK skeptic is an agnostic, not an atheist. He is arguing purely from the viewpoint of what science can discover, while Amka's and Shepherdess' arguments involve faith. You're not playing under the same ground rules, therefore the discussion is likely to devolve into an apples-to-oranges comparison.
Thanks for clarifying this. Yozhik is right. I am an agnostic. I would like to believe in God and an afterlife but I can't without some evidence. I can't simply accept God on faith, and all of the religious training I have had asserts that this is exactly what you must do. I believe that the existence of god is untestable.

My intention in posting on this topic was not to challenge anyone's belief in god, but to teach what modern evolutionary theory really is. There seems to be much misunderstanding and false knowledge being presented in this forum. It was my intention to clarify so that you can make informed decisions on the issue. It doesn't really matter to me whether you reject all of evolutionary theory after you understand it, but the teacher in me simply can't stand the idea of people rejecting ideas without understanding what they are rejecting.

For evidence of macroevolution beyond the species level, I think the most compelling is in the genetic code itself. Here is a link to the NCBI website's primer on molecular phylogenetics: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/About/primer/phylo.html

[ March 13, 2004, 07:47 AM: Message edited by: skeptic ]

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Shepherdess
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Yozhik and skeptic,
The point I was trying to make in my post (which may have been missed) is that we are not comparing apples and oranges. We are comparing different perspectives of looking at the evidence. Believing in macroevolution beyond the species level does involve some faith, whether or not the scientists want to admit it. When it comes to that, I think we have to agree that neither one of us have convincing enough proof to change the other person's perspective, and so it becomes a matter of faith.

I think it would be thrilling if someone could create a bacterial cell in the lab. However, whoever did it would most likely be using gene sequences that had been isolated from other cells, not to mention the same protein synthesis mechanisms that are used in living cells already. When and if we create life, we will be using building blocks and genetic code that is already here, because it is better than anything we can come up with on our own. We will be imitating the original designer, at least in my perspective.

When I do multiple sequence alignments comparing genes from different species, I see evidence that the same intelligent designer created it all, not that we had the same ancestor. I am in awe of the engineer who, starting from scratch, created the genetic code, not to mention DNA replication mechanisms (with redundant systems for genetic fidelity). I see evidence for a finely controlled system involving resistance to change at the DNA replication level, but allowing for variation to preserve and diversify species, mostly through genetic recombination.

But that's just my perspective, and I'm certainly not going to imply that people who believe otherwise are inferior or less evolved than I am.

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Amka
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I guess my only reaction to this is that I would appreciate it if there would be more admission that these things are not known and that intellegent design is a possibility.

Unfortunately, things are sometimes more complex rather than simpler. Newton's physics were far more simpler than Einstein's, but it was the General Theory of Relativity that won out because it explained more. Heck, the Genetic Code (A language, even!) is far more complex than earlier pictures of how traits are inherited.

The difficulty is that an intellegent designer is a wild card, indescribable and unpredictable by science. And therefore science cannot be used. And this is where I get irritated. I'm not attributing this to skeptic, just shouting out my pet peeve in general. Believing in something that cannot be scientifically verified is not irrational when science is not even the proper tool to describe it.

My experiences in life are, by nature, not scientific, yet I cannot deny things that have happened to me and if I am to keep my integrity, I must act on them.

Science simply cannot explain or describe everything.

[ March 15, 2004, 02:18 PM: Message edited by: Amka ]

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pooka
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quote:
To minimally address your assertion, I will point to the many disorders caused by nondisjunction in humans. Down Syndrome is caused, in most cases, by an extra chromosome 21. Klinefelterís Syndrome is caused by being at least XXY, sometimes with more X chromosomes than that. Individuals are also known to show XYY, and other combinations of sex chromosomes. Now, these are not different species, but individuals in which additional chromosomes lead to changes in physical appearance.
Thank you for minimally addressing my assertion [Roll Eyes]

Though this is something I don't know. Is xy/xx a mechanism for the differentiation of sexes in all primates? Mammalians? Chordates? How common of a mechanism is that? Does polychromosome artifacts show up much in other species? I think in environments where natural selection is still operative, such individuals tend to not live very long. But I think I asked about XXYs and whether they can reproduce earlier in the thread.
P.S. Sex Chromosome abnormality site Apparently, XYY and XXX are fertile, though I don't know whether the duplicated chromosomes pass on to offspring. Another site I saw while googling this said that multiple sex chromosomes are more common in fertility treatments where a sperm is injected into the egg.

[ March 15, 2004, 08:33 PM: Message edited by: pooka ]

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