Does Contemporary Evolution use a Pseudo-Creationism schema?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by wellwisher, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. wellwisher Banned Banned

    Once you leave logic and begin insults you have lost the argument. This is a litmus test.

    When science looks for life on other planets, do they look for replicators or for water? Water is where they assume life will begin, appear or thrive. Evolution starts at replicators, which is too late, and a weak foundation. I think evolution would not like to start earlier, just it does not know how. This is why it gets emotional out of frustration.

    We live in a world of specialists where the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing. There is no law of science that says the theory of quarks has to interface chemistry. How do quarks impact the formation of DNA? There is no interface. That is also a sign of a poor theory that exists in isolation. My pointing out poor theory is why I am not allowed to write on the science sections, as well as in the religion section. The staff gets too emotional.
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  3. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    Eh? I do not for an instant deny people are trying to use evolution in the hope of better understanding of life's origin - in fact I said as much in my previous post. Clearly it is reasonable to think the process of natural selection will have played some sort of role, somehow. But, equally obviously, it cannot on its own account for the first emergence of the very feature that the theory relies on, viz. hereditary replication. So CC's quote is quite right, I think.

    Saying that evolution cannot explain the origin of life is clearly not the same as saying it "had nothing to do with it". That, again, is a ridiculous Aunt Sally. It may have been a necessary part, but it is - self-evidently - not sufficient. There is a mass of initial biochemistry to account for, for which simple principles such as natural selection are quite plainly totally inadequate. To take 2 points from the video Write4U got me to watch, How do we account for the first membranes? How do we account for the choice of chirality in biochemistry? Etc.

    With natural selection of characteristics of a species it is to see, say why a giraffe might have evolved a long neck. It is harder to see how the eye - that notorious one-time favourite of ID (until it was explained) - evolved, several times independently too, but people have found evidence of intermediate stages which give an idea of how it could have occurred. The problem with origin of life is the lack of evidence of what natural selection could have operated upon. It seems that it must have operated then, as now, but without any idea of what it was working on it is not possible to get very far.

    That is the gap it seems to me we need to close. Airily asserting that evolution could have taken care of it all, just like, yer know, with a giraffe's neck, is not going to do.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2016
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  5. origin In a democracy you deserve the leaders you elect. Valued Senior Member

    I wasn't insulting you, well ok maybe the cuckoo part. However what you stated was in fact absurd and you did demonstrate that you do not understand what a theory is. You said that if a theory does not answer more than the question it started out trying to answer, then it is a bad theory. That my good fellow is absurd and not what a theory sets out to do. (and it is a little bit cuckoo)
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  7. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I don't understand your distinction between 'evolution' and 'the current mechanism'.


    Actually it doesn't. Most of the current discussion in origin or life studies seems to be concerned with what suitable chemical replicators might have been and how they might have formed naturally in conditions that might have existed on the early earth. The leading candidate at the moment is RNA. Discussion addresses the conditions in which very short strands (only a few bases) of RNA might naturally form (the idea isn't unreasonable and some mechanisms have experimental verification), replicate in the absence of a suite of suitable proteins (RNA can do that to a limited extent, which is why it is favored over DNA as the original nucleic acid, hence the 'RNA world' hypotheses) and polymerize itself into longer chains (that problem seems to be one of the bigger remaining hurdles). There's a huge literature on the origin of the first replicators. You can find an outline of that material here:

    For more on the 'RNA world' hypotheses, see here:

    One can argue that the origin of the first chemical replicators isn't part of the theory of evolution by natural selection. That's true. But these replicators are just molecules, they aren't life. To become life they still need to acquire the genetic code (and the software encoded in the nucleic acids), protein synthesis, energy metabolism, membranes and cell walls (lipid chemistry) and all the rest of cellular biology. Once we have replicators, where did everything else come from? And why all the interest in replicators in the first place?

    It's because simple chemical replicators would be subject to natural selection. The Darwinian kind of theory applies to them. Replicators would form populations. They would mutate. Selective pressures would favor some variants over others. Ones capable of coding for proteins would be favored if the proteins had some survival value. The ability to catalyze needed chemical reactions would be valuable so there would be selection for enzymes. Some simple energy metabolism would have survival value if the replicators drifted away from hydrothermal vents or wherever everything was happening. Since all of this chemical synthesis stuff would depend on maintaining a suitable chemical environment, enclosing everything in a semi-permeable membrane would obviously be very useful. So once we have the replicators, and assuming a long enough period of time in which suitable conditions existed, we can start to imagine how the first cells might have arisen and how recognizable life might first have appeared.

    After the initial appearance of the replicators, changes, developments and mutations are still all chemical. It's just that some would have a better chance than others of surviving, reproducing and being represented in subsequent samples.

    The difference between the original replicator hypotheses and divine creation is that the replicators are hypothesized to have arisen through known chemistry (if the original replicators were short naked RNA segments, through nucleic acid chemistry) not through supernatural fiat which looks very much like an appeal to magic.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2016
  8. wellwisher Banned Banned

    Then how exactly do these replicators appear in terms of chemistry? There is a magic gap!

    If the bible had said the universe was created by modern physics and the earth was created by the principles of physical chemistry and life on earth was created by the principles of biochemistry, but Adam just appears, this would still be called Creationism, because of that last magic gap. Evolution begins with a pseudo-creationism foundation in the sense the replicator need to just appear; poof!

    The pseudo-creationism is a valid observation, but it will not matter since the status quo will not change even if this is true. You can already see that in the responses to this topic. If nothing changed, nobody will be upset, but me.

    I understand you need to begin a theory somewhere, even if you don't have all the answers. If those answers appear later, then you would need to modify the theory. But in the case of evolution, no study in Abiogenesis is done with a blind fold to simulate the random approached used by evolution. In all cases, they attempt to seek a logical path, for each step, such as the Miller Experiments simulated lightning and simple gases. Miller did not throw coins with a hundred options and then let selection pick the path for him. He logically tried to use what was available for energy and chemicals. His approach began with order and was also based on selection; chemical selection. The animo acids that appeared did so because of favorable chemistry; chemical selection. Abiogenesis is connected to selection; chemical selection, which follows the logic of chemical principles.

    If abiogenesis is looking for logical paths for each step, defined by what is available and what appears happens due to chemical selection, while evolution from replicators depends on random change, then it follows that if time=0 is move backed to breakthroughs in abiogenesis, evolution will need to modified away from random change, into a chemical selection schema.

    Random is connected to the original appearance in the gap assumption; replicators appear poof!. This random was allowed, therefore it is used to jump from gap to gap all the way to the present. This is not how Abiogenesis approaches the subject before t=0. It does not rely on pseudo-creationism at every turn. Selection disguises the gap jumping.

    Say we allowed Abiogenesis to rely on a pseudo-creationism approach, where it can ignore the constraints of chemistry and logic, and jump any gap; poof, if it runs into a problem. The theory would be all done, now. It is easy, if can cut corners. Would that be good chemistry practice? No! But, it might be good enough for evolution.

    Since water was there from the beginning; hot earth, and since all the reactions of life, from abiogenesis to the present occurred in water or with water, water is a key to the chemical selection process; nanoscale selection process. This is internal natural selection, while biology uses only an external selection process. Internal selection is approximated with randomness and casino math.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2016
  9. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I agree that there's a gap, since the appearance of the first replicators still isn't fully understood. (Theoretical molecular biologists still aren't sure what the first replicators were, though the favored theory is that they were RNA.)

    But the gap isn't magical since there's no reason to think that it can't be bridged by chemistry. Much of the current work on origin of life addresses exactly that.

    You might want to read this:

    It's a review article by Leslie Orgel, one of the biggest names in origin-of-life theorizing (especially the 'RNA world' ideas), about how the first self-replicating RNA might have appeared. There's nothing magical about these hypotheses, no 'hand of God' reaching in with a "poof".

    Of course hypothesizing about will begin with conditions as they were believed to have been when life first appeared and with the principles of known organic chemistry. Then it will examine the likelihood of proposed chemical events happening. Is there something wrong with that?

    Evolutionary hypothesizing already does that, doesn't it? Mutations in existing genomes aren't absolutely random, they are limited both in their nature and in their frequency by the nature of the genes in which they occur. They might be particular kinds of chemical changes in the gene, transposition errors in the code or whatever. Some chemical changes or transpositions are going to be more likely than others even before natural selection goes to work.

    You don't seem to be making a whole lot of sense. Perhaps I'm not understanding you. Who is ignoring chemistry or logic? When is that happening?

    Water isn't the secret of life or a secularized hand of God. It isn't your "poof". Water is necessary for many origin of life hypotheses, but it might also create problems for some of them.

    P. 7 and 8 of the U. of Texas notes say this -

    "The gas-discharge experiments only produce monomers (if conditions are right) but none produce the long chain molecules that are the ultimate basis for life on Earth. This is a problem with all ideas for the origin of life, whether energized gas from volcanoes or comets, or hydrothermal vents.

    We want M1 + M2 -> polymer + H2O. But the reverse is more likely in the ocean (look at the reaction in reverse). So must get rid of liquid water and need energy source."

    Orgel's review article in the first link up above says this (p.11) -

    " The polymerization of nucleotides in aqueous solution is an uphill reaction and does not occur spontaneously to a significant extent."
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2016
  10. wellwisher Banned Banned

    I recognize the gap to form replicators can be bridged by chemistry, but this gap remains unbridged, while the theory of evolution develops from the gap. Say we find out that the mechanism is X, and X is not part of the theory schema, while its inclusion creates a ripple affect, nothing will change if the ripple is too large, since it will require all that uses the old, to be put on hold. This will never happen, so it will be ignored for as long as necessary.

    If you look at Creationism, it was one of the first published theories in the history of science; 5000 year ago. It is not normally looked at this way, by atheism, but it addressed and published some of the first human theories in physics, chemistry , biology and evolution all in one theory, at a time in history when there were no tools. They did not have the advantage of modern precedent but had to start from scratch. They did have a lot of gaps. However, all and all they did a good job under the circumstances.

    As science was able to fill in the gaps, most of which had been postulated as being connected God, the theory needed to change, but it did not change. This is what happens. It remains as a testament to history of science, with the gaps never changing, since if the gaps change it will change the story.

    I put this in philosophy because philosophy is about logic and not just bias of convention obstructing all challenges. The way the current model is developed with gaps; mutations, define the flow of the theory and how it unfolds by default. If chemistry fills in the foundation gap of the replicators, with logic, will the model schema change or avoid change with insults and posturing.

    I called this pseudo-creationism, because it is not creationism, just like pseudo-science is not science. Pseudo-science has conceptual similarities to science, but it is distinct from science. One distinction is pseudo-science might begin with unproven premises. But after that it might still use logic, cite references, and may use the lab.

    Pseudo-creationism is not creationism, but has conceptual similarities. The similarity lie in the gap approach used in Creationism. The mutations gaps appear just like the replicators appeared. This is not creationism. Although both things have gaps, pseudo-creationism gaps are not explained with God. It just hand it off the gap, to some unknown science of the future, while building in a way that perpetuates the gaps.

    The DNA has proof-reading enzymes which reduce the number of potential mutations. The cell is loading the dice so random is no longer valid.

    Like you said, a proof-reader enzyme will ignore some typos in certain areas of the DNA, more often, while not as often in other areas. This is not random but shows loaded dice. There is something logical in the gaps.

    Protein fold with perfect folds; probability equal to 1.0. There is no gap governed by statistics and random in terms of over 50% of the structural mass of cells. This has been known for over 50 years and still does not have a statistical explanation. Yet nothing has been done about it, such as teaching this to students. This will upset the gap dogma.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2016
  11. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

    Wellwisher:"Water was necessary for the formation of life on earth."

    It wasn't but it did get rid of the excess land.
  12. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

    Since ideas / explanations that are non-crazy have been proposed for how primitive replicators could arise (i.e., are compatible with the presuppositions of a "commonsense naturalism"), then there's far less any magical "explanatory gap" here than in regard to the experience feature of consciousness[*]. Thus there's good justification for evolution proceeding onward without a consensus for the "origin", or not being too concerned about it.

    [The original context, birthplace, and employment of the "crazyism" diagnosis slash viewpoint -- now potentially, generically applicable or useful to other areas besides just PoM:

    - - - - - - -

    [*] Just in case that chosen item of comparison has to be elaborated on with a brief detour: Most, if not all, solutions to the "hard problem" puzzle of brain electrochemical activity sporting qualitative manifestations in connection to some of its perceptual-sensory and thought processes... Are "crazy" remedies, in respect to what's deemed presuppositions of a "commonsense physicalism". Any future, specific scientific answers will be slot-able under the broader philosophical conceptions of identity theory, supervenience, dualism, property-dualism, idealism, panpsychism or panexperientialism, Chinese-nation functionalism, eliminative materialism, brute emergence (equivalent to magical conjuring), etc. Which are each potentially "crazy" for varying reasons in the aforementioned context.

    But a common factor of craziness for those attempts above is due to physics not even attributing qualitative properties to matter (except when forced by everyday language and tradition to mention it as an "extraneous to the system" add-on which accordingly doesn't fall out of the accepted / known fundamental or "prior in rank" agencies). And physics being unimpressed enough by the claims of other disciplines -- in which "experience brutely emerges without precursors", among other speculations -- to still include phenomenal properties or "shown events" as a conventionally supported characteristic of matter under those special terms.

    Thus the very attested presence of visual, aural, tactile, etc manifestations can thereby reek of pseudoscience or crankhood itself. But this is in conflict with such experiences being self-evident to each conscious individual, denied only by eliminativists (who in turn thereby get judged another brand of kooks themselves, since those manifestations are used as the basic evidence for everything else existing / occurring, including language descriptions or intellectual conclusion-making transpiring about _x_).
  13. Waiter_2001 Registered Senior Member

    "Once you leave logic and begin insults you have lost the argument. This is a litmus test."

    If you are resorting to violence you have already lost.
  14. river

    The only way that the bunch of you on this thread ; will ; who have responded to this thread ; ever come to some sort of rational conclusion is to admit to some points ; what ever this point and/or these points maybe.

    Just saying
  15. wellwisher Banned Banned

    Here is my best argument for why the current schema for evolution is half baked. This does not mean that Evolution is wrong. It means that the current theoretical framework, being taught and used by science, is wrong. It needs an upgrade.

    If you look at natural selection, this is an ordered process, based on a wide range of external parameters. Natural selection does not throw the dice or work in a random way. Rather natural selection reduces the alternatives to the best choice for that environment. If the climate is cold, selection will not pick the pretty short fur; random or subjective choice, over the ugly long fur; an objective choice for cold. Selection is not subjective or random.

    Darwin proposed a selection mechanism that could be explained, if you analysis any system, in terms of a train of logic. Random might be perceived, if one does not have good Sherlock Holmes skills. If you can't reason and infer, you might be able to use black box statistics to make some progress. But this is not how it selection was designed by Darwin. He always assumed there was a logical reason, albeit, this was not always clear.

    The natural selection theory, developed by Darwin, is connected to external selection. This level of selection is based on something outside the life form; climate, choosing that which will be optimized. The animals of the desert are optimized to the desert.

    Has anyone considered internal natural selection? This would be an extension of the natural selection of Darwin, but applied to the internal chemical environment.

    There were experiments run, that proved that internal natural selection can have global impact on the direction of evolution. If you take out the water of a cell, or take the water out of any level of life, and replace the water with any other solvent, this will create a different internal chemical environment. In these experiments, it was observed that nothing works and there is no life for external selection. If he cell dies there is nothing for external selection to worry about.

    Nothing works with the new solvent because everything in the cell, as well as the integration that defines life, had been selected to work in water. Water defines the primary internal environment. There is a cause and affect between water, defining a unique internal environment, and the activity and operation of everything in the cell, selected to express life, down to single enzymes.

    One may argue that if we used another solved we could form different life. Say this is true, that new solvent will define a different internal environment for all future chemical selection. It would need to choose different chemicals, and fold these in different ways than water. All the chemicals that water selected, do not work, as shown by those experiments.

    If we assume natural selection is logical and not random, like Darwin implied, logic applies to both the inside and outside environment. The solvent replacement experiments, and the complete loss of function, down to individual enzymes, shows how important internal selection was. If the internal selection was random, one would expectant random solvents to able to take over at least a good fraction of the function since there would be no cause and affect with water. That is not observed.

    What is called random mutation on the DNA, is a theoretical placeholder, for internal selection. The current schema violates the spirit of natural selection by assuming internal selection throws dice. Darwin never said this.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2016
  16. PhysBang Valued Senior Member

    The problem is that nobody, anywhere, denies that biological life as we know it on Earth ceases with the removal of water. This is entirely irrelevant to pretty much everything in biology.
  17. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

    Traditionally, the regulating system itself has not been taken to be introducing deviations, apart from the statistical probability of accident / error eventually happening in the course of replicating patterns. The other random mutations which are chosen / rejected by the overall regulating system can result from the intrusive effects of everything from radiation / cosmic rays to viral infections / disruptive substances, etc. [They stem from invasive causes, extraneous agencies and their penetrating influences.]

    However, there are now signs that some of those changes which the microscopic apparatus itself is solely responsible for are NOT classifiable as chance errors / accidents: "[...] changes in genetic material that occur at the molecular level are not entirely random, a new study suggests. These mutations are guided by both the physical properties of the genetic code and the need to preserve the critical function of proteins, the researchers said."

    There are a lot of things he couldn't specifically say or necessarily predict. Which is to say, the limitations of his original proposals didn't constitute a doctrine which all future progress in evolutionary research was ideologically bound to. The synthesis of natural selection and early genetics didn't occur until the 1920s and '30s (and more detailed understanding of the genetic structure and other molecular "machinery" until later still). Since then the additional footprints of evolutionary developmental biology and a yet tentative / recent extended evolutionary synthesis have pressed into the landscape.

    Darwin is an abused authority / oracle which some detractors of evolution overuse, treated more like a Karl Marx or Adam Smith philosopher than just one very important link in the chain of a particular science endeavor.
  18. origin In a democracy you deserve the leaders you elect. Valued Senior Member

    What does that even mean? Evolution states that random variation in a population will result in some individuals being better suited for an enviorment and reproduce more than those less suited.
    Are you saying that if, say an ice age starts to occur that natural selection would be 'logical' and mammals would just start getting larger and develop thicker coats??
  19. wellwisher Banned Banned

    What would happen is the colder climate will impact the internal environment of the mammals. Their internal environment is based on organic equilibria within water. If we chill cells, we can impact their reaction rates, with not all cells behaving the exact same way. Cold can shut down the global system, through the loss of reaction kinetics in sub-aspects. This is not random.

    The cold will create an internal potential; based on a optimized set point. The mammal may begin to shiver to get the body to heat up so there is better internal global optimization; return to set point. A mammal has a brain, so it will instinctively; internally, sense the optimization set point, as a function of the warmest part of the day; sun is in the southern sky (northern hemisphere). It will stand posting that direction and then migrate south, toward the heat, with the goal to achieve steady state internal selection. Internal selection does not have to wait for a random change. The internal environment will gravitate; via the brain, toward a new external environment, so the animal can once again become part of external natural selection.

    Pre-humans out of Africa, was more than likely due to internal environmental selection; focused at the brain. These migrations were not an extrapolation of an internal random mutation theory; re-humans did not randomly walk in all directions, including circles and squares, with those pre-humans who went north, naturally selected. That is what the pseudo-creation approach sounds like when you extrapolate this schema.

    An ancient religious approach did something similar to the random approach. It would use a ritual to make appeal to an external selection process for a decision; appeal to god or a helpful spirit. The confused human would not have a clue, but will simulate a random approach trying anything. The helpful spirit will make the selection. This is another reason I call this pseudo-creationism. It uses the god of chaos and casinos to help the wandering human scientists, who walk in circles. You throw the experimental dice and let the data/oracle choose.

    If you are trained in biology, statistics is such a standard part of the curriculum, you may not think there is any other way to look at life or else this would have also been taught. Am I close? I was trained in chemistry and engineering so my mind thinks in terms of application of rational principles using logic and ingenuity. Statistics was an elective for engineers and is used more for compliance to regulations; politics. You don't have time or resources to put on a blind fold and hope management; external, likes one of your random options. If they have to pick but don't fully understand, they will bring in compliance officers who will use statistics to meets the needs of regulations; politics.

    Random requires faith not reason. Faith is the belief in things not seen, such as those things that somehow appear in the gaps when you need them; proper mutation. If one plays the lottery, the fantasy of winning is driven by faith. One has faith that the odds from statistics will shine on you; oracle system. The age of reason did away with the random mystical approach, where gold could randomly appear from lead if the odds/gods be willing. It always puzzles me why the regression backwards? But external selective advantage, with respect to career paths, may be one explanation. It does not pay to reason too much.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  20. wellwisher Banned Banned

    If you replace the water of any cell, with another solvent, the new solvent will interact with all the organics materials, defining their shapes and their reactivity. You can do this with yeast if you are curious. If nothing works properly and all parameters defined for life cease, there is a cause and affect between solvent and the specific organics that will work in that solvent. The solvent will define the parameters for internal chemical selection. This is natural selection at the nano-scale.

    If we removed the water and added another solvent, but only 50% of the cell did not work, then the solvent is not quite as important. But when up to 100% not working, then each organic item in the cell has been selected to be optimized to water. Even if you assume mutations due to an unknown source, these will still need to be selected by water. This is reflected in universal compliance to water, and nothing working in other solvents. A defect due to radiation, for example, can add non equilibrium to the water. It will not be selected internally but can lead to changes to compound non-equilibrium; sickness and death.

    If we assume all is optimized to the water, then water would have its finger in every pie. This is logically consistent with observation, but is not taught to students, who might then assume this can't be true if not taught. Had students, been taught this observation and this logic in school authority, many would be thinking about future possibilities?

    Life on earth has been selected by the internal potentials created by water. The question becomes what are the parameters that water sets, which all the organics of life need to conformed too, which are different from any other solvent? If we can define that, then the question becomes, can these positively impact what goes on at the DNA, since all other solvents have a pronounced negative impact on the DNA?
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  21. wellwisher Banned Banned

    I have been saying this for a decade and get censored for it. I am ahead of the research. The question becomes how does the cell translate critical protein function into conservation within the genetic code? The answer is simple, even this connection has to comply to the potentials in the water to be selected. It too bad I will have to wait another decade before science catches up.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
  22. origin In a democracy you deserve the leaders you elect. Valued Senior Member

    None of that actually addresses the point.

    That makes no sense at all. If I throw a single dice (die) the outcome is random with a 1 in 6 chance of getting any number. That is not faith that math and statistics.
    I guess it seems like things unseen because you do not understand statistics.
    So you did not ever address the point. If the mutations are not random then they must driven by something. What is the driver and what is the mechanism? Is God directing evolution? Are the animal and plants creating mutations that they know will be beneficial to future generations?

    Do you really not see how absurd and illogical this is???
  23. origin In a democracy you deserve the leaders you elect. Valued Senior Member

    I guess it is fun to fantasize that you are a towering genius that the achedemic's cannot fathom but some day you will show them all. I think it is more enjoyable to continue to learn and grow in the real world
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016

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