Human Evolution

Discussion in 'Human Science' started by Robert_js, Feb 20, 2004.

  1. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    I think this thread belongs in a forum which discusses religion. Robert JS seems motivated by religious faith, similar to the creationists, who also argue with the standard theory of evolution.
     
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  3. xeth Registered Member

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    i read somewhere that evolution sometimes makes these huge radical leaps, almost like a grotesque experiment by nature, to see if something works. if thats true, it would be great to dig up somekind of fossils or maybe even find one in the wild today. anyone up for a monster hunt?
     
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  5. John Connellan Valued Senior Member

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    The problem is that evolution CANNOT make these huge leaps which are sometimes seen in the fossil record. This is the only good argument against part of the evolution theory.
     
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  7. paulsamuel Registered Senior Member

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    WHAT???!! How do you know?? Are you an evolutionary biologist?

    I suspect you're not, good thing I am. And yes, evolution can proceed by 'punctuated equilibrium,' i.e. leaps.
     
  8. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Or, alternatively, it is a good argument for the extremely patchy nature of the fossil record.
     
  9. John Connellan Valued Senior Member

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    OK I misunderstood the word leap there! I thought he meant that one form of creature can turn into another form without a transition in between. This cannot happen but 'punctuated equilibrium' means that we have underestimated the speed at which evolution can occur.

    I suppose if i was an evolutionary biologist then i would have understood the word leap in this context

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  10. Robert_js Registered Senior Member

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    Sorry I have not been back to this forum for awhile -:

    Dinosaur wrote 04-01-2004:

    “I think this thread belongs in a forum which discusses religion. Robert JS seems motivated by religious faith, similar to the creationists, who also argue with (against) the standard theory of evolution.”
    It is a pity one can not challenge the Darwinian theory of natural selection without it being suggested that I am motivated by “religious faith. I am irritated in the extreme by religious fundamentalism. I am equally irritated by what is increasingly being referred to as “scientific fundamentalism”. Scientific fundamentalists are those wedded to a doctrine 150 years old that is increasingly being discredited. But in my view was unsound from the start and did not need modern science to demonstrate its weaknesses. For as long as I can remember (and presumably for longer than that) people have been saying; “If nothing created it then where did all the matter come from; where did all the heat in the stars come from; where did the gravitational force come from that holds it all together come from; and even if there was enough time to create a complex system then all you have is a complex system – not life and not something with a consciousness and something that can reproduce”.

    Sorry Dinosaur; give me some sound scientific answers to those old chestnuts and I will abandon my belief in a creator.

    John Connellan wrote 04-01-2004:

    “The problem is that evolution CANNOT make these huge leaps which are sometimes seen in the fossil record. This is the only good argument against part of the evolution theory.”
    Paul Samuel wrote in response to John Connellan above:

    “WHAT???!! How do you know?? Are you an evolutionary biologist?

    I suspect you're not, good thing I am. And yes, evolution can proceed by 'punctuated equilibrium,' i.e. leaps.”
    John Connellan replied 04-03-2004:

    “OK I misunderstood the word leap there! I thought he meant that one form of creature can turn into another form without a transition in between. This cannot happen but 'punctuated equilibrium' means that we have underestimated the speed at which evolution can occur.

    I suppose if I was an evolutionary biologist then I would have understood the word leap in this context.”
    Yes John you probably would have but there are a couple of interesting points here. Our evolutionary biologist seems to be stuck on the word “evolution” and has conveniently chosen not to use the words “natural selection”. This is disappointing because we have really been talking about natural selection; not evolution. No one disagrees with the fact that species evolved; these days even the Pope has come on board and agreed that species evolved. The question is; “how did they evolve and was it possible by way of natural selection?”

    So you were not correct in saying that evolution CAN NOT make these huge leaps. It is obvious now that they did evolve in huge leaps. What you meant to say was “evolution by way of natural selection CAN NOT make these huge leaps” and in this you are 100% correct. After 150 years of desperately looking for the intermediate species it is now evident that the fossil record does not support the Darwinian gradualist approach. This is why the modern Darwinists like Steven J Gould came up with the “punctuated equilibrium” theory. But the rational mind had difficulty believing that the occasional random mutation could design complex species with limitless time. Now we are meant to believe it could happen in an evolutionary blink of an eye.

    Our evolutionary biologist needs to listen to Darwin himself. Darwin wrote:

    “ … if I were convinced that I required such additions to the theory of natural selection, I would reject it as rubbish ... I would give nothing for the theory of Natural selection, if it requires miraculous additions at any one stage of descent.”

    “ … if it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.”​
    Quoted from Richard Dawkin's The Blind Watchmaker, page 248.​
    It would seem that Charles Darwin is the only Darwinist who understands his concept and has admitted he got it wrong.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2004
  11. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    How so? Plenty of intermediate species have been found.
     
  12. Robert_js Registered Senior Member

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    James R wrote:

    >>> How so? Plenty of intermediate species have been found.<<<
    Some intermediate species have been found but not enough to support the “gradualist” theory of natural selection. Certainly with our own species the intermediates have not been found. And given that we are a very recent species (and the time and resources spent looking) it is unlikely they would not have been discovered if in fact they existed. This is why the neo-Darwinists like Eldridge and Gould have bitten the bullet and opted for the “punctuated equilibrium” theory. The problem for this model however is that few people can accept that complex systems could be designed in such short periods of time by way of natural selection. There has to be something else driving it.

    And just in case you have forgotten the point I made earlier -:

    >>> For as long as I can remember (and presumably for longer than that) people have been saying; “If nothing created it then where did all the matter come from; where did all the heat in the stars come from; where did the gravitational force come from that holds it all together come from; and even if there was enough time to create a complex system then all you have is a complex system – not life and not something with a consciousness and something that can reproduce”.<<<
    Can you help me with that one please?
     
  13. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    It was formed from energy in the big bang. Where did that energy come from? Some scientists say it may have been a quantum fluctuation of some kind.

    Gravitational potential energy is converted to kinetic energy, which heats up material infalling to create a star. Once a proto-star is dense enough, the internal pressure is high enough to start nuclear fusion processes within the star. The process of fusing hydrogen nuclei to helium and higher elements creates the heat which is output by the star.

    Gravity is one of the four fundamental forces which "froze out" from the unified forces present in the earliest era of the universe - the first fractions of a second after the big bang.

    Life is just one more complex system. There's nothing mystical about it. Natural processes are all that are required.
     
  14. Raithere plagued by infinities Valued Senior Member

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    P.E. is commonly misunderstood and misrepresented, as it is here. P.E. does not propose an accelerated rate of mutation.

    What it states is that the main component of a population remains relatively stable while change occurs along the periphery of the main population in smaller and relatively isolated sub-populations. This "accelerates" evolution in the sense that a given mutation (still occurring at a 'normal' rate) will spread more quickly amongst a smaller population than a larger one. (Common sense, neh?)

    These daughter-species will then quickly expand either supplanting or co-existing with the parent species. This explains the fossil record in that transitional fossils will be fairly rare as the transition occurs within a small group within a relatively short period of time.

    This is not as much of a diversion from phyletic gradualism as some would suppose. Nor was it intended to entirely supplant gradualism, instead it is expansive.
    "The essential features that make up Punctuated Equilibria are as follows:
    1. Paleontology should be informed by neontology.
    2. Most speciation is cladogenesis rather than anagenesis.
    3. Most speciation occurs via peripatric speciation.
    4. Large, widespread species usually change slowly, if at all, during their time of residence.
    5. Daughter species usually develop in a geographically limited region.
    6. Daughter species usually develop in a stratigraphically limited extent, which is small in relation to total residence time of the species.
    7. Sampling of the fossil record will reveal a pattern of most species in stasis, with abrupt appearance of newly derived species being a consequence of ecological succession and dispersion.
    8. Adaptive change in lineages occurs mostly during periods of speciation.
    9. Trends in adaptation occur mostly through the mechanism of species selection."
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/punc-eq.html
    http://ucsu.colorado.edu/~theobal/PE.html

    ~Raithere
     
  15. Persol I am the great and mighty Zo. Registered Senior Member

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    Aimed at the bilogical minded here... what logic is generally used to support these leaps? Mass extintions seem to do the trick, but was most of our evolution limited to immediately after those periods? If not, what pushed it along? (I'm imagining some kind of imbalance between predator/prey... but really have no idea)
     
  16. Raithere plagued by infinities Valued Senior Member

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    The predator / prey relationship can cause a sort of evolutionary arms race but this is really just a specific case of natural selection. Mutation is the basic production engine of evolution; natural selection is the sieve through which mutations are strained. Keep in mind that these 'leaps' are relative, in terms of a geologic timescale; we're still talking about many, many generations. See my above post and the links I gave regarding specifics regarding P.E.

    ~Raithere
     
  17. antifreeze defrosting agent Registered Senior Member

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    certain conditions are required for fossils to form. furthermore, some fossils which have formed can be destroyed through seismic activity or weathering or whatnot. so it could be that our fossil record is incomplete but this would not necessarily indicate the impossibility of a species' existence.

    also, this is a bit off topic, but can anyone explain to me how sympatric speciation works in fauna?
     
  18. Robert_js Registered Senior Member

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    James R wrote:

    >>> Life is just one more complex system. There's nothing mystical about it. Natural processes are all that are required. <<<
    Sorry James R but I am something of a sceptic. Do you have any evidence for this (and the other) outrageous statements that you made. Or should I just believe it because you said it was true. This is what I have referred to as the fundamentalist scientists. When it comes to having FAITH in their beliefs they leave the Christians for dead.
     
  19. paulsamuel Registered Senior Member

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    Excuse me???!!

    A skeptic???!!!

    Aren't you espousing some religious nonsense about God Gametes? You know this requires faith!, not skepticism. So, you sound like a faith-holder, not a skeptic.

    Outrageous statements???!! You mean science. Your problem is that you can't tell the difference between science and belief. You think there's a choice. Reality is reality and is completely independent of beliefs. You should read Karl Popper who has made the distinction between science and 'not-science' which is falsifiability.

    This crap ought to be moved to pseudoscience or religion forum, cause it's not human science, it's not human evolution, it's not science.
     
  20. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    All the statements I made are accepted by the vast majority of the scientific community. I get the impression I'd be wasting my time providing you with references.
     
  21. Robert_js Registered Senior Member

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    Paulsamuel wrote:

    >>> distinction between science and 'not-science' which is falsifiability <<<
    Paul, I am challenging the statement that James R has written -:

    >>> Life is just one more complex system. There's nothing mystical about it. Natural processes are all that are required. <<<
    Do you think this is a scientific statement? Is it falsifiable? If not then your “reality is reality” has jumped out of the realm of “science” into being just another “belief”.

    I agree that my God Gametes theory is not pure science. It can not be proven and is not falsifiable. But the same is true of Darwinism. Yes it is accepted that species evolved but the theory that “natural selection” drove the evolution of complex species is not proven scientifically and is just a theory. Would you say that Darwinism is “crap” and “ … ought to be moved to pseudoscience or religion forum”?
     
  22. Persol I am the great and mighty Zo. Registered Senior Member

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    The theory can be disproven though. All it requries is the voice of god to boom down from teh heavens and say 'I made you'.

    Or some other contradicting evidence.
     
  23. paulsamuel Registered Senior Member

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    yes i do
    yes it is
    i'm assuming that you are equating "Darwinism" with natural selection, please be more specific about your terms if i am wrong in that assumption.

    in what way is it not falsifiable? be specific
     

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