Evolution and humans: big brain size uses energy (Evolution)

by dhw, Saturday, November 25, 2017, 08:40 (354 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: You refuse to see that what you call the problem in our existence applies to every other organism that developed after bacteria: none of them were “required”. But all the changes that followed on from multicellularity, including those that led to humans, can be explained by a drive for survival and/or improvement. If you throw out Darwin completely, you have to reject the heart of his theory which is common descent, and until today you have always believed in it. Throw out your insistence that you know God’s anthropocentric purpose and that he preprogammed or personally dabbled every twig of the vast bush, including the weaverbird’s nest, eight stages of whale, and the duckbilled platypus, just so he could produce us, and then all the problems of your theistic evolutionary theory (the anomalies) will disappear. But you are right that my problem of ORIGINS would disappear if I accepted God. They would also disappear if I accepted chance or atheistic panpsychism.

DAVID: I have not changed from my contention that God prefers to evolve life's forms. That is common descent! What I throw out is Darwin's survival of the fittest, which implies a struggle for survival. That Darwin concept means improvements beyond the level of survival appear for no good reason for survival but appear anyway. Our brain is a prime example, multicellularity another. As I've told you before, your Darwin background is an impediment to your thinking.

A strange response! You ask me to “throw out Darwin theory completely”, and when I refuse to throw out common descent, which lies at the heart of his theory, you say you mean survival of the fittest. Why bring Darwin into the discussion at all? You are discussing this with me, not with Darwin, and in any case you know perfectly well that I add improvement to survival, do not believe in Darwin’s gradualism or random mutations, and am a devoted follower of Margulis’s theory that evolution depends just as much on cooperation as on competition.

Meanwhile, anyone who believes in God and believes in evolution will agree with you that God prefers to evolve life’s forms through an evolutionary process. The discussion is for what purpose and how he uses the process (if he exists). Fulminating against Darwin may be a useful diversion from the anomalies that riddle your hypothesis, but it provides no evidence for your contention that your God preprogrammed or dabbled every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder extant and extinct in order to keep life going so that the preprogrammed or dabbled brain of Homo sapiens could finally appear. And it is no answer to my alternative proposal, with which you can find no fault as an explanation of evolutionary history.


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