Biology Intelligent Design

Tufts biologist asks, where is anatomy coded in living systems?

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Philip Cunningham writes to say (and quote),

Michael Levin, a Distinguished Professor in the Biology department at Tufts, after giving several examples of top-down ‘biological form’, not bottom-up ’emergence’, being the ruling factor in embryological development, states that…

“OK, so one very canonical example of this that we discovered a few years ago is this. So here’s a tadpole, the gut, the brain, the nostrils, and the eyes here. This tadpole needs to become a frog. In order for a tadpole face to become a frog face, things have to move. So the jaw has to move, the eyes have to move forward, everything has to move. And it used to be thought that this process was hardwired because if you are a standard tadpole and you want to be a standard frog, all you have to remember is which direction and by how much every piece of the face moves. We suspected that there was more intelligence to this process than that, and so we did an experiment. We created so-called “Picasso’ frogs. So these are tadpoles in which everything is messed up. The eyes are on the side of the head, the jaws are off to the side, the nostrils are too far back. I mean everything is in the wrong position. And we found that these animals still, largely, make pretty normal frogs. Because all of these pieces will move in novel paths, sometimes they go too far and have to double back, to give you a normal frog.

“So what the genetics give you is not some hardwired system that always moves in the same way. What it specifies is a really interesting error minimization machine that, however you start it off, obviously within some limits, will try to minimize the error and get to the correct final shape. If we had a robotic swarm, a collection of robots that was able to do this we would call this a prize winning example of collective intelligence, but we don’t have such technology yet.

“So we started trying to understand this process. How does all this work? And so to this standard feed-forward, kind of open, process of developmental biology that you would read about in class, where there are genes, they make proteins… there’s some physics and chemistry, and then there is this ’emergent’ outcome (i.e. of the ‘anatomy’). Add to these feedback loops, whereby this is actually a homeostatic system. If that anatomy is disrupted in some way, by injury, by mutations, by teratogens, by parasites, whatever, then these feedback loops will kick in and try to minimize error. The cells will do what they can to try to get back to the correct shape. It’s a thing about your thermostat. It is a basic homeostatic circuit. Now, on the one hand, this is pretty expected. Biologists know all about feedback loops and so on. On the other hand, there are two kinds of weird and unusual things here. The first is that every homeostatic process has to have a set point. So, if you are going to try to get back to where you need to be, you need to remember where the right position is. You have to store a set point. We are used to thinking about scalars, single numbers, as set points, temperature, PH, things like that, but in this case the set point is some sort of a large scale geometry, It is a coarse grain descriptor of some kind of anatomy. A complex data structure. And, in general, biologists don’t love to think about goal directed processes. The idea is that there is supposed to be emergence (of anatomy), and that kind of emergent complexity, but this idea that things are working towards a goal, as any navigational system fundamentally does, is not something that is very comfortable, certainly for molecular biology.

“So how would something like this work? How could we have a navigating system that can have goals in anatomical space?” — Michael Levin – Where is Anatomy Encoded in Living Systems? – 11:33 minute mark

Well, when science is not comfortable with the evidence, either something is wrong with the science or something is wrong with the evidence. One solution is to ignore — or deprecate — the evidence. There is another solution but it’s controversial just now…

Merry Christmas to all, especially those stranded by bad weather! This is for you:

32 Replies to “Tufts biologist asks, where is anatomy coded in living systems?

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    As “Picasso” frogs give ample evidence of, Darwinists, with their ‘bottom-up’ reductive materialistic framework, are simply at a complete loss to explain how ‘biological form’ can supposedly ’emerge’ from ‘bottom-up’ materialistic processes during embryological development.

    In fact, as the following article notes, “Embryonic development, which inspired the first theories of biological form, was eventually excluded from the conceptual framework of the Modern Synthesis, (neo-Darwinism) as irrelevant.,,, At present, the problem of biological form remains unsolved.”

    On the problem of biological form – Marta Linde-Medina (2020)
    Excerpt: Embryonic development, which inspired the first theories of biological form, was eventually excluded from the conceptual framework of the Modern Synthesis, (neo-Darwinism) as irrelevant.,,,
    At present, the problem of biological form remains unsolved.
    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12064-020-00317-3

    Contrary to popular belief, there is simply nothing within DNA which can be said to be the ‘blueprint’ for what final form an organism may take.

    As James Le Fan succinctly put it, “There is, in short, nothing in the genomes of fly and man to explain why the fly should have six legs, a pair of wings, and a dot-sized brain and we should have two arms, two legs, and a mind capable of comprehending that overarching history of our universe.”

    Between Sapientia and Scientia — Michael Aeschliman’s Profound Interpretation -James Le Fanu – September 9, 2019
    Excerpt: The ability to spell out the full sequence of genes should reveal, it was reasonable to assume, the distinctive genetic instructions that determine the diverse forms of the millions of species, so readily distinguishable one from the other. Biologists were thus understandably disconcerted to discover precisely the reverse to be the case. Contrary to all expectations, many DNA sequences involved in embryo development are remarkably similar across the vast spectrum of organismic complexity, from a millimeter-long worm to ourselves.7 There is, in short, nothing in the genomes of fly and man to explain why the fly should have six legs, a pair of wings, and a dot-sized brain and we should have two arms, two legs, and a mind capable of comprehending that overarching history of our universe.
    So we have moved in the very recent past from supposing we might know the principles of genetic inheritance to recognizing we have no realistic conception of what they might be. As Phillip Gell, professor of genetics at the University of Birmingham, observed, “This gap in our knowledge is not merely unbridged, but in principle unbridgeable and our ignorance will remain ineluctable.”8
    https://evolutionnews.org/2019/09/between-sapientia-and-scientia-michael-aeschlimans-profound-interpretation/

    DNA does not even control itself, much less can it possibly dictate what final form an organism may take. As Talbott put it, “The performances of countless cells in your body are redirected and coordinated as part of a global narrative for which no localized controller exists.,,, Hundreds or thousands of DNA sequences move (or are moved) within vast numbers of cell nuclei,,,, that are nowhere codified — least of all in those DNA sequences.,,,”

    Genes and Organisms: Improvising the Dance of Life – Stephen L. Talbott – Nov. 10, 2015
    Excerpt: The performances of countless cells in your body are redirected and coordinated as part of a global narrative for which no localized controller exists. This redirection and coordination includes a unique choreography of gene expression in each individual cell. Hundreds or thousands of DNA sequences move (or are moved) within vast numbers of cell nuclei, and are subjected to extraordinarily nuanced, locally modulated chemical activity so as to contribute appropriately to bodily requirements that are nowhere codified — least of all in those DNA sequences.,,,
    http://www.natureinstitute.org.....nes_29.htm

    And as Jonathan Wells noted, “I now know as an embryologist,,,Tissues and cells, as they differentiate, modify their DNA to suit their needs. It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.”

    Ask an Embryologist: Genomic Mosaicism – Jonathan Wells – February 23, 2015
    Excerpt: humans have a “few thousand” different cell types. Here is my simple question: Does the DNA sequence in one cell type differ from the sequence in another cell type in the same person?,,,
    The simple answer is: We now know that there is considerable variation in DNA sequences among tissues, and even among cells in the same tissue. It’s called genomic mosaicism.
    In the early days of developmental genetics, some people thought that parts of the embryo became different from each other because they acquired different pieces of the DNA from the fertilized egg. That theory was abandoned,,,
    ,,,(then) “genomic equivalence” — the idea that all the cells of an organism (with a few exceptions, such as cells of the immune system) contain the same DNA — became the accepted view.
    I taught genomic equivalence for many years. A few years ago, however, everything changed. With the development of more sophisticated techniques and the sampling of more tissues and cells, it became clear that genetic mosaicism is common.
    I now know as an embryologist,,,Tissues and cells, as they differentiate, modify their DNA to suit their needs. It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....93851.html

    Moreover, this failure of the reductive materialistic framework of Darwinists to be able to explain, via DNA, what macroscopic form an organism may take occurs at a much lower level than DNA itself.

    In the following article entitled ‘Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics’, which studied the derivation of macroscopic properties from a complete microscopic description, the researchers remark that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,, The researchers further commented that their findings challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”

    Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics – December 9, 2015
    Excerpt: A mathematical problem underlying fundamental questions in particle and quantum physics is provably unsolvable,,,
    It is the first major problem in physics for which such a fundamental limitation could be proven. The findings are important because they show that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,,
    “We knew about the possibility of problems that are undecidable in principle since the works of Turing and Gödel in the 1930s,” added Co-author Professor Michael Wolf from Technical University of Munich. “So far, however, this only concerned the very abstract corners of theoretical computer science and mathematical logic. No one had seriously contemplated this as a possibility right in the heart of theoretical physics before. But our results change this picture. From a more philosophical perspective, they also challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”
    http://phys.org/news/2015-12-q.....godel.html

    Of related interest to the fact that the final macroscopic form of an organism is irreducible to DNA, in the following article Brian Miller notes that “life was “transcomputational” — beyond the realm of any theoretical means of computation” and that, “the process of development should be thought of as being controlled by an “algebraic structure outside space-time itself”, and that, “life can only be understood as a mathematical abstraction consisting of functional relationships, irreducible to mechanistic processes.”

    Intelligent Design and the Advancement of Science – Brian Miller – December 11, 2017
    Excerpt: DNA was expected to be the primary source of causality behind the operation and development of life. Such beliefs have previously raised concerns from leading scientists and mathematicians. For instance, physicist Walter Elsasser argued that the unfathomable complexity of the chemical and physically processes in life was “transcomputational” — beyond the realm of any theoretical means of computation. Moreover, the development of the embryo is not solely directed by DNA. Instead, it requires new “biotonic” principles. As a result, life cannot be reduced to chemistry and physics. An unbridgeable gap separates life from non-life.
    Similarly, mathematician René Thom argued that the 3D patterns of tissues in an organism’s development from egg to birth and their continuous transformation cannot be understood in terms of isolating the individual proteins generated by DNA and other molecules produced in cells. The problem is that the individual “parts” composing tissues and organs only take on the right form and function in the environment of those tissues and organs. More recent work by Denis Noble further has elucidated how every level of the biological hierarchy affects every other level, from DNA to tissues to the entire organism. Based partly on these insights, Thom concluded in his book Structural Stability and Morphogenesis that the process of development should be thought of as being controlled by an “algebraic structure outside space-time itself” (p. 119). Likewise, Robert Rosen argued that life can only be understood as a mathematical abstraction consisting of functional relationships, irreducible to mechanistic processes. He observed that life is fundamentally different from simple physics and chemistry. It embodies the Aristotelian category of final causation, which is closely related to the idea of purpose. The conclusions of these scholars challenge materialistic philosophy at its core.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2017/12/intelligent-design-and-the-advancement-of-science/

    In short, and in conclusion, and as “Picasso” frogs, in and of themselves, give ample evidence of, in order to give an adequate explanation for what final macroscopic form an organism may take, we are forced to ditch the reductive materialistic, DNA-centered, explanations of Darwinists and appeal to a cause that is beyond space and time.

    Might I suggest the ‘top-down’ cause of God?

    Psalm 139:13
    For You formed my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb.

    Supplemental note:

    Oct. 2022 – So since Darwinian Atheists, as a foundational presupposition of their materialistic philosophy, (and not from any compelling scientific evidence mind you), deny the existence of souls, (and since the materialist’s denial of souls, (and God), has led (via atheistic tyrants) to so much catastrophic disaster on human societies in the 20th century), then it is VERY important to ‘scientifically’ establish the existence of these ‘souls’ that are of incalculable worth, and that are equal, before God.
    https://uncommondescent.com/off-topic/what-must-we-do-when-the-foundations-are-being-destroyed/#comment-768496

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

  2. 2
    martin_r says:

    I strongly recommend to anyone to watch this lecture … ( It was published a week ago, it is very new)

    Especially our atheist-friends (Seversky, ChuckD, Sir Giles, Alan Fox and Co.) should watch it …

    Professor Levin is a mainstream Darwinian researcher, obviously, he believes in evolution, he is mentioning evolution all the time, but he sounds like an ID proponent …

    His breakthrough-research is another nail to Darwinian-theory-of-evolution coffin … and he just started …

    I like the final moments of this lecture, where he is explaining:

    Biologists don’t love to think about goal directed processes, the idea is, there supposed to be emergence and kind of emergent complexity, but this idea that things are working towards a
    goal the way that any navigational system fundamentally does, is really not something that is very comfortable certainly for molecular biology …

    :)))))))))))

  3. 3
    Origenes says:

    Where Is Anatomy Coded In Living Systems?
    Silence will fall when the question is asked. Once I asked Professor Moran, who holds that most of our DNA is junk, where the body plan is encoded. His astonishing answer: “… experts do not see a need to encode body plans and brain in our genome.”

  4. 4
    Querius says:

    What I appreciate is Professor Levin’s insights and candor. He doesn’t seem motivated by covering for any particular narrative–unlike many Darwinists.

    He points out the gaps that are normally spackled over with Magical Musta ™ thinking, which basically stops science with Darwin-of-the-gaps rationalizations or denial such as Professor Moran’s pathetic appeal to authority.

    To find out the true source of such rationalizations, let’s assume the following:

    1. In 13.8 billion years, it’s not unlikely that many advanced civilizations arose in the universe.

    2. Many of those civilizations probably collapsed, perhaps due to global war or environmental disasters.

    3. A few of them were able to create biological life and were capable of seeding earth-like planets.

    4. Considering the EVIDENCE that we currently have available for a 4.5 billion year time frame, it seems MORE LIKELY at this point that life on earth was seeded than emerged due to some completely unknown process.

    5. However, prominent people in the scientific establishment are dead set against any such scenario, EVEN THOUGH IT’S A MORE LIKELY CAUSE.

    Gosh, I wonder why . . .

    -Q

  5. 5
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/1

    As “Picasso” frogs give ample evidence of, Darwinists, with their ‘bottom-up’ reductive materialistic framework, are simply at a complete loss to explain how ‘biological form’ can supposedly ’emerge’ from ‘bottom-up’ materialistic processes during embryological development.

    Developmental biology is less at a loss than Intelligent Design/Creationism which has no explanation at all of how other than to gesture vaguely towards the sky and mutter about “top down”.

    Contrary to popular belief, there is simply nothing within DNA which can be said to be the ‘blueprint’ for what final form an organism may take.

    The “blueprint” metaphor is yet another analogy from engineering that is found to be somewhat less than informative. The recipe is usually offered as a better alternative, as I’m sure you’re aware.

    As James Le Fan succinctly put it, “There is, in short, nothing in the genomes of fly and man to explain why the fly should have six legs, a pair of wings, and a dot-sized brain and we should have two arms, two legs, and a mind capable of comprehending that overarching history of our universe.”

    James Le Fanu is a retired British general practitioner and journalist not a geneticist or developmental biologist.

    And anyone who doubts the role of the genome in the formation of living organisms is invited to look up gene knockout experiments or the thalidomide disaster or teratology.

    Of related interest to the fact that the final macroscopic form of an organism is irreducible to DNA, in the following article Brian Miller notes that “life was “transcomputational” — beyond the realm of any theoretical means of computation” and that, “the process of development should be thought of as being controlled by an “algebraic structure outside space-time itself”, and that, “life can only be understood as a mathematical abstraction consisting of functional relationships, irreducible to mechanistic processes.”

    Brian Miller’s educational background is physics and engineering. Why am I not surprised?

    In short, and in conclusion, and as “Picasso” frogs, in and of themselves, give ample evidence of, in order to give an adequate explanation for what final macroscopic form an organism may take, we are forced to ditch the reductive materialistic, DNA-centered, explanations of Darwinists and appeal to a cause that is beyond space and time.

    If “something” exists outside space and time and is not comprised of matter/energy then what is it? How is it different from nothing? How can it be said to exist at all?

    Might I suggest the ‘top-down’ cause of God?

    You can suggest anything you like but God “poofing” stuff into existence has less evidence to support it than developmental biology.

  6. 6
    Blastus says:

    Wow. Just wow.

    Thank you, News, for the article. And thank you BA77 for the supplemental information.

    It is one thing to code for proteins. It is another to position and purpose those proteins.

    The materialist says: “We do not yet understand. Scientists will learn given more time.”

    But it is 2022. Human intelligence cannot answer these questions and yet supposedly random processes acting upon primordial soup (good ol’ “Pond Scum”) somehow produced all this? I say, let us all give Pond Scum a tip of the hat, perhaps a round of applause, insofar as Pond Scum appears more knowledgeable and capable than our best and brightest. Pond Scum needs to stop withholding information from our researchers. Perhaps Pond Scum can start sharing his findings in our better peer reviewed journals.

    Perhaps the committees in Norway should award Pond Scum a Nobel prize.

    Or perhaps we could all be smart enough to realize that these things could not and did not make themselves.

    Merry Christmas to all (yes, you, too, Seversky)! But hold that thought until January 6 or 7 if you are Eastern Orthodox.

  7. 7
    Querius says:

    Blastus @6,

    Perhaps the committees in Norway should award Pond Scum a Nobel prize.

    Heh, indeed!

    It’s simply amazing how an unknown and non-repeatable random process supposedly obviates any and all alternatives, including that life began elsewhere and seeded biological life on earth.

    But rather than a Nobel prize, how about an award of the “Lebon prize” for hindering scientific progress on a heroic scale?

    And why should even a naturalistic alternative be unthinkable? After all, NASA publishes a list of degrees programs in astrobiology:
    https://astrobiology.nasa.gov/careers-employment-courses/

    So, what are the odds that life on earth is the most advanced in the entire universe? Doesn’t the principle of parsimony suggest the simplest and most likely explanation?

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/computer-science/parsimony-principle

    -Q

  8. 8
    martin_r says:

    Seversky,

    first of all, I wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    you wrote:

    The “blueprint” metaphor is yet another analogy from engineering that is found to be somewhat less than informative. The recipe is usually offered as a better alternative, as I’m sure you’re aware.

    first, you have to ask yourself, why biologists use engineers’ jargon all the time … you know, “machines … sensors … design … blueprint …etc. ” or, my favorite ones, “GENETIC ENGINEERING” … “SYSTEM BIOLOGY” :)))))))

    Second, you suggest to call it “a recipe” instead of “a blueprint” …

    Are you saying, that to create a recipe, you don’t need an engineer ? :)))))))
    Are you saying, that a recipe was not engineered ?
    Are you saying, that e.g. a cook who invents/designs new foods is not a food engineer ? :)))))
    What is he then ?

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    Sev states, “And anyone who doubts the role of the genome in the formation of living organisms is invited to look up gene knockout experiments or the thalidomide disaster or teratology.”

    Apparently birth defects, which are, by definition, deformations of an organism’s form, are proof, in and of themselves, for Seversky that the an organism’s form can be reduced to DNA?

    Yet the argument is NOT that mutations, and/or disruptions, to DNA cannot have detrimental effects that mar what final form an organism may take. Shoot, everybody knows that random mutations to DNA are overwhelmingly detrimental in their effects on an organism. (Which is a empirical fact, in and of itself, that falsifies Darwinism, see Behe, “Darwin Devolves”), the argument, as “Picasso” frogs give ample evidence of, is that DNA cannot possibly be the ‘master controller’ that dictates what final form an organism may take. As Denis Noble once put it, “DNA is an organ of the cell, not its dictator”.

    Darwinists simply have no evidence that mutations to DNA can specify what basic form an organism may take. As Jonathan Wells states in the following article, Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.

    Jonathan Wells: Far from being all-powerful, DNA does not wholly determine biological form – March 31, 2014
    Excerpt: Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/jonathan-wells-far-from-being-all-powerful-dna-does-not-wholly-determine-biological-form/

    Response to John Wise – October 2010
    Excerpt: But there are solid empirical grounds for arguing that changes in DNA alone cannot produce new organs or body plans. A technique called “saturation mutagenesis”1,2 has been used to produce every possible developmental mutation in fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster),3,4,5 roundworms (Caenorhabditis elegans),6,7 and zebrafish (Danio rerio),8,9,10 and the same technique is now being applied to mice (Mus musculus).11,12. None of the evidence from these and numerous other studies of developmental mutations supports the neo-Darwinian dogma that DNA mutations can lead to new organs or body plans–,,,
    (As Jonathan Wells states),,, We can modify the DNA of a fruit fly embryo in any way we want, and there are only three possible outcomes:
    A normal fruit fly;
    A defective fruit fly; or
    A dead fruit fly.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....38811.html

    Again Darwinists, with their reductive materialistic, DNA centered, framework, are simply at a complete loss to explain how an organism might achieve its final form during embryological development. Appealling to mutations, or disruptions, to DNA, as Seversky did, only further accentuates the fact that Darwinists are at a complete loss to explain how an organism might achieve its final form.

    Seversky then goes on to state, “If “something” exists outside space and time and is not comprised of matter/energy then what is it? How is it different from nothing? How can it be said to exist at all?”

    And this is the key, and fatal, flaw in the Darwinist’s reductive materialistic framework. If something is not composed of matter and energy, it simply does not exist for reductive materialists.

    Yet, as Sedgwick scolded Charles Darwin himself, “There is a moral or metaphysical part of nature as well as a physical A man who denies this is deep in the mire of folly”

    From Adam Sedgwick 24 November 1859
    My dear Darwin,
    Excerpt: ,,, I have read your book with more pain than pleasure. Parts of it I admired greatly; parts I laughed at till my sides were almost sore; other parts I read with absolute sorrow; because I think them utterly false & grievously mischievous—5 You have deserted—after a start in that tram-road of all solid physical truth—the the true method of induction—& started up a machinery as wild I think as Bishop Wilkin’s locomotive that was to sail with us to the Moon.6 Many of your wide conclusions are based upon assumptions which can neither be proved nor disproved. Why then express them in the language & arrangements of philosophical induction?.—
    As to your grand principle—natural selection—what is it but a secondary consequence of supposed, or known, primary facts. Development is a better word because more close to the cause of the fact. For you do not deny causation. I call (in the abstract) causation the will of God: & I can prove that He acts for the good of His creatures. He also acts by laws which we can study & comprehend— Acting by law, & under what is called final cause, comprehends, I think, your whole principle. You write of “natural selection” as if it were done consciously by the selecting agent. ’Tis but a consequence of the presupposed development, & the subsequent battle for life.—
    This view of nature you have stated admirably; tho’ admitted by all naturalists & denied by no one of common sense. We all admit development as a fact of history; but how came it about? Here, in language, & still more in logic, we are point blank at issue— There is a moral or metaphysical part of nature as well as a physical A man who denies this is deep in the mire of folly Tis the crown & glory of organic science that it does thro’ final cause , link material to moral; & yet does not allow us to mingle them in our first conception of laws, & our classification of such laws whether we consider one side of nature or the other— You have ignored this link; &, if I do not mistake your meaning, you have done your best in one or two pregnant cases to break it. Were it possible (which thank God it is not) to break it, humanity in my mind, would suffer a damage that might brutalize it—& sink the human race into a lower grade of degradation than any into which it has fallen since its written records tell us of its history.,,,
    https://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/letter/DCP-LETT-2548.xml

    In fact, both ‘persons’ and mathematics, since they are not reducible to matter and energy, simply don’t exist for the Darwinian materialist.

    What Does It Mean to Say That Science & Religion Conflict? – M. Anthony Mills – April 16, 2018
    Excerpt: Barr rightly observes that scientific atheists often unwittingly assume not just metaphysical naturalism but an even more controversial philosophical position: reductive materialism, which says all that exists is or is reducible to the material constituents postulated by our most fundamental physical theories.
    As Barr points out, this implies not only that God does not exist — because God is not material — but that you do not exist. For you are not a material constituent postulated by any of our most fundamental physical theories; at best, you are an aggregate of those constituents, arranged in a particular way. Not just you, but tables, chairs, countries, countrymen, symphonies, jokes, legal contracts, moral judgments, and acts of courage or cowardice — all of these must be fully explicable in terms of those more fundamental, material constituents.
    In fact, more problematic for the materialist than the non-existence of persons is the existence of mathematics. Why? Although a committed materialist might be perfectly willing to accept that you do not really exist, he will have a harder time accepting that numbers do not exist. The trouble is that numbers — along with other mathematical entities such as classes, sets, and functions — are indispensable for modern science. And yet — here’s the rub — these “abstract objects” are not material. Thus, one cannot take science as the only sure guide to reality and at the same time discount disbelief in all immaterial realities.
    https://www.realclearreligion.org/articles/2018/04/16/what_does_it_mean_to_say_that_science_and_religion_conflict.html

    In fact, the thing that makes us “more different from apes than apes are from viruses” is the fact that we can think ‘abstractly’. Which is to say, we can think ‘immaterially’.

    The Fundamental Difference Between Humans and Nonhuman Animals
    Michael Egnor – November 5, 2015
    Excerpt: Human beings have mental powers that include the material mental powers of animals but in addition entail a profoundly different kind of thinking. Human beings think abstractly, and nonhuman animals do not. Human beings have the power to contemplate universals, which are concepts that have no material instantiation. Human beings think about mathematics, literature, art, language, justice, mercy, and an endless library of abstract concepts. Human beings are rational animals.
    Human rationality is not merely a highly evolved kind of animal perception. Human rationality is qualitatively different — ontologically different — from animal perception. Human rationality is different because it is immaterial. Contemplation of universals cannot have material instantiation, because universals themselves are not material and cannot be instantiated in matter.,,,
    ,,, It is in our ability to think abstractly that we differ from apes. It is a radical difference — an immeasurable qualitative difference, not a quantitative difference.
    We are more different from apes than apes are from viruses. Our difference is a metaphysical chasm. It is obvious and manifest in our biological nature. We are rational animals, and our rationality is all the difference. Systems of taxonomy that emphasize physical and genetic similarities and ignore the fact that human beings are partly immaterial beings who are capable of abstract thought and contemplation of moral law and eternity are pitifully inadequate to describe man.
    The assertion that man is an ape is self-refuting. We could not express such a concept, misguided as it is, if we were apes and not men.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2015/11/the_fundamental_2/

    Moreover, it is not as if we do not have abundant empirical evidence that immaterial entities, (such as mathematics, logic, and mind), can have pronounced effects on the material realm.

    The computer sitting right in front of Seversky’s face is undeniable proof that the immaterial realms of mathematic, logic, and mind, can have pronounced ‘top-down’ effects on the material realm,

    Recognising Top-Down Causation – George Ellis
    Excerpt: Causation: The nature of causation is highly contested territory, and I will take a pragmatic view:
    Definition 1:
    Causal Effect
    If making a change in a quantity X results in a reliable demonstrable change in a quantity Y in a given context, then X has a causal effect on Y.
    Example: I press the key labelled “A” on my computer keyboard; the letter “A” appears on my
    computer screen.,,,,
    Definition 2:
    Existence
    If Y is a physical entity made up of ordinary matter, and X is some kind of entity that has a demonstrable causal effect on Y as per Definition 1, then we must acknowledge that X also exists (even if it is not made up of such matter).
    This is clearly a sensible and testable criterion; in the example above, it leads to the conclusion that both the data and the relevant software exist. If we do not adopt this definition, we will have instances of uncaused changes in the world; I presume we wish to avoid that situation.
    Excerpt: page 5: A: Causal Efficacy of Non Physical entities:
    Both the program and the data are non-physical entities, indeed so is all software. A program is not a physical thing you can point to, but by Definition 2 it certainly exists. You can point to a CD or flashdrive where it is stored, but that is not the thing in itself: it is a medium in which it is stored.
    The program itself is an abstract entity, shaped by abstract logic. Is the software “nothing but” its realisation through a specific set of stored electronic states in the computer memory banks? No it is not because it is the precise pattern in those states that matters: a higher level relation that is not apparent at the scale of the electrons themselves. It’s a relational thing (and if you get the relations between the symbols wrong, so you have a syntax error, it will all come to a grinding halt). This abstract nature of software is realised in the concept of virtual machines, which occur at every level in the computer hierarchy except the bottom one [17]. But this tower of virtual machines causes physical effects in the real world, for example when a computer controls a robot in an assembly line to create physical artefacts.
    Excerpt page 7: The assumption that causation is bottom up only is wrong in biology, in computers, and even in many cases in physics, ,,,
    The mind is not a physical entity, but it certainly is causally effective: proof is the existence of the computer on which you are reading this text. It could not exist if it had not been designed and manufactured according to someone’s plans, thereby proving the causal efficacy of thoughts, which like computer programs and data are not physical entities.
    http://fqxi.org/data/essay-con.....s_2012.pdf

    Indeed, much of modern day technology simply would not exist if ‘abstract’, i.e. immaterial, mathematics did not have pronounced effects on the matter/energy realm.

    Describing Nature With Math By Peter Tyson – Nov. 2011
    Excerpt: Mathematics underlies virtually all of our technology today. James Maxwell’s four equations summarizing electromagnetism led directly to radio and all other forms of telecommunication. E = mc2 led directly to nuclear power and nuclear weapons. The equations of quantum mechanics made possible everything from transistors and semiconductors to electron microscopy and magnetic resonance imaging.
    Indeed, many of the technologies you and I enjoy every day simply would not work without mathematics. When you do a Google search, you’re relying on 19th-century algebra, on which the search engine’s algorithms are based. When you watch a movie, you may well be seeing mountains and other natural features that, while appearing as real as rock, arise entirely from mathematical models. When you play your iPod, you’re hearing a mathematical recreation of music that is stored digitally; your cell phone does the same in real time.
    “When you listen to a mobile phone, you’re not actually hearing the voice of the person speaking,” Devlin told me. “You’re hearing a mathematical recreation of that voice. That voice is reduced to mathematics.”
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/p.....-math.html

  10. 10
    bornagain77 says:

    As well, since Seversky holds that if something is not composed of matter and energy then it simply does not exist at all, then Seversky is also forced to hold that non-local quantum information, and/or entanglement, does not exist at all since it is, ‘notoriously’, not reducible to his simplistic “everything is matter/energy” explanations.

    As the following paper entitled “Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory” stated, “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”

    Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – 28 October 2012
    Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121028142217.htm

    And as Anton Zeilinger stated at the end of his recent Nobel prize lecture, “These predictions (of quantum mechanics) are completely independent of the relative arrangements of measurements in space and time. That tells you something about the role of space and time. There’s no role at all.”,,,”

    “There’s one important message I want to say here. When you look at the predictions of quantum mechanics for multi-particle entanglement,, so you could have one measurement here, one (measurement) there, an earlier (measurement), a later (measurement), and so on. These predictions (of quantum mechanics) are completely independent of the relative arrangements of measurements in space and time. That tells you something about the role of space and time. There’s no role at all.”,,,
    – Anton Zeilinger
    – 2022 Nobel Prize lectures in physics – video (1:50:07 mark)
    https://youtu.be/a9FsKqvrJNY?t=6607

    Thus Seversky can deny that anything ‘immaterial’ exists beyond his reductive materialistic, i.e. ‘matter/energy’, framework all he wants, but the fact remains that his computer sitting right in front of his face would not exist, shoot Seversky himself would not even exist, and even science itself would be impossible, if the immaterial entities of information, mathematics, logic, and minds, did not have pronounced ‘top-down’ causal effects on the material realm.

    Of supplemental note,

    Dec. 2022 – That (immaterial) information is “also” constitutive of, and is what actualizes, what matter/energy is is fairly easy to see with quantum teleportation experiments.,,,
    As Asher Peres himself, when asked by a journalist if quantum teleportation could transport a person’s soul as well as their body, answered, “No, not the body, just the soul.”
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/information-and-the-first-cause/#comment-771985

    Oct. 2022 – So since Darwinian Atheists, as a foundational presupposition of their materialistic philosophy, (and not from any compelling scientific evidence mind you), deny the existence of souls, (and since the materialist’s denial of souls, (and God), has led (via atheistic tyrants) to so much catastrophic disaster on human societies in the 20th century), then it is VERY important to ‘scientifically’ establish the existence of these ‘souls’ that are of incalculable worth, and that are equal, before God.
    https://uncommondescent.com/off-topic/what-must-we-do-when-the-foundations-are-being-destroyed/#comment-768496

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

  11. 11
    jerry says:

    Developmental biology is less at a loss than Intelligent Design/Creationism which has no explanation at all of how other than to gesture vaguely towards the sky and mutter about “top down”.

    Notice that there is no assertion that there is a solution to gestation organization. Only that ID is fantasy.

    Just, a complete diversion to something irrelevant. This is the typical objection to ID. It just could not have happened.

    It is the begging the question fallacy, the most common fallacy of the anti ID commenter. In other words there is no real objection, just rhetoric to divert.

    From a comment made last night.

    Remember, any personal attack over a disagreement on fact or policy is a confession that your point of view is correct and your critics are out of arguments.

    When you are wrong, people are delighted to tell you why, in detail.

    When you are right, you get the other treatment

  12. 12
    jerry says:

    And anyone who doubts the role of the genome in the formation of living organisms is invited to look up gene knockout experiments or the thalidomide disaster or teratology

    Maybe this should be looked at in more detail.

    My understanding is that thalidomide interfered with gene expression. This is very different from cell type placement. No one is arguing that DNA is not important in the body. What is being argued is that the detailed instructions for cell type designation and placement is not in DNA.

    What cause not only gene expression to massively change by cell type but where to precisely place these very different cell types. Maybe an analogy is a tool box vs a detailed plan on how to use the tools where and when.

  13. 13
    martin_r says:

    Blastus

    The materialist says: “We do not yet understand. Scientists will learn given more time.”

    exactly … and then, we will learn that:

    “…current concepts are reviewed…”
    “…uprooting current thinking….”
    “…latest findings contradict the current dogma….”
    “… it challenges a long-held theory…”
    “… it upends a common view…”
    “… in contrast to the decades-long dogma …”
    “… it needs a rethink … ”
    “… the findings are surprising and unexpected …. ”
    “… it shakes up the dogma … ”
    “… earlier than thought…”
    “… younger than thought….”
    “… smarter than thought ….”
    “… more complex than thought ….”
    “… a fossil defies textbook explanation …”
    “… a fossil overturns more than a century of knowledge”
    “… fossils upends conventional wisdom….”
    “… it challenges central principle in biology…”
    “…it casts doubt in Established Evolution Beliefs….”
    “… new discovery puts into question existing models…”

  14. 14
    relatd says:

    Seversky at 5,

    You don’t get it, do you? Evolution – as NASA and a bunch of speculators – will tell you, relies on poof creation. Inorganic matter poofs into something alive. Don’t know how or when but the speculators have unlimited faith that it happened. And the public believes it. Why should they? Because scientists – given millions of years and virtually unlimited combinations of chemicals – have put their faith – not their science, their faith in poof, it was inorganic and dead one minute and alive the next.

    I hope you get it now.

  15. 15
    Querius says:

    Relatd @14,

    I hope you get it now.

    Not a chance, and here’s why. It’s because the ideological implications are too disturbing to consider. Thus, science becomes limited to rigid doctrine. There are no exceptions. All must be approved by the priests, bishops, and cardinals of the science-fantasy religion of Darwinism.

    It’s a safe, mechanistic world for their true believers.

    -Q

  16. 16
    relatd says:

    Querius at 15,

    If ID is accepted by the public, it means the collapse of the unguided evolution fantasy. People will realize that the designer is God. That means a return to religious orthodoxy. That cannot be allowed to happen. So, in order to convince the public that evolution still has some merit, some post here as if ID does not exist. Or should not be accepted.

  17. 17
    Seversky says:

    Martin_r/8

    first of all, I wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    And the same to you!

    first, you have to ask yourself, why biologists use engineers’ jargon all the time … you know, “machines … sensors … design … blueprint …etc. ” or, my favorite ones, “GENETIC ENGINEERING” … “SYSTEM BIOLOGY” :)))))))

    Because it’s a handy vocabulary that can be co-opted for use in biology. Now, ask yourself, how many of those in the life sciences who use such language do so because they belief life was created by a Supreme Engineer?

    Are you saying, that e.g. a cook who invents/designs new foods is not a food engineer ? :)))))

    You can stretch the meaning of “engineering” to include cookery if you want but I don’t see any advantage unless you are trying to elevate engineering to some sort of theory of everything.

  18. 18
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/9

    Apparently birth defects, which are, by definition, deformations of an organism’s form, are proof, in and of themselves, for Seversky that the an organism’s form can be reduced to DNA?

    Not proof but certainly evidence.

    Yet the argument is NOT that mutations, and/or disruptions, to DNA cannot have detrimental effects that mar what final form an organism may take. Shoot, everybody knows that random mutations to DNA are overwhelmingly detrimental in their effects on an organism.

    In which case, you are conceding that genes do affect the physical form of an organism.

    Also, as you’ve ben told many times before, the current position is that the majority of mutations are neutral or nearly neutral in effect, a much smaller number are detrimental and a much smaller number still are beneficial. And whether or not a mutation is detrimental or beneficial depends on the environment in which it occurs.

    Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.

    In other words, mutating embryonic DNA can have an observable effect on the form of the fruit fly but the knowledge and mutagenetic tools available to science at this point are too crude to affect the form any more precisely and predictably.

    Seversky then goes on to state, “If “something” exists outside space and time and is not comprised of matter/energy then what is it? How is it different from nothing? How can it be said to exist at all?”

    And this is the key, and fatal, flaw in the Darwinist’s reductive materialistic framework. If something is not composed of matter and energy, it simply does not exist for reductive materialists.

    In which case, if you want to persuade us that this immaterial realm exists in any meaningful sense you should give us some idea of what and how.

    In fact, both ‘persons’ and mathematics, since they are not reducible to matter and energy, simply don’t exist for the Darwinian materialist.

    “Persons” and even “mathematics” are concepts that exist in our mental model of reality but that doesn’t mean they have any existence beyond that. The Lord of the Rings exists in our mental model but is not held to exist anywhere beyond that.

    In fact, the thing that makes us “more different from apes than apes are from viruses” is the fact that we can think ‘abstractly’. Which is to say, we can think ‘immaterially’.

    What makes you – or Egnor – think that other apes cannot think abstractly at least to some extent?

    Indeed, much of modern day technology simply would not exist if ‘abstract’, i.e. immaterial, mathematics did not have pronounced effects on the matter/energy realm

    How can an immaterial entity have any effect on the physical realm of matter/energy?

  19. 19
    Seversky says:

    Relatd/14

    You don’t get it, do you? Evolution – as NASA and a bunch of speculators – will tell you, relies on poof creation. Inorganic matter poofs into something alive.

    It sounds like you are confusing several issues.

    The theory of evolution does not say anything about the origins of life.

    Abiogenesis is the field that investigates how life might have arisen from non-living matter. You’re right that there is no well-established theory of abiogenesis yet

    And the public believes it.

    A lot of the public reject both evolution and abiogenesis which concerns me but should please you.

    Why should they? Because scientists – given millions of years and virtually unlimited combinations of chemicals – have put their faith – not their science, their faith in poof, it was inorganic and dead one minute and alive the next.

    So we have a choice between some form of abiogenesis or some form of Designer/Creator as to which is the more “poofy”. How would you suggest we decide between them?

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    Frankly Seversky, seeing as you, basically, wildly waved your hands around without presenting any actual evidence, I am quite glad to let my post stand as stated. As “Picasso” frogs give ample evidence of, DNA does not, and cannot, dictate the final form of an organism.

  21. 21
    relatd says:

    Seversky at 19,

    This is not my first encounter with the uncrossable barrier between the first life and evolution. Face it – no first life, no evolution.

    I choose God – Jesus Christ – through Him all things were made.

    John 1:3

    “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.”

  22. 22
    relatd says:

    Ba77 at 20,

    What does dictate the final forms of humans, insects and fish?

  23. 23
    chuckdarwin says:

    Sev/19

    So we have a choice between some form of abiogenesis or some form of Designer/Creator as to which is the more “poofy”. How would you suggest we decide between them?

    Dueling pistols at twenty paces. I just hope you are a good shot, Seversky. The entire weight of western civilization is on your shoulders. But hey, no pressure……

  24. 24
    relatd says:

    The Creator is + 20 million to dodge. There goes Seversky…

  25. 25
    bornagain77 says:

    “What does dictate the final forms of humans, insects and fish?”

    per post 1

    ,,, Might I suggest the ‘top-down’ cause of God?

    Psalm 139:13
    For You formed my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb.

    https://uncommondescent.com/biology/tufts-biologist-asks-where-is-anatomy-coded-in-living-systems/#comment-772552

    Of related interest is the ‘top-down’ fossil record,:

    “Most higher taxa were built from the top down, rather than from the bottom up. The fossil record suggests that the major pulse of diversification of phyla occurs before that of classes, classes before that of orders, orders before that of families…the higher taxa do not seem to have diverged through an accumulation of lower taxa.”48 and 49,,,
    – 48 D. H. Erwin, J. W. Valentine, and J. J. Sepkowski, “A Comparative Study Of Diversification Events: The Early Paleozoic Versus The Mesozoic,” Evolution 41 (1987): 1177ñ86.

    Scientific study turns understanding about evolution on its head – July 30, 2013
    Excerpt: evolutionary biologists,,, looked at nearly one hundred fossil groups to test the notion that it takes groups of animals many millions of years to reach their maximum diversity of form.
    Contrary to popular belief, not all animal groups continued to evolve fundamentally new morphologies through time. The majority actually achieved their greatest diversity of form (disparity) relatively early in their histories.
    ,,,Dr Matthew Wills said: “This pattern, known as ‘early high disparity’, turns the traditional V-shaped cone model of evolution on its head. What is equally surprising in our findings is that groups of animals are likely to show early-high disparity regardless of when they originated over the last half a billion years. This isn’t a phenomenon particularly associated with the first radiation of animals (in the Cambrian Explosion), or periods in the immediate wake of mass extinctions.”,,,
    Author Martin Hughes, continued: “Our work implies that there must be constraints on the range of forms within animal groups, and that these limits are often hit relatively early on.
    Co-author Dr Sylvain Gerber, added: “A key question now is what prevents groups from generating fundamentally new forms later on in their evolution.,,,
    http://phys.org/news/2013-07-s.....ution.html

    “The facts of greatest general importance are the following. When a new phylum, class, or order appears, there follows a quick, explosive (in terms of geological time) diversification so that practically all orders or families known appear suddenly and without any apparent transitions. Afterwards, a slow evolution follows; this frequently has the appearance of a gradual change, step by step, though down to the generic level abrupt major steps without transitions occur. At the end of such a series, a kind of evolutionary running-wild frequently is observed. Giant forms appear, and odd or pathological types of different kinds precede the extinction of such a line.”
    – Richard B. Goldschmidt, “Evolution, as Viewed by One Geneticist,” American Scientist 40 (January 1952), 97.

    “In virtually all cases a new taxon appears for the first time in the fossil record with most definitive features already present, and practically no known stem-group forms.”
    – TS Kemp – Fossils and Evolution,– Curator of Zoological Collections, Oxford University, Oxford Uni Press, p246, 1999

    “What is missing are the many intermediate forms hypothesized by Darwin, and the continual divergence of major lineages into the morphospace between distinct adaptive types.”
    – Robert L Carroll (born 1938) – vertebrate paleontologist who specialises in Paleozoic and Mesozoic amphibians

    “Over the past 150 years or so, paleontologists have found many representatives of the phyla that were well-known in Darwin’s time (by analogy, the equivalent of the three primary colors) and a few completely new forms altogether (by analogy, some other distinct colors such as green and orange, perhaps). And, of course, within these phyla, there is a great deal of variety. Nevertheless, the analogy holds at least insofar as the differences in form between any member of one phylum and any member of another phylum are vast, and paleontologists have utterly failed to find forms that would fill these yawning chasms in what biotechnologists call “morphological space.” In other words, they have failed to find the paleolontogical equivalent of the numerous finely graded intermediate colors (Oedleton blue, dusty rose, gun barrel gray, magenta, etc.) that interior designers covet. Instead, extensive sampling of the fossil record has confirmed a strikingly discontinuous pattern in which representatives of the major phyla stand in stark isolation from members of other phyla, without intermediate forms filling the intervening morphological space.”
    – Stephen Meyer – Darwin’s Doubt (p. 70)

    “The Earth’s creation is the glory of God, as seen from the works of Nature by Man alone. The study of nature would reveal the Divine Order of God’s creation, and it was the naturalist’s task to construct a ‘natural classification’ that would reveal this Order in the universe.”
    – Carl Linnaeus
    https://www.crosswalk.com/family/homeschool/christians-in-science-carolus-linnaeus-1368814.html

    Here is Linnaeus’s ‘top down’ classification scheme which is still in use today:

    Linnaeus’s Classification System
    In Systema Naturae, Linnaeus classified nature into a hierarchy. He proposed that there were three broad groups, called kingdoms, into which the whole of nature could fit. These kingdoms were animals, plants, and minerals. He divided each of these kingdoms into classes. Classes were divided into orders. These were further divided into genera (genus is singular) and then species. We still use this system today, but we have made some changes.
    Today, we only use this system to classify living things. (Linnaeus included nonliving things in his mineral kingdom.) Also, we have added a few additional levels in the hierarchy. The broadest level of life is now a domain. All living things fit into only three domains: Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukarya. Within each of these domains there are kingdoms. For example, Eukarya includes the kingdoms Animalia, Fungi, Plantae, and more. Each kingdom contains phyla (singular is phylum), followed by class, order, family, genus, and species. Each level of classification is also called a taxon (plural is taxa).
    https://study.com/academy/lesson/carolus-linnaeus-classification-taxonomy-contributions-to-biology.html

  26. 26
    relatd says:

    Ba77 at 25,

    My question has to do with the instructions that result in a human embryo, a fish embryo, etc. What are these instructions? Where are they stored?

  27. 27
    bornagain77 says:

    Perhaps you should have read my post at 1 that I referenced?,, for instance this part, “the process of development should be thought of as being controlled by an “algebraic structure outside space-time itself”, and that, “life can only be understood as a mathematical abstraction consisting of functional relationships, irreducible to mechanistic processes.”

    In other words, there is no material medium, DNA or otherwise, in an embryonic cell to which a reductive materialist can point and say, “AHA, and that is where the final form of an organism is stored!”

    The ‘final form’ of an organism is forever beyond any possible reductive materialistic explanation, and as such, a ‘top-down’ non-material cause must be sought, hence my comment, ,,, “Might I suggest the ‘top-down’ cause of God?”

    Psalm 139:13
    For You formed my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb.

    Supplemental note:

    Oct. 2022 – So since Darwinian Atheists, as a foundational presupposition of their materialistic philosophy, (and not from any compelling scientific evidence mind you), deny the existence of souls, (and since the materialist’s denial of souls, (and God), has led (via atheistic tyrants) to so much catastrophic disaster on human societies in the 20th century), then it is VERY important to ‘scientifically’ establish the existence of these ‘souls’ that are of incalculable worth, and that are equal, before God.
    https://uncommondescent.com/off-topic/what-must-we-do-when-the-foundations-are-being-destroyed/#comment-768496

    Mark 8:37
    Is anything worth more than your soul?

  28. 28
    martin_r says:

    Seversky

    to elevate engineering to some sort of theory of everything.

    but engineering is the theory of everything …
    This is what most people including biologists don’t get.

    Without engineers, there would be nothing … PERIOD.

  29. 29
    martin_r says:

    Seversky

    Are you saying, that e.g. a cook who invents/designs new foods is not a food engineer ? :))))) What is he then ?

    So you insist, that a cook is not an engineer.
    How else would you describe the process of inventing/designing new foods/food recipes ?
    Does it mean, that such a person, has to have an university degree or some certificate that he is an engineer ?

    Wasn’t a caveman an engineer when he designed the first stone/wood axe ?

    In regards engineers’ jargon you wrote:

    Because it’s a handy vocabulary that can be co-opted for use in biology.

    So why don’t they use cooks’ jargon ? you know, the recipe-thing ? Or any other jargon ? why engineers’ jargon all the time ?

  30. 30
    Querius says:

    Martin_r @29,

    As you wish! 🙂

    LIFE ON EARTH RECIPE
    Serves at least 8 billion or more.

    INGREDIENTS
    • 2.68 x 10^21 kg water
    https://www.space.com/27256-earth-water-older-than-sun.html

    • 5.5 x 10^18 kg Nickle-iron alloy of at least 90% iron

    • Generous amounts of K40, U235, U238, and Th232 radioactive seeds and spices
    https://www.livescience.com/radioactive-meteorites-seeded-life-on-earth

    • About 6 × 10^24 kg minerals

    • 5 x 10^18 kg gases, mostly Nitrogen (78%), Oxygen (21%)
    https://astrobiology.nasa.gov/news/earths-early-atmosphere-an-update/

    DIRECTIONS
    1. Form the Nickle-iron alloy into a tight ball of around 1000 km in diameter.

    2. Take HALF the water and mix it together with the dry minerals.

    3. Knead the water-soaked minerals together with the radioactive seeds and spices.
    https://www.newscientist.com/article/2133963-theres-as-much-water-in-earths-mantle-as-in-all-the-oceans/

    4. Form the mixture around the core into a ball of about 12.7 x 10^3 km in diameter and cover with the rest of the water (about 1.34 x 10^21 kg).

    5. Season liberally with rocky meteorites and during baking. Form any leftovers into a smaller ball called “the moon.”

    6. Bake in the solar system for about 4 billion years until a delicious crust forms that bubbles and steams from the radioactive seeds and spices inside. The green fuzzy stuff that covers the crust and floats around in the water is called “life” should soon form spontaneously by itself. If nothing happens, try sprinkling it with more meteorites, static electricity, gamma rays, and everything else you can think of. If you get stuck, call the Tour Group: https://www.jmtour.com/

    7. Rest. You deserve it!

    Enjoy!

    -Q

  31. 31
    Querius says:

    P.S. It’s also interesting to note that the earth is the densest planet in the solar system and that the average density of Jupiter is close to that of corn syrup.

  32. 32
    Origenes says:

    Form determines content.

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