Intelligent Design

Jordan Peterson’s reflections on Twitter on reading Steve Meyer’s Return of the God Hypothesis

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Readers will recall the well-known Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson

On The Return of the God Hypothesis he has tweeted,

Reading Stephen C. Meyer’s Return of the God Hypothesis. It’s a difficult book, well-written, densely informative. He claims (p. 211) “without functional criteria to guide a search through the vast space of possible sequences, random variation is probabilistically doomed.

Reading Stephen C. Meyer’s Return of the God Hypothesis. It’s a difficult book, well-written, densely informative. He claims (p. 211) “without functional criteria to guide a search through the vast space of possible sequences, random variation is probabilistically doomed.

Is this an accurate claim? He makes the case very carefully. It’s not often that I encounter a book that contains so much that I did not know….

Which neo-Darwinists effectively address critiques of neo-Darwinism’s putative inability to deal with the problem of combinatorial explosion with regard to protein folding (to say nothing of DNA mutation)

I lack the capacity to substantively critique Meyer’s claims. What about the fact, however, that micro-evolution at least is often observed? Take Covid variants as a painfully evident example. Is that not a consequence of random variation and natural selection?

But those assumptions add immense complexity to what was once a theory typified by its elegance. If you have to posit whole universes to maintain the credibility of your assumptions is that not a problem?

The responses under the tweets are most interesting.

But now …

Jordan, if you believe Meyer is right or even partways right or is making a good case, stand your ground. You have already faced some of the most incomprehensibly vicious mobs that Cancel Culture has spewed and you are still standing. Follow the evidence, not the crybullies. You, of all people, can afford to and it would do immense good.


You may also wish to read:

O’Leary for News’s profile and review of Peterson and his 2018 book Twelve Rules for Life: Do the stitches hold?

and

In Big Tech World: the journalist as censor, hit man, and snitch. Glenn Greenwald looks at a disturbing trend in media toward misrepresentation as well as censorship — on the campaign to take him down.

14 Replies to “Jordan Peterson’s reflections on Twitter on reading Steve Meyer’s Return of the God Hypothesis

  1. 1
    polistra says:

    Virus mutations are a peculiar case. Some viruses don’t mutate much, and some do. The ones that do mutate increase their ability to spread to a wider variety of individuals. But the mutation also weakens the virus and reduces its ability to infect cells and induce symptoms like sneezing and coughing that actually spread it.

    In other words, the mutation works the same way as most mutations in animals: Weakening the organism, not strengthening it.

    Unless we think that the virus’s purpose is simply gaining access to a wider variety of hosts. Which is the correct purpose?

  2. 2
    jerry says:

    Jordan Peterson does not understand the difference between micro and macro evolution. Like most educated people he equates the two and assumes time will produce everything we see. He makes a big deal of evolution shaping our current world in his writings and courses.

    It will be interesting to see if this changes anything he understands. Meyer does not help because he makes the argument too complex and not understandable.

    without functional criteria to guide a search through the vast space of possible sequences, random variation is probabilistically doomed.

    People here know what that means but the average PhD doesn’t understand it let alone a college graduate.

    Meyer has answered Peterson in the last 12 hours

    Yes. Microevolutionary processes are observed & well-documented. Mutation & selection are real processes, but lack the creative power to produce the information needed to generate novel protein folds, or major morphological innovations. ~SM

    https://twitter.com/StephenCMeyer/status/1426769701581905923

  3. 3
    AnimatedDust says:

    Jerry, he might just begin to change his mind, with this new evidence.

  4. 4
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Great review, O’Leary. Thanks for posting.

    As a Canadian, I am troubled by the descent of historic national media into the gutter, denouncing Peterson without besmirching themselves by an effort to understand what he is saying (perhaps because they cannot?).

    Yes, exactly. It’s old fashioned envy and ignorance. J.P. is probably the most significant public intellectual we’ve got. He’s saying things that others avoid. It’s self-help, yes – but it is informed with traditional wisdom.

    Trying to meld the Bible with evolutionary psychology fares no better. One grieves while reading about Jane Goodall’s horrifying discovery that chimpanzees are unthinkingly cruel. But, if we are not wedded to Darwinian doctrines, what does chimpanzee behavior demonstrate that need matter to our human quest for a true way today?

    In my first attempt to read 12 rules I gave up. The Evo-psychology was too much to deal with. But the second time, I just ignored all of that since, as always, it adds nothing at all to the analysis. From that point, I found it valuable and robust. Good solid motivational reading, encouragement for virtue and commitment in life and heartfelt common sense.

    Peterson has an odd affection for Nietzsche, whose philosophy became infamous as a claimed impetus behind the Third Reich. But he uses the philosopher’s wide-ranging critiques in small doses. Nietzsche can be helpful in identifying what we now call virtue signaling, as opposed to virtuous actions. Still, one rather wishes that self-help writers would choose another source.

    Yes, it’s odd. I think he’s trying to say that he’s a secularist intellectual. Nietzsche buys him credibility among some people. But like evolution, adds nothing of value.

    He says:

    It’s not often that I encounter a book that contains so much that I did not know….

    That’s a tribute to Stephen Meyer.

    I lack the capacity to substantively critique Meyer’s claims.

    Rare to see that kind of humility in response – congratulations to him. And give him credit for even reading it.

    If you have to posit whole universes to maintain the credibility of your assumptions is that not a problem?

    It’s a major problem that even Peterson, the evolutionist, can see clearly.

  5. 5
    chuckdarwin says:

    “I lack the capacity to substantively critique Meyer’s claims.”
    That pretty much says it all…..

  6. 6
    jerry says:

    The latest from Steve Meyer to Jordan Peterson

    ICYMI Neo-Darwinists largely ignored the combinatorial search problem associated w/ novel protein folds. As evolutionary biologist H. Allen Orr admitted this problem was “almost entirely ignored for two decades” by molecular evolutionists. But …

    Protein scientists like the late Dan Tawfik (Weizmann Institute) called protein fold origination “close to a miracle”. He showed protein folds lose thermodynamic stability after a few mutations & long before they can evolve new folds.

    Here’s a vid, Information Enigma explaining the math & combinatorial problem with the evolution of new protein folds. Its conclusions are based on experiments done at Cambridge U. by protein scientist @dougaxe
    https://youtu.be/aA-FcnLsF1g

    https://twitter.com/StephenCMeyer/status/1427024416718819330

    In terms of religion, Peterson’s wife is the one who is very religious.

  7. 7
    Dick says:

    “It’s not often that I encounter a book that contains so much that I did not know….”
    Evidently there are a lot of Darwinians out there who also don’t know a lot of what’s in Meyer’s book. If they did there wouldn’t be so many of them.

  8. 8
    Towiel says:

    On twitter, Mr. Peterson asks about the fact that micro-evolution is observed. Mr. Meyer has responded or commented that they are observed processes but they lack creative power. These comments strongly suggest that both are not familiar with the actual scientific model of created kinds as it is being developed in the field of baraminology.

    What is actually observed is speciation (not microevolution). Both the creation and evolution model expect speciation to occur but for different reasons and with different results (precitions). One rapidly through already existing genes which produces hybridization within a kind while the other is very slow through mutation and natural selection producing reproductive isolation of species. Which do we actually see in nature? rapid change and broad hybridization. It turns out, the creation model is often more accurate and more predictive than the evolutionary or uniformiatarian counterparts. An example of this can be seen in this example with the Duck Kind https://thecreationclub.com/exploring-the-creation-orchard-part-one/ .

  9. 9
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Towiel

    One rapidly through already existing genes which produces hybridization within a kind while the other is very slow through mutation and natural selection producing reproductive isolation of species.

    I think the key difference is the use of the concept of “kinds” which are sort of the older concept of species. So, as a means of defining species in the older sense (not sure what it is now) is the same as what is called kinds (where the organisms cannot hybridize). Then what is called micro-evolution is called speciation. Although I haven’t followed what the boudaries are in species in that creation model. Given that very minor adaptations can be considered micro-evolution I guess every one of those would be a new species.

  10. 10
    Towiel says:

    Silver Asiatic

    Then what is called micro-evolution is called speciation. Although I haven’t followed what the boudaries are in species in that creation model.

    Please do not conflate / confuse speciation and evolution. Evolution is a proposed process to cause speciation and (although the consensus follows this) it has not been proven.

    Created Kinds are not equal with species. In fact, Kinds strongly average at the Family level of classification. This implies that hybridization is expected with other species, with other genera, and even other sub-familes within the Kind unit. This is a huge difference from the reproductive isolation of species expected by evolution.

    This example from the paper I linked to above shows what we find in nature:

    Perhaps the best example of this comes from the common mallard duck (Anasot platyrhyncim). This happens to be the representative type species for the kind. There are records of it hybridizing with species in the Anserot, Brantot, Alophochot, Tadoranot, Amazonettot, Cairinot, Aixot, Anasot, Nettot, Aythyot, Melanittot, Bucephalot, and Clangulot. This involves not only 12 genera, but a possible 6 Subfamilies.” Exactly what the creation model predicts.

  11. 11
    jerry says:

    Looking for further reaction to Meyer but found this instead on Peterson‘s site

    Jordan Peterson, God, and Christianity: The Search for a Meaningful Life,” endorsed by Peterson himself, is the first systematic analysis, from a Christian perspective, of both Peterson’s biblical series on YouTube and his bestselling book “12 Rules for Life.

    http://www.standardnewswire.co.....17642.html

  12. 12
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Towiel

    Created Kinds are not equal with species. In fact, Kinds strongly average at the Family level of classification. This implies that hybridization is expected with other species, with other genera, and even other sub-familes within the Kind unit. This is a huge difference from the reproductive isolation of species expected by evolution.

    The classification system you describe assigns different meaning to the term species and adds the category kinds. But it’s not a huge difference to say that for evolution, there is hybridization within species.
    I’m not criticizing the system as such. I does seem reasonable to say that the basic unit is the family – or call it kind. Then all sorts of things can happen underneath that heading. As you said, like “ducks” as the basic unit. To me that seems more accurate than the evolutionary idea of “species of ducks” which are minor adaptations. That whole evolutionary classification has been messed up by genetic analysis anyway. In my view it never served much purpose except for people who like to categorize things and create charts.
    We know what ducks are. Then there are varieties of ducks.
    Not very scientific-sounding but I don’t think we lose anything much by taking that path.

  13. 13
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Jordan Peterson, God, and Christianity: The Search for a Meaningful Life,” endorsed by Peterson himself

    Thanks — looks very good. I want to read Beyond Order first, but that one goes on my list.

  14. 14
    Kirikagure says:

    There are two things regarding animal kinds (including dinosaurs) that have always been obvious but for some reason after the 19th century, western professors (who are an insignificant minority) decided to commit intellectual suicide. I am glad that the Islamic population is increasingly replacing the western population in their own countries because they deserved it.

    Firstly, before the 19th century, all civilizations used the term “kinds” as the default taxonomy of animals, and kind simply falls somewhere at the family level. For example, cats, tigers, lions belong to the feline family, dogs, coyotes, wolves belong to the canine family, horses, donkeys and zebras belong to the equine family etc, these families all come from original ancestors of each family from Noah’s Ark. The term “species” was invented after darwinis and it became extremely vague, almost every western biologist has a different definition of species, and it has become a huge mess.

    Secondly, every single major civilization throughout history has documented material about dinosaurs, but they simply called them “dragons”, every dictionary before the 19th century calls dinosaurs as dragons, the hebrew word is “tannyin”. But for some reason after darwinism again this mass stupidity clouded minds of western “professors” and decided to forget everything and make up an imaginary jurrassic era that never existed instead of having the dinosaurs as normal animals like every other animals.

    And the issue is that those who actually believe in darwinism are such a tiny and insignificant minority limited in english-speaking western countries (most people have never even heard of the theory), but minorities tend to be very angry and loud, if you look at feminists, atheists, veganists all of them are angry and loud but atheists are by far the angriest, most miserable and most suicidal minority of all. Which is why the Muslim population is increasing rapidly in Europe and North America and Islam is taking over. God always wins and the more someone tries to resist, the harder and more humiliating the defeat becomes.

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