Intelligent Design

The folk over at Pharyngula seem to be freaking out over ..

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Over what now, you wonder, could the Pharyngula – usually as placid as a sea of glass – be freaking? Actually over something kind of stale. Years ago, at the Post-Darwinist, I blogged on the fact that one of the late Stephen Jay Gould’s friends (yes, he of Wonderful Life AND The Simpsons) said that Gould would never have signed the Darwin lobby’s Steves list (all the Steves in science that the Darwin lobby can find who agree with them).

Pivar had his own take on evolution, which he thinks is much closer to what the original Steve really meant. And now his take is back for another run, too. Go here for the rest.

Also, more fun today at the Mindful Hack, O’Leary’s blog on neuroscience issues,

Stanley Fish deconstructs dogmatic materialist atheists

Bioethicist Leon Kass makes hay of materialist neuroscientist Steve Pinker.

One Reply to “The folk over at Pharyngula seem to be freaking out over ..

  1. 1
    magnan says:

    From the description of Pivar’s new book, From Egg to Embryo by Self-organization:

    “This book is the first publication of the discovery of a scientific alternative to Darwinian natural selection as the cause of evolution. It claims that the body blueprint is encoded not in the DNA, but in patterns in the egg cell. Leading scientists in the field of life origins have declared this theory to be plausible. Biologists have found a second code which nature uses to form the general body plan — vertebrate, insect, crustacean, etc.– while the well-known genetic code directs variations such as human from ape and human from human. The new code provides a blueprint for the evolution of species and the path from egg to embryo, the first ever attempted. …..With this discovery, the ancient mystery of how the complex body is formed from a single cell is finally provided with a plausible solution. This account of body-form origin and evolution is based on the recent discovery by biologists world-wide that the embryonic membrane is a simple geometrically patterned surface of a torus (doughnut shape). The book demonstrates how this shape can be deformed to simulate any of the basic body-plans. This fundamental form is claimed to occur by self-organization in the egg-cell membrane of every individual animal or plant, by the biological phenomenon known as morphogenetic fields.”

    The biologist Rupert Sheldrake originally coined the term “morphogenetic field” to refer to a non-physical “field” containing and mediating biological information from generation to generation. He has been a leading and successful researcher in parapsychology, whose first book was deemed as needing to be burned by the editor of Nature. However, though the book description isn’t clear, these “morphogenetic fields” are presumably topological fields created by non-coding “junk” DNA. Pivar had better be careful he doesn’t get classed with Sheldrake, or he will be deemed a heretic whose books also should be burned.

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