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Thursday, June 24, 2010

God versus Darwin - When nothing means everything

In the beginning,  God created the heavens and the Earth.  What was BEFORE the beginning?  By definition, nothing.   At least, nothing material.   There was no matter, no time, no change, no energy, no entropy, nothing.   Some people like to think that nothing made itself into a Universe that is fine-tuned for life on Earth and situated so that the Universe itself can be observed and understood by the inhabitants of Earth.   I say that a Supernatural Creator made all things material ex nihilo, from nothing.   We see two remarkable signs of the supernatural within the natural, two things that are of immense importance to every man.   

Information.  

Life.

Two nails in the Darwinist coffin:

1)  INFORMATION IS NOT MATERIAL IN NATURE OR FORM

It took a few months to get it to be said by Darwinists but they finally gave the correct response:  "...this post is also from the mind that defines "Information" as the weightless and massless, intelligent transmission of intelligence. I mean, how awesome is that?"  




Pretty awesome!  As previously stated, information itself is not a material, not a medium, but is intelligence that is transmitted through a medium.  My previous illustration demonstrates this easily.

An excerpt:  "The guy who coined the phrase, "global village", McLuhan recognized that the rapid growth of new methods of communication would revolutionize the world. He sought to quantify and identify the growth, to analyze the effects of such growth and recognize patterns within the process. He came to several conclusions based upon the idea that information was part of the material world. He was wrong, even though many of his conclusions were pretty accurate. The medium is NOT the message. Information is intelligence transmitted. What we commonly call information is actually the translation of a message into a material form. One must not confuse the medium or the method for the message itself. A message is a transfer of intelligence and information is that intelligence which is being transmitted from one entity to another.



I will use an example I presented previously in greater detail. Suppose I have a notepad and a pen. I show you the items. Nothing has been written upon the notepad. I put them on a scale and weigh them. I put you on a scale and weigh you. I weigh myself.


Now I take the pen and draw a bunch of quick scribbles and lines on the pad in a random way. I show it to you. You do not perceive a message from me on the notepad. I weigh the pad and paper and the weight is unchanged. You stand on the scale and your weight is unchanged. I weigh myself and my weight is unchanged.


Now I take the pen and write "Jesus rose from the dead on Easter." You are able to read this message. I have transmitted information to you. I now weigh the notepad and paper and the weight remains the same. You get on the scale and you weigh the same. I get on the scale and I weigh the same. But now you and I both agree that something has passed between you and I. I have transmitted information to you without passing anything material to you. Maybe you already know that Jesus rose from the dead and when. Maybe you didn't know it, or maybe you don't believe it. But you know that I transmitted that message to you whether you agree with it or not."

For the naturalistic atheistic materialist, the problem is unsolvable.  Information IS the massless, weightless part of the puzzle of living organisms that has no materialistic explanation.  Nor can it have one, because chance is not intelligent.  Darwinists are the people who expect you to walk along and find Paley's watch and expect that is just happened to occur by chance.  In all fairness, I will quote from a source that is not a big fan of Paley's argument:

" The classic statement of the teleological argument is that of William Paley in his Natural Theology. Paley likened the universe to a watch. Like a watch, he said, the universe consists of many complex parts functioning in harmony towards some useful end. In a watch the various parts are ordered such that they measure time; in the universe, such that they support life. The two are, in this respect, similar. This comparison forms the basis of Paley’s argument for intelligent design.


In the case of a watch we take these properties to constitute evidence of design. If we were to stumble across a watch in a natural environment, lying on a heath, to cite Paley’s example, then we would instantly know, because of its order and complexity, that it was designed. Order and complexity are the marks of design.

If order and complexity constitute evidence of design in the case of a watch, though, then they must also constitute evidence of design in the case of the universe. The case of the watch thus illustrates the fact that the order and complexity of the universe is evidence that the universe was designed. Insofar as the universe is observed to consist of many different parts functioning in harmony to accomplish a purpose, then, we have reason to believe that it was created for that purpose by an intelligent agent.

The inference from the order and complexity of a watch to its being designed is not dependent on knowledge of how watches are made. If we were to stumble across a watch in a natural environment, then we would instantly know that it was designed even without any knowledge of how watches are made or where watches come from. It is therefore no objection to Paley’s argument that we know how watches are made but do not know how universes are made. Order and complexity are together sufficient to support the inference to a designer even without any knowledge at all of the origins of universes. We need not have prior knowledge of how universes are made in order to run Paley’s argument to design.

Nor is it an objection to Paley’s argument that the flaws in the universe, the disorder or failure to accomplish its purpose, count against the claim that it is designed. Even in a watch that sometimes breaks, or runs slow, ordered complexity suggest design; the same must surely hold for the universe.

Not only can we infer from the analogy between the order and complexity of a watch and the order and complexity of the universe that the universe has a designer, we can also infer something about what this designer is like. For the universe is not only ordered and complex in the same way as a watch, but it is so on a much grander scale. The order and complexity of the universe far exceeds that of a watch, and we may therefore infer that the designer of the universe is correspondingly greater than designers of watches.

One objection to this argument is that the analogy between a watch and the universe is too weak to support the inference to a designer of the universe, that there are better alternative analogies available that imply different views of the universe’s origins. Another objection is that arguments from analogy are too limited in the kinds of conclusion that they can support, and so force those who use them into an anthropomorphism that is inconsistent with theism. A further problem is that the principle that ordered complexity implies a designer applies no more to the universe than it does to God, inviting the question Who created God?

I say that other questions that arise from the complexity and design of the Universe concerning the nature and identity of a Creator are not the issue in discussion organisms found on Earth.  We can have those discussions.  But first we have been discussing the possibilities of Darwinist evolution and since there is no possible way for information to enter the cell and no source of information available in the natural world I would say that the application of Paley's Watch is perfect for organisms.  Organisms are understood now to be full of information packed into the DNA and the precision of the reproduction process is such that it is preloaded with choices that are selected for mutations and copying errors so that most non-lethal mutations do not cause problems for the gene pool as a whole.  Never have Darwinists produced one example of an organism gaining new information,  they always find speciation and trumpet it as a Darwinist triumph and then we discover that information is lost or transferred, never gained.  Neither is any new kind of creature ever formed.  Darwinism never even gets off the starting line.

Not only does Paley's Watch apply, for we know we will not find a watch laying around that simply happened because a tornado went through a junkyard, but also that someone had to wind the watch and set the time!  All creatures are not only designed and packed with information, they are also alive and responsive to the world around them.

Glen Miller said this about consciousness:  "Consciousness" has attracted a great deal of attention, esp. in the last 50 years or so. There are numerous attempts daily(!) to 'reduce it' to physical processes (with or without the intermediate 'biological' half-way house). I personally am not convinced that we can even 'objectify' it adequately, since it is basically experienced 1) from 'within' (we study it from 'without') and 2) our experience of it from 'without' is so heavily conditioned by the presence of 'will' as to make our results highly questionable. Although consensus philosophy of science assumes that this reduction 'obtains' they have essentially given up on demonstrating it! (see the Books section readings).

At this point, I consider consciousness to be 'irreducible' in content, like 'fear'...you cannot define it except ostensibly. [To be fair, I don't think we do much better with terms like 'matter' or 'nature' or 'existence' or 'essence' or 'individuation' either--so I don't think this is a major objection...but I have taken a stab at definitions of existence in the Wall section]

As for how the consciousness interacts with the neuro-stuff...well, I have my naive, pet theory. I think the will has the ability to create patterns of minute electrical charges (ex nihilo--sorta like the virtual electrons/photons/gauge particles of quantum electrodynamics and quantum field theory, eh?) in the brain, that 'route' the massive parallel flows that are characteristic of all macro-level operations...much as a train switch or rudder of ship...not many such electrons (or whatever) are truly necessary to make massive shifts in the patterns.
But what about the observability of this suggested mechanism? What about its predictive power? I have found it to be surprisingly powerful as a predictive model. For example, almost every time my consciousness 'wills' to press the letter H on this keyboard, my arm/finger movements do just that!

Watch...HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH...see? Amazing!

Now, I KNOW what some of you out there are probably thinking--something like "hey, wait a minute...how can you demonstrate that your 'willing' produced the neuro-stuff that produced the motion? If you can't demonstrate how the 'exchange' or 'interface' worked, why should we believe you?" And to this I simply ask if you have been tracking the methods and procedures of sub-atomic physics for the last 50 years. That 'hard science' area has so many more unobservables than does my full-blown theological system!...and they infer the 'existence' of those particles, by the production of macro-level consequences (such as bubble-chamber tracks) WITHOUT any 'inspection' or 'demonstration' of the intermediate processes or interfaces. The strange languages of quantum field theory, quantum electrodynamics, and quantum chromodynamics are accepted because of their PREDICTIVE power alone. So...watch me again...HHHHHHHHHHHHHH...it worked again. (There are some qualifications to this argument, but they will have to wait till I have made more progress on the other pages.)

(How to get to all of the other pages)


2) LIFE IS NOT MATERIAL IN NATURE OR FORM

A  movie - 21 Grams - was made based on the assertion by a Dr. Duncan MacDougall from the early 20th century that a human soul has a weight and that the body loses that weight at the moment of death.  Naturally such an urban legend would be addressed by Snopes.  There is no clinical study done that actually supports such an assertion.  At the moment of death a body remains the same in terms of mass and chemical composition as it was in life but upon death a host of processes begin.  One reason that the gradualistic idea of rock layers is preposterous is that it requires unusual circumstances to preserve bodies.  Once an organism dies there are immediate changes as putrefaction begins and carrion critters begin working on the remains.  Otherwise we would have five million dead possum fossils formed by the sides of roads.   But no scientist has been able to define life in a materialistic way.

The spark of life and the presence of consciousness, did those arise from a primordial soup and bolts of lightning?  How so if they are not even material in nature?  You cannot put a gram of "life" on a slide to examine under a microscope.  An intelligent Christian would no more expect "the soul" to have mass and weight than he would expect God to be a material being.  God is supernatural and preexistent.  He formed time and matter and energy as He made the Universe and He also gave organisms something we call life.  We have become pretty good at determining whether something is alive or not.  But we can only use descriptive terms for evidence that something is alive rather than be able to define life itself.  Can you define it?  These guys give it a try:

"life,  although there is no universal agreement as to a definition of life, its biological manifestations are generally considered to be organization, metabolism, growth, irritability, adaptation, and reproduction. Protozoa perform, in a single cell, the same life functions as those carried on by the complex tissues and organs of humans and other highly developed organisms. The attributes of life are inherent in such minute structures as viruses, bacteria, and genes, just as they are in the whale and the giant sequoia. In seeking an understanding of life, scientists have broken down many barriers that once separated the physical sciences from the biological sciences; a result of the growth of biochemistry, biophysics, and other interrelated fields of study has been a better understanding of the composition and functioning of living tissues of all kinds."

Oh, okay. That didn't do the trick.  How about these guys? 


Pronunciation: \ˈlīf\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural lives \ˈlīvz\
Etymology: Middle English lif, from Old English līf; akin to Old English libban to live — more at live
Date: before 12th century
1 a : the quality that distinguishes a vital and functional being from a dead body b : a principle or force that is considered to underlie the distinctive quality of animate beings c : an organismic state characterized by capacity for metabolism, growth, reaction to stimuli, and reproduction
2 a : the sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual b : one or more aspects of the process of living
3 : biography 1
4 : spiritual existence transcending physical death
5 a : the period from birth to death b : a specific phase of earthly existence c : the period from an event until death d : a sentence of imprisonment for the remainder of a convict's life
6 : a way or manner of living
7 :
livelihood
8 : a vital or living being; specifically : person lives were lost in the disaster>
9 : an animating and shaping force or principle
10 : spirit, animation dancing>
11 : the form or pattern of something existing in reality
12 : the period of duration, usefulness, or popularity of something
13 : the period of existence (as of a subatomic particle) — compare half-life
14 : a property (as resilience or elasticity) of an inanimate substance or object resembling the animate quality of a living being
15 : living beings (as of a particular kind or environment)
16 a : human activities b : animate activity and movement c : the activities of a given sphere, area, or time
17 : one providing interest and vigor party>
18 : an opportunity for continued viability
19 capitalized Christian Science : god 1b
20 : something resembling animate life




No matter how you define life, science cannot pin it down and certainly has never been able to identify it as a substance, a force, a particle or a wave.   We have not discovered the subatomic particles of life.  Life does not seem to have material substance...and yet it exists and those people who have it also have free will and,  if during their one shot at life they decide that life itself is just an accident and that accidents and mistakes and epiphanies are responsible for this highly complex universe full of highly complex organisms packed with information then they will face the Creator God with no excuses.

When you choose Darwin and chance as the explanation for everything then you are denying the idea of God and denying the existence of absolutes such as right and wrong.  This is no light decision.  If indeed there is a Creator God who has communicated His existence through the Bible and has signed life with the signature of DNA and if man refuses to recognize Him in life, then man will recognize Him in death. 

I carry on because in the long run I have the hope that some will reconsider the propaganda that has been assailing their senses from childhood and think seriously about the massive problems of Darwinism and the complete emptiness of Atheism and seek to find truth in the possibility of a Creator God.   I believe anyone who sincerely seeks God will find Him. 

24 comments:

Jon Woolf said...

So we're back to your self-serving, rigged, circular definition of "information," are we?

Tell me, does a data transmission have to have an intelligence at one or both ends in order to qualify as "information?"

Hawkeye® said...

Radar,
"Now I take the pen and write "Jesus rose from the dead on Easter." You are able to read this message. I have transmitted information to you. I now weigh the notepad and paper and the weight remains the same. You get on the scale and you weigh the same. I get on the scale and I weigh the same. But now you and I both agree that something has passed between you and I. I have transmitted information to you without passing anything material to you."

In theory, the ink added to the paper did in fact add weight and hence material. However, one might have used a different example...

You have a rock. I take your rock from you, carve letters into it, and return the rock to you. You understand the meaning of the letters. Therefore, I have transmitted information to you by actually removing weight and mass. The information was not in the weight and mass of the material that was removed. The information was in the rock which had the mass removed from it.

Anonymous said...

Aw man.

Okay, let's just note up front that Radar is still running away from a bunch of questions and abortive "series".

And of course any comments in this section will be ignored, so I won't invest a huge amount of time going through every detail... but man, there is so much just plain wrong here, regardless of worldview. Simply sloppy thinking.

1. Why is it a "nail in the Darwinist coffin" that information is not material in nature or form? How does this in any way contradict the theory of evolution? Do you really think that when we talk about gain or loss of information, we're talking about gain or loss of MATTER? Seriously?

2. Why do you think life is not material in nature or form? It is a bunch of interconnected chemical/physical/biological processes. All of which are material processes. Again, it's not a matter of WEIGHT being lost or added, it's the processes. Once the interconnected organisms fail in some way, the system breaks down, and that's the end of that organism's life.

3. "Some people like to think that nothing made itself into a Universe that is fine-tuned for life on Earth and situated so that the Universe itself can be observed and understood by the inhabitants of Earth."

Re. the "nothing made itself into a Universe" part: NONSENSE. You've been called on this over and over, but for some reason you're incapable of taking in any of the comments on your own blog. Who are these "some people"?

Re. the "situated so that the Universe itself can be observed and understood by the inhabitants of Earth" part: say what?! If the inhabitants of Earth are capable of observing, then no matter where they are, they can "observe the Universe"... or rather some infinitesimally tiny portion of it.

But what on Earth makes you think that we can understand the Universe? Do YOU think you can understand the Universe?

Seriously.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

You know, Radar, the more you use your own words, the clearer it becomes that you don't understand the arguments in question at all.

-- creeper

radar said...

creeper, that is a lot of verbiage to just say that you cannot provide an answer to the problem. Information is not material in nature or form.

Hawkeye added an interesting point, but in truth information itself has no mass and is not material in nature. The medium used might include either adding or subtracting matter. If I remove rock from a boulder and produce a statue you could still cobble the pieces chipped off the rock and add it all together and the total mass would not change. You can paint a canvas and produce a painting but you had to bring paint to apply it and nothing else. The intelligence came from your mind and the information itself was not a material substance.

So how does a naturalistic materialist explain this? He doesn't as you can see from what creeper and Woolf say. Since information is not material, then organisms did not have a materialistic naturalistic beginning. The information and design features of the cell require a designer who intelligently designed the cell and input the information.

A data transmission is unsuccessful if it is not received. I can send an email to someone but if it is lost in the junk filter or for some other reason it goes unread then the information I sent is not received.

radar said...

Hawkeye, by the way, I presented the pen and paper together. The ink was in the pen but until I wrote on the paper no information was transmitted. Since we weighed the pad and the pen before and after with no change in weight, the information that was written upon the page therefore has no mass or weight. Does that make sense?

Jon Woolf said...

Those who restrict themselves to the surface will never comprehend the depths that lie beneath them...

So how does a naturalistic materialist explain this? He doesn't as you can see from what creeper and Woolf say.

Actually, Radar, I do have an answer. It simply is not an answer you can accept ... largely because it's not an answer you can understand. "Intelligence" and "information" are abstract concepts which appear to be simple on the surface, but if you look a little closer they get much more complex. And much more interesting.

This is why I keep demanding definitions from you. We can't have an intelligent discussion if we can't even agree what it is that we're talking about. I reject your definition of information as circular, self-serving, and ultimately useless because it has too many holes and leaves too many questions unanswered. As do you.

Does a data transmission have to have an intelligence at one or both ends in order to qualify as "information?"

Anonymous said...

"creeper, that is a lot of verbiage to just say that you cannot provide an answer to the problem."

It's "verbiage" that you deign not to actually read and comprehend, as the rest of your comment shows.

"Information is not material in nature or form."

Who ever said it was? Were you really under the impression that that is what the theory of evolution says, or that it's what "Darwinists" claim? Really?

And as to your second point: what is your evidence that life is NOT material in nature or form?

"Hawkeye added an interesting point, but in truth information itself has no mass and is not material in nature. The medium used might include either adding or subtracting matter. If I remove rock from a boulder and produce a statue you could still cobble the pieces chipped off the rock and add it all together and the total mass would not change. You can paint a canvas and produce a painting but you had to bring paint to apply it and nothing else. The intelligence came from your mind and the information itself was not a material substance."

Now that is a lot of verbiage over nothing, as is most of the post above. Nobody's arguing that the gain or loss of information has to do with the gain or loss of matter.

Instead of thinking up cute analogies and quoting yourself, how about you try to answer some of the questions raised in recent comments?

Like these:

Radar: "No, many paraconformities have not been explained and cannot be explained"

Jon: "Examples?"

[...]

Radar: "A polystrate that measured some 80 feet was found in England in the 1800's thrust through layers of coal that was estimated to encompass was supposed to be millions of years."

Jon: "Details please. Exact location, exact local geology, exact description of the "polystrate" fossil."


Run, Radar, run... I guess we'll take your silence as yet another concession.


"So how does a naturalistic materialist explain this? He doesn't as you can see from what creeper and Woolf say."

Explain what exactly?! You're off on some strawman argument. Sorry, but we can't help you there. Don't blame us.

"Since information is not material, then organisms did not have a materialistic naturalistic beginning."

The latest in a long line of logic fails... to understand why this doesn't add up, try to answer Jon's question. We get information from material sources all the time...

"The information and design features of the cell require a designer who intelligently designed the cell and input the information."

If you could ever come up with an intelligent definition of what you think the gain or loss of information in an organism would entail, then we could have a discussion about this. Instead you're stuck on this inanity of whether the gain or loss of information entails the gain or loss of matter... sad.

"A data transmission is unsuccessful if it is not received. I can send an email to someone but if it is lost in the junk filter or for some other reason it goes unread then the information I sent is not received."

Ah, but more to the point - can information be transmitted if it is not sent?

-- creeper

Hawkeye® said...

Radar,
Good point about the weight of pad and pen together. I didn't pick up on that. However, I think my example shows that information is not only without mass, but that information can be passed by removing mass.

Hawkeye® said...

creeper,
You have yet to explain how inanimate matter organized itself into "life". You have yet to explain how inanimate matter developed the "biological processes" of which you speak. You have yet to explain even how animate matter can become "intelligent". Yet, you guys talk like all of this is a "done deal". Radar is correct that you have failed to provide adequate answers to such questions.

I ask you the same questions you asked of Radar...

"But what on Earth makes you think that we can understand the Universe? Do YOU think you can understand the Universe?"

If you acknowledge that you cannot understand the universe, then why do you act as if you can?

Hawkeye® said...

Jon Woolf,
"This is why I keep demanding definitions from you. We can't have an intelligent discussion if we can't even agree what it is that we're talking about."

Good point. Radar provided a definition for the term "information". But you didn't like his definition, therefore you rejected his argument.

A true "philosopher" is willing to accept the premise of another (even if it is contrary to one's own view) and argue the merits of a case within the confines of those parameters. If you can do that and succeed, then you become the "victor". If you cannot do that, then you must concede defeat "within the parameters set forth" by the contrarian.

Since you are rarely willing to do that, you are not a "philosopher". You are a "dogmatist". Radar is likewise a "dogmatist" (sorry Radar, but it's true). You have both come to certain "conclusions" via whatever paths.

Therefore, you and Radar keep talking at cross purposes. You won't accept his premises, and he won't accept your premises. Therefore, the prospect of an "intelligent conversation" (from a philosophical perspective) is fairly remote.

Anonymous said...

"You have yet to explain how inanimate matter organized itself into "life". You have yet to explain how inanimate matter developed the "biological processes" of which you speak. You have yet to explain even how animate matter can become "intelligent"."

1. That wasn't the subject here, and I don't know why I have to explain this. Do you have to explain how God created life?

2. I personally don't know how inanimate matter organized itself into "life", as I think I've mentioned several times before on this blog. On the other hand, I personally don't know anyone who does know this, including creationists.

"If you acknowledge that you cannot understand the universe, then why do you act as if you can?"

In what way do you think I act as if I understand the universe? I'm pretty dang sure that the universe is far too vast for me to ever comprehend it; I'd even go so far as to say that I think it's impossible for any human to comprehend it.

"Radar provided a definition for the term "information". But you didn't like his definition, therefore you rejected his argument."

Wrong. Radar copied some dictionary definitions, but failed to provide a definition of information that would be useful in a discussion of the gain or loss of information, i.e. a way in which information could be quantified. An interesting omission for such an information expert as Radar fancies himself to be.

Hawkeye, you make some interesting observations about the state of debate between Jon and Radar... but I suspect that Jon would be willing to accept various premises for the purpose of discussion, even if he disagrees with them. That's why he keeps asking for definitions of terms, as a basis for debate.

Problem is, Radar is so unsure of his footing in almost all these subjects that he is either loath or unable to provide such definitions and enter into an actual debate. And on he goes pasting more articles from websites that are known to spread lies.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"The concept of biological evolution existed long before Charles Darwin. What Darwin added was
what seemed to be a credible naturalistic mechanism which might drive the evolutionary process. He
proposed a mechanistic force
which might cause evolution to actually happen spontaneously"

With that kind of ignorance on display in the introduction alone, what does that tell you about the rest of the article... and the source?

radar said...

""The concept of biological evolution existed long before Charles Darwin. What Darwin added was
what seemed to be a credible naturalistic mechanism which might drive the evolutionary process. He
proposed a mechanistic force which might cause evolution to actually happen spontaneously"

With that kind of ignorance on display in the introduction alone, what does that tell you about the rest of the article... and the source?"

Feel free to enlighten us. Do not allow our ignorance to go on...

1) Was Darwin first to propose natural selection? (this is an easy one)

Is it in your opinion intelligence driven rather than a combination of spontaneity and incredibly good luck? Please do tell.

radar said...

Ah, I think some of these comments deserve their own post coming this weekend. I promise!

Jon Woolf said...

Hawkeye wrote: A true "philosopher" is willing to accept the premise of another (even if it is contrary to one's own view) and argue the merits of a case within the confines of those parameters.

Not if he (or she) has any sense. A smart philosopher will try any set of premises that is logically valid. Radar's definition of intelligence isn't logically valid.

Hawkeye, I suggest you find and read two of Isaac Asimov's science essays: "Euclid's Fifth" and "The Plane Truth." You can find them in either The Left Hand of the Electron or The Edge of Tomorrow. After you read them, you'll understand when I say that what Radar is doing is akin to asking me to do geometry on the surface of a sphere after assuming that Euclid's Fifth is true.

Anonymous said...

The moronic part was highlighted in bold for you: Darwin "proposed a mechanistic force"? Obviously written by someone who's never cracked a book on evolution in his life.

You didn't catch that?

"Do not allow our ignorance to go on..."

Don't blame other people for your ignorance. It's self-imposed. Crack an actual textbook for once, instead of slavishly copying creationist websites. If you take issue with the theory of evolution, then take issue with the theory of evolution, not some made-up fantasy version of it.

Anonymous said...

"Ah, I think some of these comments deserve their own post coming this weekend. I promise!"

Any chance we'll see answers to these questions at any time?

Radar: "No, many paraconformities have not been explained and cannot be explained"

Jon: "Examples?"

[...]

Radar: "A polystrate that measured some 80 feet was found in England in the 1800's thrust through layers of coal that was estimated to encompass was supposed to be millions of years."

Jon: "Details please. Exact location, exact local geology, exact description of the "polystrate" fossil."


and this:

Not too terribly long ago you made this claim:

"All dating methods thought up by Darwinists and Naturalists ignore the idea of the Flood and all of them have major flaws and questions. One will find this out if one studies the evidence presented by both sides (all three sides, depending on how you look at it). For every method that presents old ages there is another method that shows a very young earth. Creationists have been very successful finding dating methods that are not likely skewed by a Flood event and those methods give us young ages."

Which of course raised the following questions:

1. What are the methods (plural) that indicate a very young Earth?

2. Why are all the results indicated by all dating methods that do indicate an old Earth interpreted falsely, and how should they have been interpreted and why?


Or will you just cut and paste more endless articles from lying websites like AiG and CMI?

-- creeper

radar said...

Hawkeye, if we put you and the rock on a big weigh scale and you carved a message in the rock, the weight of you, the rock and the chips from the rock would be the same as before you carved it. Again the message itself would have no material aspect to it, only the medium.

One more time for Jon Woolf, a successful data transmission requires a sender and a receiver and many more things - a code and syntax understood by both, for instance. A transmission needs intelligence at both ends to be a success. The transmission of data and "intelligence" and "information" are not synonymous.

Information comes from intelligence. Raw data may or may not be intelligent in nature but would require intelligence to translate.

Take a anemometer. It measures the speed and perhaps the pressure and direction of wind. Wind is a natural phenomenon. Wind is not intelligent. An Anemeometer is a device designed by intelligence in order to measure the wind and convert properties of the wind into data that can be transmitted and discussed.

The wind might blow fifty miles an hour and without intelligence no one would have been there to quantify the speed or measure it.

So it goes with the cell. Whereas a skin cell may not have intellect it was designed to operate in such a fashion so that it would fulfill various tasks, not limited to keeping your blood and muscles and so on within certain boundaries and to protect from all sorts of organisms and influences and so on.
Now that we know how remarkably well designed cells really are it is amazing to me that any serious scientist would actually think such a thing could happen by chance. You guys truly amaze me.

Jon Woolf said...

A transmission needs intelligence at both ends to be a success.

Oh well, in that case there is no information in a cell. Problem solved.

What, you don't agree .. or worse, you don't understand? Well, I'm not surprised.

You just said that there must be an intelligence on both ends of a transmission before it can qualify as a transfer of information. That's the answer I expected ... and it's an answer that backfires on you quite neatly. If God put data in the form of genes into the first living cell, then there was no intelligence present to receive that data. Thus, by your own definition, no information was transferred.

When any currently-living cell reproduces, and copies its DNA in the process, no intelligence is involved. It's an entirely mechanistic process. The parent cell isn't intelligent. The daughter cells aren't intelligent. But the genes do still get transferred from parent to offspring. Therefore, (again, by your own definition) the reproductive process can't possibly qualify as a transmission of information either.

So, no information in a cell .. and no "information"-based argument against evolution. You lose, Radar.

Hawkeye® said...

creeper,
"1. That wasn't the subject here, and I don't know why I have to explain this."

"Creationists" (ie, people who believe that God created the universe) have existed for thousands of years. Darwinists have existed for approximately 100 years. Since Darwinists are challenging the status quo by insisting that natural materialistic processes must have "created" all life and the abundance of life forms we see around us, then it is incumbent upon them to explain how such things could have occurred. If they cannot do so, then the basis of their "theory" is seriously undermined, and their credibility is in question.

"2. I personally don't know how inanimate matter organized itself into "life", as I think I've mentioned several times before on this blog. On the other hand, I personally don't know anyone who does know this, including creationists."

If you don't know this, then as I stated above, the basis of your "theory" is seriously undermined, and your credibility is in question. Creationists don't need to know how inanimate matter organized itself into "life", because they don't believe that it did in fact "organize itself". They believe that God organized it (ie, created it).

"In what way do you think I act as if I understand the universe?"

You act as if you are 100% positive that only natural, materialistic processes exist in the universe. You act as if you are 100% positive that God does not exist. You act as if you are 100% positive that life sprang from lifelessness. You act as if you are 100% positive that evolution is the cause for all the variation of life on this planet. You act as if you are 100% positive that man ultimately evolved from a single cell creature. Those are all aspects of the universe that you seem to understand 100%.

"Wrong. Radar copied some dictionary definitions, but failed to provide a definition of information that would be useful in a discussion of the gain or loss of information, i.e. a way in which information could be quantified."

I take it then that you have in fact provided an alternative definition which is useful to the discussion? I must have missed that.

Hawkeye® said...

Jon Woolf,
"A transmission needs intelligence at both ends to be a success.

Oh well, in that case there is no information in a cell."


But the big question I have is, why are you so concerned about data "transmission" or "transfer". (I must admit here that I haven't followed all of the details of your discussions with Radar.) That does not seem to be a critical issue.

Automobiles are clearly a product of "intelligent design". When automakers design a car, they incorporate "information" into the car. This is particularly evident if there is a computer in the car (but it need not be so). The computer is programmed by the designer in a way that instructs the automobile how to operate. The automobile and its component parts contain no intelligence, therefore there is no "transmission of information" per se (ie, from one intelligence to another).

Yet, it is clearly obvious that there is "information" in a car, and that intelligence was used to design the vehicle. And we know that the automobile did not "evolve" from a bicycle or a motorcycle.

The "transmission" of information in a car occurs when an expert plugs his laptop or test equipment into the car's computer and analyzes the information stored there. The expert can see the car's programming and any data which the computer was programmed to store. If the expert can receive and understand the "information" from the car's designer, then a successful "transmission" took place.

In the case of a cell, information has been programmed into it by a designer, which instructs the cell not only how to operate, but also to repair itself, and even reproduce. It is a design which is far more advanced than any human invention.

If you want to talk about information "transmission" in a cell, then you can say that the information stored in the cell was only "transmitted" (from God to human beings) when humans became intelligent enough to receive and understand God's message. We needed scientists (the equivalent of the auto "expert") to "plug in" to the cell and examine the "programming" to try and understand the "information" deposited there by the "designer".

Jon Woolf said...

(I must admit here that I haven't followed all of the details of your discussions with Radar.)

Hence your confusion.

But the big question I have is, why are you so concerned about data "transmission" or "transfer".

Because Radar is. "Information is intelligence transmitted for a specific purpose." By using and defending that definition, he's unwittingly refuted his own argument. If his definition of information is right, then natural genetic variations don't represent a change in the cell's information content. Conversely, if he wishes to defend the claim that natural variation can't introduce new genetic information, then he needs to find a different definition of "information," one that is applicable to the process of cellular reproduction.

Hawkeye® said...

Jon Woolf,
I see. Therefore you would agree that my analogy is better?

(:D)