Theory of Evolution

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CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (Dalriada @ Nov 13 2008, 07:34 PM) And I really feel that you're deliberately obtuse if you can't see the advantages of the satellites, meteorology, the GPS, inter-continental communications and I forget some of them.
It's not just abstract science, we're using applications of those theories everyday.

Yeah, but inspite all those things, we fear that the next World War is going to wipe us all out from the face of this planet.



QUOTE Sadly, it won't work.
Because no matter what kind of intermediary state between a great ape or a man we could present, you would say "It's a great ape, or it's a man, but it's not a missing link".
And how exactly did you arrive at that conclusion?




QUOTE That's what happen when people choose their conclusion in advance, they become close-minded.
Have you seen your own statement? The one that I've just replied to right before this one?



QUOTE I could search the web to find some relevant articles, but it would be a waste of time, since you've decided not to change your mind.
There is no sufficient reason to change my mind regarding the matter to begin with. Show me some concrete evidence first, then I'll reconsider.
 

noob

±ⁿ°°ɓ±
Retired
I'd like to point out that while quoting different segments of a post is absolutely fine in this section of the forums, simply commenting on each quote without providing an argument with its support(s) is not the kind of 'discussion' we'd like to have at this section of the forums. In addition to that, any form of flamming is also not tolerated as it directly violates the general ftv rules. I know it hasn't happened so far but based on the most recent posts, the likelihood of a flame war is getting greater and greater. Please keep this warning in mind in the near future as I or any other mod, will not provide further warnings.
 

JustGravy

-chi
Kouhai
QUOTE QUOTE Sadly, it won't work.
Because no matter what kind of intermediary state between a great ape or a man we could present, you would say "It's a great ape, or it's a man, but it's not a missing link".
And how exactly did you arrive at that conclusion?

I think it's the fact that you said you'd wait for the discovery of the "missing link," which implies that you believe that all of the species found in the fossil record that fit between human and great ape do not qualify as this "missing link."
If none of these qualify as convincing to you, it brings me to ask - What does it take to qualify something as the "missing link" to you? Either you have come up with a picture perfect idea of what a true "missing link" is and we have yet to find anything that fulfills it, or you have a predisposition of disbelief towards anything that might constitute a valid "missing link" because you are uncomfortable with the idea that anything could/does compete with your already pre-set conclusion.


QUOTE Sadly, it won't work. Because no matter what kind of intermediary state between a great ape or a man we could present, you would say "It's a great ape, or it's a man, but it's not a missing link". That's what happen when people choose their conclusion in advance, they become close-minded.
Is right. It is this discomfort with anything that might compete with your set beliefs that has you rejecting good evidence of the evolution between the great apes and humans and demanding a "perfect" (and therefor unobtainable) "missing link."
That is why he suggested that any new discovery, adding to already existing evidence, will not convince you. You have already come to a conclusion, and will not accept anything that suggests otherwise, no matter how sound it is.
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
I'm merely waiting for the scientific community to just outright say "Look, we've found the missing link, we're pretty sure this is it."

But despite those new fossils and all, they still can't do that.
 

EggBeast

- deska`
Retired
QUOTE (CASSHERNxLYUZE @ Nov 24 2008, 04:39 PM)I'm merely waiting for the scientific community to just outright say "Look, we've found the missing link, we're pretty sure this is it."

But despite those new fossils and all, they still can't do that.
Realize that the evolutionary process of man has taken place over many millions of years. Any intermediary form we're lucky enough to uncover can be considered a "missing link". There's really no such thing as the missing link, and it's definitely not a scientific term. Many, many "missing links" have already been found, but no matter how many more we're fortunate enough to find, none of them will ever be called the missing link. If what you're looking for is for a large majority of scientists to say that the theory of evolution has been proven time and time again, you needn't look any longer. There is already an outrageous amount of evidence supporting the theory. In fact, all of modern biology and genetics today is based off of evolutionary theory. Evolutionary theory to biology is what the fundamental theorem of calculus is to... well, calculus. It's what Newton's laws are to classical physics. Arguing against evolution based off a perceived lack of evidence is a losing argument.
 

JustGravy

-chi
Kouhai
At this point it is not a matter of how much evidence there is or how strong it is, or really anything on the part of science. There's plenty of good evidence.
At this point, it's bias you have to consider.
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (EggBeast @ Nov 25 2008, 03:13 PM) Realize that the evolutionary process of man has taken place over many millions of years. Any intermediary form we're lucky enough to uncover can be considered a "missing link". There's really no such thing as the missing link, and it's definitely not a scientific term. Many, many "missing links" have already been found, but no matter how many more we're fortunate enough to find, none of them will ever be called the missing link. If what you're looking for is for a large majority of scientists to say that the theory of evolution has been proven time and time again, you needn't look any longer. There is already an outrageous amount of evidence supporting the theory. In fact, all of modern biology and genetics today is based off of evolutionary theory. Evolutionary theory to biology is what the fundamental theorem of calculus is to... well, calculus. It's what Newton's laws are to classical physics. Arguing against evolution based off a perceived lack of evidence is a losing argument.
Then I want to hear them say it. I want them to say, "this is how it all really went down". If there is so much evidence, that shouldn't be a problem.
 

JustGravy

-chi
Kouhai
QUOTE Then I want to hear them say it. I want them to say, "this is how it all really went down". If there is so much evidence, that shouldn't be a problem.

See: current theory of evolution.
 

EggBeast

- deska`
Retired
QUOTE (CASSHERNxLYUZE @ Nov 26 2008, 04:58 AM)Then I want to hear them say it. I want them to say, "this is how it all really went down". If there is so much evidence, that shouldn't be a problem.
Well, you might find this presentation particularly interesting. The following link is a 2-hour presentation by Ken Miller. Ken Miller is a Roman Catholic, a professor in biology, and an ardent believer in evolution. He makes his case against creationism and intelligent design, instead arguing that accepting evolution as a legitimate science and believing in a god are not mutually exclusive, and that, in fact, it's the only reasonable route for religious individuals to take. It's an interesting watch, if you've got the time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVRsWAjvQSg

Of course, many, many other scientists, not just biologists, would bet their lives on evolution, although, being scientists, they have to accept the possibility that the theory might have to be revised in light of new evidence, or maybe even be replaced by an even more elegant, more inclusive theory. That's the beauty of science. In the end, you needn't worry about scientists being unsure on the theory of evolution.
 

monsta666

-the bee's knees
Kouhai
QUOTE (CASSHERNxLYUZE @ Nov 26 2008, 10:58 AM)Then I want to hear them say it. I want them to say, "this is how it all really went down". If there is so much evidence, that shouldn't be a problem.
The theory of evolution is not just supported by fossil records but also by our knowledge of genetics and microbiology. Like others have said, it is difficult to observe evolution because the process occurs over hundreds, if not thousands of years. The best way of observing evolution at work is to look at bacteria, as their life-spans are much shorter.

Various studies have shown that bacteria develop resistance to drugs. This is a case of evolution at work and it closely follows original Darwin's theory. If a population is subjected to a selective pressure (the drug) then only the fittest ones will survive (the bacteria that are resistant to the drug). These studies are also supported by genetics. As bacteria are more simple life-forms the change in genes can also be determined. This adds further weight to the whole argument. If you monitor the gene pool of the whole bacteria population you will find it changes so it is better suited to coping with the drugs. And that's what evolution is all about; a shift in a population's gene pool so it better suited to it's environment.

This isn't the only area where evolution works. For thousands of years farmers have selectively bred their life-stock to produce desirable traits. As a result, many farm animals have been able to produce more milk/eggs/meat etc. This is another case of evolution and is further proof that the theory works. The fossils may not provide conclusive proof but if you add the genetic/microbiology elements the evidence seems rather compelling.
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (EggBeast @ Nov 26 2008, 11:15 PM) Well, you might find this presentation particularly interesting. The following link is a 2-hour presentation by Ken Miller. Ken Miller is a Roman Catholic, a professor in biology, and an ardent believer in evolution. He makes his case against creationism and intelligent design, instead arguing that accepting evolution as a legitimate science and believing in a god are not mutually exclusive, and that, in fact, it's the only reasonable route for religious individuals to take. It's an interesting watch, if you've got the time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVRsWAjvQSg

It's too long. I watched the mousetrap vid instead.

Do you follow this guy's belief? Or are you merely suggesting his perspective as an option for me to consider? It's funny that you should point out that he's a Roman Catholic. I remember stating that the Catholic Church is "bogus" in the other thread. And Catholics just seem to love all sorts of compromises and subjectivity.

I don't really have a problem with the "not mutually exclusive" concept, but, since science and its theories hinges upon empirical evidence and there is an unavailability of empirical evidence for God, I just don't see how you can genuinely reconcile them other than not to take the Genesis accounts literally, and accept the possibility that not all things in existence are empirically observable by us humans.




QUOTE Of course, many, many other scientists, not just biologists, would bet their lives on evolution, although, being scientists, they have to accept the possibility that the theory might have to be revised in light of new evidence, or maybe even be replaced by an even more elegant, more inclusive theory.  That's the beauty of science.  In the end, you needn't worry about scientists being unsure on the theory of evolution.
I'm not sure what that last sentence meant, but it's not just the "scientists" that have to accept the possibility that the theory might have to be revised in light of new evidence, or maybe even be replaced by an even more elegant, more inclusive theory, don't you think?

I think there's a need to underline the difference between a "scientist" and say...an "atheist", here.




QUOTE (monsta666 @ Nov 27 2008, 10:42 AM)The best way of observing evolution at work is to look at bacteria, as their life-spans are much shorter.

Various studies have shown that bacteria develop resistance to drugs. This is a case of evolution at work and it closely follows original Darwin's theory. If a population is subjected to a selective pressure (the drug) then only the fittest ones will survive (the bacteria that are resistant to the drug). These studies are also supported by genetics. As bacteria are more simple life-forms the change in genes can also be determined. This adds further weight to the whole argument. If you monitor the gene pool of the whole bacteria population you will find it changes so it is better suited to coping with the drugs. And that's what evolution is all about; a shift in a population's gene pool so it better suited to it's environment.

You know what puzzles me about evolution? How come not all "apes" (or whatever we're supposed to have evolved from) evolved to the point that they became "human"?
 

Dalriada

-dono
Sempai
QUOTE
Do you follow this guy's belief? Or are you merely suggesting his perspective as an option for me to consider? It's funny that you should point out that he's a Roman Catholic. I remember stating that the Catholic Church is "bogus" in the other thread. And Catholics just seem to love all sorts of compromises and subjectivity.

Do you have evidences to sustain your claims or are you just insulting the largest Christian group for no reasons ?
Because it's not scriptura sola ?


QUOTE I don't really have a problem with the "not mutually exclusive" concept, but, since science and its theories hinges upon empirical evidence and there is an unavailability of empirical evidence for God, I just don't see how you can genuinely reconcile them other than not to take the Genesis accounts literally, and accept the possibility that not all things in existence are empirically observable by us humans.

A lot of believers don't take the Genesis literaly (the two hot point of creationism are American Protestantism and Middle-East Islam, as far as I know).
Science does not claim to be able to observe empirically everything.
So, no problem, really.


QUOTE
You know what puzzles me about evolution? How come not all "apes" (or whatever we're supposed to have evolved from) evolved to the point that they became "human"?

Because not all of them lived in east-african savanna, where standing on two feet was a great advantage, and where jumping from a tree to another wasn't a super-big asset.
And even among those living in the savanna, standing on two feet may not be the only solution.

You're thinking of evolution in term of 'progress'. There's not progress in the theory, the human and the jellyfish are on the same level : both have adapted to their environment (Eh, I agree there's a big difference between human and jellyfish, but it's not relevant with how they evolved).
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (Dalriada @ Nov 28 2008, 02:17 AM) Do you have evidences to sustain your claims or are you just insulting the largest Christian group for no reasons ?
Because it's not scriptura sola ?
Evidence? How about worshipping graven images for one?

And does being the largest group equate to validity of claim? Isn't that what you call Argumentum ad Populum or something?

Besides, if they are not following scripture alone, what else are they following?



QUOTE A lot of believers don't take the Genesis literaly (the two hot point of creationism are American Protestantism and Middle-East Islam, as far as I know).
I'm not sure who you are referring to by "believers" and why you referred to them, but I was talking about people who go on and on about how ridiculous and nonsensical some of the contents of Genesis are - a number of which identify as "atheists".



QUOTE Science does not claim to be able to observe empirically everything.
But it only recognizes those that it could.



QUOTE Because not all of them lived in east-african savanna, where standing on two feet was a great advantage, and where jumping from a tree to another wasn't a super-big asset.
And even among those living in the savanna, standing on two feet may not be the only solution.
Didn't someone say before that "may" makes an argument weak or something to that effect?



QUOTE You're thinking of evolution in term of 'progress'. There's not progress in the theory, the human and the jellyfish are on the same level : both have adapted to their environment (Eh, I agree there's a big difference between human and jellyfish, but it's not relevant with how they evolved).
Let's talk about the "apes that evolved to humans" and the "apes that remained apes". You said earlier that "even among those living in the savanna...", so what you're saying is, the environment within one part of the savanna is that significally different from that of the other, that some apes evolved to be able to come up with things like recorded culture and technology despite all being in the same savanna?
 

darkdog

-dredg
Retired
QUOTE Let's talk about the "apes that evolved to humans" and the "apes that remained apes". You said earlier that "even among those living in the savanna...", so what you're saying is, the environment within one part of the savanna is that significally different from that of the other, that some apes evolved to be able to come up with things like recorded culture and technology despite all being in the same savanna?
first of all, the "apes that remained apes" part is arguable. they probably evolved into superior species of apes.

besides, that "despite all being in the same savanna" part is highly misleading. Let's just imagine that a river crosses such savannah: within a species' population, specimen whose fishing skills were above average would have an advantage; specimen living far from the river would be better off with tree-climbing skills to get fruit, for example. Plains would have one kind of predator, mountains would have different ones; low places would have vegetation different from high places', etc, etc. there's an amazing variety of variables on which an individual specimen's fitness depends on, all in the same savanna.

if you really think that "a savanna is a savanna, so all the species living in it would evolve in the same direction", then this will likely be my last intervention on this thread: if you don't acknowledge things that are documented and observable right now, then there's no point in discussing this theory any further: it'll only lead to more misleading counter-arguments and angry attempts at rebuttals.
 

Dalriada

-dono
Sempai
QUOTE Evidence? How about worshipping graven images for one?

And does being the largest group equate to validity of claim? Isn't that what you call Argumentum ad Populum or something?

Besides, if they are not following scripture alone, what else are they following?


Critisizing an argumentum ad populum and using an argumentum ad verecundiam...
Anyway...


QUOTE
I'm not sure who you are referring to by "believers" and why you referred to them, but I was talking about people who go on and on about how ridiculous and nonsensical some of the contents of Genesis are - a number of which identify as "atheists".

When I say believers, I mean theists (the influence of French, I guess).
And believe me or not, a lot of theists, a lot of Christian take anything close of a literal approch of the Genesis as ridiculous and are completely evolutionists (the RCC, the CoE, a lot of the main Jewish and Protestant groups)


QUOTE
Didn't someone say before that "may" makes an argument weak or something to that effect?

The 'may' was here because I haven't study the problem in-depth. I'm stating a reasonable hypothesis, but I'm not proving it, therefore the 'may'.
It may weaken the argument, but we, scientist people, emphasize honesty.


QUOTE
Let's talk about the "apes that evolved to humans" and the "apes that remained apes". You said earlier that "even among those living in the savanna...", so what you're saying is, the environment within one part of the savanna is that significally different from that of the other, that some apes evolved to be able to come up with things like recorded culture and technology despite all being in the same savanna?

Let's take a simple example.
A group of bird comes in an island with two kind of food : nuts quite hard to crack, seeds on the ground.
You have chances to see the development of two species : one very good at bursting nuts, and one very good at searching the ground for seeds.
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (Dalriada @ Nov 30 2008, 03:12 AM) Critisizing an argumentum ad populum and using an argumentum ad verecundiam...
Anyway...
So you're admitting that your argument was Argumentum ad Populum?
Could you explain to me how my statement was Argumentum ad Verecundiam?

And I repeat my question; "if they are not following scripture alone, what else are they following?" The significance of this being, the person whom their religious beliefs is supposed to be based upon, Jesus, himself, abided by the Scriptures.



QUOTE And believe me or not, a lot of theists, a lot of Christian take anything close of a literal approch of the Genesis as ridiculous and are completely evolutionists (the RCC, the CoE, a lot of the main Jewish and Protestant groups)
I think you misunderstood me. I was talking about the people (who a portion of which identify as "atheist" and are more or less aligned with a movement of the same name) who take the book of Genesis literally (and only literally) and criticize the Bible based on how nonsensical and absurd some of its contents are to them, and then they pass it off as complete BS.



QUOTE The 'may' was here because I haven't study the problem in-depth. I'm stating a reasonable hypothesis, but I'm not proving it, therefore the 'may'.
It may weaken the argument, but we, scientist people, emphasize honesty.
I'll take note of that "honesty" then.



QUOTE Let's take a simple example.
A group of bird comes in an island with two kind of food : nuts quite hard to crack, seeds on the ground.
You have chances to see the development of two species : one very good at bursting nuts, and one very good at searching the ground for seeds.
I was thinking more in the lines of, why are we the only biological creatures on our planet who can come up with things that are way beyond others (like launch a rocket into space)? Given that we've evolved from apes, we've evolved to a point that we do and require things that are normally unnecessary for every other lifeform that we know. Why didn't that happen to other species. Why aren't there "reptilian people", "fish people", or "bird people"? And why only some apes?
 

darkdog

-dredg
Retired
i found an interesting article (there's also a more technical version available) about an experiment that led the investigators to believe that neural bases for language existed already 25-30 millions years ago in an ancestral of human and non-human primates.

and on a much lighter note, you can watch a chimp learn how to ride a segway.

Anyway, feel free to draw your own conclusions, evolutionists and creationists alike.
 

Dalriada

-dono
Sempai
QUOTE (CASSHERNxLYUZE @ Nov 30 2008, 06:26 PM)


QUOTE So you're admitting that your argument was Argumentum ad Populum?
Could you explain to me how my statement was Argumentum ad Verecundiam?

Not really argumentum ad populum, since I acknowledge I'm not even catholic.
And you used appeal to authority by refering to the Bible, of course !

For your information (and very roughly, since I'm not really good at theology), the RCC use the Bible and the Tradition, i.e. the sum of what all the previous doctors in theology said.
You can disagree with them (and they can certainly disagree with you), but they are as christian as you.



QUOTE I think you misunderstood me. I was talking about the people (who a portion of which identify as "atheist" and are more or less aligned with a movement of the same name) who take the book of Genesis literally (and only literally) and criticize the Bible based on how nonsensical and absurd some of its contents are to them, and then they pass it off as complete BS.

But...
Critisizing a literal interpretation of the Genesis is a criticism of creationism, not a criticism of the Bible... And it's shared by atheists and theists (and christians among them).


QUOTE
I was thinking more in the lines of, why are we the only biological creatures on our planet who can come up with things that are way beyond others (like launch a rocket into space)? Given that we've evolved from apes, we've evolved to a point that we do and require things that are normally unnecessary for every other lifeform that we know. Why didn't that happen to other species. Why aren't there "reptilian people", "fish people", or "bird people"? And why only some apes?

Why ?
It's a philosophical question, not a scientific one. You may be interested by the philosophical essay of the Nobel prize winning biochemist Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity: An Essay on the Natural Philosophy of Modern Biology (Le hasard et la nécessité), if you can find it.

I'll just add that our domination on earth is not really linked with the theory of evolution any longer.
Genetically, we're not really different of our ancestors 5000 years ago. But we managed to build cultures and civilisation to overcome that.
 

CASSHERNxLYUZE

-chan
Kouhai
QUOTE (darkdog @ Nov 30 2008, 07:54 PM) i found an interesting article (there's also a more technical version available) about an experiment that led the investigators to believe that neural bases for language existed already 25-30 millions years ago in an ancestral of human and non-human primates.
I read the less technical version. I don't remember taking exception to the sounds monkeys make. In fact, I never really cared about monkeys and apes. But the next time I hear such sounds, I'll try to see if I can intuitively figure out what they're trying to say.




QUOTE Not really argumentum ad populum, since I acknowledge I'm not even catholic.
You don't have to be. All that's needed is to assert that a claim is true based on a large number of people supporting it. In this case, by citing the RCC as "the largest Christian group", in effect you're implying that they can't possibly be "bogus".

By the way, don't Catholics themselves admit that some of their teachings are merely things that their council of elites have decided upon? Like the existence of "Purgatory" for example.



QUOTE And you used appeal to authority by refering to the Bible, of course !

But the same could be said of citing works (writings, videos, speeches, etc.) of "scientists", which a lot of people here have been rather inclined to do.




QUOTE Genetically, we're not really different of our ancestors 5000 years ago.
I don't know if that's true, but the idea doesn't really surprise me.
 

Dalriada

-dono
Sempai
QUOTE
You don't have to be. All that's needed is to assert that a claim is true based on a large number of people supporting it. In this case, by citing the RCC as "the largest Christian group", in effect you're implying that they can't possibly be "bogus".


Wrong.
By citing the RCC as the largest Christian group, I expect that you have better arguments that "I don't like them" or "They don't think like me".
Apparently, you don't have better arguments. Too bad.


QUOTE
But the same could be said of citing works (writings, videos, speeches, etc.) of "scientists", which a lot of people here have been rather inclined to do.


No, it can't. For two reasons :
-The experiences can be repeated at will.
-The papers published in scientific reviews are peer-reviewed, i.e. other scientists judge is the study is rigourous enough to be published.


Edit

QUOTE
Could I ask a mod to close this thread for the time being as the discussion has dfited away from the original purpose according to the thread title and seems to be more about pointing out flaws in other peoples statements at the moment

The last messages aren't far away of the topic of the thread, i.e. the theory of evolution.
Sure, we drifted a bit on the catholic thing, but it's still relevant, since it shows the different perceptions about the theory of evolution from the different religious groups. And well... it pretty much sums up the whole problem about evolution, which is not a scientific problem, but a problem of how people accept or don't accept scientific truth.
About the 'pointing out flaws', it's typical socratic maieutics, you can't do more thoughtful than that.
 
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