View Poll Results: Do you believe in evolution?

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    80 84.21%
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How many people believe in evolution?

  1. #201
    Gravwell Freak
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Bacteria use a form of electric motor to power their flagellum which is exactly the same in principle and design to the basic ones we use. Obviously, without any one of it's parts it would not work. Are evolutionists trying to say that the whole electric motor just appeared al at once and was immediately beneficial to the cell?

    That is not how evolutionists say it works, that is how creationists always claim it work so they can they bash it to little pieces.

    In evolution you should not look at the result and then declare how improbable it is to evolve something like that. Evolution works in the other direction, you try out billions of options and you retain the option that works best in the situation, keep repeating that and in the end you will have complex systems. You didn't need a cell before you could evolve something that provides energy, most likely there was something that provided energy and something that could develop into a cell that got merged into one thing, a cell that could provide its own energy by absorbing resources.

    Maybe i'm wrong, but this is how i think it works.

  2. #202
    Daniika Rain
    Aye, basically. As I've said before, one doesn't look at a 747 and declare how it couldn't possibly have just spontaneously been invented. Obviously it wasn't spontaneously invented. Similarly, one wouldn't look at the Wright Brothers' plane, from which the 747 "evolved", and say how unlikely it was that it could have been spontaneously invented. Once again, it wasn't. The petrol engine wasn't invented by the Wright Brothers, for example; they simply integrated it into their design. They developed and refined their craft, discarding designs that weren't effective until they came up with something that was.

    Perhaps it's creationists' own beliefs that cause them to represent the evolutionists' views as they do: since they believe God created everything pretty much spontaneously, they figure that evolution says the same thing, only that no God was involved...

  3. General Discussions Senior Member Homeworld Senior Member  #203
    Israelie greasemonkey Alliance's Avatar
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    Jan 2002
    eeks, soo long...

    must make each page hold more then 14 posts... its horide...

  4. #204
    You misunderstand me sir.

    Show me how an electric motor can evolve, and I'll give you much Kudos. I don't care what you start with, but an electric motor is an electric motor, is it not? Remove any one part and it becomes utterly useless. In other words, at any stage of evolution other than completedness it is not an electric motor.

    hmm, a link...

    That's a debate between a creationist and an evolutionist in which the motor argument is brought up. See what you think.

  5. #205
    The motion of a flagellum is only similar to an electric motor in a very basic kind of way, in the sense that something is turning. An electrochemical gradient (a difference in pH across a membrane in this case) is thought provides the energy for the torque, but it's not clear how at this point. Thus the electric motor analogy is false to begin with.

    To explain molecular diversity, proteins are quite complex, and given the fact that genes mutate with a sufficient frequency, you end up with a great deal of versatility in the history of a protein. First you have to consider that genes dont just accumulate mutations, they also get cut up, moved around, and duplicated. Sometimes they do this on their own. So having two copies of a gene at different chromosomal positions gives you a little room for creativity. Indeed, this is seen: there exist extremely similar, redundant proteins, which have slightly different but complimentary funcitons.

    An enzyme that normally has one function may end up producing something totally different from the same substrate. A DNA binding factor may have a subtle change in its structure that associates it with an entirely new complex of proteins, thus changing the way a cell responds to stimuli.

    The individual components necessary for some basic functionality of the flagellum already existed in an opportunistic form. Since higher functionality would be more advantageous for a proto-flagellum, mutations which improved the integration of the components would be selected for and propagated. Furthermore, additional components could be added.

    In cell biology, there's almost always a gradient of functionality associated with any particular protein. It takes a lot of work, but things can change in a positive fashion because of those gradients.

    As a sidenote: for the love of Christ, stop using the word "Evolutionism" or "Evolutionist." There's no such word.

    Dukath, that's a pretty concise explanation of the process. Thanks!

  6. General Discussions Senior Member  #206
    terrible, terrible damage Starfisher's Avatar
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    Aug 2002
    Budd Lake, NJ
    Vijil, you're not comprehending.

    Take the eye. Remove one part of the eye, and you go blind. However, the evolution of the eye has been traced from its beginnings as a light-sensitive protein way back when. If you remove a piece of the motor, then the motor doesn't work. But you can easily trace the "evolution" such as it is, of an electric motor. Name one piece of the motor that has no origin in a pre-existing technology and i'll give YOU kudos.

    The point is that the end result may be completely dependent on all its parts working together. However, those parts could have been used for something very different just one step back in time. When the random mutation comes along that allows that one part to work with another to form a completly different and new function, you have evolution. If the changes is benefical of course.

    The motor argument kinda got shot down in the debate.. I wonder why you posted it.

  7. #207
    Daniika Rain
    <comment type="aol" form="redundant" topic="me_too">

    ...which is exactly what I told him on irc!


  8. Child's Play Donor  #208
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    Jan 2000
    Forgive me for jumping in and violating my own rule of read the thread first

    With regards to evolution, I think there is very little one can use to dispute that survival of the fittest as a fit theory/law. Furthermore without getting into the biologist of things, it is immediately obvious to even creationists that mutations can and do occur - and survive. Drawing from everyday things such as news, our advances in genetic manipulation have resulted in quite a lot of progress in things considered good and bad - corn is an example of genetic manipulation before science done by humans and not a god.

    Jumping species however, is probably the more questionable thing here. Crossing a horse with a donkey gets you a mule, but that mule happens to be sterile. On a macroscopic level (struggles to remember stuff from biology lectures), it is generally accepted that eukaryotic cells evolved from/with prokaryotic ones - that is, symbiontic relationship. (I am really out of my league in this) A quick definition of eukaryotic cell includes existence of nucleus and organelles that perform different functions within a membrane, while prokaryotic ones being model Ts compared to Eukaryotic cells. In a nut shell, the theory goes something along the lines of one cell somehow swallowing a smaller cell but somehow magically not digesting it (one explaination off hand, a million cells swallowed another million, and one didn't digest it and went on to become more powerful liek them cartoon robots when they combine, then apply survival of the fittest). The bacteria in our guts for example are foreign parasites (sort of) but we benefit each other mutually - so anyway, back to the eukaryotic cell, through the prokaryotic cells within itself, an eukaryotic cell is able to survive conditions other E cells cannot, while a P cell would be able to survive in conditions other P cannot. Thus the P cells eventually became the organelles and joined 'the Borg collective' - don't ask me how, but perhaps out of a need to produce its own replacements within the E cell. This theory is strongly supported by the fact that DNA (or was it RNA?) are found within mitochondria for example that serves (I think) no purpose.

    It is still quite beyond my grasp how the big picture comes together even though I try to convince myself evolution is it, hell my biology prof couldn't even tell us how the cell knows where to distribute parts inside the cell to replace damaged proteins.

    Show me how an electric motor can evolve, and I'll give you much Kudos.
    I think Daniikia has already answered that with the analogy of evolution of airplanes, so I'm going to ask you a question Vijil... who created God? Obviously something of that complexity and awesome power cannot just come into being from... nothing!

  9. #209
    So prokaryotes have been hanging out inside of Eukaryotes as long as Eukaryotes have existed; the two most notable examples of these symbiotes are the Chloroplast and the Mitochondrion. They do each have their own DNA, which far from being useless, provides the information necessary to maintain the core metabolism of the symbiote. It's really conserved, basic machinery kind of stuff that's mainly to do with aerobic respiration. Mitochondria and chloroplasts synthesize their own proteins, but still require specific proteins to be imported from their host. (To clarify, when I say "protein" I mean a functional molecule, not food.)

    Cells are totally oblivious to their surroundings, it's much more helpful to anthropomorphize the cellular proteins. They're the movers and the shakers, and by collecting and passing information through networks of chemical signals, they can affect changes to the ways genes are expressed (turned on or off) in the nucleus.

    With this in mind, proteins don't know beforehand where they're supposed to go. However, when you consider the size of the cell, it's not like they're wandering around aimlessly inside the cell all day until they find what they're looking for; things diffuse fairly rapidly, and if the protein is being produced and maintained at a high level within the cell, it's going to find the place where it's supposed to go by chance in a relatively short time. It "knows" when it's gotten to the right place because there are structural interactions that, say, bind it to a complex, or begin threading it through a hole into a compartment, or involve it in some sort of enzymatic activity.

    I remember a series of experiments that were carried out to study flaggellins. Researches cut off the flagella at various lengths and then monitored extracellular protein concentrations-- they found that the cells were rebuilding the flagella by secreting the protein through the hollow core of the flagellum. All the stuff was coming out, but only the things that were supposed to stick to the "wound" did, and depending on the location of the wound, different proteins would stick, in a way which mimics the distribution of proteins throughout the flagellum.

    Thus: the information about how to assemble the flagellum was to some extent encoded within the structure of the flagellum itself. If this seems fantastic or novel to the point of belief in a supernatural force, it really shouldn't; it's surprising how frequently self-assembly into complex structures happens in stupid-simple proteins.

  10. #210
    Daniika Rain
    As a sidenote: for the love of Christ, stop using the word "Evolutionism" or "Evolutionist." There's no such word.
    Not to be a smart arse, but if this debate is to continue we need to have something to call people who "believe in", or advocate, evolution. Since evolutionist is actually a word, I suggest we stick with it.

  11. #211
    Although I've been brought up to call them "scientists," I sit corrected. I had no idea that the term had ever been used except by those on the other side of the debate. If my experiments fail today I will still have learned something.

  12. #212
    Daniika Rain
    Ah..."scientists", of course! I'm kinda in favour of that, but there is such thing as a scientist who doesn't agree with evolution.

  13. #213
    While examples exist, I think they're largely people who have a nonscientific agenda to support. I'm not saying it's impossible to scientifically oppose evolution, just that nobody ever seems to do a particularly good job of it.

  14. #214
    Daniika Rain

  15. #215

    sorry long post

    Great thread! I have been working and teaching in this area for a couple of decades (molecular biology, embryology) and its good to see people thinking about such deep issues.

    In the spirit of moving the discussion along I want to clear up a couple of recurrent misconceptions about evolution.

    The first is about the alleged flaw in the theory of evolution manifested in the lack of intermediates. This isn't a flaw at all - its a hang over from the days when we didn't know much about the molecular biology of evolution. The fact is that the anatomy of organisms can change (evolve) dramatically in very short periods of time and without the need for intermediates. Another way of looking at this is the recurrent idea that evolutionhappens through very gradual changes in morphology (anatomy) over time. SquidDNA gave the example of how slightly smaller animals can open up new econiches for themselves and have a sudden edge in survival. While that happens it is also true that drastic changes in body plans do happen very quickly and there is a clear understanding now of how that happens.

    first the opposing argument from the sceptics:

    To get started unraveling this mystery we must first look at the supposed evidence that proves evolution. The fossil record is supposedly one of evolution’s strongest defenses. The only problem is that they don’t tell you what the fossil record really shows. Charles Darwin, the founder of the evolutionary theory, was worried because the fossil record did not show what he had predicted about the links between species:

    "Why is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory."

    The reason why this is so detrimental to Darwin’s theory is that if all living things evolved form other living things then there would be plenty of transitional or intermediate forms along the way. But as Darwin pointed out, the fossil record does not support this. It only shows the abrupt appearance of fully formed species. Since the evidence is truly against them, evolutionists have since invented entire intermediates out of a few bones. One of these is called Ramapithecus, and it was based entirely on jaw and teeth fragments. For more 20 years Ramapithecus was proudly displayed as man’s first direct ancestor in museums across the country. Then when a complete jaw was found evolutionists where forced to admit that Ramapithecus was actually a relative of the orangutan and not at all a link between ape and man.
    Natural selection by itself is a huge stumbling block for evolution. The problem is that natural selection only kills off unfit species and does not create new ones. Darwin tried to combat this by saying that these new organisms arrived through mutations of the genes. Evolutionists say the formations of a new and distinct species is due to an accumulation of mutations. This process has never been observed at all anywhere in the world. In fact, all the evidence shows just the opposite. Mutations do not increase the viability of the affected organism, they are almost universally harmful and cause the opposite effects; death and disease, not increasing order and complexity. Mutations only change existing information, never adding new information. The odds for mutations occurring with no radioactive intervention are 1 to 10,000 to 1 in 1 million, per gene, per generation. To add to the problem, 99 percent of all mutations are lethal. Furthermore, mutations are very rare, so imagine millions upon millions of beneficial mutations required to formulate the world as we know it. This surely staggers the imagination and requires immense faith to believe.

    If these mutations supposedly happened over millions and millions of years, we should have easily found the ape-to-man transition stage. But all supposed ape-men, Lucy, Nebraska-Man, Java-Man etc., have all been discredited. Scientists have the before stage of all animals, i.e. apes, and the after stage of all animals, i.e. man, but none of the intermediates.
    Another thing evolution fail to explain is how animals got vast systems of interrelated parts, which could not have evolved in gradual fashion, unless, by some miracle, its interconnected parts also evolved at the same time. Many organs such as the eye, lungs, defense systems etc. prove this point. These systems are so complex; each one has a part that needs another one at the same time to work. This could not happen through step-by-step accidents.

    Ok so the supposed challenge to the theory is that there are radical differences between the anatomy of species. Where in the evolutionary process is there an explanation for this because the fossil record doesn't support gradual changes? In fact it shows many examples of radical changes in anatomy over short periods of evolutionary time. Or as meda asked: "how animals got vast systems of interrelated parts, which could not have evolved in gradual fashion"

    Basic Concepts (I know a lot of peeps know this but some don't - hope it helps them).

    • "Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny" When you look at the diversity of animal life it is difficult to see much anatomy in common between species. However if you look at how these organisms are built - how they develop from a single cell through embryonic development - then the similarities are obvious and the differences relatively minor. Ontogeny is this process of development of an organism from a single cell. When you look at the anatomy of embryos at different stages of development they look like the progressively more evolved (that’s to say later in evolutionary time) species. So embryos as they develop almost go through the tree of species (Phylogeny) starting with the simple progressing to more complex.
    • Evolution appears to have occurred with rapid changes punctuated by long periods of stasis. Meda said "Evolutionists own words convincingly reveal that the fossil record does not support evolution. Consider the following expectations of the fossil record if evolution were true: gradualism, simple to complex, clear-cut lineages, and identifiable common ancestors", and "If [these] mutations supposedly happened over millions and millions of years, we should have easily found the ape-to-man transition stage." Meda assumes a model of long term gradual change, usually referred to as "phyletic gradualism". It is essentially a 19th century Darwinian idea that species evolve at a more or less steady rate - that there is slow progressive change of one species into the next. Over the last few decades, this model has been challenged by paleontologists (heh we evolved a new one ). Fossil evidence indicates that some species remained essentially the same for millions of years and then underwent short periods of very rapid change. This model is called "punctuated equilibrium".
    • DNA (makes RNA) makes Proteins Our bodies are made with or by the actions of proteins. Our genes (stretches of DNA) are templates that code for our various protein molecules. The way that proteins are made is that a copy of the DNA code is made into RNA that is a messenger molecule. RNA then travels to the protein synthesizing machinery in a cell and the protein is built according to the code in the RNA.
    • The only thing passed on from generation to generation is DNA So evolved characteristics must reflect changes in DNA. It’s the only way to pass a change on.
    • A very small component of the genome (our total DNA) is made up of genes. Most of the DNA in our cells does not code for any protein. There are long stretches of DNA that are regulatory sites (switches) that turn genes on and off. Also the genes themselves are interrupted so that you think of a gene as analogous to a paragraph in a novel there would be maybe 50 interruptions of strings of nonsensical letters (called introns) that chop the gene into small coding fragments (called exons).
    • Not all genes are structural genes expressed as visible traits. As molecular biologists characterize the genes that make up animal genomes they find different types of genes. Some genes code for proteins that make things we can see directly such skin or eye pigments, muscle proteins, hair, blood groups, and all the various so called structural components of the body - the bricks and mortar. However many genes do not code for structural genes. These genes are mainly regulatory genes they code for proteins that themselves bind to genes (they interact with the DNA molecule) and regulate the expression of genes.
    • Some proteins bind to DNA and regulate the expression of genes. Simplistically it is like a cascade. There may be one master gene that codes for a protein molecule that is a DNA-binding protein. This protein stays in the cell nucleus and binds to regulatory sites on the target DNA (specific sequences of DNA bases) and activates "downstream" genes that in turn make proteins that go on to activate whole banks of other genes. Structural genes are usually at the end of the cascade or regulatory ladder. All genes are regulated by DNA-binding proteins and there may be many sites of regulation for a given gene with some regulatory proteins promoting expression and some inhibiting expression. The regulators compete and the end result is a kind of equilibrium where the gene is expressed to a certain degree but could be turned more on or off to a varying degree.

    Why all this Molecular Biology matters for understanding Evolution

    The basic question is how can mutations in your structural genes (eye color or blood type as an example) make a monkey into a man. The simple answer is they can’t. Such mutations are not the mechanism of new species.

    To understand how gene mutations can make new species you need to look to all that molecular biology stuff above. There are master genes that control or activate the expression of whole banks of genes that in turn go on to make whole organs or body parts. Often many regulatory genes combine in effect and specific patters in time and space to make a body - its like an elaborate military plan with a whole sequence of events happening in very specific order. Mess up the order mess up the outcome.

    Scientists identified these master genes (called homeobox genes) in the fruit fly drosophila melanogaster. They found them by looking for animals that had gross deformities like two sets of wings or no eyes, and found the genes that mutated to cause those malformations. They turned out to be master genes of the kind I described above.

    Molecular Biology of drastic changes in anatomy

    Ok so what? There are master genes that switch on whole banks of genes that go on to make whole organs and limbs - what does that have to do with evolution? - everything. Simple mutations in those master genes make subtle changes in the proteins they code for and this means that these proteins have altered affinity for the target DNA site. So a change in a single amino acid means that instead of binding to one regulatory site on gene A the protein now binds to another site on gene B. Since these are master regulatory genes now whole banks of genes activate at a new point in time.

    Read that twice if it doesn't sound profoundly important because it is.

    The punchline or one way of putting a foot in your mouth?

    The beauty of science is that when we have theories we can actually test them by experiment. So here is an example. We take a regulatory gene in a fly, mutate it and put it back in an egg and let an embryo develop and show that such simple mutations of regulatory genes cause massive changes in anatomy. There are many examples, this one is a mutation called antennapedia. In this mutation a normal fly mutates into an abnormal fly fly that has a pair of legs growing out of its head where antennae should be. A single gene change puts a pair of limbs where there were none.

    Molecular Evolution

    I hear the sceptics saying "well so what there are no animals that evolved with legs out of their head thats not evolution!" Well it is the mechanism of evolution. There are now many examples of mutations like antennapedia. Let me show you some really useful examples - like to fly or not to fly? Often the master regulatory genes that mutate specify how many times a group of embryonic cells divide. People have used the simple species like flies and tracked every single embryonic cell through development comparing species that have different anatomy. Using such detailed observation people have studied what is different between insects that fly (=have wings) versus insects that don't fly (=have no wings). Here is a article that shows the original data. They compared the development of the Grasshopper (has wings) against the Silverfish (doesn't have wings).
    Neurogenesis (makin' brain cells) was examined in the central nervous system of embryos of the primitively wingless insect, the silverfish....The silverfish has the same number and positioning of neuroblasts (precursors of brain cells - like grandfather cells) as seen in more advanced insects and the relative order in which the different neuroblasts segregate from the neuroectoderm is highly conserved between the silverfish and the grasshopper, Schistocerca.....Of the 31 different neuroblasts (yup thats right they tracked every single cell and gave them all names) found in a thoracic segment, one (NB 6-3) has a much longer proliferative period in silverfish......Both insects have similar periods of abdominal neurogenesis except that in the silverfish terminal ganglion, a prominent set of neuroblasts continues dividing until close to hatching.........This comparison between silverfish and grasshopper shows that the shift from wingless to flying insects was not accompanied by the addition of any new neuronal lineages in the thorax. Instead, selected lineages undergo a proliferative expansion to supply the additional neurons presumably needed for flight.
    I hope that all makes sense but what it adds up to is that the nervous system apparatus that controls a whole wing can be the result of a few extra cell division cycles in a single cell in an embryo. Now you can see how single regulatory gene changes can do drastic things that will cause rapid evolution. There are many more examples but I'm not going to labor this - if you're not convinced I can post more examples.

    General Principles

    Most of the anatomical changes that are the basis of evolution of organisms are simple changes in the sequence of events in early embryonic development. The earlier embryos of different species are, the more alike they are, and along the process of development small differences emerge that add up to a whole lot of difference in the grown animal.

    Genes active in early embryonic development organize the whole business of building body parts. When scientists looked at regulatory genes in different species they found that the master genes in species that are hundreds of millions of years apart in evolution are highly similar. The same master genes are present in flies as in humans! However the structural genes (bricks and mortar) have diverged greatly.

    How powerful are these genes? Have you ever seen an animal "mutate" into a different species? The answer is yes. If you are not convinced think about the metamorphosis of a tadpole into a frog. This is triggered by the action of a few master genes. It’s a fascinating area of biology by the way if we understood the gene switches better we could make human amputees regenerate whole limbs just as amphibians can do. As we evolved we lost the switching capability but many species can do it.

    Now we know that these are the very genes that when damaged cause cancer. Cancer is often activation of a gene (by a virus or a mutation) that was responsible for triggering a period of rapid cell division in an embryo getting switched on again in an adult and all of a sudden cell division gets out of control = tumor. Mutations causing this kind of problem are often in those silent or non-coding stretches of DNA that affect the regulation of gene expression rather than any structural proteins.

    There are many more examples and much more science to the story. The point though is that much of evolution has occurred through changes in regulation of gene expression during embryonic development. Most such mutations are lethal but some are highly advantageous and have resulted in rapid evolutionary changes. Remember this isn't conjecture or speculation - we can reproduce this in the lab and make embryos morph into radically different creatures.

    For those who are interested here is a link to a site that reviews a lot of the biology of the fruitfly that relates to embryonic development and genes.

    PostScript - the evolution of the Brain

    My area of research has been in the study of the evolution and embryonic development of the brain. If you've bothered to read this far I'm assuming you're interested so I'm going to give one final example of how a couple of relatively simple mutations can have enormous and profound effects on the evolution of species - the evolution of higher brain function. How did it happen that we rocketed ahead of the apes in such a short timespan?

    We know that most of the complex wiring of the brain that subserves higher brain functions occurs after birth, way after embryonic development, and IS NOT specified in the genetic code. Thats to say nurture > nature as far as personality and intellect goes. The subleties that make a Mozart or an Einstein largely occur after birth and are the result of the interaction of the brain with the environment. Early childhood experiences actually shape the way our brains wire up and determine many of our personality, intellectual, and athletic attributes. In short (and to simplify to make a point) the DNA template codes for a blank sheet of brain cells. Experience after birth forges into that sheet of brain tissue a human mind (assuming you accept that the mind is in the brain).

    So how could human intelligence evolve in keeping with what I have said about mechanisms of evolution? At first it might seem hopelessly complex to begin to understand why humans are so different from chimps. There are many similarities. First the DNA sequences (chimp/human) are >98% homologous - thats right there's hardly any difference in the genetic codes to explain the differences in intellect between us and the monkeys.

    The embryos and their developmental anatomy are almost identical. In both the brain starts as a simple structure that is like a sheet of paper rolled into a tube (the neural tube). Then at the top end (the brain part) the wall of the tube thickens and grandfather cells (neuroblasts) furiously divide in the inner part of the tube and migrate to the outer surface to form brain cells of the cerebral cortex. There is a cool animation here. But this just puts the component brain cells in the right place.

    Differences? - We do know that the human brain has enlarged rapidly in recent evolutionary time. Early transitional humans had significantly larger brains than the great apes.

    Adult cranial capacity (range in cm3)
    • chimpanzees 300-500
    • early transitional humans 500-750
    • modern humans 900-2300

    The biggest difference between the brains of chimpanzees and humans is in the area of cerebral cortex which is that outer convoluted sheet of gray matter that is spread over the surface of the cerebral hemispheres. Humans have more than double the amount that chimps do. Pasko Rakic at Yale who is the leading world expert on the anatomy of the cerebral cortex has estimated that all it would take to explain the difference is one or two more cycles of cell division of some of the early grandfather cells in the embryonic brain and voila you have twice or four times as much as much cerebral cortex! Its that simple. The DNA doesnt need to code for Shakespeare or Mozart or Einstein it just mutated to make a bigger sheet of cells. As a result we have areas of cerebral cortex that can serve integrated and complicated functions subserving language, analytical thinking, and memory that outperform the chimp so drastically that we are sitting at our computers and they're still in the same habitat they were in 4 million years ago. Hardly any DNA mutation but it affected cell division in the embryonic brain millions of years ago and we got an extra helping.

    Couple that with a mutation that rotated the thumb the "wrong" way so it opposed the other fingers and another mutation that made the larynx bigger and allowed speech....You get the picture - its not linear - change some things and the effect is catastrophic. Change others and its not noticable.

    So part of the reason for rapid evolutionary change is that critical genes are affected. There is no telling what mutations will do - it is not subtle and gradual, it is spectacular and sudden.

    To those people who think human evolution is over now that we all live in a comfortable habitat - bah gg

  16. #216
    Holy F_ckin Sh*t!!! You guys are still debating this?:yas: Evolution is real and a fact so leave it at that you creationists! Whoops, now i just added to this debate

  17. General Discussions Senior Member  #217
    terrible, terrible damage Starfisher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Budd Lake, NJ
    And thats that.

    [Edit] Colorful way of saying, "That's that" pimpster... [/Edit]

  18. #218
    Wow.. I've just been outclassed.

    Beltemall, where are you? What are you researching?

  19. Child's Play Donor  #219
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    wow uh can you two be my biology tutor

  20. #220
    Squid's got competition...

    This is definitely archive material now. Best discussion on it we've had so far, I think...

  21. #221
    How did God get there you say? A lot of ppl ask that question. I just think its more likely that something not limited by physics and logic and time would "just exist" than something as relatively limited and finite as this physical reality.

  22. #222
    Don't get me wrong, I think way back when this thread started that i said that god could exist, just that evolution is still correct. Hmm... That is confusing, ok what i mean is for all we know God sent a bunch of asteroids hurling towards the earth to start the evolution process. For all we know god might talk in binary, he might even be a large breast


    --PIMPSTER WAS HERE... and now I will go and watch TV. Crap I've got school tommorow well if I'm not on later today, I won't be on till friday with all the Homework I get
    Last edited by JargonFilter; 15th Sep 02 at 5:19 PM.

  23. #223
    There are still problems with evolution, it is by no means a complete theory. But as it is it makes a lot of sense, for the most part.

  24. #224
    The problem with the bible is that the as soon as you see a bible you see a priest or something with it. I believe in god an the bible, but I don't take everything literally, cause if i did, I'd have slaves, and be sleeping with them and be stoning every girl that walks past me. The bible is a collection of storys on how we should live our lives, it teaches us to forgive others and to love each other. The church on the other hand is just a tool that trys to control people, just like every government. Don't get me wrong, but I don't trust the church for anything everyone of those preist or bishops in there is just trying to get ahead, and have more power. Because really look at it, back in the 50's they said that rock and roll is the tool of the devil and parents protest and protest it. They say give us money, what do we do, give and give and give. In the past, before people really listened to the chruch like 1800's and before, what ever the chruch said went. Today its at its lowest point, like technically if a person is devorced they cannot marry again, but if you donate enough money to the church they you are great, and you are obsoloved from you sins, and you can marry 5 times again if you want. All they care about is the money. Its just like police or anyther profession that helps people. In the begining a young priest really cares, and actually trys to help. Then after a few years, its "Ok what did you do? Yea that'll be $50." See It makes no sense to me the people that own the most land in the whole world can be broke all the time. If you really read the bible, Jesus was a normal guy that hung out with normal every day workers all trying to have a better life for them selves and their kids. Basically his message, was be kind and love each other, and believe in my father. Thats it, but when you go and analize ever word in a book that has been translated at least a dozen times, the words start to become very misconstruted.

    Evolution on the other hand, Is probably true, but we really haven't been aware of it long enought to really see if its true or not. Yea you can do experiments on fly or somethig that has a short life span a brieds quickly, but that isn't really ure nature, and thats mostly what evoluion is about. We are looking at fossils that can prove the theory and disprove it at the same time, with the same fossil. So until we can really watch to world like for another 2 or 3 hundred years, we really can't be sure if its 100% or not.

  25. Child's Play Donor  #225
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    Vijil: So if God can just appear without reason or logic, why not electric motors?

  26. #226
    Daniika Rain
    I can understand Higaran's jaded viewpoint, but I don't think it's very accurate. I've met some bad priests who really do seem pretty much egoistic and intent on furthering their own agenda, and I've met some priests who I would be truly proud to call my friends. Religion can be seen in two ways: either as a tool to guide people, or as a tool to control them. Any kind of structured system designed to teach people certain values can be used to control those people just as easily, and there will always be people willing to take advantage of that, but it doesn't mean religion is inherently bad. It just means people are.

    Regarding Mac's question, I think that could be answered by the fact God is not governed by the laws of physics, so it's a comparison between the proverbial apples and oranges. Now, I entirely disagree with the idea of a god (Occam's Razor says it's the less likely option, since it's more complex, and I've definitely learned that the universe always takes the simplest route)...but it doesn't seem unreasonable to argue that the same laws of logic don't apply to him as to evolution.

  27. Child's Play Donor  #227
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    Jan 2000
    so basicly we make special condition for God because we want to believe in Him, but we're pretty sure someone has to have designed the electric motor? How is 'a realm beyond reasoning' reasonable? If God is not bond by anything, and he also interacts with this place, how DO YOU KNOW he didn't make it rain electric motors?

    [09:48] <Mac_Bug> electric motors can do anything in lalaland
    [09:48] <Mac_Bug> they're not bond by logic!
    [09:49] <dukath|homm4> so they can have children?
    [09:49] <Mac_Bug> maybe
    [09:49] <dukath|homm4> ooooh i get it
    [09:49] <dukath|homm4> god created the world and the electric engine created the electricity and all the virtual worlds on the internet
    [09:50] <dukath|homm4> k
    [09:50] <Mac_Bug> YES
    [09:50] <Mac_Bug> and you can't argue with me
    [09:50] <Mac_Bug> because electric engine is beyond our logic
    [09:50] <Gazbeans> ignorance is strength
    [09:50] <Mac_Bug> and has always existed
    [09:50] <Mokona|work> hail MacBug
    [09:50] <Mokona|work> our new prophet
    [09:50] <Mokona|work> i will cast aside my anime girls
    [09:50] <pik0r> MOKACHU!
    [09:50] <Mokona|work> and devote my life to learning the MacBug way
    Last edited by Mac_Bug; 16th Sep 02 at 10:08 AM.

  28. #228
    That's hardly fair. It's entirely reasonable to say that God interacts with the universe in ways which are logical, but indistinguishable from naturally occuring events, however freakishly unlikely, while God himself, as an entity outisde the universe, isn't bound by the laws he created to run that universe.

  29. Child's Play Donor  #229
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    Therefore it is also reasonable to say that electric engine interacts with the universe in ways which are logical, but inddistinguishable from naturally occuring events, however freakishly unlikely, while electric engine itself, as an entity outside the universe, isn't bound by the laws he created to run that universe. Therefore when you see an electric engine on the road, it is entirely possible that it has no creator.

  30. #230
    But what of the people whose job it is to create electric engines? Or the patents for them, demonstrating that in recent history, people invented them?

    While it's easy to draw broad anthropological conclusions regarding human nature and the need for deities, there's actual documented evidence showing that electric engines are human in origin, and thus have creators, while the origin of an equally real God is unknown and / or meaningless.

    On the other hand, if you wanted to say that the Universe was created by an electric engine and that the electric engines we make are the living bodies of that creator, of whom we are but tools it uses in craft, then yes, you have an equally valid argument.

  31. #231
    Daniika Rain alot of the priests that had sex with little boys were considerd pillars of the community and were great friends with everyone. Don't get me wrong I'm not saying that ALL the preists are corrupt, I do feel however that most of the higher ranking officials are. Except for the pope, most of those bishops and arch bishops in the Vatican are a bunch of guys just trying to make a run to be pope, and thats what they really care about. The church since its opening has been a tool to control people, expecially in the middel ages, every king or lord or who ever that had power, was controled by the chruch. Think about it, if everyone who had any power went against the chruch then they were over thrown or killed. My mom tells me when she was a little girl she went to chruch at least 5 times a week. What ever the priest said they did, thats just how it was. Look at the Omish or mormons , they can't swear or drink alochol. I don't drink my self, but I don't see any where where is says its a sin. Even Jesus turned water into wine for that one party of his aunts. Do you see what I'm saying, the bible isn't about all this krap of don't do this or don't do that or you going to hell, which is basically what the church is saying. Its about that every one should love and help each other and our lives would be soo much better we would still be living in paradise. If you really look at the chruch its racist, sexist, and hipocrytic of everthing that it preaches. Thats why I don't believe in it, but I do believe in the message that the bible is really about. That huge book, is really all about 3 things, peace, unity, and love.

  32. Child's Play Donor  #232
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    Regarding Hell, I'm not sure where in the passage of the Bible it was mentioned, since Jehovah's Witnesses claim there is no such thing as Hell.

  33. #233
    Scream for me baby! El Russo's Avatar
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    London, UK
    i can't believe this has lasted so long. a few things noticed...

    squid is no longer the ultimate ruler of all things biology. haha!

    daniika is some kind of sharp-shooter intent on replying to everything! and doing that well without diluting her own quality.

    people who say "evolution rules, deal with it" are not only not adding nothing but decreasing the legitimacy of what they are saying (and therefore the legitimacy of evolution in this particular instance) by making themselves appear as ignorant as those who they think ARE ignorant. way to sink your own ships! not that what is being said is wrong, but the way of saying it.

  34. #234
    El Russo, Beltemall is another biology professional, one who appears to be much further in his or her career than I am. However, I hereby challenge Beltemall to a Biology showdown to defend my Fleet Biologist title!

    Or something.

  35. #235
    I never said God was any one thing (electric motor or super banana) in particular, that is irrelevant, just that I believe there is something higher. Enough with the flawed folksy strawman analogies already.

    As for Hell, it is mentioned in revelation as the "Lake of Fire" where Satan will be cast eventually. This is not literal really, it is explained elsewhere that Hell means nothing more than eternal seperation from God. Which, assuming there is a God, would not be a good thing. Firey torment of the soul and all.

    Can't say I don't agree with Higaran on many of his points.

  36. #236

    You do know that there is no answer for all this argument, right? That is the reason religion is based on faith, and science is based on theory. And never the two shall meet...

    Or is there?

    For example, if you take the Christian view that the world was created in seven days, you can take that either literally (7, separate, consecutive 24 hour time periods), or the almost certain geological fact of the earth taking millions of years to complete any revolution (I.E. Dead Spin until an E.L.E.- type asteroid, or similar event). In this example (like millions of others) the scientific and the bibical can co-exist.

    You also have to be extremely arrogant to believe that God (if you beleive in her, or whatever you call her) went straight verbatim with us with our piddly little brains.

    God (if you beleive in said, or Allah, etc, if you prefer) is a being with a maginitude more intelligence than we posess. Any communication about our origins would have had to occur on the simplist terms. It's Stephen Hawkings explaining daylight to a fungus. Maybe even more extreme than that.

    So let us agree to disagree. My vote is to have this unfortunate thread LOCKED

    Fact of the matter is, none of us KNOW any it. so quite arguing.

    Moderator, lock it?

  37. #237
    Pale, did you even read this thread? Your points have been covered again and again. I feel we're onto other things now. As such, the topic is still viable as a discussion of the validity of institutional religion, and it looks like we just got done with an illogical creator being able to interact with a logical universe.

    But I take offense at your tone. For your superior attitude, you've contributed very little to a discussion where others have contributed much, and more you have dismissed participants as "kids."

    Still, since it has wandered so far off topic and has kind of petered out in the last page or so, some may see it as a blight on the first page, so if the moderators deem it such...

  38. #238
    I am VERY sorry if I came across as being condescending; I did not mean it as such. I routinely say "kids" to my coworkers (all of whcih are older than I am) and my friends; it is just a matter of speech for me; I'm extremely sorry if offended anyone.

    I only want threads of this ilk locked because it alienates some board memebers, at least those I knew back when I used to post years ago. [mea cupla]

  39. #239
    pale: I hate to bring it up, but...

    In english, "he", "him" etc. (the male) is the default article when referring to a genderless object or person such as God, regardless of peoples views on the matter. You have used "her".

    This is incorrect grammar when used in this context. Otherwise, "him/her" or "it" will suffice. Just thought I'd clear that up. I take issue with sexists, be they feminist or the opposite. No offence...

    /me ducks

    btw, kudos for the good attitude El Russo.

  40. #240
    I'm sorry if the use of a femine "her" bothers you; didn't mean it that way. As I have a Master's Degree in Engilsh, and a minor in Religion, I think it is important to note that not all religions view their creator as a male. Sorry if that was offensive to you.

  41. #241
    Regarding Hell, I'm not sure where in the passage of the Bible it was mentioned, since Jehovah's Witnesses claim there is no such thing as Hell.
    Technically speaking the concept of hell, or of heaven for that matter, developed rather late in the history of judaism, and was a very new concept during Jesus' time. If you look at words actually spoken by Jesus (Supposedly) you will find not a single reference (Except in passing in a single parable, which we all acknowledge are not to be taken literally).

    Just so you know.


  42. #242
    Daniika Rain
    Regarding pale's previous comments about these kinds of discussions "alienating" board members...I feel it should be pointed out that any discussion alienates someone. I mean, not to put too fine a point on it, but duh? The "What if: unified world government" thread now has 52 comments, which is a reasonable number, and I haven't been tempted to post there. I'm not interested in it. Call it alienation if you want. I thought the point of threads was to provide a means of discourse between people of similar interests, not to try to make something that absolutely everyone would post in...

    Really not sure what pale's point was here, to be honest. If someone had felt so alienated by this thread that they couldn't take it, I'm sure it would have been called to our attention by now.

  43. #243
    I agree, if you don't believe in evolution or religon, or either, then post that you don't believe. This is a topic that everyone can have an opinion on.

  44. #244
    Daniika: what pale meant I think was that people with the minority opinions (myself, Higaran etc.) tend to be ganged up on, whether ppl are being malicious or not. It seems the fact that we have minority opinions is enough to alienate us. When ppl start telling us how utterly ridiculous our opinions are, it's hard not to feel alienated. I know we should be "oh but that's just their opinion", and happy and tolerant and all, but even still...

  45. General Discussions Senior Member  #245
    terrible, terrible damage Starfisher's Avatar
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    Budd Lake, NJ
    Debates alienate those who get too much into it. I mean, If you can't look at what you are saying and revise it according to what others say, then you are being intolerant, not they.

    Of course, if someone flamed you and said you were stupid, then sure, you're alienated. But this was a remarkably gentle-man like discussion of something that usually degenerates into violent flaming... could you point out where you were mocked?

  46. #246
    I'm talking in general. And no, I can't be bothered going through 17 pages of colossal posts to find where I was mocked. Overall I must say that it has been a gentlemanly argument, for the most part. I have learned much

    If you can't look at what you are saying and revise it according to what others say, then you are being intolerant, not they.
    This requires that I accept what others say, which has not usually been the case. As for tolerance, that is a huge issue in itself.

  47. General Discussions Senior Member  #247
    terrible, terrible damage Starfisher's Avatar
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    Budd Lake, NJ
    If you say that giant flaming chicken is taking over the white house and will soon lead a violent insurrection of chickesn worldwide, and provide thought-provoking evidence or logic, then yes, no matter how little I agreed with you, I would have to revise my current beliefs to take into account the new information.

    wow.. thats my best random example ever!!

  48. #248
    well I could argue at length on this...

    but that would be OT and a complete waste of time.

  49. Child's Play Donor  #249
    senile member Mac_Bug's Avatar
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    If my opinion of your opinion is that your opinion is stupid, then it is my opinion that your opinion is stupid. Consequently, if you think my opinions are crap, then your opinion of my opinions is that my opinions are crap. There is no round about way to say it, would you rather prefer cherry on top?

    Playing whether or not the earth is round case aside, we might as well talk about 1 + 1 = 2 because that's about the only thing we could potentially all agree upon.

  50. #250
    the trick is to not deal in opinions. deal in facts. when facts are bandied about, opinions have no place; and persistence in not accepting them is ignorance of the first order.

    if you cant lend anything to a discussion except opinions, unless opinions are whats wanted, then dont step into it.
    the exception to this rule being if you have the flexibility and objectivity to represent a point of view that is either unrepresented or poorly represented by the people currently representing it... quite apart from your own views. thats called perspective. playing the devils advocate is an educational experience.

    if all you want to do is stick by your guns, intellectually bludgeon people and have a good old argument because everyone else is wrong while believing that it and you actually matter, you cant play the game. and youre firmly below the people who can.

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