Author Topic: Evolution for Beginners  (Read 42791 times)

Offline TJ

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #90 on: February 01, 2017, 01:46:59 AM »
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I think we should have an Evolution sticky post to refer to and add to whenever we get an inquiring newbie or even an obstinate creationist.

'Evolution' is a funny word. There is no reason why a person could believe in the following forms of 'evolution' and not be a creationist:

1) Microbial evolution. This is a form of micro-evolution. Microbes are subject to mutations and can adapt. They still remain microbes.

2) Speciation. 'Species' is also a funny word. However, there is no reason to believe that a particular species cannot change into a closely related sister species (as defined by scientists). This is also micro-evolution. The species still remains as one biblical 'kind.' One can see a finch species become another finch species (yet still remain finches.)

These are the types of evolution that a creationist with a knowledge of science need not to accept, since the evidence is lacking:

1) Macro-evolution. Seeing one type of animal evolve into an entirely different type of animal. For example, a dog-like animal evolving into a bear-like animal. This has never been observed and isn't supported by the fossil record, which shows stasis (giving rise to the Punctuated Equilibrium hypothesis).

2) Chemical evolution. Otherwise known as abiogenesis. The hypothesis that life arose from natural chemical reactions. This is unobserved, non-repeatable. The mechanisms of how this was supposed to have happened are currently not established.

Here is what a creationist would need to believe in a naturalistic explanation of all life (and this list is by no means exhaustive):

1) Multiple examples of macro-evolution (examples cannot be explained by other means).
2) A convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the stasis seen in the fossil record.
3) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the "big bangs" of species appearing after mass extinctions in the fossil record.
4) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the "big bang" of mankind's unique behavior bursting onto the archeological scene, with all the traits seen in modern humans, with no such behaviors observed in the archeological record "evolving" from the hominids.
5) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for why 50% - 80% of all known phylas appeared within, arguably, a 3 million year time period in the Cambrian Explosion.
6) Convincing explanation for why the Long Term Evolution Experiment, decades of mutations experiments with fruit flies, and 70 years of plant mutation experiments have never produced the results that evolutionists expected.
7) Any convincing explanation, which should be repeatable, for abiogenesis.

Offline TJ

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #91 on: February 01, 2017, 02:00:25 AM »
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Life simply *IS*.  It is inwardly-directed, not outwardly.  No deity determines which frog eggs mature to reproduce.  No deity decided that peacocks would have fancy tails.  No deity chose anyone or group to survive or thrive.  No deity supports US.

As the saying goes, the survival of the fittest does not explain the ARRIVAL of the fittest.

Life exists. It is all around us. We are alive, or living beings, creatures, either intentionally (intelligently) made/designed or the product of time, a lot of time and chance, and unintentional in design and in purpose or function. But we're alive! Even the most ardent skeptic must accept this.

So how does that help us, or answer the question, What is the origin of life?

Here is an argument which I believe demonstrates sufficiently the origin of life is life, and therefore life must ultimately be eternal, since we are alive now. According to how we generally consider a matter to be "scientific," that is, by having sufficiently demonstrable results according to a repeated and testable process, I believe this argument fits the requirements for being accepted as the best available means of reliably explaining the origin of life:

    1) Life exists.

    2) Based on all known, shared, and/or otherwise available scientific study and information life can only come from something or from someone already alive or living.

    3) Therefore, since based on all known, shared, and/or otherwise available scientific study and information life can only come from something or from someone already alive or living, the origin of life must be life, or something or someone already alive.

    4) Further, and based on the above, namely, all known, shared, and/or otherwise available scientific study and information shows us without exception life can only come from something or from someone already alive or living, life must be considered eternal (without any beginning or start from non-life) because life is here now.

I also believe the above argument sufficiently responds to any argument which claims not to be able to account for the origin of life as life itself, or as something or someone already alive or living. This also means it is scientific to say life is eternal. This provides a basis for claiming it is scientific to believe "God" or some other superhuman being or alien is also eternal.

Offline Hydra009

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #92 on: February 01, 2017, 02:15:15 AM »
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a creationist with a knowledge of science
So basically, a unicorn.

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need not to accept, since the evidence is lacking:
Am I replying to a creationist right now?

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1) Macro-evolution. Seeing one type of animal evolve into an entirely different type of animal.
That's not what macroevolution (or any form of evolution) is.  Evolution involves gradations, creationism is the one that makes leaps.  You must have the two confused.

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For example, a dog-like animal evolving into a bear-like animal.
Not directly, obviously.  Only a complete idiot (or a creationist) would expect that.

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This has never been observed and isn't supported by the fossil record
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Offline TJ

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #93 on: February 01, 2017, 03:30:56 AM »
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So basically, a unicorn.

So you are suggesting that the founding fathers of modern science (Galileo, Bacon, Newton, Einstein etc.) were unicorns?

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That's not what macroevolution (or any form of evolution) is.  Evolution involves gradations, creationism is the one that makes leaps.  You must have the two confused

No confusion. The theory of evolution asserts that humans evolved from fish. That's a pretty big leap.

The basic definition of the *word* Evolution is simply " to change over time", which I think every informed creationist agrees with: Tails get shorter or longer, certain species become extinct while others flourish, etc.

Then there's the *theory* of Evolution: Organic evolution is the theory that the first living organism developed from lifeless matter. Then, as it reproduced, it is said, it changed into different kinds of living things, ultimately producing all forms of plant and animal life that have ever existed on this earth. All of this is said to have been accomplished without the supernatural intervention of a Creator.

As one geneticist said: "The scientific community is well aware of the complexity found in life. But these fascinating facts are generally presented in a strong evolutionary context. In my mind, however, the arguments against the Bible account of creation fall apart when subjected to scientific scrutiny. I have examined such arguments over decades. After much careful study of living things and consideration of the way the laws governing the universe seem perfectly adjusted so that life on earth can exist, I am compelled to believe in a Creator."

Actually...

Claiming that fossils are transitional dog-bear forms is a blatant assumption, not a fact.

Evolutionists refer to the entire collection of organisms between two points in time as 'transitionals.' Implicit in this reference is the assumption that evolution must be true.

When evolutionary biologists have no real understanding of the precise evolutionary pathway that connects two organisms, they remain convinced that one must exist.

Biblical creationism predicts that:

1) Forms appear suddenly in the fossil record.
2) They remain essentially unaltered.
3) They are optimal as soon as they appear.

Evolutionary theory predicts that:

1) New forms should appear gradually in the fossil record.
2) Gradual evolutionary forms between different types should be evident.
2) Some transitional forms should appear crude and inefficient.

The fossil record matches the creation model, not the evolutionary model.

Offline TJ

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #94 on: February 01, 2017, 03:59:42 AM »
And as for the so-called "vestigal" dew claw on the inner side of the dog's hind leg, it is not vestigal at all. It is a functional structure.

When the dog runs it can make contact with the ground, and the dog uses it when making quick turns.  Even if the claw does not make contact with the ground, or take any weight, the dog can use it to scratch itself to remove irritants from around eyes, ears and in its fur.  In some dogs it is robust enough to be used to help manipulate objects, such as bones and sticks.

Some larger breeds e.g. Rottweiler, German Shepherd etc. can have two or three “toes/nails” on the rear dewclaw, and are these are usually unattached by bone.  These dewclaws can be used for grooming, scratching and clasping, and even in play or hunting.

And not all dog breeds have dewclaws.  Our domestic breeds are often quite removed and different from wild dogs due to selective breeding.

In some breeds the dewclaw is present but lacks the muscle and tendons needed to make it useful, and in these cases it could be called “vestigial”.  However, this is not evidence for evolution.  It just means that a functional claw has become degenerate and lost part of its structure, and is no longer useful. 

Offline TJ

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #95 on: February 01, 2017, 04:10:42 AM »
"Vestigial" features is not a good argument for evolutionists.

For example, they say 'A' is a vestigial organ, and is evidence for evolution.' Then, a few years later, A is shown to have function.

Does that mean that A now disproves evolution? No, evolutionists don't accept that, and the old 'evidence' is quietly sweep under the rug.

Evolution would predict vestigial organs. Creation would predict function for all organs. Scientific findings show that all organs have function. Organs that are thought to have no function are shown to have function. Thus, creation has fulfilled scientific predictions.

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #96 on: February 01, 2017, 05:02:15 AM »
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'Evolution' is a funny word. There is no reason why a person could believe in the following forms of 'evolution' and not be a creationist:

1) Microbial evolution. This is a form of micro-evolution. Microbes are subject to mutations and can adapt. They still remain microbes.

2) Speciation. 'Species' is also a funny word. However, there is no reason to believe that a particular species cannot change into a closely related sister species (as defined by scientists). This is also micro-evolution. The species still remains as one biblical 'kind.' One can see a finch species become another finch species (yet still remain finches.)

These are the types of evolution that a creationist with a knowledge of science need not to accept, since the evidence is lacking:

1) Macro-evolution. Seeing one type of animal evolve into an entirely different type of animal. For example, a dog-like animal evolving into a bear-like animal. This has never been observed and isn't supported by the fossil record, which shows stasis (giving rise to the Punctuated Equilibrium hypothesis).

2) Chemical evolution. Otherwise known as abiogenesis. The hypothesis that life arose from natural chemical reactions. This is unobserved, non-repeatable. The mechanisms of how this was supposed to have happened are currently not established.

Here is what a creationist would need to believe in a naturalistic explanation of all life (and this list is by no means exhaustive):

1) Multiple examples of macro-evolution (examples cannot be explained by other means).
2) A convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the stasis seen in the fossil record.
3) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the "big bangs" of species appearing after mass extinctions in the fossil record.
4) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for the "big bang" of mankind's unique behavior bursting onto the archeological scene, with all the traits seen in modern humans, with no such behaviors observed in the archeological record "evolving" from the hominids.
5) Convincing explanation, with conclusive evidence, for why 50% - 80% of all known phylas appeared within, arguably, a 3 million year time period in the Cambrian Explosion.
6) Convincing explanation for why the Long Term Evolution Experiment, decades of mutations experiments with fruit flies, and 70 years of plant mutation experiments have never produced the results that evolutionists expected.
7) Any convincing explanation, which should be repeatable, for abiogenesis.
Lol, you can't even count right.

But forget about evolution, what is the theory of creation, how does that work?
Please don't take anything I say seriously.

Offline Baruch

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #97 on: February 01, 2017, 07:22:46 AM »
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Life simply *IS*.  It is inwardly-directed, not outwardly.  No deity determines which frog eggs mature to reproduce.  No deity decided that peacocks would have fancy tails.  No deity chose anyone or group to survive or thrive.  No deity supports US.

Made up friends, do have marginal benefit, psychosomatically.
Zampa xiquihto.  Amo nimitzcuamachilia.
Say it again.  I don't understand you.

Offline PopeyesPappy

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #98 on: February 01, 2017, 07:31:50 AM »
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Please get your head out of Ken Hams ass, and spend some time at You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login reading up on what other Christians think about your beliefs on evolution.
Save a life. Adopt a Greyhound.


Offline Hydra009

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #99 on: February 01, 2017, 06:09:34 PM »
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So you are suggesting that the founding fathers of modern science (Galileo, Bacon, Newton, Einstein etc.) were unicorns?
You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login.  How many of those listed lived and died before there even was a theory of evolution via natural selection?  Everyone on your list but Einstein.

Einstein is an odd choice, btw.  He called the idea of an anthropomorphic deity "naïve" and "childlike".  And you seriously expect me to buy your obviously bullshit claim that he was a creationist?



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No confusion. The theory of evolution asserts that humans evolved from fish. That's a pretty big leap.
1) It seems like a pretty big leap only when you omit the shitload of intermediate forms.
2) Natura non facit saltus.
3) FFS, read a biology textbook or something.  You're clearly getting what can laughably be called "information" from Dr Dino or Ken Ham or some other charlatan pseudoscientist.  LRN2LRN.

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The basic definition of the *word* Evolution is simply " to change over time"
The colloquial definition of the word doesn't matter in a discussion about the scientific concept.

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Then there's the *theory* of Evolution: Organic evolution is the theory that the first living organism developed from lifeless matter.
In trying to define evolution, you actually described abiogenesis instead.  Bro, do you even science?

« Last Edit: February 01, 2017, 06:25:50 PM by Hydra009 »

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #100 on: February 01, 2017, 06:37:52 PM »











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Offline Hijiri Byakuren

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Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #101 on: February 01, 2017, 10:57:25 PM »
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No confusion. The theory of evolution asserts that humans evolved from fish. That's a pretty big leap.
Sure, we evolved from fish... if you ignore every evolutionary stage between ancient fish and modern humans.

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Then there's the *theory* of Evolution: Organic evolution is the theory that the first living organism developed from lifeless matter.
No, that's abiogenesis, which is still a hypothesis since it's yet to be observed.

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Then, as it reproduced, it is said, it changed into different kinds of living things, ultimately producing all forms of plant and animal life that have ever existed on this earth. All of this is said to have been accomplished without the supernatural intervention of a Creator.
Yup. Because we've seen it happen. It's part of why you need a new flu shot every year.

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As one geneticist said: "The scientific community is well aware of the complexity found in life. But these fascinating facts are generally presented in a strong evolutionary context. In my mind, however, the arguments against the Bible account of creation fall apart when subjected to scientific scrutiny. I have examined such arguments over decades. After much careful study of living things and consideration of the way the laws governing the universe seem perfectly adjusted so that life on earth can exist, I am compelled to believe in a Creator."
I suppose I can't fault a geneticist for being ignorant of science outside his own field; but as Stephen Hawking once said, the only thing the universe seems "fine-tuned" to do is produce black holes. Life is more of a by-product than anything else.

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Actually...

Claiming that fossils are transitional dog-bear forms is a blatant assumption, not a fact.
It's a conclusion based on skeletal comparison. Contrary to what you seem to believe, most ancestral lines have tell-tale features linking them to one or more modern lineages. That's how we know ancient land-whales were whales, for example, and not just weird-looking wolves.

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Evolutionists refer to the entire collection of organisms between two points in time as 'transitionals.' Implicit in this reference is the assumption that evolution must be true.
Every life form that has ever produced offspring is a "transitional organism." My parents are transitional organisms (between myself and my grandparents). However the term is usually reserved for specific species whose fossils are used to determine how modern features came about. That being said, "transitional" species were just as fully-formed as any other animal, and did just fine in the habitat they were adapted to at the time.

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When evolutionary biologists have no real understanding of the precise evolutionary pathway that connects two organisms, they remain convinced that one must exist.
Well when basically every other organism on Earth does it, the logical conclusion is that your mystery creature does too.

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Biblical creationism predicts that:

1) Forms appear suddenly in the fossil record.
2) They remain essentially unaltered.
3) They are optimal as soon as they appear.

Evolutionary theory predicts that:

1) New forms should appear gradually in the fossil record.
2) Gradual evolutionary forms between different types should be evident.
2) Some transitional forms should appear crude and inefficient.

The fossil record matches the creation model, not the evolutionary model.
Again, you are completely off-base. What we call transitional forms were perfectly functional in their own habitat. If they weren't they wouldn't have "transitioned" into their descendants; their line would just be extinct. Evolution only occurs in the wild when one of two things happens: either certain traits get winnowed out of the gene pool due to outside factors, or a new niche opens up that favors a particular trait. This is how you get a billion species of birds in the Galapagos Islands, but the coelacanth remains almost unchanged after hundreds of millions of years.
"Existence is beautiful, if you let it be. Life is not a question. There does not need to be an answer."
- No Man's Sky

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Online trdsf

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #102 on: February 02, 2017, 11:44:02 AM »
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Evolutionary theory predicts that:

1) New forms should appear gradually in the fossil record.
Which we see in the fossil record.  What we do not have, of course, is a complete fossil record, so there are gaps.  That's the nature of the process of fossilization.

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2) Gradual evolutionary forms between different types should be evident.
Which we see, where the fossils exist.

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2) Some transitional forms should appear crude and inefficient.
I think you mean 3, and evolution makes no such prediction.  Transitional forms should appear adapted to their then-current environment.  Evolution doesn't cause an organism to go from efficient to less efficient, even on its way to finding a better-adapted form.

Inefficiencies are caused by environmental changes occurring at a pace faster than evolutionary changes, and you are making the common error of thinking that evolution has a goal.  If evolution were goal-oriented rather than survival-oriented, temporary inefficiencies might appear en route to a newer form enabled by that inefficiency.

Instead, when we see inefficient forms, it is because the environment changed, and evolution had to play catch up.

Simple as that.

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The fossil record matches the creation model, not the evolutionary model.
Now this is just flat wrong.
"My faith in the Constitution is whole, it is complete, it is total, and I am not going to sit here and be an idle spectator to the diminution, the subversion, the destruction of the Constitution." -- Barbara Jordan

Offline Hydra009

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #103 on: February 02, 2017, 12:07:15 PM »
I'd also like to address the common creationist claim that microevolution (wolves to dogs) is indisputably true, but macroevolution (dogs to bears, fish to people, whatever other BS creationists think it means) is a lie from the pits of hell.

Microevolution and Macroevolution refer to the exact same thing, just on different timescales.  And the mechanisms driving these cumulative genetic changes are exactly the same.

Creationists are essentially arguing that erosion can change the shape of a beach but not the shape of an entire country's coastline.  This distinction is illogical and factually wrong and we all know that the underlying motivation of this sort of thinking has more to do with maintaining religious beliefs in the face of reality than anything involving science.

« Last Edit: February 02, 2017, 12:10:26 PM by Hydra009 »

Online trdsf

Re: Evolution for Beginners
« Reply #104 on: February 02, 2017, 01:04:12 PM »
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Microevolution and Macroevolution refer to the exact same thing, just on different timescales.  And the mechanisms driving these cumulative genetic changes are exactly the same.
Exactly.

Also, I've never seen any sort of case presented as to why evolution is okay on the micro scale, but not on the macro.  Creationists need to offer a mechanism for why evolution stops at the micro level, or some sort of semi-logical argument as to why it shouldn't work at larger time frames.

"It just doesn't" isn't good enough, without explaining why it doesn't.
"My faith in the Constitution is whole, it is complete, it is total, and I am not going to sit here and be an idle spectator to the diminution, the subversion, the destruction of the Constitution." -- Barbara Jordan

 

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