Meanderings on Atheism, Darwinism, and Science

I am posting this excerpt of Daniel Dennett’s response to William Lane Craig’s presentation (HERE). Dennett’s short follow up offers no defense of his atheism in light of Craig’s presentation. He basically mentions that his non-knowledge will some day be filled in (atheism-of-the-gaps). This will be followed up by a response in the comments section that made me think of this old upload on my Vimeo, and why I isolated it. The response is well thought out and will be an enjoyable read to those of us headed towards glory. I will also insert my response (mainly using Dr. Howe’s book, Vestigial Organs Are Fully Functional) to a Discover Magazine article when “Born Again 77” gets to the topic, as well as a couple other resources. Enjoy:

The original topic in which I pulled this response from can be found here at UNCOMMON DESCENT, Born Again 77 starts by quoting a previous statement by a skeptic, and then adding to his knowledge base:


Very Enjoyable Read


  • “Perhaps the gaps he is referring to are things like lightning (yep, gotta hand it to science; definitely not thrown by Zeus in piques of anger)”

Actually the ‘lightning gap’ remains un-closed:

We Don’t Actually Know What Triggers Lightning Strikes – Aug. 2013

Excerpt: Lightning is a natural electrical discharge—but scientists are still scratching their heads trying to figure out what triggers it.

Physicist finds mysterious anti-electron clouds inside thunderstorm – May 13, 2015

Excerpt: In August 2009, Dwyer and colleagues were aboard a National Center for Atmospheric Research Gulfstream V when it inadvertently flew into the extremely violent thunderstorm—and, it turned out, through a large cloud of positrons, the antimatter opposite of electrons, that should not have been there.

To encounter a cloud of positrons without other associated physical phenomena such as energetic gamma-ray emissions was completely unexpected, thoroughly perplexing and contrary to currently understood physics.

“The fact that, apparently out of nowhere, the number of positrons around us suddenly increased by more than a factor of 10 and formed a cloud around the aircraft is very hard to understand. We really have no good explanation for it,” says Dwyer…

…“We really don’t understand how lightning gets started very well because we don’t understand the electrical environment of thunderstorms. This positron phenomenon could be telling us something new about how thunderstorms charge up and make lightning, but our finding definitely complicates things because it doesn’t fit into the picture that was developing.”

Verse: “Do you send the lightning bolts on their way? Do they report to you, ‘Here we are’?” (Job 38:35)

Moreover, the ‘gap’ problem is far worse for Atheists than just not being able to explain lightning. Atheistic materialism cannot even explain how a single photon gets from point a to point b, nor even how a photon is emitted or absorbed, much less how lightning occurs:

“The path taken by the photon is not an element of reality. We are not allowed to talk about the photon passing through this or this slit. Neither are we allowed to say the photon passes through both slits. All this kind of language is not applicable.” ~ Anton Zeilinger (Double Slit, Quantum-Electrodynamics, and Christian Theism – Video)

Quantum Electrodynamics

Excerpt: It is important not to over-interpret these diagrams. Nothing is implied about how a particle gets from one point to another. The diagrams do not imply that the particles are moving in straight or curved lines. They do not imply that the particles are moving with fixed speeds. The fact that the photon is often represented, by convention, by a wavy line and not a straight one does not imply that it is thought that it is more wavelike than is an electron. The images are just symbols to represent the actions above: photons and electrons do, somehow, move from point to point and electrons, somehow, emit and absorb photons. We do not know how these things happen, but the theory tells us about the probabilities of these things happening.

Verse: “For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’” (Acts 17:28)

And although Theists are often accused of making ‘God of the Gaps’ style arguments by atheists, the fact of the matter is that, as science has progressed, it is the Atheist himself who has had to retreat further and further into ‘Materialism/Naturalism of Gaps’ style arguments. i.e. into “Science will figure a materialistic answer out to that mystery some day” style argument.

To clearly illustrate the ‘materialism of the gaps’ style argument that atheists are forced to make, the materialistic and Theistic philosophy make, and have made, several major contradictory predictions about what type of scientific evidence we will find.

These major contradictory predictions, and the evidence now revealed by advances in modern science, can be tested against one another to see if either materialism or Theism is true.

See: Theism compared to Materialism/Naturalism – a comparative overview of the major predictions of each philosophy (Video)

As you can see from the preceding video, when we remove the artificial imposition of the materialistic philosophy (methodological naturalism), from the scientific method, and look carefully at the predictions of both the materialistic philosophy and the Theistic philosophy, side by side, we find the scientific method is very good at pointing us in the direction of Theism as the true explanation. – In fact science is even very good at pointing us to Christianity as the solution for the much sought after ‘theory of everything’

See: The Resurrection of Jesus Christ from Death as the “Theory of Everything” (Video)

[See Also: The Argument from Reason (Video); The Metaphysical Assumptions of the “Scientific Method]

Moreover, let us be VERY clear to the fact that ALL of science, every discipline within science, is dependent on basic Theistic presuppositions about the rational intelligibility of the universe and the ability of our mind to comprehend that rational intelligibility….

The Great Debate: Does God Exist? – Justin Holcomb – audio of the 1985 Greg Bahnsen debate (Full audio of the debate at the bottom of the site)

Excerpt: When we go to look at the different world views that atheists and theists have, I suggest we can prove the existence of God from the impossibility of the contrary.

The transcendental proof for God’s existence is that without Him it is impossible to prove anything. The atheist worldview is irrational and cannot consistently provide the preconditions of intelligible experience, science, logic, or morality. The atheist worldview cannot allow for laws of logic, the uniformity of nature, the ability for the mind to understand the world, and moral absolutes. In that sense the atheist worldview cannot account for our debate tonight….

Moreover, if we cast aside those basic Theistic presuppositions about the rational intelligibility of the universe and the ability of our mind to comprehend that rational intelligibility, and try to use naturalism as our basis for understanding the universe, and for practicing science, then everything within that atheistic/naturalistic worldview, (i.e. sense of self. observation of reality, beliefs about reality, free will, even reality itself), collapses into self-refuting, unrestrained, flights of fantasy and imagination.

Darwinian evolution, and atheism/naturalism in general, are built entirely upon a framework of illusions and fantasy – Sept. 2016 (Google Doc)

As well, Darwinian evolution, the supposed pride and joy of Atheistic Materialism, is itself useless as a heuristic in science

  • “Darwinian explanations for such things are often too supple: Natural selection makes humans self-centered and aggressive – except when it makes them altruistic and peaceable. Or natural selection produces virile men who eagerly spread their seed – except when it prefers men who are faithful protectors and providers. When an explanation is so supple that it can explain any behavior, it is difficult to test it experimentally, much less use it as a catalyst for scientific discovery. Darwinian evolution – whatever its other virtues – does not provide a fruitful heuristic in experimental biology.”

~ Philip S. Skell – (the late) Emeritus Evan Pugh Professor at Pennsylvania State University, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. – Why Do We Invoke Darwin? – 2005

  • “In fact, over the last 100 years, almost all of biology has proceeded independent of evolution, except evolutionary biology itself. Molecular biology, biochemistry, and physiology, have not taken evolution into account at all.” 

~ Marc Kirschner, Boston Globe, Oct. 23, 2005

  • “While the great majority of biologists would probably agree with Theodosius Dobzhansky’s dictum that “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution”, most can conduct their work quite happily without particular reference to evolutionary ideas. Evolution would appear to be the indispensable unifying idea and, at the same time, a highly superflous one.”

~ A.S. Wilkins, editor of the journal BioEssays, Introduction to “Evolutionary Processes” – (2000).

Excerpt: Coincidentally, a correspondent today sends across my desk this from biologist Jerry Coyne, of Why Evolution Is True fame. Writing in Nature (“Selling Darwin”), Coyne has conceded:

“[T]ruth be told, evolution hasn’t yielded many practical or commercial benefits. Yes, bacteria evolve drug resistance, and yes, we must take countermeasures, but beyond that there is not much to say. Evolution cannot help us predict what new vaccines to manufacture because microbes evolve unpredictably. But hasn’t evolution helped guide animal and plant breeding? Not very much. Most improvement in crop plants and animals occurred long before we knew anything about evolution, and came about by people following the genetic principle of ‘like begets like’. Even now, as its practitioners admit, the field of quantitative genetics has been of little value in helping improve varieties. Future advances will almost certainly come from transgenics, which is not based on evolution at all.”

~ Doctors and Evolution – May 19, 2015

In fact, to the extent that Darwinian evolution has influenced scientific research, it has sent science down blind alleys by making wrong predictions, such as the false predictions of vestigial organs and junk DNA. The following paper evaluates 23 fundamental false predictions of evolutionary theory from a wide range of different categories

Why investigate evolution’s false predictions?

Excerpt: The predictions examined in this paper were selected according to several criteria. They cover a wide spectrum of evolutionary theory and are fundamental to the theory, reflecting major tenets of evolutionary thought. They were widely held by the consensus rather than reflecting one viewpoint of several competing viewpoints. Each prediction was a natural and fundamental expectation of the theory of evolution, and constituted mainstream evolutionary science. Furthermore, the selected predictions are not vague but rather are specific and can be objectively evaluated. They have been tested and evaluated and the outcome is not controversial or in question. And finally the predictions have implications for evolution’s (in)capacity to explain phenomena, as discussed in the conclusions.

  • “The thyroid gland, pituitary gland, thymus, pineal gland, and coccyx, … once considered useless by evolutionists, are now known to have important functions. The list of 180 “vestigial” structures is practically down to zero. Unfortunately, earlier Darwinists assumed that if they were ignorant of an organ’s function, then it had no function.”

~ “Tornado in a Junkyard” – book – by former atheist James Perloff

Vestigial Organs: Comparing ID and Darwinian Approaches – July 20, 2012

Excerpt: A favorite criticisms of ID is that it is a science stopper. The opposite is true. The Live Science article shows that the “vestigial organs” argument has not changed for over a century, since Wiedersheim coined the term and listed over a hundred examples (in 1893). Evolutionary theory, in fact, has been worse than a science stopper: its predictions have been flat out wrong. Only a handful of alleged vestigial organs remains from Wiedersheim’s original list, and each of those is questionable.

In fact, the false prediction of vestigial organs by Darwinists led to much medical malpractice in the past:

Evolution’s “vestigial organ” argument debunked

Excerpt: “The appendix, like the once ‘vestigial’ tonsils and adenoids, is a lymphoid organ (part of the body’s immune system) which makes antibodies against infections in the digestive system. Believing it to be a useless evolutionary ‘left over,’ many surgeons once removed even the healthy appendix whenever they were in the abdominal cavity. Today, removal of a healthy appendix under most circumstances would be considered medical malpractice”

~ David Menton, Ph.D., “The Human Tail, and Other Tales of Evolution,” St. Louis MetroVoice , January 1994, Vol. 4, No. 1.

“Doctors once thought tonsils were simply useless evolutionary leftovers and took them out thinking that it could do no harm. Today there is considerable evidence that there are more troubles in the upper respiratory tract after tonsil removal than before, and doctors generally agree that simple enlargement of tonsils is hardly an indication for surgery”

~ J.D. Ratcliff, Your Body and How it Works, 1975, p. 137.

The tailbone, properly known as the coccyx, is another supposed example of a vestigial structure that has been found to have a valuable function—especially regarding the ability to sit comfortably. Many people who have had this bone removed have great difficulty sitting.

~ God, Science And The Bible: Evolution’S “Vestigial Organ” Argument Debunked

SEE ALSO MY PAPER:

Vestigial Discover Magazine Article Critiqued by Papa Giorgio on Scribd

Moreover, in so far as science has been able to advance in spite of Atheistic materialism, it can be argued that Intelligent Design was and is central to the advancement of science itself since almost all, if not all, of science has advanced by technological advancement in the instruments of science. That is to say, almost all, if not all, of science has advanced by humans infusing new information into material substrates, in a ‘top down’ fashion, in better and better, i.e. more sophisticated, ways:

Describing Nature With Math By Peter Tyson – Nov. 2011

Excerpt: Mathematics underlies virtually all of our technology today. James Maxwell’s four equations summarizing electromagnetism led directly to radio and all other forms of telecommunication. E = mc2 led directly to nuclear power and nuclear weapons. The equations of quantum mechanics made possible everything from transistors and semiconductors to electron microscopy and magnetic resonance imaging.

Indeed, many of the technologies you and I enjoy every day simply would not work without mathematics. When you do a Google search, you’re relying on 19th-century algebra, on which the search engine’s algorithms are based. When you watch a movie, you may well be seeing mountains and other natural features that, while appearing as real as rock, arise entirely from mathematical models. When you play your iPod, you’re hearing a mathematical recreation of music that is stored digitally; your cell phone does the same in real time.

“When you listen to a mobile phone, you’re not actually hearing the voice of the person speaking,” Devlin told me. “You’re hearing a mathematical recreation of that voice. That voice is reduced to mathematics.”

Excerpt: page 5: A:

Causal Efficacy of Non Physical entities:

Both the program and the data are non-physical entities, indeed so is all software. A program is not a physical thing you can point to, but by Definition 2 it certainly exists. You can point to a CD or flashdrive where it is stored, but that is not the thing in itself: it is a medium in which it is stored.

The program itself is an abstract entity, shaped by abstract logic. Is the software “nothing but” its realisation through a specific set of stored electronic states in the computer memory banks? No it is not because it is the precise pattern in those states that matters: a higher level relation that is not apparent at the scale of the electrons themselves. It’s a relational thing (and if you get the relations between the symbols wrong, so you have a syntax error, it will all come to a grinding halt). This abstract nature of software is realised in the concept of virtual machines, which occur at every level in the computer hierarchy except the bottom one [17]. But this tower of virtual machines causes physical effects in the real world, for example when a computer controls a robot in an assembly line to create physical artefacts.

Excerpt page 7: The assumption that causation is bottom up only is wrong in biology, in computers, and even in many cases in physics….

The mind is not a physical entity, but it certainly is causally effective: proof is the existence of the computer on which you are reading this text. It could not exist if it had not been designed and manufactured according to someone’s plans, thereby proving the causal efficacy of thoughts, which like computer programs and data are not physical entities.

Verse: “…but test all things. Hold fast to what is good. (1 Thessalonians 5:21)

 

Darwin vs. Population Genetics (Of Rabbits and Illusions)

Mind you, Philip Cunningham may be a bit tough to listen to… but his attention to detail — even if he cannot pronounce “intelligentsia” — are a must. Enjoy.

(Above video description) “Darwinism provided an explanation for the appearance of design, and argued that there is no Designer — or, if you will, the designer is natural selection. If that’s out of the way — if that (natural selection) just does not explain the evidence — then the flip side of that is, well, things appear designed because they are designed.” ~ Richard Sternberg – Living Waters documentary

Whale Evolution vs. Population Genetics – Richard Sternberg and Paul Nelson – (excerpt from Living Waters video) [POSTED BELOW]

The abject failure of Natural Selection on two levels of physical reality – VIDEO (2016) (princess and the pea paradox & quarter power scaling)

(Above video description) THE ORIGIN OF MAN AND THE “WAITING TIME” PROBLEM – John Sanford – August 10, 2016

Excerpt: My colleagues and I recently published a paper in Theoretical Biology and Medical Modeling, “The Waiting Time Problem in a Model Hominin Population.” It is one of the journal’s “highly accessed” articles. A pre-human hominin population of roughly 10,000 individuals is thought to have evolved into modern man, during a period of less than six million years. This would have required the establishment of a great deal of new biological information. That means, minimally, millions of specific beneficial mutations, and a large number of specific beneficial sets of mutations, selectively fixed in this very short period of time. We show that there is simply not enough time for this type of evolution to have occurred in the population from which we supposedly arose.

Historically, Darwin-defenders have argued that time is on their side. They have claimed that given enough time, any evolutionary scenario is feasible. They have consistently argued that given millions of years, very large amounts of new biologically meaningful information can arise by the Darwinian process of mutation/selection. However, careful analysis of what is required to establish even a single genetic “word” (a short functional string of genetic letters) within a hominin genome shows just the opposite. Even given tens of millions of years, there is not enough time to generate the genetic equivalent of the simplest “word” (two or more nucleotides). Even in a hundred billion years, much longer than the age of the universe, there is not enough time to establish the genetic equivalent of a very simple “sentence” (ten or more nucleotides). This problem is so fundamental that it justifies a complete re-assessment of the basic Darwinian mechanism.

Whale of a Tale ~ Debating Evolution

This post is with thanks to Philip Cunningham.

(For a great introduction to the below video of which the following is a clip from, see Evolution News & Views)

More About the Male (Whale’s) Refrigeration System ~ The system actually works better when the whale swims hard. How can that be, when the testes are located right between the abdominal swimming muscles? It’s like trying to keep a refrigerator cold between two furnaces. 

It works because the blood pumps harder during exercise, allowing more heat to escape into the water through the dorsal fin and tail. The higher volume of cool venous blood then enters the “miraculous web” (Latin rete mirabile, read more here) between the abdominal muscles, where the heat from the arteries is transferred to the cooler veins before entering the testes. It’s a marvelous solution: a “counter-current heat exchanger” (CCHE) mechanism.

As Richard Sternberg and Paul Nelson explain in the film, without both internal testes and the refrigeration mechanism existing simultaneously, natural selection would halt, and whales would have gone extinct. Females, too, have a CCHE to protect the young during pregnancy. Similar CCHE systems are found in other marine mammals such as manatees and seals, providing more unlikely examples of “convergent evolution.”


One of the key (most complete) missing link in this WILD scenario is Rodhocetus. Rodhocetus’ discoverer, Dr. Phil Gingerich, one of the leading experts on whale evolution, promoted the idea that Rodhocetus had a whale’s fluke (tail) and flippers. Later Dr. Gingerich admitted,

  • “Since then, we have found the forelimbs, the hands, and the front arms of Rodhocetus, and we understand that it doesn’t have the kind of arms that can be spread out like flippers on a whale.”

When asked about the missing fluke, Dr. Gingerich replied,

  • “I speculated that it might have had a fluke… I now doubt that Rodhocetus would have had a fluked tail.”

Without this fossil, there is no evolutionary story telling like we see in this WHALE OF A TALE:

Rodhocetus Clear X

Will museums and textbooks change their displays or portraits Rodhocetus as a transitional fossil? Don’t hold your breath.

rodhocetus-size

(Philip Cunningham Intro) In the following video, Philip Gingerich, the paleontologist who discovered and reconstructed Rhohocetus, which has been called by evolutionists, ‘the most spectacular intermediary fossil in whale evolution’, states this about that, “most spectacular intermediary fossil”….

  • “Well, I told you we don’t have the tail in Rodhocetus. We don’t know for sure whether it had a ball vertebrate indicating a (tail) fluke or not. So I speculated (that) it might have had a (tail) fluke…. Since then we found the forelimbs, the hands, and the front arms, the arms in other words of Rodhocetus, and we understand that it doesn’t have the kind of arms that can be spread out like flippers are on a whale.,, If you don’t have flippers, I don’t think you can have a fluke tail and really powered swimming. And so I now doubt that Rodhocetus would have had a fluke tail.” 

Philip Gingerich paleontologist – Whale Evolution vs. The Actual Evidence – video – fraudulent fossils revealed (Starts at the 11:40 minute mark – see another clip of this here):

Here we get into the weeds with these fraudulent Plaster of Paris replicas for the myriad of students visiting natural history museum. The excerpt here comes from Uncommon Descent:

If you can’t find a missing link, just make one up with plaster and body parts and put it in museums. I don’t think the deception was deliberate in as much as it was self-deception and they just added plaster to conform a land fossil to look like a whale.

The two scientists who found the lion’s share of walking whale fossils essentially created the best fossil proof of evolution using plaster models and drawings and supplied these to museums and science magazines. In each case, they started with incomplete fossils of a land mammal. Whenever a fossil part was missing, they substituted a whale body part (blowholes, fins and flukes) on the skeletal model or skull that they distributed to museums. When these same scientists later found fossils negating their original interpretations, they did not recall the plaster models or drawings. Now museums are full of skulls and skeletons of ‘walking whales’ that are simply false.” Dr. Werner went on to say, “I suspect some curators are not aware of the significance of these substitutions nor are they aware of the updated fossils. Museums should now remove all of the altered skeletons, skulls and drawings since the most important parts of these ‘walking whales’ are admittedly made up. Museums will also have to delete these images from their websites as they are misleading the public.” –

The Grand Experiment

Vestigial Responses

(just that, old… useless [baseless] theories)

Here is an example of my child’s biology textbook from grade school (enlargeable by just clicking the image ~ for maximum enlargement, right click with the mouse and choose, “open link in new tab“):

George B. Johnson and Peter H. Raven,
Biology: Principles & Explorations, Annotated Teacher’s Edition
(Austin, TX: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2001), 284-285.

On page 288 of the same text we read:

  • The pelvic bones found in modern whales are homologous to the pelvises that are found in land vertebrates. Although the whale pelvis bones are located near their reproductive organs, these bones do not function like a pelvis in a land vertebrate. The whale pelvis is located far from the vertebrae and has no apparent function. Thus, the whale pelvis is a vestigial structure.

The “pelvic bones” in whales are said to be vestigial. Here is another example from my son’s public schooling:

Vestigial Structures

Many organisms have features that seem to serve no useful function. For example, humans have a tailbone at the end of the spine that is of no apparent use. The human appendix, a small, fingerlike projection from the intestine, also has no known function. Some snakes have tiny pelvic bones and limb bones. Whales also have pelvic bones, along with a four-chambered stomach like that of a cow.

These apparently useless features are said to be vestigial. Vestigial (ves-TIJ-ee-uhl) features were useful to an ancestor, but they are not use­ful to the modern organism that has them. The vestigial tailbone in humans is homologous to the functional tails of other vertebrate species. A vestigial feature in a modern organism is evidence that the structure was functional in some ancestor of the modern organism. Moreover, an organism with a vestigial feature probably shares com­mon ancestry with an organism that has a functional version of the same feature.

So what sort of evolutionary clues can vestigial features provide? Consider that normal sperm whales, like all whales, have small pelvic bones but no hind legs. A very small percentage of sperm whales, how­ever, have vestigial leg bones, and some sperm whales even have bone-supported bumps protruding from their body.

Whales probably are descended from an ancestor that lived on land. In the whales’ genome, many of the genes needed to make hind legs have been conserved, or have remained unchanged. In normal whales, the genes for hind legs are turned off. In rare cases, however. the genes are partially turned on, and vestigial hind legs form. Thus. whales and other living things may display their evolutionary history in the usually unexpressed genes they carry.

Susan Feldkamp and Maureen Kilpatrick, editors, Modern Biology (Austin, TX: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2002), 290.

Here, Philip Cunningham fills in what these “vestigial” bones are used for via a couple examples, the first being an Email Exchange regarding “vestigial legs” pelvic bones in whales:

The pelvic bones (supposed Vestigial Legs) of whales serve as attachments for the musculature associated with the penis in males and its homologue, the clitoris, in females. The muscle involved is known as the ischiocavernosus and is quite a powerful muscle in males. It serves as a retractor muscle for the penis in copulation and probably provides the base for lateral movements of the penis. The mechanisms of penile motion are not well understood in whales. The penis seems to be capable of a lot of independent motion, much like the trunk of an elephant. How much of this is mediated by the ischiocavernosus is not known.

In females the anatomical parts are smaller and more diffuse. I would imagine that there is something homologous to the perineal muscles in man and tetrapods, which affect the entire pelvic area – the clitoris, vagina and anus.

The pelvic rudiments also serve as origins for the ischiocaudalis muscle, which is a ventral muscle that inserts on the tips of the chevron bones of the spinal column and acts to flex the tail in normal locomotion.

James G. Mead, Ph.D. – Curator of Marine Mammals – National Museum of Natural History – Smithsonian Institution

(via Uncommon Descent)

This second example comes by way of PHYS.ORG and like all other vestigial organs, the “Darwinism-of-the-gaps” is proven to be vacuous:

Both whales and dolphins have pelvic (hip) bones, (supposed) evolutionary remnants from when their ancestors walked on land more than 40 million years ago. Common wisdom has long held that those bones are simply vestigial, slowly withering away…

New research from USC and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM) flies directly in the face of that assumption, finding that,, pelvic bones serve a purpose…

“Everyone’s always assumed that if you gave whales and dolphins a few more million years of evolution, the pelvic bones would disappear. But it appears that’s not the case,”….

Dean collaborated with fellow co-corresponding author Jim Dines,,, on a painstaking four-year project to analyze cetacean (whale and dolphin) pelvic bones.

The muscles that control a cetacean’s penis – which has a high degree of mobility – attach directly to its pelvic bones….

The Smithsonian Institute has and article on this as well… the title is illuminating:

I thought this was a telling commentary in the article:

Testing any of this in the field is near impossible—for now, there’s no way to x-ray whales having sex underwater to reveal the inner workings of their anatomy. All the researchers can do at this point is speculate.

My only question would be…

…why this “speculation” wasn’t applied to the previously held position that these bones are vestigial.


Quantum Mechanics Meet Outdated Biological Models

  • “Biology today is at a crossroads. The molecular paradigm, which so successfully guided the discipline throughout most of the 20th century, is no longer a reliable guide. Its vision of biology now realized, the molecular paradigm has run its course.”….

The cells we know are not just loosely coupled arrangements of quasi-independent modules. They are highly, intricately, and precisely integrated networks of entities and interactions. … To think that a new cell design can be created more or less haphazardly from chunks of other modern cell designs is just another fallacy born of a mechanistic, reductionist view of the organism.

Carl Woese – A New Biology for a New Century – Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews – 2004

(See more at Common Descent)

The neo-Darwinian view of biology is being undermined by the emerging evidence in quantum mechanics (QM). Now, I do not accept the QM as many atheists do… however, the deterministic view of QM is giving theism a boost in an area atheists once thought they had a new foothold. One of my favorite critics of Darwin notes as much in his referencing a 2004 article and commenting on it:

As Carl Woese explained in 2004:

  • The cells we know are not just loosely coupled arrangements of quasi-independent modules. They are highly, intricately, and precisely integrated networks of entities and interactions. … To think that a new cell design can be created more or less haphazardly from chunks of other modern cell designs is just another fallacy born of a mechanistic, reductionist view of the organism.

In a previous uploaded audio and commentary of the many QM models to choose from and the one’s theist see as beneficial to scientific discovery delineates the chasm between fruitful views of science and unhealthy views in scientific modeling and their subsequent impact on scientific apologetics. The first paragraph below notes the philosophical naturalist default (so-to-speak), followed by two points related to this discussion:

These oddities prompt some observers to conclude that QM overturns natural law and rationality, leaving us with an incomprehensible, uncreated universe. Standard physics says matter can be neither created nor destroyed by natural means, but some scientists (falsely) claim that quantum particles naturally pop in and out of existence. From this, leading atheists claim the whole universe “sprang” into existence naturally. No Creator necessary. Furthermore, they say that even if God exists and created the universe, QM shows He made a world He cannot control. Once He uncorked this world, not even God knows what will come of it. Theologians who favor science fads over Scripture conclude the same thing: QM implies God cannot govern creation or know the future….

[….]

I suggest the following starting points for the Christian response: First, for all the wild attributes that may hold true in QM, we note that macroscopic reality behaves in a predictable, law-like fashion and everywhere presents us with evidence of its fundamentally rational construction and operation. So even if quantum particles could do lawless things like pop in and out of existence naturally, no such thing happens in the realm of everyday objects. Quantum oddities, whatever you make of them, are detained at the door to the larger realities we experience.

Second, many of the astounding behaviors attributed to QM occur only in highly artificial laboratory settings. There is no certainty that these things can actually happen in real-world settings. Thus, we are justified in casting an indifferent eye on many of the zany headlines coming from physics laboratories….

The very non-deterministic models are the ones liked by atheists and they support the idea of randomness. The other “orderly” — if you will — models show an order on the quantum level that is “supra-ordered,” and thus, the theistic view of QM is emboldened by the evidence.

In other words… order and function in the DNA is guided also by laws being discovered on the quantum level… that without these strict mechanical rules life would be impossible… something “randomness” cannot account for. In other words there seems to be more going on here that the simplified “DAN to RNA to Protein” quip. And this increasing complexity equals hard-times for atheism.

While Philip Cunningham may be hard to listen to at times… I love his slow, methodical contributions to this field of learning/debate:

Again, to note the idea here:

  • The other model that show rules and order on the quantum level is being supported by these discoveries, and thus, the theistic view of QM is emboldened by the evidence. In other words… order and function in the DNA is guided also by laws being discovered on the quantum level… that without these strict mechanical rules life would be impossible… something “randomness” cannot account for.

Here is the posted text under Phillip’s video on his Facebook:

Physicists Discover Quantum Law of Protein Folding: Quantum mechanics finally explains why protein folding depends on temperature in such a strange way.

First, a little background on protein folding. Proteins are long chains of amino acids that become biologically active only when they fold into specific, highly complex shapes. The puzzle is how proteins do this so quickly when they have so many possible configurations to choose from.

To put this in perspective, a relatively small protein of only 100 amino acids can take some 10^100 different configurations. If it tried these shapes at the rate of 100 billion a second, it would take longer than the age of the universe to find the correct one. Just how these molecules do the job in nanoseconds, nobody knows.

[….]

Today, Luo and Lo say these curves can be easily explained if the process of folding is a quantum affair. By conventional thinking, a chain of amino acids can only change from one shape to another by mechanically passing though various shapes in between.

But Luo and Lo say that if this process were a quantum one, the shape could change by quantum transition, meaning that the protein could ‘jump’ from one shape to another without necessarily forming the shapes in between.

[….]

Their astonishing result is that this quantum transition model fits the folding curves of 15 different proteins and even explains the difference in folding and unfolding rates of the same proteins. That’s a significant breakthrough. Luo and Lo’s equations amount to the first universal laws of protein folding. That’s the equivalent in biology to something like the thermodynamic laws in physics

Bottom line! What has been a buttressed hideout/club of evolutionary thought — biology in general — is now in it’s early throes of bowing it’s knee to intelligent design, i.e., it’s Creator!

Agent Causality vs. Blind Causality