PRO

Where Your Ideas can change Minds

Please visit our new forum at

http://www.4forums.com

CON


YouDebate.com Forum
» back to YouDebate.com
Register | Profile | Log In | Lost Password | Active Users | Help | Board Rules | Search | FAQ |
Custom Search
» You are not logged in.   log in | register

  YouDebate.com Forum
   Creationism vs Evolution Debates
     Redefining Natural Selection (

Topic Jump
« Back | Next »
[ Single page for this topic ]
Forum moderated by: admin
    

    
Syamsu

|      |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:

I'm trying to get some response from creationists on redefining Natural Selection.

My argument for redefining Natural Selection is currently quite strong, meaning I have "refuted" all counterarguments from Darwinists to my reformulation. I don't think that happens much, that the position of an evolutionist on something is shown to be fundamentally flawed in argument on internetforums, so I guess that should raise interest some.

The theory of Natural Selection is of course absolutely central in the evolutionist program, and any small change in the fundamental theory of Natural Selection, would have a reverberating effect on all the knowledge that has been built on it. So even if a change in the definition of the theory may be small, it's effect on the rest of knowledge may be quite large, because it is fundamental. What I mean to say is that the subject of redefining Natural Selection is significant.

Most creationists still accept Natural Selection even if in the limited form of "micro-evolution". So an acceptance would mean a personal responsibility to ensure it's truth. Besides from having a responsibility to ensure the scientific merit of Natural Selection, I also think creationists have a responsibility to defend religion, from where Natural Selection tends to cross  over from science into religious areas. While these reasons to respond also apply to evolutionists, I still think that creationists have more reason to respond to my case about redefining Natural Selection then evolutionists do, so what's stopping you from replying? Any help why no creationist is responding would also be appreciated.

My case for redefining Natural Selection goes as follows.  

First I cut down the common standard definition of Natural Selection to it's simplest form by continuously asking the question if or not some phenomenon mentioned in part of the common definition is required to be there for Natural Selection to apply. For instance, is variation required to be there for Natural Selection to apply? is competition? how many individuals does it take at a minimum for Natural Selection to apply? and so on.

After much discussion with Darwinists I have found that neither variation or competition is neccessary for Natural Selection to apply. The cut down meaning of Natural Selection then becomes like:

the relation of an organism to it's environment in terms of the event of it's reproduction.

For instance light (environment) falls on the photosynthetic cells of a plant (organism) which contributes to it's reproduction (is selected for). As you can see no mention of variation, competition, or more then a single organism, but still selection. Apart from positive selective factors that contribute to reproduction, there are of course also negative selective factors like disease, or unsuitable weatherconditions, which decrease the chance of reproduction. The negative together with the positive selective factors make up the selective regime of an organism. Selection is then between reproduction and no reproduction, in stead of as in the common definition where selection is between one or the other variant, one variant reproducing and the other variant not reproducing.

This redefinition does not preclude evolution, the only thing is one would first have to add the principle of mutation or recombination to begin talking about evolution. To cut down to the simplest formulation is how knowledge is most efficiently, and clearly organized, and is applicable in all science. Apart from it being efficient, it is also true to observation, because most times stasis is observed in a population and not any interesting evolution.

The arguments against this reformulation are so far non-existant. That is the Darwinists I talked to admit that selection this way is valid, but still insist on including variation in the definition because there most always is differential variation in a population. When I point out there is most times stasis in populations, and that you still have to describe a trait regardless of whether or not it is varying, I get no response. So really as it is there are no valid arguments against it as far as I can tell. But if you can find a reason why variation or something else should be required in the definition then please explain. I would like to ask though that any argument for including variation should incorporate the photosynthesis example I gave before. I would like to know how you are going to describe photosynthesis if you would include variation in the definition of Natural Selection.

Why this reformulation is so important is not in the first place for what benefits it has to science (there are many scientific benefits though), but mainly what benefits it has in how science relates to religion. Unlike other science theories, Natural Selection theory has been extremely conducive to derive moral, political and religious views from. Not just by lay people applying popularized versions of the theory, but especially Darwinian scientists themselves seem to be drenched in Darwinism in all their areas of thought and emotion. A recent example of this is Richard Dawkins who believes that Natural Selection disproves the existence of "universal love", and that Natural Selection shows that Nature at bottom is "blind, pitiless and indifferent". He proposed a "selfish" gene theory, which in his words could enlighten us about our "greed" and "genorisity". Associated to this meandering of Dawkins is the discipline of evolutionary psychology, which is really more appriopately called Darwinist psychology. Sometimes Darwinists say how ridiculous it is to take personal consequence from a mere scientific theory, and then compare it with taking personal consequence from gravity theory or something like that. But of course there is no gravitational psychology but there is a Darwinist psychology.

Other examples of extremely influential Darwinian scientists being drenched in Darwinism are Darwin himself, Galton, Haeckel and Lorenz.

Darwin's pre-occupation with eugenics (finebreeding people), and his general judgementalism displayed in the context of Darwinism in his book "The Descent of Man", where he goes to talk about such esoteric things as what the highest state of morality is, and that superior should not marry inferior, and when it's right for the superior to "neglect" the inferior (so the inferior die), etc..

Francis Galton, one of the main inventors of the statistical method, conceived the need for a eugenic religion on account of Darwinism.

Ernst Haeckel is commonly known to have advanced proto-nazi ideas on account of Darwinism, infamously once judging an essay - competition about applying Darwinism to state law, and he associated the credibility of his personal philosophy of monism to the findings in Darwinism.

The later nobel prizewinner Konrad Lorenz advertised Nazism based on Darwinism, and he even participated in ethnic cleansing in Posen, an area of Poland, during the second world war, as a member of a Nazi race office. His prosaic books which are popular within science, as well as popular to the general public, deal with such vague notional things as "innate aggression". His books are now seen to be prejudicially slanted towards Nazi ideology. Konrad Lorenz remained a fanatic eugenicist after the war.

But really my evidence is not about some historical facts but it's about here and now, about how the common definition of Natural Selection affects my own thinking. If you don't have the experience sometimes that Natural Selection dominates in how you appreciate nature, or that it somehow pushes you in some direction in the area of "worldviews" when thinking about it, then basically you should consider this part of my argument without evidence. You should for instance have personal experience of Natural Selection leading you to think of Nature as cruel, or blind pitiless and indifferent for that matter, as is typical. When thinking about human beings you should for instance have personal experience of questioning the equality of people on account of describing people in Darwinian terms of fit and unfit. (often also called "better" and "worse", or "superior" and "inferior" in Darwinist literature).

When I flash some different kinds of pictures of Nature through my mind then it occurs to me how incredibly arrogant and hateful it is to make a generalising judgement on Nature as cruel this way. Nature is so big and complex that any general judgement could not possibly do it any meaningful justice. Even so it's not very meaningful to make a generalising judgements like that, I acknowledge that such judgements have their place in personal beliefs. Where it becomes creepy however is when people like Dawkins and other Darwinists before him, make this superficial judgement so much weightier then it ought to be, and bring the authority of science to bear on the subject. As if it is as undeniable that Nature is fundamentally cruel, or pitilessly indifferent as it is to deny that planets go around the sun.

These errors would IMO not happen if Natural Selection was redefined in the way I set out before. Where the common definition of Natural Selection mainly tends to cross over into religious and moral areas is where Darwinists talk about one being better or superior then the other, which is based on including variation in the definition. The second point where it crosses over into religious and moral areas is by the way competition is included. Including competition means to include teleological (goal/purpose) aspects into Darwinism. Often Darwinists talk in emotive terms about organisms "wanting" to achieve the highest reproductive "success", or "wanting" to survive. Competition in Darwinism does not only take place between organisms, but it also takes place between organism and environment. Darwin for instance talks about a plant struggling against the drought in order for it to survive. But this use of competition or struggle is not correct, and competition and struggle can even be said to work against Natural Selection in it's common definition. For instance you can conjecture "this one plant was more fit then the other plant, but the other plant struggled harder to survive, hence the less fit plant won out." The operation of competition in science always involves the operation of randomness. Organisms in one place that are identical would tend to go for the same resources, and in this situation competition is most strong. But which organism gets the resources in this situation, is a matter of flipping a coin in the air. Since the organisms are identical they have equal chance, like equal sides on a coin. This is not understood in the common definition of Natural Selection.

Besides that the faulty formulation tends to be more conducive to derive valuejudgements from, those valuejudgements that are derived tend to be prejudicial. Sometimes for instance Darwinists talk about the difficulties in getting a job as some kind of undeniable fact that Darwinism still rules society. Some years ago and in many areas of the economy still, there was/is a labour shortage, in stead of a labour surplus. You could get a free car if you took a job as an information-technology professional. Why then do Darwinists ignore the labour shortage situation, and focus their comments on labour surplus situations, where it is very hard for people to get a job? The explanation why Darwinists are focused on situations of shortage of jobs, is the original Malthusian formulation of Natural Selection by Darwin. This formulation relied on there being too many organisms to reproduce, and ignored situations in Nature were there is a wealth of oppurtunities for organisms to exploit.

When excluding variation and competition from the definition the view attained on Nature by Natural Selection theory then doesn't become more narrow, in stead it becomes more broad and cohesive. Where the common definition of Natural Selection forces you to look at a moth just by the one trait of wingcolor (as in the peppered moth example), or have you look at a human being by the one trait of skincolor, the cutdown version would note how all traits of the moth and the human being function in reproduction. Where the common definition stops to apply once the changes in the moth population have taken place, the cut-down definition continues to apply throughout. Think about how strange this is compared with other science theories like gravity theory, that the common definition of Natural Selection starts and stops to apply at the appearance and disappearance of differential variation. Should we also talk about differential gravitational success of planets in stead of normal gravitation theory? Should we only apply gravity when the objects are "different"? Seen this way, to require there to be variation for the theory of Natural Selection to apply, is clearly absurd.

If the formulation of Natural Selection were cleaned up by cutting variation and competition from the definition, then I guess we wouldn't see such bizarre things as the theory being part of the education material of a political party (the Hitleryouth), we would not see a young killer pre-occupied with Natural Selection theory (one of the killers in Columbine highschool). Apart from stopping those bizarre things, for the average person it mainly would mean the theory wouldn't at times dominate anymore in how they appreciated Nature, or have much of any significance in "worldviews". The theory would just become a descriptive thingamujig, a tool as easily ignored as learned, in stead of the theory tending to drench the minds of the people who support it's use.

regards,

Mohammad Nor Syamsu

 


Posts: 2 | Posted: 07:20 AM on March 27, 2003 | IP
Yves

|     |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:


I get the whole thing about instead of the fittest survive, tis the whole concept of if it reproduces or not.  But after that, im lost.
Try to slim it down into simple contentions with like a sentence to explain, it will be MUCH EASIER!!!

I am an evolutionist, and if i should dissagree, well, i dont, i think that is very logical and could be true, infact, more true than the current idea.  But for the sake of comprehension, PLEASE NARROW IT DOWN!!!!

Yves
 


Posts: 0 | Posted: 8:47 PM on March 27, 2003 | IP
Ahuactl

|     |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:

I read through most of your post, but the closest thing I found to a definition was

"Selection is then between reproduction and no reproduction, instead of as in the common definition where selection is between one or the other variant, one variant reproducing and the other variant not reproducing."

Let me see if I've got this straight.  There are two organisms (selection requires at least two options).  One reproduces and the other doesn't.  If they are identical, then the selection was random and of no interest from an evolutionary point of view.  If they are different, then one variant reproduced and the other did not.  So how, exactly, does your definition differ from the most widely accepted one?


 


Posts: 4 | Posted: 01:51 AM on March 29, 2003 | IP
Syamsu

|      |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:

Selection does require two options, but not two organisms. The options are reproduction or no reproduction. With 2 organism you have a total of 4 options for selection.

A standard definition will go as follows:

differential reproductive succes of varying genotypes in a population.

some differences are:
- it is a comparitive relationship in stead of a physical relationship
- it requires variation to apply
- it notionally requires competition to apply (in the word success)

regards,
Mohammad Nor Syamsu
 


Posts: 2 | Posted: 06:41 AM on March 29, 2003 | IP
Ahuactl

|     |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:

The options are reproduction or no reproduction.

Or do you mean that over the life of the organism, it will either reproduce or not reproduce?

In science, the value of a definition lies in its usefulness.  In seems to me that at some point, you are going to have to tie in your definition with the definition of evolution.  How you are going to do that without reference to variable reproductive success is beyond me.
 


Posts: 4 | Posted: 7:24 PM on March 29, 2003 | IP
Guest

|     |       Report Post



Newbie
Post Score
Adjustment:
n/a

Rate this post:

As before, to talk about evolution you would simply have to add mutation or recombination to the cut down theory, not variation.

Variation requires to view organisms comparitively, and I think it is more useful to focus on physical relationships, then comparitive relationships.

I think you're mistaken that evolution is much  scientifically interesting, compared to how interesting it is how organisms work to reproduce.

For instance if it was known that in the year x a mutation occurred which caused the first photosynthetic cell to come into existence. The differential reproductive success from the parent population of algeatypes from which it orignated was 14:1. So now you have all the knowledge you could possibly want as an evolutionist, except maybe a video of the actual event. But even if you had a video also, then you still wouldn't have much interesting knowledge IMO. What is interesting IMO is how photosynthesis actually contributes to reproduction.  What is interesting is the relationship of an organism to it's environment in regards to the event of reproduction. To compare the rate of reproduction of the first photosynthetic organism with it's ancestorpopulation is not very interesting at all IMO.

Mutations are largely unpredictable, so any changes leading up to the first photosynthetic organism, would reflect the unpredictability of mutations. It would just be a historical account, to which formula's such as gradualism really do not meaningfully apply.

You can use the cut down definition of Natural Selection to simply know all about how organisms reproduce. When you know that, then you know pretty much of everything about that organism.

You can also use the knowledge for saving endangered species for instance, or for finding out how to make a bacteria infection completely extinct. The common definition of Natural Selection doesn't apply well, in situations like that, since it is prejudicially focused on evolution.

regards,
Mohammad Nor Syamsu
 


Posts: 0 | Posted: 07:48 AM on March 30, 2003 | IP
    
[ Single page for this topic ]

Topic Jump
« Back | Next »
[ Single page for this topic ]
Forum moderated by: admin
    

Topic options: Lock topic | Unlock topic | Make Topic Sticky | Remove Sticky | Delete thread | Move thread | Merge thread

 

© YouDebate.com
Powered by: ScareCrow version 2.12
© 2001 Jonathan Bravata. All rights reserved.