Behe, Swamidass, and Berean

Dr @Swamidass,
I enjoyed skimming your blog post above. Thank you.

I’m glad to see you affirm your common ground with Behe, and I’m glad to see the following points that you mention (that I agree on as well).

  1. God designed us all.
  2. Rejecting Darwinism (all three forms that you mention).
  3. Finding Greater things (I agree with your points and Behe’s)

Re Affirming Evolutionary “Science” … I agree re the evidence for an old earth.

However, I am skeptical of the alleged evidence for a NATURALISTIC common descent of man with the great apes (largely due to the waiting time problem, and orphan genes, both of which I see as inductive pointers to the inability of naturalistic random-chance means to provide the probabilistic resources needed for natural selection OR genetic drift to create the complex genes, proteins and organ changes needed in the 6-10million year timeframe available for alleged chimp-human luca to man).

I agree with you that the alleged-bad-design-argument is Vacuous (a silly non-argument pretending to be one).

I disagree that that Irreducible Complexity is an already solved problem. It is NOTHING of the sort. NOBODY has demonstrated a step-by-step naturalistic process for formation of the simplest self-replicator (considered as a nanomachine), or EVEN of the flagellum (considered as a nanomachine).

I also disagree that there is any compelling evidence for NATURALISTIC universal common descent and/or a Naturalistic Universal Single Tree of Life. In doing so, I maybe disagreeing with both you and Prof Behe (I do not know his views in detail).

I think that is an overview, of my areas of agreement and disagreement with the key points you mention in your blog post.

An interesting side note -> I am glad that you reject Darwinism (the core mechanism of Natural Selection (NS) as having the ability to create new complex traits and organs). That however, leads to the following…

There are ONLY two core components to Naturalistic Evolution (natural selection and random-chance).

ALL of the proposed mechanisms (in Naturalistic ToE) boil down to one, or the other, or combinations of the two.

If we reject Darwinism, we are rejecting NS as the Core mechanism for the formation of complex Traits and complex Organs.

The problem is that the core mechanism of NS is the ONLY mechanism by which ToE can even remotely claim to explain the origin of complex traits and organs…

So, if we reject NS as the sufficient mechanism, we are left with NO naturalistic mechanism for ToE to create any complex traits, organs or organisms.

The ONLY thing that is left is random-chance. Which is ridiculous (which even biologists would admit).

This means that Naturalistic-ToE has NO valid mechanism for the formation of complex traits, organs, or organisms.

And that is exactly what I would expect if Intelligent Design were true (in contrast to Naturalistic Large-Scale Evolution). This is based on the method of competing hypotheses.

As I have mentioned elsewhere, I subscribe to Bushes of Life with Intelligent-Design Infusions of Bio-functional information at the base of each bush. The patterns we see in the biosphere are much more consistent with this model (ID-Bushes) than with Naturalistic Universal Common Descent or a Naturalistic Universal Single Tree of Life.



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Well, I have good news for you. Science is silent about God. Maybe he was involved in insipring mutations along the way. Scientists don’t really know one way or another.

As for the waiting-time problem and probabilistic resources, turns out that there are large errors and assumptions in the math in the sources I’ve seen.

Also, what complex genes, proteins, and organ changes do you think were required? To first approximation, we have the same parts as a chimp, just shuffled around a little bit (a very little bit).

It seems like you are boxing shadows some what with this “naturalistic” business. Science is silent about God’s action. This does not mean God did not act.

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Depends on your definitions of science. If you assume that science is necessarily Atheistic in nature then it is a Tautology that science is silent about God.

BUT, what if science is a form of sincere truth-seeking? A view I subscribe to. In such a case, Science CAN (and actually does) provide us inductive pointers to the existence of God.

I am of the view that that is indeed the case. I.e., I find Gould’s NOM to be a metaphysical faith-based position that is not substantiated by the evidence.

Again this comes down to your definitions of science. The truth is that Scientists know NOTHING (if you are looking for deductive levels of proof). Alternatively, if we see Science as an Inductive Method of coming to Tentative Knowledge, then the same methods lead us to God.

Re mutations, yes that is true.

However, the presence of independently specified-complexity (ISC) is a strong indication of intelligent design in other fields (than evo bio), and so the presence of ISC (particularly of the functional sort) in nanomachines is a strong indication of intelligent design there as well.

Orphan genes is another strong indication of an informational discontinuity that points (inductively) to intelligent design.

That is not the case in the math I have seen :slight_smile: … If you think otherwise, I would be very interested in your demonstrating how the simplest self-replicator (for instance) could arise naturalistically within even a billion years.

Just looking at the orphan genes in humans … and the probability of their de novo originations… shows that the alleged luca does not have the probabilistic resources for formation of those required orphan genes.

And we also need the genetic programs to then use those orphan genes in a manner specific to humans.

Not at all… IF atheism is true, then ONLY a combination of Natural Selection and Random-Chance could have created all of the biosphere.

IF theism is true, then necessarily, Intelligent Information Infusions are a valid form of causation to include in our repertoire of causations for the biosphere.

So, it is completely valid to distinguish between completely Naturalistic claims of NALSE vs the ID-bushes view I mention above.

The evidence is strongly in favor of the ID bushes view over a Naturalistic SIngle Tree of Life (or NUCD).

How many orphan genes do you think there are between humans and chimps?

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There are other options. Science is sincere form of truth-seeking of only certain types of truth. What ever you’d like science to be, does not mean it is this. It just does not work the way you think it does.

No one has demonstrated a waiting time problem for human evolution. Even Behe goes so far as to say that within-family evolution (such as of humans from apes) does not require God’s intervention. Maybe it does (so I won’t go that far with him), but we certainly don’t have evidence for it.

Abiogenesis is a different (and much harder) problem. Don’t confuse the two.

I’m looking. Do you know of any? It seems you are mistaken. How many orphan genes in humans do you think there are?

There is no evidence of ISC in evolution. Please show us even a single example of ISC. Forget that I asked. There is no example that exists.


You are sadly mistaken. But would it matter to you? What if the number is 0 (not saying that it is), would that change anything about your argument?

@roohif where is a link to your study on “de novo” human genes?


Sorry but that just wrong and is the most common mistake I see ID-Creationists make. As usual you forgot a combination of the two mechanisms, which is strange because you even mentioned combination in your speech. An iterative feedback process with a random portion (genetic variation) and a non-random portion (the feedback from selection) with each iteration carrying forward heritable traits. Such a process (i.e evolution) has been empirically demonstrated capable of producing virtually unlimited complexity and remarkable non-intuitve solution to the problems living creatures face.


Yes they do: non-coding DNA.

There is not a single protein coding gene expressed in human, that does not have a highly similar DNA region in chimpanzee, and the other wary around, there is not a single protein coding gene expressed in chimpanzee that does not have a highly similar non-coding region in human.

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What does “adequately demonstrated” mean?

What defines a complex trait to be “new”? How different must two DNA sequences be from each other before one changes from “similar” to “new”?

It is not clear why design as “a valid form of causation in the biosphere” has as one of it’s foundations the purported impossibility of evolution.

Could both not be possible, for example? I don’t see why these two ideas have to constitute a mutually exclusive dichotomy. It could, at least in principle, be the case that “completely naturalistic evolution” and design are possible, and the fact that one is possible or plausible does not in itself disprove the possibility or reality of the other.

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It seems like we have a lot of common ground. Perhaps the real disagreement that remains is just common descent. Is that right?

Why is that good news? :slight_smile:

Do you in fact reject “Darwinism” in quite the way Peter thinks you do?

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I think this is 90% of the battle around here.



What does that sentence mean?

Depending on what “inductive pointers” means… maybe I believe Science does that too… but without the phrase “scientific proof” attached to that.

When you show me how science can control for “God as a variable”, then I will agree that Science is not silent on God.


If @swamidass thinks God created Adam out of dust, why would God-Guided evolution be a problem?

Because it mean science can remain impartial while investigating real world phenomena. It doesn’t take sides between Fred’s God or Farhang’s God or Yu Yan’s God.

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I don’t know precisely what he thinks. I know he just read my article, so he knows what I wrote about this. He may still be sorting it out.

God guided evolution is not a problem for him, though he doesn’t agree with it. He has a problem with bad arguments for it.

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Science can be neither partial nor impartial. And it is a rather rare human who can be impartial.


“he” doesn’t agree with it? where “he” is You?

The last time you forced yourself into a posting like this, it was about whether you believed SCIENCE endorsed God-Guided Evolution.

You may recall that I did not expect you to say that “Science proved God-Guided Evolution.”

But if you endorse de novo creation of Adam and Eve (as a spiritual not a scientific truth!) … why wouldn’t you endorse God-guided evolution for the rest of Genesis equation (also as a spiritual not scientific truth)?

You are either getting a little more “casual” about how you express yourself, Joshua, or you just lost me in a pretty tight left hand turn…

Please explain?