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Old 08-14-2014, 01:48 PM   #151
LEMONZEST
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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It is a basic observational error to postulate the existence of a "spiritual/supernatural arena". Where is the evidence for this supernatural arena? where does it reside? and what does it consist of?
In brief my response is that this is all up for discussion. If it reads better to you I can adjust my phrasing as follows: "IF the spiritual realm exists the scientific method is perhaps not the best way to explore it".

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because in my 27 years on this earth I've never come across a "supernatural arena" nor have I had any inclination to unnecessarily postulate its existence.
The French astronomer and mathematician Pierre-Simon Laplace is famously quoted for the same idea in his conversation with Napoleon

Napoleon: You have written this huge book on the system of the world without once mentioning the author of the universe.

Laplace: Sire, I had no need of that hypothesis.

This sums up methodological naturalism well as applied to scientific inquiry. You are only one person with one set of experiences. What about the people who have experienced something supernatural?

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What conclusions in particular are you referring to?
Atheism

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because I'm starting to get the impression that you've never read anything by R Dawkins.
The only thing I have read from Dawkins is TGSOE and the youtubes.

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You would have a discussion about what the data "means" and you would be wrong. Do you know why you would be wrong? because you haven't spent enough time with the data.
I disagree, but ok.

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Applying biology to spirituality? Why would a scientist apply a whole lot of assumptions to the interpretation of his data when his goal is to eliminate any and all assumptions possible?
Just to clarify I am not suggesting religion should somehow be integrated into biology or other sciences. Scientists should eliminate all assumptions which is simply good science according to methodological naturalism. Do you appreciate the difference between methodological naturalism and philosophical naturalism?

As I mentioned above not even all scientists apply methodological naturalism to all aspects of thought and life.

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Also, can you please define spirituality for me?
Broadly speaking, things which exist beyond the physical realm which include but are not limited to: God(s), prayer, consciousness of man (spirit?), morality, compassion, and life after death.

By its nature spirituality is difficult to pin down with words because it is immaterial. I think our state of mind is included in spirituality, things like hope, despair, fear, joy etc. These are part of our consciousness and spiritual state.

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I would recommend "The Greatest Show on Earth" by Dawkins if you think that this is his view because this couldn't be further from his interpretation of the data. His whole book is about celebrating the natural in all its glory, without the need for superfluous supernatural - without the need for additional assumptions.
I was providing an example, I was not attempting to summarize RD's views. I have read TGSOE.

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Old 08-14-2014, 02:48 PM   #152
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

This guy is entertaining in his own right and also covers naturalism well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9fIDM5ijSY

note the line of skulls in the background.... also love the superman shirt.
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Old 04-23-2021, 12:22 PM   #153
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

Debunking the whale evolution narrative:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wq_oYftA2ow

Addressing responses to above video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ErLGxrSdw0
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Old 04-30-2021, 08:43 AM   #154
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

Give it up mate. Nobody cares about your creationist YouTubes that focus on a small discrepancy they found in someone's book and then make it sound like it discredits the entire body of work supporting whale evolution.
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Old 04-30-2021, 02:56 PM   #155
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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Give it up mate. Nobody cares about your creationist YouTubes that focus on a small discrepancy they found in someone's book and then make it sound like it discredits the entire body of work supporting whale evolution.
#1. The video is not from a creationist source
#2. "small discrepancy" <--- ROFL, shows how brain-washed you are
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Old 04-30-2021, 07:16 PM   #156
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

So give a better explanation for the existence of whales. Please understand that you have to agree that the world is billions of years old and fossils are real remnants of creatures that lived millions of years ago otherwise there is no point in discussing anything. So the earth springing into existence with fossils already in the ground is not an explanation but a crackpot theory.

And that is a creationist source and I am not sure you understand who is brainwashed here.
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:54 PM   #157
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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So give a better explanation for the existence of whales.
God created whales.

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Please understand that you have to agree that the world is billions of years old and fossils are real remnants of creatures that lived millions of years ago otherwise there is no point in discussing anything.
So, a discussion can only be had if one accepts the "millions of years" narrative?

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So the earth springing into existence with fossils already in the ground is not an explanation but a crackpot theory.
I am unaware of anyone in this Forum postulating that theory. Do you?
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:57 PM   #158
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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And that is a creationist source and I am not sure you understand who is brainwashed here.
You are correct; Discovery Science is an ID site.
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Old 05-04-2021, 08:37 AM   #159
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

I don't want to go into a discussion on when God created whales with someone that thinks the earth is 6000 years old and fossils aren't really fossils because that is beyond pointless so I try to stop that in advance. What I tried was to get a feel of where Festeringzit stands these days because I vaguely remember his take was animals change but speciation doesn't happen. This sort of works with most species we currently know even if you accept the fossil record. The biggest exception is whales.
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Old 05-05-2021, 12:04 AM   #160
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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I don't want to go into a discussion on when God created whales with someone that thinks the earth is 6000 years old and fossils aren't really fossils because that is beyond pointless so I try to stop that in advance.
I believe that the fossils are actually fossils.

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What I tried was to get a feel of where Festeringzit stands these days because I vaguely remember his take was animals change but speciation doesn't happen. This sort of works with most species we currently know even if you accept the fossil record. The biggest exception is whales.
I also believe that animals change (microevolution), but that transpeciation does not occur (macroevolution).
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Old 05-05-2021, 02:05 AM   #161
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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And that is a creationist source and I am not sure you understand who is brainwashed here.
They're definitely not creationists. Nope. They're Cdesign Proponentsists.
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Old 05-06-2021, 03:10 AM   #162
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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So give a better explanation for the existence of whales. Please understand that you have to agree that the world is billions of years old and fossils are real remnants of creatures that lived millions of years ago otherwise there is no point in discussing anything. So the earth springing into existence with fossils already in the ground is not an explanation but a crackpot theory.

And that is a creationist source and I am not sure you understand who is brainwashed here.
Let me repeat myself.

No, they are not a creationist site. Intelligent design proponents encompass a wide array of folks, some are agnostic, like Dr David Berlinski.

Why are you spewing YEC crap into this thread? You assume that anyone pushing back against Darwinism is a YEC? Please.
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Old 05-14-2021, 11:46 PM   #163
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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Let me repeat myself.

No, they are not a creationist site. Intelligent design proponents encompass a wide array of folks, some are agnostic, like Dr David Berlinski.
ID is a type of creationism, if a creationist is anyone who believes that the world was purposely created. A Creationist (upper case c) would generally be identified with anyone accepting the Genesis account of creation (whether YEC or not).

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Why are you spewing YEC crap into this thread? You assume that anyone pushing back against Darwinism is a YEC? Please.
I guess that I am the token YEC in this Forum.
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Old 05-16-2021, 02:29 AM   #164
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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So give a better explanation for the existence of whales. Please understand that you have to agree that the world is billions of years old and fossils are real remnants of creatures that lived millions of years ago otherwise there is no point in discussing anything. So the earth springing into existence with fossils already in the ground is not an explanation but a crackpot theory.

And that is a creationist source and I am not sure you understand who is brainwashed here.
That seems consistent with quantum theory. It's not like the cat was actually in rigor mortis immediately before you opened the box and saw that it was; the cat's actual history was created when you looked.
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Old 09-12-2021, 10:15 PM   #165
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

Scientists recently found in Egypt a jawbone and some teeth.

Here are the headlines, this is not a joke, sadly.

NPR: “Scientists Discover Fossil Of A 4-Legged Whale With A Raptor-Like Eating

Style”Newsweek: “Scientists have found the fossil of a deadly 4-legged whale that had a jackal-like head and lived both on land and in the sea”

New York Post: “Fossil of previously unknown four-legged whale found in Egypt”

BBC: “New species of ancient four-legged whale discovered in Egypt”

The bones actually found from the technical paper shown here:
https://royalsocietypublishing.org/c...0211368f01.gif

Reminds me, when proponents of the religion of Darwinism built ape-man Nebraska man out of the tooth of a pig.
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Old 09-13-2021, 02:19 PM   #166
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

^^
I gather you are arguing that the existence of legs can't be inferred from skulls?

If the red in the diagram represents the actual fossil, then the scientists would have information about how the skull articulated with the neck bones. I betcha that would tell whether the neck, or water, supported the skull. If the neck is supporting weight, it's a terrestrial creature, i.e. legs. The inference might also have come from the new species' similarity to more complete skeletons of the protocetidae class.

Maybe yes, maybe no. The real point is you don't know by what line of reasoning they concluded the creature had legs. You are engaging in a shallow "gotcha" argument based on a crude, barely explained illustration.

By all means read the actual paper rather than just look at the picture. They had a lot more than just a jawbone with teeth.

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Old 09-13-2021, 04:17 PM   #167
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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^^
I gather you are arguing that the existence of legs can't be inferred from skulls?

If the red in the diagram represents the actual fossil, then the scientists would have information about how the skull articulated with the neck bones. I betcha that would tell whether the neck, or water, supported the skull. If the neck is supporting weight, it's a terrestrial creature, i.e. legs. The inference might also have come from the new species' similarity to more complete skeletons of the protocetidae class.

Maybe yes, maybe no. The real point is you don't know by what line of reasoning they concluded the creature had legs. You are engaging in a shallow "gotcha" argument based on a crude, barely explained illustration.

By all means read the actual paper rather than just look at the picture. They had a lot more than just a jawbone with teeth.
The skeleton also includes part of the vertebrae, as shown in the illustration.
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Old 09-13-2021, 05:49 PM   #168
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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^^
I gather you are arguing that the existence of legs can't be inferred from skulls?

If the red in the diagram represents the actual fossil, then the scientists would have information about how the skull articulated with the neck bones. I betcha that would tell whether the neck, or water, supported the skull. If the neck is supporting weight, it's a terrestrial creature, i.e. legs. The inference might also have come from the new species' similarity to more complete skeletons of the protocetidae class.

Maybe yes, maybe no. The real point is you don't know by what line of reasoning they concluded the creature had legs. You are engaging in a shallow "gotcha" argument based on a crude, barely explained illustration.

By all means read the actual paper rather than just look at the picture. They had a lot more than just a jawbone with teeth.
I did peruse the paper, and didn't see anything which justified the assumption of legs and feet.

I'm skeptical.
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Old 09-13-2021, 07:17 PM   #169
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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I did peruse the paper, and didn't see anything which justified the assumption of legs and feet.

I'm skeptical.
If you reject the entire paradigm on which the argument is based, it is no surprise that you are skeptical of the conclusion of the paper. Would you be skeptical of the conclusion given the evolutionary assumptions of the authors?

Creationists love to talk about Nebraska Man because they want to tear down the credibility of science and their model of knowledge is based on authority and infallibility. But this is what actually happened: in 1922 an article was published in Science claiming to identify a possible ancestor of humans on the basis of a tooth. This claim never became accepted and the article was retracted five years later.

Imo that enhances the credibility of science. It is form of knowledge that is fallible, where our confidence in scientific claims increase over time as they are tested against other evidence and the original evidence is reevaluated. That is what happened here. I don't expect every hypothesis to be correct, but rather that incorrect hypotheses are seen as such as rejected.
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Old 09-13-2021, 07:40 PM   #170
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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I did peruse the paper, and didn't see anything which justified the assumption of legs and feet.
Then you know the article does make extensive, minute, comparisons to other specimens of the protocetidae family, and it classifies the Egyptian species as protocetidae. If it is protocetidae, it has feet.

And if the vertebrae are not weight bearing because the specimen was exclusively aquatic, then the form of the vertebrae will reflect that. If that were the case it would blow up the classification all together, it could not be protocetidae at all.

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Old 09-14-2021, 10:37 AM   #171
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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If you reject the entire paradigm on which the argument is based, it is no surprise that you are skeptical of the conclusion of the paper. Would you be skeptical of the conclusion given the evolutionary assumptions of the authors?
I am open to consider some form of theistic evolution. But the narrative
around whale evolution to me seems impossible.

The adaptive changes that need to occur for a land mammal to gradually
evolve into a whale are just impossible. Just looking at the changes that
would need to occur around the reproductive system alone make the
theory infeasible.

Just a single pair of cooperative mutations in a large mammal population requires > 100 million years (whale evolution would require thousands of
these).

According to the Darwinian models, the longest possible timeframe for the evolution of a land-dwelling animal into a whale is 9 million years.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E49kwOE6AU8
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Old 09-21-2021, 09:51 PM   #172
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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According to the Darwinian models, the longest possible timeframe for the evolution of a land-dwelling animal into a whale is 9 million years.
Sounds about right. But God created a dude in a day, right?
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Old 09-22-2021, 12:16 AM   #173
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

Explaining whales on a fundamental level assuming you agree at least to some basics finds in the fossil record isn't possible without evolution. Basically the fossil record is we start with just fish in the oceans, then a lot later we have mammals on land and then again a lot later we have mammals in the oceans(whales). So the only explanation that ignores evolution is that God created whales a significant time after he created everything else and forgot to update the bible.
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Old 09-23-2021, 08:56 AM   #174
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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Explaining whales on a fundamental level assuming you agree at least to some basics finds in the fossil record isn't possible without evolution. Basically the fossil record is we start with just fish in the oceans, then a lot later we have mammals on land and then again a lot later we have mammals in the oceans(whales). So the only explanation that ignores evolution is that God created whales a significant time after he created everything else and forgot to update the bible.
Not to mention, whales don’t have gills. This is certainly consistent with a timeline where fish (with gills) were the earliest vertebrates, with terrestrial vertebrates, including mammals, developing later. Obviously, the selection pressure for gills in land animals is minimal, so it makes sense that gills were cooped into other functions and/or disappeared entirely. Once aquatic mammals developed, made possible by the extinction of water-dwelling reptiles, they would not have gills, just like any other mammal.

The real question is (and one that I’ve asked on several of these threads without receiving even a token response) is how is the lack of gills in whales consistent with the notion of creation of whales by a designer? Assuming some flavor of creationism, the designer obviously knew what gills are and knew that they would be useful for aquatic creatures — look at all the species of fish. Why then would even a reasonably intelligent designer (let alone the omnipotent, omniscient one that IDers REALLY mean) think it was a good idea to design a creature that would live exclusively in the ocean, but could drown unless it surfaces periodically?

Does God hate whales or what???
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Old 09-23-2021, 03:55 PM   #175
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Re: Richard Dawkins on Whale Evolution

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Originally Posted by festeringZit View Post

Just a single pair of cooperative mutations in a large mammal population requires > 100 million years (whale evolution would require thousands of
these).

According to the Darwinian models, the longest possible timeframe for the evolution of a land-dwelling animal into a whale is 9 million years.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E49kwOE6AU8
You and the video assume that the mutations had to be novel, rather than already present, scattered about the population. But a lot of evolution is the bringing together of disparate alleles, not fresh mutations.

Consider: dogs evolved from wolves in just ten thousand years. There was selective pressure for progressively friendlier wolf-dogs. A Russian experiment bred foxes as friendly as dogs in just a few generations. I don't think anyone thinks this evolution was due to mutations. Rather, it was the rearranging and regathering of alleles already present. Further, consider the remarkable range of dog breeds due to selective breeding. And that's done in hundreds of years -- think what's possible in nine million.

The fossil record clearly shows evolution. It happened irregardless of whether we understand the complexities of how it happens. Evolution is a combination of mutations with allele competition.
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