More Complex than Previously Thought-Part IV

Recent research that Darwinism has added yet another epicycle to the geocentric theory that is evolution.(1)

ScienceDaily (Jan. 27, 2009) — A new and comprehensive analysis confirms that the evolutionary relationships among animals are not as simple as previously thought. The traditional idea that animal evolution has followed a trajectory from simple to complex—from sponge to chordate—meets a dramatic exception in the metazoan tree of life.

New work suggests that the so-called “lower” metazoans (including Placozoa, corals, and jellyfish) evolved in parallel to “higher” animals (all other metazoans, from flatworms to chordates). It also appears that Placozoans—large amoeba-shaped, multi-cellular animals—have passed over sponges and other organisms as an animal that most closely mirrors the root of this tree of life.

“To make inferences about the origin of Bilaterians—animals with a bilateral symmetry, like humans—earlier studies suggested sponges, ctenophores (comb jellies), or a small, interesting group called Placozoa as the most basal or primitive animal,” says senior author Rob DeSalle, Curator at the Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics at the American Museum of Natural History. “But our new analysis implies that the first major event in animal evolution split bilateral animals from all others, and our work firmly places Placozoa as the most primitive of the nonbilaterian animals.”

Then they go on to note that the nervous system must have had to evolve twice, because of where the supposed split in the evolutionary branch occurred.

The phylogeny drawn from the new analysis places Placozoans as basal within the Diptoblasta, a group of animals that includes sponges, comb jellies, jellyfish, corals, and anemones. This means that sponges and comb jellies, both previously considered candidates for the most basal animal, fall within the clade as more derived than Placozoans and as sister taxa to each other. Study results also identify a very deep division between the Diptoblasta and the Bilateria/Triploblasta: when looking at all animals, scientists now see that Placozoans and their relatives are in a separate lineage from all other metazoans (starfish, bivalves, anthropoids, crustaceans and chordates). This means that the nervous system, once thought to have arisen once, must have evolved twice from the DNA that coded for these complex systems (keeping in mind that while Placozoans and sponges do not have nervous systems, many of the taxa related to them do.)

Count me as one who is “shocked” by these findings.  The Darwinists now want us to believe that neurons and nervous systems evolved independently in two separate instances with nothing more than blind processes as their guide.

“Some people might initially be shocked to see that nerve cells in cnidarians and higher animals (Bilateria), the group of animals that includes humans, evolved independently,” says Schierwater. “But with this new phylogeny, we can take a closer look at the anatomy of these organisms—and we can see that their nervous systems are not all that similar at the morphological level after all.”

DeSalle agrees. “It is the underlying genetic tool kit that is similar amongst these basal animals. Placozoa have all of the tools in their genome to make a nervous system, but they just don’t do it.” (emphasis added)

So, these animals have all the tools available in their toolkit of a genome to make a nervous system, but they just don’t do it.  Score one for the “front-loaders.”  I’m a front-loader, but not of the common descent variety.  I believe that God may have designed mechanisms into the genome in order to allow for adaptation and change in response to environmental demands.

(1). New Tree of Life Divides all Lower Metazoans from Higher Animals

A Naturalistic Fairy Tale-Part XXV

Dark Flow

And then did we, the Most High Scientists, decide to share our latest discoveries. We know you will be impressed. We did discover that Dark Flow, that mysterious Dark Force that is causing cluster galaxies to move at an impossible 1000 kilometers/second, may tell us what lies beyond that cosmic horizon.(1) The cosmic horizon is 45 billion light years away. We did figure out that these clusters are moving at this incredible speed from looking at particle interactions with the cosmic microwave background (CMB), either that, or there is a fundamental problem with our cosmology (Praise Science). So we did get to wondering what could cause this Dark Flow. It can’t be invisible Dark Matter, because there is not enough of it in the universe (even though it’s invisible and unmeasurable, it makes up 95% of the mass of the universe). It can’t be Dark Energy (that unmeasurable force that is causing the expansion of the universe to accelerate), because it’s spread evenly throughout space.

The Multiverse

So, we did continue asking the question, and we came up with an answer (Praise Science and Ourselves), just as you knew we would. So, we got to thinking that something outside of our bubble must be tugging on these galaxies. And then we did get to thinking that perhaps the pre-existing patch of space-time before the Big Bang did result in lots of bubbles, with a universe in each (Praise Science and the Multiverse). We even coined a new phrase, “Eternal Inflation.” We already predicted you would like it, and yet again, our predictions were confirmed. Others of us think that our bubble might have crashed into another bubble shortly after popping into existence. Others just think the standard model of cosmology is  incorrect, but we’ll print that later in the article, and go back to focusing on more interesting things.

(1). Dark Flow: Proof of another Universe?

Naturalism is true; therefore, evolution is a fact

At the conclusion of the series of essays on DarwinsPredictions.com, the author summarizes the viewpoint of Darwinists through the relevant philosophical assumptions.  The gist is that naturalism is seen as metaphysically true; therefore, through the process of elimination, evolution is true.  The question from this perspective cannot be, “Did evolution occur?”  It can only be, “How did it occur?”

The irony here is that evolutionists make naturalism unscientific according to their own criterion of testability. This is because naturalistic explanations are the only explanations that are allowed. They therefore cannot be tested because they are true by definition. The only testing that can be done is between different sub-hypotheses of naturalism. Gradualism can be compared with punctuated equilibrium, drift can be compared with selection, and so forth. But naturalism has been defined as the only scientific option available.

Imagine if the species were designed, as they appear to be. Imagine that the DNA code, the bat’s sonar system, the towering redwood trees, and the other biological wonders were designed. If this were true, it would never be allowed within evolutionary science. How can evolutionists claim their theory is a fact while simultaneously ruling out certain explanations? They can do this by allowing for only scientific explanations to be factual. The world outside of science may be beautiful, awesome, intriguing, enchanting, and so forth, but it is not factual. In a word, science deals with facts while non-science deals with values.

So the basis, the philosophical underpinnings, of their position is untestable, and is, therefore, unscientific by their own criteria. Science, it seems, lacks a definition apart from philosophical naturalism, which is held as a metaphysical truth…a metaphysical “truth,” which is untestable.

In the century and a half since Charles Darwin proposed his theory of evolution, science has discovered a plethora of contradictory information. Many predictions of the theory have been falsified, including foundational expectations. The theory has consistently failed and as a consequence it has grown far more complex than anything Darwin ever envisioned. Evolution is not a good scientific theory and in this sense it is comparable to geocentrism. Both theories grew ever more complicated in response to the evidences of the natural world, adding epicycle upon epicycle.

In stark contrast to these evidential problems, evolutionists believe that their theory is a fact. Evolution is a fact, they say, just as gravity is fact. This remarkable claim is an indicator that there is more to evolution than merely a scientific theory. In light of the scientific evidence, the claim that evolution is a fact may seem to be absurd. But it is not.

The fact of evolution is a necessary consequence of the metaphysical assumptions evolutionists make. Metaphysical assumptions are assumptions that do not derive from science. They are made independent of science. These metaphysical assumptions that evolutionists make would be difficult to defend as necessarily true outside of evolutionary circles, but within evolution their truth is not controversial. All of this means that the scientific problems with evolution are relegated to questions of how evolution occurred. The science cannot bear on questions of whether or not evolution occurred.

More Complex than Previously Thought-Part III

Scientists are now claiming that, “…the tree of life, which shows how species are related, is ‘wrong’ and ‘misleading.'” Basically, the problem is that evolution is far to complex to be explained by a few roots and branches.(1)

Dr Eric Bapteste, an evolutionary biologist at the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, said: “For a long time the holy grail was to build a tree of life. We have no evidence at all that the tree of life is a reality.”

The discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953 – whose pioneers believed it would provide proof of Darwin’s tree – opened up new vistas for evolutionary biology.

But current research is finding a far more complex scenario than Darwin could have imagined – particularly in relation to bacteria and single-celled organisms.

Dr Rose said: “The tree of life is being politely buried – we all know that. What’s less accepted is our whole fundamental view of biology needs to change.”

He says biology is vastly more complex than we thought and facing up to this complexity will be as scary as the conceptual upheavals physicists had to take on board in the early 20th century.

It’s gratifying to see Darwinists starting to admit major flaws in their conceptualizations. It was only a matter of time before this grand unified theory began to crumble under the weight of the complexity of life’s design.

As noted in the Executive Summary of Darwin’s Predictions:

Many predictions of evolution have been falsified, including foundational expectations. Evolutionists have added explanations to their theory to account for these problematic findings. The drawback is that this greatly complicates the theory. Scientific theories are supposed to be parsimonious, explaining future findings with simple explanations rather than explaining past findings with complicated explanations.

Therefore evolutionists are faced with a accuracy-versus-parsimony tradeoff. The scientific findings make their original theory inaccurate. That is, the theory does not fit the empirical evidence well. The only way to increase the evolution’s accuracy is to complicate the theory tremendously and sacrifice parsimony. Evolutionists have consistently preferred low parsimony over low accuracy, but either way the theory is problematic.

The theory of evolution has consistently failed and as a consequence it has grown far more complex than anything Darwin ever envisioned. Therefore evolution is not a good scientific theory and in this sense it is comparable to geocentrism. Both theories grew ever more complicated in response to the evidences of the natural world, adding epicycle upon epicycle.

(1) Charles Darwin’s tree of life is ‘wrong and misleading.’

Hat tip: Uncommon Descent

Darwin's Predictions

I just read an interesting post on Uncommon Descent about a new website called Darwin’s Predictions.   The site appears to be well written and will be a useful resource for understanding the problems with Darwinism.

From the website Darwin’s Predictions:

It is not controversial that a great many predictions made by Darwin’s theory of evolution have been found to be false. There is less consensus, however, on how to interpret these falsifications. In logic, when a hypothesis predicts or entails an observation that is discovered to be false, then the hypothesis is concluded to be false. Not so in science.

When a scientific theory makes a prediction that is discovered to be false, then sometimes the theory is simply modified a bit to accommodate the new finding. Broad, umbrella theories, such as evolution, are particularly amenable to adjustments. Evolution states that naturalistic mechanisms are sufficient to explain the origin of species. This is a very broad statement capable of generating a wide variety of specific explanations about how evolution is supposed to have actually occurred. In fact evolutionists often disagree about these details. So if one explanation, dealing with a particular aspect of evolution, makes false predictions, there often are alternative explanations available to explain that particular aspect of evolution. Obviously the theory of evolution itself is not harmed simply because one particular sub-hypothesis is shown to be wrong.

Failed expectations are not necessarily a problem for a theory. [1] But what if fundamental predictions are consistently falsified? As we shall see this is the case with Darwin’s theory of evolution. Evolutionists are commonly surprised by the scientific evidences from biology. The evidences do not fit the evolutionary expectations. Evolutionists argue strenuously that these surprises are not problems, but rather are signs of scientific progress. With each new finding, evolutionists say, we learn more about how evolution occurred. Is this true or simply a case of partisanship in science? How can we tell?

Enter "The Matrix": Reality is but a holographic projection

I thought about writing a Naturalistic Fairy Tale about this, but I have far too much material for future editions of that. We now turn to a recent claim of scientists, and that is “Our

Which will you choose?

Which will you choose?

world may be a giant hologram.”(1) Wow, break out your copies of The Matrix.

I think perhaps some of these physicists could team up with biologists to make the Red vs. the Blue pill. Which would you take?  I’ll go ahead and take the red pill to wake up from this false world of naturalistic fantasy. As an aside, I don’t think I noticed that prominent scar between Morpheus’ eyebrows previously.  I wonder what that means?

Let us consult the edges of the Universe. Seriously.  The folks set up a pretty expensive experiment to examine Einstein’s theoretical notion of gravity waves.  Little did they know, there was a glitch in The Matrix.

For many months, the GEO600 team-members had been scratching their heads over inexplicable noise that is plaguing their giant detector. Then, out of the blue, a researcher approached them with an explanation. In fact, he had even predicted the noise before he knew they were detecting it. According to Craig Hogan, a physicist at the Fermilab particle physics lab in Batavia, Illinois, GEO600 has stumbled upon the fundamental limit of space-time – the point where space-time stops behaving like the smooth continuum Einstein described and instead dissolves into “grains”, just as a newspaper photograph dissolves into dots as you zoom in. “It looks like GEO600 is being buffeted by the microscopic quantum convulsions of space-time,” says Hogan.

So far so good? How about this?

If this doesn’t blow your socks off, then Hogan, who has just been appointed director of Fermilab’s Center for Particle Astrophysics, has an even bigger shock in store: “If the GEO600 result is what I suspect it is, then we are all living in a giant cosmic hologram.”

Have I ever told you that I love Sci-Fi? That’s a rhetorical question, I know I have. But, right now I’m absolutely itching to watch The Matrix again (By the way, the first one is by far the best). So, supposedly, according to this theory, the edges of the spherical universe are amplified somehow so that the tiniest aspects of time are observable in the interior of the Universe. This has been previously thought to be well beyond the realm of possibility.

The “holographic principle” challenges our sensibilities. It seems hard to believe that you woke up, brushed your teeth and are reading this article because of something happening on the boundary of the universe. No one knows what it would mean for us if we really do live in a hologram, yet theorists have good reasons to believe that many aspects of the holographic principle are true.

I know what it means, I want the Red Pill right now. I just hope I don’t wake up at the edge of the Universe with no oxygen. Supposedly, they are upgrading their detector gadget, and this will help them to know if we really are in a giant hologram. This will also allegedly allow them to possibly falsify other theories associated with string theory (you know, more unmeasurable/unobservable aspects of the Universe). They do all the usual disclaimers about how this is very preliminary (so that you do not think they are completely crazy), and say that “more research is needed.” Until then, I’ll have to be satisfied with watching The Matrix.

Hogan agrees that if the holographic principle is confirmed, it rules out all approaches to quantum gravity that do not incorporate the holographic principle. Conversely, it would be a boost for those that do – including some derived from string theory and something called matrix theory. “Ultimately, we may have our first indication of how space-time emerges out of quantum theory.” As serendipitous discoveries go, it’s hard to get more ground-breaking than that. (emphasis added)

Oh, I almost forgot, they like a 5 dimensional view of the Universe,(2) but noted it may be shaped like a Pringle. Even better!

(1). Our world may be a giant hologram, New Scientist
(2). The Five Dimensions: A Creation Science Cosmology Theory

The Art of Knowledge

Recent comments reminded me of a story I may have posted in the comments here once.  Specifically comments like Mike’s,  “The young composer only gains a real appreciation of the great composers by trying to compose something himself. ”  He went on to point out that we can have some notion of how things look different from a different perspective.

So here is that short story drawn along the same lines.

Once upon a time there was an Artist who could draw other artists into his pictures, some to draw some things for him and even some who could draw things for themselves too. So he drew an apprentice in his own image and his new student asked him about a piece of art that he was working on, “What is it going to be?”

“It’s a picture about good and evil, right and wrong.”

“But how can you draw a picture about wrong that is right?”

“Whatever I draw is right, even that which I let look wrong to those I draw to observe it so. It’s something in the lighting and my drawing, you see. Keep observing, I will not explain further until the picture is complete…. Come close little one, so that I may ask you a question. Now, why do you suppose I would draw you here to ask me annoying questions when I’m trying to work?”

“Well, I suppose…I, uh, eh, I don’t know why! Well it seems to me that you must know all about your own art. Say, why don’t you just draw me to stop it? Huh?”

The Artist turned to look at the little fellow staring up at him from his side, sighed, then said, “What you’re drawing me to do is going to hurt you more than it hurts me.”

“Uh, wait a minute…” the little fellow looked back at the painting, “I suppose I can wait until the picture is complete.”

“Very well, and besides the answer does not exist yet in any form that you can understand. You see, I’ve not drawn you to understand it yet. But perhaps you can think of it in this way as I work for now… making a picture about good and evil consists of drawing the line someplace.” As the artist spoke he drew a line and as he did some of the little forms that he had drawn into his picture murmured among themselves, “Why are things this way, rather than that? I can think of things my way and want them to be so, so why should they not be my way? Why?!”

This caused the student to comment, “Say, they are a little like me in that way! A rather likable likeness if I do say so myself… So I suppose their next question about what will be, will be why don’t you just take their will away?”

“Only I know, as I know all of my own art. Yet I would think that some of the answers about the will would be rather obvious, if you will.”

“It seems an odd decision to me.”

“Yes, I knew you would say that.”

“Ah, but what if I knew you knew? See how my knowledge increases to approach your own!”

The Master Artist just glanced at the little fellow and kept working on the picture. So his student asked, “Well…can you draw me to have some of your knowledge?” and the Artist answered, “For now you do not even have the symbols, imagery in your head or the forms of thought necessary to think many of my thoughts, so some of the best truths about my art and this picture will remain ineffable and paradoxical to you. That is my will. If you are willing to learn how my will must be done in all of my pictures then I will naturally draw you to have more knowledge of my nature.”

“Naturally….yes, that seems logical to me.”

“Yes, of course, I knew it would. After all, I just drew you to think so.” The little fellow just sighed at that, and thought that he might have heard the Artist chuckle as he did.