The New York Times ran an article last November on the Language of Biology. This article is more amusing than anything else for some of the language that is used in the article.
Scientists have learned that the canonical “genes” account for an embarrassingly tiny part of the human genome: maybe 1 percent of the three billion paired subunits of DNA that are stuffed into nearly every cell of the body qualify as indisputable protein codes. Scientists are also learning that many of the gene-free regions of our DNA are far more loquacious than previously believed, far more willing to express themselves in ways that have nothing to do with protein manufacture.
So much for the Junk DNA myth that was advanced by Darwinists as previous “proof” of their theory. But we’ve already been down that road, so let’s get to the interesting part.
Dr. Keller is a big fan of the double helix considered both in toto and in situ — in its native cellular setting. “DNA is an enormously powerful resource, the most brilliant invention in evolutionary history,” she said. “It is a far richer and more interesting molecule than we could have imagined when we first started studying it.”
Still, she said, “it doesn’t do anything by itself.” It is a profoundly relational molecule, she said, and it has meaning only in the context of the cell. To focus endlessly on genes, she said, keeps us stuck in a linear, unidirectional and two-dimensional view of life, in which instructions are read out and dutifully followed.
“What makes DNA a living molecule is the dynamics of it, and a dynamic vocabulary would be helpful,” she said. “I talk about trying to verb biology.” And to renoun it as well. Writing last year in the journal PloS One, Dr. Keller and David Harel of the Weizmann Institute of Science suggested as an alternative to gene the word dene, which they said could be used to connote any DNA sequence that plays a role in the cell. So far, Dr. Keller admits, it has yet to catch on.
So a blind process is brilliant. That’s impressive language, and so is “verb biology.” I wonder if dene will be a verb (That ribosome is dening a protein.) And indeed, Darwinists “never would have imagined” the complexity they would encounter, and they continue to be surprised.
Here is the part I found most amusing:
In a similar vein, we may never understand the workings of our cells and genomes as comfortably and cockily as we understand the artifacts of our own design. “We have evolved to solve problems,” Dr. Keller said. “Those do not include an understanding of the operation of our own systems — that doesn’t have much evolutionary advantage.” It’s quite possible, she said, that biology is “irreducibly complex,” and not entirely accessible to rational analysis. Which is not to say we’re anywhere near being stymied, she said: “Our biology is stretching our minds. It’s another loop in the evolutionary process.”
I guess we’ll have to wait until we do evolve to understand the operation of our own systems, and that may entail waiting for a selection process that allows only those with greater understanding to live. Note also, the Darwinists use the term “irreducibly complex,” but not in the way intended by Behe. I think what they mean is, “So complex we could never understand it.”