Darwin's Black Box - Michael J. Behe and Intelligent Design

Niall

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
I really enjoyed this interview. I have to admit that I never heard of Matthew Ehret before, but he's like a true Renaissance Thinker! I couldn't find anything about his education (not that it matters since he's obviously very smart/wise), but I'm just curious – is he like a 'self learned' genius or something?

I'd love to hear more interviews with him.
Ehret has been submitting articles to Sott.net for several years, many of which were Sott Focuses.

I don't know the extent of his current involvement, but I can tell by the things he writes about that Ehret is from the LaRouche/Schiller 'school of thought', which holds that an evil oligarchy - more or less continuously since Roman times - has enslaved the world. Today the oligarchy's global empire is essentially British, not American (nor 'Jewish'), centered on the City of London rather than Washington DC.

The LaRouchers are in many respects colinear with our 'school' or network: they have a solid grasp of the threat from near-Earth asteroids, they understand (and heavily promote) Eurasian integration as the new model for world cooperation (and were doing so long before Xi Jinping announced 'One Belt One Road'), they promote and extol the virtues of classical culture in architecture, art and music, and much more besides. They've been variously attacked as 'fascists', a 'cult', 'conspiracy theorists', etc.

I suppose a big difference between us is that they believe the masses can be led to 'the obvious solutions presented by Reason', and that if they work hard to lobby power centers like the US Congress and the CCP, form think-tanks and organize symposia, they can convert potential 'visionaries' and 'builders of a better future world' and one day realize Lyndon LaRouche's vision(s). By contrast, we believe such an 'external' effort to be futile proselytism, that what is or not 'Reason' is often nigh-on-impossible to deduct, and that individuals must come to realizations of what is and what ought to be of their own accord, thus we focus on 'internal' efforts (while maintaining something of a 'public access program' through FOTCM and Sott.net to attract said 'visionaries' and 'builders of a better future world').

I can pick faults in their philosophy and analyses of world events (it appears, for example, that the movement, on the whole, bought into the Covid-19 narrative), but their decades-long contributions to geopolitics and education generally has been immense so I prefer not to criticize them and instead be selective about which of their published content to share on Sott.net.

By the way, William Engdahl, Webster Tarpley and other highly productive and insightful 'revisionist' historians and 'conspiracy theory' essayists, came through or are products of this movement/school. Search for Lyndon LaRouche, the Schiller Institute, and Executive Intelligence Review. Their origin story is fascinating, as are much of their ideas and content.
 

Niall

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Thank you guys for this awesome show. Such a joy listening to Ehret. What a mind!

One thing I found odd though is his idea that there was a war between Planck/Einstein and Bohr/Heisenberg that decided the fate of modern physics. That seems way overblown to me. I looked at his article Symphony in Space where he lays out his thinking, but frankly I couldn't find much substance concerning quantum physics and the alleged antagonism between Planck/Einstein and Bohr/Heisenberg, although it is true of course that there were heated discussions about it back then. But it is also true that Heisenberg was influenced a lot by Einstein, and he was on good terms with Planck, who convinced Heisenberg to stay in Germany when the Nazis took over. And btw, Heisenberg was an accomplished classical pianist too :) As for Bohr, he certainly was an odd guy with some strange ideas, but he was also very insightful in many ways. It is true that he had an extraordinary influence on the interpretation of quantum physics, but to my mind at least, there are positive aspects about this as well. (Materialists and free will-deniers hate it by the way.) And it's not that the Copenhagen school wasn't challenged. There are dozens of interpretations of quantum mechanics around. So on this point, Ehret quite lost me. It would be interesting to hear his opinion on Heisenberg's book "physics and beyond", which is kind of an inside scoop on what went on in Bohr's circle and quantum mechanics in general when it was first conceived.
Well there you go. On this, you know more than the MindMatters guest, who was apparently motivated to write an article about it because he sees things through a certain 'historical dialectic'.

You, knowing more, understand that there are nuances and cross-overs which 'spoil' such a 'neat contrast' as Ehret has laid out.

I can do likewise with his geopolitical analyses or 'history of oligarchy', but I generally don't because he's bringing new information to me that I hadn't heard of or considered before.

I'm thinking his 'idée(s) fixe(s)' may break down some day and he'll - maybe - 'join' us! In the meantime, I encourage readers to support him by sharing his work, and/or supporting him financially if they're so inclined. He's probably hard up as a struggling independent writer.
 

Debra

Dagobah Resident
Posting this on "Darwin Eve".
It is only 2 and a half minutes long, and very inspiring!

Just in time for Charles Darwin’s birthday (Feb. 12), scientists from around the world are speaking out in a new video about the compelling evidence of purpose and intelligent design they see in nature.

Intelligent Design has brand new web site, and it is a beauty!
 

Matai

Padawan Learner
Here is a new article on unz.com by Laurent Guyenot the author of From Yawyeh to Zion and JFK-911: 50 years of the deep state about intelligent design:


In it he traces a path through history from Plato and Aristotle to the history of vitalism and darwinism with multiple references to philosophers from Descartes to Schopenhauer.

He then proceeds to quote Michael Behe and Stephen C Meyer before transitioning to the work of Rupert Sheldrake and his morphogenetic fields.

It is an article which nicely ties many threads and details some of the history of darwinism and intelligent design and it is interesting to see that Guyenot is not only describing historical truths but also tying together very similar biological truths to those that have been uncovered by the chateau team and the forum.

It is almost as if he has been inspired by reading SOTT/the forum? Or perhaps he has a similar FRV allowing him to attain such insights?

Regardless it was a useful refresher on some of the key concepts that have been discussed in this thread
 

Hesper

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
Stephen Meyer was recently interviewed on the Hoover Institution's YouTube channel by Peter Robinson. They discuss his new book Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Scientific Discoveries That Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe, which was just published at the end of March 2021.

Peter is an excellent interviewer and I've found his interviews with Thomas Sowell to be worth watching and re-watching. This interview is also excellent.

They start by discussing one of my favorite subjects - the hypothesis that the idea of Christ created the conditions necessary for science. It's nice to see that it has nearly 100K views since April 6th.

Here is the blurb on YouTube:

Dr. Stephen Meyer directs the Center for Science and Culture at the Discovery Institute in Seattle. He returns to Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson to discuss his newest book, Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Scientific Discoveries That Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe. In this wide-ranging and often mind-bending interview, Dr. Meyer explains the God Hypothesis; makes his continuing and evolving case for intelligent design; describes how Judeo-Christian theology gave rise to science; discusses why the discovery of DNA is actually an enigma, as its existence cannot be explained by natural selection; and more.


 

genero81

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
That's really interesting. Collingwood basically articulated the same idea in Speculum Mentis. That was something that caught my attention because I had never come across the idea but it makes sense. Taking as what Collingwood would say is an absolute proposition, God exist, therefore, the universe has order. Science is the process by which the fundamental laws behind that order are discovered and applied. Or something like that. I will check it out.

We did Sowell's 'Intellectuals and Society' a few months back at ISGN. That was a great read and I like Sowell a lot as well.
 

Hesper

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
That's really interesting. Collingwood basically articulated the same idea in Speculum Mentis. That was something that caught my attention because I had never come across the idea but it makes sense. Taking as what Collingwood would say is an absolute proposition, God exist, therefore, the universe has order. Science is the process by which the fundamental laws behind that order are discovered and applied. Or something like that. I will check it out.

Yes, I like that you brought up Collingwood, because there are certainly many scientific dimensions to the God hypothesis (fine tuning of the physical universe that allows for life to exist, DNA as a code, etc) but historical understanding is what puts the abandonment of the God hypothesis in its proper context. I can't wait for Laura's new book because I bet it will bring unbelievable light to this area.

Like you said, let's say our ancestors accepted the absolute proposition that God exists, and drew the conclusion that that means there is an order to the universe. But other cultures also had "gods" and various hierarchies of "other worlds" and such. Islam had Allah. And those many other cultures laid the foundation for mathematics, engineering, philosophy, etc in ways the West could never hope to match. But why not the institution of science, then?

It seems that Christ was different - a very different kind of role model for the individual, for the community, as well as for our relationship with God and what that says about God. Jordan Peterson recently spoke on Christ as the "ultimate" mentor.


Perhaps it's fair to say that Christ was the blueprint, and science was (one) of the things we built on that. I say one because there are also strong arguments that the practice of Christianity led to the positive aspects of capitalism. This is a bit on how the medieval monasteries incubated capitalism:

St. Benedict of Nursia, whose rules for monastic life were the foundation for nearly all Western monasticism, mandated that his monks take a vow of poverty and at the same time be engaged in work. Benedict recognized that God gave Adam work to do in the garden before the fall, and so work was good no matter what society thought of it.

The Cistercian order is a good example of a monastery following Benedict’s rule. They made sure that the monks were all engaged in productive labor. At the same time, they banned conspicuous consumption and luxurious living.

But a curious thing happened. Productive labor resulted in increasing profits even as the monks took a vow of poverty. While some profits were given away, the limitations on transportation and the relatively sparse population still left a surplus after giving to the poor. Since it was wrong to let the produce spoil, it was sold and the proceeds were used to purchase more land, since the monks’ vow of poverty meant that cash could not be kept or spent on conspicuous consumption.

The new land, in turn, increased the productive potential of the monastery. The monks themselves could not work all of the land, and so they brought in tenant farmers who grew crops and gave a fixed amount back to the monastery. The monks thus provided employment for the lay people outside of the monastery, giving them meaningful work and a chance to benefit from their own labor.

The net result is that a strict understanding of the monastic vow of poverty led the Cistercians to become very rich while also benefiting those who lived around the monasteries.

But now we have the house and we say "we don't need the blueprint". Even as the house collapses, people say "we no longer need the blueprint". Because without the blueprint we are lost. And yet the blueprint itself, it seems, needs a massive update.
 

genero81

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
Well, I'm reading "From Dawn to Decadence' by Jacques Barzun. Barzun comments on a similar idea in regards to Calvinism and the austere work ethic resulting therefrom.

Self-repression for the sake of freeing the spirit had other than strictly religious consequences. It resembles the ethos of the ancient Stoics, and we shall not be surprised to find their doctrine adopted as a living philosophy by many humanists in Calvin's day and the century following. Clearly it was not his influence alone but something in the common temper that made discipline congenial. After the expansiveness of the rebellion and the excitement of a new turn in culture, there is savor in austere deportment and sober expectations. Oddly enough, these ways of dealing with the self have in our day been believed to throw light on a complex economic question: the rise of Capitalism. Thanks to repetition, the thesis proposed by two scholars, one German, the other English, has become a thought-cliche; the Capitalist system owes it's birth and success to the moral teachings of the Reformers. The Protestant "work ethic" created the entrepreneur, the economic man as we know him under capitalism.

But was the God-fearing Protestant- anxious soul- really predestined to be a capitalist? The socialist Max Weber and the socialist R. H. Tawney wrote quasi classic books that give complimentary accounts of this supposed cultural connection. It pleased the modern critics of Capitalism by linking that system and it's evils to a "straitlaced morality" and "a discredited theology," at the same time it vexed the strict Marxists by substituting a spiritual for a materialistic agency in the march of history.
 

luc

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
I’ve been reading a very interesting book called “What is Information” by Peter Janich (German “Was ist Information”, there is an English translation available). Here are some thoughts:

I have been mulling over this question in connection with Darwinism: why can we call what is in the DNA “information”, or anything else we usually call information such as data on a harddrive or other medium? After all, isn’t it just something material, and how to respond to materialists pointing that out? We can’t just say it’s because there is a complex pattern, or even that it leads to complex things – where to draw the line between any simple pattern and information? And just because something causes something else doesn’t make it different from any other material causes. It’s a difficult question.

Interestingly though, the Darwinist-materialist crowd seldom makes that argument (as one might expect), and instead keeps calling DNA and its processes (as well as many other things) “information”. And they usually don’t say “oh, it’s not really information, we just call it that”, but insist that it really is information. The reason now seems clear: by using information terminology, they want to turn information and everything connected to the concept into “stuff” so that they can keep up their materialist charade.

And this is precisely what Janich quite brilliantly goes after – what he calls the “legend of the naturalization of information”, i.e. forcing information into the materialist dogma with a sleight of hand. He traces this development back through the works of Shannon/Weaver (mostly Weaver), Morris (Kybernetics) and the modern history of philosophy, while mounting very good arguments against this thesis and showing the complete lack of arguments for it in all these works.

He also makes it clear that the materialists (ab)use the old trick here that one might call “pulling a Dawkins”: By using the rich language of information and our human/conscious experience of it to describe material processes, they imbue this rich world of meaning on the material world – complete with purpose, teleology, functions, interpretations etc. – and so can make it seem as if the material world alone could produce all these things or at least give us the illusion they exist, without mentioning it. This is what gives the materialist view its credibility, but it’s just trickery.

Janich gives some great food for thought. For example, he compares the microbiological processes such as copying, transcribing etc. to a coin minting machine: the minting of the coin is a purely mechanical process, there is no information involved, the machine certainly doesn’t “produce” information. The coin is just a material object, not different from any other. Rather, the information is in our interpretation of the coin, the meaning we give it, the purpose of the whole operation: the context of its interaction with consciousness. It is also in the blueprint of the machine (as per Behe). But it is not in the material itself, neither the machine nor the coin.

So there are two things that come to mind:
  • In that sense, information seems to connect past and future: the information depends on what minds have conceived in the past, AND what minds will do with it in the future
  • Which of course implies that consciousness is at the root of information, not material – whether it’s human minds or other forms of consciousness
If that is so, and a piece of information depends on what minds will do with it in the future, is the “object” of this information influenced by the future as well? Is the writer of a book, for example, influenced by what future readers will get from it or do with it? It kind of would make sense that information, if it depends on and changes according to minds interacting with it, might transcend time and space. But if there are different futures where minds do different things with the information, how do they affect the information, and which possible future might be dominant?

This all goes well with the idea of the “information field” and DNA as “antennas”. Indeed, there cannot be information in material, it seems. But it may interact with information, maybe in a sort of co-creation process. Anyway, these are interesting questions I haven’t thought about a lot yet.

Peter Janich writes clearly and engagingly (at least in German), as far as philosophy goes, and has done quite a bit of heavy-lifting, so I can recommend the book to anyone pondering the relationship between information, consciousness and matter.
 

Mike

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
If that is so, and a piece of information depends on what minds will do with it in the future, is the “object” of this information influenced by the future as well? Is the writer of a book, for example, influenced by what future readers will get from it or do with it? It kind of would make sense that information, if it depends on and changes according to minds interacting with it, might transcend time and space. But if there are different futures where minds do different things with the information, how do they affect the information, and which possible future might be dominant?
Maybe information is more like a medium in which consciousness is stored or able to reside and express itself. And it is consciousness that transcendence time via the medium of the universal information field or system. That a writer endows their writing with their consciousness, which a person in the future can interact with with their own consciousness. And thus it is the consciousness from the writer and future reader which interact outside of time and affect each other?

See this post that I wrote after reading your post: Session 15 August 2020
 
I’ve been reading a very interesting book called “What is Information” by Peter Janich (German “Was ist Information”, there is an English translation available). Here are some thoughts:

I have been mulling over this question in connection with Darwinism: why can we call what is in the DNA “information”, or anything else we usually call information such as data on a harddrive or other medium? After all, isn’t it just something material, and how to respond to materialists pointing that out? We can’t just say it’s because there is a complex pattern, or even that it leads to complex things – where to draw the line between any simple pattern and information? And just because something causes something else doesn’t make it different from any other material causes. It’s a difficult question.

Interestingly though, the Darwinist-materialist crowd seldom makes that argument (as one might expect), and instead keeps calling DNA and its processes (as well as many other things) “information”. And they usually don’t say “oh, it’s not really information, we just call it that”, but insist that it really is information. The reason now seems clear: by using information terminology, they want to turn information and everything connected to the concept into “stuff” so that they can keep up their materialist charade.

And this is precisely what Janich quite brilliantly goes after – what he calls the “legend of the naturalization of information”, i.e. forcing information into the materialist dogma with a sleight of hand. He traces this development back through the works of Shannon/Weaver (mostly Weaver), Morris (Kybernetics) and the modern history of philosophy, while mounting very good arguments against this thesis and showing the complete lack of arguments for it in all these works.

He also makes it clear that the materialists (ab)use the old trick here that one might call “pulling a Dawkins”: By using the rich language of information and our human/conscious experience of it to describe material processes, they imbue this rich world of meaning on the material world – complete with purpose, teleology, functions, interpretations etc. – and so can make it seem as if the material world alone could produce all these things or at least give us the illusion they exist, without mentioning it. This is what gives the materialist view its credibility, but it’s just trickery.

Janich gives some great food for thought. For example, he compares the microbiological processes such as copying, transcribing etc. to a coin minting machine: the minting of the coin is a purely mechanical process, there is no information involved, the machine certainly doesn’t “produce” information. The coin is just a material object, not different from any other. Rather, the information is in our interpretation of the coin, the meaning we give it, the purpose of the whole operation: the context of its interaction with consciousness. It is also in the blueprint of the machine (as per Behe). But it is not in the material itself, neither the machine nor the coin.

So there are two things that come to mind:
  • In that sense, information seems to connect past and future: the information depends on what minds have conceived in the past, AND what minds will do with it in the future
  • Which of course implies that consciousness is at the root of information, not material – whether it’s human minds or other forms of consciousness
If that is so, and a piece of information depends on what minds will do with it in the future, is the “object” of this information influenced by the future as well? Is the writer of a book, for example, influenced by what future readers will get from it or do with it? It kind of would make sense that information, if it depends on and changes according to minds interacting with it, might transcend time and space. But if there are different futures where minds do different things with the information, how do they affect the information, and which possible future might be dominant?

This all goes well with the idea of the “information field” and DNA as “antennas”. Indeed, there cannot be information in material, it seems. But it may interact with information, maybe in a sort of co-creation process. Anyway, these are interesting questions I haven’t thought about a lot yet.

Peter Janich writes clearly and engagingly (at least in German), as far as philosophy goes, and has done quite a bit of heavy-lifting, so I can recommend the book to anyone pondering the relationship between information, consciousness and matter.
Darwin was a member of mason (they usually carry the iron cross symbol like SS trooper or a lot of european monarch. Queen Elizabeth wear it openly on top of her crown). During his time a lot of scientists are questioning the credibility of creationism so they created an alternate materialistic version of evolution. It is two of the main trick to prevent spiritual growth as explain in the bible: pharisees vs sadducees
1sadducees: represent materialism and senses which is useless when trying to learn spiritualism as the mind can't explain higher level spiritualism leading to ritualism or going through the motion without any result. (Scientific method falls into this category since most of false teachings are approved by the jesuit/church).
2 pharisees: faith without action leads to judgmental and hypocrisy. Expert create symbolism with meaning for common people and other for those who understand the language. If you distort the meaning you will not understand the process leading to your inability to perform.

  • In that sense, information seems to connect past and future: the information depends on what minds have conceived in the past, AND what minds will do with it in the future
  • Which of course implies that consciousness is at the root of information, not material – whether it’s human minds or other forms of consciousness
Your memory of the past may be implanted or real. What matter is the consciousness vibration now/knowledge as it act as a compass when choosing future options. The cabal usually try to control the direction of the future of our sphere through false info as most of us are underdeveloped spiritually. If the false info become the memory/understanding of mass population (reaching critical mass) it will direct this sphere/planet to future timeline they want (instead of useless effort to change events by jumping timeline) This is why the church destroy/slander other spiritual competition to control the message. This way they can control society without resistance/realization of the general population through education and mass media through their secret society. The reason for all this insanity is the great wave of change. In near distant future there will be flare from center of galaxy that increase the vibration of every consciousness on its path for few days. With instant understanding the cabal don't feel safe loosing control when their cattle suddenly becoming aware (instant jump in vibration) they have been enslaved through manipulation for thousand of years. Thus, the reign of terror is released upon us prior to the event to lower the vibration of mass population with fear (war on terror, covid, etc)
 

siftingmaterials

Padawan Learner
I’ve been reading a very interesting book called “What is Information” by Peter Janich (German “Was ist Information”, there is an English translation available). Here are some thoughts:

I have been mulling over this question in connection with Darwinism: why can we call what is in the DNA “information”, or anything else we usually call information such as data on a harddrive or other medium? After all, isn’t it just something material, and how to respond to materialists pointing that out? We can’t just say it’s because there is a complex pattern, or even that it leads to complex things – where to draw the line between any simple pattern and information? And just because something causes something else doesn’t make it different from any other material causes. It’s a difficult question.

Interestingly though, the Darwinist-materialist crowd seldom makes that argument (as one might expect), and instead keeps calling DNA and its processes (as well as many other things) “information”. And they usually don’t say “oh, it’s not really information, we just call it that”, but insist that it really is information. The reason now seems clear: by using information terminology, they want to turn information and everything connected to the concept into “stuff” so that they can keep up their materialist charade.

And this is precisely what Janich quite brilliantly goes after – what he calls the “legend of the naturalization of information”, i.e. forcing information into the materialist dogma with a sleight of hand. He traces this development back through the works of Shannon/Weaver (mostly Weaver), Morris (Kybernetics) and the modern history of philosophy, while mounting very good arguments against this thesis and showing the complete lack of arguments for it in all these works.

He also makes it clear that the materialists (ab)use the old trick here that one might call “pulling a Dawkins”: By using the rich language of information and our human/conscious experience of it to describe material processes, they imbue this rich world of meaning on the material world – complete with purpose, teleology, functions, interpretations etc. – and so can make it seem as if the material world alone could produce all these things or at least give us the illusion they exist, without mentioning it. This is what gives the materialist view its credibility, but it’s just trickery.

Janich gives some great food for thought. For example, he compares the microbiological processes such as copying, transcribing etc. to a coin minting machine: the minting of the coin is a purely mechanical process, there is no information involved, the machine certainly doesn’t “produce” information. The coin is just a material object, not different from any other. Rather, the information is in our interpretation of the coin, the meaning we give it, the purpose of the whole operation: the context of its interaction with consciousness. It is also in the blueprint of the machine (as per Behe). But it is not in the material itself, neither the machine nor the coin.

So there are two things that come to mind:
  • In that sense, information seems to connect past and future: the information depends on what minds have conceived in the past, AND what minds will do with it in the future
  • Which of course implies that consciousness is at the root of information, not material – whether it’s human minds or other forms of consciousness
If that is so, and a piece of information depends on what minds will do with it in the future, is the “object” of this information influenced by the future as well? Is the writer of a book, for example, influenced by what future readers will get from it or do with it? It kind of would make sense that information, if it depends on and changes according to minds interacting with it, might transcend time and space. But if there are different futures where minds do different things with the information, how do they affect the information, and which possible future might be dominant?

This all goes well with the idea of the “information field” and DNA as “antennas”. Indeed, there cannot be information in material, it seems. But it may interact with information, maybe in a sort of co-creation process. Anyway, these are interesting questions I haven’t thought about a lot yet.

Peter Janich writes clearly and engagingly (at least in German), as far as philosophy goes, and has done quite a bit of heavy-lifting, so I can recommend the book to anyone pondering the relationship between information, consciousness and matter.
This is interesting. Claude Shannon, who pioneered information theory, observed that information was message data. He also said, "Roughly speaking, a message's information is proportional to its improbability--or its capacity to surprise an observer."

So we see a leaf and it is green. We look again and we notice the veins of the leaf and the shadows cast by other leaves. The longer you observe, in fact, the more messages you receive about the leaf from your senses and the question of improbability is stress tested. It's no longer improbable that the leaf is green. The green leaf has become "the case" and in proportion the messages you are receiving have less and less to do with colour. And more to do with a set of probabilities that use what is the case to progress.

In a sense information has a valence that is keyed to the observer.
 

siftingmaterials

Padawan Learner
Wow - inspiring post! So many profound points to wake-up to!



Without anything to back it up, my own belief is that space is about as "sterile" as the earth's oceans.



Unless they were "engineered"...

(In my teens, and as a machine code programmer, I experimented with the creation of a number of computer viruses just to understand them and how their replication mechanisms worked. Note for the record: I never released any into the wild!)



Without claiming to know the answer, I would suggest that for viruses (as we know them) to exist, there also had to exist DNA/RNA and a replication mechanism. I believe that none of the viruses we have seen, so far, contain their own replication process - so the chances are that they came into being as DNA parasites rather than as an agent of creation.

Your final question also resonates with one I have had for some time: What is the minimum viable unit of life?

A "modern" cell is clearly a very advanced symbiotic life form with organelles and mitochondria (which appear to be symbiotic passengers with their own life cycles). Cancer has demonstrated an earlier pre-mitochondrial cellular stage of life that is also (horrifically) viable in the concentrated presence of nutrients.

Where I am going with this is a similar question to yours: Which came first, a "cell" or DNA/RNA and its replication mechanism?

Could the DNA/RNA have spontaneously formed (along with its replication mechanism) in a nutrient rich soup, which then, over time, generated the cellular membrane and structures necessary to concentrate and maintain charge and nutrient density? Or was the cell there first, in some form of lipid membrane that just managed to capture enough of a combination of nutrients and minerals for them to magically have the exact combination of properties necessary for them to become a vehicle for life?

I have stated in a prior post elsewhere on the forum that I believe we are not just descendants of the first cell/DNA-fragment, but ARE PART OF that same entity (because all cells/DNA appear to multiply by division).

But, what was the first/original minimum viable entity, and where did that come from?

There are a lot of arguments about Evolution vs ID, but I feel that the arguments still exist only because we are looking in the wrong place: if we can identify the minimum viable unit of life, my bet is that the arguments about ID vs Evolution would (largely) evaporate...
I love this whole post. This is what I would call 'high speculation' - it presumes that the outcome of a long held conflict is yet to be described, we have not arrived at the synthesis of two or more opposing views. A synthesis is not a mix. It's not a compromise. Synthesis is new, whole, a thing in itself. It comes about in such a way that undermines the need for the supremacy of its priors.

A theory of life is a perfect example. Our definition for the irriducible unit of life has shifted over time. Indeed, it is inconsistent from culture to culture, let alone that cultures shift their own theories over time.

Is our desire for a universal theory of life any different from the desires that the hermetic philosophers and theologians had? Or the evolutionary biologists and intelligent design advocates?

Is it part of a grand teleology that is leading us toward an ultimate description of life?

Are we merely arriving at the necessary descriptions of life? Can we establish truth from necessity if what is necessary is unfixed in time and space?

Or is there a theory of life that is simply true, and if so, would it be resistant to synthesis?
 
I saw this article in which scientists would be somewhat surprised that worms with only 304 neurons were capable of making different decisions while taking into account multiple factors... apparently they are surprised that they are capable of these actions with so few neurons per what these would not be everything by themselves and it would be necessary to change the approaches when looking for how animals manage to make complex decisions (to be clear, there may be factors related to information fields involved).

Tiny worms make complex decisions, too: Scientists surprised to discover flexible decision-making capabilities in a worm with just 302 neurons.

Tiny worms make complex decisions, too​

Scientists surprised to discover flexible decision-making capabilities in a worm with just 302 neurons​

Date: March 7, 2022
Source:Salk Institute
Summary: How does an animal make decisions? Scientists have spent decades trying to answer this question by focusing on the cells and connections of the brain that might be involved. Scientists are taking a different approach -- analyzing behavior, not neurons. They were surprised to find that worms can take multiple factors into account and choose between two different actions, despite having only 302 neurons compared to approximately 86 billion in humans.Share:
FULL STORY


How does an animal make decisions? Scientists have spent decades trying to answer this question by focusing on the cells and connections of the brain that might be involved. Salk scientists are taking a different approach -- analyzing behavior, not neurons. They were surprised to find that worms can take multiple factors into account and choose between two different actions, despite having only 302 neurons compared to approximately 86 billion in humans.

The findings, published in Current Biology on March 7, 2022, have important implications for the way researchers assess motivation and cognitive abilities in animals. What's more, the study demonstrates that complex decision-making capabilities could be encoded in small biological and artificial networks.

"Our study shows you can use a simple system such as the worm to study something complex, like goal-directed decision-making. We also demonstrated that behavior can tell us a lot about how the brain works," says senior author Sreekanth Chalasani, associate professor in Salk's Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory. "Even simple systems like worms have different strategies, and they can choose between those strategies, deciding which one works well for them in a given situation. That provides a framework for understanding how these decisions are made in more complex systems, such as humans."

Whether eating prey or defending its food source, the predatory worm Pristionchus pacificus relies on biting. The team's challenge was to determine the worm's intentions when it bites.
The researchers found that P. pacificus chooses between two foraging strategies for biting its prey and competitor, another worm called Caenorhabditis elegans: 1) predatory strategy, in which its goal for biting is to kill prey, or 2) territorial strategy, in which biting is instead used to force C. elegans away from a food source. P. pacificus chooses the predatory strategy against larval C. elegans, which is easy to kill. In contrast, P. pacificus selects the territorial strategy against adult C. elegans, which is difficult to kill and outcompetes P. pacificus for food.
To the team, it appeared that P. pacificus weighed the costs and benefits of multiple potential outcomes of an action -- behavior that's familiar in vertebrates but unexpected in a worm.

"Scientists have always assumed that worms were simple -- when P. pacificus bites we thought that was always for a singular predatory purpose," says first author Kathleen Quach, a postdoctoral fellow in Chalasani's lab. "Actually, P. pacificus is versatile and can use the same action, biting C. elegans, to achieve different long-term goals. I was surprised to find that P. pacificus could leverage what seemed like failed predation into successful and goal-directed territoriality."

In the future, the scientists would like to determine which of P. pacificus' cost-benefit calculations are hard-wired or flexible. They hope more research like this will help further uncover the molecular underpinnings of decision-making.

The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health (5R01MH113905), the W.M. Keck Foundation, the National Science Foundation, Salk Women & Science and a Paul F. Glenn Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship.


Story Source:
Materials provided by Salk Institute. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.
 

Niall

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Dear God, shades of the Tower of Babel, Sodom and Gomorrah, Atlantis, the whole nine yards! Obviously a schizoid psychopath in Lobaczewski's terms, too.
Harari speaking at a WEF conference in 2018:


Note what he says from 01:35:

"Science is replacing evolution by natural selection with evolution by intelligent design. Not the intelligent design of some god above the clouds, but our intelligent design..."

Ultra-materialistic, transhumanistic, hubristic, Schwabian, technotronic fascism.

We've seen your 'intelligent design' at work [SARS-CoV-2, then 'Covid vaccines'], and it SUCKS!

You may succeed in 'hacking' some humans, but you will never 'hack' human nature and you will never 'hack' the Divine Cosmic Mind, you two-dimensional, delusional psychopaths.
 
Top Bottom