Home » Mind, News » But can nature create human consciousness at all?

But can nature create human consciousness at all?

Barry Arrington offers an interesting argument in Nature Wouldn’t Have Done It That Way:

In the zombie thought experiment we are supposed to imagine a person (let’s call him Fred) who looks and acts exactly like a fully conscious human being. Fred eats, drinks, converses, laughs, cries, etc. exactly like a human being, but he is in fact a biological robot with no subjective consciousness at all. …

This is, of course, a thought experiment.

Gelernter points out that from an outside observer’s perspective, a fully conscious, self-aware person cannot be distinguished from a zombie Fred. They behave exactly alike. Here is where it gets interesting. If a conscious person and a zombie behave exactly alike, consciousness does not confer a survival advantage on the conscious person. It follows that consciousness is invisible to natural selection, which selects for only those traits that provide a survival advantage. And from this it follows that consciousness cannot be accounted for as the product of natural selection. Nature would not have done it that way.

Where does this get us? It is hard to say. At the very least, it seems to me that the next time an anti-ID person employs the “God would not have done it that way” argument, I can respond with “And nature wouldn’t have either so where does that leave us?” response.

Commenter goodusername replies,

I’ve never seen anyone argue that consciousness was selected for (although such people may exist). Rather, it’s usually seen as a result or byproduct of other things that were selected for.

No one believes that every trait of every organism needs to be selected for in order to exist. Most features don’t exist as independent entities but, rather, are shaped by other parts of the organism. Many features exist at all only as a side effect of other features, such as the human chin.

I’m not sure if consciousness alone has any survival benefit, but it may exist as a side effect or byproduct of us being highly intelligent and highly social, and other mental traits.

I’m afraid this doesn’t get us anywhere.

If consciousness had survival value, we could conceivably have a naturalist discussion of why only humans have it. Given that it doesn’t have survival value, we are expected to see it as a side effect of “us being highly intelligent and highly social, and other mental traits.” But those traits are experienced as a product of consciousness (remember, zombie Fred doesn’t, so far as we know, exist, so he isn’t really an exception to this rule).

There is no reason— apart from a faith belief in naturalism—to believe that nature, which is unconscious, can produce human consciousness at all. Whether such consciousness has survival value or not. The best nature can do is produce animal consciousness (awareness of and response to one’s surroundings and experience). The rest of it—the abstractions, the ethical wrestles, the aesthetic quarrels, the tussle with mortality—does not seem to be part of nature’s remit. – O’Leary for News

PS: Added: It is not called the Hard Problem of Consciousness for nothing.

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31 Responses to But can nature create human consciousness at all?

  1. News- consciousness emerges from the interactions of matter and energy as they form a human. Problem solved :roll:

  2. If consciousness had survival value, we could conceivably have a naturalist discussion of why only humans have it. Given that it doesn’t have survival value, we are expected to see it as a side effect of “us being highly intelligent and highly social, and other mental traits.” But those traits are experienced as a product of consciousness (remember, zombie Fred doesn’t, so far as we know, exist, so he isn’t really an exception to this rule).

    It appears that we’re mostly in agreement, except that you see intelligence, etc, as a byproduct of consciousness, instead of the vice versa? Putting it that ways seems a bit odd to me. But on the larger point we appear to be in agreement. You have doubts that “Zombie Fred” could exist, so do I, and for the same reason. The different mental features can’t be viewed as separate lego blocks. If we had the power to try to construct “Zombie Fred” from scratch, and gave him certain features, I think we’d find that certain features would emerge from the combination of other features, and the features would impact and influence other features, etc (i.e. Fred would have traits that we didn’t give him explicitly, just as we have traits that weren’t explicitly selected for.)

  3. OT: Eugenie Scott Lectures on the Evolution of Tubes —– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHWrzzdItT0

  4. We broke off from apes and chimps, six-ten million years ago. They survived without our type of consciousness/intellect just as well as we did until recently when their habitat stated to disappear. This proves that our consciousness is not needed for survival. Coming down out of the trees with an upright posture means a slower moving organism which needs more planning and thinking to stay alive.That may have selected for more brain power, but why then did we leave the trees? I fully believe our evolution was guided.

  5. Melvinvines your video was hilarious. You should make a video like that with donexodus2′s face instead if you know who donexodus2 is.

  6. By the way my friend constantly refers me to this website thought you guys would want to tear it up. Heres the link: http://exposingreligionblog.tu.....8154081516

  7. As the argument starts by comparing P-zombies (philosophical zombies) and consciousness then O’Leary should have said,

    There is no reason— apart from a faith belief in naturalism—to believe that nature, which is a zombie, can produce human consciousness at all.

    But she didn’t as she used “unconscious”. As there is an obvious value in being conscious compared to being unconscious O’Leary’s argument quickly falls into disarray. Again she’s using it as a coat rack to hang up the supernatural.

    The very fact that anaesthetics which chemically turn off consciousness in humans (and other animals) should be a clue that we’re dealing with a natural process unless O’Leary wants to claim anaesthetics are un-natural (or supernatural).

    Hearts pump and brains think. One heart cell isn’t a heart and one brain cell isn’t a brain. Work out what fallacy O’Leary et al is deploying.

  8. turell, I’m seriously having trouble with your whole evolutionary narrative even if it has a Theistic caveat at the end. It simply is a mishmash of unsupported assertion and conjecture:

    First you assert:

    We broke off from apes and chimps, six-ten million years ago.

    Really??? How do you know this? What is your specific evidence? We can’t even get a bacteria to evolve into a different type of bacteria!

    Scant search for the Maker
    Excerpt: But where is the experimental evidence? None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of 20 to 30 minutes, and populations achieved after 18 hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another, in spite of the fact that populations have been exposed to potent chemical and physical mutagens and that, uniquely, bacteria possess extrachromosomal, transmissible plasmids. Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organisms. –
    Alan H. Linton – emeritus professor of bacteriology, University of Bristol.
    http://www.timeshighereducatio.....ode=159282

    A review of The Edge of Evolution: The Search for the Limits of Darwinism
    The numbers of Plasmodium and HIV in the last 50 years greatly exceeds the total number of mammals since their supposed evolutionary origin (several hundred million years ago), yet little has been achieved by evolution. This suggests that mammals could have “invented” little in their time frame. Behe: ‘Our experience with HIV gives good reason to think that Darwinism doesn’t do much—even with billions of years and all the cells in that world at its disposal’ (p. 155).
    http://creation.com/review-mic.....-evolution

    “The immediate, most important implication is that complexes with more than two different binding sites-ones that require three or more proteins-are beyond the edge of evolution, past what is biologically reasonable to expect Darwinian evolution to have accomplished in all of life in all of the billion-year history of the world. The reasoning is straightforward. The odds of getting two independent things right are the multiple of the odds of getting each right by itself. So, other things being equal, the likelihood of developing two binding sites in a protein complex would be the square of the probability for getting one: a double CCC, 10^20 times 10^20, which is 10^40. There have likely been fewer than 10^40 cells in the world in the last 4 billion years, so the odds are against a single event of this variety in the history of life. It is biologically unreasonable.”
    - Michael Behe – The Edge of Evolution – page 146

    Michael Behe, The Edge of Evolution, pg. 162 Swine Flu, Viruses, and the Edge of Evolution
    “Indeed, the work on malaria and AIDS demonstrates that after all possible unintelligent processes in the cell–both ones we’ve discovered so far and ones we haven’t–at best extremely limited benefit, since no such process was able to do much of anything. It’s critical to notice that no artificial limitations were placed on the kinds of mutations or processes the microorganisms could undergo in nature. Nothing–neither point mutation, deletion, insertion, gene duplication, transposition, genome duplication, self-organization nor any other process yet undiscovered–was of much use.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....20071.html

    Nor do we have evidence that a fruit fly can evolve into anything but another fruit fly:

    ‘No matter what we do to a fruit fly embryo there are only three possible outcomes, a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly. What we never see is primary speciation much less macro-evolution’ –
    Jonathan Wells

    Darwin’s Theory – Fruit Flies and Morphology – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZJTIwRY0bs

    Experimental Evolution in Fruit Flies (35 years of trying to force fruit flies to evolve in the laboratory fails, spectacularly) – October 2010
    Excerpt: “Despite decades of sustained selection in relatively small, sexually reproducing laboratory populations, selection did not lead to the fixation of newly arising unconditionally advantageous alleles.,,, “This research really upends the dominant paradigm about how species evolve,” said ecology and evolutionary biology professor Anthony Long, the primary investigator.
    http://www.arn.org/blogs/index.....ruit_flies
    http://eebweb.arizona.edu/nach.....l_2010.pdf

    Nor do empirics coupled with mathematics support that such a transition is possible from apes to humans by Darwinian mechanisms:

    Thou Shalt Not Put Evolutionary Theory to a Test – Douglas Axe – July 18, 2012
    Excerpt: “For example, McBride criticizes me for not mentioning genetic drift in my discussion of human origins, apparently without realizing that the result of Durrett and Schmidt rules drift out. Each and every specific genetic change needed to produce humans from apes would have to have conferred a significant selective advantage in order for humans to have appeared in the available time (i.e. the mutations cannot be ‘neutral’). Any aspect of the transition that requires two or more mutations to act in combination in order to increase fitness would take way too long (>100 million years).
    My challenge to McBride, and everyone else who believes the evolutionary story of human origins, is not to provide the list of mutations that did the trick, but rather a list of mutations that can do it. Otherwise they’re in the position of insisting that something is a scientific fact without having the faintest idea how it even could be.” Doug Axe PhD.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....62351.html

    More from Ann Gauger on why humans didn’t happen the way Darwin said – July 2012
    Excerpt: Each of these new features probably required multiple mutations. Getting a feature that requires six neutral mutations is the limit of what bacteria can produce. For primates (e.g., monkeys, apes and humans) the limit is much more severe. Because of much smaller effective population sizes (an estimated ten thousand for humans instead of a billion for bacteria) and longer generation times (fifteen to twenty years per generation for humans vs. a thousand generations per year for bacteria), it would take a very long time for even a single beneficial mutation to appear and become fixed in a human population.
    You don’t have to take my word for it. In 2007, Durrett and Schmidt estimated in the journal Genetics that for a single mutation to occur in a nucleotide-binding site and be fixed in a primate lineage would require a waiting time of six million years. The same authors later estimated it would take 216 million years for the binding site to acquire two mutations, if the first mutation was neutral in its effect.
    Facing Facts
    But six million years is the entire time allotted for the transition from our last common ancestor with chimps to us according to the standard evolutionary timescale. Two hundred and sixteen million years takes us back to the Triassic, when the very first mammals appeared. One or two mutations simply aren’t sufficient to produce the necessary changes— sixteen anatomical features—in the time available. At most, a new binding site might affect the regulation of one or two genes.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....rwin-said/

    In fact, we have no evidence whatsoever that radical plasticity of body plans, as is required by Darwinism, is even possible:

    Response to John Wise – October 2010
    Excerpt: A technique called “saturation mutagenesis”1,2 has been used to produce every possible developmental mutation in fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster),3,4,5 roundworms (Caenorhabditis elegans),6,7 and zebrafish (Danio rerio),8,9,10 and the same technique is now being applied to mice (Mus musculus).11,12 None of the evidence from these and numerous other studies of developmental mutations supports the neo-Darwinian dogma that DNA mutations can lead to new organs or body plans–because none of the observed developmental mutations benefit the organism.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....38811.html

    “Perhaps the most obvious challenge is to demonstrate evolution empirically. There are, arguably, some 2 to 10 million species on earth. The fossil record shows that most species survive somewhere between 3 and 5 million years. In that case, we ought to be seeing small but significant numbers of originations (new species) .. every decade.”
    Keith Stewart Thomson, Professor of Biology and Dean of the Graduate School, Yale University (Nov. -Dec. American Scientist, 1997 pg. 516)

    Phenotypic Plasticity – Lizard cecal valve (cyclical variation)- video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEtgOApmnTA

  9. turell, I’m seriously having trouble with your whole evolutionary narrative even if it has a Theistic caveat at the end. It simply is a mishmash of unsupported assertion and conjecture:

    First you assert:

    We broke off from apes and chimps, six-ten million years ago.

    Really??? How do you know this? What is your specific evidence? We can’t even get a bacteria to evolve into a different type of bacteria!

    Scant search for the Maker
    Excerpt: But where is the experimental evidence? None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of 20 to 30 minutes, and populations achieved after 18 hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another, in spite of the fact that populations have been exposed to potent chemical and physical mutagens and that, uniquely, bacteria possess extrachromosomal, transmissible plasmids. Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organisms. –
    Alan H. Linton – emeritus professor of bacteriology, University of Bristol.
    http://www.timeshighereducatio.....ode=159282

    A review of The Edge of Evolution: The Search for the Limits of Darwinism
    The numbers of Plasmodium and HIV in the last 50 years greatly exceeds the total number of mammals since their supposed evolutionary origin (several hundred million years ago), yet little has been achieved by evolution. This suggests that mammals could have “invented” little in their time frame. Behe: ‘Our experience with HIV gives good reason to think that Darwinism doesn’t do much—even with billions of years and all the cells in that world at its disposal’ (p. 155).
    http://creation.com/review-mic.....-evolution

    “The immediate, most important implication is that complexes with more than two different binding sites-ones that require three or more proteins-are beyond the edge of evolution, past what is biologically reasonable to expect Darwinian evolution to have accomplished in all of life in all of the billion-year history of the world. The reasoning is straightforward. The odds of getting two independent things right are the multiple of the odds of getting each right by itself. So, other things being equal, the likelihood of developing two binding sites in a protein complex would be the square of the probability for getting one: a double CCC, 10^20 times 10^20, which is 10^40. There have likely been fewer than 10^40 cells in the world in the last 4 billion years, so the odds are against a single event of this variety in the history of life. It is biologically unreasonable.”
    - Michael Behe – The Edge of Evolution – page 146

    Michael Behe, The Edge of Evolution, pg. 162 Swine Flu, Viruses, and the Edge of Evolution
    “Indeed, the work on malaria and AIDS demonstrates that after all possible unintelligent processes in the cell–both ones we’ve discovered so far and ones we haven’t–at best extremely limited benefit, since no such process was able to do much of anything. It’s critical to notice that no artificial limitations were placed on the kinds of mutations or processes the microorganisms could undergo in nature. Nothing–neither point mutation, deletion, insertion, gene duplication, transposition, genome duplication, self-organization nor any other process yet undiscovered–was of much use.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....20071.html

    Nor do we have evidence that a fruit fly can evolve into anything but another fruit fly:

    ‘No matter what we do to a fruit fly embryo there are only three possible outcomes, a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly. What we never see is primary speciation much less macro-evolution’ –
    Jonathan Wells

    Darwin’s Theory – Fruit Flies and Morphology – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZJTIwRY0bs

    Experimental Evolution in Fruit Flies (35 years of trying to force fruit flies to evolve in the laboratory fails, spectacularly) – October 2010
    Excerpt: “Despite decades of sustained selection in relatively small, sexually reproducing laboratory populations, selection did not lead to the fixation of newly arising unconditionally advantageous alleles.,,, “This research really upends the dominant paradigm about how species evolve,” said ecology and evolutionary biology professor Anthony Long, the primary investigator.
    http://eebweb.arizona.edu/nach.....l_2010.pdf

    Nor does empirical evidence coupled with mathematics support that such a transition is even possible from apes to humans by Darwinian mechanisms in the first place:

    Thou Shalt Not Put Evolutionary Theory to a Test – Douglas Axe – July 18, 2012
    Excerpt: “For example, McBride criticizes me for not mentioning genetic drift in my discussion of human origins, apparently without realizing that the result of Durrett and Schmidt rules drift out. Each and every specific genetic change needed to produce humans from apes would have to have conferred a significant selective advantage in order for humans to have appeared in the available time (i.e. the mutations cannot be ‘neutral’). Any aspect of the transition that requires two or more mutations to act in combination in order to increase fitness would take way too long (>100 million years).
    My challenge to McBride, and everyone else who believes the evolutionary story of human origins, is not to provide the list of mutations that did the trick, but rather a list of mutations that can do it. Otherwise they’re in the position of insisting that something is a scientific fact without having the faintest idea how it even could be.” Doug Axe PhD.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....62351.html

    More from Ann Gauger on why humans didn’t happen the way Darwin said – July 2012
    Excerpt: Each of these new features probably required multiple mutations. Getting a feature that requires six neutral mutations is the limit of what bacteria can produce. For primates (e.g., monkeys, apes and humans) the limit is much more severe. Because of much smaller effective population sizes (an estimated ten thousand for humans instead of a billion for bacteria) and longer generation times (fifteen to twenty years per generation for humans vs. a thousand generations per year for bacteria), it would take a very long time for even a single beneficial mutation to appear and become fixed in a human population.
    You don’t have to take my word for it. In 2007, Durrett and Schmidt estimated in the journal Genetics that for a single mutation to occur in a nucleotide-binding site and be fixed in a primate lineage would require a waiting time of six million years. The same authors later estimated it would take 216 million years for the binding site to acquire two mutations, if the first mutation was neutral in its effect.
    Facing Facts
    But six million years is the entire time allotted for the transition from our last common ancestor with chimps to us according to the standard evolutionary timescale. Two hundred and sixteen million years takes us back to the Triassic, when the very first mammals appeared. One or two mutations simply aren’t sufficient to produce the necessary changes— sixteen anatomical features—in the time available. At most, a new binding site might affect the regulation of one or two genes.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....rwin-said/

    In fact, we have no evidence whatsoever that radical plasticity of body plans, as is required by Darwinism, is even possible:

    Response to John Wise – October 2010
    Excerpt: A technique called “saturation mutagenesis”1,2 has been used to produce every possible developmental mutation in fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster),3,4,5 roundworms (Caenorhabditis elegans),6,7 and zebrafish (Danio rerio),8,9,10 and the same technique is now being applied to mice (Mus musculus).11,12 None of the evidence from these and numerous other studies of developmental mutations supports the neo-Darwinian dogma that DNA mutations can lead to new organs or body plans–because none of the observed developmental mutations benefit the organism.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....38811.html

    “Perhaps the most obvious challenge is to demonstrate evolution empirically. There are, arguably, some 2 to 10 million species on earth. The fossil record shows that most species survive somewhere between 3 and 5 million years. In that case, we ought to be seeing small but significant numbers of originations (new species) .. every decade.”
    Keith Stewart Thomson, Professor of Biology and Dean of the Graduate School, Yale University (Nov. -Dec. American Scientist, 1997 pg. 516)

    Phenotypic Plasticity – Lizard cecal valve (cyclical variation)- video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEtgOApmnTA

  10. Moreover, it is seriously questioned whether or not ‘form’ is even reducible to the reductive materialism of neo-Darwinism:

    Darwin or Design? – Paul Nelson at Saddleback Church – Nov. 2012 – ontogenetic depth (excellent update) – video
    Text from one of the Saddleback slides:
    1. Animal body plans are built in each generation by a stepwise process, from the fertilized egg to the many cells of the adult. The earliest stages in this process determine what follows.
    2. Thus, to change — that is, to evolve — any body plan, mutations expressed early in development must occur, be viable, and be stably transmitted to offspring.
    3. But such early-acting mutations of global effect are those least likely to be tolerated by the embryo.
    Losses of structures are the only exception to this otherwise universal generalization about animal development and evolution. Many species will tolerate phenotypic losses if their local (environmental) circumstances are favorable. Hence island or cave fauna often lose (for instance) wings or eyes.
    http://www.saddleback.com/mc/m/7ece8/

    HOW BIOLOGISTS LOST SIGHT OF THE MEANING OF LIFE — AND ARE NOW STARING IT IN THE FACE – Stephen L. Talbott – May 2012
    Excerpt: The question is indeed, then, “How does the organism meaningfully dispose of all its molecules, getting them to the right places and into the right interactions?”
    The same sort of question can be asked of cells, for example in the growing embryo, where literal streams of cells are flowing to their appointed places, differentiating themselves into different types as they go, and adjusting themselves to all sorts of unpredictable perturbations — even to the degree of responding appropriately when a lab technician excises a clump of them from one location in a young embryo and puts them in another, where they may proceed to adapt themselves in an entirely different and proper way to the new environment. It is hard to quibble with the immediate impression that form (which is more idea-like than thing-like) is primary, and the material particulars subsidiary.
    http://www.netfuture.org/2012/May1012_184.html#2

    As well, the genetic evidence for the hypothesized ape to human transition is now known to not nearly be as conducive to Darwinian speculations as was/is erroneously believed in popular imagination:

    Human Origins(?) by Brian Thomas, M.S. – December 20, 2013
    Excerpt: Three major pillars supporting a human-chimp link crashed in 2013.
    1. Genetic similarity (70% instead of 98%)
    2. beta-globin pseudogene (functional instead of leftover junk)
    3. Chromosome 2 fusion site (encodes a functional feature within an important gene instead of a being a fusion site)
    All three key genetic pillars of human evolution (for Darwinists) turned out to be specious—overstatements based on ignorance of genetic function.
    http://www.icr.org/article/7867/

    Moreover, just as with the genetic evidence, the anatomy between chimps and humans is far more different than most people imagine it to be:

    Although humans and chimpanzees are rather similar in the structure of the thorax and arms, they differ substantially not only in brain size but also in the anatomy of the pelvis, foot, and jaws, as well as in relative lengths of limbs and digits (38).
    Humans and chimpanzees also differ significantly in many other anatomical respects, to the extent that nearly every bone in the body of a chimpanzee is readily distinguishable in shape or size from its human counterpart (38).
    Associated with these anatomical differences there are, of course, major differences in posture (see cover picture), mode of locomotion, methods of procuring food, and means of communication. Because of these major differences in anatomy and way of life, biologists place the two species not just in separate genera but in separate families (39).
    David Berlinski – The Devil’s Delusion – Page 162&163

    The Red Ape – Cornelius Hunter – August 2009
    Excerpt: “There remains, however, a paradoxical problem lurking within the wealth of DNA data: our morphology and physiology have very little, if anything, uniquely in common with chimpanzees to corroborate a unique common ancestor. Most of the characters we do share with chimpanzees also occur in other primates, and in sexual biology and reproduction we could hardly be more different. It would be an understatement to think of this as an evolutionary puzzle.”
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....d-ape.html

    Mona Lisa smile: The morphological enigma of human and great ape evolution – 2006
    Excerpt: The quality and scope of published documentation and verification of morphological features suggests there is very little in morphology to support a unique common ancestor for humans and chimpanzees.,,,
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com.....7/abstract

    A chimp-pig hybrid origin for humans? – July 3, 2013
    Excerpt: Dr. Eugene McCarthy,, has amassed an impressive body of evidence suggesting that human origins can be best explained by hybridization between pigs and chimpanzees. Extraordinary theories require extraordinary evidence and McCarthy does not disappoint. Rather than relying on genetic sequence comparisons, he instead offers extensive anatomical comparisons, each of which may be individually assailable, but startling when taken together.,,,
    The list of anatomical specializations we may have gained from porcine philandering is too long to detail here. Suffice it to say, similarities in the face, skin and organ microstructure alone is hard to explain away. A short list of differential features, for example, would include, multipyramidal kidney structure, presence of dermal melanocytes, melanoma, absence of a primate baculum (penis bone), surface lipid and carbohydrate composition of cell membranes, vocal cord structure, laryngeal sacs, diverticuli of the fetal stomach, intestinal “valves of Kerkring,” heart chamber symmetry, skin and cranial vasculature and method of cooling, and tooth structure. Other features occasionally seen in humans, like bicornuate uteruses and supernumerary nipples, would also be difficult to incorporate into a purely primate tree.
    http://phys.org/news/2013-07-c.....umans.html

    Nor does the fossil record reveal a gradual transition between apes and humans, as Darwinists would prefer people to imagine:

    Human Origins and the Fossil Record: What Does the Evidence Say? – Casey Luskin – July 2012
    Excerpt: Indeed, far from supplying “a nice clean example” of “gradualistic evolutionary change,” the record reveals a dramatic discontinuity between ape-like and human-like fossils. Human-like fossils appear abruptly in the record, without clear evolutionary precursors, making the case for human evolution based on fossils highly speculative.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....61771.html

    Read Your References Carefully: Paul McBride’s Prized Citation on Skull-Sizes Supports My Thesis, Not His – Casey Luskin – August 31, 2012
    Excerpt of Conclusion: This has been a long article, but I hope it is instructive in showing how evolutionists deal with the fossil hominin evidence. As we’ve seen, multiple authorities recognize that our genus Homo appears in the fossil record abruptly with a complex suite of characteristics never-before-seen in any hominin. And that suite of characteristics has remained remarkably constant from the time Homo appears until the present day with you, me, and the rest of modern humanity. The one possible exception to this is brain size, where there are some skulls of intermediate cranial capacity, and there is some increase over time. But even there, when Homo appears, it does so with an abrupt increase in skull-size. ,,,
    The complex suite of traits associated with our genus Homo appears abruptly, and is distinctly different from the australopithecines which were supposedly our ancestors. There are no transitional fossils linking us to that group.,,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....63841.html

  11. turell, you then assert this

    They survived without our type of consciousness/intellect just as well as we did until recently when their habitat started to disappear. This proves that our consciousness is not needed for survival. Coming down out of the trees with an upright posture means a slower moving organism which needs more planning and thinking to stay alive. That may have selected for more brain power,

    So turell being made ‘in the image of God’ emerged when some supposed ape ancestor to humans lost its habitat??? And since you said this ‘proves’ your point, may I ask you what proof you actually have that a change in environment will drive evolutionary change?

    Another Difficulty with Darwinian Accounts of How Human Bipedalism Developed – David Klinghoffer – February 21, 2013
    Excerpt: A Darwinian evolutionary bedtime story tells of how proto-man achieved his upright walking status when the forests of his native East Africa turned to savannas. That was 4 to 6 million years ago, and the theory was that our ancestors stood up in order to be able to look around themselves over the sea of grasslands, which would have been irrelevant in the forests of old.
    A team of researchers led by USC’s Sarah J. Feakins, writing in the journal Geology, detonate that tidy explanation with their finding that the savannas, going back 12 million years, had already been there more than 6 million years when the wonderful transition to bipedalism took place (“Northeast African vegetation change over 12 m.y.”).
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....69411.html

    Donald Prothero: In evolution, stasis was general, gradualism rare, and that’s the consensus 40 years on – February 2012
    Excerpt: In four of the biggest climatic-vegetational events of the last 50 million years, the mammals and birds show no noticeable change in response to changing climates. No matter how many presentations I give where I show these data, no one (including myself) has a good explanation yet for such widespread stasis despite the obvious selective pressures of changing climate. Rather than answers, we have more questions—
    Donald Prothero – American paleontologist, geologist, and author who specializes in mammalian paleontology.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ars-later/

    turell you then offer this Theistic caveat at the end,,,

    but why then did we leave the trees? I fully believe our evolution was guided.

    Well turell, that is just so sentimental of you to give God a little room right there at the end because you can’t seem to imagine a job for natural selection to do (never mind it can’t explain trees are monkeys in the first place)! :) I’m sure He is mighty pleased that you did not completely forget him in your just so story.,,, But may I offer word of advice from the old wise wordsmith of old England?

    “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
    William Shakespeare – Hamlet

    Supplemental notes;

    Human brain has more switches than all computers on Earth – November 2010
    Excerpt: They found that the brain’s complexity is beyond anything they’d imagined, almost to the point of being beyond belief, says Stephen Smith, a professor of molecular and cellular physiology and senior author of the paper describing the study: …One synapse, by itself, is more like a microprocessor–with both memory-storage and information-processing elements–than a mere on/off switch. In fact, one synapse may contain on the order of 1,000 molecular-scale switches. A single human brain has more switches than all the computers and routers and Internet connections on Earth.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-485929

    Darwin’s mistake: explaining the discontinuity between human and nonhuman minds. – 2008
    Excerpt: Over the last quarter century, the dominant tendency in comparative cognitive psychology has been to emphasize the similarities between human and nonhuman minds and to downplay the differences as “one of degree and not of kind” (Darwin 1871).,,, To wit, there is a significant discontinuity in the degree to which human and nonhuman animals are able to approximate the higher-order, systematic, relational capabilities of a physical symbol system (PSS) (Newell 1980). We show that this symbolic-relational discontinuity pervades nearly every domain of cognition and runs much deeper than even the spectacular scaffolding provided by language or culture alone can explain,,,
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18479531

    The Hard Impossible Problem of Consciousness – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FglKcWBKEu8

    The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences – Eugene Wigner – 1960
    Excerpt: ,,certainly it is hard to believe that our reasoning power was brought, by Darwin’s process of natural selection, to the perfection which it seems to possess.,,,
    It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind’s capacity to divine them.,,,
    The miracle of the appropriateness of the language of mathematics for the formulation of the laws of physics is a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve. We should be grateful for it and hope that it will remain valid in future research and that it will extend, for better or for worse, to our pleasure, even though perhaps also to our bafflement, to wide branches of learning.
    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc.....igner.html

    “The only human emotion I could feel was pure, unrelenting, unconditional love. Take the unconditional love a mother has for a child and amplify it a thousand fold, then multiply exponentially. The result of your equation would be as a grain of sand is to all the beaches in the world. So, too, is the comparison between the love we experience on earth to what I felt during my experience. This love is so strong, that words like “love” make the description seem obscene. It was the most powerful and compelling feeling. But, it was so much more. I felt the presence of angels. I felt the presence of joyous souls, and they described to me a hundred lifetimes worth of knowledge about our divinity. Simultaneous to the deliverance of this knowledge, I knew I was in the presence of God. I never wanted to leave, never.”
    - Judeo-Christian Near Death Experience testimony

    Verse and Music:

    Psalm 16:11
    You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

    Good To Be Alive – Jason Gray
    http://myktis.com/songs/good-to-be-alive/

  12. Lincoln Phipps you state:

    The very fact that anaesthetics which chemically turn off consciousness in humans (and other animals) should be a clue that we’re dealing with a natural process unless O’Leary wants to claim anaesthetics are un-natural (or supernatural).

    Perhaps you want to argue with anesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff about that?

    The Day I Died – NDE Documentary Part 5 of 6
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3TB–jo7fU

    also see the last few minutes of part 4

  13. Lincoln Phipps:

    The very fact that anaesthetics which chemically turn off consciousness in humans (and other animals) should be a clue that we’re dealing with a natural process unless O’Leary wants to claim anaesthetics are un-natural (or supernatural).

    Your argument does not prove that consciousness is entirely physical, which is your intent. It takes two things to have consciousness, a knower and a known. Suppressing either knower or known is enough to suppress consciousness. I propose that anesthetics suppresses only the known, i.e., neurobiological processes in some parts of the brain. Unless you are prepared to show that the knower is also neurobiological, your argument does not hold water.

  14. Mapou and bornagain77 you might like this silly website I found on human evolution. I only like it for the bones and fossils. Here it is: http://exposingreligionblog.tu.....9779540482

  15. Jaceli123, why do you continually post evolutionary weblinks on this site without offering the proper refutation for those websites. Incredulity is best served as dessert after you serving the main course of showing us why the site is untrustworhty in its presentation of evidence.

    Along that line;

    Paleoanthropology
    Excerpt: In regards to the pictures of the supposed ancestors of man featured in science journals and the news media Boyce Rensberger wrote in the journal Science the following regarding their highly speculative nature:
    “Unfortunately, the vast majority of artist’s conceptions are based more on imagination than on evidence. But a handful of expert natural-history artists begin with the fossil bones of a hominid and work from there…. Much of the reconstruction, however, is guesswork. Bones say nothing about the fleshy parts of the nose, lips, or ears (or eyes). Artists must create something between an ape and a human being; the older the specimen is said to be, the more apelike they make it…. Hairiness is a matter of pure conjecture.”
    http://conservapedia.com/Evolu.....thropology

    “National Geographic magazine commissioned four artists to reconstruct a female figure from casts of seven fossil bones thought to be from the same species as skull 1470. One artist drew a creature whose forehead is missing and whose jaws look vaguely like those of a beaked dinosaur. Another artist drew a rather good-looking modern African-American woman with unusually long arms. A third drew a somewhat scrawny female with arms like a gorilla and a face like a Hollywood werewolf. And a fourth drew a figure covered with body hair and climbing a tree, with beady eyes that glare out from under a heavy, gorilla-like brow.”
    “Behind the Scenes,” National Geographic 197 (March, 2000): 140
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....-disorder/

    One can see that ‘artistic license’ for human evolution being played out on the following site.

    10 Transitional Ancestors of Human Evolution by Tyler G., March 18, 2013
    http://listverse.com/2013/03/1.....evolution/

    Please note, on the preceding site, how the sclera (white of the eye), a uniquely human characteristic, was brought in very early on, in the artists’ reconstructions, to make the fossils appear much more human than they actually were, even though the artists making the reconstructions have no clue whatsoever as to what the colors of the eyes, of these supposed transitional fossils, actually were.

    Evolution of human eye as a device for communication – Hiromi Kobayashi – Kyoto University, Japan
    Excerpt: The uniqueness of human eye morphology among primates illustrates the remarkable difference between human and other primates in the ability to communicate using gaze signals.
    http://www.saga-jp.org/coe_abst/kobayashi.htm

  16. bornagain77 mentioned

    One can see that ‘artistic license’ for human evolution being played out on the following site.

    Gosh, I didn’t know you need to get an artistic license. Are applications available at the NCSE? ;-)

    -Q

  17. Querius, here are a few more notes about the ‘artistic license’, (imagination instead of hard evidence), being the only ‘real’ support for evolution:

    “most hominid fossils, even though they serve as basis of endless speculation and elaborate storytelling, are fragments of of jaws and scraps of skulls”
    Stephen Jay Gould

    The Fragmented Field of Paleoanthropology – July 2012
    Excerpt: “alleged restoration of ancient types of man have very little, if any, scientific value and are likely only to mislead the public”
    Earnest A. Hooton – physical anthropologist – Harvard University
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....62101.html

    “We have all seen the canonical parade of apes, each one becoming more human. We know that, as a depiction of evolution, this line-up is tosh (i.e. nonsense). Yet we cling to it. Ideas of what human evolution ought to have been like still colour our debates.”
    Henry Gee, editor of Nature (478, 6 October 2011, page 34, doi:10.1038/478034a),

    Paleoanthropologist Exposes Shoddiness of “Early Man” Research – Feb. 6, 2013
    Excerpt: The unilineal depiction of human evolution popularized by the familiar iconography of an evolutionary ‘march to modern man’ has been proven wrong for more than 60 years. However, the cartoon continues to provide a popular straw man for scientists, writers and editors alike.
    ,,, archaic species concepts and an inadequate fossil record continue to obscure the origins of our genus.
    http://crev.info/2013/02/paleo.....hoddiness/

    Paleoanthropology
    Dr. Pilbeam also wrote the following regarding the theory of evolution and paleoanthropology :
    “I am also aware of the fact that, at least in my own subject of paleoanthropology, “theory” – heavily influenced by implicit ideas almost always dominates “data”. ….Ideas that are totally unrelated to actual fossils have dominated theory building, which in turn strongly influence the way fossils are interpreted”
    http://conservapedia.com/Evolu.....thropology

    My Pilgrimage to Lucy’s Holy Relics Fails to Inspire Faith in Darwinism
    Excerpt: —”We were sent a cast of the Lucy skeleton, and I was asked to assemble it for display,” remembers Peter Schmid, a paleontologist at the Anthropological Institute in Zurich.,,, “When I started to put [Lucy’s] skeleton together, I expected it to look human,” Schmid continues “Everyone had talked about Lucy as being very modern, very human, so I was surprised by what I saw.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....ly_re.html

    The Truth About Human Origins:
    Excerpt: “It is practically impossible to determine which “family tree” (for human evolution) one should accept. Richard Leakey (of the famed fossil hunting family from Africa) has proposed one. His late mother, Mary Leakey, proposed another. Donald Johanson, former president of the Institute of Human Origins in Berkeley, California, has proposed yet another. And as late as 2001, Meave Leakey (Richard’s wife) has proposed still another.,,”
    http://books.google.com/books?.....8;lpg=PT28

    DeWitt’s digital manipulation of skull 1470 – August 13, 2012
    Excerpt: The skull as presented in the news websites has some significant issues that suggests that the facial reconstruction is seriously off.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....kull-1470/

    Skull “Rewrites” Story of Human Evolution — Again – Casey Luskin – October 22, 2013
    Excerpt: “There is a big gap in the fossil record,” Zollikofer told NBC News. “I would put a question mark there. Of course it would be nice to say this was the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and us, but we simply don’t know.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....78221.html

    No Known Hominin Is Common Ancestor of Neanderthals and Modern Humans, Study Suggests – Oct. 21, 2013
    Excerpt: The article, “No known hominin species matches the expected dental morphology of the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans,” relies on fossils of approximately 1,200 molars and premolars from 13 species or types of hominins — humans and human relatives and ancestors. Fossils from the well-known Atapuerca sites have a crucial role in this research, accounting for more than 15 percent of the complete studied fossil collection.,,,
    They conclude with high statistical confidence that none of the hominins usually proposed as a common ancestor, such as Homo heidelbergensis, H. erectus and H. antecessor, is a satisfactory match.
    “None of the species that have been previously suggested as the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans has a dental morphology that is fully compatible with the expected morphology of this ancestor,” Gómez-Robles said.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....153202.htm

    “No fossil is buried with its birth certificate. That, and the scarcity of fossils, means that it is effectively impossible to link fossils into chains of cause and effect in any valid way… To take a line of fossils and claim that they represent a lineage is not a scientific hypothesis that can be tested, but an assertion that carries the same validity as a bedtime story—amusing, perhaps even instructive, but not scientific.”
    - Henry Gee (Editor of Nature), In Search of Deep Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life

  18. bornagain77,

    you threw in Hameroff when I mentioned that “we’re dealing with a natural process unless O’Leary wants to claim anaesthetics are un-natural (or supernatural). ”

    Skipping whether Penrose/Hameroff is on the right path, microtubules and quantum mechanics is still nature and are not un-natural or supernatural. My point stands.

  19. Thanks bornagain,

    I’ve also read that artistic licence had played a part in the (dis) location of the jaws of hominid fossils.

    -Q

  20. Oops, now I read some it in your link

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....kull-1470/

    Originally, I read some information written by a dentist. Apparently the amount of chewing we do and how old we can significantly affect the shape of our skull.

    -Q

  21. . . . and how old we ARE can . . .

    I need to proofread before posting. Argh.

    -Q

  22. Regarding evolutionary “artistic license”:
    Interview with medical illustrator Ronald J Ervin:
    “I was told to make the illustrations either more or less human or modern—whatever the subject was. I was pleased as an artist to have the freedom to create a drawing no one could question, because they didn’t know for sure themselves what the creature looked like.”

    “He originally drew this Australopethecus as too human-like for the book’s authors. ‘I was told to make her more ape-like, or more “transitional” in appearance’, he said.

    ‘I had been given a cast of a skull, and I was shown some drawings other artists had done of “Lucy”, and was asked to improve on these—to make her look more transitional. I had to make some things up, while keeping the anatomical bones intact, like the temple bone and other features which are standard.’”

    From this article: http://creation.com/filling-in-the-blanks

  23. Lincoln Phipps you now claim:

    “microtubules and quantum mechanics is still nature and are not un-natural or supernatural. My point stands.”

    Although Hameroff, and ID proponents, would strongly disagree with your assertion that microtubules are natural, in that there is no way for ‘nature’ (i.e. undirected processes of law and ‘chance’) to account for the origination, nor inherent complexity, of a single microtubule, (not to mention not accounting for the origination, nor inherent complexity, of a single human brain which has more switches than all the computers and routers and Internet connections on Earth), I would like to focus instead on your assertion that quantum mechanics is ‘nature’. The ‘non-local’, beyond space and time, actions of Quantum mechanics, regardless of whether you find it ‘nature’ or not, is about as far away from the reductive materialism underpinning the neo-Darwinian framework as can be had. So unless you are prepared to forsake reductive materialism, and to thus forsake neo-Darwinism, then I find your statement to be completely incoherent for a Darwinian materialist to make. Here are a few quotes and examples of how quantum mechanics completely contradicts what reductive materialism expects at the foundation of reality.

    “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.” Eugene Wigner (1902 -1995) from his collection of essays “Symmetries and Reflections – Scientific Essays”;
    Eugene Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963.

    “It will remain remarkable, in whatever way our future concepts may develop, that the very study of the external world led to the scientific conclusion that the content of the consciousness is the ultimate universal reality” -
    Eugene Wigner – (Remarks on the Mind-Body Question, Eugene Wigner, in Wheeler and Zurek, p.169) 1961 – received Nobel Prize in 1963 for ‘Quantum Symmetries’

    “As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter.”
    Max Planck – The Father Of Quantum Mechanics – Das Wesen der Materie [The Nature of Matter], speech at Florence, Italy (1944) (from Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Abt. Va, Rep. 11 Planck, Nr. 1797)(Of Note: Max Planck Planck was a devoted Christian from early life to death, was a churchwarden from 1920 until his death, and believed in an almighty, all-knowing, beneficent God.

    “No, I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”
    Max Planck (1858–1947), the originator of quantum theory, The Observer, London, January 25, 1931

    “Consciousness cannot be accounted for in physical terms. For consciousness is absolutely fundamental. It cannot be accounted for in terms of anything else.”
    (Schroedinger, Erwin. 1984. “General Scientific and Popular Papers,” in Collected Papers, Vol. 4. Vienna: Austrian Academy of Sciences. Friedr. Vieweg & Sohn, Braunschweig/Wiesbaden. p. 334.)

    Mind and Cosmos – Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False – Thomas Nagel
    Excerpt: If materialism cannot accommodate consciousness and other mind-related aspects of reality, then we must abandon a purely materialist understanding of nature in general, extending to biology, evolutionary theory, and cosmology. Since minds are features of biological systems that have developed through evolution, the standard materialist version of evolutionary biology is fundamentally incomplete. And the cosmological history that led to the origin of life and the coming into existence of the conditions for evolution cannot be a merely materialist history.
    http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/pro.....9919758.do

    What Does Quantum Physics Have to Do with Free Will? – By Antoine Suarez – July 22, 2013
    Excerpt: What is more, recent experiments are bringing to light that the experimenter’s free will and consciousness should be considered axioms (founding principles) of standard quantum physics theory. So for instance, in experiments involving “entanglement” (the phenomenon Einstein called “spooky action at a distance”), to conclude that quantum correlations of two particles are nonlocal (i.e. cannot be explained by signals traveling at velocity less than or equal to the speed of light), it is crucial to assume that the experimenter can make free choices, and is not constrained in what orientation he/she sets the measuring devices.
    To understand these implications it is crucial to be aware that quantum physics is not only a description of the material and visible world around us, but also speaks about non-material influences coming from outside the space-time.,,,
    https://www.bigquestionsonline.com/content/what-does-quantum-physics-have-do-free-will

    Free will and nonlocality at detection: Basic principles of quantum physics – Antoine Suarez – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhMrrmlTXl4

    In fact, due to advances in quantum mechanics, the argument for God from consciousness can now be framed like this:

    1. Consciousness either preceded all of material reality or is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality.
    2. If consciousness is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality then consciousness will be found to have no special position within material reality. Whereas conversely, if consciousness precedes material reality then consciousness will be found to have a special position within material reality.
    3. Consciousness is found to have a special, even central, position within material reality.
    4. Therefore, consciousness is found to precede material reality.

    Four intersecting lines of experimental evidence from quantum mechanics that shows that consciousness precedes material reality (Wigner’s Quantum Symmetries, Wheeler’s Delayed Choice, Leggett’s Inequalities, Quantum Zeno effect):
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1G_Fi50ljF5w_XyJHfmSIZsOcPFhgoAZ3PRc_ktY8cFo/edit

    Colossians 1:17
    And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

    Quantum Physics – (material reality does not exist until we look at it) – Dr. Quantum video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1ezNvpFcJU

    If you have trouble accepting the implications of the preceding video, don’t feel alone, Nobel prize winner Anthony Leggett, who developed Leggett’s inequality to try to prove that an objective material reality exists when we are not looking at it, still does not believe the results of the experiment that he himself was integral in devising, even though the inequality was violated by a stunning 80 orders of magnitude. He seems to have done this simply because the results contradicted the ‘realism’ he believes in (realism is the notion that an objective material reality exists apart from our conscious observation of it).

    A team of physicists in Vienna has devised experiments that may answer one of the enduring riddles of science: Do we create the world just by looking at it? – 2008
    Excerpt: In mid-2007 Fedrizzi found that the new realism model was violated by 80 orders of magnitude; the group was even more assured that quantum mechanics was correct.
    Leggett agrees with Zeilinger that realism is wrong in quantum mechanics, but when I asked him whether he now believes in the theory, he answered only “no” before demurring, “I’m in a small minority with that point of view and I wouldn’t stake my life on it.” For Leggett there are still enough loopholes to disbelieve. I asked him what could finally change his mind about quantum mechanics. Without hesitation, he said sending humans into space as detectors to test the theory.,,,

    (to which Anton Zeilinger responded)

    When I mentioned this to Prof. Zeilinger he said, “That will happen someday. There is no doubt in my mind. It is just a question of technology.” Alessandro Fedrizzi had already shown me a prototype of a realism experiment he is hoping to send up in a satellite. It’s a heavy, metallic slab the size of a dinner plate.
    http://seedmagazine.com/conten....._tests/P3/

    Quantum physics mimics spooky action into the past – April 23, 2012
    Excerpt: The authors experimentally realized a “Gedankenexperiment” called “delayed-choice entanglement swapping”, formulated by Asher Peres in the year 2000. Two pairs of entangled photons are produced, and one photon from each pair is sent to a party called Victor. Of the two remaining photons, one photon is sent to the party Alice and one is sent to the party Bob. Victor can now choose between two kinds of measurements. If he decides to measure his two photons in a way such that they are forced to be in an entangled state, then also Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair becomes entangled. If Victor chooses to measure his particles individually, Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair ends up in a separable state. Modern quantum optics technology allowed the team to delay Victor’s choice and measurement with respect to the measurements which Alice and Bob perform on their photons. “We found that whether Alice’s and Bob’s photons are entangled and show quantum correlations or are separable and show classical correlations can be decided after they have been measured”, explains Xiao-song Ma, lead author of the study.
    According to the famous words of Albert Einstein, the effects of quantum entanglement appear as “spooky action at a distance”. The recent experiment has gone one remarkable step further. “Within a naïve classical world view, quantum mechanics can even mimic an influence of future actions on past events”, says Anton Zeilinger.
    http://phys.org/news/2012-04-q.....ction.html

    How Free Will Works (In Quantum Mechanics) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMp30Q8OGOE

    In other words, if my conscious choices really are just merely the result of whatever state the material particles in my brain happen to be in in the past (deterministic) how in blue blazes are my choices instantaneously effecting the state of material particles into the past?,,,

    So Mr. Phipps, I agree with you that Quantum Mechanics is ‘nature’ but I disagree strongly with you that Quantum Mechanics supports your preferred materialistic view of reality!

    footnote:

    Does Quantum Biology Support A Quantum Soul? – Stuart Hameroff – video (notes in description)
    http://vimeo.com/29895068

  24. B-A77. I know you don’t like theistic evolutionists but that is what I am. I study science to reach my own conclusions. I don’t use the Bible, but there many types of believers. I accept intelligent design. I think you should accept that I have a right to my own reasoning.

  25. turell, it is not about liking or disliking Theistic Evolutionists, it is about your position being incoherent. Like I said,,,

    “(your position) simply is a mishmash of unsupported assertion and conjecture:”

    I laid out the reasons (with links), and could go deeper, as to why I find your position incoherent, but for you to respond,,,

    “I study science to reach my own conclusions.”

    Without addressing even one of my objections with peer reviewed refutation, is simply ‘not even wrong’ as Wolfgang Pauli would put it

  26. B-A77: I am not attempting to debate you. Your resources are much deeper than mine, and you present masses of material with which I have my own interpretations. I was just commenting on the amazing chain of events that lead to human beings. And that chain of events cannot have been based on chance mutations and environmental pressures.

  27. turell you state:

    “I was just commenting on the amazing chain of events that lead to human beings.”

    Excuse me turell, but your ‘amazing chain of events that led to human beings’,,, as you state here,,,

    “Coming down out of the trees with an upright posture means a slower moving organism which needs more planning and thinking to stay alive.That may have selected for more brain power,”

    ,,,Lacks quite a bit of the ‘thrill factor’ of amazement that I find when I contemplate the full import of this following passage of scripture:

    Genesis 1:26
    Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

    Call me old fashioned if you want, but I just can’t seem to find any thrill in ‘coming down from trees with a need for more planning and survival’ as to a sequence of events that led to the origination of humans when compared with being created by almighty God in His image.

    Quote:

    “I’ll believe in evolution when I see monkeys build spaceships to send other monkeys to the moon”
    - Country Farmer

  28. B-A77: I’m sorry you just don’t follow my reasoning. As a member of the religion that created Genesis, I have every right to interpret it as I have, and to study it through Jewish scholars who dispute the interpretations in the KJV. I follow Gerald Schroeder and his books. His background as a Ph.D. theoretical particle physicist is matched by his Biblical scholarship. I’m only pointing out to you that there are many ways to reach a faith in God. I also follow the philosophy of Mortimer J. Adler, a leading philosopher of the 20th century. There are many roads to God. Yours is one I respect, as I do many others. Yours is right for you, but others may not agree with it. Faith is individual, and yours is very strong, in your seeming belief that only your approach is correct. It may surprise you but my wife is born again. We each approach God in our own way with deep love for each other.

    I think we are made in the image of God, but I consider God as the universal consciousness of the universe, and in our individual consciousness we are in His image.

    You have arrived at your faith, I’ve arrived at mine. I consider your approach and mine equals. I have no reason to argue with you. We are both convinced of intelligent design.

  29. Uh turel, Gerald Schroeder does not believe in a gradual fossil record, and I have read a few of his books myself, and I may be wrong but I don’t ever recall him saying that God created man through a bottom up process that included natural selection:

    Evolution: Rationality vs. Randomness
    Excerpt: These (Cambrian) fossils could have changed the entire concept of evolution from a tree of life to a bush of life. And they did, but not in 1909. Walcott knew he had discovered something very important. That is why he collected the vast number of samples. But he could not believe that evolution could have occurred in such a burst of life forms, “simultaneously” to use the words of Scientific American. This was totally against the theory of Darwin in which he and his colleagues were steeped. And so Walcott reburied the fossils, all 60,000 of them, this time in the drawers of his laboratory. Walcott was the director of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington D.C., the largest array of museums in the world. It was not until 1985 that they were rediscovered (in the draws of the Smithsonian). Had Walcott wanted, he could have hired a phalanx of graduate students to work on the fossils. But he chose not to rock the boat of evolution. Today fossil representatives of the Cambrian era have been found in China, Africa, the British Isles, Sweden, Greenland. The explosion was worldwide. But before it became proper to discuss the extraordinary nature of the explosion, the data were simply not reported. It is a classic example of cognitive dissonance, but an example for which we have all paid a severe price.
    - Gerald Schroeder
    http://www.geraldschroeder.com/Evolution.aspx

    Of note: Too bad that Schroeder’s calculation for long days did not pan out. I was hoping it would.

  30. B-A77: I’ve actually met Schroeder at a talk he gave and he has signed his second book for me. As an Orthodox Jew he has a theory about the great ages of the early humans in the bible. I know what Walcott did, as I have read Gould’s “Wonderful Life”. I wasn’t referring to Gould to validate or not validate evolution. He accepts the basic estimates of the life of the universe, in The Science of God. The Cambrian Explosion blows Darwin out of the water, as he wa afraid it might. Another Jewish physicist who destroys Darwin is Dr. Lee Spetner in his book “Not By Chance”. In this regard I follow Simon Conway Morris and his convergence theory. As you know it is possible to be a theistic and leading scientist. His book “Life’s solution” has been a guide for me. It predicts humans had to appear. I’ve come a long way back from agnosticism, but I am sure God accepts you back no matter how you get there.

    In regard to Biblical days, that pesky word “yom’ has caused a major problem. In ancient Hebrew, and I’ve read some Jewish scholars about it, it simply means an interval of time, and the length of that interval is taken from the context of the surrounding text. Genesis realy discusses six intervals of time.It is just like ‘yam’ which means a body of water of any size. The Sea of Galili is Yam Kenneret to me, a 5 by 13 mile lake. An interesting new interpretation of Genesis is a book by Judah Landa “In the Beginning Of; A New Look At Old Words”.

  31. If consciousness had survival value, we could conceivably have a naturalist discussion of why only humans have it. Given that it doesn’t have survival value, we are expected to see it as a side effect of “us being highly intelligent and highly social, and other mental traits.” But those traits are experienced as a product of consciousness (remember, zombie Fred doesn’t, so far as we know, exist, so he isn’t really an exception to this rule).

    Why on earth makes you think that consciousness does not have survival value? If it causes “highly intelligent and highly social, and other mental traits” as you write then that would seem to have immense survival value. The fact that is possible to imagine beings that have those traits without consciousness is irrelevant. They don’t exist and we don’t even know they are physically possible. As I said on Barry’s thread – natural selection acts on what exists not on what could be imagined to exist.

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