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Prove that evolution is what actually happened.

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Ssenkahdavic said:
GameOver22 said:

Very true. The problem I've always had with Ockham's razor is that the simpler explanation is not necessarily the better explanation. The only place where Ockham's razor makes sense is in a system that appears as if it was designed (a system that is highly ordered with no extraneous parts). If there are extraneous parts, Ockham's razor can't be used because these parts might attach onto the simpler explanation and make it more complex.

Ockham's razor itself makes some fundamental assumptions, but the assumptions are not necessarily true. For that reason, I would say Ockham's razor is useful, but hardly foolproof. It should be used carefully, but I usually have a hard time understanding when it is actually applicable.


And the best part of all of this is if you use the principle of Ockham's Razor to justify evolution.  What do you think is the simplest explanation? 

That the pattern of evolution is GODs plan.  While I might not agree with this, it can definitely be in the realm of possibility.  Is this the best explanation? Not at all, but it is probably the simplist.  I am also very sure that Wiliam of Ockham did not mean for his principle to be used in this way.  His way would be more of: How are were here through evolution or GOD?  GOD because its a much simplier explanation.   Part of why he said "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone."

I'm not quite sure I understand your point, but I will say a few things.

Biologists wouldn't use Ockham's razor to justify evolution. They would use the evidence that has been accumulated through experiments. However, they would use Ockham's razor to justify excluding God from the explanation. The point I was making, and you might be driving at this point as well, is that the proper use of Ockham's razor really requires a huge amount of knowledge about the subject in question.

As as example, take the question of human origins prior to Darwin's theory of evolution. Even in Ockham's time, there would have been any number of theories (not talking scientific theories here). Philosophers as far back as ancient Greece produced ideas very similar to Darwin's theories, but they didn't have the evidence to support them. On top of that, you have any number of theories, such as "We popped into existence five minutes ago". In this type of environment, it is difficult to apply Ockham's razor because you have a lot of theoretical arguments but no real way to assess the truth value of these arguments. In these types of situations, the apllication of Ockham's razor would mostly likely result in falsehoods because the only thing we could assess would be theoretical complexity.

Point being, if we thought real hard, we could probably come up with an argument explaining human origins that is theoretically less complex than Darwin's theory of evolution. The problem with this type of explanation is that it would not take into account the evidence we have accumulated through scientific investigations.

Also, while my knowledge of Okham is limited, I wouldn't be surprised if the quotation, "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone", is made in reference to the ontological argument.



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Cirio said:
Runa216 said:
Cirio said:
Runa216 said:
Cirio said:

Proof =/= Evidence. Proof is a mathematical concept while evidence is scientific. We are AWARE that evolution occurs, and we've tested it a billion times with evidence that supports this theory. I agree that Evolution occurs, but it is still a scientific theory where one cannot claim "evolution is a proven fact". His question NOW makes sense after he changed his title, but originally he asked to simply "prove evolution", which by definition is not possible because almost all scientific theories don't prove anything.

This is the kind of logic that people use to disregard anything they can.  "There are no absolutes" logic is the same kind of argument I've seen child molesters use to excuse themselves from their actions "Well 17 is no different than 18, logically, and 16 is just another step from there..." I've actually sat there and listened to a person try to philisophically justify that kind of action by saying there are no absolutes. 

Which is the same thing that's happening here..."Nothing is proven" may be technically true, but how much evidence do you need to be convinced of something?  How many supporting facts do you need?  what's the positive to negative ratio in which something is considered proven?  I'm sorry, but I'm not buying into this "nothing is proven" deal.  Yes, we may be wrong, but until we find evidence to the contrary (substantial evidence), it's a VERY fair assumption that something is proven.  

I don't know where I was going with this, it's late and I worked all day. 

You're pretty much expanding on what I'm saying. Yes, evolution does exist, we have sufficient enough evidence to confidently say that evolution indeed does occur. But scientifically, we cannot say that evolution is PROVEN, even though there isn't anything besides creationists philosophy that says otherwise. I was simply commenting on his original thread title "prove evolution" because you cannot make that statement in a scientific setting. Evolution DOES occur, but one cannot say that he/she has PROVEN evolution. I'm nitpicking but I've had this discussion with my Biology professors and they tell me not to use the word "prove" in almost anything related to scientific theories.

The point I was trying to make is that you're arguing semantics. The intimate details of whether something is 'proven' or not is irrelevant, you're wasting your time arguing over a meaning of a word instead of actually debating the point at hand.  

It wasn't my intention to argue over the definition of a scientific theory. It was that other guy who called my original post "gross and a terrible misrepresentation", so naturally I had to defend my position.

That's because it is. You are arguing semantics. The biggest flaw in your logic was that stating that proof was a purely mathematical construct. IT IS NOT. Get that straight. Mathematical proofing IS a purely mathematical construct. The word "proof" when used in other fields, means, beyond reasonable double, which is obtained by presenting mountains of evidence, eventually, after enough evidence, you have proven beyond a reasonable doubt that x or y thing is true. Science uses both these contructs. I talk to engineers and scientists quite often, it's my area of study right now at college, and I do dabble is research projects. I know these defintions well... Which is why, you are arguing sementics; the fact that you completely ignored my informing you of the difference between mathematical proofing and proof shows clear bias... Now, if in your original sentence, you would've said, we can't use mathematical proofing on evolution, I might be inclined to agree, but you used the word "proof" which has various meaning and interpretations depending on your field of study.



Ok, taking this thread at face value, I shall present some evidence for the big bang theory and evolution.

Each material, when burned for fuel, emits light in particular narrow wavelength bands. These are called spectra, and using the imaginatively named spectrascope, scientists can determine the contents of far away stars. However, they noticed something interesting - the spectra of stars had been shifted away from the blue/ultraviolet side of the spectrum and towards the red/infared. This is referred to as the Dopler shift and it shows that these stars are moving away from us at great speeds. The universe is expanding, and due to newton's laws, we know that things only accelerate if acted on by a force. There was some force of incredible magnitude that hurled all the matter and energy in the universe away from its starting point.
Additionally, with a sufficiently powerful telescope, we can see that space is not infact completely empty. It emits very small amounts of radiation in microwave frequencies (ie different frequencies to what stars emit) this was predicted by the big bang theory long before it was observed, and is believed to be a relic of the early stages of the universe.

None of the 'proves' the big bang theory, but hey, Newton's theory of gravitation hasn't been proved either. What the scientific community tries to do, instead of proving things, is to provide a satisfactory amount of evidence, which they feel they have for the big bang theory.

Nor does this disprove the idea of God, or Gods. God could have set the Big Bang in motion in such a way that it would lead to the universe as we know, or he could have created the universe as it is, and set the stars moving away from each other and created the cosmological background radiation.

Onto abiogenesis - it has been done in a lab. Non living matter was turned into living matter. http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/05/ribonucleotides/. We obviously cannot show that it DID happen, but we have shown that the conditions were present that can lead to it happening. Again, this could all have been set into motion by God.

On to evolution
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_human_evolution - shows a series of animals that form a timeline of evolution of humans
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antibiotic_resistance - evolution is happening, and in lifeforms with short lifespans, it is observable in a human lifetime.
Also consider those with immunity to the black plague. The fittest did a little surving and now the majority of Europeans have evolved from their offspring.
Additionally, if you accept that naturally attractive parents are likely to give birth to attractive children, and if you accept that attractive people/animals are more likely to reproduce, then that is evolution.



scottie said:
Ok, taking this thread at face value, I shall present some evidence for the big bang theory and evolution.

Each material, when burned for fuel, emits light in particular narrow wavelength bands. These are called spectra, and using the imaginatively named spectrascope, scientists can determine the contents of far away stars. However, they noticed something interesting - the spectra of stars had been shifted away from the blue/ultraviolet side of the spectrum and towards the red/infared. This is referred to as the Dopler shift and it shows that these stars are moving away from us at great speeds. The universe is expanding, and due to newton's laws, we know that things only accelerate if acted on by a force. There was some force of incredible magnitude that hurled all the matter and energy in the universe away from its starting point.
Additionally, with a sufficiently powerful telescope, we can see that space is not infact completely empty. It emits very small amounts of radiation in microwave frequencies (ie different frequencies to what stars emit) this was predicted by the big bang theory long before it was observed, and is believed to be a relic of the early stages of the universe.

None of the 'proves' the big bang theory, but hey, Newton's theory of gravitation hasn't been proved either. What the scientific community tries to do, instead of proving things, is to provide a satisfactory amount of evidence, which they feel they have for the big bang theory.

Nor does this disprove the idea of God, or Gods. God could have set the Big Bang in motion in such a way that it would lead to the universe as we know, or he could have created the universe as it is, and set the stars moving away from each other and created the cosmological background radiation.

Onto abiogenesis - it has been done in a lab. Non living matter was turned into living matter. http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/05/ribonucleotides/. We obviously cannot show that it DID happen, but we have shown that the conditions were present that can lead to it happening. Again, this could all have been set into motion by God.

On to evolution
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_human_evolution - shows a series of animals that form a timeline of evolution of humans
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antibiotic_resistance - evolution is happening, and in lifeforms with short lifespans, it is observable in a human lifetime.
Also consider those with immunity to the black plague. The fittest did a little surving and now the majority of Europeans have evolved from their offspring.
Additionally, if you accept that naturally attractive parents are likely to give birth to attractive children, and if you accept that attractive people/animals are more likely to reproduce, then that is evolution.


Nice post, can't really criticize or add to it in any way.



GameOver22 said:
Ssenkahdavic said:
GameOver22 said:

Very true. The problem I've always had with Ockham's razor is that the simpler explanation is not necessarily the better explanation. The only place where Ockham's razor makes sense is in a system that appears as if it was designed (a system that is highly ordered with no extraneous parts). If there are extraneous parts, Ockham's razor can't be used because these parts might attach onto the simpler explanation and make it more complex.

Ockham's razor itself makes some fundamental assumptions, but the assumptions are not necessarily true. For that reason, I would say Ockham's razor is useful, but hardly foolproof. It should be used carefully, but I usually have a hard time understanding when it is actually applicable.


And the best part of all of this is if you use the principle of Ockham's Razor to justify evolution.  What do you think is the simplest explanation? 

That the pattern of evolution is GODs plan.  While I might not agree with this, it can definitely be in the realm of possibility.  Is this the best explanation? Not at all, but it is probably the simplist.  I am also very sure that Wiliam of Ockham did not mean for his principle to be used in this way.  His way would be more of: How are were here through evolution or GOD?  GOD because its a much simplier explanation.   Part of why he said "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone."

I'm not quite sure I understand your point, but I will say a few things.

Biologists wouldn't use Ockham's razor to justify evolution. They would use the evidence that has been accumulated through experiments. However, they would use Ockham's razor to justify excluding God from the explanation. The point I was making, and you might be driving at this point as well, is that the proper use of Ockham's razor really requires a huge amount of knowledge about the subject in question.

As as example, take the question of human origins prior to Darwin's theory of evolution. Even in Ockham's time, there would have been any number of theories (not talking scientific theories here). Philosophers as far back as ancient Greece produced ideas very similar to Darwin's theories, but they didn't have the evidence to support them. On top of that, you have any number of theories, such as "We popped into existence five minutes ago". In this type of environment, it is difficult to apply Ockham's razor because you have a lot of theoretical arguments but no real way to assess the truth value of these arguments. In these types of situations, the apllication of Ockham's razor would mostly likely result in falsehoods because the only thing we could assess would be theoretical complexity.

Point being, if we thought real hard, we could probably come up with an argument explaining human origins that is theoretically less complex than Darwin's theory of evolution. The problem with this type of explanation is that it would not take into account the evidence we have accumulated through scientific investigations.

Also, while my knowledge of Okham is limited, I wouldn't be surprised if the quotation, "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone", is made in reference to the ontological argument.

Worth a read on the subject: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ockham/

For Ockham, the only truly necessary entity is God; everything else, the whole of creation, is radically contingent through and through. In short, Ockham does not accept the Principle of Sufficient Reason.

As for using the principle, it requires two arguments that both could have the same outcome.  IE:  There is a loud Sound.  1) A car hit a tree.  2) A car hit a mailbox, spun out, went through my neighbors yard and hit his house. Which is simplier?  Ockham said many times that the answers his principle brought you too were not always the correct ones.  Also, Ockham did believe in unverifiable outcomes as well (GOD, divine intervention, etc)  The Razor is pure Philosophy, but Philosophy that has very many uses.

Using the Razor to purely deduce if Evolution vs. Divine Will lead to human creation, Divine will would win.  My point above was that If you used the Razor to explain Evolution, GOD being the cause of Evolution might be picked, as it is the simplest explanation.   This was to my earlier comment about why the two cannot be melded into one?  Why must one completely negate the other?  I am a Scientist and we should not discount anything.  God cannot be a theory (due to the existence not being falsifiable) but that does not mean that the idea of should be discounted in the Theory of Evolution discussion.


It is also interesting to note that Darwin would be remembered today not as a Biologist, but as a Geologist if not for his work On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. 



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Ssenkahdavic said:
GameOver22 said:
Ssenkahdavic said:
GameOver22 said:

Very true. The problem I've always had with Ockham's razor is that the simpler explanation is not necessarily the better explanation. The only place where Ockham's razor makes sense is in a system that appears as if it was designed (a system that is highly ordered with no extraneous parts). If there are extraneous parts, Ockham's razor can't be used because these parts might attach onto the simpler explanation and make it more complex.

Ockham's razor itself makes some fundamental assumptions, but the assumptions are not necessarily true. For that reason, I would say Ockham's razor is useful, but hardly foolproof. It should be used carefully, but I usually have a hard time understanding when it is actually applicable.


And the best part of all of this is if you use the principle of Ockham's Razor to justify evolution.  What do you think is the simplest explanation? 

That the pattern of evolution is GODs plan.  While I might not agree with this, it can definitely be in the realm of possibility.  Is this the best explanation? Not at all, but it is probably the simplist.  I am also very sure that Wiliam of Ockham did not mean for his principle to be used in this way.  His way would be more of: How are were here through evolution or GOD?  GOD because its a much simplier explanation.   Part of why he said "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone."

I'm not quite sure I understand your point, but I will say a few things.

Biologists wouldn't use Ockham's razor to justify evolution. They would use the evidence that has been accumulated through experiments. However, they would use Ockham's razor to justify excluding God from the explanation. The point I was making, and you might be driving at this point as well, is that the proper use of Ockham's razor really requires a huge amount of knowledge about the subject in question.

As as example, take the question of human origins prior to Darwin's theory of evolution. Even in Ockham's time, there would have been any number of theories (not talking scientific theories here). Philosophers as far back as ancient Greece produced ideas very similar to Darwin's theories, but they didn't have the evidence to support them. On top of that, you have any number of theories, such as "We popped into existence five minutes ago". In this type of environment, it is difficult to apply Ockham's razor because you have a lot of theoretical arguments but no real way to assess the truth value of these arguments. In these types of situations, the apllication of Ockham's razor would mostly likely result in falsehoods because the only thing we could assess would be theoretical complexity.

Point being, if we thought real hard, we could probably come up with an argument explaining human origins that is theoretically less complex than Darwin's theory of evolution. The problem with this type of explanation is that it would not take into account the evidence we have accumulated through scientific investigations.

Also, while my knowledge of Okham is limited, I wouldn't be surprised if the quotation, "God's existence cannot be deduced by reason alone", is made in reference to the ontological argument.

Worth a read on the subject: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ockham/

For Ockham, the only truly necessary entity is God; everything else, the whole of creation, is radically contingent through and through. In short, Ockham does not accept the Principle of Sufficient Reason.

As for using the principle, it requires two arguments that both could have the same outcome.  IE:  There is a loud Sound.  1) A car hit a tree.  2) A car hit a mailbox, spun out, went through my neighbors yard and hit his house. Which is simplier?  Ockham said many times that the answers his principle brought you too were not always the correct ones.  Also, Ockham did believe in unverifiable outcomes as well (GOD, divine intervention, etc)  The Razor is pure Philosophy, but Philosophy that has very many uses.

Using the Razor to purely deduce if Evolution vs. Divine Will lead to human creation, Divine will would win.  My point above was that If you used the Razor to explain Evolution, GOD being the cause of Evolution might be picked, as it is the simplest explanation.   This was to my earlier comment about why the two cannot be melded into one?  Why must one completely negate the other?  I am a Scientist and we should not discount anything.  God cannot be a theory (due to the existence not being falsifiable) but that does not mean that the idea of should be discounted in the Theory of Evolution discussion.


It is also interesting to note that Darwin would be remembered today not as a Biologist, but as a Geologist if not for his work On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. 

Alright, that makes more sense, and I agree with you. I think I was making the same point although much more wordy. Funny enough, I was actually checking out that article right after I made the post. Standford Encyclopedia of Philosophy is one of my favorite sites (great resources and its free).



spurgeonryan said:
Reasonable said:
NNN2004 said:
its already disapproved many times.


Really.  Got any details because so far as I'm aware evolution has been dispproved... oh zero times.


What is that in your avatar cats mouth? True to what you said about evolution being disprobed zero times. I wonder how many times the religion or alien theory has been disprobed?

lol - it's not easy to speak around a chew stick, as this probes...



Try to be reasonable... its easier than you think...

Reasonable said:
spurgeonryan said:
Reasonable said:
NNN2004 said:
its already disapproved many times.


Really.  Got any details because so far as I'm aware evolution has been dispproved... oh zero times.


What is that in your avatar cats mouth? True to what you said about evolution being disprobed zero times. I wonder how many times the religion or alien theory has been disprobed?

lol - it's not easy to speak around a chew stick, as this probes...

What the heck is a chew stick? and it was supposed to say "I wonder how many times ~that~ religion



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I just want to interject here and say you're all understanding Occam's Razor wrong. "The simplest solution is the best" is NOT Occam's razor, that's just lazy. No, the Razor is about making as few assumptions as possible.

God creating everything is simpler to grasp and to understand, but makes many grand assumptions (namely, that God exists, that God cares about us, and that God is omnipotent)

The Big Bang (or whatever other geneis theory you have) makes fewer assumptions because almost all aspects of the theory has scientific backing, so it's not about assumptions, it's about following the evidence.

Occam's Razor is a principle that generally recommends, when faced with competing hypotheses that are equal in other respects, selecting the one that makes the fewest new assumptions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam%27s_Razor

Educate yourself before looking like a tool. Wikipedia (and Google) are both right at your fingertips.



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spurgeonryan said:
Reasonable said:
spurgeonryan said:
Reasonable said:
NNN2004 said:
its already disapproved many times.


Really.  Got any details because so far as I'm aware evolution has been dispproved... oh zero times.


What is that in your avatar cats mouth? True to what you said about evolution being disprobed zero times. I wonder how many times the religion or alien theory has been disprobed?

lol - it's not easy to speak around a chew stick, as this probes...

What the heck is a chew stick? and it was supposed to say "I wonder how many times ~that~ religion



*puts on detective hat*

I say you have a problem here. Don't worry, I'll get the answer you're looking for.

Using my excellent inference skills due to my PHD in Detectivism, I think I can accurately identify what this 'chew stick' actually is. I can confidently say that this 'chew stick' is some sort of stick, or stick-shaped object, used by animanls or humans for their chewing pleasure.

Don't ask me how I know this, because unless you have a PHD in Detectivism AND an IQ of over 9,000, it would take hours, maybe days, to explain the complexities of what I said. You just have to trust that I am correct due to my vastly superior intellect.