Evolution and Systems Dynamics

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #1

Jay W. Forrester, the Father of Systems Dynamics recently died. System Dynamics is about computer modeling of complex systems like ecological systems. This field is within my field of interest, but outside my field of expertise.

Dawkins said that evolution can be explained as similar to a computer model apparently unaware that computers models are designed and he was arguing that evolution is not.

My biggest issue with Darwinian evolution is that it claims that evolution is structurally linear, while systems dynamics creates models which are non-linear. Natural Selection as best I can tell is the ecological feedback of evolution.

Darwin’s understanding of evolution was linear, but the role of Natural Selection is non-linear. This is the reason why his understanding of Natural Selection which is followed by Dawkins & Co. is wrong.

It is a shame that modern discoveries of ecology and Systems Dynamics are ignored by the modern science of evolution.

(Larry Bunce) #2

It is easy to confuse the linear charts and tree diagrams used to Illustrate evolution with the full range of the science involved. Natural selection is driven by ecological considerations such as the climate and presence of other creatures in the environment. it is easier to show on paper the very big picture of evolution as a simple tree structure, and the chart would become very difficult to understand if all the inter-related connections between the branches were shown.

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #3


I agree that Natural Selection is driven by ecological considerations, which are hard to show on a linear chart.

However what I am criticizing is those s those who say that Natural Selection is driven by the Struggle for Survival or conflict between members of the same species as Darwin claimed as Survival of the Fittest. This is indeed linear and false.

(Marvin Adams) #4

if fitness is the ability to support creation it would allow a number of redundant systems that even if one species is eliminated by accident it would not destabilize the system, a bit like node redundancy in networks. might in the end lead to the elimination of mankind :frowning:

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #5


Thank you for this thought, buy I am having some problems processing it.

First of all, no one has suggested that “fitness is the ability to support creation.” This is a new radically anti- Darwinian concept which is very interesting. Fitness is seen as the ability of the universe to support life, not life to support the universe. Of course it is both.

it would allow a number of redundant systems that even if one species is eliminated by accident it would not destabilize the system, a bit like node redundancy in networks

This treats evolution and ecology as a system, which as I said does not seem the way evolutionary science treats it. The answer is yes.

might in the end lead to the elimination of mankind

Does humanity play a redundant role in the ecology? First I would say that there is nothing in our faith that says humanity must survive. We believe that humans will be judged and may be destroyed.

On the other hand if humans were wiped from the earth, this would radically face and character of the earth. Humans evolved because they are not specialized, but a general species. Their specialization is within human society which enables them to adapt to all sorts of conditions and environments. This makes us very difficult to destroy by accident.

There is redundancy built into the system, but homo sapiens is not redundant.

(Marvin Adams) #6

Probably should have put a smiley around our removal from the genepool. Life might have well existed before and even human life and the reason that we have not made contact may be due to lack of survival of those systems. Eradication would be due to what is referred to the “Darwin - award” process :slight_smile:
usually intiated by excessive selfishness

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #7


First please be aware that the life on our planet on any given time is dependent on the ecology of our planet.

Second that our solar system is far distant from other places that that may have human life. Therefore it is most likely that we would have no way of knowing of their existence, despite our science fiction fantasies.

It may be comforting to think that we are not alone, but we are isolated from almost any contact from other beings like us, other than God.

(Marvin Adams) #8

depending on how preditoritary some behave it may be comforting to think that we are alone - particularly if you do not believe in a loving God but an evolutionary system based on eliminating others or degrading them for lesser intelligence.