I was wondering what your position is on the theory of quantum evolution? The reason I bring this up is because if quantum evolution is the true mechanism, then one can suppose that observation (by a creator) can result in location of a significant particle (as the wave form collapses) in such a location as to create the desired mutation of the DNA molecule, resulting in creation of a new species such as man. This would seem to then explain evolution both scientifically and theologically, would it not? Thoughts anyone?
If waveform collapse is the ‘true mechanism’, the creator could just as readily have formed the solar system last week. It may be a lower probability event but as long as the total energy is conserved, I don’t see the conflict. But neither this example nor the directed evolution of man by controlled mutation are terribly economical in terms of explanation (parsimony). So, given the lack of obvious need to invoke “selected waveform collapse” as a cause, it probably would not make much headway as a scientific explanation.
Aside: With selective control over quantum-level events you could transport instantaneously to Mars (provided a similar mass from Mars swapped with your place on Earth). I think something similar was also the basis of the infinity improbability drive (pace Douglas Adams: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)
I don’t think there is that much dispute over God’s ability to adjust genetic material any way he wants to … whenever he wants to (unless you are Roger).
The dispute is really all about whether the Bible ALLOWS for us to believe God wanted to use Evolution … not if he COULD.
It doesn’t make biological sense, as evolution is primarily driven by existing variation, not new mutation.
Why wouldn’t a God of the Gaps operate on selection instead of causing a recessive (most are) mutation that may or may not even be selectable, or at best would have to remain around for many generations until inbreeding creates a homozygote?
At the risk of starting another round of virulent rhetoric… I am still hoping to see this position: “evolution is primarily driven by existing variation, not new mutation” fully explicated in a concise thread (this one thread, or a new one).
Part of the underlying premises for this hypothesis is the STARTING POINT right?
“Existing Variation” suggests that a genetically diverse population as a starting point, right?
We have a choice of STARTING with, say the first FISHES … or the first land-based TETRAPOD… or the first MAMMAL
Do you think your stated hypothesis is true EVEN if we start with the first FISH?
Is “existing variation” SUFFICIENT within the ANCIENT Fish gene pool to say that the eventually evolutionary appearance of Amphib’s, Reptiles or Mammals is MOSTLY from EXISTING VARIATION?
THE REASON I ASK: if Fishes were able to PERFECTLY transmit their genetic material from one generation to the next … would we really STILL have amphib’s, reptiles and mammals? Or wouldn’t FISH still be FISH? Didn’t unintended CHANGES to the genetic code in fact drive this kind of evolution?
My understanding is that Darwin’s evolution of species has been proven to be scientifically invalid based on the geological record as the Cambrian explosion of new species in the geological record seems to refute slow evolution of new species over time. Now Neo-Darwinism is the preferred theory based on mutation, and some suggest mutation occurs by quantum tunneling, and I believe this allows God to observe or create the mutations he chooses. Mutation of DNA to create species is much more complex and suggests design. On quantum tunneling and quantum physics, Einstein said to Bohr, “God would not play dice with the universe” to which Bohr replied, “Don’t tell God what to do.”
I like your thinking. Indeed if one could choose the correct waveform collapse, transportation across the universe is feasible, such as angels coming down from heaven on to earth, Jesus ascending into heaven. The problem of course is that we mere mortals can only guess location of particles in the wave form collapse. But God knowing all future and past events knows the location of these particles and can make these kind of choices to cause these types of events. I believe this is how God exists in our world. Do you think this is possible or not?
I believe there is no way of determining the mechanisms by which God exists in our world and so I can’t judge relative possibilities. I can’t see what that explanation would add to our understanding as compared to some other possibility. Fun to discuss but I don’t see any place where the ‘rubber meets the road’ and provides explanatory traction elsewhere.
Are mutations ‘quantum events’? Not necessarily. Most are chemically based. Here is a references describing causes of mutation. Further, point mutations tend to have less effects than say, deletion or insertion mutations which alter longer stretches of DNA.
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Thanks Eddie, I will definitely check into this.
Argon, I realize that it is extremely difficult to determine the mechanisms by which God exists in our world. Sir Isaac Newton studied the bible for the answers and even a genius like him failed in the effort and finally authored classical physics. However, that was before quantum physics. Ever read the Self Aware Universe by Amit Goswami? Perhaps quantum physics is the path to the answer?
I can appreciate the desire and efforts taken to tackle the great, perpetual questions of philosophy. But I’m going to reserve judgement on this one until something more concrete can be worked out. Part of the reason is that there is so much ‘quantum quackery’ out there and I’ve seen Goswami’s attraction to the paranormal and fringe areas like Sheldrake’s Morphic Resonance. The other part is I just don’t see how invoking ‘quantum mechanics’ solves the riddle. It may be part of the answer but it isn’t the answer.
I expect the actual answer will be unexpected, like the Spanish Inquisition in Monty Python.
[quote=“gbrooks9, post:5, topic:4731”]
At the risk of starting another round of virulent rhetoric… I am still hoping to see this position: “evolution is primarily driven by existing variation, not new mutation” fully explicated in a concise thread (this one thread, or a new one).[/quote]
I thought that we were in agreement.
[quote]Part of the underlying premises for this hypothesis is the STARTING POINT right?
“Existing Variation” suggests that a genetically diverse population as a starting point, right?[/quote]
Yes, existing variation is what we directly observe. New mutant alleles are NEITHER necessary nor sufficient to produce evolution.
[quote]We have a choice of STARTING with, say the first FISHES … or the first land-based TETRAPOD… or the first MAMMAL
Do you think your stated hypothesis is true EVEN if we start with the first FISH?[/quote]
Yes, although there was never anything we could look back on and unambiguously identify as “the first fish.” You don’t seem to be grasping the concepts of gradualism and quantitative trait loci.
Think of it this way: mutation is a faucet slowly dripping new variations into a huge, full bathtub of existing variation. Selection doesn’t care if the variation it is acting upon is new or already existing, but it’s almost certain to act upon the latter, just because there’s so much more of it. Cheetahs, for multiple reasons, have an empty bathtub, so they are in big trouble and can’t be saved by the tiny drops of new variation.
That time frame is more than enough to go through the bathtub many, many times.
You’re sounding like a creationist now.
[quote]Didn’t unintended CHANGES to the genetic code in fact drive this kind of evolution?
[/quote]No, the genetic code has been virtually always constant.
Or perhaps by “genetic code” you don’t mean the genetic code? If so, you should make a better effort to use standard terms. You’d be a lot less confused.
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So let me try this again:
George’s New Question: “When it comes to getting a mammal from an ancestral fish … didn’t imperfections in the next generation’s chromosomes in fact drive this kind of evolution?”
Your prior posting included this comment:
“You don’t seem to be grasping the concepts of gradualism and quantitative trait loci.”
I think you are right. I don’t see how these ideas, as well as “existing variation”, can take us from FISH to
If the great bulk of our genome is the same boiler plate for running cellular metabolism, making neurons and bones … and so forth … obviously, I can see how this would lead to a GIANT chunk of our genome being the
same as reptiles or fish.
But set all this aside… because it’s irrelevant to my question.
If a scientist had the sufficient theoretical framework to MAKE a mammal from a thousand Fish Embryos… are you trying to suggest that MOSTLY all he would have to do is pick and choose the varying genes within these thousand fish embryos and - - VOILA he has a mammal?
Or isn’t it more close to the truth that he would MOSTLY have to do is CHANGE a number of crucial GENES to make a mammal out of fish embryos?
I look forward to your response.
[quote=“gbrooks9, post:15, topic:4731”]
George’s New Question: “When it comes to getting a mammal from an ancestral fish … didn’t imperfections in the next generation’s chromosomes in fact drive this kind of evolution?”[/quote]
Once again, you throw in another hopelessly vague term. “Imperfections” requires something else to be perfect. So PRECISELY what is the perfection against which we are judging in George’s New Question? Without rigorously defined terms, your question is useless.
To see it, you would need to learn a lot of developmental biology. Are you willing to do so? You weren’t even willing to read the abstracts of the papers I cited to glean the simple story all 4 of them told.
It is and it is, depending on how one defines “same.” I attempted to get the concept of functional sameness across to you (remember, YOU requested studies), but you threw it aside.
Why? It’s extremely relevant!
If he had the framework (and far more than a thousand individuals), possibly–at least it would be something George Brooks would look at and identify as a mammal. But why would you specify embryos? It seems to me that there’s something major you’re missing.
Why change from your previous platform of whales? Your challenge would likely be easy for hippo vs. whale–that is, assuming we know all of the QTLs and have more than a thousand individuals for DNA mining.
Change the amino acid sequences of the proteins they encode or merely change the regulation of crucial genes? Once again, vagueness precludes both discussion and understanding.
I think that your understanding is hopelessly scrambled. You would gain a far better understanding of evolution if you concentrated on actual biological mechanisms and resisted the temptation to name-drop.
No… I DID read the Abstracts… I didn’t find them particularly relevant to my question. I should know… it was MY question.
As for your objections to the use of the word “IMPERFECTIONS”… I think you are just being a prima donna…
There is nothing wrong with that term.
If parents passed on their genetic information PERFECTLY … then the only way the population evolves is from percentage changes in variations…with NO new traits… only changes in ratios of existing traits and variants.
SO… PRAY TELL… how does a population of fish who produce PERFECT copies of their chromosomal content in the next generation … ever turn into a population of anything other than FISH? Fish who perfectly reproduce fish will never evolve into anything else… though variants in color, size and shape will continue to respond to ecological factors…
Isn’t it obvious that something has to be replicated with an error… to create really new forms over time? … really new forms that eventually create air breathing mammals?
Ben, what you don’t seem to grasp is if you can’t convince ME … if you can’t find a way to speak MY language… you are NEVER EVER going to be able to reach Evangelicals… and the special language THEY speak…
George and Jon's scholarly quibbles about the Flood and what happens when you die
With every comment, you introduce a new term or two and move the goalposts back and forth from a single speciation event to the division between classes. I answer all of your questions and you answer none of mine.
I think you do understand and are just arguing for the sake of arguing.
[ Notice how short I have to keep my responses to keep you from running wild with the discussion? ]
So… “We’ll still get plenty of new forms if God stops all mutations tomorrow.”
Okay… so tell me how that would work?
If we have a population of special Goldfish… some colored all gold… some colored with patches of other colors. But 100% of them are without any noticeable physical defect. And what is special with these Goldfish is the process of meiosis is AMAZINGLY perfect. And the process of sexual reproduction is perfect. 50% of each parent’s genome is precisely transmitted to the next generation in a union with flaws or mistakes.
How much longer, in terms of percent, do you think it would take for this kind of fish population to produce a tetrapod in a changing environment compared to a population of fish that was NOT capable of perfect transmission of parental genetic information?
You spend WAYYYY too much time rejecting my terminology, and virtually no time explaining YOUR terminology. The end result is you convince none of your readers of anything you say … except how brilliant you must be.