Does evolution happen by chance?

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Mefiante (April 01, 2009, 12:20:33 PM):
But Darwin didn't know about genes,…
And what of it? Isaac Newton didn’t know about spacetime manifolds or complex numbers or photons or quantum electrodynamics either. That hardly invalidates his observations on statics, dynamics, optics or gravity. And nor did Darwin’s ignorance of genetics invalidate his observations re descent with modification.



… who is Gould interpreting, the wikipedia nr.1 reference doesn't tell us.
Why, he’s giving you a synopsis of things put forward by the people who put together the “modern evolutionary synthesis.”



Who is this person that decided that "genes" must be associated with the word evolution ? Because theories are always formally defined.
That would be Julian Huxley, R. A. Fisher, Theodosius Dobzhansky, J.B.S. Haldane, Sewall Wright, E.B. Ford, Ernst Mayr, Bernhard Rensch, Sergei Chetverikov, George Gaylord Simpson, and G. Ledyard Stebbins among others, i.e. the people who put together the “modern evolutionary synthesis.”



The concept Darwin had with "evolution" was the unrolling of pre-fabricated beings by God , this is how a reader read OoS in 1859.
Do you have any evidence in support of this rather remarkable contention? Any at all? Because your idea that Darwin’s concept had any “god” in it is, as far as I can tell, pure fabrication. Not only that. It also seems that none of your previous discussions here have disabused you of the ridiculous notion concerning “the unrolling of pre-fabricated beings” by your god (or anyone else, for that matter). But even if Darwin (or any 19th century reader of his work) had inserted a god into evolution, we have learned a few things since then, including about the superfluity of a god in evolution. Perhaps you’d care to join the rest of us here in the 21st century right after you first find out how science advances and how knowledge accumulates.



Is this the same concept Gould had in 2002…
Ignoring the fallacious take on what Darwin (or a 19th century person) had in mind with evolution, the answer is still a resounding, “No!”



… and what is the relation to Genes, how did Darwin solve a problem he couldn't define.
For the first part, read the link I provided earlier. Then you will realise that Darwin left unsolved the problem of heredity and the mechanisms by which it proceeds.

'Luthon64
Sentinel (April 01, 2009, 12:30:55 PM):
I'm in no way as knowlegable on this topic as some of the other members of the forum, but I would like to add something that may shine some light on your post, mentari.

The concept that Gould had in 2002 with the word evolution is change in the genes of an organisms.
[...]
But Darwin didn't know about genes, who is Gould interpreting... how did Darwin solve a problem he couldn't define.


What you are referring to is the scientific method, also discused here.

The wonderful thing about this, as I see it, is that it allows advancement. Theories are also constantly tested. In other words, if research provides additional information, this will be incorporated in the theory, thereby expanding what we understand about the theory and perhaps even to fine-tune the definition.

It is almost unfathomable to think that modern research into genetics can once again prove a 150 year old theory like Evolution. The scientific method has proven itself once again.

So what if the definition of the theory "evolved" as well? It still does not change the original concept, as outlined by Darwin?

In any event, I would not define Evolution as per your quote from Wikipedia. That can perhaps be classified as a description of the theory. I would, in layman's terms, define Evolution as the History of life. Scientists act as investigators, to determine this history.

In the past, they had fossil records to go by, but as science progressed, they found genetics as additional resource for their investigation. Darwin would have given anything to have had this to his disposal.

Sentinel

PS. Luthon posted something while I was typing, but I'll post this anyway
Sentinel (April 01, 2009, 12:50:32 PM):
The only comment I can make in addition to Luthon's post (that makes mine look as if it was done by a 3yr-old :) ) is on the following:


The concept Darwin had with "evolution" was the unrolling of pre-fabricated beings by God , this is how a reader read OoS in 1859.
Do you have any evidence in support of this rather remarkable contention? Any at all? Because your idea that Darwin’s concept had any “god” in it is, as far as I can tell, pure fabrication. Not only that. It also seems that none of your previous discussions here have disabused you of the ridiculous notion concerning “the unrolling of pre-fabricated beings” by your god (or anyone else, for that matter). But even if Darwin (or any 19th century reader of his work) had inserted a god into evolution, we have learned a few things since then, including about the superfluity of a god in evolution. Perhaps you’d care to join the rest of us here in the 21st century right after you first find out how science advances and how knowledge accumulates.

'Luthon64


I agree with everything that was said.

The only example that I know of, where Darwin, being a Christian at the time of his initial voyage, considered God in any of his research, can be found in the book, Saving Darwin - How to be a Christian and believe in Evolution.

I mentioned the following, in a recent post:

If you are really serious about the subject, please do yourself a favour and start by reading the following book: Saving Darwin - How to be a Christian and Believe in Evolution.

Darwin, a Christian, faced the same theological crisis we do: How can an all powerful and omniscient God allow such cruelties in nature? He studied the ichneumon wasp that lays eggs inside a caterpillar, feeding on its insides whilst keeping it alive until they themselves are ready to pupate. He could not believe that God would allow this.

This inspired him and later lead to his theory of evolution, through which he could blame natural selection for the cruelty found in nature, and not his benevolent God.


This does not mean that God forms part of Darwin's Theory. It merely suggests that, being a Christian, he would have had some thoughts on the subject.
bluegray (April 01, 2009, 15:28:46 PM):
I am the old mentari but lost my user name and password.
To avoid confusion, please use the links provided to get new login details. If you have any problems with that PM or email me and I'll sort it out.
Rigil Kent (April 01, 2009, 22:16:10 PM):
Quote
Strictly speaking, evolution is the study of gene and allele frequencies. This means that evolution concerns itself with how certain genes (or alleles) become abundant or scarce, and the factors that play a role.

Luthon, I don't particularly like this definition because it confuses the process of evolution with the study of evolution (i.e. Biology).

Quote
Does evolution happen by chance?

What chance is will vary depending on your point of view.

If you are an objective observer of evolution, mutation will be random (non-directional, accidental) and natural selection will be a directional influence.

If you are a theistic observer of evolution, then I suspect neither mutation nor selection will happen by chance.

If you are an evolving species, both mutation and selection will be random.

If you are a collection of cellular organelles and molecules, mutation will be predetermined and unavoidable, and selection random.

Actually, I don't think the idea of CHANCE makes much sense at all.

Mintaka

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