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  1.    #21  
    Clearly I was not questioning the capability but the notion that there was a point in time when some humans possessed self-consciousness while others did not such the self-conscious were advantaged to the point of the extinction of the "unaware."
  2. #22  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Clearly I was not questioning the capability but the notion that there was a point in time when some humans possessed self-consciousness while others did not such the self-conscious were advantaged to the point of the extinction of the "unaware."
    Why do you question that notion? It is well established that the cousins of our species (Homo sapiens), the Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis), and many other lines of the genus "Homo" (= "man" in latin) had various degrees of mental capabilities, judging from their brain size/structure, their ability to create tools, their burying rituals, etc. Today only one human species lives on earth, that is us, Homo sapiens, but that was not always so.

    The human evolution is documented very well, also the fossile record is very good, in case you still have doubts about the actuality of the events, you can look up some of it here or here (the latter from Encarta for a change).

    What do you think, were do all those fossils come from, did the devil burry them in order to confuse us? True, the now extinct species of the genus Homo are not mentioned in Genesis, but I guess it would be very difficult for an open-minded and educated person to deny that they existed nevertheless, when looking at the piles of evidence.
    Last edited by clulup; 05/02/2005 at 05:17 AM.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  3.    #23  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Why do you question that notion? It is well established that the cousins of our species (Homo sapiens), the Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis), and many other lines of the genus "Homo" (= "man" in latin) had various degrees of mental capabilities, judging from their brain size/structure, their ability to create tools, their burying rituals, etc. Today only one human species lives on earth, that is us, Homo sapiens, but that was not always so.

    The human evolution is documented very well, also the fossile record is very good, in case you still have doubts about the actuality of the events, you can look up some of it here or here (the latter from Encarta for a change).

    What do you think, were do all those fossils come from, did the devil burry them in order to confuse us? True, the now extinct species of the genus Homo are not mentioned in Genesis, but I guess it would be very difficult for an open-minded and educated person to deny that they existed nevertheless, when looking at the piles of evidence.
    My mind may not be open enough, and my education may be lacking. So, please lets take it slow....for my sake.

    Are you saying that the other members of the homo genus, with what has been judged to be varying levels of mental capability, lacked self-consciousness?
  4. #24  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    My mind may not be open enough, and my education may be lacking. So, please lets take it slow....for my sake.

    Are you saying that the other members of the homo genus, with what has been judged to be varying levels of mental capability, lacked self-consciousness?
    We can quite safely assume that some members of the Homo genus did have self-consciousness, for instance Homo neanderthalensis, which is a very close relative of us (Homo sapiens), much closer than e.g. chimpanzees, with which we share about 97 % of our genetic information. The earliear hominids, e.g. those living before the common ancestor of e.g. chimpanzees and humans, probably did not have self-consciousness. It is a gradual thing anyway, as you can see from the present-day chimps.

    Why is this important in the context of evolution, meaning etc.? It is well established that chimpanzees have self-consciousness, that they can use or even develop simple tools, etc., those are not disputed questions.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  5.    #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    <SNIP>
    Why is this important in the context of evolution, meaning etc.? It is well established that chimpanzees have self-consciousness, that they can use or even develop simple tools, etc., those are not disputed questions.
    Again, the question is not whether humans have it, but how we came to have it. Did it come from a creator? Is it inherent to us? Or is it just a trait that happens to be prevalent in our generation? Perhaps, future variations on the homo sapein species will not be self-conscious.

    More importantly, though, my ultimate thesis is that the sense of "meaning" and "responsibility" that we humans recognize is not consistent with a view that life is the result of an unplanned and unintended series of random events.
  6. #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Again, the question is not whether humans have it, but how we came to have it. Did it come from a creator? Is it inherent to us? Or is it just a trait that happens to be prevalent in our generation? Perhaps, future variations on the homo sapein species will not be self-conscious.
    It is not really a question how and why humans have self-consciousness. It is the result or a large (in relation to body size) and complex brain, a brain which became bigger and bigger in the course of human evolution, as you can easily tell when looking at the fossils and the relative size of their brain. Obviously being more clever than the other animal species was an important selective advantage in the evolution of humans, otherwise a large brain would not have been selected for, and we would not be writing this.

    What do you think, due to which mechanism do we have self-consciousness? If it was the exclusive act of a creator, why do chimpanzees have it, too, although they are not mentioned in the bible? Why did Homo neanderthalensis also have it, judging from the quite complex burying rituals, and the tools they developed?
    More importantly, though, my ultimate thesis is that the sense of "meaning" and "responsibility" that we humans recognize is not consistent with a view that life is the result of an unplanned and unintended series of random events.
    That's what you believe, it is an opinion, not a fact. Billions of people derive the value and meaning of their live from sources that have absolutely nothing to do with the bible (which seems to be your favourite and exclusive source), or nothing with any religious text in general.

    Besides: evolution is a fact by any definition of fact you would find acceptable in everyday life. Whether you like a particular fact or not does not change the factual content of that fact.

    However, the fact that evolution took and takes place and makes life on this planet evolve does not mean that there is no god. It can still be a god or a group of gods or whatever who started the whole thing, even if there is no sign for that anywhere.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  7.    #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    It is not really a question how and why humans have self-consciousness. It is the result or a large (in relation to body size) and complex brain, a brain which became bigger and bigger in the course of human evolution, as you can easily tell when looking at the fossils and the relative size of their brain. Obviously being more clever than the other animal species was an important selective advantage in the evolution of humans, otherwise a large brain would not have been selected for, and we would not be writing this.

    What do you think, due to which mechanism do we have self-consciousness? If it was the exclusive act of a creator, why do chimpanzees have it, too, although they are not mentioned in the bible? Why did Homo neanderthalensis also have it, judging from the quite complex burying rituals, and the tools they developed?
    Logically speaking, if there were a creator, then the creator would be the source of self-consciousness for humans, chimpanzees, and any other creature that had it, no?
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    That's what you believe, it is an opinion, not a fact. Billions of people derive the value and meaning of their live from sources that have absolutely nothing to do with the bible (which seems to be your favourite and exclusive source), or nothing with any religious text in general.
    We are in agreement in this regards. It is just that the theory of evolution does not logically present itself as one of those sources.
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Besides: evolution is a fact by any definition of fact you would find acceptable in everyday life. Whether you like a particular fact or not does not change the factual content of that fact.

    However, the fact that evolution took and takes place and makes life on this planet evolve does not mean that there is no god. It can still be a god or a group of gods or whatever who started the whole thing, even if there is no sign for that anywhere.
    if there were a god or group of gods who started it, would that not eliminate the principle of unplanned and undirected? Unless, I suppose, the god(s) did not have any purpose for kicking off the process.
  8.    #28  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Besides: evolution is a fact by any definition of fact you would find acceptable in everyday life. Whether you like a particular fact or not does not change the factual content of that fact.
    Is this the definition we're using for "fact"?

    Quote Originally Posted by wikipedia
    In science, a fact is data supported by a scientific experiment. A fact is an honest observation. A scientific fact is an honest observation seen by many scientists. A scientific fact is a scientific observation that is so accepted that it becomes difficult to consider other interpretations of the data. A fact may tentatively support or refute a model of how the universe works. Facts do not prove a model is correct. One observation of any phenomenon does not prove anything. We tend to see facts which support our position and ignore facts which contradict our opinion. If we have power we feel justified in making the other guy experience our Truth.
    Source
  9. #29  
    I dont believe that knowledge can make some one a believer or non-believer. Some one learns of god and then searches their self for faith. Not books, or others. Not science nor religious scholars. You cannot amass a flawless argument of science against a believer and change them or point out endless inconsistancies in evolution building a undeniable wall of religious truths that no athiest could face and thange them either. But I love the discussion as much as anyone.
  10. #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Logically speaking, if there were a creator, then the creator would be the source of self-consciousness for humans, chimpanzees, and any other creature that had it, no?
    If you assume a creator which created everything, then obviously the answer to that question is yes.
    It is just that the theory of evolution does not logically present itself as one of those sources [of meaning/value/etc.].
    Of course it doesn't, that's not the intention, and nobody ever claimed it is. Evolution shows how life on this planet evolved, what the underlying principles were, and it is extremely good at that. It does not explain why earth circles the sun, how lightbulbs function, not even why the chicken crossed the street. So? That does not question how well it describes how life developed.
    if there were a god or group of gods who started it, would that not eliminate the principle of unplanned and undirected? Unless, I suppose, the god(s) did not have any purpose for kicking off the process.
    If there were a god or group of gods who started it and planned it, then yes, that would eliminate the priciple of unplanned. "Undirected" is not exactly what evolution is about. Evolution works into the direction of "having more offspring", meaning being more successful in reproduction (= selection, as discussed elsewhere - not just chance).
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  11. #31  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Is this the definition we're using for "fact"?

    Source
    I don't find it a good definition. "In science, a fact is data supported by a scientific experiment." is not very clear, because in fact data are the result of a scientific experiment or observation.

    Here some other definitions:

    fact: an observation that has been confirmed repeatedly (using sound, reliable and honest methods) and is accepted as true (although its truth is never final).

    fact: a theory that has been validated (using sound, reliable and honest methods) close to certainty.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  12.    #32  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    It is just that the theory of evolution does not logically present itself as one of those sources
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Of course it doesn't<snip>
    So, then we agree! This feels much better than reaching a measly 1000 posts!!
  13. #33  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    So, then we agree! This feels much better than reaching a measly 1000 posts!!
    Glad you feel good. Did you - until now - fear accepting evolution meant you had to make Charles Darwin your new messiah? AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK, $Darwin$ $worship$ $is$ $not$ $one$ $of$ $the$ $prerequisites$ $for$ $accepting$ $evolution$...
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  14. #34  
    And was Darwins comment about the eye rhetorical, or did he have doubts?

    To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.
    MaxiMunK.com The Forum That Asks, "Are You Not Entertained?"

    Remember: "Anyone that thinks the Treo should just work right out of the box, shouldn't own a Treo..."
  15.    #35  
    Quote Originally Posted by clulup
    Glad you feel good. Did you - until now - fear accepting evolution meant you had to make Charles Darwin your new messiah? AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK, $Darwin$ $worship$ $is$ $not$ $one$ $of$ $the$ $prerequisites$ $for$ $accepting$ $evolution$...
    Accept evolution? I thought you accepted Jesus
  16. #36  
    Quote Originally Posted by shopharim
    Accept evolution? I thought you accepted Jesus
    I do accept it is quite likely that a historical person called Jesus lived in Jerusalem about 2000 years ago!
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  17. #37  
    Quote Originally Posted by Insertion
    And was Darwins comment about the eye rhetorical, or did he have doubts?
    I think it was rhethorical. But the question what Darwin thought is of little importance: what matters is only whether the data show that eyes can develop according to evolutionary principles or not. Clearly, they can.
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
  18. #38  
    It's nice to see such a pleasant discussion on an often volatile subject.

    Kudos to you shopharim and clulup.
  19. #39  
    Quote Originally Posted by Woof
    It's nice to see such a pleasant discussion on an often volatile subject.

    Kudos to you shopharim and clulup.
    I know. I almost don't want to post!
    MaxiMunK.com The Forum That Asks, "Are You Not Entertained?"

    Remember: "Anyone that thinks the Treo should just work right out of the box, shouldn't own a Treo..."
  20. #40  
    Quote Originally Posted by Insertion
    I know. I almost don't want to post!
    TC used to be such a lively, emotional, intense, personal... place. Now it's peace, love and harmony everywhere - yuk, where did the good old days with the closed threads go?
    “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.” (Philip K. ****)
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