Darwin's Black Box - Michael J. Behe and Intelligent Design

Debra

Jedi Council Member
I have been a member of the Discovery Institute for several years, and enjoy their articles and videos that arrive in the Newsletters.

This video was recently done, it is a lecture by one of my favorite speakers, biologist Michael Denton.

I am reading his latest book publication, "The Miracle of the Cell" on Kindle, and as always, it is a delight, because he writes the way he talks.

In this video, he describes all the pre conditions that had to be "created' on this planet, to support life,"compelling evidence that long before life emerged on our planet, the design of the carbon-based cell was foreshadowed in the order of nature, in the exquisite fitness of the laws of nature for this foundational unit of all life on Earth."

He is an amazing speaker, and his humor and wit, as well as his commitment to "Intelligent Design" is so encouraging and enlightening, in my opinion. In this lecture, he ties together the fascinating link between elemental metals and fire making by beings of "Our Design".

The video is a short 46 minutes, and well worth the watch, or listen, if you just leave it going as you surf...

 

anka

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Or is the denial of free will, with all its profitable shock value, while at the same time invoking Darwin to avoid being eaten by the offended mob, itself a stable evolutionary strategy?
Actually, if there is such a thing as evolutionary strategy, that would in my opinion clearly imply intelligent design. Those Darwinists really are chasing their own tales.

Anyway, very nice piece, Luc. Thanks for sharing.
 

hlat

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
From Operators and Things by Barbara O’Brien
I lived in a community where to be different was to be suspect, where the lines of thought and behavior were rigid. In my freshman year in high school, there was a short story contest open to all students. It was not expected that a freshman would win it and my story brought me instantly to the attention of the school administrative staff. The judges of the contest were individuals from outside the community and they had awarded my story the prize as much for the theme as for the writing. “An unusual theme for a child,” said the judges. The school staff thought so, too. A battalion of teachers, a vice principal and a principal interviewed me. Where had I gotten such a strange theme?

Strange? It seemed perfectly ordinary to me. In the story, a child of thirteen— my own age at the time— comes to the conclusion that there is no God as the picture of God is shaped by religious training. Having come to her conclusion, the child decides to close the door upon any concept of God and to shape her thinking and her living as if there were no God. In a biology class, she comes up against the laws and rules of nature, with sharp shock. There is design and pattern in nature. It is apparent in a grape, a bird that plucks it and sprinkles the seeds about, in the earth that receives and nourishes the seeds, in the rain that nourishes the soil. The design is large and impressive and the pattern too big to be composed by anything smaller than a God. The concept of God is restored, in a different form, but restored.

I went through a succession of interviews with adults who looked at me curiously. Where had I gotten such a theme? Why, I told them, it had happened to me and so I wrote it. If the teachers of the school had been awarding the prize, I doubt that I would have received it. Children of thirteen, in that community, were not supposed to think that way. The teachers poked their anxious, inquisitive faces at me and I could feel their uneasiness oozing from them.
 

thorbiorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
From Operators and Things by Barbara O’Brien
Thank you for finding that. The full title is Operators and Things: The Inner Life of a Schizophrenic and was published in 1958.
The causes of schizophrenia are discussed in Session 20 August 2011 which has:
Q: (L) Okay. What's the next question? (Psyche) We were checking some statistics and we realized that full siblings of schizophrenics are nine times more likely than the general population to have schizophrenia, and four times more likely to have bipolar disorder. Is {name redacted} affected by this genetic tendency?

A: Oh indeed! However this requires explanation. First of all, the genetics that are associated with schizophrenia can be either a doorway or a barrier. Second, the manifestation of schizophrenia can take non-ordinary pathways. That is to say that diet can activate the pathway without the concomitant benefits.

Q: (Burma) I think that they're saying that schizophrenia could essentially be a way to be open to seeing other aspects of reality but diet can make it so it basically just makes you crazy without actually seeing anything.

A: Primitive societies that eat according to the normal diet for human beings do not have "schizophrenics", but they do have shamans who can "see".

Q: (Perceval) So a schizophrenic on animal fat is a shaman. (L) Well, wait a minute. There's something real subtle here. What I think you're saying is that when these genetic pathways are activated through wrong diet, it screws up the shamanic capacity?

A: Yes.

Q: (L) So, schizophrenia as we understand it or have witnessed it is a screw-up of something that could or might manifest in a completely different way on a different diet? Is that it?

A: Yes
Q: (L) Are Lizards responsible for paranoid schizophrenia?

A: Some.

Q: (L) In a general sense, in the majority of cases, what is the cause of paranoia or schizophrenia?

A: Lizard manipulation of energies.


Q: (L) Why?

A: To feed off the negative results.

Q: (L) So it isn't necessarily attachments?

A: No.

Q: (L) Do Lizards use attachments of dark energies to effect their purposes?

A: Yes.

Q: (L) In a lot of cases of paranoid schizophrenia are attachments used?

A: Yes.

Q: (L) Are they perpetuating schizophrenia through genetics?

A: Can. Or mental and emotional. Environmental life experiences.
If the content of the quote you mentioned was conceived when she was 13, there probably was information coming through. Maybe she had talent as a medium, and to be in this world and the other at the same time.
 

luc

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
A new book by Michael Behe is out where he answers his critics. Here is a great (and funny) article about it:

Darwin Is on the Roof — New Book from Michael Behe, Available Now​

David Klinghoffer@d_klinghoffer
November 18, 2020, 6:24 AM
Photo credit: Bruce Gendler via Unsplash.
There is a joke about a cat on a roof:


A man left his cat with his brother while he went on vacation for a week. When he came back, he called his brother to see when he could pick the cat up. The brother hesitated, then said, “I’m so sorry, but while you were away, the cat died.”
The man was very upset and yelled, “You know, you could have broken the news to me better than that. When I called today, you could have said he was on the roof and wouldn’t come down. Then when I called the next day, you could have said that he had fallen off and the vet was working on patching him up. Then when I called the third day, you could have said he had passed away.”
The brother thought about it and apologized.
“So how’s Mom?” asked the man.
“She’s on the roof and won’t come down.”

Jokes when analyzed lose their humor. At the risking of my bludgeoning this particular joke, the premise here is that people more readily accept shocking news when it’s given to them in partial steps. Not, “The cat is dead,” but first, “The cat is on the roof.” Something like that is going on in the debate about evolution. As biochemist Michael Behe explains in the Introduction to his new book, out today — A Mousetrap for Darwin: Michael J. Behe Answers His Critics — the public is being prepared very slowly for the demise of Darwinian evolutionary theory. It wasn’t planned that way, but it is how things are playing out.


All Is Still Well?​


As popular media and biology textbooks present the matter, all is still well with Darwin. He is on the roof, but safe. ID scientists, such as that scoundrel Michael Behe, may pose their “anti-science” challenges. However, it is merely a gentle breeze on a cat’s fur.


But wait… Actually, the cat’s fate has advanced a step beyond that. Behe writes:


Since the turn of the millennium a raft of distinguished biologists have written books critically evaluating evolutionary theory. None of them think that Darwin’s mechanism is the main driver of life. It may surprise people who get their information about the state of science from gee-whiz puff pieces in the mainstream media, but, although strong partisans still hold out, the eclipse of Darwinism in the scientific community is well-advanced. A few years ago the journal Nature published an exchange between two groups of scientists, one defending Darwin and the other saying it’s time to move on. It’s nice to have defenders, but when an idea has been around for 150 years — wished well by all right-thinking people, investigated to death by the scientific community — and a piece appears in the world’s leading science journal saying it’s time to move on, then it’s time to move on.
The question of course is, move on to what? Those books by scientists dissing Darwin offer their own clever ideas, but so far the scientific community isn’t buying any of them. All the new ideas — self-organization, facilitated variation, symbiosis, complexity theory, and more — are quickly concluded to be nonstarters, to have the same problems as Darwin’s theory, or both. In the absence of an acceptable replacement — and because of its usefulness as a defensive talking point in fending off skepticism from the public — intellectual inertia maintains Darwinism as textbook orthodoxy.

An Independent Audit​


Actually, for Darwinism, the situation is even worse than that. Books by Behe, and other ID theorists doing an independent of audit of evolutionary thinking, find devastating faults in the theory.


But hold on, the critics have their responses to the ID proponents. They say Behe never answers their rebuttals! As a trio of prominent scientist authors, Nathan Lents, Joshua Swamidass, and Richard Lenski, wrote in the journal Science last year in reply Dr. Behe’s book Darwin Devolves (emphasis added):


  • “Behe…ignores the fact that some of his prior arguments have been dismantled.”
  • “Behe doubles down on his claim that the evolution of chloroquine resistance in malaria by random mutations is exceedingly unlikely because at least two mutations are required, neither of which is beneficial without the other. His calculations have already been refuted.”
  • “Ultimately, Darwin Devolves fails to challenge modern evolutionary science because, once again, Behe does not fully engage with it.”

That sounds pretty bad. He “ignores” critics. He “double down on his claims” that “have already been refuted.” He fails to “engage.” Behe’s purported unresponsiveness was one of the main themes of the attack by Lents et al. Surely the cat is safe after all. It is on the operating table. It may be under veterinary anesthesia but is expected to recover just fine. Right?


Unfortunately for Darwin’s partisans, no. Dear Sir or Madam, we regret to inform you of the passing of your pet theory. Claims that Mike Behe doesn’t answer critics are massively refuted now with the publication of his new book. It is 556 pages of answers to critics, all written with Behe’s customary wit and rigor. The chapters cover the range of criticisms that have been aimed at his books. Some, including devastating answers to Lents, Swamidass, and Lenski, were published first by us here at Evolution News.


This giant book is among the strongest indicators yet that the cat is dead. The public hasn’t been informed yet and evolution theory’s loyal defenders are in denial. It’s just a matter of time, though. Michael Behe demonstrates as much in A Mousetrap for Darwin. Order your copy now!
 

zoidbergh77

The Force is Strong With This One
A new book by Michael Behe is out where he answers his critics. Here is a great (and funny) article about it:
This topic is so fascinating. Some seven years ago I had read "The 5th Option", which was interesting, but as others in this thread have already mentioned, is a little hard to read (especially if english is not your first language). But afterwards I never really pursued this topic any further. But over the last couple of months I have read all of Behe´s books, plus Stephen C. Meyer, "Heretic", Ken Pedersen´s "Modern Science proves Intelligent Design" and Marcus Eberlein´s "Foresight" and it´s just mind blowing and it is all explained in ways understandable to me as a layman. Especially if you come to the point of wondering if all the fine tuning of the universe isn´t itself already a sign of ID. It´s certainly no coincidence that the only times the media touch on this topic they always show some creationists who take the bible literally, what better way to poison this whole thing in the minds of those who consider themselves rational and scientific minded. It certainly prevented me from looking into this matter for many years.

So thank you Luc for the info and the link, I didn´t know there´s a new book out by Behe, I will definetly get that one asap.
 

Ennio

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
Though the latest MindMatters show got into a few different topics, one of its focuses was the political forces and motivations for getting Darwinism into public consciousness, which is based on this fascinating article by Matthew Ehret:

How Thomas Huxley's X-Club created 'Nature Magazine' and sabotaged science for 150 years

But if you're a regular reader of Sott, you may have noticed that Sott has published or republished many of Matthew's terrific articles on a variety of subjects, and so we thought it would be great to speak with him:

MindMatters: Picking Matthew Ehret's Brain: How Darwinism Took Over the World, and Why Ertugrul Is Awesome


When looking at the news, the best analysis quite often comes with a fair bit of 'dot connecting'. Ideally, we seek to understand our world and the major events unfolding as deeply as possible, but we're too often served a dish of two-dimensional news that furthers our knowledge just so much and not much more. So when a writer in the alternative news world manages to draw upon history, philosophy, science, and any number of other areas and disciplines - broadening our perspective in the process - we notice.

This week on MindMatters we are joined by just such a voice: author and lecturer Matthew Ehret. Matthew is like the college prof you wish you had, enlivening his knowledge base with an infectious enthusiasm and command of the relevant facts. A veritable plethora of subject matter is on the table: Darwin and Malthus, Planck and Einstein, Kepler's genius, the retrograde motion of Mars, the nature of conspiracies, and why you need to watch Resurrection: Ertugrul. Join us this week as the owner and contributor of the Canadian Patriot and the Rising Tide Foundation reminds us that academic-level research need not be a dry and listless affair, but can expand our world views in ways not previously anticipated.


 

Voyageur

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
...and so we thought it would be great to speak with him:

Yes, and hope the opportunity presents again.

Mr. Ehret's ability to recall and link information together is formidable indeed. At one point Matthew mentioned Cicero in terms of "defending the republican/Promethean heritage of Athens and Rome" from his other writings, and wonder if it may be related to an unknown aspect of the man in history - a general distortion (discussed in threads and books), as much of what is known comes down through the filter of Cicero. Would be interested on his expanded view.

As for the Resurrection: Ertugrul series, have to acknowledge that I've yet to view, so that will be on the list as it was an interesting topic.

Great show!
 

aragorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Though the latest MindMatters show got into a few different topics, one of its focuses was the political forces and motivations for getting Darwinism into public consciousness, which is based on this fascinating article by Matthew Ehret:

How Thomas Huxley's X-Club created 'Nature Magazine' and sabotaged science for 150 years

But if you're a regular reader of Sott, you may have noticed that Sott has published or republished many of Matthew's terrific articles on a variety of subjects, and so we thought it would be great to speak with him:

MindMatters: Picking Matthew Ehret's Brain: How Darwinism Took Over the World, and Why Ertugrul Is Awesome





I really enjoyed this interview. I have to admit that I never heard of Matthew Ehret before, but he's like a true Renaissance Thinker! I couldn't find anything about his education (not that it matters since he's obviously very smart/wise), but I'm just curious – is he like a 'self learned' genius or something?

I'd love to hear more interviews with him.
 

Redrock12

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I really enjoyed this interview. I have to admit that I never heard of Matthew Ehret before, but he's like a true Renaissance Thinker! I couldn't find anything about his education (not that it matters since he's obviously very smart/wise), but I'm just curious – is he like a 'self learned' genius or something?

I'd love to hear more interviews with him.
Ditto.
 

Redrock12

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I have been a member of the Discovery Institute for several years, and enjoy their articles and videos that arrive in the Newsletters.

This video was recently done, it is a lecture by one of my favorite speakers, biologist Michael Denton.

I am reading his latest book publication, "The Miracle of the Cell" on Kindle, and as always, it is a delight, because he writes the way he talks.

In this video, he describes all the pre conditions that had to be "created' on this planet, to support life,"compelling evidence that long before life emerged on our planet, the design of the carbon-based cell was foreshadowed in the order of nature, in the exquisite fitness of the laws of nature for this foundational unit of all life on Earth."

He is an amazing speaker, and his humor and wit, as well as his commitment to "Intelligent Design" is so encouraging and enlightening, in my opinion. In this lecture, he ties together the fascinating link between elemental metals and fire making by beings of "Our Design".

The video is a short 46 minutes, and well worth the watch, or listen, if you just leave it going as you surf...

This has to be the most interesting and informative video ever!
 

Redrock12

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
This topic is so fascinating. Some seven years ago I had read "The 5th Option", which was interesting, but as others in this thread have already mentioned, is a little hard to read (especially if english is not your first language). But afterwards I never really pursued this topic any further. But over the last couple of months I have read all of Behe´s books, plus Stephen C. Meyer, "Heretic", Ken Pedersen´s "Modern Science proves Intelligent Design" and Marcus Eberlein´s "Foresight" and it´s just mind blowing and it is all explained in ways understandable to me as a layman. Especially if you come to the point of wondering if all the fine tuning of the universe isn´t itself already a sign of ID. It´s certainly no coincidence that the only times the media touch on this topic they always show some creationists who take the bible literally, what better way to poison this whole thing in the minds of those who consider themselves rational and scientific minded. It certainly prevented me from looking into this matter for many years.

So thank you Luc for the info and the link, I didn´t know there´s a new book out by Behe, I will definetly get that one asap.
I've had Ken Pedersen's book for a month but I just haven't found the time to read it. Well, I've got to make time. This topic is off-the-wall fascinating!
 

Ennio

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
At one point Matthew mentioned Cicero in terms of "defending the republican/Promethean heritage of Athens and Rome" from his other writings, and wonder if it may be related to an unknown aspect of the man in history - a general distortion (discussed in threads and books), as much of what is known comes down through the filter of Cicero. Would be interested on his expanded view.

Yes, I caught that as well. And it would have been an interesting line to follow too given who we understand Cicero to have really been, but quite often it seems better to be 'polite' and have faith that savvy listeners will weed through the discussion as you have ;-)

I really enjoyed this interview. I have to admit that I never heard of Matthew Ehret before, but he's like a true Renaissance Thinker! I couldn't find anything about his education (not that it matters since he's obviously very smart/wise), but I'm just curious – is he like a 'self learned' genius or something?

Probably a bit of both. At one point during the interview I noticed Matthew looking down and it seemed like he was writing notes to himself. I wondered if, however engaged he was in the discussion, he may have also been thinking on other articles and lectures he was working on as well. Reminds me of a story about Bill Clinton. As the story goes, when he was President he was once holding a Cabinet Meeting and during the time of it completed a New York Times crossword puzzle! But at some point towards the end of the meeting (or something like that) he demonstrated that he was also following the discussion of his staff completely. Bill Clinton may be as corrupt and evil as they come but he was also a Rhodes Scholar and very smart in some ways. All this by way of saying that there are individuals out there who are geniuses of a sort. If only more of them were like Matthew, and less like Bill!
 

luc

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
Yes, I caught that as well. And it would have been an interesting line to follow too given who we understand Cicero to have really been, but quite often it seems better to be 'polite' and have faith that savvy listeners will weed through the discussion as you have

Thank you guys for this awesome show. Such a joy listening to Ehret. What a mind!

One thing I found odd though is his idea that there was a war between Planck/Einstein and Bohr/Heisenberg that decided the fate of modern physics. That seems way overblown to me. I looked at his article Symphony in Space where he lays out his thinking, but frankly I couldn't find much substance concerning quantum physics and the alleged antagonism between Planck/Einstein and Bohr/Heisenberg, although it is true of course that there were heated discussions about it back then. But it is also true that Heisenberg was influenced a lot by Einstein, and he was on good terms with Planck, who convinced Heisenberg to stay in Germany when the Nazis took over. And btw, Heisenberg was an accomplished classical pianist too :) As for Bohr, he certainly was an odd guy with some strange ideas, but he was also very insightful in many ways. It is true that he had an extraordinary influence on the interpretation of quantum physics, but to my mind at least, there are positive aspects about this as well. (Materialists and free will-deniers hate it by the way.) And it's not that the Copenhagen school wasn't challenged. There are dozens of interpretations of quantum mechanics around. So on this point, Ehret quite lost me. It would be interesting to hear his opinion on Heisenberg's book "physics and beyond", which is kind of an inside scoop on what went on in Bohr's circle and quantum mechanics in general when it was first conceived.
 
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