Natural Selection

Techne

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To continue discussion on this topic:
https://mybroadband.co.za/forum/threads/logic.999538/post-22996464
:confused: Fair enough...
1) A cause or force (force being a subset of causes).
2) An outcome of causes.
3) A process.

So I'd like this discussion not to get all twisty and turny because it has educated scientists far smarter than I covering it already.
However, to my mind, the Theory of Evolution (passing on genetic traits) is very closely aligned to Natural selection (survival of the fittest) and it's easy to get the two conflated.
The ultimate goal of life is to live, oddly enough the reason and name are aligned. ToE and NS support life.
Because the world & universe is not a static place, life must change with it, or find itself unsuitable for habitation of said world or universe.

Those that are alive are there because of a sequence of causes/consequences and processes of trying to stay alive. Some make it, some don't.

Sorry to conflate cause, outcome and process, but I think an overarching theory about life and how we got here would contain all 3?
No Worries. Yes, I agree, any view of reality would have to account for causes, process and outcomes.


https://mybroadband.co.za/forum/threads/logic.999538/post-22996202
It's not my view, but one you have argued for in the past iirc when you've talked about Aquinas. You mentioned a natural end, but must an efficient cause also have a beginning? Forgive me if I misunderstood, but I thought that was what you were driving at.
An efficient cause does not necessarily need a beginning. Contingent causes sure. I am just talking about ordinary everyday efficient causes.


https://mybroadband.co.za/forum/threads/logic.999538/post-22996816
Here you paraphrase the previous definition of "Natural selection" which you table in a previous reply to me, which you took almost word for word out of one of the many references there are available on "Natural Selection".

Those same references you quote define " Natural Selection" as one of the processes that describe the evolutionary process defined within the TOE.

So, in actual fact, depending on what you want to say or describe, all three would apply, provided you read the definition within the context of the specific paragraph or description.

So, the correct way to Understand "Natural Selection" is to stick to the original definition as defined by Darwin, including the changes made over time as the TOE has been refined, and NOT to try and come up with your own definition. He made a specific point of using the word "natural" to exclude an external force from the definition.
What you might or might not know is that there were other scientists and philosophers before Darwin that had noticed the similarities between animals and attributed it or used their observations to try and show that there must have been an outside agency involved, which then means "selection" is no longer a natural process but a deliberate action or force. Hence why there is this pre-occupation among some to try and say "Natural Selection" is a cause or force. And that is what the modern Creationist (Intelligent design Lobby) has picked up on saying basically, "okay" we will agree there is a selection going on but it is an outside force that is doing it deliberately.

Finally, at the risk of repeating myself and others', Creationism has no scientific substance behind it. It chooses a selective set of "evidence" which none of them has developed, described or quantified themselves to reach a preconceived conclusion, which fits their narrow belief system. Therefore it can never be a Scientific Theory because it has decided beforehand what the outcome is and then scratched around for evidence to justify and prove that outcome.
So what is the original definition of natural selection as defined by Darwin? Careful, Darwin was actually a teleologist. There is actually a very interesting contemporary debate about whether natural selection is a cause/force or an outcome of causes/forces. I tend to agree with the latter interpretation as it removes all teleology from natural selection itself.
 

DMNknight

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because someone decided that the Logic thread had run its course and closed it.
 

UrBaN963

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When one's "Logic" thread is in fact an "illogic" thread, and is subsequently closed (logical) and summarily reopened (illogic) one must ask oneself, "is it Monday?"
 

Geoff.D

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Let us hope we can hold a real debate about this subject now. As equals with a view to unpacking the subject and the various viewpoints. A few rules, please. NO name calling and logical fallacy debates.
 
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DMNknight

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A victim of Natural Selection in itself...
Not to get too much off topic. It was a victim of its creator and the audience.
There are times where there were some remarkable and surprising discussions and reasoning.

However, in any discussion you need to have 2 willing participants that agree to discuss, that have a common purpose. When the purpose of the discussion gets railroaded by agenda's, toxic posters and trolls/meta-trolls then the thread is doomed.

There was actually quite a bit more to say, now only in potentia. I would not have agreed to close the thread.
 

DMNknight

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Let us hope we can hold a real debate about this subject now. As equals with a view to packing the subject and the various viewpoints. A few rules please. NO name calling and logical fallacy debates.
1) No Logical Fallacies
2) No Cognitive errors
3) No Argumentative errors

I've attached a handy guide.
 

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Geoff.D

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That is a great chart! I had one in my office, and it ended up remaining there because I forgot to take it with me. ----
 

DMNknight

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That is a great chart! I had one in my office, and it ended up remaining there because I forgot to take it with me. ----
I TRY to adhere to it... but sometimes I devolve out of adult into parent/child ego states which is most often when the fallacies creep in. Most often an unconscious response to protecting an ego state which the opposite person is projecting.
 

Geoff.D

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Teleology in itself is not a bad thing. And we all need to remember that older Scientific texts did tend to describe and explain things in terms of its end, purpose or goal.
"Teleology is a reason or explanation for something in function of its end, purpose, or goal".
In Science, it came to a point where Scientists decided that these explanations were too subjective, so there was a move away from Teleology. I personally think there is nothing wrong with such explanations, provided the explanation is read and understood within the context of what is being described or explained.

Therefore it is not fair or right to call a person or a scientist a "teleologist", if the times when that scientist did his research it was an accepted practice. Even today, there are quite a few disciplines in life in general where being a Teleologist is the only way.

A classic would be Management by Objective in business. An example that backfired on society is "outcomes-based education".

So, in general, there are other examples where it is very difficult to simply re-write theories simply because of Teleology.

Just read in context and get the message is what is important.

The medical profession is outcomes based, so it is not difficult to understand why the attempts to remove teleological explanations out of Biology, and therefore by inference, out of Biological Evolution studies and theories has proven to be rather difficult.

So maybe, we could pick a part of the TOE, show why the current way in which it is documented could be considered to be teleological, and then show how that aspect has been changed to now be free of any teleological explanations?

Teleology does not in itself make the TOE invalid. I hope all of you agree?
 

Techne

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When I talk about teleology I refer to the Aristotelian view of "Every agent acts towards an end". So when someone talks about natural selection as some sort of cause or force then natural selection itself is some sort of agent that acts towards an end. As an example, the natural end of natural selection acting as a force (and thus an agent) is the differential survival of alleles. I don't support this view, but from reading the literature this is one of the reasons why Darwin was a teleologist. He saw natural selection as some sort of active agent or force or cause with its corresponding natural end.

I don't have any objections to scientists being teleologists. Yes, I agree, teleology does not in itself make the TOE invalid. In fact, find me one scientist that is not and I will show you how he/she is acting towards the end of trying to show you how he/she is not. Even explanations in physics are teleological. Choose ANY physical phenomenon and try and give a dysteleological explanation.
 

DMNknight

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Agreed and in accordance to the Fallacy Fallacy.
Presuming a claim to be necessarily wrong because a fallacy has been committed
We cannot dismiss ideas simply because they may have been based on one or two false premises. Teleology was actually useful in leading to the point where it was longer tenable. As good scientists do, they found something more suitable to the task and carried on.
 

Ponderer

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It is quite logical to contrast cause and effect.
It is further also logical to consider the purpose of something.
The trick is not to get confused - ie. is something the result of something else, or is it the cause of something else.
I think that the way forward would require some terms to be clearly defined - ie. exactly what be Darwinism, Evolution, Creationism, Natural Selection, the TEO, ......
 

Ponderer

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Mmmm - another thing.
The whole thing should be approached from the perspective of a crime scene investigation.
There be clues and/or evidence - the tricky part is to string it together so as to make sense of it all.
Some things might seem to be logical, but are in fact not, and vice versa.
If you are serious about wanting to know the truth, you must let Logic take its course, and follow it wherever it leads, regardless of anything else.
 

ToxicBunny

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Mmmm - another thing.
The whole thing should be approached from the perspective of a crime scene investigation.
There be clues and/or evidence - the tricky part is to string it together so as to make sense of it all.
Some things might seem to be logical, but are in fact not, and vice versa.
If you are serious about wanting to know the truth, you must let Logic take its course, and follow it wherever it leads, regardless of anything else.
That is generally where it did go... You seem to by and large be the only person here who struggles with this.
 

C4Cat

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When I talk about teleology I refer to the Aristotelian view of "Every agent acts towards an end". So when someone talks about natural selection as some sort of cause or force then natural selection itself is some sort of agent that acts towards an end. As an example, the natural end of natural selection acting as a force (and thus an agent) is the differential survival of alleles. I don't support this view, but from reading the literature this is one of the reasons why Darwin was a teleologist. He saw natural selection as some sort of active agent or force or cause with its corresponding natural end.

I don't have any objections to scientists being teleologists. Yes, I agree, teleology does not in itself make the TOE invalid. In fact, find me one scientist that is not and I will show you how he/she is acting towards the end of trying to show you how he/she is not. Even explanations in physics are teleological. Choose ANY physical phenomenon and try and give a dysteleological explanation.
Recognising the mechanism of natural selection makes teleological explanations unnecessary in explaining the rich diversity of life. Yes, sometimes there is a language problem, when describing something we tend to use words that imply teology but these can always be rephrased to exclude such inferences. I'm not aware that Darwin ever spoke of natural selection as an active force that acts towards an end goal. He simply observed that life may or may not survive.

The truly outstanding achievement of the principle of natural selection is that it makes unnecessary the invocation of “final causes”—that is, any teleological forces leading to a particular end. In fact, nothing is predetermined.
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/darwins-influence-on-modern-thought/
 

Ponderer

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Recognising the mechanism of natural selection makes teleological explanations unnecessary in explaining the rich diversity of life. Yes, sometimes there is a language problem, when describing something we tend to use words that imply teology but these can always be rephrased to exclude such inferences. I'm not aware that Darwin ever spoke of natural selection as an active force that acts towards an end goal. He simply observed that life may or may not survive.


https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/darwins-influence-on-modern-thought/
Are you saying that Darwinism does not postulate speciation - more specifically, that species do not adapt so as to become another species?
 

Ponderer

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Recognising the mechanism of natural selection makes teleological explanations unnecessary in explaining the rich diversity of life. Yes, sometimes there is a language problem, when describing something we tend to use words that imply teology but these can always be rephrased to exclude such inferences. I'm not aware that Darwin ever spoke of natural selection as an active force that acts towards an end goal. He simply observed that life may or may not survive.


https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/darwins-influence-on-modern-thought/
Another thing.
Does Darwinism postulate anything other than extinction?
 
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