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Science Writer Miraculously Escapes Ravages Of Evolution

A science writer at Discover magazine has managed to escape from the clutches of evolution and lived to tell us of it. This Bridget Alex has discovered humans—not her, but humans—have evolved to believe in gods. But, somehow, she did not. Therefore she is not human.

Or if she is, I don’t know if that means evolution is broken or she is some sort of genetic mutant who has evolved not to believe in gods. Since God exists, and since this Bridget Alex has evolved out of believing in this part of Reality, both theories are plausible.

On the other hand, if evolution can cause what we think, or is skilled at tricking us into thinking that what is not so is so, then how does this Bridget Alex know that what she believes is Real? What she believes may be an evolutionary fraud, a genetic trick designed to give her a breeding advantage for the strangely overly sexualized-yet-non-sexual American savanna in which she resides. She may be programmed to spout atheistic nonsense to lure a beta-boy into her bed, a soy boy who will encourage her not to abort her nascent offspring.

Evolution can be cruel.

Incidentally, why is evolution causing so many ladies to kill their own children? We are told evolution provides survival skillz. Yet slaughtering your own selfish-gene carriers would appear to be the opposite of survival.

On the other other hand, that killing is a pattern I noticed, and this Bridget Alex says humans evolved to notice patterns, many of which turn out to be false. Not the patterns she notices, of course. Evolution gave her a pass. So she says. But my patterns are suspect. So it could be injecting drugs to prevent conception and slitting the throats of the wee mites who make it past those chemical gates is providing a survival advantage I cannot see, since evolution isn’t letting me grasp the correct pattern.

I’ll let the true scientists, the folks who know evolution has let their minds alone discover truths, even though it’s evolution that provides the feels about truth, and so nobody would ever know they aren’t being fooled by some impish genes, answer this.

Isn’t science grand?

14 thoughts on “Science Writer Miraculously Escapes Ravages Of Evolution Leave a comment

  1. “Incidentally, why is evolution causing so many ladies to kill their own children? We are told evolution provides survival skillz.”

    Nobody is telling you that evolution thinks ahead and adapts to any environment but the one the critter is in right now. For example, he instincts that help squirrels evade cats appear to me (this is a GUESS) to be the same instincts that lead them to double back under your car wheels at the last moment. The environment has changed. If we keep it up long enough, squirrels will change. But they seem to breed fast enough for cars not to threaten the species.

    People spend a lot of time rationalizing instinctive behavior. I think (this is a GUESS) infinitely delayed reproduction is something like a “delayed gratification” instinct getting triggered the wrong way in a novel environment.

    See also the “mouse heaven” experiment.

    Evolution can’t think ahead. This is obvious. When you assume that it must, you’re missing the point.

  2. McChuck—I so agree with you. Disney ruins everything.

    Wilbur H: “For example, he instincts that help squirrels evade cats appear to me (this is a GUESS) to be the same instincts that lead them to double back under your car wheels at the last moment.”
    Love it! My laugh for the day!

    I note, too, that the instincts that keep rabbits “safe”—becoming immobile—works 100% against them with humans. Of course, their “cuteness” may help balance that out.

    Evolution does not think, doesn’t predict, etc. It’s a retroactive application of patterns observed—SWAGS. I’m not even sure it rises to the level of a theory. However, questioning this results in extreme anger on the part of those who “believe”. That or a questioning of just what evolution really means. Dang—this is giving me a headache….

  3. Evolution, that is, descent with modification, within chemically mediated biological organisms, is trivially true. Mutable beings mutate. God, being the Being that must exist, by logical necessity; also must have made the physical universe. So ….

    It isn’t so much reproductive advantage, as relative reproductive disadvantage, when it comes to mutations. Most are neutral. Some are an immediate disadvantage. Others are conditionally neutral to a slight advantage right now at this place given the current set of conditions. These may not be at a different time, at a different place, and given some other set of conditions. In order to be fruitful and multiply given that, the system must be quite robust; and I don’t see how that could be so without an outside intellect designing it and making it be so; even if it doesn’t look to be so to limited beings that exist within the system. By outside, I mean just that. Space aliens also exist within the system. Besides, we may very well be the first embodied intelligent life. ;p

    I used to play a mental game when reading papers. Could I swap out evolution for God such that the paper read the same? Often I could do just that.

  4. For a really good disney film showing primordial soup, watch
    “Fantasia”
    The first.
    Gary’s quote is apt.
    Then see Lady and the Tramp. IF you dont have holly in . your heart, like some old sour pussies.

  5. Joy

    You’re referring to Disney when Disney was Walt.

    Walt passed many many moons ago.

    Don’t forget Disney’s Winnie-the-Pooh (not as good as the book but still wonderful)

  6. A couple of thoughts:

    1) RE “…Isn’t science grand?”

    That is in conclusion to the statements made by a single (“1” as in “one”) individual, Bridget Alex, regarding who’s views about evolution Briggs disagrees. Briggs segues’ from that person’s argument and extrapolates to the merits of the entirety of science — from a person’s analysis conducted perhaps unreliably to an entire discipline. This invocation of the ‘ole switcheroo’ to illogically undermine a discipline seen as a threat to a belief system, rather than the error made by the practitioner, is a recurring theme here.

    Using that “logic” we can conclude every time Briggs points out some individual’s misuse of statistics that the entire discipline of statistics, and statisticians, are full of and produce humbug.
    Of course, we know better…

    RE: “…why is evolution causing so many ladies to kill their own children?”

    The more informative question is why did (used to be “does”) god(s) require animal sacrifices? Some demanded the sacrifice be human. Abraham, ancestor to Christianity, had no problem whatsoever accepting that his deity demanded a human sacrifice, his own child no less, and went along (note in that story the issue is its his son, not that its a human who happens to be his son). Even though that wasn’t consummated, other animal sacrifices were … and are now no longer necessary. Why is that?

    And therein lies part of the answer to Briggs’ query, because reasons are given (by mere mortals though) and many of those reasons apply across religions such that if the sacrifice is human, one’s offspring, etc. matter not. Interesting, that, because the rationale to end the requirement for sacrifice cannot also evade rationale wonderment at why they were ever really required in the first place.

    That aside, abortion is doing preemptively what many women and families did right after a child’s birth, or much later, for much the same reasons, such as convenience (most of us recall the story of Hansel & Gretel and the witch, but few seem to recall it was their new selfish step mother that persuaded the father to abandon them because they had meager resources for all). Infanticide was, and remains in many locales, a common occurrence, but so was the killing of much older children. Might as well mention that in rough times eating one’s children was also a survival necessity. One wonders what proportion of humanity’s children, before modern medicine, were offed for convenience of one sort or other — its not the sort of statistic people like to consider as this as doing so ruins the pleasant fiction that in simpler times things were more idyllic. Our view of history in many fundamental regards is downright wrong. Why, that’s just like the willful [and selective] invocation of nonsense logic to impugn an entire discipline for the error of a single practitioner!

  7. John B,
    Yes, Winnie The Pooh, Alice in Wonderland, which was too grown up, really.

    It’s an adult film, or maybe intended for children with a short attention span. I was upset about the tea party, something recognisable, at last! Oh dear… What is wrong with people! The silliness was really unsettling. I’m still with Alice, the only sane one amongst them, Ahem.

    ‘wonderful’s some kind of ‘special’ word’?, (she said in a stage whisper), and all the modern films are cheap. There are enough of the old. It was the end of an era.
    As they say, Just smile that it happened.

    I know they own a lot of ‘stuff’ now, and that corporations are modern day political battleships or some other frigate or figure of speech, but they are just the same as other media. Once people don’t know who’s on who’s side or which side their bread is buttered it’s like Alice in Wonderland all over again. So, wake up, like Alice, and learn some real History.

    Internet media is of current concern, and how toxic it really is. At least you can walk out of a cinema you know you walked into.

    Not just Disney, Hollywood is in a pickle…and Mel G was no help! The worst historian ever.

    Psalm 19 and 20 were my today’s reading.

  8. Sheri, I have never seen here an “evolution believer” get angry with you for expressing your doubts. I have however seen you get angry here (many times) at anyone who questions your doubts or tries to help you through your fog of confusion.

  9. @ Andyd,

    “I have however seen you [Sheri] get angry here (many times) at anyone who questions your doubts or tries to help you through your fog of confusion.”

    I have noticed that also.

    @ cdquarles,

    “In order to be fruitful and multiply given that, the system must be quite robust; and I don’t see how that could be so without an outside intellect designing it and making it be so; even if it doesn’t look to be so to limited beings that exist within the system.”

    It doesn’t make any sense to try and use evolution as evidence for a god when the field of evolution doesn’t agree with you. You might just as well claim that the field of waste management provides evidence for a god.

  10. People are extremely diverse in many traits, and religiosity is no exception. It seems to follow the schizophrenia/autism spectrum. Schizophrenics are deeply, fanatically religious — how could they not be, when they hear accusing voices in their heads all the time? Autistics tend to be atheists, baffled that anyone would believe in things which do not manifest themselves to the five senses. And normal people are somewhere in between.

    Why has natural selection not resolved this dichotomy in favor of the mental state more conducive to successful reproduction? Because it depends. In a healthy society with a sane religion, religiosity is beneficial to reproduction. It fosters social cohesion and eugenic mating.

    But when religion goes bonkers, as modern progressive liberalism has (and to a lesser extent, most Christian denominations, see Dalrock), it becomes a suicide pact, a herd of lemmings running off a cliff. In that case, the less religious, the social outcasts, the spergs, are the ones left behind to repopulate and rebuild.

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