Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id UAA15998 (8.6.9/5.3[ref email@example.com] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from firstname.lastname@example.org); Thu, 30 Aug 2001 20:56:54 +0100 Message-ID: <002b01c1318d$b3a57780$9124f4d8@teddace> From: "Dace" <email@example.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> References: <3B8C7133.15509.CB3665@localhost> <3B8CFBAC.AE958210@bioinf.man.ac.uk> Subject: Re: Dawkins etc Date: Thu, 30 Aug 2001 12:55:19 -0700 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit X-Priority: 3 X-MSMail-Priority: Normal X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 5.50.4133.2400 X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V5.50.4133.2400 Sender: email@example.com Precedence: bulk Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
From: Chris Taylor
> > > Of course there are differences. Why shouldn't there be? They're
> > > different species in different locations. But they're also profoundly
> > > similar.
> No, I bet you couldn't find a single protein with the same sequence, let
> alone a gene; all the similar traits will ontologically be from
> different developmental pathways. Similarity at the macro level, which
> is all you are considering, is a small percentage of what makes an
It's a testament to the power of morphic resonance that any two species with
different genes and proteins end up appearing and behaving as incredibly
closely as many of the marsupials and placentals. (Not to mention the S.
American and Australian marsupials.) The improbability that these parallels
result *exclusively* from natural selection is beyond calculation. Why
should wolves appear? Why should cats appear? Why should flying squirrels
appear? It's absurd that natural selection, by itself, would produce the
same array of creatures twice in two different places.
> > > Parallel evolution is quite common
> > > and crops up in human origins. Witness the incredibly similar
> > > development of Eurasian Homo sapiens (Neanderthal) and the African
> > > model.
> That is drivel. They only just *DI*verged so of course they're similar.
Neanderthal evolved from Homo heidelbergensis a minimum of 500,000 years
ago. The most recent spurt in brain growth occurred between 500 and 200
Kya. This spurt was almost identical in the African and Eurasian lineages
of Homo sapiens. The result is that Neanderthal had the same brain size and
identifiable neural structures as modern humans. Their advanced vocal
tracts, which evolved after the split from our common ancestor, were also
the same. Here's Stephen Mithen from The Prehistory of the Mind (page 141):
"The hyoid is a bone that can provide detailed information about the
structure of the vocal tract. Its movement affects the position and
movement of the larynx to which it is attached. That found at Kebara, lying
in an undisturbed position with the mandible and cervical vertebra, is
virtually identical to that of a Modern Human with regard to its shape,
muscular attachments and apparent positioning."
While these parallels could theoretically result from natural selection, the
combination of morphic influences and natural selection is far more
> > Except for superficial changes, such as pigmentation and hair
> > texture, not much has changed, or had much time to, evolutionarily
> > speaking. Here we are most definitely talking (geologically recent)
> > common ancestor.
Never assume Joe Dees knows what he's talking about.
> I just don't understand how one could go shopping for new explanations
> anyway when there don't appear to be any problems with existing
> theories. Just because they don't explain everything straight away
> doesn't mean that they can't (remember they're just tools in our hands,
> which implies some skill in their use). To get MR's foot in the door
> with me, you'd have to prove that there is something that current
> thinking clearly doesn't have a hope of explaining.
The quality of being alive. All organic structure irreducible to genes.
Mind and memory. Self-existence and self-determination. Convergent
evolution not explainable according to natural selection or species-hopping
genes. Cumulative progress across generations of a given species in
completing specific tasks. The passing on of acquired characteristics.
Non-materially coordinated behavior among groups.
Those are the more significant ones.
This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Aug 30 2001 - 21:01:32 BST