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With regards to Natural Selection, isn't adaption to change intelligence in action i.e. the avoidance of death (bear with me as I build up my case)? I wouldn't call it 'luck' per se but brute strength versus problem solving as in Jason and The Bean Men in Nathaniel Hawthorne's 'Twice Told Tales' (Greek Myths) and Hylas in the version of Jason and the Argonauts.

 

“It's not the strongest of the species that survives. It is the one most adaptable to change” as Darwin said. I think it is the interpretation of intelligence that has changed since his idea, through awareness of what consciousness is, in relation to it. Jay Gould said he didn't believe in innate intelligence and I'm not sure I do. Adaption to change has to come into this or we would never go forward. I believe stupidity is resistance to this change and that this is not bad luck but suicide for the individual or society it belongs to as it means being left in the past as a rearguard of what was, not what is or will be. Consciousness is a defense against the unconscious (the new, unknown, different). This is the basis of prejudice rather than the understanding which releases us to go forward as an individual or race. This is why it appears 'lucky' to survive or stumble over anything new in the way of ideas because it slips passed the ego defenses.

 

I further believe that evolution is a refinement of our knowledge or abilities (behaviour or form) according to changed conditions, even if it us that changes them through experiment with life. I would further add that The Galapagos Finch beak is a tool, developed in the factory of the body, by the adaptive mind (Think of diggers with different implements that can be added, like buckets or hammer drills), much as cars are manufactured in buildings as protective spheres, eggs in shells, babies in wombs, life on a planet, seeds in hard shells, genes in a cell.

 

Lastly, I'd like to point out that I think that Behavioural exchange on the mental level is like genetic exchange on the physical. I've seen our dogs for instance swop actions over time*, in what is a language of motion or a kind of semaphore of dominance or submission (imitation or I want to do what the top dog does as a form of pleasure or 'achievement;' sadly reflected in celebrity culture nowadays).

 

* The new dog now sits at the top of the stairs, guarding the front door and barks at our neighbours dog which the old one did too. It also took over the bean bag as did our old dog, from our old Lab. Before it but it has still not worked out how to use it when it's downstairs and ends up behind it, digging at the bag like it is its fault that it's not working as it should (I'm sure I could add more observations, if I thought about it).

 

 

 

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It would really help if you would make use of paragraphs: walls of text are discouraging.

 

You ask, "Is adaptation to change, intelligence in action?"

 

Answer, yes, but only occasionally, and not in the way you mean. Most organisms on the planet lack what we would conventionally call intelligence. The prokaryotes don't have it; plants don't have it; I doubt graptolites had it.

 

If you have intelligence, then you can employ it to provide novel behaviours in the face of novel situations. This is what Dawkins (?) meant by an extended phenotype in relation to human culture. But this represents a very small subset of all adaptation.

 

You also say "The Galapagos Finch beak is a tool, developed in the factory of the body, by the adaptive mind."

 

Please provide even a shred of evidence to support this contention. The finches did not consciously change their beaks. The finches with beaks appropriate to conditions outsurvived the others. You are asserting teleological Lamarkism - strange bedfellows indeed.

 

 

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Okay, let me put it like this. It is all down to how you define intelligence. Habit is not intelligence because it is repetition of previous actions that proved efficacious. To me intelligence is exploration and accidental discovery (to you) of something unknown. Look at science and inventions. Were they deliberate solutions to problems? In a lot of cases it was trial and error or curious findings for which an application was found later (see penicillin for an example). To me the body is like a factory, where other designs are developed through the mixing of various elements (here genes). We know that breeding with close family members (inbreeding) can lead to deformities and this I believe is the equivalent of genetic stagnation, although you may call it something else or even give a different cause. I personally think we may mistake complexity for intelligence because that is the result of evolution from simple forms but that is because the game has become more complex, like any game becomes more complex as various ideas are exploited and better survival defenses worked out.

 

I presume you are saying that accidental mutation leads to variation? Do you have proof of this? Surely it is interpretation of the end results and how we define terms, that is the only difference of the end result we both see? Could plants orientating themselves be a sign of intelligence? Isn't survival itself and the acts carried out a sign of intelligence?

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Sorry about Dawkins's, paragraphs and not providing proof of my theory but how could you? It's conjecture based on observed facts.

 

By the way you might like to look at my thread "What Science Is" as I think evolution is a scientific experiment by life itself as it explores reality as an individual life form (See post for better idea of what I mean, then you can pull my reasoning even further to bits as you'll have even more ammunition to do it with).

Edited by pagetheoracle
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Sorry about that.  Just realized how that happened as in its original form it was in separate paragraphs.  I cut and pasted it from an original document that I placed elsewhere but when put here, it ended up as one mass of sentences:  I know this because I saw another of my threads elsewhere and it had happened to it as well but I noticed it this time.

By the way sorry I called you Ecologite, Eclogite

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  • 2 weeks later...

You ask, "Is adaptation to change, intelligence in action?" Answer, yes, but only occasionally, and not in the way you mean. Most organisms on the planet lack what we would conventionally call intelligence. The prokaryotes don't have it; plants don't have it; I doubt graptolites had it. If you have intelligence, then you can employ it to provide novel behaviours in the face of novel situations. This is what Dawkins (?) meant by an extended phenotype in relation to human culture. But this represents a very small subset of all adaptation. You also say "The Galapagos Finch beak is a tool, developed in the factory of the body, by the adaptive mind." Please provide even a shred of evidence to support this contention. The finches did not consciously change their beaks. The finches with beaks appropriate to conditions outsurvived the others. You are asserting teleological Lamarkism - strange bedfellows indeed.

 

How about coelacanths, nautiloidea, crocodilia as species that have been the same for millions of years, not to mentions various plants species that haven't changed over time?  If mutation is accidental rather than deliberate, why haven't they changed?

Edited by CraigD
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How about coelacanths, nautiloidea, crocodilia as species that have been the same for millions of years, not to mentions various plants species that haven't changed over time?  If mutation is accidental rather than deliberate, why haven't they changed?

1. These groups have not been the same for millions of years. There outward appearance and bahvioural patterns have remained similar, but not identical.

2. They have remained this way because they are very well adpated to their environments. Significant mutations that have occured have been selected against.

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  • 8 months later...

Sorry about Dawkins's, paragraphs and not providing proof of my theory but how could you? It's conjecture based on observed facts.

 

By the way you might like to look at my thread "What Science Is" as I think evolution is a scientific experiment by life itself as it explores reality as an individual life form (See post for better idea of what I mean, then you can pull my reasoning even further to bits as you'll have even more ammunition to do it with).

The trouble with your argument is that you are carelessly mixing the literal with the metaphorical.  Saying "evolution is a scientific experiment by life itself" is not literally true.  It is a metaphor.  And as such, it has value only to the extent that the metaphor aids in understanding the literal.  BY ITSELF, a metaphorical statement is generally useless.  "Life explores reality" is another metaphor.  It is a short and convenient way to refer to many aspects of evolution, including natural selection.  But it could just as easily refer to debunked hypotheses, such as Lamarkian evolution or creationism.  

 

Metaphor is the "wooden sword" of warfare.  It's a great tool for training soldiers, but isn't worth sh*t in a real battle.  :)

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How about coelacanths, nautiloidea, crocodilia as species that have been the same for millions of years, not to mentions various plants species that haven't changed over time?  If mutation is accidental rather than deliberate, why haven't they changed?

Evolution is a process with several steps.  You have (at a minimum) the mutation, the mutation's phenotype, followed by natural selection and reproduction, then repeat.

 

Crocodiles mutate just like all other life.  But if their ENVIRONMENT does NOT change, then it is very unlikely that the mutations will improve the crocodile's chances of survival and reproduction.  Evolution is in many ways DNA's attempt to "hit a moving target".  The requirements for survival are often incrementally different for each generation.  If so, then DNA relies upon sex and mutations to "scatter-shot" its descendants in the hope that a few will survive better under the ever-changing environmental conditions.

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How about coelacanths, nautiloidea, crocodilia as species that have been the same for millions of years, not to mentions various plants species that haven't changed over time?  If mutation is accidental rather than deliberate, why haven't they changed?

 

 

Do you really think there have never been crocodiles that were different than the ones we have today? There have been herbivore crocodiles, land crocodiles with a upright legs and under the body posture, there have been crocodiles with horns, armor, and spikes. Small ones that lived in trees, sea going crocodiles with fins instead of legs, there have a great many crocodiles that have little resemblance to the ones we have today, it's just that the ones we have today are the only successful ones left and even among the ones we have today there is considerable diversity..  

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