View Single Post
Old 02-04-2009, 12:18 AM   #16
SkinWalker's Avatar
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Give critical thought a chance
Posts: 2,709
LFN Staff Member 
Originally Posted by GarfieldJL View Post
Then how did life begin, the odds of life starting on Earth in the amount of time that it did is technically based on the chemical interactions and what all, about the same as a tornado ripping through a junk yard and assembling a fully functional Boeing 747. I'll find the book I got that from later.
I hate to tell you, but this is an argument from ignorance. Before you can even start discussing what the odds are you must define what n is. The number of worlds in all possible universes (mulitverse theory is another topic) is n. You then look at the number of misses, where life didn't begin, began but discontinued, began and was successful, etc.

This isn't within our ability at this time, so discussion on the "odds of life starting on Earth" is one from ignorance. Indeed, we know it did if only because we are here.

In addition, the analogy about a "tornado ripping through a junk yard" only to produce a 747 is an analogy from ignorance. Science doesn't suggest such a process exists in nature nor does it imply that evolution is such a process. There is no accidental process to evolution. The argument isn't relative to evolution since evolution doesn't work by assembling a species from individual parts. Evolution occurs via selective gradual modifications to existing structures to create order.

This weak analogy, often fallaciously favored and repeated by those that are apposed to the truth and reason of evolutionary explanations for life, originates from Fred Hoyle (1983: 18-19), who wasn't making the analogy to lifeforms as complicated as people. He was making the analogy to abiogenesis, where it's more appropriate. Earliest life on the planet would have been in the form of self-replicating molecules of RNA or other strings of proteins comprised of amino acids. There's no reason to believe such spontaneous assemblies couldn't occur at the molecular level. It's an absurd analogy to apply to complex organisms like humans, bovids, or even cockroaches.


Hoyle, Fred (1983). The Intelligent Universe. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.

A Hot Cup of Joe - My Blog

Not finding an intellectual challenge in the Swamp? Try the Senate Chambers!

Evolution and How We Know It's Right - Post your thoughts!
Debate Strategies & Tactics - Polish your online debate skills and offer your own advice
SkinWalker is offline   you may: quote & reply,