There's only one data set, so let's do some thought-experiments.
Imagine what might have happened, knowing what we do about astrophysics and
prebiotic evolution and organic evolution, if we "ran the program" (or "ran
the tape," as suggested by Gould in "Wonderful Life") using "Matter in
Unsupervised Motion" for 1000 runs each, for these three parts of natural
from the Big Bang to the formation of Earth,
from Earth to the first 1-celled animal, and
from a 1-celled animal to the present (with humans,...).
Don't protest that "Matter in Unsupervised Motion" is impossible; this is a
*thought-experiment*, done to test the 3-way compatibility between
philosophical materialism (which claims that only MIUM occurred) based on
current science (which assumes that only MIUM occurred), and what we
observe, and various interpretations for theistic evolution (TE).
With a many-universe scenario, "anything goes" with most questions of
plausibility being discarded -- since there are essentially an infinite
number of universes, even odds of zero (1 in a zillion raised to the
zillionth power raised to the zillionth power raised to the zillionth power
raised......) are OK -- and these experiments become meaningless.
But with one universe, the following questions are meaningful.
If all 1000 runs produce exactly what God wanted (as in Loren's TE-3b2
with "Determined Outcome") for the characteristics of Earth and its
inhabitants, then TE is consistent with materialistic science, with no need
to postulate any need to proceed beyond materialistic theories of evolution
(cosmological, chemical, or organic). Do you think (using your best guess,
based on current-science or YETI-science) that this would occur in each of
the 1000 runs? in most? some? none?
If all 1000 runs produce something that is "close enough" to what God
wanted (as in Loren's TE-3b3 with a "Flexible Outcome" goal), this would
make TE consistent with materialistic theories of E. Or is it OK if a
"close enough" result occurs in only some runs? Do you think a "close
enough" result would occur in all runs? most? some? none?
Of course, similar thought-experiments (using conditions that vary with
goals and contexts) are common in evolutionary science. But these
experiments are interesting, and are useful when thinking about the issues
summarized by Loren in the preceding post, re: the relative contributions
from 1, 2, 3 and 4 in "functional integrity" and in other types of theistic
evolution or progressive creation.