Re: Intelligent design vs. natural selection

Pattle Pun (
Fri, 5 Sep 1997 14:24:44 -0500 (CDT)

On Thu, 4 Sep 1997, David Campbell wrote:

> >> On Wed, 3 Sep 1997, Pattle Pun wrote:
> >> > One of the ways by which intelligent design theory can be tested is by
> >> > way of following the patterns of sequence homologies of macromolecules
> >> > that cannot be accommodated by the the monophyletic assumption of the
> >> > comment descent hypothesis, but rather by a polyphyletic lineage with a
> >> > common pattern (or "design"). Preliminary evidence has already indicated
> >> > that the three distinct "urkingdoms" of Archea, Bacteria, and Eukarya have
> >> > unique patterns within themselves such as rRNA, RNA polymerase, Cell
> >> > Walls, Lipid compositions, and translational machineries. Current models
> >> > of forcing these data into monophyletic interpretation are farfetched.
> Phylogenies connecting all three urkingdoms have been made based on
> rRNA, tRNA, heat shock proteins, and several other molecules. The split
> between the three is probably over 3.5 billion years ago, so large
> differences are to be expected. Gene transfers seem to have occurred in
> many cases, so these phylogenies will not always agree with each other, but
> the basic biochemical similarities among all living organisms seem best
> explained by the suggestion that God created them all from a common
> ancestor-the commonalities are greater than is necessary for function.
> However, multiple origins of life are possible under a naturalistic
> scenario, so this would not unambiguously test ID versus "methodological
> naturalism".
If patterns are discovered that are unique to each of the three
urkingdoms, i.e. the signiture sequences in rRNA that cannot be explained
by any naturalistic mechanisms, the better hypothesis would be it was put
together under a "design", or irreducible complexity, to use Behe's famous
buzz word. The same arguments are put forth to suggest that the origin of
life from non living is by "design", not by naturalistic mechanisms since
there are none. This is not "God of the Gap", since the hypothesis can be
tested and further experiments can be done to check out what that
"pattern" of "irreducible complexity" is designed for.

------------------------------------- Dr. Pattle Pun Professor of Biology
Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL 60187
Phone: (630)752-5303
FAX: (630)752-5996