Re: [asa] Re: Reading Genesis theologically NOT historically

From: Bill Powers <>
Date: Fri Oct 09 2009 - 08:31:29 EDT


You say:

" If you disagree with the above, then let's end the discussion here.
But if you agree with the above, and if you are so inclined, apply this
reasoning to the genus Homo, or the species Homo sapiens, and tell me why
similar reasoning would not apply. Granting entirely that modern humans
have genes in them going back to many near and far sources, why is it not
the case that certain *individual traits* necessary to being human would
*first* have appeared in a particular individual, before spreading into a
population, such that if that individual had died before reproducing, Homo or
Homo sapiens would not have come into being? "

I agree with your logic regarding the giraffe neck. But, in agreeing, I
also presume that what makes a giraffe distinguishes a giraffe is *only*
its neck length.

If humans are, in some sense, the union of many traits. It seems to me
that, according to any notion of evolution and inherited traits, that a
human could very well have many particular individual ancestors,
and not just one, without whom the human would not have come to be.

Why cannot it not be that unique human trait A can be traced to
inidividual A1 and trait B from individual B1. At some point A1 mates
with B1 creating individual C1.

Rethinking what I was thinking, suppose C1 possesses "all" the traits of a
human. We have to be careful about what we mean by traits here, because
we want to be able to say that C1 is *not* human. Speaking classically,
we might say that C1 possesses all the qualities of humans, but just not
in the quantity that humans possess.

If we can accept this logic and claim that this happens, not just in the
case of humans, but in all speciation, then it seems to me we could say
that, yes, humans had a particular individual ancestor.

Such an argument appears to presume that this particular individual is
unlikely. That is, it would be judged very unlikely that several or many
of these proto-humans could arise simultaneously. Of course, this
proto-human would necessarily mate with those that are not proto-human,
but somehow those proto-human qualities would survive.

So, given the presumptions outlined here, it looks like we have
demonstrated here a change of mind in one email.


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Received on Fri Oct 9 08:32:14 2009

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