Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Miraculous Mouth



Every day we use our mouths, but how often do we contemplate what a marvel of engineering it is, even on the most superficial level?

Notice how the nose is positioned directly over the mouth like a security guard. If you attempt to put something rotten into your mouth, the nose warns you to take it away.

Inside the mouth, the front teeth are sharp like knives. They are ready to chop off a small bite sized piece of a large chunk of food. The teeth further back in the mouth are very different - they are like millstones. The molars are broad and rough and grind the food into a fine pulp which is suitable for further digestion. 

The tongue is covered with taste buds which further screen the safety of the food being put in the mouth. If something tastes bad, then it probably is bad for you and you will warned by the taste buds to spit it out.

The tongue is also covered with very sensitive nerves. The tongue is constantly moving around the mouth during chewing to check if the food is thoroughly chewed before swallowing. If some hard object in the food cannot be chewed, the tongue senses this and it is spat out.

If a person is missing part of his mouth as a result of a birth defect, cancer surgery or an accident, surgeons can replace it, but only to a limited degree and mainly by removing tissues from other parts of the body and using them to rebuild the mouth. Our mouths are truly priceless machines which we use constantly without a second thought. Let's remember to thank God every time we eat.

At the same time, what could be more insane than the idea that random mutations, even in hundreds of millions of generations, could create this clear example of purposefulness and complexity? Imagine a factory producing telegraphs which would occasionally make some random production error. Then customers would non-randomly select only those devices which are functional. (Non-functioning machines would not be purchased and would be discarded.) The factory would then continue to faithful reproduced those machines with a functional error while occasionally accidentally making some new random change to them as well. How much chance is there that a simple telegraph would evolve into a smart phone - with no intelligent designer, merely random accidental production errors and customer selection? This is exactly how atheists believe the primitive mouth of a flatworm turned into our mouths through 550 million years of random genetic mutations and natural selection. What massive blind faith is required to believe that; the Pope should be put to shame.

34 comments:

Jeff said...

The "massive blind faith" that you speak about is not the same as religious faith.

Would you say that quantum physics requires "massive blind faith" since most of us have never seen, nor will we ever see, electrons jumping around atoms? We must rely on "blind faith" on those sneaky scientists concocting strange theories in their laboratories and notebooks. I believe Hitler believed that about physics, which was a "Jewish science".

JP its all about what you take seriously. That's the bottom line. If you take god or Judaism seriously, you lead your life in a certain fashion. If you take science seriously, you might become a scientist or a doctor, and really get into that.

Personally, on a scale of 1 to 10, I put god on a 2 or 3, and science about 7-8.

jewish philosopher said...

So explain to me how atheists answer my objection to evolution. If they have answers, maybe we can start calling it science. If not, then atheism makes the catholic church look like the ultimate in hard nosed rationalism.

jewish philosopher said...

Just consider this: to the best of my knowledge, of all the humans who have been born in the past century, there has never been a single documented case of a baby born with a de novo mutation which increased the number of children he eventually had. 

However exactly this, new, random variations and natural selection, is the engine which powers Darwinian evolution. Yet out of perhaps 10 billion or more births, medical journals do not record a solitary case of a de novo mutation which ultimately increased reproduction - let's say enabled the mutant to see infrared light, thereby avoiding danger, living longer and having more kids than most other people.

The whole thing is just insanity. The mouth did not evolve any more than the iphone evolved. Someone made it.

Jeff said...

A brief review of the previous comments reveals that this question has been answered 100s of times on this blog so I won't repeat the same answers. You don't accept these answers because you don't take science or scientists seriously.

As I said, it comes down to what matters to you. Some people take music seriously. Some art. Some exercise or meditation. Some cooking. Some god, and some science. Some take many things seriously, some nothing at all.

I believe that your objections have nothing to do with the intellectual musings and arguments presented here.

You're simply into God, just like some people are into sports. I'm into science.

Whatever tickles your fiddle.

jewish philosopher said...

"A brief review of the previous comments reveals that this question has been answered 100s of times on this blog"

Not true. Atheists, like all believers in false religions, don't have valid any answers and respond consistently with a handful of logical fallacies as I explain here.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2009/06/post-about-comments.html

I'm just into honesty. 

Jeff said...

I'm trying to make a different point here, and I claim that we're not arguing about the validity or invalidity of a certain logical argument. I'm claiming that the argument is about what you or I emphasize as important and valid in our lives.

I have a friend who is really into art. She has her own internal logic and has tons of expert knowledge about different works of art, with all kinds of details about different artists and different paintings.

I don't mean to sound like a boor, but no matter how much she explains to me, it simply doesn't interest me. In fact, I really don't give a crap about art-- its totally unimportant to me. I don't argue that her art knowledge is false or wrong--I just think its irrelevant and unimportant.

So you can feel the same way about science, and I feel the same way about religion. Actually, I'm not totally uninterested in Judaism, its just that I don't take it that seriously. I happen to take science more seriously, although I completely understand a person who doesn't care about it.

Jeff said...

To extend my point--people have different "truths" which give them meaning. For some folks dedicating their lives to their careers is all that matters. It may not be very noble, but its a perfectly acceptable way to have meaning in their life.

It also completely understandable to me that a particular person would not care less whether a scientist says that we evolved in a certain fashion. It makes no difference to him.

So I think that you have to get off your high horse and stop thinking that you have the only "truth" that is meaningful.

As far as god is concerned, it simply doesnt interest me whether he exists or not, or whether Moses said this or that on Mt Sinai. I happen to believe that the story is false, but it really doesn't matter to me what may or may not have happened 3500 years ago.

jewish philosopher said...

Let's say someone is really into drugs and he believes that heroin and cocaine are wonderful, life-giving substances and the more you use the better. The governments which outlaw them are merely obnoxious killjoys. Would I be correct in encouraging him to continue with "his truth".

jewish philosopher said...

If you want to check out some science, check this out: the E. coli long-term evolution experiment

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._coli_long-term_evolution_experiment

Somebody has been growing 12 populations of bacteria for over twenty years and ended up with one significant de novo genetic mutation.

For bacteria, 22 years equals 50,000 generations. I don't know how large these twelve populations are, however let's guess that each one is in a liter of water. One milliliter of water will contain about 100 million e. coli

http://www.disknet.com/indiana_biolab/b038.htm

Twelve liter would therefore be about 1.2 trillion. 50,000 generations would be 6 x 10^16 bacteria total. Out of that astronomical number, one had a good mutation.

It's estimated that about 106 billion humans have ever lived.
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population#Number_of_humans_who_have_ever_lived

How many millions or billions of years would it take for one single good mutation to appear somewhere in all of mankind? And from there, how long would it take to develop a single, new useful limb or organ? Would our solar system exist that long?

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/55/Solar_Life_Cycle.svg

Jeff said...

I assume that you and I would agrees that a pursuit that clearly harms others or ourselves would be immoral, or at least unworthy. So I don't think that we would disagree that being a drug addict falls into that category, and it is not in the category of art, science, religion or philosophy.

If YOU really want to check out some science, just google for yourself for documentation of clearly observable examples of adaptive mutations. But that's only of it matters to you...

Lots of very good people find meaning in God, and I have no problem with that. But I'm sure you know lots of other good people who couldnt give jack squat about god.

jewish philosopher said...

"I assume that you and I would agrees that a pursuit that clearly harms others or ourselves would be immoral"

Sure, but who decides what's harmful?

How about eugenics - harmful or helpful?

How about eliminating selfish capitalists - "enemies of the people" - harmful or helpful?

How about assisted suicide? How about invading Iraq? How about gun control, the war on drugs, Israeli occupation of the west bank, abortion, wearing fur, eating meat?

Atheism is an extremely dangerous false religion. Atheists have a license to kill.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2011/10/atheists-have-license-to-kill.html

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2011/08/baby-killer-and-secret-atheist.html

"just google for yourself for documentation of clearly observable examples of adaptive mutations"

The above post is what I found. Evolutionists believe it's a "huge breakthrough" in proving Darwinism.

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Lenski_results_challenge_creationism

Actually, it's just the opposite.

Jeff said...

Hi,

Your response only reinforces the point I'm making (which is not to prove evolution). What matters to you is what you think god whats you to do. Fine. What scientists say, based on scientific method, doesn't matter to you. For example:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/04/080417112433.htm

Again, I don't expect you to be convinced, because you have already revealed that god, and not scientific evidence or reasoning, is what matters to you. Since you reject the whole concept of inductive reasoning, which is the basis of scientific method, I wouldn't expect you to accept evidence which is accepted as proof in the scientific community.

I would imagine that only if god himself told you the evolution occurred, then you would accept it.

Obviously, I feel differently...

With regards to the other moral dilemmas that you raise, well, they're dilemmas. We can talk about them.

jewish philosopher said...

The lizard study may have no relevance to evolution:

The study demonstrates that a lot of change happens in island environments, said Andrew Hendry, a biology professor at Montreal's McGill University. What could be debated, however, is how those changes are interpreted – whether they had a genetic basis rather than being a “plastic response to the environment,” said Hendry, who was not associated with the study.

There's no dispute that major changes to the lizards' digestive tract occurred. “That kind of change is really dramatic,” he added. “All of this might be evolution. The logical next step would be to confirm the genetic basis for these changes.”

http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20080522/news_1c22lizard.html

http://biology.mcgill.ca/faculty/hendry/

In other words, were these changes the result of de novo genetic mutations and natural selection or the result of phenotype plasticity

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phenotypic_plasticity

 which of course would do nothing to support evolution.

Evolution is an evidence free pseudo-science. If you want to call it science then I don't see why astrology, Christian Science and Scientology aren't science too, along with scientific racism and scientific Marxism.

ksil said...

"Atheists, like all believers in false religions, don't have valid any answers and respond consistently with a handful of logical fallacies"

amazing how orthodox rabbinic judaism fits this like a glove!

i agree with you, science is full of made up bullshit, thats why i believe in santa claus. he made us you know.

LOL

you sound like such a dufus sometimes - i feel bad for your kids.

jewish philosopher said...

Appeal to Ridicule.

http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/appeal-to-ridicule.html

You never get tired of that one. Like a broken record. Lol.

Ironmistress said...

JP, what you present here is Texas Sharpshooter fallacy. You first present a several unrelated functions and features (hits) and then you paint a target around them (suggest there is an underlying design).

The vertebrate mouth has not developed from the flatworm mouth, but the same stem as starfish mouth. Vertebrates are most close to Echinodermata in the evolutionary tree of life.

If any technological innovations had self-replicating machinery, instead of being manufactured in factories, the very similar process of evolution would take place sooner or later. If a telegraph could replicate itself, it would sooner or later evolve itself into a smart phone.

jewish philosopher said...

" If a telegraph could replicate itself, it would sooner or later evolve itself into a smart phone."

Replicate means "making a replica" or a copy. Copies of telegraphs would remain telegraphs.

According to evolution the earliest human ancestor with a mouth seems to be the flatworm.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_human_evolution

Ironmistress said...

" If a telegraph could replicate itself, it would sooner or later evolve itself into a smart phone."

Replicate means "making a replica" or a copy. Copies of telegraphs would remain telegraphs.


Unless a mutation occurs on the replication mechanism. Which will happen sooner or later, given enough time.

According to evolution the earliest human ancestor with a mouth seems to be the flatworm.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_human_evolution


...given enough time. 50 million years (first tapeworm to first vertebrate) is a long time.

jewish philosopher said...

"50 million years (first tapeworm to first vertebrate) is a long time."

Not nearly long enough. If evolutionists would claim that in 3 billion years bacteria had evolved a few small organelles, that might be plausible. However to claim that in 3 billion years bacteria became people doesn't make sense mathematically.

Ironmistress said...

Actually it does. The development as function of time is not linear, it is exponential. To gain momentum, the process from the first Miller syntheses to simple bacteria takes an awfully long time. But once the evolution is on its way, it will accelerate on exponential rate. It will indeed take 2.5 million years to produce bacteria and 500 million years from bacteria to evolve into flatworms, but only 50 million years from flatworms to simple vertebrates (Pikaia).

The evolution will first advance on snail pace, but once a critical threshold is crossed, it will accelerate into exponential speed. They speak of "Cambrian explosion"; the Cambrian epoch was one of the most vivid periods of evolution.

jewish philosopher said...

I see; so today evolution should be roaring along at supersonic speed. Is it? Has anyone evolved lately?

Ironmistress said...

I see; so today evolution should be roaring along at supersonic speed. Is it? Has anyone evolved lately?

Actually yes. Every now and then new species are found and which have developed very recently.

The speciesization occurs actually very quickly when two criteria are fulfilled:

1) a free ecological niche
2) an isolated population

If those conditions are met, a new species is created very quickly by natural selection.

An evolutionally old genus is one with few specieses but large number of individuals. An evolutionally young genus is one with many similar specieses but few individual representants of each species.

Stephen Jay Gould explains this pretty well in "Dinosaur in Haystack". According to him, most specieses are perhaps millions of years in the state of stasis where little or no evolution occurs. The coelecanthus is today the same as 70 million years ago. When a sudden change happens - a natural catastophe, a free ecological niche, an extinction in the food chain - then the development of new specieses is rapid.

The jellyfish haven't evolved not a bit since the Ediacaran period. There simply has not been need to evolve (no free ecological niches) nor isolated populations (oceans).

Are reindeer and caribou the same? Yes and no. There is a continuous chain of similar animals along the Arctic areas from Norway to Newfoundland, but nobody can really say where the reindeer turns into caribou.

jewish philosopher said...

"Actually yes."

Actually no. In all of medical history there is not one single known individual who has been born with a de novo genetic mutation which significantly increased his reproductive success. The whole evolution idea is a fairy tale.

Ironmistress said...

Here you are.

Actually the same mutation which gives the Scandinavians an extremely high tolerance against HIV and AIDS does protect us from bubonic plague and smallpox. Europeans, on the other hand, are more susceptible to West Nile virus and malaria than Africans.

There are six billion humans around, so any de novo mutations are not likely to emerge or become commonplace. They do so only if there is a free echological niche around and an isolated population.

jewish philosopher said...

However isolated populations are quickly killed off by bad mutations as I explain here.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2011/05/amish-refutation-of-evolution.html

So again, we are back to 19th century fairy tales.

Ironmistress said...

JP, no they aren't. It is because bad mutations are quickly weeded away in the wild due to struggle of existence and survival of the fittest.

They manifest themselves only where there is no culling in the form of natural selection. Where competition and struggle for existence exists, there also individuals with harmful mutations perish quickly. That in turn favours beneficial mutations. [Which leads into speciesization.]

But in a sense you are on right track. On human beings, where culling of the weak and unfit has not been a popular idea since Adolf Hitler and Aktion T-4, the harmful mutations do manifest themselves quite quickly on isolated populations as almost anyone can and will produce offspring. Eugenics on the other hand does produce so vile results that it hasn't been tried [for good reasons!] since WWII.

My own nation, Finns, is a good example. We have an isolated gene pool - which fortunately is quite wide. We have some sixty hereditary diseases, which are rare elsewhere, but at the same time many hereditary diseases which are commonplace amongst the other Caucasians, are completely lacking in Finland.

jewish philosopher said...

"It is because bad mutations are quickly weeded away in the wild due to struggle of existence and survival of the fittest."

Exactly. So small isolated inbred populations would die off long before any new, useful limbs or organs could appear.

Ironmistress said...

JP, the question was about bad mutations.

Inbreeding is not necessarily bad or good trait. All the domestic cattle, vegetable, fruit and other animal and plant breeds are results of inbreeding.

It is true that purebreeds are always sicklier than mutts. Then again, mutts never present the similar properties than purebreeds do.

You skipped the second pre-requisite for speciesization: free ecological niche. If there is a free ecological niche for the isolated population to occupy, the population will quickly speciesize into a separate species. If there is no free ecological niche, the isolated population will die off like you described.

The question is exactly the same as with small business in market economy: specialize or perish. Find a free ecological niche and occupy it - or be rolled over by bigger and more fit players.

Ironmistress said...

On new useful limbs and organs: there are very few free ecological niches for new useful limbs or organs, especially for those which would improve the ecological fitness of an organism. Almost all those organs did evolve already during the Ediacaran, Cambrian and Ordovician periods, and after those periods only the wings on both insects, birds and bats have really evolved. I cannot come by with any organ which would really improve the overall ecological fitness of humans, for example. So it is extremely unlikely that new limbs or organs will emerge anymore.

But things like that do happen, such as the Hemingway cats.

jewish philosopher said...

"You skipped the second pre-requisite for speciesization: free ecological niche."

So all the Amish are missing is a free ecological niche and they will quickly speciesize into a separate species?

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2011/05/amish-refutation-of-evolution.html

And how will that happen exactly?

You see I think you basically are just parroting atheistic propaganda which you only half understand.

jewish philosopher said...

"there are very few free ecological niches for new useful limbs or organs, especially for those which would improve the ecological fitness of an organism"

Wings would certainly help avoid those long New York traffic jams. Or how about a second, back up liver for those of us who drink like Hemingway? Eyes on the back of the head would help a lot of school teachers.

"But things like that do happen, such as the Hemingway cats."

The extra digit is not increasing the number of offspring therefore it is not "naturally selected" in the evolutionary sense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_selection#Fitness

Ironmistress said...

"You skipped the second pre-requisite for speciesization: free ecological niche."

So all the Amish are missing is a free ecological niche and they will quickly speciesize into a separate species?


Basically yes. That is what happened with Homo florensiensis and why it developed into a separate species.

The problem is that Homo sapiens is extremely flexible with its ecological niches. A human being can live at a landfill and still remain as one. Our intelligence and brains and omnivorous habits and position at the top of the food chain make us far more flexible in that respect than any other animals. Homo sapiens is not likely to evolve into anything else anymore.

"there are very few free ecological niches for new useful limbs or organs, especially for those which would improve the ecological fitness of an organism"

Wings would certainly help avoid those long New York traffic jams.


Certainly. The problem is that they would cause a horrible handicap - the human skeleton and musculature simply cannot support having wings, and such individual would be disadvantaged. But if we lived like bats' ancestors did, growing wings would be plausible.

'Or how about a second, back up liver for those of us who drink like Hemingway?

That is why we have backup kidneys. It is possible that one day an individual with double livers might be born, and he certainly would have an advantage over a single livered individual. I'm not a biologist, so I do not have a definite answer on why mammals have only a single liver and not double like kidneys.

Eyes on the back of the head would help a lot of school teachers.

But at the same time it would screw up the stereoscopic vision for good.

Reptilians back in the Triassic age used to have a back-of-the-head eye for just that purpose. It did not, however, provide any asset over exact stereoscopic eyesight.

It is assumed that glandula pinealis is a rudiment of this third eye which once existed.

"But things like that do happen, such as the Hemingway cats."

The extra digit is not increasing the number of offspring therefore it is not "naturally selected" in the evolutionary sense.


Wrong. It certainly does improve the cats' ecological fitness by granting them a greater degree of freedom and hence improving their chances of survival - and thus reproducing. Ceteris paribus a six-toed cat will produce more surviving offspring during her lifespan than an ordinary cat.

Only surviving individuals will reproduce, and that makes the difference betwheen those who perish and those who survive.

jewish philosopher said...

"But at the same time it would screw up the stereoscopic vision for good. "

Your simply making up excuses. Evolution doesn't happen now and it never did.

" Ceteris paribus a six-toed cat will produce more surviving offspring during her lifespan than an ordinary cat."

Who says?

Ironmistress said...

"But at the same time it would screw up the stereoscopic vision for good. "

Your simply making up excuses.


No. That is exactly what happens if you have more than two eyes.

Some animals - like jellyfish - sacrifice stereoscopic vision for all-around vision, and insects do have prismatic eyes which are good on detecting movement but not stereoscopy. The structure of an animal's eye is determined by the environment in which it lives, and the behavioural tasks it must fulfill in order to survive.

Good stereoscopic eyesight is essential for predators like vertebrates, and that is why we do not have a third eye anymore Here more of this issue.

" Ceteris paribus a six-toed cat will produce more surviving offspring during her lifespan than an ordinary cat."

Who says?


Greater degree of freedom means greater likelihood of survival and greater chance of offspring.