By Robert Deyes
In his 1987 seminal work entitled Impossibility In Medicine the American psychiatrist Jean Goodwin presented to the world the following acutely insightful vista of the brain:
"Despite many assertions to the contrary, the brain is not "like a computer". Yes, the brain has many electrical connections, just like a computer. But at each point in a computer only a binary decision can be made- yes or no, on or off, 0 or 1. Each point in the brain, each brain cell, contains all the genetic information necessary to reproduce the entire organism. A brain cell is not a switch. It has a memory; it can be subtle. Each brain cell is like a computer. The brain is like a hundred billion computers all connected together. It is impossible to understand because it is too complex. As Emerson Pugh wrote, "If the human brain was so simple that we could understand it, we would be so simple that we couldn't."" (1)
In so doing he hinted at an aspect of the brain that tied in well with a philosophical thought-chain expounded by ID philosopher Bill Dembski in his book No Free Lunch:
"Humans have designed all sorts of engineering marvels, everything from Cray supercomputers to Gothic cathedrals. But that means, if we are to believe Melvin Kooner, that a blind evolutionary process...cobbled together human neuro-anatomy which in turn gave rise to human consciousness, which in turn produces artifacts like supercomputers which in turn are not cobbled together at all but instead are carefully designed. Out pop purpose, intelligence, and design from a process that started with no purpose, intelligence, or design. This is magic" (2)
In my most recent essay Lessons From A Broken Brain I provide a high-level overview of key medical moments that helped define the hundred-billion-computer organ housed atop our bodies. The design inference shines through in the brief details I present.
On a somewhat related note there is a fascinating clip on the work of Dutch kinetic sculptor Theo Jansen who has created his own brand of beach creatures. With over twenty years of arduous work under his belt, Jansen started by pulling his 'offspring creatures' up into the wind, then gave them propellers and wings/sails to increase their running power. The commentator on this clip notes that: "through hours of experimenting and trial and error, Theo's designs are becoming more and more independent".
Jansen's own conclusion?
"What I have found about this experience of making new forms of life is that you discover all the problems that the real creator must have had creating this world"
And these are not even thinking, autonomous, reproducing beings! See Beach Creatures
1. No Way: The Nature of the Impossible, edited by Philip Davis and David Park. Cited in Inside The Mind Of God- Images And Words Of Inner Space, edited by Michael Reagan, Templeton Foundation Press, New York, p.61
2. William Dembski (2002) No Free Lunch: Why Specified Complexity Cannot Be Purchased Without Intelligence, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc, Lanham, Maryland, p.369
No Pingbacks for this post yet...
|<< <||> >>|
Evolution has become a favorite topic of the news media recently, but for some reason, they never seem to get the story straight. The staff at Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture started this Blog to set the record straight and make sure you knew "the rest of the story".
A blogger from New England offers his intelligent reasoning.
We are a group of individuals, coming from diverse backgrounds and not speaking for any organization, who have found common ground around teleological concepts, including intelligent design. We think these concepts have real potential to generate insights about our reality that are being drowned out by political advocacy from both sides. We hope this blog will provide a small voice that helps rectify this situation.
Website dedicated to comparing scenes from the "Inherit the Wind" movie with factual information from actual Scopes Trial. View 37 clips from the movie and decide for yourself if this movie is more fact or fiction.
Don Cicchetti blogs on: Culture, Music, Faith, Intelligent Design, Guitar, Audio
Australian biologist Stephen E. Jones maintains one of the best origins "quote" databases around. He is meticulous about accuracy and working from original sources.
Most guys going through midlife crisis buy a convertible. Austrialian Stephen E. Jones went back to college to get a biology degree and is now a proponent of ID and common ancestry.
Complete zipped downloadable pdf copy of David Stove's devastating, and yet hard-to-find, critique of neo-Darwinism entitled "Darwinian Fairytales"
Intelligent Design The Future is a multiple contributor weblog whose participants include the nation's leading design scientists and theorists: biochemist Michael Behe, mathematician William Dembski, astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez, philosophers of science Stephen Meyer, and Jay Richards, philosopher of biology Paul Nelson, molecular biologist Jonathan Wells, and science writer Jonathan Witt. Posts will focus primarily on the intellectual issues at stake in the debate over intelligent design, rather than its implications for education or public policy.
A Philosopher's Journey: Political and cultural reflections of John Mark N. Reynolds. Dr. Reynolds is Director of the Torrey Honors Institute at