The Metaphysics of EvolutionSubmitted by fico on Sat, 02/16/2008 - 16:11
The Metaphysics of Evolution
by Fred Reed, an agnostic, posted at lewrockwell.com
I was probably in college when I found myself asking what seemed to me straightforward questions about the chemical origin of life. In particular:
(1) Life was said to have begun by chemical inadvertence in the early seas. Did we, I wondered, really know of what those early seas consisted? Know, not suspect, hope, theorize, divine, speculate, or really, really wish.
The answer was, and is, "no." We have no dried residue, no remaining pools, and the science of planetogenesis isn't nearly good enough to provide a quantitative analysis.
(2) Had the creation of a living cell been replicated in the laboratory? No, it hadn't, and hasn't. (Note 1)
(3) Did we know what conditions were necessary for a cell to come about? No, we didn't, and don't.
(4) Could it be shown to be mathematically probable that a cell would form, given any soup whatever? No, it couldn't, and can't. (At least not without cooking the assumptions.) (Note 2)
Well, I thought, sophomore chemistry major that I then was: If we don't know what conditions existed, or what conditions are necessary, and can't reproduce the event in the laboratory, and can't show it to be statistically probable – why are we so very sure that it happened? Would you hang a man on such evidence?