THE LIST - FINAL - and Lepidoptera

John R. Grehan jrg13 at
Thu Jan 10 16:34:21 EST 2002

>singular issue counterpoints of:  A)  The soup was all naturally produced
>and the resultant life was all spontaneous and thus without any "intellect
>driven force"   vs.  B)  That be it at the point of soup or much later in a
>material/biological state, it was all by "intellect driven force" that the
>ingredients were determined, the right temperature set, and the stirring of
>the soup that brought about the life (living things).

Although neither of these positions is contrary to evolution as a science 
(i.e. the science of
evolution is theologically neutral). Personally I could go with either 
notion - but
as for the actual nature of the universe I will remain agnostic (regardless 
of my actual
theological inclinations).

>two basic groups subscribed here -- those who think/believe the "Divine"
>made butterflies and those that think/believe "Nature" made them.

And members of either group can be evolutionists. A lot of discussions 
evolution concern the philosophical questions of whether evolution actually 
or not according to one's beliefs about the past. This is a bit like a 
crime scene where one
may debate whether some particular event (e.g. a robbery) actually occurred 
or not. In
one sense there is never any way of knowing in the absolute terms, in 
another sense
there is the analysis of the 'data' that may generate predictions of 
certain other facts (such
as where someone may have been at a certain time) that leads to 
apprehension of the culprit.
The analysis is 'successful' in generating a corroborated prediction, even 
though whether the
event really happened may remain philosophical conjecture.

On the evolution side of things, to clarify my perspective (for those 
interested) I am one of those people who views the 'explanations' for 
adaptations by some kind of 'selective advantage' to be speculative 
conjecture based on a faith in natural selection. A lot of the evolutionary 
literature is filled with nonsensical claims for the origin of morphologies 
that fails to give a deeper appreciation of those morphologies. Take for 
example the branching wing venation of butterflies - is it purely 
'coincidence' that there are similar patterns in leaves, or even in moth 
scales. What is a wing anyway - is it a single structure or a compound 
structure? Even fossils may not provide an absolute answer as our 
interpretation of fossils is contingent upon our conceptual tools. People 
often refer to eyespots as some kind of evolutionary invention in order to 
scare predators or such like. Interesting that these features are called 
eyespots. Everyone generally assumes they just 'look' like eyespots, but 
what if their relationship to eyes is closer than that? Primitive eyes are 
little more than pigment spots. What if an eyespot is really a primitive 
'eye' that happened to form on a wing rather than a head?

Sorry for the ramble, just thought I would introduce some 'Lepidoptera' 
related ideas in all this.

John Grehan


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