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Come back when you've done your homework.

Ed, you've just shown your penchant for the circular logic that keeps you in the religionist camp: your example presumes the bones existed first and then were arranged. That's deranged.

I think you got a good answer here:

http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=22202270

I'd like to add that you seem to be missing a framework for understanding complex systems and their autogenesis. Take any solution of atoms or molecules, apply energy, and at different stages the solution will take on a preditably orderly behavior. A mass of warm humid rising air results in a very orderly structure...a hurricane. Sometimes systems can even become powerful enough to be self-sustaining, such as the massive hurricane on Jupiter (the great red spot) which has been blowing for the last 300+ years.

We are barely beginning to understand how this happens, never mind WHY, but it's repeatable and verifiable.

What's the point? There is no reason to think the preconstituents of life don't follow the same behaviors. You can make amino acids in a few weeks in a test tube, starting with a simple solution of organic elements. After a billion years of heating and cooling and zapping and simmering, you think somewhere once these amino acids couldn't have joined up by accident with an enzyme (a new ordered system) that happened to help it copy itself (self-sustaining)?

All systems do it. Why not life precursors?

If you think it's not probable, you've missed the scale of things, Ed.

A brief comment on the WHY: like I said, we don't know why systems arise and self-sustain with the application of energy. That behavior seems like a fundamental principle of our universe. If you want to label that "God", fine with me. Just don't fabricate a whole mythology of snakes and apples and whatever else along with it.

Anyway, does this mean DNA suddenly came forth whole and complete, ready to make cell walls and flagella and eventually 206 bones all put into the right place at the right time? Of course not. The first self-replicating molecule probably wasn't more than a few chains long and completely at the mercy of the elements.

BTW:

Next, jwiest goes into math and mentions he wonders if i have gotten lost in the details yet. As if somehow i should be intimidated by his intellectual prowess?

By me? Hardly. I was ribbing you on your comment that Dawkins lost you in the details. It's a fair admission, but it admits a major problem: if you can't keep track of those details, how will you ever get what we're talking about? And discounting what we believe because you can't or won't understand strikes me as intellectually irresponsible.
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