Thursday, July 01, 2010

Dignity and The One-Trick Pony

Darwinists eye all human characteristics through the lens of "survival advantage".  Not only is that their only criteria for the endowment of characteristics in humans and other species, that is their only possible criteria. Life, we are told, is a one-off lucky accident, without purpose or design, there is no supervening Author of evolutionary processes, and the arrow of evolution is illusionary -- there is really no direction to it. It's just the way things worked out.


They are a a one-trick, one-eyed pony.

And so, when faced with something like human dignity, and the curious fact that we endowed with an inborn, innate sense of it, the darwinist brings out his pony.  In a previous post, it went like this:

"Are you so lacking in imagination that you cannot see how emotional states like dignity, honour, integrity, and the ability to evaluate those in others would provide a survival advantage to large-brained primates living in complex hierarchical cultures? Why is that so hard to get?"

In other words, I am the dense one. 

First off,  I think the darwinian survival-advantage argument is very weak when applied to the concept of an indwelling sense of intrinsic dignity.  It is a subtle effect painted on the canvas of our psyche that you have to sometimes look for. And it is easy to either miss it or  ignored it. It is sublime.

But, the greater question is how a weakly intelligent, scratch that, un-intelligent process, which wouldn't have the first clue what dignity was if it rose up and bit it in the kidneys, could conspire to produce, let's call it, "the dignity effect" in humans. I mean, is there a darwinist out there that has the first clue? 

Just one huge, incredibly lucky tweak, maybe?  Is there an article out there in the literature entitled "How To Create The Sensation Of Dignity In 1,012 Simple Biochemical Steps".

I'd like to read it. 

And that's the way the Ball bounces.



3 comments:

P@J said...

Kids! Let us play a game of Spot the Logical fallacy”:

“Darwinists…” Composition Fallacy (not all evolutionary scientists agree on all aspects of the science).

“Life, we are told, is a one-off lucky accident” – False Premise. (Natural selection says nothing of the origins of life, nor does it purport that evolution only happened once, here or elsewhere).

“arrow of evolution is illusionary…” –Strawman (that is not what Natural Selection says, that is your inference, borne of ignorance)

“when faced with something like human dignity” –homunculus fallacy (you have yet to define this term, which also makes it an equivocation fallacy).

“… the curious fact that we endowed with an inborn, innate sense of it” –joint effect fallacy: (you argue something undefined as ingrained, without appeal to cultural factors on emotional development).

“It is sublime.” –appeal to the supernatural, sentimental fallacy, weasel words, probably a dozen more.

“But, the greater question is…” – actually begging the question (an answer is asserted).

"How To Create The Sensation Of Dignity In 1,012 Simple Biochemical Steps" -Strawman (how many steps would you deem an acceptable number? If it took 4.5 billion steps, would that be satisfying to you?)

Surely this list is incomplete, anyone care to point out more?

Lady Janus said...

Dignity is subjective, and therefore not universal, either in origin or effect. It also is not the sole property of humans.

Define it or don't define it; but no one's god has anything to do with it.

RkBall said...

Dignity is immediately apprehensible, like pain. Like pain, it doesn't need a formal definition before it can be discussed. When someone says "physical pain is a common experience of humanity", you don't usually get "how do you define it" as a response.

If dignity is subjective, how can you possibly know it is not the sole property of humans? Perhaps you are thinking of dignified behavior or demeanor rather than the inner sense of dignity we are discussing.

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"