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http://groups.google.com/group/talk.origins/browse_thread/thread/4aaab26afabe2b5e/d7bd76e75825892d?show_docid=d7bd76e75825892d

On Sep 16, 4:42 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote: > Natural selection : the operation of natural causes by which those > individuals of a species that are best adapted to the environment tend > to be preserved and to transmit their characters, while those less > adapted die out, so that in the course of generations the degree of > adaptation to the environment tends progressively to increase.

Other than noting they were best adapted, how was their tendency to be preserved measured?

Answer: Their tendency to be preserved was measured in terms of their adaptability and their adaptability measured in terms of their tendency to be preserved. best adapted <=> tend to be preserved. These terms self-referentially refer to the same fact, saying the same thing twice. Lets strip out the tautology and reformulate for truism to more clearly show the conclusion is a non-sequitur. We will replace selection with preservation , the term darwin actually meant, which in turn refers to survival. Reduce1: Natural preservation is the cause by which species are preserved, their offspring are better adapted.

Reduce2: Natural preservation causes the offspring of species to be better adapted.

Reduce3: By the natural means of competitive preservation(selection, survival) the offspring of species become better adapted. In terms of Democritus atomism: By the natural means of competitive preservation(selection, survival) the surviving atoms became better adapted. This raises the following:

1) Truism element, everything that is in existence is obviously preserved.

2) It is assumed that the present offspring or atom possess attributes that weren't in previous generations of which we only have dead bones.

3) Democritus assumed that present atoms possessed attributes that weren't previously there. They obtained their attributes by engaging in a competitive jostling for atomic space process. It was a natural outflow of his premise that universe existed for eternity and that the present state of atomic resilience didn't exist billions of years ago. Thus there had to be some process by which they obtained their resilience: he thus begged the question. By formulating this atomic competitive selection process in an unfalsifiable manner , he masked the circular reasoning.

4)How do we prevent cause-effect inversion? A polar bear in the arctic posses the attributes to withstand the cold while a camel doesn't. The actual reason will be because of morphology of the bear, it therefore is not adapted to the arctic, it only expresses its attributes. There never was a time when its predecessors didn't posses the attributes enabling pole survival. Thus underlying we have circular reasoning, it is implicitly assumed that there was a point in time when the ancestors of the polar bear couldn't survive the arctic cold.

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