“Right,” she said.
“And by evolution, you mean a mindless, random process that didn’t really have an end in mind. In other words, there was no “designer” for the eye, or the body for that matter. Am I getting that right?”
“Right again,” she replied.
But how could an undirected process produce such highly functional complexity, I wondered aloud. She gave me a look that said, “you really don’t have the time or, probably, the background to understand, so do we really have to go there?”
We did, and I persisted, trying another tack that I had been wondering about for a while.
“Okay, well let me ask you just a few questions” I countered. “Would you agree that evolution as you understand it is a gradual process of adaptation over time, where changes that are advantageous accumulate?”
“Yes,” came her quick reply.
“Would you agree that over time these gradual adaptations would lead to the development of complex systems, such as organ systems?”
“Yes, that makes sense,” she said.
“Would you also agree,” I pressed, “that, generally speaking, the more complex the system, the longer it would take for these gradual adaptations to evolve, so that a complex system would take longer to evolve than a less complex system.”
“Yes.” The response was a bit slower, more thoughtful.
Shifting gears a bit, I asked, “In the field of human biology, would you agree that, generally speaking, the human female reproductive system is considerably more complex than its male counterpart?”
“I’m not sure what you mean,” she queried.
“Well,” I started, “the male half of the equation involves dividing cells to get to 23 chromosomes and providing a, uh, delivery mechanism. The female system involves the production of eggs, the delivery of the eggs to a specific location, the means for implantation, and if that occurs, the creation of a placenta that is fine tuned to support the development of the life that is growing. The whole system must work in conjunction with the woman’s body, provide for correction of any mistakes occurring to minimize miscarriages, screen the fetus from harmful substances in the woman’s blood, connect the fetus to the mother by means of a two way umbilical cord, and provide a method for the baby to be safely delivered into the world. More amazingly, the two systems must somehow recognize each other and work together, so that the 23 chromosomes from each half form a single cell that has the complete instructions for a new human life to begin. This seems like a pretty complex, interconnected and interdependent system requiring multiple components to work just right. And yet it does work right millions and millions of times.”
“I suppose there’s something to that, but” she hesitated, “what’s your point?” Her tone matched her more serious expression.
“Just this,” I responded. “What exactly were all those men doing generation after generation waiting for the first fully functional female to evolve?”
She stared at me, no doubt wondering whether I was trying to mock her. But, though my question was of course facetious, I wanted to know where my logic was flawed. After all, the premises seem valid. If designed, it makes perfect sense that God could create a system in which some parts are more complex than others, and still have them work together for a purpose. But how could mammalian sexual reproduction – involving separate male and female individuals -ever evolve simultaneously? I wanted to know where that very first human male and very first human female came from. She took a deep breath and began her answer…. and it didn’t have anything to do with God.
In my next post, I’ll outline her reply.
Posted by Al Serrato