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Philosophy

Failure of Groups as Singular Objects

It is commonplace between scientists and lay people alike to treat a set of objects as a singular group. For example, if I buy a box of cheerios, I don't say I just purchased 2,000 cheerios. I say I bought a box of cheerios. Simple enough and justified. Similarly, when I refer to the inhabitants of say, India, we just call them Indians. Or a trunk, root system and leaves as a tree. Again, justified. It seems to be natural for humans to group things together and refer to them as one. However, this grouping soon breaks down when used beyond anything but a convenience device.

I Am In Awe Of The Structure And Form Of Life

I am constantly struck by the beauty of California. Up and down the highways the state has placed interesting and unusual flora. It is spring time now and everything has come alive, shooting leaves and branches and stems into the air. Here and there stretches of highway will explode with color as a particular plant blooms. I could count a hundred different plants to and from work... trees, flowers, bushes, shrubs, cactus, etc. Most of which are flowering or soon to. Once leafless and dull, trees have shot out little leaves. It is quite pleasing to see different plants for the first time.

Selection, Levels.

Anyone who has read Darwin knows that evolution can be broken down into 3 basic ideas: inheritence, selection, and change. What evolves, is the organism. But where, exactly, that evolution takes place has always been debated. For almost 200 years scientists have argued the where of inheritence. Today it is known that the primary item of inheritence is DNA. DNA is passed from parent to child, ad infinitum. Some (like Dawkins) take a hard line approach to this and exclude anything but DNA as the item of inheritance. But, there are other alternative theories.

Flying Over The Tops Of Trees, Part I.

I don't understand why people get so bent out of shape on the subject of evolution. Merely mentioning the word causes turned heads or looks of disgust or judgment. Even those who express genuine interest in the subject often have wrong or even harmful understandings of the subject. Fact is, biology is so complicated that in order to understand it you must commit yourself to a study of biology and evolution. It is important to study evolution when learning biology. Evolution provides the context under which biology operates.

Everyone Should Be Agnostic.

Talk with anyone long enough about God, the universe, or the nature of existence and you'll eventually reach the same conclusion. No, it's not that God doesn't exist or that "he" does exist. It's that you have no way of knowing one way or the other. It's why faith is so important to anyones religious beliefs or other belief system.

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