Saturday, 15 June 2013

Cooking up big brain soup

What it is so special about human brains that allows us to think, feel and reason in a way that animals don’t? Professor Susanna Herculano Husel, a researcher in comparative neuro anatomy in Rio de Janeiro, did some research on neurones and is in Britain to present her findings at a TED talk .

Using a novel measuring technique, she found that the human brain contained about the same number of neurones that we would expect in a primate brain of its side. You don’t say? The research was based on dissolving brain cell membranes in a solvent to free the nuclei into a ‘brain soup’ so they could be counted under a microscope. So, her no doubt richly funded research demonstrated that human brain tissue has roughly the same number of neurones per gram as mouse or other mammalian brain.

I confess to being underwhelmed by the truly Darwinian banality of this observation. Darwin was also fond of doing banal experiments (measuring the plant species in mown and unmown grass squares, sowing seeds from the crop of a dead pigeon etc) which were perfectly decent science but in no way gave any support to his evolutionary ideas.

She said we have one major advantage over other animals as our brains are large, with more neurones in the cerebral cortex. This begs a huge number of questions even if we simply assume the brain of the supposed ape like ancestor, itself completely inexplicable without a designer. To go from apish to human brains you have to add a large amount of specified complexity of a kind which we only ever observe coming from a designing mind. To suggest than human consciousness arose as a result of bigger brains which just happened by blind evolutionary forces as our ancestors found a way of increasing their calorie intake is bizarre. But as any reasonably well informed sceptic will know, this sort of assertion is normal for Darwinism. Darwinian 'evidence' with it's 'might have...I can readily suppose...may have...I can hardly would be rash to deny the possibility... I have no difficulty in believing...etc' works very differently from the normal scientific process of evidence collection and evaluation which depends on actual observations that can be repeated and tested.

When asked by the fawning BBC interviewer why our human brains came to be bigger and more powerful, the professor said ‘For me it comes down to cooking.‘ According to her, our ape like ancestors learned to cook, therefore could get more energy from  food than if they just ate it raw, therefore subsequently-and consequently- grew bigger brains. She put this down to an increased supply of available energy. She didn't say whether this was based on any observations, for example experimentally feeding a high energy refined diet to chimps to see if they grew bigger brains. No, I thought not.

To put it plainly, how does increased calorie intake lead to the development of a much more advanced brain? Of course this question was not put.

So our human sensitivities, our awareness of God, compassion, our ability to think about the future, to produce art, technology and civilisation all happened as determined by the forces of natural selection acting on random mutation because the ability to release more energy from food became available to our ape like ancestors as a result of them learning to cook. I can't be bothered to ask how they learned to cook in the first place, they would have needed as a minimum fire and some fireproof utensils. Any evidence of chimps producing these, or using them if given the wherewithal? No, all just pure speculation dressed up as science. And they call intelligent design creationism in a cheap tuxedo? More like evolutionism is a mix of pagan superstition and atheism hiding behind a lab coat.

The interview can be listened to for the next 7 days here  about 45 minutes in. The professor’s opinions will be more widely available when her TED talk goes on line.

Yes folks, this is how evolution works. Or, more like, how evolutionary propaganda works. This is what they call evidence, this is what you are now by law not allowed to question or criticise in the British education system. There are certainly ‘overwhelming mountains’ of this sort of stuff, richly funded by public money, and never any shortage of uncritical interviewers at the BBC to foist it without challenge on a gullible public. But evidence it is not. No doubt professor Susanna has done a very capable job of measuring the number of nuclei, in brain tissue, but her evolutionary conclusions are total non sequiturs. As Cornelius Hunter (see link) says 'religion is driving science, and it matters.'
As the apostle Paul wrote in Romans chapter 1 verses18-22, humans know very well and always have known by the evidence of the things we can see (and our ability to see them) that the world was made by the word of God, and so were we. We deny this because we are in rebellion against God. Vast sums of money are spent and some of the best brains on the planet are devoted to attempting to shore up the vain belief that we emerged through blind forces, ultimately from the big bang (whatever that emerged from). But God is not mocked, and each of us shall give account to him.



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