I’ve been told that natural selection acting on random mutations has enough power to produce everything in biology. I’ve put these claims to the test several times
- Can Evolution Explain Altruism?
- Can Evolution Explain Reason?
- Can Evolution Explain Software?
- Can Evolution Explain Software 2.0?
- Can Evolution Explain The Indonesian Mimicry Octopus?
- Can Evolution Explain the Eye?
- Can Evolution Explain Empathy?
- Can Evolution Explain Morality?
Well, I got a new challenge from a God-denier, who made the claim that evolution can even explain the origin of human brains. This particular God-denier didn’t just say that evolution can explain human brains, she claimed “There is incontrovertible evidence for evolution of the brain“. “iNconTroVerTible”. I’m reminded of The Princess Bide when Inigo Montoya says to the Sicilian “You keep using that word. I don’t think it means what you think it means.”
She provided a link to Wikipedia as the source of this “incontrovertible” evidence. I pushed back asking if she wanted to use a crowd-sourced blog as her “incontrovertible evidence”, but she assured me that it’s impossible to refute. Thinking she could bluster her way through a conversation without me being skeptical of her source, she left it out there as though the matter was settled that evolution can explain human brains. But I don’t surrender to bluster so easily. Let’s analyze her claim to see if Wikipedia, is relying on evidence or assumptions
Here’s how this works: I will post the quotes from the article in red and then just below the quote, I’ll post my analysis in the default black font. I have bolded key words throughout, so the bold does not appear in the original work. Throughout, you’ll notice that instead of actual evidence, the author(s) of the article relies on assumptions. Let’s get started:
This approach (endocasts), however, is limited in regard to what information can be gathered
It looks like the gaps in available information that can be gathered has been filled with assumptions of evolution’s power.
While endocasts are extremely helpful in revealing superficial brain anatomy, they cannot reveal brain structure, particularly of deeper brain areas.
Since the only thing these endocasts can show is size, we must again reject this quote as incontrovertible evidence. It is simply an assumption. Since their endocast model can only determine skull capacity, are we now to conclude that they believe that larger adults are smarter than smaller adults?
The evolutionary history of the human brain shows primarily a gradually bigger brain relative to body size during the evolutionary path from early primates to hominins and finally to Homo sapiens
Also assumed (but not proven) is the mantra that early primates evolved into humans. I do not grant this assumption upon which they rely for their story to be true. How can it be incontrovertible evidence if their premises are packed full of unproven assumptions?
This can be visualized
They mean imagined. Next they try to escape the problem imposed by the assumption that brain size related to increased intelligence due to the politically incorrect nature of the assumption
Consequently, the authors argue that the notion of an increase in brain size being related to advances in cogntion (sp) needs to be re-thought in light of global variation in brain size, as the brains of many modern humans with normal cogntive (sp) capacities are only 400g/ml larger than chimpanzees
Notice how since the actual evidence of the brains themselves were not preserved in fossils. Those who assume that evolution can “incontrovertibly” produce human brains are (like the empty skulls of the fossils) devoid of actual evidence.
It is also important to note that the measure of brain mass or volume, seen as cranial capacity, or even relative brain size, which is brain mass that is expressed as a percentage of body mass, are not a measure of intelligence, use, or function of regions of the brain.Total neurons, however, also do not indicate a higher ranking in cognitive abilities. Elephants have a higher number of total neurons (257 billion) compared to humans (100 billion). Relative brain size, overall mass, and total number of neurons are only a few metrics that help scientists follow the evolutionary trend of increased brain to body ratio through the hominin phylogeny
They consider it important to note that neither higher capacity of brain size nor total number of neurons increase cognitive abilities. So why do they assume that the fossil skulls contained brains with less intelligence/cognition than current brains? The evidence is missing…all that’s left is assumptions
Their findings imply…It also suggests…What is the least controversial is
The last paragraph in that section includes the 3 phrases from above. None of those sound like “incontrovertible” evidence to me. It sounds like they are having to assume some things, infer some things and suggest some things…but where’s the evidence itself?
The more convoluted the surface of the brain is, the greater the surface area of the cortex which allows for an expansion of cortex. It is the most evolutionarily advanced part of the brain. Greater surface area of the brain is linked to higher intelligence as is the thicker cortex but there is an inverse relationship—the thicker the cortex, the more difficult it is for it to fold. In adult humans, thicker cerebral cortex has been linked to higher intelligence
Again, those paying attention will see that the very substance that they need to verify their claim of evolution creating the brain: brain surface, cortex, thicker cortex ARE ALL COMPLETELY MISSING. From the start Wikipedia authors admit that the brain is not preserved in the fossils, so the very evidence in question is missing! It’s not just that this Wikipedia article is NOT incontrovertible, it’s laughably impotent to explain the evolution of human brains at all
If they actually wanted to show how evolution was able to produce human brains, they would have to have brains of creatures that they can PROVE are indeed ancestors of humans and show that natural selection acting on random mutations produced human brains. This Wikipedia article did not do any of that. It was empty speculation
If anyone would like to read an account of the fossils without the Darwinian infection, read Sanford’s Contested Bones and Lubenow’s Bones of Contention
God created mankind in his image. God’s Word is clear and we can trust that revelation, so evolution is false. When Adam sinned, his descendants and all of creation fell under the curse of sin: death, suffering, and thorns. As was promised in Genesis 3:15, God the Son (Jesus) became incarnate as a descendant of Adam and (where Adam failed) Jesus perfectly kept the law. Jesus gave his life to pay for the sins (by taking upon Himself all the curses of sin: death, suffering, thorns) of all those who would turn from their sin and humbly submit to the authority of Jesus.