Evolution of the Eye and Human Knowledge 10 August

August 10, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

I have heard people argue that evolution cannot explain the human body because some parts, such as the eye, are so complex that there is no series of evolutionary steps that could lead to the eye.  I think the better argument can be found in the writings of Richard Dawkins, who is excellent at explaining the power of natural selection to evolve increasingly complex forms.  The alternative, advocated by the naysayers of evolution, is that a higher power created the eye's design. The eye, ergo, god. If you believe Dawkins's arguments, then do you conclude no god? 

The bubble 1The bubble 1

If a creature of infinite knowledge and power created the eye, then I have some complaints about its performance, based on personal experience. My eye went out of focus at an early age. Since I was born in the 20th century, corrective lenses and contact lenses fixed that. Then my lenses in my eye clouded, i.e., cataracts.  Since I developed this problem in 2013 and later, I got my natural lenses removed and artificial lenses inserted. The procedure for this is not in the Bible, koran, or other mythology. It can only be found in books of science. 

But the story does not end there. My left eye started to fall apart, when the retina got detached from its intended substrate. (Een netvlies loslating.) This condition will lead to blindness in that eye unless treated. I knew the symptoms because a person of science had warned me about this risk. My luck has continued, because this happened in 2017, when advances in eye surgery make this a fixable condition. I live in an advanced western civilization, the Netherlands, where the latest in medical care is available.  I was assigned to Dr. Hoog at the Academisch Medisch Centrum.  He, with the help of other doctors and medical people, made tiny holes in my sclera, removed the fluid and goo from the interior of my eye, wiggled the retina back into place, and tack welded it there with a laser. One hour, no pain.  Wat leuk! Then he filled my eye with gas, including nitrous oxide and sulfur hexafluoride (also used as an insulator in high voltage electrical equipment!). (You shouldn't fly on a plane with gas in your eye; they didn't say why but I imagine it would explode and make a mess.) The gas is temporary and is absorbed by the body and replaced with vitreous fluid. The ratio of gas to vitreous changes over 2 weeks or so. After two weeks, I have a small bubble of gas left, which has made my evolving vision unusual and somewhat interesting and annoying simultaneously.  When I tip my head forward, the gas forms a circle in the center of my vision, with a heavy black circumference, and blur in the middle.  I tried to re-create the sensation in the photo above. The day after the surgery, everything was a complete blur, but has changed over time and hopefully will be back to normal within a few more days. 

Once again, science has shown it is the best way to understand the natural world. This seems so overwhelmingly obvious that I think almost everyone will want to promote science, except apparently those in the White House and EPA and similar places. They prefer the dark ages.


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