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Han Hua (Alan)

Student - B.E - Computer Engineering, TEDtoChina

TEDCRED 500+

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Can Theory of Evolution explain the existence of salmon fish? If it can't, does God exist?

A friend of mine ask me this question.

Look up salmon fish as a nitrogen pump. Weathering from rain will only 1-way wash nitrogen compounds downwards to the sea. Nitrogen is necessary for vegetation to grow. That is the basis for fertilizers. If all of the nitrogen are washed away, there will not be life in the mountains.

This is where a very special type of fish, the salmon, are designed, not for its own benefit, but for the benefit of life on the planet, to spend 3-5 years in the deep ocean eating proteins, which contain nitrogen in the amino acids. Then, like a pre-programmed guided vehicle, all the salmons remember to return to their birthplace high in the mountain streams, to breed and to die. 100% of them will never go back to the sea again. The nitrogen in their proteins will be eaten, and the bears will shit in the deep forests, and that is how nitrogen is replaced so we have life and forests in the mountains.

Question is evolution cannot explain this development of a very special fish, because there is no survival advantage for the salmon to return so high in the mountains. The benefit is for the planet. So is there a Power actually control the universe, like God?

You may refer to some materials:
http://www.thinksalmon.com/learn/science/salmon_forest/
http://www.biol.wwu.edu/hooper/Helfield%26Naiman2001Ecol_Salmon-derivedN%26ForestGrowth.pdf

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    Dec 20 2011: If evolution can explain the salmon does that mean God does not exist?
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      Dec 21 2011: I'm 'afraid' the first part of your reverse question may include any of the live creature... Ouch.
      I see no salmon collision to the evolution theory. It's clearly seen in the Alan's description, without salmon, there would be a missing element in the nature, so many other creatures could not exist.
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        Dec 21 2011: Thank you for your comments Julia, but please forgive me as I am missing your point.
        Are you in agreement with Alan that the salmon represents a challenge to the theory of evolution?
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          Dec 22 2011: Wow, my comment may really seem ambiguous, but I wanted to say that I really disagree with Alan. I see no collision, no challenge at all, I just clearly see the consequence of an
          evolution - salmon fish. Sorry, maybe my first comment looked like a little bitter towards you, but my 'bitterness' was actually towards Alan =]
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        Dec 26 2011: Hi Julija,

        I think you miss my point of question.
        My question is evolution cannot explain this development of a very special fish, because there is no survival advantage for the salmon to return so high in the mountains. The benefit is for the planet.

        I didn't deny other nitrogen circles in nature. Even if God does not exist, there must be something wrong with Theory of Evolution, right?
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          Dec 26 2011: Maybe there's something a little bit wrong with man-made THEORY of evolution, but there's nothing wrong with salmon in evolution in practice since it exists and makes some other creatures exist.
          I would like to add, that your 2nd question in the title is super duper genial =]
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          Dec 27 2011: No Alan, but sometimes the picture can be so big, we get confused by the detail. Before the salmon example, people used to say the eye was evidence of god, because of its complexity (see Dawkin's The Blind Watchmaker for a really good discussion about it)

          For now from Wiki:'The complex structure of the eye has been used as evidence to support the theory that they have been designed by a creator, as it has been said to be unlikely to have evolved via natural selection.

          Charles Darwin himself wrote in his Origin of Species, that the evolution of the eye by natural selection at first glance seemed "absurd in the highest possible degree". However, he went on to explain that despite the difficulty in imagining it, this was perfectly feasible:

          He suggested a gradation from "an optic nerve merely coated with pigment, and without any other mechanism" to "a moderately high stage of perfection", giving examples of extant intermediate grades of evolution[5] Darwin's suggestions were soon shown to be correct.

          The first fossils of eyes that have been found to date are from the lower Cambrian period (about 540 million years ago).[7] This period saw a burst of apparently rapid evolution, dubbed the "Cambrian explosion". The first fossils of eyes that have been found to date are from the lower Cambrian period (about 540 million years ago).[7] This period saw a burst of apparently rapid evolution, dubbed the "Cambrian explosion".

          Since the fossil record, particularly of the Early Cambrian, is so poor, it is difficult to estimate the rate of eye evolution. Simple modelling, invoking small mutations exposed to natural selection, demonstrates that a primitive optical sense organ based upon efficient photopigments could evolve into a complex human-like eye in approximately 400,000 years.'
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        Dec 27 2011: Yes, Julija.

        Actually this question can go further.
        Why do technical people like my friend and me sometimes fall faith in a great being or super nature?
        The question is tricky here to inspire people to rethink over the relationship between science and religion.

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