Biological Complexity

On this page I want to take the argument of Dr. Behe to a higher or more complete level. I want to do my best to conservatively illustrate the actual complexity of life on Earth. We have to start with the molecular level and build. At the same time, I need to keep this simple enough that a high school student can understand it.

First, referring back to "Darwin's Black Box" and the extreme complexity of the very many tiny molecular processes required to make the human or any other organism function. Also keep in mind the things I have already taught you about life.

As I explained earlier, evolutionists like to deceive you by using terms like "simple cell." The term simple cell is an oxymoron. There is no such thing. If you don't believe it, read the process of just moving a protein to a Lysosome in a cell as described in "Darwin's Black Box." This is only one of many tiny little actions necessary for cell function which are all incredibly complex.

The truth is that the simplest living cell has over one trillion molecules in it. That is more than 1,000 times 1,000 times 1,000 times 1,000 or 1,000 times one billion. All of the molecules in that cell have to be in just the right place at the right time or the cell will either malfunction or not function and die. Think of it this way, there are from 500 to over 1,000 times more molecules in the simplest cell than there are people on Earth and, unlike the people on Earth, all of the molecules must be in exactly the right place at the right time or it wont work.

Let me give you an example to make a point. If every human, building, transportation system, communication system, and every other part of the total existence of man on Earth had to be in exactly the right place at the right time for life on Earth to be possible, it would require AT LEAST 500 of such planet Earths linked together and completely dependent on each other to MAYBE equal the complexity of the simplest living cell.

If an evolutionist uses the phrase,"simple cell", he has already started lying to you. There is no such thing.

But life gets far more complex than that. When you study multicellular organisms such as the human being, you find the organization, structure, complexity, and interdependence of the cells that make up the organization to be just as complex. The average human has over one trillion cells and you have to have all the right cells in the right place doing the right job for the organism to function properly. Let me give you some examples.

If you study scientific fields like Endocrinology, you find that all complex organisms are made up of many very complex systems. Everyone of these systems must function properly down to the molecule or they will not function properly and the organism will either be crippled or die. If just one or more atoms are out of place, the organism won't function properly.

For example, a hormone is what we call a chemical messenger. It is sent from one cell to another cell to cause (1)the stimulation of cellular synthesis and secretion, (2)to effect metabolic processes, (3)cause contraction, relaxation, and metabolism in muscle cells, (4)effect organism reproduction, (5)cause cell proliferation, (6)cause anion and cation absorbsion and secretion, (7)effect the actions of other hormones, and (8)effect the behavior of the organism.

When a hormone reaches a "target cell", it must attach itself to what we call a receptor. This is a molecule which is designed to react to one and only one specific hormone. It will not react to any molecule that is similar to the intended hormone. The receptor is hormone specific. This means that if just one atom is out of place on the hormone or receptor, the receptor will not react to the hormone.

These receptors are found in three basic places in the target cell. Depending on the hormone, the receptor will be either on the plasma membrane, in the cytoplasm, or on the nucleus. There are reasons for having the receptors in different places. One of these has to do with time of response by the cell to the hormone. If the receptor is on the plasma membrane, the cell will react more quickly but it will react more slowly if the receptor is either in the cytoplasm or on the nucleus. Obviously, the receptors on the plasma membrane are for cell functions which require a quicker response to meet the needs of the organism. This shows design and not accident.

Let me give you a relatively simple hormonal process as an example. To get the milk to let down in a mother's breast for the baby to feed, the suckling stimulation on the mother's breast by the baby causes the nervous system to send a message to the hypothalamus in the lower part of the brain. Here, a specialized group of cells produce a hormone called oxytocin and dumps it into the blood stream. When these hormone molecules make contact with receptors in the mammary glands, They cause the cells to release the milk which flows down to the nipples to the baby. I have made this process sound relatively simple but at the molecular level it is very complex and everything must function exactly right or the baby starves to death.

Evolutionists have a problem with complex systems like this. What would cause cells in one part of the body to specialize to meet the needs of cells in another part of the body? Plus it seems that accidental occurrence would cause the stimulation of milk let down to be more local. Why have nerves go to the brain to create a hormone that travels through the blood system to cells in the breast to cause those cells to release the milk? Why not just have nerves feed to the muscles in the mammary glands and cause them to stimulate the cells?

It turns out that the reason for such complexity are control systems. We have little control systems or feed back loops that turn these systems on and off. These control systems make the entire process very complex and efficient. This, again, illustrates design and not accident.

Then there is the system which controls the amount of calcium in your blood stream. If the calcium content in your blood varies by more than just a little bit, it will cause serious malfunctions and even death. The body stores most of its reserve calcium in the bones but also stores some in the soft tissues and a tiny bit in the blood.

If the calcium level in the blood begins to drop, the dropping calcium level of the blood stimulates the tiny parathyroid glands in the throat to produce parathyroid hormone (PTH) which goes into the blood and heads for target cells in the bones, intestines, and kidneys. PTH stimulates osteoclast cells in the bones causing them to break down or demineralize the bones to increase the amount of calcium in the blood. In the intestines, PTH cases the reabsorbtion of calcium by stimulation with vitamin D3 which originates in the skin and is produced with a form of photosynthesis. In the kidneys, PTH stimulates the reabsorbtion of calcium. When the blood level of calcium returns to normal, the parathyroid glands are stimulated with a control system to stop or block the production of PTH.

If the calcium blood level increases, the parathyroid is stimulated to produce calcitonen to cause the opposite effects in the same organs. Once the calcium blood level returns to normal levels, a control system blocks the production of calcitonen.

These are very efficient and complex systems which would take our engineers generations of product development and improvement to design plus these are relatively simple endocrine systems. This system organization, complexity, and efficiency illustrates design and not accident.

Another illustration is how the body has a control system to prevent the build up of hormones in the blood which would cause the cell processes to stay turned on all of the time. The body produces enzymes which break the hormones down as soon as the enzymes come in contact with the specific hormone. This presents a problem. If we just dump the hormones into the blood with these enzymes, the enzymes will break down enough of the hormones before they reach the target cells so that we may not get the required cell functions and the organism will die.

The control for this is brilliant. The cells produce the hormones as a part of a much larger molecule that the enzymes wont "cut" but this presents a problem. Now the hormone wont react with the hormone specific receptor. But, brilliantly, there is another enzyme which will "snip off" part of this larger hormone to give the hormone more time to reach the target cells before it is destroyed. Some hormones will be snipped off half a dozen or more times before they become the desired active hormones. Each enzyme is designed to snip off only a very specific part of the larger molecule and the next enzyme wont snip off its part until the first enzyme does its job. In other words, there is a required order of enzyme snipping to get the larger molecule down to the active hormone.

An example for this is the hormone PTH which is used to stimulate the increase in calcium blood level. It starts out as preproPTH with 115 amino acids. The first cutting turns it into proPTH with 90 amino acids. The next cutting turns it into PTH with 84 amino acids. Active PTH will have between 1 and 34 amino acids depending on which cells the body needs to stimulate. The half life of PTH is 3 to 4 minutes in your blood which means that half of the initial dump is broken down in the first 3 to 4 minutes. Every 3 to 4 minutes half of the remaining PTH is broken down until it is almost all gone.

This incredibly brilliant and efficient control system illustrates design instead of accident. When you put all of these little parts for even just one endocrine system, it become incredibly complex and efficient at the molecular level. This screams design and not accident.

Now back to our understanding the complexity of life on Earth. At the cellular level we have determined that one cell is the equivalent of at least 500 highly structured and interdependent planet Earths linked together or what we will call a planet system for identification and simplicity purposes. When we consider the complexity of the human body with over a trillion cells of such complexity and how they all function for the benefit of the total organism, we realize that it would require more than one trillion of these planet systems to come close to the complexity and organization of just one human being. This would be 500 trillion linked and interdependent planets.

When we consider that most galaxies have between one and ten billion stars and that, if each star in a galaxy had one of these planets orbiting it, it would take 500 thousand galaxies of such planets all linked together and interdependent to equal the complexity of one human. For identification and simplicity purposes we will call this 500 thousand galaxies of planet Earths "one galaxy system." But it gets worse.

If you study zoology and ecology, you learn that life cannot exist without a balanced ecosystem composed of tens of thousands of different organisms with each organism playing a very important part in that ecosystem. For example, frogs provide food for such animals as snakes, birds, and fish. Yet frogs are a control system to prevent the over population of other organisms such as insects to keep them from destroying the ecosystem and life on Earth. You have to also understand that the snakes, birds, and fish are also control systems which prevent the over population of frogs and other organisms. We are all interdependent to maintain the balance of the ecosystems we live in and to maintain life in those ecosystems. Almost every organism is food and a control system at the same time.

The complexity of an average ecosystem includes thousands of organisms functioning in a structured and efficient system. To show the complexity of life at the ecosystem or zoological niche level, it would take hundreds of thousands of our galaxy systems all linked together and interdependent to come close to equaling just an average ecosystem. To be conservative and give evolutionists the benefit of the doubt, we will assume only 100 thousand galaxy systems to equal the complexity of an average ecosystem. That would be more than 50 billion galaxies of very organized and structured planet Earths all linked together and dependent on each other. For identification and simplicity purposes, we will call this one cosmos system because it gets worse.

We have only relatively recently begun to realize and understand that all of the ecosystems on Earth are linked together and dependent on each other. This is primarily because of overlap of ecosystems and regular migration of species between ecosystems. Other factors include the oxygen animals breath in one ecosystem being made in other ecosystems. We are just now beginning to understand how the global ecology functions. We do know that all ecosystems are tied together whether on land or in water.

There are at least hundreds of thousands of ecosystems making up our global ecosystem. In order to understand the complexity of life on Earth, we would have to have at least 100,000 of our cosmos systems of planets linked together and dependent on each other to even begin to come close to the complexity of life on Earth. It is not possible for one person to intellectually comprehend the complexity of the totality of life on Earth. And to think that there are people who actually believe that this just accidently happened.

But it is even worse than that because we have not considered other required organizations and complexities which are required for there to be life on Earth. Such sciences as geophysics tell us that the Earth has to have the right element and compound make up for our soils, water, and air for life to exist on Earth. Meteorology tells us that we have to have weather within very strict limits such as a relatively small range of temperatures for life to exist on Earth. Astrophysics tells us that there are many requirements for life on Earth such as the size of our planet, the size and type of sun, our orbit around the sun, our distance from the sun, our rotation as a planet, the size and distance from the moon, the orbit of the moon, and many other factors have to be just right or we cannot have life on Earth.

For example, if Earth were just a little closer to the sun, our planet would be too hot and all the water would vaporize like on Venice. If we were a little further from the sun, it would get too cold and all the water would freeze like on Mars. If our planet were just a little smaller, it wouldn't have enough gravity to maintain the atmospheric pressure to have liquid water like on Mars. If the planet were a little larger, the gravity would cause there to be too many heavy metals for life to exist.

We have even found that our position within our galaxy is important for there to be life on Earth. If our universe were too much closer to the center of our galaxy, the increased closeness and number of nearby stars would increase the gravitational effect on Earth causing too many heavy metals for life to exist. If we were too much closer to the outside of our galaxy, there would not be enough gravitational effect on Earth and we wouldn't have enough of the more complex molecules we need.

But I also didn't go in the opposite direction to the super micro world of nuclear physics. I already told you that to get the right molecular function and motion for the cell to function properly and live, we must have all the right molecules in the right places at the right time. In order to have the right molecules in the right places, we must have the right atoms in the right places. In order to have all the right atoms in the right places, we must have all the electrons and protons in the right places. If we have just one electron or proton out of place, we wont have the right atom and, if we don't have the right atom, we wont have the right molecule. If we don't have the right molecule, we wont have the right molecular function and activity for the cell to function and live. Then we can't have life.

When one scientifically and objectively considers the extreme complexities, organization, structure, and interdependence of everything required for life on Earth, evolution becomes simple minded foolishness.

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