Category: Intelligent Design
|October 12, 2015||Posted by niwrad under Intelligent Design, Science, Philosophy and (Natural) Theology|
Some Aristotelian Neo-Thomists (E. Feser call them “A-T philosophers”) accuse intelligent design (ID) of being an expression of the modern mechanistic reductionist quantificationist mindset, and of denying an immanent teleology in nature. I would argue that the difference between internal and external teleology shouldn’t divide ID and A-T. ID doesn’t deny immanent teleology in nature, […]
|October 10, 2015||Posted by vjtorley under Intelligent Design|
Professor Jerry Coyne’s credibility as a New Atheist is now in tatters, after the publication of yesterday’s devastating rebuttal by philosopher Edward Feser, on top of the one he wrote last week. Additionally, Coyne has undermined his scientific credibility by declaring that “it’s simply wrong to suggest that there’s any real scientific ‘debate’ about macroevolution.” […]
|October 10, 2015||Posted by News under Evolutionary psychology, Human evolution, Intelligent Design, Peer review|
From Nature: How scientists fool themselves – and how they can stop This is the big problem in science that no one is talking about: even an honest person is a master of self-deception. Our brains evolved long ago on the African savannah, where jumping to plausible conclusions about the location of ripe fruit or […]
|October 10, 2015||Posted by News under Intelligent Design, News|
Here. On this episode of ID the Future, Casey Luskin talks with Felipe Aizpún, author of The Fifth Way and Intelligent Design (La quinta vía y el diseño inteligente) and prolific writer on ID and the debate over origins. Aizpún shares how intelligent design is both a scientific and philosophical argument, and discusses Thomist philosophers’ […]
|October 9, 2015||Posted by Barry Arrington under Intelligent Design|
Over the last several days I’ve been watching StephenB thrash RDFish in this post. Several times SB has asked Fish this question: Is a murderer a different kind of cause than accidental death or is it not? Now obviously Fish is in a pickle, between the proverbial Scylla and Charybdis so to speak. If he […]
|October 9, 2015||Posted by News under Culture, Intelligent Design, News, Science|
From RealClearScience: Disproved Discoveries That Won Nobel Prizes Including Perhaps the most clear-cut example hearkens all the way back to 1926, when Johannes Fibiger won the Nobel Prize in Medicine for “for his discovery of the Spiroptera carcinoma.” In layman’s terms, he found a tiny parasitic worm that causes cancer. Subsequent research conducted in the […]
|October 8, 2015||Posted by News under Culture, Darwinism, Intelligent Design|
Icons of Evolution (Jonathan Wells, Regnery, 2002) is 13 years old. A friend, forensic engineer Stephen Batzer, summarizes, I think that there are three “show stoppers” since then. 1. That Darwin’s finches are simply races of the same bird. There has been no speciation. 2. That the tree of life is not viable. “It’s a […]
|October 8, 2015||Posted by News under Information, Intelligent Design, News|
Human DNA is like a computer program but far, far more advanced than any software we’ve ever created.” (Bill Gates, The Road Ahead, page 228 (Viking, Penguin Group, 1996, Revised Edition)* On line here. *Also: Bill Gates, with Nathan Myhrvold and Peter Rinearson, The Road Ahead (New York: Penguin Books, 1995), p. 188. Wonder what […]
|October 8, 2015||Posted by News under Information, Intelligent Design|
Further to: Origin of life research still “abject failure” (Franklin Harold)? The answers will remain murky because the researchers are trying to get information out of matter. Great physicists have said it was the other way around: Here’s the trailer for a new film addressing the problem, The Information Enigma Information drives the development of […]
|October 8, 2015||Posted by vjtorley under Intelligent Design|
Any fair-minded person who read Thomist philosopher Edward Feser’s incisive and crushing refutation of physicist Lawrence Krauss’s article, “Why scientists should be militant atheists,” would have to conclude that New Atheism was on the ropes. But after reading Jerry Coyne’s spirited defense of Krauss, I was reminded of a line from Louisa Alcott’s Little Men: […]
|October 7, 2015||Posted by News under Evolution, Intelligent Design, Origin Of Life|
THE DESIGN OF LIFE COLLECTION is a spectacular journey to uncover stunning evidence for intelligent design in the animal kingdom. It includes three feature length documentariesIncluding Metamorphosis: the Beauty and Design of Butterflies, FLIGHT: The Genius of Birds, and LIVING WATERS: Intelligent design in the Oceans of the Earth. For more information visit: www.DesignOfLife.org From […]
|October 6, 2015||Posted by News under Culture, Darwinism, Intelligent Design|
From Evolution News & Views: Following Kitzmiller v. Dover, an Excellent Decade for Intelligent Design Tomorrow marks the tenth anniversary of opening of arguments in the Kitzmiller v. Dover case that resulted in the most absurdly hyped court decision in memory. In 2005, did an obscure Federal judge in Dover, Pennsylvania, at last settle the […]
|October 6, 2015||Posted by News under Darwinism, Evolution, Intelligent Design, News|
No subject apart from religion has vexed Darwin’s followers more than why people sacrifice themselves for others. They have embraced the ambiguous term “altruism” because it does not clearly mean “compassion” or “heroism.” Rather, it is to be seen as the same natural force that causes worker ants to pass on their genes by serving […]
|October 5, 2015||Posted by News under Extraterrestrial life, Intelligent Design|
Further to the recent evidence for water on Mars, and the BBC News commentary that “If we find life on Mars and it can be shown to be of a different origin to that on Earth, then that essentially means that the Universe is teeming with life. It seems almost impossible that life could spring […]
|October 5, 2015||Posted by News under Culture, General interest, Intelligent Design, News|
O’Leary for News’ other blog Defamation law must catch up with internet age. Any blogger who linked to a website held to contain defamatory material—whether the blogger knew the fact or not—could be at risk. Android apps to control your teen’s brain? This’ll never beat the bicycle Ban the cell phone monster from normal conversation […]
|October 4, 2015||Posted by News under Intelligent Design, Mathematics, News|
Interesting discussion from NOVA: Zeno’s paradox is solved, but the question of whether there is a smallest unit of length hasn’t gone away. Today, some physicists think that the existence of an absolute minimum length could help avoid another kind of logical nonsense; the infinities that arise when physicists make attempts at a quantum version […]
|October 3, 2015||Posted by News under academic freedom, Atheism, Intellectual freedom, Intelligent Design, News|
Here: Dawkins worries about the way US university campuses are becoming places for unlearning liberty. Well yes, but neither Dawkins nor Maher seems able or willing to understand that progressivism is not about liberty; it is about control of an increasingly subject and dependent population. They congratulate themselves on being “liberals,” but might find out […]
|October 2, 2015||Posted by Cornelius Hunter under Intelligent Design|
They just stare at me. See more
|October 2, 2015||Posted by Barry Arrington under Intelligent Design|
In this story. Here is the headline: Probe in college slayings peers into Web rants and possible religious rage Here is the lede: The gunman who cut a deadly path through a college campus appeared armed for an extended siege, a report said Friday, as investigators probed deeper into suspicions the shooter may have […]
|October 1, 2015||Posted by vjtorley under Intelligent Design|
Jeffrey Tayler has written an article in Salon, titled, Make them shut up about God: The right-wing’s religious delusions are killing us—and them, in which he lists some questions he’d ask politicians of faith: Sample questions to be put to pietistic contenders for the White House: What makes you believe in God? Do you hear […]
Finally, there’s the argument from cosmic fine-tuning. As cosmologist Luke Barnes has cogently argued, the fine-tuning of the cosmos is real, whatever Victor Stenger might have told you. What’s more, there are five good scientific arguments against the multiverse, and eminent physicist Paul Davies has recently pointed out that the multiverse would imply that our universe is probably a fake universe with fake physics – i.e. a simulation set up by aliens. As we’ve seen, there are also independent philosophical arguments for the existence of a personal Creator. It seems reasonable to conclude, as Dr. Robin Collins does in his essay, The Teleological Argument: An Exploration of the Fine-Tuning of the Universe, that the cosmos was designed by an intelligent being in order to support life. (Dr. Collins also argues that a multiverse, if it exists, would also need to be designed.)
That’s just three reasons. There are many more: C.S. Lewis’s argument from reason (which actually comes from Arthur Balfour), the astronomically low odds of abiogenesis, and Godel’s version of the ontological argument are also arguments that merit consideration, in my view.
2. Do you hear voices? See visions?
No, I don’t, but I don’t like to make fun of people who do. Here’s a true story for you. My own grandmother heard a voice from out of the blue, once, and it saved her life. She was in the habit of walking straight ahead, without looking to her left or right, and one day, she was about to step off the kerb and cross the street. Suddenly she heard a voice yell out “STOP!” and she did. That action saved her life: had she not stopped, she would have been run over by a large vehicle. She looked around to see who had called out to her, but could see no-one. Now, you might try and explain that away by supposing that she was subliminally aware of the oncoming car and that triggered a warning from her subconscious, or by suggesting that the warning came from an anonymous stranger who quickly scurried away because he didn’t want to be thanked, but your explanations sound mighty contrived to me, and there’s not a scrap of evidence to support them. If that had happened to me, my first impulse, after marveling at my good fortune, would be to thank the Almighty, and I’d consider it impious to do otherwise.
3. Do you believe God answers your prayers? If so, please provide objective evidence.
4. Why is, say, the Bible or the Torah better than the Quran?
The Bible contains records of many publicly attested miracles; the Quran doesn’t even claim to provide such miracles. Jews frequently employ the kuzari argument, which basically says that since you can’t fool all the people all the time, and since the Jews have an oral and written tradition of miracles being witnessed by the entire Israelite people in the Sinai desert, the only rational explanation of this tradition is that these miracles actually occurred. Christians typically argue that the Resurrection was witnessed by a large number of people, on several occasions, rendering alternative hypotheses (e.g. hallucination) astronomically unlikely, and making belief in the Resurrection reasonable.
5. Does not the eternal hellfire the supposedly merciful Jesus promised sinners epitomize Constitutionally prohibited cruel and unusual punishment?
Hell would be cruel if it were a punishment arbitrarily imposed by God, but in reality it is a self-inflicted punishment. Let me quote C.S. Lewis on Hell, in his book, The Great Divorce: “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, “Thy will be done,” and those to whom God says, in the end, “Thy will be done.” All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. To those who knock it is opened.”
In The Problem of Pain, Lewis wrote, “The doors of Hell are locked on the inside. I do not mean that the ghosts may not wish to come out of Hell, in the vague fashion wherein an envious man ‘wishes’ to be happy: but they certainly do not will even the first preliminary stages of that self-abandonment through which alone the soul can reach any good. They enjoy forever the horrible freedom they have demanded, and are therefore self-enslaved: just as the blessed, forever submitting to obedience, become through all eternity more and more free.”
6. If you consider the Bible a reliable guide for your personal life, may I ask if would you slaughter your child on God’s command (as Abraham was prepared to do)?
The question about Abraham is silly, as we don’t know what went through his mind as he bound his son, Isaac, to the altar. Perhaps he was hoping that God would deliver him at the last second – which is precisely what happened. In any case, the point is that God did not allow Abraham to slay his son, and elsewhere in the Old Testament God clearly expresses His utter detestation of child sacrifice, in vivid language, so the question is moot.
7. Would you stone your daughter to death for not being a virgin on her wedding night? If not, why not?
Of course not. See John 7:53-8:11 (the parable of the woman caught in adultery): “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” I might add that as far back as the 1st century A.D., Judaism had tightened the conditions for handing down a death sentence so such a degree that capital punishment was virtually non-existent: because the standards of proof were so high, it was well-nigh impossible to inflict the death penalty.
8. What scriptural authority can you cite for following your “Holy Book” in some cases, but not in others?
That’s a dumb question. Obviously, if I didn’t believe in following Scripture in all cases, then I wouldn’t cite Scripture as an authority for doing so. I’d cite what I believed to be a higher authority.
I might add, however, that not all Scriptural passages carry equal weight. Christians would say that the New Testament supersedes the Old, although rules such as the Ten Commandments are still binding. The Golden Rule, in particular, has always been accorded a special status.
Look, I know there are lots of troubling passages in Scripture. Rather than answer your silly “gotcha” questions on these passages, I’ll just mention three ways in which Christians might respond to them.
The first is to believe in the mysteries of Christianity (e.g. the Trinity, the Incarnation and the Atonement), but to reject the doctrine that every single word of the Bible is inspired. That’s the option that Christian apologist C. S. Lewis took.
The second option is to interpret the passages allegorically, just as Mahatma Gandhi interpreted the bloody opening chapters of the Bhagavad Gita as an allegory of the soul’s struggle against evil desires.
The third is to say that the rules imposed by God upon the Israelites made sense back then, given the extraordinary conditions that they lived under, but that these rules no longer make sense today. The rules apply to a one-off, unrepeatable situation.
Any of these options is fully compatible with what C.S. Lewis referred to as “mere Christianity.”
9. And what about Balaam’s jabbering donkey? Please explain how 21st century humans are to take such a tale seriously.
Gee, Jeffrey, didn’t you watch Mr. Ed as a kid? Appearing to make sounds come out of a donkey’s mouth should be a cinch for a supernatural Being. The only question is whether such a Being would want to do such a thing. I see no inherent reason why not. The miracle would strike us as comically absurd today, but it may not have seemed so ridiculous to people living back then.
Well, I’m sure that readers have questions of their own, which they’d like to ask aspiring atheist politicians and/or politicians with religious faith. Over to you.