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Dissenting from Darwin

Increasinginly I find that those with doctorates in the natural and engineering sciences are asking, “What can I do to help in the fight against Darwinism?” For some this will involve research bearing directly on Darwinian theory. But there is also another way to help. Many in the media and the public still do not know that there is scientific dissent from Darwinism. They have no idea that MANY scientists are skeptical of neo-Darwinian theory.

So one way you can help is to put your head on the chopping block and voice your skepticism of Darwinism (if you do, trust me, Darwin’s dogmatic defenders will try to chop off your head). This is why Discovery Institute created their statement “A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism.” It states: “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

The original list of 100 scientists has now grown to nearly 700. To learn more about the list and if you are eligible to help overturning Darwinism and publically voice your skepticism, see www.dissentfromdarwin.org. You can also view a PDF copy of the current list at this site.

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36 Responses to Dissenting from Darwin

  1. [...] Dissenting from Darwin: it would help if those dissenting did not get tripped up by the induced suggestion that ID is the only alternative. Increasinginly I find that those with doctorates in the natural and engineering sciences are asking, “What can I do to help in the fight against Darwinism?” For some this will involve research bearing directly on Darwinian theory. But there is also another way to help. Many in the media and the public still do not know that there is scientific dissent from Darwinism. They have no idea that MANY scientists are skeptical of neo-Darwinian theory. [...]

  2. You’re making progress.
    Pro ID editorial in Pa.

  3. Just a brief note: When I first started writing By Design or by Chance? (Augsburg 2004), an overview of the intelligent design controversy, I came across a young cognitive scientist who told me that he found Darwinism a significant constraint in his work, as follows:

    In order to justify an explanation of how a system in the human brain works, he was required to demonstrate how such a mechanism might have evolved. Otherwise, he could not advance it.

    Now, an engineer will likely see the obvious problem here: It is much easier to determine how a system works than to determine how it evolved. Perhaps a given system went through 13 iterations before the current model – but perhaps it didn’t.

    If any previous iterations ever existed, the evidence for them may be lost.

    So one ends, of course, by making up stories – just-so stories about what the dim Pleistocene cave man and his lady of limited patience “would have done” – a strange and clumsy grammatical tense indeed, signifying a strange and clumsy view of our history.

    At this point, Darwinism is a net suppressor of creative ideas.

  4. The DI list is about to over take the StevoMeter

    Bergman’s list is alread has 1940 names listed publicly. I mentioned, Bergman’s list here: Bergman’s Dissent from Darwin List at 3,000-10,000. UD commentor bhinton gave that figure 1940 not 3000. But 1940 is still a decent number. Further, Bergman’s list does not encompass all the names on the DI 700 list.

  5. amadan

    Great comment. Welcome.

  6. If the solar system was brought about by an accidental collision, then the appearance of organic life on this planet was also an accident, and the whole evolution of Man was an accident too. If so, then all our present thoughts are mere accidents – the accidental by-product of the movement of atoms. And this holds for the thoughts of the materialists and astronomers as well as for anyone else’s. But if their thoughts – i.e., of Materialism and Astronomy – are merely accidental by-products, why should we believe them to be true?

    I see no reason for believing that one accident should be able to give me a correct account of all the other accidents.

    It’s like expecting that the accidental shape taken by the splash when you upset a milk-jug should give you a correct account of how the jug was made and why it was upset.–CS Lewis

  7. Religions such as the Abrahamic ones, which posit an omnipotent loving god who is the fount of morality, cannot explain away these evils without performing rhetorical gymnastics that stretch credulity.

    That’s true of any worldview. Of course it’s even harder to explain why there is good.

  8. Amadan,

    Essentially you have admitted to the presence of a God though you prefer the lower case. Let me see if I understand what you say. There is an intelligence somewhere that has designed life and either periodically modified it or designed an initial condition that led to the various forms over the eons and to the current variety. I assume that this intelligence or another intelligence could also be responsible for the universe or the construction of matter, energy, time etc as we are starting to know it.

    How is this different from the Deist position of the 16-19th centuries?

    Many here will say that ID leads to no specific interpretation of how this intelligence interacts or doesn’t interact with the human race. With this I agree. But that other forms of reasoning lead many to an interpretation that there is an interaction and a purpose so we are back to an argument over just how that is manifest or whether it is/has been manifested at all.

    And such a discussion has been going on for several thousand years and ID contributes very little to it.

  9. Amadan,

    Also you essentially have introduced the theodicy issue into the reasoning for your rejection of the loving all potent Christian God.

    The theodicy issue is certainly not new as a rationale for the rejection of God or at least the God that many adhere to and also has been discussed for thousands of years.

  10. “That’s true of any worldview.”

    It’s not true of an atheism predicated on NDE.

    “Of course it’s even harder to explain why there is good.”

    Reciprocal altruism does a pretty good job, IMO.

  11. Tribune7- They posted my comment to that editorial (see link in comment 11)- that should stir things up a bit…

  12. Amadan,

    Welcome. Regarding ID-sympathetic atheists, Frank Tipler considers himself one (albeit a provisional atheist). Fred Hoyle who wrote the book Intelligent Universe was very close to being one as well. You are not alone.

    Welcome to Uncommon Descent.

    Salvador

  13. Amadan said:
    “The conclusion I reach is that the universe was created and designed, but that whoever or whatever did it is inaccessible to out perception and therefore to our understanding. Apart from its act of creation (or design), the creator remains outside the realm of rational discourse and so can be ignored or treated as if it no longer exists.”

    It’s not the view I take, but I see nothing wrong with the logic. I’d think it’s easier to be an agnostic though, but you can certainly support ID and be an atheist. I personally think the evidence of design does nothing to promote the idea of a “personal God”. Fact is, we clearly see design in the universe, but the designer could be anything.

  14. Joseph, good comment!

  15. I am a long time lurker here and would like to add a couple of comments. I am no longer a believer in NDE. I graduated with my PharmD (Doctorate of Pharmacy) four years ago and at that time, I still believed in NDE. After investigating NDE thoroughly for a couple of years after college, I am now 100% convinced that the Design movement will overtake Darwin’s theory within this century. What led me to this final conclusion was how hard the staunch Darwinist tries to tell us that we should ignore design. I cannot help but see design in nature, so I am done denying it. I wrote this response just to encourage those in the ID movement to continue the fight. You have many uphill battles in front of you, but the fight will be worth it.

  16. I am a long time lurker here and would like to add a couple of comments. I am no longer a believer in NDE. I graduated with my PharmD (Doctorate of Pharmacy) four years ago and at that time, I still believed NDE. After investigating NDE thoroughly for a couple of years after college, I am now 100% convinced that the Design movement will overtake Darwin’s theory within this century. What led me to this final conclusion was how hard the staunch Darwinist tries to tell us that we should ignore design. I cannot help but see design in nature, so I am done denying it. I wrote this response just to encourage those in the ID movement to continue the fight. You have many uphill battles in front of you, but the fight will be worth it.

  17. I don’t believe I saw John Sanford’s name on the list. Can someone important consider contacting him??

    Sal

  18. Likewise, Walter Brown, Air Force Academy Emeritus, MIT PhD is not on the list. Can someone from the Discovery Institute extend a personal invitation?

    Also, there are names from Bergman’s list who might be candidates for the DI list. Biochemists Dr. Kelly Hollowell PhD, JD and Dr. Georgia Purdom come to mind. Even though Purdom is negative on ID (since she considers ID not quite Christian), she still might sign the document.

    How about Timothy Brophy and Marcus Ross? They both graduated from Secular Institutions.

    I know the Discovery Institute is understaffed, but if they can find the resources for such an outreach, these numbers can be improved even further….

  19. Sal, you’ve shown no lack of boldness in other contexts, so go for it here. If you like, email these people and cc me, indicating that I put you up to it!

  20. Amand:

    So if the universe shows evidence of design, how can that support atheism? By reason of the need for evidence.

    The design isn’t evidence for a Designer?

    No god or gods are evident in the universe.

    Depends on what you understand as “evident”.

    We do not see their intervention in any demonstrable way.

    I think this is one of the things that Bill addressed with his theory of “Specified Complexity”. You don’t have to see the designer designing in order to know that, based on evidence, the best explination is design (as related to a designer)

    Further, you do not have to be a moral philosopher to point out the wrongs, injustices, and suffering in the world.

    There are ample sources that deal with that issue. I can refer you to Answers in Genesis, for example.
    You might say “oh, but that is outside of science”. Well, your apeal to the “wrongs, etc, etc” can be considered “outside of science” aswell. If you can follow that road, so can others who have an answwer to that
    One thing worth noticing is that, the existence of “wrongs”, “injustices” and “suferings” dont eliminate the existence of design in the universe, and as long asthere is design, it can be used as evidence for the Designer.

    Religions such as the Abrahamic ones, which posit an omnipotent loving god

    I would respectfully like to make a distinction here. The Judeo-CHristian God is portrayed as a Loving God. The islamic deity is totally diferent from the Judeo-Christian one. Thsi is irrelevant for ID, but it’s important to draw the line.

    who is the fount of morality, cannot explain away these evils without performing rhetorical gymnastics that stretch credulity.

    Actually, the Judeo-CHristian God can explain that very well, and it doesn’t need “rethorical gymnastics”.

    The evidence is inconsistent with such a god.

    If you qualify the clarifications as “rethorics”, then you can reach to that conclusion

  21. Galen – Is that your real name? If so, you’ve got a good name for your profession.

  22. thechristiancynic – No, just an alias that relates to my profession.

  23. William Dembski:
    “Increasinginly I find that those with doctorates in the natural and engineering sciences are asking, “What can I do to help in the fight against Darwinism?”

    There is absolutely nothing anyone can do to defeat Darwinism.

    Darwinism is Materialism and Naturalism interpretations of scientific evidence. These interpretations presuppose that the appearance of design seen in nature do not correspond to the power of an invisible Designer. The assumption that design does not indicate Designer and the success of the assumption (= Darwinism) is a penalty from God for denying Him the credit and status of Creator.

    “Naturalism is a prison constructed by God” for pursuing the assumption that design does not correspond to Designer. (Dr. Gene Scott, oral teaching, 2001).

    In other words, the idea to exclude God is really an effect of God’s power forever excluding those who deny that design indicates Designer.

    Now, thanks to Dr. Scott, the “success” of Darwinism is now explained.

    Ray

  24. amadan

    You know that the matter and energy in the universe that we know about and have physical theories to describe (normal matter and energy) comprise only 5% of the “stuff” in the universe. The other 95% of the stuff we only know about through its gravitational interaction with normal matter. 20% of the other stuff is some exotic form of matter called “dark matter” and the remaining 75% is “dark energy”.

    I wonder what kind of wonders might be found in the other 95% of the universe that surrounds and pervades us that we can only detect through its gravitational effects on normal matter.

  25. Ray Martinez

    Dr. Gene Scott had a radio program 30 years ago that me and one of my best friends in the Marines used to listen to. He was quite entertaining in small doses.

  26. I also believe the Design theory will ultimately win out do to a factor outside of science. It has to do with secularization. Regarding European birth rates, Eric Kaufman, a senior lecturer in politics at Birkbeck, recently wrote in Prospect (http://www.prospect-magazine.c.....hp?id=7913), that “next to age and marital status, a woman’s religiosity was the strongest predictor of her number of offspring.” Kaufman found in religious a 15-20 percent fertility lead over the non-religious. According to another study done by Brian C. O’Neill, a researcher at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria, “”If the current fertility rate of around 1.5 births per woman persists until 2020, negative momentum will result in 88 million fewer people in 2100, if one assumes constant mortality and no net migration,” the researchers stated about Europe. (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories.....6441.shtml). Interesting, Muslims birth rate are not declining. In Europe, Muslims are 3 times as likely to have children. Expect Europe to become more religious in the future, with a more Islamic world view.

    The same is happening here (America). Kaufman quotes Arthur Brooks of Syracuse University who recently wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “if you picked 100 unrelated politically liberal adults at random, you would find that they had, between them, 147 children. If you picked 100 conservatives, you would find 208 kids. That’s a ‘fertility gap’ of 41 per cent. Given that about 80 percent of people with an identifiable party preference grow up to vote the same way as their parents, this gap translates into lots more little Republicans than little Democrats to vote in future elections.”

    In general, conservatives are much more accepting of ID. I believe that this will help the ID movement in the future immensely.

    Sorry for the long post.

  27. Amadan wrote:
    “At the risk of repeating myself, ID completes a satisfactory framework for explaining the origin of things: the evidence and logic show that universe was created to be as it is. Full Stop The nature and motivations of the designer are not eluctible by observation. Why move beyond evidence and logic?”

    I’m trying to be objective here, although I have to admit when I see the word “atheist” I prepare myself for a slurry of irrationalities and faulty logic (no offense), but I have to agree with you on this. Strictly speaking, the evidence points to a designed universe, but to move beyond this is unwarranted. The designer could be dead; in fact the designer could be anything. Like I said before though, if you must, I think agnosticism would be a much better fit than atheism once design is acknowledged and accepted into your personal philosophy. ID certainly can say nothing about which religion is correct, or if I should go to church on Sunday. I personally feel that consciousness studies (as is being discussed in another thread) will give us the key we need. If it could be shown that consciousness is not just an emergent property of the brain, this combined with obvious design in the universe will pretty much force us to accept the existence of a supernatural realm.

  28. Did I actually see Dr. Gene Scott’s name come up here! LOL. Some college buddies and I would flip and channels and ineviatably land on him which would lead to a rousing round of armchair philosophy. My personal favorite is when he would wear 6 pairs of glasses. Is he still alive?

  29. Did I actually see Dr. Gene Scott’s name come up here! . . .Is he still alive?

    According to Wiki he died Feb. 21, 2005.

  30. Amadan,

    All the evidence shows is that creation, including design, took place. But by using a capital D, are you giving the designer a white beard and an aversion to pork? If so, why?

    I think the problem here is that we start from diferent “bias”. You are trying to rule out my bias with your bias, and to consider your bias “rational” or “necessary”.

    My bias is “God is the Creator”. If so, let’s see if the world agrees.
    Your bias is “there is no God”. You can’t rule out the evidence I use in favor of God just bkz you have a diferent set of bias.
    So my point still remains: God is there, and the design in the universe is evidence for it.

    Depends on what you understand as “evident”.

    Observable, repeatable, reliably documented – that kind of thing.

    Of course, your definition of reliable is an open question. Reliable under whose definition? I for example consider the universe a strong observable, “testable” evidence.

    You don’t have to see the designer designing in order to know that, based on evidence, the best explination is design (as related to a designer)

    Exactly. But do you say that this design is continuing in the present?

    Depends on what you understand as “continuing”.

    Has the world recently changed in ways that natural processes can’t account for?

    That is, has any supernatural event been observable, seen or heard? Tons! I can refer you to a link or two, but I must warn you that they are very schocking. Check them at your own risk.

    http://paranormal.about.com/li.....orcism.wma

    I warn you, don’t listen to it if you are impressionable.

    Actually, the Judeo-CHristian God can explain that very well, and it doesn’t need “rethorical gymnastics”

    But it can’t without presupposing the god of the Bible. That begs the question.

    That’s how things work. You post an hypothesis, and we test its explinatory power. Our “thesis” is God exists”.
    The explinatory power of Christian Theism is more rational and scientifically sound than any other type of theism. NAturally, given than we are talking with an unrepeatable past (creation), it is still a faith, but it’s a rational faith.

    If anyone has evidence for a currently existing god that can’t be accounted for by natural processes, please post it: the world is waiting.

    Actually, only the atheists are “waiting”.
    Secondly, why does it have to be acounted by “natural processes” ? In fact, what are “natural processes”? Processes that happen in the natural world?

  31. Ray Martinez

    Your rude comment to me was not approved and likely none in the future either. Evidently you’re not very familiar with Dr. Gene Scott’s broadcasts back in those days.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugene_Scott

    The second category is a broadcast of what Scott named the Festival of Faith. The Festival of Faith was a very informal, non-traditional broadcast which featured Scott sitting alone in a chair, often smoking a cigar or a pipe, telling jokes, interacting with the crew and “Voices of Faith” (volunteer phone operators), berating his staff and/or his congregation, and making remarks that were often considered to be quite off-color by many listeners. He often spiced up his speech with what many would consider profanity, although all his remarks were within FCC guidelines if not always within the guidelines of good taste. He also was well known for constantly engaging in the nervous habit of cleaning out his nose with a handkerchief while on camera (both during Sunday services and during the Festival of Faith). These Festival of Faith broadcasts also featured Scott reading from books on UFOs, Demonology, The Great Pyramid of Giza, and similar viewer-grabbing topics. He quite often called out, “Am I boring you?” to which his staff and the volunteers responded, “No sir!” He frequently exhorted his viewers to “Get on the phone!” to make a monetary pledge or to encourage him to keep reading.

  32. DaveScot:

    Smearing a Stanford Ph.D. via pro-atheist/Darwinian Wikipedia – a site that any anonymous person can grind their tabloid axe on, while censoring valid criticism about yourself, demonstrates that I hit the nail on the head about your kind. Using Moderator status to grind your axe while denying opponents the microphone betrays guilt and fear and an inferior intellect. I am comforted. See you at Talk Origins Usenet where the playing field is level.

    Ray

  33. Ray Martinez

    What I quoted from Wikipedia is exactly what I remember about Doctor Gene Scott’s public access television show in the 1970′s. I reiterate, he was very entertaining in small doses. Do you like worship Scott or something? Be careful. False idols and all that. :razz:

    Wikipedia is kinder than most of the top ten google hits:

    http://www.rotten.com/library/.....ene-scott/

    http://www.morethings.com/god_.....9-2005.htm

    http://thomashawk.com/2005/02/.....at-75.html

    This utube clip is particularly good.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6Fqms_Iw8M

  34. DaveScot:

    “Do you worship Dembski?”

    [sorry, Bill]

    See how silly your comment is?

    Your disapproval of a Stanford Ph.D. and the greatest IDer of all time demonstrates your level of intellectuality.

    Ray

  35. Ray

    “Do you worship Dembski?”

    No. I’m an agnostic, remember? We don’t worship.

    Your disapproval of a Stanford Ph.D.

    You seem awfully hung up on the Stanford Ph.D. thing. You don’t have to be stupid to be crazy. It helps though. Scott was certifiable. But hey, to each his own. Did you donate 10% of your income to Dr. Gene Scott to help him marry a pornstar 40 years younger than him, fly around in Lear jets, and generally live more like a rock star than a Christian minister? It’s your money buddy, so don’t get me wrong, if you want to spend it like that it’s your business, but don’t expect me to sugar coat what kind of chump does something like that.

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