Home » Intelligent Design » In a characteristic display of scientific humility, PZ Myers announces, …

In a characteristic display of scientific humility, PZ Myers announces, …

“Scientists! If You’re Not an Atheist, You Aren’t Doing Science Right!”

And what exactly are the achievements that the sage of Morris, Minnesota himself boasts, that justify such a pronouncement?

Note the unhinged comments from supporters at YouTube.

Like we said, the big problem with new atheism is not its conflict with traditional religion and philosophy but its growing conflict with liberal democracy and representative government.

See also: He said it: “There is more evidence for evolution than … the idea that things are made up of atoms”

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70 Responses to In a characteristic display of scientific humility, PZ Myers announces, …

  1. Strange that the father of modern science, Isaac Newton, saw science as a way of understanding God’s Creation.

  2. If a supernatural entity can, at will, interrupt the observed regularities of nature, then science is a pointless exercise.

    Why?

    If you believe that a supernatural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y. (There is always the chance that the experimental result happened because the supernatural entity intervened to make it turn out that way).

    If that is what you think, then you should say so.

  3. If a supernatural entity can, at will, interrupt the observed regularities of nature, then science is a pointless exercise.

    Nope, because no one says said agency does so all the time. And anyway science only cares about reality.

    If you believe that a supernatural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y.

    Good luck proving that bit of nonsense.

  4. Joe posted this:

    “Nope, because no one says said agency does so all the time. And anyway science only cares about reality.”

    How are we to tell if godididitty intervened in this particular experiment or did not?

    It is you that believes that the regularity of nature can be interrupted by miracles. Fine. Just produce evidence. The point is this: if it is possible that the supernatural entity can interrupt the regularities of nature, then the whole of science is a waste of time (even the bits you like).

  5. How are we to tell if godididitty intervened in this particular experiment or did not?

    How do we tell now?

    It is you that believes that the regularity of nature can be interrupted by miracles.

    It is? Evidence please.

    Ya see tim, I say YOUR position requires more miracles than mine.

    The point is this: if it is possible that the supernatural entity can interrupt the regularities of nature, then the whole of science is a waste of time (even the bits you like).

    Just saying it does NOT make it so, duh.

  6. Joe

    How strange that you would post this:

    “Ya see tim, I say YOUR position requires more miracles than mine.”

    And then post this:

    “Just saying it does NOT make it so, duh.”

    I agree.

  7. actually timothya, Joe is completely correct to observe,,,

    “Ya see tim, I say YOUR position requires more miracles than mine.”

    For ya see tim:

    BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010
    Excerpt: The physical universe is causally incomplete and therefore neither self-originating nor self-sustaining. The world of space, time, matter and energy is dependent on a reality that transcends space, time, matter and energy. This transcendent reality cannot merely be a Platonic realm of mathematical descriptions, for such things are causally inert abstract entities that do not affect the material world. Neither is it the case that “nothing” is unstable, as Mr. Hawking and others maintain. Absolute nothing cannot have mathematical relationships predicated on it, not even quantum gravitational ones. Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. This is what “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.,,, the evidence for string theory and its extension, M-theory, is nonexistent; and the idea that conjoining them demonstrates that we live in a multiverse of bubble universes with different laws and constants is a mathematical fantasy. What is worse, multiplying without limit the opportunities for any event to happen in the context of a multiverse – where it is alleged that anything can spontaneously jump into existence without cause – produces a situation in which no absurdity is beyond the pale.
    For instance, we find multiverse cosmologists debating the “Boltzmann Brain” problem: In the most “reasonable” models for a multiverse, it is immeasurably more likely that our consciousness is associated with a brain that has spontaneously fluctuated into existence in the quantum vacuum than it is that we have parents and exist in an orderly universe with a 13.7 billion-year history. This is absurd. The multiverse hypothesis is therefore falsified because it renders false what we know to be true about ourselves. Clearly, embracing the multiverse idea entails a nihilistic irrationality that destroys the very possibility of science.
    http://www.washingtontimes.com.....arguments/

    The Absurdity of Inflation, String Theory & The Multiverse – Dr. Bruce Gordon – video
    http://vimeo.com/34468027

    Here is the last power-point slide of the preceding video:

    The End Of Materialism?
    * In the multiverse, anything can happen for no reason at all.
    * In other words, the materialist is forced to believe in random miracles as a explanatory principle.
    * In a Theistic universe, nothing happens without a reason. Miracles are therefore intelligently directed deviations from divinely maintained regularities, and are thus expressions of rational purpose.
    * Scientific materialism is (therefore) epistemically self defeating: it makes scientific rationality impossible.

    This ‘lack of a guarantee’, for trusting our perceptions and reasoning in science to be trustworthy in the first place, even extends into evolutionary naturalism itself;

    Should You Trust the Monkey Mind? – Joe Carter
    Excerpt: Evolutionary naturalism assumes that our noetic equipment developed as it did because it had some survival value or reproductive advantage. Unguided evolution does not select for belief except insofar as the belief improves the chances of survival. The truth of a belief is irrelevant, as long as it produces an evolutionary advantage. This equipment could have developed at least four different kinds of belief that are compatible with evolutionary naturalism, none of which necessarily produce true and trustworthy cognitive faculties.
    http://www.firstthings.com/ont.....onkey-mind

    What is the Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism? (‘inconsistent identity’ of cause leads to failure of absolute truth claims for materialists) (Alvin Plantinga) – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yNg4MJgTFw

    Philosopher Sticks Up for God
    Excerpt: Theism, with its vision of an orderly universe superintended by a God who created rational-minded creatures in his own image, “is vastly more hospitable to science than naturalism,” with its random process of natural selection, he (Plantinga) writes. “Indeed, it is theism, not naturalism, that deserves to be called ‘the scientific worldview.’”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12.....wanted=all

    Modern science was conceived, and born, and flourished in the matrix of Christian theism. Only liberal doses of self-deception and double-think, I believe, will permit it to flourish in the context of Darwinian naturalism.
    ~ Alvin Plantinga

    Can atheists trust their own minds? – William Lane Craig On Alvin Plantinga’s Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byN38dyZb-k

    “One absolutely central inconsistency ruins [the popular scientific philosophy]. The whole picture professes to depend on inferences from observed facts. Unless inference is valid, the whole picture disappears… unless Reason is an absolute, all is in ruins. Yet those who ask me to believe this world picture also ask me to believe that Reason is simply the unforeseen and unintended by-product of mindless matter at one stage of its endless and aimless becoming. Here is flat contradiction. They ask me at the same moment to accept a conclusion and to discredit the only testimony on which that conclusion can be based.”
    —C.S. Lewis, Is Theology Poetry (aka the Argument from Reason)

    Do the New Atheists Own the Market on Reason? – On the terms of the New Atheists, the very concept of rationality becomes nonsensical – By R. Scott Smith, May 03, 2012
    Excerpt: If atheistic evolution by NS were true, we’d be in a beginningless series of interpretations, without any knowledge. Yet, we do know many things. So, naturalism & atheistic evolution by NS are false — non-physical essences exist. But, what’s their best explanation? Being non-physical, it can’t be evolution by NS. Plus, we use our experiences, form concepts and beliefs, and even modify or reject them. Yet, if we’re just physical beings, how could we interact with and use these non-physical things? Perhaps we have non-physical souls too. In all, it seems likely the best explanation for these non-physical things is that there exists a Creator after all.
    http://www.patheos.com/Evangel.....#038;max=1

    The following interview is sadly comical as a evolutionary psychologist realizes that neo-Darwinism can offer no guarantee that our faculties of reasoning will correspond to the truth, not even for the truth that he is purporting to give in the interview, (which begs the question of how was he able to come to that particular truthful realization, in the first place, if neo-Darwinian evolution were actually true?);

    Evolutionary guru: Don’t believe everything you think – October 2011
    Interviewer: You could be deceiving yourself about that.(?)
    Evolutionary Psychologist: Absolutely.
    http://www.newscientist.com/ar.....think.html

    Evolutionists Are Now Saying Their Thinking is Flawed (But Evolution is Still a Fact) – Cornelius Hunter – May 2012
    Excerpt: But the point here is that these “researchers” are making an assertion (human reasoning evolved and is flawed) which undermines their very argument. If human reasoning evolved and is flawed, then how can we know that evolution is a fact, much less any particular details of said evolutionary process that they think they understand via their “research”?
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....their.html

  8. timothya- Speaking of miracles, how strange that you are able to post anything. Usually that is limited to people with some understanding of things.

  9. Bjornagain posted this (among other things):

    “* In other words, the materialist is forced to believe in random miracles as a explanatory principle.”

    Well perhaps (though this little black duck doesn’t feel forced to believe any such thing, and I would not presume to speak for materialists in general).

    But an anti-materialist (anyone who believes in the existence of a supernatural entity as an ultimate cause of material reality) must also believe that the entity is capable of randomly and miraculously intervening in nature.

    If this is true, then science is a pointless waste of human effort for reasons I explained upthread.

  10. Joe posted this:

    “timothya- Speaking of miracles, how strange that you are able to post anything.”

    You think information technologies are miraculous? No wonder I have a job for life.

  11. If this is true, then science is a pointless waste of human effort for reasons I explained upthread.

    Except you didn’t explain anything. As I said you don’t appear to have a basic understanding of anything. That is why it is a miracle that you can use the internet.

  12. tim you falsely hold:

    must also believe that the entity is capable of randomly and miraculously intervening in nature.

    i.e. hidden in your use of the word ‘randomly’ is the wrong thought that God is somehow capricious in His actions; Yet God, as the ‘maximally great Being’, is incapable of being capricious in His actions for that would be a ‘lesser making quality’:

    God Is Not Dead Yet – William Lane Craig – Page 4
    The ontological argument. Anselm’s famous argument has been reformulated and defended by Alvin Plantinga, Robert Maydole, Brian Leftow, and others. God, Anselm observes, is by definition the greatest being conceivable. If you could conceive of anything greater than God, then that would be God. Thus, God is the greatest conceivable being, a maximally great being. So what would such a being be like? He would be all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-good, and he would exist in every logically possible world. But then we can argue:

    1. It is possible that a maximally great being (God) exists.
    2. If it is possible that a maximally great being exists, then a maximally great being exists in some possible world.
    3. If a maximally great being exists in some possible world, then it exists in every possible world.
    4. If a maximally great being exists in every possible world, then it exists in the actual world.
    5. Therefore, a maximally great being exists in the actual world.
    6. Therefore, a maximally great being exists.
    7. Therefore, God exists.

    Now it might be a surprise to learn that steps 2–7 of this argument are relatively uncontroversial. Most philosophers would agree that if God’s existence is even possible, then he must exist. So the whole question is: Is God’s existence possible? The atheist has to maintain that it’s impossible that God exists. He has to say that the concept of God is incoherent, like the concept of a married bachelor or a round square. But the problem is that the concept of God just doesn’t appear to be incoherent in that way. The idea of a being which is all-powerful, all knowing, and all-good in every possible world seems perfectly coherent. And so long as God’s existence is even possible, it follows that God must exist.
    http://www.christianitytoday.c.....ml?start=4

    I like the concluding comment about the ontological argument from the following Dr. Plantinga video:

    “God then is the Being that couldn’t possibly not exit.”

    Ontological Argument – Dr. Plantinga (3:50 minute mark)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCXvVcWFrGQ

    Further notes:

    The Ontological Argument (The Introduction) – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQPRqHZRP68

    It should also be carefully noted that materialists/atheists have conceded the necessary premise to the ontological argument in their appeal to the multiverse to try to ‘explain away’ the extreme fine-tuning of the universe

    Ontological Argument For God From The Many Worlds/Multiverse Hypothesis – William Lane Craig – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4784641

    i.e. As well, this hypothetical infinite multiverse obviously begs the question of exactly which laws of physics, arising from which material basis, are telling all the other natural laws in physics what, how and when, to do the many precise unchanging things they do in these infinity of other universes? Exactly where is this universe creating machine to be located? Moreover, if an infinite number of other possible universes must exist in order to ‘explain away’ the extreme fine tuning of this one, then why is it not also infinitely possible for a infinitely powerful and transcendent Creator to exist? Using the materialist same line of reasoning for an infinity of multiverses to ‘explain away’ the extreme fine-tuning of this one we can thusly surmise; If it is infinitely possible for God to exist then He, of 100% certainty, must exist no matter how small the probability is of His existence in one of these other infinity of universes, and since He certainly must exist in some possible world then he must exist in all possible worlds since all possibilities in all universes automatically become subject to Him since He is, by definition, transcendent and infinitely Powerful.,,,

    and as weird as it may sound, this following video refines the Ontological argument into a proof that, because of the characteristic of ‘maximally great love’, God must exist in more than one person:

    The Ontological Argument for the Triune God – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGVYXog8NUg

  13. tim as to your thought that materialism somehow has a leg to stand on as far as empirical science in concerned (that material particles are somehow ‘self-sustaining’ entities), well that materialistic presupposition of yours is now shown to be completely false:

    Quantum Evidence for a Theistic Universe
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1agaJIWjPWHs5vtMx5SkpaMPbantoP471k0lNBUXg0Xo/edit

  14. Tomothya,

    You and PZ don’t have a case here at all. Just because God conceivably can intervene and gum up our ability to do meaningful scientific experimentation, it does not follow that He has to. And, since experimentally we indeed do find repeatability and coherence, your premise is only going to get you as far as concluding that God, for whatever reason, does not intervene, or does so consistently, either of which make scientific exploration meaningful. No further conclusions can be drawn I’m afraid.

    I think this is a case of unwarranted and untenable selective skepticism. I.E., since something is logically possible, therefore we cannot (or could not) know. And then you say (by implication), since we do know scientific experiments are a real means of knowledge and understanding, therefore it is logically impossible for God to exist.

    I don’t see any other way for your argument to go, and this way will get you exactly nowhere.

  15. Tim, your point goes both ways. If the universe can exist on its own it can stop existing, parts of it can change or anything can happen at any time.

  16. Brent posted this:

    “You and PZ don’t have a case here at all. Just because God conceivably can intervene and gum up our ability to do meaningful scientific experimentation, it does not follow that He has to.”

    It is you lot that are claiming to know the mind of God, not me. I am making the humble point that if miracles are possible, then you can never know whether you are observing a natural regularity or a miracle.

    Butifnot posted this:

    “If the universe can exist on its own it can stop existing, parts of it can change or anything can happen at any time.”

    Well done, you are starting to get the drift.

  17. timothya,

    I would like to develop your idea more if you don’t mind.
    What would happen if God was not capricious? That is, if he/she/it made it crystal clear they were doing something extraordinary in nature?

  18. timothya,

    You are on my “cannot be taken seriously radar” since you, again, use your own selective way of dealing with a part of what I said.

    You are saying:

    If God exists, no meaningful science.

    Meaningful science.

    God doesn’t exist.

    Ummm . . .

  19. Doh!

    That would be a proper modus-tollens.

    But, as per my first post, the problem is that it isn’t sound as a premise, if God, no meaningful science. You will have to establish that first. Good luck.

  20. @ 3:15…

    Yes there are religious scientists, but they don’t do it simultaneously. They have to shut down their prayer module when they go into the lab to do research because prayers do not contribute to their research.

    Put another way…

    Yes there are scientists with senses of humor, but they don’t do it simultaneously. They have to shut down their humor module when they go into the lab to do research because laughter does not contribute to their research.

    I guess scientists should not have sense of humor, then!

    Sad that this is even getting discussed. It is intellectually bankrupt, just a bunch of GOTCHA! philosophy. timothya, you truly believe that if God were to intervene even one time, that would bankrupt all of the value of science? “Sorry little Bobby, we have to throw these chemotherapy drugs in the trash…science has been overturned by God making a firecracker un-explode.”

  21. Okay I made it to the 20 minute mark. Let me know if something Earth shattering was said beyond that. But his main argument for why religion doesn’t matter seems to be “it doesn’t” and his argument for why love has nothing to do with God or the supernatural is “it doesn’t”. What powerful arguments, Dr. Myers. How can my faith survive such strong arguments?

    From whatever I’ve read or heard from PZ, it just seems like he doesn’t realize that his worldview is driven by faith just as much as an theists. He compares theists’ faith with his “lack of faith”, not realize that he really has faith in the lack of the supernatural. I’ll just sit back and watch real science obliterate his worldview more and more every year by uncovering the layers of complexity in biology.

  22. Timothya said:
    “…then you can never know whether you are observing a natural regularity or a miracle.”

    It is a strange notion seeing that ID is all about detecting irregularities in the natural flow of things. The only cause we scientifically (i.e. through experience) know that can cause irregularities is intelligence.

    Are you implying that the investigation of irregularities in nature is outside the reach of scientific method. If that is your position then I suppose you have a strong argument to ensure that “tampering with the data” can never be detected.

    or

    Maybe you just have a strange definition of a miracle?

  23. TA:

    I see your claim/boilerplate — it seems to be a pretty standard talking point used to push a priori materialism under the name methodological naturalism or the like:

    If you believe that a supernatural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y. (There is always the chance that the experimental result happened because the supernatural entity intervened to make it turn out that way).

    The main problem is that you have first and foremost offered a strawman caricature, one that actually curs clean across the actual history of the rise of modern science. Should it not give you pause, that the likes of Boyle, Kepler, newton etc believed in a world ordered by the mind of God so that in science we think God’s ordering and sustaining thoughts after him? Surely, the eminence of these thinkers as founders of science should tell you that history is advising us that science is very possible within a theistic worldview that is open to the miraculous.

    In short, your assertion fails the actual history of science test.

    Why is that so?

    C S Lewis offers a key clue: on any reasonable theistic view and definition, miracles are signs that to work as signs, must stand out from the usual course of the world. Where that basic and mundane course of the world is itself sustained by the will of the Deity as a means of governing creation.

    (This is for instance very strongly asserted in Newton’s General Scholium to Principia, i.e. the most important book of science written in the past 400 years. So, someone has not done due diligence before making confident manner assertions, and/or is suppressing inconvenient but material evidence. In either case they know or SHOULD know better.)

    In short, theism posits a cosmos, not a chaos.

    It is indeed true that science is not feasible in a chaos, but it is a caricature of theism to suggest that it teaches or implies that we live in a chaos.

    An open universe in which for good reason God may act in other than the usual way (creating a sign that points to realities beyond our mundane world order), is not one that is hostile to genuine science. Science that is humble enough to for instance recognise the provisionality of its findings, and to accept that in the end it offers models made by imperfect people which therefore are likely to be imperfect, but at the same time should seek, value and prize truth about the world.

    In that context, it is those who would impose an a priori materialism who are censors and are profoundly anti-scientific. For they are taking science captive to an ideology. And, those induced to become fellow travellers with that ideologisation, are enablers of the undermining of the social consensus that lies behind the credibility of science in our day. if you turn science into politics, eventually enough people will get the message that science will be seen as simply a party-platform label. At least, in the relevant fields.

    That is already happening with climate science.

    Or, in the words of the child’s story, those who cry wolf wolf when there is no wolf, will one day lose all respect and credibility when a real wolf is tearing the flock.

    So, please, think again.

    KF

  24. uoflcard:

    “Okay I made it to the 20 minute mark (of the PZ Myer video)”

    I feel for you, I sat through about that much of his Junk DNA video, skipping though, along the high points of his powerpoints, to gather his main claims at the end, which, if I remember correctly, he claimed that DNA was something like greater than 50% completely functionless. So much for unbiased science on his part. But here PZ’s primary claim (accusation against Theists) is that:

    “Scientists! If You’re Not an Atheist, You Aren’t Doing Science Right!”

    But as was pointed out so eloquently in a post that came out yesterday in the Christian Post, in a article challenging Lawrence Krauss’s over the top claims about the significance of the Higg’s boson (The ‘God’ particle):

    The God Particle: Not the God of the Gaps, But the Whole Show – Monday, Aug 20, 2012
    Excerpt: It is Krauss’s atheism that is at war with his science – not God.
    http://www.christianpost.com/n.....how-80307/

    Indeed it seems that PZ Myers, in his irrational, hate filled, war against God refuses to recognize that without God ‘science’, which he claims to love so much, is not even possible in the first place!

    Epistemology – Why Should The Human Mind Even Be Able To Comprehend Reality? – Stephen Meyer – video – (Notes in description)
    http://vimeo.com/32145998

    Why should the human mind be able to comprehend reality so deeply? – referenced article
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1qGvbg_212biTtvMschSGZ_9kYSqhooRN4OUW_Pw-w0E/edit

    Moreover, Myers, with his a-priorily preferred theory of atheistic/materialistic neo-Darwinism, simply has no basis in science from which to work with:

    i.e. Although neo-Darwinists are infamous for claiming that Darwinian evolution is as well established as gravity. This claim is patently false! For one thing Gravity, as formulated within General Relativity, can be falsified:

    The happiest thought of my life.
    Then the Principle of Equivalence states that
    ‘the inertial and gravitational masses are identical.’
    The whole of the General Theory of Relativity rests on this postulate, and will fail if one can find a material for which the inertial and gravitational masses have different values.
    http://physics.ucr.edu/~wudka/.....ode85.html

    Whereas, neo-Darwinism has no identifiable falsification criteria:

    Science and Pseudoscience – Imre Lakatos
    “nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific” – Imre Lakatos (November 9, 1922 – February 2, 1974) a philosopher of mathematics and science, , quote as stated in 1973 LSE Scientific Method Lecture

    Moreover, General Relativity has been confirmed to stunning degree of accuracy:

    Einstein’s General Relativity Tested Again, Much More Stringently – 2010
    Excerpt: As Müller puts it, “If the time of freefall was extended to the age of the universe – 14 billion years – the time difference between the upper and lower routes would be a mere one thousandth of a second, and the accuracy of the measurement would be 60 ps, the time it takes for light to travel about a centimetre.”
    http://www.universetoday.com/5.....ringently/

    Whereas neo-Darwinists have never demonstrated that even a single protein (much less massively integrated protein networks) can arise by purely material processes:

    Evolution vs. Functional Proteins – Doug Axe – Video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4018222

    Moreover, not only is Darwinian evolution not even close to being as firmly established as gravity, (General Relativity), a strong case can now be made that Gravity, as described by General Relativity, arises as a ‘entropic force’, and therefore directly opposes the entire concept of Darwinian evolution (opposes the entire concept of random ‘bottom up’ evolution),,,

    Evolution is a Fact, Just Like Gravity is a Fact! UhOh! – January 2010
    Excerpt: The results of this paper suggest gravity arises as an entropic force, once space and time themselves have emerged.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....fact-uhoh/

    The Physics of the Small and Large: What is the Bridge Between Them? Roger Penrose
    Excerpt: “The time-asymmetry is fundamentally connected to with the Second Law of Thermodynamics: indeed, the extraordinarily special nature (to a greater precision than about 1 in 10^10^123, in terms of phase-space volume) can be identified as the “source” of the Second Law (Entropy).”

    How special was the big bang? – Roger Penrose
    Excerpt: This now tells us how precise the Creator’s aim must have been: namely to an accuracy of one part in 10^10^123.
    (from the Emperor’s New Mind, Penrose, pp 339-345 – 1989)

    Roger Penrose – How Special Was The Big Bang?
    “But why was the big bang so precisely organized, whereas the big crunch (or the singularities in black holes) would be expected to be totally chaotic? It would appear that this question can be phrased in terms of the behaviour of the WEYL part of the space-time curvature at space-time singularities. What we appear to find is that there is a constraint WEYL = 0 (or something very like this) at initial space-time singularities-but not at final singularities-and this seems to be what confines the Creator’s choice to this very tiny region of phase space.”

    Entropy of the Universe – Hugh Ross – May 2010
    Excerpt: Egan and Lineweaver found that supermassive black holes are the largest contributor to the observable universe’s entropy. They showed that these supermassive black holes contribute about 30 times more entropy than what the previous research teams estimated.
    http://www.reasons.org/entropy-universe

    ,,, there is also a very strong case to be made that the cosmological constant in General Relativity, the expansion of space-time (Dark Energy), drives, or is deeply connected to, entropy as measured by diffusion:

    Big Rip
    Excerpt: The Big Rip is a cosmological hypothesis first published in 2003, about the ultimate fate of the universe, in which the matter of universe, from stars and galaxies to atoms and subatomic particles, are progressively torn apart by the expansion of the universe at a certain time in the future. Theoretically, the scale factor of the universe becomes infinite at a finite time in the future.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Rip

  25. Thus, though neo-Darwinian atheists may claim that evolution is as well established as Gravity, the plain fact of the matter is that General Relativity itself, which is by far our best description of Gravity, testifies strongly against the entire concept of ‘bottom up’ neo-Darwinian evolution.

    further notes:

    Are You Looking for the Simplest and Clearest Argument for Intelligent Design? – Granville Sewell (2nd Law) – video
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....56711.html

    Physicist Rob Sheldon offers some thoughts on Sal Cordova vs. Granville Sewell on 2nd Law Thermo – July 5, 2012
    Excerpt: This is where Granville derives the potency of his argument, since a living organism certainly shows unusual permutations of the atoms, and thus has stat mech entropy that via Boltzmann, must obey the 2nd law. If life violates this, then it must not be lawfully possible for evolution to happen (without an input of work or information.)
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....aw-thermo/

    In further critique

    Science and Pseudoscience (transcript) -
    “In degenerating programmes, however, theories are fabricated only in order to accommodate known facts” – Imre Lakatos (November 9, 1922 – February 2, 1974) a philosopher of mathematics and science, , quote as stated in 1973 LSE Scientific Method Lecture

    Even Darwinists are now admitting that their theory has suffered major renovations in order to fit what the evidence is now saying:

    EMBO workshop focuses on “phenomena that are not part of the traditional narrative of molecular evolution … ” August 2012
    Excerpt: It is impossible to deny that our ideas on evolution are shifting from the simple and rigid ‘random mutation–selective fixation’ scheme epitomized in the Modern Synthesis, to a much more complex, nuanced picture. Under the new view, the interplay between stochasticity and adaptive mechanisms is extensive and essential, both in the generation of variation and in the fixation of the changes.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....evolution/

    also of note, quantum mechanics, which is even stronger than general relativity in terms of predictive power, has some very interesting assumptions built into it that make it so successful as a theory:

    Can quantum theory be improved? – July 23, 2012
    Excerpt: However, in the new paper, the physicists have experimentally demonstrated that there cannot exist any alternative theory that increases the predictive probability of quantum theory by more than 0.165, with the only assumption being that measurement (conscious observation) parameters can be chosen independently (free choice, free will assumption) of the other parameters of the theory.,,,
    ,, the experimental results provide the tightest constraints yet on alternatives to quantum theory. The findings imply that quantum theory is close to optimal in terms of its predictive power, even when the predictions are completely random.
    http://phys.org/news/2012-07-quantum-theory.html

    Needless to say, finding free will and consciousness to be ‘built into’ quantum mechanics as starting assumptions is VERY antithetical to the entire materialistic philosophy

  26. Plenty of people commenting here are happy to prescribe various ways in which their particular God is supposed or required to behave. Get back to me when you get confirmation from her one way or the other. But Kairosfocus takes the cake. He posted this:

    “Should it not give you pause, that the likes of Boyle, Kepler, newton etc believed in a world ordered by the mind of God so that in science we think God’s ordering and sustaining thoughts after him? Surely, the eminence of these thinkers as founders of science should tell you that history is advising us that science is very possible within a theistic worldview that is open to the miraculous.”

    But KF, haven’t you noticed something strange about the form of Boyle’s Law (or Keplers’ or Newtons’)? Boyle says:

    “pV=K”

    Boyle does not say:

    “pV=K (except when God intervenes to make sure that pV does not equal K)”

    I can only interpret your words, so I must assume that you think the necessary God of your religion is hidden inside the p or the V or the K (or perhaps the equality). Your call.

    Certainly Boyle and many other magnificent scientists were deeply religious, but there is no evidence that religion informed their results. They left their prayer book outside the laboratory, as every observant scientist does.

    KF also posted this (and then followed it up with some gratuitous fingerwagging):

    “It is indeed true that science is not feasible in a chaos, but it is a caricature of theism to suggest that it teaches or implies that we live in a chaos.”

    I have no idea what this means, so I can only respond with a well-known quote from Thomas Jefferson:

    “Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them; and no man ever had a distinct idea of the trinity. It is the mere Abracadabra of the mountebanks calling themselves the priests of Jesus.”

  27. timothya,

    Glad to know my radar is fully operational. You disregard overall points, cherry-picking what is convenient for your agenda.

    Get that fixed and then come back for real dialogue. Right now you are just a troll.

  28. Brent: give me an “overall point” to comment on and I will be glad to oblige if I find it interesting. But please don’t ask me to dredge through KF’s and Bornagain’s unreadable sequences of disarticulated quotemines.

    Ridicule is the only serious response to that form of argumentation. Your radar may be operational, but it is tuned to the wrong frequency.

  29. Well then, start, please, with making your case that:

    1) If God, no meaningful science.

    2) Because God can perform a miracle and interfere with the normal operations of nature, that He must.

    3) A miracle would even be known as such if they were a regular occurrence (and please stop acting as if you didn’t/couldn’t get that very, very valid and pertinent part of KF’s post. Really!)

  30. Brent:

    1. If miracles (arbitrary violations of the regularities of nature) are possible then no reliable science is possible (that is, we can never rely on any experimental result because we can never know whether we are observing the regularity or the miracle).

    2. I never imputed any motivations to God (capriciousness, necessity or intentionality etc etc), nor would I (since I don’t anthropomorphise nature). I leave that mode of thinking to people who feel obliged to believe that nature is imbued with a spirit.

    3. Regular miracles are a valid point? When? Where? Do you have an actual example of such a thing? Don’t make me tired.

  31. These “answers” make me sure my radar is both functional and properly tuned.

    1) This is a simple assertion. I asked you to “make your case”. You simply parroted what you were saying from the beginning. Combined with 3, which you apparently didn’t understand (i.e., you need to make your case that miracles would be even knowable as such if they were regular occurrences. If miracles regularly happened, they would be considered normal and not supernatural. The idea of miracle presupposes regularity. If no regularity, no chance of miracles being known as such. Therefore, regularity, necessarily and experimentally, is the RULE!), shows you have not thought about this very thoroughly at all.

    2) This is a total cop-out! You have, by implication, stated clearly that it would be logically impossible for God not to interfere with the normal, regular operations of nature if He existed. MAKE YOUR CASE! If you can rationally hash that out you could have a good argument against theism.

    In other words, what you must be saying is that it is not possible, in any possible world, that God could conceivably create a universe that ran without Him performing intervening acts often enough to thwart a scientific enterprise. This is what you need to show, not just assert.

    3) We can talk on miracles later if you’d like. I thought it was clear that we were, until now, speaking theoretically, logically, hypothetically. Sorry you missed the “if”.

  32. tim you state:

    If miracles (arbitrary violations of the regularities of nature) are possible then no reliable science is possible

    EXACTLY RIGHT TIM!

    BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010
    Excerpt: multiplying without limit the opportunities for any event to happen in the context of a multiverse – where it is alleged that anything can spontaneously jump into existence without cause – produces a situation in which no absurdity is beyond the pale.
    For instance, we find multiverse cosmologists debating the “Boltzmann Brain” problem: In the most “reasonable” models for a multiverse, it is immeasurably more likely that our consciousness is associated with a brain that has spontaneously fluctuated into existence in the quantum vacuum than it is that we have parents and exist in an orderly universe with a 13.7 billion-year history. This is absurd. The multiverse hypothesis is therefore falsified because it renders false what we know to be true about ourselves. Clearly, embracing the multiverse idea entails a nihilistic irrationality that destroys the very possibility of science. – quoted from Washington Times article

    The Absurdity of Inflation, String Theory & The Multiverse – Dr. Bruce Gordon – video
    http://vimeo.com/34468027

    Here is the last power-point slide of the preceding video by Dr. Gordon:

    The End Of Materialism?
    * In the multiverse, anything can happen for no reason at all.
    * In other words, the materialist is forced to believe in random miracles (ARBITRARY MIRACLES) as a explanatory principle.
    * In a Theistic universe, nothing happens without a reason. Miracles are therefore intelligently directed deviations from divinely maintained regularities, and are thus expressions of rational purpose.
    * Scientific materialism is (therefore) epistemically self defeating: it makes scientific rationality impossible.

    Further notes on the (science defeating) irrationality of relying on ‘arbitrary’ random miracles as a explanatory principle:

    Evolution and the Illusion of Randomness – Talbott – Fall 2011
    Excerpt: The situation calls to mind a widely circulated cartoon by Sidney Harris, which shows two scientists in front of a blackboard on which a body of theory has been traced out with the usual tangle of symbols, arrows, equations, and so on. But there’s a gap in the reasoning at one point, filled by the words, “Then a miracle occurs.” And the one scientist is saying to the other, “I think you should be more explicit here in step two.”
    In the case of evolution, I picture Dennett and Dawkins filling the blackboard with their vivid descriptions of living, highly regulated, coordinated, integrated, and intensely meaningful biological processes, and then inserting a small, mysterious gap in the middle, along with the words, “Here something random occurs.”
    This “something random” looks every bit as wishful as the appeal to a miracle. It is the central miracle in a gospel of meaninglessness, a “Randomness of the gaps,” demanding an extraordinarily blind faith. At the very least, we have a right to ask, “Can you be a little more explicit here?”
    http://www.thenewatlantis.com/.....randomness

    Murray Eden, as reported in “Heresy in the Halls of Biology: Mathematicians Question Darwinism,” Scientific Research, November 1967, p. 64.
    “It is our contention that if ‘random’ is given a serious and crucial interpretation from a probabilistic point of view, the randomness postulate is highly implausible and that an adequate scientific theory of evolution must await the discovery and elucidation of new natural laws—physical, physico-chemical, and biological.” Murray Eden, “Inadequacies of Neo-Darwinian Evolution as a Scientific Theory,” Mathematical Challenges to the Neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution, editors Paul S. Moorhead and Martin M. Kaplan, June 1967, p. 109.
    http://www.creationscience.com.....tes32.html

    Nobel Prize-Winning Physicist Wolfgang Pauli on the Empirical Problems with Neo-Darwinism – Casey Luskin – February 27, 2012
    Excerpt: “In discussions with biologists I met large difficulties when they apply the concept of ‘natural selection’ in a rather wide field, without being able to estimate the probability of the occurrence in a empirically given time of just those events, which have been important for the biological evolution. Treating the empirical time scale of the evolution theoretically as infinity they have then an easy game, apparently to avoid the concept of purposesiveness. While they pretend to stay in this way completely ‘scientific’ and ‘rational,’ they become actually very irrational, particularly because they use the word ‘chance’, not any longer combined with estimations of a mathematically defined probability, in its application to very rare single events more or less synonymous with the old word ‘miracle.’” Wolfgang Pauli (pp. 27-28) -
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....56771.html

  33. TA:

    I responded to a specific problem in how you portrayed theism in science. You decided to pick a handy point to drag a red herring and head off on a tangent to a strawman, exactly the original problem. And, I have not failed to notice the pouring on of oil of contempt and the snide flash of spark-words of the sort usually intended to ignite a fire and spread poisonous, choking, polarising clouds of confusion and contention.

    I notice that was immediately picked up.

    In short, the game is no longer working as easily as it once did, after many months of repeated exposure of the trifecta tactic.

    Perhaps it has not dawned on you that the orderliness of the cosmos and its fine tuned setting to an operating point that supports C-Chemistry, cell based life are factors that speak in this overall context?

    Has it not registered that theism — as the historic examples cited show — sees the general order of the cosmos as the law of its creator, and so that scientific thought on reasoned induction is confidently used as it thinks the thoughts of God after him?

    Has it not dawned on you that the same theists, down to today, hold that for good reason miracles will be rare and in particular contexts so that science will be able to confidently proceed on investigating the overall order of the cosmos?

    Indeed, has it never dawned on you that for a law there is usually a lawgiver, hence the significance of “laws of nature”?

    I guess I should pause to clip what you should have read and seriously reckoned with in the above link from Newton in his General Scholium:

    . . . This most beautiful system of the sun, planets, and comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being. And if the fixed stars are the centres of other like systems, these, being formed by the like wise counsel, must be all subject to the dominion of One; especially since the light of the fixed stars is of the same nature with the light of the sun, and from every system light passes into all the other systems: and lest the systems of the fixed stars should, by their gravity, fall on each other mutually, he hath placed those systems at immense distances one from another.

    This Being governs all things, not as the soul of the world, but as Lord over all; and on account of his dominion he is wont to be called Lord God pantokrator , or Universal Ruler . . . .

    Blind metaphysical necessity, which is certainly the same always and every where, could produce no variety of things. [i.e necessity does not produce contingency] All that diversity of natural things which we find suited to different times and places could arise from nothing but the ideas and will of a Being necessarily existing. [That is, implicitly rejects chance, Plato's third alternative and explicitly infers to the Designer of the Cosmos.] . . .

    Remember, onlookers, this is in the single most influential scientific work ever written. And, there is much more than I have clipped.

    KF

  34. Brent:

    1. “If miracles regularly happened, they would be considered normal and not supernatural.”

    Are you saying that we wouldn’t even necessarily recognise a miracle if it actually happened? That would come as a surprise for the miracle-hunters of the Catholic church who require such events as justification for canonising saints.

    2. “You have, by implication, stated clearly that it would be logically impossible for God not to interfere with the normal, regular operations of nature if He existed.”

    What are you smoking? I said this? I don’t think so. Here is what I think: every attempt to suppose a god-like intervention in nature is simply a logical fallacy that humans seem addicted to – imposing on nature an anthropomorphic principle (weird things happen in nature, therefore a human-like intelligence must be involved).

    A miracle, by definition, cannot be “normal”. It has to be an observed, verifiable interruption of the regularity of nature. In any case, you are assuming what you are required to demonstrate: that your God exists and intervenes in nature in detectable ways. Ante up evidence.

    3. I am happy to make angels dance on pinheads for the sake of a hypothetical discussion. But I simply don’t find that particular discussion interesting.

  35. Oh boy!

    Is it logically possible that God (a maximally great being) could have created a universe like this one in such a way that He needn’t interfere, but it would run according to rules “programmed in”? Yes/No

  36. This comment is directed to on-lookers,

    The miracles-destroy-science argument put forth by timothya requires that God be capricious and non-revelatory in order to work. Now when asked about the possibility that God could be intentional and revealing about his extraordinary work, we are told that it is defective to claim knowledge of God. We are to “get back” to him when we have confirmed this knowledge. It seems that claiming knowledge of how God works is impossible.

    But since timothya’s argument requires God to be capricious and non-revelatory, he has made an implicit knowledge claim. Maybe he should get back to us when he confirms God means to act that way.

  37. TA:

    Don’t you see the irony in:

    Here is what I think: every attempt to suppose a god-like intervention in nature is simply a logical fallacy that humans seem addicted to – imposing on nature an anthropomorphic principle (weird things happen in nature, therefore a human-like intelligence must be involved).

    A miracle, by definition, cannot be “normal”. It has to be an observed, verifiable interruption of the regularity of nature. In any case, you are assuming what you are required to demonstrate . . .

    Methinks you have here shown a problem with a question-begging assertion — how do you KNOW that EVERY case of the miraculous as experienced or reported is fallacious? And, you compound it by projection of question-begging unto theists who accept the supernatural and miraculous

    And BTW, the fact that I am sitting here next to one of my fav Math teachers, and typing to you, is itself testimony of a miracle. Absent a miracle of guidance, that led my mother to the right doctor whom she would never otherwise have heard of I would be dead these 40 and more years now.

    And in fact millions of people have over the centuries experienced God in life-changing,miracle working power. If the human mind is so delusional that this is all fallacious, then in fact you have decisively undercut the credibility of your own mind.

    later

    KF

  38. PS: It is worth footnoting that in his will Boyle endowed a lecture series in defense of the Christian view, from the sort of arguments above. And of course, there is no explicit statement of an “exception” to the law of the spring of the air, it being understood that science studies the usual course of the world. Or, do you think, say, Joseph was minded to privily put away his espoused wife because he believed there was no usual course of the world, or that Luke gave up his medical knowledge — or even praxis — because he came to believe that one rose from the dead in fulfillment of the promises of God? Etc?

  39. Brent: Yes, but since there can be no information transfer across the singularity, we will never know one way or the other. Such a universe would be indistinguishable from one that poofed into existence on its own. So why prefer a more complicated explanation? Roger of Ockham is your friend.

    Steve: My comments have nothing to do with whether miracles actually happen or not (though I admit my rather pointed mode of expression might lead you to think so). I make no claims about whether God acts or thinks in this or that way, only about why people so readily resort to supernatural causes.

    It is simply this. Humans are disposed to allocate unusual events to the supernatural (evidence: you’all). This mental trick may even have been evolutionarily adaptive in the distant past, but the decline of miraculous events in recent centuries suggests our species is growing out of the habit.

    KF said this: “And in fact millions of people have over the centuries experienced God in life-changing,miracle working power.” This is a fact is it? I daresay millions of people believe they experienced God, but that is a different thing. In saying this, you are using precisely the same argument that you criticise defenders of evolution for: attempting to establish the truth of an idea by popular vote (does the phrase “150 years of criticism” ring a bell?).

  40. 40

    timothya,

    Ockham is meaningful as a lesson in parsimony. It was never intended to be a tool to avoid critical evidence.

  41. TA:

    Remember, this is the context in which your dismissals come to me: I would not be here to converse with you had it not been for a miracle of guidance on the day when my mother cried out in despair to God after nursing me through yet another awful night.

    (I also testify to other cases of healings, including of myself. And let’s just say that there is a reason why a recent notorious web skeptic site had to admit that a significant majority of physicians acknowledge the reality of healings.)

    Your skeptical dismissals and suggestion that my experiences are “fallacies” therefore ring very hollow to me.

    Second, I am astonished that you would imagine that in pointing to my own experience and that of quite literally millions across the world and for thousands of years, I am appealing to blind adherence to authority or to blind adherence to an opinion.

    Frankly, whatever you may explain away the vast body of experience and positive life transformation I speak of, that body of experience and how it is understood is a fact with as good a basis of testimony and record as anything you may encounter in any book of history or in any court room.

    Lastly, I would not so hastily dismiss the millions — including some of the leading figures of our civilisation who testify to life-transforming encounters and relationships with God. (Pascal’s night of fire, as just one case, is well known in history. Similarly, the whole twelve-step recovery movement pivots on life-transforming experience of God’s help; accounting for thousands and thousands of cases. Remember, those who study such will consistently inform us how delusions are disintegrative, not integrative and healing.)

    If the human mind is that prone to delusion, you will find yourself in the same boat in dealing with your own perceptions and beliefs.

    It is not helpful to saw off the branch on which you are sitting, too.

    Please, think again.

    And, oh yes, on Boyle, a founder of the Royal Society, you may profit by reading in his The Christian Virtuoso [= learned scientist], to get a balance to the methodological Naturalism you have been immersed in. Let me clip (cleaning up a messy scan, I will leave in the f = s):

    I muft not [omit] that judicious Observation of one of the firft and greateft Experimental Philofophers of our Age, (Sir Francis Bacon) That God never wrought a Miracle to convince Athe-ifts, becaufe in his Vifible Works he had plac’d enough to do it, if they were not wanting to themfelves. The Reafon he gives for which Remark, I fhall confirm, by obfefving, that ’tis intimated in a paffage of St. Paul [Rom. i. 20.], afferting both that the in-vifible things of God are clearly feen from the Crea-tion of the World , as Tokens and Ef-fects, . . . and that his Divinity and Eternal Power may be fo well underftood by the things that are made, that the Gentiles, who had but the Light of Nature to lead them to the acknowledgment of the true God , were Excufelefs, for not being brought by that Guide to that Acknowledgment. And indeed, the Experimental Pht-lofophy giving us a more clear difco-very , than Strangers to it have, of the divine Excellencies difplay’d in the Fabrick and Conduct of the Univerfe, and of the Creatures it confifts of, very much difpofeth the mind, to afcribe such admirable Effects to fo incompetent and pitiful a Caufe as Blind Chance, or the tumultuous Juftlings of Atomical Portions of fenfelefs Matter and leads it direcly to the acknowledgment and adoration of a moft Intelligent,Powerful and Benign Author of things, to whom alone fuch excellent Productions may, with the greateft Congruity, be afcrib’d.

    In short, far from your caricature of a theistic chaos that undermines the possibility of science, we see here how theistic thought was a part and parcel of the confidence of founders of modern science in a rational and intelligible cosmos that reflected its Creator.

    KF

    PS: Onlookers, FYI, my worldview 101 level case on why I take the view I hold is here on in context.

  42. F/N: Nor am I blind to how you would compare an opinion of a dominant school of thought with the EXPERIENCE of millions. FYI, there are no observations of Darwinian or similar macro-evo, for the excellent reason that we were not there. Think about how you are in effect equating a model of the unobserved past, with the experience of millions. The two things are not even in the same epistemic category.

  43. timothya you make a very peculiar claim here:

    there can be no information transfer across the singularity,

    Now let’s focus in on that word information that you so nonchalantly used and see what we can glean from it:

    Quantum Evidence for a Theistic Big Bang and universe
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1agaJIWjPWHs5vtMx5SkpaMPbantoP471k0lNBUXg0Xo/edit

    From the best scientific evidence we now have, from multiple intersecting lines of evidence, we now have very good reason to believe that the entire universe came instantaneously into origination at the Big Bang. Not only was all mass-energy brought into being, but space-time itself was also instantaneously brought into being at the Big Bang!!!

    “Every solution to the equations of general relativity guarantees the existence of a singular boundary for space and time in the past.”
    (Hawking, Penrose, Ellis) – 1970
    http://www.leaderu.com/real/ri9404/bigbang.html

    “All the evidence we have says that the universe had a beginning.” – (Paper announced at Hawking’s 70th birthday party)
    Cosmologist Alexander Vilenkin of Tufts University in Boston – January 2012
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....beginning/

    Thus it logically follows that whatever brought the universe into being had to be transcendent of space-time, mass-energy. Yet the only thing that we know of that is completely transcendent of space-time, matter-energy is information. Thus the question becomes did information bring space-time, mass-energy into being?,,, simple enough question, but how do we prove it? It turns out that quantum teleportation breakthroughs have shed light directly on this question!,,, Here are a few experiments establishing the ‘beyond space and time’ ‘information theoretic’ origin, and sustaining, of this universe,;

    Quantum Mechanics has now been extended by Anton Zeilinger, and team, to falsify local realism (reductive materialism) without even using quantum entanglement to do it. i.e. one must now appeal to a ‘non-local’, beyond space and time, cause to explain the continued existence of photons within spacetime:

    ‘Quantum Magic’ Without Any ‘Spooky Action at a Distance’ – June 2011
    Excerpt: A team of researchers led by Anton Zeilinger at the University of Vienna and the Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information of the Austrian Academy of Sciences used a system which does not allow for entanglement, and still found results which cannot be interpreted classically.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....111942.htm

    The following experiments demonstrate that energy and mass reduce to quantum information;

    How Teleportation Will Work -
    Excerpt: In 1993, the idea of teleportation moved out of the realm of science fiction and into the world of theoretical possibility. It was then that physicist Charles Bennett and a team of researchers at IBM confirmed that quantum teleportation was possible, but only if the original object being teleported was destroyed. — As predicted, the original photon no longer existed once the replica was made.
    http://science.howstuffworks.c.....ation1.htm

    Quantum Teleportation – IBM Research Page
    Excerpt: “it would destroy the original (photon) in the process,,”
    http://www.research.ibm.com/qu.....portation/

    Explaining Information Transfer in Quantum Teleportation: Armond Duwell †‡ University of Pittsburgh
    Excerpt: In contrast to a classical bit, the description of a (photon) qubit requires an infinite amount of information. The amount of information is infinite because two real numbers are required in the expansion of the state vector of a two state quantum system (Jozsa 1997, 1) — Concept 2. is used by Bennett, et al. Recall that they infer that since an infinite amount of information is required to specify a (photon) qubit, an infinite amount of information must be transferred to teleport.
    http://www.cas.umt.edu/phil/fa.....lPSA2K.pdf

    ,,,The following articles show that even atoms are subject to ‘instantaneous’ teleportation:,,,

    Ions have been teleported successfully for the first time by two independent research groups
    Excerpt: In fact, copying isn’t quite the right word for it. In order to reproduce the quantum state of one atom in a second atom, the original has to be destroyed. This is unavoidable – it is enforced by the laws of quantum mechanics, which stipulate that you can’t ‘clone’ a quantum state. In principle, however, the ‘copy’ can be indistinguishable from the original (that was destroyed),,,
    http://www.rsc.org/chemistrywo.....ammeup.asp

    Atom takes a quantum leap – 2009
    Excerpt: Ytterbium ions have been ‘teleported’ over a distance of a metre.,,,
    “What you’re moving is information, not the actual atoms,” says Chris Monroe, from the Joint Quantum Institute at the University of Maryland in College Park and an author of the paper. But as two particles of the same type differ only in their quantum states, the transfer of quantum information is equivalent to moving the first particle to the location of the second.
    http://www.freerepublic.com/fo.....1769/posts

  44. ,,These following experiments offer further confirmation that the teleportation of information is indeed ‘instantaneous’, thus demonstrating transcendence, and even dominion, of space and time;,,,

    Light and Quantum Entanglement Reflect Some Characteristics Of God – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4102182/

    Researchers Succeed in Quantum Teleportation of Light Waves – April 2011
    Excerpt: In this experiment, researchers in Australia and Japan were able to transfer quantum information from one place to another without having to physically move it. It was destroyed in one place and instantly resurrected in another, “alive” again and unchanged. This is a major advance, as previous teleportation experiments were either very slow or caused some information to be lost.
    http://www.popsci.com/technolo.....-computing

    Here is another experiment which demonstrated quantum information’s dominion over space and time (specifically time);

    Physicists describe method to observe timelike entanglement – January 2011
    Excerpt: In “ordinary” quantum entanglement, two particles possess properties that are inherently linked with each other, even though the particles may be spatially separated by a large distance. Now, physicists S. Jay Olson and Timothy C. Ralph from the University of Queensland have shown that it’s possible to create entanglement between regions of spacetime that are separated in time but not in space, and then to convert the timelike entanglement into normal spacelike entanglement. They also discuss the possibility of using this timelike entanglement from the quantum vacuum for a process they call “teleportation in time.” “To me, the exciting aspect of this result (that entanglement exists between the future and past) is that it is quite a general property of nature and opens the door to new creativity, since we know that entanglement can be viewed as a resource for quantum technology,” Olson told PhysOrg.com.
    http://www.physorg.com/news/20.....ement.html

    and this experiment:

    Here’s a variation of Wheeler’s Delayed Choice experiment, which highlights quantum information’s transcendence of time so as to effect ‘spooky action into the past’;

    Quantum physics mimics spooky action into the past – April 23, 2012
    Excerpt: The authors experimentally realized a “Gedankenexperiment” called “delayed-choice entanglement swapping”, formulated by Asher Peres in the year 2000. Two pairs of entangled photons are produced, and one photon from each pair is sent to a party called Victor. Of the two remaining photons, one photon is sent to the party Alice and one is sent to the party Bob. Victor can now choose between two kinds of measurements. If he decides to measure his two photons in a way such that they are forced to be in an entangled state, then also Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair becomes entangled. If Victor chooses to measure his particles individually, Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair ends up in a separable state. Modern quantum optics technology allowed the team to delay Victor’s choice and measurement with respect to the measurements which Alice and Bob perform on their photons. “We found that whether Alice’s and Bob’s photons are entangled and show quantum correlations or are separable and show classical correlations can be decided after they have been measured”, explains Xiao-song Ma, lead author of the study.
    According to the famous words of Albert Einstein, the effects of quantum entanglement appear as “spooky action at a distance”. The recent experiment has gone one remarkable step further. “Within a naïve classical world view, quantum mechanics can even mimic an influence of future actions on past events”, says Anton Zeilinger.
    http://phys.org/news/2012-04-q.....ction.html

    ,,,Whereas these following experiment shows that quantum information is ‘conserved’,,,

    Quantum no-hiding theorem experimentally confirmed for first time
    Excerpt: In the classical world, information can be copied and deleted at will. In the quantum world, however, the conservation of quantum information means that information cannot be created nor destroyed. This concept stems from two fundamental theorems of quantum mechanics: the no-cloning theorem and the no-deleting theorem. A third and related theorem, called the no-hiding theorem, addresses information loss in the quantum world. According to the no-hiding theorem, if information is missing from one system (which may happen when the system interacts with the environment), then the information is simply residing somewhere else in the Universe; in other words, the missing information cannot be hidden in the correlations between a system and its environment.
    http://www.physorg.com/news/20.....tally.html

    Quantum no-deleting theorem
    Excerpt: A stronger version of the no-cloning theorem and the no-deleting theorem provide permanence to quantum information. To create a copy one must import the information from some part of the universe and to delete a state one needs to export it to another part of the universe where it will continue to exist.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q.....onsequence

    ,,,Moreover, when the quantum wave state (superposition), which is defined as a infinite dimensional state, a wave state which can be encoded with pixelated information (University of Rochester), collapses to its particle state, the collapsed state yields only a single bit of information:,,,

    Wave function
    Excerpt “wave functions form an abstract vector space”,,, This vector space is infinite-dimensional, because there is no finite set of functions which can be added together in various combinations to create every possible function.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W.....ctor_space

    Single photons to soak up data:
    Excerpt: the orbital angular momentum of a photon can take on an infinite number of values. Since a photon can also exist in a superposition of these states, it could – in principle – be encoded with an infinite amount of information.
    http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/7201

    Quantum Computing – Stanford Encyclopedia
    Excerpt: Theoretically, a single qubit can store an infinite amount of information, yet when measured (and thus collapsing the Quantum Wave state) it yields only the classical result (0 or 1),,,
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entr.....tcomp/#2.1

  45. Zeilinger’s principle
    The principle that any elementary system carries just one bit of information. This principle was put forward by the Austrian physicist Anton Zeilinger in 1999 and subsequently developed by him to derive several aspects of quantum mechanics.
    http://science.jrank.org/pages.....z17a7f88PM

    Why the Quantum? It from Bit? A Participatory Universe?
    Excerpt: In conclusion, it may very well be said that information is the irreducible kernel from which everything else flows. Thence the question why nature appears quantized is simply a consequence of the fact that information itself is quantized by necessity. It might even be fair to observe that the concept that information is fundamental is very old knowledge of humanity, witness for example the beginning of gospel according to John: “In the beginning was the Word.” Anton Zeilinger – a leading expert in quantum teleportation:

    ,,,moreover, encoded information, such as we find encoded in computers, and yes, such as we find encoded in DNA, is found to be a subset of ‘conserved’ quantum information:,,,

    Quantum knowledge cools computers: New understanding of entropy – June 2011
    Excerpt: No heat, even a cooling effect;
    In the case of perfect classical knowledge of a computer memory (zero entropy), deletion of the data requires in theory no energy at all. The researchers prove that “more than complete knowledge” from quantum entanglement with the memory (negative entropy) leads to deletion of the data being accompanied by removal of heat from the computer and its release as usable energy. This is the physical meaning of negative entropy.
    Renner emphasizes, however, “This doesn’t mean that we can develop a perpetual motion machine.” The data can only be deleted once, so there is no possibility to continue to generate energy. The process also destroys the entanglement, and it would take an input of energy to reset the system to its starting state. The equations are consistent with what’s known as the second law of thermodynamics: the idea that the entropy of the universe can never decrease. Vedral says “We’re working on the edge of the second law. If you go any further, you will break it.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....134300.htm

    ,,,The following logical deduction and evidence shows that consciousness precedes the collapse of the ‘infinite information’ of the quantum wave state to the single bit of the ‘uncertain’ particle state,,,

    The argument for God from consciousness can be framed like this:

    1. Consciousness either precedes all of material reality or is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality.
    2. If consciousness is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality then consciousness will be found to have no special position within material reality. Whereas conversely, if consciousness precedes material reality then consciousness will be found to have a special position within material reality.
    3. Consciousness is found to have a special, even central, position within material reality.
    4. Therefore, consciousness is found to precede material reality.

    Three intersecting lines of experimental evidence from quantum mechanics that shows that consciousness precedes material reality
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1G_Fi50ljF5w_XyJHfmSIZsOcPFhgoAZ3PRc_ktY8cFo/edit

    “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.”
    Eugene Wigner (1902 -1995) from his collection of essays “Symmetries and Reflections – Scientific Essays”; Eugene Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963.

    ,,,Wigner stated this in regards to his Nobel Prize winning work on Quantum Symmetries,,,

    Eugene Wigner
    Excerpt: To express this basic experience in a more direct way: the world does not have a privileged center, there is no absolute rest, preferred direction, unique origin of calendar time, even left and right seem to be rather symmetric. The interference of electrons, photons, neutrons has indicated that the state of a particle can be described by a vector possessing a certain number of components. As the observer is replaced by another observer (working elsewhere, looking at a different direction, using another clock, perhaps being left-handed), the state of the very same particle is described by another vector, obtained from the previous vector by multiplying it with a matrix. This matrix transfers from one observer to another.
    http://www.reak.bme.hu/Wigner_.....io/wb1.htm

    ,,,i.e. In the experiment the ‘world’ (i.e. the universe) does not have a ‘privileged center’. Yet strangely, the conscious observer does exhibit a ‘privileged center’. This is since the ‘matrix’, which determines which vector will be used to describe the particle in the experiment, is ‘observer-centric’ in its origination! Thus explaining Wigner’s dramatic statement, “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.”,,,

    The following solidified Wigner’s work from another angle;

    “I’m going to talk about the Bell inequality, and more importantly a new inequality that you might not have heard of called the Leggett inequality, that was recently measured. It was actually formulated almost 30 years ago by Professor Leggett, who is a Nobel Prize winner, but it wasn’t tested until about a year and a half ago (in 2007), when an article appeared in Nature, that the measurement was made by this prominent quantum group in Vienna led by Anton Zeilinger, which they measured the Leggett inequality, which actually goes a step deeper than the Bell inequality and rules out any possible interpretation other than consciousness creates reality when the measurement is made.” – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D., Calphysics Institute, is an astrophysicist and author of over 130 scientific publications. – Preceding quote taken from this following video;

    Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness – A New Measurement – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D (Shortened version of entire video with notes in description of video)
    http://vimeo.com/37517080

    Quantum physics says goodbye to reality – Apr 20, 2007
    Excerpt: Many realizations of the thought experiment have indeed verified the violation of Bell’s inequality. These have ruled out all hidden-variables theories based on joint assumptions of realism, meaning that reality exists when we are not observing it; and locality, meaning that separated events cannot influence one another instantaneously. But a violation of Bell’s inequality does not tell specifically which assumption – realism, locality or both – is discordant with quantum mechanics.
    Markus Aspelmeyer, Anton Zeilinger and colleagues from the University of Vienna, however, have now shown that realism is more of a problem than locality in the quantum world. They devised an experiment that violates a different inequality proposed by physicist Anthony Leggett in 2003 that relies only on realism, and relaxes the reliance on locality. To do this, rather than taking measurements along just one plane of polarization, the Austrian team took measurements in additional, perpendicular planes to check for elliptical polarization.
    They found that, just as in the realizations of Bell’s thought experiment, Leggett’s inequality is violated – thus stressing the quantum-mechanical assertion that reality does not exist when we’re not observing it. “Our study shows that ‘just’ giving up the concept of locality would not be enough to obtain a more complete description of quantum mechanics,” Aspelmeyer told Physics Web. “You would also have to give up certain intuitive features of realism.”
    http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/27640

    Nonlocal “realistic” Leggett models can be considered refuted by the before-before experiment – Antoine Suarez Center for Quantum Philosophy, – 2008
    Excerpt: (page 3) The independence of quantum measurement from the presence of human consciousness has not been proved wrong by any experiment to date.,,, “nonlocal correlations happen from outside space-time, in the sense that there is no story in space-time that tells us how they happen.”
    http://www.quantumphil.org/SuarezFOOP201R2.pdf

    And to further solidify the case that ‘consciousness precedes reality’ the violation of Leggett’s inequalities were extended in 2010:

    Violation of Leggett inequalities in orbital angular momentum subspaces – 2010
    Main results. We extend the violation of Leggett inequalities to the orbital angular momentum (OAM) state space of photons, which is associated with their helical wavefronts. We define our measurements in a Bloch sphere for OAM and measure the Leggett parameter LN (where N is the number of settings for the signal photon) as we change the angle ? (see figure). We observe excellent agreement with quantum mechanical predictions (red line), and show a violation of five and six standard deviations for N = 3 and N = 4, respectively.
    http://iopscience.iop.org/1367-2630/12/12/123007

  46. ,,,It is important to note that the following experiment actually encoded information into a photon while it was in its quantum wave state, thus destroying the notion, held by many, that the wave function was not ‘physically real’ but was merely ‘abstract’. i.e. How can information possibly be encoded into something that is not physically real but merely abstract?,,,

    Ultra-Dense Optical Storage – on One Photon
    Excerpt: Researchers at the University of Rochester have made an optics breakthrough that allows them to encode an entire image’s worth of data into a photon, slow the image down for storage, and then retrieve the image intact.
    http://www.physorg.com/news88439430.html

    Information In Photon – Robert W. Boyd – slides from presentation
    http://www.quantumphotonics.uo.....-InPho.pdf

    Information in a Photon – Robert W. Boyd – 2010
    Excerpt: By its conventional definition, a photon is one unit of excitation of a mode of the electromagnetic field. The modes of the electromagnetic field constitute a countably infinite set of basis functions, and in this sense the amount of information that can be impressed onto an individual photon is unlimited.
    http://www.pqeconference.com/p.....td/013.pdf

    Here is a more rigorous measurement of the wave function which establishes it as ‘physically real’;

    Direct measurement of the quantum wavefunction – June 2011
    Excerpt: The wavefunction is the complex distribution used to completely describe a quantum system, and is central to quantum theory. But despite its fundamental role, it is typically introduced as an abstract element of the theory with no explicit definition.,,, Here we show that the wavefunction can be measured directly by the sequential measurement of two complementary variables of the system. The crux of our method is that the first measurement is performed in a gentle way through weak measurement so as not to invalidate the second. The result is that the real and imaginary components of the wavefunction appear directly on our measurement apparatus. We give an experimental example by directly measuring the transverse spatial wavefunction of a single photon, a task not previously realized by any method.
    http://www.nature.com/nature/j.....10120.html

    ,,,The following paper mathematically corroborated the preceding experiment and cleaned up some pretty nasty probabilistic incongruities that arose from a purely statistical interpretation, i.e. it seems that stacking a ‘random infinity’, (parallel universes to explain quantum wave collapse), on top of another ‘random infinity’, to explain quantum entanglement, leads to irreconcilable mathematical absurdities within quantum mechanics:,,,

    Quantum Theory’s ‘Wavefunction’ Found to Be Real Physical Entity: Scientific American – November 2011
    Excerpt: David Wallace, a philosopher of physics at the University of Oxford, UK, says that the theorem is the most important result in the foundations of quantum mechanics that he has seen in his 15-year professional career. “This strips away obscurity and shows you can’t have an interpretation of a quantum state as probabilistic,” he says.
    http://www.scientificamerican......vefunction

    The quantum (wave) state cannot be interpreted statistically – November 2011
    http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/1111.3328

    Now, I find the preceding to be absolutely fascinating! A photon, in its quantum wave state, is found to be mathematically defined as a ‘infinite-dimensional’ state, which ‘requires an infinite amount of information’ to describe it properly, can be encoded with information in its ‘infinite dimensional’ state, and this ‘infinite dimensional’ photon is found to collapse, instantaneously, and thus ‘non-locally’, to just a ’1 or 0? state, out of a infinite number of possibilities that the photon could have collapsed to instead! Moreover, consciousness is found to precede the collapse of the wavefunction to its particle state. Now my question to materialistic atheists is this, “Exactly what ’cause’ has been postulated throughout history to be completely independent of any space-time constraints, as well as possessing infinite knowledge, so as to be the ‘sufficient cause’ to explain what we see in the quantum wave collapse of a photon???

    John 1:1-5
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

    ,,,In my personal opinion, even though not hashed out in exhaustive detail yet, all this evidence is about as sweet as it can get in experimental science as to providing ‘proof’, at least as much ‘proof’ as empirical evidence will allow, that Almighty God created and sustains this universe.,,,

    The Word Is Alive – Casting Crowns – music video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/5197438/

  47. I asked:

    Is it logically possible that God (a maximally great being) could have created a universe like this one in such a way that He needn’t interfere, but it would run according to rules “programmed in”? Yes/No

    You answered:

    Brent: Yes, but since there can be no information transfer across the singularity, we will never know one way or the other. Such a universe would be indistinguishable from one that poofed into existence on its own. So why prefer a more complicated explanation? Roger of Ockham is your friend.

    So you again, very trolly, twist and manipulate my words into as self-serving a meaning as possible. I didn’t say that God could not interfere, but that He need not.

    Goodbye, troll.

  48. Public Service Announcement

    There are different ways of dealing with people like Tim. One I’m finding effective, after giving the benefit of the doubt, is to ask yes/no questions. I could, of course, repeat my last question to Tim, not leaving him room to slither out of the side of the sandwich, but it is apparent that he isn’t interested in being rational or coherent. He is satisfied with playing games. He is trolling.

    He stated his position which, on the surface, is clear. But he either cannot, or will not, show that his reasoning for his position has any rational or coherent foundation. So, in actuality, his position is unclear, which he obviously prefers, and for obvious reasons. He knows he has no foundation for his position. And to try to argue with someone who will not state a clear position is like fighting the wind. In this case, even the wind doesn’t know where it’s blowing.

  49. Brent:

    You miss the point of what I said. I agree with you that it is logically possible for your proposed universe to exist (that is, one in which God need not interfere). If God, indeed, did not interfere, then such universe would be indistinguishable from one that was not created by God. We could not tell the difference between the two from any information available within the universe.

  50. Onlookers (and TA),

    I think I am going to take a leaf from Brent’s book.

    Of course, in so doing, I note how — having raised Boyle’s law of the spring of the air as an example to try to counter the correction that the miraculous is quite consistent with a world that follows a usual course amenable to science — TA studiously ignores the inconvenient truth about Boyle. I think this is a clear case to be put on the table in challenge to his prejudice against theists, that imagines us to be irrational devotees of chaos rather than cosmos, thus enemies of science.

    Let us therefore pose a few yes/no Q’s:

    1 –> Is is so that Boyle was a pivotal founder of science and especially of the priority of experiment?

    2 –> Is it true that he was one of the 12 charter members of the Royal Society, the oldest Scientific Society, that still publishes the longest-running Journal?

    3 –> Is it fair to conclude, then, that he was a founding champion of modern science?

    4 –> Is it true that in light of a vivid sense of God and our accountability before him, occasioned by a thunderstorm (BTW, this is similar to the life of Luther), he had a clear conversion experience that — never mind the inevitable struggles and stumbles of life — profoundly shaped his life from that time on?

    5 –> Is it true that he endowed a course of lectures in defense of the Christian faith from atheists and fellow travellers? (BTW, does this not also show that it was quite possible to be an open atheist or the like as a member of “Society” in those days?)

    6 –> Did he or did he not, writing across decades, publish a series of works, not only on science and popular science [including pioneering publishing in the vernacular], but also on theology, philosophy and related apologetics topics?

    7 –> Did he or did he not publish as one such work, The Christian Virtuoso, defending the legitimacy of being a serious Christian and a practicing scientist, using as a pivotal argument what Paul wrote in Rom 1 about how the evident order of the universe speaks to one and all so plainly about the Lawgiver of the Laws of nature etc, that those who reject it are without excuse before Him?

    8 –> And in particular, is or is not the following an excerpt from this book? To wit:

    I muft not [omit] that judicious Observation of one of the firft and greateft Experimental Philofophers of our Age, (Sir Francis Bacon) That God never wrought a Miracle to convince Athe-ifts, becaufe in his Vifible Works he had plac’d enough to do it, if they were not wanting to themfelves. The Reafon he gives for which Remark, I fhall confirm, by obfefving, that ’tis intimated in a paffage of St. Paul [Rom. i. 20.], afferting both that the in-vifible things of God are clearly feen from the Crea-tion of the World , as Tokens and Ef-fects, . . . and that his Divinity and Eternal Power may be fo well underftood by the things that are made, that the Gentiles, who had but the Light of Nature to lead them to the acknowledgment of the true God , were Excufelefs, for not being brought by that Guide to that Acknowledgment. And indeed, the Experimental Pht-lofophy giving us a more clear difco-very , than Strangers to it have, of the divine Excellencies difplay’d in the Fabrick and Conduct of the Univerfe, and of the Creatures it confifts of, very much difpofeth the mind, to afcribe such admirable Effects to fo incompetent and pitiful a Caufe as Blind Chance, or the tumultuous Juftlings of Atomical Portions of fenfelefs Matter and leads it direcly to the acknowledgment and adoration of a moft Intelligent,Powerful and Benign Author of things, to whom alone fuch excellent Productions may, with the greateft Congruity, be afcrib’d.

    9 –> Is it not then fair to say:

    i: that Theists can be, have been and are scientists of even world class rank [cf. Fritz Schaeffer here],

    ii: that the theism held by scientists and apostles alike sees the order of a universe working by laws as testifying to its lawgiver,

    iii: that many such scientists would assent to Kepler in his saying that in science we think God’s [creative and sustaining] thoughts after him, and

    iv: that (following say C S Lewis and others) such will often hold something very much like the premise that miracles to stand out as signs pointing beyond the usual course of nature, are necessarily rare [and will be in a context of communication and relationship that highlights their revelatory significance], i.e.

    v: they would hold that we live in a cosmos that follows a lawful order that reflects an ordering lawgiver . . . ?

    10 –> If you disagree, why, and on what evident facts?

    KF

  51. Kairosfocus:

    1. Yes.
    2. Yes.
    3. Yes.
    4. No.
    5. Pass, you provided insufficient data to establish his motivation.
    6. Yes.
    7. Pass, I am not competent to judge what constitutes a serious Christian and a practising scientist.
    8. Yes. I’ll take your word for it.
    9i. Yes.
    9ii. No. Only some scientists think this, if I am reading your formulation correctly.
    9iii. Pass, you provided insufficient data for me to agree or disagree with the term “many”.
    9iv. Pass, depends on 9iii. Insufficient data to hold a reliable opinion, depends on the definition of “many”.
    9v. Pass, depends on 9iii. Insufficient data to hold a reliable opinion, depends on the definition of “many”.
    10. Agreed with six, disagreed with two, insufficient data to form a judgement on five.

    Reason for disagreeing with 4:

    Whose characterisation of the experience am I being asked to adjudicate? Yours? His? An independent observer of the event? Who?

    Reason for disagreeing with 9ii:

    Your formulation conflates the term “scientist” and “apostle”. If you mean scientists in general, then I disagree, since it is trivially true that there have been atheist scientists as long as science has existed as a human activity who denied the existence of a “lawgiver”.

  52. TA:

    I shortly have to get out and set up for a coming trop storm. I will be brief.

    4 –> I stated a matter of fact. This is the testimony of Boyle, whose life reflected just such a Christian commitment.

    5 –> The Boyle Lectures from 1692 on as endowed in Boyle’s will, were a matter of public record. Google it.

    7 –> I linked the book, and have cited from it, There are several other works published across DECADES of a reasonably long (for the time) life.

    8 –> A Google search will suffice to show that I am in fact citing from the given work. The onward remarks on those who would pretend to use science as a basis for atheism would be helpful to consult even today.

    9 ii –> I spoke to scientists who are theists, and gave also an onward linked summary that will show that this is accurate.

    9 iii –> In fact there are many scientists (and closely related professionals) who are theists, today and historically.

    9 iv –> I am documenting a fact that you need to check out, in duty of care to fairness, before commenting adversely.

    9 v –> Documented historically and in the contemporary world. Note the very term law of nature points to there being a lawgiver of nature. This can be seen in the already pointed out General Scholium to Principia and the Query 31 to Opticks, just to give the case with Newton.

    Your comment about atheistical scientists, has nothing to do with the fact of theistic scientists, whose position has enough historical impact that we still talk about laws of nature.

    KF

  53. Man, how did I miss this thread?

    Someone said:

    If you believe that a supernatural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y.

    WHAT IS YOUR THEORY OF CAUSATION?

  54. If you believe that a natural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y.

  55. @Mung,

    Exactly. Just why is there that “bit” about real science being able to be repeatable? Perhaps someone already thought of the possibility for anomalies??? Just maybe.

  56. Mung said this (and Brent agreed):

    If you believe that a natural entity can intervene in nature at any time, then no scientific experiment (of any kind!) can reliably tell us that X causes Y.

    What is this comment meant to signify? If a natural entity “intervenes” in its natural environment, then (in principle, at least) science will be able to find evidence of the connection between natural cause and natural effect using the methods of normal science. Or was this meant to be a joke?

  57. Mung shouted this:

    WHAT IS YOUR THEORY OF CAUSATION?

    That natural effects have natural causes.

  58. 58

    “That natural effects have natural causes.”

    What is the natural cause of a red plastic ball? The red plastic ball is made of material which is faithfully following physcical law, but is there anything in the plastic that would cause it to form a sphere and dye itself red?

    Is there? This is not a question beyond giving an answer.

  59. Upright Biped said this:

    What is the natural cause of a red plastic ball? The red plastic ball is made of material which is faithfully following physcical law, but is there anything in the plastic that would cause it to form a sphere and dye itself red?

    No. Red plastic balls do not normally cause themselves to become round and red. Red plastic balls are formed by (natural) physical and chemical processes under the direction of (natural) human engineers and (natural) machine operators. Are you sure you meant to post this?

  60. 60

    Timothya,

    Do you not understand that when UB uses the term “natural”, it is in contrast to the opposing term “artificial”? Apparently not, since you seem to think that human engineers and machine operators are part of a non-artificial, natural process.

  61. 61

    Red plastic balls are formed by (natural) physical and chemical processes under the direction of (natural) human engineers

    If I were forced to willfully look past the understanding of terms, and simple assume my conclusions instead; if I my arguments required of me a tactical defense where I could not allow the use of a word such as “artificial” as a nominal distinction between the actual existence of, say, a space shuttle and a clump of mud, then I think I would simply change my beliefs.

    They would not be worth having.

  62. William J Murray said this:

    Apparently not, since you seem to think that human engineers and machine operators are part of a non-artificial, natural process.

    Yup, you got it in one. Human beings are natural entities (and so are the artefacts they produce from their intelligence). Artificial and natural are not necessarily antonymic, whereas natural and supernatural are. No supernatural causes are required to produce red plastic balls.

  63. 63

    Timothya:

    Then you don’t understand the argument being presented, and/or are embarked on the same straw man that has been explained and refuted countless times here.

  64. 64

    Timothya,

    The ID argument is that some phenomena are, for all reasonable purposes, not plausibly explicable without an intelligence guiding events towards an end – such as the existence of red plastic balls. To subsume that necessary intelligence under the term “natural” only evades the point, it doesn’t address it. It doesn’t matter if you call that necessary, pro-active intelligence natural, supernatural, or fig pudding, the point is that without it, one cannot reasonably explain the existence of red plastic balls.

    Calling intelligence “natural” doesn’t make a case that it is not necessary for the existence of the red plastic ball.

  65. 65

    TA: “Artificial and natural are not necessarily antonymic, whereas natural and supernatural are. No supernatural causes are required to produce red plastic balls.”

    No, “natural” can be seen as a subset of of “supernatural”, so if one wishes to equivocate to the point of having terms that are essentially meaningless, then one can go that route as well.

    BTW, where did anyone claim that superntural causes are required to produce red plastic balls?

  66. William J Murray asked:

    BTW, where did anyone claim that superntural causes are required to produce red plastic balls?

    See 58 in response to my 57. Upright Biped clearly thinks my statement of causation is insufficient. If he/she requires other types of cause, they must be supernatural.

  67. 67

    Timothya,

    When you misrepresent the position of the person you are debating, and they (and others) point it out, and you continue to misrepresent their position, then it becomes obviously you are not interested in honest, meaningful debate.

  68. William J Murray posted:

    Calling intelligence “natural” doesn’t make a case that it is not necessary for the existence of the red plastic ball.

    Talk about misrepresentation. I would never claim such a silly thing. My claim about causation is that human intelligance (as a cause) contains no supernatural elements. Human intelligence combined with natural materials and natural physical processes is sufficient to explain red plastic balls.

  69. 69

    Timothy: “My claim about causation is that human intelligance (as a cause) contains no supernatural elements.”

    (1) Irrelevant. Nobody here (that I can see) claimed it did. Once again, the error is yours in assuming UB was contrasting “natural” with “supernatural”, when he wasn’t (which he has pointed out). This is called a straw man – you’re making an argument against something nobody here claimed.

    (2) Since you have made the claim that human intelligence contains no supernatural elements, I challenge you to support that claim.

  70. William J Murray posted this:

    Since you have made the claim that human intelligence contains no supernatural elements, I challenge you to support that claim.

    Certainly. I can find no published scientific material on the subject of human neurobiology that supports the presence of any supernatural element in human intelligence. I could be wrong, or I could not have searched hard enough, but so far, none.

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