Home » Intelligent Design » Not Seeing the Forest for the Trees — Part Deux

Not Seeing the Forest for the Trees — Part Deux

Paying too much attention to details and not understanding the general situation is the classic definition of NSFT.

It is my view that Darwinists have become ensnared by NSFT. As the evidence of modern science — from many domains, especially the information and computational sciences, in addition to simple mathematical probabilistic calculations — has progressively and logically eviscerated the creative powers of the Darwinian mechanism, Darwinists continue to hang on to the hopelessly improbable.

How can this be? How can the Darwinist not see the forest (design) for the trees (the endlessly unsubstantiated and usually silly or even embarrassing speculations of Darwinian storytelling, as countered by the mounting evidence of design from every sector of scientific investigation, all evaluated with simple rational thought)?

In my essay here (which has generated at this writing 182 comments) UD contributor allanius presented what I believe encapsulates and elucidates the essentials concerning this enigma.

In his comment he offers the thesis that cultural epochs are self-limiting. Proponents obtain power and dominance for a season, but are eventually brought down by their inflexibility.

Of course, the same argument might be made for religious believers. As many UD readers know, I am a former militant atheist but now an unapologetic apologist for both ID and the historic Christian faith.

Since Copernicus it was thought that materialistic “science” would eventually answer all questions and solve all problems. This trajectory seemed inevitable and irreversible.

But 20th-century science produced something entirely unexpected. The discovery of the fine-tuning of the laws of physics for the eventual appearance of living things, and the discovery that life is fundamentally based on highly sophisticated information-processing technology, threw a big wrench into the machinery of chance and necessity and materialism as the ultimate explanation for everything.

So, things appear to have come full circle.

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29 Responses to Not Seeing the Forest for the Trees — Part Deux

  1. As to this quote:

    ‘Since Copernicus it was thought that materialistic “science” would eventually answer all questions and solve all problems. This trajectory seemed inevitable and irreversible.’

    I remember believing that all knowledge was limited, and I even recall thinking that it sure would be a boring world if knowledge was truly limited, and some day all knowledge that could be known was eventually discovered by man, with no new frontiers left for anyone to explore and discover. I also recall coming to the realization that God really is real and that He really is “INFINITE” in knowledge, wisdom and power. Moreover, with that realization of the Infinitude of God, I also realized that my belief that heaven may somehow be boring was severely misplaced, for we could learn and discover new and wonderful things from God for billions upon billions of years and still not even touch the starting line that would be the infinite treasures that God has prepared for us in His kingdom;

    1 Corinthians 2:9
    But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—

    Steven Curtis Chapman – Miracle of the Moment – Lyrics
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSiJeL0b3Eo

    of note it took ‘infinite’ specified information to create each and every individual photon in the creation event of the big bang!!!:

    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)
    http://www.cas.umt.edu/phil/fa.....lPSA2K.pdf

    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

    ====

    “The Big Bang represents an immensely powerful, yet carefully planned and controlled release of matter, energy, space and time. All this is accomplished within the strict confines of very carefully fine-tuned physical constants and laws. The power and care this explosion reveals exceeds human mental capacity by multiple orders of magnitude.”
    Prof. Henry F. Schaefer

    The First Cause Must Be A Personal Being – William Lane Craig – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/w/4813914

    ===

    John 1:1-3
    In the beginning, the Word existed. 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.

  2. Bang on again, GilDodgen.

    I first came across the term “cognitive dissonance” when reading Richard Milton’s “The Facts of Life”. He suggested that neo-darwinists suffered from cognitive dissonance because they “continue to believe (evolution) even in the face of contradictory evidence”.

    He talks of a “global paradigm shift” occurring when “this blinkered dogmatism” can no longer continue in the face of overwhelming evidence and a new theory deposing the old one.

    NSFT is a symptom of cognitive dissonance that will not be relieved until a global paradigm shift occurs. In the 20 years since Milton’s book was published, we are much, much closer to that occurrence.

  3. 3
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Oddly, of course, it looks exactly like that from the other side.

    I’m not saying this to be agressive, it’s just spooky to me the way that both “sides” are totally convinced that the cognitive dissonance belongs to the other lot.

    I think it’s worth thinking about, because, at bottom, it says that both sides think the right view is “obvious”.

    tbh, I don’t think it has much to do with cognitive dissonance at all. I think it’s due to something much more interesting, actually.

  4. I have to disagree with you there, Lizzie. The majority of evolutionists only make token gestures towards evidence for their beliefs these days (“what about embryos? What about peppered moths? What about junk DNA?” etc).

    Once these gestures are waved away, there is only “Who designed the designer then?” and “How can all those scientists be wrong?”.

    You’ve spent some time here now and surely you must admit, that is not what the ID side is all about.

  5. I think it’s worth thinking about, because, at bottom, it says that both sides think the right view is “obvious”.

    Both sides agree the presence of design is obvious and they are both right.

    :)

  6. 6
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Well, perhaps I wasn’t clear, Chris. Yes, I certainly observe very shallow criticisms of ID; but, equally, I observe very shallow criticisms of what I really don’t like calling “Darwinism” because it’s pretty standard biology and goes well beyond, so let me call it the “Standard Model”.

    And a lot depends on where you look and in which forums (literally and metaphorically).

    I post regularly at a forum in which creationists in particularly (relatively few IDists who aren’t creationists) turn up and seem clearly (to me, and to the scientists who post there) in the grip of “cognitive dissonance”. And yet they, in their turn see nothing but “cognitive dissonance” in the responses they get from the scientists.

    I’m enjoying being here (on the whole!) because it seems to me that most people have really thought out their positions. I still disagree with them, of course (I’ll let you know if I find myself persuaded!), but the nice thing is that instead of links to AnswersInGenesis, I’m seeing real arguments.

    So yes, I know that’s “not what ID is all about”. On the other hand, I think there is a real and, to my mind, fatal, critique to be made of ID, and it’s obviously a bit annoying when people assume that anyone who thinks they’ve got a killer argument is simply suffering from “cognitive dissonance”!

    But I’m more than happy to engage on the issues, although, if permitted, I do expect a rigorous response.

    There’s nothing worse (and I’ve seen it on both sides) than a virtual facepalm. I think it’s important for both sides to realise that at best, the other side aren’t either stupid or ignorant, or, indeed, emotionally invested, whativer they may be at worst.

    And the reason I feel in a position of some authority to say this is, that I, like GilDodgen, changed sides.

    In other words both he and I (as well as being musicians!) have the experience of going “hey. That’s a VERY good point.” And radically changing our worldviews as a result.

    The difference between us, obviously, as that we ended up on opposite sides :)

    As I often find myself saying (more and more often as I age, I think): good people with the best of motives, information, and cognitive abilities, can radically differ.

    The challenge is to sweep away the straw men and get to the nub of that difference.

    That’s what I’m trying to get to, anyway :)

    I’m extremely willing to be persuaded back to my former position. The difficulty is, given the fact of the switch, in understanding how that could possibly be!

  7. 7
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Mung:

    Both sides agree the presence of design is obvious and they are both right.

    Absolutely :)

    So where do we go from here?

    I have some ideas….

  8. EL:

    So yes, I know that’s “not what ID is all about”. On the other hand, I think there is a real and, to my mind, fatal, critique to be made of ID, and it’s obviously a bit annoying when people assume that anyone who thinks they’ve got a killer argument is simply suffering from “cognitive dissonance”!

    If you think ID’s task is to prove God’s existence, then you’re insistence that huge improbabilities still leave you unpersuaded is understandable.

    But if ID is about challenging Darwinian orthodoxy, and demonstrating the huge improbabilities involved in simple mutational pathways, (think of Doug Axe’s work here), then I don’t think, as a scientist, you’re entitled to being unmoved by the vast improbabilities.

  9. EL:

    I’m extremely willing to be persuaded back to my former position. The difficulty is, given the fact of the switch, in understanding how that could possibly be!

    There’s two good books out there:

    (1) Ray Varghese’s The Wonder of the World; and

    (2) Spitzer’s “New Proofs for God’s Existence” (http://www.amazon.com/New-Proo.....038;sr=8-1)

    A lot of science in both.

  10. 10
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Pav #8

    No, I don’t think that “ID’s task is to prove God’s existence”. I don’t think “ID” has a task – I thought it was a theory, or, at least, an inference!

    And it’s not that the “huge improbabilities” per se “leave [me] unpersuaded”. The “huge imrobabilities” come with three problems, as I see it.

    The first is that I think the idea that huge improbabilities leave us with ID as the default is logically flawed, even if I accepted the huge improbabilities. The second is that I query the priors that result in their calculation. The third is that no scientist is even claiming that the phenomena for which the improbabilities are calculated happened fortuitously.

    #9

    Thanks for the links :)

  11. ME: Both sides agree the presence of design is obvious and they are both right.

    Elizabeth Liddle:

    So where do we go from here?

    I have some ideas…

    Can I guess?

    First, you’d like to create an operational definition of design.

    ;)

  12. 12
    Elizabeth Liddle

    I’ve never understood why people are so resistant to providing operational definitions.

    Science can’t proceed without them.

    They are no big deal, though, it’s just an essential part of the methodology.

  13. 13
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Although, in the above case, I don’t think it would be necessary.

  14. Although, in the above case, I don’t think it would be necessary.

    Oh, but it is!

    Darwinists claim their process can produce it, without having an operational definition of what it is.

    Not science.

  15. 15

    Hi Lizzie,

    I’ve got a busy weekend ahead so won’t have time today to respond to your post on the first Forrest thread, nor your post on this Forrest thread. Hopefully I’ll get a chance tomorrow. Otherwise it’ll be Monday.

    I’m sure the others will keep you busy here in the meantime!

    Cheers

    Chris

    PS. Did you catch any of the “Inside the Human Body” documentaries that were shown on the BBC? I’ve just watched the first two. They are excellent and I strongly recommend them. They also happen to really drive home my point that when you make random, unplanned changes to cells and those incredible machines that cells make – bodies! – you only get degradation, loss and imperfection.

    In actual fact, Intelligent Design is needed to prevent the destructive forces of Chance and Necessity from influencing outcomes wherever possible.

  16. 16
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Mung:

    Oh, but it is!

    Yes, I agree. As soon as I hit submit, I realised that it too has to be.

    Everything subject to scientific hypothesis testing has to be operationalized.

    Darwinists claim their process can produce it, without having an operational definition of what it is.

    Not science.

    um, not, they don’t. What I’ve seen (Dawkins makes it) is the claim that Darwinian processes can create the appearance of design.

    However, if we operationalise design, or, at least “intelligence” then, depending on the operational definition, then either Darwinian processes qualify (which would explain why their output resembles the kind of design we see from intelligent human designers), or they don’t, because they lack “intention”, and so their output only “resembles” the output of intelligent intentional designers.

    And, I would argue that the output of Darwinian processes differ from the output of intentional processes, fairly subtly, but that those subtle differences are exactly what distinguish the output of human designers from the output of Darwinian processes.

    Plus of course those outputs differ radically in the very quality that allows us to posit Darwinian processes as a possible explanation for the provenance of living things, namely their capacity to self-replicate.

  17. Thanks, Gil. A fuller explanation of the self-limiting nature of cultural identities can be found here:

    https://wipfandstock.com/store/At_Smiths_House_The_Search_for_Meaning_in_a_Postmodern_Age

    https://kindle.amazon.com/search?keywords=at+smith%27s+house+trott

    Speculation on what might replace Darwinism/Modernism:

    http://www.hope101store.net/in.....tem=122644

    More recent work (The Way: What the Bible Says About Happiness):

    https://kindle.amazon.com/work/way-bible-about-happiness-ebook/B004U34PUE/B004U34PUE

  18. Elizabeth Liddle:

    um, not, they don’t. What I’ve seen (Dawkins makes it) is the claim that Darwinian processes can create the appearance of design.

    All the way back to Darwin himself, and forward from Dawkins. It’s all about explaining Design without a Designer.

    However, if we operationalise design, or, at least “intelligence” then, depending on the operational definition, then either Darwinian processes qualify (which would explain why their output resembles the kind of design we see from intelligent human designers), or they don’t, because they lack “intention”, and so their output only “resembles” the output of intelligent intentional designers.

    Intelligence has nothing to do with it. Eyes, and wings, and other design-like things, are not intelligent.

    So we can get rid of the “intelligence” red herring and concentrate on finding an operational definition of design so that we can scientifically put the claims of the Darwinists to the test.

    What is the Darwinist’s operational definition of design (i.e., how do they propose to measure it) such that we can determine whether some aspect of nature does indeed have “the appearance of design” and thus test the claim that RM+NS can generate it.

    I’m waiting. We’re all waiting. Darwinism is not science and never has been.

  19. 19

    Hello Lizzie,

    I hope you are well and not finding it too time-consuming over here (it can be hard work one-on-one, but it often gets a bit ridiculous when it’s five-on-one)! Apologies for the delay on my part.

    Okay, this thread is a bit shorter and quieter so I will respond to both of your messages here so that we both might have a chance to see the wood for the trees!

    First of all, message 230 on the first Forrest thread. You seem to be making the point that Chance and Necessity may not be what they first appear and, in fact, Chance might be more like Necessity and Necessity might be more like Chance. This seems to bring an element of Determinability to your worldview. All fascinating stuff. But, ultimately, you are still offering an Accidental explanation for existence. Remember the Acid Test I referred to previously: was the Creator surprised by our arrival or was it all part of a Plan? Obviously, if you don’t believe in the Creator in the first place then you are, by definition, someone who believes it all just made itself (ie. without any kind of front-loading or planning).

    The idea that the human body, for instance, could just make itself (even given enough time and self-replication), is absolutely ridiculous. I put it to you that when you spell that out (rather than go on about mysterious stochastic processes) it is hard to disagree without sounding a bit ridiculous!

    As for the influence of unguided influences on “sophisticated, complex and functional information”, you may disagree with me… but, like your belief in the existence of “precursors of that first modern cell”, this is an unscientific standpoint. Observational evidence and experimental results are on my side here: not yours. Seriously, what else are you bringing to the table if not scientific facts and findings?

    And if evolutionists don’t “keep trying to disown” abiogenesis, then why do they make comments like “abiogenesis has nothing to do with evolution”? Such comments, whether true or false, clearly demonstrate an attempt to disown the problem. Scientists may like nothing more than “fascinating and unsolved” questions… but only when the answers to those questions do NOT threaten their naturalistic worldview.

    Now onto message 6 on this Forrest thread.

    You begin by trying to redefine evolutionist beliefs as “pretty standard biology”. Nice try. Pretty standard 21st century biology is actually all it takes to fatally undermine evolutionist beliefs in the first place!

    You then refer to creationists who “seem clearly… in the grip of ‘cognitive dissonance’”. Again, nice try. The key difference is, if those creationists stick to observations and experiments (ie. not just quoting the Bible or AIG links at you) then they will always have science on their side. Evolutionists can only summon consensus and other non-scientific factors to support their position. There is also a very big difference between believing you have a “real and… fatal” critique of ID and actually presenting that critique, subjecting it to the test by allowing the scrutiny of ID proponents. Don’t be shy: bring it on! That’s what I’m here for anyway.

    Finally, it was very interesting to learn that you switched from (presumably, Christian) belief in the Creator to a convinced evolutionist position instead. Thank-you for sharing that. I’m sure I’m not alone in hoping that, if we wouldn’t be exploring personal, private matters, you shed a bit more light on that comment. What was that “VERY good point” you referred to?

  20. 20
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Hi, Chris!

    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you (this site doesn’t lend itself very well to slow conversations! – I only just found your post).

    Hello Lizzie,

    I hope you are well and not finding it too time-consuming over here (it can be hard work one-on-one, but it often gets a bit ridiculous when it’s five-on-one)! Apologies for the delay on my part.

    Okay, this thread is a bit shorter and quieter so I will respond to both of your messages here so that we both might have a chance to see the wood for the trees!

    :)

    First of all, message 230 on the first Forrest thread. You seem to be making the point that Chance and Necessity may not be what they first appear and, in fact, Chance might be more like Necessity and Necessity might be more like Chance. This seems to bring an element of Determinability to your worldview. All fascinating stuff. But, ultimately, you are still offering an Accidental explanation for existence. Remember the Acid Test I referred to previously: was the Creator surprised by our arrival or was it all part of a Plan? Obviously, if you don’t believe in the Creator in the first place then you are, by definition, someone who believes it all just made itself (ie. without any kind of front-loading or planning).

    Yes. However, I’ll elaborate on that below.

    The idea that the human body, for instance, could just make itself (even given enough time and self-replication), is absolutely ridiculous. I put it to you that when you spell that out (rather than go on about mysterious stochastic processes) it is hard to disagree without sounding a bit ridiculous!

    Well, I disagree, but again, more below.

    As for the influence of unguided influences on “sophisticated, complex and functional information”, you may disagree with me… but, like your belief in the existence of “precursors of that first modern cell”, this is an unscientific standpoint. Observational evidence and experimental results are on my side here: not yours. Seriously, what else are you bringing to the table if not scientific facts and findings?

    Nothing else, except, perhaps, a different way of looking at those “facts and findings”.

    And if evolutionists don’t “keep trying to disown” abiogenesis, then why do they make comments like “abiogenesis has nothing to do with evolution”? Such comments, whether true or false, clearly demonstrate an attempt to disown the problem.

    I think that is a serious misreading. The question of abiogenesis was not the question Darwin addressed. It may be that Darwinian processes can be invoked to account for the very earliest stages of pre-biotic life, but that doesn’t alter the fact that Darwinian processes simply don’t account for any phenomena prior to the first self-replicator – studies of the phenomena that might have led to the first self-replicator are known as abiogenesis studies.

    Darwinian evolutionary process are perfectly compatible even with Special Creation; they simply account for how lineages diverge. They do not account for how the lineages started in the first place.

    That said, of course, most people these days (not Darwin, however) who accept evolutionary theory also tend to assume that pre-evolutionary processes were natural. But to equate “evolution” with “abiogenesis” is like equating it with “cosmology”. Darwinian evolutionary process explain neither (although they can, potentially, push back the simplicity of the first self-replicators).

    Scientists may like nothing more than “fascinating and unsolved” questions… but only when the answers to those questions do NOT threaten their naturalistic worldview.

    This again, is a misunderstanding, in my view. I may comment on this on the Lewontin thread. Supernatural causation does not “threaten” a “naturalistic” approach to science. It is simply outside its methodological limits.

    Now onto message 6 on this Forrest thread.

    You begin by trying to redefine evolutionist beliefs as “pretty standard biology”. Nice try. Pretty standard 21st century biology is actually all it takes to fatally undermine evolutionist beliefs in the first place!

    Well, obviously I disagree :)

    You then refer to creationists who “seem clearly… in the grip of ‘cognitive dissonance’”. Again, nice try. The key difference is, if those creationists stick to observations and experiments (ie. not just quoting the Bible or AIG links at you) then they will always have science on their side. Evolutionists can only summon consensus and other non-scientific factors to support their position.

    Again, I simply disagree. I think that “evolutionists” have overwhelming evidence to support their position. I accept that IDists don’t share this view, but, well, “evolutionists” obviously don’t share the view of IDists!

    If we want to figure out which “side” the evidence does support, it seems to me the best approach is to find out exactly where the evidence is being differently interpreted. It’s not a lot of use either side just asserting: “the evidence supports us not you”. Both sides have to make their case.

    May the best side win :)

    There is also a very big difference between believing you have a “real and… fatal” critique of ID and actually presenting that critique, subjecting it to the test by allowing the scrutiny of ID proponents. Don’t be shy: bring it on! That’s what I’m here for anyway.

    Sure. It’s scattered about in various threads, though. I haven’t been persuasive so far, but I’ll keep trying :)

    Finally, it was very interesting to learn that you switched from (presumably, Christian) belief in the Creator to a convinced evolutionist position instead.

    At no point was I unconvinced by the theory of evolution. It always made sense to me, and still does (although over my lifetime it has been vastly refined).

    Thank-you for sharing that. I’m sure I’m not alone in hoping that, if we wouldn’t be exploring personal, private matters, you shed a bit more light on that comment. What was that “VERY good point” you referred to?

    It had nothing to do with the theory of evolution, but to do with a model of moral responsibility and consciousness that I found persuasive.

    But to expand somewhat as promised on my comments above:

    Oddly enough I agree with IDists that the living world shows signs of having been created by something with at least some of the properties that we call “intelligence”. I’m interested in intelligence – I’m a cognitive psychologist/neuroscientist, so the mechanisms, if you like, of intelligence are of interest to me. So if I see the results of something that looks as though it was designed by something intelligent, my next question is: what kind of intelligent processes could have designed this?

    Now we know quite a lot about intelligent processes, and one thing we know is that, interestingly, they are in many respects like evolutionary processes. Noisy random stuff is essentially put through a series of selective “filters” where some patterns are boosted and others inhibited, depending on what makes contact with what. What emerges is a “choice” – at its simplest, a choice of action, one that will, typically, best suit the current goals of the Intelligent Thing. These may be short, or long term. When they are long term, we start to talk about “intention” and “purpose”. When they are short term, we talk about “reflex” or “instinct”.

    My view of evolution is that evolutioinary processes are spontaneous instantiation of a short-term intelligent system – one that responds to immediate goals, not long term ones.

    This fits the evidence to me – things are intelligently designed, but not only show no signs of foresight, but show signs of lack of foresight – not so much a literally “blind watchmaker” but sleepwalking watchmaker, operating on instinct and reflex only.

    And we have a mechanism to hand with exactly those properties – short-term decision-making without reference to long-term goals, namely Darwinian evolution.

    So my position is not that living things weren’t intelligently designed, but that they were, but that the intelligence that designed them was the short-term intelligence that is evolutionary processes.

    Just as an even shorter-term intelligence “designs” snowflakes, and sand-dunes, and galaxies, and hurricanes.

    For me however, that “naturalism” does not undermine my awe at the world, nor even does it undermine my faith in God, although my God is probably not one you’d recognise. I do believe in a God – the God that is the emergent property of the universe itself, and manifest in the extraordinary capacity that universe has to bring forth not only itself, but a love that encompasses and transcends itself.

    And the really awesome thing about that God is that that God requires no “faith” at all! That God is right there in front of us, all day and every day, smiling from the faces of everyone we meet.

    “Love your neighbour as yourself”

    and

    “Whatever you do to these my brothers, you do for me.”.

    Makes sense :)

    Cheers

    Lizzie

  21. If we want to figure out which “side” the evidence does support, it seems to me the best approach is to find out exactly where the evidence is being differently interpreted. It’s not a lot of use either side just asserting: “the evidence supports us not you”.

    It’s also helpful to determine what evidence is even relevant to the debate.

    ID does not even attempt to offer an explanation for many of the “evidences” for evolutionary theory.

    So when you say you find the evidence for evolution compelling, that’s a big so what to most of us here, and it’s understood (though perhaps not stated as often as it should be) that that’s not a rational reason to reject ID.

  22. 22

    No problem at all, Lizzie. I’m far too busy to be on here really but I can’t help myself! The more breathers I get through delayed responses, the better as far as I’m concerned. Getting summoned now in fact so I will keep this brief.

    I absolutely agree that the likes of you and I merely asserting our opposing positions doesn’t progress the discussion. You have strong convictions and believe they are supported by science. So do I. Something’s gotta give and may the best side win but at least we are both clear (and accepting) of each other’s standpoint. In the 15 years I’ve been participating in these debates, it is amazing how often the discussion stalls on that point.

    I agree with you that strictly speaking, biological evolution does not begin until we have an existing, living self-replicant. However, the typical evolutionist worldview extends far beyond biological evolution. The question of abiogenesis is framed in evolutionist terms: how did life make itself naturalistically? And cosmological questions are framed in evolutionist terms: how did the universe make itself and how did stars and planets form naturalistically? Evolutionist beliefs, particularly atheistic evolutionist beliefs, in practice address the entirety of existence.

    Did your copy of Signature in the Cell turn up yet? I hope so because I genuinely believe that, after reading it, you will need to think again about the relationship your propose between “Darwinian evolution” and “Intelligent Systems”.

    So, I’ll leave it there for now!

    Cheers

    Chris

  23. 23
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Hi Chris – thanks for this.

    Yes, discussions often stall before even reaching the key point of disagreement, in my experience! So I really appreciate your efforts to connect :)

    Yes, my copy arrived. It’s so fat and heavy the postman couldn’t deliver it so I had to go and collect it from the post office!

    I’ve read the first chapter, but it will take me a while to get through it, as I only seem to have teaspoonfuls of time at the moment, and the book clearly contains a great many teaspoonfuls of stuff!.

    But I will :)

    cheers

    Lizzie

  24. 24
    Elizabeth Liddle

    Mung – thanks for this too. Yes, all points taken. Well put.

  25. 25
    Elizabeth Liddle

    I’d just like to rewrite a carelessly written paragraph – I wrote:

    This fits the evidence to me – things are intelligently designed, but the design process not only shows no signs of foresight, but show signs of lack of foresight – not so much a literally “blind watchmaker” but sleepwalking watchmaker, operating on instinct and reflex only.

    emendation in bold.

    Clearly the designed things show signs of foresight, because they include us!

    However I meant what stands above.

    Apologies!

  26. Language/code, algorithms, and implementing machinery in a chicken-egg closed cycle in the living cell are not evidence of foresighted design to set up the system?

  27. 27
    Elizabeth Liddle

    I would say no :)

    But I agree that that is the key question.

  28. If the items listed in @26 above were found in the technological devices created by man, would you still say no, they don’t evince foresighted design?

  29. Oh Lizzie.

    Do you have no answer?

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