Dec 072006
 

It is not a well-known fact, but the pilot who led the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor, 55 years ago today, eventually became an Evangelical Christian. See: From Pearl Harbor to Calvary. Such changed lives are the product of intelligent design, not random Darwinian processes.

  59 Responses to “December 7th…Pearl Harbor Day and God’s Samurai”

  1. What an incredible story! The transforming power of faith in Christ truly is miraculous. I know this from personal experience.

  2. Sure, some athiests become religious, some theists become atheists and some thiests join new religions. People are intelligent, and make choices. Now sure how that relates to the claims of modern evolutionary theory, or ID.

    As an aside, from the site’s banner: “Teleological: (adj) of or related to the philosophical study of design in nature.” It is interesting how many of the recent entries on this site are apologetics, with two entries about conversion to Christianity, another starting with a quote from Relevations and one about a scientist visiting a creationist church. And yet some people still try to claim ID is not religious.

  3. Sure, some athiests become religious, some theists become atheists and some thiests join new religions.

    Hi Pixie,
    I think you’ve missed the point. What we are talking about here is the transforming power of Christianity to take a person from a depraved and sometimes heinous behavior to the position of contentment, forgiveness and love. You don’t hear of a story where a depraved Christian acting out heinous behavior and converts to atheism to find contentment and love.

    It is interesting how many of the recent entries on this site are apologetics, with two entries about conversion to Christianity ” And yet some people still try to claim ID is not religious.

    You’ve got to be kidding me Pixie. This is your proof that ID = religion? We’ve never hide the fact that this blog is run by Creationists. I’ve posted at least a few times on the distinction of Creationism and ID. However, to say that because we are Creationists posting on ID, therefore when we post on theistic issues it is equivalent to ID is illogical.

    Have you ever read any of PZ Myers’s ScienceBlog or Richard Dawkins blog? They are vocal atheists and claim to be the personification of science. So will you say that Atheism = science? No? Too bad they do. Or have you counted how many times they talk about Christianity? So will you say that Christianity = Atheism = science? Your argument is just non sequitur.

  4. I think you’ve missed the point. What we are talking about here is the transforming power of Christianity to take a person from a depraved and sometimes heinous behavior to the position of contentment, forgiveness and love. You don’t hear of a story where a depraved Christian acting out heinous behavior and converts to atheism to find contentment and love.

    The church does specialise in absolving guilt in a way athiest cannot hope to. I see nothing in that to suggest it is right though.

    You’ve got to be kidding me Pixie. This is your proof that ID = religion?

    No, no. It is evidence that ID, like creationism, is just a form of Christian apologetics.

    Have you ever read any of PZ Myers’s ScienceBlog or Richard Dawkins blog? They are vocal atheists and claim to be the personification of science. So will you say that Atheism = science? No? Too bad they do.

    I agree that they do much to muddy the waters.

    One of the big issues in the ID vs MET debate is purpose. Is there purpose in life? What was the purpose of the designer? I would suggest that the purpose of ID is Christian apologetics, while the purpose of science has nothing to do with religion or atheism. Most scientists (and Dawkins and Myer are exceptions) are angry at creationists for what creationists are trying to do to science; they are passionate about science, not atheism. On the other hand, most creationists seem to have a religious purpose for promoting ID.

  5. The church does specialise in absolving guilt in a way athiest cannot hope to. I see nothing in that to suggest it is right though.

    I think you are still missing the point. If it were only a matter of absolving guilt, Atheism would be the apex in that regard. Atheism demands no accountability and no condemnation. Man would be free to do whatever is right in their own eyes. The transformed life of this soldier and people like me, Gil, Sal and those who have come to trust in Christ is the evidence that suggests Christianity is right. I would submit that the natural tendency of human beings is toward Atheism and not to a God that will hold you in account.

    No, no. It is evidence that ID, like creationism, is just a form of Christian apologetics.

    Sorry Pixie, but this is again ridiculous. When have you ever seen me use Christianity to defend ID? Whenever I’ve argued for ID it has always been based solely on empirical evidences. I think your problem is that you are seeing ID through rose color lenses. You have a conspiratorial bias against Christianity therefore you assume that ID is a mere rhetorical tool. It is true that Christianity by definition requires a Designer. Therefore any naturalistic theory that involves intelligence will have some common grounds with Christianity. As a scientist what are you suppose to do, throw out any theory solely on the basis that it has some common grounds with Christianity?

    I would suggest that the purpose of ID is Christian apologetics, while the purpose of science has nothing to do with religion or atheism.

    As I said above, we can’t discard a theory solely on the basis that it might have some metaphysical implications. You are acting like the early Big Bang deniers, who refuse to accept the Big Bang because it has metaphysical implications.

    Can you point to a single statement or argument by leading ID theorists or even in this blog where the purpose of that argument is to support Christianity and not science? I challenge you to produce that one single shred of evidence.

    Most scientists (and Dawkins and Myer are exceptions) are angry at creationists for what creationists are trying to do to science

    What are we trying to do to science? Please give detail examples of the implied harm by your statement.

    they are passionate about science, not atheism. On the other hand, most creationists seem to have a religious purpose for promoting ID.

    Frankly from this side of the fence, most scientists are blinded to science because of their atheistic predisposition.

    Steve Weinberg who’s a physicist and notably anti-religious have said “Science does not make it impossible to believe in God, it just makes it possible to not believe in God”

    Daniel Dennett:
    If they said that the theory of evolution in no way conflicts with the existence of a divine creator, then I must say that I find that claim to be disingenuous. The theory of evolution demolishes the best reason anyone has ever suggested for believing in a divine creator.

    You claim that Myers and Dawkins are exceptions, but I think their sentiment toward religion and Atheism is much more common, NAS at 85% atheists. It is precisely your kind of attitude that sees ID as Creationism that you feel threaten by it, therefore making you blinded to the science of the theory.

    On the other hand, as a Creationist I am not promoting ID using religious arguments. I engage ID solely from a scientific basis. I would challenge you to demonstrate otherwise. I will acknowledge a theory, which involves a designer is more consonant with my personal belief. I can’t change the implication of ID any more than I can change the implication of gravity.

  6. I think you are still missing the point. If it were only a matter of absolving guilt, Atheism would be the apex in that regard. Atheism demands no accountability and no condemnation. Man would be free to do whatever is right in their own eyes. The transformed life of this soldier and people like me, Gil, Sal and those who have come to trust in Christ is the evidence that suggests Christianity is right. I would submit that the natural tendency of human beings is toward Atheism and not to a God that will hold you in account.

    Atheism (my atheism anyway) acknowledges that everyone is accountable to the people around them (from the family to the whole world). I suspect this is true of most atheists, given that most of them live moral lives.

    This guy felt guilt at what he had done. Athiesm offers no magic bullet to kill that guilt. But Christianity does. Repent your sins, and get forgiven by the ultimate father figure.

    Sorry Pixie, but this is again ridiculous. When have you ever seen me use Christianity to defend ID?

    It is the other way around. ID is used to defend Christianity. If I was being harsh, I might suggest that this is a Christian apologetics website, that uses ID to give it a veneer of credibility.

    You have a conspiratorial bias against Christianity therefore you assume that ID is a mere rhetorical tool.

    I have no bias against Christianity as such. I send my children to a church school, for example.

    And when I see evidence that ID is not just a rhetorical tool, I will tell you.

    As I said above, we can’t discard a theory solely on the basis that it might have some metaphysical implications. You are acting like the early Big Bang deniers, who refuse to accept the Big Bang because it has metaphysical implications.

    I reject it because of its purpose, not its implications.

    Can you point to a single statement or argument by leading ID theorists or even in this blog where the purpose of that argument is to support Christianity and not science? I challenge you to produce that one single shred of evidence.

    Hmm, well, let me think really hard. Oh yes, this page! “It is not a well-known fact, but the pilot who led the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor, 55 years ago today, eventually became an Evangelical Christian.”
    Also check out these pages from this blog, and think about how much science there is in each one, and how much Christian apologetics. I quote the first sentence in each, to give a flavour:
    * The Destructive Power of Materialist Indoctrination: I was an atheist, brainwashed by the establishment, into my 40s.
    * Great works of art, beauty and goodness often blossom where you least expect”: It says in the book of Revelation, “The Lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world.”
    * Francis Collins attends a creationist church: I discovered through mutual acquaintances that Francis Collins attends a church that is part of the creationist-leaning Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC).
    These are about science?

    Talk.Orgins provides some quotes from leading IDists:
    * There’s a difference of opinion about how important this debate [advocating intelligent design] is. What I always say is that it’s not just scientific theory. The question is best understood as: Is God real or imaginary? (Phillip Johnson, “The Search for Intelligent Design in the Universe”, Silicon Valley Magazine, 9 Jan. 2000.)
    * “We are taking an intuition most people have [the belief in God] and making it a scientific and academic enterprise. We are removing the most important cultural roadblock to accepting the role of God as creator. (Phillip Johnson, “Enlisting Science to Find the Fingerprints of a Creator”, LA Times, 25 Mar. 2001.)
    * Our strategy has been to change the subject a bit so that we can get the issue of intelligent design, which really means the reality of God, before the academic world and into the schools (P. Johnson 2003).
    * “Father’s words, my studies, and my prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism, just as many of my fellow Unificationists had already devoted their lives to destroying Marxism. When Father chose me (along with about a dozen other seminary graduates) to enter a Ph.D. program in 1978, I welcomed the opportunity to prepare myself for battle (J. Wells n.d.).
    * If we take seriously the word-flesh Christology of Chalcedon (i.e. the doctrine that Christ is fully human and fully divine) and view Christ as the telos toward which God is drawing the whole of creation, then any view of the sciences that leaves Christ out of the picture must be seen as fundamentally deficient. (William Dembski, Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science & Theology, Downers Grove, InterVarsity Press, 1999.)
    * “Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John’s Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory (Dembski 1999, 84).

    What are we trying to do to science? Please give detail examples of the implied harm by your statement.

    Check out the Wedge document. Oriinally a secret document detailing what the purpose of the ID movement is.

    Discovery Institute’s Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture seeks nothing less than the overthrow of materialism and its cultural legacies. Bringing together leading scholars from the natural sciences and those from the humanities and social sciences, the Center explores how new developments in biology, physics and cognitive science raise serious doubts about scientific materialism and have re-opened the case for a broadly theistic understanding of nature.

    You claim that Myers and Dawkins are exceptions, but I think their sentiment toward religion and Atheism is much more common, NAS at 85% atheists.

    Hold on there, that was a pretty skeaky use of statistics. Just because 85% of scientists are athiests it does not follow that 85% of scientists are promoting athiest as science. Bear in mind that about 15% of scientists ae theists, and donot promote their religion as science.

    It is precisely your kind of attitude that sees ID as Creationism that you feel threaten by it, therefore making you blinded to the science of the theory.

    The “science of the theory”?

    On the other hand, as a Creationist I am not promoting ID using religious arguments. I engage ID solely from a scientific basis. I would challenge you to demonstrate otherwise.

    Science, eh? Well, how about this. You give me your hypothesis, you show what predictions are necessary implications of that theory. Just give a link to when you (or someone) has done that. Because that is how science is done.

    And when you tell me science need not be done like that, I can tell you why ID is damaging to science.

  7. Atheism (my atheism anyway) acknowledges that everyone is accountable to the people around them. I suspect this is true of most atheists, given that most of them live moral lives.

    This guy felt guilt at what he had done. Athiesm offers no magic bullet to kill that guilt. But Christianity does. Repent your sins, and get forgiven by the ultimate father figure.

    I don’t want to belabor this point too much because I’ve posted many times on this before. But you are wrong about Atheism. Atheism offers the best absolution for any behavior. All the great atheistic existentialist knows this, i.e. Nietzsche, Sartre, Camus. The only problem with Atheism is the metaphysical God given conscience that argues against Atheism’s amorality.

    It is the other way around. ID is used to defend Christianity. If I was being harsh, I might suggest that this is a Christian apologetics website, that uses ID to give it a veneer of credibility.

    I will accept your harsh criticism if you can show me evidence of how I am blurring the science of ID and my apologetic of Christianity. However, I will not apologize that this is a Christian apologetic website. I am a Christian and I am proud of it. My point is and has been that Christian can do science objectively and defend our faith. I make clear distinction between ID and Christian faith. I can’t say that for many Darwinists.

    I have no bias against Christianity as such. I send my children to a church school, for example.

    And when I see evidence that ID is not just a rhetorical tool, I will tell you.

    Pixie I commend you for sending you children to a church school, but let’s be honest, almost anyone can call themselves a church. Many churches nowadays don’t even believe in the Bible or Creation. However that was not my point, I was not saying you have some deep seeded hatred for Christians like Myers, Dawkins or Dennett. I was saying that you accuse Christians who supports and work on design theories, as having an agenda other than science without any substantive proof, other than your own fearful assumptions. If everything about ID is rhetorical then it should not be a problem for you to point to just one specific example of how an argument like CSI, IC or criticisms of Darwinism is not based on empirical science?

    Hmm, well, let me think really hard. Oh yes, this page! “It is not a well-known fact, but the pilot who led the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor, 55 years ago today, eventually became an Evangelical Christian.”

    Oops, I guess you caught us. How could I have missed such an obvious case of an argument in support of the biological case for ID? Oh wait a minute, no one is talking about the pilot becoming a Christian was a product of CSI or IC or some anthropic fine-tuning, did they? No, this was a philosophical posting and was not meant as a SCIENTIFIC argument for ID. Thanks for that conspiratorial misrepresentation.

    Note what I said carefully in context. I was asking for an example of, where ID is presenting a scientific case for the theory, which we don’t support that theory with scientific data. e.g. Darwin’s Black Box, Cambrian explosion of diverse phyla, DNA, Icons, CSI, etc”

    Understand that ID is diametrically oppose to Darwinian evolution, and as such part of the thesis of ID will criticize the Darwinian mechanism. Many times on this blog our postings are a response to the “so called” science blogs that criticizes ID as Creationism. As I’ve said, this blog will also respond to atheists who try to pass their religion off as science. Contrary to what you might think, Darwinism is not equivalent or the sole source on science.

  8. Just because 85% of scientists are athiests it does not follow that 85% of scientists are promoting athiest as science.

    I don’t understand why I need to correct this, but here goes. I said they have similar sentiment toward religion and Atheism. In context, I giving an argument for their fearful bias toward ID based on your criteria of guilt by association. It was a direct response to your claim

    “they are passionate about science, not atheism. On the other hand, most creationists seem to have a religious purpose for promoting ID.”

  9. “Talk.Orgins provides some quotes from leading IDists:…”

    Oh please Pixie. If I post quotes from the leading scientists showing their “bend” toward atheism, would that imply that purpose of science is to promote atheism?

  10. I don’t want to belabor this point too much because I’ve posted many times on this before. But you are wrong about Atheism. Atheism offers the best absolution for any behavior. All the great atheistic existentialist knows this, i.e. Nietzsche, Sartre, Camus. The only problem with Atheism is the metaphysical God given conscience that argues against Atheism’s amorality.

    And yet most atheists are moral people. That suggests your reasoning is wrong. You might like to try to figure out why athiests lead moral lives with the fear of God peering over their shoulders at all times.

    However, I will not apologize that this is a Christian apologetic website.

    Fine, we agree this web site is Christian apologetics.

    Pixie I commend you for sending you children to a church school, but let’s be honest, almost anyone can call themselves a church. Many churches nowadays don’t even believe in the Bible or Creation.

    It is the Anglican church, which has been around a while, and still uses the Bible in its services. Thankfully, they do not (on the whole) believe in creationism.

    However that was not my point, I was not saying you have some deep seeded hatred for Christians like Myers, Dawkins or Dennett. I was saying that you accuse Christians who supports and work on design theories, as having an agenda other than science without any substantive proof, other than your own fearful assumptions.

    I make these accusations because I see creationists trying to push pseudo-science into school classrooms. You may think ID is science, but it is not. There is no coherent theory of how life as we know it today came to be. It is as basic as that.

    Oops, I guess you caught us. How could I have missed such an obvious case of an argument in support of the biological case for ID? Oh wait a minute, no one is talking about the pilot becoming a Christian was a product of CSI or IC or some anthropic fine-tuning, did they? No, this was a philosophical posting and was not meant as a SCIENTIFIC argument for ID. Thanks for that conspiratorial misrepresentation.

    But it is on a site with the banner “Teleological Blog
    Teleological: (adj) of or related to the philosophical study of design in nature.
    “Biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved.” — Francis Crick

    Sorry, but that banner screams Intelligent Design, not Christian apologetics. If you openly said this was a Christian apologetics site, I might believe you. Take a look at the categories you post under. Intelligent Design is there, Christian apologetics (or anything specifically Christian in nature) is not. So what should I think?

    Sure this is a Christian apologetics site. You just keep it quiet. Which is basically my point.

    Note what I said carefully in context. I was asking for an example of, where ID is presenting a scientific case for the theory, which we don’t support that theory with scientific data. e.g. Darwin’s Black Box, Cambrian explosion of diverse phyla, DNA, Icons, CSI, etc”

    Sorry, the context was a bunch of posts on a blog called “Teleological”. The context was some leading IDists saying their reasons for doing ID are religious.

    I don’t understand why I need to correct this, but here goes. I said they have similar sentiment toward religion and Atheism.

    Just to remind everyone:

    Pix: Most scientists (and Dawkins and Myer are exceptions) are angry at creationists for what creationists are trying to do to science.
    Teleologist: You claim that Myers and Dawkins are exceptions, but I think their sentiment toward religion and Atheism is much more common, NAS at 85% atheists.

    You seem to be offering the 85% statistic to support your claim that a Dawkins-like sentiment toward religion and Atheism is common. But the statistics do not support that claim, they only tell us about the proportion of atheists. Unless I have misunderstood something, that is a pretty poor use of statistics. I hope it was accidental…

  11. Oh please Pixie. If I post quotes from the leading scientists showing their “bend” toward atheism, would that imply that purpose of science is to promote atheism?

    It kind of depends what they say. These are not just quotes when IDists say they are Christians, they are quotes where IDists say their Christian beliefs are the reasons for believing ID. Let us go though them.

    There’s a difference of opinion about how important this debate [advocating intelligent design] is. What I always say is that it’s not just scientific theory. The question is best understood as: Is God real or imaginary? (Phillip Johnson, “The Search for Intelligent Design in the Universe” , Silicon Valley Magazine, 9 Jan. 2000.)

    Johnson says the ID debate is about whether God is real or not.

    “We are taking an intuition most people have [the belief in God] and making it a scientific and academic enterprise. We are removing the most important cultural roadblock to accepting the role of God as creator. (Phillip Johnson, “Enlisting Science to Find the Fingerprints of a Creator” , LA Times, 25 Mar. 2001.)

    Johnson says ID is about making belief in God scientific.

    Our strategy has been to change the subject a bit so that we can get the issue of intelligent design, which really means the reality of God, before the academic world and into the schools (P. Johnson 2003).

    Johnson says ID is about getting the “reality of God” into schools.

    “Father’s words, my studies, and my prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism, just as many of my fellow Unificationists had already devoted their lives to destroying Marxism. When Father chose me (along with about a dozen other seminary graduates) to enter a Ph.D. program in 1978, I welcomed the opportunity to prepare myself for battle (J. Wells n.d.).

    Wells says he devoted his life to destroying Darwinism for religious reasons. See if you can find an atheist who says he took up science to destroy creationism. I somehow doubt you will.

    If we take seriously the word-flesh Christology of Chalcedon (i.e. the doctrine that Christ is fully human and fully divine) and view Christ as the telos toward which God is drawing the whole of creation, then any view of the sciences that leaves Christ out of the picture must be seen as fundamentally deficient. (William Dembski, Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science & Theology, Downers Grove, InterVarsity Press, 1999.)

    Dembski tells us ID is all about Christ.

    “Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John’s Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory (Dembski 1999, 84).

    Dembski tells us ID is all about the Bible.

    That is three of the biggest names in ID (arguable the biggest names in ID) stating that religion is the reason that they are promoting ID. So you go ahead and see what you can find. See how many Darwinists you can find who are on record saying that their reason for being Darwinists or for promoting Darwinism is their atheism. Given there are vastly more scientists who believe in MET, should be easy, no?

  12. Hi The Pixie,

    It is no secret that most (but not all) ID proponents are Christians, and yes they do believe that ID has profound implications on their worldview. However in no way do these quotes support your assertion that “IDists say their Christian beliefs are the reasons for believing ID”. They simply state that ID is 100% compatible with their Christian faith. As far as your challenge to list Darwinists quotes that will show them using Darwinism to promote their atheism, I simply do not know where to start. They can be found in just about every book written by Darwinists and even in some Biology textbooks. And I simply cannot believe you are ignorant of them all.

  13. Did you read what Wells said? I cannot see how he could be any clearer. For religious reasons, following the dictates of his religious leader, he devoted his life to “destroying Darwinism”. Not science, religion for clearly his purpose.

    I simply do not know where to start.

    What? Surely you look at web sites of evolutionists occasionally, how about starting there. Or check out creationist websites, surely they have a whole stack of them, if they exist. The claim you cannot find them because they are so numerous is just no credible. I am not asking you to collect all of them, just a handful like I did.

  14. hi The Pixie,

    Please don’t put words in my mouth. I did not say I cannot find them, I just don’t feel waisting my time quoting them. But if you insist…let the Darwinists speak for themselves. I just have to say sorry to others for spamming, because this is common knowledge.

    Michael Ruse, professor of history and philosophy and author of The Darwinian Revolution (1979), Darwinism Defended (1982), and Taking Darwin Seriously (1986), acknowledges that evolution is religious:

    “Evolution is promoted by its practitioners as more than mere science. Evolution is promulgated as an ideology, a secular religion–a full-fledged alternative to Christianity, with meaning and morality. I am an ardent evolutionist and an ex-Christian, but I must admit in this one complaint. . . the literalists [i.e., creationists] are absolutely right. Evolution is a religion. This was true of evolution in the beginning, and it is true of evolution still today.”

    Michael Ruse, “Saving Darwinism from the Darwinians,” National Post (May 13, 2000), B3.

    For Ruse, and he is correct, “evolution is a kind of secular ideology, an explicit substitute for Christianity.” If evolution is a “substitute for Christianity,” and Christianity is religious, then evolution, as Christianity’s substitute, is religious. The distinction in this debate, therefore, is not between religion and science, as so many claim, but between one religion and science (materialistic evolution) and another religion and science (creation science).

    Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895), in addition to being called “Darwin’s Bulldog,” was also known as “Pope Huxley”? “Huxley personalized ‘nature,’ referring to it as ‘fair, just and patient,’ ‘a strong angel who is playing for love.'” How can this be when evolution is described as “blind”? Huxley’s great-grandson, Julian Huxley (1887-­1975), “conceded that his beliefs are ‘something in the nature of a religion,'” and described his humanist beliefs as “The New Divinity.”

    Philip J. Sampson, 6 Modern Myths About Christianity and Western Civilization (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2001), 62.
    Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe Without Design (New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1986).
    Julian Huxley, Evolution in Action (New York: Mentor, 1953), 132. Quoted in Sampson, Six Modern Myths, 62.

    Ruse and the Huxleys are not alone in their contention that evolution is a materialistic religion that is founded on metaphysical assumptions:

    The distinguished biologist Lynn Margulis has rather scathingly referred to new-Darwinism as “a minor twentieth century religious sect within the sprawling religious persuasion of Anglo-Saxon biology.” Stuart Kauffman observes that “natural selection” has become so central an explanatory force in neo-Darwinism that “we might as well capitalize [it] as though it were the new deity

    Sampson, 6 Modern Myths, 62.

    Man, I am tired already, but lets continue.

    Professor Richard Lewontin, a geneticist and author of a number of books on Darwinian theory, illustrates the implicit metaphysical starting point of the evolutionary dogma. Even when the facts point away from a certain scientific explanation for a given theory, evolution must be followed because the materialistic religion of Darwin must be protected against any Divine intrusion:

    We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is an absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.

    Richard Lewontin, “Billions and billions of demons,” The New York Review (January 9, 1997), 31.

    Robert Jastrow, an internationally known astronomer, founder and director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Professor of Astronomy and Geology at Columbia University, and Professor of Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College, describes science as “religion” in the chapter where the following quotation is taken:

    Consider the enormity of the problem. Science has proven that the Universe exploded into being at a certain moment. It asks, What cause produced this effect? Who or what put the matter and energy into the Universe? Was the Universe created out of nothing, or was it gathered together out of pre-existing materials? And science cannot answer these questions, because, according to the astronomers, in the first moments of its existence the Universe was compressed to an extraordinary degree, and consumed by the heat of a fire beyond human imagination. The shock of that instant must have destroyed every particle of evidence that could have yielded a clue to the cause of the great explosion. An entire world, rich in structure and history, may have existed before our Universe appeared; but if it did, science cannot tell what kind of world it was. A sound explanation may exist for the explosive birth of our Universe; but if it does, science cannot find out what the explanation is.

    Jastrow, God and the Astronomers, 114-­115.

    “The first theory places the question of the origin of life beyond the reach of scientific inquiry. It is a statement of faith in the power of a Supreme Being not subject to the laws of science. The second theory is also an act of faith. The act of faith consists in assuming that the scientific view of the origin of life is correct, without having concrete evidence to support that belief.”

    Robert Jastrow, Until the Sun Dies (New York: Norton & Co., 1977), 62­-63. The chapter in which this quotation appears is called “The Miracle.”

    These aren’t the words of a “Christian fundamentalist” who is “anti-intellectual and where “logic takes a holiday,” to use Darwinists description of biblical creationists. Jastrow is a well-respected scientist, described as “the greatest writer of science living today.”

    …and I haven’t even scratched the surface.

    But Pixie, I think the issue is motive vs. purpose on both sides of the debate. I don’t have a problem that atheism or materialism motivates Darwinists as long as their purpose is to advance empirical science. Same goes for ID and Creationism. Why should it bother you what Dr. Wells or Dr. Dawkins say from the pulpit if their arguments for their world view are scientific?

  15. You might like to try to figure out why athiests lead moral lives

    I would submit atheists who submit to a moral code are hypocrites who do not live according to their faith. But don’t take my word for it, that is the conclusion by one of the great atheist philosopher, Jean Paul Sartre.

    But it is on a site with the banner “Teleological Blog
    Teleological: (adj) of or related to the philosophical study of design in nature.

    I am happy to see that you are so impressed with our banner. Teleology is the main focus of this blog. We have about 250 postings and the overwhelming majority of them are related to ID issues. There are a small percentage of the postings that are not directly related to ID. So What? You are drawing a conclusion not based on the contents of this blog but rather from the professing adherence of its contributors. Again I challenge you to show from our blog and from any design theorists, when making an argument supporting the theory of ID have appealed to religious text. On the contrary, it is the ID critics such as you who incessantly link our motivation while ignoring the merits to religion.

    You are also showing your blind hypocritical bias by not criticizing blogs like those by Myers. They have a name like scienceBlogs. You can’t get any more blunt than that can you. Do you know how many of their posts have no connection to science at all? So either you are fixated on distorting the postings in this blog to support your misguided assertion that ID = Creationism, or you are being mischievous by misrepresenting this blog.

    Sure this is a Christian apologetics site. You just keep it quiet.

    Well, maybe you and I have a different interpretation of Christian apologetics. Defense of Christianity does not necessarily mean a direct engagement of our Worldview. Maybe we should consider this blog more as an indirect type of apologetics. For example, construction project in Israel have nothing to do with Christianity. However, if an artifact was unearthed during excavation with some inscriptions on it that refers to Jesus, James and Joseph, then all of a sudden the construction project and this artifact takes on new significance. If I were to report on this construction project and the significance of this artifact, would this make construction and archaeology equivalent to Christian apologetics? More importantly does my reporting and discussion of this artifact invalid any of the scientific analysis behind this artifact? What if this artifact has religious implications? Does this mean that all scientific study of this artifact has a Christian apologetic purpose? In the same way, this blog is committed to reporting the scientific findings of ID. In no way does my reporting and discussion of this theory invalidate the facts of the theory.

    Sorry, the context was a bunch of posts on a blog called “Teleological” . The context was some leading IDists saying their reasons for doing ID are religious.

    Please demonstrate how the blood cascade is a religious reason? Please demonstrate to me how a few dozen well-fitted and coordinated parts of constructing a flagellum is a religious reason? Please demonstrate to me how the complexity of the DNA code is a religious reason? It seems the only people who are incapable of separating science from their religious beliefs are atheists and science.

    You seem to be offering the 85% statistic to support your claim that a Dawkins-like sentiment toward religion and Atheism is common. But the statistics do not support that claim, they only tell us about the proportion of atheists. Unless I have misunderstood something, that is a pretty poor use of statistics. I hope it was accidental”

    You are taking my reference out of context, but before I get to that let’s use your criterion as an example of how we can draw a conclusion. Teleologist is a Creationist. Teleologist supports ID. Therefore ID = Creationism. It is estimated that there are approximately 2 billion Creationists in the world, in one form or another. According to Pixie ID = Creationism, therefore 2 billion Creationists support ID. Also according to Pixie the purpose for Creationists promoting ID is religious. How does Pixie know this? Can you read the minds of 2 billion people? Do you have a poll of 2 billion Creationists confessing to this purpose? Do you have the actions or context from 2 billion Creationists to make this statement

    On the other hand, most creationists seem to have a religious purpose for promoting ID.

    You have no data to support your claim. It is a pretty poor use of logic. I hope it was accidental.

    I said they have similar sentiment toward religion and Atheism. In context, I giving an argument for their fearful bias toward ID based on your criteria of guilt by association. It was a direct response to your claim

    Now it is my turn to remember you what I said.

    I don’t understand why I need to correct this, but here goes. I said they have similar sentiment toward religion and Atheism. In context, I giving an argument for their fearful bias toward ID based on your criteria of guilt by association.

    The key words there are similar sentiment. I would say that 100% of the 85% share the same sentiment toward religion and Atheism. That sentiment being religion is diametrically opposed to Atheism. For all practical purpose the religion we are talking about here is a god. Atheism makes a positive denial of god. What claim does this not support? I further press my case that since 85% of the NAS members share this similar sentiment of religion and Atheism this is the cause for their fear and antagonism toward ID. ID has the implication that challenges the core methodological naturalistic belief of Atheism. Couple this philosophical fear with the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID, just as you have shown here in the last 2 days. I have to conclude that your objections stems from a philosophical fear more than from scientific evidence.

    Johnson says the ID debate is about whether God is real or not.

    What Johnson said is absolutely true. Do you know the context of what he is saying here? It seems this quote fits into the context of what I know Johnson believes, Darwinian evolution is a religion. NDE is a religion that denies the existence of God. ID is not just in a battle over science. It is a battle against Darwinian Priors who has a personal stake to not accept ID.

    Johnson says ID is about making belief in God scientific.

    Johnson may or may not be saying that. It is hard to tell without further context. But let me ask you, suppose Johnson does have some nefarious agenda. Can you explain to me how he is able to make his belief in God by making the blood cascade with over 20 different interdependent reactions with feedbacks? Can Johnson’s belief change the reality of scientific evidence? Ultimately we have to ID is presenting scientific evidence of IC and inference of design not a religious belief. MET is making an inference based on faith that RM&NS can perform its magic.

  16. Thanks inunison for providing those quotes. It is helpful to have a few of these quotes on record here. The fact that Pixie wouldn’t even acknowledge their predisposition says a lot about his, and I hope, inadvertent close-mindedness.

  17. Hi inunison

    Michael Ruse, professor of history and philosophy and author…

    So not actually a scientist.

    For Ruse, and he is correct, “evolution is a kind of secular ideology, an explicit substitute for Christianity.” If evolution is a “substitute for Christianity,” and Christianity is religious, then evolution, as Christianity’s substitute, is religious.

    You said originally “would that imply that purpose of science is to promote atheism?”. I see nothing here to suppose that any scientist does science with the specific purpose of promoting athiesm. I think the Wells quote shows he does ID for religious reasons; his purpose for devoting his life to destroying Darwinism is his religion.

    Professor Richard Lewontin, a geneticist and author of a number of books on Darwinian theory, illustrates the implicit metaphysical starting point of the evolutionary dogma. Even when the facts point away from a certain scientific explanation for a given theory, evolution must be followed because the materialistic religion of Darwin must be protected against any Divine intrusion.

    Do you really believe that?

    By the way, Lewontin was describing methodological materialism, not metaphysical materialism.

    …describes science as “religion” in the chapter where the following quotation is taken:

    But that quote say sciences does not know the important questions of religion. Did you get the wrong one?

    Jastrow is again describing methodological naturalism. Science is in the business of studying what science can study, and that is the natural world.

    And still I see nothing to suggest any scienctist does science with the purpose of promoting atheism.

    But Pixie, I think the issue is motive vs. purpose on both sides of the debate. I don’t have a problem that atheism or materialism motivates Darwinists as long as their purpose is to advance empirical science. Same goes for ID and Creationism. Why should it bother you what Dr. Wells or Dr. Dawkins say from the pulpit if their arguments for their world view are scientific?

    If people believe ID is right because it fits with their meta-physics (or Darwinism, I know), and ignore the evidence that contradicts it, then that is a problem. I have this suspicion that that is the case for much of ID. The thing about religion is that is is absolute faith. Do you doubt God exists? If you have no doubt, then anything you find that contradicts that opinion must be distorted to mean something else. Wells started a Ph.D. in biology already convinced that Darwinism was wrong. Whatever the evidence, his faith told him Darwinism was wrong. And that is not science.

  18. So not actually a scientist.

    That’s right. Just like Barbara Forrest and Daniel Dennett who claims to defend science but in reality is promoting Atheism? I wonder what your opinion is about Forrest’s comments on science? BTW, anyone without a PhD in science should just lobotomize themselves and pray to the Darwinian Priors, right?

    I see nothing here to suppose that any scientist does science with the specific purpose of promoting athiesm. I think the Wells quote shows he does ID for religious reasons; his purpose for devoting his life to destroying Darwinism is his religion.

    We know what you think Pixie. Your bias and willful hypocrisy is evident. However, I am now worried about your rationality. Compare the quote that you gave on Wells and your own interpretation of what he said.

    Pixie quotes Wells: “Father’s words, my studies, and my prayers convinced me that I should devote my life to destroying Darwinism

    Pixie’s interpretation: “I think the Wells quote shows he does ID for religious reasons

    (emphasis added)All Wells said was he is going to devote his life to destroy Darwinism. You somehow process that in your brain as doing ID for religious reasons. This is very enlightening. This decoding problem in your brain explains why so many atheists hears and sees one thing and regurgitate another. This is probably the clearest case of your atheistic bias. When it comes to the atheistic beliefs of 85% of the NAS members, some are very vocal against religion, but you refuse to acknowledge that they have an interest in denying the validity ID, not based on science but philosophical predisposition. You then turn around and magically conclude that Wells does ID for religious reason, when he never even mentions about ID? Not only that, you go even further with your magic apologetics to conclude that just because Wells is doing ID for religious reasons(your interpretation only) then ID is Creationism.

  19. Hi Teleologists

    I would submit atheists who submit to a moral code are hypocrites who do not live according to their faith. But don’t take my word for it, that is the conclusion by one of the great atheist philosopher, Jean Paul Sartre.

    Athiesm is not a faith. Athiests cannot live according to that faith.

    I am not getting why you think we are hypcrites. Do you think we only say there is no God, but really we believe there is?

    Again I challenge you to show from our blog and from any design theorists, when making an argument supporting the theory of ID have appealed to religious text. On the contrary, it is the ID critics such as you who incessantly link our motivation while ignoring the merits to religion.

    How about the Dembski quote: “Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John’s Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory”. I would suggest that Dembski is trying to persuade Christians that ID is right by linking it to scripture.

    Or this blog post: “It is not a well-known fact, but the pilot who led the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor, 55 years ago today, eventually became an Evangelical Christian. See: From Pearl Harbor to Calvary. Such changed lives are the product of intelligent design, not random Darwinian processes.” The first sentence is Christian apologetics, the last attempts to use that to prove ID.

    Please demonstrate how the blood cascade is a religious reason?

    Some people argue that the blood cascade is “irreducably complex”, which is to say that it could not happen without the intervention of an intelligent agent (perhaps when life fist appeared, but certainly at some point since the point modern science recognises as the Big Bang.

    There is a movement that promotes this under the banner of something called “Intelligent Design”, and some of the common definitions note that features of the universe were designed by this intelligence, or that it preexists nature. An intelligence external to our universe. God, you might say.

    This idea of “irreducably complex” is not science, it is not even that well defined, but some people want it taiught as science to school children. My suspicion is that those people have religious reasons for wanting to do that (based partly on comments by members of the school board that came to light in the Dover court case).

    You seem to be offering the 85% statistic to support your claim that a Dawkins-like sentiment toward religion and Atheism is common. But the statistics do not support that claim, they only tell us about the proportion of atheists. Unless I have misunderstood something, that is a pretty poor use of statistics. I hope it was accidental”

    You are taking my reference out of context, but before I get to that let’s use your criterion as an example of how we can draw a conclusion. Teleologist is a Creationist. Teleologist supports ID. Therefore ID = Creationism.

    I have no idea what this is referring to. I have not said, and do not believe that ID = Creationism, and I do not believe I have used logic anywhere analogous to that.

    Pix: On the other hand, most creationists seem to have a religious purpose for promoting ID.
    Tel: You have no data to support your claim. It is a pretty poor use of logic. I hope it was accidental.

    Hmm, maybe my use of creationism and ID there confused you. Creationism is a religious belief. Furthermore, creationism is a subset of ID (any creationism origins theory is also an ID origins theory, though the reverse is not necessarily true. If you are a creationist who promotes ID, then it logically follows that you have a relgious reason for doing so.

    Note that I did not claim all IDists have a religious purpose for promoting ID – I have no data for that. I can only say it for creationists because by definition they have a relgious reason for promoting ID.

    The key words there are similar sentiment. I would say that 100% of the 85% share the same sentiment toward religion and Atheism.

    Let us be clear that you were talking about a similar sentiment to Dawkins and Myers. You said: “You claim that Myers and Dawkins are exceptions, but I think their sentiment toward religion and Atheism is much more common, NAS at 85% atheists.” I dispute the claim that all (or even most) of those 85% atheists are comparable to Myers and Dawkins in their athiesm. I know I am not (though I am not in the NAS).

    This is based on my experience that most people are moderate. Most Christians are moderates, but some are more extreme, and will go to some lengths to promote the idea of a six-day creation. Most athiests are moderate (and only strongly suspect there is no God), but will some are more extreme, and will go to some lengths to promote the idea of impossibility of God. As far as I know, all the athiests at ARN are moderates.

    Couple this philosophical fear with the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID, just as you have shown here in the last 2 days.

    I have done what now? Is this a joke or what?

    How about you start a post with what you consider the best factual evidence for ID, and we take it from there. Okay, if you really feel you have to, you can post the best evidence against evolution.

    All Wells said was he is going to devote his life to destroy Darwinism. You somehow process that in your brain as doing ID for religious reasons.

    Sorry, but all the big ID arguments are arguments against evolution. How many ID books mention Darwin in the title?

    But I guess this raises the ante a little. So ID is not about destroying Darwinism, so forget what I just said about starting a post with the best evidence against evolution. You say ID is not about destroying Darwinism, you said “the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID”. So let us see what this “factual evidence for ID”, and I will engage you in debate.

  20. Athiesm is not a faith. Athiests cannot live according to that faith.

    I am not getting why you think we are hypcrites. Do you think we only say there is no God, but really we believe there is?

    Philosophy 101. All humanistic Worldviews are based on faith, because no one is omniscient.

    Atheists are hypocrites because if Atheism is true the logical necessity is amorality. (see my comments here and here). Atheists are hypocrites because they always make judgments of what they perceive as right and wrong.

    teleologist: Again I challenge you to show from our blog and from any design theorists, when making an argument supporting the theory of ID have appealed to religious text.

    How about the Dembski quote: “Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John’s Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory” . I would suggest that Dembski is trying to persuade Christians that ID is right by linking it to scripture.

    Pixie, I am serious, are you not able to tell the difference between analogy and the study of science? Dembski doesn’t hide the fact that he is a Christian nor do the contributor in this blog. Just as people like Myers et al do not hide the fact that they are atheists. The question is do they use their faith as evidence for science. I think it is absolutely reasonable if the reverse is true. If science has certain facts or tenets that authenticate one’s faith, there is no harm to science if one uses those facts to enforce their faith.

    Your misrepresentation of Dembski and this blog is salacious. I asked for a specific example of what IDists consider as an instance of ID. Then using that example show how Idists instead of using scientific methodology to support that instance of ID, we use religious text. Dembski in your example was not trying to prove any instance of ID. Do you understand the difference? Do you understand the faulty logic when Darwinists say that evolution is a fact, just as gravity is a fact?

    (I will get to the rest of your post when I have more time.)

  21. Philosophy 101. All humanistic Worldviews are based on faith, because no one is omniscient.

    No, no, no! Any absolute belief in a world view is based on faith, because no one is omniscient. If I believed without doubt that there is no God, that would be faith. But as it happens, I only think there is no God, I am not sure about it.

    Atheists are hypocrites because if Atheism is true the logical necessity is amorality. (see my comments here and here). Atheists are hypocrites because they always make judgments of what they perceive as right and wrong.

    Atheists live with other people, and recognise that the only way we can all get along is if we behave morally. It is in our best interests to tell the truth, because when you tell lies, people stop believing you.

    Referring to your first linked comments, echoing CS Lewis, I tend to agree with point 1, though I find the reasoning spurious. I fail to understand how 2 follows from 1. Point 3 would seem toundermine Christianity, as the God of the Old Testament does some pretty nasty things, such as genocide. I would also agree that instincts are not a good guide to morality. Morality is something that has evolved culturally, not biologically. It is necessary if people are going to live together, and becomes more important as the size of the community grows. A respect for property and person is vital for a culture to flourish economically. Look up “social contract” to get an idea of what I am talking about.

    Your misrepresentation of Dembski and this blog is salacious. I asked for a specific example of what IDists consider as an instance of ID. Then using that example show how Idists instead of using scientific methodology to support that instance of ID, we use religious text. Dembski in your example was not trying to prove any instance of ID. Do you understand the difference? Do you understand the faulty logic when Darwinists say that evolution is a fact, just as gravity is a fact?

    Okay… But I originally said ID was a form of Christian apologetics, that Dembski et al are using ID to promote Christianity, not that he uses Christianity to prove ID (admittedly the Dembski quote is different as it directed at Christians, rather than science).

  22. Hi Pixie,

    You said:

    Hmm, maybe my use of creationism and ID there confused you. Creationism is a religious belief. Furthermore, creationism is a subset of ID (any creationism origins theory is also an ID origins theory, though the reverse is not necessarily true. If you are a creationist who promotes ID, then it logically follows that you have a relgious (sic) reason for doing so.

    Note that I did not claim all IDists have a religious purpose for promoting ID – I have no data for that. I can only say it for creationists because by definition they have a relgious (sic) reason for promoting ID.

    I think we need to get things clear for you. ID has no origins story, hence Scientific Creationism cannot be subset of ID. ID is also NOT alternative for Evolution and it does not deny it. Claims of ID are actually quite modest and it goes like this: that intelligent causes are necessary to explain the complex, information-rich structures of biology and that these causes are empirically detectable. Admittedly this modest claim has a huge implications not just for Science of Biology but Philosophy in general. It will also by default make Darwinian Evolution obsolete (but not evolution in general).

    And regarding Jastrow’s quote you need to read my posts more carefully. The act of faith consists in assuming that the scientific view of the origin of life is correct, without having concrete evidence to support that belief. Why are you just dismissing everything we post here without even reading it? I am not saying you must or should agree but at least show some higher level of understanding what are we talking about here.

  23. I was going with slightly different definitions:

    dembski: Design theory– also called design or the design argument– is the view that nature shows tangible signs of having been designed by a preexisting intelligence.

    IDEA: The theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, and are not the result of an undirected, chance-based process such as Darwinian evolution.

    Meyer:In contrast, the theory of intelligent design holds that there are tell-tale features of living systems and the universe that are best explained by an intelligent cause. The theory does not challenge the idea of evolution defined as change over time, or even common ancestry, but it does dispute Darwin’s idea that the cause of biological change is wholly blind and undirected.

    All of these are consistent with scientific creationism (SC), the difference being that SC has rather more. There is nothing is SC that contradicts the above, and indeed SC necessarily entails the above. Any hypothesis that can be considered SC must also be an ID hypothesis. Thus the set of SC hypotheses is a subset of IC hypotheses.

    Jastrow

    Consider the enormity of the problem. Science has proven that the Universe exploded into being at a certain moment. It asks, What cause produced this effect? Who or what put the matter and energy into the Universe? Was the Universe created out of nothing, or was it gathered together out of pre-existing materials? And science cannot answer these questions, because, according to the astronomers, in the first moments of its existence the Universe was compressed to an extraordinary degree, and consumed by the heat of a fire beyond human imagination. The shock of that instant must have destroyed every particle of evidence that could have yielded a clue to the cause of the great explosion. An entire world, rich in structure and history, may have existed before our Universe appeared; but if it did, science cannot tell what kind of world it was. A sound explanation may exist for the explosive birth of our Universe; but if it does, science cannot find out what the explanation is.

    So what? This is bad news, sure, because we would like to know the answers. But it does not prove science wrong, it does not prove the methodology of science is wrong. Furthermore, we have no other tools available to answer these questions. So how does this relate to our discussion? I have read carefully, twice now, and still have no clue why you posted it.

    The first theory places the question of the origin of life beyond the reach of scientific inquiry. It is a statement of faith in the power of a Supreme Being not subject to the laws of science. The second theory is also an act of faith. The act of faith consists in assuming that the scientific view of the origin of life is correct, without having concrete evidence to support that belief.

    There is no consensus scientific view on the origin of life. There are conjectures, with varying amounts of supporting evidence, but no one can be sure if they are right, and perhaps never will. Science accepts that. And what does Jastrow mean by “concrete evidence”?
    That said, science does assume that everything has a naturalistic explanation. Scientists exploring abiogenesis restrict themselves to studying natural processes. They have to; how could they study a mechanism that involves the hand of God? This is what methodological naturalism is all about. Science studying nature and only nature… because it can do nothing else.

    Sure, sciece could be wrong, but that working asssumption has served well for decades. Scientists assuming a naturalistic explanation for lightning could have been wrong; it might have been God expressing his anger. But they had no way to study that, so they looked at other possibilities that they could study. Turns out they were right.

    So in summary: Jastrow is again describing methodological naturalism. Science is in the business of studying what science can study, and that is the natural world. Which is what I said last time. Perhaps you need to show some higher level of understanding what Jastrow is we talking about here?

  24. Hi Pixie,

    I meant no offense in my post, just a notion that you are not taking up the issues here. The fact of the matter is, I showed you after 5 minutes of searching that Darwinists state that belief in Darwinian Evolution comes before and above empirical scientific research. But saying that, I don’t think it appropriate to conclude that Darwinian Evolution is not scientific program. Same goes for ID. And I am going to repeat it again: the issue is motive vs. purpose on both sides of the debate. I don’t have a problem that atheism or materialism motivates Darwinists as long as their purpose is to advance empirical science. Same goes for ID and Creationism. Why should it bother you what Dr. Wells or Dr. Dawkins say from the pulpit if their arguments for their world view are scientific? Would you not agree that advancement of science does not depend on motives of people who do science?

    With Jastrow, you are beating a dead horse here, and perhaps should take your disagreements with him directly.

  25. btw Pixie,

    That definition of ID is taken from William A. Dembski, Intelligent Design (Downer’s Grove, Ill: InterVarsity, 1999), p. 106.

    Have you read the book? It is very informative as to what ID is and is not.

    Thus the set of SC hypotheses is a subset of IC hypotheses

    This is not correct. SC is based on Revelation first and above anything else and uses legitimate scientific methodology to support that foundation or assumption. SC is, if you wish “total” world view. ID does and claims no such thing, there is no Scriptural support invoked for its claims and it does not address origins, morality, psychology etc. So why do you keep on saying that SC is subset of IC?

  26. I meant no offense in my post, just a notion that you are not taking up the issues here. The fact of the matter is, I showed you after 5 minutes of searching that Darwinists state that belief in Darwinian Evolution comes before and above empirical scientific research.

    I am going to take a wild stab in the dark here, and suggest you found those quotes on creationist/IDists websites that have done the work for you. I had a quick look for the context of the Jastrow quotes, and all I could find was creationist/IDists websites.

    That said, the quotes you found do not show what you claim. Jastrow was talking about the origins of life, abiogenesis, which is what happens before evolution, and even earlier than that, to the Big Bang. Lewontin does not mention evolution at all.

    the issue is motive vs. purpose on both sides of the debate. I don’t have a problem that atheism or materialism motivates Darwinists as long as their purpose is to advance empirical science. Same goes for ID and Creationism. Why should it bother you what Dr. Wells or Dr. Dawkins say from the pulpit if their arguments for their world view are scientific? Would you not agree that advancement of science does not depend on motives of people who do science?

    Wells and Dawkins can say what they want from their respective pulpits. If they say it from the pulpits, it does not have to be science at all. If they have a scientific argument, then regardless of their motives, as long as anyone well-verse in the field can make strong predictions from it, and test those predictions, then it is science.

    The problem potentially comes when they try to push what they say in the pulpits into science. If they know in advance that they are right, because that is their faith, and will therefore twist the results to confirm that, or try to change the rules of science so their pet theory does not have to make predictions, that stops being science. And the more they promote that pseudo-science to the masses (who, with all due respect, may not be too conversant in science) the more damage they do to science.

    With Jastrow, you are beating a dead horse here, and perhaps should take your disagreements with him directly.

    I was disagreeing with your interpretation of what he says, not with what he says (though he does not sound like his views are exactly conventional).

    This is not correct. SC is based on Revelation first and above anything else and uses legitimate scientific methodology to support that foundation or assumption. SC is, if you wish “total” world view. ID does and claims no such thing, there is no Scriptural support invoked for its claims and it does not address origins, morality, psychology etc. So why do you keep on saying that SC is subset of IC?

    If we found absolute evidence that SC was spot on, that would prove Darwinism was wrong. I suggest it would also prove ID right on each of the claims ID makes. If SC is true then it necessarily follows that ID is true. Any origins hypothesis that is SC must therefore also be ID.

    Of course, where my argument fails is that ID has a deliberate policy of not having any actually hypothesis of what happened. Thus the set of ID hypotheses is and must alway be empty. But this brings us back to the earlier point about trying to redefine science. If you want to claim ID is science, and not religion, go do some science. Generage hypotheses, draw predictions, test them.

  27. Hi Pixie,

    You said:

    Wells and Dawkins can say what they want from their respective pulpits. If they say it from the pulpits, it does not have to be science at all. If they have a scientific argument, then regardless of their motives, as long as anyone well-verse in the field can make strong predictions from it, and test those predictions, then it is science.

    The problem potentially comes when they try to push what they say in the pulpits into science. If they know in advance that they are right, because that is their faith, and will therefore twist the results to confirm that, or try to change the rules of science so their pet theory does not have to make predictions, that stops being science. And the more they promote that pseudo-science to the masses (who, with all due respect, may not be too conversant in science) the more damage they do to science.

    Absolutely! I am in complete agreement with you on this one. The question is who is the guilty party? And no, I don’t think all Darwinists are bad scientists and all SC or/and ID proponents good ones. That can only be determined based on validity of scientific data interpretation.

    If we found absolute evidence that SC was spot on, that would prove Darwinism was wrong.

    No, that is not how science works. There is no such thing like absolute evidence, even SC recognizes that (unlike Darwinian Fundamentalists). We can only interpret data that comes our way by scientific method, which by the way, alone cannot give us whole picture of reality.

    If SC is true then it necessarily follows that ID is true

    If true, it makes ID subset of SC, exactly opposite of what you claim.

    Any origins hypothesis that is SC must therefore also be ID

    This is not true. ID does not have origins hypothesis. Your post #23 have definitions of ID that do not have any origins claim. You should by now understand that ID is not about mechanism but detection of design. ID and Darwinian Evolution are not in the same category. ID is much more modest in its claims. And if true, it would not invalidate evolution as such. As you noticed yourself, Dr. Meyer said: The theory does not challenge the idea of evolution defined as change over time, or even common ancestry, but it does dispute Darwin’s idea that the cause of biological change is wholly blind and undirected.

    I am going to take a wild stab in the dark here…

    Wild indeed. I do own all books or articles from which I quoted, avoiding copy/paste from the Web so that I cannot be accused of what you are accusing me of. It actually makes no difference if quality of information is there. So you are welcome to copy/paste from any Web site you like, I will not hold it against you.

  28. No, that is not how science works.

    I was talking hypothetically.

    This is not true. ID does not have origins hypothesis.

    As I later noted, it does not really have anything at all in the way of hypotheses. Which is why I am intrigued at what Teleologist can produce in the way of factual evidence for ID.

  29. Hi Pix,

    How about you start a post with what you consider the best factual evidence for ID, and we take it from there. ” You say ID is not about destroying Darwinism, you said “the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID” . So let us see what this “factual evidence for ID” , and I will engage you in debate.

    Now you are joking with me right? You come here accusing us of being a purely apologetics blog and you don’t even know we’ve posted on this already? I will give you some time to read up on our blog. At the meantime we need to focus on some other loose ends.

    I don’t think I ever said that ID is not about destroying Darwinism. Debunking Darwinism might not be a stated goal but IMO, it by default is a part, let me repeat so I won’t be misrepresented, it is a part of the consequences of ID theory. The two theories are mutually exclusive. I could also say that Darwinism is about destroying ID.

    Any absolute belief in a world view is based on faith, because no one is omniscient. If I believed without doubt that there is no God, that would be faith. But as it happens, I only think there is no God, I am not sure about it.

    Hi Pix, Are you sure you are not sure about it? And how were you able to come to that certainty if you are sure able that you are not sure?

    Atheists live with other people, and recognise that the only way we can all get along is if we behave morally. It is in our best interests to tell the truth, because when you tell lies, people stop believing you.

    Once again, you’ve missed the mark. We need to really focus here. Do you understand the difference between a person’s existential behavior and epistemology? This is very basic philosophy. This is the difference of a person’s committed behavior and how they derive the constructs of that behavior. I am glad that you live a moral live. I think you should live a moral live, just as I’ve told RBH. The problem is not how buy why? Why is there a comparison of value? Why is there a differentiation between your view of morality and another view of morality that is different from you? Do you understand what Sartre meant by an infinite reference point?

    Referring to your first linked comments, echoing CS Lewis, I tend to agree with point 1, though I find the reasoning spurious.

    I thought you might agree with his point 1, but what part of his reasoning do you find spurious?

    I fail to understand how 2 follows from 1.

    2. But a universal moral law requires a universal Moral Law Giver, since the Source of it: (a) Gives moral commands (as lawgivers do). (b) Is interested in our behavior (as moral persons are).

    Where would such a moral code come from if not from an Absolute? i.e. Hypothetically speaking, if all the sentient beings in the entire universe agree on a single moral law. Does this make that moral law an Absolute or is it just a consensus?

    Point 3 would seem toundermine Christianity, as the God of the Old Testament does some pretty nasty things

    Are you God? You must be, because your statement is a judgment of value. It would also follow that you are omniscient and have the authority to dictate what the God of the OT did was right or wrong. Or else, you statement of value is meaningless.

    The other possibility is the Christian perspective.

    Okay” But I originally said ID was a form of Christian apologetics, that Dembski et al are using ID to promote Christianity, not that he uses Christianity to prove ID (admittedly the Dembski quote is different as it directed at Christians, rather than science).

    Thank you. So you agree that ID as a scientific theory is independent of religion or Christianity, right? And as such, I have no problem with people using ID, Physics, Philosophy, Behaviorial Science, Quantum mechanics or any field of science as Christian apologetics.

    I can only say it for creationists because by definition they have a relgious (sic) reason for promoting ID.

    PLEASE, end your hypocrisy now! Are “atheists because by definition they have a religious (sic) reason for promoting Darwinism” a valid statement also? Atheism may be a subset of Darwinism, but inunison is right, it is impossible for Christianity to be a subset of ID. As I said before but you apparently have missed, is that there might be certain aspects of ID that is in consonant with Christianity. There are intersecting spheres of knowledge and I will unapologetically highlight these facts to the benefit of Christianity.

  30. Now you are joking with me right? You come here accusing us of being a purely apologetics blog and you don’t even know we’ve posted on this already? I will give you some time to read up on our blog. At the meantime we need to focus on some other loose ends.

    The original claim by you was that I refused to engage in debate when you post so-called factual evidence (“Couple this philosophical fear with the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID, just as you have shown here in the last 2 days”). Has it now dawned on you that I did not engage in debate because I have not gone back through every post on your site?

    I don’t think I ever said that ID is not about destroying Darwinism. Debunking Darwinism might not be a stated goal but IMO, it by default is a part, let me repeat so I won’t be misrepresented, it is a part of the consequences of ID theory. The two theories are mutually exclusive. I could also say that Darwinism is about destroying ID.

    Actually Darwinism (or modern evolutionary theory; MET) and ID are not mutually exclusive. Darwinism describes the process after first life appears, and ID in some form is perfectly happy with the design occurring either at the Big Bang, or for the first life. The universe then unfolds under natural laws (i.e, MET), with no further intervention.

    Check these quotes by Behe:
    “…one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature…”
    “…they were designed billions of years ago and that they have been passed down to the present by the normal processes of cellular reproduction. ” Suppose that nearly 4 BYA the designer made the first cell, already containing the IC biomechanical systems discussed here and many others…”
    “…Since the simplest possible design scenario posits a single cell – formed billions of years ago – that already contained all information to produce descendant organisms, other studies could test this scenario by attempting to calculate how much DNA would be required to code the information (keeping in mind that much of the information might be implicit)…”
    And by Dembski:
    “…Indeed, intelligent design is perfectly compatible with all the design in the world being front-loaded in the sense that all design was introduced at the beginning (say at the Big Bang) and then came to expression subsequently over the course of natural history much as a computer program’s output becomes evident only when the program is run…”
    “…there is no reason prima facie to suppose that this designer did not act consistently with natural laws. It is, for instance, a logical possibility that the design in the bacterial flagellum was front-loaded into the universe at the Big Bang and subsequently expressed itself in the course of natural history …”
    Hat tip to daron at Teleological blog for finding these for me.

    This all misses the point of why you want to destroy Darwinism. Is it first and foremost because of the evidence? Or is it because of your religious convictions? I would ask any IDist reading this to consider this carefully; what really bought you to ID?

    Hi Pix, Are you sure you are not sure about it? And how were you able to come to that certainty if you are sure able that you are not sure?

    Uncertainty is the only certainty.

    Do you understand what Sartre meant by an infinite reference point?

    No, what is it?

    I am drawing on my own experiences and ideas as a atheist here. I do not really care what Sartre believes; I am not going to read his ideas to tell me why I should behave in a certain way.

    I thought you might agree with his point 1, but what part of his reasoning do you find spurious?

    Here is the reasoning:

    1. There must be a universal moral law, or else: (a) Moral disagreements would make no sense, as we all assume they do. (b) All moral criticisms would be meaningless (e.g., “The Nazis were wrong.” ). (c) It is unnecessary to keep promises or treaties, as we all assume that it is. (d) We would not make excuses for breaking the moral law, as we all do.

    (a) is based on the unsupported assumption that moral disagreements make sense (I think they do, but as given this is unsupported). (b) is simply a rephrasing of (a) (critising someone implies you disagree with them). (c) is again based on an assumption. Also, there are pragmatic reasons for keeping promises and treaties; you want people to believe them in the future. With regards to (d), we naturally make excuses for failing to do what society expects of us; we want to remain a part ofthat society. But the mores of societies are various, and I would suggest that members of the society will make excuses for breaking the taboos, whether or not those taboos coincide with the universal moral law.

    2. But a universal moral law requires a universal Moral Law Giver, since the Source of it: (a) Gives moral commands (as lawgivers do). (b) Is interested in our behavior (as moral persons are).
    Where would such a moral code come from if not from an Absolute? i.e. Hypothetically speaking, if all the sentient beings in the entire universe agree on a single moral law. Does this make that moral law an Absolute or is it just a consensus?

    I have never seen any evidence of a Moral Law Giver giving moral commands. My observation is that people build their own morality, based on their life experiences (eg, culture raised in). I see no reason to suppose anyone (excepting other people) has any interest in our moral behaviour.

    Are you God? You must be, because your statement is a judgment of value. It would also follow that you are omniscient and have the authority to dictate what the God of the OT did was right or wrong. Or else, you statement of value is meaningless.

    I believe every intelligent being is capable of making moral judgements (not necessarily good ones, though), and every intelligent being can be judged. Your argument makes the claim that a perfect moral being exists; I think it quite reasonable to compare the God of the Bible to this supposed perfect moral being.

    Do you really believe only God is capable of judging right from wrong? I appreciate that was God’s plan, according to Genesis, but Adam and Eve ate that fruit, and now we all can (now, if A&E had eaten the other fruit too, then we would all be as Gods).

    Personally, I believe in an absolute morality. It is wrong to kill innocent people. That is true if you are despate to feed your family, or if you are the supreme being who created those people.

    The other possibility is the Christian perspective.

    What would that be?

    Thank you. So you agree that ID as a scientific theory is independent of religion or Christianity, right? And as such, I have no problem with people using ID, Physics, Philosophy, Behaviorial Science, Quantum mechanics or any field of science as Christian apologetics.

    There is no way that ID is a scientific theory. ID could be conducted as scientific research. You could propose a hypothesis for the origins of life and/or the universe that is consistent with ID, and show that it is well supported, and make that a scientific theory. Oh, no, you cannot, because ID by definition has no hypotheses, so any hypothesis for the origins of life and/or the universe must necessarily not be ID.

    Once ID is willing to entertain the idea of hypothesis for the origins of life and/or the universe, and you have such a hypothesis, and you can show it is well supported (by drawing logical predictions, and showing they are accurate), then you have a scientific theory (and if good enough, you would probably find it become subsumed in MET eventually). And it does not matter a jot why you want to do that.

    But ID is not at that stage. There is no scientific theory of ID, and ID states that there cannot be. And yet, people want to get ID taught as science. Why is that? Why are so many people convinced ID is right, when there is so little factual evidence for it? Faith, is my guess.

    Forget that ID does not allow hypotheses for the origins of life and/or the universe if you can for a moment, and tell us what you think happened. Be as specific as you can. And we can compare the level of detail between your hypothesis and MET, we will compare the evidence for and against each. We will look at the necessary predictions each makes, and how they hold up. And then each of us can try to explain why we subscribe to our prefered theory.

  31. The original claim by you was that I refused to engage in debate when you post so-called factual evidence (” Couple this philosophical fear with the denial by many Atheists to engage in a debate of the factual evidence for ID, just as you have shown here in the last 2 days” ). Has it now dawned on you that I did not engage in debate because I have not gone back through every post on your site?

    I beg to differ. The original innuendo by you was that this is a purely Christian apologetics blog. But not it is evident by you that you made that innuendo from ignorance.

    Actually Darwinism (or modern evolutionary theory; MET) and ID are not mutually exclusive. Darwinism describes the process after first life appears, and ID in some form is perfectly happy with the design occurring either at the Big Bang, or for the first life. The universe then unfolds under natural laws (i.e, MET), with no further intervention.

    Can you name a prominent Darwinist who opposes ID but affirm your claim that evolution is not due to random causes but by a prescribed process?

    Check these quotes by Behe:
    “”one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature””

    Pixie, do you actually what the working tenets of MET and ID are?

    This all misses the point of why you want to destroy Darwinism. Is it first and foremost because of the evidence? Or is it because of your religious convictions? I would ask any IDist reading this to consider this carefully; what really bought you to ID?

    Pixie, do you actually what the working tenets of MET and ID are?

    I am drawing on my own experiences and ideas as a atheist here. I do not really care what Sartre believes; I am not going to read his ideas to tell me why I should behave in a certain way.

    Just as I suspected, you have no interest in science. You attack ID out of your atheistic obstinance, not because of scientific analysis. Sartre has no interest in telling you to behave in any way. He merely analyze why you behave the way you do. Although you didn’t think through why you behave in a certain way, Sartre already did that for you.

    (a) is based on the unsupported assumption that moral disagreements make sense (I think they do, but as given this is unsupported).

    This was precisely Lewis’s point. How do you determine if any disagreement makes sense or not?

    (b) is simply a rephrasing of

    Not exactly. (a) is epistemology (b) is the value

    (c) is again based on an assumption. Also, there are pragmatic reasons for keeping promises and treaties; you want people to believe them in the future. With regards to

    What assumption? And you can’t have a pragmatic reason unless you make a value judgment. But (a) and (b) tells us that you can’t make such a judgment. i.e. If you think breaking treaties are wrong because it causes others not to trust you. You are making an Absolute value judgment and thereby making yourself as an Absolute lawgiver. The problem is that the other Absolute lawgiver disagrees with you. He claims that he is the only one allowed to break treaties. As an atheist you persist in your Absolute pragmatism then you’ve just become a hypocrite. Because although you deny that there must be an universal lawgiver, in reality you only deny all others except yourself as the universal lawgiver.

    (d), we naturally make excuses for failing to do what society expects of us; we want to remain a part ofthat society. But the mores of societies are various, and I would suggest that members of the society will make excuses for breaking the taboos, whether or not those taboos coincide with the universal moral law.

    That is not what Lewis is saying. (d) We would not make excuses for breaking the moral law. His point is that without a universal moral law, we should not need to make excuses because there are no right or wrong.

    So what you said are spurious is just that you don’t understand the depth of his argument.

    I have never seen any evidence of a Moral Law Giver giving moral commands.

    Pix, GET OVER IT, this is not about you. You are not the universal moral lawgiver. Lewis is dealing with purely logical reasoning. He is making a rational argument not an existential one. 2. But a universal moral law requires a universal Moral Law Giver, since the Source of it: (a) Gives moral commands (as lawgivers do). (b) Is interested in our behavior (as moral persons are). Lewis argues that there must be a universal moral law because even the hypocrite atheists will affirm that as you’ve done here. It then therefore follows that a universal law must come from a universal lawgiver.

    I believe every intelligent being is capable of making moral judgements (not necessarily good ones, though), and every intelligent being can be judged. Your argument makes the claim that a perfect moral being exists; I think it quite reasonable to compare the God of the Bible to this supposed perfect moral being.

    You think your judgment is right but I think your judgment is wrong. Who can arbitrate our dispute?

    teleologist : Thank you. So you agree that ID as a scientific theory is independent of religion or Christianity, right? And as such, I have no problem with people using ID, Physics, Philosophy, Behaviorial Science, Quantum mechanics or any field of science as Christian apologetics.
    There is no way that ID is a scientific theory.

    I don’t really care if you think ID is a theory or not. We will get to that when we debate the evidence for design. Right now I am only interested in one thing and that is you said this,

    Okay” But I originally said ID was a form of Christian apologetics, that Dembski et al are using ID to promote Christianity

    So you agree that ID is not religion or Christianity. People have no business debating this issue if they don’t even understand the distinction between these 2 spheres of knowledge. Or worst they try to misrepresent what each believes.

  32. Regarding the Pearl Harbor account:

    1. I try to make the discussion interesting. This weblog and it’s exploration of ID becomes dull if it has no context to some greater truth. Half the battle in getting people to study ID is to keep them interested.

    2. What happened to Fuchida is like so many things in the human experience. It is not easily reconciled with Darwinian evoluton. Though Francis Collins accepts common ancestry, he rightly points out the spectrum of human character is not consistent with evolutionary theory. Kin and Group selection fail to answer the dimensions of human qualities, and that convinced him of the existence of a personal God.

    Was what happened to Fuchida a fluke? In another account, Fuchida confessed out of 78 pilots in the Pearl Harbor raid that he was associated with, he alone survied through the war. He was spared being incinerated in Hiroshima by a providential set of circumstances. It seemed the Lord was calling Fuchida. The story trancends a Darwinistic/Atheistic view of reality. Certainly it is troubling to think God would spare Fuchida and not others. The Christian response is that the greater mystery is that God spared anyone, and that is another discussion.

    As far as the design argument, I can believe in God because of the Design argument, not the reverse. That may not be the case for others, but it is for me.

  33. I beg to differ. The original innuendo by you was that this is a purely Christian apologetics blog. But not it is evident by you that you made that innuendo from ignorance.

    Actually I said ID was a form of Christian apologetics, and this site was an example of that. Take Salvador’s example; he came to Christianity via ID. It worked for him. Gil Dodgen is another example. That does not prove it, I know, but it supports the hypothesis.

    Pixie, do you actually what the working tenets of MET and ID are?

    Hmm, maybe not. Can you enlighten me? Where exactly do the tenets of ID contradict those of MET?

    Pix: This all misses the point of why you want to destroy Darwinism. Is it first and foremost because of the evidence? Or is it because of your religious convictions? I would ask any IDist reading this to consider this carefully; what really bought you to ID?

    Tel: Pixie, do you actually what the working tenets of MET and ID are?

    I have no idea how your comment is supposed to respond to mine.

    Just as I suspected, you have no interest in science. You attack ID out of your atheistic obstinance, not because of scientific analysis. Sartre has no interest in telling you to behave in any way. He merely analyze why you behave the way you do. Although you didn’t think through why you behave in a certain way, Sartre already did that for you.

    Sartre was a philosopher, not a scientist, and as far as I am aware said nothing about the philosophy of science.

    What assumption? And you can’t have a pragmatic reason unless you make a value judgment. But (a) and (b) tells us that you can’t make such a judgment. i.e. If you think breaking treaties are wrong because it causes others not to trust you. You are making an Absolute value judgment and thereby making yourself as an Absolute lawgiver. The problem is that the other Absolute lawgiver disagrees with you. He claims that he is the only one allowed to break treaties. As an atheist you persist in your Absolute pragmatism then you’ve just become a hypocrite. Because although you deny that there must be an universal lawgiver, in reality you only deny all others except yourself as the universal lawgiver.

    There is no Absolute lawgiver. I can give my opinion on value judgements, and you can give yours. I have no guarantee mine are right, and nor do you. We just have to live with that.

    Tel: 2. But a universal moral law requires a universal Moral Law Giver, since the Source of it: (a) Gives moral commands (as lawgivers do). (b) Is interested in our behavior (as moral persons are).
    Where would such a moral code come from if not from an Absolute? i.e. Hypothetically speaking, if all the sentient beings in the entire universe agree on a single moral law. Does this make that moral law an Absolute or is it just a consensus?

    Pix: I have never seen any evidence of a Moral Law Giver giving moral commands.

    Tel: Pix, GET OVER IT, this is not about you. You are not the universal moral lawgiver. Lewis is dealing with purely logical reasoning. He is making a rational argument not an existential one. 2. But a universal moral law requires a universal Moral Law Giver, since the Source of it: (a) Gives moral commands (as lawgivers do). (b) Is interested in our behavior (as moral persons are). Lewis argues that there must be a universal moral law because even the hypocrite atheists will affirm that as you’ve done here. It then therefore follows that a universal law must come from a universal lawgiver.

    I know I am not the universal law maker. You claimed that the “universal Moral Law Giver” “Gives moral commands”. All I said is that I have seen no evidence that this has ever happened.

    You think your judgment is right but I think your judgment is wrong. Who can arbitrate our dispute?

    Has God ever arbitrated any dispute you have been involved in? If you think about who has done, you can answer this question yourself.

  34. I am having trouble posting. I have tried cutting up my post a number of ways, but not much is getting through. Any idea what might be stopping them? There is no error reported, they just do not show up, and if I repost the same thing, it says its posted already.

  35. Hi Pixie, maybe it’s a spam filter. I am sure teleologist will look into it. I would also like to thank you that you made this discussion civil among other things. Please keep posting.

  36. Sorry Pixie, I am not sure why the spam filter has been acting up lately. When I have more time I will look into it. If there are any more missing comments please try to repost. I apologize for the inconvenience.

  37. Hi Pixie,

    Actually I said ID was a form of Christian apologetics

    We don’t deny that. The problem is you accuse ID as being religiously motivated. That is just not factual. Let me ask this again, why do you not apply this same standard to Myers and Dawkins blog when they use Darwinism as a form of atheist apologetics.

    Hmm, maybe not. Can you enlighten me? Where exactly do the tenets of ID contradict those of MET?

    At the core of ID is not common descent, it is teleology. The diversity of life and (for some) the universe exhibit evidence of design. At the core of MET everything in and the universe itself is a random process without any guiding or preexisting teleology. How much more contradictory can you get?

    Sartre was a philosopher, not a scientist, and as far as I am aware said nothing about the philosophy of science.

    Sartre was not a scientist but I pointed him out to dispute your philosophical view of morality not your view on science.

    There is no Absolute lawgiver. I can give my opinion on value judgements, and you can give yours. I have no guarantee mine are right, and nor do you. We just have to live with that.

    Let me try this one more time, even if you don’t understand this but maybe other readers will. You comment is correct. No Absolute lawgiver then amorality. The point that I made was atheists (affirms no Absolute lawgiver thus amoral) are hypocrites because they do not live according to their faith. It should be impossible for atheists to make a judgment on which conflicting value is right or wrong and yet atheists do that all day long.

  38. We don’t deny that. The problem is you accuse ID as being religiously motivated.

    So it is a form of Christian apologetics, but is not religiously motivated… Have I got that right?

    Let me ask this again, why do you not apply this same standard to Myers and Dawkins blog when they use Darwinism as a form of atheist apologetics.

    Atheist apologetics is not the raison d’etre of MET, MET is not a form of atheist apologetics, it is used in atheist apologetics.

    At the core of ID is not common descent, it is teleology. The diversity of life and (for some) the universe exhibit evidence of design. At the core of MET everything in and the universe itself is a random process without any guiding or preexisting teleology. How much more contradictory can you get?

    I am not sure why you mention common descent. ID is compatible with common descent (according to Behe, Dembski and Denton, at least). MET does not anything at all about what happens anywhere in the universe except for a very, very tiny fraction spread over the surface on this planet. It is not a core tenet of MET that there was no pre-existing teleology. Denton’s idea that the universe was fine tuned to make intelligent life is entire compatible with MET.

    Sartre was not a scientist but I pointed him out to dispute your philosophical view of morality not your view on science.

    That is simply not true. When I said I did not care what Satre thought you said “Just as I suspected, you have no interest in science. You attack ID out of your atheistic obstinance, not because of scientific analysis.” Go back and look!

    Let me try this one more time, even if you don’t understand this but maybe other readers will. You comment is correct. No Absolute lawgiver then amorality. The point that I made was atheists (affirms no Absolute lawgiver thus amoral) are hypocrites because they do not live according to their faith. It should be impossible for atheists to make a judgment on which conflicting value is right or wrong and yet atheists do that all day.

    Why do we need a lawgiver to have morality? Can you give me an instance of a supernatural lawmaker actually giving laws? You asked in an earlier post “You think your judgment is right but I think your judgment is wrong. Who can arbitrate our dispute?” Can you give me an instance of a supernatural lawmaker arbitrating in any dispute you have ever had?

    If you were right, then we would expect Christians for over a thousand years, all around the world, to have followed a single unchanging morality, that given to them by God. Meanwhile atheists have ranged from the hypocritics why live moral lives, to those who have no morality whatsoever.

    If I am right, we all, Christians and atheists alike, get our morality from ourselves and our culture. Some Christians are amoral, some atheists are amoral, but by and large we all live good lives, following the mores of our respective, individual culture, as the only way to get along.

    People can decide for themselves which better reflects reality.

  39. So it is a form of Christian apologetics, but is not religiously motivated” Have I got that right?

    My mistake, I should not have given you the impression that I agree with your statement. I believe what I said before was that Christians uses certain aspect of ID for apologetics purposes. When these 2 spheres of knowledge intersect then I have no problem pointing out that they agree.

    Denton’s idea that the universe was fine tuned to make intelligent life is entire compatible with MET.

    Frankly, I am not sure what his definition for fine tuning is, but the point remains that ID as a teleological inference is entirely incompatible with MET. What evidence does MET have for supporting any preexisting intelligence? What evidence does it have on how this teleology works in evolution? Can you give an example of a Darwinian scientist who rejects ID, but supports evolution is teleologically driven?

    That is simply not true. When I said I did not care what Satre thought you said “Just as I suspected, you have no interest in science. You attack ID out of your atheistic obstinance, not because of scientific analysis.” Go back and look!

    You are right. I might have blurred two things together. We were talking about MET and ID just above the Sartre comment.

    However, you still are not able rebut that fact that Sartre claim that without an infinite reference point or an Absolute. Your moral values are meaningless.

    You asked in an earlier post “You think your judgment is right but I think your judgment is wrong. Who can arbitrate our dispute?” Can you give me an instance of a supernatural lawmaker arbitrating in any dispute you have ever had?

    Well, what is your answer to my question? I can give you my answer but then we will just be talking about my answer and not yours. I guarantee you that I have an answer to your question. In fact it is very simple.

    You need to answer Sartre and Lewis. By you persistent dodging of this problem I surmise you have no viable answer to address this. Don’t worry, it is not your fault, because atheism is internally irrational and therefore there is no answer to this problem. I am just waiting for you to recognize the fact that you are embracing an irrational philosophy. Then I would like to ask you would a rational person embrace something that is irrational?

    If you were right, then we would expect Christians for over a thousand years, all around the world, to have followed a single unchanging morality, that given to them by God. Meanwhile atheists have ranged from the hypocritics why live moral lives, to those who have no morality whatsoever.

    You are right in both counts.

    If I am right, we all, Christians and atheists alike, get our morality from ourselves and our culture. Some Christians are amoral,

    This is illogical. Christian can be immoral but not amoral.

    some atheists are amoral, but by and large we all live good lives, following the mores of our respective, individual culture, as the only way to get along.

    This is also illogical. I will remind you again, you are confusing behavior with epistemology. This won’t become clear until you are able to answer Sartre and Lewis.

  40. Frankly, I am not sure what his definition for fine tuning is, but the point remains that ID as a teleological inference is entirely incompatible with MET. What evidence does MET have for supporting any preexisting intelligence? What evidence does it have on how this teleology works in evolution? Can you give an example of a Darwinian scientist who rejects ID, but supports evolution is teleologically driven?

    This is a bit confused. MET does not give evidence either way with regards to preexisting intelligence. Thus, it is compatible with those who think there were and those who thnk there were not. No, I cannot give an example of a Darwinian scientist who rejects ID, but supports evolution is teleologically driven… Because ID implies teleology. Can I give an example of a scientist who accepts the basic tenets of MET, but is an IDist? I think both Gene and Denton would qualify (less sure of Gene, admittedly). Perhaps you could check Nature’s Destiny and see what he says that contradicts MET, if you want to prove me wrong.

    However, you still are not able rebut that fact that Sartre claim that without an infinite reference point or an Absolute. Your moral values are meaningless.

    They are important to me, and therefore they have meaning. Your moral values impact on me, so they to are important and have meaning.

    Well, what is your answer to my question? I can give you my answer but then we will just be talking about my answer and not yours. I guarantee you that I have an answer to your question. In fact it is very simple.

    I alluded to the answer before. We use judges and juries for disputes that go to court, disputes between children are arbitated by parents and teachers, most disputes are resolved by the debaters themselves. That is my experience, anyway.

    You need to answer Sartre and Lewis.

    I just did a quick search for Sartre on this page, and I am not sure what question you mean.

    You are right in both counts.

    And yet, that is not what we see. The morality of Christians has changed over the centuries. How can that be if it is based on an eternal?

    This is also illogical. I will remind you again, you are confusing behavior with epistemology.

    I guess at heart I am an empiricalist. We can see a person’s behaviour, but not their epistemology. If they behave in a good way, then I take that as a sign they are moral people. I see that with Christians and athiests alike.

  41. Can I give an example of a scientist who accepts the basic tenets of MET, but is an IDist?

    Oh please, now you are just playing games. MET as accepted in the majority of the scientific community is random and unguided processes. Can you show me the quote where Mike defines MET the way you’ve define it and accepts MET as compatible with ID?

  42. Oh please, now you are just playing games. MET as accepted in the majority of the scientific community is random and unguided processes. Can you show me the quote where Mike defines MET the way you’ve define it and accepts MET as compatible with ID?

    Plenty of scientists (though maybe a minority) are Christians, who accept MET, but still believe God guides the process. It is called theistic evolution. It is not a basic tenet of MET that it is unguided, though no guiding influence has been detected ever. Integral to MET are inheritance and natural selection, neither of which are random.

    From the other thread:

    You claim that Denton’s fine tuning fits with MET, but you did not address you misrepresentation of Behe and Dembski. It doesn’t matter if you think MET is compatible with ID, (I disputed this on the other thread) but Behe and Dembski does not. Your quote mining is misrepresentative of their views.

    Here is the quote by Behe: ““one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature”” I am sorry if I am misrepresenting him, but I really cannot understand what he is talking about here unless he means that stars and planets form, first life appears and evolves – though a process of variation and selection – to give the rich diversity of life we see today, without any influence from the designer since the Big Bang. Can you explain to me what sort of process Behe is thinking about here? How does Behe get from single-celled organism to human – without external influence?

  43. It is not a basic tenet of MET that it is unguided, though no guiding influence has been detected ever. Integral to MET are inheritance and natural selection, neither of which are random.

    Can you give some references to scientific literature that actually espouses this definition or did you just made it up off the top of your head?

    I am sorry if I am misrepresenting him, but I really cannot understand what he is talking about here unless he means that stars and planets form, first life appears and evolves – though a process of variation and selection – to give the rich diversity of life we see today, without any influence from the designer since the Big Bang.

    Are you saying your quote is representative of what Behe said below?

    Indeed, until I completed my doctoral studies in biochemistry, I believed that Darwin’s mechanism — random mutation paired with natural selection — was the correct explanation for the diversity of life. Yet I now find that theory incomplete.

    In fact, the complex design of the cell has provoked me to stake out a distinctly minority view among scientists on the question of what caused evolution. I believe that Darwin’s mechanism for evolution doesn’t explain much of what is seen under a microscope. Cells are simply too complex to have evolved randomly; intelligence was required to produce them.

    (emphasis added) Do you think the scientific world at large will support your definition of MET to include Behe’s definition?

  44. Can you give some references to scientific literature that actually espouses this definition or did you just made it up off the top of your head?

    Have a look at the Wiki entry.

    Are you saying your quote is representative of what Behe said below?
    … Cells are simply too complex to have evolved randomly; intelligence was required to produce them.

    I have no idea how Behe reconciles those two views. Can you explain it? Sounds to me like he is talking out of both sides of his mouth; surely not?

  45. Have a look at the Wiki entry

    Maybe I missed it. Can you show me the exact quote from your link that expresses the equivalent idea as this, “information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe”

    I have no idea how Behe reconciles those two views. Can you explain it? Sounds to me like he is talking out of both sides of his mouth; surely not?

    It seems to me that you were quote mining and misrepresented what he meant. There was nothing wrong with the 2 quotes depending on the context of the first quote. The problem is your misrepresentation of it. You distorted Behe’s words to give the impression he supported an unguided evolutionary process that does not allow intelligent involvement.

  46. Maybe I missed it. Can you show me the exact quote from your link that expresses the equivalent idea as this, “information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe”

    I did not say the scenario Behe described was identical to MET, I said it was compatible with MET. Back in post 29 you said (my emphasis): “I don’t think I ever said that ID is not about destroying Darwinism. Debunking Darwinism might not be a stated goal but IMO, it by default is a part, let me repeat so I won’t be misrepresented, it is a part of the consequences of ID theory. The two theories are mutually exclusive. I could also say that Darwinism is about destroying ID.” What I am disputing here is that ID and MET are mutually exclusive. I see nothing in the Wiki entry that excludes the ID scenario Behe described. Therefore, I submit that ID and MET are not mutually exclusive.

    It seems to me that you were quote mining and misrepresented what he meant. There was nothing wrong with the 2 quotes depending on the context of the first quote. The problem is your misrepresentation of it. You distorted Behe’s words to give the impression he supported an unguided evolutionary process that does not allow intelligent involvement.

    Well pardon me, but I got it from a post on your blog about ID not needing intelligent intervention. So what is? Is Behe proposing an ID scenario in which there is no intelligent involvement after the Big Bang, or did Daron get that whole post wrong? Does ID need intelligent intervention or not? Here is what Behe said again, with more context:

    “I should add that, even if one does think the designer is God, subscribing to a theory of intelligent design does not necessarily commit one to “miracles.” At least no more than thinking that the laws of nature were designed by God–a view, as we’ve seen, condoned by the National Academy of Sciences (National Academy of Sciences 1999). In either case one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature. In one case, the information is present just in general laws. In the other case, in addition to general laws, information is present in other factors too. The difference might boil down simply to the question of whether there was more or less explicit design information present at the beginning–hardly a point of principle. “

    No subsequent intervention. How many ways are there of reading that? How about you explain what Behe really means here? Why did he use those specific words? If he feels the designer has to intervene during evolution, why did he say “with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature”?

    And please give credit where it is due. It was not my quote-mine, it was Daron’s. He was the one that found this, and presented it in a way that made me, for one, believe that Behe had an ID scenario in which God was involved at the Big Bang, and not subsequently.

  47. I did not say the scenario Behe described was identical to MET, I said it was compatible with MET. Back in post 29 you said (my emphasis): … What I am disputing here is that ID and MET are mutually exclusive. I see nothing in the Wiki entry that excludes the ID scenario Behe described. Therefore, I submit that ID and MET are not mutually exclusive.

    You want to use semantics, fine, I didn’t say identical. I asked you how the 2 quotes from Behe and your interpretation expressed “an equivalent idea” which goes to the point of you using that quote mining to twist what Behe meant. In comment #42 you said this in response to my comment.

    tel: You claim that Denton’s fine tuning fits with MET, but you did not address you misrepresentation of Behe and Dembski. It doesn’t matter if you think MET is compatible with ID, (I disputed this on the other thread) but Behe and Dembski does not.

    Pix: Here is the quote by Behe: “”one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature”” I am sorry if I am misrepresenting him, but I really cannot understand what he is talking about here unless he means that stars and planets form, first life appears and evolves – though a process of variation and selection – to give the rich diversity of life we see today, without any influence from the designer since the Big Bang. Can you explain to me what sort of process Behe is thinking about here?

    Clearly in my comment I said, I don’t think Behe and Dembski believe that ID is compatible to MET. You offered your quote mining as evidence to support your misrepresentation of Behe. You are using your quote from Behe to suggest he support something that he rejects which is the idea that modern evolution is based on an unguided process from beginning to end.

    You also claim that nothing in you wiki link disputes Behe’s ID scenario. Even in your quote from Behe, he said “”one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life In the case of wiki entry, it describes evolution as random.

    • Genetic variation arises due to random mutations that occur at a certain rate in the genomes of all organisms.
    • Two separate populations that begin with the same allele frequencies therefore might drift apart by random fluctuation into two divergent populations with different allele sets
    • As there is no functional advantage to right or left handed molecular chirality, the simplest hypothesis is that the choice was made randomly in the early beginnings of life and passed on to all extant life through common descent.

    Pix: Well pardon me, but I got it from a post on your blog about ID not needing intelligent intervention.

    You are still trying to misrepresent what Behe said. Behe DID NOT say “ID not needing intelligent intervention” . Behe DID say “no subsequent intervention required from outside” .

    No subsequent intervention. How many ways are there of reading that?

    I only know of one way, but I guess if you take words in a sentence chop it up into little pieces and put it in different context, like you did then it could mean whatever you want it to mean. I wonder how you would read “no subsequent intervention” if I added phrases like “the information for the subsequent unfolding” and ” was present at the very start of the universe” back in front of the “no subsequent intervention” .

  48. You want to use semantics, fine, I didn’t say identical. I asked you how the 2 quotes from Behe and your interpretation expressed “an equivalent idea” which goes to the point of you using that quote mining to twist what Behe meant. In comment #42 you said this in response to my comment.

    When you change the meaning of what I wrote, yes I will use semantics. I did not say the scenario Behe described was identical to or “an equivalent idea” to MET, I said they were compatible. That means there is nothing in one hypothesis that contradicts what is claimed in the other. Newtonian physics is compatible with MET, but it is not identical or equivalent to MET. It just means that none of the claims of Newtonian physics contradict any of the claims of MET.

    Clearly in my comment I said, I don’t think Behe and Dembski believe that ID is compatible to MET.

    Clearly you did! But you gave no reason why you believe that, no supporting evidence. Explain what Behe really meant, and you prove me wrong.

    You offered your quote mining as evidence to support your misrepresentation of Behe. You are using your quote from Behe to suggest he support something that he rejects which is the idea that modern evolution is based on an unguided process from beginning to end.

    I found a quote from Behe that supports my hypothesis. Until you can explain why Behe said that, I shall continue to believe it does. Surely that was the point of Daron’s post, that ID does NOT require guidance during evolution. Are you saying that intervention during the evolution of life from single-celled organisms necessarily requires the intervention of the designer? If so, say so. On that thread Daron started.

    You also claim that nothing in you wiki link disputes Behe’s ID scenario. Even in your quote from Behe, he said “”one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life In the case of wiki entry, it describes evolution as random.

    The second law of thermodynamics is one of the best established laws in science. After over 100 years, no exceptions have been found at the macroscopic scale, across chemistry, biology and physics. Entropy always increases. And yet that absolute rule is true because of the random nature of energy at the quantum level. Personally, I see no reason why God could not use random events to give predictable results if chemical engineers are doing just that every day.

    You are still trying to misrepresent what Behe said. Behe DID NOT say “ID not needing intelligent intervention” . Behe DID say “no subsequent intervention required from outside” .

    Read all of what he said. “one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature.” No intervention after the very start of the universe, the Big Bang.

    I only know of one way, but I guess if you take words in a sentence chop it up into little pieces and put it in different context, like you did then it could mean whatever you want it to mean. I wonder how you would read “no subsequent intervention” if I added phrases like “the information for the subsequent unfolding” and ” was present at the very start of the universe” back in front of the “no subsequent intervention” .

    Well, duh! Of course Behe is claiming that all the information for the subsequent unfolding was there right at the start. Personally, I suspect not, but nothing in MET contradicts that claim. As I understand it, Behe says: The designer carefully constructed the laws of nature so they contained all the CSI necessary for life, then gives it a gentle push… Big Bang, and the universe unfolds with no subsequent intervention by the design. After about 14 billion years, without the designer doing anything more, but in the manner he specified, through the laws of nature he devised, certain chemicals came together, to eventually form the first living organism on this planet. That organism, and all subsequent organisms, following as they must the laws of nature devised by the designer, evolved and eventually produce us. Now which bit of that have I got wrong?

    Compare to abiogenesis, followed by MET: Through the laws of nature, certain chemicals came together, to eventually form the first living organism on this planet. That organism, and all subsequent organisms, following as they must the laws of nature, evolved and eventually produce us. They are not identical, they are not equivalent, but as far as I can see MET sits nicely inside Behe’s scenario. They are compatible. Note carefully that they both use the same natural laws; Behe says they were designed, but either way, the Boltzmann constant must be the same – it is what we have measured it to be. So in both cases they are proposing that life has evolved under identical systems of natural laws. And in both cases the evolution part of the process has occurred without the designer intervening.

  49. Clearly you did! But you gave no reason why you believe that, no supporting evidence. Explain what Behe really meant, and you prove me wrong.

    Astounding! I thought everyone knew that Behe is a leading ID theorist. Didn’t your Darwinian friends tell you that ID is not science and it is not “compatible” with neo-Darwinism? Try this one on for size.

    A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

    I found a quote from Behe that supports my hypothesis.

    No you did not.

    Until you can explain why Behe said that

    I did. I am not going to cut and paste the past posts for you again.

    I shall continue to believe it does.

    That is your prerogative.

    Pix Quote: The second law of thermodynamics is one of the best established laws in science. After over 100 years, no exceptions have been found at the macroscopic scale, across chemistry, biology and physics. Entropy always increases. And yet that absolute rule is true because of the random nature of energy at the quantum level. Personally, I see no reason why God could not use random events to give predictable results if chemical engineers are doing just that every day.

    Who made this quote? Where is the reference?

    Read all of what he said. “.. No intervention after the very start of the universe, the Big Bang.

    Good advice. “one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature.”
    And preprogrammed information from the start is suppose to be “compatible” to this?

    • Genetic variation arises due to random mutations that occur at a certain rate in the genomes of all organisms.
    • Two separate populations that begin with the same allele frequencies therefore might drift apart by random fluctuation into two divergent populations with different allele sets
    • As there is no functional advantage to right or left handed molecular chirality, the simplest hypothesis is that the choice was made randomly in the early beginnings of life and passed on to all extant life through common descent.

    Now which bit of that have I got wrong?

    I don’t know, maybe all of it? Why don’t you show a quote from Behe that he actually said what you have just said.

    Compare to abiogenesis, followed by MET: Through the laws of nature, certain chemicals came together, to eventually form the first living organism on this planet. That organism, and all subsequent organisms, following as they must the laws of nature, evolved and eventually produce us. They are not identical, they are not equivalent, but as far as I can see MET sits nicely inside Behe’s scenario. They are compatible. Note carefully that they both use the same natural laws; Behe says they were designed, but either way, the Boltzmann constant must be the same – it is what we have measured it to be. So in both cases they are proposing that life has evolved under identical systems of natural laws. And in both cases the evolution part of the process has occurred without the designer intervening.

    Does anyone even know how all this fancy bloviating is related to “Behe’s ID is compatible to MET” ?

    Let me try to distill it back to the main point. This is not about what Pixie thinks that ID is compatible with MET, even though no major scientific literature have supported this. This is about 1. Pixie claims Behe said ID is compatible with MET. 2. Pixie using quote mining to support his claim.

    The problem is Behe never made any statement to the effect that ID is compatible to MET. Pixie’s quote mining only show that Behe supports that information is needed for the subsequent unfolding of life. Behe affirms ID’s position that intelligence is needed for the diversity of life. MET denies intelligence and affirms a random, unguided process.

  50. I did. I am not going to cut and paste the past posts for you again.

    Fine, just give me the post number and an idea which paragraph it is.

  51. Is common descent compatible with ID? I get the impression that you personally do not believe in common descent, but several IDists are on record saying they are compatible, and Behe, Gene and Denton all believe in common descent. Would it be fair to say then that you believe common descent is compatible with ID, even though you do not believe in it?

    The reason I ask is that I am wondering if there is an analogy to Behe’s statements. He says that evolution without intervention from the designer (other than at the Big Bang) is compatible with ID, even though he personally believes the evidence points to evolution with periodic or continuous intervention.

    Consider this: Does Behe think ID includes YEC? Behe clearly does not believe in YEC, as he accepts common descent. But I would guess he would still consider YEC to be compatible with ID. By the same token, while he does not believe the designer created the universe with all the CSI loaded in, then left it to unfold without further intervention, he notes that this scenario is covered by ID.

    I think maybe the other problem here is that you think a tenet of MET is that it is purposeless. Certainly, purposeless MET contradicts ID, as design implies purposes (and yes, I personally think evolution is purposeless). But purposeless is not a tenet of MET, as I hope the Wiki entry showed.

    With regards to the second law of thermodynamics, and how you can make predictions with certainty from random systems, you might like to look at this site, which is pretty technical, or this site, which is not.

  52. Another tack. Suppose God designed the universe. He tuned the laws of nature and the fundamental constants in such a way that suns would inevitably form, planets would condense around them, life would appear and evolve, through a process of random variation, selection and inheritance, into intelligent beings, as well as countless other species, all without God being involved at all since the Big Bang. God then appears on Earrth, and say this is what happened.

    Do you think IDists would say they were right all along? I believe so, because the universe was designed to ensure humans appeared.

    Do you think MET supporters would say they were right all along? I believe so, because God has confirmed that species evolved through a process of random variation, selection and inheritance.

    If ID and MET can both be true at the same time, thy are not mutually exclusive.

  53. But purposeless is not a tenet of MET, as I hope the Wiki entry showed.

    The wiki entry does not show that. It shows that evolution is random, without any discernable purpose. I pointed to the quotes where it said that. Show me a quote from wiki or anywhere that affirms your assertion that randomness is not a tenet of MET.

    With regards to the second law of thermodynamics, and how you can make predictions with certainty from random systems

    First this and the above point that you’ve made has nothing to do with you quote mining to misrepresent Behe. There is still no evidence that Behe thinks that ID and MET are compatible.

    WRT, predictability from random systems, this is a sleight of hand. Predictability does not mean purpose. Pulsars are the most predictable objects in the universe. Does this mean that their radio beacon was purposed?

    I suspect all these are smokescreens to divert attention from the fact that while you accuse IDists of quote mining, you were doing just that.

  54. Another tack. Suppose God designed the universe. He tuned the laws of nature and the fundamental constants in such a way that suns would inevitably form, planets would condense around them, life would appear and evolve, through a process of random variation, selection and inheritance, into intelligent beings, as well as countless other species, all without God being involved at all since the Big Bang.

    This was an ingenious spin. You’ve stealthily integrated the anthropic principle and random variation and applied it to all possible contingence. My only problem is the incorporation of random variation. If you take that out we would be fine, but you can’t do that can you because random variation is at the core of MET. Therefore ID and MET is not compatible.

    Stellar formation can be a random process but the underlying factor is fine-tuning of the universal constants. e.g. nuclear and gravitational forces, electron to proton mass ratio. Given these natural laws, yes, stellar formation can take place without any further intervention because one intervention was sufficient. This does not mean that stellar formation was random in the sense that it had no direction. Some IDists believe that there is a similar pre-programming for life. This again would not mean that life with all its diversities was arrived without direction. This I don’t think is compatible with MET, which denies purpose and direction.

  55. The wiki entry does not show that. It shows that evolution is random, without any discernable purpose. I pointed to the quotes where it said that. Show me a quote from wiki or anywhere that affirms your assertion that randomness is not a tenet of MET.

    Sure, no discernable purpose. That is different to no purpose, I would say. The scenario that I believe Behe is proposing involve evolution having a purpose, but that purpose is not discernable (by the way, what is the purpose of life?).

    And the Wiki entry does not say evolution is random. It says evolution involves some random elements. If you are confused about the difference, you might to think how a game like Monopoly can have rules, and a predictable outcome (one player will end up with most of the proerties, while the others end up with none), and still have a random element.

    WRT, predictability from random systems, this is a sleight of hand. Predictability does not mean purpose. Pulsars are the most predictable objects in the universe. Does this mean that their radio beacon was purposed?

    Hold on there. You are saying MET is random, therefore it necessarily follows that it is purposeless. Hmm, maybe the sleight of hand is yours? I am merely disputing that claim. Because a random system can ultimately be predictable, it would seem to me that a clever Intelligent Design could use a random system to achieve some purpose.

    To spell this out, predictability does not mean purpose, but if random processes are predictable, it disproves ypur claim that MET must necessarily be purposely as it has a random element.

    As I said before, chemical engineers use the predictability of random systems in their designs. Do you think your Intelligent Designer cannot do likewise?

    I suspect all these are smokescreens to divert attention from the fact that while you accuse IDists of quote mining, you were doing just that.

    I appreciate that is what you think. It is a shame you could not indicate the post and paragraph where you claim to have explained what Behe realy meant in that quote. If I was as cynical as you, I might think you were trying to dodge the question.

    Stellar formation can be a random process but the underlying factor is fine-tuning of the universal constants. e.g. nuclear and gravitational forces, electron to proton mass ratio. Given these natural laws, yes, stellar formation can take place without any further intervention because one intervention was sufficient. This does not mean that stellar formation was random in the sense that it had no direction. Some IDists believe that there is a similar pre-programming for life.

    Exactly. I think this is what Behe is talking about (whether he actually believes it), and I think it is what Denton believes.

    So you say “This does not mean that stellar formation was random in the sense that it had no direction”. So a random process, in the sense of involving random events, but with direction, and so potentially with purpose. The fact that the process involves random events does not mean it has to be purposeless.

    This again would not mean that life with all its diversities was arrived without direction. This I don’t think is compatible with MET, which denies purpose and direction.

    Ah, I thought we had it there. You seem to agree that the Wiki entry does not say evolution denies purpose and direction, you seem to agree that a process can involve random events and still have direction. So what is the problem? Your argument seems to be that even though a random purpose can have direction, MET must be purposeless because it is random.

    So back to the scenario I described, I get the impression your objection is that it would be impossible for God to do that, so the scenario makes no sense. Have I got that right?

  56. Hey Pix,

    This discussion again is going no way. With all of Pixie’s dancing, he has never address these 3 points.

    I asked you to show from the Darwinian community that they support your definition of MET. There are no statements from the Darwinian community that affirms MET is compatible with ID.
    I’ve shown quotes from wiki that evolution is random. Evolution does not act in a linear direction towards a pre-defined “goal” The belief of intelligence in evolution of this sort is known as orthogenesis, and is not supported by the scientific understanding of evolution.
    MOST IMPORTANTLY: Pixie is quote mining Behe to misrepresent what Behe has never supported. Behe never made any statement that he thinks ID/Intelligence is compatible with MET.

  57. This discussion again is going no way. With all of Pixie’s dancing, he has never address these 3 points.

    I resent the accusation of “dancing”. I think I have addressed these points, but I will do so again, to clarify.

    On the other hand you dismissed my commets in post 52 as “ingenious spin”, without answering the questions, and my comments in post 55 you have ignored completely. Why is that?

    I asked you to show from the Darwinian community that they support your definition of MET. There are no statements from the Darwinian community that affirms MET is compatible with ID.

    I showed you the Wiki entry. I believe it was written by someone you would call a “Darwinist”. Do you believe otherwise?

    I think what the real problem is that you are still confusing “purposeless” with “random”. The Wiki entry describes parts of MET as random, it does not describe MET as purposeless. The real problem here is that the ID movement misrepresents MET as purposeless because that better helps their crusade (as do some ID opponents, to be fair, and for similar reasons).

    The second law of thermodynamics seems to have thrown you, perhaps you are more familiar with radioactive decay? When a chunk of 131-iodine decays, you will find that every 8.05 days the amount of iodine has dropped by exactly half. This is a prediction, a reliable prediction. But if you lok at the individual atoms, there is no way to predict which will decay next. It is entirely random. Random events at the quantum level, giving predictable results at the macroscopic level.

    If something is random, it can still be predictable (not necessarily, but it may be). If something is predictable, it can be used by an intelligent agent to achieve some purpose.

    I’ve shown quotes from wiki that evolution is random. Evolution does not act in a linear direction towards a pre-defined “goal” The belief of intelligence in evolution of this sort is known as orthogenesis, and is not supported by the scientific understanding of evolution.

    And I have explained several times that evolution could have a purpose, despite being random. You seemed to get that for a moment when you talked about stellar formatiom. Please do not bother to tell us evolution is random again. We all know that. Instead, explain why I am wrong to say random still allows purpose.

    Certainly we know of no pre-defined goal, but that does not preclude the possibility.

    This is not quite orthogenesis, by the way, as orthogenesis rejects natural selection.

    MOST IMPORTANTLY: Pixie is quote mining Behe to misrepresent what Behe has never supported. Behe never made any statement that he thinks ID/Intelligence is compatible with MET.

    MOST IMPORTANTLY: I still have no idea what you believe Behe was really saying with that quote. You say you already have, but if you have, I missed it. I asked you repeat it, but you refused. I asked you to point me to the post where you explained it, and you ignored the question. The suspicion is growing that actually you cannot explain it.

    It may well be that Behe, like you, believes MET is inherently purposeless, and therefore ID is incompatible with MET. I am not claiming Behe believes MET is compatible with ID, I am claiming they are not mutually exclusive. This is why the comments in post 52 are so important (hmm, maybe that is why you dismissed them as “ingenious spin”). If you could bring yourself to comment on the respective positions of the IDists and the mainstream scientists, or to say why the scenario is nonsense (and I mean, give something reasoned, something with substance), I might understand what your objection is.

  58. I will try this one last time and we will just have to agree to disagree, unless your argument changes. You can continue to post I guess or maybe Sal can close this thread. 😀

    I will try to answer your last post as fully as I think it deserves. I use the word deserve not in a derogatory sense but I suspect we will probably disagree on how fully my comments should be.

    I resent the accusation of “dancing” . I think I have addressed these points, but I will do so again, to clarify.

    I am sorry. It wasn’t meant as an insult, but an assessment of what you’ve been doing.

    On the other hand you dismissed my commets in post 52 as “ingenious spin” , without answering the questions

    I beg to differ. I did answer your comment. Here is the answer without that first sentence.
    You’ve stealthily integrated the anthropic principle and random variation and applied it to all possible contingence. My only problem is the incorporation of random variation. If you take that out we would be fine, but you can’t do that can you because random variation is at the core of MET. Therefore ID and MET is not compatible.

    Stellar formation can be a random process but the underlying factor is fine-tuning of the universal constants. e.g. nuclear and gravitational forces, electron to proton mass ratio. Given these natural laws, yes, stellar formation can take place without any further intervention because one intervention was sufficient. This does not mean that stellar formation was random in the sense that it had no direction. Some IDists believe that there is a similar pre-programming for life. This again would not mean that life with all its diversities was arrived without direction. This I don’t think is compatible with MET, which denies purpose and direction.

    and my comments in post 55 you have ignored completely. Why is that?

    This is true because it seems to me you are just rehashing the same idea without any support. Which is why in comment #56, I tried to focus in on and summarize the key points that would forward the debate for me. But let me just go back and address one point that you made in comment #55.

    Sure, no discernable purpose. That is different to no purpose, I would say. The scenario that I believe Behe is proposing involve evolution having a purpose, but that purpose is not discernable (by the way, what is the purpose of life?).

    I don’t expect you to agree with this and I am no interested in debating this any further other than my comment here, at this time. Your definition of discernable purpose is nothing more than a cover for Darwinism and an attempt to pigeonhole ID into fideism rather than science. This is similar to many atheists would prefer to be called agnostic to avoid the burden of proving a universal negative, when in reality they are atheists. What Darwinists are doing here is to push teleology outside of science and pretend that Darwinism (synonymous with science in the Darwinian mindset) cannot disprove something that is outside of science and therefore teleology is compatible with MET. This is probably some sort of appeasement to the TEs. However, we all know this is not what ID means by purpose, and certain not what Behe means by purpose. Purpose in ID theory posits intelligence and it is detectable within science.

    tel: I asked you to show from the Darwinian community that they support your definition of MET. There are no statements from the Darwinian community that affirms MET is compatible with ID.

    Pix: I showed you the Wiki entry. I believe it was written by someone you would call a “Darwinist” . Do you believe otherwise?

    I have no idea what quote from wiki you have posted. I asked you in comment #45 to show references to support your version of MET. Your response in #46 still contained no wiki quote. Then on #48 you quoted something about thermodynamics but it did not refer to ID and MET. If you are referring to the quote’s reference to God, there is no reason to think from the quote that intelligence in evolution is detectable.

    I think what the real problem is that you are still confusing “purposeless” with “random” . The Wiki entry describes parts of MET as random, it does not describe MET as purposeless. The real problem here is that the ID movement misrepresents MET as purposeless because that better helps their crusade (as do some ID opponents, to be fair, and for similar reasons).

    It is not I who is confused but I think the opposite is true. Darwinists are misrepresenting ID to marginalize it outside of science.

    If something is random, it can still be predictable (not necessarily, but it may be).

    You are confused. Let me repeat what I said in #53, predictability does not mean purpose. Purpose involves intelligence and goal oriented results. Entropy is not the goal of random subatomic particles. The other problem you have is that random subatomic particles are not a predictor of all things. It can’t predict when or if a Boeing 747 will appear in a junkyard.

    And I have explained several times that evolution could have a purpose, despite being random.

    And I have asked you to provide references, not your definition, to support this assertion.

    Certainly we know of no pre-defined goal, but that does not preclude the possibility.

    Is this a proven assertion? i.e. “evolution does not preclude the possibility of a pre-defined goal” ?
    This is contrary to ID theory because ID posits that pre-defined goal is detectable and we know of them. This is the problem and what I have been trying to say all along. You are misrepresenting ID and using a straw man version to claim compatibility with MET. Worst of all is that you did it with quote mining from Behe.

    This is not quite orthogenesis, by the way, as orthogenesis rejects natural selection.

    Well do you think orthogenesis is compatible to MET? How about point 2 of my previously posted comment? Evolution does not act in a linear direction towards a pre-defined “goal” The belief of intelligence/teleology/purpose in evolution of this sort is known as orthogenesis, and is not supported by the scientific understanding of evolution.” Do you agree that teleology is a form of orthogenesis and therefore unsupported by evolution?

    MOST IMPORTANTLY: I still have no idea what you believe Behe was really saying with that quote. You say you already have, but if you have, I missed it.

    In comment #49 I referred to Behe’s quote as preprogramming.
    “one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature.” And preprogrammed information from the start is suppose to be “compatible” to this?
    I later expanded on that by saying,
    Pixie’s quote mining only show that Behe supports that information is needed for the subsequent unfolding of life. Behe affirms ID’s position that intelligence is needed for the diversity of life.

    Pix: I am not claiming Behe believes MET is compatible with ID, I am claiming they are not mutually exclusive.

    (emphasis added)
    What are you talking about Pix? This is at the heart of our debate. You can claim anything you want and we can debate it. That is not the problem. The problem is while you attack Creationist for quote mining, you are doing the same quote mining from Behe to support your claim.

    You said this in comment #30,
    Pixie:Actually Darwinism (or modern evolutionary theory; MET) and ID are not mutually exclusive. Darwinism describes the process after first life appears, and ID in some form is perfectly happy with the design occurring either at the Big Bang, or for the first life. The universe then unfolds under natural laws (i.e, MET), with no further intervention.
    Check these quotes by Behe:

    You then used his quote to support what you said when in reality Behe’s definition of ID is completely different than what you claim.

    Then is comment #46 you further that misrepresentation with this.
    Pixie:I did not say the scenario Behe described was identical to MET, I said it was compatible with MET.
    In this sentence you sure seem to be saying the quote from Behe IS COMPATIBLE WITH MET. Unless now you are going to tell us that Behe’s quote does not represent the ID position, but then that would make your comment in #30 kind of pointless, don’t you think?

    I don’t know what more I can say. If this does show that you were quote mining then we will just to agree to disagree.

  59. I don’t expect you to agree with this and I am no interested in debating this any further other than my comment here, at this time. Your definition of discernable purpose is nothing more than a cover for Darwinism and an attempt to pigeonhole ID into fideism rather than science.

    Thus is not just “a cover for Darwinism”. “Discernable purpose” means purpose that we can discern. If there is purpose that we cannot detect, that is no “discernable purpose”. We could argue whether we mean we can discern what the purpose is or whether we can detect that there is a purpose, but I do not think it will affect the argument. You said of the Wiki article “It shows that evolution is random, without any discernable purpose“. That does not imply no purpose, it implies no purpose has been detected. I am struggling to think how I can explain any more, as it seems so obvious to me.

    This is similar to many atheists would prefer to be called agnostic to avoid the burden of proving a universal negative, when in reality they are atheists. What Darwinists are doing here is to push teleology outside of science and pretend that Darwinism (synonymous with science in the Darwinian mindset) cannot disprove something that is outside of science and therefore teleology is compatible with MET.

    Despite the way you spin, there is nothing wrong with this reasoning, and nothing in your statement to counter it. Yes, you cannot prove a universal negative, therefore most athiests are “soft atheists”, they accept the possibility of a god, but think it pretty unlikely. And also therefore MET cannot exclude teleology, it can only say there is no discernable teleology.

    This is probably some sort of appeasement to the TEs. However, we all know this is not what ID means by purpose, and certain not what Behe means by purpose. Purpose in ID theory posits intelligence…

    Nothing here addresses the point that MET only excludes discernable purpose. Of course purpose implies intelligence, that is not unique to ID.

    … and it is detectable within science.

    So now I am wondering about what Behe was talking about, because it sure does not sound like ID to me. But surely you will explain that later.

    I have no idea what quote from wiki you have posted. I asked you in comment #45 to show references to support your version of MET. Your response in #46 still contained no wiki quote. Then on #48 you quoted something about thermodynamics but it did not refer to ID and MET. If you are referring to the quote’s reference to God, there is no reason to think from the quote that intelligence in evolution is detectable.

    See those goalposts run!

    I posted a link to the Wiki article on evolution. I know you found it, and looked at it because you quoted from it. My claim about MET is that it does not exclude purpose. The Wiki article describes mainstream evolution, and does not exclude purpose. It does not refer to ID or to God, because these are outside of MET.

    You are confused. Let me repeat what I said in #53, predictability does not mean purpose. Purpose involves intelligence and goal oriented results. Entropy is not the goal of random subatomic particles. The other problem you have is that random subatomic particles are not a predictor of all things. It can’t predict when or if a Boeing 747 will appear in a junkyard.

    I still think it is you who is confused. Of course predictability does not mean purpose, and I never said it did. Predictability allows an intelligent agent to use it to achieve some purpose. If a system is predictable, then it could be used for a purpose by an intelligent agent.

    When someone designed your fridge, they had a goal of producing an appliance that would keep food cold. To ensure that it would work, they calculated the change in entropy as the coolant boils and condenses. The inevitable increase in entropy is used by the design to achieve a specific purpose. But that entropy is actually due to randomness at the quantum level (actually the distribution of energy around molecules, rather than subatomic particles).

    Of course entropy is not a predictor of all things. So what? Fridge engineers still manage to use it to design efficient fridges. Car designers use it to design efficient cars. Chemical engineers use it to design efficient chemical plants. None of the can use it to predict the lottery numbers, but that hardly invalidates their designs.

    Now if the fridge designer, the car designer and the chemical engineer can use randomness to design something, why can God not?

    Is this a proven assertion? i.e. “evolution does not preclude the possibility of a pre-defined goal” ?

    What? Is it proven that MET does or does not have a pre-defined goal? I will let you decide.

    This is contrary to ID theory because ID posits that pre-defined goal is detectable and we know of them. This is the problem and what I have been trying to say all along. You are misrepresenting ID and using a straw man version to claim compatibility with MET. Worst of all is that you did it with quote mining from Behe.

    Well hopefully it will be clear what Behe was really saying when you explain later.

    Well do you think orthogenesis is compatible to MET? How about point 2 of my previously posted comment? Evolution does not act in a linear direction towards a pre-defined “goal” The belief of intelligence/teleology/purpose in evolution of this sort is known as orthogenesis, and is not supported by the scientific understanding of evolution.” Do you agree that teleology is a form of orthogenesis and therefore unsupported by evolution?

    No I do not. Yes, teleology is a form of orthogenesis. Further more it is incompatible with MET (not sure what you mean by “supported by”). But the one is not a necessary consequence of the other, so the “therefore” in your last sentence makes it wrong. MET does not reject teleology, it just says it is not detected.

    In comment #49 I referred to Behe’s quote as preprogramming.
    “one could hold that the information for the subsequent unfolding of life was present at the very start of the universe, with no subsequent “intervention” required from outside of nature.” And preprogrammed information from the start is suppose to be “compatible” to this?
    I later expanded on that by saying,
    Pixie’s quote mining only show that Behe supports that information is needed for the subsequent unfolding of life. Behe affirms ID’s position that intelligence is needed for the diversity of life.

    That is interesting, because before that in post 48 I asked you to explain, and then in post 49, before the bit quoted above, you said you already did.

    Also, there is nothing in what you say here that contradicts what I think Behe is saying. As I said in post 48 “Well, duh! Of course Behe is claiming that all the information for the subsequent unfolding was there right at the start. Personally, I suspect not, but nothing in MET contradicts that claim.“. In the scenario I keep bring up, I say that that information is there at the Big Bang (I assume in the laws and constants, but it does not matter either way). Nothing in MET contradicts that claim.

    On the other hand, maybe ID contradicts it. If this scenario is correct, then what evidence for ID is there, how is design detectable? I assume Behe is thinking of the fine-tuning argument. Purpose is detectable if we examine the fundamental laws and constants. I do not seen how in this scenario, with the designer absent for the last 17 billion years, how you can expect to see evidence of design in the appearance and evolution of life over the last 4 billion years. Which would then make it compatible with MET (which only says no discernable purpose in evolution, not the laws and constants).

    Pix: I am not claiming Behe believes MET is compatible with ID, I am claiming they are not mutually exclusive.
    (emphasis added)
    What are you talking about Pix? This is at the heart of our debate. You can claim anything you want and we can debate it. That is not the problem. The problem is while you attack Creationist for quote mining, you are doing the same quote mining from Behe to support your claim.

    No, the heart of the debate was your claim “The two theories are mutually exclusive.” way back in post 29. Go back and check.

    And the problem seems to be that we both understand Behe to mean the same thing!

    You said this in comment #30,
    Pixie:Actually Darwinism (or modern evolutionary theory; MET) and ID are not mutually exclusive. Darwinism describes the process after first life appears, and ID in some form is perfectly happy with the design occurring either at the Big Bang, or for the first life. The universe then unfolds under natural laws (i.e, MET), with no further intervention.
    Check these quotes by Behe:
    You then used his quote to support what you said when in reality Behe’s definition of ID is completely different than what you claim.

    Right, so my comment was in reply to your claim in the previous post.

    See also in post 30 I describe what I think Behe is proposing: “design occurring either at the Big Bang, or for the first life. The universe then unfolds under natural laws (i.e, MET), with no further intervention.” I guess now I would reword it slightly, to spell out that the information is there at the start, but that was what I understood to be happening way back then. So even now, I still do not know why you think I am misrepresenting what Behe was trying to say in this quote.

    Then is comment #46 you further that misrepresentation with this.
    Pixie:I did not say the scenario Behe described was identical to MET, I said it was compatible with MET.
    In this sentence you sure seem to be saying the quote from Behe IS COMPATIBLE WITH MET. Unless now you are going to tell us that Behe’s quote does not represent the ID position, but then that would make your comment in #30 kind of pointless, don’t you think?

    I assumed Behe’s quote represents ID’s position, as he is one the foremost IDists, and he says in the quote that ID encompasses the scenario he describes. I admit I now wonder if Behe was wrong; I am not sure if that scenario allows for detection or not, so perhaps Behe is wrong.

    I don’t know what more I can say. If this does show that you were quote mining then we will just to agree to disagree.

    Just try to explain what Behe is talking about, and what I have wrong. Please do not say that Behe is claiming all the information is put in place at the Big Bang, because I already know that.

    You see it still seems he is talking about a single design event at the Big Bang, with all the information necessary loaded into the universe right then, and then everything after that following natural laws. That would seem to me to imply inheritance, selection and random variation for the evolution of life. Okay, I do not see why you should be able to detect design in this scenario, but Behe says it is ID

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