Saturday, October 3, 2009

Intelligent Design

Below is my comment to an atheist's blog:

We are surrounded by examples of intelligent design in whichever direction we look. I will not torment you with the many examples of the fine-tuning of the universe, of which I’m sure you are already painfully aware and which drive you to postulate highly imaginative solutions such as an infinite number of universes in order to account for it. Nor will I tell you about the wonderful associations I find between my conscience and the salutary direction its promptings lead me to take, lest you ascribe it once again to natural selection.

Nor will I mention the informational DNA system and the inability of evolution to even whisper a theory regarding its origin. Nor will I be so cruel as to challenge you about the origin of life and the cell, when I know it will only promote feverish, ill-conceived theories. Nor will I even suggest you consider consciousness and freewill, lest this forces you to resort to the ultimate faith-answer: “Naturalism might not have an explanation now, but this doesn’t mean that we won’t have one later!”

Nor will I be so indelicate as to raise the matter of the elegance of our equations which express the operations of the physical laws. (Indeed, there isn’t a law, formula, or equation that doesn’t carry His fingerprints!) For instance, my gullible unscientific mind was so impressed by the beautiful and simple formula for gravity: Gravitational Attraction = 1/ (distance separation between two bodies)². Why must it be exactly squared? Why couldn’t it have been 1.999 or 2.0001 instead? Why soooo elegant? Can you answer this? Does natural selection have anything to say about this? Can it explain why these laws are unchanging in the midst of a changing, expanding universe? Can it explain from where our tools of reason of and logic came or how they correspond so wonderfully and unchangeably to the challenges of life? Could all of this originated from an explosion, the big bang?

And E = MC²? Again the elegance! But also the incredible coordination and harmony among energy and matter! Light, energy and mass all intimately related! And then there is the chemical periodic table which reflects so poignantly the order we find among the elements. Can you account for this elegant design? Even musical notes are related so precisely and mathematically. Not only that, but our ears and tastes also resonate to their precise relationships.

Have you considered the perfect size relationship between our moon and sun and their relative distances from the earth, enabling us to see perfect eclipses of the sun? Have you considered the fortuitous properties of water causing it to expand at 33 degrees so that ice doesn’t sink and kill our aquatic life?

However, I’m not doing justice to ID by merely pointing to particular instances of intelligent design. Rather, it seems that everything reflects harmony and beauty. The very fact that we can so meaningfully and constructively contemplate these lofty issues with a grey sponge we call “brain,” also points us to the bewildering correspondence between our minds and the world. And now we are being told that even “chaotic” arrangements evince their own fractal designs. It leads us to wonder whether everything is the product of intelligent design. Indeed, “The earth is filled with His glory!”

This brings us back to the question of natural selection, which can’t even begin to explain the phenomena of design outside of biology. If it fails to enlighten us regarding life, DNA, freewill, consciousness, fine-tuning, and the origin and the perpetuation of the laws of nature, perhaps science is best advised to look for another mechanism that can parsimoniously explain ALL, even biological diversity!

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