Tuesday, November 29, 2016


Atheists commonly charge theists, especially Christians, of being mindless:

·       For all we know that believer is arguing from ignorance. "I can't explain this, therefore God." or "I cannot believe that it can be anything but God, therefore God" or on circular cases "I believe it is God because I know. Why? Because I know."

This is inaccurate. I do not believe because I don’t understand but because I do. When I compare naturalism (non-design) to ID (design), I find the ID paradigm far superior. For one thing, everyone, even Carl Sagan, admits that we are surrounded by artifacts having the appearance of design. This is what our senses and experience tell us:

  • "A living cell is a marvel of detailed and complex architecture. Seen through a microscope there is an appearance of almost frantic activity. On a deeper level it is known that molecules are being synthesized at an enormous rate. Almost any enzyme catalyzes the synthesis of more than 100 other molecules per second. In ten minutes, a sizeable fraction of total mass of a metabolizing bacterial cell has been synthesized. The information content of a simple cell had been estimated as around 1012 bits, comparable to about a hundred million pages of the Encyclopedia Britannica." (Carl Sagan, "Life" in Encyclopedia Britannica: Macropaedia (1974 ed.), pp. 893-894)

Furthermore, we consider our sensual data – what we see around us – as more authoritative than what scientists tell us we should see, unless we can understand scientific findings in a way that does not contradict our senses. For example, if scientists tell me that I do not have freewill, my experience of freewill takes precedence over what they tell me. This experience is so basic that to deny it is also to deny other things that I know on an experiential/perceptual basis – that I exist and that the material world exists.

There is absolutely no evidence against our perceptions of design (ID). Even if macro-evolution is true (which I don’t believe), there is no evidence to discount the possibility that ID had been behind it. If this is so, then there is no evidence that anything has ever happened “naturally” without ID.

If so, why not go with our thousands of perceptions of ID? In fact, many scientists have affirmed the credibility of ID based upon the evidence for ID. Physicist Paul Davies, concluded that chance events could not account for what he had been observing:

  • “Scientists are slowly waking up to an inconvenient truth – the universe looks suspiciously like a fix. The issue concerns the very laws of nature themselves. For 40 years, physicists and cosmologists have been quietly collecting examples of all too convenient “coincidences” and special features in the underlying laws of the universe that seem to be necessary in order for life, and hence conscious beings, to exist. Change any one of them and the consequences would be lethal. The crucial point is that some of those metaphorical knobs (of which there are 40) must be tuned very precisely, or the universe would be sterile. Example: neutrons are just a tad heavier than protons. If it were the other way around, atoms couldn’t exist, because all the protons in the universe would have decayed into neutrons shortly after the big bang. No protons, then no atomic nucleus and no atoms. No atoms, no chemistry, no life.”

British astrophysicist George Ellis also sees the scientific evidence pointing to ID:

  •  “Amazing fine tuning occurs in the laws that make this [complexity] possible. Realization of the complexity of what is accomplished makes it very difficult not to use the word ‘miraculous’ without taking a stand as to the ontological status of the word.”

Nobel Laureate in physics Arno Penzias came to the same conclusion:

  •  “Astronomy leads us to a unique event, a universe which was created out of nothing, one with the very delicate balance needed to provide exactly the conditions required to permit life, and one which has an underlying (one might say ‘supernatural’) plan.”

Frank Tipler, Professor of Mathematical Physics, recounts:

  • “When I began my career as a cosmologist some twenty years ago, I was a convinced atheist. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that one day I would be writing a book purporting to show that the central claims of Judeo-Christian theology are in fact true, that these claims are straightforward deductions of the laws of physics as we now understand them. I have been forced into these conclusions by the inexorable logic of my own special branch of physics.” (All these quotations have been taken from: http://ubcgcu.org/2013/03/05/mind-expanding-quotes-on-fine-tuning/

In light of the above, I think that it is essential to move past the straw-man arguments against ID, like, "I can't explain this, therefore God," if thoughtful discussion is to occur.

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