Fathers’ Rights

A Chicago Blog

Stephen Meyer vs Peter Ward: Intelligent Design

Posted by madcap on February 9, 2008

“In some countries you are not allowed to question the government. In our country one is not allowed to question Darwin.”

From Jay Richards, Proud Obstacles, p. 32

“Our willingness to accept scientific claims that are against common sense is key to an understanding of the real struggle between science and the supernatural. We take the side of science in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises. In spite of the tolerance of the scientific community of unsubstantiated just-so-stories, because we have a prior 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 counterintuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.”

Also watch:

Unlocking the Mysteries of Life.

A thoughtful and well presented argument for a turn away from the dry/rationalist argument that the miracle of life is a “nothing but” scientifically explained foregone conclusion. There is “intelligence” behind the design.

Also see:

Intelligent Design Network


The origin of biological information and the higher taxonomic categories
Stephen C. Meyer

Introduction

In a recent volume of the Vienna Series in a Theoretical Biology (2003), Gerd B. Muller and Stuart Newman argue that what they call the “origination of organismal form” remains an unsolved problem. In making this claim, Muller and Newman (2003:3-10) distinguish two distinct issues, namely, (1) the causes of form generation in the individual organism during embryological development and (2) the causes responsible for the production of novel organismal forms in the first place during the history of life. To distinguish the latter case (phylogeny) from the former (ontogeny), Muller and Newman use the term “origination” to designate the causal processes by which biological form first arose during the evolution of life. They insist that “the molecular mechanisms that bring about biological form in modern day embryos should not be confused” with the causes responsible for the origin (or “origination”) of novel biological forms during the history of life (p.3). They further argue that we know more about the causes of ontogenesis, due to advances in molecular biology, molecular genetics and developmental biology, than we do about the causes of phylogenesis–the ultimate origination of new biological forms during the remote past. Full article:

Also see my article:

The Cosmic Fine Tuner

Everyone welcome to post respectful comments.

11 Responses to “Stephen Meyer vs Peter Ward: Intelligent Design”

  1. Matt said

    Again with the rhetoric that one is not allowed to question Evolution. It gets questioned by scientists each and every day who continuously test findings and data, who carry out experiments to fine tune the theory.

    What one isn’t allowed to do is try to bring in a hypothesis which isn’t actually science and try to pass it off as such – which is what ID is. It is not science. It has no evidence to support it, it has no testable mechanism and so on. It is not a scientific theory, it probably doesn’t even qualify as a hypothesis.

  2. madcap said

    Matt,

    “What one isn’t allowed to do is try to bring in a hypothesis which isn’t actually science and try to pass it off as such.”

    Ok, no problem. we are talking about two distinctly different fields of inquiry. Natural science asks “how” questions, and philosophical science ask “why” questions. The problem is that the natural sciences make value judgments concerning theological questions all the time. Often these judgments included discounting theological science as irrelevant, as if the possibility of a designer is simply out of the question. This is not scientific, but rather rhetoric.

  3. Matt said

    It’s perfectly scientific.
    Science has yet to find the need for a creator being mechanism to explain available evidence. And one thing you never do in science is introduce a mechanism when it is not needed or there is no evidence to support the idea of such.

    As of yet, no need for such a mechanism has been found nor has any evidence been found.

    Therefore that particular mechanism is disregarded as it simply does not enter into the equation.

  4. madcap said

    Matt,
    “Science has yet to find the need for a creator being mechanism to explain available evidence.”

    I do not believe this to be accurate. From what I can gather, cosmologist such as Stephen Hawkins, have been forced to speculate for some other possibility other than the Big Bang, specifically because the data points toward some sort of “cosmic fine tuner.” We would have to accept a supernatural cause if we are to accept the big bang.

  5. Matt said

    And you gathered this from where, exactly?
    Nothing I have seen or read gives any indication at all of such.

  6. madcap said

    From Hawking:

    ” One would feel happier about the anthropic principle, at least in its weak version, if one could show that quite a number of different initial configurations for the universe would have had to be chosen very precisely for the rate of expansion still to be so close to the critical rate needed to avoid recollapse. This means that the rent initial configurations for the universe would have evolved to produce a universe like the one we observe. If this is the case, a universe that developed from some sort of random initial conditions should contain a number of regions that are smooth and uniform and are suitable for the evolution of intelligent life. On the other hand, if the initial state of the universe had to be chosen extremely carefully to lead to something like what we see around us, the universe would be unlikely to contain any region in which life would appear. In the hot big bang model, there was not enough time in the early universe for heat to have flowed from one region to another. This means that the initial state of the universe would have to have had exactly the same temperature everywhere in order to account for the fact that the microwave background has the same temperature in every direction we look. The initial rate of expansion also would have had to be chosen very precisely for the rate of expansion still to be so close to the critical rate needed state of the universe must have been very carefully chosen indeed if the hot big bang model was correct right back to the beginning of time. It would be very difficult to explain why the universe should have begun in just this way, except as the act of a God who intended to create beings like us.”

    Matt,
    Not only is it amazing that there is a universe, but that a universe that contains life, and intelligence, is simply scientifically inconceivable.

  7. Matt said

    The source of that quote?
    That quote seems to directly contradict what he said in many other papers and works such as ‘A Brief History of Time’.

  8. madcap said

    It’s from A Brief History of Time. This also speaks directly to what I am talking about. The rhetoric coming from both sides of the argument rage so loud, that we often overlook the obvious. We need to come to a place where both branches of study, the empirical along with the metaphysical, can co-exist.

  9. Matt said

    I see.
    Much akin to Hawkings ending to ‘A Brief History of Time’ then, “… then we would know the mind of god.” which gets brought out time and again by people who don’t realise the context it is used in, which is pure metaphorical.

    Oddly enough, I can not find your quote in the edition I have. Page number, please?

    I did find on page 181, however, that Hawking does question the necessary for a creator being as a mechanism when he states/asks: “But if the Universe is really complete self contained, having no boundary or edge, it would have neither beginning nor end: it would simply be. What place, then, for a creator?”

    And, as far science knows, the universe is self contained.

  10. madcap said

    Hawking, History of time, p. 125-126. I’m not smart enough to have made it up. I have a poor Internet connection at the moment. The comment was posted before I could edit.

  11. Matt said

    Sadly, we must possess different editions then. My page 124 is regarding the life cycle of stars.

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