Intelligent Design is merely a "God of the gaps" argument against naturalistic evolution.

10 Myths Related to Science and Christianity

Comments by Glen Leckman

DEFINITION of Intelligent Design: "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." - Discovery Institute

Based on the teleological argument for God - the apparent purpose and design found in universe lead to conclusion there is a designer. The same argument is commonly used in forensics, e.g. CSI tv show.

Key figures: William Paley, Charles Thaxton, Phillip Johnson, Michael Behe, Bill Dembski, Guillermo Gonzalez, Stephen C Meyer, Jonathon Welles, Discovery Institute, Reasons To Believe

Anthropic principle = the conclusion that the universe, Milky Way Galaxy, solar system & earth are all exquisitely fine tuned or engineered so human life can exist & flourish

Martin Rees - 6 dimensionless constants found in nature that are exactly right value

Popular Explanations for Why the Universe exits as it does (from Paul Davies - Goldilocks Enigma)

  1. The absurd universe - Our universe just happens to be the way it is.
  2. The unique universe - There is a deep underlying unity in physics which necessitates the Universe being the way it is.
  3. The multiverse - Multiple universes exist, having all possible combinations of characteristics, and we inevitably find ourselves within a universe that allows us to exist.
  4. Intelligent Design - A creator designed the Universe with the purpose of supporting complexity and the emergence of intelligence.
  5. The life principle - There is an underlying principle that constrains the Universe to evolve towards life and mind.
  6. The self-explaining universe - A closed explanatory or causal loop: "perhaps only universes with a capacity for consciousness can exist." This is Wheeler's Participatory Anthropic Principle (PAP).
  7. The fake universe - We live inside a virtual reality simulation.

God of the Gaps explanation =substitutes extraordinary explanations where ordinary explanations will do; e.g. a>b>c>*#*>e>f where *#*= God did it. Later, step d is found, but this is not accepted as refutation of God

C.A. Coulson - "When we come to the scientifically unknown, our correct position is not to rejoice because we have found God; it is to become better scientists."

Behe's irreducible complexity & Dembski's complex specified information seek to define limits to evolution

Argument against I.D: Intelligent Design is not falsifiable and therefore is not science

Argument against I.D: Intelligent Design does not provide predictions and therefore is not science

The Scientific Method =:

  1. Identify the phenomenon to be investigated and explained
  2. Identify the frames of reference or points of view to be used in studying and describing the phenomenon
  3. Determine the initial conditions for the phenomenon
  4. Perform an experiment or observe the phenomenon, noting what takes place when, where and in what order
  5. Note the final conditions for the phenomenon
  6. Form a tentative explanation or hypothesis, for how and why things transpired as they did
  7. Test the hypothesis with further experiments or observations
  8. Revise the hypothesis accordingly
  9. Determine how well the explanation of the phenomenon integrates with explanations of related phenomena

In Creation as Science Hugh Ross makes dozens of predictions from the 4 prominent creation & evolution models

Summary God of the Gaps = no scientific explanation = proof of God

Intelligent Design = The apparent purpose and design found in universe lead to conclusion there is a designer based on:

  • Irreducible complexity
  • Complex specified information
  • Fine tuning of earth & universe
  • Complexity of life forms



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