The impression of design is overwhelming

 

Is it chance ordesign?

This Google Ocean image is 620 miles off the west coast of Africa near the Canary Islands. It is over 15,000 feet deep and the feature of interest is about 90 miles on a side or 8000 square miles.

In another thread ID critics complain there is no rigorous definition or mathematical formula by which everyone can agree on whether or not something exhibits complex specified information. Believe it not, they say it like mainstream science isn’t chock full of things that not everyone can agree upon. 

It is relatively unusual that a physical scientist is truly an atheist. Why is this true? Some point to the anthropic constraints, the remarkable fine tuning of the universe. For example, Freeman Dyson, a Princeton faculty member, has said, “Nature has been kinder to us that we had any right to expect.” Martin Rees, one of Stephen Hawking’s colleagues at Cambridge, notes the same facts. Rees recently stated “The possibility of life as we know it depends on the values of a few basic, physical constants and is in some respects remarkably sensitive to their numerical values. Nature does exhibit remarkable coincidences.” Science writer extraordinaire Paul Davies adds “There is for me powerful evidence that there is something going on behind it all. . . It seems as though somebody has fine tuned nature’s numbers to make the Universe. . . The impression of design is overwhelming.” Some scientists express surprise at what they view as so many “accidental occurrences.” However, that astonishment quickly disappears when one sees purpose instead of arbitrariness in the laws of nature.

 

In an Op-Ed piece entitled “Darwin, Intelligent Design, and Freedom of Discovery on Evolutionists’ Holy Day” in U.S. News and World Report, Casey luskin said this:

The more we discover about the cell, the more we are learning that it functions like a miniature factory, replete with motors, powerhouses, garbage disposals, guarded gates, transportation corridors, and most importantly, CPUs. The central information processing machinery of the cell runs on a language-based code composed of irreducibly complex circuits and machines: The myriad enzymes used in the process that converts the genetic information in DNA into proteins are themselves created by the process that converts DNA into proteins.

The problem for Darwinists is obvious: The simplest cell won’t function unless this basic machinery is intact, so how does such complexity evolve via 
a “blind” and “undirected” Darwinian process of numerous, successive, slight modifications?

 

Imagine coming upon Stonehenge for the first time, an your companion says, “What’s so special about that?  It’s perfectly possible that natural selection through random slight variations could explain that quite well.

 

 

      

 Or take this one:  (Look closely – someone has monkeyed with the original!)

 

 

 

 

 

Can anyone seriously think for a moment that this just popped up by ramdom forces?

Yet against every ounce of instinct and common sense, we’re told to believe that this really is just the result of those random accidents!  Some have looked at this and concluded that there is no design inference, or that if there is, that “random design” was the cause.  Maybe that’s right, but do they know, or are they just unwilling to consider a non-materialist explanation?

I don’t know what made any of these designs, but it strikes me as absurd that any of them should be considered anything other than designed.

But that’s me.

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9 thoughts on “The impression of design is overwhelming

  1. mgarelick

    “Maybe that’s right, but do they know, or are they just unwilling to consider a non-materialist explanation?”

    How are we supposed to consider a non-materialist explanation? What is the criteria for evaluating its truth?

  2. Well, answer my question first. Do you look at any of these things pictured and conclude that they must be the result of random processes? If you do, I’d like to hear the process by which you arrived – scientifically – at that conclusion.

    The truth is that almost everyone decides immediately that these things were designed and built by some one, not some thing. So why is DNA – which is many magnitudes more complex – not given the same consideration? We don’t need a scientific test. We only need the ability to reason.

  3. mgarelick

    “Do you look at any of these things pictured and conclude that they must be the result of random processes?”

    I wouldn’t say “must be” about any of the images (including the DNA). As to the DNA (and, to a lesser degree, the ocean floor) I would say “probably,” with the imprecise meaning that I am more confident that it is than that it isn’t.

    Certainly, as to the DNA, I would, if I had the talent and resources to study it, work within a paradigm of presuming that it is a “naturally” occuring molecule. I don’t know how else I would study it. But maybe you’ll tell me, now that I’ve answered (or tried to) your question.

    “The truth is that almost everyone decides immediately that these things were designed and built by some one, not some thing.”

    If “these things” includes the DNA and the ocean floor, then I don’t know what you mean by “almost everyone. Certainly there are lots and lots of people who don’t decide that immediately.

    “So why is DNA – which is many magnitudes more complex – not given the same consideration?”

    How about this — precisely because it is “many magnitudes more complex.” You argument seems to be “A is more complex than anything we know about that is intelligently designed. Therefore, A must be intelligently designed.” This seems odd to me. If something seems to be beyond the capabilities of known intelligence, why would you think that all it needs is more and more intelligence?

    1. I wouldn’t say “must be” about any of the images (including the DNA). As to the DNA (and, to a lesser degree, the ocean floor) I would say “probably,” with the imprecise meaning that I am more confident that it is than that it isn’t.

      You’re saying that you aren’t sure whether stonehenge or Mt. Rushmore were designed and built by some one? Really?

      Why would you presume that DNA was naturally occurring? It does exist in nature now, so it could be studied naturalistically whether you assume it evolved by naturalistic means or had it’s origin in some guided process. So why the presumption?

      That ocean floor picture lost something from the original, but if you look closely, you’ll see a series of very straight lines arranged into a rectangular design. And that “feature of interest” is about 90 miles on a side or 8000 square miles! So how could that have happened without guidance?

      And re your last paragraph, how can you argue that more complexity is more reason to attribute random processes? Either it happened by chance, or it was guided somehow. My contention is that is is irrational in the extreme to hold that any of the items listed could have been assembled without the involvement of an intelligent agent. Think about it. The information is more sophisticated than anything we know about. Bill Gates called it software, and said it was more complex than anything we’ve been able to come up with.

  4. Pingback: Did Darwin kill God? « Bloom Where You’re Planted

  5. mgarelick

    “You’re saying that you aren’t sure whether stonehenge or Mt. Rushmore were designed and built by some one? Really?”

    Not at all. Read your question and my answer. You asked whether I concluded that they “must be the result of random processes;” I said, no, I don’t conclude that any of the images must be the result of random processes. I did not say anything at all about whether stonehenge or Mt. Rushmore were designed or built by someone.

    “Why would you presume that DNA was naturally occurring? It does exist in nature now, so it could be studied naturalistically whether you assume it evolved by naturalistic means or had it’s origin in some guided process. So why the presumption?”

    All I’m saying is that I think that if I were to search for a naturalistic origin of DNA, I am more likely to find one than if I conduct my investigation under some other paradigm. Roughly speaking, then, you can say that I think that DNA probably has an origin that is nonteleological. (I’m still waiting for you to tell me anything about how to conduct scientific investigation into a nonmaterialistic explanation.)

    Regarding the ocean floor, I know that I read something about the image being an “artifact” of the imaging process, but I’m sorry that I can’t give you any help finding that. It was on some sort of science/skeptic blog within the past week or so. From what I do remember, though, the image is at a location far below where any human has been; if I’m correct about this, who or what do you think “guided” it?

    I don’t know if we can get anywhere regarding he last paragraph of my post or your response in the last paragraph of yours. To me, it is not at all obvious that (1) if DNA is more complex than anything that can be designed by any intelligence we know about, (2) therefore it must have been designed by some intelligence. (Did Bill Gates actually “call it software,” or did he say it was like software?)

  6. I just saw this and thought I’d chime in…

    Your title is “The impression of design”, and I think that’s very suiting. Much progress is being made in the neuroscience field and it’s being shown how our minds seek out patterns in the world around us. In fact, people will convince themselves that patterns appear in completely random strings of information.

    Recently I read ‘The Ethical Brain’ by Mike Gazzaniga, which I highly recommend. Also Michael Shermer hits on this topic in some of his writings. The one that comes to mind is ‘The Science of Good and Evil’.

    Basically, our minds aren’t satisfied with not knowing. They much prefer a conspiracy theory to no theory at all.

    So, EVERYTHING looks designed, but that doesn’t mean that it is, nor does it help us much. We should be more concerned with the how and why.

    1. I don’t agree that everything looks designed. Think of the Trade Center after 9-11. But I agree that the question of how and why is more important. So when we see a crop circle, or paintings on the wall of a cave, we do not question whether it was designed. We wonder who (not what) did the designing. But if we taught our kids in school that evolution was the ‘designer’ of either one, and did not bother to introduce the possible flaws in the theory, would we be teaching kids how to think critically, or just teaching them what to think?

  7. Think of the Trade Center after 9-11.

    Many people saw ‘the devil’ in some of the billowing smoke clouds, and when they found 2 beams that formed a cross I’m sure many people saw design in that. All of this is just a minor point though.

    But if we taught our kids in school that evolution was the ‘designer’ of either one

    I don’t really understand this entire sentence. We don’t teach kids that evolution designed crop circles, or cave paintings.

    and did not bother to introduce the possible flaws in the theory

    I’m not sure which flaws you are speaking of. The only flaws I can think of are discussed at the graduate level.

    would we be teaching kids how to think critically, or just teaching them what to think?

    This very much IS a fundamental flaw in our education system. It’s not the education system’s fault, but it’s a fault of the WAY that we teach. We make kids memorize dull boring information, when we should be presenting problems for them to solve and get excited about. We should have our kids questioning EVERYTHING. (yes, even evolution)

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