North Western Winds

Contemplating it all from the great Pacific Northwest

Intelligent Design

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The debate over evolution and intelligent design often gives one the impression that the ferocity of the exchanges is due more to the supposed political and religious implications than it is to what people see in the evidence.

On Intelligent Design, Micheal Behe writes:

The next claim in the argument for design is that we have no good explanation for the foundation of life that doesn’t involve intelligence. Here is where thoughtful people part company. Darwinists assert that their theory can explain the appearance of design in life as the result of random mutation and natural selection acting over immense stretches of time. Some scientists, however, think the Darwinists’ confidence is unjustified. They note that although natural selection can explain some aspects of biology, there are no research studies indicating that Darwinian processes can make molecular machines of the complexity we find in the cell.

Micheal Behe is a well known biochemist who takes the side of intelligent design. I have no idea if he is right or not. I suspect what he says is of value. That is, his ideas make sense to me. I believe in evolution but I do not think evolution is a proof for atheism, and it is certainly not a proof for Rationalism (if our minds are the result of a natural machine, how can we trust them?). I try to keep an open mind in this debate and to watch for writers and thinkers engaged in curve fitting in an effort to keep their politics or religion afloat. I note than if Behe is right we might have a solution to the regression argument.

This seems to be a real problem for some. Resistance to Intelligent Design seems to arise because people chafe against the idea that they are beholden to anything or anyone. They seriously resent its implied teleology, which suggests that designed things have purposes, and that some uses of the designed object are “correct.” They view this as an attack on freedom, although it is very hard to see how a mechanized naturalism can be the foundation of the kind of freedom they seek.

Check out Behe. If nothing else, it’s good to hear from the other side. Behe is not foaming at the mouth over creation in six days.


Written by Curt

February 7, 2005 at 10:01 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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