Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

At Claremont Review of Books: “The God Hypothesis should be considered as a possible explanation for our universe.”


From a review of Steve Meyer’s The Return of the God Hypothesis:

As Meyer explains, the materialist assumption—the convention that scientific explanation means explanation without recourse to God—has not always been part of the scientific method. It gained primacy after Darwin in order to facilitate scientific discovery. Today, the hegemony of the materialist assumption is complete. The textbooks presuppose it. The mainstream takes it for granted. But what if it is not true? Meyer argues that the materialist assumption now poses an obstruction to understanding, compelling scientists to embrace implausible and untestable hypotheses as a defense against the God hypothesis.

Meyer is not the first writer to recognize that science has bitten its own tail (to quote Nietzsche’s apt phrase in The Birth of Tragedy): that science has created dilemmas which cannot be answered by science. Nine years ago, New York University professor of philosophy Thomas Nagel published Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False. Nagel, an atheist, noted that most materialists simply assume the universe consists of nothing more than matter, energy, space, and time. But this claim is an assumption, not a fact. Citing earlier work by Dr. Meyer among other sources, Nagel argued that the available evidence strongly suggests there must be a fifth element in the universe which Nagel called Mind, whether immanent or transcendent. Reviewing Meyer’s previous book, Darwin’s Doubt (2013), in these pages, Yale professor of computer science David Gelernter agreed that the current materialist assumptions regarding neo-Darwinian evolution simply can no longer stand in light of the overwhelming evidence (“Giving Up Darwin,” Spring 2019). Gelernter was pilloried in the popular media for praising Meyer’s book, even though Gelernter specifically disavowed intelligent design. But Gelernter and Nagel make a good case that religious zealotry, and a refusal to debate the facts honestly, now characterize Meyer’s opponents more than they do Meyer and his supporters.

Leonard Sax, “The Ambiguity of the Evidence” at Claremont Review of Books (Fall 2021)

Actually, never mind intelligent design, panpsychism is also gaining ground on Darwinian naturalism.

You may also wish to read: Why panpsychism is starting to push out naturalism. A key goal of naturalism/materialism has been to explain human consciousness away as “nothing but a pack of neurons.” That can’t work. Panpsychism is not dualism. By including consciousness — including human consciousness — as a bedrock fact of nature, it avoids naturalism’s dead end.

Polistra @1
"....he’s pushing a specifically Roman Catholic god a bit too hard for my taste. The arguments for a creator don’t automatically require the immaculate conception and infallible popes."
In his review Sax found no Biblical references in the book. He says: "(There is no) appeal to authority anywhere in the book. Meyer never cites any passage from the Bible or indeed any religious text. You will find no mention here of Jesus Christ or the Tao." doubter
Polistra 1, I don't know if Meyer is Catholic. However, I don't recall when & where he publicly endorsed the Immaculate Conception and Papal infallibility as part of ID. Please elucidate. anthropic
As to: "It (the philosophy of Atheistic Materialism) gained primacy after Darwin in order to facilitate scientific discovery." I'm just wondering, "When has the philosophy of Atheistic Materialism ever facilitated scientific discovery???" Obviously, advances in science have been driven, first and foremost, by advances in the engineering of our scientific instruments. Which is obviously a product of humans "Intelligently Designing" those scientific instruments to more, and more, exacting degrees. In so far as I can tell, advances in science have never been facilitated by presupposing the philosophy of Atheistic Materialism as being true. In fact, off the top of my head I can think of several instances, i.e. Big Bang Cosmology, Non-Locality of Quantum Mechanics, Vestigial Organs, Junk DNA, etc.., etc.., where the presupposition of Atheistic Materialism hindered the advancement of science discovery instead of facilitating it. bornagain77
all EDUCATED rational persons with even a BASIC KNOWLEDGE in molecular biology have to admit, that Darwinism failed in a big way ... Perhaps it looked plausible in 19th century, but today ? Today, Darwinian theory of evolution is absurd in the highest possible degree martin_r
As usual, reality becomes a radical terrorist idea that a few people bravely defend. Over all of human history, only about 0.1% of all people believe the NON-god hypothesis. Meyer seems to be making inroads on the tiny fraction, but he's pushing a specifically Roman Catholic god a bit too hard for my taste. The arguments for a creator don't automatically require the immaculate conception and infallible popes. polistra

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