Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

ICON-RIDS: Non-Religious ID Scientists and Scholars


It will be interesting to see how the National Center for Science Education Selling Evolution deals with the growing number of non-religious ID proponents. Check out the following link: icon-rids.blogspot.com.

[...] number of non-religious ID proponents. Check out the following link: icon-rids.blogspot.com.” ["ICON-RIDS: Non-Religious ID Scientists and Scholars.", by William Dembski. Uncommon Descent, June 16, [...] Diogenes' Lamp
The thing about atheism, is that it is the most irrational, illogical position one can take. I can still understand that someone can believe in guided darwinism, but the idea that live can naturally evolve from non-living matter has been thoroughly disproven in many scientific dissiplines. It is not an arguement based on what we don't know, but on what we do know. However, if you do believe in guided evolution, then you are infact, believing in intelligent design. This is something that Darwinists don't like to hear. They prefer ID to be another form of "Creationism", or "Intelligent design creationism", as they call it. Then they say it is the ID proponents that are "dishonnest"! I do believe that ID proponents are sincere about not attaching ID to any religious doctrine, because I do believe that ID is a hypothesis based on empirical data, not religious believe. That is its major strength, and that is why Darwinists want to confuse people about ID. There is nothing worse for the Darwinist than having to debate a non-christian ID proponent, because all the anti-creationist arguements they usually use are suddenly irrelelvant. Atheism is an unnatural, irrational believe system. That is why their numbers has always been small, and why their "golden era" barely lasted a generation. The idea that there was nothing, and then the nothingness took the nothing and created a perfectly, fine tuned universe, is completely irrational. The laws of nature just do not have that creative power. Atheists like to call themselves "Athiests" - to put the emphisis on what they DON'T believe. Then they tell people that they do not believe in anything without evidence. That isn't true, though, because they believe the laws of nature have magical creative powers. For instance: Live exists, it must have had an origin, therefore darwinism must be true. The assertion that darwinism is true is not based on any biochemical evidence that the natural formation of live is actually possible, but on the assumption that it was not designed. It is an assumption made without evidence, and therefore qualifies as "faith". For this reason, we should not call them "atheists" but "naturalists" or "materialists", to confront them with the fact that they too believe certain things based on faith, rather than evidence. Once one realise this, it actually becomes entertaining to see how the icons, such as Richard Dawkins, try to defend this intellectually bankrupt idea. It also show that there is a "priesthood" amongst atheists: Richard Dawkins can give any silly explaination of how darwinism work, such as his "computer random letter generator 'filtered by preexisting text'" example. Even though the example is fatally flawed, many atheists take it seriously, simply because Richard Dawkins indorced the idea. Well, hell, he is a professor, he must know what he's talking about, so I don't think for myself. The parallels between the fight between Darwinism and ID, and the church reformation is astounding: Just like Luther and Calvin took the church back to the scriptural foundation, purifying it from all kinds of superstition and tradisions, so too the ID take science back to its empirical foundation, purifying it from all its naturalist assumptions. hannodb
I hope ID proponents are sincere about welcoming non-theistic ID-sympathetic minds into their midst (I can already tell, frankly, that ID is extremely tolerant of other faiths across the spectrum), because my bet is that it's a trend which will continue. I think it's honestly a matter of time before transhumanists and the like start making 'Matrix' style arguments (I believe some already have), and those interested in theories like Nick Bostrom's simulation argument start looking towards the ID paradigm to ground their suspicions. Don't underestimate the number of people who would be willing to think in these terms. I say this as a Christian/Catholic. One thing I noticed recently with Dawkins' apparent concession to deism is that the moment it seemed that Dawkins was signaling 'you can be a deist and I, your champion, won't think less of you', I suddenly saw some regular anti-theist types owing up to either being deists, seriously vascillating between atheism and deism, or respecting the deist position. These are guys who previously showed no hint of concession to design arguments, or thoughts of any deity whatsoever. All they needed was a signal that it was okay to come out of the closet (so to speak) for this to start popping up. Now I'm just one guy, and all this is anecdotal - so take it with a grain of salt. But I predict that down the line (5 years? 10 years? More?) that naturalistic/materialistic atheism will die down in popularity, to be replaced by quasi-naturalistic deism and semi-deism(s) of varying types. Atheism of the type we see currently (materialistic, scientism-prone, fundamentalist) won't last - it's self-defeating, requires too much of a faith commitment, and entails various absurdities or inconsistencies. But most of all, it's the echo of a bygone enlightenment era that is no longer intellectually or emotionally sustainable - centuries ago, being passionately against organized religion could be maintained in these ways because said religions' leaders were dominant secular forces and far more combatitive amongst themselves. Nowadays, we have the hindsight of atheist regimes soaked in blood, religion remains very relevant but has ceded official power to secular states (which continue to behave poorly), and an ecumenical air such that the Pope can meet with muslims in peace, evangelicals can work with jews, and cooperation / peaceful dialogue is abundant, and becoming moreso. When you hear about a major figure angrily denouncing all beliefs different from his own, odds are you're either listening to a small-time preacher, a middle-of-nowhere mullah, or... a prominent atheist. Atheism has no real future. But, as I said at the start, I hope ID proponents are serious about sharing the spotlight with deists, transhumanists, and otherwise - many of them have more sympathy with the design paradigm than you would think. nullasalus
Thanks for your reply. It is very encouraging to hear. Unfortunately, I do not think Darwinism will ever go away, exactly because of its religious nature. But, I hope a time will come when it is no longer assumed by the mainstream. Good luck with your work, and may reason prevail. hannodb
My conclusion is that these people don’t WANT Darwin to be wrong, they simply don’t WANT there to be a designer, because that threatens their (a)religions world view.
To be fair, many Darwinists are religious. BUT they have their own personal philosophical views on their own religion that they believe conflicts with design (like "God would not have done it that way").
How are things going with ID, aspecially amongst scientists? Is it growing?
I'd say yes, the ID community is growing. At the same time hardcore Darwinists are becoming more vitriolic. Some people will choose to believe something no matter how much reason is thrown at them. Patrick
Hi guys. I'm a South African, and I've followed the ID "debate" for a couple of years. What really depresses me, is how Darwinists can lie, create strawman arguements, practice double standards, and use mockery, all to discredit ID, and then still believe they're "defending science". Why are they not giving scientific answers to the scientific challenges raised by ID? I know Kenneth Miller did try to sincerely refute the ID arguements (I can respect him for that), but his arguements make some major leaps of assumptions. My conclusion is that these people don't WANT Darwin to be wrong, they simply don't WANT there to be a designer, because that threatens their (a)religions world view. My question to you guys in the States is: How are things going with ID, aspecially amongst scientists? Is it growing? Can reason penetrate the mainstream materialist fundimentalism in the scientific community? Is there reason to hope that future generations will see them as the fools that they are? hannodb
Welcome NoeticGuru, good to have you here. :) Atom
Heh, long time lurker, first time poster here. But I'm glad that organizations like ICON-RIDS are showing up, and that proponents of ID are taking notice of them. I think that it will help show that ID isn't a single religious doctrine since it can incorporate so many different non-materialistic philosophies. ICON-RIDS, for example, will probably attract a lot of followers with its ethical philosophy (you'll probably need to scroll down a bit to get to his Transparadigmic Pleasurian socio-ethical paradigm, but it's worth a read). Since I'm also a dabbler in mathematics, I've been particularly impressed with Dr. Brookfield's cosmological proof of cosmological physical incompleteness -- I wonder how many mathematical polymaths ID will have to accumulate before Darwinists stop making light of the field's credentialed researchers? NoeticGuru
Quote from the article: "Some of it ("junk" that has been found to be transcribed) may be doing nothing. “It may be like clutter in the attic,” Collins said, noting that clutter could be useful when conditions change and evolution needs new material to work with.” I hope the joyful reaction to these findings by ID advocates isn't premature and jumping to conclusions. Behe discusses evolutionary computational simulations briefly at the end of Appendix D. He uses Avida as an example, and points out that this fails to correctly model actual living systems. He appears to consider that in principle at least, random variation and selection can produce specified complex systems (mechanisms). In this admission for some reason he doesn't point out that such algorithms still incorporate hidden front-loaded information (i.e. the NFL argument). The one critical area he mentions where this software system differs greatly from actual life is that Avida apparently selectively rewards the evolving "organism" for accumulating surplus instructions, whether or not they do anything or are even executed. The programmers found this was necessary to get the evolutionary algorithm to work; otherwise there is a strong selective pressure for shorter genomes. Could this possibly relate to the underlying purpose of these huge expanses of transcribed but apparently unused DNA? magnan
William Brookfield invited me to join the blog a while back, I'm glad to see that he's getting attention. I think I actually have time to contribute! EJ Klone
"ICON-RIDS" -- that's a catchy acronym! Reminds me of my old organization that opposed the grossly unconstitutional $300 California "smog impact fee" on out-of-state vehicles -- CAUSTIC (Committee Against Unconstitutional Smog Taxes In California). It was indeed a caustic organization -- one staffer in the state legislature described my opposition to the fee as a "vendetta." ICON-RIDS sounds like a good organization -- I have long believed that the Darwinists have been misusing the Constitution's establishment clause to suppress scientific ideas that they disagree with. The Darwinists call all scientific criticism of Darwinism "pseudoscience," but since there is no constitutional separation of pseudoscience and state, the Darwinists exploit the so-called separation of church and state instead. What the Darwinists have actually done is establish Darwinism as a state religion. So those who are trying to remove Darwinism as a state religion are "disestablishmentarians," which would make those opposing them "antidisestablishmentarians." Larry Fafarman
Here's a link to an article about Drosophila "junk DNA": http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070615091210.htm I thought this quote was interesting. It appears that the genome knows that transposons are around. This makes me wonder just how "random" transposons really are. "The annotated heterochromatic sequences reveal over 200 protein-coding genes. The heterochromatin also includes other features of biological importance, including sequences that code for non-protein-coding RNAs and other functional elements, such as small RNAs that neutralize transposable elements, or transposons — DNAs similar to viruses that hop around the genome and are capable of disrupting gene function." PaV
I don't know if ID will make this prediction but the Theistic Philosophy would predict that when they "try" to decode the other 99% of the DNA, it will be found to have even more astounding complexity than they found in this prelimenary study. Furthermore The complexity may vastly exceed man's ability to comprehend it completely. bornagain77
"makes", not "males". Charlie
PaV, I second that. The ars technica article on Encode has more of the same (my emphasis): http://arstechnica.com/journals/science.ars/2007/06/13/encode-finds-the-human-genome-to-be-an-active-place
"The new study finds that essentially every base in the genome shows up in RNA at one point or another. This is despite the fact that most of these bases aren't doing anything: 95 percent of the genome isn't under selective pressure, and most of that 95 percent doesn't appear functional in an evolutionary sense. "
The DNA is being transcribed into RNA, but isn't doing anything. The author males the transcription of RNA out to be a noisy, indiscriminate process, before conceding that:
"the study also found clear signals of defined transcription start sites at a rate of nearly ten times the number of genes in the area, suggesting some aspects of the excess transcription are nonrandom." He assumes first that it is 'excess' RNA, and second that it is junk:
"Personally, I fall into the "it's all junk" end of the spectrum. If almost all of these sequences are not conserved by evolution, and we haven't found a function for any of them yet, it's hard to see how the "none of it's junk" view can be maintained."
That scientists can continue to be wrong, be corrected, and then continue on in the same incorrect manner of thinking is simply astounding. Consider this quote from the article: "Surprisingly, though, the new work shows that most of a cell's DNA gets transcribed, raising questions about what all that RNA is doing. Some of it may be doing nothing. "It may be like clutter in the attic," Collins said, noting that clutter could be useful when conditions change and evolution needs new material to work with." After dismantling the notion that "junk" DNA is 'junk in the attic', what is Collin's first reaction to what seems to be an excess amount of RNA? It's like clutter in the attic! What's the matter with these guys? PaV
One word: "Awesome!" bork
The evidence (ENCODE) is truly becoming overwhelming for evolutionists. Any scientists who remains true to empirical evidence will soon(within 10 years) admit ID is true and shed their Alchemy ways! bornagain77

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