Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Keep Your Eye on the Cause Ball


In his post below Clive Hayden quotes Dr. Bruce Gordon: “spontaneous creation” minus “any cause illustrates the lack of an explanation rather than scientific comprehension.”

nikkipolya objects: “The popular interpretation of Quantum Mechanics is also anything but comprehensible. Yet, it correctly explains most of the phenomena at the atomic level. Comprehensibility is a problem that only exists in the brain. You are trying to correlate two unrelated problems.”

nikkipolya does not appear to understand Gordon’s basic point. The equations of quantum mechanics describe certain regularities (i.e., “laws”) of sub-atomic phenomena. In no sense do the equations of quantum mechanics explain how or why those regularities came into existence in the first place

Thus, at its base, nikkipolya’ objection depends on an equivocation on the word “explain.” “Explain” can mean to describe how something came into being and it can also mean to describe why something came into being. Nikkipolya uses the word in the former sense, while Gordon is using it in the latter.

Here is a rough analogy: Say we can go back in time and videotape Leonardo da Vinci painting the Mona Lisa. We could then analyze that videotape and write a description of everything Leonardo did to create the painting. That description would read something like this: “The painter stretched a canvas on a frame. The then painter dabbed his brush into the blue paint and applied it in four light downward strokes to sector 15 of the canvas. The painter then dapped his brush in green paint and applied two heavy horizontal strokes in sector 23 of the canvas, and so on.” Our detailed account of the painting process would describe how the painting came into being. It would not explain why the painting came into existence (i.e., Leonardo needed to make a living and he was commissioned to paint a portrait and he decided to do so).

In terms of Aristotelian causation, our account of the painting is an account of the material and efficient causes of the painting. It is not an account of the final cause of the painting.

Hawkings runs off the rails when he forgets the first principles of science laid down by Francis Bacon in 1605 when he noted that science takes account of only material and efficient causes. It does not take account of final or formal causes.

Collin, you were talking about angels the other day. Coincidentally this weeks 'Prophecy in the News' program is on the role of angels in human affairs: Ordained by Angels http://www.prophecyinthenews.com/videos/tv-program/ bornagain77
es58, that's great. Next time you see me comment on a thread, give me that link if you find it. I think this thread is dying out... Collin
collin, somewhere on line, a few years ago I found a published paper suggesting viruses were degraded from full life forms. It may still be out there. if I find it, I'll send a link. If you see it, please do same. The approach was that as each new, "smallest" genome life form was discovered, it was eventually discovered that it had actually degraded from a more complex form discovered later. Thanks es58
gpuccio, though I haven't read this whole paper yet, the paper seems to deconstruct many of the 12 alternative models for QM that you alluded to: The Metaphysics of Quantum Mechanics http://www.reasons.org/resources/non-staff-papers/the-metaphysics-of-quantum-mechanics bornagain77
Aleta, Thanks for those interesting comments. Thanks, gpuccio, too. I would add that limits or errors in design are sometimes explained as degradation from a previous, more optimal design. A hypothesis that I wish I could test is whether or not viruses once had a beneficial role to play in biology. Maybe some viruses still do? Collin
Aleta: I have read more thoroughly your points at #69. They are very good, and I can say that I agree with most of what you say. I would probably have some slightly different points of view on some aspects, but in general I agree. You are really a very good contributor to ID theory. Some points I specially liked: "If design is detectable, then inferences about the nature of the designer are valid." Absolutely so. I think many IDists are forced to wrong statements about that by the equivocal position of many ID critics that "design cannot be detected unless we have information on the nature of the designer". That is simply false. But it is true that, once design is detected, "inferences about the nature of the designer are valid". Some more very good points: "Secondly, I think the imperfections we see in design are because the designers are in fact limited in the way they interact with the world. " "the designers manipulate quantum probabilities at the molecular level in genetic events." "Therefore it is reasonable to hypothesize that it is precisely at molecular genetic change, and nowhere else, where intelligence intervenes." I agree on almost all. We have to consider, anyway, that ID critics often consider "imperfections" many things which probably are not imperfections at all. We cannot accept that. It is very difficult to decide, in each specific case, if design is "optimized". I have many reasons to believe that most examples we observe in biology (see proteins, for example) are truly very much optimized. So it is of many engineering solutions in living beings. Limits are not the same things of errors. Limits are determined by the context, and by the initial rules. In any context, a designer can obtain optimization according to the existing reality. I am not saying that biological design has always to be otpimal, or that it may not contain errors. That is not a requisite for me. I am only saying that much of what we observe is really optimized, given the context. And I absolutely agree that the designer(s), in the context, is limited. He cannot do anything. But he can do much, given the necessary time and resources. Finally, a comment on that "and nowhere else". I would leave that open. Biological design is certainly a supreme and powerful expression of design in reality. It is like nothing else we observe in the material universe. But design may have a role, even if different, also elsewhere. First of all there is the problem of initial fine tuning, which brings to the cosmological argument. It is a valid field of speculation. And second, I am not sure that our present understanding of "natural" laws will be able to explain everything, even in the non living world. Let's wait and see. Dark energy, in these recent years, is a good example of "scientific mystery". Maybe others are waiting... You say, finally: "But I offer as food for thought the idea that the animistic notions of primitive people (who were in much closer experiential contact with living things than we are) are closer to the truth: the world is inhabited by a vast pantheon of life forces, each expressing itself through the interface of it’s particular kind of creature. The wolf, the bear, the eagle, the flower, and so on each have their own “spirit”, so to speak, in an animistic tradition. This seems to be a primitive expression of MDT…." Why not? As I have already said, I am potentially interested in any convincing form of "neo-vitalism". Would you like to contribute more on that? gpuccio
OT, ,, It seems that now not only do Darwinists have to deal with (ignore) the 3 to 5 million time frame that the basis of the Cambrian explosion has been narrowed down to, but now they have to deal with (ignore) the the fact that Dinosaurs abruptly appear in the fossil record 1 to 2 million years after the greatest mass extinction on earth: Oldest Evidence of Dinosaurs in Footprints: Dinosaur Lineage Emerged Soon After Massive Permian Extinction - October 2010 Excerpt: The oldest evidence of the dinosaur lineage -- fossilized tracks -- is described in Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Just one or two million years after the massive Permian-Triassic extinction,,,, This fossilized trackway places the very closest relatives of dinosaurs on Earth about 250 million years ago -- 5 to 9 million years earlier than previously described fossilized skeletal material has indicated,,, "We see the closest dinosaur cousins immediately after the worst mass extinction,",,, bornagain77
Cabal: Where are the designers today? Dead, or just taking a nap? Who says that design is not going on today? That is certainly one possible and valuable hypothesis. As I have already told, we can have no arbitrary assumptions. Only facts will answer our appropriate questions. gpuccio
Aleta: When I wrote my previous post, I had not yet read your posts about Hoppe. As you can see, my thought are rather in accord with both Hoppe and you. I don't agree that MDT is necessarily the best hypothesis, but I do agree that there are good arguments for it, and I think Hoppe has summarized them well enough. To be clear, I definitely disagree with any position (in ID) which starts from an explicit or implicit premise that the designer must be an omnipotent God. That is a valuable hypothesis, but it has to be treated empirically exactly as all other valuable hypotheses. There must be no compromise about that. gpuccio
Collin: I think ID can certainly try to answer the question if the designer is one or many. But we probably need more data for that. How can data help? It's simple. We must analyze the design patterns, try to understand when and how specific designs were implemented, and is possible different levels of purpose in them. Finally, we must try to infer if the data are best explained by a single designer theory or by a many designers theory. I suspect that you are in some way concerned by the problem that, if we hypothesize that the only designer is an omnipotent God, then it is difficult to explain many patterns we observe (common descent, gradually evolving design, errors, and so on). I understand that aspect, but I don't think that it necessarily points to multiple and limited designers. An alternative is a single designer acting in a context (possibly initially created by himself), and accepting the "rules" of that context. Another possibility is: two designers with different purposes (according to main traditional religious views, that could be one main "good" designer, God, and one relatively subordinate antagonistic designer, an "evil one"). I am not sponsoring any of these views. I am only saying that we cannot start from our philosophical or religious ideas. We have to start from facts, and follow them. Our philosophical and religious ideas remain supreme for us, and we remain loyal to them. But when we do science, we do science. At the best of our ability. I do believe that the best religious way to do something is to do it well. Is it so difficult to accept this simple attitude? gpuccio
Cabal: Thank you for the wishes. It's not so funny that I say that. I have always said that. The point is very simple: no information about the designer is necessary to infer design by the ID method. The ID method works exactly to detect design when we have no information about the designer and the design process. But that does not mean that we cannot try to infer informations about the designer and the design process from the design, after we have inferred that design is present. That is absolutely appropriate. Obviously, our present knowledge does not probably allow us to solve the fundamental questions (who is the designer(s), what it its nature, how and when was the design implemented, what are the higher level motivations of the design), but hypotheses can certainly be made, at least on some of those points. I have discussed some of those hypotheses many times. gpuccio
Cabal this article from a few days ago is relevant: BRUCE GORDON: Hawking irrational arguments - October 2010 Excerpt: The physical universe is causally incomplete and therefore neither self-originating nor self-sustaining. The world of space, time, matter and energy is dependent on a reality that transcends space, time, matter and energy. This transcendent reality cannot merely be a Platonic realm of mathematical descriptions, for such things are causally inert abstract entities that do not affect the material world. Neither is it the case that "nothing" is unstable, as Mr. Hawking and others maintain. Absolute nothing cannot have mathematical relationships predicated on it, not even quantum gravitational ones. Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency - a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/oct/1/hawking-irrational-arguments/ bornagain77
Cabal you ask, 'Where are the designers today? Dead, or just taking a nap?' God is not a uncaring deistic god. God not only created the universe but God also sustains the universe. "The 'First Mover' is necessary for change occurring at each moment." Michael Egnor - Aquinas’ First Way http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/09/jerry_coyne_and_aquinas_first.html I find this centuries old philosophical argument, for the necessity of a 'First Mover' accounting for change occurring at each moment, to be validated by quantum mechanics. This is since the possibility for the universe to be considered a self-sustaining 'closed loop' of cause and effect is removed with the refutation of the 'hidden variable' argument in entanglement experiments. As well, there also must be a sufficient transcendent cause (God/First Mover) to explain quantum wave collapse for 'each moment' of the universe. "As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent mind. This mind is the matrix of all matter." Max Planck - The Father Of Quantum Mechanics - (Of Note: Max Planck was a devout Christian, which is not surprising when you realize practically every, if not every, founder of each major branch of modern science also 'just so happened' to have a deep Christian connection.) Cabal, in fact Quantum Mechanics is infamous for bringing indeterminacy back to physics. Thus what will you postulate for the 'cause' of quantum wave collapse if not for the living God? Will you also choose to believe the absurdity of infinite parallel universes so as to do away with quantum wave collapse 'problem'? bornagain77
Re. #70, Is there anything in the universe or in this world that is not fine-tuned by the designers? Just take chemistry, the exquisite design of atoms enabling them to assemble themselves perfectly into the most intricate designs required to make and sustain life. And they are doing it on an everyday basis, year in year out, without fail. Amazing. They even do it without having to be told, they just keep doing it with no apparent outside help. Where are the designers today? Dead, or just taking a nap? Cabal
he above discussion reminds me how beautiful it is that ID reamins empirical. I will go on speaking of designer or designers, and trying to derive any information on the designer from empirical data, instead of just embarking in purely speculative hypotheses, whatever my religious convictions may be.
Funny you should say that; critics of ID have regularly been told how inappropriate it is to ask for any information about the designer and his methods. Sort of like "If we infer design it is design, and that's that." Wishing you good luck with your empirical research and looking forward to some stunning results. Cabal
Hoppe must have really enjoyed writing that. Rather like a fish that gets to walk around in a dream. The greatest discomfort in science is a materialist having to deal with the information in the genome. Thanks for sharing your viewpoint, Aleta Upright BiPed
Let me add one more note from Hoppe's post.
I am known to be an ID critic, and readers may therefore believe that this description of Multiple Designers Theory is presented as a parody of ID. It is not. It is a logical extension of a dominant stream of thought in current ID. MDT takes the ID thesis at face value and explores an obvious question implied by it. That question is completely legitimate and, as I point out, MDT accounts for patterns of evidence that current ID theory cannot comfortably handle, leads to the kind of research program that current ID has been unable or unwilling to provide, and blunts at least one significant criticism of current ID. It is the kind of theoretical structure and research that ID must build if it is to make good on its claims to scientific utility. Rather than a parody, read it as a challenge to IDists to make good on their promises.
This was eight years ago, and yet is just as true today as it was then. Aleta
Well Aleta, here are some fairly strong points for inferring the designer of the universe is also the designer of life on earth: Evidence for design is displayed on every size scale of the universe that we look at: Hugh Ross - Evidence For Intelligent Design Is Everywhere - video http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4347236 The earth is apparently designed to support advanced life: Privileged Planet Principle - Michael Strauss - video http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4318884? As well, Visible light is also incredibly fine-tuned for life to exist. Though visible light is only a tiny fraction of the total electromagnetic spectrum coming from the sun, it happens to be the "most permitted" portion of the sun's spectrum allowed to filter through the our atmosphere. All the other bands of electromagnetic radiation, directly surrounding visible light, happen to be harmful to organic molecules, and are almost completely absorbed by the atmosphere. The tiny amount of harmful UV radiation, which is not visible light, allowed to filter through the atmosphere is needed to keep various populations of single cell bacteria from over-populating the world (Ross; reasons.org). The size of light's wavelengths and the constraints on the size allowable for the protein molecules of organic life, also seem to be tailor-made for each other. This "tailor-made fit" allows photosynthesis, the miracle of sight, and many other things that are necessary for human life. These specific frequencies of light (that enable plants to manufacture food and astronomers to observe the cosmos) represent less than 1 trillionth of a trillionth (10^-24) of the universe's entire range of electromagnetic emissions. Like water, visible light also appears to be of optimal biological utility (Denton; Nature's Destiny). Fine Tuning Of Universal Constants, Particularly Light - Walter Bradley - video http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4491552 Fine Tuning Of Light to the Atmosphere, to Biological Life, and to Water - illustrations http://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0AYmaSrBPNEmGZGM4ejY3d3pfMTljaGh4MmdnOQ The 'miracle' of carbon formation in stars supports a singular Creator: The delicate balance at which carbon is synthesized in stars is truly a work of art. Fred Hoyle (1915-2001), a famed astrophysicist, is the scientist who established the nucleo-synthesis of heavier elements within stars as mathematically valid in 1946. Soon after Sir Fred discovered the stunning precision with which carbon is synthesized in stars he stated: "A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.” The 'miracle' of sequence of creation of the elements by nucleosynthesis and element balance for life also points to a singular creator: Michael Denton - We Are Stardust - Uncanny Balance Of The Elements - Fred Hoyle Atheist to Deist/Theist - video http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4003877 Even uranium the last naturally occurring element on the period table of elements is necessary for life. The heat generated by the decay of uranium is necessary to keep a molten core in the earth for an extended period of time, which is necessary for the magnetic field surrounding the earth, which in turn protects organic life from the harmful charged particles of the sun. As well, uranium decay provides the heat for tectonic activity and the turnover of the earth's crustal rocks, which is necessary to keep a proper mixture of minerals and nutrients available on the surface of the earth, which is necessary for long term life on earth. (Denton; Nature's Destiny). The match of vital life functions to the maximum limits allowable by physics points to a singular Creator: Evidence for wavelike energy transfer through quantum coherence in photosynthetic systems. Gregory S. Engel, Nature (12 April 2007) Photosynthetic complexes are exquisitely tuned to capture solar light efficiently, and then transmit the excitation energy to reaction centres, where long term energy storage is initiated.,,,, This wavelike characteristic of the energy transfer within the photosynthetic complex can explain its extreme efficiency, in that it allows the complexes to sample vast areas of phase space to find the most efficient path. ---- Conclusion? Obviously Photosynthesis is a brilliant piece of design by "Someone" who even knows how quantum mechanics works. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17429397 Quantum Mechanics at Work in Photosynthesis: Algae Familiar With These Processes for Nearly Two Billion Years - Feb. 2010 Excerpt: "We were astonished to find clear evidence of long-lived quantum mechanical states involved in moving the energy. Our result suggests that the energy of absorbed light resides in two places at once -- a quantum superposition state, or coherence -- and such a state lies at the heart of quantum mechanical theory.",,, "It suggests that algae knew about quantum mechanics nearly two billion years before humans," says Scholes. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100203131356.htm William Bialek - Professor Of Physics - Princeton University: Excerpt: "A central theme in my research is an appreciation for how well things “work” in biological systems. It is, after all, some notion of functional behavior that distinguishes life from inanimate matter, and it is a challenge to quantify this functionality in a language that parallels our characterization of other physical systems. Strikingly, when we do this (and there are not so many cases where it has been done!), the performance of biological systems often approaches some limits set by basic physical principles. While it is popular to view biological mechanisms as an historical record of evolutionary and developmental compromises, these observations on functional performance point toward a very different view of life as having selected a set of near optimal mechanisms for its most crucial tasks.,,,The idea of performance near the physical limits crosses many levels of biological organization, from single molecules to cells to perception and learning in the brain,,,," http://www.princeton.edu/~wbialek/wbialek.html DNA Optimized for Photostability Excerpt: These nucleobases maximally absorb UV-radiation at the same wavelengths that are most effectively shielded by ozone. Moreover, the chemical structures of the nucleobases of DNA allow the UV-radiation to be efficiently radiated away after it has been absorbed, restricting the opportunity for damage. http://www.reasons.org/dna-soaks-suns-rays bornagain77
One argument has been that this is the proper order of things, for until we can determine if in fact design has happened, hypothesizing about further details is a moot point
It has always struck me as odd that evolution can be ruled out due to insufficiency of means, but ID is given an automatic pass. I would think that before making the assumption that a designing entity has been at work, one should be able to describe the work involved, perhaps giving an example of how one would arrange to have populations adapt to changing environments or to changing competitors or predators. We require this of archaeologists who assert that some objects are man made and other objects are natural. Petrushka
And now from my comments immediately following Richard's post:
I [have] pointed out that one of the things it seemed the ID movement lacked was active attempts to offer hypotheses about the details of ID: when did it happen, and particularly how did it happen. The emphasis has been on the theory of design detection as opposed to a more full-fledged attempt to describe the details of ID. One argument has been that this is the proper order of things, for until we can determine if in fact design has happened, hypothesizing about further details is a moot point. Obviously, ID critics who believe that arguments for the detection of design are invalid might not believe that further discussion is relevant. Others have argued that while a design inference is scientifically valid, further inferences about the designer are invalid. I believe that both of these arguments are wrong. I definitely believe that if we accept inferences about the existence of design, we can equally accept inferences about the nature of the designer. This is standard science - we offer hypotheses about the nature of an entity (think quarks, or black holes) based on the consequences that we observe. We work backwards from observed consequences to testable hypothesis about the nature of the source of the phenomena which produces the consequences. If design is detectable, then inferences about the nature of the designer are valid. 2) Secondly, I think the imperfections we see in design are because the designers are in fact limited in the way they interact with the world. RBH mentions Dembski’s idea that design information might enter the world through an undetectable “infinite-wavelength zero-energy signal.” I believe the mechanism I described in my thread on evolution and design is more likely: the designers manipulate quantum probabilities at the molecular level in genetic events. These manipulations have a limited ability to affect the world - once a design event is attempted, the designer has little impact on how the design plays out. Part of the reason for this is that for macro-phenomena the statistical effects of large numbers of events overwhelm the effect of any small number of discrete quantum interventions. My second point is that I hypothesize that the designers only interface with the world at the level of genetic molecular activity. For the most part the world (all of physics and chemistry, natural selection, comets hitting earth, etc.) are fully explainable by naturalistic causes and are not subject to design. However, the universe, according to design theory in general, does require, and shows evidence for, intervention at the level of genetic change. Therefore it is reasonable to hypothesize that it is precisely at molecular genetic change, and nowhere else, where intelligence intervenes. Third point on this topic of imperfection: The evidence clearly shows that the progression of changes in life forms on earth the past 3 billion years or so has been sequential and slow - we see an orderly development as opposed to extremely abrupt new creations. There are no creatures of mammalian complexity in the Cambrian, dinosaurs aren’t recreated suddenly after the great extinction 65 millions years ago, and so on. I think this evidence shows that the designers are fairly limited in their powers. They cannot create whole genomes independently, but can only make small adjustments to existing genomes, and once they introduce a change, the rest of that organism’s life plays out according to naturalistic forces.... 3) RBH points out that to some extent our grammar causes a unconscious bias towards the singular (much as it causes a bias towards the masculine when we use “he” to refer to people in general.) I think there are cultural reasons why this is so, the most obvious one being the monotheistic tradition in the Western world. But I offer as food for thought the idea that the animistic notions of primitive people (who were in much closer experiential contact with living things than we are) are closer to the truth: the world is inhabited by a vast pantheon of life forces, each expressing itself through the interface of it’s particular kind of creature. The wolf, the bear, the eagle, the flower, and so on each have their own “spirit”, so to speak, in an animistic tradition. This seems to be a primitive expression of MDT.... [and more at the same link as above]
Back in 2002, over at the Discussion forum at Dembski's ISCID site, Richard Hoppe wrote a lengthy and substantial essay on Multiple Designers Theory, and I, writing under a different name, contributed some additional comments. See http://www.iscid.org/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=000172#000000 for the whole thing. Here are a few excerpts. From Richard's post:
The observation that stimulated my thinking on this topic was of a humble grammatical phenomenon. In reading an array of ID works over the last several months, I realized that virtually without exception, the hypothesized entity responsible for the designs is referred to in the singular. Whether called an "intelligent designer," an "intelligent agent," or an "intelligent agency," it is always in the singular. ... The central message of Multiple Designers Theory is that the unwarranted assumption of a single designer is not only unnecessary, it is an unjustifiable constraint that puts artificial and arbitrary limits on theory and research in ID. Therefore, with the help of a few colleagues I have prepared an introductory outline of Multiple Designers Theory, MDT, to stimulate thinking and discussion. ... As its name implies, the central tenet of Multiple Designers Theory is that if intelligent design is implicated in the properties and structure of life of on earth, then multiple designers are implicated, not merely a single designer. As I will sketch below, the evidence that is interpreted to be supportive of the design hypothesis almost universally implicates multiple designers rather than just one designer. ... C. The multiple designers are not perfect designers. That follows from the fact that they are different from one another. Perfect designers would by definition be identical to one another, and their designs would be indistinguishable. Therefore MDT posits that the multiple designers are imperfect in the sense that they do not produce the ideally optimized design, the highest peak on the 'goodness of design' landscape. Moreover, they differ from one another in their very imperfections, and those differences provide cracks into which one can drive MDT research wedges. ... III. Some Evidence Consistent with Multiple Designers Theory ... A. Design-versus-design: The design-vs.-design pattern is a ubiquitous phenomenon in biology. In fact, it is fair to say that some of the most impressive designs in biology appear to have as their primary purpose the defeat or subversion of other designs. Designs engage in various kinds of arms races with one another. Some examples are: 1. Predator/prey arms races. 2. Parasite/host arms races. 3. Male/female arms races. 4. Disease-causing bacteria/drug companies arms races. Each of these is an example of design pitted against design, directly implicating multiple designers. ... [And so on - there is much more]
Steve O, I just loaded a video, with references in the description, in which Michael Behe talks of the sheer poverty for experimental evidence for evolution in the scientific literature: Michael Behe - No Scientific Literature For Evolution of Molecular Machines http://www.metacafe.com/w/5302950 bornagain77
steveO you ask, Flawed? Yes, severely, when I read that article this morning the first thing I noticed, as I was looking for the empirical evidence of them actually 'evolving' greater levels of functional complexity in the laboratory, is that they in fact did not evolve anything in a laboratory but instead,,, 'Using a database of the molecular sequences, functions, and atomic structures of hundreds of modern-day receptor proteins, the researchers reconstructed the biochemical characteristics of the ancestral nuclear receptor, which existed before the last common ancestor of all animals on earth -- as much as a billion years ago.' Thus the crushing problem, as elucidated by Behe in the Edge of Evolution of the severe limits for Darwinian evolution ,are completely ignored, evolution is taken to be true as a first step with absolutely no evidence from the laboratory that greater levels of functional complexity may be evolved,,, but none-the-less, despite this stunning lack of empirical support, they get their computers out and prove it all true for the audience,,, Yes folks,, I can hear them saying,,, 'nothing up my sleeves'. bornagain77
gpuccio, But can ID determine if it is more likely that there was more than one designer? Walter Remine thinks so. (his conclusion is in the negative). Collin
OT: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101005171032.htm Flawed? steveO
Probably just fiddle. Angels would explain common descent like humans explain the evolution of automobiles, their move from pre-auto organisms (wagons) to simple autos (horseless carriages) to winged varieties, sports cars, trucks, each adapting to a different niche in the environment. Collin
Aleta: the above discussion reminds me how beautiful it is that ID reamins empirical. I will go on speaking of designer or designers, and trying to derive any information on the designer from empirical data, instead of just embarking in purely speculative hypotheses, whatever my religious convictions may be. gpuccio
Why would angels necessarily explain common descent? Can they not create ex nihilo? Or can they only fiddle around with genes? Aleta
Angels would explain common descent. While God knows all, angels would learn over time to improve and expand their designs. They are brilliant, but might make an imperfect or limited design sometimes. Collin
Well, sorry if this is way off topic. But clearly angels have free will if Lucifer was an angel and he rebelled against God. I think that the case for angels is good. God often delegates His work to man, why not the Creation to angels? Collin
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