Was reading the new novel “Sunstorm” by Author C. Clarke and I noticed something “interesting”.
“Okay,” Toby said. “So a rogue planet fell into the sun. It’s an astonishing thing to happen, but not unprecedented. Remember Comet Shoemaker-Levy colliding with Jupiter in the 1990s? And–with respect–what does it have to do with Lieutenant Dutt and her theories about extraterrestrial intervention?”
Eugene snapped, “Are you such a fool that you can’t see it?”
Toby bit back, “Now look here–“
Siobhan grabbed his arm. “Just take us through it, Eugene. Step by step.”
Eugene visibly fought for patience. “Have you really no idea how unlikely this scenario is? Yes, there are rogue planets, formed independently of stars, or flung out of stellar systems. Yes, it may happen that such a planet could cross from one system to another. But it’s highly unlikely. The Galaxy is empty. To scale, the stars are like grains of sand, separated by kilometers. I estimate the change of a planet like this coming anywhere near our solar system as being one in a hundred thousand.
“And this Jovian didn’t just approach us–it didn’t just fall near the sun–it fell directly into the sun, on a trajectory that would take it directly toward the sun’s center of mass.” He laughed, disbelieving at their incomprehension. “The odds against such a thing are absurd. No naturalistic explanation is plausible.”
Mikhail nodded. “Circumstantial, perhaps, but still…I’ve always thought Sherlock Holmes put it well. ‘When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.'”
“Somebody did this,” Toby said slowly. “That’s what you’re saying. Somebody deliberately fired a planet, a big fat Jovian, straight at our sun. We’ve been hit by a bullet from God.”
Bisesa said briskly, “Oh, I don’t think it has anything to do with God.” She stood up. “More coffee?”
So making a design inference without having detailed knowledge on the designer (or even knowing the exact identity) isn’t a problem…so is Clarke an ID supporter now? Doubt it considering all the genuflecting and obeisaunces aimed at Darwin contained within the novel. See page 198 where it is claimed that design arguments were put in a coffin by Darwin…despite a design argument being used elsewhere in the same book.
He also takes a bunch of potshots at Christians in particular. Characters are worried about “all the religiousity [going] around”. Religion is said to have evolved since it “can serve a social purpose, in uniting us around a common goal.” It’s posited that increased solar activity affects the brains of religious people in particular, causing them to have trouble thinking clearly…but OF COURSE atheists are left unaffected:
“magnetic disturbances can stimulate religious impulses in human brains: there was a plague of prophets and doomsayers, miracles and visions”
(On a side note I like that explanation for the deep fried brains of atheists. 😉 ) According to one scene the initial impact of the Jovian caused enough solar activity to mess around with the mind of baby Jesus who had horrible nightmares that day:
“And in a shabby room in Bethlehem, a newborn child, lying on dirty hay, stirred and gasped, tormented by images He could not comprehend.”
In another scene:
“It’s a time of hard choices.” Siobhan sighed. “You know, the other day I spoke to an ecologist who said we should just accept what’s going on. This is just another extinction event, in a long string of disasters. It’s like a forest fire, she said, a necessary cleansing. And each time the biosphere bounces back, eventually becoming richer than before.”
“But this isn’t natural,” Bisesa said grimly. “Not even the way an asteroid impact is. Somebody did this, intentionally. Maybe this is why intelligence evolved in the first place. Because there are times–when the sun goess off, when the dinosaur killer strikes–when the mechanisms of natural selection aren’t enough. Times when you need consciousness to save the world.”
“A biologist would say there is no intention behind natural selection, Bisesa. And evolution can’t prepare you for the future.”
“Yes,” she smiled. “But I’m not biologist, so I can say it…”
Now excuse me while I laugh, disbelieving Darwinist’s incomprehension.
On a mostly unrelated note Clarke kept making references to the Giant Impact Theory for the formation of the Moon: