Marcus Tullius Cicero, wrote the most prominent Roman treatise to advance the argument from intelligent design in: The Nature of the Gods (written in 45 BCE), where i wrote:
When you follow from afar the course of a ship, upon the sea, you do not question that its movement is guided by a skilled intelligence. When you see a sundial or a water clock, you see that it tells the time by design and not by chance. How then can you imagine that the universe as a whole is devoid of purpose and intelligence? … Our opponents however profess to be in doubt whether the universe.. .came into being by accident or by necessity or is the product of a divine intelligence.The truth is that the universe is controlled by a power and purpose which we can never imitate. When we see some example of a mechanism, such as a globe or a clock or some such device, do we doubt that it is the creation of a conscious intelligence? So when we see the movement of the heavenly bodies, the speed of their revolution, and the way in which they regularly run their annual course, so that all that depends on them is preserved and prospers, how can we doubt that these too are not only the works of reason but of a reason which is perfect and divine?
Epicurus taught that the universe is infinite and eternal and that all matter is made up of extremely tiny, invisible particles known as atoms. All occurrences in the natural world are ultimately the result of atoms moving and interacting in empty space. He rejected the idea that the Gods have created our world for multiple reasons.
Epicurus, in attempting to provide a materialist explanation of the emergence of the world in all its complexity, relied on an argument that transformed blind chance into contingency. Thus he adopted assumptions that not only
reduced the improbability of the world developing in its present form but made the appearance of such a world certain. This was what Epicureans called “the power of infinity” associated with the assumptions of
(1) infinite space, time, and matter;
(2) an infinite number of worlds;
(3) a mathematically smallest magnitude (so small as to be partless) that combined in precise ways with other such minimum magnitudes to form atoms (literally uncuttables);
(4) a resulting finite number of possible atomic types/shapes derived from the combination of these smallest magnitudes;
(5) a largest possible size to a world; and
(6) the principle of isonomia, or distributive equality between like things.
As a result of these mathematical assumptions, together with the basic material postulates of Epicurean philosophy, anything possible was bound to happen in the universe at large, and anything necessary would occur in any given world. In short, a sophisticated argument of cosmic probability was used to bolster the case for a material explanation of the existing world.
“It is the specific originality of Epicurus that he is the first man known in history to have organized a movement for the liberation of mankind at large from superstition.” Epicurus has always had the reputation of being the atheist philosopher par excellence, and was always called a swine; for this reason, too, Clement of Alexandria says that when Paul takes up arms against philosophy he has in mind Epicurean philosophy alone.
Quotes about Infinity, Superstition, God, Intelligent Design