agit-prop, opinion manipulation and well-poisoning games Defending our Civilization Lessons of History Philosophy

Francis Schaeffer’s “line of despair” model of our civilisation’s intellectual history:

Spread the love

We can adapt Francis Schaeffer’s themes, looking back to the Christian Synthesis of the heritage of Jerusalem, Greece and Rome, and the onward flow of ideas and cultural agendas since Paul of Tarsus:

Extending (and correcting) Schaeffer’s vision of the course of western thought, worldviews and culture, C1 – 21

Schaeffer thought that once there was an upper/lower storey approach that in effect gave up on solving the problem of the one and the many, the lower storey would eat up the upper one, unity and coherence would disintegrate:

Dichotomising nature and grace leads to disjointedness in western man’s worldview

Schaeffer and others also thought in terms of the seven mountains picture of the span of culture, how the dominant view sets the agenda and how cultures therefore change. This has been championed by Wallnau and others in recent years. I adapt:

We may carry this onward to the challenge to speak into the culture prophetically, from a gospel based, worldviews informed sound perspective rooted in “The God who is there and who is not silent”:

In our time, all of this is complicated by complex geostrategic issues:

Food for thought. END

F/N: Let me add, a summary from a 2014 conference on military strategy and issues, by Russian General Valery Gerasimov, who in 2014 was Army General, Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation – First Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation.

So, this is not some nonentity speculating, this is literally the Russian analysis behind the war in Ukraine, which began in 2014 and has now surged to a much higher kinetic level:

He further amplifies:

U/D April 7: As a “lowest common denominator reference,” we may note that Wikipedia has an article on Colour Revolutions, complete with a list starting with the “yellow” revolution in the Philippines in 1986 (a year which saw also the ouster of “Baby Doc” Duvalier in Haiti). I add, in the same 1986, the student “Cess” strike and protests were observed to be targetted by literal card carrying Communists to become a trigger for a Haiti style overthrow of the Seaga, parliamentary government, it failed but came to the edge of having students shot down by riot police. (I note here as an eyewitness.) We should also note that Jamaica’s low intensity, cold war involved civil war from 1976 to 1980, culminating in the “peanut or lime” [red vs green] violence tainted election in October 1980 also reflects similar characteristics. It is clear that Cuba, the USSR, the USA and UK as well as Israel were involved in Jamaica’s civil conflict, indeed, in late 1990, the USSR sent a delegation to Jamaica to publicly apologise for its part in what happened. Wikipedia’s anonymous drafters and moderators collectively summarise:

Colour revolution (sometimes coloured revolution)[1] is a term used since around 2004 by worldwide media to describe various anti-regime protest movements and accompanying (attempted or successful) changes of government that took place in post-Soviet Eurasia during the early 21st century—namely countries of the former Soviet Union, the former Yugoslavia, and People’s Republic of China.[2] The term has also been more widely applied to several other revolutions elsewhere, including in the Middle East, the Asia-Pacific region, and South America, dating from the late 1980s to the 2020s. Some observers (such as Justin Raimondo and Michael Lind) have called the events a revolutionary wave, the origins of which can be traced back to the 1986 People Power Revolution (also known as the “Yellow Revolution”) in the Philippines.

Some of these movements have had a measure of success; in the early 2000s, for example, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s Bulldozer Revolution (2000), Georgia’s Rose Revolution (2003), Ukraine’s Orange Revolution (2004), and Kyrgyzstan’s Tulip Revolution (2005). In most but not all cases, massive street-protests followed disputed elections or demands for fair elections. They led to the resignation or overthrow of leaders regarded by their opponents as authoritarian.[3] Some events have been called “colour revolutions” but differ from the above cases in certain basic characteristics, including such examples as Lebanon’s Cedar Revolution (2005) and Kuwait’s Blue Revolution (2005).

Russia, China and Vietnam[4] share the view that colour revolutions are the “product of machinations by the United States and other Western powers” and pose a vital threat to their public and national security.[5]

In short, colour revolutions are seen here, as a form of 4th generation war, with emphasis on subversive external intervention, but obviously the pivot is civil conflict, war in the shadows with low kinetic elements leading to or resisting subjugation. Where, as low kinetic implies, the operations of war are no longer primarily military.

Where, too, the baseline summary as to what fourth generation war is and how it emerged in mid C20 [going beyond Blitzkrieg, Deep Battle etc], can be charted:

Characteristics:

Where, the dirty form McFaul Colour revolution model can next be profitably cross connected to the SOCOM insurgency escalator framework and further tied to the 4th generation war model:

If that sounds familiar, it should. Culture War has gone geostrategic.

F/N2: How to destroy liberty.

We can use the Overton window concept to analyse how we can lose constitutional, lawful democracy with freedom and order, through cultural decline driven by ratcheting, slipperly slope lawless agendas, as summarised in the chain of expressions:

WORLDVIEW + POLICY/CULTURAL AGENDA = IDEOLOGY

IDEOLOGY + POWER/STRONG INFLUENCE = REGIME

REGIME (AKA, BALANCE OF POWER-FACTIONS) + DECISION-MAKING INFLUENCES = BUSINESS AS USUAL (BAU)

BAU + INSISTENT VOYAGE OF SINFUL FOLLY = SHIPWRECK

And yes, cultural marxism and broader “critical theory” in the line flowing from the Frankfurt School, I am looking straight at you.

We must recall, lawless oligarchy is — historically — the normal state of government and governance and it can return:

For those who want background, here is more on the Overton Window:

Video:

We must not overlook, the media spin and gaslight game:

More broadly, we can analyse the conventional left-centre-right political spectrum and an alternative more historically anchored political spectrum:

These tie back to Schaeffer’s line of despair model, which is about worldview shifts that open up new cultural, lifestyle and political possibilities as seemingly plausible, opening up the Overton Window. The power brokers and influences manipulate this, and currently the means in play go all the way to colour revolution, 4th generation war operations.

178 Replies to “Francis Schaeffer’s “line of despair” model of our civilisation’s intellectual history:

  1. 1
    kairosfocus says:

    Francis Schaeffer’s “line of despair” model of our civilisation’s intellectual history

  2. 2
    KRock says:

    Interesting timing; I just ordered Schaeffer’s book, Escape from Reason. I’m really looking forward to reading it.

  3. 3
    kairosfocus says:

    KR, get the whole collection [Complete Works], it may be hard at first but is full of powerful insights. How should we then live strikes me as a great second title. There is also a video survey. KF

  4. 4
    jerry says:

    For those interested, I highly recommend the Peter Robinson interview of Bari Weiss.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VwX372tM3I&t=3s

    There is a reaction to all the overly leftist advocacy of the last few years being led by people of the center left as well as conservatives. They even created a new university in order to get a good college education. Matriculation starts this summer.

  5. 5
    chuckdarwin says:

    [D]ominant, secularist, largely evolutionary materialist radically relativist humanism…a priori materialist scientism & (often neo-pagan) post-/ultra-modernism

    That is quite a mouthful. Missed “Marxist,” “atheist,” “Woke,” “crypto-fascist,” although I can see they are implied.
    A veritable word salad of woes…………………………

  6. 6
    KRock says:

    @Kairosfocus #3

    I will most definitely look into acquiring more of his books. Truthfully, it’s really nice to finally have some free time to wade through books outside the required readings for my studies.

  7. 7
    KRock says:

    @Jerry #4

    Is that the college/university they started in Austin, Texas? I heard about that one. It’s refreshing to see people finally waking up to the damage inflicted from decades of monopolized alt-left thinking within academia.

    I’ll check out the link. Thanks for sharing.

  8. 8
    Seversky says:

    Chuckdarwin/5

    [D]ominant, secularist, largely evolutionary materialist radically relativist humanism…a priori materialist scientism & (often neo-pagan) post-/ultra-modernism

    That is quite a mouthful. Missed “Marxist,” “atheist,” “Woke,” “crypto-fascist,” although I can see they are implied.
    A veritable word salad of woes…………………………

    Indeed, and I think I will also have some “naturalism” – make it a mix of “methodological” and metaphysical” – oh, yes, and some “methodological reductionism” and, as an elitist, I think I should have it topped off with a generous helping of Caesar salad dressing.

  9. 9
    kairosfocus says:

    CD & Seversky,

    apparently, you think it is strange that people would have reasonable questions about the current dominant policy and cultural agenda of our civilisation and where it likely leads. Especially when evolutionary materialistic scientism has in it no IS capable of bearing the weight of ought . . . which you neatly omitted in your clipping, setting up a strawman target.

    First, let me clip Lindh et al on onward reflections regarding 4th generation war, highly non linear and increasingly diverse/in the shadows, with non state actors and low kinetic operations becoming operationally powerful in attaining the object, subjugation:

    The third idea that shapes our understanding of fourth generation warfare ties in our situation here at home. In the United States of America, our traditional, Western, Judeo-Christian
    culture is collapsing. It is not collapsing because it failed. On the contrary, it has given us the
    freest and most prosperous society in human history. Rather, it is collapsing because we are
    abandoning it.

    Starting in the mid-1960s, we have thrown away the values, morals, and standards that define
    traditional Western culture. In part, this has been driven by cultural radicals, people who hate
    our Judeo-Christian culture. Dominant in the elite, especially in the universities, the media,
    and the entertainment industry (now the most powerful force in our culture and a source of
    endless degradation), the cultural radicals have successfully pushed an agenda of moral
    relativism, militant secularism, and sexual and social “liberation.” This agenda has slowly
    codified into a new ideology. usually known as “multiculturalism” or “political correctness,”
    that is in essence Marxism translated from economic into social and cultural terms.

    This new, cultural Marxism has had remarkable success in discrediting America’s common
    culture and substituting for it cultural fragmentation based on ethnic groups, gender, sexual
    identity, and class. If this trend continues, Americans will increasingly find they have less in
    common with each other as Americans. National identity will weaken. Other, mutually hostile
    identities will strengthen, until the nation comes apart
    : region vs. region, minority vs.
    minority, and gang vs. gang. When one nation comes apart at its cultural seams, eventually it
    turns on itself and fights.

    BTW, that’s December 1994.

    What we see around us, what was rioting backed by red guard groups [conspicuously NOT followed up by police], committing arson, committing mayhem and murder, declaring automous zones across summer 2020 and beyond has been coming for a long time.

    Decades, indeed generations.

    That’s what Schaeffer saw ahead of time and sought to address.

    Worldviews have consequences.

    Second, FYI, evolutionary materialistic scientism is the substance of naturalism. Standford Enc of Phil, SEP:

    The term “naturalism” has no very precise meaning in contemporary philosophy. Its current usage derives from debates in America in the first half of the last century. The self-proclaimed “naturalists” from that period included John Dewey, Ernest Nagel, Sidney Hook and Roy Wood Sellars. These philosophers aimed to ally philosophy more closely with science. They urged that reality is exhausted by nature, containing nothing “supernatural”, and that the scientific method should be used to investigate all areas of reality, including the “human spirit” (Krikorian 1944, Kim 2003).

    Fair comment, such struggles to ground even reason itself as say Haldane pointed out nigh on a century ago now:

    “It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For

    if

    [p:] my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain

    [–> taking in DNA, epigenetics and matters of computer organisation, programming and dynamic-stochastic processes; notice, “my brain,” i.e. self referential]
    ______________________________

    [ THEN]

    [q:] I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true.

    [–> indeed, blindly mechanical computation is not in itself a rational process, the only rationality is the canned rationality of the programmer, where survival-filtered lucky noise is not a credible programmer, note the funcionally specific, highly complex organised information rich code and algorithms in D/RNA, i.e. language and goal directed stepwise process . . . an observationally validated adequate source for such is _____ ?]

    [Corollary 1:] They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically.

    And hence

    [Corollary 2:] I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. [–> grand, self-referential delusion, utterly absurd self-falsifying incoherence]

    In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter.” [“When I am dead,” in Possible Worlds: And Other Essays [1927], Chatto and Windus: London, 1932, reprint, p.209. Cf. here on (and esp here) on the self-refutation by self-falsifying self referential incoherence and on linked amorality.]

    Let’s hear your answer to this: __________ (Schaeffer’s terms were that on secular humanism, man is a product of time plus chance plus the impersonal and so man is a zero.)

    With REASON being unfounded and man reduced to a zero, it is unsurprising that such would struggle to found and to acknowledge rational, responsible, principle and conscience guided moral government through self evident first duties. To wit, Ciceronian first duties:

    1st – to truth,
    2nd – to right reason,
    3rd – to prudence [including <a href = "”>warrant],
    4th – to sound conscience,
    5th – to neighbour; so also,
    6th – to fairness and
    7th – to justice
    [ . . .]
    xth – etc.

    Such a dominant agenda, then, is naturally anti civilisational. Civilisation holds legitimacy through moral government with the consent of leaders and people alike.

    That is being undermined and it is at the heart of the 4th gen war operations currently ripping the US apart and is a key factor in the wider global geostrategic fight where Ukraine is just the latest hot flash point.

    KF

  10. 10
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: Ironically we have now reached a level of intellectual and moral bankruptcy where what is a woman is suddenly deemed controversial and basic obvious facts and underlying knowledge of the XY chromosome sex determination system and our contrast with say groupers and clownfish, which DO change sex, are disregarded. Take that as a measure of where we are now.

  11. 11
    kairosfocus says:

    PPS, Lewontin letting the cat out of the bag on much the same issue,

    . . . to put a correct [–> Just who here presume to cornering the market on truth and so demand authority to impose?] view of the universe into people’s heads

    [==> as in, “we” the radically secularist elites have cornered the market on truth, warrant and knowledge, making “our” “consensus” the yardstick of truth . . . where of course “view” is patently short for WORLDVIEW . . . and linked cultural agenda . . . ]

    we must first get an incorrect view out [–> as in, if you disagree with “us” of the secularist elite you are wrong, irrational and so dangerous you must be stopped, even at the price of manipulative indoctrination of hoi polloi] . . . the problem is to get them [= hoi polloi] to reject irrational and supernatural explanations of the world [–> “explanations of the world” is yet another synonym for WORLDVIEWS; the despised “demon[ic]” “supernatural” being of course an index of animus towards ethical theism and particularly the Judaeo-Christian faith tradition], the demons that exist only in their imaginations,

    [ –> as in, to think in terms of ethical theism is to be delusional, justifying “our” elitist and establishment-controlling interventions of power to “fix” the widespread mental disease]

    and to accept a social and intellectual apparatus, Science, as the only begetter of truth

    [–> NB: this is a knowledge claim about knowledge and its possible sources, i.e. it is a claim in philosophy not science; it is thus self-refuting]

    . . . . To Sagan, as to all but a few other scientists [–> “we” are the dominant elites], it is self-evident

    [–> actually, science and its knowledge claims are plainly not immediately and necessarily true on pain of absurdity, to one who understands them; this is another logical error, begging the question , confused for real self-evidence; whereby a claim shows itself not just true but true on pain of patent absurdity if one tries to deny it . . . and in fact it is evolutionary materialism that is readily shown to be self-refuting]

    that the practices of science provide the surest method of putting us in contact with physical reality [–> = all of reality to the evolutionary materialist], and that, in contrast, the demon-haunted world rests on a set of beliefs and behaviors that fail every reasonable test [–> i.e. an assertion that tellingly reveals a hostile mindset, not a warranted claim] . . . .

    It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us [= the evo-mat establishment] to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes [–> another major begging of the question . . . ] to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute [–> i.e. here we see the fallacious, indoctrinated, ideological, closed mind . . . ], for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door . . . [–> irreconcilable hostility to ethical theism, already caricatured as believing delusionally in imaginary demons]. [Lewontin, Billions and billions of Demons, NYRB Jan 1997,cf. here. And, if you imagine this is “quote-mined” I invite you to read the fuller annotated citation here.]

  12. 12
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Wiki’s triumphalism is revealing:

    In philosophy, naturalism is the idea or belief that only natural laws and forces (as opposed to supernatural ones) operate in the universe.[1]

    Naturalism is not so much a special system as a point of view or tendency common to a number of philosophical and religious systems; not so much a well-defined set of positive and negative doctrines as an attitude or spirit pervading and influencing many doctrines. As the name implies, this tendency consists essentially in looking upon nature as the one original and fundamental source of all that exists, and in attempting to explain everything in terms of nature. Either the limits of nature are also the limits of existing reality, or at least the first cause, if its existence is found necessary, has nothing to do with the working of natural agencies. All events, therefore, find their adequate explanation within nature itself. But, as the terms nature and natural are themselves used in more than one sense, the term naturalism is also far from having one fixed meaning.
    —?Dubray 1911

    According to philosopher Steven Lockwood, naturalism can be separated into an ontological sense and a methodological sense.[2] “Ontological” refers to ontology, the philosophical study of what exists. On an ontological level, philosophers often treat naturalism as equivalent to materialism. For example, philosopher Paul Kurtz argues that nature is best accounted for by reference to material principles. These principles include mass, energy, and other physical and chemical properties accepted by the scientific community. Further, this sense of naturalism holds that spirits, deities, and ghosts are not real and that there is no “purpose” in nature. This stronger formulation of naturalism is commonly referred to as metaphysical naturalism.[3] On the other hand, the more moderate view that naturalism should be assumed in one’s working methods as the current paradigm, without any further consideration of whether naturalism is true in the robust metaphysical sense, is called methodological naturalism.[4]

    With the exception of pantheists—who believe that Nature is identical with divinity while not recognizing a distinct personal anthropomorphic god—theists challenge the idea that nature contains all of reality. According to some theists, natural laws may be viewed as secondary causes of God(s).

    In the 20th century, Willard Van Orman Quine, George Santayana, and other philosophers argued that the success of naturalism in science meant that scientific methods should also be used in philosophy. According to this view, science and philosophy are not always distinct from one another, but instead form a continuum.

    Giant fail.

    KF

  13. 13
    kairosfocus says:

    U/D, I have added to the post a footnote showing the ties between colour revolution and 4th generation war. Culture War has gone geostrategic.

  14. 14
    Seversky says:

    I suspect that, by now, any of us are familiar with the opening paragraphs of the entry on “naturalism” in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

    The term “naturalism” has no very precise meaning in contemporary philosophy. Its current usage derives from debates in America in the first half of the last century. The self-proclaimed “naturalists” from that period included John Dewey, Ernest Nagel, Sidney Hook and Roy Wood Sellars. These philosophers aimed to ally philosophy more closely with science. They urged that reality is exhausted by nature, containing nothing “supernatural”, and that the scientific method should be used to investigate all areas of reality, including the “human spirit” (Krikorian 1944; Kim 2003).

    So understood, “naturalism” is not a particularly informative term as applied to contemporary philosophers. The great majority of contemporary philosophers would happily accept naturalism as just characterized—that is, they would both reject “supernatural” entities, and allow that science is a possible route (if not necessarily the only one) to important truths about the “human spirit”

    If you argue that science is limited to the investigation of natural phenomena, those that can be observed, however indirectly, or which can be inferred from such observation then I would agree. I would then ask, in what way is that a limitation? What else is there? Isn’t the “supernatural” an empty set?

    Ghosts, for example, are popularly thought to be a supernatural phenomenon. But if such entities exist in objective reality, if they have a nature which can be observed and described, however elusive they might be, then how are they not a natural phenomenon? The same would also be true of any putative deity.

    On the other hand, if you assume that the set of supernatural phenomena includes those that are forever inaccessible to scientific investigation, such that we cannot know if they even exist, then how does that provide any explanatory purchase in the natural world? Take, for example, the case of epileptic seizures. Two explanations are proposed. The first argues that they are the effect of misfiring brain cells, the second claims that they are a sign of demonic possession. In the first case, we can observe the physical brain and the neurons of which it is partially composed and look for any abnormal activity that might be associated with the seizures. In the second case, if we cannot have any knowledge of the existence of demons, of their nature, of how they might “possess” a human being and influence their behavior then of what possible use is it as an explanation, let alone a scientific explanation?

    If there is any failure involved, it is not of methodological naturalism, it is the failure of those who propose “supernatural” phenomena such as souls or spirits or angels or demons or an afterlife or a God while being unable to provide any compelling evidence for their existence. Again, if they have no detectable effect in the natural world, if they are walled off from any means we might have of trying to investigate them, what reason do we have for thinking they exist at all?

  15. 15
    Viola Lee says:

    Lewontin! And good post, Sev.

  16. 16
    jerry says:

    Again, if they have no detectable effect in the natural world, if they are walled off from any means we might have of trying to investigate them, what reason do we have for thinking they exist at all?

    You must know this is a nonsense comment.

    Because there is most definitely a detectable effect. Why make it?

    So understood, “naturalism” is not a particularly informative term as applied to contemporary philosophers. The great majority of contemporary philosophers would happily accept naturalism as just characterized—that is, they would both reject “supernatural” entities, and allow that science is a possible route (if not necessarily the only one) to important truths about the “human spirit

    Do you realize how stupid this statement is?

    No one expected science to support the concept of a creator but it has. That’s what embarrassing for the anti ID people. All their reasoning is from people 60 years ago or longer who had no idea what science would reveal.

    Explain why ID is not Science+.

    If you believe in science, you have to support ID.

  17. 17
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev, I have several times shown that any possible world will have in it N,Z,Q,R,R*,C, C* etc thus the framework of structure and quantity that has necessary being abstracta such as 2 etc. These are non causal but constrain what is possible, because but not active cause. Next, if your mind reduces to computation on a substrate through dynamic-stochastic forces, you cannot be rational; computation is blind mechanism. That was Haldane’s point nearly 100 years ago. So, on your rationality to think naturalism, you require capability to be freely self moved in thoughts that can be rational and warranted. So, already we find the necessary being abstracta and the contingent human mind that escape the naturalist’s circle. Going beyond, you know full well that we do not get a world from utter non being, and that circular retro causation is another species of non being as source, where also a causal-temporal-thermodynamic [CTTh] world succeeding itself cumulatively by years, cannot have actually traversed an implicit or explicit past without beginning, as traversal of the transfinite span in finite steps is a futile infeasible supertask. So, we are left with necessary being, causally adequate world root, which is beyond a CTTh world like ours, a physical domain of existence. the real issue is of what nature, such a necessary so eternal and by definition super natural being would be. I suggest that as such needs to account for reaponsibly, rationally free morally governed creatures it must fill the bill of requisites, inherently good and utterly wise as well as necessary and causally competent to be source and sustainer of worlds. The attempted isolated system naturalist circle fails again. KF

  18. 18
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, yes, Lewontin rather let the cat out of the bag that should have had a fat piglet for super. But let us hear the Board of the US national Science Teacher’s Association similarly making a telling admission and declaration of ideological imposition, just as Lewontin did — and rumour has it this was after a million dollar study on the matter:

    All those involved with science teaching and learning should have a common, accurate view of the nature of science. [–> yes but a question-begging ideological imposition is not an accurate view] Science is characterized by the systematic gathering of information through various forms of direct and indirect observations and the testing of this information by methods including, but not limited to, experimentation [–> correct so far]. The principal product of science is knowledge in the form of naturalistic concepts [–> evolutionary materialistic scientism is imposed] and the laws and theories related to those [–> i.e. ideologically loaded, evolutionary materialistic] concepts . . . . science, along with its methods, explanations and generalizations, must be the sole focus of instruction in science classes to the exclusion of all non-scientific or pseudoscientific methods, explanations, generalizations and products [–> censorship of anything that challenges the imposition; fails to appreciate that scientific methods are studied through logic, epistemology and philosophy of science, which are philosophy not science] . . . .

    Although no single universal step-by-step scientific method captures the complexity of doing science [–> a good point, but fails to see that this brings to bear many philosophical issues], a number of shared values and perspectives characterize a scientific approach to understanding nature. Among these are a demand for naturalistic explanations [–> outright ideological imposition and censorship that fetters freedom of responsible thought] supported by empirical evidence [–> the imposition controls how evidence is interpreted and that’s why blind watchmaker mechanisms never seen to actually cause FSCO/I have default claim to explain it in the world of life] that are, at least in principle, testable against the natural world. Other shared elements include observations, rational argument [–> ideological imposition may hide under a cloak of rationality but is in fact anti-rational], inference, skepticism [–> critical awareness is responsible, selective hyperskepticism backed by ideological censorship is not], peer review [–> a circle of ideologues in agreement has no probative value] and replicability of work . . . .

    Science, by definition, is limited to naturalistic [= evolutionary materialistic scientism is imposed by definition, locking out an unfettered search for the credibly warranted truth about our world i/l/o observational evidence and linked inductive reasoning] methods and explanations and, as such [–> notice, ideological imposition by question-begging definition], is precluded from using supernatural elements [–> sets up a supernatural vs natural strawman alternative when the proper contrast since Plato in The Laws, Bk X, is natural vs artificial] in the production of scientific knowledge. [US NSTA Board, July 2000, definition of the nature of science for education purposes]

    I call that grand, ideologically driven question begging and imposition on children not in a position to know the rest of the story. Worse, that was in the general time when NSTA and NAS were involved in threatenting and holding hostage parents in Kansas USA that their education would not be accredited in uni or work places if they did not accept a similarly ideologically loaded and historically unjustifiable redefinition of science.

    Of course the matter was grossly misreported in the media, no surprise.

    So, sorry, you cannot rhetorically eye-roll and push away Lewontin.

    KF

  19. 19
    Viola Lee says:

    You have probably posted the Lewontin quote a bajillion times: that’s why I noted it’s occurrence. 🙂

    You write, “Science, by definition, is limited to naturalistic [= evolutionary materialistic scientism is imposed by definition, locking out an unfettered search for the credibly warranted truth about our world i/l/o observational evidence and linked inductive reasoning] methods and explanations.”

    Saying that science is limited to naturalistic methods and explanations is NOT the same as scientism. Scientism is the belief that science is the ONLY avenue to valid knowledge. That is different than saying science produces one limited type of knowledge without addressing the question of other avenues to knowledge.

    You should know that.

  20. 20
    Viola Lee says:

    And the definition doesn’t endorse materialism, either. I’m not a materialist, and I don’t expect science to be able to account for my consciousness, for instance. And I know lots of people who accept that definition of science and who are also religious: they don’t expect science to account for their belief in God and other aspects of their religion.

  21. 21
    jerry says:

    they don’t expect science to account for their belief in God and other aspects of their religion

    But the reality is that science actually does point to a creator whether anyone likes it or not.

    bajillion times

    Does Cicero get a bajillion squared times?

  22. 22
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Seversky

    Isn’t the “supernatural” an empty set?

    You have to investigate claims of the supernatural to determine the answer to that.

    But if such entities exist in objective reality, if they have a nature which can be observed and described, however elusive they might be, then how are they not a natural phenomenon? The same would also be true of any putative deity

    There’s natural, supernatural and preternatural. Ghosts (if they exist) would be preternatural, but also immaterial. So physical science could not directly observe them, even though they have an effect on the physical world. Science is for entities that can be measured by weight, motion, and resistance.

    On the other hand, if you assume that the set of supernatural phenomena includes those that are forever inaccessible to scientific investigation, such that we cannot know if they even exist, then how does that provide any explanatory purchase in the natural world?

    Here you give the proposition for scientism: “the only things that we can know exist are those accessible to scientific investigation”. But scientism is self-refuting. “The only things that exist are those things that science can observe. We know that because science is the only means we have to know if things exist – because that’s what science tells us.” It’s just a circular argument and an absurdity. “Anything that exists beyond what science can observe does not exist, because science cannot observe it”. Or, you could simply say “science can observe every possible thing that exists or could exist”. We have that much confidence in human intelligence? We’re capable of directly observing every possible thing that exists?
    It’s like a person who is color-blind saying that nothing is differentiated by hue but only by tone. Why? Because the color blind person can only see that.

    In the second case, if we cannot have any knowledge of the existence of demons, of their nature, of how they might “possess” a human being and influence their behavior then of what possible use is it as an explanation, let alone a scientific explanation?

    As above, you’re saying that science is the only means we have of knowledge. Then yes, if science cannot measure it, then we cannot have knowledge of it. But we can have knowledge of demons through many other means besides physical science.

    If there is any failure involved, it is not of methodological naturalism, it is the failure of those who propose “supernatural” phenomena such as souls or spirits or angels or demons or an afterlife or a God while being unable to provide any compelling evidence for their existence.

    There’s quite a lot of compelling evidence for the existence of God, angels, souls, the afterlife and demons. That’s while billions of people acknowledge that such entities exist. Of course, some people cannot find evidence that Elvis Presely is really dead. But we shouldn’t give too much credibility to that kind of minority-opinion.

    Again, if they have no detectable effect in the natural world, if they are walled off from any means we might have of trying to investigate them, what reason do we have for thinking they exist at all?

    Three sources that would give us reason to think they exist:
    1. Direct experience. If you had such, then you’d have a reason
    2. Witness of someone having a direct experience, where you might even see how “the supernatural has a detectable effect on a person”.
    3. Testimony of reliable and credible persons who have experienced or witnessed the supernatural

    All three of those give us good reason to accept that the supernatural exists.

  23. 23
    Silver Asiatic says:

    repetitio est mater studiorum

    If people keep making the same mistakes, then it is essential to keep repeating the correction.
    That’s what a good teacher will do. Eventually, it begins to sink in.

  24. 24
    Viola Lee says:

    Lewontin does not speak for all science, or all who support science. Repeating a mistake countless times does not make it any less a mistake.

  25. 25
    jerry says:

    all who support science

    ID supports science.

    Can anyone point to any legitimate science that ID doesn’t support? I don’t think so. It doesn’t exist.

    So anyone that questions ID, is in reality anti science.

    If you believe in science, you have to support ID.

  26. 26
    chuckdarwin says:

    My organic chem professor (who was a Jesuit priest) defined science as “the study of the physical world by physical means.” The natural result of this view is that over time we discover the physical causes of processes and phenomena that we once ascribed to demons or gods. The only limitation is that we do not resort to non-physical causal agents (i.e., gods) or processes (i.e., ID) because they not only do not explain the physical world, they obscure it.

  27. 27
    Viola Lee says:

    I like that definition because it makes it clear that science doesn’t study everything: science studies things of a certain sort in terms of things of the same sort.

  28. 28
    jerry says:

    My organic chem professor (who was a Jesuit priest) defined science as “the study of the physical world by physical means.”

    Nothing wrong with this.

    The only limitation is that we do not resort to non-physical causal agents (i.e., gods) or processes (i.e., ID) because they not only do not explain the physical world, they obscure it.

    Your Jesuit instructor was then extremely misguided.

    He should have read the Nicene Creed to which he supposedly swore as truth.

    We believe in one God,
    the Father, the Almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    and of all that is, seen and unseen.

    Is this the best you can do?

    You say this instructor represents something that is full of crap (a religious belief that you have rejected) and then use him as a source for your beliefs. Which is it?

    Final question: do you believe in anything?

  29. 29
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, you see here the significance of Lewonyin’s confession on the part of the elites and their reigning orthodoxy, his refreshing honesty is worth a modicum of respect. As for the sophistries of NSTA, the manifest truth is, that they imagine science as the gold standard of knowledge and that it monopolises or utterly dominates so it effectively exhausts or so overrules that once Big Sc Science . . . Scientism . . . speaks, that decides. The exclusions therefore are effective dismissals. Read them in light of Lewontin, understand the fundamental failure and imposition. Oh, methodological naturalism is not metaphysical frankly only works because of the implicit loading and attitude Lewontin exposes, speaking as representative. The evasions and back doors fail. KF

    PS, Provine:

    Naturalistic evolution has clear consequences that Charles Darwin understood perfectly. 1) No gods worth having exist; 2) no life after death exists; 3) no ultimate foundation for ethics exists; 4) no ultimate meaning in life exists; and 5) human free will is nonexistent . . . .

    The first 4 implications are so obvious to modern naturalistic evolutionists that I will spend little time defending them. Human free will, however, is another matter. Even evolutionists have trouble swallowing that implication. I will argue that humans are locally determined systems that make choices. They have, however, no free will [–> without responsible freedom, mind, reason and morality alike disintegrate into grand delusion, hence self-referential incoherence and self-refutation. But that does not make such fallacies any less effective in the hands of clever manipulators] . . . [1998 Darwin Day Keynote Address, U of Tenn — and yes, that is significant i/l/o the Scopes Trial, 1925]

  30. 30
    Viola Lee says:

    KF, you write, “VL, you see here the significance of Lewonyin’s confession on the part of the elites and their reigning orthodoxy,”

    Because of your own biases, you cherry-pick those you want to represent “the elites” and ignore the countless numbers of scientists who are not materialists. Lewontin represents what you don’t like, but that doesn’t mean that he speaks for everyone, or that there aren’t lots of people among the “elites” who would disagree with him.

    ‘Nuf said. I just find it amusing that you trot out that quote so often.

  31. 31
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    😆 If is true that a living organism has a goal then materialism is false because the goal concept is immaterial/intelligent . You can’t explain a goal of a cell (or purpose of a computer ) with chemistry and physics alone. Try it. This is the Achilles heel of evolution that never will be answered .
    The layers of organisation of life are coming down from Intelligence-body-systems-organs-cells-molecules not like materialist would prefer from molecules to intelligence.

  32. 32
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, If you read him, Lewontin accepts he does not speak for ALL scientists, but he does claim to represent a dominant faction or coalition. A faction or coalition that exhibits all too familiar ideas and agendas. Something with very direct echoes in the US NSTA standards and the attempt to redefine science, its substance and methods. If that were not the case, when Mr Dawkins said that those who challenged or questioned these ideas were ignorant, stupid, insane or wicked, he would have been corrected and shunned, not made into a superstar celebrity voice of science. That’s not cherry picking unrepresentative idiosyncrasies, it is recognising clear, readily observable patterns of domination despite spin games and frankly, gaslighting. Similarly, Provine is quite clear, down to elimination of our responsible, rational freedom, and its time and place where it picked up a science imprimatur. And yet it is easy to see that evolutionary materialistic scientism is self referentially incoherent and cannot be truth, is certainly not fact, and has a history of destructive consequences, not to mention a tendency to fly the colours of science while imposing questionable ideology. Where, fellow traveller accomodationists, whatever nuances and obfuscations they use, are in fact enablers of this domineering coalition. So, thank you for inadvertent whistleblowing, Mr Lewontin. Duly noted for action in defence of genuine science and of civilisation. KF

  33. 33
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, Cicero laid out something truly foundational for law and government. We should not grudge to acknowledge our debt to him, any more than we resent being reminded of Newton’s laws of momentum and gravitation or his co invention of the calculus etc. What is going on is frankly a disguised way of saying, we don’t want to hear this voice, these truths; so, we confess by projecting blameworthiness. That speaks, not in our favour. KF

    PS: Here is Cicero in De Legibus, which happens to be highly relevant to Schaeffer;s contribution and to the way the Paul led Christian synthesis of the heritage of Jerusalem, Athens and Rome became foundational to our civilisation as we know it:

    —Marcus [in de Legibus, introductory remarks,. C1 BC, being Cicero himself]: . . . we shall have to explain the true nature of moral justice, which is congenial and correspondent [36]with the true nature of man [–> we are seeing the root vision of natural law, coeval with our humanity] . . . . With respect to the true principle of justice, many learned men have maintained that it springs from Law. I hardly know if their opinion be not correct, at least, according to their own definition; for . “Law (say they) is the highest reason, implanted in nature, which prescribes those things which ought to be done, and forbids the contrary” . . . .

    They therefore conceive that the voice of conscience is a law, that moral prudence is a law [–> a key remark] , whose operation is to urge us to good actions, and restrain us from evil ones . . . . According to the Greeks, therefore, the name of law implies an equitable distribution of goods: according to the Romans [–> esp. Cicero, speaking as a leading statesman], an equitable discrimination between good and evil.

    The true definition of law should, however, include both these characteristics. And this being granted as an almost self–evident proposition, the origin of justice is to be sought in the divine law of eternal and immutable morality. This indeed is the true energy of nature, the very soul and essence of wisdom, the test of virtue and vice.

    [–> this points to the wellsprings of reality, the only place where is and ought can be bridged; bridged, through the inherently good utterly wise, maximally great necessary being, the creator God, which adequately answers the Euthyphro dilemma and Hume’s guillotine argument surprise on seeing reasoning is-is then suddenly a leap to ought-ought. IS and OUGHT are fused from the root]

    This indeed is the true energy of nature, the very soul and essence of wisdom, the test of virtue and vice.

    PPS, I cannot but notice how there seems to be overlooking of the voice of the Russian General Staff on the nature of dirty — they think, American backed — colour revolutions, added to the OP above yesterday. This is background for Ukraine.

  34. 34
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: The kind of impositions I am highlighting can be seen in the battle of definitions of science to be used in schools in Kansas where parents and children were held hostage over threats to dis-accredit their education:

    2001 radical re-definition: “Science is the human activity of seeking natural explanations of the world around us.”

    –> For natural, read the subtext, Natural-ISTIC

    2005, historically and philosophically better founded and more substantial definition: “Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation, that uses observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena.”

    Re imposition after power plays and media smears, 2007: “Science is a human activity of systematically seeking natural explanations for what we observe in the world around us”

    Suppressed context. Ever since Plato, it has been well known that we have the alternatives, natural [ = blind chance and/or mechanical necessity] vs the ART-ificial, where actions of intelligently directed configuration are often empirically observable and testable. Where, this is routinely practiced in archaeology and paleontology, forensics, medicine and more, where ART-ifacts are frequently observed and studied scientifically. In Telecommunications we routinely recognise signals from noise and signal to noise power ratio is a key metric of performance. This last distinction is central to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.

    So, there was an improper suppression of historically and currently warranted understanding due to ideological imposition of a priori evolutionary materialistic scientism. Here backed by NSTA and the US National Academy of the Sciences.

    Thank you Lewontin, for letting the cat out of the bag.

    KF

  35. 35
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, kindly note the above. KF

  36. 36
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, I think it would be interesting to see you interact with the NSTA Board definition i/l/o exchanges in Kansas, further informed by Dawkins and Lewontin. Not to mention Provine. KF

  37. 37
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N, Demographic collapse is a sign of loss of confidence and hope in the future, and itself is a direct cause of civilisation collapse due to lack of people. Almost all of the West is in demographic collapse, either generally or in key population segments. The future belongs to those who show up for it. KF

  38. 38
    Viola Lee says:

    Hmmm, KF, I think the definition you quoted in 34 is pretty much like CD’s chem teacher in 26, and they seem reasonable to me. Science is a limited enterprise. It tries to explain certain kinds of things, and provide explanations about how those things relate to each other. It doesn’t try to explain everything.

    The definition that includes the phrase “… logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena” runs into the problem I ran into in my long discussion with SA recently: SA had a “logical argument” that made what he considered not only an adequate but in fact a conclusive conclusion about God and his relationship to natural phenomena, but which I considered quite flawed. Without going back into the details, was SA’s argument science?

  39. 39
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, that the definitions seem reasonable to you is a symptom. In the Chem Teacher’s definition, “physical” is grossly ambiguous, inviting the implication physical-IST, the updated form of materialism. Likewise, “natural” in the Kansas definitions and in the NSTA defintitions invites, “natural-ISM” which carries the implication, Scientism. I am not going to try to parse a long exchange with SA in a line, but note that I have put on the table why belief in God is quite reasonable and consistent with a non radicalised scientific mindset. Indeed, understanding God as a serious candidate to be the required necessary being root of reality, as a serious candidate NB, God is either actual or impossible. KF

  40. 40
    jerry says:

    People confuse science with logic. Logic underpins science and is completely different from it.

    Science uses logic. Logic has no need of science. Though logical arguments will frequently use scientific findings.

    See Kirk Durston video just posted.

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/kirk-durston-on-sabine-hossenfelder-and-god

    Also the dichotomy of “is” or “isn’t” is too often the criteria used. When the criteria should be “probable” vs “unlikely.” On certain things we will never know for sure. Is not knowing for sure a criteria for a functional world.

    ID is about probable explanations. Science by its very definition rules out some very probable conclusions. That is the problem modern science has.

    As a result it lets in very improbable explanations to eliminate the obvious it does not like. Modern science constantly commits the logical fallacy of “begging the question.”

    The irony is that modern science is illogical.

  41. 41
    Viola Lee says:

    re 39: First, it is you who read “physicalist” and “naturalistic” and “materialistic” implications into the statements. Of course you do: that your bias and hobbyhorse. I prefer to take the statements at their face value, and understand that they do not imply that science can do everything. Science, for instance, can not study consciousness, or values, or ethical principles, or many metaphysical speculations, such as the existence or non-existence of God, etc.

    You write also, ” I am not going to try to parse a long exchange with SA in a line, but note that I have put on the table why belief in God is quite reasonable and consistent with a non radicalised scientific mindset.”

    I’m not asking you to comment on the particular discussion I had with SA: what I want to know is if you think a logical argument for the existence of God as the creator of the physical world is science, not if it is merely “consistent” with science.

  42. 42
    jerry says:

    I want to know is if you think a logical argument for the existence of God as the creator of the physical world is science, not if it is merely “consistent” with science.

    Definitely not science. But definitely a very logical argument.

    Science supports the logical evidence for a creator. Again I recommend the recently posted Durston video.

  43. 43
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, no, I point to Lewontin, I point to the pattern of Dawkins et al, I can point to a pattern that is too widespread to fairly deny or dismiss. What I actually said is that the phrasing INVITES, in a world where we have a pattern like we do, we have to lock out false and loaded interpretation by precise, historically correct phrasing. That is exactly what the 2005 statement as restored to a historically accurate form indicates. What can you find sound fault with in:

    2005, historically and philosophically better founded and more substantial definition: “Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation, that uses observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena.”

    Where, I further noted:

    Suppressed context. Ever since Plato, it has been well known that we have the alternatives, natural [ = blind chance and/or mechanical necessity] vs the ART-ificial, where actions of intelligently directed configuration are often empirically observable and testable. Where, this is routinely practiced in archaeology and paleontology, forensics, medicine and more, where ART-ifacts are frequently observed and studied scientifically. In Telecommunications we routinely recognise signals from noise and signal to noise power ratio is a key metric of performance. This last distinction is central to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.

    It is the mere fact that the 2005 correction was attacked widely, subjected to threats of dis-accrediting education, and was characterised in lurid terms as a radical religious subversion of science that is decisive: they do mean natural-ISTIC, physical-ISTIC, i.e. a priori ideological imposition of evolutionary materialistic scientism.

    This, is confession by projection.

    KF

  44. 44
    Viola Lee says:

    “precise, historically correct phrasing.”

    I’m curious what “historically correct” definition of science you are referring to. Can you point to a source?

  45. 45
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: I note definitions from high quality somewhat older dictionaries, which I have as paper copies (the 1965 being inherited from my late mom):

    science: a branch of knowledge conducted on objective principles involving the systematized observation of and experiment with phenomena, esp. concerned with the material and functions of the physical universe. [Concise Oxford, 1990 — and yes, they used the “z” Virginia!]

    scientific method: principles and procedures for the systematic pursuit of knowledge [”the body of truth, information and principles acquired by mankind”] involving the recognition and formulation of a problem, the collection of data through observation and experiment, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses. [Webster’s 7th Collegiate, 1965]

    The balance on merits is clear. The 2005 correction is sound, the 2001 and 2007 radical revisions invite radical ideological impositions, as does the 2000 statement of the US NSTA Board.

    Philip Johnson’s reply to Lewontin is revealing:

    For scientific materialists the materialism comes first; the science comes thereafter. [Emphasis original] We might more accurately term them “materialists employing science.” And if materialism is true, then some materialistic theory of evolution has to be true simply as a matter of logical deduction, regardless of the evidence.

    [–> notice, the power of an undisclosed, question-begging, controlling assumption . . . often put up as if it were a mere reasonable methodological constraint; emphasis added. Let us note how Rational Wiki, so-called, presents it:

    “Methodological naturalism is the label for the required assumption of philosophical naturalism when working with the scientific method. Methodological naturalists limit their scientific research to the study of natural causes, because any attempts to define causal relationships with the supernatural are never fruitful, and result in the creation of scientific “dead ends” and God of the gaps-type hypotheses.” [NB: I am aware that Rational Wiki has backed away, un-announced, from the cat-out-of-the-bag direct phrasing that was in place a few years ago. That historic phrasing is still valid as a summary of what is going on.]

    Of course, this ideological imposition on science that subverts it from freely seeking the empirically, observationally anchored truth about our world pivots on the deception of side-stepping the obvious fact since Plato in The Laws Bk X, that there is a second, readily empirically testable and observable alternative to “natural vs [the suspect] supernatural.” Namely, blind chance and/or mechanical necessity [= the natural] vs the ART-ificial, the latter acting by evident intelligently directed configuration. [Cf Plantinga’s reply here and here.]

    And as for the god of the gaps canard, the issue is, inference to best explanation across competing live option candidates. If chance and necessity is a candidate, so is intelligence acting by art through design. And it is not an appeal to ever- diminishing- ignorance to point out that design, rooted in intelligent action, routinely configures systems exhibiting functionally specific, often fine tuned complex organisation and associated information. Nor, that it is the only observed cause of such, nor that the search challenge of our observed cosmos makes it maximally implausible that blind chance and/or mechanical necessity can account for such.]

    That theory will necessarily be at least roughly like neo-Darwinism, in that it will have to involve some combination of random changes and law-like processes capable of producing complicated organisms that (in Dawkins’ words) “give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.”

    . . . . The debate about creation and evolution is not deadlocked . . . Biblical literalism is not the issue. The issue is whether materialism and rationality are the same thing. Darwinism is based on an a priori commitment to materialism, not on a philosophically neutral assessment of the evidence. Separate the philosophy from the science, and the proud tower collapses. [Emphasis added.] [The Unraveling of Scientific Materialism, First Things, 77 (Nov. 1997), pp. 22 – 25.]

    Notice, what Rational Wiki said then puled back, doubtless as it was yet another cat out of the bag moment.

  46. 46
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, logic is compatible with science or science is in deep trouble. Logic of being, likewise stands in judgement of science, not the converse. So, a logic of being case for the reality of God and for the reasonableness of so believing, is independent of and prior to science. As to scientific cases that point to God, we ID thinkers, from Thaxton et al in 1984 on in TMLO, have long been on record that the world of life has abundant evidence of intelligently directed configuration starting with the D/RNA code in the cell and protein spaces, going to now the XY and similar systems for sex determination illustrating isolated islands of function in vast configurations paces etc. However, a molecular nanotech lab some decades ahead of Venter et al could reasonably account for this. What raises a much bigger question is the fine tuning of the physics of our cosmos that fits it for life. By definition a designer who builds universes is supernatural and awesomely powerful. A familiar profile. Bring on board something from wider knowledge, that we are responsible rational self moved, significantly free morally governed creatures further requires that the necessary being root of reality is inherently good and utterly wise. Where, a serious candidate NB is either actual or impossible of being. Do you have good reason to hold God not a serious candidate NB ________ or that he is not possible of being ______ ? I will dare to predict that you will find it exceedingly hard to fill in such blanks. KF

  47. 47
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, I specifically identified the 2005 definition and quoted it again. Insofar as there is a generic definition that is feasible, that serves well enough for schools level. Notice, Oxford Dictionary and Webster’s 7th Collegiate. I am fully aware that Feyerabend et al have devastated any claim that there is a simple hard and fast definition of science and its methods that is precising, one size fits all and only, science, serving as a demarcation simply splitting off non science and pseudo science. However, scientism is without sound foundation and must be excluded, and materialism and physicalism are self referentially incoherent and necessarily false. The 2001 and 2007 radical ideologically loaded definitions invite these in. KF

  48. 48
    kairosfocus says:

    Kindly see 34 above.

  49. 49
    jerry says:

    Again I recommend the Durston video. It will save thousands of words.

  50. 50
    Viola Lee says:

    KF, I already read and responded to 34, so why 48???

  51. 51
    Seversky says:

    Kairosfocus/45

    … yet another cat out of the bag moment.

    As far as I can see, the cat was never in the bag – although Erwin Schrodinger may have begged to differ – it’s been out and about, sniffing around the natural world, trying to dig up new information about it and keeping out of any boxes owned by quantum physicists.

    As for a precise definition of science, it’s certainly been a question debated vigorously by philosophers of science but that hasn’t prevented scientists themselves from actually doing it. They probably content themselves with Edmund Burke’s pragmatic little aphorism

    “Though no man can draw a stroke between the confines of day and night, yet light and darkness are upon the whole tolerably distinguishable.”

    Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents 1770

  52. 52
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev, almost amusing. This very thread shows the sort of point that Lewontin inadvertently made is key to a clear understanding of what is in the bag. As to definition of science, we are looking at school level ones, KF

  53. 53
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, in 44 you asked for the definition I put up, so I pointed to where it is. See,

    2005, historically and philosophically better founded and more substantial definition: “Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation, that uses observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena.”

    Compare, to:

    science: a branch of knowledge conducted on objective principles involving the systematized observation of and experiment with phenomena, esp. concerned with the material and functions of the physical universe. [Concise Oxford, 1990 — and yes, they used the “z” Virginia!]

    scientific method: principles and procedures for the systematic pursuit of knowledge [”the body of truth, information and principles acquired by mankind”] involving the recognition and formulation of a problem, the collection of data through observation and experiment, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses. [Webster’s 7th Collegiate, 1965]

    KF

  54. 54
    Viola Lee says:

    You said historically correct, KF, and 2005 is not exactly historical. That’s why I asked.

    I looked up the definition you gave and it was written by some ID advocates, by the way, which also makes it not exactly historical.

    Also, the word “science” has several different levels of meanings. For instance, a google search finds “A systematic method or body of knowledge in a given area”, which is a very general meaning of the word. What I’m interested in, now that the subject has come up, is what has been the understanding of the domain of science in fields like physics, chemistry, and biology over the last couple of hundred years: has it been understood to be looking for explanations of the physical world in terms of other things in the physical world, as CD’s professor said? Are there any sources about that, I wonder?

    P.S. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy offers some perspective.

  55. 55
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, historically correct has to do with the actual history of scientific research, starting with the likes of Copernicus, Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, Newton and co, and coming forward. It further speaks to typical definitions found in high quality dictionaries, as in fact follows immediately above. As for written by ID advocates, in fact the radical redefinitions were written by advocates of evolutionary materialistic scientism and twist the actual history since the scientific revolution; all you managed to do is to inadvertently affirm that the derided ID thinkers have a more accurate, historically correct understanding of the sciences; see the excerpt below. Our understanding must at least embrace the practice of science from Copernicus et al in the scientific revolution going forward. And the sciences in view are those we of British derivation call Natural Sciences as opposed to social and behavioural or looser senses. And this you know, the objections are ill grounded. KF

    PS: Newton, Opticks, Query 31, c 1718:

    As in Mathematicks, so in Natural Philosophy, the Investigation of difficult Things by the Method of Analysis, ought ever to precede the Method of Composition. This Analysis consists in making Experiments and Observations, and in drawing general Conclusions from them by Induction, and admitting of no Objections against the Conclusions, but such as are taken from Experiments, or other certain Truths. For [speculative] Hypotheses are not to be regarded in experimental Philosophy. And although the arguing from Experiments and Observations by Induction be no Demonstration of general Conclusions; yet it is the best way of arguing which the Nature of Things admits of, and may be looked upon as so much the stronger, by how much the Induction is more general. And if no Exception occur from Phænomena, the Conclusion may be pronounced generally. But if at any time afterwards any Exception shall occur from Experiments, it may then begin to be pronounced with such Exceptions as occur. By this way of Analysis we may proceed from Compounds to Ingredients, and from Motions to the Forces producing them; and in general, from Effects to their Causes, and from particular Causes to more general ones, till the Argument end in the most general. This is the Method of Analysis: And the Synthesis consists in assuming the Causes discover’d, and establish’d as Principles, and by them explaining the Phænomena proceeding from them, and proving the Explanations.

    Read the whole: https://erenow.net/common/history-philosophy-science-reader/50.php

    See where the classic discussions of what science is and what its methods are, come from?

  56. 56
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: In part I studied 6th form physics from a book titled nat phil, and of course Newton’s great work is Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy.

  57. 57
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N 2: Later in 34 I also noted,

    Suppressed context. Ever since Plato, it has been well known that we have the alternatives, natural [ = blind chance and/or mechanical necessity] vs the ART-ificial, where actions of intelligently directed configuration are often empirically observable and testable. Where, this is routinely practiced in archaeology and paleontology, forensics, medicine and more, where ART-ifacts are frequently observed and studied scientifically. In Telecommunications we routinely recognise signals from noise and signal to noise power ratio is a key metric of performance. This last distinction is central to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.

    So, there was an improper suppression of historically and currently warranted understanding due to ideological imposition of a priori evolutionary materialistic scientism. Here backed by NSTA and the US National Academy of the Sciences.

    In short, inference to the ART-ificial is a common part of science, based on its characteristic signs. To a priori exclude from the definition of science that it may when appropriate infer to intelligently directed configuration is massive question begging and twists science from pursuing empirically warranted, credibly and objectively truth (or at least best efforts so far) into a prestigious front for evolutionary materialistic scientism, an ideology. The end of this will be to discredit science, education, media and governments that went along with that perversion of the proper aim and values of science.

  58. 58
    kairosfocus says:

    To tie to OP, these are about the current state extension of Schaeffer’s framework.

  59. 59
    Seversky says:

    Kairosfocus/57

    In short, inference to the ART-ificial is a common part of science, based on its characteristic signs.

    Except that the only artifice to which we can reliably infer is that of the only intelligent agency for which we have overwhelming evidence, ourselves. We have no idea how an alien intelligence might approach design. We have Mill’s argument that a being with God-like knowledge and powers would have no need to “design” anything at all. And the “appearance of design” argument implies that a being capable of creating our Universe did so using design principles that would be recognizable to a species of intelligent ape that would not come into existence until roughly 13.8 bn years later.

    To a priori exclude from the definition of science that it may when appropriate infer to intelligently directed configuration is massive question begging and twists science from pursuing empirically warranted, credibly and objectively truth (or at least best efforts so far) into a prestigious front for evolutionary materialistic scientism, an ideology.

    So you resort to a conspiracy theory to explain why science does not accept your theology as a scientific theory of equivalent standing to those already well-established by decades of diligent investigation?

    The end of this will be to discredit science, education, media and governments that went along with that perversion of the proper aim and values of science.

    No, Lewontin was right insofar as he was saying that science could not allow unproven theological claims to gain a foothold in the field as acceptable explanations. If you once allow that “God did it” or “It must have been God’s will” have any kind of explanatory traction then you put an end to science at that point.

    The reality is that the proper response by science to Christian claims that their theology is also a scientific explanation is to refer to the burden of proof that the faith bears when making such claims. In other words, if you say “God did it”, prove it.

  60. 60
    Viola Lee says:

    “We have Mill’s argument that a being with God-like knowledge and powers would have no need to “design” anything at all.”

    I like that line. And this:

    No, Lewontin was right insofar as he was saying that science could not allow unproven theological claims to gain a foothold in the field as acceptable explanations. If you once allow that “God did it” or “It must have been God’s will” have any kind of explanatory traction then you put an end to science at that point.

  61. 61
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, kindly take due note of Newton, Opticks, Query 31. After that, much else will be clear regarding science, its methods, what is historically correct, what is justified and what has been done by radicals. KF

  62. 62
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev (attn VL), selective hyperskepticism and ideological imposition illustrating the precise point. Evidence is evidence and should be allowed to speak in its own voice, especially i/l/o Newton’s Rules and empirically tested, reliable signs. Once designers are a possible candidate, tested, observed to be reliable signs of design must be allowed to speak. Otherwise science has become little more than an agit prop, lab coat clad front for precisely the domineering, a priori materialist, evolutionary materialistic scientism that Lewontin exposed, that we can see in the US NSTA attempt to ideologically capture science education, and which I summarised in extending Schaeffer’s analysis to now, 38 years after he passed on after a long cancer fight. KF

    PS: Per Newton, I remind of the title of Lyell’s Principles of Geology Vol 3:

    PRINCIPLES OF GEOLOGY: BEING AN INQUIRY HOW FAR THE FORMER CHANGES OF
    THE EARTH’S SURFACE ARE REFERABLE TO CAUSES NOW IN OPERATION

    Now, kindly explain to us the observed cause of meaningful alphanumeric, linguistic text beyond 500 – 1,000 bits of complexity, especially of algorithms, which are goal directed stepwise finite procedures with halting ________. More broadly, kindly explain the observed cause of trillions of occurrences of functionally specific, complex organisation and/or associated information [FSCO/I] that we have observed the actual causal process for ________ . If you can, kindly identify actually observed cases where such have come about by blind chance and/or mechanical necessity _________ . Then, explain to us why, apart from ideological imposition and selective hyperskepticism, we should rule out as unscientific [or even pseudo-scientific or anti-science etc . . . ], inference from reliable, tested observed signs to causal process involving intelligently directed configuration ____________ . Especially, given that many investigations of unquestionably scientific character routinely investigate and infer to or even embed in key metrics such as S/N power ratio, the reality of such design and inference thereto. KF

    PPS, Mill is simply wrong, once we recognise that design is intelligently directed configuration which often leaves strong traces of its causation by ART-ificial act rather than blind chance and/or mechanical necessity. There would be no reason why an act of said intelligent action by God, would not show traces of such intelligent action, indeed even the concept of a miracle is one where in rare cases for good reason God acts beyond the normal course of the world, showing signs that draw attention to intelligent cause by a power above powers of the natural world. At more mundane level, we routinely infer to acts of mind from FSCO/I eg text posted as comments here. Besides, on the most discussed case, the world of life based on the cell, there is no claimed design inference from FSCO/I to God as cause. From 1984 on in TMLO modern design thinkers have made that clear. If you wish to address fine tuning of the physics of the cosmos and issues of inherent finitude of the actual past, then we can, and we can infer on logic of being to a necessary being world root adequate to be source of our observed world.

  63. 63
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N, Actually, Lewontin showed — yes this is a design inference on motive, means, opportunity and linked evidence — how

    a: censorship and marginalisation operations by elites dominated by a radical a priori materialist ideology
    b: seek to lock out evidence and inference that might point where they have no intent to allow so long as they hold decisive power. This then becomes
    C: capture of science and institutions, leading to the intellectual bankruptcy of locking out freedom to follow evidence in light of what it warrants, towards objective truth and knowledge.
    ________________________

    CONCLUSION: Intellectual bankruptcy of the elites and undermining of credibility of science and of institutions across the 7 mtns [see OP]

    Trouble is upon us.

    KF

  64. 64
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Anyone care to respond to geostrategic considerations, 4th gen post Westphalia war, Russian style views on colour revolutions, Reichstag fire type incidents, and where we may already be? KF

  65. 65
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
    The universe began to exist.
    Therefore, the universe has a cause.

    The universe, by definition, is all physical matter, space, time, energy.
    Therefore, the cause of the universe is non-physical, non-material, non-bounded by space or time.
    The necessary being (spaceless, timeless, unbounded), therefore, with the power to cause the origin of the universe is what we call “God”.

    Life is irreducible to blind, material nature and can only be the product of intelligence.
    Proof:
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/film-premieres-today-cell-membranes-as-a-challenge-in-the-origin-of-life/
    The necessary being with the power, intelligence can capability to be the source, cause, origin or author of life is what we call “God”.

  66. 66
    Silver Asiatic says:

    KF

    Actually, Lewontin showed — yes this is a design inference on motive, means, opportunity and linked evidence

    Exactly. ID says that we know with certainty what can only be produced by intelligent causes. We can observe and identify and prove some things can only be produced by intelligent design.
    We then see in nature things which share these exact characteristics. Therefore, the inescapable conclusion is that they also were produced by intelligent design.
    One kind of anti-IDist view then just denies this because they assert that “no such intelligence exists”.
    So, like Lewontin – they shut the door on the inquiry before it can get started.
    Where’s the direct evidence that God does not exist?

  67. 67
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, we know we need a necessary being root of reality to be causal source and sustainer of temporal-causal, thermodynamic [CTTh] worlds, as “years” cannot have been endlessly traversed in the past because of the infeasible supertask of traversing the implicitly or explicitly transfinite in finite stage cumulative steps. That has to do with how quantities are part of the necessary framework for any world, it is a logic of being constraint expressed through logic of structure and quantity, AKA Mathematics. So, as utter non being cannot cause anything, were there ever such a condition it would forever obtain (and circular retrocausation on cosmos level is essentially the same something from nothing), we can be certain, logically certain there was a beginning to worlds — cosmi — such as ours. In this world we are a new level of creature, responsibly and rationally self moved, free and morally governed. This points to a bill of requisites for the reality root, post Hume and Euthyphro; inherently good and utterly wise, as well as powerful enough to cause worlds. In that context, God is a serious candidate to be such a reality root, and so the logic of being alternatives are, actual, or else impossible of being. Actual NB’s are framework for any world to exist as the numbers in N,Z,Q,R,R*,C, C* etc are for example. Objectors to the reality of God have no good reason that he is so impossible, or it would be everywhere. It is more than merely reasonable to acknowledge the reality of God and to claim to know that he is. In addition, millions know and have known him personally in life transforming power; to hold us delusional is a case where one implicitly infers that humanity is under grand delusion, which discredits ALL systems of thought and claimed reason, which is of course self referential. It is not on merits that power elites have led many to doubt, dismiss and be angry at God, but on systems of thought that will predictably fail at the bar of comparative difficulties. That is, factual adequacy, coherence and balanced explanatory power [neither ad hoc nor simplistic]. KF

    PS, as for reliability of signs of intelligence, we have trillions of cases on the ground and sitting in servers globally. The very comments in this thread are part of the natural experiment. As for the power of blind chance and/or mechanical necessity to create FSCO/I, let Wiki’s admission against interest in the infinite monkeys theorem article speak for itself:

    The infinite monkey theorem states that a monkey hitting keys at random on a typewriter keyboard for an infinite amount of time will almost surely type any given text, such as the complete works of William Shakespeare. In fact, the monkey would almost surely type every possible finite text an infinite number of times. However, the probability that monkeys filling the entire observable universe would type a single complete work, such as Shakespeare’s Hamlet, is so tiny that the chance of it occurring during a period of time hundreds of thousands of orders of magnitude longer than the age of the universe is extremely low (but technically not zero) . . . . The theorem concerns a thought experiment which cannot be fully carried out in practice, since it is predicted to require prohibitive amounts of time and resources. Nonetheless, it has inspired efforts in finite random text generation.

    One computer program run by Dan Oliver of Scottsdale, Arizona, according to an article in The New Yorker, came up with a result on 4 August 2004: After the group had worked for 42,162,500,000 billion billion monkey-years, one of the “monkeys” typed, “VALENTINE. Cease toIdor:eFLP0FRjWK78aXzVOwm)-‘;8.t” The first 19 letters of this sequence can be found in “The Two Gentlemen of Verona”. Other teams have reproduced 18 characters from “Timon of Athens”, 17 from “Troilus and Cressida”, and 16 from “Richard II”.[27]

    A website entitled The Monkey Shakespeare Simulator, launched on 1 July 2003, contained a Java applet that simulated a large population of monkeys typing randomly, with the stated intention of seeing how long it takes the virtual monkeys to produce a complete Shakespearean play from beginning to end. For example, it produced this partial line from Henry IV, Part 2, reporting that it took “2,737,850 million billion billion billion monkey-years” to reach 24 matching characters:

    RUMOUR. Open your ears; 9r”5j5&?OWTY Z0d

    That is a factor of 10^100 short of the configuration space for 500 – 1,000 bits [72 – 143 ASCII characters], the threshold we are interested in. islands odf function in large configuration spaces are a reality as for example even the diverse systems for genetics for sex determination show and the distribution of protein fold domains in AA sequence space also shows.

    That’s before we identify that the code in the cell is linguistic and algorithmic so clearly characteristic of intelligence, right from the root of the tree of life.

    Besides, the fine tuning of the physics of the cosmos speaks for itself.

    Cosmos level design fine tuned to sustain cell based, Carbon chemistry, aqueous medium life.

  68. 68
    Silver Asiatic says:

    KF

    For example, it produced this partial line from Henry IV, Part 2, reporting that it took “2,737,850 million billion billion billion monkey-years” to reach 24 matching characters:

    People often claim that ID is not testable or non-falsifiable, but the results you posted from different tests refute that claim.

  69. 69
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, that result has been in the public for many years, including here at UD. Of course, it is utterly as expected. KF

  70. 70
    Viola Lee says:

    KF: Would Newton have accepted God as an explanation for some physical phenomena?

  71. 71
    jerry says:

    Would Newton have accepted God as an explanation for some physical phenomena

    He did.

    Which led to La Place’s famous response.

    Je n’avais pas besoin de cette hypothèse-là. (“I had no need of that hypothesis.”)

    Napoleon told this to Lagrange who said

    Ah! c’est une belle hypothèse; ça explique beaucoup de choses. (“Ah, it is a fine hypothesis; it explains many things.”)

    Both La Place and Lagrange were correct.

  72. 72
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, you may find the full Query 31 interesting reading, he actually guesses at a surprising number of onward trends in physics with a touch or two of chemistry. A convinced atomist, he remarked earlier than our excerpt that defines Science and its methods: “All these things being consider’d, it seems probable to me, that God in the Beginning form’d Matter in solid, massy, hard, impenetrable, moveable Particles, of such Sizes and Figures, and with such other Properties, and in such Proportion to Space, as most conduced to the End for which he form’d them . . .” And then there is the General Scholium to Principia. However, the focal point you have been challenging is the accuracy of the 2005 definition, and I would suggest that a definition that would censor Opticks and Principia . . . Newton’s two most famous works of science, fails the historical accuracy test rather badly. KF

  73. 73
    Viola Lee says:

    And would a statement that God, in the beginning, created the atoms with the properties they have be considered a scientific explanation? Newton was religious, so of course he had religious thoughts about God, but in his scientific work did he ever do anything other than look for physical explanations for physical phenomena?

    And how would the definition you offered as wrong “censor Opticks and Principia.” Could you be specific?

  74. 74
    jerry says:

    And would a statement that God, in the beginning, created the atoms with the properties they have be considered a scientific explanation?

    No.

    It’s an explanation.

    Someone painted the Mona Lisa. If you had three people who witnessed Da Vinci paint it, then that would be an explanation. But I doubt it would be called a scientific explanation.

    However, once a system was intact and changes happened to it by the laws of physics, then one might want to call that a scientific explanation. The laws of physics are the basis for chemistry and chemistry is the basis for much of what happens in biology. But all explanations that science investigates may not be due to the laws of physics and a distinction should be made for these types of explanations.

    ID essentially says that some changes/and the causes for these change are not due to available forces of nature but are due to some other force intervening to cause a change. Some of these changes have some remarkable properties which would obviate some unknown physical force from being the cause. The likely cause is some intelligence.

    Are we still trying to understand what science is? If it is. I again recommend the Durston video.

  75. 75
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, it is part of his frame of doing science, it grounded his expectation of lawlike behaviour intelligible to us as has long since been drawn out going far beyond Newton, as a key part of the puzzle why science had its breakthrough where and when it did. Further to this, Opticks Query 31 puts paid to the notion that theistic thought is a science stopper, in fact this was a starter and a basis for laying out in outline 200+ years of onward fruitful inquiry in the hardest core of all modern sciences, the yardstick science in fact. We need history like this as a hard, factual counter weight to a lot of radical secularist myths and ideological talk points confused for truth about the actual history and nature of science. Then, I cannot but note how you have dropped your attempt to stigmatise and dismiss the dissenters of 2005 without acknowledging that they were right, the heretics turned out to be sounder than the radical ruling orthodoxy of evolutionary materialistic scientism. Duly noted. More directly, as there is ever a trend of invidious insinuations about design thinkers, the despised IDers have here demonstrated a sounder understanding of the nature and methods of science. What is more, despite agit prop and lawfare as happened in Kansas and Pennsylvania, as the UD Weak Argument Correctives point out, the design inference is an inference on tested reliable signs to their known causal process/factor, intelligently directed configuration. This is not an inference to any particular designer, and we see that natural [= blind chance and/or mechanical necessity] has a proper contrast with techne, the ART-ifice and contrivance of intelligently directed configuration. So the agit prop driven oh it’s natural vs supernatural is at best an historically misinformed strawman. Plato went on record on this in The Laws Bk X, c 360 BC. KF

  76. 76
    JHolo says:

    I never thought this was difficult. Scientific investigation is limited to things we can observe and things we can test.

  77. 77
    Viola Lee says:

    re 75, to KF. I don’t think anyone has said that “theistic thought is a science stopper.” Lots of theists believe that God has created the world to be orderly and for that order to be discoverable by us. That is a motivation to do science. But that is different than saying that God is part of a resulting scientific explanation.

    You write, “Then, I cannot but note how you have dropped your attempt to stigmatise and dismiss the dissenters of 2005 without acknowledging that they were right, the heretics turned out to be sounder than the radical ruling orthodoxy of evolutionary materialistic scientism. Duly noted.”

    I have no idea what you are talking about. I said I liked the 2001 definition, which is like CD’s professor’s statement, and that I had problems with the 2005 definition, for various reasons, one of which, according to what I read on the internet, was written by ID supporters who thought the 2001 definition was basically atheistic, which seems quite wrong to me. I didn’t acknowledge those 2005 authors were right because I don’t think they are right, especially in the context of that particular situation.

  78. 78
    Silver Asiatic says:

    The US NSTA Board says in 2007:

    “Science is a human activity of systematically seeking natural explanations for what we observe in the world around us”

    Newton:

    But it is not to be conceived that mere mechanical causes could give birth to so many regular motions: since the Comets range over all parts of the heavens, in very eccentric orbits. For by that kind of motion they pass easily through the orbits of the Planets, and with great rapidity; and in their aphelions, where they move the slowest, and are detain’d the longest, they recede to the greatest distances from each other, and thence suffer the least disturbance from their mutual attractions. This most beautiful System of the Sun, Planets, and Comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful being.

    … We know him only by his most wise and excellent contrivances of things, and final causes; we admire him for his perfections; but we reverence and adore him on account of his dominion. For we adore him as his servants; and a God without dominion, providence, and final causes, is nothing else but Fate and Nature. Blind metaphysical necessity, which is certainly the same always and every where, could produce no variety of things. All that diversity of natural things which we find, suited to different times and places, could arise from nothing but the ideas and will of a Being necessarily existing.

    The General Scholium
    to Isaac Newton’s Principia mathematica

    Newton’s work would therefore be censored by the NSTA.

  79. 79
    Viola Lee says:

    yo SA: That is a favorite quote, but Newton did not propose that as a scientific explanation. He proposed the laws of universal gravitation as explanations, and he famously declared that as far as science went, he did not propose a metaphysical explanation for gravity.

    The General Scholium was an appendix to the Principia which isaac-newton.org says “contains an excursion into natural theology and theology proper.”

    Newton was very religious, and in fact spent the later part of his life more involved in theology, alchemy, and Bible studies than he was in physics.

    But the critical point he did not confuse his religious beliefs with his scientific work where he searched for explanations of physical phenomena in terms of other physical phenomena.

    Yes, the NSTA would say that the quote you offered was religious belief, but not science. That doesn’t negate the vast amount of science that Newton did.

  80. 80
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, any number have said theistic thinking is anti science and a science stopper. As one clue they commonly make a contrast between natural and supernatural rather than Plato’s ART-ificial from The Laws Bk X 360 BC. But if you narrow it to design thinkers or even Biblical Creationists, Newton classifies as both. We have in hand in Opticks Query 31 a direct disproof by having theistic, creationist and design thought, cheek by jowl with a classic, set the yardstick definition of science and its methods including strengths and limitations so an implied weak form sense of knowledge. He is writing in the context of leading arguably the greatest breakthrough of modern science and Mathematics [co inventor of Calculus] and manages to sketch out major lines down which Physics would go for 200+ years. Science stopper is dead. As for definitions in Kansas, Lewontin let the cat out of the bag on the subtext of “natural” in 2001 and 2007 alike, the elites wish to exorcise even the shadow of God’s foot from the province of serious knowledge, by which they manifestly mean scientism, evolutionary materialistic scientism. The radical redefinitions are historically demonstrably inaccurate and as SA just hinted would lead to bowdlerising or conveniently back burner-ing or censoring Newton’s main scientific works. If your definition cannot pass the Newton test it is hopeless. Fail. KF

  81. 81
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Newton’s General Scholium to Principia:

    . . . This most beautiful system of the sun, planets, and comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being. And if the fixed stars are the centres of other like systems, these, being formed by the like wise counsel, must be all subject to the dominion of One; especially since the light of the fixed stars is of the same nature with the light of the sun, and from every system light passes into all the other systems: and lest the systems of the fixed stars should, by their gravity, fall on each other mutually, he hath placed those systems at immense distances one from another.

    This Being governs all things, not as the soul of the world, but as Lord over all [–> sets aside pantheism and panentheism]; and on account of his dominion he is wont to be called Lord God pantokrator , or Universal Ruler; for God is a relative word, and has a respect to servants; and Deity is the dominion of God not over his own body, as those imagine who fancy God to be the soul of the world, but over servants.

    The Supreme God is [–> definition of God and his domain:] a Being eternal, infinite, absolutely perfect; but a being, however perfect, without dominion, cannot be said to be Lord God; for we say, my God, your God, the God of Israel, the God of Gods, and Lord of Lords; but we do not say, my Eternal, your Eternal, the Eternal of Israel, the Eternal of Gods; we do not say, my Infinite, or my Perfect: these are titles which have no respect to servants. The word God usually signifies Lord; but every lord is not a God. It is the dominion of a spiritual being which constitutes a God: a true, supreme, or imaginary dominion makes a true, supreme, or imaginary God. And from his true dominion it follows that the true God is a living, intelligent, and powerful Being; and, from his other perfections, that he is supreme, or most perfect. He is eternal and infinite, omnipotent and omniscient; that is, his duration reaches from eternity to eternity; his presence from infinity to infinity; he governs all things, and knows all things that are or can be done. He is not eternity or infinity, but eternal and infinite; he is not duration or space, but he endures and is present. He endures for ever, and is every where present; and by existing always and every where, he constitutes duration and space.

    Since every particle of space is always, and every indivisible moment of duration is every where, certainly the Maker and Lord of all things cannot be never and no where. Every soul that has perception is, though in different times and in different organs of sense and motion, still the same indivisible person. There are given successive parts in duration, co-existent puts in space, but neither the one nor the other in the person of a man, or his thinking principle; and much less can they be found in the thinking substance of God.

    Every man, so far as he is a thing that has perception, is one and the same man during his whole life, in all and each of his organs of sense. [–> identity issues] God is the same God, always and every where. He is omnipresent not virtually only, but also substantially; for virtue cannot subsist without substance. In him are all things contained and moved [i.e. cites Ac 17, where Paul evidently cites Cleanthes and sets him in a Biblical, Creation context]; yet neither affects the other: God suffers nothing from the motion of bodies; bodies find no resistance from the omnipresence of God.

    It is allowed by all that the Supreme God exists necessarily [–> necessary being]; and by the same necessity he exists always, and every where. [i.e accepts the cosmological argument to God, also implies God is framework to the world, one doubts possible world speak would have been well studied then.] Whence also he is all similar, all eye, all ear, all brain, all arm, all power to perceive, to understand, and to act; but in a manner not at all human, in a manner not at all corporeal, in a manner utterly unknown to us. As a blind man has no idea of colours, so have we no idea of the manner by which the all-wise God perceives and understands all things. He is utterly void of all body and bodily figure [–> issues of necessary being, not made up from detachable parts], and can therefore neither be seen, nor heard, or touched; nor ought he to be worshipped under the representation of any corporeal thing. [Cites Exod 20.] We have ideas of his attributes, but what the real substance of any thing is we know not.

    In bodies, we see only their figures and colours, we hear only the sounds, we touch only their outward surfaces, we smell only the smells, and taste the savours; but their inward substances are not to be known either by our senses, or by any reflex act of our minds: much less, then, have we any idea of the substance of God. We know him only by his most wise and excellent contrivances of things, and final cause [i.e from his designs]: we admire him for his perfections; but we reverence and adore him on account of his dominion: for we adore him as his servants; and a god without dominion, providence, and final causes, is nothing else but Fate and Nature. Blind metaphysical necessity, which is certainly the same always and every where, could produce no variety of things. [i.e necessity does not produce contingency] All that diversity of natural things which we find suited to different times and places could arise from nothing but the ideas and will of a Being necessarily existing. [That is, implicitly rejects chance, Plato’s third alternative and explicitly infers to the Designer of the Cosmos.]

    But, by way of allegory, God is said to see, to speak, to laugh, to love, to hate, to desire, to give, to receive, to rejoice, to be angry, to fight, to frame, to work, to build; for all our notions of God are taken from. the ways of mankind by a certain similitude, which, though not perfect, has some likeness, however. And thus much concerning God; to discourse of whom from the appearances of things, does certainly belong to Natural Philosophy. [General Scholium to Principia, paragraphs added. Notice what he thought about discourse on God and Natural Philosophy.]

  82. 82
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, note how Newton closes off his remarks as just cited. Inference from nature of things to their author. KF

  83. 83
    Viola Lee says:

    KF writes, “theistic thinking is anti science and a science stopper.” As I stated above, religious thinking is not a science stopper if you consider it a stimulus to explore the order that is in the world. It is a science stopper if you conclude “God did it”, and thus forestall any further investigation.

    Also, you quoted more of Newton. I assume you read what isaac-newton.org said about the Scholium in my post 78.

    Also, you write, “elites wish to exorcise even the shadow of God’s foot from the province of serious knowledge” No, there is no problem in proposing God as part of serious knowledge. The objection is to proposing God as part of serious science. Science does not encompass all of knowledge,

  84. 84
    jerry says:

    religious thinking is not a science stopper if you consider it a stimulus to explore the order that is in the world. It is a science stopper if you conclude “God did it”, and thus forestall any further investigation.

    Should this be added?

    Science is not a truth stopper if you consider it a stimulus to explore the order that is in the world. It is a truth stopper if you preclude “God did it”, and thus forestall any further understanding of the world.

    Science is limited to the four natural forces of physics. There is more than these four forces. Thus, there is truth beyond what science reveals or more importantly can reveal. Science has a limited domain and thus, by definition is limited in what it can show.

    Another great resource for understanding science is Stephen Meyer’s new book, the Return of the God Hypothesis.

  85. 85
    Viola Lee says:

    Jerry writes, “Science is limited to the four natural forces of physics. There is more than these four forces. Thus, there is truth beyond what science reveals or more importantly can reveal. Science has a limited domain and thus, by definition is limited in what it can show.”

    I agree entirely, and that is similar to things I said in earlier posts. That is why CD’s professor’s statement that science is searching for physical explanations for physical phenomena (or something like that) is accurate.

  86. 86
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, Newton clearly thought God did it and then proceeded to produce the greatest breakthroughs in the history of modern science and mathematics. He concluded God did it and proceeded in the same context to lay out ideas that opened up lines of exploration in physics and related disciplines for 200+ years. Indeed in that context, he further laid out the classic defining framework of science and its methods INCLUDING HOW EARLIER CONCLUSIONS ARE TO BE MODIFIED AND WHEN NOT. In short, it is clear that you have been unresponsive to demonstrated fact because of a talking point that is commonplace but inaccurate to key history with Newton as Exhibit A on why it is inaccurate. Pardon how direct you have forced me to be. KF

    PS, I append, for comparison:

    Newton, 1718, Opticks, Query 31: >>As in Mathematicks, so in Natural Philosophy, the Investigation of difficult Things by the Method of Analysis, ought ever to precede the Method of Composition. This Analysis consists in making Experiments and Observations, and in drawing general Conclusions from them by Induction, and admitting of no Objections against the Conclusions, but such as are taken from Experiments, or other certain Truths. For [speculative] Hypotheses are not to be regarded in experimental Philosophy. And although the arguing from Experiments and Observations by Induction be no Demonstration of general Conclusions; yet it is the best way of arguing which the Nature of Things admits of, and may be looked upon as so much the stronger, by how much the Induction is more general. And if no Exception occur from Phænomena, the Conclusion may be pronounced generally. But if at any time afterwards any Exception shall occur from Experiments, it may then begin to be pronounced with such Exceptions as occur. By this way of Analysis we may proceed from Compounds to Ingredients, and from Motions to the Forces producing them; and in general, from Effects to their Causes, and from particular Causes to more general ones, till the Argument end in the most general. This is the Method of Analysis: And the Synthesis consists in assuming the Causes discover’d, and establish’d as Principles, and by them explaining the Phænomena proceeding from them, and proving the Explanations.>>

    2005, historically and philosophically better founded and more substantial definition: “Science is a systematic method of continuing investigation, that uses observation, hypothesis testing, measurement, experimentation, logical argument and theory building, to lead to more adequate explanations of natural phenomena.”

    Notice, how the dissenters of 2005 are also showing that open endedness is pivotal to science. The term induction, even with modern sense specified has become far too controversial to be used in a schools context. I would add that science seeks to increasingly accurately describe, explain, predict and provide tools to influence and control the materials, forces and phenomena of the natural world, but they were good enough.

  87. 87
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, attn Jerry, there is an openness to a fifth force, of course. KF

  88. 88
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Some corrective notes on the myths about methodological and metaphysical naturalism as bulwarks of science, from a series of articles from some years ago:

    Sometimes the most obvious facts are the easiest to overlook. Here is one that ought to be stunningly obvious: science as an organized, sustained enterprise arose only once in the history of Earth. Where was that? Although other civilizations have contributed technical achievements or isolated innovations, the invention of science as a cumulative, rigorous, systematic, and ongoing investigation into the laws of nature occurred only in Europe; that is, in the civilization then known as Christendom. Science arose and flourished in a civilization that, at the time, was profoundly and nearly exclusively Christian in its mental outlook.

    There are deep reasons for that, and they are inherent in the Judeo-Christian view of the world which, principally in its Christian manifestation, formed the European mind. As Stark observes, the Christian view depicted God as “a rational, responsive, dependable, and omnipotent being and the universe as his personal creation, thus having a rational, lawful, stable structure, awaiting human comprehension.” That was not true of belief systems elsewhere. A view that the universe is uncreated, has been around forever, and is just “what happens to be” does not suggest that it has fundamental principles that are rational and discoverable. Other belief systems have considered the natural world to be an insoluble mystery, conceived of it as a realm in which multiple, arbitrary gods are at work, or thought of it in animistic terms. None of these views will, or did, give rise to a deep faith that there is a lawful order imparted by a divine creator that can and should be discovered.

    [–> Clue: why do we still talk about “Laws” of nature? Doesn’t such historically rooted language not suggest: a law-giver? (And indeed, that is precisely what Newton discussed at length in his General Scholium to his Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy.) Of course, that will not move the deeply indoctrinated and polarised, but it is a clear marker to those who are willing to think more open-mindedly.]

    Recent scholarship in the history of science reveals that this commitment to rational, empirical investigation of God’s creation is not simply a product of the “scientific revolution” of the 16th and 17th centuries, but has profound roots going back at least to the High Middle Ages . . . .

    Albertus Magnus — prodigious scholar, naturalist, teacher of Thomas Aquinas, and member of the Dominican order — affirmed in his De Mineralibus that the purpose of science is “not simply to accept the statements of others, that is, what is narrated by people, but to investigate the causes that are at work in nature for themselves.” Another 13th-century figure, Robert Grosseteste, who was chancellor of Oxford and Bishop of Lincoln, has been identified as “the first man ever to write down a complete set of steps for performing a scientific experiment,” according to Woods.

    WHEN THE DISCOVERIES of science exploded in number and importance in the 1500s and 1600s, the connection with Christian belief was again profound. Many of the trailblazing scientists of that period when science came into full bloom were devout Christian believers, and declared that their work was inspired by a desire to explore God’s creation and discover its glories. Perhaps the greatest scientist in history, Sir Isaac Newton, was a fervent Christian who wrote over a million words on theological subjects. Other giants of science and mathematics were similarly devout: Boyle, Descartes, Kepler, Leibniz, Pascal. To avoid relying on what might be isolated examples, Stark analyzed the religious views of the 52 leading scientists from the time of Copernicus until the end of the 17th century. Using a methodology that probably downplayed religious belief, he found that 32 were “devout”; 18 were at least “conventional” in their religious belief; and only two were “skeptics.” More than a quarter were themselves ecclesiastics: “priests, ministers, monks, canons, and the like.”

    Down through the 19th century, many of the leading figures in science were thoroughgoing Christians. A partial list includes Babbage, Dalton, Faraday, Herschel, Joule, Lyell, Maxwell, Mendel, and Thompson (Lord Kelvin). A survey of the most eminent British scientists near the end of the 19th century found that nearly all were members of the established church or affiliated with some other church.

    In short, scientists who were committed Christians include men often considered to be fathers of the fields of astronomy, atomic theory, calculus, chemistry, computers, electricity, genetics, geology, mathematics, and physics. In the late 1990s, a survey found that about 40 percent of American scientists believe in a personal God and an afterlife — a percentage that is basically unchanged since the early 20th century. A listing of eminent 20th-century scientists who were religious believers would be far too voluminous to include here — so let’s not bring coals to Newcastle, but simply note that the list would be large indeed, including Nobel Prize winners.

    Far from being inimical to science, then, the Judeo-Christian worldview is the only belief system that actually produced it. Scientists who (in Boyle’s words) viewed nature as “the immutable workmanship of the omniscient Architect” were the pathfinders who originated the scientific enterprise. The assertion that intelligent design is automatically “not science” because it may support the concept of a creator is a statement of materialist philosophy, not of any intrinsic requirement of science itself.

    The redefinition of science in materialist terms — never wholly successful, but probably now the predominant view — required the confluence of several intellectual currents. The attack on religious belief in general, and Christianity in particular, has been underway for more than two centuries . . . . IT WAS THE AWE-INSPIRING SUCCESS of science itself, nurtured for centuries in a Christian belief system, that caused many to turn to it as the comprehensive source of explanation. With the mighty technology spawned by science in his hands, man could exalt himself, it seemed, and dispense with God. Although Darwin was by no means the sole cause of the apotheosis of materialist science, his theories gave it crucial support. It is perhaps not altogether a coincidence that the year 1882, in which Darwin died, found Nietzsche proclaiming that “God is dead…and we have killed him.”

    The capture of science (in considerable measure) by materialist philosophy was aided by the hasty retreat of many theists. There are those who duck any conflict by declaring that science and religion occupy non-overlapping domains or, to use a current catchphrase, separate “magisteria.” One hears this dichotomy expressed in apothegms such as, “Science asks how; religion asks why.” In this view, science is the domain of hard facts and objective truth. Religion is the realm of subjective belief and faith. Science is publicly verifiable, and is the only kind of truth that can be allowed in the public square. Religion is private, unverifiable, and cannot be permitted to intrude into public affairs, including education. The two magisteria do not conflict, because they never come into contact with each other. To achieve this peace, all the theists have to do is interpret away many of the central beliefs of the Judeo-Christian tradition.

    This retreat makes some theists happy, because they can avoid a fight that they feel ill-equipped to win, and can retire to a cozy warren of warm, fuzzy irrelevancy. It also makes materialists happy, because the field has been ceded to them. As ID advocate Phillip Johnson remarks acerbically:

    Politically astute scientific naturalists feel no hostility toward those religious leaders who implicitly accept the key naturalistic doctrine that supernatural powers do not actually affect the course of nature. In fact, many scientific leaders disapprove of aggressive atheists like Richard Dawkins, who seem to be asking for trouble by picking fights with religious people who only want to surrender with dignity.

    But the ID theorists do not go gentle into that good night. That’s what’s different about intelligent design. ID says that the best evidence we have shows that life is the product of a real intelligent agent, actually working in space and time, and that the designer’s hand can be detected, scientifically and mathematically, by what we know about the kinds of things that are produced only by intelligence. It is making scientific claims about the real world. Because it relies on objective fact and scientific reasoning, ID seeks admission to the public square. Rather than retreating to the gaseous realm of the subjective, it challenges the materialist conception of science on its own turf. It thus threatens materialism generally, with all that that entails for morality, law, culture — and even for what it means to be human.

    THOSE WHO NOW OCCUPY the public square will fight to keep possession of it. The advocates of Darwinian materialism believe that they are in possession of The Truth, and are perfectly willing to invoke the power of the state to suppress competing views [–> which should be a big warning-sign that something has gone very wrong] . . . [“What’s the Big Deal About Intelligent Design?” By Dan Peterson, American Spectator, Published 12/22/2005; also cf his earlier popular level summary on ID here. (HT: Wayback Machine.)]

    These seem necessary at this point to correct a longstanding agit prop false and persistent accusation (not mere innocent mischaracterisation), and should be seen i/l/o the direct text we have from Newton.

    KF

  89. 89
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, to further document my underlying point, I will now excerpt an October 13th, 1880 letter to Edward Bibbins Aveling (a physician, and Common Law husband of Eleanor Marx (1884), thus better known to history as Karl Marx’s de facto son- in- law) in reference to requested remarks on a book by Aveling that sought to popularise Darwin’s thought [apparently, The Student’s Darwin. London: Freethought Publishing Co., 1881]. Charles Darwin went on record as follows:

    . . . though I am a strong advocate for free thought [–> NB: free-thought is an old and frankly tendentious synonym for skepticism, agnosticism or atheism, which are often quite dogmatic as Lewontin et al showed] on all subjects, yet it appears to me (whether rightly or wrongly) that direct arguments against christianity & theism produce hardly any effect on the public; & freedom of thought is best promoted by the gradual illumination of men’s minds, which follows from the advance of science. [–> obviously, evolutionary materialistic scientism and/or fellow traveller ideologies] It has, therefore, been always my object to avoid writing on religion, & I have confined myself to science. I may, however, have been unduly biassed by the pain which it would give some members of my family [–> NB: especially his wife, Emma], if I aided in any way direct attacks on religion.

    There is a term for that strategic option, the indirect approach; as Liddell Hart advocated.

    This letter makes it utterly clear that a key background motive for Darwin’s theorising on origins science was to put God out of a job, thus indirectly undermining the plausibility of believing in God.

    Fair comment, in thinking and acting like this, Darwin probably believed that he was championing enlightenment and science-led progress in their path to victory over backward, irrational but emotionally clung-to beliefs, he patently imagined that the Christian Faith was backward superstition to be replaced by “science.” Which, is a classic thesis of scientism. And so his strategy was to lead in a science that was in his mind showing just how outdated and ill-founded the Judaeo-Christian theism that had dominated the West since Constantine in the 300’s was.

    In case the views just raised are doubted, here is the very same Aveling on Darwin, the Christian faith and clergy, shortly after his passing:

    SINCE the death of our great teacher, the clergy, who denounced him aforetime with that volubility of which long practice in the art of vituperation has made them consummate masters, have claimed the illustrious dead as one of their flock . . . . those who are trying to effect a compromise between the irreconcilables, religion and scientific thought, from the Archbishop of Canterbury upwards, are assuring us that the great truths of Evolution are all in harmony with the Bible, and have been this long time embodied in more or less hidden guise in the teaching of the Church—that, in short, the discoveries of to-day are a godsend to religion, whilst less versatile thinkers had regarded them the rather as a god’s end. All this might have been passed by with pity and a sigh for something more novel. But when these same persons tell us that Charles Darwin was a religious man and a Christian, a feeling other than one of pity is ours . . . .

    [Having been invited to lunch and at the end of the meal with a Dr Büchner of Germany, withdrawing to Darwin’s study, so] once we were within the walls of his study, and he was sitting in most unconventional fashion in the large, well-worn easy chair, almost the first thing he said was, “Why do you call yourselves Atheists?” . . . . It was pointed out that the Greek ? was privative, not negative; that whilst we did not commit the folly of god-denial, we avoided with equal care the folly of god-assertion: that as god was not proven, we were without god (?????) and by consequence were with hope in this world, and in this world alone . . . with point after point of our argument he agreed; statement on statement that was made he endorsed, saying finally: “I am with you in thought, but I should prefer the word Agnostic to the word Atheist.”

    Upon this the suggestion was made that, after all, “Agnostic” was but “Atheist” writ respectable, and “Atheist” was only “Agnostic” writ aggressive. To say that one did not know was the verbal equivalent of saying that one was destitute of the god-idea, whilst at the same time a sop was thrown to the Cerberus of society by the adoption of a name less determined and uncompromising. At this he smiled and asked: “Why should you be so aggressive? Is anything gained by trying to force these new ideas upon the mass of mankind? It is all very well for educated, cultured, thoughtful people; but are the masses yet ripe for it?”

    Then we asked him whether the same questions he now asked of us had not been addressed to him about the years 1859—60, when his immortal “Origin of Species” first saw the light. Many at that time had thought a greater wisdom would have been shown in only enunciating the revolutionary truths of Natural and Sexual Selection to the judicious few. Many had, as of old, dreaded the open declaration of truth to the multitudes. New ideas are always at first regarded as only for the study.

    Danger is feared if they are proclaimed abroad on the house-tops, and discussed in market-place and home. But he, happily for humanity, had by the gentle, irresistible power of reason, forced his new ideas upon the mass of the people. And the masses had been found ripe for it. Had he kept silence, the tremendous strides taken by human thought during the last twenty-one years would have been shorn of their fair proportions, perhaps had hardly been made at all. His own illustrious example was encouragement, was for a command to every thinker to make known to all his fellows that which he believed to be the truth.

    Then the talk fell upon Christianity, and these remarkable words were uttered: “I never gave up Christianity until I was forty years of age.” I commend these words to the careful consideration of all and sundry who claimed the great naturalist as an orthodox Christian . . . [Aveling, E. B. 1883. The religious views of Charles Darwin. London: Freethought Publishing Company. In reply to this, Darwin’s son, Francis wrote: “Dr. Aveling tried to show that the terms “Agnostic” and “Atheist” were practically equivalent—that an atheist is one who, without denying the existence of God, is without God, inasmuch as he is unconvinced of the existence of a Deity. My father’s replies implied his preference for the unaggressive attitude of an Agnostic. Dr. Aveling seems (p. 5) to regard the absence of aggressiveness in my father’s views as distinguishing them in an unessential manner from his own. But, in my judgment, it is precisely differences of this kind which distinguish him so completely from the class of thinkers to which Dr. Aveling belongs.”]

    Of course, we here meet a clever rhetorical redefinition of atheism. A more frank and truthful summary is that, instead: atheism normally and across many centuries is understood as the active, even aggressive, denial of the reality of God, not merely doubting it while pretending to know enough that were there good warrant one of such erudition and brilliance would be well aware of it.

    Which, is of course the reason why Francis Darwin emphasises the difference between Agnosticism and Atheism in his own onward response as cited. But, from the pen of Aveling, and the association of Dr. Ludwig Büchner, of Darmstadt, president of The International Federation of Freethinkers Congress in London on September 25th, 26th, 27th of 1881, we have a clear enough picture on Darwin’s views on Religion and how this intersected with his theory and its expected effect on the masses.

    In particular, Darwin was plainly of the view that the Christian faith is ill-founded, that there is no clear warrant for confidence in the reality of God, and that gradual scientific enlightenment would so undermine the Christian faith and theism that eventually an “enlightened” era under the name science would emerge. God’s reality would not so much be hotly dismissed but rather viewed as increasingly doubtful and irrelevant to the world of informed thought.

    Unsurprisingly, then, once Darwinian thought on the origin of the varieties of life had triumphed in the academy, in education and in the popular media, for the first time in history Atheism became a movement with a mass following. The prestige of Big-S Science was harnessed to enable men in turning their backs on God.

    But it turns out that Darwin’s theories and descendants to today have not actually provided an empirically well warranted account of the blind watchmaker dynamics by which functionally specific complex organisation and/or associated information [FSCO/I] originated in the first living cell or in life forms exhibiting dozens of diverse main body plans. Indeed, what is empirically warranted instead, is that FSCO/I is a reliable sign of intelligently directed configuration as key causal factor.

    Accordingly, Philip Johnson was right in his reply to Lewontin:

    For scientific materialists the materialism comes first; the science comes thereafter. [Emphasis original] We might more accurately term them “materialists employing science.” And if materialism is true, then some materialistic theory of evolution has to be true simply as a matter of logical deduction, regardless of the evidence.

    [–> notice, the power of an undisclosed, question-begging, controlling assumption . . . often put up as if it were a mere reasonable methodological constraint; emphasis added. Let us note how Rational Wiki, so-called, presents it:

    “Methodological naturalism is the label for the required assumption of philosophical naturalism when working with the scientific method. Methodological naturalists limit their scientific research to the study of natural causes, because any attempts to define causal relationships with the supernatural are never fruitful, and result in the creation of scientific “dead ends” and God of the gaps-type hypotheses.” [NB: I am aware that Rational Wiki has backed away, un-announced, from the cat-out-of-the-bag direct phrasing that was in place a few years ago. That historic phrasing is still valid as a summary of what is going on.]

    Of course, this ideological imposition on science that subverts it from freely seeking the empirically, observationally anchored truth about our world pivots on the deception of side-stepping the obvious fact since Plato in The Laws Bk X, that there is a second, readily empirically testable and observable alternative to “natural vs [the suspect] supernatural.” Namely, blind chance and/or mechanical necessity [= the natural] vs the ART-ificial, the latter acting by evident intelligently directed configuration. [Cf Plantinga’s reply here and here.]

    And as for the god of the gaps canard, the issue is, inference to best explanation across competing live option candidates. If chance and necessity is a candidate, so is intelligence acting by art through design. And it is not an appeal to ever- diminishing- ignorance to point out that design, rooted in intelligent action, routinely configures systems exhibiting functionally specific, often fine tuned complex organisation and associated information. Nor, that it is the only observed cause of such, nor that the search challenge of our observed cosmos makes it maximally implausible that blind chance and/or mechanical necessity can account for such.]

    That theory will necessarily be at least roughly like neo-Darwinism, in that it will have to involve some combination of random changes and law-like processes capable of producing complicated organisms that (in Dawkins’ words) “give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.”

    . . . . The debate about creation and evolution is not deadlocked . . . Biblical literalism is not the issue. The issue is whether materialism and rationality are the same thing. Darwinism is based on an a priori commitment to materialism, not on a philosophically neutral assessment of the evidence. Separate the philosophy from the science, and the proud tower collapses. [Emphasis added.] [The Unraveling of Scientific Materialism, First Things, 77 (Nov. 1997), pp. 22 – 25.]

    KF

  90. 90
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Moreover, Martin Mahner is a fairly active German author on materialism in science, ontological and methodological, so called. Here is a key remark he made on the matter:

    http://www.springerlink.com/co......html#CR31

    . . . metaphysical naturalism is a constitutive ontological principle of science in that the general empirical methods of science, such as observation, measurement and experiment, and thus the very production of empirical evidence, presuppose a no-supernature principle [–> recall, we are dealing with what is institutionally dominant, it matters not that some would disagree, this is a statement of where the Overton Window lies and what the power brokers think they have power to lock out, regardless of actual merits] . . . .

    Metaphysical or ontological naturalism (henceforth: ON) [“roughly” and “simply”] is the view that all that exists is our lawful spatiotemporal world. Its negation is of course supernaturalism: the view that our lawful spatiotemporal world is not all that exists because there is another non-spatiotemporal world transcending the natural one, whose inhabitants—usually considered to be intentional beings—are not subject to natural laws . . . . Both scientists and science educators keep being challenged by creationists of all shades, who try hard to reintroduce supernaturalist explanations into biology and into all the areas of science that concern the origin of the world in general and of human beings in particular. [–> Confession by projection? No merely human power class has a permanent empire. This too will fall.]

    [–> of course he here glides by the point Plato highlighted in The Laws Bk X, natural vs artificial, and the linked point that it is empirically well founded that there are signs of intelligently directed configuration as cause, where a major goal and condition of credibility of science is that it seeks empirically supported truth about our world. Ideological capture of science and science education potentially has a ruinous cost.]

    A major aspect of this debate is the role of ON in science . . . .

    ON is not part of a deductive argument in the sense that if we collected all the statements or theories of science and used them as premises, then ON would logically follow. After all, scientific theories do not explicitly talk about anything metaphysical such as the presence or absence of supernatural entities: they simply refer to natural entities and processes only. Therefore, ON rather is a tacit [= hidden, read between the lines] metaphysical supposition of science, an ontological postulate. It is part of a metascientific framework or, if preferred, of the metaparadigm of science that guides the construction and evaluation of theories, and that helps to explain why science works and succeeds in studying and explaining the world. [–> cat out of the bag.] [“The role of Metaphysical Naturalism in Science,” Science and Education, 2011]

    The matter is clear and any prudent educator or thinker on related subjects would avoid terminology that invites the Lewontin imposition, unless that is precisely what it is desired to enable. In that regard we can see further reasons to view the 2005 corrective definition of science for use in schools as prudent and well justified.

    KF

  91. 91
    chuckdarwin says:

    KF writes @ 9 re me and Sev:

    [A]pparently, you think it is strange that people would have reasonable questions about the current dominant policy and cultural agenda of our civilisation and where it likely leads.

    Not at all. What I find strange is the virtually impenetrable thicket of verbiage you think necessary to communicate one simple (and simplistic) idea: that without embracing Christianity we are all doomed….

  92. 92
    Viola Lee says:

    KF writes, “Newton clearly thought God did it and then proceeded to produce the greatest breakthroughs in the history of modern science and mathematics.”

    I’ve already said that a theistic perspective can lead one to investigate the order in the world.

    But is “God did it” a scientific explanation?

    How about a short (100 words or less) answer?

  93. 93
    jerry says:

    How about a short (100 words or less) answer

    You have been answered.

    Why repeat this?

    Aside: when will Kf learn this is all about him and his style, not his ideas? By the way this comment about Kf is also is a repeat.

    Provoking Kf is the most popular sport on UD because everyone knows he will use thousands of indecipherable words to answer for which he can then be criticized for his reply whatever it was.

  94. 94
    jerry says:

    that without embracing Christianity we are all doomed….

    As usual you are wrong.

    Nearly batting a thousand in being incorrect. Takes real talent though to be this consistently wrong.

  95. 95
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    But is “God did it” a scientific explanation?

    Rudolf Diesel, patented the diesel engine .
    God ,patented all the life forms including Rudolf Diesel.

    Rudolf did it.
    God did it.

    Maybe you will not find the name of Rudolf Diesel inside the diesel engine components but if you have 1 sane neuron you will conclude that an intelligent person did it.
    A simple cell is a factory with thousands of motors operating with precision . Maybe you don’t find the God’s name inside the components of a cell but if you have 1 sane neuron you will conclude that an Intelligent Person did it.

  96. 96
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, if you will look above, you will see that I provided several pieces of reference documentation. Yes, Newton is hard to read, C17 English is not as today. Darwin and co are admittedly Victorian and Mahner a German but I believe the message is clear enough. Very little is from me so it cannot be that I am at fault here whatever your complaints. KF

  97. 97
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, kindly see the above to Jerry. You are reacting to reference documentation; and we all know that when I summed up in my words it was treated as dubious. I trust Newton in Opticks, Query 31 and in the General Scholium to Principia, is sufficient. KF

  98. 98
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, you already had it from me. Now you have it from reference documentation. And Newton is not only a theist but a design thinker AND a Biblical Creationist, explicitly citing Paul as he quoted Cleanthes, on Mars Hill in Ac 17. Newton is a capital example as to why the science stopper rhetoric so beloved of those who attack design thinkers — yes, it becomes very personal and even propagandistic — is shattered irrecoverably. Evasions fail, the point is refuted by reference to the single most significant modern scientist. Also, the last of the Magi in the words of Keynes, who dealt with his papers. Going back, the corrective definition of 2005 is fully historically warranted. KF

  99. 99
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, I would settle for a good old fashioned Stoic patriot like Marcus Tullus Cicero:

    , On the Republic, Bk 3: {22.} [33] L . . . True law is right reason in agreement with [–> our morally governed] nature , it is of universal application, unchanging and everlasting; it summons to duty by its commands, and averts from wrongdoing by its prohibitions. And it does not lay its commands or prohibitions upon good men in vain, though neither have any effect on the wicked. It is a sin to try to alter this law, nor is it allowable to attempt to repeal any part of it [–> as universally binding core of law], and it is impossible to abolish it entirely. We cannot be freed from its obligations by senate or people [–> as binding, universal, coeval with our humanity], and we need not look outside ourselves for an expounder or interpreter of it. [–> sound conscience- guided reason will point out the core] And there will not be different laws at Rome and at Athens, or different laws now and in the future, but one eternal and unchangeable law will be valid for all nations and all times, and there will be one master and ruler, that is, God, over us all, for he is the author of this law, its promulgator, and its enforcing judge. Whoever is disobedient is fleeing from himself and denying his human nature, and by reason of this very fact he will suffer the worst penalties, even if he escapes what is commonly considered punishment. . . . – Marcus Tullius Cicero, c. 55 – 54 BC

    A Deist like Jefferson or Franklin would do, too.

    Has it dawned on you that I have been pointing to first duties of reason as built in intelligible law accessible to all who do not benumb consciences and endarken minds, on which modern liberty and constitutional democracy were actually built? A core of law that BTW is endorsed in both the OT and the NT, endorsed precisely as self evident?

    We are manifestly on a suicidal path as a civilisation as just our million more of our living posterity slaughtered per week and linked demographic collapse suffice to show. Now we have senior judges professing to not be able to identify what a woman is.

    Not good signs, and there are many more.

    KF

  100. 100
    kairosfocus says:

    I find it interesting that so far there has not been uptake on the Russian view of colour revolutions and linked considerations on 4th gen war. I think we are going beyond Schaeffer into a very dangerous time.

  101. 101
    jerry says:

    Very little is from me so it cannot be that I am at fault here whatever your complaints

    You chose them.

    There are tens of thousands of words in your own rhetoric also

    You are obviously completely unaware of what’s going on.

  102. 102
    Viola Lee says:

    KF, you say you have answered my question, but you have not, or maybe it’s been lost in all your replies. Yes, Newton had a religious belief that God did it. Is “”God did it” a scientific explanation” is a separate question.

    Why can’t you provide a short answer?

  103. 103
    jerry says:

    KF, you say you have answered my question, but you have not, or maybe it’s been lost in all your replies. Yes, Newton had a religious belief that God did it. Is “”God did it” a scientific explanation” is a separate question.

    Why can’t you provide a short answer?

    Perfect example of

    Provoking Kf is the most popular sport on UD because everyone knows he will use thousands of indecipherable words to answer for which he can then be criticized for his reply whatever it was.

    By the way Kf did answer this in a way and it was short. See#86 which is in reference to my reply that answered this question.

  104. 104
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, I chose key historical references that are in the original voices as summaries today were being brushed aside. And no there are not tens of thousands of my words in those comments. KF

  105. 105
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, you challenged the summary that the corrective 2005 definition of science for schools was so, and whether theism and especially design thought are science stoppers, familiar language from some pretty tendentious literature, some of it lawfare. My base reply was to cite Newton in Opticks Query 31, and to invite you to read the query. It will suffice to show just where the traditional school level definition of science and its methods comes from, Newton and in this passage though doubtless not usually directly. Newton also refutes by counter example the commonly suggested notion that theistic thought, design thought and even biblical creationism are anti science science stoppers. Newton actually manages to suggest lines of inquiry for the next 200+ years for physics. Peterson outlines the history and current situation. Darwin and Aveling let the cat out of the bag even more than Lewontin. As at now, I think we can conclude the matter is settled on the merits and mostly from the horses’ mouths. KF

  106. 106
    jerry says:

    And no there are not tens of thousands of my words in those comments

    So far over 21 thousand words in the comments on this thread. Any guess what percentage is Kf?

    My reference was to your comments in general.

  107. 107
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, I spoke to my responses to VL, which is the context of immediate discussion. It will be readily apparent that I mostly cited sources, many of which are not well known and which I can guarantee will not be followed up is simply linked and summarised. For example, we have yet to see VL actually respond to newton’s wider remarks in Opticks, Query 31, or for that matter explicitly acknowledge that this is the obvious root for the corrective definition of 2005. KF

  108. 108
    jerry says:

    and which I can guarantee will not be followed up

    This is true about all your comments everywhere on this site.

    I rarely read them because it is a struggle to do so. So just assume almost nothing of what you write gets read.

    Which leads to the question, why make comments that don’t get read?

    During a typical week, I read about a hundred articles on various topics so I know what good writing is.

  109. 109
    Viola Lee says:

    Jerry, I agreed a lot with your answer given at 83. However, all 86 said ” “VL, attn Jerry, there is an openness to a fifth force, of course. KF”

    So I’m interested in a short answer from KF. Is “God did it” a scientific answer?

    Surely KF can tell me what he thinks.

  110. 110
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, there has long been a discussion in physics as to whether there is a fifth fundamental force, not just gravity, electro-magnetism, weak and strong. So, the door needs to be left open. KF

  111. 111
    Silver Asiatic says:

    I don’t think KF needs it, but I’ll lend my voice of support to his posts, even the long complex ones, which I find to be excellent. He details his thoughts and provides source material to support the arguments. Very often, he includes commentary within antiquated texts.
    Yes, these often require careful reading. This cuts against the trend where people think they can conduct an intellectual debate with 280 character tweets. Not every argument can be solved with a bumper-sticker slogan. So, I suggest we just take the time, slow down and read what’s there. Absorb the argument and debate or build on it.

  112. 112
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N:

    We can take it that the substantial questions raised regarding the current worldview state have been settled substantially. Settled, in favour of the points in the OP.

    For those interested in substance, we can turn to the geostrategic issues in play behind the situation, as the OP points to also.

    We need to ask, why is it that a fundamentally incoherent ideology and worldview that is also manifestly damaging to civilisation can be so entrenched. The answer, obviously, is that it was not a matter of actual merits but of power games. As Schaeffer highlighted, over generations and even centuries, our intellectual leadership has progressively sought to reconceptualise the world without reference to built in recognised canons of justice that would restrain them. That’s the clue, it points to power elites grasping for lawless oligarchy, however disguised.

    Now, we are seeing the potential death of constitutional democracy pivoting on guarding the civil peace of justice, due balance of rights, freedoms and duties.

    In that context, the Russian Generals likely have a serious point when they point to a wave of tainted colour revolutions and identify subversion as shadow war. That does not justify what they are doing in the Ukraine, but it is a point to ponder. For, shadow war using agit prop, lawfare, subversion etc is fourth generation warfare which can reduce the conquered under subjugation just as effectively as Hitler’s panzers.

    In which context, I must ask whether the theme colour for the American tainted colour revolution is black.

    KF

  113. 113
    Viola Lee says:

    KF, are you saying that the fifth force might be God?

    I’m asking, in general, is the conclusion that “God did it” a scientific explanation?

  114. 114
    Viola Lee says:

    SA, what is your answer to the question: In general, would “God did it” be a scientific explanation?

  115. 115
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: A classic on just why evolutionary materialist scientism is incoherent, a point echoed in Durston’s video suggested by Jerry:

    “It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For

    if

    [p:] my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain

    [–> taking in DNA, epigenetics and matters of computer organisation, programming and dynamic-stochastic processes; notice, “my brain,” i.e. self referential]
    ______________________________

    [ THEN]

    [q:] I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true.

    [–> indeed, blindly mechanical computation is not in itself a rational process, the only rationality is the canned rationality of the programmer, where survival-filtered lucky noise is not a credible programmer, note the funcionally specific, highly complex organised information rich code and algorithms in D/RNA, i.e. language and goal directed stepwise process . . . an observationally validated adequate source for such is _____ ?]

    [Corollary 1:] They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically.

    And hence

    [Corollary 2:] I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. [–> grand, self-referential delusion, utterly absurd self-falsifying incoherence]

    In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter.” [“When I am dead,” in Possible Worlds: And Other Essays [1927], Chatto and Windus: London, 1932, reprint, p.209. Cf. here on (and esp here) on the self-refutation by self-falsifying self referential incoherence and on linked amorality.]

    Such a view is necessarily false, it reduces one to self referential grand delusion.

    It is time to admit it frankly, then start afresh with more promising materials.

    PPS: SA, thanks.

  116. 116
    Viola Lee says:

    You are avoiding the question, KF. 🙂 Many religious people, I think, would agree that “God did it” is not a scientific explanation. What do you think?

  117. 117
    jerry says:

    Jerry, there is an openness to a fifth force, of course. KF”

    So I’m interested in a short answer from KF. Is “God did it” a scientific answer?

    This has nothing to do with God or any intelligence.

    It’s in reference to some other possible force operating blindly in nature such as gravity and the electro magnetic force.

    It has been referenced before as a possibility but there is no indication that such a force actually exists. But ID would certainly not object to it if one was found.

  118. 118
    jerry says:

    This cuts against the trend where people think they can conduct an intellectual debate with 280 character tweets. Not every argument can be solved with a bumper-sticker slogan.

    I have to disagree.

    Most arguments can be resolved with very short replies. Often clarification is necessary but short 100-200 word answers will often work.

    But what we see is endless repeats of the same thing, usually much too long the first time.

    If people here were limited to 250 words including quotes more would get accomplished.

    Aside: I’m not against writing something for the record which may be long but not meant to be offered as an argument.

    If they feel more is needed, links could be used for this.

  119. 119
    Silver Asiatic says:

    VL

    In general, would “God did it” be a scientific explanation?

    If someone asked: “What is the chemical composition of water?” then the answer “God did it” wouldn’t be a scientific explanation. Something like: “What color are gray wolves?” would be the same. We would just give the color and not say “God did it”.
    But there are other more significant questions where the idea that God is the necessary being involved in the observed event would be a perfectly reasonable corollary to the scientific exploration.
    That’s what Newton showed in his principia. He took his observations and proposed God as the best explanation.
    ID does the same but avoids referencing God.
    The reason for that is that we live in a secularized culture that does not favor any one religion. But I don’t see why scientists who live, for example, in an Islamic theocracy couldn’t say that Allah is the best candidate for the origin of the universe. There is no other material/physical agency that can be the explanation for that, and the universe shows qualities that God alone can fulfill.
    ID just references “intelligence” in order to keep a materialist viewpoint in focus because that’s what our culture accepts. But not all cultures have to agree with that.

  120. 120
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Viola Lee
    Many religious people, I think, would agree that “God did it” is not a scientific explanation. What do you think?

    😆 Let’s not forget that contemporary “scientific” mainstream think that “Chance did it “ . Is this a scientific explanation?
    Was SETI a scientific enterprize ? Was NOT, acording to VL.
    PS: What is the difference between “God did it” and “Chance did it “. The obvious bias of VL stands out .

  121. 121
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Jerry

    Most arguments can be resolved with very short replies.

    Meyer’s recent book is 400 pages or so. He’s arguing for ID – so total up all the pages he has written in arguments defending ID and its in the thousands.
    Anti-Darwin arguments cannot be solved in short answers. Philosophical arguments are complex. Just defining the terminology is a challenge. Religious arguments are very complex.

    At the same time, I can accept anyone who thinks they have the perfect argument in a sentence or two. If that’s all they have to say, that’s fine with me. If they can convince people in a sentence – that is truly great also. Even if they can’t convince anyone at all, if they think they said everything that was needed, then that’s good with me. That makes for a very short conversation.
    But I think in just about every academic area, scholars work on arguments that are complex and take a lot of wriiting, thought, research and time to sort out.
    History, philosophy, art, religion, literature, politics, sociology, morality — those require detailed and deeper analysis.
    Things like engineering or manufacturing or chemistry or computer repair or even software programming — all of those do not need essay-level analysis usually. If there’s a problem, it’s often solved with a short answer. For some of those functional areas, the best, most efficient, quickest and most robust and easiest answer wins.
    That’s not at all the same for many other areas.

  122. 122
    Silver Asiatic says:

    LCD

    True. “Chance” cannot be a cause. It’s an accidental output. And science cannot even explain what chance is.

  123. 123
    jerry says:

    ID just references “intelligence” in order to keep a materialist viewpoint in focus because that’s what our culture accepts. But not all cultures have to agree with that.

    I completely disagree with this.

    ID has zero to do with belief or lack of belief in God or accepting a materialistic worldview or not. It is just logic applied to the evidence.

    The logic and evidence leads you in definite directions though.

    Anti-Darwin arguments cannot be solved in short answers.

    Yes, it can!!!!

    Meyer’s recent book is 400 pages or so. He’s arguing for ID – so total up all the pages he has written in arguments defending ID and its in the thousands.

    It actually can be summed up in less than 250 words.

    The entire book does not have to be in every comment nor even a long summary. They can be referenced.

  124. 124
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Jerry

    It actually can be summed up in less than 250 words.

    An argument requires more than a summary.

    ID has zero to do with belief or lack of belief in God or accepting a materialistic worldview or not. It is just logic applied to the evidence.

    I look at the evidence and conclude “God did it”. Is ID ok with that explanation?

  125. 125
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Silver Asiatic
    True. “Chance” cannot be a cause. It’s an accidental output. And science cannot even explain what chance is.

    Maybe you believe that Mayer himself has written the book . You are wrong. All Mayer did was to detonate a bomb inside a barrack full with logs and under logs was a canister with ink. That’s all. After smoke disappeared the book was shinning in the middle of the barrack . I swear. Mayer just picked it up and sent it to Amazon .These thing happens all the time : origin of life ,origin of books, origin of Boeing 747 ,etc… I just wonder who detonated the bomb in the barrack full with barrels with inorganic chemicals that produced life?

  126. 126
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, just to be clear, God would be an agent, not a force. Intelligently directed configuration uses forces, materials, laws of nature etc but the seat of intelligence will be an agent. KF

  127. 127
    jerry says:

    I look at the evidence and conclude “God did it”. Is ID ok with that explanation?

    You are welcome to make that conclusion.

    ID does not say it is wrong or it is correct. So to connect it to ID actually causes problems because it implies this is what ID is about.

    An argument requires more than a summary.

    Both can be short and there is no need to quote an entire book.

    For example, a summary

    Meyer says that a creator is a likely explanation for the beginning and nature of the universe.

    Meyer also says that an intelligence is the likely explanation for the origin of life.

    For an argument,

    Meyer points to the fine tuning of the universe as the reason it did not arise accidentally. Meyer points to the evidence of expansion and having a finite beginning as the reason it had a beginning.

    His argument on life is less convincing for a God because some other intelligence could have been the cause.

    Critiques on the improbability argument are mainly that there could be infinite instances of universes so our fine tuning is just the one we happen to live in. But infinite occurrence incur even more absurd possibilities so they are ruled out.

    That is enough. Now I understand that it cannot encompass everything but any further point could be most often addressed in less than 250 word chunks.

  128. 128
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Jerry

    So to connect [God] to ID actually causes problems because it implies this is what ID is about.

    That’s what I think I said and you disagreed with it. ID uses a materialist framework that does not reference God. ID argues “as if” materialism is ok – so it tries to show that the Darwinian and materialist view doesn’t work on their own standards. If ID said “God did it”, even if that was correct, ID would be dismissed and ridiculed. So, ID just accepts materialist-science where God is not allowed to be mentioned. I don’t see anything wrong with that at all. That’s how the science-game is played. Nobody can mention God. Of course, the materialists take it farther and think that since science cannot reference God, that’s proof that God doesn’t exist.

  129. 129
    vividbleau says:

    SA
    “True. “Chance” cannot be a cause. It’s an accidental output. And science cannot even explain what chance is.”

    I can explain what chance is, chance is no thing ie nothing.

    Vivid

  130. 130
    jerry says:

    Of course, the materialists take it farther and think that since science cannot reference God, that’s proof that God doesn’t exist.

    Science by definition can not reference God. So to take a definition and then use it to eliminate what is not included in the definition is a non-sequitur.

    I constantly say that ID is Science+. What does this mean? It means that there is more than what science can show and ID encompasses both science and other conclusions that are evidence based. Above I called these additional things truth.

    So truth will include science but it will also include other things which science cannot address. Some of these are addressed by ID. But truth is not identical with ID. There are certain truths that ID cannot address.

    For example, ID cannot address who the creator is and what were his intentions, only that it is extremely likely that there is one. So to equate what one believes this creator is, will at best confuse the issue and is definitely not ID.

    If you are interested in combating the misinformation about science and religion, read Meyer’s book. He goes into detail about it. But to say that ID solves the problem, it doesn’t. It makes certain beliefs more palatable.

    ID doesn’t dispute the Deist view of the creator. It certainly doesn’t point to Christianity. So to defend Christianity with ID is obviously not valid. For that one has to go elsewhere which is definitely not ID. (246 words including reference quote and additions)

  131. 131
    jerry says:

    Here is a defense of Christianity.

    1) there is a creator – definitely addressed by ID
    2) the creator is Christ or sent Christ into this world for a reason – absolutely nothing to do with ID
    3) Christ started a religion – again absolutely nothing to do with ID.

    So the conclusion of this is that the creator started Christianity. ID only has relevance in point one.

    So Christians must defend points 2 and 3. Three is easy so the focus is on 2) as the basis for belief.

    The last thing I want to do here is get into a discussion of Christianity but the same could be said for any religion that the second point would have to be argued as true and evidence provided but these would not be ID based. So ID and any religion are non equivalent. (140 words)

  132. 132
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    But to say that ID solves the problem, it doesn’t.

    Matter doesn’t create higher organisation , doesn’t use symbols , codes and meanings to achieve obvious purposes , building layers upon layer of bigger and bigger complexity. This is a magical belief . Nobody saw it , nobody will see it .It’s just a mantra of “scientific” priesthood. There is nothing scientific in this materialistic speculation run all over the scientific realm. Ignoring the obvious evidence is not science and fortunately you don’t need to be a scientist to see that.

  133. 133
    kairosfocus says:

    If it succeed, none dare call it treason.

  134. 134
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, pardon an observation, what you have is a skeletal argument, not a substantial case. There is a place for such but absent fairly serious engagement with many questions, issues and arguments it will only affect those inclined to take premises as more or less correct. Recall, Discovery and History channels, Dan Brown, new atheists, Jesus Seminar etc have spent decades promoting a body of widely believed objections. Those objections start with doubting the historicity of Jesus and the NT as an authentic C1 narrative, with the OT even more dismissed. There are entire schools of thought on theology entrenched in Seminaries, denominations and more that actually promote such. Popular level Apologists are routinely debunked and dismissed online. Apologetics is often disdained as pseudo-scholarship and more serious Apologists like a Craig are targets of specific attack. (Someone like Habermas or like Evans or Licona will probably be simply marginalised as though they were not there.) And more. I am not saying that Christians don’t have the weight on actual merits but I am saying that the above outline can only be a partial abstract for a case, especially in a context like UD. Beyond case making, lies counter culture building, which implies restructuring knowledge through independent research and analysis, which will not have access to the sort of funding tha, say,t deeply institutionalised cultural marxism increasingly has. KF

  135. 135
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: going back to the thoughts of General and First Deputy Minister Valery Gerasimov, in the OP, we need to recognise that powerful, ruthless, sometimes lawless power elites are at work on a global scale, seeking to take oligarchic power. To whatever degree various colour revolutions since the Philippines in the 1980’s have been legitimate, it is reasonable to acknowledge that several have been manipulated and tainted by proponents of 4th gen war operations. The list of revolutions and attempts he gives — see OP — likely includes several cases. The increasingly bizarre policies in much of the West suggest that similar forces are still at work. I suggest that ruthless ambitious elites either think they have critical mass or else fear that trends could reverse and are shifting gears. I further suggest that the USA has been going through a tainted McFaul type colour revolution attempt and that its future may be more in doubt than many are inclined to believe. Before deriding this as conspiracism — a conspiracy is a secret strategy — kindly read Plato’s Ship of State, and for starters Wiki on the Chinese Cultural Revolution and on the Reichstag Fire incident in Germany. The sad fate of Milada Horakova should also be noted. KF

  136. 136
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, God did it is rather strawmannish and I suggest we have got into a bad cultural habit of substituting is it scientific for is it reasonable and credibly warranted as truth, so objectively knowable. That is why we have ended up at the fallacies of evolutionary materialistic scientism. The fifth force is an allusion to onward possible forces parallel to the four commonly discussed, God as noted is an agent who may use forces. I have already spoken to logic and to logic of being, so to what they frame using possible worlds. That is antecedent to whatever we explore scientifically and warrant — cutting across dominant notions — that as God is a serious candidate necessary being, he is actual or else impossible of being. As for science, since the early 50’s cosmological fine tuning fitting the world for c chem, aqueous medium cell based life leads to a cosmological design inference on science. This would point to an extra cosmic designing agent. Some suggest for instance that we are part of a simulation or the like (on trends of computing technology) but I rather doubt that, starting with our evident responsible rational freedom. Nevertheless, that would be a design inference to creation of a simulation. Perhaps that can help us ponder why the design inference on signs is naturally and quite innocently not in itself inference to a particular agent. KF

    PS, why didn’t I think to use Wiki as a handy first note?

    In physics, there are four observed fundamental interactions (also known as fundamental forces) that form the basis of all known interactions in nature: gravitational, electromagnetic, strong nuclear, and weak nuclear forces. Some speculative theories have proposed a fifth force to explain various anomalous observations that do not fit existing theories. The characteristics of this fifth force depend on the hypothesis being advanced. Many postulate a force roughly the strength of gravity (i.e., it is much weaker than electromagnetism or the nuclear forces) with a range of anywhere from less than a millimeter to cosmological scales. Another proposal is a new weak force mediated by W’ and Z’ bosons.

    The search for a fifth force has increased in recent decades due to two discoveries in cosmology which are not explained by current theories. It has been discovered that most of the mass of the universe is accounted for by an unknown form of matter called dark matter. Most physicists believe that dark matter consists of new, undiscovered subatomic particles,[1] but some believe that it could be related to an unknown fundamental force. Second, it has also recently been discovered that the expansion of the universe is accelerating, which has been attributed to a form of energy called dark energy. Some physicists speculate that a form of dark energy called quintessence could be a fifth force.

  137. 137
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: An expose of and response to Dan Brown’s claims, as an example of what is afoot. KF

    PS, Notice AiG and its response. In the spirit of this thread (itself a response to a point SA raised), the relevant matter for UD is we are here seeing free spreading of twisted myths that are widely taken as fairly sound . . . yes, people are swallowing a novel by a non expert as giving “Fact[s]” on the Christian faith’s roots, while sound reply is only heard at the margins of popular awareness. Message/narrative domination over soundness. So, we see the importance of first principles and duties of reason, and of objectivity rooted in warrant.

  138. 138
    William J Murray says:

    I don’t think “God did it” can be a scientific question because “God” is far, far to open to interpretation unless one specifically defines what they mean by “God.”

    If one means “God” as “the necessarily existent intelligence that designed and implemented the highly fine-tuned, organized, complex, interacting patterns of phenomena found as being what we call the universe, and especially in life,” then yes. It’s a form of forensic and other investigative sciences that can attribute a death to a murderer (or other agent of homicide,) or a fire to an arsonist, or certain objects to a designer, even if those agents cannot be specifically named.

  139. 139
    kairosfocus says:

    U/D: I have added some remarks and a Wikipedia excerpt on Colour Revolutions to the F/N to the OP. It seems pretty evident that we are caught up in a global, multipolar, in the shadows geostrategic struggle. One, in which ruthless or even lawless actors are playing out a 4th generation in the shadows war that fits the pattern of my 2016 outline as is also in the OP. Yes, this is also a geostrategic design inference, to “long train[s] of abuses and usurpations” that pursue a common “design.” We could even call this World War IV, the Cold War earning the retrospective title WW III. For sure, it had the death toll of a full blown world war. Where things get interesting is when we connect dots from Schaeffer’s line of despair trend map as adjusted, to the worldviews –> ideologies and power agendas that are reflected in the seven mountains of influence framework. DV, later. KF

  140. 140
    jerry says:

    pardon an observation, what you have is a skeletal argument, not a substantial case

    Which one?

    I have made several.

    What’s the difference between skeletal and substantial? Number of words?

  141. 141
    bornagain77 says:

    Jerry, makes this blanket statement, “ID doesn’t dispute the Deist view of the creator. It certainly doesn’t point to Christianity.”

    Well Stephen Meyer would certainly be very surprised by that blanket statement from Jerry

    Deism holds that God is impersonal. i.e. That God created the universe and then, basically, walked away and let the universe unfold to its own accord. Yet Christian Theism holds that God is very much a personal God. i.e. God created the universe, did subsequent acts of creation within the universe, and that God upholds the universe, and everything within the universe, in its continual existence. (And this is even before we get to the very ‘personal’ fact that God took on a human form in Jesus Christ).

    Stephen Meyer, in his book ‘The Return of the God Hypothesis”, explicitly argues for the personal God of Christian Theism and against the impersonal God of Deism.

    As the description of his book reads, “he (Stephen Meyer) reveals a stunning conclusion: the data support not just the existence of an intelligent designer of some kind—but the existence of a personal God.”

    Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Scientific Discoveries That Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe – March 30, 2021
    Excerpt: Beginning in the late 19th century, many intellectuals began to insist that scientific knowledge conflicts with traditional theistic belief—that science and belief in God are “at war.” Philosopher of science Stephen Meyer challenges this view by examining three scientific discoveries with decidedly theistic implications. Building on the case for the intelligent design of life that he developed in Signature in the Cell and Darwin’s Doubt, Meyer demonstrates how discoveries in cosmology and physics coupled with those in biology help to establish the identity of the designing intelligence behind life and the universe.
    Meyer argues that theism—with its affirmation of a transcendent, intelligent and active creator—best explains the evidence we have concerning biological and cosmological origins. Previously Meyer refrained from attempting to answer questions about “who” might have designed life. Now he provides an evidence-based answer to perhaps the ultimate mystery of the universe. In so doing, he reveals a stunning conclusion: the data support not just the existence of an intelligent designer of some kind—but the existence of a personal God.
    https://www.amazon.com/Return-God-Hypothesis-Compelling-Scientific/dp/0062071505

    Again, a ‘personal God’ is simply incompatible with Deism.

    Of supplemental note to Christianity and the design inference.

    ID holds that the information found in DNA, (and elsewhere), requires an Intelligent Designer in order to explain its existence. And Christianity just so happens to be on record, (approx. 2000 years before information in DNA was even discovered), ‘predicting’ that life had an author.

    Acts 3:15
    You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this.

    I would call that a pretty amazing ‘prediction’.

    Christianity is, apparently, far more compatible with ID than Jerry tried to imply.

    Quotes and Verse:

    “The most fundamental definition of reality is not matter or energy, but information–and it is the processing of information that lies at the root of all physical, biological, economic, and social phenomena.”
    – Vlatko Vedral – Professor of Physics at the University of Oxford, and CQT (Centre for Quantum Technologies) at the National University of Singapore, and a Fellow of Wolfson College – a recognized leader in the field of quantum mechanics.

    48:24 mark: “It is operationally impossible to separate Reality and Information”
    49:45 mark: “In the Beginning was the Word” John 1:1
    – Prof Anton Zeilinger speaks on quantum physics. at UCT – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3ZPWW5NOrw

    John 1:1-4
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.

  142. 142
    jerry says:

    Well Stephen Meyer would certainly be very surprised

    Have you read the book?

    I have the kindle and audio versions.

    What hit me is that he uses the BCE and CE designation and doesn’t mention Christ. He does mention Christianity several times in the sense that science as we know it only really appeared due to it.

    ID doesn’t say who created life, only an intelligence did. Most assume it’s the creator of the universe but really only that it was due to an intelligence can be readily argued. I have not gotten to that part of the book yet.

    By the way I personally believe in a personal creator. Meyer uses that exact term only a couple times and in a personal sense for him.

    Argument for a personal God: there were almost infinite number of possibilities for a universe creation, but the creator chose one. The act of choosing indicates an entity making a decision. In others words the creator had reasons for this specific universe and to me this means personal.

    Hope this doesn’t start the comment avalanche.

    Aside: I continually make the argument that this is the best of all possible worlds. Does that sound like an argument for an impersonal God?

  143. 143
    bornagain77 says:

    “Have you read the book?”

    Of course I did.

    You specifically claimed that “ID doesn’t dispute the Deist view of the creator. It certainly doesn’t point to Christianity.”

    That claim is simply incompatible with what Meyer argued in his book.

    Of related interest, here are a few notes overturning the Copernican principle and/or the Principle of mediocrity, and, in the process, point to a ‘personal’ God.

    the Copernican Principle and/or the Principle of Mediocrity has now been overturned by both General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics, our two most powerful theories in science: (as well as by several other lines of scientific evidence)
    March 2022
    https://uncommondescent.com/evolution/neil-thomas-on-evolutionary-theory-as-magical-thinking/#comment-748883

  144. 144
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, the context of my comments at 134 and 137 is clearly your 118 above. And as an experienced educated person you know that substantial issues have to be addressed or at least recognised on fact and logic. Where, links often will not be read even as in the days of old 25% of readers were lost once there was a jump line. You will see that I outlined several considerations and linked two responses to the man who sold 80 million books and had a major widely viewed film adaptation with multiple media appearances as a case in point. Worse, occasionally, what happens here is actually original or at least fresh. KF

  145. 145
    kairosfocus says:

    BA77, strictly the design inference itself is to process of design, not to a particular agent. Broader considerations point to an extra cosmic agent, especially cosmological fine tuning. Beyond, logic of being is actually more foundational than scientific considerations and when the causal temporal thermodynamic world is factored in we look at necessary being reality root. Our reality as contingent, responsible, rational morally governed creatures sets a need to bridge is and ought in that root, and so to the bill of requisites, necessary [so, eternal] being, capable of being source of worlds, inherently good and utterly wise. A familiar framework. Where, too, a serious candidate necessary being is either impossible of being or is actual. KF

    PS, a skeletal outline resting on substantial arguments developed here over the course of years.

  146. 146
    jerry says:

    clearly your 118

    I stand by that comment.

    Nearly all the books I have read on persuasion emphasize shortness and a few clear logical points that address the main issue. If one wants more detail, then that can be provided.

    I haven’t a clue what you are talking about in nearly all your comments. So I don’t read them very often. It’s a struggle. I definitely don’t read your OP’s except occasionally I scan them for a sentence that might make sense.

    Aside: I actually thought it was another comment. So I was surprised you would object to that one.

    Aside2: I attended one of the top business schools in the world. I learned more in a two minute discussion in our first class in Accounting than I did in the remaining two years. That two minutes succinctly outlined why businesses fail and why others succeed. It became the basis for all else I learned.

  147. 147
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, there is persuasion and there is warrant, rhetoric and dialectic. What I noted, starting with Dan Brown et al, is material and a factor for that and many other issues. I do not think we will mutually agree on all points but I note to you that the main part of my comment just now to BA77 was 115 words, shorter even than your own example. That too is a summary, the substance of fact, logic, warrant would require considerably more. Substance, that in key part was hammered out live here at UD. KF

  148. 148
    jerry says:

    Better

    The design inference is to the process of design, not to a particular agent.

    Other considerations (cosmological fine tuning) point to an agent prior to our universe. Logic is critical though scientific findings help.

    PS, this is a skeletal outline with substantial arguments available from several sources.

    This is 47 words. I have no idea what the rest of what you said means or why it is relevant.

    I happen to think the first sentence above which is a slight modification of your sentence Is pure “gold.” It definitely should be separated out, not lost in the morass of the rest of your comment.

    Aside: I am on record as to agreeing with nearly all of your ideas. It is rhetorical style that I disagree with. You are being constantly attacked not because your ideas do not make sense but because they are presented in a way that is hard to understand.

  149. 149
    davidl1 says:

    I read the book a few months ago, so I might be forgetting something. I don’t remember anything that would indicate a personal God. I think the title goes beyond what ID can support.

    There certainly could be other things that indicate a personal God, but all ID seems to say is that there was a designer (or designers). I suppose the existence of a conscience could be considered evidence for a designer(s) that want to see certain behavior, but it doesn’t mean that there will be any personal interaction with the designed creatures.

    I thought the book was terrific as far as presenting evidence for design, but the leap to a personal God didn’t seem justified.

  150. 150
    Silver Asiatic says:

    BA77

    Christianity is, apparently, far more compatible with ID than Jerry tried to imply.

    I think we should all say that Christianity is 100% compatible with ID.
    But the debate would be: Does ID point us directly to the Christian faith?
    That’s where it’s more complicated. ID would have to give evidence supporting the teaching on the Blessed Trinity (assuming all Christians accept the Council of Nicea), for example.
    Even if we said the “personal God of theism” (so maybe Judaism and/or Islam could be included), that’s very difficult for ID to show and I don’t think ID can do it. We observe “intelligence” and then God is the best candidate. But sorting out Allah from the Jewish ideas from Christian, and even there is a creator God in Hinduism and some Buddists believe that and other non-Christian religions also. Deism believes in a creator of the laws and properties of the universe, so a deist could say everything was front-loaded at the Big Bang and that’s good enough for ID.

    This paragraph by WJM @138 says it very well:

    If one means “God” as “the necessarily existent intelligence that designed and implemented the highly fine-tuned, organized, complex, interacting patterns of phenomena found as being what we call the universe, and especially in life,” then yes. It’s a form of forensic and other investigative sciences that can attribute a death to a murderer (or other agent of homicide,) or a fire to an arsonist, or certain objects to a designer, even if those agents cannot be specifically named.

    Exactly. We can define God in general terms and then ID shows God as the most likely candidate as the intelligent designer. But ID could support any number of religions.

  151. 151
    Silver Asiatic says:

    I am on record as to agreeing with nearly all of your ideas. It is rhetorical style that I disagree with. You are being constantly attacked not because your ideas do not make sense but because they are presented in a way that is hard to understand.

    I find KF’s posts to be excellent and I enjoy his rhetorical style which, to me, has a literary quality that we don’t see very often in science writing. Yes, it takes some effort at times since he embeds complex ideas into a short space (just the opposite of complaints, he actually compresses ideas). To me, it’s very worth the time because there’s a rich level of detail and a lot of scholarship included.
    Not everybody has the same taste in writing styles. I’ve been in corporate-business life for 25 years and business writing to me is shallow and boring. I can’t build any kind of meaning out of advertising slogans, except “buy this now because your life is slipping away”.
    Trying to describe, for example, Aquinas’ cosmological argument to a newcomer is just going to take more time.

  152. 152
    Silver Asiatic says:

    The success of the argument, or the quality of the post here should be measured by its effect on the intended audience. If it’s for IDists to expand their general knowledge, that’s a lot different than writing to try to convince ID opponents. There are also people who know very little about the basics of ID and reasoning. So, you have to give a different approach for them.

  153. 153
    jerry says:

    I think we should all say that Christianity is 100% compatible with ID

    I have never indicated or suggested it wasn’t. I have been commenting here since 2006 and never came close to suggesting it wasn’t.

    I am not here to defend or promote Christianity but to promote ID and learn. I happen to believe promoting Christianity or discussing it too much gets in the way of accepting ID with a lot of people.

    I emphasize learning because this is a good place to learn about science. It was a great place to learn about the virus and how it could be treated.

  154. 154
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Earlier, I noted, it is time to connect the line of despair model to how the line stair-steps across a community, then at length a civilisation, as the seven mountains of influence model frames.

    A chain of expressions will help:

    WORLDVIEW + POLICY/CULTURAL AGENDA = IDEOLOGY

    IDEOLOGY + POWER/STRONG INFLUENCE = REGIME

    REGIME (AKA, BALANCE OF POWER-FACTIONS) + DECISION-MAKING INFLUENCES = BUSINESS AS USUAL (BAU)

    BAU + INSISTENT VOYAGE OF SINFUL FOLLY = SHIPWRECK

    In short, once a dominant but ill founded worldview is entrenched, a ratchet is engaged that leads through culture and policy agenda onward to a voyage of folly and shipwreck.

    So, we need to first recognise that the framework of the current dominant evolutionary materialistic scientism is fatally cracked, if we are to build a critical mass that can turn back before it is too late. I am not sure it isn’t already desperately late, but we must try.

    Where, that was Lewontin’s inadvertent point and it was what Haldane warned us about.

    KF

  155. 155
    kairosfocus says:

    U/D2, a F/N, how to destroy liberty using Overton Window analysis and colour revolution, 4g war operations, of course cultural marxism is a key factor now too in the black theme colour push in the USA. And yes, it is way beyond faculty debates in Uni Seminar Rooms now. The relevant issue is Plato’s Ship of State.

  156. 156
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: Mutinous Ships of State and voyages of ruinous folly:

    It is not too hard to figure out that our civilisation is in deep trouble and is most likely headed for shipwreck. (And of course, that sort of concern is dismissed as “apocalyptic,” or neurotic pessimism that refuses to pause and smell the roses.)

    Plato’s Socrates spoke to this sort of situation, long since, in the ship of state parable in The Republic, Bk VI:

    >>[Soc.] I perceive, I said, that you are vastly amused at having plunged me into such a hopeless discussion; but now hear the parable, and then you will be still more amused at the meagreness of my imagination: for the manner in which the best men are treated in their own States is so grievous that no single thing on earth is comparable to it; and therefore, if I am to plead their cause, I must have recourse to fiction, and put together a figure made up of many things, like the fabulous unions of goats and stags which are found in pictures.

    Imagine then a fleet or a ship in which there is a captain [–> often interpreted, ship’s owner] who is taller and stronger than any of the crew, but he is a little deaf and has a similar infirmity in sight, and his knowledge of navigation is not much better. [= The people own the community and in the mass are overwhelmingly strong, but are ill equipped on the whole to guide, guard and lead it]

    The sailors are quarrelling with one another about the steering – every one is of opinion that he has a right to steer [= selfish ambition to rule and dominate], though he has never learned the art of navigation and cannot tell who taught him or when he learned, and will further assert that it cannot be taught, and they are ready to cut in pieces any one who says the contrary. They throng about the captain, begging and praying him to commit the helm to them [–> kubernetes, steersman, from which both cybernetics and government come in English]; and if at any time they do not prevail, but others are preferred to them, they kill the others or throw them overboard [ = ruthless contest for domination of the community], and having first chained up the noble captain’s senses with drink or some narcotic drug [ = manipulation and befuddlement, cf. the parable of the cave], they mutiny and take possession of the ship and make free with the stores; thus, eating and drinking, they proceed on their voyage in such a manner as might be expected of them [–> Cf here Luke’s subtle case study in Ac 27].

    Him who is their partisan and cleverly aids them in their plot for getting the ship out of the captain’s hands into their own whether by force or persuasion [–> Nihilistic will to power on the premise of might and manipulation making ‘right’ ‘truth’ ‘justice’ ‘rights’ etc], they compliment with the name of sailor, pilot, able seaman, and abuse the other sort of man, whom they call a good-for-nothing; but that the true pilot must pay attention to the year and seasons and sky and stars and winds, and whatever else belongs to his art, if he intends to be really qualified for the command of a ship, and that he must and will be the steerer, whether other people like or not-the possibility of this union of authority with the steerer’s art has never seriously entered into their thoughts or been made part of their calling.

    Now in vessels which are in a state of mutiny and by sailors who are mutineers, how will the true pilot be regarded? Will he not be called by them a prater, a star-gazer, a good-for-nothing?

    [Ad.] Of course, said Adeimantus.

    [Soc.] Then you will hardly need, I said, to hear the interpretation of the figure, which describes the true philosopher in his relation to the State [ –> here we see Plato’s philosopher-king emerging]; for you understand already.

    [Ad.] Certainly.

    [Soc.] Then suppose you now take this parable to the gentleman who is surprised at finding that philosophers have no honour in their cities; explain it to him and try to convince him that their having honour would be far more extraordinary.

    [Ad.] I will.

    [Soc.] Say to him, that, in deeming the best votaries of philosophy to be useless to the rest of the world, he is right; but also tell him to attribute their uselessness to the fault of those who will not use them, and not to themselves. The pilot should not humbly beg the sailors to be commanded by him –that is not the order of nature; neither are ‘the wise to go to the doors of the rich’ –the ingenious author of this saying told a lie –but the truth is, that, when a man is ill, whether he be rich or poor, to the physician he must go, and he who wants to be governed, to him who is able to govern. [–> the issue of competence and character as qualifications to rule] The ruler who is good for anything ought not to beg his subjects to be ruled by him [ –> down this road lies the modern solution: a sound, well informed people will seek sound leaders, who will not need to manipulate or bribe or worse, and such a ruler will in turn be checked by the soundness of the people, cf. US DoI, 1776]; although the present governors of mankind are of a different stamp; they may be justly compared to the mutinous sailors, and the true helmsmen to those who are called by them good-for-nothings and star-gazers.

    [Ad.] Precisely so, he said.

    [Soc] For these reasons, and among men like these, philosophy, the noblest pursuit of all, is not likely to be much esteemed by those of the opposite faction [–> the sophists, the Demagogues, Alcibiades and co, etc]; not that the greatest and most lasting injury is done to her by her opponents, but by her own professing followers, the same of whom you suppose the accuser to say, that the greater number of them are arrant rogues, and the best are useless; in which opinion I agreed [–> even among the students of the sound state (here, political philosophy and likely history etc.), many are of unsound motivation and intent, so mere education is not enough, character transformation is critical].

    [Ad.] Yes.

    [Soc.] And the reason why the good are useless has now been explained?

    [Ad.] True.

    [Soc.] Then shall we proceed to show that the corruption of the majority is also unavoidable [–> implies a need for a corruption-restraining minority providing proverbial salt and light, cf. Ac 27, as well as justifying a governing structure turning on separation of powers, checks and balances], and that this is not to be laid to the charge of philosophy any more than the other?

    [Ad.] By all means.

    [Soc.] And let us ask and answer in turn, first going back to the description of the gentle and noble nature.[ — > note the character issue] Truth, as you will remember, was his leader, whom he followed always and in all things [ –> The spirit of truth as a marker]; failing in this, he was an impostor, and had no part or lot in true philosophy [–> the spirit of truth is a marker, for good or ill] . . . >>

    (There is more than an echo of this in Acts 27, a real world case study. [Luke, a physician, was an educated Greek with a taste for subtle references.] This blog post, on soundness in policy, will also help)

  157. 157
    jerry says:

    Kf pushes on. It cannot hurt to learn.

    I admit that I never heard the term “Overton Window” till it became part of one of Kf’s extremely dense OP’s. Only recently I started to read about it.

    Essentially it’s the slippery slope approach to reach your objective. Propose something a little out of the mainstream and if enough people repeat it, the idea seems possible and even desirable. Especially if they represent elite organizations.

    This approach is old but became obvious after “Occupy Wall Street” failed. All of sudden, cries of racism and white supremacy appeared everywhere. Then climate catastrophe control was accelerated as absolutely necessary. Now it is gender or sexual identity. Obviously the controls for C19 became a very useful tool.

    So what are the unthinkable goals and who is controlling the flow of these ideas. A lot of people are pointing to Marxists and academics as the culprits. But are they?

    If one follows the money, it is not academia who is in control. I would look to those pushing for world government by the elites. That is the WEF and it’s advocates. Two organizations that are intertwined control 18 trillion dollars and essentially own every corporation or news organization in the world.

    These are Vanguard and BlackRock. Where did the money come from? Pension funds mainly.

    Extreme irony: the doubling of the stock market under Donald Trump’s policies provided their wealth.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overton_window

    Aside: are the academics who receive so much press as the perpetrators of our downfall just the useful idiots of the elites who are the actual ones with the money and pulling the strings.

  158. 158
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Ben Shapiro mentioned the Overton Window in his book “The Authoritarian Moment”. The ruling elite only keeps open a narrow window of ideas acceptable to them. This channels the focus and prevents opposition. That’s what Vanguard and Blackrock do for the US media.
    In an example recently, I searched for information on this topic:

    In 2014, Victoria Nuland supported and even encouraged the 2014 coup of the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, 9 months before the end of his term. Obama immediately legitimized the unelected coup leaders as the legitimate government of Ukraine. First order of business was to cancel the right of eastern/southern Ukrainians to speak Russian. Many Russian speakers in gov, schools, institutions, police were fired and replaced by Ukrainian speakers from West Ukraine.

    Searching Victoria Nuland 2014 coup (I don’t use google) showed 90% of the entries were from small, alternative media blogs and mini-news sites. I don’t recall one corporate media site mentioning this important story. Certainly, none were going to call it a coup anyway.
    That’s the Overton Window in action. There are hundreds of other examples – Covid alone provided very many on alternative treatments or preventative measures.

  159. 159
    Viola Lee says:

    Not on the current topic, but I’ll put this here anyway:

    Mano Singham on the state of the ID Movement

    I found this part at the end most interesting:

    During the period when I was engaged with ID, I was invited by them to many debates and panel discussions so I met many of the key players (Philip Johnson, Michael Behe, Jonathan Wells, J. P Moreland) and we had friendly exchanges. I never encountered William Dembski or David Klinghoffer though. After the Dover trial, Dembski washed his hands of the whole ID movement, especially expressing bitterness towards two religious groups whom he accused of undermining ID. One was the ‘theistic evolutionists’ (people who believe that evolution and belief in a god can be reconciled) who he said attacked ID because they felt that it was bad science and bad religion. The other was Young-Earth Creationists whom he accused of turning against ID when they realized that ID was not going to serve as a stalking horse for their literal interpretation of the biblical Genesis story of creation.

    The tension between the intellectual approach taken by the ID movement and the YEC group was always apparent to those following the issue. When I spoke at ID-sponsored debates, it was quite something to see the people on the panel talk in sophisticated terms about science and religion and then later mingle with the audience and discover that they were biblical literalists to the core, right down to Adam and Eve, the serpent, heaven and hell. With one or two exceptions, they were nice to me even though they knew that I was not at all sympathetic to their ideas. They seemed to feel sorry for me that I would eventually be stewing in hell.

    It was clear that the relatively small number of ID intellectuals needed the large numbers of YEC evangelicals to serve as their foot soldiers, while the YEC people saw the ID movement as serving to establish a beachhead against evolution. This uneasy coalition was maintained as long as it looked like ID might succeed in its goal of getting god back into the science curriculum. When the Dover trial wrecked the ID movement’s strategy, the YEC people turned against their failed leaders.

  160. 160
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Singham

    ID seems to have disappeared from view. One no longer hears from its most prominent advocates.

    I think it’s more correct to say that atheism has disappeared from view. Who are the celebrities to take over from Dennett, Dawkins and Harris? It’s just some little guys with blogs and with obscure youtube pages.
    And has Mr. Singham heard of Stephen Meyer’s recent book which was an Amazon best seller for a while?
    Let’s put it this way, I think a lot more people are a lot more interested in Stephen Meyer than have even heard of Mario Singham. I had never heard of him until today and I read a fair amount from anti-ID atheists.

  161. 161
    jerry says:

    I found this part at the end most interesting:

    I don’t disagree with nearly all that was said.

    To me personally, ID is about truth. And have pointed out in the past that if ID wins the fight for truth, the real food fight will then begin.

  162. 162
    jerry says:

    A fifth force of physics?

    Shock result in particle experiment could spark physics revolution

    The result, published in the journal Science, could be related to hints from other experiments at Fermilab and the Large Hadron Collider at the Swiss-French border. These, as yet unconfirmed results, also suggest deviations from the Standard Model, possibly as a result of an as yet undiscovered fifth force of nature at play

    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-60993523

  163. 163
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, oh well, I was just saying we have to keep it in mind. On this, I’ll wait for wider confirmatory results before definitively making such a conclusion. Odd that it came up at a point the 5th force idea came up here. KF

  164. 164
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, I looked up, saw at Wiki:

    Victoria Jane Nuland (born July 1, 1961) is an American diplomat currently serving as Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs. Nuland, a former member of the foreign service, served as the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the United States Department of State from 2013 to 2017 and US Permanent Representative to NATO from 2005 to 2008.[2][3] She held the rank of Career Ambassador, the highest diplomatic rank in the United States Foreign Service.[4] She is the former CEO of the Center for a New American Security, (CNAS), serving from January 2018 until early 2019, and is also the Brady-Johnson Distinguished Practitioner in Grand Strategy at Yale University, and a member of the board of the National Endowment for Democracy. She served as a nonresident fellow in the foreign policy program at the Brookings Institution[5] and senior counselor at the Albright Stonebridge Group.

    Wired in for sure and then things get interesting, yes, here’s Wiki admitting again:

    Ukraine

    Nuland was the lead U.S. point person for the Revolution of Dignity, establishing loan guarantees to Ukraine, including a $1 billion loan guarantee in 2014, and the provisions of non-lethal assistance to the Ukrainian military and border guard.[17][18] [–> is that the $ billion loan threatened by then US VP Biden?] Along with Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, she is seen as a leading supporter of defensive weapons delivery to Ukraine. In 2016, Nuland urged Ukraine to start prosecuting corrupt officials: “It’s time to start locking up people who have ripped off the Ukrainian population for too long and it is time to eradicate the cancer of corruption”.[19] While serving as the Department of State’s lead diplomat on the Ukraine crisis, Nuland pushed European allies to take a harder line on Russian expansionism.[20]

    During a June 7, 2016, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Hearing titled “Russian Violations of Borders, Treaties, and Human Rights”, Nuland described U.S. diplomatic outreach to the former Soviet Union and efforts to build a constructive relationship with Russia. During her testimony, Nuland noted Russia’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine which she said, “shattered any remaining illusions about this Kremlin’s willingness to abide by international law or live by the rules of the institutions that Russia joined at the end of the Cold War.”[21]

    Leaked private phone conversation

    On February 4, 2014, a recording of a phone call between Nuland and U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, on January 28, 2014, was published on YouTube.[22] [23][24][25][26][27] In their phone conversation, Nuland and Pyatt discussed who should join a unity government that they had agreed to with the Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. Nuland notified Pyatt Arseniy Yatsenyuk should become the next Prime Minister of Ukraine, while Vitali Klitschko and Oleh Tyahnybok should remain out of the government, the former because of his lack of political experience and the latter because of its radical political ideology. Nuland told Pyatt that the next step should be to set up a telephone conversation between her and the three Ukrainian candidates. Pyatt agreed: “I think you reaching out directly to him helps with the personality management among the three and it gives you also a chance to move fast on all this stuff and put us behind it”.[23][24]

    Looks like Russian General Valery Gerasimov, who in 2014 was Army General, Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation – First Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation had a serious point about dirty, McFaul Colour revolutions.

    I would look very carefully at the rash of such and then ponder carefully the question as to whether bad habits of US power brokers overseas have come home to roost, theme colour, black . . . just check Antifa etc for reference. Where, recall,

    * media manipulation,
    * street theatre agit prop [rent a riot/protest or set up patsies by agent provocateur or play Reichstag fire games etc],
    * lawfare [including show trials/tribunals], and
    * dirty elections
    * etc

    . . . are all in the toolkit for subversion, shadow war and subjugation.

    KF

  165. 165
    kairosfocus says:

    VL, I think you are aptly illustrating the marginalisation aspect of the Overton Window. Once a coalition gains power not only can it widen the window by pulling the BATNA on their side closer to their more radical views, but through domination they can narrow it by similarly pulling the other BATNA so what they had to formerly compromise about they now freely stigmatise and may even freely slander. Such follytricks too often has little to do with truth. There is a relevant, sobering, definition of lying: speaking with disregard to truth in hope of profiting from what is said or suggested being taken as truth. Duties to truth, right reason, warrant and wider prudence don’t vanish because some shout them down or marginalise them, and it remains so that power backed untruth is a gateway to injustice. KF

  166. 166
    kairosfocus says:

    BTW, looks like the Ukraine has pushed back the thrusts that took Kiev under partial siege. KF

  167. 167
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, they just realised new atheism was too shrill and in key parts embarrassingly philosophically illiterate. That universe from nothing something clip with Dawkins is still around. KF

  168. 168
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Colour revolution points to the related use of political colours:

    Political colours are colours used to represent a political ideology, movement or party, either officially or unofficially.[1] It is the intersection of colour symbolism and political symbolism.

    Parties in different countries with similar ideologies sometimes use similar colours. As an example the colour red symbolises left-wing ideologies in many countries (leading to such terms as “Red Army” and “Red Scare”), while the colour blue often used for conservatism, the colour yellow is most commonly associated with liberalism and right-libertarianism, and Green politics is named after the ideology’s political colour.[2][3]

    The political associations of a given colour vary from country to country, and there are exceptions to the general trends.[2][3] For example, red has historically been associated with monarchy or the Church, but over time gained association with leftist politics, while the United States differs from other countries in that conservativism is associated with red and liberalism with blue.[2][3] [–> there is evidence of deliberate media reversal of the usual colour assignments]

    Politicians making public appearances will often identify themselves by wearing rosettes, flowers or ties in the colour of their political party.

    Food for thought, and see PS.

    KF

    PS, Wiki on black or black and red:

    Black is primarily associated with anarchism[4] (see anarchist symbolism). Black can be seen as a lack of colour, anarchism as a lack of a state. It is used in contrast of national flags, to instead represent universal anarchism.[5] Black is used to a lesser extent to represent fascism (see blackshirts and Schutzstaffel) and jihadism (see Black Standard).[2]
    Anarchists in Germany in black bloc

    The colours black and red have been used by anarchists since at least the late 1800s when they were used on cockades by Italian anarchists in the 1874 Bologna insurrection, and in 1877 when anarchists entered the Italian town Letino carrying red and black flags to promote the First International.[6] During the Spanish civil war the CNT used a diagonally half strip of black and red, with black representing anarchism and red representing the labour movement and the worker movement. The flag was quickly adopted by other anarchists, with the second colour used to distinguish specific anarchist philosophies: anarcho pacifism with white, green anarchism with green, anarcho-syndicalism and anarcho-communism with red, mutualism with orange, and anarcho-capitalism with yellow, while black alone typically represents Anarchism without adjectives.

    During the golden age of piracy, the black flags of pirates such as Blackbeard and Calico Jack became popular symbols of piracy. The flags representing death and no quarter to those who did not surrender. The black flag of the jolly roger, used by Calico Jack turned into a popular and recognizable symbol of pirates, particularly of pirates of the Americas.[7][8] The skull and bones also became a hazardous symbol to display poisons such as cyanide, Zyklon B and other toxic substances. The black flag of piracy would later influence the symbols of anarchism, such as the symbols of the Free territory and Kronstadt rebellion. The rise of internet piracy led to the symbols of the golden age of piracy becoming widely adopted, becoming the symbols of pirate sites such as the Pirate bay. Black becoming a colour to represent pirate parties.

    Anti-clerical parties in the late 19th and early 20th centuries sometimes used the colour black in reference to the officials of the Roman Catholic Church because the cassock is usually black.[9]
    In Germany and Austria, black is the colour historically associated with Christian democratic parties, such as the Christian Democratic Union of Germany and the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP); however, this is only customary, as the official colours of CDU is orange while the official colour of the ÖVP is turquoise.
    In Italy, black is the colour of fascism because it was the official colour of the National Fascist Party. As a result, modern Italian parties would not use black as their political colour; however, it has been customary to use black to identify the neo-fascist Italian Social Movement.[10]
    In the Islamic world, black flags (often with a white shahadah) are sometimes used by jihadist groups. Black was the colour of the Abbasid caliphate. It is also commonly used by Shia Muslims, as it is also associated with mourning the death of Hussein ibn Ali.[11] It is now known as the flag colour of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
    In Russia, black was used for monarchism and nationalist movements, such as the Black Hundreds before their defeat.[12]
    In India, black represents protest. In Tamil Nadu (a state in India), black represents atheistic human rights rebels who follow Periyar E. V. Ramasamy.[13]
    In Brazil, the right-wing populist and formerly social democratic Brazilian Labour Party uses black. Black is also the colour of the far-left Popular Unity [–> right vs left is archaic and is best avoided or at least one should insist ob clarifying and providing substantial evidence for claims]

    Of course, in the US, black is also tied to racism and political activism of afro-americans, which is usually but not solely radical-progressivist or even socialist-marxist. Where the prominent form of marxism today is cultural and critical race theory, project 1619 etc are all cultural marxist.

  169. 169
    Silver Asiatic says:

    KF

    ponder carefully the question as to whether bad habits of US power brokers overseas have come home to roost

    Yes, that’s what has happened.

  170. 170
    kairosfocus says:

    Sure looks like it.

  171. 171
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Something I shared earlier today with members of my region’s legal fraternity and other stakeholders:

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/04/05/jackson-natural-rights-questions/

    The latest issue Republicans are raising: In questions for the record released after her confirmation hearings, Jackson declined to take a position on whether people have so-called “natural rights.”

    Here’s the Q&A with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.):

    Q: Do you hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights, yes or no?
    JACKSON: I do not hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights.

    See how Wa Po tries to spin it, not least “The reality, though, isn’t quite so simple — nor is this such an easy call for a judge, as history shows” — yes, to THEIR shame, too — but the reality is, our civilisation now pivots on the answer to this, as justice is due balance of rights, duties and freedoms, reflecting our creation as morally governed, rational, responsible, significantly free conscience guided creatures.

    That human beings, just by being human, hold fundamental rights and therefore have mutual duties to uphold one another in regards to life, liberty, honestly acquired property, innocent reputation etc, is what allows us to address the lawless oligarchy of the powerful.

    With reference to the OP, this may well mark the point where the BATNA of lawfulness was definitively breached by the government of the USA.

    I contrast, the US DoI, 1776, as precisely a key state document that is a successful piece of natural law reasoning — thus of universal, yes, universal — jurisdiction, the very charter of modern constitutional democracy (and more broadly, an affirmation of lawful government even before a body politic is ready for constitutional democracy):

    When . . . it becomes necessary for one people . . . to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God [–> natural law context is explicit] entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind [–> they were consciously universal in their appeal] requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, [cf Rom 1:18 – 21, 2:14 – 15; note, law as “the highest reason,” per Cicero on received consensus], that all men are created equal [–> note, equality of humanity], that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights [–> thus there are correlative duties and freedoms framed by the balance], that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security . . . .

    We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions [Cf. Judges 11:27], do, in the Name, and by the Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

    This is what is now being openly undermined and our civilisation is therefore at kairos.

    We are weighed and found wanting, can we summon the resources to make up the gap, before it is too late?

    KF

  172. 172
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: John Yu, , Professor of Law, University of California at Berkeley
    On 4/7/22 at 10:52 AM EDT writes in Newsweek:

    https://www.newsweek.com/should-supreme-court-justices-believe-natural-rights-opinion-1695961

    [ . . . ]

    Republican senators may vote against Judge Jackson because she consistently sentenced child pornography offenders to shorter prison times than normal. Other senators might find her refusal to define “woman” as a sign that has no common-sense principles based in reality. Still others may doubt her claim that she has no thoughts about critical race theory—which continues its pernicious effects in schools—or may not take seriously her stated allegiance to originalism as an interpretive methodology. But these reasons turn on the merits of Judge Jackson’s decisions and policy positions, and do not involve her personal background, religion or family life.

    On this score, Republicans would do well to focus less on Jackson’s sentencing decisions and more on her eyebrow-raising thoughts about the Declaration of Independence and natural rights. Her most remarkable response came not during the hearings themselves, but in the questions for the record after the hearing. In written questions, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) asked Judge Jackson: “Do you hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights, yes or no?” She responded: “I do not hold a position on whether individuals possess natural rights.”

    Judge Jackson’s response should give senators pause, because if the judge does not believe that our rights as Americans are “natural,” originating from our equal status as human beings, from where does she think our rights come? Perhaps Judge Jackson believes that our individual rights depend solely on the positive law—in other words, the rules enacted by the people and their representatives, such as the Constitution’s Bill of Rights, its Reconstruction Amendments, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. She does not appear to believe that our rights pre-exist the Constitution or other positive laws.

    This would be an incredible view for a would-be Supreme Court Justice to hold, though one in keeping with the way law is taught in our colleges and universities today. It stands opposite the views of Abraham Lincoln [–> a highly successful practising lawyer, BTW, before he rose to the presidency], who deplored slavery even in the face of Dred Scott v. Sandford, the Supreme Court decision upholding it. Lincoln insisted that “if slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong.” It takes the same intellectual side as Stephen Douglas, Lincoln’s great opponent in the debates of 1858, who believed that Congress and the states decided whether blacks had rights, not God or our status as equal human beings. It follows the same logic as Chief Justice Roger Taney, author of the Dred Scott decision, who believed that blacks had no rights because the Constitution forbade it . . .

    Food for thought.

    KF

  173. 173
    Silver Asiatic says:

    KF

    That human beings, just by being human, hold fundamental rights and therefore have mutual duties to uphold one another in regards to life, liberty, honestly acquired property, innocent reputation etc, is what allows us to address the lawless oligarchy of the powerful.

    Exactly. Because if the judge disagrees that humans have natural rights, then the government can create or abolish rights at will. Because then the government will be the highest authority – there will be no higher authority that one can appeal to. Natural rights are inviolate and even judges like her are subject to them and are required to uphold and defend them.
    Failing that, any government can act like the CCP does – spying on citizens, jailing and enslaving dissidents, and killing prisoners to extract human body parts for sale on the international market. Of course it can get worse than that, and it’s entirely “morally justified” under the idea that the state creates the moral law and there are no natural human rights.

  174. 174
    Silver Asiatic says:

    It takes the same intellectual side as Stephen Douglas, Lincoln’s great opponent in the debates of 1858, who believed that Congress and the states decided whether blacks had rights, not God or our status as equal human beings. It follows the same logic as Chief Justice Roger Taney, author of the Dred Scott decision, who believed that blacks had no rights because the Constitution forbade it . . .

    Well done, by Newsweek of all places. But there was a time when the moderate left talked about “human rights” as if they were objective ideas and not just what a government decreed as permitted or forbidden. The hard-left has been willing to abolish human rights in the name of progress and conformity. As stated, that aligns with the pro-slavery side.

  175. 175
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, we are at kairos and many don’t realise it. About, as it was c AD 50 in Athens when a stranger came to town seemingly talking about strange gods. And, seven years later on a ship at Fair Havens, Crete. KF

  176. 176
    Silver Asiatic says:

    That was a critical moment when the excellence of Greek philosophy was transformed by the new dispensation. St. John said the same: In the beginning was the Logos.

  177. 177
    kairosfocus says:

    SA, yes. The Greeks saw much, and for all his sins Alexander set up a common, Hellenistic space enriched by that insight. That seems to be part of the fulness of time. Ac 17 then marks the breakthrough moment, though Paul was in the main literally laughed out of court. But some few saw the point. Today, the street map shows the road by Mars Hill having the name change from Holy Apostle to Dionysius the Areopagite just there, symbolic. And of course this is the speech inscribed on the Bronze plaque attached to the outcrop, not an excerpt from Socrates’ argument. That in itself speaks. KF

  178. 178
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: notice, the concerns in the OP have been confirmed, the leading Russian General had a basis for his concerns and characterisation of colour revolutions as subject to or actually manifesting tainting. This points to 4th gen war in the shadows leading to subjugation and to our need to find fresh means of protecting lawful governance from such subversion. Yes, that means we are far beyond mere faculty debates in seminar rooms. This is a difficult challenge and points to the need to go back to sources and roots, to found frames of thought known to be sound. So, Schaeffer’s analysis as extended is relevant. So is understanding that we have a built in framework of core law, the first duties and principles of reason. Much will have to be done if we are to defend our civilisation from a patently ruinous trend; one that already exhibits demographic collapse. KF

Leave a Reply