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Humanist philosopher James Croft goes after Steve Meyer’s Return of God Hypothesis

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But in an interesting, traditional way (no Cancel Culture, no weirdness, no hysterics):

James Croft is with the Humanist Community at Harvard:

It was sponsored by the group Christian Heritage in Cambridge, England. The conversation is very genial but Dr. Croft offers a strong and aggressive critique about the nature of abductive inferences, and more. His three main points are what he calls the “Background Knowledge Problem,” the “Fallacy of Suppressed Evidence,” and that, as he sees it, the “Totality of Evidence Favors Naturalism.” I would say Meyer responds to these handily. But it was helpful to see him do so.

Croft is charming as an interlocutor, and he did his homework. He even read Steve’s Cambridge PhD thesis. He absorbed the case that Meyer makes in Return of the God Hypothesis and while accepting the science (just for the sake of argument!), he doesn’t concede the philosophy, even as he speaks its language.

David Klinghoffer, “A Philosopher Takes on Meyer’s God Hypothesis” at Evolution News and Science Today

See also: The Return of the God Hypothesis

76 Replies to “Humanist philosopher James Croft goes after Steve Meyer’s Return of God Hypothesis

  1. 1
    EDTA says:

    >Humanist philosopher…

    Boy, that must be depressing!

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    Why so?

  3. 3
    zweston says:

    What about secular humanism/atheism isn’t ultimately depressing?

  4. 4
    EDTA says:

    Sev,

    Well, if the humanist philosopher is really looking for truth, and looking clearly at today’s humanity, there’s not much to get excited about. (Flirted with humanism briefly earlier in life.) All the wonderful predictions that modern (1900-1940) thinkers had for the future!–and it has all come crashing down since then–except technological progress, that is still on-going. Moral progress? Not with 100+ million people murdered in the last 100 years. Educational progress? Hmm. Man as the master of his own destiny? Nope, we’re subjected to the whims of our worst. The nation that was once the “last best hope of earth” is more deeply divided than it has been in over a century, and it has no clue how to heal the rifts that are expanding every day.

    Yeah, I hope humanist philosophers are daily taking a cold, hard look at humanity’s reality.

  5. 5
    AaronS1978 says:

    Ha I love James Croft’s argument against Meyers based on mind brain dualism

    It’s brilliant!!!!!

    Because I’m a naturalist your argument for dualism and God fails

    This is literally his argument

    I’m a naturalist and therefore believe that the brain in the mind of one in the same so you were disembodied mind means nothing

    I would’ve kicked him out right there and said you were absolutely worthless and have nothing to add your naturalism doesn’t refused my position

    The fact that this dingdong actually thinks that because he’s a naturalist he’s immune to Meyers argument is silly just straight silly

    I would’ve booed him off the stage

  6. 6

    The God hypothesis is wrong, he should instead generically refer to “the creator hypothesis”, or “intelligent designer hypothesis”.

    Because by hypothesizing he inclines to categorize God into the material and objective category, and not as should be categorized, in the spiritual and subjective category.

    Nobody who understands intelligent design would make God a hypothesis. God is not material, or factual. Similar would be the “love hypothesis”, the “jealousy hypothesis”. It is all a category error.

    1. Creator / chooses / spiritual / subjective / opinion
    2. Creation / chosen / material / objective / fact

    God belongs in category 1, not category 2.

    What is in category 1, can only be identified with a chosen opinion.

    Logic dictates, you are free to choose to believe in God, or not, either answer is equally logically valid.

    It is a logical error to be forced to believe in God, forced by evidence, or forced by the conclusion of some philosophical reasoning (neccessary being). Same as to be forced to say a painting is beautiful, provides an invalid opinion.

    There is no doubt about it, that to choose to believe in God, is logically valid. It is immediate belief without doubt. It is straightforward. And not surreptiously maybe-ing your way to some kind of certainty of belief, by evidence.

  7. 7
    chuckdarwin says:

    No matter how much Meyer denies it, his “thesis” is simply repackaged god of the gaps…

  8. 8
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, fallacious switcheroo; actually no matter how you package it your refusal to acknowledge cogency of inference on tested reliable signs to an observed class of cause reflects refusal to be led by evidence backed by cognitive dissonance leading you to project your hostility to God to the despised other. KF

    PS: You cannot even concede to God the courtesy of a capital letter.

  9. 9
    chuckdarwin says:

    #8 Kairosfocus

    When Charles S. Pierce, arguably America’s greatest logician, innovated abductive reasoning (which is what Meyer touts using), he envisioned using it to infer to the best empirical (i.e. observable and measurable) explanation, not metaphysical, spiritual or supernatural explanations. Following Hume, he took the position that knowledge is derived only from the senses. Although not overtly hostile to religion, for this reason Pierce admonished that theologians, religionists and religious clergy should not do philosophy or science due to their propensity to import non-empirical explanations (e.g. “God”) in lieu of doing the hard work of science.

  10. 10
    Sandy says:

    Chuckdarwin
    No matter how much Meyer denies it, his “thesis” is simply repackaged god of the gaps…

    You are an automaton appeared by chance . Why would you belive any idea you have ?

  11. 11
    bornagain77 says:

    Chuckdarwin claims that Meyer is making a “repackaged god of the gaps” argument.

    It might interest Chucky to know, (or it might hurt his feelings to know), that God is not a ‘God of the gaps’ but that He is the God of the whole show.

    Not the God of the Gaps, But the Whole Show – John Lennox
    Excerpt: C. S. Lewis put it this way: “Men became scientific because they expected law in nature and they expected law in nature because they believed in a lawgiver.”
    The Nobel prizewinner Melvin Calvin traces the rise of modern science to the conviction “that the universe is governed by a single God, and is not the product of the whims of many gods, each governing his own province according to his own laws. This monotheistic view seems to be the historical foundation for modern science.”
    https://www.christianpost.com/news/the-god-particle-not-the-god-of-the-gaps-but-the-whole-show.html

    And via Stephen Meyer’s book, Return of the God hypothesis”, here are the three necessary Christian presuppositions that lay at the founding of modern science in Medieval Christian Europe.

    “Science in its modern form arose in the Western civilization alone, among all the cultures of the world”, because only the Christian West possessed the necessary “intellectual presuppositions”.
    – Ian Barbour
    Presupposition 1: The contingency of nature
    “In 1277, the Etienne Tempier, the bishop of Paris, writing with support of Pope John XXI, condemned “necessarian theology” and 219 separate theses influenced by Greek philosophy about what God could and couldn’t do.”,,
    “The order in nature could have been otherwise (therefore) the job of the natural philosopher, (i.e. scientist), was not to ask what God must have done but (to ask) what God actually did.”
    Presupposition 2: The intelligibility of nature
    “Modern science was inspired by the conviction that the universe is the product of a rational mind who designed it to be understood and who (also) designed the human mind to understand it.” (i.e. human exceptionalism),
    “God created us in his own image so that we could share in his own thoughts”
    – Johannes Kepler
    Presupposition 3: Human Fallibility
    “Humans are vulnerable to self-deception, flights of fancy, and jumping to conclusions.”, (i.e. original sin), Scientists must therefore employ “systematic experimental methods.”
    – Stephen Meyer on Intelligent Design and The Return of the God Hypothesis – Hoover Institution
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_8PPO-cAlA
    April 2021: Defense of all 3 presuppositions
    1
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/brian-keating-on-the-problem-with-follow-the-science/#comment-727893
    2
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/brian-keating-on-the-problem-with-follow-the-science/#comment-727959
    3
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/brian-keating-on-the-problem-with-follow-the-science/#comment-727980

    In short, modern science, every nook and cranny of it, is based on the presupposition of Intelligent Design and is certainly not based on the presupposition of ‘methodological naturalism’ as atheists falsely believe,,

    “From the essential Christian presuppositions that undergird the founding of modern science itself, (namely that the universe is contingent and rational in its foundational nature and that the minds of men, being made in the ‘image of God’, can, therefore, dare understand the rationality that God has imparted onto the universe), to the intelligent design of the scientific instruments and experiments themselves, to the logical and mathematical analysis of experimental results themselves, from top to bottom, science itself is certainly not to be considered a ‘natural’ endeavor of man.
    Not one scientific instrument would ever exist if men did not first intelligently design that scientific instrument. Not one test tube, microscope, telescope, spectroscope, or etc.. etc.., was ever found just laying around on a beach somewhere which was ‘naturally’ constructed by nature. Not one experimental result would ever be rationally analyzed since there would be no immaterial minds to rationally analyze the immaterial logic and immaterial mathematics that lay behind the intelligently designed experiments in the first place.
    Again, all of science, every nook and cranny of it, is based on the presupposition of intelligent design and is certainly not based on the presupposition of methodological naturalism.”

    Moreover, assuming ‘methodological naturalism’, and/or reductive materialism, as a starting presupposition in science, as Darwinian atheists do, instead of presupposing Christian Theism as a starting presupposition in science, (as the Christian founders of modern science did), leads to the catastrophic epistemological failure of science itself.

    Basically, because of reductive materialism (and/or methodological naturalism), the atheistic materialist (who believes Darwinian evolution to be true) is forced to claim that he is merely a ‘neuronal illusion’ (Coyne, Dennett, etc..), who has the illusion of free will (Harris), who has unreliable, (i.e. illusory), beliefs about reality (Plantinga), who has illusory perceptions of reality (Hoffman), who, since he has no real time empirical evidence substantiating his grandiose claims, must make up illusory “just so stories” with the illusory, and impotent, ‘designer substitute’ of natural selection (Behe, Gould, Sternberg), so as to ‘explain away’ the appearance (i.e. the illusion) of design (Crick, Dawkins), and who also must make up illusory meanings and purposes for his life since the hopelessness of the nihilism inherent in his atheistic worldview is simply too much for him to bear (Weikart), and who must also hold morality to be subjective and illusory since he has rejected God (Craig, Kreeft). Who, since beauty cannot be grounded within his materialistic worldview, must also hold beauty itself to be illusory (Darwin).
    Bottom line, nothing is truly real in the atheist’s worldview, least of all, beauty, morality, meaning and purposes for life.,,,
    April 2021 – Detailed Defense of each claim
    https://uncommondescent.com/philosophy/philosopher-mary-midgeley-1919-2018-on-scientism/#comment-728595
    https://uncommondescent.com/evolution/from-philip-cunningham-the-human-eye-like-the-human-brain-is-a-wonder/#comment-727327

    Thus, although the Darwinian Atheist and/or Methodological Naturalist may firmly believe that he is on the terra firma of science (in his appeal, even demand, for naturalistic explanations over and above God as a viable explanation), the fact of the matter is that, when examining the details of his materialistic/naturalistic worldview, it is found that Darwinists/Atheists themselves are adrift in an ocean of fantasy and imagination with no discernible anchor for reality to grab on to.

    It would be hard to fathom a worldview more antagonistic to modern science, indeed more antagonistic to reality itself, than Atheistic materialism and/or methodological naturalism have turned out to be.

    2 Corinthians 10:5
    Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

    What else is so interesting in that oft repeated “God of the gaps’ claim from Atheists is that Atheists, from at least David Hume onward, have falsely assumed that the laws of nature are completely ‘natural’ and that we do not need God in order to explain the existence of the laws of nature in the first place.

    Yet Atheists, with their ‘bottom up’ materialistic explanations, simply have no clue why there should even be (finely tuned) universal laws that govern the universe in the first place:

    “There cannot be, in principle, a naturalistic bottom-up explanation for immutable physical laws — which are themselves an ‘expression’ of top-down causation. A bottom-up explanation, from the level of e.g. bosons, should be expected to give rise to innumerable different ever-changing laws. By analogy, particles give rise to innumerable different conglomerations.
    Moreover a bottom-up process from bosons to physical laws is in need of constraints (laws) in order to produce a limited set of universal laws.
    Paul Davies: “Physical processes, however violent or complex, are thought to have absolutely no effect on the laws. There is thus a curious asymmetry: physical processes depend on laws but the laws do not depend on physical processes. Although this statement cannot be proved, it is widely accepted.”
    Saying that laws do not depend on physical processes, is another way of saying that laws cannot be explained by physical processes.”
    – Origenes – UD blogger

    Einstein himself stated, ““You find it strange that I consider the comprehensibility of the world (to the extent that we are authorized to speak of such a comprehensibility) as a miracle or as an eternal mystery. Well, a priori, one should expect a chaotic world, which cannot be grasped by the mind in any way”,,,

    On the Rational Order of the World: a Letter to Maurice Solovine – Albert Einstein – March 30, 1952
    Excerpt: “You find it strange that I consider the comprehensibility of the world (to the extent that we are authorized to speak of such a comprehensibility) as a miracle or as an eternal mystery. Well, a priori, one should expect a chaotic world, which cannot be grasped by the mind in any way .. the kind of order created by Newton’s theory of gravitation, for example, is wholly different. Even if a man proposes the axioms of the theory, the success of such a project presupposes a high degree of ordering of the objective world, and this could not be expected a priori. That is the ‘miracle’ which is constantly reinforced as our knowledge expands.
    There lies the weakness of positivists and professional atheists who are elated because they feel that they have not only successfully rid the world of gods but “bared the miracles.”
    -Albert Einstein
    – per letter to Solovine

    Likewise, Eugene Wigner also stated, “It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind’s capacity to divine them.,,,”

    The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences – Eugene Wigner – 1960
    Excerpt: ,,certainly it is hard to believe that our reasoning power was brought, by Darwin’s process of natural selection, to the perfection which it seems to possess.,,,
    It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind’s capacity to divine them.,,,
    The miracle of the appropriateness of the language of mathematics for the formulation of the laws of physics is a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve. We should be grateful for it and hope that it will remain valid in future research and that it will extend, for better or for worse, to our pleasure, even though perhaps also to our bafflement, to wide branches of learning.
    – per Dartmouth

    In short, the existence of the laws of nature, and our capacity to divine them, is, according to both Einstein and Wigner, to be considered miraculous and is certainly not to be considered ‘natural’.

    And thus, as John Lennox pointed out, and no matter how much Chuckdarwin may try to deny it, God is not a ‘God of the gaps’ but He is the God of the whole show.

    Psalm 119: 90-91
    Your faithfulness continues through all generations; You established the earth, and it endures. Your ordinances stand to this day, for all things are servants to You.

  12. 12
    Sandy says:

    propensity to import non-empirical explanations

    :)) Best explanation is the point of reference not materialist-naturalist dogma.
    Science is limited ,it’s just a tool . Who control that tool? Reason. Reason is first power of humans that control the way in which humans aquire knowledge (as a theology or as a science). Theology is a superior kind of knowledge we receive from above us(where reason , conscience, intuitions and faith are used).Science is an inferior kind of knowledge where reason+sensory organs are the source of science and reason have supremacy over science that means a simple farmer that have no science background can detect a fallacy (“a BS”)in an argument of a scientist.

  13. 13
    chuckdarwin says:

    #13

    John Lennox is an affable, somewhat impish purveyor of bromides. “God is not a ‘God of the gaps’ but He is the God of the whole show.” Really? Come on…..
    Sorry, folks, but Meyer gets fed his lunch expertly by Croft in this go around…..

  14. 14
    Sandy says:

    Really? Come on…..

    :)) This is all materialists have. How in the world they don’t hear the irony alarm.

  15. 15
    jerry says:

    A “God of the Gaps” assessment is a logical fallacy. It is form of begging the question. It assumes a non intelligent intervention when none has been shown likely.

    So anyone using it has to show it is likely there is another explanation.

  16. 16
    bornagain77 says:

    Jerry, “A “God of the Gaps” assessment is a logical fallacy. It is form of begging the question. It assumes a non intelligent intervention when none has been shown likely.”

    Bingo!

    The ‘God of the gaps’ argument from Atheists and Theistic Evolutionists fails on so many levels that it is hard to know where to begin.

    So let’s start with the origin of the argument itself. The origin of the argument goes back to the infamous atheist Friedrich Nietzsche and to theistic evolutionist Henry Drummond.

    God of the gaps – Origins of the term
    From the 1880s, Friedrich Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Part Two, “On Priests”, said “… into every gap they put their delusion, their stopgap, which they called God.”.[3] The concept, although not the exact wording, goes back to Henry Drummond, a 19th-century evangelist lecturer, from his Lowell Lectures on The Ascent of Man(1904) . He chastises those Christians who point to the things that science cannot yet explain—”gaps which they will fill up with God”—and urges them to embrace all nature as God’s, as the work of “an immanent God, which is the God of Evolution, is infinitely grander than the occasional wonder-worker, who is the God of an old theology.”[4][5]
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/God_of_the_gaps#Origins_of_the_term

    Nietzsche’s claim, “into every gap they put their delusion, their stopgap, which they called God”, was a very interesting claim for Nietzsche to make.

    The reason why it is very interesting is that if God is not real, but is merely a delusion as atheists hold, then everything else becomes a delusion and/or illusion for the atheist.

    To repeat what I stated before in this thread,

    Basically, because of reductive materialism (and/or methodological naturalism), the atheistic materialist (who believes Darwinian evolution to be true) is forced to claim that he is merely a ‘neuronal illusion’ (Coyne, Dennett, etc..), who has the illusion of free will (Harris), who has unreliable, (i.e. illusory), beliefs about reality (Plantinga), who has illusory perceptions of reality (Hoffman), who, since he has no real time empirical evidence substantiating his grandiose claims, must make up illusory “just so stories” with the illusory, and impotent, ‘designer substitute’ of natural selection (Behe, Gould, Sternberg), so as to ‘explain away’ the appearance (i.e. the illusion) of design (Crick, Dawkins), and who also must make up illusory meanings and purposes for his life since the hopelessness of the nihilism inherent in his atheistic worldview is simply too much for him to bear (Weikart), and who must also hold morality to be subjective and illusory since he has rejected God (Craig, Kreeft). Who, since beauty cannot be grounded within his materialistic worldview, must also hold beauty itself to be illusory (Darwin).
    Bottom line, nothing is truly real in the atheist’s worldview, least of all, beauty, morality, meaning and purposes for life.,,,
    April 2021 – Detailed Defense of each claim
    https://uncommondescent.com/philosophy/philosopher-mary-midgeley-1919-2018-on-scientism/#comment-728595
    https://uncommondescent.com/evolution/from-philip-cunningham-the-human-eye-like-the-human-brain-is-a-wonder/#comment-727327

    Thus, although the Darwinian Atheist and/or Methodological Naturalist may firmly believe that he is on the terra firma of science (in his appeal, even demand, for naturalistic explanations over and above God as a viable explanation), the fact of the matter is that, when examining the details of his materialistic/naturalistic worldview, it is found that Darwinists/Atheists themselves are adrift in an ocean of fantasy and imagination with no discernible anchor for reality to grab on to.

    It would be hard to fathom a worldview more antagonistic to modern science, indeed more antagonistic to reality itself, than Atheistic materialism and/or methodological naturalism have turned out to be.

    Verse:

    2 Corinthians 10:5
    Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

    The fact that the atheist, via his claim that God is an illusion, himself turns into a ‘neuronal illusion’ should be the very definition of ‘poetic justice.’ 🙂

    A Dream Within a Dream
    BY EDGAR ALLAN POE
    Take this kiss upon the brow!
    And, in parting from you now,
    Thus much let me avow —
    You are not wrong, who deem
    That my days have been a dream;
    Yet if hope has flown away
    In a night, or in a day,
    In a vision, or in none,
    Is it therefore the less gone?
    All that we see or seem
    Is but a dream within a dream.

    I stand amid the roar
    Of a surf-tormented shore,
    And I hold within my hand
    Grains of the golden sand —
    How few! yet how they creep
    Through my fingers to the deep,
    While I weep — while I weep!
    O God! Can I not grasp
    Them with a tighter clasp?
    O God! can I not save
    One from the pitiless wave?
    Is all that we see or seem
    But a dream within a dream?

    Of related note, Stephen Meyer addresses the “God of the gaps’ accusation from atheists in this following short video

    A God of the gaps argument is an argument that has a formal logical structure that in logic is known as a ‘argument from ignorance’. It is an informal fallacy. Arguments from ignorance have the following form.,,,
    1. Cause A is not sufficient to produce effect X
    2. Therefore cause B must have produced effect X
    ,,, but if I have no independent evidence that cause B can produce effect X, then I have committed a fallacy of arguing from ignorance. Because, just because cause A is not sufficient to produce effect X doesn’t mean that some other cause did it. You have to have independent evidence that that other cause is capable of doing it (i.e. producing the effect in question). That then becomes a God of the gaps argument when you say various natural processes are not sufficient to produce, say, the origin of the first life or the origin of the first animals in the history of life. If I were then to say, “Therefore God did it”, that would be a God of the gaps argument. It would be an argument from ignorance.
    But that is not how we are arguing when we make the case for Intelligent Design because we are adding an additional premise. We are saying that.,,,
    1. Various natural processes are not sufficient to produce new functional information, (specifically the digital code that is stored in the DNA molecule).
    2. We do know of a cause that does produce (functional digital) information. (We have independent evidence that intelligent agency, that mind,,, can create (functional digital) information.),,,
    ,,, so we are not arguing from our ignorance. We are arguing from our knowledge of cause and effect in the world. (Specifically we are arguing from what we know minds can do, i.e. produce information.)
    – Stephen Meyer Debunks the “God of the Gaps” Objection – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGqzCA1mnyM

  17. 17
    AaronS1978 says:

    @ ChuckyD
    No matter how much you deny it evolution is your god of gaps it literally does the same exact thing normal god of gaps does Or do you need the long laundry list of vestal organs deemed unimportant as evolutionarily Sprandel due to evolutionary got gaps and then were later found to have important and Necessary function in the body

    We can start the appendix

    Honestly are usually just nothing but a troll you have nothing important to say but most of the time you’re just a one-liner and you leave

    So I’m actually kind of shocked that you engaged a little bit more than I usually do

  18. 18
    Seversky says:

    EDTA/4

    Yeah, I hope humanist philosophers are daily taking a cold, hard look at humanity’s reality.

    I would hope so too. Much as I love Star Trek I don’t foresee Utopian societies emerging for the foreseeable future, not while human beings are as they are. I suspect we’ll continue to do as we have before, staggering along from crisis to crisis, some of them created out of our own stupidity, some not. Hopefully, there’ll be some measure of overall progress but I wouldn’t bank on it. And one good asteroid coming out of our blind spot would render the whole question moot anyway.

    Verse

    “It’s being so cheerful that keeps me going”

    — Mona Lott, ITMA

  19. 19
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/16

    The ‘God of the gaps’ argument from Atheists and Theistic Evolutionists fails on so many levels that it is hard to know where to begin.

    As you well know, the criticism of the “god of the gaps” argument is levelled justifiably at ID/creationists who fill any gap in our knowledge with “goddidit”

    The reason why it is very interesting is that if God is not real, but is merely a delusion as atheists hold, then everything else becomes a delusion and/or illusion for the atheist.

    You need to brush upon your reasoning. The non-existence of your God or any other mythical beings does not alter the reality of the world in which we find ourselves. Our view of the physical nature of a stone may have been changed radically by the advent of quantum theory but it still hurts if you kick one. And we have way more evidence for quantum theory than we do for your God.

    As for Meyer’s arguments:

    Because, just because cause A is not sufficient to produce effect X doesn’t mean that some other cause did it. You have to have independent evidence that that other cause is capable of doing it (i.e. producing the effect in question). That then becomes a God of the gaps argument when you say various natural processes are not sufficient to produce, say, the origin of the first life or the origin of the first animals in the history of life. If I were then to say, “Therefore God did it”, that would be a God of the gaps argument. It would be an argument from ignorance.

    Except that is exactly what he is doing.

    But that is not how we are arguing when we make the case for Intelligent Design because we are adding an additional premise. We are saying that.,,,
    1. Various natural processes are not sufficient to produce new functional information, (specifically the digital code that is stored in the DNA molecule).

    Actually, there are suggested natural processes that can produce “new functional information” in the genome. And, even if there weren’t, we still do not know nearly enough about natural processes to be able to rule them all out. So Meyer’s additional premise is an unsupported claim.

    2. We do know of a cause that does produce (functional digital) information. (We have independent evidence that intelligent agency, that mind,,, can create (functional digital) information.),,,

    Yes, we can design things and produce functional digital information. But we cannot design and build living creatures – not yet at least – and I think it’s fair to say we are still some ways off being able to design and build a universe.

    ,,, so we are not arguing from our ignorance. We are arguing from our knowledge of cause and effect in the world. (Specifically we are arguing from what we know minds can do, i.e. produce information.)

    Again, that is exactly what he is doing. He doesn’t know natural processes can’t give rise to “new functional information” any more than he knows there are aliens out there who can design living things and universes, something way beyond the powers of the designers we do know about.

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky restating Nietzsche’s premise as if it were true does not make it true.

    As Meyer explained, we are not arguing from ignorance but from what we know about the cause and effect structure of the world.

    WE KNOW for a fact that intelligence can create functional information. You yourself, via your own mind, just created more information than anyone has EVER seen unguided material processes create. We have NEVER seen natural processes create any non-trivial functional information. EVER!

    When you refuse to accept that known fact about the cause and effect structure of the world, and claim that some unknown natural process must have created the functional information we see in life, you are in fact flipping the entire ‘God of the Gaps’ argument on its head and turning it into a ‘naturalism of the gaps’ argument for atheism

    To paraphrase Nietzsche, “into every gap they put their delusion, their stopgap, which they called naturalism”,

  21. 21
    Sandy says:

    Actually, there are suggested natural processes that can produce “new functional information” in the genome. And, even if there weren’t, we still do not know nearly enough about natural processes to be able to rule them all out.

    :)) Even if will be found that there are processes that build information how would that rule out God? I guess atheists think God is not capable to create processes that build info but randomness and blindness somehow can. I feel sorry for atheists.

  22. 22
    AaronS1978 says:

    Lol again the argument of atheists is a combination of split hairs and the statement “because I don’t believe in your god, your god doesn’t exist like all myths”

    This statement is both hollow opinionated and meant to insult the people they are addressing which does absolutely nothing to justify the non-existence of God or prove it

    It’s the same crap to try to put believers on the defensive, and it trash

    I mean just reading the comments of our token atheists and laughing at how their arguments against god are guilty of the same criticisms they levy against Meyers

    It’s almost tiresome, they can’t disprove God and they can’t prove there is no god no differently than we can guarantee there is a god to them

    And Sandy is right God has an infinite number of ways to create any number of universe in any which way God wants to create them. he can fart them out of his hand or he can make them like our own, it doesn’t matter, Because there’s literally no limit to how God can create whatever God wants to create and WHY. For god doesn’t need a reason and certainly not the failed logic of limited, ignorant human atheist that says things aren’t designed because they know better, but turn around and say we don’t know enough about life to design it

    When people make statements like that I give them the bird and I walk away

  23. 23
    kairosfocus says:

    There is a world of difference between increments of functional information and blocks of COMPLEX, specifically functional information and organisation to effect and integrate major body plan features. Especially as the need for well fitted integration of many parts all at once requires that the configuration space is one of islands of function. Separated by wide seas of non function. This insight of design theory is too often sidestepped as though it were not there but any engineer or software designer will tell you of the functional integration challenge. KF

  24. 24
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, design is a commonly observed empirical fact. Your failure to recognise something that blatant is telling. KF

  25. 25

    Meyers contrasts the God hypothesis, with Dawkins hypothesis of blind, pitiless, indifference at the bottom of the universe.

    Obviously both are matters of opinion, not matters of fact.

  26. 26
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/20

    Seversky restating Nietzsche’s premise as if it were true does not make it true.

    No, it doesn’t. But watching Christians plug their God into every gap in our scientific knowledge, does.

    We have NEVER seen natural processes create any non-trivial functional information. EVER!

    Wrong! There are huge amounts of functional information in the genomes of all living creatures and they have a naturalistic origin as far as we know.

    If you want to offer design as an alternative you need to explain why it takes so much more information to design an onion than a human being.

    When you refuse to accept that known fact about the cause and effect structure of the world, and claim that some unknown natural process must have created the functional information we see in life, you are in fact flipping the entire ‘God of the Gaps’ argument on its head and turning it into a ‘naturalism of the gaps’ argument for atheism

    Your God of the gaps argument closes off any possible alternatives. Naturalism is open to any natural alternatives, even your God if He can be shown to exist as part of the natural order. But we know that’s unacceptable to Christians. Their God has to be top dog – or god.

  27. 27
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, you, i.e. atheists, are the ones plugging naturalistic explanations into every gap that exists where no naturalistic explanation is even plausible. i.e. Origin of the Universe, Origin of Life, Origin of consciousness. etc.. etc.. The hypocrisy of your ‘gap’ accusation is literally dripping off every word you write.

    For instance, you claim that the ‘huge amount of information’ in genomes came from a purely naturalistic origin. Yet no one knows of any naturalistic processes ever creating any non-trivial amounts of information. Much less creating ‘huge amounts’ of information. Only intelligence has ever been shown to be capable of generating ‘huge amounts’ of information. Yet you plugged some unknown naturalistic explanation into the ‘gap’ anyway. And insinuated that the matter is settled.

    You also claim that invoking God as an explanation for, say, the origin of the universe closes off any further naturalistic alternative.

    That simply is not true. As Stephen Meyer outlined in his new book, Atheists have postulated all sorts of naturalistic scenarios to try to account for the origin of the universe. And all the naturalistic alternatives postulated thus far have failed to measure up to God as the best explanation among all the competing naturalistic scenarios.

    IMHO, the competition is not even close. But hey, don’t take my word for it. Get you nose out of Richard Dawkins’ atheistic books for a minute or two, and read Meyer’s new book, and see for yourself, instead of just taking atheistic potshots from the nosebleed section.

  28. 28

    BA77 everywhere. Brilliant!

  29. 29

    Seversky, you are obviously throwing out everything inherently subjective, the entire creator category. This is unwise because, your emotions and personal character, you as being a decisionmaker, are also in that category.

    The creationist conceptual scheme:
    1. Creator / chooses / spiritual / subjective / opinion
    2. Creation / chosen / material / objective / fact

  30. 30
    chuckdarwin says:

    #24
    “CD, design is a commonly observed empirical fact. Your failure to recognise [sic]something that blatant is telling. KF”

    You need to go back and re-watch the video. Croft addresses this very issue and Meyer completely ignores his point but rather perseverates with his inapposite Rosetta Stone and Antarctica analogies. Lawrence Krauss also made this same point a few years back debating Meyer. Design attendant to human (and to a lesser extent other species) artifacts is “commonly” observed, and, in fact, we can observe the design process. However, as I discussed in my prior post, importing a supernatural or metaphysical unobservable, unmeasurable entity as the “designer” or cause of natural phenomena explains nothing. As one of my grad professors was fond of saying, there are no mysteries, simply uncontrolled variables. The notion of “God” (whatever that term means), as an independent variable “causing” natural phenomena, is, quite frankly, ridiculous and unhelpful–it has no explanatory power, it cannot be tested, it is not disprovable–it is a placeholder for folks who, like I said before, eschew the hard work of science in favor of useless (but perhaps psychologically comforting) explanations. As H.L. Menken once said, “for every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.”

  31. 31
    jerry says:

    as an independent variable “causing” natural phenomena, is, quite frankly, ridiculous and unhelpful–it has no explanatory power, it cannot be tested, it is not disprovable–it is a placeholder for folks who, like I said before, eschew the hard work of science in favor of useless (but perhaps psychologically comforting) explanations

    Again this is begging the question and a logical fallacy.

    Aside: Point to one finding of science that ID does not accept.

  32. 32
    AaronS1978 says:

    “it is a placeholder for folks who, like I said before, eschew the hard work of science in favor of useless (but perhaps psychologically comforting) explanations”

    This is the same crap comment atheists make trying to accuse ID of not trying to do real science

    Again there are plenty of examples of vestigial organs your way of thought are responsible for tossing into the waste ben because you found COMFORT in your explanation when science COULDN’T figure it out. Again a quick example of this is the appendix, no function we don’t use it anymore it’s just an artifact of evolution.
    (That’s a placeholder explanation because you couldn’t figure it out and it gave you comfort)

    That was taught for at least 30 years of my life in school and was generally accepted immediately as the explanation for the appendix

    That is exactly what you were complaining about. No science was done on it for years Because of that explanation

    Like that’s exactly what you’re complaining about which science is painfully guilty of using evolution as an explanation for something they can’t figure out

    Jerry Coyne holds that consciousness is nothing more than evolutionary Sprandel
    It has no function and there’s no need to waste any time trying to figure out the subjective experience

    And why? Consciousness is probably too hard to figure out and it probably gives him comfort That evolution can create everything that’s amazing and everything that’s bad it’s the ultimate god of gaps

    There you go, a person that I’m pretty sure you support, and finds his opinion to be intelligent, doesn’t know what the consciousness is, so evolution did it and it has no function we don’t need to study anymore

    you blame ID and believers for this exact behavior

    Richard Dawkins did it with junk DNA
    I mean he wrote an entire f@$king book about it. It’s a lot of trash science packed into one book called the self-gene, Which now has been shot down multiple times because people Did real science. But again evolution was able to explain all that DNA away as junk there was no real need to investigate further and it already given you the answer why 98% of genome i was useless. Which that is now proving to be very untrue

    What’s even more comical is the when scientists start testing something because they can’t figure out why evolution evolved it multiple times

    They evoke a design reference, why would evolution (god, designer, me HA) evolve this multiple times if it didn’t have function

    That’s exactly the philosophy of ID, it wouldn’t exist if it didn’t have function so we have to keep testing it until we find the function

    This is one of the primary arguments from the camp of evolutionist AGAINST those that feel the consciousness is epiphenominal
    If the consciousness didn’t have function it would never evolved over and over again
    And if it didn’t have function the organism would lose it. Troglobites are a good example of this

    This was also the philosophy that motivated people to start testing the appendix again to see if it had any real function

    And if you had any understanding about the philosophy of ID you would’ve read the comments of “it wouldn’t exist unless it had some form of function”

    This is a tenant that this site and multiple other ID sites push every single day

    But I forget evolutionist get to pick and choose what they want to believe in and criticize others for believing somethings they don’t. then wonder off pretending that they’re really smart my bad

  33. 33
    chuckdarwin says:

    #31
    “Aside: Point to one finding of science that ID does not accept.”

    Speciation by natural selection

  34. 34
    AaronS1978 says:

    Incorrect Chuck
    They just don’t Except it as the sole and only explanation. natural selection is not centerstage that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist and it doesn’t happen

  35. 35
    kairosfocus says:

    CD, your failure to recognise the more standard spelling [UK] is itself a sign of what is going on. YOUR OWN TEXT ABOVE IS A CASE OF DESIGN SHOWING FUNCTIONALLY SPECIFIC, COMPLEX ORGANISATION AND/OR ASSOCIATED INFORMATION (FSCO/I). Of this phenomenon there are trillions of examples all around, reliably — there are zero known exceptions once a reasonable complexity threshold such as 500 – 1,000 bits is used — showing FSCO/I a signature of design once we can observe causal process. This establishes what anywhere else would be called a law of science, but frankly science here goes up against entrenched materialist ideology. It so happens that since 1953 we have known the living cell is replete with coded, string data structure, algorithmic information and associated execution machinery. Your ideological unwillingness to acknowledge reliability of sign, demonstration (try infinite monkeys investigations) of incapacity and more does not change that balance on merits. It’s over and the warranted conclusion, cell based life comes from a process of intelligently directed conclusion is solid. KF

  36. 36
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: A classic illustration of the problem:

    . . . 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.]

  37. 37
    kairosfocus says:

    PPS: Institutional entrenchment:

    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]

  38. 38
    ET says:

    seversky:

    But watching Christians plug their God into every gap in our scientific knowledge, does.

    Right, and scientists plug in artisans and criminals cuz they can’t figure out how nature didit.

    People “plug in” an intelligent designer because the evidence calls for it. Stop blaming others for YOUR miserable failures.

  39. 39
    ET says:

    Science, by definition, is limited to naturalistic …

    You have to be a desperate loser to think that science has to start with a conclusion and force the evidence to fit it. And that is exactly what materialists do.

    Science, by definition, is limited to REALITY.

  40. 40
    jerry says:

    Speciation by natural selection

    As others have said your comment is incorrect.

    There are some cases where speciation by natural selection/variation take place and ID fully accepts it.

    Science, by definition, is limited to naturalistic

    Does that apply to forensic scientists.

  41. 41
    ET says:

    chuckdarwin:

    Speciation by natural selection

    Even YECs accept that. They don’t accept macroevolution by means of NS.

  42. 42
    AaronS1978 says:

    Honestly we just need to be more vocal then people like Chuck D and Sev

    They will maintain their obnoxious misrepresentation of religion, believers, ID, and even TE because of their biased towards the idea of God

    It’s literally a waste arguing with them here

    What needs to happen is we need to be vocal to the lay people so their trash explanations and misrepresentation of us are not the first impression people get

    First impressions have a tendency to be the foundation of future interpretations

    This is why new atheism was even a thing
    It’s false bravado was made believable due to advertising and vocalization

  43. 43
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerry, the definition imposed under threat on schools is ideological distortion. KF

  44. 44
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev, inference to design by ART-ifical action is not inference to Go, as has been on the table since Plato in the laws, Bk X. You have been here all along when that was quoted in extenso. You know better. KF

  45. 45
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/27

    Seversky, you, i.e. atheists, are the ones plugging naturalistic explanations into every gap that exists where no naturalistic explanation is even plausible. i.e. Origin of the Universe, Origin of Life, Origin of consciousness. etc.. etc.. The hypocrisy of your ‘gap’ accusation is literally dripping off every word you write.

    Yes, “Naturalistic explanations” – plural. Science is willing to try out any number of different explanations to try and find the best one. We don’t just plug in our preferred god and say ‘There! Done and dusted!’

    For instance, you claim that the ‘huge amount of information’ in genomes came from a purely naturalistic origin. Yet no one knows of any naturalistic processes ever creating any non-trivial amounts of information. Much less creating ‘huge amounts’ of information.

    Genomes contain huge amounts of information. We know genomes can be changed over time by naturalistic process. Whatever some people want to believe, we have no equivalent evidence for their preferred god or its handiwork so it’s a reasonable inference that it arose through naturalistic processes. Of course, we might all be wrong but that’s the nature of human knowledge, it’s just not as certain as we’d all like it to be but we just have to live with that uncertainty.

    Only intelligence has ever been shown to be capable of generating ‘huge amounts’ of information. Yet you plugged some unknown naturalistic explanation into the ‘gap’ anyway. And insinuated that the matter is settled.

    Only human intelligence has been shown to be capable of generating huge amounts of information but we’re pretty sure we did not design the genome. So either it was designed by some alien intelligence or it arose through naturalistic processes. At this time, we have no evidence of the existence of some alien intelligence that could have done it so we are left with nature as the better candidate cause.

    You also claim that invoking God as an explanation for, say, the origin of the universe closes off any further naturalistic alternative.

    Because clearly that is exactly what it is intended to do by its proponents. It brooks no alternatives.

    It also fails as an alternative to scientific explanations for the reasons Chuckdarwin stated @30 better than I could:

    However, as I discussed in my prior post, importing a supernatural or metaphysical unobservable, unmeasurable entity as the “designer” or cause of natural phenomena explains nothing. As one of my grad professors was fond of saying, there are no mysteries, simply uncontrolled variables. The notion of “God” (whatever that term means), as an independent variable “causing” natural phenomena, is, quite frankly, ridiculous and unhelpful–it has no explanatory power, it cannot be tested, it is not disprovable–it is a placeholder for folks who, like I said before, eschew the hard work of science in favor of useless (but perhaps psychologically comforting) explanations. As H.L. Menken once said, “for every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.”

  46. 46
    AaronS1978 says:

    Actually alien intelligence is a perfectly good explanation for the genome, the problem is you run into Richard Dawkins fallacious argument where it becomes who created the creator

    This is a fallacy and all it does is put an additional caboose on the train of explanations they keep appearing

    Edwards Fesser’s goes into great detail on this and I think he’s excellent reference when it pertains the first and final causes

    But if aliens created us it still means evolution was wrong in our origin so that would make it that we were both right for the wrong reasons

  47. 47
    Sandy says:

    So either it was designed by some alien intelligence or it arose through naturalistic processes.

    Aliens are Christians.
    Problem solved.

    who created the creator

    Creator is uncreated.
    Problem solved.

    importing a supernatural or metaphysical unobservable, unmeasurable entity as the “designer” or cause of natural phenomena explains nothing.

    :)) Atheists have no logic. If we find an UFO and we don’t see aliens around that means UFO appeared by some naturalistic processes . Right? Right!

  48. 48
    ET says:

    seversky:

    Yes, “Naturalistic explanations” – plural. Science is willing to try out any number of different explanations to try and find the best one.

    That is a lie as long as the word “naturalistic” remains before “explanations”.

    We don’t just plug in our preferred god and say ‘There! Done and dusted!’

    Nice strawman. You and yours just make stuff up.

    Genomes contain huge amounts of information.

    And there isn’t any evidence that “naturalistic processes” didit. You lose.

    We know genomes can be changed over time by naturalistic process

    Question begging. Too bad for you genomes do not determine biological form.

    Only human intelligence has been shown to be capable of generating huge amounts of information but we’re pretty sure we did not design the genome.

    So obviously we infer it was some other intelligent agency. There isn’t any evidence that nature didit. There isn’t even a way to test the claim that nature didit. So Hitchens applies and we dismiss the claim.

    Look, opponents of ID have ALL of the power to refute it. Yet they CANNOT. Their desperation is very entertaining, though.

  49. 49
    AnimatedDust says:

    @AAronS1978, you make lots of good points, but also clearly don’t bother to proofread your work. You have 20 minutes to do so. Please make avail of that time.

  50. 50
    AnimatedDust says:

    Mo @ 6:

    Why would you only treat God as subjective and illusory? That’s not going to be the case any longer after you take your last breath. Why not consider the possibility that an objective God is a possible, no PROBABLE reality, given the scads of evidence for him, and that what’s objectively true about the universe cares not a whit for the mental concoctions of subjective preference that tends to muck up and forestall having to make that conclusion for so many.

    “Every knee shall bow, and tongue confess…” does not just apply to the faithful. It’s a statement of fact that the day is coming when those who believe, AND those who don’t believe will have to utter what is unquestionably true. And those who’ve spent their lives trying to wish that fact away will have an eternity to live with the ugly fact that all the wishing of a lifetime matters not, in the face of The Truth.

    I can see why wailing and gnashing of teeth is such an apt description for so many, for whom their fantasies will have come crashing down in that moment.

    You won’t be able to say you didn’t have enough evidence.

    Especially for those who hang out in a place like this.

    Think about the meaning of this phrase too: And their foolish hearts were darkened…

    Time to stop playing tiddlywinks with the most important questions in the world, and grow up.

    “When I was a child, I did childish things. When I became a man, I left those childish things behind me.”

    Is it not time for abandoning childish things like the clinging to notions that fly in the face of the overwhelming evidence that beats us over the head with our own senses, yet we refuse to acknowledge?

    High time, indeed.

  51. 51
    AnimatedDust says:

    Seversky @ 45:

    “Only human intelligence has been shown to be capable of generating huge amounts of information but we’re pretty sure we did not design the genome. So either it was designed by some alien intelligence or it arose through naturalistic processes. At this time, we have no evidence of the existence of some alien intelligence that could have done it so we are left with nature as the better candidate cause.”

    Your inference isn’t to the best explanation. It’s intentionally ignoring the best explanation. The inference to the best explanation is what you’ve been willfully ignoring for YEARS here. That a super-intellect outside this time and space continuum is responsible for the most advanced designed living systems and complexity we observe around us. If genomes were designed, then how they change over time isn’t unguided natural processes. Everything is being done according to highly specific executions of intentionally coded instructions. That’s anything but blind happenstance.

    My comment at 50 is particularly applicable to you. You’ve been inundated daily with evidence, scads of it, by BA77, KF, Charles (Does he still post here?) that Jesus Christ is the correct theory of everything. I know you won’t consider that seriously until after you die, but by then you won’t have the luxury of continuing in your ostensibly comfortable lifestyle, enjoying the gifts of this loving Creator you daily deny.

    That’s why you are repeatedly getting gently pummeled with the most obvious truths, to all but those whose hearts are intentionally closed to the truth. Why do you remain? Something is keeping you engaged.

    What will it take for you to seriously consider the weight of these overwhelming evidential arguments put forth, with an open heart and mind?

    I, for one, want you to be able to enter into the joy of your Lord. You’re routinely civil, and always keep your cool. There’s evidence when you die that your entire life and all your thoughts will be played back for you. That presumably includes scenes where you were presented with convincing evidence, and made the conscious decision to deny it. Invisible to us, but not to the creator who loved you before time began.

    What will you say at that hour to the face of the God you’ve denied for most of your adult life, right before your choice is eternally granted to you?

    I didn’t have enough evidence?

    Quo est Veritas?

    Time you garnered the courage to face The Truth, and The Way, and The Life, and to discover the joy of living in harmony with the lover of your soul. After all, your incessant resistance isn’t likely due to your comprehensive and complete scholarship of the ancient texts, but more on a misunderstanding driven by the lack of serious scholarship your preference became, largely by the current cultural moment, and your homage to it.

    Aim at Heaven, and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth (what you’re currently devoting a huge amount of time to,) and you get neither. –Lewis

  52. 52
    AaronS1978 says:

    @ AnimatedDust

    I’m using talk to text, it’s terrible, often I’m in the middle of doing something when I’m writing these so I use it to speed it up

    For this I apologize, I’m also pretty lazy, and I hate dealing with texting on my phone

    But I am sorry about that

  53. 53
    jerry says:

    I’m watching a course on the development of human behavior and the lecturer maintains that human behavior/all biology is only understandable in terms of evolution. In other words the party line.

    He then describes evolution as micro evolution. Namely, traits are inheritable, there is variation that works on genes and natural selection will affect what genes/alleles become dominant.

    ID does not disagree with any of this.

    The issue is what precedes this process and how did it come about? This is avoided.

    This is the bait and switch that is continually used to justify natural mechanisms as the source for all of life. But as we all know there are exponential levels of difficulty between simple micro evolution which is modern day genetics and the origin of complex systems of life.

    If one is to be honest in this discussion, then one has to admit to these extreme differences in difficulty. But they are not admitted. They prefer to use the bait and switch technique to say trivial accepted processes are the be all and end all.

    I have often said the most interesting issue is not the science but the lies/diversions people tell in order to justify a position that had no justification.

  54. 54
    William J Murray says:

    AD said:

    That presumably includes scenes where you were presented with convincing evidence, and made the conscious decision to deny it. Invisible to us, but not to the creator who loved you before time began.

    I don’t mean to speak for Sevesky, but …

    C’mon, man.

    BA77’s general relativity and quantum physics arguments are convincing …. to whom? Does Seversky count himself as someone who understands those things enough to even grasp what BA77 is saying? I suggest that most people do not; not from lack of intelligence, but from a lack of devoting enough time and attention and effort into that information to gain a passable understanding. Most people have lives to attend to that demand most of their time.

    Second, what does it mean to say that Seversky “consciously made the decision” to deny the evidence? Are you saying Seversky is sitting at home, reading BA77’s (or UB’s) posts and thinking to himself, “wow, he proved that point beyond all reasonable doubt … but, I’m just going to deny it because i don’t want to believe it?” Do you really think that’s what is going on at Seversky’s end?

    C’mon man. Unless we’re just going to uncharitably assume that everyone who disagrees with us is being deliberately trollish, I think we safely assume that Seversky is unconvinced.

    Which brings us to: “convincing evidence?” Convincing … to whom? “Convincing” is in in the mind of the person reading the argument.

    Are you a mind reader too? It seems to me that there’s a lot of that going on around here.

    Further, as I’ve said, BA77 (IMO) has made a good, sound argument that the path into the Christian heaven goes through Jesus Christ. However, his NDE argument left an unanswered question, which he refused to address: why is it that non-Christians have non-Christian NDEs? How is that possible, if Christianity represents the only available conditions that can be experienced in the afterlife?

    Although his argument that a Christian heaven exists , and that there is a specific path to it, is good, as yet there has been offered no “convincing argument” that the Christian afterlife location(s) are the only available ones. In fact, the same evidence BA77 uses to support the existence of the Christian heaven directly contradicts the proposition that only Christian afterlife locations exist.

  55. 55
    AnimatedDust says:

    I don’t know about how many non-Christians have non-Christian NDE experiences, but I have seen a bunch of atheist/Islam/pantheistic people have Christian NDEs, including hell experiences.

    As for Seversky, that’s precisely what I am alleging, though not through clairvoyance. I think most atheists are of the Thomas Nagel variety. They don’t WANT there to be a god, “I don’t want the universe to be like that.” Plain and simple. And I think that’s based on a profound misunderstanding of what the Bible actually says, though admittedly I don’t have all the answers either.

    I don’t think Seversky has made the slightest attempt to objectively work through BA’s argument from special relativity, or any of his thousands of other rock solid evidentiary examples. I don’t have to be a mind reader to correctly infer that. When daily facing the discussions and evidence presented here, the obstinate resistance is so thick you can cut it with a knife, and I am just pointing that out.

  56. 56
    Sandy says:

    I don’t know about how many non-Christians have non-Christian NDE experiences, but I have seen a bunch of atheist/Islam/pantheistic people have Christian NDEs, including hell experiences.

    NDE is something banal that happens to all humans when soul disconnect from body, except some live to tell the experience while majority not. It’s like hit your finger with a hammer..and something common happens, no matter your beliefs. Shakespeare would have written a book about his pain but a common guy wouldn’t even tell to his wife. Same experience. NDE is absolutely irrelevant :)))

  57. 57
    AnimatedDust says:

    Sandy @56, couldn’t disagree more. Veridical experiences are a thing, and there are now, perish the thought, (pun intended) peer reviewed studies on NDEs.

    What they say when they come back is remarkably consistent, and similar, as BA has overwhelmingly reported. Contrary to your preferences, what people report when their hearts and brains no longer function is quite the big deal.

  58. 58
    Sandy says:

    peer reviewed studies on NDEs.

    …Then I beg you, father,’ he said, ‘send Lazarus to my father’s house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also end up in this place of torment.’
    But Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let your brothers listen to them.’
    ‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone is sent to them from the dead, they will repent.
    Then Abraham said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.’”…

  59. 59
    William J Murray says:

    AD said:

    I don’t know about how many non-Christians have non-Christian NDE experiences, ..

    Also AD:

    I don’t think Seversky has made the slightest attempt to objectively work through BA’s argument from special relativity, ..

    Perhaps it is evidence you don’t want to think about or “work through.” Perhaps you want Christianity to be true, and so are unwilling to process the evidence the very person you cite, BA77, brought to the table. Did you fail to read BA77’s argument about how Christian NDEs were “better” than non-Christian NDEs? You said that you don’t know ‘how many” non-Christian NDEs there have been reported in the literature, but if you read BA77’s argument, and the evidence I provided, you know there are many.

    What is your or BA77’s argument about why non-Christians experience non-Christian afterlife locations? Or, like you and BA77 and others often accuse Seversky, are you applying a double-standard to the NDE evidence?

  60. 60
    AnimatedDust says:

    Certainly possible, WJM. I am hoping BA will weigh in here, too.

  61. 61
    William J Murray says:

    AD said:

    Certainly possible, WJM. I am hoping BA will weigh in here, too.

    Why wait for BA77? Are you unwilling to examine the evidence and reach your own conclusions? Or, are you going to ignore it so you can believe what you want to believe?

    From: http://www.horizonresearch.org.....periences/

    In one study carried out in 1985, the experiences of 16 Asian Indians had been compared with those of Americans and it had been found that the Indians had often encountered Yamraj, the Hindu king of the dead, while the Americans had not.

    ….

    In this study the researchers had examined the visions of approximately 440 terminally ill American and Indian patients as described to their doctors and nurses. The most common feature, which occurred in 91 per cent of cases, was seeing deceased relatives. In 140 cases there were reports of seeing religious figures, usually described as an angel or God. Where these were specifically identified, they were always described according to the person’s religious beliefs: no Hindu reported seeing Jesus, and no Christian a Hindu deity.

    BA77’s entire argument is not that non-Christian NDEs do not occur; his argument is that they do occur because his argument is that Christian NDE’s are “better” than non-Christian NDEs.

    If there are only Christian afterlife locations and beings, how is it that non-Christians can have entirely non-Christian NDEs? Are you going to do what you claim Seversky does and either deny the evidence, or apply a double-standard to it?

  62. 62
    Sandy says:

    AnimatedDust
    Certainly possible, WJM. I am hoping BA will weigh in here, too.

    :))) Do you really believe a single word of WJM? His logic is broken but you said he make sense . What in the world…

  63. 63
    William J Murray says:

    It’s okay, AD. I won’t hold it against you. In fact, I totally advocate believing what you want to believe despite any evidence to the contrary. That’s what I do; I’m just honest enough to admit it.

  64. 64
    Seversky says:

    AnimatedDust/51

    Your inference isn’t to the best explanation. It’s intentionally ignoring the best explanation. The inference to the best explanation is what you’ve been willfully ignoring for YEARS here.

    When people turn to science for an explanation of something they want to know how it happened. Claiming it was the work of a god or some other sort of supreme intellect is not that sort of explanation. It’s a claim about ‘who’ not an explanation of ‘how’.

    That a super-intellect outside this time and space continuum is responsible for the most advanced designed living systems and complexity we observe around us.

    We can’t rule that out as a possibility but we can explain the how of a lot of things by natural causes, like COVID-19 being caused by a virus.

    If genomes were designed, then how they change over time isn’t unguided natural processes. Everything is being done according to highly specific executions of intentionally coded instructions. That’s anything but blind happenstance.

    Why would such an advanced designer use a genetic system that is prone to damage by random mutations? It’s estimated that 99% of the species of living things that have ever existed on Earth have gone extinct. Doesn’t that indicate a wasteful and even incompetent designer?

    My comment at 50 is particularly applicable to you. You’ve been inundated daily with evidence, scads of it, by BA77, KF, Charles (Does he still post here?) that Jesus Christ is the correct theory of everything.

    Jesus Christ is not a theory of anything. Again, it’s a claim about ‘who’ not an explanation of ‘how’. Are you even interested in how it was done?

    What will you say at that hour to the face of the God you’ve denied for most of your adult life, right before your choice is eternally granted to you?

    If that ever happens, I have a lot of questions I would like answered.

    I didn’t have enough evidence?

    Not what I would consider sufficient evidence but I’m open to anything better.

  65. 65
    Seversky says:

    William J Murray/54

    I don’t mean to speak for Sevesky, but …

    C’mon, man.

    Thanks, WJM, your comments are greatly appreciated.

  66. 66
    jerry says:

    Are you even interested in how it was done?

    C’mon, man.

    You are not really interested in how. You are interested in finding something to dispute the obvious that you can cling to. You even bring up the faulty design argument. That’s real desperation.

    I wrote this sarcastic account of this approach several years ago.

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/complex-specified-information-you-be-the-judge/#comment-305339

    It’s the same old dodge. It is actually an admission of weakness.

    Here is what I wrote over 12 years ago.

    ————

    Mark Frank and Adel, you people are just too good to be true. Next they will be accusing us of having planted you people here.

    Yes, I make sarcastic remarks because absurdity deserves it. If I hear one more person wanting to know what FSCI is, I will scream. I explained it to my niece in 4th grade and she understood it and thought it was neat. But she is really a bright kid.

    Someone actually wants the laboratory techniques used 3.8 billion years ago. You talk about bizarre. I say a thousand as hyperbole and Mark in all seriousness says there is probably only a dozen. Mark wants the actual technique used a few billion years ago.

    Mark, I got word from the designer a few weeks ago and he said the original lab and blue prints were subducted under what was to become the African plate 3.4 billion years ago but by then they were mostly rubble anyway. The original cells were relatively simple but still very complex. Subsequent plants/labs went the same way and unfortunately all holograph videos of it are now in hyper space and haven’t been looked at for at least 3 million years. So to answer one of your questions, no further work has been done for quite awhile and the designer expects future work to be done by the latest design itself. The designer travels via hyper space between his home and our area of the universe when it is necessary.

    The designer said the techniques used were much more sophisticated than anything dreamed of by current synthetic biologist crowd but in a couple million years they may get up to speed and understand how it was actually done. The designer said it is actually a lot more difficult than people think especially since this was a new technique and he had to invent the DNA/RNA/protein process from scratch but amazingly they had the right chemical properties. His comment was “Thank God for that” or else he doesn’t think he wouldn’t have been able to do it. It took him about 200,000 of our years just experimenting with amino acid combinations to get usable proteins. He said it will be easier for current scientists since they will have a template to work off…

    Your comments and Mark Frank’s comment and those by others here help us immensely. We really appreciate how easy you guys make our job convincing others about the logic and facts behind our position.

    DaveScot who was the person running the website at the. time said he would use viral vectors.

    Aside: Is Seversky actually arguing for ID? Not just one performed by the Judeo/Christian God. Welcome to the ID community, Seversky!

  67. 67
    Seversky says:

    AnimatedDust/55

    As for Seversky, that’s precisely what I am alleging, though not through clairvoyance. I think most atheists are of the Thomas Nagel variety. They don’t WANT there to be a god, “I don’t want the universe to be like that.” Plain and simple. And I think that’s based on a profound misunderstanding of what the Bible actually says, though admittedly I don’t have all the answers either.

    I was raised as a Christian. I believed the teachings of Christianity without question. I was as certain of the existence of God as I was of the existence of the Sun, I taught smaller children about the Bible in Sunday School.

    Over time, however, I became interested in what science could tell us about this Universe and found that Christianity didn’t have such answers. I also became aware that there are inconsistencies, discrepancies and even outright contradictions in Christian belief that I could not ignore. I also found that a lot of Christians simply didn’t want to know about them, I think because they found that the benefits of the faith greatly outweighed any questions about its foundations, which is fair enough.

    I don’t think Seversky has made the slightest attempt to objectively work through BA’s argument from special relativity, or any of his thousands of other rock solid evidentiary examples.

    The problem is that on at least two occasions I took the time and trouble to work through the papers, articles and press releases from which BA77 takes his quotes and found that they don’t always say what he claims. I would suggest you do the same and look at his source material and see if you agree with his interpretations.

    I don’t have to be a mind reader to correctly infer that. When daily facing the discussions and evidence presented here, the obstinate resistance is so thick you can cut it with a knife, and I am just pointing that out.

    I’m happy to look a the evidence but what I’ve seen to far just isn’t very persuasive.

  68. 68
    jerry says:

    I’m happy to look a the evidence but what I’ve seen to far just isn’t very persuasive.

    Are you talking about Darwin and all the enhancements to his ideas?

    I was listening to a lecture the other day that included the rationale for why Biology can only be understood in terms of evolution. Evolution was defined as

    1) genes are inheritable.
    2) There are mutations/variations in the genes that are passed on
    3) Natural selection affects which of these new genes become dominant in the species.

    All non controversial and accepted by ID.

    But none of the above can explain anything ID finds not very convincing.

    So are you actually objecting to the conclusions of bureaucratic science as ID does? Based on good science?

  69. 69
    ET says:

    seversky:

    When people turn to science for an explanation of something they want to know how it happened. Claiming it was the work of a god or some other sort of supreme intellect is not that sort of explanation.

    Actually, it is. Once you have determined that it was intelligently designed you know quite a bit. For one you know nature didn’t do it. For another ot tells you there was a purpose and intent at play.

    Then we get to work to figure out the rest.

    It’s a claim about ‘who’ not an explanation of ‘how’.

    It’s both.

    We can’t rule that out as a possibility but we can explain the how of a lot of things by natural causes, like COVID-19 being caused by a virus.

    And we know that the virus was intelligently engineered.

    Why would such an advanced designer use a genetic system that is prone to damage by random mutations?

    Many reasons. For one sickness is an impetus for research. For another, nothing is perfect. It is beyond stupid desperation to think that something that was intelligently designed had to be perfectly designed.

    It’s estimated that 99% of the species of living things that have ever existed on Earth have gone extinct.

    That estimate is based on the untestable assumption of universal common descent via gradual changes.

    Doesn’t that indicate a wasteful and even incompetent designer?

    No, it indicates that you are just a question-begging troll.

    Are you even interested in how it was done?

    Yes, but unfortunately, for now, you and your ilk are in the way. Archaeologists can’t even determine how many artifacts were made. And living organisms are by far more advanced than artifacts.

    But if it helps people can picture lab technicians genetically engineering the hardware of organisms while others toil away at getting the BIOS loaded.

  70. 70
    ET says:

    seversky:

    I’m happy to look a the evidence but what I’ve seen to far just isn’t very persuasive.

    And yet you cannot provide a better explanation, based on science, for our existence. You can’t even provide an explanation, based on science, for our existence.

    You are a hypocrite.

  71. 71
    Sandy says:

    I also became aware that there are inconsistencies, discrepancies and even outright contradictions in Christian belief that I could not ignore.

    False.

    I was raised as a Christian.

    False.

  72. 72
    kairosfocus says:

    AS78:

    >>I’m a naturalist and therefore believe that the brain in the mind of one in the same so you were disembodied mind means nothing>>

    If this is representative summary, it is a fail. Computational substrates, inherently, are incapable of rational, responsible freedom. This man is self-referentially self-defeating and in a way that provokes fundamental discredit. After this sort of fail, there is no recovery.

    Compare, Crick:

    . . . that “You”, your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behaviour of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules. As Lewis Carroll’s Alice might have phrased: “You’re nothing but a pack of neurons.” This hypothesis is so alien to the ideas of most people today that it can truly be called astonishing.

    The late Philip Johnson has aptly replied that Sir Francis should have therefore been willing to preface his works thusly: “I, Francis Crick, my opinions and my science, and even the thoughts expressed in this book, consist of nothing more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules.” Johnson then acidly commented: “[t]he plausibility of materialistic determinism requires that an implicit exception be made for the theorist.” [Reason in the Balance, 1995.]

    Likewise, notice Haldane, decades before Crick reduced himself to absurdity:

    “It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if 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] I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. 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.]

    Similarly, appeals to potty training, class conditioning, operant conditioning etc are all likewise personally self-referential and absurd. Sawing off the branch on which we all must sit is sawing off the branch on which one is sitting. Zip, zip, zip . . . CRAACK!

    In short, it is at least arguable that self-referential absurdity is the dagger pointing to the heart of evolutionary materialistic models of mind and its origin. For, there is a very good reason we are cautioned about how easily self-referential statements can become self-refuting, like a snake attacking and swallowing itself tail-first. Any human scheme of thought that undermines responsible [thus, morally governed] rational freedom undermines itself fatally. We thus see inadvertent, inherent self-falsification of evolutionary materialism. But, “inadvertent” counts: it can be hard to recognise and acknowledge the logically fatal nature of the result.

    Of course, that subjective challenge does not change the objective result: self-referential incoherence and irretrievable self-falsification.

    KF

  73. 73
    kairosfocus says:

    Sandy, we often perceive radical self-contradictions due to flaws in our own concepts. Riddle me dis, riddle me dat, guess me dis riddle and per’aps not — a children’s game from my homeland — Is there a single point on earth that is due North of London, UK, Kingston, Jamaica and Tokyo, Japan? At first, it seems impossible, but then go get a globe. The North Pole is due north of every point on the Earth’s surface, save itself. We use it in navigation but fail to understand its force. Our flat maps mislead us, being local and approximate. As for the core theistic concept, that God is the inherently good, utterly wise creator, a necessary and maximally great being worthy of loyalty and the reasonable, responsible service of doing the good that accords with our manifest nature, is admittedly philosophically and by extension theologically loaded. It requires high level concepts aplenty that are not now part of our mental furniture, even for PhD’s. Sometimes, including PhD’s in theology, ironically. It is unsurprising that people perceive contradictions and difficulties that others they may ask cannot cogently, concisely resolve. I point to the microcosm-holographic-facets principle: there are wholes that are so tightly integrated that every facet is informed/influenced by the others and affects the others in turn. This is directly relevant to God’s attributes, where maximal being entails that these are present to maximum compossible degree. And, on long study, this worldviews, root of reality picture is drawn out not only in systematics but in serious study of the Bible, I recall here Paul in Rom speaking of God as just and justifier of one who believes in the incarnate, crucified, risen Son. A pivot of gospel theology. And there is much more. But, again, UD is not the right context for long, drawn out exchanges on theology, those who wish to explore such should go to places like Craig’s Reasonable Faith, etc, where highly qualified people have drawn out these issues on considerable research. Even extensive amateur efforts such as Tektonics dot org, may help. KF

  74. 74
  75. 75
    AnimatedDust says:

    Seversky spake: “I’m happy to look a the evidence but what I’ve seen to far just isn’t very persuasive.”

    That’s because you don’t want to be persuaded. You won’t be. Once you have epoxied yourself to the materialist creed, you won’t be persuaded otherwise. Even when you’re beaten over the head with the evidence of design.

    ID doesn’t get you to the Christian God. But Charles, whom I wish was still posting here, has intricately laid out the case for the Bible being supernatural in origin with a 400 reply dismantling of all critics over the prophecy in Daniel 9 regarding the precise time of Christ’s arrival on earth, nearly 500 years before it happened. That should give you an explanation of who. A very important link to be made.

    You’d likely counter that he had to have been mistaken somewhere. It’s all people like you have.

    WJM: Do I want Christianity to be true? Absolutely. There. I admitted my preference too. Does that inform my evidence? Of course. But I work hard to mitigate that, and when people like Charles, and NT Wright dive deep into scripture, what they mine is treasure. Charles makes a great case that the Bible is unlike any other work on Earth. A story 1500 years in the making, with 64 books and 40 authors that all tell one story. If that doesn’t scream supernatural, along with all the other predictive prophecy, nothing else does.

    https://uncommondescent.com/atheism/fft-charles-unmasks-the-anti-id-trollish-tactic-of-attacking-god-christian-values-and-worldview-themes/

  76. 76
    William J Murray says:

    AD @75,

    I’m not sure why you posted all of that. Okay, the Bible was written by a supernatural agency. Let’s say it was written by the Christian God.

    How does any of that explain the non-Christian NDEs? How does that address your refusal to address the non-Christian NDES? Looks like you are just avoiding the evidence in question by pointing at other evidence for some argument not even being made, as far as I can tell.

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