Intelligent Design Philosophy

ID And The Arts

Spread the love

Where does artistic expression come from? Why do almost all of us, as humans, seem to have an insatiable desire to create? Why do certain works of art endure over centuries?

In another UD thread I read these comments:

Chopin has been my favorite ever since I was introduced to classical music years ago. Don’t know what it is, but there’s something in his music that does me particular good.

Chopin is the music of God’s Love and Grace. Simply genius.

Chopin died at age 39 from tuberculosis, but left an immortal musical legacy.

There is something profoundly and spiritually powerful in the art of classical music — a universal language that requires no translation and transcends all generations. Listening to it edifies; playing it transforms.

But music, painting, sculpture, etc., aren’t the only art forms. The Wright Brothers were artists, mathematicians are artists, and, yes, even engineers are artists, because they create, and have a passion for creating.

Of course, evo-psychos come up with all kinds of silly materialistic ideas to explain this all away. But I have an obvious explanation: We are created — designed. We reflect and express that from which we came, except when we refuse to listen, and then all hell breaks loose.

17 Replies to “ID And The Arts

  1. 1
    larrycranston says:

    Gil:

    Eloquently said, though I have to admit some uneasiness.

    I try very hard in conversations to make a clear distinction between Intelligent Design and my views on the Creator.

    When you say “We are created – designed”, I’m afraid that plays right into the Darwinists hands. Do you agree?

  2. 2
    Berceuse says:

    Are you a classical pianist, Gil? Someone mentioned that in a thread. I am as well. Largely inspired by Chopin (hence my screen name).

    I’m glad you brought this topic up. For me, our innate drive to create is a slap in the face to Darwinism. Creating art has no room in evolutionary/naturalistic thinking (although I’m sure some theories could be conjured up). It’s interesting…for some people, like Kurt Vonnegut, music alone is the only proof they need for God’s existence. But we must stick with “science,” right?

  3. 3
    Tina says:

    We define the type of thought involved in the creative process as “abstract” thought ie thinking not derived from immediate reality but rather thinking derived by detaching (self) from immediate reality.

    This process can be measured in phsiological terms sa neurological chemicals, neuronal firings in obscure regions of brain, increased heart beat and so on.

    As such, artistic creation, is the literal product of heart and mind.

    The artist then articulates the experience for us in the concrete form of their art. When we respond favourably (transcended) it is because our own hearts and minds aprehend what they have also felt but were unable to express. This is why we can relate to art.

    Ergo: Art is a community service.

  4. 4
    XtremeCamera says:

    This is my first post on any ID-related site. I have been studying ID and Darwinism for a handful of years because I see design in everything yet I was being told that no such design is there. I have never posted my own opinion on an ID or Darwin site because I felt I did not know enough to contribute anything of substance. I still don’t think I can, but there is one thing that has been nagging at me, and this post about Art is as good an opening as any.

    While Art may be something that is uniquely human (but perhaps not), it seems to be a way for many creationists, or believers in the divine, to make a judgement supporting a diety. While I tend to believe in design (I don’t believe in anything at a 100% certainty), I need to know why so many ID supporters make the jump from apparent design to God/Jesus/Christians. I just don’t see how you get from design to a diety. Can someone explain this to me?

    Why is it a diety rather than some advanced alien intelligence? Isn’t it more likely that something so complex, so incredibly well thought out, comes from something we cannot comprehend rather than something as simple as a Christian “God”?

    I admire the work of people like Dembski and Behe and believe they are on the right track. But, when I read someone going from irredicible complexity to a Christian God that wants people to be “good” or else it just doesn’t jive. So, if someone can explain to me how so many intelligent, knowledable, geniuses make this jump prehaps I can too.

    If you find this comment out of place, or insulting, rest assured I mean no disrepect. Feel free to delete the post if it causes any trouble for this site.

  5. 5
    John Kelly says:

    I wrote an essay on “What is Art?” in art school.

    Reduced to their essential purpose:

    – Art exposes the Understanding.
    – Science seeks the Understanding.
    – Religion serves the Understanding.
    – Commerce turns the Understanding into a commodity.

    That is why every “thing” can be considered as Art, every inquiry can be considered as Science, every belief can be considered as Religion, and every idea can be bought or sold. Creativity is the manipulation of the Understanding.

    Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it:
    Proverbs 16:22

  6. 6
    Patrick says:

    XtremeCamera,

    Within its scope ID does not contain the tools/methods necessary to make the leap between the design inference and the designer’s identity. Theists arrive at their conclusions by methods outside of ID. Religious groups are always likely to be involved to a certain extent since ID gives epistemic support in the form of greater explanatory power for their beliefs.

    So, if someone can explain to me how so many intelligent, knowledable, geniuses make this jump prehaps I can too.

    If you’re desiring to get into a deeper conversation with a proponent of a particular religion someone here on UD (volunteers?) may be interested in communicating with you privately via email. Otherwise, we try to keep to keep conversations mostly on topic.

  7. 7
    dacook says:

    XtremeCamera:

    Why is it a diety rather than some advanced alien intelligence?

    I think you would be interested in this site:
    http://www.panspermia.org/index.htm
    I believe that Panspermia and ID are mutually supportive and would like to see more cross dialogue.

    On the art theme: I have often bemoaned my lack of musical talent. Why would a creator have given someone a beautiful voice or other artistic talent and me nothing?
    Then again, why would evolution have done that?

    My son’s theory is that before we came to earth we all had so many credits to “spend” on different talents. Some chose music, some mathematics, etc.
    I think I spent all mine on a talent for annoying people. 😉

  8. 8
    John Kelly says:

    Within its scope ID does not contain the tools/methods necessary to make the leap between the design inference and the designer’s identity.
    …..yet.

    Theists arrive at their conclusions by methods outside of ID. Religious groups are always likely to be involved to a certain extent since ID gives epistemic support in the form of greater explanatory power for their beliefs.
    Natural Theology has a much more involved history than “Intelligent Design”. If anything, ID is just another form of Natural Theology. Taking a position somewhere between God and Satan is NOT going to work though. Look what is happening to Darwinism.

  9. 9

    This is a metaphysical question, so it’s right to give it a metaphysical answer. Human beings desire to create, and are good at it, because they are made in the image of God. In creating, we reflect the nature of the being that we were made with. It is the same reason why we take part in intelligent reasoning, why we pursue meaning, why we communicate, why we are moral beings who interpret acts in terms of good/evil, etcetera – because we are deliberately wired that way.

    It’s a good metaphysical question, because materialism cannot give a coherent answer to it. Creativity is inexplicable in a materialist world. Materialism and the denial of the soul cannot account for the inventiveness of the human spirit.

    David
    http://david.dw-perpsective.org.uk

  10. 10

    “made with” should say “made by” ! (I think I got stuck in two minds between typing “nature we were made with” and “being we were made by”).

  11. 11
    GilDodgen says:

    larrycranston:
    When you say “We are created – designed”, I’m afraid that plays right into the Darwinists hands. Do you agree?

    The theme of my post is human creativity and an inference to its origin. If the universe and living things, including us, are the result of design and purpose, this is evidence of enormously powerful, unimaginable creativity, from wherever it came. It simply seems reasonable to me to infer that this creative power might instill in its creation an analogue of its creative impulse. If Darwinists want to jump all over the words “creativity” and “creation” because they associate these words with young-earth Biblical creationism, there’s nothing I can do about it. These are the only words that fit the bill in the context of my essay.

    Berceuse:
    Are you a classical pianist, Gil? Someone mentioned that in a thread. I am as well. Largely inspired by Chopin (hence my screen name).

    Yes I am. You can download three of my classical piano albums in MP3 format, along with program notes, for free, here:

    http://www.worldchampionshipch.....piano.html

    You can also download my artificial-intelligence creation (oops, there’s that word again), World Championship Checkers, for free, here:

    http://www.worldchampionshipcheckers.com/

  12. 12
    StephenB says:

    I submit that creativity is a function of appreciating beauty either in nature or in the arts, and then sharing that appreciation with others through some form of artistic expression.

    As a former professional jazz pianist and fan, I found that creativity manifests itself in a personal style which develops gradually through inspiration and disciplined effort. The process seems to be made of up four stages.

    First, the artist is moved by the beauty in another artist’s performance. This is the most important quality of talent. If the capacity to be moved is lacking, no creativity will ever take place.

    Second, he tries to replicate what he hears—to recreate the beauty, as it were. Hero worship almost always follows.

    Third, he searches for other aspects of beauty in the varying styles of diverse musicians. At this stage, he becomes more open-minded, learning that quality music can take many forms.

    Finally, he gradually develops his own style, accepting those elements he considers most beautiful and rejecting the rest. It is only at the last stage that the creative function becomes personal and the style becomes original.

    I believe that all stages, especially the last, reflect a spiritual component that yearns to express appreciation to God for the gift of life.

  13. 13
    tyke says:

    Art could be just as much an accidental side-effect of design as it would be if evolution was true.

    Since ID does not infer anything beyond the claim of being able to detect design, we cannot say if the intelligent designer planned it that way, or it came about completely by accident. In fact, the designer might have had other plans entirely, but botched things up and unwittingly gave us the ability of art appreciation!

  14. 14
    VoiceTeach says:

    Xtreme camera:
    ~Why is it a diety rather than some advanced alien intelligence? Isn’t it more likely that something so complex, so incredibly well thought out, comes from something we cannot comprehend rather than something as simple as a Christian “God”?~

    One could certainly posit an advanced alien intelligence from ID. Behe readily states that the evidence of design does not identify the creator and identifies panspermia as a theory that is in the debate (Francis Crick was a proponent, at least at one time).

    While ID cannot identify the creator(s), there are other lines of investigation open to us, both empirical and metaphysical. I think the reason that one is quick to “jump” to diety is that the implications of ID (not the empirical observations) mesh with the seemingly innate religious nature of humanity, and with the Judeo/Christian tradition of creation. Conversely, the implications of Darwinism fit nicely with a pre-existing materialistic/atheistic worldview. Hence, the intense debate over ID.

    I think the problems with panspermia are that 1.) the universe seems very anti-life outside of earth (at least thus far); 2.) there is little evidence of these aliens, while there is a great deal of historical evidence for a deity of some kind.

    This is my first UD post, so I hope I didn’t get too far off topic!

  15. 15
    bFast says:

    XtremeCamera:

    Why is it a diety rather than some advanced alien intelligence?

    Scientifically, the “alien intelligence” hypothesis, aka panspermia, has a significant problem — the big bang. According to our best scientific understanding the universe itself had a beginning. In fact, physicists claim that time itself had a beginning. Further, if you study the phenomenon known as the strong anthropic principle, you will see that there is a strong case that the universe itself was designed. If so, then by necessity the designer must be outside of the universe. The designer must be outside of time. And, as there was only one big bang (in this universe anyway) there must be only one such “super-designer”. Life seems to have stemmed from a single initial seed (uncommon descent), certainly all of life follows the same pattern (DNA converts to proteins through the same encoding system). Therefore, all of life has the unity that would strongly imply that it is the product of only one designer. The fact that life requires the strong anthropic principle to even exist suggests that the designer of life is also the designer of the universe.

    Now, lets get honest, many of us are Christians first. Through a not so scientific path of inquiry, we have found significant personal value within the parameters of the Christian gospel. Many of us are drawn to the ID debate because we feel a conflict between our religion and science. In ID, we see a unification, albiet uncomfortable, between our faith and science.

    So far the most scientifically validated two verses in the Bible are the first two

    In the beginning God created the heavans and the earth [space and matter] and the earth was without form and void [a singularity] and God said, “Let there be light” [the big bang]

    larrycranston:

    When you say “We are created – designed”, I’m afraid that plays right into the Darwinists hands. Do you agree?

    I say, why not be honest. We claim that truth is on the side of ID. How can we seek truth while not being honest about our motivations. Our motivations will be found out eventually anyway. That said, I respect the panspermia people, I respect XtremeCamera’s “why does ID need to equate to Christianity” view. The tent is big enough to hold many who are not Christian. However, I, as many on this site, am Christian. My faith is a prime motivator for my search for the ID truth. It makes no sense for me to hide it.

    All of that said — Gil, I love your post. I agree with you that creativity in any of its forms is an exercise in spirituality. I also respect that you respect the inventive, not-so-artistic creativity that some of us exercise. Of all of nature that I have seen, I have only seen true creativity out of man. I see this as the evidence that we truly are created in God’s image in a way that all other animals are not.

  16. 16
    MacT says:

    There is a growing literature of interdisciplinary studies of creativity. New syntheses are drawing on cognition, neuroscience, skilled behavior, and a range of other fields to propose ways to think about how creative impulses emerge and are expressed. In general these don’t address questions relating to duality. I find it interesting to see how far we can push the reductionist view. With the new tools (fMRI, dense array EEG, etc) available to scientists now, those limits are nowhere in view. Check out this paper:

    Dietrich, A., The cognitive neuroscience of creativity. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 2004, 11 (6), 1011-1026.

  17. 17
    Jack Golightly says:

    Very interesting article over at ARN that is related to this in a oblique fasion.

    The “elaborate and wonderful symphonies that are mitosis and meiosis”

    (sorry, am unable to post a link)

    It is fascinating that we often resort to descriptive vocabulary that is derived from the arts for scientific elucidation.

Leave a Reply