The New Atheist Movement (“public standards of good taste and good sense broken daily!”) appears to have come and gone. But Michael Shermer, a well-known non-profane skeptic, is, we are glad to say, still with us. Here he is, interviewing Steve Meyer on his new book, The Return of the God Hypothesis:
Beginning in the late 19th century, many intellectuals began to insist that scientific knowledge conflicts with traditional theistic belief — that science and belief in God are “at war.” Philosopher of science Stephen Meyer challenges this view by examining three scientific discoveries with decidedly theistic implications. Building on the case for the intelligent design of life that he developed in Signature in the Cell and Darwin’s Doubt, Meyer claims that discoveries in cosmology and physics coupled with those in biology help to establish the identity of the designing intelligence behind life and the universe. Previously Meyer refrained from attempting to answer questions about “who” might have designed life. Now he provides an evidence-based answer to perhaps the ultimate mystery of the universe.
Shermer responds to each claim and a stimulating and enlightening conversation ensues.
Note: It is Dr. Shermer’s intention in his podcast to periodically talk to people with whom skeptics and scientists may disagree. In some episodes Dr. Shermer tries to “steel man” a position held by someone with differing views — that is, he says in his own words what he thinks the other person is arguing — but in this case the other person is in the conversation and can represent his own position clearly, which is what happens. As well, such conversations enable principles of skepticism to be employed in ways constructive to those who hold views not necessarily embraced by skeptics and scientists. Such principles should be embraced by all seekers of truth, and that is why we want to talk to people with whom we may disagree.
In an age when the Raging Woke parasitize the world of ideas, banning everyone from Frank Turek through Richard Dawkins from public life (when not out setting fires and assaulting the non-Woke), it is worth nothing that Shermer’s 2020 book Giving the Devil His Due, is a defense of intellectual freedom.
And we sure don’t see that every day.