Thursday, December 10, 2009

"Why Would You Choose ID?"

I began this series with:

“Nothing Did It”

“Atheism of the Gaps” -

“Es - ka - Pay” -

“Please Read This” -

“Which Came First” -

That is a question that all atheists ask. It is beyond them that anyone could have any reasons, other than religious, for seeing a designer in the origins of life. And yet science itself compels us to at least consider ID for the cause of life. Here’s why.

One reason ID fits the scientific formula for discerning historical events is because ID fits what we know, UNIFORMLY, regarding cause and effect. After all, science is, at its base, a search for a cause to the effects that we observe. To be fair, ID isn’t the only hypothesis out there. I’m not saying that it has to be. But neither can it be shoved aside for philosophical reasons.

Some atheists might be tempted to say at this point that science works by testing and evaluating the accuracy of the predictions that their theories make. Well, that’s true but it is not the ONLY way that a hypothesis is tested.

Here is what we know from origins science.
. Past causes are inferred from present effects.
. Past causes are inferred to explain particular present day facts.

Here is where the scientific method of inquiry can help us decide which cause best explains specified complexity. Here is where the scientific method of inquiry can help us decide between a million monkeys typing for a billion years, ID and any other hypothesis that might explain the origin of the extraordinarily complex information needed to build the first living organism.

Here’s the problem when atheism enters the sphere of science. Science sets aside ideas that are obviously false. No problem there. However, atheist bias also causes science to toss out any ideas that entail anything beyond nature; even if that idea fits current evidence. Let me explain.

On Origins Science
. In order to find the “Best Evidence” or “Causal Adequacy,” regarding specified information, causes that are KNOWN to bring about specified complexity, i.e., formulated information, are judged to be better candidates than ideas that are merely theoretical.

On Origins Science
. In order to find the Best Evidence, possible candidates should not include unknown causes or exotic causes. For example, in origins of the universe, Hawking’s imaginary time hypothesis has been rightly thrown out. In other words, science should follow causes that are known from uniform experience to have produced the effect in question. Lyell, “Principles of Geology.” Darwin himself used this methodological principle.

On Origins Science
. Of course, when scientists can point to a uniquely credible cause, they are not in danger of ignoring other possible causes of the same effect. As I hope to show, the production of specified complexity does in fact have a known and knowable unique cause.

On Origins Science
. To fit the paradigm of Best Evidence, the cause must be BOTH plausible and known.

On Origins Science
Unlike Dawkins who says the words “billions of planets” or “mutations” and thinks ‘problem solved,’ candidates for Best Evidence do not become candidates merely by mentioning or suggesting it as a possible cause.

Michael Scriven says, “In order to establish a causal claim, the historical scientist needs:
1) Evidence that his candidate / cause was present, and
2) Evidence that it has on other occasions clearly demonstrated its capacity to produce an effect of the sort here under study, and
3) An absence of evidence of other possible causes.
Scriven, Causes, Connections and Conditions in History” 249-50

Following this scientific method of historical scientific reasoning and investigation, I believe that specified complexity clearly finds its source in intelligence an only in intelligence. So far, our two main candidates for the specified complexity that has been present in cells for at least 3.8 billion years are:
- A chaotic environment where random mutations in inanimate and inorganic gases, in a blind unguided process produced highly specific arrangements of chemicals that produced highly selective information for the building of proteins.

- A conscious designing agent created the origin of information-rich molecules.

Why do I support the latter? Well:
. What do we experience now, in the present, that is capable of producing digital code or specified complexity? Intelligence.
. What does our uniform experience tell us is always responsible for the development of highly formulated information? Intelligence.

We know and we know beyond all doubt that our experience is uniform that only intelligent agents are capable of producing specified information. Only intelligent agents are capable of producing the effect being examined. Only intelligent, conscious activity is responsible for the creation of new specified complexity. There are no known exceptions. According to the historical scientific method, that is the main criteria for selecting candidates a possible causes of historical events. This is especially the case when dealing with singularities involving specified complexity. Only in those cases are intelligent agents uniformly experienced as the cause of such singular events.

The main question facing scientists today when trying to explain the origin of first life is: “How did the sequence-specific digital information necessary to building the first cell arise?”
Kuppers, “Information and the Origin of Life,” 170-172.

I believe and I think we have good reason to believe that an Intelligent Designer is responsible for the intelligent design that we find in each and every living cell.


Ginx said...

That is a question that all atheists ask.

Never asked, never had to. What's so complex about the child-like stance of: "God had to have done it because my Holy Book says so, and it wouldn't lie to me!"

Science compels us to observe. The only place a "creator" is observed is in religion.

There is no cause and effect explanation in ID. What is the cause of God? There is none, thereby negating your entire basis for believing the universe must have required a cause - a sentient cause at that. The universe needs a cause, God does not. Why not just jump on the bandwagon of the Spinoza crowd and claim the universe is God? The Genesis God who walks through a garden with Adam is a fairy tale, kiddo.

You're also inaccurate in your uunderstanding of observable cosmology. The farther away something is, the more distant in the past we are seeing it. Scientists observe phenomena from the very early universe all the time. If you want to see the past, just look up at the stars; you'll see billions of years of history that has already unfolded.

Again, information is not a thing. Intelligence is not required for creating "information," only for "receiving," or "interpreting" it as information. If you see a man's face in the side of a cliff, it is not accurate to presume God etched it to look as such. You didn't look up "prions," like I asked, because if you had you'd know that we have evidence for simply protein strands which self-replicate, a precursor to life (as prions are not by any stretch alive, merely self-replicating proteins). There is already evidence for the evolution of chemicals into biology, but your Christian sources will likely omit that when feeding you their rhetoric for regurgitation here.

Codes are found in nature all the time. You're making a common anthropomorphic argument, that anything we perceive to be to be intelligent must be the product of intelligent life. When the first neutron star was observed, we were convinced we had discovered life. Turns out, nature creates all kinds of seemingly intelligent things, but once we understand the fundamentally simple causes (premised on the laws of physics) we are able to see them as demystified.

You kind of remind me of one of those Japanese soldiers left on an isolated island who never heard that WWII ended.

Seek the Truth said...

"I believe and I think we have good reason to believe that an Intelligent Designer is responsible for the intelligent design that we find in each and every living cell."

This quote completely embodies your lack of knowledge. A cell isn't sentient. A cell doesn't think. A cell is a product of a chemical code, and it acts on chemical signals. There is no "design" to it at all, it is merely a manifestation of an execution of its code. Take a cell bio class.

Ginx pretty much summed it all up brilliantly, but to add another point: Science, evolution, and biology are not beliefs. Yet, somehow you think that nature is! You say, "I believe and I think that we have good reason to believe..." Nature is a fact, it is the way it is, and requires no beliefs for it to be so. And no, "we", as in humanity and science, don't have good reason to believe in intelligent design, even if you want to.

Makarios said...

ID does not arise from the Bible said it, Ginx. I thought I already explained that to you.

"Intelligence is not required for creating "information,"

Especially not this information.

Makarios said...

"A cell is a product of a chemical code, and it acts on chemical signals. There is no "design" to it at all, it is merely a manifestation of an execution of its code."

Read "Which Came First"

Ginx said...

I agree that the Bible has nothing to do with ID, which is a by-product of decades worth of fundamentalists performing theological gymnastics, trying to figure out some point in the scientific explanation for where to insert God. The Bible most certainly doesn't talk about intelligent design, it talks about 6 days of building the Earth, and nothing about the vastness of the cosmos (just some stupid dome called a firmament).

I understand why you would only want to address one or two sentences I wrote in a snarky manner, but it certainly doesn't come close to supporting your argument that everything we perceive as interesting must be a sign of intelligence. The whole ID argument echoes that theological argument that every sunset is an argument for God, and yet it's completely empty (except for the sentimental who want to believe it).

I'm more than happy to discuss the Christian interpretation of creation, which is why I frequent your site. I don't have the patience to read anymore creationist misinterpretations of scientific concepts. Religious people always rail on Dawkins for not being an expert on theology, so he has no business talking about religion. Produce for me your scientific credentials, or politely shut the fuck up about science. If you want to talk about religion, especially the Bible, I will enthusiastically comment.

I think this is the last time I respond to anything you write about evolution or abiogenesis until you address one of these two things:

1. The origin God
2. The Biblical account of creation

I'm sure I'll begin to read any post you make, but as soon as I get that familiar smirk on my face, I'll just move on. You know what I have to say on it, I can't imagine being able to not repeat myself any further on the subject.

Marcus Wellington said...

Orgin of God?
God doesn't need an orgin because He has ALWAYS existed.
God created time so there is no such thing as BEFORE God therefor God has always existed.
The Biblical account of creation?
Here you have an eyewitness account.
What have you got?

Makarios said...

What have I said about science that wasn't accurate?

Chris Mackey said...

What have you got?


God created time so there is no such thing as BEFORE God therefor God has always existed.

The big bang created time so there is no such thing as before the big bang so therefore the universe has always existed. Would you accept this as valid?

Ginx said...

Firmament, firmament, firmanent... wherefore art thou firmament.

And if you even sat down and thought for half a second about your statement of God's origin, you'd probably realize how you raped the English language. "Before Time" is the most ludicrous statement I have ever heard. How long did God exist before time? Probably for no time at all. And what day was it he created time? My Bible is missing that verse. Oh right, it's a fabricated idea of 18th century theology, when studies of time became en vogue.

JD Curtis said...

It HAS to be naturalistic, it HAS to be naturalistic, oh wait, that's a presupposition, not a conclusion.

Gandolf said...

JD Curtis said..."It HAS to be naturalistic, it HAS to be naturalistic, oh wait, that's a presupposition, not a conclusion."

Ohhh no but wait ...We can actually SEE evidence of naturalistic action happening.

We do not ever SEE any evidence of supernatural action happening

Is it really a presupposition ,maybe its HONESTLY more about some honest conclusions

Chris Mackey said...

Oh come on Gandolf! Evidence? What about when the astronauts found out the stars really were moved about by angels. Or that... oh... nevermind.

Gandolf said...

Yeah Chris :) ... "nevermind" ...Is that some actual code word for mindless?