What Would You Expect To See (or Not See) In Nature If I.D Was Fact?

371


Discussion by: RDfan

Tones of evidence — from comparative genetics, the fossil record, the geographical distribution of species, radiometric dating of fossils in sedimentary rocks — come together to confirm the fact of Evolution. 

But what if the opposite was true; that Intelligent Design was a fact? Leaving aside the many arguments against I.D, let's try to imagine what we would expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was a fact.

My first guess would be this: If I.D were a fact, we would not expect to see vestigial limbs — as we see in the hidden "legs" of some creatures that nolonger walk — whales and snakes, for example. 

So, to repeat my question: what would you expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was fact?

 

371 COMMENTS

  1. I was about 6 years old when I realised that if I were intelligently designed I would be immortal.

  2. I wouldn’t see a woven network of inherited mutations throughout the all living things. No shared retro-virus fragments in DNA between species. You would find dog fossils with dinosaur fossils and trilobite fossils all together. Of course, the lighter things floated to the top after the Flood 😉

  3. The thing is, what can ever totally disprove ID? There is a great deal that makes ID look unlikely, such as already listed here. But I think ID advocates will always have some reply – and they do.

    So this question is a good approach, that is in effect to ask ID supporters what they reasonably might expect to see if they are right.

    Perhaps as an introduction one could ask what might be expected of an intelligently designed car. Surely high on the list would be the elimination of unnecessary parts, clear internal layout and shortest lengths of cables etc. Of course, one might well expect to see common elements in different models across a range, maybe the same wheels and tyres or brake discs. But one would not expect to see small and useless fragments of parts that are used in other models, yet not this one. Any trainee engineering designer doing that in Ford / Honda etc would be sent ‘back to the drawing board’ – if not shown the door.

    In other words, how is it that merely human auto engineers have largely optimised car design in only just over 100 years, yet the Almighty still routinely messes up body layouts after having had all eternity in which to practice?

  4. Ok if we were to get evidence that deep time was rubbish and the earth was only a few thousand years old, then we would have to question natural selection and random mutation.

    Intelligent Design also implies a moral overview. The world would have to be a much fairer place where natural justice was clearly visible and not just a construct based on selective reasoning.

    Natural Selection can be calleous so a different modus operandi for evolution would have to be established. The idea of Organisims rejected because they are weak , mentally or physically , would have to change, as would the success of bullying , sinister ,selfish phenotypes.

  5. It depends on what you mean by intelligent design. It could mean design which when viewed from our human perspective looks sensible, logical and efficient. It could mean that a design shows aspects which cannot occur by means of natural physical processes. Suppose we were to identify intelligent design. Would that mean that all designs must therefore show the signs of intelligent intentional origin? When I design something I try to make it, (the design), intelligent. But I don’t always end up with a good design. I’m fallible.

    The religious people who like to promote I.D. as evidence for “God” intend to show that nature cannot have come about as it is, by purely natural means, ie. by evolution. But it has been shown that when some feature of nature is claimed to show I.D., there is a natural means by which such a design could have occurred. I am thinking of irreducible complexity here. The eye was claimed to be irreducibly complex, yet Richard Dawkins showed a series of steps by which it could have evolved, and thus he took away the claim of I.D. for the eye.

    Another example of claimed irreducible complexity which has now been reasonably debunked, is the flagellar motor structure in some bacteria.

    As others have explained in this thread, there are features in nature which have all of the hallmarks of evolution, for example the structure of the recurrent laryngeal nerve in giraffes.

    If “God” is the supposed designer of nature, I have no idea what to expect to see. The religious can let “God” off the hook, so to speak, for poor design, because, they say, “he” can do whatever “he” wants. The religious even claim that “God” deliberately makes things look as though “he” doesn’t exist, because somehow it would detract from our free will, if we were to be served all information easily on a plate.

  6. If God had created humans and all other forms of life, the design features we see today would depend entirely on God’s intent. Perhaps he did not wish to create perfect beings because he wanted life to be a struggle for existence. He might have given humans free will to see if they would choose good or evil. Maybe he enjoyed observing the consequences of human choices. Maybe he is not a perfect god at all.

    On the other hand, if God created man in his own image (what that means has always been a mystery — what is God’s image?), why does the human body have so many design flaws? A perfect designer could have created a perfect human being. Instead we get a body that’s subject to aging, a multitude of illnesses, loss of function, and inevitable death. Engineering flaws are found everywhere – the anatomy of our pharynx (see choking for details), our inside-out retina (resulting in light scattering and a blind spot), our weak lumbosacral spine (that’s making surgeons wealthy), the anatomical confluence of reproductive and eliminatory plumbing, the narrow female birth canal that limits skull size, vestigial structures like the appendix, even junk DNA. And why don’t we have optimum immune systems, the ability to regenerate lost CNS components and other organs, and the ability to determine our own longevity? Why don’t we have perfect bodies and minds?

    I don’t see evidence of intelligent design. Evolution just does what it can with what it’s got.

  7. You wouldn’t have the mosquito. God clearly hasn’t tried to sleep on a hot night with a mosquito buzzing endless just near your ear. I try to the sleep with the sheet pulled over me but its too hot. I hope that the mosquito will bite my wife, fill up with blood and go away, but sadly, I am one of those humans that smell delicious to mosquitoes.

    I have a business on the side. People invite me to outside parties and stand me in the corner so all the mosquitoes are attracted to me, and the guests can relax and have a good time.

    And what was god thinking when he designed my immune system. If there is an intelligent reason for a mosquito to exist, then why did god make my immune system so sensitive to mosquito spit, that for the next week I have a huge red welt on my arm that itches worse that water boarding, and I have to wear a straight jacket to prevent me from digging an inch of skin and flesh out of my arm.

    Or does the devil have his own design factory? (There’s a thought for the ID spies that secretly read this blog) That might account for flies, mosquitoes and global warming deniers. I’m confused. I wonder how Noah coped with two mosquitoes and two flies on the ark. I suppose with all that animal flesh and poo, they left Noah alone. I bet that Shep, Ham and Japheth hated being rostered on latrine duty. Or maybe they got their wives to do it, seeing they are second class humans.

    So God. I need to know. What were you thinking when you designed the mosquito. A hypodermic syringe with wings, carrying a lethal payload of equally malicious intelligently designed viruses. God, if you submitted this as your science project, the best I could give you would be a C Minus.

  8. A much better range of sensors. If my eyes had decent optical zoom I would be able to zoom in to see germs, get a better look at the moon, stars, etc. Being able to select for different frequencies (ie. X Ray, Thermal, etc) would also be useful. Sense of smell is pretty fourth rate. Don’t see why we could not have something similar to the smelling abilities of a dog at least. Hearing is also pretty second rate compared to a dog. But probably the biggest kludge is the human brain. Why does my brain have to include parts that are very similar to that of a reptile and cause me to have all these very primitive and counterproductive (in the modern world) impulses?

  9. …what would you expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was fact?

    Overall, people should be less diverse – equally attractive, intelligent, healthy, capable…

    People would vary less with physical characteristics. Since people seem to be judged with one yardstick, everyone would be born physically, psychologically, neurologically, intellectually…similar.

    I would expect to see an absence in — mutations, genetic diseases, diversity… Down’s syndrome would be eliminated.

    All people would be at equal risk for developing certain diseases.

    Those who are “bless” with good genetics, can eat anything, drink, smoke… and live well into their nineties or longer. Others cannot. “Sinful” abuse of our “temple” should result in consistent consequences. Of course, we are not to question “God’s plan and preference for some people over others” – a convenient explanation.

    A woman can choose a mate who is say— “good at math” to better ensure her children will excel at math. (Replace math with eye color, personality traits…) If God decides our purpose and “gifts” in life, doesn’t this possibility fly in the face of this view of God? We can genetically engineer flowers to have certain characteristics. If ID were fact, wouldn’t there be some sort safe guard to prevent manipulation by us?

    Of course there are convenient explanations for all these views, but the lack of equal “design” and our ability to select characteristics seems problematic for ID.

    Also, I would have great night vision, and not need to kill anything for survival.

  10. Regarding the physical planet –

    I would expect to see life on all planets rather than frozen rock spinning around in outer space – seems like a big waste to me.
    I would not expect fossils of sea shells in the Himalayas.

  11. In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    So God. I need to know. What were you thinking when you designed the mosquito. A hypodermic syringe with wings, carrying a lethal payload of equally malicious intelligently designed viruses. God, if you submitted this as your science project, the best I could give you would be a C Minus.

    Even if the universe was intelligently designed, what makes you think the human mind had the required intelligence to understand the intelligence of the universe?

    This is what Einstein said:

    “The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe. We are like a little child entering a huge library. The walls are covered to the ceilings with books in many different tongues. The child knows that someone must have written these books. It does not know who or how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. But the child notes a definite plan in the arrangement of the books—-a mysterious order which it does not comprehend, but only dimly suspects.”

  12. In reply to #14 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    Even if the universe was intelligently designed, what makes you think the human mind had the required intelligence to understand the intelligence of the universe?

    So what if I don’t understand the universe, and all of the collective intellect of every human being that ever existed, or may exist, doesn’t understand the universe. Lack of knowledge is not an argument for intelligent design. It is a statement of fact.

    Because you, or anyone else doesn’t understand something, doesn’t mean that I, or others don’t understand it. It just means you don’t. If from your lack of understanding, you do a Skinner’s Pigeons and want to assign some meaning to it, feel free. But your speculation is personal, and limited to just you. We don’t know now. We may never know. But, so what.

    Incidentally, “…understand the intelligence of the universe” is a meaningless statement. Its the sort of thing that philosophers sit around and discuss, not scientists. You are alluding to a supernatural force that breaches the laws of physics. So at that stage, I stop rational thought about it.

    Religion should be practiced by consenting adults in private.

  13. In reply to #15 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #14 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    So what if I don’t understand the universe, and all of the collective intellect of every human being that ever existed, or may exist, doesn’t understand the universe. Lack of knowledge is not an argument for intelligent design. It is a statement of fact.

    I agree. Lack of knowledge is not an argument for intelligent design. But if we agree we lack the knowledge to understand the universe in its entirety, then maybe the default position left for us would be to say we don’t know how the universe works, how it came into existence and how it will end. We don’t know if has been intelligently designed, or it was an accident, or something else. These are questions which are beyond the ability of our minds. Let’s settle the disputes once and for all, shall we?

    Because you, or anyone else doesn’t understand something, doesn’t mean that I, or others don’t understand it. It just means you don’t. If from your lack of understanding, you do a Skinner’s Pigeons and want to assign some meaning to it, feel free. But your speculation is personal, and limited to just you. We don’t know now. We may never know. But, so what.

    It’s not me who said this. Einstein did. And I quoted Einstein in my last post. If Einstein felt so humble before the universe…it tells us something about the universe, doesn’t it?

  14. In reply to #16 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #15 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #14 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    These are questions which are beyond the ability of our minds. …

    You make this same mistake in this discussion, as you made in the last discussion, and in the one before, and the one before that. You statement should read: “These are questions which are beyond the ability of my mind”. You are doing the same thing that the religious do. You are projecting your state of mind on to everyone else, which is obviously a false premise. U need to work on this area when you frame an argument.

    You might like to reword your last paragraphs, as you appear to be attributing to Einstein, words that I just wrote. Flattering to be confused with Einstein, but you are wrong again. It was just little old rational me.

  15. To show how close ID is to bollocks, I’d expect the vas deferens wouldn’t take a detour over the ureters & the urethra wouldn’t go through the prostate gland. I had to look closely at those diagrams, since my eyes after age 19 have been far from perfect, although somehow I haven’t lost my now grey hair, even around my unnecessary nipples.

    My sinuses wouldn’t need blowing out often since the top openings were evolved for quadrupeds, I wouldn’t need to shave every day or ever shave my ears, my appendix & tonsils wouldn’t need surgery, I wouldn’t have needed hernia surgery twice as a teenager, my teeth would be far more wear resistant, plus I would be born without a foreskin…!

    While I’m back in that vicinity, I wouldn’t need a colonoscopy to see if I’m headed for trouble, plus I’d expect that ID would better separate our recreational area from our sewage works…. Mac.

  16. In reply to #18 by CdnMacAtheist:

    To show how close ID is to bollocks, I’d expect the vas deferens wouldn’t take a detour over the ureters & the urethra wouldn’t go through the prostate gland. I had to look closely at those diagrams, since my eyes after age 19 have been far from perfect, although somehow I haven’t lost my now grey…

    I hear you Mac.

  17. Another thing that just came to mind is this: If ID was the case, why all the prodigious waste and rivalries we see around us?

    Surely an Intelligent Designer would have created an optimal ratio of, say, humans compared to viruses compared to bacteria compared to walruses, right?

    Wouldn’t He or She have created an ecologically balanced world where each had enough to live by without taking from another or without dying off in such apparently unnecessary numbers?

    What we find instead is (the aforementioned signs of poor design and) an ecological arms race and prodigious waste.

    Think of all those millions spermatozoa that were sacrificed when that spermatozoon made it and fertilized the egg that became you? Wouldn’t just one sperm for one egg in every act of copulation have sufficed?

    Or imagine the cheetah sculpted to run fast enough in order to* outpace its rivals and bear down on a gazelle built to run slow enough compared to its peers so that** it can be caught?

    Wouldn’t an IDer, in His or Her Omniscience, have thought of an alternative energy source for cheetahs and gazelles instead unsuspecting mobile meat-bags or blades of grass?

    What about those organisms that burrow into an ant’s body, take over the controls, and drive the zombified kidnap victim to commit suicide so that it — the kidnapper or, rather, its genes — can live to see another day?

    I would have expected the IDer to be a judicious ecommunist, but we find, instead, what seems to be a blind, squandering sadist.

    **Care needs to be taken not to read “intent” into Evolution, as these phrases may unwittingly suggest.

  18. In reply to #8 by SurLaffaLot:

    Another example of claimed irreducible complexity…

    Irreducible complexity (IC) is an argument by proponents of intelligent design that certain biological systems are too complex to have evolved from simpler, or “less complete” predecessors, through natural selection acting upon a series of advantageous naturally occurring, chance mutations. – Wikipedia.

    I didn’t know what IC meant.

    …which has now been reasonably debunked, is the flagellar motor structure in some bacteria.

    Can you give us a link, please?

  19. Loaded question. From I.D. you could expect anything. I.D. is not science, and it is not logic, therefore anything could come from it. Using I.D. in a discussion is getting a free “Out of Jail” card.

    I do not mean it is irrational. I mean that as long as you use an hypothetical designer you can use and apply any attribute for it without any limitation. You can justify or deny anything just by changing those attributes.

    The eye is badly designed, “The designer did it to trick us!” Ice is lighter that liquid water, “The designer let the fishes swim in winter!” There are no animals with three arms, “The designer avoided animals with three arms!”

  20. In reply to #22 by Roddy:

    In reply to #8 by SurLaffaLot:

    Another example of claimed irreducible complexity…

    Irreducible complexity (IC) is an argument by proponents of intelligent design that certain biological systems are too complex to have evolved from simpler, or “less complete” predecessors, through natural selectio…

    If you can get it, there is a wonderful documentary on the Dover High School Intelligent Design trial in the US. A fundamentalist school board wanting to introduce intelligent design into biology classes was challenged in court.. One of the main arguments by Michael Behe, the chief witness for intelligent design rested on this issue of irreducible complexity based on the “flagella motor structure in some bacteria and human sperm. The scientific community supplied witnesses to explain the science. The court found there was overwhelming evidence that intelligent design was an attempt to introduce religious creationism into US Schools, which is forbidden by the constitution. The court ruled in favour of evolution. Here is the Wikipedia Link to the trial.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitzmiller_v._Dover_Area_School_District

    If you are in the US, or know how to overcome the location restrictions, you can watch this award winning video on this site, or you may be able to find it elsewhere on the web on a site viewable by the rest of the world.

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/evolution/intelligent-design-trial.html

  21. In reply to #22 by Roddy:

    In reply to #8 by SurLaffaLot:

    Another example of claimed irreducible complexity…

    Irreducible complexity (IC) is an argument by proponents of intelligent design that certain biological systems are too complex to have evolved from simpler, or “less complete” predecessors, through natural selectio…

    Research Kitzmiller vs Dover Area School District Board, a huge trial in the US. The case rested heavily on the concept of irreducible complexity.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kitzmiller_v._Dover_Area_School_District

    An award winning documentary was produced about the trial and is a gripping thriller, worthy of Alfred Hitchcock. Recommended viewing. This link appears to work. Music to the ears of the rational people who inhabit this blog.

    http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/judgment-day-intelligent-design-on-trial/

  22. Define “Intelligent”. Because and I.D. supporter will simply “reinvent” the meaning of the word to dodge anything we might suggest.

  23. I would expect my testicles to be not hanging around outside my body thus avoiding injury and decreasing risk of hernia. I would expect breathing to be done through a different orifice to eating. I would like a total redesign of my lower back. I would expect my sinuses to be redone. I would want the prostate not to enlarge with age. I would want a redesign on the gall bladder thing. I would discard wisdom teeth. The list is endless.

    Michael

  24. If creationism were true I would expect to see less design flaws in animals as discussed by others. No vestigial structures. A natural wheel perhaps.

    In music systems, which many religious people cite as spiritual and a perfect manifestation of gods work, there are many inherent tuning errors that occur naturally. If music were intelligently designed it would be poor design indeed. These tuning problems require real compromises in order to overcome bad sounding intervals. See Musical Temperament and Tempering. Beautiful music has more to do with man’s ingenuity and his ability to overcome natural obstacles.

    A Trombone Tree?

  25. far fewer species for starters.

    no need for symbiosis, currently all multicellular life exists only through the grace of unicellular microbes so animals/plants that can digest their own food, fix nitrogen etc. The current system is so chaotic it sould be impossible to get it to work by design.

    no sex. sorry there i’ve said it

    and while we’re on the subject maybe drag up the cliche about the funfair/sewage works planning

    wheels. why not?

    no variability witnin species

    i think theye would be vestigal organs only they’d be unchanged from the creation day so for example there would be organs that were useful for keeping cool when the planet was much hotter but do very little nowadays

    genetic modification. wouldn’t work. at all.

    umm a designer. sorry but if you’re gonna create life you’ll do it for a reason, if you are a designer who has reason. might just be to create some waste product that would get harvested regularly. unless it was the sort of designer who craved praise above all else, in which case only organisms capable of giving prase, and once again, a visit from the designer once in a while to bask in it.

    no priests

  26. In reply to #23 by Elric:

    Loaded question. From I.D. you could expect anything. I.D. is not science, and it is not logic, therefore anything could come from it. Using I.D. in a discussion is getting a free “Out of Jail” card.

    I do not mean it is irrational. I mean that as long as you use an hypothetical designer you can use…

    I think that this is the most reasonable answer. ID is, as far as I can tell, an untestable hypothesis because the a priori assumption is a designer. And so, however anything is, regardless of what we think of it, is exactly according to the designer’s plan. As long as the hypothesis is untestable it remains speculation. Back to the kid’s table.

    }}}}

  27. I believe in Incompetent Design

    a designer constantly fucking up and killing most of the life it makes while making such a poor job of recreating the same species some of them accidentally outlive others.

    then takes the credit

  28. I don’t think that there are concrete and objective observations that could positively distinguish evolution from design. However, what would plea for design, is a world that is quite the opposite of ours. For example, it is no miracle that a deep sea fish is so wonderfully adapted to the deep sea. It would be a miracle if the exact same fish would be living in the Sahara with no adaptations at all. That would seriously disprove evolution and be a strong case for a some sort of god who keeps the fish alive in its unnatural habitat.

  29. Irreducible Complexity has a serious flaw. It does not state that (for example) the eye did not evolve through evolution, it states that the eye could not have evolved through evolution. Now how on earth is someone going to prove that?

  30. I think this is a silly question.

    Comments above me have suggested a forward-facing retina, or a shorter laryngeal nerve in giraffe’s, or immortality. We could go further, and suggest unicorns, faeries, sharks that shoot lasers out of their eyes…

    Any hypothetical reality in which life was designed would be entirely dependent on the whims of the deity designing it, so there is literally no end of scenarios people could dream up.

    Somewhere in that infinity of scenarios is one in which the deity in question wanted to design life (and the universe with it) in such a way that those trying to figure out their origins would be completely convinced that they had evolved.

    What if ‘god’ wanted us to have a backwards retina? What if ‘god’ wanted giraffe’s to have a stupidly long laryngeal nerve?

    These ‘expectations’ may convince some people of evolution, but what it ultimately comes down to is empiricism and rationalism. Once you’ve realised that it doesn’t matter what the ‘truth’ is so long as the science works, then the science will speak for itself and these hypothetical scenarios will be useless. Reality is as reality presents itself, and reality says “evolution”.

  31. Nothing.

    I’d expect to see nothing.

    The stone-age list of a few dozen species wouldn’t account for the bacteria, invertebrates, early vertebrates, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals long since extinct, that lead directly to my existence.

    As for “what I’d expect NOT to see?” The evidence for the past existence of the above, which we have in spades.

  32. @OP- So, to repeat my question: what would you expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was fact?

    If ID was a fact, I would not expect to find a historical string of lame attempts to invent it as a ploy to circumvent the US constitution.
    . . . . Debunked as incredulity and confused thinking in both the 1700s form, and in the revised version in the 1990s .

    I would also not expect the science of genetics to work.

    http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/1081911/intelligent-design-ID

    Intelligent design was formulated in the 1990s, primarily in the United States, as an explicit refutation of the theory of biological evolution advanced by Charles Darwin (1809–82). Building on a version of the argument from design for the existence of God advanced by the Anglican clergyman William Paley (1743–1805),

    Like earlier proponents of creationism, they wrote statutes or initiated lawsuits designed to permit the teaching of their view as an alternative to evolution in American public schools, where instruction in any form of religion is constitutionally forbidden. In the major case on the issue, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District (2005), concerning a school district in Dover, Pa., a federal court ruled that intelligent design was not clearly distinct from creationism and therefore should be excluded from the curriculum on the basis of earlier decisions, notably McLean v. Arkansas (1982).

  33. I would expect to see essentially what we have now (1) A world of incomprehensible complexity and yet full of symbiotic relationships, like a well-practiced orchestra. (2) A world where purpose has been programmed into every component, even though all are not well understood. (3) A world where objects of creation have been equipped with the high-level code necessary for variation and adaptability within a limited framework. (4) A world where functionality is not the only concern but also beauty, communication, understanding, values, conscience, etc. (5) A world where the Creator has not revealed all of His purposes and intentions to mankind.

    [Last paragraph removed by moderator.]

  34. I would definitely expect to see more lovely, generous, friendly humans, who respect each other’s lives and who share a sense of common greatfulness for and enjoyment of life. Yeah!

  35. Clearly Iclement (Post 46) just doesn’t get it. Like all true ID fantasists, he puts the cart before the horse, assuming some undefined “Purpose” driven by an equally undefined “Creator” establishes the properties of organisms. In fact the opposite is the case. The properties of organisms come about in response to the environment in which they must best adapt (i.e. EVOLVE), and which changes in unpredictable ways which make any notion of pre-planned “design” self-evidently absurd.
    Another familiar trait of the ID proponent is the frequent use of expressions such as “incomprehensible”, “not well understood”, “not revealed all His (sic) intentions”. Ignorance really is bliss to these people.

  36. In reply to #17 by David R Allen:

    You make this same mistake in this discussion, as you made in the last discussion, and in the one before, and the one before that. You statement should read: “These are questions which are beyond the ability of my mind”. You are doing the same thing that the religious do. You are projecting your state of mind on to everyone else, which is obviously a false premise. U need to work on this area when you frame an argument.

    I am just quoting Einstein, David. It wasn’t me who said, “The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe.”. The great Einstein did. It is Einstein who is projecting his state of mind on us. You are saying you know more about the universe than Einstein did?

  37. In reply to #48 by rogeroney:

    Clearly Iclement (Post 46) just doesn’t get it. Like all true ID fantasists, he puts the cart before the horse, assuming some undefined “Purpose” driven by an equally undefined “Creator” establishes the properties of organisms. In fact the opposite is the case. The properties of organisms com…

    An acknowledgement of incomplete knowledge is not a characteristic of ID proponents only. A little humility is not a bad thing.

    When I create a new software program, I start with purpose, logic and design, then I build it. Works better than haphazardly throwing things together.

  38. It is a daft question. I.D. isn’t a fact it is a fiction. Nothing would exist if existence relied on a fiction.

    Supposedly an entity in the form of human (made in its own likeness), made the universe out of nothing in a few days and then had to have a rest because it was knackered. And religious people have the audacity to call the big bang ‘improbable’. Something out of nothing? Perish the thought religious hypocrites.

    I.D means a ‘designed’ universe, not just a few lion and tiger kind of things, using the vernacular. The creation myth was cobbled together by a few nomads when the known universe was about 50 square miles of desert supporting a few goats. Unfortunately extending this miracle of creation to a 14.5 billion light year cosmos has upped the anti a bit. It is remarkable how many daft sods still buy it. But then sense has little to do with it, clan, nation, land, war, politics, money, child indoctrination, gender control, fear and ignorance are more important.

  39. In reply to #49 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #17 by David R Allen:

    You make this same mistake in this discussion, as you made in the last discussion, and in the one before, and the one before that. You statement should read: “These are questions which are beyond the ability of my mind”. You are doing the same thing that the religi…

    Let’s analyze this. What is Einstein’s field of expertize. What did Einstein’s genius do. Was it physics or social commentary. I do not dispute that in the area of relativity physics, Einstein was a genius. In the area of Quantum Theory, he was a dope. In the area of social commentary, he is no different to me or you. He’s entitled to his opinion. However an opinion in the absence of evidence is just an opinion. From a debating strategy, you can hang you hat on a reference to a revered figure to support your position. It’s called the reflected glory tactic. But if you had taken a little bit more time to analyze the content of Einstein’s statement, you would see that it has equal validity with mine. Opinion only.

  40. In reply to #1 by Roddy:

    Science says the eye has not been intelligently designed.

    And quite a few other bits and pieces that have been comprehensively listed. There are enough engineers here with a smattering of biology (including myself) who probably would answer the question simply, and in one word: Intelligence.

    There is nothing intelligent about the design of living organisms, remarkable, yes, intelligent no.

    They are without exception cobbled together with bits and pieces from previous organisms, some which don’t even do anything, but are there simply because they are on the genetic packing slip.

    Were I as a mere mortal, not at all God like, to design something this incompetently, and almost worse, with no originality at all, just tinkering with existing parts, I would be struck off, and deservedly so.

  41. In reply to #51 by keyplayer88:

    It is a daft question. I.D. isn’t a fact it is a fiction. Nothing would exist if existence relied on a fiction.

    Supposedly an entity in the form of human (made in its own likeness), made the universe out of nothing in a few days and then had to have a rest because it was knackered. And religious p…

    God, the Creator, is not flesh but spirit. He imparted to mankind only, certain attributes the He possesses, and that make us unique in the world, different that all other creatures.

    God (assuming, I believe, you are referring to Genesis) did not need to rest because He was tired (C’mon now!). There are more profound reasons for this, one in fact, is to give man a regular time to set aside work and remember who He is and who we are in our relationship. We tend to get busy and forget God. This is not a good thing.

    Logic and reason, every we look, confirm that designs require an intelligent designer. Evolution is contrary to even simple logic, and besides that, it is an absolute statistical impossibility.

    Intelligent Design is accepted by a whole host of scientists and scholars, both past and present, and also a few nomads here and there 🙂

  42. In reply to #55 by lclement:

    In reply to #51 by keyplayer88:

    It is a daft question. I.D. isn’t a fact it is a fiction. Nothing would exist if existence relied on a fiction.

    God (assuming, I believe, you are referring to Genesis)

    Incorrect, I never refer to the babble, it being an outdated fiction based on bronze age ignorance, please don’t lecture me about your unsophisticated delusions based on ancient gossip. Calling something not flesh is meaningless, like saying something ‘not rock’ gives it special significance. The pink and green creation dragon is ‘not tangible’, so it must have created the universe. Is that what you call logic?

    And please can you explain why that without flesh is a ‘he’, how does that without flesh have a gender? Sloppy terminology, as you would expect from uneducated peasants. You have no respect for reason and knowledge or those that possess it, deferring as you do to ancient myths concocted by goat herders.

    Evolution is contrary to even simple logic,

    I think you mean contrary to your simplistic logic, it’s not contrary to the educated classes who dismiss your simplistic view of the world.

    Your comments are ill informed, your inability to appreciate this is testament to your own ignorance.

    May I recommend a proper education.

  43. In reply to #53 by David R Allen:

    Let’s analyze this. What is Einstein’s field of expertize. What did Einstein’s genius do. Was it physics or social commentary. I do not dispute that in the area of relativity physics, Einstein was a genius. In the area of Quantum Theory, he was a dope. In the area of social commentary, he is no different to me or you. He’s entitled to his opinion. However an opinion in the absence of evidence is just an opinion. From a debating strategy, you can hang you hat on a reference to a revered figure to support your position. It’s called the reflected glory tactic. But if you had taken a little bit more time to analyze the content of Einstein’s statement, you would see that it has equal validity with mine. Opinion only.

    Yes, I agree. But I think we can all agree on one thing: that Einstein was a genius, and he had a brilliant mind?. He had such a brilliant mind, but he still knew that he couldn’t know the secrets of the universe with this brilliant mind of his. This is the guy who is widely regarded as one of the most intelligent people of all time.

    This tells us something. Doesn’t it?

    Let me see if I understand Einstein’s quote properly:

    You cut open a CPU and then show the inner architecture of the CPU to a 5 year old kid. It took the collective intelligence of thousands of highly intelligent humans to design and build that CPU. There is great intelligence in the design of the CPU. But the kid, lacking that level of intelligence, is unable to appreciate the intelligence that build the CPU. For him, there is little difference between his wooden toy car and the CPU. In fact, chances are that he would look at the wooden toy car with far more fascination and wonder..When we try to understand the universe through the mind, we are like that 5-year old kid trying to understand the CPU. The universe looks dumb to us because we lack the required level of intelligence to understand the intelligence of the universe. So, in a nutshell, it takes intelligence to understand intelligence. That’s what Einstein is saying, I think.

    Going back to the OP, I am of the view that we are simply unable to determine whether the universe has been intelligently designed or not. For one obvious reason, as I said in one of my previous discussions, that we are always exposed to a very limited amount of data or information. We can’t see the future. We don’t know how the future is going to change everything that we see as solidly real and true in the present.

  44. In reply to #55 by lclement:

    God (assuming, I believe, you are referring to Genesis)

    Would that be El, Yahweh, Jehovah, Baal, Asherah, Osiris?

    did not need to rest because He was tired (C’mon now!).

    But which creator and why? List of creation myths – Turtles all the way down??

    There are more profound reasons for this, one in fact, is to give man a regular time to set aside work and remember who He is and who we are in our relationship.

    Indeed the neuro-psychologists are getting nearer and nearer to locating the precise locations of gods.

    “We have found a neuropsychological basis for spirituality, but it’s not isolated to one specific area of the brain,” said Brick Johnstone, professor of health psychology in the School of Health Professions. “Spirituality is a much more dynamic concept that uses many parts of the brain. Certain parts of the brain play more predominant roles, but they all work together to facilitate individuals’ spiritual experiences.”

    We tend to get busy and forget God. This is not a good thing.

    But which god – there are so many of them! List of deities – and no evidence for the existence of any of them.

    Logic and reason, every we look, confirm that designs require an intelligent designer.

    It has been explained many times on this site, that Logic is a deductive process which to relate to reality, has to start with objective evidence.

    It is not a badge which is stuck on to people’s asserted unsupported personal opinions, as a fallacious attempt to add credibility to them .

    Evolution is contrary to even simple logic, and besides that, it is an absolute statistical impossibility.

    Why do you need to demonstrate a misunderstanding of logic, statistics AND evolution, presumably having copied that nonsense from some scientific illiterates. Evolution is observable all around us, with some involved with biology actively manipulating it in breeding programmes.
    God-did-it-by-mysterious-magic, is just the ultimate gap-filler to plug gaps in the know-it-all knowledge of the ignorant.

    Intelligent Design is accepted by a whole host of scientists and scholars, both past and present, and also a few nomads here and there 🙂

    If you mean ID as invented in America as a form of pseudo school biology, which its proponents claim is unrelated to religion, that is not even accepted by the main Christian churches such as the CofE and RCC. – let along any reputable scientific bodies or scientific journals.

    If you mean some vague personal version of a supposed “intelligent creator” alien experiment etc. then it is up to you to provide a clear definition and testable evidence. There are nearly as many gods and creation myths as there are people on the planet. – No surprise once you understand each has their own egotistically inflated little god in their own brain, kidding them, it is the master of all, or part of the universe.

    Each believer “knows” that their’s is the right one and the others are wrong! Atheists are confident that they are all wrong, thus agreeing with the majority.

  45. Hey peeps, This is a really great topic. I’d like to see a multitude of ideas that expand upon RDfan’s topic. Let’s not get derailed by creationists that drop in and try to derail the topic. I personally would like to see a list of over 1,000 absurdities if ID was fact.

    Thanks

  46. In reply to #50 by lclement:
    >

    When I create a new software program, I start with purpose, logic and design, then I build it.

    So you’re a designer. Good for you.

    Works better than haphazardly throwing things together.

    Which btw isn’t evolution. And no, it doesn’t always work better, especially when you are trying to simulate organisms and life systems. Evolutionary algorithms are often better at this than brittle expert systems.

    Evolution is contrary to even simple logic, and besides that, it is an absolute statistical impossibility.

    You mean Evolution, or Abiogenesis?

    Round and round we go…

  47. In reply to #50 by lclement:

    In reply to #48 by rogeroney:

    Clearly Iclement (Post 46) just doesn’t get it. Like all true ID fantasists, he puts the cart before the horse, assuming some

    “When I create a new software program, I start with purpose, logic and design, then I build it. Works better than haphazardly throwing things together.”

    You bet it does, my point entirely! Biological organisms are exactly that, things thrown together haphazardly by environmental pressures. Nowhere is any intelligence discernible.

  48. In reply to #55 by lclement:

    In reply to #51 by keyplayer88:

    It is a daft question. I.D. isn’t a fact it is a fiction. Nothing would exist if existence relied on a fiction.

    Supposedly an entity in the form of human (made in its own likeness), made the universe out of nothing in a few days and then had to have a rest because i…

    “God (assuming, I believe, you are referring to Genesis) did not need to rest because He was tired (C’mon now!).”

    No, you C’mon now! The hodgepodge of a holy book is pretty clear about resting. It never ceases to amaze me how the book is to be taken as literally true when it appears to suit the YEC script, but whenever it is caught in a patently obvious contradiction it is an allegory, or a mistranslation from Hebrew, or a parable for our guidance, or just about anything other than what it is, an insult to the intelligence of anyone capable of putting a thought together without worrying about what Bronze Age goat herders considered the limits of knowledge.

  49. In reply to #55 by lclement:

    In reply to #51 by keyplayer88:

    God, the Creator, is not flesh but spirit. He imparted to mankind only, certain attributes the He possesses,

    I thank god for my testicles, seeing He’s a he. But I’m curious what god did with his testicles. Does than mean there’s a Mrs God, and lots of little godlings. Maybe these are the angels. Or maybe God has to produce another new godling every time there is a quantum fluctuation that creates a new universe. Curiouser and curiouser.

  50. In reply to #57 by rizvoid:

    The universe looks dumb to us because we lack the required level of intelligence to understand the intelligence of the universe.

    This is where you constantly fail the logic test. You are attributing your level “understanding” to me and the rest of humanity. It is the same as projecting your “Gods” views on to the rest of humanity, something religions continue to do.

    I have no trouble understanding what we know about the universe today. And I hope I will continue to understand the discussions and speculation in the future. But because you can’t understand it, and constantly want to infer that there is a mystical “intelligence of the universe”, which is no different from Intelligent Designer, doesn’t mean the rest of the rational world shares you view. Your view of the universe is personal to you, and you alone.

  51. In reply to #56 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #55 by lclement:

    In reply to #51 by keyplayer88:

    It is a daft question. I.D. isn’t a fact it is a fiction. Nothing would exist if existence relied on a fiction.

    God (assuming, I believe, you are referring to Genesis)

    Incorrect, I never refer to the babble, it being an outdated fictio…

    You brought up the notion of God in human form. I was just responding to that.

    The reference to God as “he” is not to be taken as gender specific but as personal, in a general sense like we are personal and not an “it”.

  52. In reply to #65 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #57 by rizvoid:

    This is where you constantly fail the logic test. You are attributing your level “understanding” to me and the rest of humanity. It is the same as projecting your “Gods” views on to the rest of humanity, something religions continue to do.

    I have no trouble understanding what we know about the universe today. And I hope I will continue to understand the discussions and speculation in the future. But because you can’t understand it, and constantly want to infer that there is a mystical “intelligence of the universe”, which is no different from Intelligent Designer, doesn’t mean the rest of the rational world shares you view. Your view of the universe is personal to you, and you alone.

    David, maybe if you could just stop trying (even momentarily) to prove me wrong and irrational and all that, you may actually understand the point.

    Once again, it was Einstein who said that, not me. It was Einstein who said we can never understand the universe through our minds, not me. If you claim you do indeed have enough understanding to decided whether or not the universe has been intelligently designed, then bravo…. you understand what Einstein didn’t understand. There are at least a couple of Nobel prizes waiting for you.

  53. In reply to #67 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #65 by David R Allen:

    If you claim you do indeed have enough understanding to decided whether or not the universe has been intelligently designed, then bravo…. you understand what Einstein didn’t understand. There are at least a couple of Nobel prizes waiting for you.

    It’s not that hard. So no Nobel prize for me.

    You need to leave Einstein out of your arguments. He was from another era. How can you rely on what a scientist said 60 years ago, when the Einstein’s of today, have no trouble joining the dots. And I have no trouble reading the books that explain how they join the dots.

    If you really want to stretch your mind Google a YouTube Video on Richard Dawkins interviewing Laurence Krauss entitled “Something from Nothing”. The second half of the video. The principle of conservation of energy shows that a universe can start from nothing, and still keep the energy equations balanced. Warning though Riz. This may challenge your hard wired beliefs.

  54. Evidence of purpose. If the universe was designed, wouldn’t there be evidence of purpose everywhere?

    Wouldn’t a mountain have a purpose? Wouldn’t we all have clear purposes of our own? Wouldn’t the planets and stars have a clear purpose for their existence? Wouldn’t the shape of a banana, to borrow an example, have a clear purpose (to fit into the cupped shape of a human hand, for instance)?

    What we see instead is purposelessness, as far as we can tell. Mountains simply are; they’re a result of understood processes of plate tectonics. They dont exist so that mountain goats can climb them, or that Olympic skiers can slide down them.

    The stars formed via increasingly known processes. They were not placed there for a reason — such as that a disturbed post-impressionist artist could make a name for himself by painting them, or that three random kings could use them as GPS for locating a random baby.

    Again, this is all as far as we, or I, can tell. For all I know, some scientist, perhaps one at the Creation Museum, is, as I write, finishing off a revolutionary paper that will outline a law or purposes for the universe.

    But as has been said before, ID proponents can counter all of this by saying the IDer simply created a universe that looks as though it has no purpose, perhaps because S/He was playing with us. There is not much that can be said to counter that position. But it does beg the question: How do you know what the IDer, if it exists, intended?

  55. In reply to #68 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #67 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #65 by David R Allen:

    If you really want to stretch your mind Google a YouTube Video on Richard Dawkins interviewing Laurence Krauss entitled “Something from Nothing”. The second half of the video. The principle of conservation of energy shows that a universe can start from nothing, and still keep the energy equations balanced. Warning though Riz. This may challenge your hard wired beliefs.

    Ok. And while we are at it, may I recommend David Bohm to you? Really, I think this guy knew Einstein and his theory of relativity like no other. It is hard to understand Einstein if you approach him directly, so Bohm is like a bridge between Einstein and ordinary minds. Wonders await you.

  56. In reply to #70 by rizvoid:

    And while we are at it, may I recommend David Bohm to you?

    I had never heard of him but now I understand where you get your ideas from. Certainly not mainstream or in the middle of the bell curve.

    From Wikipedia.

    David Joseph Bohm FRS[1] (20 December 1917 – 27 October 1992) was an American theoretical physicist who contributed innovative and unorthodox ideas to quantum theory, philosophy of mind, and neuropsychology. He is widely considered to be one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century.[2]

    Bohm advanced the view that the old Cartesian model of reality (that there were two interacting kinds of substance – mental and physical) was limited, in the light of developments in quantum physics. He developed in detail a mathematical and physical theory of implicate and explicate order to complement it.[3] He also believed that the working of the brain, at the cellular level, obeyed the mathematics of some quantum effects, and postulated that thought was distributed and non-localised in the way that quantum entities do not readily fit into our conventional model of space and time.[4]

    Bohm warned of the dangers of rampant reason and technology, advocating instead the need for genuine supportive dialogue which he claimed could broaden and unify conflicting and troublesome divisions in the social world. In this his epistemology mirrored his ontological viewpoint.[5] Due to his youthful Communist affiliations, Bohm was targeted during the McCarthy era, leading him to leave the United States. He pursued his scientific career in several countries, becoming first a Brazilian, then a British, citizen.

    Thanks, but no thanks. I’ll stick with Dawkins.

  57. In reply to #58 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #55 by lclement:

    If you mean ID as invented in America as a form of pseudo school biology, which its proponents claim is unrelated to religion, that is not even accepted by the main Christian churches such as the CofE and RCC. – let along any reputable scientific bodies or scientific journals.

    Intelligent Design is a soft approach to the creation model. It is a starting point for the discussion of origins and somewhat religion neutral.

    But which creator and why?
    But which god – there are so many of them!

    The Power who made you is your God. Your task is to find out who that is. All the rest are insignificant.

    It has been explained many times on this site, that Logic is a deductive process which to relate to reality, has to start with objective evidence.

    I would prefer to use the term “objective methods”. Logic is valid because of stable laws that govern the universe. A<>NOT A and that is always proven true, therefore we can place our trust in certain objective methods, methods that we can use to study the world around us. Evolution is a very subjective world-view and it demands a clever manipulation of objective scientific observations, faith-like explanations for the serious deficiency in the fossil record to support the multitude of transitional life-forms, and a disregard for the laws of thermodynamics. Take away the artist’s conceptions from the text books too!

    Why is it that evolutionary theory is always upwardly mobile? The first-cause and its descendents always seems to survive any major set-backs. A wipe-out and starting over is not factored in here, is it?

  58. In reply to #60 by obzen:

    In reply to #50 by lclement:

    Which btw isn’t evolution.

    Then what do you call time and chance?

    t always work better, especially when you are trying to simulate organisms and life systems. Evolutionary algorithms are often better at this than brittle expert systems

    It seems to me that attempting to duplicate that first life form using complex mathematics, sophisticated laboratory environments, and great thinkers, sounds a lot like Intelligent Design 🙂

  59. In reply to #72 by lclement:

    In reply to #58 by Alan4discussion:
    Evolution is a very subjective world-view and it demands a clever manipulation of objective scientific observations, faith-like explanations for the serious deficiency in the fossil record to support the multitude of transitional life-forms, and a disregard for the laws of thermodynamics.

    What I find fascinating is not what Iclement says above (Text Book ID’er), but the psychological profile he puts on show, that allows him to write statements like the one above. There is nothing any of the rational contributors to this blog can say or do, no evidence that could be adduced, no logical argument that can be presented that could alter Iclement’s mind. This is a closed mind. The psychological profile of the fundamentalist religious mind is what makes them so dangerous. The inability to comprehend evidence, or to be moved by it. Basically, it is the privilege of the extremist never to doubt.

    So is Iclement’s mind any different from the Taliban, or Al Qaeda adherent. Blind faith that they, and only they have to one true god, out of the millions that have been invented. That they, and only they will be the ones going to heaven. That they, and only they live in a perfect faith and that the world would be heaven on earth if only everyone in the world thought exactly like they do. It’s the concept of the American Taliban. In an alternative universe where Islam and Christianity swap places, Iclement would be in the Ozark mountains, assault rifle in hand, defending the “One True Faith” and doing what the Taliban does.

    Iclement is evidence that intelligence design does not exist.

    This is why I stand up against the pathologically religious.

  60. In reply to #61 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #50 by lclement:

    In reply to #48 by rogeroney:

    Clearly Iclement (Post 46) just doesn’t get it. Like all true ID fantasists, he puts the cart before the horse, assuming some

    “When I create a new software program, I start with purpose, logic and design, then I build it. Works better…

    Evolutionists puzzle me. Nothing personal here, sheepdog. How can people that claim to be so rational overlook such glaring deficiencies in their hypotheses. Where are all the multitude of past transitional life forms in the fossil record? In addition, evolution should be going on today. We should be seeing presently, in our time, a multitude of transitional forms that are still evolving from lower life forms. All kinds of creatures should be running around. Where are they? The process should be dynamic and without cessation.

  61. In reply to #71 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #70 by rizvoid:

    And while we are at it, may I recommend David Bohm to you?

    I had never heard of him but now I understand where you get your ideas from. Certainly not mainstream or in the middle of the bell curve.

    From Wikipedia.

    Did you miss that bit:?

    ” He is widely considered to be one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century.”

    Mainstream or not, he was a brilliant mind. And I had been talking about a well-know mainstream scientist, a little known scientist called Einstein, for quite some time. You just asked me to leave him alone. But the moment I mentioned David Bohm, boom, … he is not a mainstream scientist, therefore he is not a valid scientist, and therefore I have weird ideas.. What a way to have an argument.

  62. In reply to #74 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #72 by lclement:

    In reply to #58 by Alan4discussion:

    What is wrong with having firm convictions? Do I not have the right, in your world system, to test them against yours?

    As far as going to Heaven is concerned, there is plenty of room left. Good people will not be there, only forgiven bad people will be there. That is why I have hope.

    I do not espouse violence and I do not need to force anyone to my faith. The relationship I have with God is a personal one and yet I freely share it with others. It has brought me great peace, joy, and love. If I am wrong, I have nothing to lose. I will return to dust and that will be the end. However, if you are wrong, you have a lot to lose, my friend.

  63. In reply to #75 by lclement:

    Where are all the multitude of past transitional life forms in the fossil record?

    If you would bother to read just a bit of Richard Dawkins you would see that he answers this. If you look into what needs to happen to make a fossil a lot of things need to happen just right in order for it to happen. The amazing thing isn’t that there are “missing” transitional fossils it’s that we have as many fossils as we do. Also, the whole notion of transitional forms is a misconception of evolution anyway. Species are human inventions to help us categorize and make sense of the diversity of living things. In reality there aren’t discrete steps where there is species X one day and species Y the next. It’s a continuous process of very small changes.

    In addition, evolution should be going on today.

    It is. It’s why health experts are so concerned about the overuse of antibiotics in hospitals and in the general population, because bacteria are evolving and as we continue to use antibiotics we are breeding stronger and stronger versions of bacteria that can resist them. The same with pesticides and insects. There are also other examples of insects and birds that have evolved different coloring and habits to adapt to cities and the industrial world. The reason most of the evolution we can point to that has occurred in the last few hundred years is in smaller animals is that evolution usually takes a very long time, many many generations so we can see it in bacteria and insects that breed rapidly but not as much in animals like us that have long life spans.

  64. In reply to #77 by lclement:

    In reply to #74 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #72 by lclement:

    In reply to #58 by Alan4discussion:

    What is wrong with having firm convictions? Do I not have the right, in your world system, to test them against yours?

    As far as going to Heaven is concerned, there is plenty of room left. Good peo…

    The fact that you can write this, confirms my worst fears.

    Where are all the multitude of past transitional life forms in the fossil record? In addition, evolution should be going on today. We should be seeing presently, in our time, a multitude of transitional forms that are still evolving from lower life forms. All kinds of creatures should be running around. Where are they? The process should be dynamic and without cessation.

    There is abundant evidence to displace your assertion, for it is nothing but an assertion. But you are incapable of assimilating that evidence. That is irrational. That is what makes a closed faith based mind so dangerous. If you can be irrational over something as simple as evolution, you can be irrational to the point of actions that do harm, like your fellow faith based closed minds.

    You do not possess the ability to doubt your position. You must every second of every day, question your position on everything. You must constantly be aware of new evidence and what that means for your position. And you must be able to change your position, if that evidence contradicts your view. You are incapable of any of this. That is the dangerous bit. I’m not saying your violent now, but people with the same psychological profile as you, when pushed, become violent. They fly planes into buildings. They are your psychological soul brothers. They think the same way as you do. You are indistinguishable from the Taliban, in your psyche profile.

  65. In reply to #80 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #77 by lclement:

    In reply to #74 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #72 by lclement:

    In reply to #58 by Alan4discussion:

    What is wrong with having firm convictions? Do I not have the right, in your world system, to test them against yours?

    As far as going to Heaven is concerned, there is…

    I Clement. (A religious reference I suspect) You don’t have, or have never had, or find it impossible to ask yourself the question:-

    “What if I am wrong.”

    In your mind, you can’t be wrong.

  66. In reply to #75 by lclement:

    In reply to #61 by Sheepdog:
    Where are all the multitude of past transitional life forms in the fossil record? In addition, evolution should be going on today. We should be seeing presently, in our time, a multitude of transitional forms that are still evolving from lower life forms. All kinds of creatures should be running around. Where are they? The process should be dynamic and without cessation.

    This has been answered and well, by others, but let me try another tack. The only exact example of a human, or a dog, or a fish is one living today. You are different to your parents, who are a transitional form between you and your grandparents, and you are a transitional form between your parents and your children. As the generations roll back, and roll on, the differences become greater, and those who started the same, but were maybe separated by a river or other barrier, became so different as to longer have fertile offspring. An obvious example being horses and donkeys. Let several thousand more generations go by, and they will not be able to reproduce at all, other than with those from their side of the river.

    Every one of those thousands of horses, and thousands of donkeys, is a transitional form. There is no sudden jump, just a common ancestor, and in answer to the favorite question, “If we are descended from chimpanzees, why are there still chimpanzees?” And of course we are not, but go back far enough, and you will find the apelike creature from whom we are both descended, and yes, it is extinct, leaving only it’s bones and stone tools in Olduvai Gorge to mark our path.

    Anyway, thanks for answering, and may I suggest not buying those anti-bacterial detergents that kill 99% of household germs. The 1% left alive are tough, and the population gets tougher every time you spray them. This too is evolution at work.

    While I agree that you can have whatever relationship you like with whatever god you like. But please, don’t indoctrinate innocent children, and in my case, were I ever to feel the need of a mythical deity to intervene on my behalf in my affairs, it certainly would not be the vindictive, murderous, misogynistic, genocidal, adulterous, and incompetent designer that the Hebrews worship.

  67. If ID was fact then I would expect to see all created animals around today. Either god destroyed his own work, since Noah was explicitly instructed to save 2 of ALL animals, or ID is not valid. If some animals are not here today because god’s own creation was imperfect, other than us humans, then his design was hardly intelligent, and he is hardly omnipotent or infallible. If he failed to save them, from a flood of from us, then he is shown to be fallible. ID is then proof of god’s own non-existence.

  68. In reply to #76 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #71 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #70 by rizvoid:

    And while we are at it, may I recommend David Bohm to you?

    D R A I had never heard of him but now I understand where you get your ideas from.

    ” He is widely considered to be one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century.”

    No, surely that’s would be me. Because I just said so?

    Bohm warned of the dangers of rampant reason

    Because he knows scientific reason will expose religion to be the superstitious nonsense that it is. A man who warns against full on reason a ‘significant theoretical physicist of the 20th century’. This is a contradiction in terms. He’s in the wrong profession.

    Did you mean significant in the sense he doesn’t base his science on rationality, reason, and objectivity like proper scientists do?

  69. But what if the opposite was true; that Intelligent Design was a fact? Leaving aside the many arguments against I.D, let’s try to imagine what we would expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was a fact.

    The hypothesis that some or all living organisms are or were, at any point, manufactured by an external agent rather than self-assembled, would require evidence on par with evidence for artefacts: materials that were made by processes other than embryological assembly, like animals with forged metal alloy parts built-in; evidence of some sort of assembly process for such creatures, akin to product manufacture in a factory or workshop; and basically evidence for the existence of a candidate that could set up and run such processes, like we have evidence that humans make cars and sculptures. Basically, you’d be looking for human-like interference and signs of external manufacture.

    I don’t know whether you’d call this I.D. – it would accommodate extraterrestrial designers (aliens) and terrestrial designers (say, a precursor intelligent species), and has no religious implications – but some evidence that this occurs or most likely did occur (as per the principle of uniformitarianism, which demands examples in the present day for historic or long-lasting processes) would be quite persuasive to most scientific panels. Basically, you’d be looking for life if it was crafted or manufactured by humans or something human-like.

    I should also point out that this would not be as comprehensive an explanation of life as evolution by natural selection or abiogenesis because it leaves the designers themselves unexplained. That said, it could still be a possible historical fact, provided the evidence actually was present and wasn’t excused by gaps in our knowledge or “makes sense” arguments.

  70. In reply to #70 by rizvoid:
    >

    Ok. And while we are at it, may I recommend David Bohm to you? Really, I think this guy knew Einstein and his theory of relativity like no other. It is hard to understand Einstein if you approach him directly, so Bohm is like a bridge between Einstein and ordinary minds. Wonders await you.

    Ah! Those wonderful fairy-stories (see @85) for those who can’t get an understanding of the real science which uses scientific methods, so they choose the simplistic – avoiding all that hard-work thinking and learning stuff – about how things actually work!

  71. In reply to #85 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #76 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #71 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #70 by rizvoid:

    Because he knows scientific reason will expose religion to be the superstitious nonsense that it is. A man who warns against full on reason a ‘significant theoretical physicist of the 20th century’. This is a contradiction in terms. He’s in the wrong profession.

    Einstein also said the same thing. Maybe the Wikipedia articles on Einstein don’t say so, but he did say reason can’t fully understand the universe. Only reason combined with Intuition can. Surprisingly, when I mention Einstein and his quotes, people just keep ignoring them, or tell me to leave Einstein out of this. But the moment I mention I David Bohm, …. long live Wikipedia. Have you actually read or listened to David Bohm?

    Did you mean significant in the sense he doesn’t base his science on rationality, reason, and objectivity like proper scientists do?

    I didn’t mean anything. Someone just quoted something about him from Wikipedia, and it was in that quoted text. Argue with Wikipedia. It wasn’t me who said that. It wasn’t me who quoted Wikipedia.

  72. In reply to #88 by rizvoid:

    Einstein also said the same thing. Maybe the Wikipedia articles on Einstein don’t say so, but he did say reason can’t fully understand the universe.

    If there is lack of information to FULLY understand any topic then the answers are incomplete. That does not default to “Ah! But if you add magic intuitive fairy-dust, it all becomes clear!”

    That is the “pseudo-clarity” of deluded self-referencing circular thinking which is utterly detached from reality.

    Only reason combined with Intuition can.

    Intuition tells you NOTHING about reality. It only speculates where you MIGHT find some evidence to START your reasoning process! It is only after the ideas have withstood testing and the falsification process, that the information has value.

  73. In reply to #89 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #88 by rizvoid:

    Intuition tells you NOTHING about reality. It only speculates where you MIGHT find some evidence to START your reasoning process! It is only after the ideas have withstood testing and the falsification process, that the information has value.

    So, Einstein is wrong when he says:

    “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.”

    And

    “There is no logical way to the discovery of elemental laws. There is only the way of intuition, which is helped by a feeling for the order lying behind the appearance.”

    And

    “The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe. We are like a little child entering a huge library.”

  74. Lawrence Krauss mentions Einstein a number of times in his book, “A Universe from Nothing”. Einstein realised that his theory could not explain a static universe, which was the generally held view at the time, so he added what he called the cosmological term. If he had greater courage of his convictions, he might have predicted the expanding universe before it’s later discovery. He is said to have called the decision to modify his equations “his biggest blunder”.

    Here is a Krauss on A Universe from Nothing. At about 25mins he is discussing gravitational lensing, which Einstein predicted but (and this is relevant to your current discussion with rizvoid) he thought there was little chance that we would be capable of observing the phenomenon.

    In reply to #68 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #67 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #65 by David R Allen:

    If you claim you do indeed have enough understanding to decided whether or not the universe has been intelligently designed, then bravo…. you understand what Einstein didn’t understand. There are at least a couple of Nobel prizes wait…

  75. And at 47:50 Krauss gives an amusing summary of String Theory.

    In reply to #91 by Marktony:

    Lawrence Krauss mentions Einstein a number of times in his book, “A Universe from Nothing”. Einstein realised that his theory could not explain a static universe, which was the generally held view at the time, so he added what he called the cosmological term. If he had greater courage of his convict…

  76. In reply to #90 by rizvoid:
    >

    Intuition tells you NOTHING about reality. It only speculates where you MIGHT find some evidence to START your reasoning process! It is only after the ideas have withstood testing and the falsification process, that the information has value.

    So, Einstein is wrong when he says:

    Yep!
    No.1) Wrong! – as you are attempting to interpret it! He is praising lateral thinking, not disparaging logic and objectivity! “Sacred” is flowery language, – unless you can prove some “sacred god” exists!

    No.2) Wrong – Elemental laws can ONLY be discovered by objective observation, testing, and logical/mathematical deduction. Navel gazing does not work!
    You have clearly failed to understand my comment which you pasted and which is above in this comment.
    It clearly explains EXACTLY what Einstein is saying about using intuition in looking for evidence to get started.

    No.3) Is probably right about the limitations of the individual human mind, but does not imply anything else.

    Creationists love quote mining, misrepresenting and digging up wrong refuted claims, made in the past by famous people, as a sort of badge of false authority for their claims, and against the science which refuted them.
    Sometimes it is simply from the fallacious thinking, that attacking someone else’s position, adds credibility to their own unevidenced views.

  77. In reply to #93 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #90 by rizvoid:

    Creationists love quote mining, misrepresenting and digging up wrong refuted claims, made in the past by famous people, as a sort of badge of false authority for their claims, and against the science which refuted them.
    Sometimes it is simply from the fallacious thinking, that attacking someone else’s position, adds credibility to their own unevidenced views.

    Yep. And that settles everything. Are you a lawyer? In case you are, I would like to meet all the people you have defended. They must all be either dead or serving life in prisons.

  78. In reply to #94 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #93 by Alan4discussion:

    Yep. And that settles everything. Are you a lawyer? In case you are, I would like to meet all the people you have defended. They must all be either dead or serving life in prisons.

    Alan. I’ve committed a thought crime. I’ve imagined a world without religion. As a lawyer, I would ask that you defend me. Your rationale is exactly what I need to overturn this heinous accusation.

  79. In reply to #95 by David R Allen:

    Alan. I’ve committed a thought crime. I’ve imagined a world without religion. As a lawyer, I would ask that you defend me. Your rationale is exactly what I need to overturn this heinous accusation.

    I see the irrational comment 94 has disappeared, but for those interested, my particular areas of interest are environmental biology, and space sciences, where the evidence against ID is pretty obvious, together with some experience in politics, which gives insight into individual and collective human thinking.

    My daughter however, is a lawyer!

  80. In reply to #97 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #95 by David R Allen:

    I see the irrational comment 94 has disappeared, but for those interested, my particular areas of interest are environmental biology, and space sciences, where the evidence against ID is pretty obvious, together with some experience in politics, which gives insight into individual and collective human thinking.

    Yeah, I agree. It was an irrational comment……

    Just for the record, I am not supporting ID. I am putting forth an argument that we are unable to answer these questions. The universe is too big, too complex, and we are too small and trivial. Maybe a little off topic. But If it is, then I expect to be notified by the moderators.

    By the way, what famous theory do you support these days regarding the origin of the universe, since you have mentioned your interest in space science?

  81. Clearly death is a problem. Why not just design living things to just live?

    Disease, parasites, even bacteria that live in concert with other organisms. How mad does a Designer have to be to include all this nonsense? Why have metamorphosis? What are carnivores for … actually, why is the eating of other species, even plants, necessary? Surely a designed world would have just self-sustaining organisms.

    Or, a designed world would have species that are just very happy to be eaten. That would save a lot of energy.

    Trade marks. The designer labels are missing. That would seem weird.

    Tidiness. The world that has evolved is very untidy, for obvious reasons if you’ve studied evolution, but a designed world would be much tidier. No tsunami, or earthquakes, or volcanoes – these things would just stop the Designer from getting on with their next ‘big thing’.

    Fashion. Species would come, and go and then make comebacks in numbers.

    Model numbers. Perhaps like a tattoo on the arm? Come to think of it, perhaps being scrapped would still be needed. The Designer would obviously have some new and better ideas later, so older models would need to be either upgraded or replaced.

    Updates. Currently none of us receives downloadable updates. In a designed world this would obviously be true.

    Product recall. Faulty batches of living beings would obviously have to be fixed.

    Garages for organisms. Hospitals are very hit and miss. In a designed world the living things would have a Product Handbook, a set of Maintenance Manuals and a full spares list. Of course some species would rely on Mobile Garages (e.g. Plants) as would some animals (such as a giraffe suffering from whatever the designed giraffe equivelant of a puncture is). The rest of us would need to book an appointment using the ‘bush telegraph’.

    One language. A designed world would have no use for more than one. The dogs and cats would also speak, of course. And horses would read road signs.

    No vestigial organs. Newer models would simply not need to wait millions of years for redundant parts to grow ever smaller through tens of thousands of generations. The Designer could simply remove them from the next, upgraded, chassis.

    No tree of life. Because of the above, there would be no need to link the design of each species. The Designer could do really radical things with each new species. This leads me to wonder why the Designed World would have one climate. Surely, a designed world could have more? Something like Earth could exist on one side and an ecosystem with Methane atmosphere breathers could live on the other half.

    More intelligence. Humans are thick. If I were a designer with the power to produce an Earth I would be extremely disappointed with the Human Race’s pathetic efforts to-date. We’re not nearly amusing enough.

    Emotions would be simple, and understood. The real World is just maddeningly bad – if the way we experience and communicate, and react to others’ emotions is anything to go by then it is either evolved – or somebody’s been incompetent …

    Better layouts. Evolved beings have mad things like five fingers and hairy nostrils. Of course. a Designer might, from time to time, amuse themselves by producing lots of people with, say, five armpits. But on the whole it seems more likely that long term fun would best be gained by creating designs that meet the Designer’s needs.

    No more ugly things. No more slimy things that crawl. Everybody would simply go to bed at night.

    No more flies. Think about it, what good are flies? Even when they’re not eating something left behind by some pet, then flying over to vomit it back up on your lunch, they’re biting you or being incredibly irritating trying to drink your sweat or tickling your hair. To be fair to flies, they don’t pick on us – they annoy all other species equally! Only an Evil Designer would design flies.

    Better recycling. Currently all living matter has to be broken down into component chemistry before it is recycled as new organisms. A designed world would obviously have many more standardised parts. For designed humanoids, for example, there would be just one blood type and organ rejection from transplants would not only be unknown, they would be far simpler -with standard connections allowing anyone to perform what, for us, is major surgery.

    For the above reason; no amputees. This would include other species, even though it might not be possible for designed ‘cat’-type organism to swap an eye with a designed ‘fish’-type organism clearly it should be possible ‘fish’-to-‘fish’.

    I can’t make up my mind if a designed world would reveal the Designer (or Designers). I suppose it depends on who’s doing the designing. Also, what would happen if a team of designers argued … ?

    Radioheads would be normal. Radio communication for intelligent species – built in – would be an obvious thing for a designer to do, as would X-Ray vision, chemical analysis (not just smell and taste – proper in-body sample diagnosis).

    No religion. If I were a designer of a world, I can’t think of a reason why I would want the ‘higher achieving’ organisms to waste time and energy on pretending to know things they don’t know. Unless, of course I was needy, nasty, narcistic and insecure.

    I thought of lots of other things that would obviously be true in a designed world, but it’s my bedtime.

    In the end I came to the conclusion that, actually, pondering a designed world just makes an evolved world seem far more likely.

    Peace.

  82. We have to remember what it is that God apparently wanted at the end of all this, and tailor “that which would be” in accordance.

    God, above all, apparently wants to be worshipped. While that seems pretty narcissistic to us, to a “createe,” spending his day on his knees would be normal, hence knees better suited to kneeling for extended periods.

    God apparently wants to be believed. So, obviously, no fossils, and simpler circles without pesky irrational numbers, or for that matter, irrational anything..

    God is really into forgiving, so there has to be even more bad behaviour for God to forgive than we see now.

    God wants to be prayed to, so with billions of people, all praying, the list of demands, and thus human aspirations, must be simpler, or God’s inbox would start to look a lot like mine.

    God shows no tolerance of competition, so all people would be pretty much the same. Dawkin’s, or Beckham, or any one with any unusual ability would be ruled out as being risky, who can say they might not be inadvertently worshipped.

    I could go on, but I am starting to feel that God’s ideal world is not one I particularly want to live in.

  83. This is incredibly optimistic… but the ultimate thing would be contact from more intelligent life. That would put such ridiculous claims to rest. However, it hasn’t been done yet obviously. But I think that would totally disprove not just ID, but creationism and possibly religion all together. We can only hope 🙂

    I think the idea of Intelligent Design actually contradicts the Bible. I was brought up in the Christian religion and every church will make it a point, over and over, that man is sinful, flawed, and depraved. At the same time, the Bible also states time and time again that we were made in God’s image 😀 The same God that says to “fill the Earth and subdue it”; that phrase from Genesis 1:28 illustrates the root of our problems – too many people. So I think if there was a God that had the Earth’s best interest, he wouldn’t initiate or allow such things as overpopulation. Or to relate better to your question: An intelligent being wouldn’t create the grounds for such stupid, possibly catastrophic outcomes. Then again, this God was known to unleash devastating plagues on cities to make his wrath apparent… Lol

    More specifically, my favorite recent case of observable, short-term evolution is that of the Australian Three-Toed Skink. This species has recently been undergoing the development of live-birthing, rather than it’s ancestral reproductive strategy of egg-laying. I think if there were an intelligent designer, something as “unintelligent” as a skink wouldn’t be able to make such adaptations; instead, the organisms reproductive strategies would be optimal.. but they’re not. This fact alone discredits the two main ideas behind Intelligent design: irreducible complexity and reducible complexity. There are many other examples, but I think when ONE example shows the weakness of the foundations of a claim, something is seriously wrong. Lol

  84. I would expect living things to need to be assembled, not to self assemble.

    I would expect DNA Polymerase III to be bidirectional instead of only going one way.

    I would expect my urethra to run somewhere other than through my reproductive organs…. Kinda like putting a sewer pipe through a playground.

    I would expect no vestigial organs.

    i would expect no emergent diseases, no microbial resistance to antibiotics, no new species, etc…

    I would expect humans to cure a disease and then move on and someday reach a point where all diseases had been eliminated.

    Quite frankly, here’s the deal IT WOULD BE A BETTER WORLD FOR HUMANS IF NATURAL SELECTION WAS BULLSHIT.

  85. In reply to #102 by crookedshoes:

    I would expect living things to need to be assembled

    Excellent idea. Children could come flat-packed from IKEA with an Allen key to put them together. Except they’d all have Scandinavian names like Crookedshoesdottir.

    Michael

  86. If living creatures had been intelligently designed by a ‘loving’ designer, they would not have been designed to eat other living things to get their own energy. They would all get their energy directly from the Sun or some other way.

  87. In reply to #98 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #97 by Alan4discussion:

    By the way, what famous theory do you support these days regarding the origin of the universe,

    The areas of the known origins of the universe are included in the Big-bang Theory. Graphical timeline of the Big Bang The theoretical physics of origins of the universe at frontiers of knowledge, is mainly a separate specialism.

    since you have mentioned your interest in space science?

    Space Science is more focussed on the Earth, the planets, Solar System, and the practical applications of hardware tools (rockets, satellites, probes, landers, telescopes, life-forms in zero G, etc) for investigations, rather than the theoretical aspects of cosmology.

    It does provide the evidence and data for the theoretical work but the preponderance of present applications, are near Earth, communications, mapping, and monitoring. All studies of The Solar System show a slow and on-going evolution over billions of years, and no magical instant creations.

    The universe is too big, too complex, and we are too small and trivial.

    Unknowns do not negate areas of knowledge which are well known and well tested. That is just the flawed argument (AKA Ham and Co.) that if we don’t know everything we know nothing.

    Maybe a little off topic. But If it is, then I expect to be notified by the moderators.

    Not at all! The evolution of the Solar System, galaxy and universe, negate instant magical creations, just as much as biological evolution.

  88. Alan4,

    How about the selection that goes on inside stars that can spew heavier elements out into space and the the subsequent selection that allows Carbon to be the central element in living things???

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #98 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #97 by Alan4discussion:

    By the way, what famous theory do you support these days regarding the origin of the universe,

    The areas of the known origins of the universe are included in the Big-bang Theory. Graphical timeline of the Big Bang The theoretical p…

  89. In reply to #106 by crookedshoes:

    Alan4,

    How about the selection that goes on inside stars that can spew heavier elements out into space and the the subsequent selection that allows Carbon to be the central element in living things???

    That certainly selects which planetary systems could support Earth-type life, and which could not because they lack the essential elements! .

    http://www.richarddawkins.net/news-articles/2014/2/13/the-archaeology-of-the-stars#comment-box-1

  90. Yes! And then the competition for available valence shell vacancies and ultimately the dance that leads to life and then the dance of life, itself.

    Selection, competition….. hmmmmm, where have I heard these terms before???

    In reply to #107 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #106 by crookedshoes:

    Alan4,

    How about the selection that goes on inside stars that can spew heavier elements out into space and the the subsequent selection that allows Carbon to be the central element in living things???

    That certainly selects which planetary systems could support E…

  91. A few years ago I had cataract surgery; the surgeon replaced my eye lenses, evolved by Natural Selection, with new ones, Intelligently Designed and made in a factory. Some of my friends have had Intelligently Designed artifical joints installed. If God had done ID, we’d have pluggable replacement parts, so they were easy to replace without all that messy surgery.

  92. In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #98 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #97 by Alan4discussion:

    Unknowns do not negate areas of knowledge which are well known and well tested. That is just the flawed argument (AKA Ham and Co.) that if we don’t know everything we know nothing.

    Not at all. It is not a flawed argument.

    Let me tell you why:

    We live in time. We live in the present, and we have a future in front of us. The future is always unknown to us. We do not know how this unknown future is going to change the facts of our present. It has happened in the past. Many times. What makes you think it can’t happen again? That what you call areas of knowledge that are well tested, can’t be changed by future discoveries? You are assuming they can’t be changed, because they are so well tested, but this is just an assumption, mind you. What makes you think your assumption is right and not wrong?

    That’s one example.

    here’s another.

    When you say people should consult science to find answers, do you have any idea how big and complex science is? Is it even remotely possible for anyone to learn all of it?

    For instance, do have you a good understand of Einstein’ theory of relativity, quantum physics, the string theory, and all that? Because if you don’t, then your knowledge of physics is partial, and since physics is the branch of science that plays such an important part in explaining the origin of the universe, how can you claim you have all the answers with your limited understanding of physics, which is only a branch of science? That was my point. Even if we consult science to find answers, science is so big, so vast, so complex, no one can really access and understand all of it. In fact, only a very small part of it. Combine that with the time factor, that we do not know the future, you have people with extremely limited focus and extremely limited understanding of the universe. Therefore, each one of us is exposed to partial knowledge at any given time. Just as you are, I am, and everyone else is. Why is this a flawed argument? I would love to know.

    And please, if you could explain to me in your terms and examples without any references to Wikipedia about logical fallacies, I would be grateful. I am not a philosopher. My knowledge of science is limited, but my knowledge of philosophy of extremely limited….:)

  93. In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #98 by rizvoid:

    Let me see if I can put some perspective on this.

    We do not know how this unknown future is going to change the facts of our present. It has happened in the past.

    Let’s go back to the past. When Newton wrote his Principia Mathematica he had no idea that I would one day use it to design a ship. Nor did he know that Einstein would realise that Newton’s work, while still useable on a day to day basis for designing bridges, ships, and flights to the moon, was actually flawed, when the absolute effects of velocity were considered. His (Newton’s) work, however is not undone by this, in fact it’s continued use thousands and thousands of times, without failing once ( when applied competently) demonstrates it’s accuracy. And of course, Einstein’s work depended on it, so progression, not disproving. Were you correct, and predictability invalid, it would be hit and miss, maybe F will equal MA this time, maybe it won’t.

    Newton’s unknowns have not negated his knowns. They do not argue for it’s being a flawed argument.

    When you say “Science is too big,” , bear in mind human knowledge is not comprehensive. We do not all know everything, just a small part. I know more about what I do than a nuclear physicist, who knows more about physics than I do, and a New Guinea tribesman knows more about hunting pigs than either of us. Human knowledge is collective, and expanding. The path to truth is not trying to know everything, but knowing who to ask.

    Finally, just because I cannot answer a question, it does not mean that there is not an answer, just that you have reached a limit to my personal knowledge. it does not mean that goddidit.

  94. We live in time. We live in the present, and we have a future in front of us. The future is always unknown to us. We do not know how this unknown future is going to change the facts of our present. It has happened in the past. Many times. What makes you think it can’t happen again?

    Do you think there is a chance that in the future we might discover that, actually, E=mc^3? Or we might wake up one day and find that the earth is flat after all?

    There is a lot of space between atoms, so it’s always possible that your atoms could pass through the space between the atoms of say a door – you could walk right through the door. Anything could happen in the future. Having said that, I always open the door.

    Does your belief that present facts may change in the future have any influence on your day-to-day life? Do you feel that it’s pointless to try to improve your knowledge because that knowledge may be proved false in the future? Have you got any educational qualifications, or did you not bother since you could never possibly know everything?

    In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #98 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #97 by Alan4discussion:

    Unknowns do not negate areas of knowledge which are well known and well tested. That is just the flawed argument (AKA Ham and Co.) that if we don’t know everything we know nothing.

    Not at all. It…

  95. In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    Unknowns do not negate areas of knowledge which are well known and well tested. That is just the flawed argument (AKA Ham and Co.) that if we don’t know everything we know nothing.

    Not at all. It is not a flawed argument.

    It is a very flawed argument, because as I pointed out, we do not need to know everything to know anything. There is a vast body of scientific knowledge in which there is a high level of confidence.
    The technologies of the modern world would not work if they were not correct to high levels of accuracy.

    Let me tell you why:

    We live in time. We live in the present, and we have a future in front of us. The future is always unknown to us.

    No it isn’t. The very nature of science, is the ability to make predictions, based on projections from past knowledge. – often to very high levels of probability.
    The motions of planets and eclipses for example, can be predicted centuries ahead by astronomers. If this sort of mathematical calculation was in error, we would not be able to land rovers on Mars, or put probes into orbit around remote planets, years after their launches.

    We do not know how this unknown future is going to change the facts of our present. It has happened in the past. Many times. What makes you think it can’t happen again?

    Unknown to you, does not mean unknown to everyone else. Slight uncertainties about accuracies is NOT equivalent to “unknown”!
    While we may not be certain where we lack information, many projections into the future are highly accurate. That is the nature of the knowledge of scientific laws and the mathematical calculations based on them.

    That what you call areas of knowledge that are well tested, can’t be changed by future discoveries?

    It is extremely unlikely in many cases. If you jump out of a 30th floor window in ten years time, some new law of gravity is not going to turn up!

    You are assuming they can’t be changed, because they are so well tested, but this is just an assumption, mind you. What makes you think your assumption is right and not wrong?

    Durrr! That is because it is WELL TESTED and confirmed by repeat experiments! That is evidence , NOT assumption.

    That’s one example.- here’s another.

    When you say people should consult science to find answers, do you have any idea how big and complex science is? Is it even remotely possible for anyone to learn all of it?

    It does not have to be. Science works on team-work and communication of reliably tested knowledge.
    Many unknowns are irrelevant to repeat instances of observable facts. That is that point I made.
    If knowledge of some specific area is well tested and repeatedly observed objectively, interpretations may be wrong, but the underlying operations of observed facts will not be altered by irrelevant unknowns.

    The suggestion that nothing can be projected into the future by understanding science, is ridiculous, and well debunked by numerous predictions which have been made and confirmed.
    Seasonal day length on Earth because of its axis and inertia, is a clear example. To suggest that science cannot predict shorter days in winter months and longer ones in summer in the opposite hemisphere, for years ahead, is just plain silly!

    Why is this a flawed argument? I would love to know.

    I think that example of seasons explains it simply enough. The predictions of phases of the Moon is another example, –
    or the Milankovitch theory of the cycles of the Earth’s axis and orbit, gives longer term predictions.

    The Earth’s axis completes one full cycle of precession approximately every 26,000 years. At the same time the elliptical orbit rotates more slowly. The combined effect of the two precessions leads to a 21,000-year period between the astronomical seasons and the orbit. In addition, the angle between Earth’s rotational axis and the normal to the plane of its orbit (obliquity) oscillates between 22.1 and 24.5 degrees on a 41,000-year cycle. It is currently 23.44 degrees and decreasing.

    It is the nature of science to be able to make calculations to predict future events, and to constantly recheck these for accuracy as time goes on.

  96. In reply to #113 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    Great. Another lengthy post that explains at length how science works… and doesn’t address the point. Doesn’t even attempt to address the point. Like I am in a primary school listening to a science teacher. The teacher who encourages his students to ask creative questions, but when they do ask creative questions, he tells them to shut up and listen to him…the contemporary and his age old rock-solid beliefs. Do ask creative questions, but don’t expect to get creative answers.

    Ok. I agree with you and your views, Alan.

  97. … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent Designer is capable of designing and driving Natural Selection.

  98. Well, CumbriaSmithy (115) since Evolution by Natural Selection proceeds without any designed direction your postulated infinitely intelligent designer would be characterised by infinitely minimal influence. I would postulate that an entity which is so vanishingly insignificant probably doesn’t exist.

  99. In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    Unknowns do not negate areas of knowledge which are well known and well tested. That is just the flawed argument (AKA Ham and Co.) that if we don’t know everything we know nothing.

    The future is always unknown to us. We do not know how this unknown future is going to change the facts of our present.

    I don’t know how you manage to negotiate the world, with your understanding of how it works. Let me tell you why.

    While eating your breakfast it could turn into a mumbo jumbo jet, because you don’t know how ‘this unknown future is going to change the facts of the present’. The future ‘is going to’, definitely, for certain, change the present, reversing time, because a self confessed ignoramus has decided it? What is more you are not content to carry this utterly flawed understanding of reality in shame and secrecy, you share your insanity with the rest of us, and even worse you lecture us about it. You are an embarrassment to your ‘kind’.

    do you have any idea how big and complex science is? Is it even remotely possible for anyone to learn all of it?

    What rubbish is this, science is difficult so why bother? Just because science challenges the intellectually weak does not oblige others, not so poorly endowed, to walk around like disinterested zombies. And what audacity that a self confessed dullard should ask such a question of those that work their whole careers addressing such difficult problems. Who better to know the difficulties of science than those that understand it, they certainly don’t need you lecturing them about its value.

    Also, what has one person not knowing everything about science got to do with, 1) being able to understanding which way is ‘up’ today and knowing it will still be ‘up’ tomorrow and, 2) not needing to further knowledge because no one person has ALL KNOWLEDGE. With your attitude to learning you may as well go through life with your head up your own anus, but don’t expect others to follow your example. As you say, you know little about science or philosophy and seem to care little about correcting this. With a total absence of expertise in these subjects what makes you think your are qualified to lecture others about them. Other than through blinkered ignorance and a misplaced sense of your own self importance.

  100. I dunno, maybe some indication that any of nature was, in fact, intelligently designed instead of just thrown together in a total haphazard way?

    “If the complexity of nature proves the existence of God, what do all the flaws say about his work ethic”?

    [And yes, I’ve got that on a t-shirt…]

  101. In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent Designer is capable of designing and…

    Ockham’s Razor disposes of the need for a designer.

  102. In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent Designer is capable of designing and…

    However postulating an infinitely massive, or infinitely intelligent entity, is just fantasy playing with the misuse of the term “infinity”.
    It explains nothing, and offers no answers to the origins of this entity, – or the infinite regression problem – of which infinite creator, was the creator, of the infinite creator, of the infinite creator. ……….. . … . .

  103. In reply to #114 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #113 by Alan4discussion:

    Great. Another lengthy post that explains at length how science works…

    That was the question you asked about certainty, uncertainty, and probability.

    and doesn’t address the point. Doesn’t even attempt to address the point.

    Really!! Perhaps you should read it again and try to understand it.

    Like I am in a primary school listening to a science teacher.

    I do like to think I can still explain science at all levels.

    The teacher who encourages his students to ask creative questions, but when they do ask creative questions,

    They are referred to the scientific work which answers those questions.

    he tells them to shut up and listen to him…

    Nope! He tells them where to look for the answers that other researchers have already investigated, and possibly to repeat the observations and tests for themselves. (I take it you have personally observed the seasonal changes in day-length and the phases of the Moon.)

    the contemporary and his age old rock-solid beliefs.

    Looking at solid evidence which is already available, and which matches reality when tested, has nothing to do with “assumed inflexible beliefs”!

    Do ask creative questions, but don’t expect to get creative answers.

    You seem to be confusing “creative answers” with “whimsical made-up answers”.

    Reality is expressed in objective observable evidence on test. It is not found in “creative made-up answers”!

    (If you want “creative answers”, read “The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”!)

    Ok. I agree with you and your views, Alan.

    I would prefer it, if you agreed, because you understood the explained views, by thinking about of the observable evidence I have pointed out.

  104. In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that

    Have you ever thought of applying your own reasoning to yourself?

    ‘for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question’.

    You can say that again.

    So to paraphrase then, you make up some invented scenario which evokes ‘insanely stupid questions’, thus confirming it to be true. Religious dogma in a nutshell.

  105. In reply to #114 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #113 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    Like I am in a primary school listening to a science teacher. The teacher who encourages his students to ask creative questions, but when they do ask creative questions, he tells them to shut up and listen to him…

    6 year old: — Please Sir, How does that shadow move?

    Teacher: — Here’s a piece of chalk. Go and draw a line along the edge of the shadow from that corner of the classroom at 2 o’clock. – .. and take your friend to write the time beside the line.

    6 years olds: We’ve done that but it’s a bit wobbly.

    Teacher It’s 3 o’clock. Go and draw another line and swap jobs this time.

    6 year olds: The shadow’s moved. It’s not in the same place any more.

    (Chat about spinning Earth, the Sun and angles)

    Teacher: If it’s sunny we can look at it again tomorrow. Where do you think the shadow will be at 2 o’clock tomorrow?

    (Several days and lines later)

    Teacher: You have invented a sundial which predicts where the shadow will be (at 2 o’clock etc) each day! We could use it to tell the time if we don’t have a watch.

    the contemporary and his age old rock-solid beliefs.

    Yep! The science just keeps producing the same consistent answers.

    Do ask creative questions, but don’t expect to get creative answers.

    Nah! Making up simplistic stuff would stifle the kids’ enjoyment of exploring nature, making predictions about the future, and testing their ideas to see if the work in the real world.

  106. I love love love the arrogance of this guy, he just takes it face value that we all think his questions are “creative”.
    HAHAHAHA….

    So do unicorns eat butterflies and shit gold charcoal? Sir, your answer offends me because my most excellent of highly intellectual questions has been answered in a way that i do not like. It has been met with honesty and integrity and patience and SCIENCE! I wanted a fantastical horseshit answer to go with my horseshit question.

    It is clear that the correct answer is “Moe from the three stooges times infinite power surges”. Your science is wrong because in history we have clear cajolment of the unnecessary equitability of clear thought.

    In reply to #124 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #114 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #113 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #110 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #105 by Alan4discussion:

    Like I am in a primary school listening to a science teacher. The teacher who encourages his students to ask creative questions, but when they do ask creative quest…

  107. God’s God

    In reply to #120 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent D…

  108. In reply to #126 by Marktony:

    God’s God

    In reply to #120 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid…

    It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery and lack of reasoning when challenged. It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’.

  109. It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery and lack of reasoning when challenged. It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’.

    Mockery yes. Lack of reasoning no. I doubt you bothered to watch the video I posted – in reply to Alan4, not you by the way. If you had watched it, and understood it, you would see that it’s full of reason.

    You bleat about a perfectly reasonable video using humour (with a little mockery) to convey an important message – yet in your post you say that the OP is asking an “insanely stupid question” because you in your ‘infinite’ wisdom apparently already know that there is an Intelligent Designer and you know it’s capabilities! Grow up.

    In reply to #127 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #126 by Marktony:

    God’s God

    In reply to #120 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous….

  110. The high ground in this discussion is that there is nothing in biology that convincingly requires the operation of any intelligence. If an intelligent creator was at work in all this, he certainly went exceedingly far out of his way to conceal himself. The God of the Bible does not appear, at leat in that book, to be quite so reticent about declaring himself.

    To answer the OP: if eveyone had “made by God” stamped on his backside, that would be evidence of a divine role in creation.

  111. In reply to #127 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #126 by Marktony:

    God’s God

    In reply to #120 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    ..It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’.

    Easy.

    Without end or limit, space and time going on forever. Happy now?

    A perfectly adequate description and no mention of religion anywhere. Did you think you had a monopoly on their meaning?
    Your questions are loaded, they imply a need for a supernatural agency from the outset, the answer coming before the question, cart before the horse.

    In common with conspiracy theorists, you choose questions in the hope that they are unanswerable. Unlike science which looks for specific answers to rationally formed questions, religion tries to avoid troublesome answers by asking questions.which are vague and imprecise. These ill formed challenges are then paraded as proof of a supernatural purpose. Knowledge is not gained from NOT answering obtuse questions, it comes from answering sensible questions, a lesson yet to be learned by religiots.

  112. In reply to #127 by CumbriaSmithy:
    >

    It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery

    There is no reason to avoid ridiculing the ridiculous. – especially those who preach about “reasoning” or “logic” while demonstrating a lack of either.

    and lack of reasoning when challenged.

    Reasoning is a process of deduction, not a badge to be stuck on to incoherent semantics. For “reasoning” to have any relevance to the material universe/world it needs to start with evidence, or it is just fantasy totally detached from reality!

    It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’.

    Perhaps it is because they are well understood as being non-existent in the material universe, and lacking evidence of any existence anywhere else.
    They are words commonly bandied around by theists but usually in the context of just meaning “overawing big magic”, where they don’t actually have any meaning.
    “Infinity” is a mathematical concept.
    “Eternity” is meaningless in the context of space-time.

    An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely,

    Similarly, a non-existent designer can design non-existent designs, non-existently – at least in someone’s imagination. That similarly is a non-explanation of how it is supposed to work.
    That’s the thing about non-existence – you can stick as many grandiose adjectives on to it and it still means nothing, even if it sounds impressive to those who cannot understand the words.
    “I don’t know what it is and and don’t know what it does, or how it works” is only evidence of ignorance, regardless of if it is ignorance of omnipotent, infinite, eternal, vague, nothingness which offers no explanation or evidence of its existence.
    If you think about it, the existence of an entity composed of nothing cannot be proved, and there is nowhere in the universe where “nothing” exists!

    The universe works just fine on the laws of science without needing personified anthropomorphic designers, or any of the multitude of creation myths which assorted cultures have produced over the millennia.

  113. In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

  114. What if there are many realities, or many segments of reality, or many universes, or many segments of the universe, some perfect, others not so perfect. What if we choose to be born into this imperfect universe or reality? Perhaps we wanted to experience existence in an imperfect reality? Perhaps there needs to be imperfection in order to recognise perfection? If dark did not exist, would we recognise light? If empathy did not exist, would be recognise hatred? What if there is evidence for intelligent design but I, you, some of us, are blind to it? Perhaps some us do not have the ability to sense or comprehend some aspects of reality? Perhaps theists, religious believers, sense aspects of reality that we do not have the ability or desire to see? Perhaps we’re the deluded ones?

  115. In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    Including brain tumors in babies?

  116. In reply to #134 by Danny Hynes:

    What if there are many realities, or many segments of reality, or many universes, or many segments of the universe, some perfect, others not so perfect. What if we choose to be born into this imperfect universe or reality? Perhaps we wanted to experience existence in an imperfect reality? Perhaps t…

    Richard Dawkins gives an elegant reply to your question(s): What If You’re Wrong About the Great Juju At the Bottom of the Sea? The point being, anyone can play the “What if…?” game or the “Perhaps…” game. But it doesn’t get us very far.

    Science asks questions that are in principle answerable (and usually based on the knowledge and technology of the day), and then goes about trying to find plausible answers for them. Naval gazers, on the other hand…

  117. If this creator was omnipotent and omnicient Cumbria, I’d have expected him to have gotten it right on the first try.

    Einstein’s original instincts that the universe was static would have been correct- as it is, the ever-changing universe is in self-destruct mode- flying apart with the Andromeda Galaxy on a collision course with his pet project here in the Milky Way.

    If we were the only real reason for all this creation, why make it so damned big? If we can’t see it because it’s too far away, it serves no purpose. And if all those billions of extra galaxies do serve a purpose (failed experiments to get to us?), they shouldn’t- it is within his powers to make it all work without them. In fact, he could have gotten by with just a single self-illuminating, self-powering planet.

    No need for evolution and 99% of everything he created to go extinct- he’d have put there just exactly what he wanted and kept it. And don’t tell me he just gets bored from time to time. There’s not a thing we could do or say or a kind of different animal to create he had not already thought of. That kind of defines omniscience.

    And he would find it highly insulting you don’t at least accord him the powers of your average television genie. You think, you blink and it’s done- no mucking about for six days, needing clay to create men, no getting all tuckered out afterwards and having to take Sunday off. That pretty well denies omnipotence.

    Men have little brains and (as Sagan pointed out) created little gods. No, if there is a god Cumbria, the best you could say is that he lit the fuse and left- why stick around when you know how it all turns out? I know- maybe he’s an insomniac and instead of counting a more limited number of sheep, he numbers the ever changing hairs on all our heads.

  118. In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    You have type the opening paragraph of an argument. You have made a statement. Now you need to argue each point you assert, in the body of you answer. Argue that God is the Intelligent Designer. Incidentally, have you had your wisdom teeth out. The you need to argue that God speaks words into the bible. Followed by an argument that links your first two assertions, with your concluding assertion that nature is as it is, because of your first two statements. Examples would help your argument. And finally, you need a summary paragraph.

    So go back and do it again because I can’t pass this paper as it is currently submitted.

    Let me know about your wisdom teeth.

  119. BULLSHIT. Now say something that matters. If there was any intelligence to the design of living things, the world would be awesome. The fact that it sucks proves that your god is non existant. And further, a 3 year old boy was escorted home from disney and the hospital yesterday by 150 police cars (the procession went right past my house).

    It was a manifestation of the “make a wish foundation” because the little guy has terminal kidney cancer and two weeks to live. A THREE YEAR OLD HAS TWO WEEKS TO LIVE. This world blows and it does because we have evolved. If your god exists, he is a motherfucker and not worthy of a moment of worship. I could certainly design a world where three year olds did NOT have two weeks to live. Could you??? If YES, then, the entire statement you proffered is worthless.

    So, I can show you why cancer exists, according to evolution and molecular genetics. Show me why an intelligent designer would include it in their paradigm and use your explanation to predict events in our future or go away.

    In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

  120. Hear, hear… I wish this “intelligent” designer created the uterus less susceptible to so many varying conditions that has caused the deaths of millions – spontaneous abortions and sometimes the death of mothers. To bad the designer didn’t have the foresight in how chromosomes in trisomic form cause birth defects and many spontaneous abortions.

  121. In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    If you are to take the Xtian Bible (with all its self-contradictions and contradictions of science), literally, that makes refutation of the claim so much easier, than the claims of those who present a vague deity without tangible properties.

    Genesis is just so “Flat-Earthist” nonsense, which is utterly refuted by modern astronomy.

    as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    It is difficult to tell if this demonstrates an ignorance of nature, an ignorance of the bible, or both!

  122. In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    Well, no it wouldn’t.

    Because ‘nature’ as described in the babble was limited to a small area of the middle east more than 2000 years ago, and based on bronze age knowledge and technology, so not nature as it is seen now. The remainder of planet Earth; America N and S, Antarctica, Europe, Australia,… the deep oceans, and the millions of other animals and plants discovered since that time, the solar system, and the rest of the cosmos were bits of ‘nature’ noticeably absent from gods creation as described in the babble. The other 99.9999999999999% of ‘nature’ was added by science and reason over the last 500 years or so. Let’s just round that up to 100%.

    It is remarkable how readily some are willing to misrepresent the facts.

  123. How can one not come to the conclusion that this “designer” is of human construct? In the bible one can clearly see that this deity has all the character traits of the people of that small area during the bronze age. Not that of those in the Amazon, Australia, South Pacific Islands, etc. This alone would trigger skepticism in any youth not tainted by being indoctrinated. I’m guessing this is why missionaries went straight to the sick, dying, and mostly the youth in the colonies with the “word”.

  124. If the universe was devised by intelligent design then the claim that the maker(s) ‘move in mysterious ways’ would be a contradictory statement, an oxymoron. As there is no sign of intelligent design in the cosmos then it’s a relief to assign the putative imaginary maker(s) to the plain old category of moron.

  125. In reply to #142 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    Well, no it wouldn’t.

    Because ‘nature’ as descr…

    Hey, fair go, there are quite a few who fall outside your 500 year limit. The eponymous inventor of algebra at the Baghdad caliphate, Archimedes and Pythagorus and a few other Greeks, and the people who laid out Stonehenge for starters.

    If it had not been for the mentally constipating effect of religion, xtianity in particular, we might have moved forwards much earlier.

  126. In reply to #146 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #142 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No differences at all.

    I agree, there were some shining lights, like Pythagoras, Archimedes, and Euclid, I meant no disrespect to early philosophers and civilisations. But the OP said as ‘described in the bible’.

    500 years may be simplistic, so I did not limit it to exactly that figure, but the modern scientific era has seen knowledge about the nature of the cosmos expand by many orders of magnitude.

    If it had not been for the mentally constipating effect of religion, xtianity in particular, we might have moved forwards much earlier.

    Quite right.

    As in the Antikythera mechanism, of which you are no doubt aware.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrfMFhrgOFc

  127. There is another comment thread on RD site referring to a debate between Ken Ham and Bill Nye, where there appears to be a consensus that Bill Nye could have done better in prosecuting the rational case against (UN)intelligent Design. If anyone wants to be informed about a better case for the prosecution, one only needs to read this blog. Overwhelming evidence for evolution. Cogent. Direct. Supported by evidence. There are some ID’rs posting, but you will see that their statements do not survive analysis.

    One of my favourites to dispose of an intelligent designer is wisdom teeth. Those four extra molars so far back on our jaw that they can’t erupt without complications. Before dentistry, problems with the eruption of molar teeth must have been extremely painful, possibly for months and even longer. Death would have occurred because of impaction and infection. The inability to eat or perform hunter / gatherer / subsistence agriculture must have put the person in dire straights.

    The IDer argues that God is perfect and the design of humans is perfect and no correspondence shall be entered into. Evolution argues that the human jaw in our past protruded further than today. Just like the fossils of early hominids proves. And that those early hominids used this longer jaw with the very neat fitting wisdom teeth to grind uncooked food to get nourishment. While homo sapien’s jaw has retreated through evolution, the genes that still produce the wisdom teeth has not. The result is a short jaw with buried wisdom teeth. Since the advent of dentistry, it is no longer painful or fatal.

    Now apply Ockham’s Razor. It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected. See here if you need more on Ockham’s Razor.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occam%27s_razor

    The evolutionary theory of wisdom teeth needs no assumptions. The evidence is laid out, step by step. To propose that we have wisdom teeth as a result of intelligent design requires assumptions. The first is that there is an intelligent designer. No evidence. The second is that the intelligent designer knows what he is doing. Wisdom teeth are a fail. The third is that the intelligent design behind wisdom teeth is so obscure that rational discourse fails to find a reason, consistent with intelligent design. And on and on. Apply Ockham’s Razor and the debate is decided. I commend Ockham’s Razor to everyone for daily use.

    All the evidence you need for evolution can be found by looking in the mirror. While you’re looking, ask yourself why you have lots of dormant virus DNA mixed in with your DNA. But that’s another Never Ending Story.

  128. In reply to #147 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #146 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #142 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #133 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In answer to the original question, I would suggest that if the Intelligent Designer is God as he speaks and is as described in the Christian Bible, then nature would be exactly as it is now. No diff…

    Well, thank you, my knowledge of the Antikythera mechanism was limited to a vague awarenes that there was a marvellous gadget found in an early Greek shipwreck. I did not know its name. Wonderful what you can learn on this forum, as well as beating up on the Ken Ham’s of the world.

    Also, I had missed the OP’s biblical reference as well.

    When I look at the skill of people, like the anonymous constructor of this, or of people like Kendall, who made the first marine chronometer with accuracy sufficient for navigation, and they did it with hand tools and by candle light, even to the extent of making their base materials, I suddenly feel very humble.

  129. In reply to #148 by David R Allen:

    Before dentistry, problems with the eruption of molar teeth must have been extremely painful, possibly for months and even longer. Death would have occurred because of impaction and infection. The inability to eat or perform hunter / gatherer / subsistence agriculture must have put the person in dire straights.

    Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia, is recorded as extracting, with no anesthetic or other pain relief, her own abcessed wisdom teeth. Her courtiers and the court “Doctors” being too afraid of the consequences to them causing her any pain to do it for her. Considering her treatment of her husband, which made Henry VIII look like a nice guy, their caution may have been well founded. A tough lady, no doubt.

    But, it is possible that the issue of impacted molars may actually be a recent and negative adaption. Tasmanian aboriginals were 100% unaffected, and other races far less so than Europeans.

    Good old God, still stuffing it up after all these years. You would think he would leave well enough alone instead of laboring on to make things worse.

    Seriously though, if this a recent example of a negative mutation, it is certainly a powerful argument against the idea of intelligent design.

  130. But, it is possible that the issue of impacted molars may actually be a recent and negative adaption. Tasmanian aboriginals were 100% unaffected, and other races far less so than Europeans.

    …not to mention problems with our temporomandibular joints.

  131. Having ploughed my way through a good chunk of this thread I’ve just discovered definitive proof that we were not designed by an omniscient superbeing incapable of error. If we had been there wouldn’t be so many people around who can’t tell the bloody difference between it’s and its!

    Also I’m quite sure that if I personally had been designed by a perfect superbeing I wouldn’t get so friggin grumpy when people who are groping for the spelling of a simple three letter possessive adjective keep feeling the need to bollix it up by putting an apostrophe in it.

    There. Glad I’ve got that off my wheezy, tobacco corrupted, imperfectly designed chest 🙂

  132. In reply to #150 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #148 by David R Allen:

    But, it is possible that the issue of impacted molars may actually be a recent and negative adaption. Tasmanian aboriginals were 100% unaffected, and other races far less so than Europeans.

    Isn’t that amazing. I never knew that. And given the Australian aboriginal population separated from the rest of the world 50-70 thousand years ago, it is doubly amazing. Who needs amazing miracles when you can read amazing real life stuff like this.

  133. In reply to #152 by Arkrid Sandwich:

    If we had been there wouldn’t be so many people around who can’t tell the bloody difference between it’s and its!

    I blame Googles automatic predictive spelling, which I do not know how to turn off, and which when coupled with my typing is capable of far worse travesties of prediction than even the evangelical doomsayers.

    In reply to #153 by David R. Allen:

    And given the Australian aboriginal population separated from the rest of the world 50-70 thousand years ago, it is doubly amazing.

    A small caution on this. The Tasmanian aboriginals were separated from the mainland people by geography, when rising ocean levels flooded Bass Strait, about 30,000 years ago. While both the mainland and Tasmanian peoples share an ancestry with the modern Dravidian peoples, the long separation of the Tasmanian people made them a distinct race. Whether the Tasmanians, and others, lost the impacted molar gene, or were isolated from it when it spread, in varying degrees, through the rest of humanity is a question to which I do not know the answer.

    Which is something that the first European settlers cared nothing about when they slaughtered them, arguably the most effectively completed act of genocide, as there were virtually no survivors, since Joshua at Jericho.

    What is weird, when you start googling this, as I did, since my own knowledge was superficial at best, I found to my amazement a very comprehensive assembly of information at, of all places, “Answers in Genesis.” I cannot tell if the dental and skeletal “experts” he quotes are creationist shills, but there is not a feeling of woo in his extensive detail, and from my own limited knowledge, I could not find much wrong with it, and it supported my own knowledge and that of Wiki.

    The amazing thing is that he took this probably valid information, and by even more amazing mental and perverse logical gymnastics, turned it all into somehow “proving” that God did it.

  134. In reply to #154 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #152 by Arkrid Sandwich:

    The amazing thing is that he took this probably valid information, and by even more amazing mental and perverse logical gymnastics, turned it all into somehow “proving” that God did it.

    Big LOL. Don’t you just LOVE creationists. The mental gymnastics would win medals at the religious Olympics.

    Did you see the article on the Denisovan DNA isolated from a bone a human ancestor in Russia. Not Homo Sapien. Not Neanderthal. A different species. When they compared the Denisovan DNA with current human populations, it was spread widely, showing that Homo Sapien interbred with this species. The high current human population with 3% – 5% Denisovan DNA were Papua New Guinea highlanders and Australian Aborigines. The Australian Aborigines are an amazing people. The oldest continuous civilization on the planet.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denisovan

  135. In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    You wouldn’t have the mosquito. God clearly hasn’t tried to sleep on a hot night with a mosquito buzzing endless just near your ear. I try to the sleep with the sheet pulled over me but its too hot. I hope that the mosquito will bite my wife, fill up with blood and go away, but sadly, I am one of…

    Good points. Actually I read somewhere that malaria is single biggest cause of death in humans in history. Even today a thousand children a day breath their last while the parasites perform a horrendous chain reaction in their blood causing each cell to explode and produce more parasites. This was designed? If so like all nasty diseases small pox,TB, various parasites, CJD, polio and so on, its hard to see it as the work of a loving being.
    If deists argue that these are the works of the devil; isn’t God supposed to be all knowing and all powerful? So he must have been aware of what was cooking up in the Devils lab and decided not to do anything about it – either way he is responsible.

  136. Why would an Intelligent Designer create an infanticidal baby barely old enough to be conscious of its murderous ways? Tough question to answer, unless, that is, you replace the Intelligent Designer with a Blind watchmaker — Evolution. Pace the Cuckoo’s Tale.*

    A longer lecture on the same phenomena is on the New College of the Humanities website.

  137. Forgive the crudeness, but I wouldn’t need to kill other living things for food or need to shit and piss.

  138. I do not hold with Intelligent Design, which is a preposterous importation of a god into a system that requires no such hypothesis.

    But most of the arguments here appear to assume that such a god would be both benevolent and efficient. There is no reason to assume that. So the existence of the human appendix and tumors in the brains of babies, while it demonstrates that any possible intelligent designer is neither efficient nor benevolent, does not in itself refute intelligent design.

  139. In reply to #155 by David R Allen:

    Did you see the article on the Denisovan DNA isolated from a bone a human ancestor in Russia. Not Homo Sapien. Not Neanderthal. A different species.

    I will admit to just skimming it. I will look further, fascinating stuff.

    I share your high regard for the Australian aboriginal people. Confirmed radio Carboned charcoal at 45,000 years (Lake Mungo) and possible, at 60,000, although it cannot be confirmed as a campsite.

    Either way, they have been there a long time, and in the hottest, driest, (for the most part) continent in the world, they never carried water. There are no pots. There is a wide variety of brilliantly designed and beautifully made artifacts from boomerangs to fishing spears to woomeras, but nothing to carry water. They knew where to find it, and how to move to do it.

    When a culture does not change for 45,000 years, it is because there is no pressure on it to change. I have often in the bush stopped, and thought “How?” To strip naked, including your shoes, and walk into the Australian bush, and earn your living, is for a European an impossibility. Their is certainly no reason to look down, in our normal patronising way, on these people, despite what has happened to them under our stewardship.

  140. In reply to #149 by Sheepdog:

    When I look at the skill of people, like the anonymous constructor of this,

    More about the Antikythera mechanism here.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KO4-zx9buc

    This documentary provides some more information about its discovery and who may have made it. Archimedes may be a likely candidate.

  141. If humans were Intelligently Designed they ought to include a capacity for adaptation and evolutionary change.

  142. In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent Designer is capable of designing and…

    I long to have a furry feline friend. Meow. But alas, my severe allergy to cats have left me with the inability to become the cat lady I so desire to become. Where’s the love? Where’s the love? Such a cruel joke nature has played on me. Why oh why should I suffer such a cruel fate? This is proof enough that there is no God. ;D

  143. In reply to #115 by CumbriaSmithy:

    … it depends how intelligent the Designer is. An infinitely intelligent Designer can and will design infinitely, so for us to pretend we know how He might do it is quite ridiculous. In fact it’s an insanely stupid question once you realise that the Intelligent Designer is capable of designing and driving Natural Selection.

    Where did you get this view? What part of it is supported by the Bible? Genesis certainly does not support the view of Natural Selection. In fact, Genesis states that we are living under a big dome – like a giant snowglobe. Check out wikipedia’s definition. You’re response might be that you do not take the Bible literally. OK, if that is your view, where do you get your views? Who told you that this is so? Church? Your parents? You’re response to this might be – Look at the beautiful, incredible world around us. Ok, but you are coming from the point of view that God exists and are making the leap that a Creator must be the only explanation. You started with the view that there must be a God and are now assuming that everything was a result of this Designer’s plan. The problem is that when we look at the results, there are lots of flaws. Review this topic and you will see lots of design problems that could have been solved with intelligence.

  144. Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out. Everything was rosy in the garden – say, just like the Garden of Eden (whether you believe in it or not) – life was perfect in all respects – painless, eternal, and with plentiful food (assuming we would need food of course) … but the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain? Would we have the ability to complain? Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed there would be no reason to complain. I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us – something of which we are not yet fully aware – but which is promised in the Bible to all those who dare to exercise a little faith and believe.

  145. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out. Everything was rosy in the garden – say, just like the Garden of Eden (whether you believe in it or not) – life was perfect in all respects – painless, eternal, and with…

    I have no idea what you are trying to prove. Maybe if I paraphrase to simplify the thought process. Instead, Lets suppose we lived in a room with no windows, and we had always been there, and it had all been painted purple by the painter, floors, walls, and ceiling. And he forgot to paint anything red, but there was a book he left in the corner that said that another colour called red existed, and despite there being absolutely no reason at all, we should just believe it.

    I’m, sorry, that can’t be what you meant. That really does sound too childish to be taken seriously, other than by a child, which is what worries me.

  146. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us – something of which we are not yet fully aware – but which is promised in the Bible to all those who dare to exercise a little faith and believe.

    Like Colonel Saunders secret herbs and spices.

    A bit like Luke Skywalker, the Force is strong in you. It will be impossible to reason with you, but that has never stopped me yet. Did you read the link to Ockham’s Razor above. If not, I commend it to you. William of Ockham was a Catholic monk strong in his religion, so he’s from your team.

    For you assertion above to be true, requires assumptions. They myriad and diverse. A couple are.. You attribution to the Intelligent Design, a nastiness, a cunning that he will deliberately make an imperfect world with painful consequences for his chosen species. And the morality of this is what??

    You, like so many of the faithful perform the mental gymnastics of “Selective Reading” of the bible. You quote furiously from the passages that endorse your view, but treat the rest of the bible like that repulsive drunk uncle that every family has. I expect you have sold your daughters into slavery as the bible states. The assumption that the bible is anything other that the collective verbal history of a previously illiterate minor tribe in the middle east is not supported by evidence. There is no evidence of any Jewish slaves in Egypt and this from a time when Egypt was writing everything down.

    You assume that the Intelligent Designer is a petty deity that plays favourites with species. Not just the species on earth, but the billions of species of animated life that are likely to inhabit a 13.7 billion year old universe. Sorry, Smithy, God’s busy at the moment running a universe, and you, are just another animal. Nothing special.

    Lots more assumptions but you get the point. Back to Ockham’s Razor, one of the most potent theorems in science and rational thinking. (And all this from a christian) It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected. Evolution requires no assumptions. It is a rigorous scientific explanation for the observed world. Your explanation requires endless assumptions, which in turn generate the need for more underlying assumptions right back to the big bang.

    If you want to live by the bible, do so, but it is personal to you and you alone. Not your children. Not your wife. Just you. Because if you force or coerce someone to do things that your personal god requires of you, you have committed an immoral act. Religion should be practiced by consenting adults in private.

    But like I said above. All I have written is a waste of time, because Smithy’s mind is locked tight and Madam Reason is barred from entry.

  147. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us – something of which we are not yet fully aware – but which is promised in the Bible to all those who dare to exercise a little faith and believe.

    It’s not what is missing from ID (even if most of the science is missing, and the attempts at history are rubbish).
    It’s the inclusion of the geocentric, central, flattering, self-centred, egotistical notion, that the humans and the Earth in the tiny area and short time they have existed are the central feature of the universe, which is so blatantly ridiculous.

    It is a beautiful illustration of the god-delusion dominating believers’ minds with inflated images of self-importance and blinding them to the scale and wonders of nature, which are derived from empirical observation and modern scientific investigations, not bronze-age mythology!

  148. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’.

    I am frankly bemused that you return with ‘here’s a challenge’ having already made so many daft statements and not bothered to read the clarifications provided for you. That is just rude and dismissive of you isn’t it, when you just talk, and others who take trouble to explain are ignored. I would expect more from a ‘moral’ religious person like yourself. And now we have another ‘challenge’. Well to be precise, more creationist drivel designed as a provocation to reason dressed up as a polite enquiry and desiring no real answers.

    Let’s pretend ‘He’

    NO! lets not bother. You ‘pretend’ like a big kid if you want. Just listen to yourself, ‘pretend’ about a fictitious being and speculate about it building a universe. What kind of idiotic challenge is that?

    I think what is lacking in your thought process is that the mere uttering of words doesn’t necessarily give them credence. Nonsense words are without meaning, they are gibberish and expose ignorance. For you to call this a ‘challenge’ is to talk up your own importance.

    Christian I D is a dead duck, in truth it never lived. The only remarkable thing is that there are still so many uneducated people that buy it.

    A ‘challenge’ based on fatuous rubbish is a nonsense, so hardly a challenge.

    You need to prove your own delusions, asking others to do this for you is rude and shows tardiness on your part. I suggest you get off your rrrrs and do it yourself.

    My correction of your previous idiotic remark is at #142. Which I assume you ignored.

  149. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’.

    I do love a challenge. I assume that when you say I.D. you’re discussing Intelligent Design – the hypothesis that the Universe that we observe is the creation of a designer or designers?

    Let’s pretend …

    No, let’s not. ‘Let’s pretend’ is a game for the Children’s table, this is the Adult table.

    [Assuming] … [the designers] had designed everything perfectly [in our World], but left one thing out.

    Well is it a perfect design, or not? You appear to be saying not. I can go along with that.

    Everything was rosy in the garden – say, just like the Garden of Eden (whether you believe in it or not) – life was perfect in all respects – painless, eternal, and with plentiful food (assuming we would need food of course) … but the designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain?

    Your preamble is not very clear, you appear to posit a case of either:

    (a) something which might exist, and that we do not have, but which we perceive might be possible or

    (b) something which might exist, and that we do not have, and which we cannot perceive might be possible?

    Would we have the ability to complain?

    (a) Yes. But we know that it’s an imperfect World so we either live with it, or invent a substitute (e.g. our current World did not come fitted with bridges – so we built our own)

    (b) Yes. Obviously we wouldn’t complain about a thing that wasn’t conceivable – but within the context of a life that could be better with something similar to the missing thing, we would complain that something appeared to be missing. So for missing endorphins we would use, perhaps, more opiates. This is, of course, exactly what many people who feel a shortage of endorphins actually do – suggesting that your Imperfect Real World hypothesis is correct

    Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed …

    That may be true, but do not be so dismissive of humanity: We dream. We discover. We invent. We conceive ambitions. We set projects in motion. We achieve new paradigms.

    Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed … there would be no reason to complain.

    I complain all the time about things which I think ought to exist but don’t (like justice and free speech), even though there are no designers. Imagine how much more I would complain if there were!

    I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us …

    If I understood you correctly, you’re saying: Since we wouldn’t be aware of something non-existent in a designed World this must mean that (if our World were designed) the designers must be being deliberately deceitful? I don’t see that? If it were something missing and needed or wanted, then the designers would be being deliberately cruel. If it was missing, and was not essential, then it might be annoying but why do I care? I can work around it.

    … something of which we are not yet fully aware …

    In case (a) Why do I care? I can conceive of a bridge over the ravine. I build one. I would, of course, complain to the designers (assuming a channel were open) about the extra work. This is the realm of science and technology: We investigate, we complain, we conquer.

    In case (b) Why would I even think about it? If I don’t know that the missing it can exist I don’t think about it. If I can perceive a lack, and conceive a way to address that lack, I have moved from Case (b) to Case (a) and I’m back to: Why do I care?

    … something [held] back from us – but which is promised in [a book] …

    Ah well, a holy scripture in our hypothetical World is of course another item of evidence that the World we are discussing is very far from perfect – and even less likely to be designed. The Real World is so imperfect that it has several holy scriptures to choose from. Why does the Bhagavad Gita not contain the many fundamental, nuanced, impenetrable things about which I do not know?

    … something [held] back from us – but which is promised to all those who dare to [have] … faith …

    I couldn’t help reading this line in the same way that you started your question, CumbriaSmithy: “ … something [held] back from us – but which is promised to all those who dare to pretend to know things they don’t know.”

    Back to the Children’s table then …

    Taking all the above together, your basic argument for a Designed World appears to be: It’s designed but – counter-intuitively – it has been designed faulty and incomplete. In addition there are things we don’t know, because they are deliberately hidden from us by the designers for no reason that you explain. We cannot complain about the ‘missing’ information, and we shouldn’t complain about this, even human-to-human, because there is no reason to complain about the World being less than ideal (even though, by complaining, we define the reasons why the World is less than perfect and therefore when we do complain we set the wheels of improvement in motion). Human flourishing in the face of this absence of (supposedly missing, but not proven to be missing) information is of no consequence. The ‘missing’ information is suggested, but not fully explained, in one of several historical contenders as the possible source of this information. In order to know the things we cannot know we simply have to pick the most outlandish, improbable, false where it discusses real things we can verify (like camels), contender from the list of hundreds of similar text products of the imperfect World and this will give us a licence to pretend to know things we don’t know.

    That’s an argument for a designed World?

    I don’t get it.

    But my position is much worse than that. Even if I grant you a designed world, and designers who design obviously imperfect worlds, and keep information to themselves, and a holy book that’s an improbable vector of some kind to the hidden designers – even if I give you all that: Why do I need to pretend to know things I don’t know?

    Peace.

  150. There have already been many responses to your myopic postings, but the notion you propose is especially preposterous so let me throw a glove in here…

    Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out. Everything was rosy in the garden – say, just like the Garden of Eden (whether you believe in it or not) – life was perfect in all respects – painless, eternal, and with plentiful food (assuming we would need food of course) … but the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain? Would we have the ability to complain? Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed there would be no reason to complain. I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us – something of which we are not yet fully aware – but which is promised in the Bible to all those who dare to exercise a little faith and believe.

    Very glad you at least start this with let’s pretend, which is the only reason I bothered to read and respond. But let’s start at the basics…

    If a given ID created everything perfectly but left one thing out, then he hasn’t created everything perfectly. Simple as that. It’s bad enough that the notion of perfection itself is very nebulous and impossible to attain (as everyone perceives perfection differently and perfection itself is merely an ideal as opposed to an attainable goal) But in all honesty what would it matter whether we ‘complained’ or not?

    Your supposition of an ID is a massive presumption about something you clearly have zero evidence to back up and no reason why any non believer would take seriously. What if the ID created us with blue skin? What if he created us with a prehensile tail and smelling of brimstone? Our lack of understanding the intent of a theoretical ID doesn’t make the actual idea of an ID any more viable or even faintly logical. It just means this is your unsubstantiated position and you somehow wish for us to take it seriously with no reason to do so.

    The only reason you even support this vacuous idea is because of your belief. I could make a multitude of erroneous claims featuring many different gods from many different cultures. Hell, I could make identical claims to yours with any number of different gods posing as said ID. But to take a single claim seriously I would need to believe that any part of it is either supportable or logical. And very, very often religious beliefs are neither. They are most often the perspective of someone who is not critically examining the beliefs they purport and therefore most often draw erroneous conclusions about things they only assume to be right due to faith.

    Now please, before posting again could you give us a reason to take any of this seriously? Or would you simply like to admit that these are simply unprovable claims you cannot support but still choose to believe? Which by the way essentially defines what this whole post is; an exercise in your faith rather than a logical discussion on the existence of an intelligent designer.

  151. In reply to #127 by CumbriaSmithy:

    It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery and lack of reasoning when challenged. It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’.

    The following are all taken from your previous posts:

    Let’s pretend…. Designer never bothered to invent endorphins……exercise a little faith and believe….their beliefs succeeded in removing the superstitious witchcraft…thereby creating a more stable society……

    Individually, these have been answered, and well, but another kick at the can can’t hurt. Starting at the beginning:

    Let’s pretend. No, let’s not pretend. I am fed up to my back teeth with religious pretense. “Oh, if only it were true! Let’s pretend it’s true, we’ll feel so much better.”

    Designer never invented etc. Well if he didn’t, who did?

    Exercise a little faith etc. No, it needs a lot of faith, a staggering amount of faith, an amount of faith that beggars belief, to get past the solid wall of fact that flies in the face of it.

    Their beliefs succeeded etc. Please explain the benefit in replacing one form of superstition with another, especially since:

    Thereby creating a more stable etc. African cultures and civilizations were enormously more stable before the influence of xtianity than after it, and had been so for several thousands of years. This lie is particularly egregious and not to be dismissed with a flip “some good, some bad” toss off. There was very little “good,” and a huge amount of “bad.”

    The reason that your points are ridiculed, simply put, is that they are ridiculous. They are ridiculous because they comprise 100% subjective deconstruction and illogical and erroneous misuse of some factual data to fit and attempt to support a predetermined and dogmatic point of view. This is not reasonable, nor is it rational.

    I presume that in putting your case for ID you are not so much asking for information that may assist you on your own intellectual journey, but are rather trying to influence others here to your own way of thinking. Well, I may be able to give you some encouragement. My point of view can be changed, and it is not that hard to do. All I need is one, that’s enough, incontrovertible piece of evidence. The old “Rabbit fossils in the pre-Cambrian” standard half joke would do it, as would God himself appearing on the steps of Sydney town hall, flanked by the angels to announce that the policies of the Abbott government in Australia were not all that bad. You could even leave the angels out of it, God by himself would do it. Heck, just appearing would do it, he would not even have to like Tony Abbott. But it would have to be God himself, not just Cardinal George Pell.

    In fact my point of view has been changed recently, on this forum, as could be yours, if you read what people are taking the time to tell you, and open your mind. Religion to me while growing up was always a non event. What other people did on Sunday morning was their business, I spent my weekends sailing on Sydney Harbour, and I never bothered God and he never bothered me.

    But since reading here, and elsewhere, internet, and books, including for the first time in my life, religious works of literature and opinion, and despite having high regard for the architecture and music created in its name, I have come to understand religion, all religions, for what they are, the last dying gasps of power structures that were attuned to the pressures and superstitions of emerging agricultural societies. They have as much relevance for our era of knowledge and mental exploration as a fish has for a bicycle.

    Worse, they are the declared path, declared by such worthies as Martin Luther and Mohamed, back to ignorance, to the undoing of all the brilliant work of people like Galileo and Newton, and Darwin, against all of whom the church has railed mightily. Back to a world of plague, slavery, and starvation.

    Yes, my opinion has changed. I no longer see religion as a harmless anachronism, but rather as a pernicious and dangerous evil from which I will do everything in my small power to protect my children and my grandchildren.

  152. Intelligent Design should make the being intelligent enough to see through the intelligent design. It won’t be even a design let alone an intelligent one for me, if some unknown being from above uses magic to spring things up. Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose, along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement. improvement which is not only aimed at survival but quality of existence, I know I am talking from a human perspective, which uses quality from its own context, but nature does succeed in making an intelligent being, so it should be inherently intelligent, otherwise my own intelligence is void, what is my own reason then..is there reason then in the sense we assume? When we think, there is an underlying assumption that our thinking transcends the world..If we consider nature fully blind, this assumption with us being evolved from nature gets nullified. In other words using legs called reason I shoot my own legs. So I must believe in intelligent design as a necessity. The terms like purpose, value, reason should be already present in nature for them to come out otherwise we and our whole being is reduced to nothing. But this design is not like creationists declare. It is planned design which will work step by step to achieve them. As far as “ism” are concerned then such kind of thinking leads us to two main ones “Deism” and “Panentheism” I choose later because it takes me closer to God, God I can feel, God whom I can thank better than the theists. God who constantly works for betterment of the world, who reveals himself. whom I may know through his gifts which are infront of myself and inside my contemplation, God who made knowledge and created an urge us to seek it, to better ourselves through better understanding, God for whom just morality isn’t important but all the gifts he gave have the own value, God whose promise of Heaven will be fulfilled through us truly working for it and making it. Not a rigid God of theology, but our own God of science, who doesn’t elude us, but welcomes us towards HIm, And this God did create us in its own image, for nature is self bettering like us. This is a God of Eternal Ascent rather than static God of theism. Heaven presented by theists deserves to be disowned. What Heaven where rest is order of day, our world is better place than that, Here we work hard for our endeavors and see them come true. What bigger joy than this game of desires! What better than a God who is with me than being far fetched unimaginable!

  153. In reply to #175 by fshamas5:

    Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose, along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement. improvement which is not only aimed at survival but quality of existence…..

    Did anyone else hear the error buzzer going off here? Read no further, fshamas5 has no idea how natural selection works.

  154. If a watch, being so intricate and well engineered, must have been designed, why did the creator of everything not make one, or something similar, himself. After all he knocked up a universe in 6 days. What about a couple of gear wheels with teeth, some cogs? Nope, not even that. This contradicts the I D argument that something that looks designed had a designer, wouldn’t we expect to see wheels and watches and the like in nature everywhere. After all we know how useful they can be.

    The argument is, the eye looks designed so it must have a designer. I think a modern camera lens looks designed, but not a human eye which, marvel though it is, looks an evolutionary mess, with its blind spot, limited bandwidth, limited sensitivity, and susceptibility to degeneration with age.

    Where are my glasses.

  155. In reply to #176 by stuhillman:

    In reply to #175 by fshamas5:

    Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose, along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement. improvement which is not only aimed at survival but quality of existence…..

    Did anyone else hear the error buzzer going off her…
    M y point here does not concern science of it here. I am not questiining the process here but the reality of it. Why does natural selection have to be such a process which creates complexity and supports better features. Why can’t a process allow negative features. Why does reality have to create me? My question is not scientifuc here. I am aware how natural selection works. But why? I look at end reality with an eye of wonder. And we should. For its a wonder that we are here out of all possibilities. It is not perfect. We dont even know what perfection means. But we are not in s choas. We are surrounded by laws which we can discern. Egerything that we feel is already present in nature

  156. In reply to #173 by Sheepdog:

    In reply to #127 by CumbriaSmithy:

    It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery and lack of reasoning when challenged. It’s as if it’s unable – or perhaps even refuses – to understand the words ‘eternal’ and ‘infinity’ … Let’s pretend … the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins …

    Taking my ‘let’s pretend’ scenario a little too literally, perhaps, Sheepdog?

    Several points to make in response:

    1. “Let’s pretend” – the original question demands we use our imagination, so since it’s already allowed here, I have to assume I can do the same.

    2. “Designer never invented” – you took that out of context. Don’t forget I was describing an imaginary, hypothetical situation.

    3. “Exercise a little faith” – I presume you exercise a little faith (in fact it requires a vast amount) in the supposition that the laws of quantum physics wrote themselves before the beginning of time; and I would suggest this is the only alternative to I.D.

    4. “African cultures, etc.” – I don’t know where you get the idea from that African tribalism (and that of many other countries, including our own at various times through history) was a stable society. It’s very well documented that prior to the arrival of missionaries many tribes were continually at war, in ‘tit for tat’ incursions into each other’s territory, constantly fighting over land and resources and indulging in horrendous forms of witchcraft (which, since the loss of Christian influence, is again emerging in some places) which were cruel to the extreme.

    5. “All I need is one, that’s enough, incontrovertible piece of evidence…” – ah, you mean you want proof? Sorry, the evidence you have is all around you and within the historical document comprising Christian Bible which, as you are very keen to point out, remains to open to disbelief, even though it describes the appearance of God to numerous people in the way you have just demanded (and complete with angels!) so graphically. If you provide me with similar ‘incontrovertible evidence’ (proof) that the laws of physics wrote themselves I’ll consider abandoning I.D.

    6. “…you are not so much asking for information that may assist you on your own intellectual journey…” – I don’t see any sign of that in your comment either, so are we religiots governed by different rules?

    7. “I have come to understand religion…” – Great, but you seem to have forgotten about its numerous benefits. Haven’t you noticed those? Are you sure you really understand religion?

  157. Surely it would be an oxymoron to claim that nature would be different (from what it is now) if I.D. was a fact?

  158. In reply to #175 by fshamas5:
    >

    Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose,

    Nope! It just follows the laws of physics without objectives.

    along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement.

    Natural Selection works on competitiveness and survival of genes. It requires neither complexity nor improvement, although these MAY benefit competitive survival – or lead to extinction.
    The vast majority of organisms on Earth are still bacteria and viruses, while large complex organisms high in the food chains, are usually the at the top of the extinction list.

    improvement which is not only aimed at survival but quality of existence,

  159. In reply to #176 by stuhillman:

    In reply to #175 by fshamas5:

    Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose, along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement. improvement which is not only aimed at survival but quality of existence…..

    Did anyone else hear the error buzzer going off her…

    Surely you have never even considered the world with an eye of wonder. It requires that eye to recognize anything. Let start with a simple argument: I say I love God or Reality and am thankful to it, because the world around me is beautiful and balanced. The counter argument to this usually is that beauty is a perspective. Were the reality any uglier we would still call it beautiful. If looked like monkeys, we would still find our faces beautiful than other. I find the counter argument good but it should not generalize. Chaos still remains chaos, no matter what you say. In fact reality becomes more beautiful to me, the way it is balanced. I am not arguing against natural selection but what I am arguing against is accident thesis which science can’t handle. Why are laws that way? What if some conditions weren’t there? I am least concerned about the process here, but its end result. A being like man, who can discern the laws and improve the reality around him. Why are there laws anyways? I am not concerned about how and why intelligence came into being. But I draw wonder about it. I look at the whole picture rather than a piece of it. And it is you who shall sound a fantasist who supposes that this whole picture of Reality is out of an accident. Not Reality is not a mere accident. It was carefully planned that I be here. How? You know. Why? I ask through my being. Through an end I seek an answer. We should not consider our worldview the last. Once theists committed this mistake, and kept adding upon it. Now we are committing the same. I don’t believe in magical worlds, but I do believe in hidden worlds. After all we have only 5 senses. There might be different world out there beyond our five senses, our current worldview. How many knew e.m waves before they were discovered, Our detectors of e.m. waves today have become sixth senses for us. We will keep discovering things.

  160. In reply to #181 by Alan4discussion:

    Natural Selection works on competitiveness and survival of genes.

    Yes, it’s brilliant. Thank God for Natural Selection!

  161. In reply to #181 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #175 by fshamas5:

    Nature works carefully and constantly, with a purpose,

    Nope! It just follows the laws of physics without objectives.

    along the path of not only increasing complexity but along the path of improvement.

    Natural Selection works on competitiveness and survival of genes…

    Again I am not considered about the process, but I am dealing with the whole picture here. “Survival” is always used a phrase. But we don’t question the whole process which does produce better organisms and culminates in a human who can discern this process. Call this an argument against theistic ally perceived I.D, I say it is too unfair to other organisms in giving human all the great traits. Two hands, standing tall, language, understanding and above all an unsatisfying urge to know, urge to better reality which comes from our accentuated level of self consciousness. We are ourselves nature at work, continuously imagining our thoughts and selecting them.

    Wonder comes with the realization of how much nature has striven for a human like me. We are living in a special if not perfect world, and we should acknowledge that.

  162. In reply to #179 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Sorry, the evidence you have is all around you and within the historical document comprising Christian Bible which,

    Perhaps you should study the history of the origins of the Xtian bible and the Jewish Torah. They are books of folk-mythology, NOT history. Apart from being self-contradictory, they are also contradicted by better validated historical records of those times.

    as you are very keen to point out, remains to open to disbelief,

    Often on the very good grounds that the OT was copied from earlier Babylonian and Sumerian myths, and the most of the NT is not supported carefully kept Roman records.

    even though it describes the appearance of God to numerous people in the way you have just demanded (and complete with angels!) so graphically.

    So fables in story-books make magical claims of gods, angels, fairies, wizards etc. Nothing new there!

    Aesop wrote some great fables, but they don’t prove that animals speak human languages!

    Creation myths are 10 a penny! Creation myth – From Wikipedia. It’s just that tthe followers claims theirs is the true on and all the others are false, – but as there is no evidence for any of them and the is evidence in scientific explanations, atheists take the scientific evidence up the boundary with the unknown. There are of course plenty of easily identified flaws in most creation myths.

    The myths are essentially the handed-down pretence by believers of having explanations, either where none exist, or where they have not bothered to study the subject. “God-did-it-by-magic”, is the universal pretend answer of the ignorant.

    If you provide me with similar ‘incontrovertible evidence’ (proof) that the laws of physics wrote themselves I’ll consider abandoning I.D.

    The accounts in the Xtian Bible, have nothing to do with the laws of physics. Most of the biblical claims are refuted by the laws of physics (and by historical records).
    You can’t have it both theist and deist ways!

  163. In reply to #185 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #179 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Perhaps you should study the history of the origins of the Xtian bible and the Jewish Torah. They are books of folk-mythology, NOT history. Apar…

    Hi Alan, yes, you’ve just confirmed, as I stated, that the Christian Bible is open to disbelief. It’s also open to belief, and you don’t need to look very far for the evidence of its historicity, veracity, credibility, etc. There are schools in both camps and where you look for your data depends on your worldview. If the Bible was not open to disbelief we would not be free creatures.

  164. One of my objections about theistic I.D. is that intelligent designed should make his presence obvious enough, or should at least give us enough intelligence to discern his intelligence. It would be much nice if God could contact us directly. The whole theistic process seems to unfair to me..People seem to be created to burn..

  165. In reply to #179 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #173 by Sheepdog:

    It’s remarkable how a community which demands rationality and reason (of the believing community) quickly resorts to mockery and lack of reasoning when challenged.

    “Let’s pretend” – the original question demands we use our imagination, so since it’s already allowed here, I have to assume I can do the same.

    Oh dear me. Do you know how devoid of sense this remark makes you sound. Your assumption being anyone is allowed to speculate ‘pretend’ as you put it, about the nature of things. Well of course we are all allowed to pretend, but so what. Who gives a flying f… about what someone else believes. There are 7 billion personal beliefs in the world, so who cares about your particular view. And just to REMIND you again, science is NOT a personal belief, so not based on ‘pretence’ and speculation like yours. You need to LOOK at this issue because you are BLIND to it at the moment.

    Please stop preaching the babble at us. There’s a bit in LOTR I find really profound, which I would like to preach to the rest of the world, etc……….. Yes, thank you, now go away…..

    The point you so obviously miss is that science doesn’t ‘pretend’ it looks for and has found evidence of a massive, extremely ancient, expanding (red shift), universe, made of fundamental particles (wave functions) obeying already well understood principles. None of which bears any resemblance to the fairy story that you believe in. As you say it depends where you look, the right place as in science journals, or the wrong place as in religious fairy tales.

    If you are trying to claim that the babble explains the universe ‘nature’, as now explained by modern science, why does your silly book not contain ONE WORD about these now well understood characteristics. Just a load of ancient gossip, talking snakes, and the sun standing still to make the day longer. An easy mistake to make if the writer is an uneducated con artist trying it on with their flock of sheep.

    Show just one example in the babble that directly confirms what modern science now tells us about the nature of things. Why did we have to wait 2000 years for science to address these fundamental questions and provide the answers. Well, because the babble told us nothing that’s why. It did though, con lots of people. A moral tale in itself. Thou shalt not be a dullard.

    I think you need to get it straight, you ain’t gonna convert anyone here. So unless you plan on ‘losing your religion’ I would save your preachings for the more gullible in society.

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  167. In reply to #186 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #185 by Alan4discussion:

    Perhaps you should study the history of the origins of the Xtian bible and the Jewish Torah. They are books of folk-mythology, NOT history.

    Hi Alan, yes, you’ve just confirmed, as I stated, that the Christian Bible is open to disbelief.

    So is everything else in the world.

    The skill is in being able to investigate whether there is any evidence or factual basis for beliefs, or if they are just made-up stories or guesses.

    It’s also open to belief, and you don’t need to look very far for the evidence of its historicity, veracity, credibility, etc.

    That is the problem with Biblical believers. They usually have never looked further than their one version of their book.

    Those who look further find all sorts of errors, conflicting claims, and records, along with the absence of independent records of supposed monumental events. When objective searches are made for this “evidence of its historicity”, the discovery is made that there isn’t any from the time of events!

    For example there is no independent record of anyone by the name of “Jesus” actually existing, although it was a common name, and the whole area was over-run with itinerant preachers. There are no documents written within decades or centuries of supposed NT events, but there are conflicting gospels which were rejected by Constantine’s Roman church in 325AD.

    Gospel of Peter

    http://www.nationalgeographic.com/lostgospel/index.html

    http://gnosis.org/library/marygosp.htm

    There are schools in both camps and where you look for your data depends on your worldview.

    The false dichotomy of “two world views” is just a projection of a believer’s “mine and the other-one” limited perspective. Roman historians, archaeologists, scientists dating documents, relics etc are looking for an accurate view., which is, or should be, unbiased by biblical unevidenced beliefs based on the selected gospels of the 4th century Roman church and the imaginative translators and relic manufacturers who lived in the following centuries.

    If the Bible was not open to disbelief we would not be free creatures.

    Many Biblical / Quoranic literalists aren’t free. They are mentally blinkered and cannot look at the wealth of evidence beyond their book.

    If Harry Potter was not open to disbelief we would not be free thinkers! Hardly a point of note!

    @183 – Yes, it’s brilliant. Thank God for Natural Selection!

    As I said @185 You can’t have it both theist and deist ways, with laws of physics, and Biblical accounts which contradict them.

    If you want to postulate a vague creator at the beginning of the Big-bang, I can show that is unlikely, but I can’t disprove it.

    If you claim the Bible is a true account of history, (or reality) that is easily refuted by evidence along with the absence of evidence where we would expect to find some.

  168. In reply to #184 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #181 by Alan4discussion:
    Again I am not considered about the process, but I am dealing with the whole picture here. “Survival” is always used a phrase. But we don’t question the whole process which does produce better organisms and culminates in a human who can discern this process.

    It is a theist myth that evolution has a purpose or exists to produce humans. Evolution works by gene replication with mutant variations and Natural Selection of traits benefical to the survival and reproduction of the genes (or copies of the genes) in individual organisms.

    Call this an argument against theistic ally perceived I.D, I say it is too unfair to other organisms in giving human all the great traits.

    Nature is not interested in “fairness”! Nor is there evidence that other organisms do not have traits just as beneficial to their survival.

    Two hands, standing tall, language, understanding and above all an unsatisfying urge to know, urge to better reality which comes from our accentuated level of self consciousness.

    A big brain has benefits, but also has fuelling costs. Evolution has yet to determine if we survive long term as a result of these features.

    At present many people seem to be using their brains to find ways to destroy our planetary life-support systems in exchange for personal luxury.

    We are ourselves nature at work, continuously imagining our thoughts and selecting them.

    True, .. but only one of millions of organisms.

    Wonder comes with the realization

    Wonder is an emotional response to perceptions of big issues.

    of how much nature has striven for a human like me.

    Nature does not strive towards any objectives. It just follows the laws of physics, and what turns up, turns up!

    We are living in a special if not perfect world, and we should acknowledge that.

    Perfection is a mental delusion involving personal objectives and purposes. The evidence says nature does not care about our purposes and objectives. Those are our own responsibilities.

    The Earth is however the only planet of its type anywhere near here, so perhaps we should take better care of it, if we want it to continue to support us.

  169. In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #184 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #181 by Alan4discussion:
    Again I am not considered about the process, but I am dealing with the whole picture here. “Survival” is always used a phrase. But we don’t question the whole process which does produce better organisms and culminates in a human wh…

    Again, let me remind you I am not talking science but metaphysics here. I am if you could say filling the holes here with my imagination, Why is the universe the way it is? Why is the natural selection the way it is? Why are laws that precise to bring up a human who could discern these laws? Science has few known answers, one is a multi-verse theory. But I call it merely playing upon infinity. Infinity in itself has so many possibilities that it is not beyond our imagination, but beyond anything. Using infinity, we can speculate anything. But what I question is the existence of reason. Why should reason come up and is it real? Is our thinking real? If you call thinking just a process set by evolution, then are you not in a way limiting it yourself. It is the great Darwinian doubt. “What certainty could we have in our monkey minds?” My question is: Is Reason Universal? Do there even exist Universals? I thought truth once to be a Universal, but seems like it was also a human notion.

  170. In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Again, let me remind you I am not talking science but metaphysics here.

    You mean not-physics then, so we are talking magic crystals, and tarot cards.
    In this arena, of absolutely no consequence to anyone but yourself.

    Science has few known answers,

    So you will be turning off your computer and donating it to someone who respects the technology that provided it, and then turn off the electricity powering all the other things in your home. If we took away everything science has brought you, you would be in a dark cave somewhere. A dismissive remark like this about science is clear indication of how biased against reality you are.

    Science provides millions of ‘answers’ in the modern world. It also shows us how the universe is and what sort of stuff makes it up. Not everything about the universe is understood, but your persistently asking others for the answer to ‘Life The Universe And Everything’, when your alternative is a delusion residing only in your own head, is insulting.

    And when science finds the answer to be 42, you will find another daft question to ask.

  171. In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #184 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #181 by Alan4discussion:
    Again I am not considered about the process, but I am dealing with the whole picture here. “Survival” is always used a phrase. But we don’t question the whole process which does produce better organisms and culminates in a human wh…

    I will sign off with some words here. “Evolution is a fact!” No it is not. Nothing in the world is a fact. Remember Bible, it was a fact once. I don’t consider any of the science a fact, but rather a theory which can explain us things. Even if some science can explain everything, I will still consider it a theory. Here is why:

    1. The results of Rutherford’s experiment. A central nucleus surrounded by electrons. Why? Because a few particles deflected, large no went straight. Intuitive really. But why does he make this conclusion. We have to look at the functioning of human thinking for this. We always think by association, by linking things. What Rutherford, viewed in his experiments, he immediately links it to what he has experienced in mechanistic nature. In comes Bohr, and he makes even a greater link. He has seen a solar system, he links theory to that and make an electron model which one must ascertain explains reality rather than “Is truth” Heisenberg and others raise questions regarding this, and tweaks are made to the theory. Why? To fit in observations. That is what the Science always is, we fit in our observations. Bohr theory is what intuitively follows best, not what is there. I may even imagine some other theory and try to fit in the observations. If I try enough, I will be successful. In fact this has always been a case with science. It started with natural science, where we looked at nature taking in observations and postulating about things, when we discovered more, our theories became old and had to change.

    2. Now the real question. If the problem of observations and theories being incoherent stops, does it mean we will know everything. No, not necessarily. It just means that we have stopped making any new observations. At that stage, we may even start making new theories and fitting in all our observations.

    3. Next question: Why is it so? Bring in Spinoza for he is one of my favorite philosophers: Out of all attributes of God only two are known to us , thought and extension. We have our scientific theories gone mad these days with just two unexplained things: dark matter and dark energy, Imagine that there is this vast world out there and we have only five senses to perceive it. Why should the world give us all the senses to appropriate it. What if there are things in the world; outside of matter and energy affecting us. What if there are things outside our five senses. They may well be. And we have all reason to believe that they are. World may in proper sense be inherently infinite. We may never capture it.

    4. Is our own reasoning correct. This is where I find myself in serious philosophical skepticism if I hold all of materialism correct. If I am result of blind unreasonable process, what assurance do I have of being not blind, and to make this very statement. It is just like a zombie in Smullyan’s classics saying that “I am not a zombie”What is my reason after all, a process that appropriates things. What if the process is inherently flawed to the point of producing certainty. What if we all are merely seing certainty that is really not there. Here is where my exact notion of truth get altered. I am myself dependent on the nature I am calling blind for my rationality. Can my reason itself be a delusion, Once preachers of Bible were certain like us, people like Democritus were considered insane. Today it is the reverse. What assurance is there world will remain the same. It only takes a few observations to turn our world upside down.

    5. Conclusion: We must never reach conclusions. Personally I am at a stage in my life where “I” is this is to consider a certain part of my unlimited subconscious, believe in nothing. But I do trust Reality and I have a hope that it will take us towards good future, for we have spent a good present.

  172. In reply to #195 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Again, let me remind you I am not talking science but metaphysics here.

    You mean not-physics then, so we are talking magic crystals, and tarot cards.
    In this arena, of absolutely no consequence to anyone but yourself.

    Science has…

    You are deriving too many conclusions, son. Don’t link my statements to the type of persons you have witnessed in your experience. I am aware that purpose, order, and other things are a cause of the human brain. But my question is bigger here. I am concerned with Universals, are there any? If there are, is reason one, because Science as it is always proceeds as if there is and goes along that path alone. But our conclusions I would say are contradictory to this. Mind is just a material which may be equally involved in delusions. What we call “truth”, may just be yet another abstraction of the mind. Here where love has ceased to be that magical force but has become a chemical resultant of filthy sexual process, where altruism is a survival strategy, where “saving the baby” is a process better than saving the mother, for baby has probably better genes, and this may be set into our mental processes as “morality” Here where good and bad have become relative, what reason do we have to believe even our own reason is true, “True” this too seems an abstract word for me. “Truth” and “False” are just notions of human mind.

    Science has few known answers…. You really like taking things out of context, don’t you kid. It’s not only you who has ever known Science. Again do not generalize, provide an opinion only when you understand what is being said and asked. I respect science very much, but I hate when inquiry is made into a dogma. Please be sure of nothing and lower your tone.

    Second science answers because of questions. If I have a question to ask of science, it is always a valid one if it does not have an immediate answer and Science should look for one. We take in reality through experience, and if we find gaps in it, we ask questions simple as that. My only question has been, why is the world the way it is. And the only satisfactory answer is the one I have got from Nietzsche: the eternal return. Don’t even try it son, it is too far fetched for you. You are one of those who jumps without understanding the whole of a thing.

    Third, Meta-physics does not mean tarrot cards and stuff. Meta means hidden, one which is not available yet to your senses. By this, you should not talk about dark matter and stuff like that. But you do, why? It does not fit into your current theory. Why do I talk about stuff like God, though mine is widely different view from traditional theists, because I think Universe as a whole (not talking about individual process) is too much of an accident. The reality which comes out of big bang is first stable enough to sustain itself, Why? Then it is dynamic enough, laws are precise, it makes an intelligence. Can it do without one? The biological processes increase complexity, I am concerned about their nature, why do they do so, they make an intelligence, again why? This process can break down at any moment, even now while we have nuclear weapons and seem cornered by asteroids. I see some purpose (it is natural reaction), and it is reasonable. Why? Because things are adding up, as if I were to say. They can go wrong at any point, humans may have not come into existence. I think Nietzsche offers a great explanation yet his answer still doesn’t cover infinity. He just makes time cyclic. I am the way I am, because I always was this way. Universe has repeated infinite no. of times. But what about humans in our future then, how could they blow up, were they the ones who caused the big bang. You ask all sorts of questions. Again, you are not certain.

  173. In reply to #196 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Nothing in the world is a fact.

    Then why do we have the word?

    From the latin, facere, factum to do, act or make, we get a curious migration of meanings from an “evil deed” through to a “true thing because it has been done”, the facts of the case, through to corroborated evidence. The best current usage of “fact” in my view is either ” a reasonable working assumption” or the stronger “the best available working assumption.” Scientific theories are one of these. An hypothesis is not.

  174. In reply to #196 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Nothing in the world is a fact.

    Completely and utterly wrong.

    What Rutherford, viewed in his experiments, he immediately links it to what he has experienced in mechanistic nature.

    So what would you link it to? Fairy land. Good old Rutherford eh, keeping it real, trying to get an intellectually based rationale for what we see in ‘nature’. A Nobel Prize winner, but a bit of a berk apparently, according to our poster fshamas, who thinks he should have ‘not given up his day job’.

    Rutherford’s early work with particle accelerators led ultimately to the experiments now being carried out at the LHC, so any dig at Rutherford’s science, waves two dismissive fingers at CERN and all other accelerators world wide.

    This arrogance of this poster knows no bounds.

  175. In reply to #199 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #196 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Nothing in the world is a fact.

    Completely and utterly wrong.

    What Rutherford, viewed in his experiments, he immediately links it to what he has experienced in mechanistic nature.

    So what would you link it to? Fairy land. Good o…

    You are missing the whole point here. Justly Rutherford links it to an experience and he should. Again you have “stereotypes” set in your mind. “Fairyland” did I mention one. Don’t make up things. Your mind is setting me up as a straw man. I am not arguing against the case that Rutherford was bad scientist or that I know better than him. All I am arguing is that this intuition of ours to answer as per our experience may be our biggest limitation in knowing reality.

    We must remember Science cannot set for the “Ultimate Truth” because many parts of Reality itself are hidden from us. Were you in the fifteenth century would you call me a fairytale expert if I told you there were e.m waves, radio waves, cosmic waves. Sure you would, for your view of reality would be different. But when I show you the same waves, through detectors you come to know their reality. My point is simple: how many such realities are there that we do not know. Again don’t jump to conclusion, I am not calling in fairy tale stuff here, believe in a God and his unseen angels, no. I am just requiring you to acknowledge this fact that our view of the world may never be the actual truth that is out there. You should read some stuff before reaching further conclusion.

    Second the point about skepticism on reason itself, don’t try yourself on it, for the thing will ruin you. And please don’t insult the things you don’t understand. And please do present at least an argument before commenting further. I feel I have been repeating things for long with you, You seem to just state things here. Making personal attacks and generalizations won’t help your case. If you have an argument against my comment, please mention it, so that I may learn. At the moment you are just barking.

  176. In reply to #198 by phil rimmer:

    In reply to #196 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Nothing in the world is a fact.

    Then why do we have the word?

    From the latin, facere, factum to do, act or make, we get a curious migration of meanings from an “evil deed” through to a “true thing because it has been done”, the f…

    I would very much like Science as “best possible explanation” of Reality but the “real” explanation, the true one…I am not sure about that. Brain in a vat is too simple a thought experiment to show you the uncertainty in the world around us. There are huge ones, like simulation within a simulation or infinite simulations. Again I not suggestive of this as fact, but a major obstacle in our path to reality. I am not sure if at all there is something called Reality. I will quote Nietzsche: “there are no truths, there are only interpretations” My quest came to end, when I realized that mind could wholly be matter, that consciousness could be explained materially. My quest was the downfall of my own quest. Or to paraphrase the absurd, “Life itself races to death”

  177. In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Again, let me remind you I am not talking science but metaphysics here.

    Why the preoccupation with philosophical imponderables, when there is evidenced reality to understand.

    I am if you could say filling the holes here with my imagination,

    That is the usual god-of-gaps process. – Otherwise known as “making it up as you go along”.

    Why is the universe the way it is? Why is the natural selection the way it is? Why are laws that precise to bring up a human who could discern these laws?

    “Why?” questions always have a series of “How?” answers right up to the frontiers of knowledge, at which point the honest answer is “We do not know at present, but may investigate”! The gapologists’ pseudo-answer is often “god-did-it-by-mysterious-magic”, as they pretend to know the unknown. Science has “How?” answers to these questions, but nobody has substantiated “Why” answers, although many religions and cults pretend to have exclusive insights into the unknown, without any basis for such claims.

    Science has few known answers,

    Science has all the best answers we have been able to investigate, confirm experimentally, and discover. Modern technologies work on the information confirmed by science to very high accuracies.

    one is a multi-verse theory.

    That is merely speculation, which goes off at a tangent, after the foolish and incorrect assertion about well known scientific answers.

    But I call it merely playing upon infinity. Infinity in itself has so many possibilities that it is not beyond our imagination, but beyond anything. Using infinity, we can speculate anything.

    Apart from mathematicians using the term correctly, most people talking about “infinity” have no idea what they are talking about. Similarly, those who talk about “nothing”, frequently have no idea either. (“Nothing”, does not exist anywhere in the universe)

    But what I question is the existence of reason.

    Why?? It very obviously exists as a thought process in some brains!

    Why should reason come up and is it real? Is our thinking real?

    Yes! Our thinking is real and it is physical.
    Neuroscience For Kids – http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/synapse.html

    If you call thinking just a process set by evolution, then are you not in a way limiting it yourself.

    You would be limiting your self to the possible, and falsifying and refuting wild fantasies or confused thinking.

    It is the great Darwinian doubt.

    “ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge” – Charles Darwin,

    “What certainty could we have in our monkey minds?”

    Certainty tends to be a property of knee-jerk ignorance. Real scientific knowledge (repeat- testable and falsifiable) deals with probabilities – in many cases very high probabilities.

    My question is: Is Reason Universal?

    No! It is a property of brains capable of rational deduction. There is no evidence at present of such brains apart from on and near Earth. It is very unlikely that any will be in the vast majority of places in space. Some on or near the odd planet may be possible.

    Do there even exist Universals? I thought truth once to be a Universal,

    The “universals” are the laws of physics, which appear to be consistent as far as we can see (with technical aids).

    Truth is universal in a mathematical or logical sense, but the term is widely misused as a badge for all sorts of weird claims.

    but seems like it was also a human notion.

    In the latter sense it is merely a confused claim used as a fallacious badge of false authority – or as a circular argument using the No True Scotsman fallacy

  178. In reply to #197 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #195 by keyplayer88:

    Your assumption seems to be that science, when grappling with answers to difficult questions, and lacking a simple overarching conceptual solution, loses credibility as a consequence. This is not true. Rutherford’s experiments were able to show that most of the atom was empty space that the proton is electrically charged and tiny compared to the size of the atom. This was calculated from observations made by his assistants counting the number and angles of reflected alpha particles, as you are no doubt aware. At that time the particle/wave duality was not known about, nor were the wave functions of particles understood. But neither of these latter discoveries in any way challenge the basic model that Rutherford proposed. The much more sophisticated model of forces and matter now adopted by modern science still agrees with Rutherford’s basic model. Charged particles of definite mass and number arranged as electrons around the positive nucleus. This has not changed. Only now, in order to understand the nature of these quanta, field theory is needed to describe them. Still Rutherford’s model survives this adaptation, it is not challenged by it.

    To unplug a quark and scrutinise it, will likely remain an impossibility. Does this imply some philosophical stand off, about the nature of quarks, of course not. CERN deals with billions of such particles every day, not one is ever ‘seen’ directly. To infer some weakness in this limitation is bogus.

    As you rightly imply, human senses are inadequate in many way to observe these phenomena which is why science uses lots of different techniques to detect them. This removes subjectivity from science which, ironically, is what you seem so concerned about.

  179. In reply to #202 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    Again, let me remind you I am not talking science but metaphysics here.

    Why the preoccupation with philosophical imponderables, when there is evidenced reality to understand.

    I am if you could say filling the holes here with my i…

    Thanks, I very much like your answers unlike some other answers I have met on this site. The way I see Science working and it does seem to satisfy the urge. But sometimes, I see it go too far fetched in explaining things. I see the arguments that are too simplistic, rather than profound. Even I may give those answers. Like I said, some answers are intuitive. But are they necessary correct, or are they building up on the delusion I have created. So More than often I have found myself struggling with such answers, especially in evolution, when it can’t be answered I have seen people call things coincidence. The famed survival or “it competes better” side of evolution is basically been thrown around. We don’t look outside this very principle. I think there is much more going around at physical level than this very fact.

    The problem I am facing is epistemolgical skepticism which can’t be dealt with. You are good to answer with Probabilities and not certainties. But what about personal experiences being brought into existence.

    what about this situation:

    Could you believe me if I told you I have seen six dimensions in universe, And I don’t have any way to relate my experience. Why? Because you have not faced it, I can to relate all those things which we share in experience. But what if I have an experience of things outside shape, Could I explain that thing to you? In what terms, its a new kind of data. I can’t even talk about it, even to myself. I experienced it, know it was truth, but somehow I find myself in a different reality.

    This shows our inability to understand reality. I do acknowledge “Why” being answered by the “How?” question. But that is not always the case. The Ultimate Why is answered by only the Ultimate Reality. I guess one day we might be able to simulate the big bang in a supercomputer and watch Endless Reality unfold in front of our eyes.

  180. In reply to #203 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #197 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #195 by keyplayer88:

    Your assumption seems to be that science, when grappling with answers to difficult questions, and lacking a simple overarching conceptual solution, loses credibility as a consequence. This is not true. Rutherford’s experiments were abl…

    I am not concerned about just the subjectivity of it, I am concerned about the whole thing. From senses to processing, our entire system may be crack….We have to have a certain amount of belief to it (don’t compare this to religious belief which is substantial, nor consider this a suggestion to invoke “See you also believe”). Again when we have a certain belief, we should remember what Science has discerned may not be stamped fact. Remember how Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein physics. I am not saying that Einstein, Newton or Rutherford for that matter was wrong. I am stating that we are limited, we have no other way. And in fact we may even be deluded. Since Reality is much vaster than we actually assume, our notions of electrons and stuff may be good, satisfactory, for us, Yes, because we know only that much reality. but in comes a new observation, and we will have to rework. A theory that explains observations and not necessarily reality. We have not even figured out what impact dark matter and energy may have “through the same cause and effect” on other stuff. Does dark matter effect some stuff in biology. Can we link consciousness to it? We have no choice here, but we should know that We are not necessarily pursuing the truth, but that which is explainable to our heads. In other words, evolution has set us on a course, not to raise children, or have food, but it has blindly set us on a course of satisfying an urge in our mind of knowing reality.

    For me there are only two good states as far as knowledge is concerned: “All Knowledge” or “No Knowledge” In both these states one asks no questions. Other states comprise life.

  181. In reply to #205 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #203 by keyplayer88:

    Remember how Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein physics.

    You have to stop this perpetual misrepresentation of science. I don’t need to look very far into your posts to read such garbage as this.

    This is a shameless misrepresentation of science, and you demand respect. You will get none from me if you persist in such falsehoods.

    Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein (Einsteinian?) physics. Garbage!

    Tell NASA they still use it.

  182. Sergei Mikhailovich Eisenstein was a Soviet Russian film director and film theorist.

    He certainly had a way with words but he had nothing to do with physics.

  183. In reply to #204 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #202 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    The Ultimate Why is answered by only the Ultimate Reality.

    “Why” maps to “understanding” and “how” maps to “mastery”.

    Understanding is a metaphorical process by which strangeness is quelled rapidly and replaced by familiarity and acceptance. Something new is said to be like something, which itself is both known and accepted, and is thereby, itself, (at least in part) understood. The weird fact of apples falling, because they are heavy, is understood, however, because of the simple familiarity of the idea. Understanding is quite separate from the idea of mastery.

    We may become masters of the universe, in the sense that we may be able to foretell the future state of any closed system of an arbitrarily large size. As the closed system becomes larger, including more and more disparate processes, any space available for metaphorical familiarity starts to shrink down and our capacity for fast track understanding reduces. There are fewer and fewer metaphorical models available as we get to the behaviour of the very very small, for instance. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the feeling of understanding didn’t take an increasingly long time to kick in whilst mastery (the how) of the universe proceeds apace.

    Eventually, we’ll finish looking and start building in earnest, to see what new things may be possible…

  184. In reply to #206 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #205 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #203 by keyplayer88:

    Remember how Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein physics.

    You have to stop this perpetual misrepresentation of science. I don’t need to look very far into your posts to read such garbage as this.

    This is ignorance, no ot…

    This is not misrepresentation of Science. Newtonian physics does not play at particle level. Tell me how many of it is still held valid, I am not saying its completely outplayed, but rather bettered. How can be sure that our current worldview won’t be bettered. In some of our assumptions we may just we wrong. This is the simple point I want to make. But because you mind is so clouded by petty generalities and stereotypes in our mind, you don’t look far from that. I assume you are some science kid. Did I ever throw insults at you while I was in the discussion. I just gave you things you could not understand. Sorry but you won’t. You don’t have the mind for skepticism. I think your inner ego believes in Science not because you mind has checked its validity but just because Science is an accepted worldview. Scientists are all around, In a religious society, you would be as dumb. I have never encountered an argument from you except an insult aimed at my person, which I don’t mind. But I think you like to win petty arguments like that. No Bobo, the world has grown. You can’t bully someone here, because everything is naked today including the minds. I do not expect to give respect to me, I suppose this is really a hierarchical structure in your brain, I suppose picture of Stephen Hawking, in your case will be up there at the top in your mind and his views infallible. Don’t try to deny yourself this, that is how our brains seems to work. Again I may ask Why? Many evolutionary answers, many deductions. But all are deductions correct. Or do we need a completely different theory. (see what level you made me down to)

  185. In reply to #208 by phil rimmer:

    In reply to #204 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #202 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #194 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #193 by Alan4discussion:

    The Ultimate Why is answered by only the Ultimate Reality.

    “Why” maps to “understanding” and “how” maps to “mastery”.

    Understanding is a metaphorical process by…

    I like the way you put it, but I can discern hope in these statements. I question the existence of this Hope in human beings. Is it all natural Or is there something mysterious to it? Mysterious? Your mind will gather up links fast. “What does he mean?” No mysterious. as I have told you doesn’t necessarily concern God or other angels and stuff. Mysterious entails that which is unseen, unobserved. The “How?” of Hope and similar mechanisms may be answered but Leibniz Great Why will always remain unanswered. It will only be answered by time itself.

    In its end, the being looks for its cause.

  186. In reply to #209 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #206 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #205 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #203 by keyplayer88:

    Remember how Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein physics.

    ‘Proven wrong’ is a lie. Newtonian physics is as valid now as the day he proposed it. Einstein is correct, Newton was correct. To say proven wrong is a falsehood, because everything based on Newtonian mechanics, read that bit carefully, WORKS, is CORRECT, PROVEN. Got that! It sends probes to Mars and out through the Solar system. I would hate to think where your probe would end up with your knowledge of such matters.

    So NOT ‘WRONG’ as you so tritely put it.

    Your views are those of a spoiler, you are not interested in philosophical discourse you simply try to deface that which undermines your world view. Which is clearly anti scientific, despite your innocent protestations to the contrary.

    I think your inner ego believes in Science not because you mind has checked its validity but just because Science is an accepted worldview.

    Oh dear wrong again. I have a science degree. So I base my comments on a firm scientific/technological footing. So ego has sod all to do with it. What it does have to do with is, I can spot a chancer at 500 miles.

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  188. In reply to #211 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #209 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #206 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #205 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #203 by keyplayer88:

    Remember how Newtonian physics was proven wrong by Eisenstein physics.

    ‘Proven wrong’ is a lie. Newtonian physics is as valid now as the day he proposed it. Einstein is…

    Can you really state Newtonian worldview (the way it existed in that time), still exists now. No so many things have changed from that worldview. I am not despising Science here, but dear boy there are still many things far from our senses. After all we don’t know “Everything” And you need to tell me that you have a Science degree. Anybody can have one these days, following Science is easy boy. Creating is what is difficult.

    The very processes of Science trump us every time with skepticism. We may not be even aware of it but deep inside our brain they are working. Like I said once we had supreme love, now that is just a sexual attraction, once we had supreme morals, now they just reactions to social environment. Reason will be the last of these Universals to fall. You don’t seem to get the point here. What surety can we have in the game of atoms.

    “But now science, spurred on by its powerful delusion, hurtles inexorably towards its limits where the optimism hidden in the essence of logic founders. For the periphery of the circle of science has an infinite number of points and while there is no telling yet how the circle could ever be fully surveyed, the noble and gifted man, before he has reached the middle of his life, still inevitably encounters such peripheral limit points and finds himself staring into an impenetrable darkness. If he at that moment sees to his horror how in these limits logic coils around itself and finally bites its own tail – then the new form of knowledge breaks through, tragic knowledge, which in order to be tolerated, needs art as a protection and remedy.” – Nietzsche

  189. In reply to #213 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #211 by keyplayer88:

    following Science is easy boy.

    So can you tell me what science qualification/s you have to base such an opinion on. Or is this yet another one of your anecdotal off the cuff remarks based on total ignorance of the subject.

  190. In reply to #214 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #213 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #211 by keyplayer88:

    following Science is easy boy.

    So can you tell me what science qualification/s you have to base such an opinion on. Or is this yet another one of your anecdotal off the cuff remarks based on total ignorance of the subject.

    I have a masters degree in philosophy. But I do understand your anger here. After all, you might have wasted so many of your days. What for?

  191. In reply to #215 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #214 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #213 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #211 by keyplayer88:

    following Science is easy boy.

    So can you tell me what science qualification/s you have to base such an opinion on. Or is this yet another one of your anecdotal off the cuff remarks based on total ign…

    Philosophy, so thinking about things.

    Impressive.

    But then as you say yourself about qualifications ‘anybody can have one these days’.

  192. In reply to #215 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #214 by keyplayer88:

    In reply to #213 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #211 by keyplayer88:

    following Science is easy boy.

    So no science qualification then. Shame.

  193. In reply to #179 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #173 by Sheepdog:

    If I sound a little blunt, I apologize, my time today is limited. Nor have I read all the subsequent posts carefully, so if I cover ground already trodden, again, my apologies.

    Taking my ‘let’s pretend’ scenario a little too literally, perhaps, Sheepdog?

    Not really. I find the glib ability that religion has to alternate between allegory, literal truth, metaphor, and parable or moral lesson as it suits, and then switch back without drawing breath, to be remarkable at best, scurrilous at worst. Not ever knowing which it is at any moment, all I can do is take it all as presented literally. It is safer that way.

    “Let’s pretend”

    As above.

    “Designer never invented” – you took that out of context.

    As above, but add “imaginary, hypothetical situation” to the list.

    “Exercise a little faith”

    This is the old “You want me to prove God exists, but you can’t prove the origin of the laws of physics, therefore God exists.” line of highly dubious logic. Just because I cannot prove something does not mean it cannot be proven by others more skilled than I who are working on the problem.
    For ID to be a serious contender, we would need some better ongoing research, and basically, the only authorities are the Bible, the Talmud, and the Quran, all of which have remained static and unchanging for periods varying from roughly 1500 to 3500 years, with no new work published. If that is as good as it gets, I will follow the work of the present, past, and future physicists and mathematicians with greater expectations of results than the work of the Ken Ham’s of the world with their fictitious pseudo science based on a seriously dated and very dubious authority.

    “African cultures, etc.” – I don’t know where you get the idea from

    From the colonial and missionary history of Africa. Some words to google: Mali, Timbuktoo, Songhai, Kikuyu, Masai, and of course Egypt, and the Kingdom of Benin. Where I will concede you some ground is that Islam can make a strong claim to “stabilizing” much of North Africa, although it did it with the sword, and the colonial habit of dividing the spoils in straight line boundaries across traditional tribal lands, the Rwanda slaughter of Hutu and Tutsi being one obvious example of the long term consequence of this practice. In all the colonial advances however, the missionaries were right in the front, just behind the cannons.
    Not really my idea of stabilization.

    “All I need is one, that’s enough, incontrovertible piece of evidence…” – ah, you mean you want proof? Sorry, the evidence you have is all around you

    No its not. In fact the evidence that is all around me is to the contrary.

    and within the historical document comprising Christian Bible

    What is so bloody special about the Christian Bible, and its Abrahamic originals, compared to say, the Bhagavad Gita, or the Quran, or the Tao Te Ching, or even Beowulf, all of which have had their purported “history” pretty thoroughly debunked, where that is, they make historical claims. Not all do. The Christian Bible recounts the activities of some of the most bloodthirsty and misogynistic and generally nasty people the planet has seen, guided apparently by an even nastier deity. Again, google “Biblical Historical inaccuracies” for a wealth of examples.

    though it describes the appearance of God to numerous people in the way you have just demanded

    Frankly, I hardly consider the book or books described above as an authority. I see now that they are to be taken literally apparently.

    “…you are not so much asking for information that may assist you on your own intellectual journey…” – I don’t see any sign of that in your comment either, so are we religiots governed by different rules?

    Apparently so, since logic and physics and astronomy don’t seem to stand a chance, but a 3,500 (roughly) year old book written by pre technological people trying to work out, with nothing else to go on, what was the big bright thing that appeared every morning, has better information and trumps what we are learning from the particle accelerators and the Hubble telescope, and for that matter, people like Hubble.
    Sorry, that is too nonsensical to be taken seriously.

    Great, but you seem to have forgotten about its numerous benefits. Haven’t you noticed those?

    I will concede you music, and architecture.
    As to other benefits, I am sure that the Inca appreciated the benefit that Pizarro’s religion brought them, as they were slaughtered, and as did the Hawaiians who died like flies from measles brought by the missionaries, and the smallpox brought the Pacific North-West. Great benefits all.

    And now religion wants to deny to an emerging generation in the US in particular an education in the sciences that the nation will need if it is not to lapse back into an utterly ignorant and murderous theocracy. Some benefits!

  194. In reply to #204 by fshamas5:

    In reply to #202 by Alan4discussion:

    Thanks, I very much like your answers unlike some other answers I have met on this site. The way I see Science working and it does seem to satisfy the urge. But sometimes, I see it go too far fetched in explaining things.

    Philosophical musings cannot substitute for scientific study. Without a depth of understanding people are simply not in a position to make value judgements on the coverage of areas of science.

    I see the arguments that are too simplistic, rather than profound.

    This is just rhetoric unless you can specify particular areas.

    Even I may give those answers. Like I said, some answers are intuitive. But are they necessary correct, or are they building up on the delusion I have created.

    Except where it is reflection and digestion of previous objective observations, navel gazing has been consistently shown to be an unreliable and flawed method of trying to understand and match a view to the real world.

    So More than often I have found myself struggling with such answers, especially in evolution, when it can’t be answered I have seen people call things coincidence. The famed survival or “it competes better” side of evolution is basically been thrown around.

    These are the core features which have been confirmed multiple thousands of times. Questions in evolution are answered by empirical observations and testing.

    We don’t look outside this very principle.

    I can assure you biologists look at a great deal of detail beyond the core features.

    I think there is much more going around at physical level than this very fact.

    There certainly is. There is a whole list of text and reference books dealing with the subject.

    Here are a few:-

    http://www.richarddawkins.net/books/2013/8/30/the-magic-of-reality-how-we-know-what-s-really-true#

    http://www.richarddawkins.net/books/2013/8/6/the-selfish-gene#

    http://www.richarddawkins.net/books/2013/8/7/the-greatest-show-on-earth-the-evidence-for-evolution-1#

    The problem I am facing is epistemolgical skepticism which can’t be dealt with.

    That is your problem. The science is readily available for study.

    You are good to answer with Probabilities and not certainties. But what about personal experiences being brought into existence.

    If you are applying this to considerations in evolution, personal experience of field biology, genetics, and a general understanding of scientific methodology would be beneficial. Other experiences are probably not very relevant.

    This shows our inability to understand reality.

    Our understanding depends on how and how often we interact in investigations into “reality”. Objective observations, investigations, peer-review checking to expose errors and eliminate cognitive biases, is the essence of the scientific methodology of matching the view as closely as possible to the underlying physical reality.

    I do acknowledge “Why” being answered by the “How?” question. But that is not always the case.

    Strange? Can you give an example of this?

    The Ultimate Why is answered by only the Ultimate Reality.

    “Ultimate”, is one of those “deepity words”, like “infinite” and “nothing”, which are bandied around in contexts where the sound impressive, but have no meaning!

    I guess one day we might be able to simulate the big bang in a supercomputer and watch Endless Reality unfold in front of our eyes.

    The information is for the most part already there!

    Graphical timeline of the Big Bang

    @213 – Can you really state Newtonian worldview (the way it existed in that time), still exists now. No so many things have changed from that worldview.

    You clearly do not understand Newtonian physics. Talking of probabilities, Newton is 99.99999% accurate for subsonic travel on Earth. Einstein only comes into the picture where the relative velocity is very high or the gravity is significantly different. (Such as on SAT-NAVS or orbiting stars near black-holes)

    I am not despising Science here, but dear boy there are still many things far from our senses.

    I think you have just explained that the understanding of the science is far from your senses! Science uses a huge diversity of instruments to enhance our perceptions beyond the normal range of our senses.

    After all we don’t know “Everything”

    The lack of “knowing everything”, in no way supports the view that science knows nothing, although this claim is often made by those who know little or nothing about science. Anyone who steps out of a twenty-fifth floor window, in the expectation of a new law of gravity turning up, is going to very disappointed. (for a relatively short time.)

    And you need to tell me that you have a Science degree. Anybody can have one these days, following Science is easy boy.

    Really?? That must explain the school drop-out rate in sciences of those who find the going too challenging!

    Creating is what is difficult.

    This is too vague to even evaluate. I would suggest that it is a false dichotomy to try to separate science from “creating”. Science has created and revealed the wonders of modern technology and the wonders of the universe.

    If anyone tries to tell you that creating a working roving science laboratory on Mars, a probe to film rain on Titan, or a VASIMR rocket engine, “is easy”, they really have no idea what they are talking about!

  195. what would you expect to see, or not see, in nature if I.D was fact?

    That depends on the designer. Had Yahweh really designed the universe I’d expect billions of planets populated by subservient women, glossolalic climate science deniers and anti-vaccinationists.

    If Satan had formulated the master-plan I’d anticipate word salad, confabulation and child rape would all be absent.

  196. In reply to #210 by fshamas5:

    I like the way you put it, but I can discern hope in these statements. I question the existence of this Hope in human beings. Is it all natural

    All emotions are “natural” biological features of the neurological and endocrine systems.

    Or is there something mysterious to it? Mysterious?

    While there are plenty of further details to investigate, these things are particularly mysterious to those who have no understanding of the subjects, because they have not studied them.

    Mysterious entails that which is unseen, unobserved.

    All details are unseen and unobserved by those who don’t look or don’t know where to look. There is no virtue in ignorance, or commenting from a view-point of ignorance.

    The “How?” of Hope and similar mechanisms may be answered

    That sounds unlikely. The answers are are much more likely to come from neuroscientists.

    but Leibniz Great Why will always remain unanswered.

    Did you mean the great unknown? Human knowledge really has moved on since the 1600s and 1700s.

    No one is in position to make assertions about genuine “unknowns”

    It will only be answered by time itself.

    Unknowns will be answered as they have been throughout history, by scientific investigations.

    Occam shows gods as credible explanations, to be as unlikely to explain modern unknowns as they were to explain past unknowns.

  197. In reply to #165 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out. Everything was rosy in the garden – say, just like the Garden of Eden (whether you believe in it or not) – life was perfect in all respects – painless, eternal, and with plentiful food (assuming we would need food of course) … but the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain? Would we have the ability to complain? Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed there would be no reason to complain. I would suggest ‘The I.D.’ is still holding something back from us – something of which we are not yet fully aware – but which is promised in the Bible to all those who dare to exercise a little faith and believe.

    Hold your horses there Smithy… Would a Grand Creator that is holding back an optimal design of my Vagus nerve or blood supply for my eyes be proving some sort of point for my “soul’s benefit?.” No, It’s just plain bad design.

    Let’s say that there is a Grand Designer and the ability to see through buildings with our naked eye is being held back from us…OK so what? This possibility isn’t even on the playing field. It has no effect and is irrelevant. Let’s look at the multitude of imperfections that we deal with daily instead of some imaginary possibility that we are supposedly missing out on having. Have you read all the comments pointing out our “design” flaws? – NO. It’s as if you just skimmed over them and didn’t consider any of the tangible, concrete, observable, in-your-face realities of our flawed nature. Instead you want to pull in “possibilities.” I don’t buy the ” We are being held back from having a high quality mountain bike and have been given tricycles instead.” There is good design in a tricycle, in and of itself. But, we have tricycles with balloon thin tires of different sizes with naturally flat spots, crooked frame, pedals that easily break… What we have is imperfect – susceptible to illness and harsh environments (thus the need for clothing – You would think that we’d be furry…) We have a “1970s version” of “made in Japan” bodies except the flaws were not intentional results of cost cutting measures intended on keeping us “small and insignificant in the eyes of the Creator.”

    Our eye was designed so that the blood supply is inside out. Have you noticed all the veins you can see when your eye doctor shines a bright light in your eyes? It’s because you’re retina is behind the blood source ( in simplistic terms) There was a more optimal way of “designing” our vision. (I think I’m the 20th person to post this here.) Our spines frequently feel pain, deteriorate, and experience other problems that are the result of Evolution not deep thought or creativity. Check out the Vagus nerve in giraffes too. Knowing that my Vagus nerve could be shorter is irrelevant and doesn’t effect my day-to-day living. Why if “God is Great” is life so poorly designed?

  198. No only do I not know what we’d observe, I wouldn’t even know what there would be to discuss. “See how beautifully God designed the eye? Ain’t it purty?”

  199. OT: I posted a new discussion on ERVs the other day, and I received a message that it needed to be moderated. It still hasn’t shown up. I assumed it was because I was a new user, but I see that I’m able to post comments just fine without moderation.

  200. You first need to estimate the qualities of an intelligent designer before estimating the consequences of intelligent design. Which means you have to consider the nature of intelligence. Otherwise just assuming the nature of intelligence becomes an implicit flawed assumption in your initial premises, which would lead to a meaningless conclusion. Apparently it’s a good idea to avoid meaningless conclusions. But that’s just an assumption, with no real evidence to support it.

    First off you can forget about any infinite qualities or eternity regarding intelligence. Intelligence is not separable from the application of intelligence. It’s a dynamic activity: a process rather than a static thing. Intelligence can only exist as part of a living process. It’s as meaningless to have a non-living intelligence as it is to ask about the timing of events before there was a space-time environment.

    And artificial intelligence is irrelevant because you’d first need artificial life to sustain the artificial intelligence. And once you’ve artificially ‘created’ life in the lab (unlikely given that deep time and evolutionary processes are pretty much the only production models available) what you end up with is not necessarily artificial anymore. It’s been created by life anyway, so it’s just life. Life doesn’t care exactly how it was created. It’s a purely present moment and forward looking phenomenon. Superficial artificial ‘intelligence’ created by IT researchers which appears to be more capable that a real living intelligent entity would be more a reflection of the poor quality of that real intelligence rather than the high quality of the lab-created artificial intelligence.

    If an intelligent designer were to establish something as intricately complex as an entire ecosystem of planetary life then you’ve basically got an intelligent entity that exists in reality and which makes choices and acts purposefully, with reasonably justifiable (but inherently imperfect) expectations for future outcomes. Which implies an ability to act with confidence to attempt to maintain its own existence. Intelligence without the capability and genuine need to act is meaningless. Reason being that intelligence is essentially the ability to solve problems. Without problems there can be no intelligence. Real problems are more than puzzles, games, or amusements. They must be addressed and they are not problems if there are no direct or indirect significant consequences of failing or succeeding to solve them. This implies that an intelligent designer really needs to solve real problems and therefore must face significant choices and decision options and to be sensitive to preferences and opportunity trade-offs with costs, time, energy (e.g. needing to rest up on weekends), resources, capabilities, knowledge etc.

    An intelligent designer may face a superabundance of some or all of these production factors, but never an infinite abundance. Infinite abundance would imply there are effectively no potentially unsolvable problems, and therefore no consequences of attempting to struggle to fail or succeed in solving problems. Which therefore means nil concept of intelligence as being the means of accumulating and processing knowledge with capacity for solving problems. No constraints means no problems and no problems means no intelligence.
    Such an intelligent designer is incompatible with the concept of most religious gods which are typically described as infinite, unconstrained, insubstantial etc.

    This situation of finite resource constraints is a direct consequence of proposing the existence of an intelligent designer (which by implication therefore really exists in this real universe and is capable of designing life and all its interconnectedness). Finite resources implies that an intelligent designer’s approach to the problem of establishing an extremely complex planetary ecosystem would be pretty much practically constrained to applying evolution and natural selection. Being the only cost-effective mechanism that could conceivably create life on earth, given finite constraints (effectively the laws of nature).

    The hypothetical absence of significant resource constraints (which implies magic – as might be attributed to religious gods) actually implies the non-existence of an intelligent designer, which therefore couldn’t be intelligent or achieve any purpose by designing anything.

    So if a truly intelligent designer existed, implying sufficient knowledge and foresight to be aware of its own inherent constraints, then you’d expect to see strong evidence of evolution in every aspect of life. Conversely a complete absence of any evidence of intelligent design would also be conclusive evidence that the intelligent designer is intentionally and intelligently absent. Only a true intelligent designer would deny its own divinity (by steering clear and leaving everything to natural evolutionary processes). Despite possessing the resources and capabilities to directly intervene with evolution, being intelligent enough to know better than to meddle around with the extremely complex processes of life and natural evolution. The intelligent designer being intelligent enough to know that only evolutionary processes over deep time could successfully produce sustainable interesting outcomes.

    Presumably the proposed intelligent designer intends to employ natural evolutionary processes to generate additional intelligent resources to recruit towards future ongoing problem solving activities. This would require the evolution of intelligent creatures. To be truly useful to the designer these creatures would need to demonstrate considerable capabilities of intelligence, perhaps by demonstrating that, unaided by the intelligent designer, they are imaginative enough to avoid succumbing to simple logical fallacies, natural cognitive biases, and superstitious belief in the supernatural. Current evidence implies that it’s reasonable to assume that the intelligent designer would be compelled to remain detached from his creation and to enable evolutionary processes to continue for some considerable time yet, as the job is obviously incomplete at present.

    Basically you’re left with an intelligent designer situation that’s indistinguishable from not having an intelligent designer, except that with the intelligent designer you’ve got the added complexity of a mysterious, invisible entity of improbable origin and existence that people will tend to irrationally believe in, despite the lack of evidence. This implies that the intelligent designer (assuming it exists) remains disappointed with its production consequences so far. A directly active intelligent designer would have left out all those mental mechanisms that generate irrational beliefs but, having relied on natural evolutionary processes, could never intentionally interfere to attempt to correct these accumulated errors because, as any software engineer will know, eliminating any one particular known bug inevitably introduces further more serious undocumented feature that will likely cause worse problems than the original flaw.

    So the intelligent designer is therefore compelled to remain effectively non-existent and inactive until people evolve sufficiently to shake off their irrational beliefs in things like intelligent designers. Hence the argument that the evidence for intelligent design is the conspicuous absence of any evidence of an intelligent designer.

  201. “Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out … the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain? Would we have the ability to complain? Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed there would be no reason to complain.”

    I would like to try to clarify what I tried (obviously inadequately) to say with the above. The absence of endorphins in our brains would mean we would not experience pleasure and therefore pleasure would be an unknown concept. I guess it’s the same as trying to explain the concept of colour to someone who sees in only grey tones. Rather than saying he didn’t believe in colour, the person would have to shrug his shoulders and ‘take our word’ for it.

    What I find in atheistic circles, however, is very different from a shoulder shrug, and this is what puzzles me because it’s like the colour-blind person trying to deny the existence of colour. It’s as if, because there’s such a huge inclination in the human psyche towards superstition, the atheist is scared of it and so horrified by some of its manifestations that it declares there’s no such thing as the supernatural. This seems to be what’s emerging in the responses to the original question; it’s as if the last thing you want to do is acknowledge the possibility that any ‘supernaturality’ exists so you find every possible excuse. Am I correct with this assessment, or have I got it all wrong?

  202. What I find in atheistic circles, however, is very different from a shoulder shrug, and this is what puzzles me because it’s like the colour-blind person trying to deny the existence of colour. It’s as if, because there’s such a huge inclination in the human psyche towards superstition, the atheist is scared of it and so horrified by some of its manifestations that it declares there’s no such thing as the supernatural.

    And what I find is that you’re not actually addressing the responses in a real manner, and the clarifying doesn’t really address most of the responses.

    The fact is we have many animals that are deficient in many of the qualities you mention and no cries of the supernatural or ID design are automatic as a result. Whether we would be aware of it or not wouldn’t automatically preclude an ID nor would it preclude any more evidence of such.

    This has nothing to do with a perceived fear of superstition (an ironic turn of phrase as most superstitions are in some form fear based, mostly irrational fears) as much as it is atheists trying to express that your example, however phrased, holds no weight in regards to an Intelligent Designer.

    Superstition does not equal evidence. Even if a single bit of superstition had any weight, your explanation would be only one in literally millions of explanations and none of them are guaranteed to actually have any truth to them. It effectively leaves you right back where you started.

    Once again, my final question in my original reply post was something to the degree of: What reason do you have that any of us should take the position you pose seriously?

  203. In reply to #226 by CumbriaSmithy:

    “Here’s a challenge to all those who question ‘I.D.’. Let’s pretend ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out … the Designer never bothered to invent endorphins. Would we complain? Would we have the ability to complain? Since we wouldn’t be aware of what had never existed there would be no reason to complain.”

    These hypothetical propositions are just silly. Without endorphins humans would probably have died out long before they evolved into humans.

    I would like to try to clarify what I tried (obviously inadequately) to say with the above. The absence of endorphins in our brains would mean we would not experience pleasure and therefore pleasure would be an unknown concept. I guess it’s the same as trying to explain the concept of colour to someone who sees in only grey tones. Rather than saying he didn’t believe in colour, the person would have to shrug his shoulders and ‘take our word’ for it.

    Scientists regularly confirm the existence of spectral “colours” such as UV, and radio waves – invisible to human eyes, – by using instruments, which of course show if any spectrum is present or not. Supernaturalists just assume their mythological entities or energies exist, despite wide coverage detection systems showing a blank. They have been hiding magical mythical gods in gaps in knowledge for centuries.

    What I find in atheistic circles, however, is very different from a shoulder shrug, and this is what puzzles me because it’s like the colour-blind person trying to deny the existence of colour.

    This is just your imagination. Absence of evidence is evidence of absence, when there should be evidence if claims are true.

    It’s as if, because there’s such a huge inclination in the human psyche towards superstition, the atheist is scared of it and so horrified by some of its manifestations that it declares there’s no such thing as the supernatural.

    Atheists and scientists cannot see your illusions because they do not exist outside of your own brain. Not because of any deficiency in their viewing or measuring techniques. If it is detectable as having ANY effect on the material world, it is natural. If it does not have detectable effects, it is either irrelevant or non-existent.

    This seems to be what’s emerging in the responses to the original question; it’s as if the last thing you want to do is acknowledge the possibility that any ‘supernaturality’ exists so you find every possible excuse.

    There is no need for excuses for non-belief in leprechauns, invisible dragons, multitudes of gods, Harry Potter magic or tooth-fairies. When science accounts for ALL the energies in a system, there are no magic extra ones (even if some bronze age myth-writers thought otherwise).

    Am I correct with this assessment, or have I got it all wrong?

    Wrong I’m afraid. You are just projecting and rationalising your delusions. Throughout the world, people take, or have taken, a whole range of different supernatural beliefs on “faith” from people they trusted -(usually in childhood), but there is no evidence to support any of them as actually existing beyond images locked into believers’ brains by indoctrination.

    Over the years science has proved so many theist claims and myths to be wrong!
    “God-did-it-by-magic”, has been repeatedly confirmed for centuries, to simply be expressions of personal ignorance of the genuine explanation.

  204. In reply to #228 by Alan4discussion:

    Scientists regularly confirm the existence of spectral “colours” such as UV, and radio waves – invisible to human eyes, – by using instruments, which of course show if any spectrum is present or not.

    This is exactly the thing that puzzles me. Can you not understand that despite the sophisticated diagrams and data you put before him regarding ‘dimensions of perception’, the colour-blind person still won’t really understand what you mean? Why is there no willingness among atheists to acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests and ‘catch-all’ experiments, there could easily exist a supernaturality/intelligence beyond our understanding? Why this insistence that ‘absence of evidence IS evidence of absence’ (notice, claimed by a physicist) when you know it really cannot apply to supernaturality or spiritual existence?

  205. Why is there no willingness among atheists to acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests and ‘catch-all’ experiments, there could easily exist a supernaturality/intelligence beyond our understanding?

    Why are you so eager to embrace the idea if there is absolutely no way to demonstrate it?

    Seriously, everything you’ve posted is obviously designed to give credibility to supernatural, but you try to do so with absolutely nothing concrete and then add that we should observe and reflect on the idea that things can exist that we can’t prove exist? That in effect lie beyond our understanding?

    You do realize that still leaves you with all of your work ahead of you don’t you? That just because you clearly believe something doesn’t make it true? Bear in mind if we can’t prove these things exists and they lie beyond our understanding, you can’t be an authority on it as you have no method of achieving such an understanding.

    Why this insistence that ‘absence of evidence IS evidence of absence’ (notice, claimed by a physicist) when you know it really cannot apply to supernaturality or spiritual existence?

    If these things are beyond our comprehension, how do you propose to know any of it?

    There are a great number of mysteries that lie in the this universe, many we will no doubt discover, many will no doubt remain opaque. But making blanket accusations about what atheists are willing to accept and simply trying to insert the supernatural as viable when there is literally no reason to accept any of it is neither mysterious nor opaque. It is based on belief and superstition that has no grounds in reality beyond the belief itself.

    We have been able to with the many fields of science discover so many different things about ourselves and the universe that go far beyond what our senses could perceive. Yet you wish to persist that your positions are somehow immune because science can’t discover the supernatural or perceive an Intelligent Designer?

    Once again I ask you, why should we take a single bit of this seriously?

  206. In reply to #229 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #228 by Alan4discussion:

    This is exactly the thing that puzzles me. Can you not understand that despite the sophisticated diagrams and data you put before him regarding ‘dimensions of perception’, the colour-blind person still won’t really understand what you mean?

    You continue to miss the point! We are all colour blind to ultraviolet and Xrays, but have no difficulty in understanding black and white or false-colour images in these wavelengths made by our instruments. Do you really not understand what is meant by an Xray photograph?

    Why is there no willingness among atheists to acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests and ‘catch-all’ experiments, there could easily exist a supernaturality/intelligence beyond our understanding?

    If we can’t detect something by physical means, that shows that it has no effect on the physical world we live in, so is either irrelevant or non-existent. Do you really think there could be undetectable fairies, leprechauns, pots of gold at the foot of the rainbow, or thousands of gods?

    Why this insistence that ‘absence of evidence IS evidence of absence’ (notice, claimed by a physicist) when you know it really cannot apply to supernaturality

    A lack of detectable traces of evidence is the usual reasonable basis for rejecting a claim.

    • Judge: Where is the evidence for the prosecution?

    • Council for the prosecution: There isn’t any Mi Lud! – but I thought you might like to imagine some!

    • Judge: Case dismissed.

    How would I “know” that, if it has no detectable properties in the real material world, and more to the point, how would you “know” that?

    Your lack of understanding of the science of matter and energy, is not a basis for making a claim.

    “I have no idea about this, so it must be supernatural magic”, really isn’t a credible argument for adults!

    or spiritual existence?

    Ah! Now spiritual existence is a different issue. The neuroscientists are well on to pinning down the seats of “spiritual existence” right there in parts of the brain!

    Now, researchers have completed research that indicates spirituality is a complex phenomenon, and multiple areas of the brain are responsible for the many aspects of spiritual experiences.

  207. In reply to #229 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #228 by Alan4discussion:

    Scientists regularly confirm the existence of spectral “colours” such as UV, and radio waves – invisible to human eyes, – by using instruments, which of course show if any spectrum is present or not.

    This is exactly the thing that puzzles me. Can you not unders…

    I am colour blind. There are many types, and it affects me zero unless my job were spotting a red leaf in a green field. But you know the great thing, CumbriaSmithy? I can pull up a website and study the tests and charts to find comparisons designed by scientists.

    I understand the differences as described by people viewing the data with me. The scientists will have say, two pictures precisely matched to look the same for me, whilst looking the most different to those with stronger genetic ties to fruit-eating primate’s eyesight. Most of the time the statement from the participant will be “yours is just less colourful and browner”.

    I am, contrary to your blanket proclamation of stupidity, able to understand what “less colourful, and more brown” means. And the means with which we’re informed of the genetic diversity of human eyes, doesn’t come from a 2000 year old book from the middle east. You’re missing out on so much actual fact and discovery, and wasting more and more time, the more you settle for the “The Best Of” album- “Middle East”. It’s thousands of years out of the loop buddy.

  208. To put the discussion about the human eye in perspective, look at it for what it is, a radio receiver, just like the VHF radio on my boat, the UHF radio I use at work, which differ only in that they transmit as well as receive, and the microwave that I use to reheat pizza. There are many links that show this, quite a good one is here.

    http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/science/know_l1/emspectrum.html

    Other animals have eyes that receive at differing frequencies, some more, some less, but all within the generally close bandwidth, depending on the environmental pressures of how they live. We, clever little apes that we are, have built other receivers that can see all the way from near dead flat line long wave to extreme gamma ray, and guess who is not there, God. If he really did exist, the radio spectrum is where he would be, patiently waiting for us to evolve, as CumbriaSmithy suggests was his instrumentality, sufficiently for us to get in touch.

    The Bible is not the black obelisk from the wonderful Space Odyssey 2001 film, that set so many minds alight. Although, if the “Curiousity” rover found a Bible on the surface of Mars, now that would be something, but I am not holding my breath.

  209. In reply to #232 by Timothy McNamara:

    I am colour blind. There are many types, and it affects me zero unless my job were spotting a red leaf in a green field.

    This is interesting, Timothy, but just as a side issue (but which does affect the point I’m trying to make here) do you suffer from migraines and see the coloured spangly effects across your vision which migraine sufferers sometimes experience?

  210. In reply to #226 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    I would like to try to clarify what I tried to say with the [example of endorphins]. The absence of endorphins in our brains would mean we would not experience pleasure and therefore pleasure would be an unknown concept. I guess it’s the same as trying to explain the concept of colour to someone who sees in only grey tones. Rather than saying he didn’t believe in colour, the person would have to shrug his shoulders and ‘take our word’ for it.

    We don’t see X-Rays, we are all X-Ray blind. But we know they exist from investigation and by applying the theories we have formulated from looking at other forms of wave. We confirm the existence of X-Rays every day by using the technologies we have made based on our knowing that they exist. We don’t need to take anyone’s word for X-Rays even though X-Rays are invisible, and we can’t hear them, smell them, or touch them.

    Rather than saying he didn’t believe in colour, the person would have to shrug his shoulders and ‘take our word’ for it.

    No, he really wouldn’t. Because there is abundant evidence that colour exists just as X-Rays exist.

    What I find in atheistic circles, however, is very different from a shoulder shrug, and this is what puzzles me …

    Atheists are sceptics. It is normal and healthy to ask when one sees no evidence for something. You don’t get a shoulder-shrug from a sceptic when you talk about the supernatural because they are genuinely interested to learn, if the supernatural really exists, and quickly become disillusioned when that evidence does not appear.

    … it’s like the colour-blind person trying to deny the existence of colour.

    As above, present the evidence and a sceptic will no longer deny the supernatural.

    … there’s such a huge inclination in the human psyche towards superstition

    That’s an empirical claim – but you present no evidence for it. I’m sceptical; is that really true? It seems to me that what inclination there is towards superstition is explained by the evidence. For example: People born in Saudi Arabia tend to believe in the superstitions of the Muslim faith, according to numerous surveys.

    … the atheist is scared of [superstition] and so horrified by some of its manifestations that [the Atheist] declares there’s no such thing as the supernatural.

    No, I know of no-one who is scared of superstition. Frightened by the lack of thinking involved in supernatural belief, the horrific outcomes from the poor thinking habits that spring from dogma, the terrible waste of lives and resources … yes. But of superstition itself? No.

    This seems to be what’s emerging in the responses to the original question; it’s as if the last thing you want to do is acknowledge the possibility that any ‘supernaturality’ exists so you find every possible excuse.

    As a sceptic I remain open-minded. All I ask is for some verifiable, repeatable, evidence. Why is that so hard?

    Am I correct with this assessment, or have I got it all wrong?

    We’ll I think the above answers that question in some detail.

    Peace.

  211. In reply to #229 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Can you not understand that despite the sophisticated diagrams and data you put before him regarding ‘dimensions of perception’, the colour-blind person still won’t really understand what you mean?

    You’ll have to find a colour blind person willing to testify to that before I’ll believe it. We even have testimony from a colour blind person in this thread saying the opposite [Timothy #232].

    Why is there no willingness among atheists to acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests and ‘catch-all’ experiments, there could easily exist a supernaturality/intelligence beyond our understanding?

    There’s a lot going on all at once here.

    Sceptics are ready to acknowledge evidence. It doesn’t have to be physical, but it does have to be rooted in reality (i.e. verifiable).

    Plenty of things are acknowledged by sceptics that are not physical: energy, light, emotions, justice, philosophy, law, statistics, mathematics, time, fiction, …

    I have never heard of a ‘catch-all’ experiment before. I’m intrigued, do tell.

    Many things in the Universe are known not by experiment, but by observation and the fact that they fit with the previous understanding of the Universe – like Black Holes which were predicted before they were actually observed to boot.

    We also know many things today that were beyond the understanding of our forebears. The sceptic does not discount the possibility of something simply because it is beyond our understanding.

    The sceptic does not discount the likelihood of intelligence beyond our understanding. Alien life has had plenty of time to get ahead of us.

    You seem to have the idea that sceptics think in white versus red terms – that there are no shades of pink in our World.

    Not true. I am willing to grant the possibility that a supernatural realm exists. The amount of evidence required to establish such a claim is mountainous. The evidence itself is extra-ordinarily noticeable for a very special reason: not one iota exists. This puts the probability of a supernatural realm in the scarlet band of my white-to-red scale. It is so improbable that I live my life as if it doesn’t exist because it can clearly have no effect on me even if it does!

    Why this insistence that ‘absence of evidence IS evidence of absence’ (notice, claimed by a physicist) …

    And why would you expect a different response from a Physicist?

    Why this insistence that ‘absence of evidence IS evidence of absence’ when you know it really cannot apply to supernaturality or spiritual existence?

    How do we know this?

    Let us grant you the possibility that something outside nature can exist without evidence. Now what? Why should we care? What possible claim can this thing have upon us?

    Peace.

  212. Just to add a little to this; color blind people see colors. They just cannot distinguish between certain colors.

    On a related note, I recently read about women who could have an extra photoreceptor in their retinas. Most humans have three types of cones (photoreceptors) it is possible for women have four. It would enable them to see MILLIONS of colors that no one else can see.
    (It would have to be women due to genetic reasons tied to the X chromosome)

    However, would they KNOW they saw these extra colors??? This is the point (IMO) that CumbriaSmithy is hanging their argument on. Even if they knew, could they articulate those colors to a man who couldn’t see them?

    Anyway, the issue of whether they would know is moot, my friend Cumbria, because, see, humans can extend their senses by using machines and ingenuity. You seem to think that articulating the colors meaning is all the color is. NO, it is a particular wavelength of the electromagnetic spectrum. It actually exists whether we can describe it IN WORDS or not. The question is, can we detect it and PROVE it exists?

    So, we CAN measure colors that we can’t see. UV comes to mind. But, please read a little about the electromagnetic spectrum (of which visible light is a small small portion). We know about all sorts of “colors” of electromagnetism. Just google “electromagnetic spectrum” and look at the wavelength of visible light vs. the wavelength of all the electromagnetism we CANNOT see.

    I am sure you won’t get this, but, radio waves and microwaves are the same phenomena as visible light. Does your microwave work? Can you “see” the colors of microwaves? How ’bout that radio in your car? See? PROOF!

    BTW, infrared, X-rays, gamma and cosmic rays (very hard to even detect) all fall in this same category of electromagnetic radiation.

    In reply to #235 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #226 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    I would like to try to clarify what I tried to say with the [example of endorphins]. The absence of endorphins in our brains would mean we would not experience pleasure and therefore pleasure would be an unknown concept. I guess it’s the same as…

  213. In reply to #234 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    I am colour blind. There are many types, and it affects me zero unless my job were spotting a red leaf in a green field.

    This is interesting, Timothy, but just as a side issue (but which does affect the point I’m trying to make here) do you suffer from migraines and see the coloured spangly effects across your vision which migraine sufferers sometimes experience?

    Surely you can’t be asking Timothy for evidence?

    Why can you not simply believe that what Timothy says about his colour blindness is true?

    Peace.

  214. In reply to #237 by crookedshoes:

    Hi crookedshoes,

    Thank you for an interesting addition.

    Most humans have three types of cones (photoreceptors) it is possible for women to have four. It would enable them to see MILLIONS of colors that no one else can see … would they KNOW they saw these extra colors??? This is the point (IMO) that CumbriaSmithy is hanging [his] argument on. Even if they knew, could they articulate those colors to a man who couldn’t see them?

    Yes. Just as we can explain invisible electron beams inside old-fashioned TV sets.

    In addition, as you also point out, these colors are still a part of a verifiable reality. Thus, it is possible for men (and women who have only 3 color receptors) to ‘see’ those colors remotely -in the same way that we can all ‘see’ infra-red.

    When you talk of proof you are awarding CumbriaSmithy’s argument too much credibility.

    1. In order to begin forming your hypothesis you need facts. You began by observing people’s reactions to colors.

    2. To generate a hypothesis you need observations e.g.: There is a color that is more ‘blue’ than the most violet color in the rainbow. You generate this hypothesis on the basis that some people claim to see more violet in certain pictures.

    3. In order to prove something you must prove a hypothesis, e.g.: you use prisms and lenses to separate off (what you hope is) invisible light beyond the violet end of the first prism’s spectrum and focus it on some light sensitive paper. The paper reacts as it would if exposed to light. You have discovered ‘black light’.

    CumbriaSmithy has yet to get past stage one. He offers us no observations, no evidence, on which to even build a hypothesis such as ‘there is a supernatural realm’. Proof of such an hypothesis is therefore still a very, very, long way off.

    Peace.

  215. The point I’m trying to make is that knowledge is not the same as experience. I know plenty about eyes, colour (I’ve worked with colour for most of my working life), retinas, nodes, etc, but unless we experience colour we don’t really know what it is. If you haven’t experienced migraines and the associated visual effects (aura) you really don’t understand them. They can be described and emulated on a screen or painting, but actually experiencing them is a different thing. If Timothy does experience migraine aura he will almost certainly know what colour is, because the colours can be very vivid because they’re not generated by the retina. However, if he doesn’t, his experiential knowledge of colour will be limited. Similarly, some people don’t remember their dreams when they wake up, so they think the rest of us who do are weird and fanciful.

    Is the point beginning to sink in? Could it be that some of us are capable of contemplating the existence of I.D. and others are not?

  216. In reply to #229 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Why is there no willingness among atheists to acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests and ‘catch-all’ experiments, there could easily exist a supernaturality/intelligence beyond our understanding?
    This is exactly the thing that puzzles me.

    You are making the same common mistake and assumption that the religious always make. Because you don’t understand something, doesn’t mean that other people can’t understand it. Instead of saying, “I can’t understand this”, and stop there. You then go on to attribute the explanation to a being, that has been created in your imagination, or in the prehistoric imagination of our ancestors. It is OK to not understand something. Every contributor in this forum will acknowledge that there is stuff that they don’t understand, but that is never a justification to substitute a catch all solution entity to fill in the gaps.

    One of the consequences of this psychological profile is that the religious then go on to insist that everyone else in the world should share their lack of understanding. That’s what makes religion so dangerous. But I digress.

    I’ve read all your posts, and it doesn’t matter what Alan, or Sheepdog or any of the other rational posters say. It is impossible for your brain to admit this knowledge. This is because you are a victim of indoctrination, probably in childhood to believe what you are writing in this forum. If you practice an activity, your brain lays down new neural pathways to record and reinforce this activity. Its is how people get good at sport, or acting, or studying for exams. It is brain plasticity. It’s only recently been discovered but your brain has been through an intensive period of repetitive activity which has locked in the desperate need you express in here for an outside agency to fill in the gaps, and it is impossible for you to escape. It doesn’t matter if one of the rational posters writes a definitive and final refutation of your view, you won’t hear it, see it or acknowledge it.

    If your religious indoctrination was done to you before you had reached an age that you could think for yourself, then you are a victim of child abuse, just like every other child whose blank slate brain has had religion imprinted on it through repetitive practice. Brain plasticity in action.

    It will be almost impossible for you to escape. You will never understand or accept Alan’s explanation. But there are Shawshank Redemption spoons available to you. You can escape. Your belief in a deity is actually a diagnosable psychological delusion. Dawkins’ addresses this concept in The God Delusion. Challenge yourself. Show some intellectual courage. Stand in front of the mirror and see a victim of indoctrination. Read The God Delusion. You will feel better, and be able to relax in the world you see around you.

  217. In reply to #240 by CumbriaSmithy:

    The point I’m trying to make is that knowledge is not the same as experience. I know plenty about eyes, colour (I’ve worked with colour for most of my working life), retinas, nodes, etc, but unless we experience colour we don’t really know what it is.

    I can assure you that scientists using multispectral scanners know precisely what “colour” is! – Right across the wavelengths.

    If you haven’t experienced migraines and the associated visual effects (aura) you really don’t understand them. They can be described and emulated on a screen or painting, but actually experiencing them is a different thing.

    What you are talking about here is not the colour spectrum of light. It is NOT your neurological perception of colour, as stimulated by the radiation/light via rods and cones of eyes and nerves.

    In other words, it is your image of colour in your brain. – which could be real representation of images of the world, or in this case, imaginary images generated by irregularities in the brain’s chemistry.

    Similar illusory effects can be generated by drugs replacing neurotransmitters at your synapses.

    If Timothy does experience migraine aura he will almost certainly know what colour is, because the colours can be very vivid because they’re not generated by the retina.

    Those would be illusory images of colour internally generated, not perceptions of the world.

    However, if he doesn’t, his experiential knowledge of colour will be limited.

    Not at all. His interpretation of the external radiation detected by his eyes would be a genuine representation of the outside world. Your “migraine colours” are illusory.

    (Your claim is like saying you do not have a perception of reality unless you are popping happy-pills and are away on a psychedelic trip!! )

    Similarly, some people don’t remember their dreams when they wake up, so they think the rest of us who do are weird and fanciful.

    Dreams are also illusions.

    Is the point beginning to sink in?

    Yep! Your spiritual illusions are internally generated by your brain, just like you migraine colour illusions.

    Could it be that some of us are capable of contemplating the existence of I.D. and others are not?

    All can contemplate supernatural magic, Some can tell illusion and delusion from features of reality, – and some can’t!

    It is well explaied here:- http://www.richarddawkins.net/books/2013/8/1/the-god-delusion#

  218. You might be on to something. A neurological disorder (similar to that which causes migraines) could be responsible for you seeing things and believing in all kinds of crazy shit.

    In reply to #240 by CumbriaSmithy:

    The point I’m trying to make is that knowledge is not the same as experience. I know plenty about eyes, colour (I’ve worked with colour for most of my working life), retinas, nodes, etc, but unless we experience colour we don’t really know what it is. If you haven’t experienced migraines and the ass…

  219. In reply to #240 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    The point I’m trying to make is that knowledge is not the same as experience.

    I looked up several Definitions of knowledge:
    Facts, information, and skills acquired through experience … etc. is the common theme running through those definitions.

    Please help me to understand: In what way are knowledge and experience different?

    Also, why is it important that I understand that difference? Surely knowledge only has value if it is true?

    I have had many experiences. I do not count my memory of them all equally. Some led to knowledge, others were dreams and still others led to mistakes, falsehood and lies.

    Experience, alone, is rarely a path to truth.

    … unless we experience colour we don’t really know what it is.

    As far as we know our brains being constructed the same way argues for a level of consistency in sense experience.

    However, I will grant that it is possible that we all experience colour differently.

    This does not stop us from defining colour in an objective manner – in a way that allows us all to understand when someone standing next to us says “look at that red rose” we know which rose they are referring to because it is the only red rose among twenty white roses – even though we may experience ‘red’ quite differently.

    If you haven’t experienced migraines and the associated visual effects (aura) you really don’t understand them.

    I have experienced migraines. I did have difficulty describing them to non-sufferers. This isn’t getting us anywhere. A Doctor studying migraine needs to understand symptoms. Personal descriptions of symptoms are often highly subjective. Part of the skill of a General Practitioner is to be able to pick out the items in the Patient’s subjective description and match them to an objective description of a condition.

    But note: The real value in the Doctor-Patient dialogue is in reaching an objective diagnosis, not in the Patient’s description of their sense experience. Where the
    Patient’s experience is highly personal, and therefore valuable to them, it may be of no consequence whatsoever to anyone else.

    They can be described and emulated on a screen or painting, but actually experiencing them is a different thing. If Timothy does experience migraine aura he will almost certainly know what colour is, because the colours can be very vivid because they’re not generated by the retina.

    Two things:

    If you ask Timothy for evidence that he experiences colour in a non-eye-detected form you undermine your own argument [Comment 229]:

    … acknowledge that yes, even though we can’t detect it by physical means or by using physical tests … there could easily exist a [something else]

    Also, if you want to argue, as above, that sense experience is different for everyone, Timothy’s testimony is only truly useful if you can then match it to an objective description of colour. Like the Patient, Timothy’s personal experience will be of great interest to him, but without a link to an objective view of what it might signify it is valueless to the rest of us. We cannot verify it, we cannot test it, we cannot measure it, we cannot repeat it.

    As much as we love Timothy, and as much as we might study his painting, we will gain no insight into his migraine – what it is, where it comes from, where it goes, or why it even exists.

    However, if he [Timothy] doesn’t [experience migraine aura], his experiential knowledge of colour will be limited. Similarly, some people don’t remember their dreams when they wake up, so they think the rest of us who do are weird and fanciful.

    Some people experience some things, and others don’t experience those things, is that what you mean? This goes back to what I have already said above. A minority of people claiming an experience in common is interesting. In order to excite more than casual curiosity, however, there has to be touch point – a place where we can say that there is a link to an objective, verifiable, reality. Just like the Doctor diagnosing migraine, to help me understand you need to provide me with some evidence that actually makes sense outside your own head.

    Is the point beginning to sink in?

    What point?

    Could it be that some of us are capable of contemplating the existence of I.D. and others are not?

    I contemplate the beauty and power of the Invisible Pink Unicorn every day. I still don’t get I.D..

    Peace.

  220. In reply to #134 by Danny Hynes:

    What if there are many realities, or many segments of reality, or many universes, or many segments of the universe, some perfect, others not so perfect. What if we choose to be born into this imperfect universe or reality? Perhaps we wanted to experience existence in an imperfect reality?

    We can dream up lots of potential plots for an imaginary world. They can seem very real, but they are not.

    The fact is…SOMEONE SHARED OR REGURGITATED THEIR VIEWS OF MANY REALITIES AND UNIVERSES. Do you remember who first told you this?

    Notice how you stress that we are born into “this imperfect world.” Why are you so certain that absolute perfection exists somewhere and somehow? You have also tried to make sense of cruddy situations by framing them as something to contrast with good situations so that you’ll appreciate the good moments in life much more so. You are attempting to project your value system onto reality. You have decided what is good and bad, right and wrong and assumed that these views are absolute truth for all. There is no “good” and “bad” that needs to be contrasted. It’s just your opinion.

  221. In reply to #241 by David R Allen:

    You are making the same common mistake and assumption that the religious always make. Because you don’t understand something, doesn’t mean that other people can’t understand it. …

    Yes, David, I can assure you, I do understand all you and others are saying; you all make it very clear. However, your point about hardwiring can also be applied to your own worldview. This site is full of assuring and repetitive doctrine that atheism is the only valid worldview, so I would suggest you’re all doing exactly the same as you accuse us religiots of doing – concrete-lining your mental bunkers.

    And yes, I have read The God Delusion, and whilst I can’t dispute many of the facts he provides in the book the one vital thing that he seems to struggle with is that for God to have intelligently designed the universe in all its complexity, including evolution and natural selection, and billions of years in advance of instigating it, He would have to be infinitely complex. Oh dear, does that mean RD either can’t understand the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence, or does he deliberately refuse to contemplate it? The rest of the book is essentially anti-religious dogma (providing us with excuses to not believe) or indicators of a diminishing probability of God or gods rather than something that will persuade us that God doesn’t exist. You’ll notice I read the book sceptically, in the same way as atheists tend to read the Bible.

  222. ‘He’ had designed everything perfectly, but left one thing out.

    I reread a few comments and had an “aha” moment. You acknowledge that we are imperfect in an imperfect world. We can talk in detail about all our imperfections in “design” and you will fail to see this information objectively. You have decided that this imperfection is part of a plan created by “God.” I could tell you that I have a deviated septum and you will be thinking that is is part of a Grand Design. Everything is filtered though your “God Did it” glasses.

    Is the point beginning to sink in? Could it be that some of us are capable of contemplating the existence of I.D. and others are not?

    I’m reminded how people used to think I was “psychic.” People would say that some people are capable of psychic ability and others are not. “Contemplating” that’s an interesting choice… contemplating is subjective and fuzzy. No one really knows if you’re properly “contemplating.” You could be hallucinating and still think that you are properly contemplating. You may be overlooking something and focusing on something else and not know it. You admitted that we are imperfect. Are you so certain that your contemplating is without flaws? Yes, our thinking is flawed which is good reason to create tests and instruments that measure what we experience and observe so that we are not relying on our flawed perception.

  223. This site is full of assuring and repetitive doctrine that atheism is the only valid worldview, so I would suggest you’re all doing exactly the same as you accuse us religiots of doing – concrete-lining your mental bunkers.

    You’re conflating atheism – the view of “no God” with what is know about the actual physical world. You are confusing mental thought/contemplation of knowledge and information with imagination and creative thinking.

  224. In reply to #69 by RDfan:

    Evidence of purpose. If the universe was designed, wouldn’t there be evidence of purpose everywhere?

    Wouldn’t a mountain have a purpose? Wouldn’t we all have clear purposes of our own? Wouldn’t the planets and stars have a clear purpose for their existence? Wouldn’t the shape of a banana, to borrow..

    What a mess this thread has become — too many egos and too much argumentum ad hominum. Shame on you. This is not Facebook.

  225. In reply to #246 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #241 by David R Allen:

    Yes, David, I can assure you, I do understand all you and others are saying; you all make it very clear. However, your point about hardwiring can also be applied to your own worldview. This site is full of assuring and repetitive doctrine that atheism is the only valid worldview, so I would suggest you’re all doing exactly the same as you accuse us religiots of doing – concrete-lining your mental bunkers.

    You argue above that we are identical in our bunkered thinking. The Christian and the atheist.

    This is the crux of the difference between the rational, and the irrational. Between you and me. As it was argued above by one or the rational correspondents, which I endorse. If Jesus turns up tomorrow. Game over. Proof. Just one miracle would do it. A stacking contest for angels on a pin head. I am a scientific skeptic whose view reflects the prevailing evidence. I WILL CHANGE MY MIND. You however, WILL NEVER CHANGE YOUR MIND, because evidence is irrelevant when blind faith is the only justification. Unlike Einstein’s observers who were all created equal, your view and my view are not validly equal. One is evidence based. One is faith based.

    Your argument of equivalence of views must fail.

  226. In reply to #246 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #241 by David R Allen:

    You are making the same common mistake and assumption that the religious always make. Because you don’t understand something, doesn’t mean that other people can’t understand it. …

    Yes, David, I can assure you, I do understand all you and others are saying; you all make it very clear.

    But despite it being clear, you still only see a caricatured reflection of a reversal of your own view.

    This site is full of assuring and repetitive doctrine that atheism is the only valid worldview,

    “Atheism” does not have a “doctrine”, any more that “religions” have a single doctrine or single god. It is only those whose blinkered view makes them think in terms of their own view and “THE OTHER ONE”, who can only see opposing views as “doctrine”!

    If you actually look at the discussions on this site objectively, you will see free-thinkers, with a diversity of views, with most using science and reasoning, to try to resolve differences and establish facts about the world as accurately as possible.

    so I would suggest you’re all doing exactly the same as you accuse us religiots of doing – concrete-lining your mental bunkers.

    This is just a further manifestation of “my view” and the reversed image of it as “THE other ONE”!

    And yes, I have read The God Delusion, and whilst I can’t dispute many of the facts he provides in the book the one vital thing that he seems to struggle with is that for God to have intelligently designed the universe in all its complexity, including evolution and natural selection, and billions of years in advance of instigating it,

    We are still waiting for some theist to explain how that works – They all have different stories, none of which make sense, or have any credibility when compared to the scientific explanations.

    The usual one thing they have in common, is that those proposing them, show no understanding of the scientific mechanisms they claim have been designed.

    All they offer is their own personal determined wish to believe in an anthropomorphic, and simplistic, kiddy version:- “The big sky-fairy-did-it-by-magic, so that shows I understand it best”!

    one vital thing that he seems to struggle with is that for God to have intelligently designed the universe in all its complexity,

    “God” with a capital “g”? You don’t seem to have got as far as recognising all the numerous gods claimed by different cultures!

    He would have to be infinitely complex.

    Which god or goddess? How could you possibly know that?

    That is simply a repetition of indoctrinated blind faith, with a bit of grandstanding, flattery, for the god-delusion in your head!

    It kids you that it is master of the universe, but like the migraine colours, it is only an illusion of being master of the universe – with the image preserved by blanking out inputs from material world which show its true nature and true status.

    Oh dear, does that mean RD either can’t understand the concept of infinite power,

    Perhaps he does understand it, as I do, but in doing so recognises that such a thing does not exist. Such proposals usually come from people who have negligible understanding of the mathematical concepts of “infinity” (or even extremely large), and no understanding of matter, energy or “power”.

    To them, they are just incomprehensible big words (like: eternity, colour, energy, complexity, and universal) which sound impressive when bandied around in discussions with other people who pretend to understand them, but fail to acknowledge, that some scientists actually do understand them.

    The fundamental difference, is that faith-believers try to match reality to the illusions in their heads, while scientists try to match their mental images, to the underlying reality they have investigated, tested, and had independently confirmed.

    As with your “colours”, they know what a colour spectrum is throughout the universe, not just someone’s illusory mental image of it inside their head!

  227. In reply to #246 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    This site is full of assuring and repetitive doctrine that atheism is the only valid worldview …

    I apologise on behalf of those of us who have done our best to address your comments about I.D. with open minds and questions seeking your understanding. Your complete failure – so far – to address those questions and requests is noted.

    I would suggest you’re all doing exactly the same as you accuse us religiots of doing – concrete-lining your mental bunkers.

    Please show me where I have done this.

    … does … [Richard Dawkins] [not] understand the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence, or does he deliberately refuse to contemplate it?

    I cannot speak for Prof. Dawkins, but for myself – the former. Please explain the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence.

    The rest of the book [The God Delusion] is essentially anti-religious …

    True.

    The rest of the book [The God Delusion] is essentially … dogma …

    How so?

    (Dogma: A set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true)

    The rest of the book [The God Delusion] is essentially … indicators of a diminishing probability of God or gods rather than something that will persuade us that God doesn’t exist.

    True.

    Peace.

  228. In reply to #252 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    Please show me where I have done this [concrete-lined our mental bunkers].

    Here: “If we can’t detect something by physical means, that shows that it has no effect on the physical world we live in, so is either irrelevant or non-existent.” Such a statement helps you and others to justify your position, but if you think about it carefully it means nothing. We can’t perform control or placebo experiments on I.D.

    Please explain the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence.

    To do that we would both also need infinite intelligence, and, probably more difficult for you, infinite time.

    (Dogma: A set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true)

    Agreed. That definition has been worded very carefully. I would guess the OED thought long and hard about how to put it.

  229. In reply to #253 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    Please show me where I have done this [concrete-lined our mental bunkers].

    Here: “If we can’t detect something by physical means, that shows that it has no effect on the physical world we live in, so is either irrelevant or non-existent.”

    That was Alan4discussion [#231], not me. I will not defend that statement, I would have said no such a thing.

    Here is something I really did say in this thread:

    Plenty of things are acknowledged by sceptics that are not physical: energy, light, emotions, justice, philosophy, law, statistics, mathematics, time, fiction, …

    Please explain the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence.

    To do that we would both also need infinite intelligence, and, probably more difficult for you, infinite time.

    Yet you claim to know that it exists. How do you know? Come on Smithy tell us – this is your big chance, a thousand sceptics are hanging on your every word right now. Really, we want to know.

    The rest of the book [The God Delusion] is essentially … dogma …

    How so?

    Agree [definition of dogma]

    And your argument for why Prof. Dawkin’s book The God Delusion is dogma would be … ?

    So all of my questions remain unanswered still.

    Come on Smithy, you’re not even trying. You can do better than that, surely?

    Peace.

  230. Alan4
    This has been a most masterful dissection.

    I just wanted to bring up something a little off center. This is a bit personal, so well…. here goes.

    i am a lucid dreamer. I am fully aware that i am dreaming and can control the “flow” of my dreams. I can even wake up in the middle of a dream and decide to go back to sleep and continue the dream (especially if it is a pleasant one). this does not happen all the time. It never happens if I have had alcohol. It never happens in the night time. However, it always is in the hours of the morning when the sun is up but i am still asleep. Curiously enough, I do not ever remember a single dream EXCEPT my lucid dreams.

    BTW, this is rather controversial and I have had conversation with a few professors of Psychology who regard it as horse shit and some who are genuinely interested. Those who think it is bullshit tend to claim that i am kind of physiologically awake and mentally not all the way awake when this occurs. Therefore, not dreaming, but rather kind of “day dreaming”… I don’t really know which it is.

    Now to my point. I know that I am dreaming and even though Sofia Vergara and Halle Berre may star in my dream (even simultaneously), I know that I did not actually experience the scenario but rather hallucinated it. (I only say this to be provocative, my dreams are not of this ilk)…

    CumbriaSmithy would go into the bar looking for high fives because he/she thinks that it actually happened on some level. That he/she EXPERIENCED it. Laughable.

    And regarding infinite power or infinite anything, Attributing infinite anything is bullshit. You’d have to have infinite time to stand and witness something to ensure that it was infinite.

    Just like claiming the god thing knows everything. You’d have to have a second being that knew everything to verify whether the god thing knew everything. Or you could just make up bullshit and insist you are correct.

    Infinite is a concept that absolutely fucks with people because they just do not think at all past the generic term. There are implications to saying infinite, and NONE of them are verifiable.

    In reply to #242 by Alan4discussion:

    In reply to #240 by CumbriaSmithy:

    The point I’m trying to make is that knowledge is not the same as experience. I know plenty about eyes, colour (I’ve worked with colour for most of my working life), retinas, nodes, etc, but unless we experience colour we don’t really know what it is.

    I can assur…

  231. In reply to #254 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #253 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    Please show me where I have done this [concrete-lined our mental bunkers].

    Here: “If we can’t detect something by physical means, that shows that it has no effect on the physical world we live in, so is either irrelevant or non-existent.”

    That was Alan4discussion [#231], not me. I will not defend that statement, I would have said no such a thing.

    Just to clarify that point: – If a diligent search has been made using modern science, and there is no trace of a physical effect in the material world, it is reasonable to deduce to a very high probability, that there is no cause. Hence fairies, invisible dragons etc are dismissed.

    This is rational behaviour, not concrete-lined dogmatism.
    To suggest that all thinking apart from gullible acceptance of ANY unevidenced proposition encountered, (or more usually some pet theist notion), is being dogmatic, is simply ludicrous.

    A practical example would be an alleged substance in a chemical reaction.
    No reaction to anything = either absence, or something utterly inert!

  232. In reply to #256 by Alan4discussion:

    Hi Alan,

    Nothing personal. I was trying to keep CumbriaSmithy focused.

    I hope he responds. After all, he says he has the key to knowledge denied to you and me. – what’s not to like.

    Peace.

  233. In reply to #257 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    Hi Alan,

    Best of luck.

    There seem to be quite a lot of my comments and issues unanswered!

    I have been looking at satellite false-colour images since they were first developed for land/ocean surveys, so I was looking forward to this new “enhanced” understanding of colour Smithy offers!

    Unfortunately it seems to be illusory, but despite professing a special interest in the subject of colour @240, he shows no interest in responding to my comments or discussing the wider subject outside of his own head.

  234. To cut to the chase, as this discussion has wandered so far into other areas, many interesting, I concede, that the trees can longer be seen for the leaves. CumbriaSmithy wants to believe, and to make a case for, Intelligent Deign, ID abbreviation deliberately omitted.

    This infers two things, one is intelligence, and the other is design. Taking them one at a time.

    There is nothing in the end result of this process that speaks at all to any intelligence. The contributors to this topic have highlighted many examples of the absolute lack of intelligence involved, and they have still only scratched the surface. SI or “Stupid Design” would actually be an easier case to make.

    There is no “Design” at work in incremental change, and looking at the natural world, all that is visible is incremental change. The changes can be seen to take place at a rate varying in direct proportion to a pressure to change. Nowhere is there any instance where it can be shown a designer started with a clean sheet of paper.

    Designers also require clients, who set the performance criteria of the finished design. My clients tell me how fast, how far, and how else my design will perform, then comes my clean sheet of paper. Yes, in working, I stand on the shoulders of giants, like Newton, and I am inspired and influenced by the best work of the past. My computer wall paper is a painting of the “Cutty Sark.” But I still start with a clean sheet of paper.

    Who was God’s client?

  235. In reply to #259 by Sheepdog:

    Hi Sheepdog,

    CumbriaSmithy wants to believe, and to make a case for, Intelligent Deign

    Oh wow, that’s funny!

  236. In reply to #260 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #259 by Sheepdog:

    Hi Sheepdog,

    CumbriaSmithy wants to believe, and to make a case for, Intelligent Deign …

    Oh wow, that’s funny!

    Yeah, it is. I just wish I could claim it as intentional!

  237. In reply to #259 by Sheepdog:

    There is nothing in the end result of this process that speaks at all to any intelligence. The contributors to this topic have highlighted many examples of the absolute lack of intelligence involved, and they have still only scratched the surface. SI or “Stupid Design” would actually be an easier case to make.

    There is also “inadequate design”! (ID?)

    Coming back to the colour issue.

    If the designs are “perfect” as IDiots often claim, you would have thought humans,- “being made in a perfect god’s all seeing image”, – would have been able to see the full electromagnetic spectrum, without waiting millennia for the scientists to invent technical equipment!

  238. Here’s a point we will all, hopefully, agree on.

    If I.D. was a fact, we have to assume our own intelligence would be far better than it is now. I am obviously living proof of this, and get the feeling here that I’ve missed out somewhere in the evolutionary process!

    So how could it have been better? Similarly, what kind of intelligence might animals have had?

  239. In reply to #264 by CumbriaSmithy:

    So how could it have been better? Similarly, what kind of intelligence might animals have had?

    While humans do have the lead in body size to brain ratio, many animals have considerable intelligence and abilities which surpass humans in several specific areas. Ego-centric humans have been very slow to recognise these planning and thinking skills. Whales and dolphins far out-perform unaided humans in ocean navigation and sonic imaging.

    Extraordinary research from Japan shows that chimpanzees are way ahead of humans in complex memory tests – http://www.richarddawkins.net/news-articles/2013/9/29/-how-chimps-are-making-monkeys-out-of-humans#

    and get the feeling here that I’ve missed out somewhere in the evolutionary process!

    Evolution develops adaptations which are ADEQUATE to compete, not “perfection”! Furthermore, it cobbles them together from adapting existing features, a tiny step at a time.

    Capuchin monkeys and Chimps are about on a par with stone-age men on tool use. They actually leave the nuts to dry for a few days first to make then easier to crack.

    On Assignment: Monkeys Use Stones to Crack Nuts – http://video.nationalgeographic.co.uk/video/news/ng-on-assignment/monkey-nut-crackers-ngoa/

    December 6, 2012—In the Brazilian Cerrado, a National Geographic explorer is studying how bearded capuchin monkeys learned to expertly use stone tools to crack open palm nuts.

  240. In reply to #264 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    Before I reply, just a quick note to say that I am sure that I am not alone in being extremely disappointed that you will not share the concept of infinite power, knowledge and intelligence, and how you know the path to this ‘truth’.

    As it took you so long to respond, I had time to re-read your previous posts and people’s responses. I counted that you have made at least 8 unsubstantiated claims.

    You have a pattern of setting up outrageous claims but not defending them.

    Having been challenged to defend your claim – you attempt to side-step your responsibility by re-starting the conversation without reference to your previous position … yet again.

    I feel it is only right to point out to you that raising people’s expectations of honest dialogue, only to undermine the conversation by pretending that other people’s contributions are valueless, is anti-social.

    How sad.

    Peace.

  241. In reply to #264 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    Here’s a point we will all, hopefully, agree on.

    They say there’s a first time for everything.

    If I.D. was a fact …

    This is the main question in the OP. Most people who have corresponded with you have already answered this question in detail. My direct response to the OP is at Comment #99.

    If I.D. was a fact we have to assume our own intelligence would be far better than it is now.

    Why ours? As Alan4discussion points out, we may not even be the most intelligent beings on Planet Earth … to say nothing of the Cosmos.

    Why, indeed, do you assume that humans would exist at all in a Designed World?

    That said, I would agree that an Intelligent Designer would seem likely to be motivated to design a Universe that gave rise to an intelligence approaching, or equal to, their own.

    On that basis, yes, our own limited intelligence would appear to stand as evidence against intelligent design of this World.

    I am obviously living proof of this …

    I don’t see why?

    I … get the feeling here that I’ve missed out somewhere in the evolutionary process!

    That is definitely not true. You are as evolved as the rest of us. Your comment suggests to me that you may have fundamentally misunderstood what evolution is, and how it proceeds.

    So how could it have been better?

    How could what have been better, and when, and where and – while we’re at it – what do you mean by “better”?

    Clearly, a Designed World’s Creator is not automatically good, wholesome, or fun to know. That suggests to me that being the Creator’s designed-to-be-intelligent playmate might be very uncomfortable.

    Are you saying that your God is evil – or that the World was invented by the Devil?

    Similarly, what kind of intelligence might animals have had?

    It seems obvious to me that a Designed World would not necessarily need many species.

    We have also assumed, up to now, that a Designer would not make any mistakes. I cover this in my Comment #99, but here is another thought along those lines:

    If I were the Designer, I would make many Worlds in my Universe so that I could experiment with lots of different ideas. Are animals needed at all. No. If I wanted a companion so intelligent it could learn to play games that I had invented … And beat me. You know, like chess. Also it wouldn’t need sleep, like me. It would be much more clean-cut than an animal with a much longer life.

    Assuming, like Douglas Adams, that animals and planetary systems could form parts of a humongous computer so that I was divorced from all that excrement and blood-and-guts, and pain and suffering … I suppose I might be happy to be an evil scumbag with my ‘computer’ companion.

    But, of course, all of this is idle speculation on a fiction. It is not a dangerous hobby, but it is a colossal waste of time.

    Even my mean intelligence, focused on the vast Universe, can see that the minuscule number of habitable Worlds – particularly when compared to immense amounts of matter, the many eons of time that have passed, and the humongous amounts of energy that appear to be available – could be taken as evidence that it is not designed.

    If our Universe were designed, it would quite frankly be difficult to conceive of a more slapdash and haphazard one. The Designer would have to be monumentally stupid, lazy, incompetent … or all three.

    Your question is an example of why day-dreams do not make good philosophy.

    Peace.

  242. HI Stephen,

    I’m sorry to have been such a disappointment to you. I hadn’t realised people kept a tally of points raised and/or answered here, so I’ll have to go back and re-read your posts. My time here is limited so it’ll have to wait until after the weekend.

  243. In reply to #268 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Curious. Who is keep a tally of points raised and/or answered?

    You only need to read one post: #99.

  244. In reply to #268 by CumbriaSmithy:

    HI Stephen,

    I’m sorry to have been such a disappointment to you. I hadn’t realised people kept a tally of points raised and/or answered here, so I’ll have to go back and re-read your posts. My time here is limited so it’ll have to wait until after the weekend.

    Your Honour. The question before the court is “What Would You Expect To See (or Not See) In Nature If I.D Was Fact’

    The Prosecution has submitted rational and evidence based answers to the question. Those answers are referenced to accepted, published peer reviewed science. The Prosecution will rely on this evidence in support of its case.

    The defendant has submitted opinion based on faith, without evidence. The defendant has been asked numerous times to supply answers to the prosecution case and is pleading mitigating circumstances. He says, “My time here is limited so it’ll have to wait until after the weekend.” A bit like our “Glorious Leader Reg, can’t come because he has a sore back.” But I digress. The defendant claims that he can’t answer the questions because it is not the weekend.

    I will drawn your Honour’s attention to the blog in question and you will find that Smithy made contributions to the blog as follows. Friday 21st Feb. 3 Posts. Tuesday 25th of Feb. 1 post. Wed 26th of Feb. 3 post. Thur 27th of Feb. 4 posts. Fri 28th of Feb. 2 posts and on an actual weekend, the 1st of March, the defendant submitted 2 posts.

    Your Honour. It would be my submission to the court that the defendant, CumbriaSmithy, far from not being able to answer questions except on weekends, doesn’t actually have a credible evidence based answer to the questions, and has posted this late defence in an attempt to escape from the responsibility all posters have in forums, to support their submissions with evidence, not just opinion.

    I would ask that Your Honour find the case proven, and that CumbriaSmithy be found to be an unreliable witness.

  245. In reply to #268 by CumbriaSmithy:

    Hi CumbriaSmithy,

    I hadn’t realised people kept a tally of points …

    It’s not about keeping score. At the risk of sounding pompous: It’s about honesty, integrity and truth. It’s about common curtesy.

    I’ll have to go back and re-read your posts.

    Again, it’s not just about me. You should read all of your respondents. If you were to ignore the rude ones (of which there are sadly many – tut!), I don’t think anyone can complain about that.

    My time here is limited so it’ll have to wait until after the weekend.

    Fair enough.

    All I ask is that you please remember some are in this thread, first and foremost, for you, and for truth.

    I’m sorry to have been such a disappointment to you.

    The rest of us are still stuck at station: Very Disappointed.

    But it’s still all to play for. It’s still your serve.

    Peace.

  246. I would expect to see much smaller universe. If we are central to the universe (this is for theists!) why we are in the middle of nowhere. And I would expect to see and interact with supernatural beings like those supposedly “chosen Neos.”

  247. If God existed and ID was true I would ask the following questions:

    1.Why are sex organs next to the toilet area where germs can breed.
    2 Why were wisdom teeth created when we don’t use them and cause pain in young people.
    3 Why create an intelligent mind to question rather then accept things as they are.
    4 Why is nature so cruel
    5 Why do we have an appendix
    6 Why do we stand upright.
    7 If God created the earth then did he create Billions of stars at the same time if so why do we their light when they are so far away.
    8 What is the purpose of the Moon and the tides which goes with it.
    9 Why are there so many dieases which kill innocent children every year. God must have created these illnesses in the first place
    10 Why do we age.

    These are rather naive questions, which if I ever met this rather nasty “God” I would ask and why he did not put things right.

  248. CumbriaSmithy
    268
    HI Stephen,

    I’m sorry to have been such a disappointment to you. I hadn’t realised people kept a tally of points raised and/or answered here, so I’ll have to go back and re-read your posts. My time here is limited so it’ll have to wait until after the weekend.

    Now where have I seen that before? Oh yes, on the AtheismUK site whenever you were asked an awkward question, you would claim that your time was limited so that you could go off to do a bit of research, hoping to come back with a killer question while ignoring the questions put to you. Nice to see you haven’t changed.

  249. 1 Simplicity rather than complexity.

    2 Reliability

    3 No atavisms

    4 Modern organisms in the earliest fossil record. (Assuming the designer created finished products rather than the designer guided evolution.)

  250. 1 Simplicity rather than complexity.

    2 Reliability

    3 No atavisms

    4 Modern organisms in the earliest fossil record. (Assuming the designer created finished products rather than the designer guided evolution.)

  251. Possibly more do with divine creation than “Intelligent” (QV) design, but were God on the job, surely he would have given his chosen people some oil?

    It was Golda Meier, I think, who famously said: “Moses? Don’t talk to me about Moses. He led us for forty years to the only place for miles around that does not have any oil.”

  252. Is this I.D?

    Use nothing to make the earth, sun, moon, stars…..

    Use the dust of the earth to make a man….

    Use the rib of man to make a woman…..

    Observe for a few thousand years…

    Then use a complete woman to make the son…..

    Intelligent Design….. use better and better raw materials to get the same/similar (and not necessarily a better) product….

    So now we know what we can expect to see, or not see, in I.D

  253. In reply to #274 by jel

    Hi Jel,

    Now where have I seen that before? Oh yes, on the AtheismUK site …

    Whatever CumbriaSmithy may have, or may not have, done somewhere else is of no concern to me.

    … whenever you were asked an awkward question, you would claim that your time was limited so that you could go off to do a bit of research, hoping to come back with a killer question while ignoring the questions put to you.

    Way to go with the pre-judging Jel.

    It’s not about winners and losers – there will be no vote at the end.

    It’s about engagement. In order to change a mind, first engage it. In order to engage a mind you don’t challenge it directly, that just turns on the defense alarms. To engage a mind; tease it.

    Peace.

  254. The thing is ….. where to start? I think, in marvelling at our bodies, we struggle to look at things objectively. Everything about the human body is pretty much a compromise.

    I’d expect two hearts. We’ve got two lungs – one can fail, we can get by on the other. Why have a critical pump without fail-over?

    Why do we have to cut each other open (with bleeding) when something goes wrong and we need to fix it? Even we mortals can design things with hatches, disconnectable cabling etc.

    Why on earth (!) do we have to rely on a thin layer of atmosphere around the earth for survival? What about a nice exoskeleton to handle the pressure difference and a way of liquefying oxygen, or getting by on nuclear fusion, so we can explore this massive universe we’ve been .. er …. given?

    Even the ability to rotate the head through 180 degrees would be handy.

    Why would we design something that needed 8 hours of vulnerable and unproductive downtime every day? Whatever happened to 24 x7? Even if it turned out that sleep was an immutable law of the universe, other species can turn off half of the brains at a time.

    Why don’t belly buttons just heal completely after birth?

    On the subject of the universe, isn’t it a bit wasteful if we are the summit of some designer’s aspirations. If we’re a BMW 5-series, that’s a fucking big test track. And with the speed of light being what it is (terms and conditions that we don’t know about yet may apply) we can never get to most of it. In a roundabout way, that’s rather like designing a car that can’t actually last for 26,000 miles, or whatever it takes to get to the other side of the planet and back. Perverse, actually.

    Paper cuts. Discuss.

  255. I would expect to see an emotional flatness in humans, a depletion of complexity and richness in aesthetic responses. If Vilayanur Ramachandran is correct and the bulk of aesthetic responses are the result of second order effects of “just good enough” evolved detector mechanisms for kin, sexy, food, danger, yucky, to-be-cared-for, etc, open by their crudeness to regular and inappropriate misfiring, then with proper and reliable detectors in humans, installed by an “Intelligent” Designer, there would be no art galleries, no music, no weird itches to scratch.

  256. In reply to #281 by phil rimmer:

    I would expect to see an emotional flatness in humans, a depletion of complexity and richness in aesthetic responses. …

    Why stop here? Wouldn’t it have been more sensible for the I.D. to have omitted the capacity for free thought from humans?

  257. In reply to #282 by CumbriaSmithy:

    In reply to #281 by phil rimmer:

    I would expect to see an emotional flatness in humans, a depletion of complexity and richness in aesthetic responses. …

    Why stop here? Wouldn’t it have been more sensible for the I.D. to have omitted the capacity for free thought from humans?

    You can argue that we already don’t. In which case it cannot be taken as an indication of ID. I think you might argue the converse. If our thoughts and actions are not detectably connected, on occasions, to earlier brain states, but somehow piped in from the ether, we may simultaneously presume design and designer…

  258. In reply to #281 by phil rimmer:

    Hi Phil,

    I would expect to see an emotional flatness in humans, a depletion of complexity and richness in aesthetic responses

    Aren’t you assuming an awful lot about the potential designers?

    Almost everyone, myself included, has also assumed that the Universe created by designers would have a certain level of complexity – but driving by …

    It seems to me that a Designer (or Designers) would need to be complex. As complex beings ourselves we can see that the designers would therefore be motivated. Whether, or not, they would be motivated – and to what extent – by aesthetics seems to me to be moot.

    If … the bulk of aesthetic responses are the result of second order effects of “just good enough” evolved detector mechanisms … etc., … then with proper and reliable detectors in humans, installed by an “Intelligent” Designer, there would be no art galleries, no music, no weird itches to scratch.

    Better interfaces mean less room for errors? True, but their would still need to be systems for error correction (unless the Designed Universe was perfect, but that seems a bit of a stretch given the sample of this one).

    That such a designed error correction system might be as wasteful, itself so prone to errors and to concatenating and amplifying errors and incoherent as Art and emotions seems highly doubtful.

    Peace.

  259. In reply to #284 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #281 by phil rimmer:

    Hi Phil,

    I would expect to see an emotional flatness in humans, a depletion of complexity and richness in aesthetic responses

    Aren’t you assuming an awful lot about the potential designers?

    It seems to me that a Designer (or Designers) would need to be complex.

    Much more than this. I am claiming they need to be complex and spurious or whimsical*.

    I am from a super intelligent species of duck and I’m in the Coinsville City Art Gallery and I’m looking at a piece of art by Damien Canard. It is a claw hammer towering above me and leaning over as if in the act of striking me. The handle is red.

    I am shocked but don’t understand why. Sure the hammer is threatening, but the effect is hugely unsettling. The art critic next to me agrees and talks about some political symbolism or other.

    A visiting human naturalist watches and smiles, he sees the red handle makes a round red circle in the middle of the hammers head. These ducks evolved to see the red spot at at the top of its mothers beak and know to tap at the beak to retrieve food (Ok, these are alien ducks and do the regurgitation thing…) All sorts of primitive aesthetic conflicts are thrown up that DuckPhil is unaware of but moved and stirred by.

    My contention is that any kind of pre-guessing of quirky inadequate detectors will have the tendency to reduce the richness of the culture. If our designer is a a triple Omni being who has every stochastic process nailed and knows that Damian Canard will do work like thus and so then there is no value in the OP question. But some lesser designer will under perform and ID makes no claim about the designer..

    This is my argument against the designers of AI entities and their expectations of creating “human” attributes…breast feeding and oxytocin may be needed. Or to create some/any kind of rich aesthetic response we may need to have something akin to an evolution of its own “good enough” internal processes and detection schemes. Design dirigisme without a sufficient dose of the omnis will produce deadly dull beings or be a non-conscious trick like Siri.

    *The question begged, also, is why would a non evolved triple omni designer want aesthetics based on the quirks of a just good enough evolutionary process?

  260. It seems to me that a Designer (or Designers) would need to be complex. As complex beings ourselves we can see that the designers would therefore be motivated. Whether, or not, they would be motivated – and to what extent – by aesthetics seems to me to be moot.

    Designers and artists revel in the new and different. They don’t have lots of petty rules and considering the high percentages of homosexuals in creative fields, they are not watching what you smoke or your sexual partners. The God of the Bible does not have the personality type of an artists nor creator. He thinks too much in the box. If he were a creator, he would not be so concerned about mixed fibers. He would be experimenting with lots of materials.

    complexity depends on the God:

    New Age – Yes,
    Islamic – No,
    Fundamentalist – No.
    Deist – Maybe,
    Pagan – Yes,
    New Thought – It’s up to you,
    Hindu – Possibly,
    Christian – probably not

  261. In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    You wouldn’t have the mosquito. God clearly hasn’t tried to sleep on a hot night with a mosquito buzzing endless just near your ear. I try to the sleep with the sheet pulled over me but its too hot. I hope that the mosquito will bite my wife, fill up with blood and go away, but sadly, I am one of…

    Spiders. There would be no spiders…..

  262. Spiders. There would be no spiders…..

    I like spiders. Lay off the spider phobia.

    Isn’t it interesting how people cannot agree on what is good and perfect? No wonder some religions offer up individual planets as their idea of Heaven. One person would be off skiing while someone else would be sunbathing. One person would want everything perfectly lined up, predictable, and organized while another would revel in clutter, randomness, and spontaneity.

  263. In reply to #288 by QuestioningKat:

    Spiders. There would be no spiders…..

    I like spiders. Lay off the spider phobia.

    Isn’t it interesting how people cannot agree on what is good and perfect? No wonder some religions offer up individual planets as their idea of Heaven. One person would be off skiing while someone else would be sunb…

    I concur Kate. What would the golf courses be like. No sand bunkers. And if there were sand bunkers, you never hit your ball into them. Every round of golf would be 18 holes in one. Where’s the fun in that. The people you play with would be straight laced religious, the ones who haven’t been caught having sex with a male or a female, not condoned by their god. And what would the conversation be like. I’d rather engage with Kate and Alan, even Rizvoid if he is still out there. Even Cumbria Smithy is worth debating. I think I would prefer Atheist Heaven where I could talk to Christopher Hitchens and Bertrand Russell, rather than to Billy Graham, Torqumada and Luther.

    An ID Universe would be so boring, you’d want to run away and escape to alternative quantum universe to get some brain stimulation. In fact, what would be the point of having an inquiring brain, if everything was perfect. Where’s the challenge. Where’s the problem solving. I think I could state that the fact that we have an inquiring brain is proof that an intelligently designed universe does not exist.

  264. In reply to #288 by QuestioningKat:

    Spiders. There would be no spiders…..

    I like spiders. Lay off the spider phobia.

    Isn’t it interesting how people cannot agree on what is good and perfect? No wonder some religions offer up individual planets as their idea of Heaven. One person would be off skiing while someone else would be sunb…

    You LIKE spiders? Do you know what a wolf spider is?

  265. In reply to #290 by alf1200:

    You LIKE spiders? Do you know what a wolf spider is?

    A spider that thinks webs are for sissies.

    Seriously, wolf spiders do it the old-fashioned way by chasing down their prey on foot. And they make surprisingly caring parents, too, since the mother carries the egg sac with her, monitors its temperature, and makes adjustments to keep the eggs warm. They are awesome.

  266. In reply to #291 by Zeuglodon:

    In reply to #290 by alf1200:

    You LIKE spiders? Do you know what a wolf spider is?

    A spider that thinks webs are for sissies.

    Seriously, wolf spiders do it the old-fashioned way by chasing down their prey on foot. And they make surprisingly caring parents, too, since the mother carries the egg sac…

    Considering that many spiders kill and devour their spouses following copulation, I am not sure how far I am prepared to take the loving parent anthropomorphic business.

  267. In reply to #292 by Sheepdog:

    Considering that many spiders kill and devour their spouses following copulation, I am not sure how far I am prepared to take the loving parent anthropomorphic business.

    Well, being a loving parent doesn’t prevent you from being cruel to your spouse. Wolf spiders at least have the option of persuading their partners not to use them as a pre-pregnancy snack.

  268. What would you see if I.D. was fact?

    You would see a world that is habitable and conducive to life,

    You would see laws of nature that are generally predictable and orderly, making it possible for science experiments to be testable and repeatable.

    There would be creatures with faculties and functions conducive to living in the world that had been designed just for them, with complex systems for eating, breathing, reproduction and sensing the world about them.

    You would see people with abilities that far exceed those needed for basic survival: for example, the creativity and ability to design that is shown in building, writing, art, music and dance.

    There would be beauty in flowers, bird song, natural scenery, other people and loving relationships,

    You would see people who desire to live with a sense of purpose; not satisfied with living by chance, random processes,

    You would see people with a sense of morality who abhor crime and instinctively know that justice is right and necessary, and who also know that self-sacrifice for the good of others is better than self-centeredness.

    You would see people who can conceive of the possibility of the Intelligent Designer, whether they like it or not, for that Designer’s stamp would be indelibly marked on their personality.

    You would see people with the ability to reason and argue logically and to communicate their thoughts to others.

    Let’s look around . . .Oh, that’s what we do see.

    Now, the flaws and failures referred to in many of the posts above relate to another side of our story, but the evidence for a Designer is apparent to all – and it takes a leap in logic to conclude that it wasn’t designed. After all, we don’t conclude that about anything else: only our origins. That position seems inconsistent to me.

  269. In reply to #14 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #10 by David R Allen:

    Firstly, rizvoid, you are making an argument from authority. What Einstein thought in general and the rightness of his theory of relativity could well be independent. One is scientifically validated, the other not. Mixing the two up is misleading at best.

    One could reasonably think, at most, that Einstien was a deist. He didn’t like to commit to being atheist because he felt it was vulgar:

    I have repeatedly said that in my opinion the idea of a personal God is a childlike one. You may call me an agnostic, I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth.

    However, that was in public. In private, he wrote:

    … The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this. These subtilised interpretations are highly manifold according to their nature and have almost nothing to do with the original text. For me the Jewish religion like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions. And the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity have no different quality for me than all other people. As far as my experience goes, they are also no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise I cannot see anything ‘chosen’ about them.

    In general I find it painful that you claim a privileged position and try to defend it by two walls of pride, an external one as a man and an internal one as a Jew. As a man you claim, so to speak, a dispensation from causality otherwise accepted, as a Jew the privilege of monotheism. But a limited causality is no longer a causality at all, as our wonderful Spinoza recognized with all incision, probably as the first one. And the animistic interpretations of the religions of nature are in principle not annulled by monopolization. With such walls we can only attain a certain self-deception, but our moral efforts are not furthered by them. On the contrary.

    Now that I have quite openly stated our differences in intellectual convictions it is still clear to me that we are quite close to each other in essential things, i.e; in our evaluations of human behavior. What separates us are only intellectual ‘props’ and ‘rationalization’ in Freud’s language. Therefore I think that we would understand each other quite well if we talked about concrete things.

    He felt religion was childish, insufficient for morality and untrue. It seems pretty clear to me that what he hoped to do was kindle a sense of wonder in (what was at the time) the religious majority and to recognize the current limits of understanding– the necessity of humility and rejection of hubris– not to fatalistically deny the validity of reason or declare science hopeless.

    source

  270. In reply to #76 by rizvoid:

    In reply to #71 by David R Allen:

    In reply to #70 by rizvoid:

    “He is widely considered to be one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century.”

    That’s overstatement. He was a competent theoretical physicist with an interest in philosophy who made some good contributions, e.g. to Bell’s theorem, but also had some odd ideas which I would interpret as being related to the kind of personality, and thus mind, that he had. As I said above, that some ideas a person has are good and important doesn’t mean that all ideas they have will be.

  271. Replacement teeth.
    Separate breathing, speaking, and eating pathways.
    Life all over the solar system.
    UV filter over eyes.

    I’m suddenly realizing there is a difference between ID for life and ID for the material Universe. I’d make energy providing atom that replaced ATP and oxygen.

  272. We would certainly never see a design in which every bit of food an animal takes in must pass over a ridiculous flap that must close just right or another tube, that is responsible for getting life-giving air and oxygen into the body, gets closed off and the animal dies. Intelligent design? More like ludicrous design.

  273. In reply to #295 by Lonevoice:

    What would you see if I.D. was fact?

    You would see a world that is habitable and conducive to life,

    Hardly surprising, considering we live in it.

    You would see laws of nature that are generally predictable and orderly, making it possible for science experiments to be testable and repeatable.

    The interrelationship between the fundamental laws of nature, their influence on climate, and the planet itself over the eons are anything but orderly in dictating the directions that life on the planet has changed incrementally.

    Now, the flaws and failures referred to in many of the posts above relate to another side of our story, but the evidence for a Designer is apparent to all – and it takes a leap in logic to conclude that it wasn’t designed. After all, we don’t conclude that about anything else: only our origins. That position seems inconsistent to me.

    This is all nice and fuzzy, but really, why would the psychopaths and similar in our midst not also display the “Designer’s stamp would be indelibly marked on their personality.” Looking through the list, it seems to contain no shortage of religiously devoted albeit murderous people, starting with the obvious ones who shoot Doctors. Come to think of it, considering the record of murder and mayhem that this designer brags about, you may have a point.

    There would be creatures with faculties and functi…

    Look, this is all very pleasant, and reminiscent of Beethoven’s Eroica, but really, how does this tie to design in any way. Especially considering the “flaws and failures” that you gloss over, and the remarkably complete fossil record, argue exactly the opposite, and is real, as distinct from dreamed up and believed because it feels nice.

  274. To those who choose to defend ID.
    How do you defend:
    1. Heart worms. They are harmfull to their hosts (dogs).
    2. Tape worms. They are also harmfull.
    3. Fleas. Harmfull
    4. Parasites in general. Most are harmfull.
    The list of things that should not have been designed would fill a phone book.
    It would be interesting to hear why anything on this very short list should exist.

  275. In reply to #295 by Lonevoice:

    What would you see if I.D. was fact?

    You would see a world that is habitable and conducive to life,

    You would see laws of nature that are generally predictable and orderly, making it possible for science experiments to be testable and repeatable.

    There would be creatures with faculties and functi…

    Nice try but….

    Dissect the elements or your argument. You propose an intelligent designer (god) who is omniscient, omnipotent and present during every quantum fluctuation in the entire universe. (Not a sparrow falls..) There can be no error in your intelligent designer (god). Perfection personified. If just one design error can be found, then your argument fails. Perfection can have zero defects. You can’t have the perfect designer, incapable of producing perfect design.

    So if you’ve read any of this blog, you would have seen a myriad obvious and catastrophic design faults. To defeat your argument, I don’t need myriads of faults, I just need one. Select any of the above. That defect defeats your intelligent design (god) hypothesis. Just one defect undermines your assertion that your intelligent designer (god) is perfect.

    If you want to rewrite your post, and admit that your intelligent designer (god) is lax, inefficient, malevolent, psychopathic, lazy, and careless with the truth, you might be able to claim your intelligent designer (god) fits the prevailing evidence.

  276. In reply to #295 by Lonevoice:

    What would you see if I.D. was fact?

    You would see a world that is habitable and conducive to life,

    You would see laws of nature that are generally predictable and orderly, making it possible for science experiments to be testable and repeatable.

    There would be creatures with faculties and functi…

    Yea. Tell that to my doctor who knows something about medicine. Tell that to my bad back, asthma, and everybody else’s birth defects and poor design.
    Go to Africa and tell the starving how great this “design” of your is.
    After a natural disaster, go and talk to the people affected how this was planned by your “design”.
    I don’t know where this clown that “designed” this universe works but he’s or she’s fired!

  277. In reply to #295 by Lonevoice:

    What would you see if I.D. was fact?

    You would see a world that is habitable and conducive to life,

    A point I should have made earlier. This is a text book example of a circular argument tha