Evolution vs Intelligent Design

  • Thread starter onycho
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  • #1
onycho
[SOLVED] Evolution vs Intelligent Design

Something to consider:

Can Darwin's evolutionary concepts of small changes be consistent with an intelligent design that uses adaptic changes within a species but not the random chance of life from inanimate matter to create all life forms and specie change from primitive cells to humanity as we know it?

By Albert Mohler

Panic is setting in among the Darwinists. Even as diverse forms of Darwinist theory have become the enforced orthodoxy of naturalistic science, the fragile house of evolution is in big trouble--and the Darwinists know it.

Evidence of the Darwinists' panic is seen in an editorial published in the November-December 2003 edition of The American Biology Teacher. In this editorial, scientist Marshall Berman goes after proponents of "Intelligent Design" [ID] who have been poking giant holes in evolutionary theory over the last several years.

Berman is apoplectic. His article reveals not only the febrile anxieties of materialistic science, but also the fact that the secular worldview goes far beyond matters of science--and evolutionary theory is the foundation of an understanding of everything from the origin of the universe to matters of morality and politics.

As Berman warns, "consciously or unconsciously, they [proponents of Intelligent Design] are jeopardizing the nature of science itself, our education system, and even our form of government. ". Scared yet?

Berman's article needs to be read with a soundtrack of militant music in the background, announcing the onslaught of the cultural crusade. He warns that those who reject evolution and argue that the universe shows unmistakable signs of having been designed by intelligence, "do not understand that the cause many of them promote would, if successful terminate many of the freedoms that they and we currently enjoy." Terminate many of the freedoms that we currently enjoy? What in the world is Berman ranting about?

Over the last several years, proponents of Intelligent Design have achieved considerable success in embarrassing the proponents of evolutionary theory, demonstrating the failures of evolutionary "science," and persuading school boards to present evidence for Intelligent Design along with purported evidence for the theory of evolution.

The edifice of Darwinism has been cracking for decades. In reality, the classical theory promoted by Charles Darwin--especially dealing with the mechanics of evolution and natural selection--has been discarded long ago. Contemporary evolutionary theorists are really "neo-Darwinists" whose various versions of Darwinian thought seek to move beyond Darwin's own proposal in order to deal with shifts in the scientific worldview. Evolutionary theorists have no common idea of how evolution works, or even how much time has been involved in evolutionary progress on earth. They argue among themselves over the fundamental principles of the evolutionary process, and their only shared conviction is absolute opposition to anything that threatens the hegemony of evolution in the academy. Berman's article is the latest evidence of the intellectual insecurity and Stalinist oppression that marks today's evolutionary science. Nevertheless, Berman's nightmarish warnings are so out of line with reality that one can only characterize his editorial as evidence of an irrational anxiety attack.

Consider this sentence: "It is time for those who cherish our republic and our freedom to take a strong stand against those who would prefer a theocracy, not in Iran or Afghanistan, but in the United States." The opponents of evolutionary theory are theocrats? What lies behind Berman's claim that proponents of Intelligent Design want to create a theocracy?

In documenting his charge, Berman points to the website of the Discovery Institute and its Center for Science and Culture. According to the Institute, "the theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." Does that sound like a manifesto for theocracy?

Berman goes on to explain that advocates of intelligent design "claim that scientists have a naturalistic bias in that ID is scientific and not religious, despite the fact that it does not provide any description of the designer, nor any mechanistic model by which the design was effectuated."

Where does Berman stand on the most basic question of the origin of the universe? He clearly rejects any validity of the biblical account of creation. According to Berman, "evidence conclusively demonstrates that the Genesis account is not a scientifically valid theory for cosmology, geology, physics, or biology." All intelligent persons are convinced of that fact, Berman would have us think. Keep in mind that Berman's editorial was directed toward high school biology teachers.

Of course, Berman's larger fear is that the theory of Intelligent Design will continue to grow, gain adherents, and influence public policy.

He strikes at the very core of Intelligent Design theory: "They do not accept the essence of science, the foundation that has made it so successful as a special way of learning about the world: science as the search for natural causes for natural phenomena."

Intentionally or unintentionally, Berman has pointed to the most basic issue that divides naturalistic science from the rest of us. For over a hundred years, the dominant scientific establishment has been moving toward an enforced orthodoxy of naturalism, materialism, and secularism. According to this worldview, the universe is a closed box that can be understood only on its own terms--with everything inside the box explained only by other matter and processes within the same box. The box itself is explained as a cosmic accident, and naturalistic science allows no place for a designer or a design in the entire cosmos.

Of course, the evolutionists remain frustrated that the vast majority of Americans simply will not buy this theory. Even though they are not credentialed scientists, most Americans have a fairly good grasp of reality. As they observe the world, they are unable to accept an explanatory theory that says that everything--from human beings to the starry heavens above--just "happened" and came to exist without any design whatsoever.

Berman and his evolutionary colleagues have the temerity to accuse proponents of intelligent design--and the vast mainstream of Americans--to be ignoring the "evidence." What they mean, of course, is that we will not accept their spotty and unsubstantiated trail of fossils and missing links.

In another editorial published in 1998, Berman claimed that "there are currently no viable scientific alternatives to evolution." Berman and his fellow evolutionists make this claim by asserting a circular argument. When a scientific alternative to evolution is presented, they deny that the theory can be scientific simply because it rejects evolution. Evolutionary theory is now at the core of their definition of science itself.

In their panicked response to the cracks appearing in the evolutionary edifice, Berman and similar advocates of evolutionary theory turn to hyperbole and name calling. Take this sentence for example: "Creationists' 'evidence' against evolution is no better than so-called evidence that the earth is flat, demons cause disease, or the stork brings babies."

That sentence is a classic demonstration of their intellectual insecurity and their habitual recourse to circular logic. It also shows the condescension evolutionary proponents habitually throw towards those who have the temerity to challenge their precious theory. As Berman's statement reveals, scientific advocates of evolution are now so philosophically committed to their theory, that they will accept no contradictory evidence whatsoever. All critics of evolution are simply "flat-earthers" who believe that the stork brings babies.

This much is clear--the whole structure of evolutionary thought is standing on shifting ground, and the evolutionists know they are in big trouble. Given time, more and more intelligent Americans will see the failures of evolutionary theory and the nihilism that stands at its intellectual base.

Nevertheless, Berman's editorial shows that the problem is far deeper than anything addressed by science. This is a spiritual battle and the arguments over evolution have as much to do with morality and politics as with fossils and natural phenomena.

Evolutionary theory stands at the base of moral relativism and the rejection of traditional morality. If human beings are not made in the image of God, and if the entire cosmos is nothing more than a freakish accident, morality is nothing but a mirage and human beings--cosmic accidents that we are--are free to negotiate whatever moral arrangement seems best to us at any given time. Human life has no inherent dignity, morality has no objective basis, and we are alone in the universe to eat drink and be merry before our bones join the fossil record and we pass from existence.

Marshall Berman and company see the growing influence of Intelligent Design and the crumbling of evolutionary orthodoxy as a threat to everything they know and cherish. Writing to high school biology teachers, Berman makes his point clear. "Recognizing the threat is only the first step. All scientists, as well as teachers, parents, and citizens need to get involved in local and state efforts to develop strong, unequivocal science standards, to insure high-quality textbooks, to improve science education at all levels, and to engage in politics as the need arises."

Berman is calling Darwinists to the barricades, but the more they write and talk, the more ground they lose. As an intellectual argument, evolutionary theory is in big trouble.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Zero
*yawn*

You might want to watch the copyright violation there.

Signs that someone is lying or misinformed about evolution and/or creationism:

#1: Someone who claims that "Darwinism" is in trouble.


First off, "Darwinism", when describing modern evolution, is a term used mostly by people who are uninformed, because the science has moved far beyond Darwin. Secondly, evolution is a vibrant and healthy part of modern biology, and AFAIK, is in no danger of being supplanted anytime soon.

Mohler, in fact, has no idea about science in general, or evolution specifically. He claims that evolutionary theory has changed with "shifts in the scientific worldview". In reality(a place ID proponents seem to avoid), the theory adapts as new evidence is discovered, a sure sign of healthy science at work. He also seems to believe that conflicting views by scientists is a weakness of evolution, once again showing his lack of understanding of the principles of science. First off, no credible biologist doubts that evolution takes place, and furthermore, the lack of agreement about specifics is a wonderful thing, because it means multiple avenues of study are taking place.

Of course, evolution is being threatened , by a PR effort by ID proponents, because they are willing to lie to misrepresent themselves and evolution to convince laypeople. As a scientific theory, however, evolution is stronger than ever.
 
  • #3
onycho
Originally posted by Zero

*yawn* *squat*

You might want to watch the copyright violation there.


You'll note that my post was properly quoted and credited as required. I did not use someone elses work as my own.

Your obvious lack of knowledge from the now closed site basically because of your use of religion when the post had nothing whatsoever to do with faith.

All the argument I made was that Dr. Behe said that the macro world does evolve in each specie from time to time but that on the micro level, there was never any evolution as documented in the fossil record and now with scientific experimentation.

Forget about the intellengent direction of organisms on earth having anything to do with a diety.
 
  • #4
Zero
Do you have permission to post the entire article? If not, even if you give credit, it is copyright violation. If you have permission, you are fine.


Signs that someone is lying or misinformed about evolution and/or creationism:

#2: They pretend their view isn't based on specific religious views, but if you dig deeper, you invariably find out that they believe their personal holy book is infalible. What they are really talking about is political, religious, and social, not scientific.


Here's a few short quotes from the article:
Where does Berman stand on the most basic question of the origin of the universe? He clearly rejects any validity of the biblical account of creation.
For over a hundred years, the dominant scientific establishment has been moving toward an enforced orthodoxy of naturalism, materialism, and secularism.
If human beings are not made in the image of God, and if the entire cosmos is nothing more than a freakish accident, morality is nothing but a mirage and human beings--cosmic accidents that we are--are free to negotiate whatever moral arrangement seems best to us at any given time. Human life has no inherent dignity, morality has no objective basis, and we are alone in the universe to eat drink and be merry before our bones join the fossil record and we pass from existence.

No link to religion? The facts speak for themselves.
 
  • #5
onycho
Originally posted by Zero

Do you have permission to post the entire article? If not, even if you give credit, it is copyright violation. If you have permission, you are fine.

You apparently do not understand the rules dealing with intellectual property or the concept of plagiarizm.

[/b]Signs that someone is lying or misinformed about evolution and/or creationism:[/b]

Forget about religious aspects of intellectual design. As I orignally posted that there might be other reasons than a diety who is responsible for intelligent design (panspermia).

#2: They pretend their view isn't (AREN'T) based on specific religious views, but if you dig deeper, you invariably find out that they believe their personal holy book is infalible. What they are really talking about is political, religious, and social, not scientific.


Is that your very own opinion created in your own brain?

Here's a few short quotes from the article: No link to religion? The facts speak for themselves.

What are you trying to say?
 
  • #6
Zero
Your "correction" of #2 is grammatically incorrect. Do you have anything of substance to post in your own thread?

BTW, I am accusing Albert Mohler of either lying or being misinformed, not you, in case there was some confusion. However, I do find it interesting that you claim that ID has nothing to do with "God", but the article you pasted disagrees with you.
Anyways, on with some on-topic posting:

Signs that someone is lying or misinformed about evolution and/or creationism:

#3: They make claims to popular opinion as though science is something that can be voted on.


Of course, the evolutionists remain frustrated that the vast majority of Americans simply will not buy this theory. Even though they are not credentialed scientists, most Americans have a fairly good grasp of reality. As they observe the world, they are unable to accept an explanatory theory that says that everything--from human beings to the starry heavens above--just "happened" and came to exist without any design whatsoever.
 
  • #7
onycho
Originally posted by Zero

I must appologize for I am between patients and have little time to reply today.

You state that ID can only have to do with a God but I have stated that there are alternatives which eliminates evolution as a possibility.

As I stated in my earlier post on the now closed thread, the 'unseen hand' you find so offensive could be that (1) all earth species were planted here from elsewhere in the universe. This would account for the sudden appearance of life on earth (after water appeared 3.5 billion years ago) and as seen in the fossil records that are now documented in museums and research institutions around the world.

I will hopefully be able to post more information refuting evolution as an impossiblity not based on faith in a diety.
 
  • #8
Zero
Check you PMs. Then edit your first post., please.
 
  • #9
Zero
Originally posted by onycho
Originally posted by Zero

I must appologize for I am between patients and have little time to reply today.

You state that ID can only have to do with a God but I have stated that there are alternatives which eliminates evolution as a possibility.

As I stated in my earlier post on the now closed thread, the 'unseen hand' you find so offensive could be that (1) all earth species were planted here from elsewhere in the universe. This would account for the sudden appearance of life on earth (after water appeared 3.5 billion years ago) and as seen in the fossil records that are now documented in museums and research institutions around the world.

I will hopefully be able to post more information refuting evolution as an impossiblity not based on faith in a diety.
If that is your position, then can you explain why you (illegally, it seems)pasted an essay that specifically references a deity and political and social issues, and presents no evidence of intelligent design? There was a bunch of whining about how no one takes them seriously, but there was also no reason given as to WHY anyone should take ID seriously.

I'm patient...
 
  • #10
Zero
On further reflection, we can see that evolution and some sort of "planting" of life on earth are not mutually exclusive at all, since evolution is not a theory of the origin of life.
 
  • #11
Zero
HAHAHAHA!!!!


Well, I know who Albert Mohler is now. Is he a scientist, maybe a biologist or geneticist? No. Is he a doctor of some sort? No. Is he even a high school biology teacher? Of course not. This brilliant man, whose word we should take on matters of science, is President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

So, let me ask again: is there, or is there not, a religious component to ID?
 
  • #12
Kerrie
Staff Emeritus
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Originally posted by Zero
HAHAHAHA!!!!


Well, I know who Albert Mohler is now. Is he a scientist, maybe a biologist or geneticist? No. Is he a doctor of some sort? No. Is he even a high school biology teacher? Of course not. This brilliant man, whose word we should take on matters of science, is President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

So, let me ask again: is there, or is there not, a religious component to ID?

provide a link of proof of this zero, and further action may be taken...the last thing i need here is a theory fueled by "religious science"...

and zero, after all these months, what is your avatar suppossed to be? it looks like a man battered all bloody...
 
  • #13
Zero
Originally posted by Kerrie
provide a link of proof of this zero, and further action may be taken...the last thing i need here is a theory fueled by "religious science"...

and zero, after all these months, what is your avatar suppossed to be? it looks like a man battered all bloody...
The original article is posted here

And here is the Albert Mohler website , with a link to the first website, just in case someone wanted to claim that they were two different people.
 
  • #14
Zero
Oh, and that guy in my avatar is Ash, from The Evil Dead, Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn, and Army of Darkness...played by Bruce Campbell, who was also on Brisco County Jr., Hercules, and Zena.
0902_dsashbust.jpg


Hail to the king, baby!
 
  • #16
Zero
Originally posted by Nereid
Will Albert Mohler's home page suffice?
You're a little slow on the draw, but you are catching on...with some training, someday you might be almost as good as I am...almost.
 
  • #17
Nereid
Staff Emeritus
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Hey, I only found the thread a few minutes after Kerrie's post; by the time I finished reading it, and was ready to write a reply, you'd already written two!

This certainly isn't the first time I've taken the time to write a reply, only to find that the thread has moved on while I was reading and writing.

Ah well, c'est la vie (at least you should be pleased that you aren't the only person - other than onycho and Kerrie - who's been reading the thread!)
 
  • #18
1,081
1
I have to agree with Zero here. That article is laughable on credibility. Unfortunately, it's people like this who try to disguise there political and creationists ideas behind a term like "ID" that make it hard for any one else to be taken seriously when they honestly want to consider other alternatives.

I'm not talking about alternatives to evolution. That is obviously true. I'm referring more to abiogensis. Which is where the debate really is anyway. I can't figure out why the word "evolution" continues to be used. Do people actually doubt that natural selection works? As opposed to what? Creating it all in 7 days? I can't honestly take this story seriously even though I'm the first person to pause when asked if I think the universe is an accidental box full of rocks.

I'm not sure the science in this area is taught as it should be either but I don't believe the reason is a political and moral conspiracy. That's insane. True progress will never happen as long as we have uneducated people involved.
 
  • #19
onycho
i]Originally posted by Zero [/i]

If that is your position, then can you explain why you (illegally, it seems)pasted an essay that specifically references a deity and political and social issues, and presents no evidence of intelligent design? There was a bunch of whining about how no one takes them seriously, but there was also no reason given as to WHY anyone should take ID seriously. I'm patient...

Since you have accused me of illegally posting a public internet site with both the name of the author being posted and his post placed within quotes, I have chosen to contact the people at Crosswalk.com about your allegations.

I have given them your post threads concerning your vitriol in respect to Dr. Mohler and my thread using the legally quoted and referenced article taken from their site. I have asked them to review this post in light of their policy.

As far as I am concerned, any further discourse with you is futile and will serve no useful purpose. Once I receive any reply from the staff of Crosswalk.com I will post their reply on this site.

It is apparent that you have no understanding of reliable scientific discourse about this subject. I have no further interest in feeding your ego as you apparently have little respect for yourself or others. Your retorts are simply your opinion or opinions of others who have no credibility.

I am placing your posts on my ignore list. If there are others who really want to discuss the issue of intelligent design vs. random chance within the context of civil discourse, I will be more than happy to spend time in discussion or posting observable reliable source evidence.

Zero you may post on this thread, but expect no response from me as my time is much too valuable to indulge your feeling of impotence.
 
  • #20
Nereid
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
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Originally posted by onycho
*SNIP
As far as I am concerned, any further discourse with you is futile and will serve no useful purpose. [...]

It is apparent that you have no understanding of reliable scientific discourse about this subject. I have no further interest in feeding your ego as you apparently have little respect for yourself or others. Your retorts are simply your opinion or opinions of others who have no credibility.

I am placing your posts on my ignore list. If there are others who really want to discuss the issue of intelligent design vs. random chance within the context of civil discourse, I will be more than happy to spend time in discussion or posting observable reliable source evidence.

Zero you may post on this thread, but expect no response from me as my time is much too valuable to indulge your feeling of impotence.
onycho,

Based on my own disagreements with Zero, it seems he will readily accept good data and consistent logic which contradicts his own assertions, and graciously admit his case is either weak or flawed.

If you have a persistent critic, as long as the points he or she is raising are well founded (and she or he doesn't keep repeating things no longer in contention), it behoves you to respond - with well reasoned arguments or good data of your own - to his or her criticisms. Indeed, we should all welcome such critics, they can only make our own proposals better.

Nereid
 
  • #21
onycho
Originally posted by Fliption

I have to agree with Zero here.....

You are correct in your assumption that Albert Mohler is a Baptist preacher and as such is speaking from his religious perspective.

Professor Steven Weinberg was educated at Cornell University, the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen and Princeton University and has received honorary doctoral degrees from a dozen other universities.

Professor Weinberg is an avowed skeptic, if I understand him correctly has his doubts. He wrote in "life as we know it' would be impossible if any one of several physical quantities had slight different values.... One constant does seem to require incredible fine tuning." (Scientific American, October 1994). This constant has to do with the energy of the big bang, Weinberg quantifies the tuning as one part in 10> (130). Scientific notation is an understatement and so I will expand that potential into decimal notation. If the energy of the big bang were different by one part out of 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 there would be no life in our universe. The universe is tuned for life from its inception, when life first appears.

Michael Turner, the widely quoted astrophysicist at the University of Chicago and Fermilab, described that tuning with a simile: "The precision,” he said, "is as if one could throw a dart across the entire universe and hit a bull’s-eye one millimeter in diameter on the other side."

Scientists discover astonishing facts every day. Whether it's physicists realizing how a tiny difference in temperature at the time of the big bang would have obviated the possibility of life as we know it, or biochemists discovering the miraculously complex, delicately balanced molecular machinery that makes blood clotting possible, scientists face the wonder of our existence very directly. Why, then, is it that a hard core of vocal scientists are avowed atheists, taking their discoveries of the wonders of nature as sufficiently edifying ends in themselves.

Slow random chance occurrences of gas bubbles in a flask cannot account for a broken tea cup, over time and by chance returning to its original state. One may ignore reality in order to continue believing the world is flat.

http://proxy.arts.uci.edu/~nideffer/Hawking/early_proto/weinberg.html
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #22
Evo
Mentor
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Originally posted by onycho
Professor Weinberg is an avowed skeptic, if I understand him correctly has his doubts. He wrote in "life as we know it' would be impossible if any one of several physical quantities had slight different values.... One constant does seem to require incredible fine tuning." (Scientific American, October 1994). This constant has to do with the energy of the big bang, Weinberg quantifies the tuning as one part in 10> (130). Scientific notation is an understatement and so I will expand that potential into decimal notation. If the energy of the big bang were different by one part out of 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 there would be no life in our universe. The universe is tuned for life from its inception, when life first appears.

Michael Turner, the widely quoted astrophysicist at the University of Chicago and Fermilab, described that tuning with a simile: "The precision,” he said, "is as if one could throw a dart across the entire universe and hit a bull’s-eye one millimeter in diameter on the other side."
If everything needed to be *that* precise in order for things to have happened the way they did, the possibility that it was done "by design" seems even more impossible. Which seems to be exactly the point they are making. The more reasonable explanation would be an accident.

Nereid, I am even slower than you are. :smile: You can't imagine how many posts I've deleted because it took me too long to type up my response.

Zero, great job!

edited to correct typo
 
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  • #23
onycho
Originally posted by Nereid

onycho, Based on my own disagreements with Zero, it seems he will readily accept good data and consistent logic which contradicts his own assertions, and graciously admit his case is either weak or flawed. If you have a persistent critic, as long as the points he or she is raising are well founded (and she or he doesn't keep repeating things no longer in contention), it behoves you to respond - with well reasoned arguments or good data of your own - to his or her criticisms. Indeed, we should all welcome such critics, they can only make our own proposals better.

Nereid


Nereid,

Base on my previous experience with this person, I have found him to neither be willing to welcome criticism nor use his or others logic but instead chooses to lowers himself to be both banal and trivial.

I choose to use my time with those who can do more than accusations of illegal posting when appropriate credit is given to the author.

This is my choice....
 
  • #24
1,081
1
Originally posted by Evo
If everything needed to be *that* precise in order for things to have happened the way they did, the possibility that it was done "by design" seems even more impossible. Which seems to be exactly the point they are making. The more reasonable explanation would be an accident.

Hmm that doesn't make any sense.
 
  • #25
onycho
Originally posted by Evo

If everything needed to be *that* precise in order for things to have happened the way they did, the possibility that it was done "by design" seems even more impossible. Which seems to be exactly the point they are making. The more reasonable explanation would be an accident.

Evo you make a statement that I presume you are able to back up with logic or proof rather than simply making a blanket statement about random accident being so necessarily precise.

Reasonable is in your opinion but not in any evidence you have presented to counter this assertion.
 

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