Monday, October 03, 2005

INTELLIGENT DESIGN - Another Perspective!

According to Brian Fahling, senior trial attorney for the American Family Association's Center for Law & Policy in Tupelo, Mississippi, the Theory of Evolution is more like Creationism than Intelligent Design.

In comments related to the Darwinists versus Desingers trial in Dover, Pennsylvania, Fahling writes ...
Last year, the Dover School Board voted to adopt a policy that makes students aware that evolution is a theory and not fact. The policy also states: "Intelligent design is an explanation of the origin of life that differs from Darwin's view."
The school system's opponent is the judicial system's evil stepsisters, the ACLU and Americans United for Separation of Church ... the trial began on Monday.
Armed with a 1987 Supreme Court decision declaring that teaching creationism in public schools is a violation of the Establishment Clause, the ACLU will argue that intelligent design is creationism repackaged.
"But is it really? "Fahling wonders openly.

Fahling explains ...
Creationism is an a priori argument drawn from a particular interpretation of the Genesis account of creation. In the context of a public classroom, that means the God of the Bible is the starting point and assumed ground of life's origin and the origin of the cosmos. Drawing from a literal reading of Genesis, creationists postulate a "young earth" and six 24-hour days of creation. All empirical data are subject to and analyzed within this interpretive grid.
Again from Fahling ...
Intelligent design, however, is an a posteriori argument; it is the inference drawn from examination of complex structures in living organisms and the universe.

Instead of attributing the design evident in these structures to God, or undirected processes and natural selection, the intelligent design theorist merely posits an intelligent cause behind life and the cosmos. The inference is not held as the only possible explanation, merely, for now, the most plausible.
A key ingredient is highlighted in the piece ...
As a matter of science, intelligent design theory is much more disciplined and modest in its claims than either the theory of evolution or creationism.

Intelligent design theory merely infers, but does not attempt to identify, a designer from evidence that even evolutionists agree has the appearance of being designed. Unlike creationism and the theory of evolution, intelligent design theory does not make dogmatic religious or philosophic claims about the origin of life because such claims are beyond the competence of science to make.
Another key ingredient in Fahling's analysis is the flow of logic ...
Creationism and the theory of evolution, unlike intelligent design theory, are insular in their approach to science.

Creationists reason downward from an article of religious faith and conduct their science within that paradigm; the creationist's article of faith does not admit of any alternative. Evolutionists, too, reason downward from an article of faith and conduct their science with the same dogmatic zeal and selectiveness of their creationist counterparts -- there is simply no room at the inn for dissidents or competing theories.

Like creationism, then, the theory of evolution is an a priori argument drawn from the evolutionist's article of faith which holds that the origin of life and the cosmos can only be explained by undirected natural processes.
And as Fahling correctly points our, "This is a metaphysical claim, not scientific fact."
Still, it is not in dispute that one may infer an evolutionary process from the data, but that is not what the evolutionist does; he does not infer it, he begins with it, asserts it as an article of faith, and then he proceeds to squeeze all data through the colander of his metaphysic.
What follows is what I've wanted to say but could never be as articulate as this!
The evolutionist stomps his feet screaming that the theory of evolution is as well established as the theory of gravity. But that simply is not true. And that is why critical examination of the theory of evolution should be permitted in public schools. By all accounts there are many holes in Darwin's theory. That does not make his theory wrong, but it does counsel that the extravagant and absolutist claims made on behalf of the theory should be rejected.
The author repeats what has been said by a number of scientific types, even some Darwinists, "Good science requires an open mind."
There is more than a little irony, then, in the evolutionist's attempt to paint intelligent design theory with the creationist brush when it is the evolutionists who have the most in common with the creationists.

... To be sure, [evolutionist and creationist] creeds are antithetical to each another, but it is the reception of their respective creeds among the faithful as infallible and exclusive explanatory tools that binds them together, removing them from the realm of science and placing them squarely in the middle of religion and philosophy.
Both creationists and evolutionists require their adherents to affirm their respective creed, yet both "are exclusive claims, neither is scientific, neither can be empirically verified."

Intelligent design theory, on the other hand, does not require that any creed about the origin of life and the cosmos be affirmed, it merely points to the evidence and suggests that the best explanation (though not the only explanation) for the design found in nature and the cosmos is a designer, whoever or whatever that may be.

It is hard to imagine that Dover's students would not benefit from being told that there are gaps in Darwin's theory and that intelligent design theory offers a competing explanation for the origin of life and the cosmos. Failure to provide such an explanatory note implicitly gives state approbation to evolution's creed that there is no God.
And that is where the theory of evolution begins to look like, smell, and feel like a religion!

Special CRIB thanks to Brian Fahling and AFA for making this matter easier to understand.

PS: I have absolutely no knowledge of what I said in Latin; if I've said something offensive pleas forgive me? I just like to have fun while I work!

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