Re: The recent ID discussion
Adrian Teo (AdrianTeo@mailhost.net)
Tue, 07 Oct 1997 09:57:39 -0700
Paul A. Nelson wrote:
> In his post, Bill Dembski wrote:
> >Because intelligent causes are empirically detectable,
> >science must ever remain open to evidence of their activity.
> If you want a common credo for the ID group, there it is. (By implication:
> methodological naturalism is unsound.) Theologically, this might be
> understood under the dictum, "Adopt no philosophy of science which ties
> God's hands." But I do not think any ID theorist would say that God
> must intervene to leave evidence of His existence.
> God does whatever He pleases. We, in turn, struggle to understand.
> What puzzles ID theorists, I think, is the astonishing willingness of
> scientists who are also theists and Christians to lay aside possible
> modes of causation a priori -- as if they knew, before looking, how God
> acted (i.e., via only so-called natural causes).
Paul, while I appreciate your commitment to this perspective, I would
just like to point out that for some of us, it is NOT our willingness to
lay aside certain modes of causation and embrace methodological
naturalism, but rather, that we (or should it just be "I"?) are not
convinced that ID can be empirically verified. Having read Dembski's
article in the latest PSCF issue, I share the concerns of Glenn Morton
about whether his tying of specification to personal knowledge creates
an arbitrary standard and presents problems in testing. Related to this
is my failure to see how directed contingency and chance can be clearly
differentiated after the fact.
IMO, the more promising approach for ID advocates is to demonstrate the
untenability of undirected natural causes as explanations of biological
evolution. To demonstrate positive evidence for ID is a much more