Re: ASA News Releases (God-guided process looking purposeless)

Don N Page (don@Phys.UAlberta.CA)
Mon, 8 Sep 97 10:20:34 -0600

Let me give give another illustration besides Glenn Morton's excellent
example of Acts 1:26 for's 06:50 AM 9/7/97 message reading,
in part,
"I am confused. I can agree that evolution might be a God-guided process. If
that's the case, how then can it "look just like purposeless, unguided
evolution to the scientific observer"?"

Take the second half of the first two million digits of pi. They are
completely determined by any one of several fairly simple algorithms, but yet I
would expect that no ordinary statistical test could distinguish this sequence
from a truly random sequence of a million digits. (Of course, here simple
algorithmic determination is used merely as an analogy for God-guided purpose;
I am not trying to imply that they are equivalent.)

Thus it seems entirely possible that to any scientific observer,
certain data could look purposeless and unguided, not because the scientist is
blind to this data, but simply because it is not enough of the total picture
for the purpose to be apparent. (Of course, it could be that the scientist is
blind to other data that are available, such as historical evidence for the
truth of Christianity.)

Don Page