Re: Fwd: Pigliucci responds to Miller

Keith B Miller (
Tue, 31 Mar 1998 11:00:22 -0600

Pigliucci wrote:

>No, I don't, Keith. Furthermore, I don't see how anybody *could* see it.
>It's pretty clear that the messy and slow history of the universe and of
>life in particular smacks of chance and necessity, or of an *incredibly
>poor* designer.

Only if you make a priori assumptions about the character of God.
Scripture is quite transparant in revealing the "messiness" of human
history. God is also described as feeding the eagle and the lion, He is
proclaimed to be active in the rather "messy processes" of nature as well.
Most significantly, scripture claims that God took upon himself creation
and lived a short persecuted life ending with an agonizing death on a
cross. As George Murphy has repeatedly emphasized on this listserve, the
cross of Christ is the real

>What I sense from many of your postings is exactly what you accuse
>atheists of: intellectual arrogance. I do not mean to be offensive, but
>it is really hard to stand by being accused of being blind, not
>perceiving "superior" or "larger" truths, and so on, while in fact you
>don't have a leg to stand on!

Of course you don't see God's hand in creation. I did not intend to imply
that the evidence (which is ascientific) for God's presence in creation was
irresistable complelling. It is apprehended by faith. The whole point is
that God does not force belief, but allows himself to be hidden. You are
free to deny the reality of religious experience, but that is not the same
as a logical proof of the non-existence of God. I know of no logical
"proofs" of the existence or non-existence of God. What can be demanded is
that one's worldview be logically consistent.

I find it intriguing that often nontheists will make universal statements
about the ultimate nature of reality, but cry foul when theists do the same
thing. Why is this a problem? The nature of worldviews is that they make
universal claims about the nature of reality. It is fundamental to any
Christian theology that God's existence is ultimate and independent of
whether anyone believes or not. As an atheist you have every right to try
to convince me of the truth of your worldview, and I have every right to
convince you of the truth of mine. What is damaging to the discussion is
to claim that an atheistic worldview, or a Christian worldview, is
scientific or scientifically demanded. As I have tried to emphasize,
science is by definition mute with regard to divine action. However, it
remains that those of us living in the 20th century must have a worldview
that is consistent with what is known of the physical universe through
scientific investigation.


Keith B. Miller
Department of Geology
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506