Re: ID.Weinberg

From: george murphy (
Date: Fri Apr 06 2001 - 08:27:39 EDT

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    Keith B Miller wrote:

    > This essay by Weinberg might be a good focus for dissecting the arguments
    > of a philosophical materialist.

            A couple of general comments:
            1) Christians who expect to make any headway in getting scientifically
    knowledgeable non-Christians to consider the claims of the faith by starting
    with natural theology, & especially design arguments, are going to be
    disappointed. They will, if I may put it boluntly, get their butts kicked by
    Weinberg _et al_. This is quite apart from the question of any theoretical
    justification for natural theology. It just won't work for this audience.
            (Of course such arguments can work to support the faith of those who are
    already Christians, or even leaning toward Christianity because of other
    consdierations, but that is another matter.)
            2) Weinberg's argument against miracles is - like almost all such
    arguments - finally no different from that of Hume ~240 years ago, no better &
    no worse. & while that argument does have some
    value - i.e., we should examine claims for phenomena outside the ordinary course
    of nature critically - it is in the last analysis a begging of the question:
    The absolute uniformity of nature is established only by leaving out all claims
    for phenomena which don't fit that pattern, & then is supposedly used to exclude
    those claims. The fact that we now know the laws of physics a lot better than
    people did in the 18th century does nothing to remedy this flaw.



    George L. Murphy
    "The Science-Theology Interface"

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