Re: [asa] dawkins and collins on "Fresh Air" interview program

From: PvM <>
Date: Sat Mar 31 2007 - 14:22:58 EDT

Having listened to Dawkins interview, it seems that Dawkins may agree
to the extent of calling this 'god'.

In his book the God Delusion, Dawkins writes

<quote>The Nobel Prize-winning physicist (and atheist) Steven Weinberg
 made the point as well as anybody, in Dreams of a Final Theory:

Some people have views of God that are so broad and
flexible that it is inevitable that they will find God
wherever they look for him. One hears it said that 'God is
the ultimate' or 'God is our better nature' or 'God is the
universe.' Of course, like any other word, the word 'God'
can be given any meaning we like. If you want to say that
'God is energy,' then you can find God in a lump of

Weinberg is surely right that, if the word God is not to become
completely useless, it should be used in the way people have gener-
ally understood it: to denote a supernatural creator that is
'appropriate for us to worship'.

Later Dawkins quotes from Einstein

It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious
convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I
do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied
this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me
which can be called religious then it is the unbounded
admiration for the structure of the world so far as our
science can reveal it.

Dawkins then explains that his book is not about the Einsteinian God

My title, The God Delusion, does not refer to the God of Einstein
and the other enlightened scientists of the previous section.

When discussing argument for design, Dawkins finally gets to
Intelligent Design and it claims about complexity and concludes that

But the candidate solutions to the riddle of improbability are not, as
is falsely implied, design and chance. They are design and natural
selection. Chance is not a solution, given the high levels of
improbability we see in living organisms, and no sane biologist ever
suggested that it was. Design is not a real solution either, as we
shall see later; but for the moment I want to continue demonstrating
the problem that any theory of life must solve: the problem of how to
escape from chance.

If you are concerned that ID has granted a powerful weapon to people
like Dawkins then we agree. By making 'design' an issue of science, ID
has not only done science a disservice but in this case also theology
and faith.

Scientifically because of

<quote>There is, then, an unfortunate hook-up between science's
methodological need to seek out areas of ignorance in order to target
research, and ID's need to seek out areas of ignorance in
order to claim victory by default. It is precisely the fact that ID
has no evidence of its own, but thrives like a weed in gaps left by
scientific knowledge, that sits uneasily with science's need to
identify and proclaim the very same gaps as a prelude to researching
them. In this respect, science finds itself in alliance with
sophisticated theologians like Bonhoeffer, united against the
common enemies of naive, populist theology and the gap theology of
intelligent design.

On 3/31/07, David Opderbeck <> wrote:
> Poured himself into a design... Sounds almost as scientific as God is
> > beyond science. Poof...
> To be clear, this wasn't intended as a defense of ID. It was intended as a
> reference to my orthodox Christian belief in "one God, the Father, the
> Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen," who,
> in the words of the ASA's Statement of Faith, "has endowed it with
> contingent order and intelligibility." This God whom Christians have
> professed for 2000 years (and who was professed by the Jews long before
> that) does not arise out of creation. He is outside, over, and above it.
> He is a given; he simply is.

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Received on Sat Mar 31 14:23:14 2007

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