Re: [asa] Natural Agents - Cause and Effect, Non-Natural Agents

From: Keith Miller <>
Date: Sat Apr 11 2009 - 12:32:05 EDT

Gregory Arago wrote:

> I.e. every major ID 'theorist' disagrees that "science can
> investigate the supernatural, since it can investigate human
> action." It's just that their language is fuzzy or foaming!

ID advocates reject humans as natural agents, and instead view them
as non-natural intelligent agents distinct from the natural world.
Human (and human-like) agents and supernatural agents are viewed as
essentially identical categories with respect to scientific
explanation. Thus a demonstration of human intelligent action is for
them indistinguishable from a demonstration of divine action. This
equation of human and divine action is crucial for their argument
that supernatural intelligence can be detected empirically.

Nelson argues for the non-natural character of human actions as follows:

“At this very moment, you are engaged in a nonnaturalistic event.
Traditional Christianity teaches that your nonphysical soul is
engaged with your body in the task of reading. You are, if science
must be naturalistic, engaged in an activity that science will never
understand. Science bound by naturalism will never be able to
recognize an immaterial soul. Reading is not scientifically
explainable. This holds true for whatever activity in which humans,
or any other beings with souls, engage themselves. Worst of all, the
same research futility that plagued the physicist will return with a
vengeance for the psychologist. Human psychology, if it can only
recognize natural causes for events, will be forever on the hapless
task of trying to explain the actions of the soul without including
the soul in the theory.”[1]

[1] P. Nelson and J. M. Reynolds, 1999, “Young Earth Creationism.”
In, Three Views on Creation and Evolution (J.P.Moreland & John Marks
Reynolds, eds.) Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing, p.47.

The whole point of Nelson's argument is that science must be free to
investigate the non-natural and supernatural. He is arguing for the
expansion of science to the investigation of the supernatural.


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Received on Sat Apr 11 12:33:51 2009

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