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  'Intelligent Design' Is a Placeholder for any Religion

REPLY:

'Intelligent Design' Is a Placeholder for any Religion

by Jozsef Ludvig

"There is absolutely no hint of a proof in Darwin's work or biography for the idea that Darwin used an atheist premise."
Mr. David Plyler presents an inconsistent view in his letter. He says:
"Intelligent Design does not postulate a God and is not about religion."
But in reality, by leaving the name and identity of the designer unknown, ID becomes a placeholder for any religion while narrowly escaping the definition of a religion itself. But it can still not pose for science because it starts with the premise that a supernatural force had to be involved in the creation of life from inorganic matter. In order to prove this premise it then invents the non-empirical device of irreducible complexity which is just a typical God-Of-The-Gaps and cannot explain anything by itself. The resulting negative inference of a supernatural force from empirical ignorance is, by definition, neither a scientific subject nor consistent with the scientific method. Thus ID is not science.

The only scientific version of ID possible would involve a natural designer, but such a space alien hypothesis fails to have any attributes that could be of interest for anyone but members of the Raelian sect.

After having set up such a transparent deception, he continues with with an obvious lie:

"Darwinism begins with a premise of atheism....Darwin began his concept of naturalistic explanations in order to refute religion with atheism."
There is absolutely no hint of a proof in Darwin's work or biography for the idea that Darwin used an atheist premise. Maybe Mr. Plyler could point us to his historical evidence?

And even if he had such proof, it would not make the least of a difference for the modern theory of evolution, which is a perfectly scientific theory supported by overwhelming evidence. But he conveniently fails to mention that. To him, an invented historical lie extinguishes any trace of physical evidence.

Darwin, in his work as a scientist, was a naturalist. At the heart of Mr. Plyler's split tongue argument is the notion of many religious people that naturalism, simply because it fails to mention God, is an atheist construct. But this is absolutely incorrect.

Naturalism is the belief that nature is completely self-contained and self-consistent. Where atheism makes an explicit statement about gods, naturalism does not. If one logically negates any possible statement of naturalism, it will still not contain anything about super-natural beings. But if one negates atheism, one has to end up with the basic tenet of any religion that there are supernatural beings, thus where atheism is essentially anti-religion, naturalism is simply logically disjoint.

Ultimately, the inconsistency in his argument lies in the belief of ID not being religious because it does not mention ANY PARTICULAR supernatural being, while he accuses Darwinism, which does not mention God at all, of being atheist.

His other musings about micro- vs. macro- evolution and the missing fossil record are desperate fantasies to keep his belief in his own inconsistent premises alive. They are hardly worthy of a reply.


Copyright © 2005 The Baltimore Chronicle. All rights reserved.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

This story was published on August 30, 2005.

 
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