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Author Topic:   Is Intelligent Design Religion in the Guise of Science?
Posts: 3976
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 10.0

Message 115 of 204 (448633)
01-14-2008 2:17 PM
Reply to: Message 96 by Beretta
01-13-2008 8:54 AM

Re: And Should it be Taught in Our Schools?
Only agnostics get counted out in that case because they don't believe either way in fact by definintion they don't believe that you can know
So maybe the entire argument is religious on both sides but only one side can be right.So what does the evidence show is more likely?
You're confused about Atheism. We've gone over this many times in many threads, so let's just make it clear and not make a giant discussion of it here to derail the topic: Atheists do not have faith that there is no god. Atheists simply have no belief in a god.
Think of it this way: does it require faith for you to believe that there is not, in fact, an invisible fairy named Dixie fluttering next to you right now? Or do you simply have no reason to believe that the fairy is there, and so it doesn't occur to you?
It's the same with Atheists. We don;t see any evidence of any deities or the supernatural, so we simply don't believe in them. We don't have a positive belief that they do not and cannot exist, we simply have a lack of belief that they do. Do you see the difference?
This is contrasted by Agnostics, who believe we cannot know one way or the other.
A simplified version would go like this:
Agnostic: "I don't know, and we really can't know one way or the other."
Atheist: "Yeah, but given the complete lack of evidence, I don't think so. I'll believe it when I see evidence, and not before."
Science, of course, doesn't care about any of this. Its position is inherently skeptical of everything (a necessity of Occam's Razor - extraneous entities are irrelevant and should simply be ignored in any model).
This is why ID is religious, and evolution is not - ID is adding an extraneous entity when no such entity is required. Parsimony requires that the simplest model (that is, the model with the fewest terms or entities) is to be preferred.
The Theory of Evolution looks like this:
(diversity of life seen today) = (life) + (evolution as observed in modern species) + (time)
This model is backed up by mountains of evidence.
ID looks like this:
(diversity of life seen today) = (life) + (evolution as observed in modern species) + (time) + (unnamed "designer")
The only evidence for this unnamed "designer" is incredulity with respect to the complexity of life. IDists literally look at a model of a cell and say "wow, there's no way that could have evolved on its own," and so add an additional entity to the equation.
But there are two problems with this. The first is parsimony, or Occam's Razor, as we just discussed - all other things being equal, the simplest expression is to be preferred.
1 + 2 + 3 = 6
1 + 2 + 3 + x = 6
x = 0, and is irrelevant - there's no reason to mention x at all. It could exist, or it could not, but it has nothing to do with the equation.
What is x in the above examples? The (unnamed "designer"). Could the designer exist? Sure. But without evidence that requires it to exist in order for the model to function, it's irrelevant and science has no reason to make any mention of it.
This, by the way, is why science is religion-neutral. There's simply no reason for science to comment on religious matters until the day a deity is required by evidence to make an accurate model function.
The other problem with the assumed "designer" is that the entire idea begins with incredulity: "there's no way that could possibly have evolved by itself, so I will add in the undefined term "designer" without any associated mechanism for the designing to satisfy my incredulity. Plus, there's the bonus that it fits with my existing religious beliefs."
As we know, any conclusion that stems from a logical fallacy is fallacious itself. ID stems from an argument from incredulity, and so is a fallacious argument.
So: who is adding an extraneous entity to a model that has already proven through evidence and extensive testing to be highly accurate? ID.
Who is basing their entire point on the logical fallacy of incredulity? ID.
Who adds an extraneous and undefined entity while refusing to even define "design" or how to distinguish it? ID
Which model follows the scientific model, passes its hypotheses through the peer review process, constantly tests its predictions, and obeys parsimony? The Theory of Evolution.
Which is a scientific model, and which is based on religion?
It looks pretty obvious to me.
As an aside, and just to highlight some more of the differences between science inferring the existence of an additional entity and ID's undefined addition from incredulity:
Science often infers the existence of an entity from indirect evidence. For instance, the outer planets in our solar system were inferred to exist long before they were actually seen due to their gravitational effects on the other planets.
Perhaps the best corollary (and one cdesign proponentists have brought up a few times before) would be "dark matter."
Dark matter is an undefined form of matter (possibly nonbaryonic, or simply non-light-reflective) that is inferred to exist due to the fact that galaxies are still held together despite insufficient detectable mass to produce enough gravity.
In this case, dark matter is like the undefined designer - we don't really know what it is, only a few ideas of what to start looking for. The anomaly it's invoked to explain could even just be the result of an incomplete model of gravitational forces.
Doesn't this violate parsimony? We're talking about adding an additional entity to the model despite never having observed it, and not even really being able to say what it could be. It's just as undefined as the "designer," right?
It's the reasons for the inference that make the difference. Dark matter is inferred to exist because we actually see the amount of mass in galaxies - it can be measured. "Appearance of design" cannot be measured - design can;t even seem to be defined. Dark matter is not inferred to exist because of incredulity ("there's no way that little mass could hold galaxies together"); rather, we know very well how gravity works, and can calculate the forces involved with relative ease. The math shows that the gravity from the observed mass alone cannot account for the force required to hold galaxies together - the evidence requires the existence of an additional entity, or possibly a refining of our models of the forces involved, to account for the observations. The entity is left undefined because of the lack of evidence regarding it's properties - we know how much extra gravity is required, and we know that we can't as of yet detect whatever it is, and that's about it. This is different from ID, where "design" is inferred due to incredulity, the "designer" is invoked to account for the undefined design, and yet neither is required by any model to function.
So: dark matter is inferred to explain an observed, quantified and defined anomaly, and only as a last resort (calculations regarding the effects of gravity if the model is adjusted to compensate by adding additional gravity from vast distances or other such exotic modifications to our understanding of the gravitational force don't even come close to matching the observed universe).
The "designer" is inferred to explain "design," an undefined term that cannot be quantified and is itself the result of mere incredulity rather than observational requirements.
Do you see the difference?
ID is simply religion, even leaving aside the facts of the Dover trial where the cdesign proponentists were proven to be Christian Creationists attempting to weasel around the establishment clause and add their religious beliefs to science class. The very concept of ID as it stands today invokes undefined extraneous entities to "explain" undefined and unquantified "design," works from the basis of bare incredulity, and doesn't actually propose any sort of mechanism for the "designer" to work his "design" outside of the existing and accurate evolution model.

Every time a fundy breaks the laws of thermodynamics, Schroedinger probably kills his cat.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 96 by Beretta, posted 01-13-2008 8:54 AM Beretta has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 116 by sidelined, posted 01-14-2008 2:24 PM Rahvin has replied

Posts: 3976
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 10.0

Message 117 of 204 (448638)
01-14-2008 2:43 PM
Reply to: Message 116 by sidelined
01-14-2008 2:24 PM

Re: And Should it be Taught in Our Schools?
Atheists do not have faith that there is no god. Atheists simply have no belief in a god.
Saying that atheism is a belief system is like saying that bald is a hair color.
Exactly. Or that "shadow" is a form of light. Or that "cold" is a form of energy.
The insistence that Atheism is a belief system, or requires faith, is simply a projection from those who do have faith and find it inconceivable that an individual should have none. They can accept other religions (most of the time), but not an absence of faith.

Every time a fundy breaks the laws of thermodynamics, Schroedinger probably kills his cat.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 116 by sidelined, posted 01-14-2008 2:24 PM sidelined has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 118 by Chiroptera, posted 01-14-2008 3:49 PM Rahvin has not replied
 Message 119 by Granny Magda, posted 01-14-2008 10:45 PM Rahvin has not replied

Posts: 3976
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 10.0

Message 152 of 204 (449293)
01-17-2008 3:11 PM
Reply to: Message 151 by bluescat48
01-17-2008 2:22 PM

Re: And Should it be Taught in Our Schools?
A lot of them still believe in the vapor canopy.

Every time a fundy breaks the laws of thermodynamics, Schroedinger probably kills his cat.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 151 by bluescat48, posted 01-17-2008 2:22 PM bluescat48 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 159 by bluescat48, posted 01-17-2008 9:12 PM Rahvin has not replied

Posts: 3976
Joined: 07-01-2005
Member Rating: 10.0

Message 193 of 204 (451402)
01-27-2008 3:54 PM
Reply to: Message 192 by CK
01-27-2008 3:47 PM

Re: Science is not Truth????
Interesting development:
The organization that last year opened a US$27-million creation museum in Kentucky has started its own 'peer-reviewed' scientific research journal.
On 9 January, Answers in Genesis, a Christian ministry run by evangelical Ken Ham, launched Answers Research Journal (ARJ ), a free, online publication devoted to research on “recent Creation and the global Flood within a biblical framework”. Papers will be peer reviewed by those who “support the positions taken by the journal”, according to editor-in-chief Andrew Snelling, a geologist based in Brisbane, Australia.
“There have been these kinds of publications in the past,” says Keith Miller, a geologist at Kansas State University in Manhattan, who follows creationism. For the most part, he says, the work is ignored by the scientific community. But those without a science background, including some policy-makers, may not be able to judge the difference in value of a paper in ARJ and a genuine science journal.
From here.
Apparently, the Creationists have taken out criticism of the lack of published papers seriously...so now they will publish their own "peer-reviewed" journal.
Of course, there still wont be any actual science involved, and it's not going to be a respected journal. neither will it be reviewed by actual, objective scientists. But the attempt is funny. The Wedge Strategy progresses!

When you know you're going to wake up in three days, dying is not a sacrifice. It's a painful inconvenience.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 192 by CK, posted 01-27-2008 3:47 PM CK has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 196 by Percy, posted 01-27-2008 4:23 PM Rahvin has not replied

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