Sunday, January 28, 2007

Who Would Know Better About Theology Than An Evolutionary Scientist?

Here's another one for the "Non-Overlapping Magisteria" file:

Remember Richard Sternberg, the editor who got in hot water for allowing a paper arguing for intelligent design to be published in a scientific journal, where intelligent design was "out of place"? Fortunately, other editors enjoy looser reigns. In the article "Intelligent design and biological complexity" in the journal Gene, molecular biologist at Stanford University Emile Zuckerkandl writes not only about intelligent design (he thinks it's an "intellectual virus") but even about the attributes of God:

Time implies change. Without change, there probably is no time. Time and change as unavoidable conditions of existence would have had to impose themselves upon that "higher intelligence" that is being peddled to the public. If the higher intelligence had to conform to time, then why not to the other dimensions of nature? It looks as though beyond the ascendancy of nature any other power may be superfluous - and inherently limited. Since life in particular could under no conditions be created instantaneously - biology makes this abundantly clear, because certain required simultaneities can only result from a history - no God can be almighty.

A few questions: How does speculations about intelligent design and theology fit in with the description of Gene as dealing with "structural, functional, and evolutionary aspects of genes, chromatin, chromosomes and genomes"? Will Gene be opening a forthcoming issue to a reply from theologians, defending the almightiness of God?

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