Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Use Of The Phrase "So Irreducibly Complex" Simply Indicates You Have No Idea What You Are Critiquing

And Ruse used the phrase:

Not a good start. And I’m afraid it doesn’t get better. Here’s another excerpt:

In the ID case, whatever its supporters may say publicly for political purposes – in the USA thanks to the First Amendment you cannot teach religion in state-funded schools – the intention is to bring God into the causal process. ID claims that there are some phenomena (like the bacterial flagellum and the blood-clotting cascade) are so “irreducibly complex,” that to explain them we must invoke an “intelligent designer.” As they admit among themselves – the philosopher-mathematician William Dembski is quite clear on this – the designer is none other than our old friend the God of Christianity.

(1) “Bring God into the causal process”?? The notion makes absolutely no sense. According to religious believers, no causal process could exist without God in the first place. God sustains the universe in being; it would not exist, even for a second, without Him.

(2) Irreducibly complexity doesn’t come in degrees; either a system is irreducibly complex or it isn’t. Professor Ruse’s phrase “so irreducibly complex” (emphasis mine) betrays a misunderstanding of this point.

(3) Professor Dembski’s views on the identity of the intelligent designer form no part of Intelligent Design theory, as contained in ID textbooks. Intelligent Design as such is a scientific project.

(4) Professor Dembski’s religious views and motives are no more germane to the scientific merits of Intelligent Design theory than the atheistic views and motives of most neo-Darwinists are of relevance to the scientific merits of neo-Darwinism.

Professor Ruse opens his third paragraph with the following jaw-dropper:

The trouble for the Fuller analogy is that science simply does not allow God as a causal factor.

Now, if Professor Ruse had claimed that science does not explicitly invoke God as a causal factor, he would have been on strong argumentative ground. But to say that science does not allow God as a causal factor is patently absurd. Or does Ruse really think that scientists can legislate God out of existence?

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