Science & Faith

CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).

Posted 3/30/12 at 9:12 PM | Mike Keas

What is the Theory of Intelligent Design and does it Have a Future?

The theory of intelligent design (ID) holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause rather than an undirected process such as natural selection. Intelligent design theorists engage in an effort to empirically detect whether many instances of "apparent design" in nature are genuine design (the product of an intelligent cause) or are simply the product of an undirected process such as natural selection acting on random variations.

ID is different than creationism. Creationism is focused on defending a literal reading of the Genesis account, usually including the creation of the earth by the biblical God a few thousand years ago. Unlike creationism, the scientific theory of intelligent design does not have within its scientific resources the ability to discover the source of design. Honest critics of intelligent design acknowledge the difference between intelligent design and creationism. University of Wisconsin historian of science Ronald Numbers is critical of intelligent design, yet according to the Associated Press, he "agrees the creationist label is inaccurate when it comes to the ID [intelligent design] movement." FULL POST

Posted 3/27/12 at 11:22 PM | Mike Keas

Columbia University Professor Challenges Krauss' Book: A Universe From Nothing (Reason Rally Rhetoric)

Lawrence M. Krauss

Columbia University Philosopher of Science David Albert published a devastating review of Lawrence Krauss' book A Universe From Nothing in the New York Times on March 23, one day before Krauss appeared on stage with Dawkins at the Reason Rally atheism festival in DC. In the book's afterword Dawkins provided this lofty pronouncement: "If 'On the Origin of Species' was biology's deadliest blow to super-naturalism, we may come to see 'A Universe From Nothing' as the equivalent from cosmology."

David Albert, an accomplished philosopher of physics (Ph.D in Theoretical Physics, Rockefeller University) is far more qualified to judge the merits of Krauss' book than is biologist Richard Dawkins. You might want to ignore the ungrounded Reason Rally styled chants of Dawkins and take a careful look at what Albert has to tell us about Krauss' book. Albert's expertise is in quantum mechanics, the very subfield of physics that Krauss claims can tell us how everything came from "nothing." FULL POST

Posted 3/24/12 at 11:49 PM | Mike Keas

Reason Rally Participants Urged to Mock Religion

I'll briefly comment on Lillian Kwon's Christian Post article about the Saturday March 24th Reason Rally.

Kwon writes:

Richard Dawkins, author of the best-selling The God Delusion, was the most anticipated and well-known speaker at the rally. In his brief address, Dawkins encouraged fellow atheists to ridicule those who claim to be religious. ... "Mock them, ridicule them in public," he urged. "Don't fall for the convention that we're all too polite to talk about religion."

I thought reason was all about carefully examining evidence and listening patiently to each person who makes a case for a particular view. This entails civility and careful thought, not ridicule and mockery. Dawkins does not appear to highly value such rules for respectable public discourse.

Gilson, who blogs at thinkingchristian.net ... argued that atheists "have no business claiming the brand of reason" because "they don't reason very well." ... "reason ... means being able to start with a premise or some evidence, move through a line of thinking and arrive at a conclusion without stumbling upon fallacies that lead you to a wrong conclusion." FULL POST

Posted 3/23/12 at 9:48 AM | Mike Keas

Bad Religion: Punk "Science & Religion" Rock on the DC "Reason Rally" Stage

Bad Religion in Stockholm, 2004

Earlier I introduced punk rocker and PhD evolutionary biologist Greg Graffin. I noted his similarities to Richard Dawkins, and their highly anticipated joint appearance at the DC Reason Rally on Saturday March 24.

Let's explore the anti-theistic music of Greg Graffin's Bad Religion punk band a bit more, because popular culture has been of great assistance to the atheist movement. Bad Religion is likely to be well received on the stage of the Reason Rally. Let's see why by analyzing two more songs from the 2010 album The Dissent of Man: "Won't Somebody" and "Meeting of the Minds." These are two good candidates for the Reason Rally on March 24th, 2012 at the National Mall.

Won't Somebody (complete lyrics) FULL POST

Posted 3/21/12 at 9:51 PM | Mike Keas

Molecular Machines in the Cell: See the Products of Intelligent Design Animated

This amazing molecular machine in the living cell is animated below (the animation is oriented upside down relative to this illustration)

Casey Luskin's recent Bio-Mechanics article in Salvo magazine offers a riveting and clear explanation of how molecular machines in the living cell point to intelligent design. Here are some excerpts with comments, and links to a few animations that illustrate the points even better than Luskin's still graphics.

Luskin writes (I've omitted the footnotes):

Molecular machines are ubiquitous in all living organisms. A 2004 article defined them as "devices that can produce useful work through the interaction of individual molecules at the molecular scale," and noted that "countless such machines exist in nature." Likewise, a paper in Nature Methods observed that "most cellular functions are executed by protein complexes, acting like molecular machines." One individual research project reported the discovery of over 250 new molecular machines in yeast alone. FULL POST

Posted 3/19/12 at 3:55 PM | Mike Keas

Preparing for the March 24 “Reason Rally” with the book “True Reason"

Earlier I wrote about the "Reason Rally" here: Bad Religion and the "Largest Gathering of the Secular Movement in World History." You will want to purchase the book True Reason whether or not you attend the March 24th "Reason Rally." This book responds to the unjustified leaps of thinking that you will find at the much anticipated secularism-atheism "Reason Rally" event.

Here is the book description:

While New Atheists like Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and others proclaim loudly their rationality, clear thinking, and incontrovertible scientific arguments, others are beginning to wonder how genuinely rational they are. Have they proved anything? Have they argued convincingly? Have they pinpointed any real challenges to the credibility of Christian faith? FULL POST

Posted 3/17/12 at 9:28 PM | Mike Keas

Bad Religion, Ideologically Hijacked Science, and the "Largest Gathering of the Secular Movement in World History"

Greg Graffin: Punk Rocker to Share the Stage with Richard Dawkins

What do Richard Dawkins and Greg Graffin have in common? They both have PhDs that prepared them to teach evolutionary biology to college students: Dawkins at Oxford and Graffin at UCLA. They also both have written anti-theistic books about faith and evolution: Dawkins' God Delusion (2006) and Graffin's Anarchy Evolution: Faith, Science, and Bad Religion in a World Without God (2010). Finally, they share the honor of making appearances at the Reason Rally in Washington, DC, which is promoting itself as the "Largest Gathering of the Secular Movement in World History."

The Reason Rally on March 24th, 2012 at the National Mall will feature Dawkins preaching and Graffin singing with his group Bad Religion. Their message: A world without God is more reasonable and happy. Even if the preaching is bad, the event might grip the masses if the music shines. Indeed, Graffin is (still) the lead singer/songwriter for the punk rock group Bad Religion, which he co-founded in Los Angeles in 1979. Graffin has mellowed since his screaming F-bomb days. He's an aging punker with kids of his own now. There is a useful biography of Graffin here and a musical history of Bad Religion here (played out in the music video "Wrong Way Kids"). FULL POST

Posted 3/14/12 at 6:29 PM | Mike Keas

David Berlinski & Michael Denton: Primary Objections to Neo-Darwinism

I found this podcast to be one of the best in the past month at ID The Future. On this episode Discovery Institute senior fellows David Berlinski and Michael Denton, both long-time critics of neo-Darwinism, discuss their primary objections to neo-Darwinian theory. For Berlinski, a mathematician and author of 1, 2, 3: Absolutely Elementary Mathematics, the problem is quantitative and methodological. For Denton, a scientist and author of Nature's Destiny: How the Laws of Biology Reveal Purpose in the Universe, the problem is empirical. Don't miss this engaging discussion! FULL POST

Posted 3/13/12 at 2:47 PM | Mike Keas

"RNA World" View of Life's Origin is in Trouble Again: Naturalistic Faith Overcomes the Disconfirming Evidence

Yesterday Cornelius Hunter posted a blog that updates the controversy over the origin of the first life forms. Hunter holds a Ph.D. in Biophysics and Computational Biology. He is author of the award-winning Darwin's God: Evolution and the Problem of Evil, in which he shows that Darwinism has relied on many "God wouldn't have done it that way" theological arguments that have been repeatedly voiced from 1859 until today.

His blog yesterday, An Evolutionist Just Gave Up On a Fundamental Just-So Story (And Then Made Up Another to Replace it), is another illustration of how religious faith in naturalism (the belief that nature is all there is) drives much of evolutionary biology when it comes to the maintenance of belief in Darwinism despite many stubborn facts that resist the theory. In the blog posted yesterday Hunter explains how the "RNA world" theory of life's origin has suffered a disconfirming blow. Darwinists have made it through this evidential setback, however, through the invention of another blind-faith hypothesis which Hunter labels a "just-so story" (like juveneil fantasy stories that make for great bedtime reading, but are not true). FULL POST

Posted 3/10/12 at 8:44 PM | Mike Keas

Aping Mankind: An Atheist Professor of Medicine Exposes Weaknesses in Darwinian Tales about the Human Mind

Raymond Tallis, who is an atheistic Professor of Medicine, and a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, recently published Aping Mankind: Neuromania, Darwinitis, and the Misrepresentation of Humanity (Acumen, 2011). In this book he voices concern about the overuse of materialistic explanations of all things human. But also he desires to maintains his atheistic worldview in the face of such nagging doubts about whether Darwinism today is really as "intellectually fulfilling" as it is popularly declared.

While largely accepting Richard Dawkins' characterization of the Darwinian natural selection process as a blind watchmaker, Tallis admits that the purposeful, goal-directed traits of human consciousness seem to defy Darwinian explanation:

Darwinism, therefore, leaves something unaccounted for: the emergence of people like you and me who are indubitably sighted watchmakers. If there are no sighted watchmakers in nature and yet humans are sighted watchmakers, in the narrower sense of making artefacts whose purpose they envisage in advance, and in the wider sense of consciously aiming at stated goals, then humans are not part of nature: or not entirely so. To put this another way, isn't there a problem in explaining how the blind forces of physics brought about (cognitively) sighted humans who are able to see, and identify, and comment on, the "blind" forces of physics, even to notice that they are blind and deliberately utilize them to engage with nature as if from the outside, and on much more favourable terms than those that govern the lives of the animals? On the Origin of Species leaves us with the task of explaining the origin of one species that is indeed a designer. (p. 212) FULL POST

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