Reasoning to the Best Explanation for Life

Whether the universe, which has the appearance of design, was actually designed is the question that is begged by modern science.

 (c) Can Stock Photo

(c) Can Stock Photo

I recently read the book, Darwin’s Doubt, by Stephen C. Meyer, a Cambridge University Ph.D. in the Philosophy of Science. The book uses Darwin’s acknowledgment that the Cambrian Explosion was a significant problem to his evolutionary theory of the origin of life as a springboard to explore in detail that problem which Meyer aptly names “Darwin’s doubt”.

I have summarized the first ten chapters of the book on a different Blog, Perspective, starting with a summary of the first four chapters of the book. Read my blog if you want to read a summary description of the detail that Meyer explores without buying the book, though I strongly suggest buying the book if your are interested.

In this blog, I want to provide an overarching description of the basis for Intelligent Design, which is ultimately the theory that Meyer espouses. For Meyer, the key bases for Intelligent Design is 1) the argument from biological or genetic information and 2) the argument from physics or cosmology. Both arguments can be summed up in the statement that we live in a world so finely-tuned for life that it could not have happened by chance or unguided “natural law”.

Meyer focuses on the biological argument, observing that, to build the complex biological machines that exist, prior information is necessary, and any discussion of that complexity begs the question: where did that information necessary to build the protein parts out of which the complex structures are made come from in the first place?

What cause is capable of generating that information?

Meyer argues that we can use the same scientific method that Darwin used to infer that the cause had to be conscious mind or intelligence.
Continue reading “Reasoning to the Best Explanation for Life”

The Evolution of C.S. Lewis

From early on his observations that nature is cruel was counter balanced by the longings nature stirred within him. For Lewis, the experience of beauty in nature pointed to the reality of something beyond nature. “Atoms ever dead could never stir the heart of us lest the beauty that we see the endless beauty be.”

Flagstaff Mountain Flowers

C.S. Lewis had a profound influence on me as a thinker and as a man of faith. In this piece, I trace the evolution of C.S. Lewis in his thinking from materialist to theist.

We begin looking at Lewis a few months after his honorable discharge from the British Army following service in World War I at age 20. Lewis say fighting and was injured during the War. He published a book of poems, Spirits in Bondage, influenced by his experiences. The opening poem, Satan Speaks, paints a grim portrait of nature and the way that young Lewis had come to view the world. Continue reading “The Evolution of C.S. Lewis”

Not So Random Thoughts on Evolution

Evolution does not satisfactorily explain the big picture, and it seems to me that the forest gets lost in the trees.

sad chimpanzee

I am fascinated by evolution. I have learned more about evolution in the last ten years of my life than I did in the first 50. I have come to respect the science, though I do not come to it from within the scientific community. As an outsider to this community, I am curious to see the religious fervor with which evolution, as theory for the origin of life, has provides for its adherents. It prompts me to ask: why are so many people so religiously attached to evolution?

I am no scientist. I will admit that; at the same time, I note that many people are downright dogmatic on this topic. Questioning the theory of evolution as an explanation for the origin of life is sacrilege in these modern times – so much so that we have laws in the United States that forbid competing theories (like intelligent design or creationism, which are very different models) from even being mentioned in a public school.

As I focus on evolution in this blog piece, I am not talking about the adaptation of species. I see more than sufficient proof of evolution in that sense. I am not even talking about the origin of species, though I believe we need more sufficient evidence to prove that evolution is the sole explanation for the origin of species.

I am talking about the origin of life, itself – the big picture, the forest, not the trees. When talking about the evolutionary paradigm as an explanation of the origin of life, I do not see a satisfactory explanation of the big picture, not even close, and it seems to me that the forest gets lost in the trees. Continue reading “Not So Random Thoughts on Evolution”