Old Patriot's Pen

Personal pontifications of an old geezer born 200 years too late.

NOTE The views I express on this site are mine and mine alone. Nothing I say should be construed as being "official" or the views of any group, whether I've been a member of that group or not. The advertisings on this page are from Google, and do not constitute an endorsement on my part.

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Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States

I've been everywhere That was the title of a hit country-and-western song from the late 1950's, originally sung by Hank Snow, and made famous by Johnny Cash. I resemble that! My 26-year career in the Air Force took me to more than sixty nations on five continents - sometimes only for a few minutes, other times for as long as four years at a time. In all that travel, I also managed to find the perfect partner, help rear three children, earn more than 200 hours of college credit, write more than 3000 reports, papers, documents, pamphlets, and even a handful of novels, take about 10,000 photographs, and met a huge crowd of interesting people. I use this weblog and my personal website here to document my life, and discuss my views on subjects I find interesting.

Monday, January 31, 2005

Intelligent Design and Genesis

This article in Opinion Journal illustrates behavior that disgusts me, especially coming from "scientists". This is the strait-jacket of "political correctness" carried to its illogical extreme.

The kefuffle over "Creationism", "Intelligent Design", and "Darwinism" seems to be growing. There's something, however, that I'd like all three groups to think about.

The Bible of the Hebrews documents the creation of the "heavens and the earth" by an omnipotent, omniscent, all-powerful God who created everything that exists. It doesn't say HOW He did it, only that He had.

This brings up some interesting questions, if you're someone who's willing to think, rather than just reject anything to do with religion as "superstition". Here are some topics to think about:

  • If God created EVERYTHING, then that includes the so-called "natural laws" that govern the Universe, from the inverse square law to quantum mechanics to the laws of physics, biology, geology, and and any other "ology" we as 'mere mortals' may deduce from His universe.
  • In the same vein, if we look at the universe as something designed by a higher being, everything that happens occurs for a reason. That doesn't necessarily mean that we know the reason, or can even understand it at this point in our development.
  • The case for evolution to be the sole source for the creation of the myriad number of species is becoming weaker and weaker. At the same time, there is abundant evidence that evolution of species has occurred. We have also seen extensive evidence of the physical changes in the conditions supporting life on Earth. If we postulate

    • that the Earth is in a constant state of flux, with continents, ocean currents, air currents, mountain chains, river systems, and shorelines changing over time,
    • that the Solar System, including our sun, is also constantly changing, even if these changes are minute and difficult to detect,
    • and that even minute changes (in solar output, ocean width or depth, or mountain orogeny, for instance) may have huge impacts over time that affect every living thing on Earth,
    • there needs to be some form of biological feedback within species as a whole as well as individuals to adjust to those changes,
    • therefore, what we classify as "evolution" is a form of self-adjusting feedback mechanism that ensures the continued existence of the species.

"Intelligent Design" is the catch-phrase of those that acknowledge that the universe as it exists cannot be explained by the laws of random generation, but requires something more. These people cannot bring themselves to acknowledge the possibility that any one God, especially not the God of the Hebrews, actually exists, and actually relates to His creation on a routine basis, even at the individual level. They postulate some other force as being behind the universe without ever attempting to explain what that force could be. That's a cop-out. So are the words of the fundamentalists that believe they know how God created the universe, and that the literal translation of the Bible is the only explanation of how God works. Genesis explains "who" and "what", not "how". Trying to encapsule God's creation into days that literally didn't exist until the fourth "day" highlights this fallacy. How God works is beyond our abilities to know - THAT He works, and that He has a desire to be a part of the lives of each of us is all that should matter.

Anyone who refuses to acknowledge that there may be an alternate explanation to a theory, even an explanation with religious connotations, is not a true scientist. A true scientist is one who has an open mind, and a willingness to accept any hypothesis until it's proven false. The growth of scientific evidence supporting the structured nature of the universe will eventually displace the "chaos" theory. As the amount of evidence grows, there is good reason to expect intelligent design to be an equally, perhaps better explanation, of the development of life in all its current forms. For those who identify that intelligence as "God", it will be an acceptance long overdue.


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