Sunday, November 06, 2005

the Devil is to blame ... or aliens ?

In the first century BC, Marcus Tullius Cicero, a Roman lawyer, rebuked non-Epicurean theology – beliefs arguing divine intervention in human affairs – as “baseless figments of the imagination, such as the artisan deity and world-builder.” he would have shown no mercy to “Intelligent design” (ID).

Five centuries later, St Augustine read Cicero and denounced literalism in areas where knowledge is available. Ignoring their roots, advocates of ID inserted their ignorance into school curriculums of several states. ID proponents in Aroostook County are also proponents of hate and discrimination.

The ID website, intelligentdesignnetwork.org, informs us that ID “is an intellectual movement that includes a scientific research program for investigating intelligent causes.” And they claim to be utilizing scientific objectivity in “seeking answers to the question: Where do we come from?”

As ID claims to be “simply the science of design detection – how to recognize patterns arranged by an intelligent cause for a purpose.” It is clear, pattern does not, can not, define origin. So they lie.

The website asserts, “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.” It also warns that their research is of an historical, “thus very subjective nature,” and “unavoidably impacts religion.”

They caution that ID research is to be viewed “without regard to the implications of its findings.” A very significant statement – similar to telling Dorothy, in Oz, to ignore the man behind the curtain.

Once an “undirected process” is excluded, so are evolution or random influence – both of which are products of freewill and individual choice. Both choice and freewill promote randomness, remove them and you undermine individual moral responsibility. ID is an attack on moral responsibility.

Biologists define evolution as a change in the gene pool of a population over time. The process of Natural Selection is one “whereby some organisms in a species have certain inherited variations that give them an advantage over others.” That advantage can be survival in new hosts or environments.

Absent the “undirected process” inherent in “natural selection” an organism should be stable; hence, a virus – such as avian flu – which is normally nonlethal, should not become lethal. More important is the fact that it should not change host species – at least not unless it is altered by a demonic agent.

Evolution does not require that malevolent agent. Nor does it create the problem ID generates: Why does it take teams of biochemists to develop antibiotics, or anti-viral agents, against which bacteria and viruses somehow become immune. Do germs operated their own biochemistry labs?

ID wishes to conceal the implication – that whose sole purpose is to kill is the product of intentional malevolent designer. To modify avian flu, that designer must be currently active. Objectivity! ID seeks to prove a living malevolence is actively shaping our history – and the benevolent one is dead.

Evolution describes an ongoing biological process which is consistent with freewill – our right to select, and be responsible for, our behavior. ID denies such an “undirected process”, so denies the basics of freewill and personal responsibility. Under ID, death from disease is a directed process.

The “implications” which ID wants people to overlook? How do you appease a malevolent force? Existence proves origin – ID can only provide arguments for an ongoing influence by an evil entity.

If our children are to be responsible adults, they cannot be taught to say: “The devil made me do it.”

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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