In the wake of a new article critiquing Darwin and citing the ID group we might reference our huge number of posts on the issue, starting with J.G.Bennett’s engaging perspective, one of which I am critical but which actually finds a new approach to the question. Bennett’s work is provocative because it suggests something like spooky physics stands behind evolution: his idea of time, eternity and hyparxis, while hardly science suggests how ‘timeless’ form factors lurk behind temporal realizations. Sorry, fascinating but not yet science.
Beyond that we have our discussions of the eonic evolution of civilization, a topic that should be required reading for anyone who has been stranded in postdarwinian puzzlement.
To deal with evolution requires learning how to visualize complex transformations stretching over long periods of time, almost impossible. But the eonic effect in world history gives an example so to speak. While this is not organismic evolution it is none the less ‘evolution’ of some kind. To see this requires careful study.
The eonic model is in many ways your next assignment after seeing the failure of darwinism.
The eonic effect shows one way that evolutionary directionality can work itself out in practice as a series of discrete intervals and transformations, a sort of generalized punctuated equilibrium. But there is a mysterious form factor that we don’t see and this makes any theory of speciation problematical. The issue of the Cambrian falls into place in that context (which doesn’t quite explain it): we see that form factor suddenly reify in a temporal dimension.
The issue of evolution ends up inconclusive. The ID group has perhaps frittered away their successful challenge to darwinism in the quagmire of ‘intelligent design’. The problem with the latter is that it is used to connect with theistic design in history in the manner of the Old Testament.
It is not valid to use arguments against darwinism to prop up religious historicism.
Behe’s new book has arrived and the debate over evolution continues ad infinitum. I have not as yet read the book but google books has a hefty selection. I question at once the misleading idea that ‘design’ challenges ‘evolution’: it only challenges darwinism and Behe is either careless on this point or tossing a crust to hard core creationists. But more generally the case for design in nature is strong…until ID proponents come along and spoil their own argument. Meanwhile the clueless realm of darwinists still to this day peddles the dogmas of evolution by accident in the theology of Dawkins et al. Sometimes you feel like shouting in the ear of the darwinists: they have done an immense disservice in confusing the public so badly for so long. But the ID proponents are their own worst enemy. Continue reading does the design argument need an ‘atheist’ framework?…//Darwin Devolves: The New Science About DNA That Challenges Evolution – Michael J. Behe – Google Books
Despite our challenge to darwinism, and support of the idea of design, we might well challenge the idea of ‘Intelligent Design’ rather than simply ‘design’. The use of the term ‘intelligent’ is no doubt a deliberate attempt to introduce either ‘god’ or at least some ‘mental power’ in the universe connected to evolution. But the gesture is not legitimate: the idea of a design inference allows us to see ‘design’ but its source may or may not be an ‘intelligent mind’ but a process that mimics intelligence, perhaps, but is something different. the distinction is crucial. The idea of design suggests teleology in nature but we cannot produce theology around that. The distinction is essential because the abuse of design arguments in proofs of the existence of god has long since flunked a Kantian metaphysical test. The idea of design however cannot be dismissed using natural selection arguments and the attempt to do so has almost destroyed biological reasoning of scientists…
It may well be that there is some ‘intelligent’ power in the universe, man is one of them, and philosophers like Hegel use the term ‘geist’ (spirit, or mind) explicitly, but that is open to Kantian challenge and in any case is far more sophisticated and reasoned than creationist theologizing…
It is almost incredible that at this late date scientists in a journal such as Science are still in denial over the issue of (irreducible) complexity and the design factor in biology/evolution.
Source: Behe won the argument long ago…dumbing down of science ED…//A biochemist’s crusade to overturn evolution misrepresents theory and ignores evidence | Books, Et Al. – Darwiniana
This kind of junk misses the point that the term ‘god’ has been so trashed by christians/jews/moslems that it can no longer be used. If you are going to leverage ‘design’ to find god again you can’t use that to justify christian and jewish Old Testament mythology. The result is/will be cognitive dissonance and a failure to upgrade theories of evolution. Drop the term ‘god’ and start over with some new terminology.