Tuesday, December 20, 2005

not entirely based on religion: intelligent design

U.S. District Judge John Jones ruled today that teaching "intelligent design" would violate the Constitutional separation of church and state.

In his written opinion [pdf], Judge Jones writes:
"To be sure, Darwin's theory of evolution is imperfect. However, the fact that a scientific theory cannot yet render an explanation on every point should not be used as a pretext to thrust an untestable alternative hypothesis grounded in religion into the science classroom or to misrepresent well-established scientific propositions.”

That phrase of his, “an untestable alternative hypothesis grounded in religion,” is where I’d part company with Jones. I’ve always thought that proponents of intelligent design base part of their argument on philosophy. I mean, the belief that the universe came about through an intelligent designer can be argued and even proven using philosophy and logic, not religion, as Jones points out.

I mean, isn’t this the whole point of the various Cosmological Arguments for the existence of an intelligent designer as proposed by Plato, Aristotle, Leibniz, Aquinas, Kalam, and Avicenna?

Even down to our time, Dr. William Hatcher, a self-proclaimed Platonist philosopher with a Ph.D. in mathematics, presented a logical/mathematical proof for the existence of an intelligent designer.

What is bothersome is the knee-jerk reaction that just because one reasonably doubts and even rejects Darwinian evolutionism, that the reason is purely religious.

Rather, one can reject Darwin’s theory based on logic, reason, and philosophy….not purely on religion.

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