TIP of the day (logic):What Dawkins can prove

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Mar 3 2016 12:31 AM

No, you are not going to get multiple logic lessons per day ... or logic lessons every day, but I am concerned that readers may overstate my critique of the logic of Dawkins. This is Dawkins position as he can defend it logically ... considerably less broad than his stated position.

Given this description of science

  • Science is limited to what humans can observe through their senses, through the tools human build to extend their senses, and what reasoning based upon these perceptions can deduce or infer.
  • We have seen an explosion in the knowledge we have gained through science; we can expect continuing growth in scientific knowledge; we have no way of of estimating what portion of reality we have currently explored nor estimating the portion of reality not subject to our currently recognized sensory perceptions.
  • We acknowledge that science is based upon inductive and abductive logic which reasons to the "best fit" rather than logical truth; in this sense scientific knowledge is always provisional.

What Dawkins can argue is "for that portion of reality which we have currently developed scientific (provisional) explanations and/or means of observation, we have no observations that require the positing of an intelligent creator-god to explain the observed phenomenon."

That may be slightly broader than I would grant Dawkins as an acceptable assertion, but it is close. It is the gap between this statements and Dawkins' actual statements that I am illustrating logic by deflating.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 6:22 AM

Vyrso resource => God's Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe mentions Richard Dawkins

God's Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detectiv Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe:

THE APPEARANCE OF DESIGN IN BIOLOGICAL ORGANISMS

As unlikely and unexpected as it may be, life exists in our universe, and just as researchers stipulate to the appearance of fine-tuning in the cosmos, scientists also stipulate to the appearance of design in biological organisms. Richard Dawkins would be the first to agree: “Biology is the study of complicated things that give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.”

   Many other scientists affirm this observation and extend it to include the larger ecosystems in which many symbiotic organisms are dependent on one another for their survival. Smith College professor of biological sciences Robert Dorit said, “The apparent fit between organisms seems to suggest some higher intelligence at work, some supervisory gardener bringing harmony and color to the garden.” For scientists looking for an explanation within the “garden” to avoid the inference of an external “supervisory gardener,” this appearance of design is difficult to explain.

   Dawkins believes, however, the power of natural evolutionary processes can explain “the illusion of design and planning.” If the appearance of design and planning is purely illusory, it is an impressive illusion indeed. The examples of apparent design are plentiful and varied. Lehigh University biochemist Michael Behe describes in detail a number of inexplicable biological systems and micro-machines in his groundbreaking book Darwin’s Black Box. Behe challenges the scientific community to explain the appearance of design in cellular cilia (microscopic oar-like filaments), the interconnected molecular processes involved in blood clotting, the specified complexity of cellular protein delivery systems, and more. He also identifies a number of design features similar to those we observed in the garrote.

Footnote 5

God's Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detectiv Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe:

As Michael Behe observed, “Some evolutionary biologists—like Richard Dawkins—have fertile imaginations. Given a starting point, they almost always can spin a story to get to any biological structure you wish. The talent can be valuable, but it is a two-edged sword. Although they might think of possible evolutionary routes other people overlook, they also tend to ignore details and roadblocks that would trip up their scenarios. Science, however, cannot ultimately ignore relevant details, and at the molecular level all the ‘details’ become critical. If a molecular nut or bolt is missing, then the whole system can crash” (Darwin’s Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution [New York: Free Press, 2006], 65).

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 7:33 AM

In geology, tectonic theory is just decades old, completely re-writing earlier theories. The geologists didn't blink ... the conversion took about 2-3 years. So we see a mass change in theory relative to evidence (one of the Dawkins points above).

The problem the apologists face, is once they destroy the Dawkins argument in early 21st century knowledge, they've simply arrived at Marcion's door in the 2nd century.


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Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 11:49 AM

MJ. Smith:
"for that portion of reality which we have currently developed scientific (provisional) explanations and/or means of observation, we have no observations that require the positing of an intelligent creator-god to explain the observed phenomenon."

Of course not - he can always put it down to "nature" or "evolution" or "natural selection" or "survival of the fittest"!

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 2:10 PM

Dave Hooton:
he can always put it down to "nature" or "evolution" or "natural selection" or "survival of the fittest"!

And he probably would try. However, if he were in a situation where he had to follow the rules of logic, such as a dialogue logic match or a 14th century student debate, my "translation" of his "The God Delusion" hypothesis is the strongest he would be able to assert.  And, here, it is the logic I am interested in.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Mark | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 3:06 PM

MJ. Smith:
And, here, it is the logic I am interested in.

If you do not already know of Dr. John Lennox, you may find him enjoyable to read.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 3:16 PM

Thanks you, I'll pick up one of his books

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Mac | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Mar 3 2016 6:33 PM

Dawkins is using the empiricist argument rather than  rationalist in the form of knowledge.

He is even narrower in that his empirical observations are only limited to reproducible scientific knowledge.

His conclusion is of course logically very limited.

Mac

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