Im sorry Sean but your whole critique seems to be …

Comment on LSU Removes Dr. Lee Grismer as Chairman of the Biology Department by Sean Pitman.

Im sorry Sean but your whole critique seems to be based on a specious argument on your part.

I said that Science is based on methodological naturalism which means

1] Natural law explanations and not the miraculous are the provenance of science.

Is human-level design “miraculous”? or outside of “natural law”?

Where am I arguing for the “miraculous” any more than a SETI scientist would be arguing for the miraculous when arguing that a certain type of radio signal or granite rock is a true artefact of intelligent design?

2] If you cannot couch the question in terms of an hypothesis with testable natural mechanism it is not science.

I agree. The hypothesis is that only an intelligent designer of some kind (doesn’t have to be a supernatural designer) produced the object or phenomenon in question. That’s it. This hypothesis is testable and potentially falsifiable. All one has to do to effectively falsify this hypothesis is show a mindless natural mechanism producing something similar.

3] Science is circumscribed and limited. There are many questions outside of science and natural mechanism.

Such as? Upon what rational basis does one choose to believe someone or some book who claims to have superhuman powers or origins? This seems to me to be an empirical question that requires empirical evidence and rational arguments. This isn’t a subjective question regarding the meaning of life or if you enjoy vanilla ice cream…

4] Natural mechanism has been successful in understanding the natural world and only the natural world and is likely to be so in the future.

Is a highly symmetrical polished granite cube not within the natural world? Is it not a clear artefact of intelligent design? Is this conclusion not supported by methodological naturalism? Is this conclusion therefore somehow outside of the realm of science?

This you construe to be an argument for a God of the Gap. To sustain that argument however you have to

1] first redefine science and natural mechanism as God an extremely idiosyncratic definition of God but necessary if you are to attribute to me a invocation of God as an explanation for any gaps

Your “god” of the gaps is not a personal god, but mindless nature. You plug in this mindless god into any gap where it is not yet known how any mindless natural process could have done the job. Yet, you argue that some future discovery will explain this current gap in knowledge with a demonstration of how mindless nature actually does it. That is your version of the GoG argument.

The ID-only hypothesis, on the other hand, is not a GoG argument since it is testable and potentially falsifiable. This is not true of your position. Your position is not testable or potentially falsifiable. That is why it can be used to explain anything and everything without any fear of being proved wrong. That is why your argument explains nothing and is not a scientific position.

2] claim that I am arguing that everything that is unknown is within the domain of science or “my God”

No. That’s not my claim at all. What I said is that your argue for a mindless mechanism to explain any and all phenomena even though you don’t currently have such a mechanism in hand. You propose that some future discovery will supply this missing information. This argument of yours is equivalent to a non-testable non-falsifiable GoG argument. It is just that the “god” part of the equation that you’re appealing to here is some kind of mindless natural mechanism – i.e., Nature Herself.

This requires you to attribute to me philosophical naturalism, which you have ,dishonestly I believe, done. Completely ignoring that I have repeatedly and consistently said that natural mechanism is concerned with process in the natural world and nothing more.

What you’ve said is that there is no empirical evidence or rational argument to support the existence of a God or God-like being… that everything within the empirical world, everything, can be explained by mindless naturalistic mechanisms. That notion rationally leads most who take on this position toward philosophical naturalism. Many people simply do not consider fideism as a viable option (but perhaps these are simply too “right brained” to understand).

You have redefined the accepted definition of science to claim I am using it as a universal explanation and redefined science as all possible knowledge and now suggest to George that Intelligent design is right by default unless someone else can prove it wrong.

I never said that ID was “right by default”. The opposite is true. I would assume a mindless mechanism by default when approaching a new phenomenon. However, I would not assume this position once I discovered that the phenomenon in question clear goes well beyond what any known mindless mechanism can explain. If a phenomenon is clearly beyond any known mindless natural mechanism and is within the realm of what known intelligent agents can produce, then the most rational scientific conclusion is that the phenomenon in question is a true artefact of intelligent design.

This is exactly the same argument used by forensic scientists, anthropologists, and even SETI scientists. It would also be your argument if our highly symmetrical granite cube happened to be discovered on an alien planet like Mars.

In comparison, you’re the one claiming that mindless mechanisms of nature are “right be default” – even though you wouldn’t make this claim for a highly symmetrical polished granite cube. You’re simply being inconsistent. And, your position is not testable or potentially falsifiable (i.e., a GoG argument).

Sean Pitman

Sean Pitman Also Commented

LSU Removes Dr. Lee Grismer as Chairman of the Biology Department
The GoG argument is one that invokes an explanation that is not tested or testable to explain a given phenomenon. My hypothesis of intelligent design is testable in a potentially falsifiable manner. All one has to do is demonstrate a non-intelligent natural mechanism to explain the phenomenon and my hypothesis is neatly falsified. This is not true of Paul’s position where he argues for some future discovery to explain the phenomenon. That position is not testable or falsifiable. It is therefore a true GoG argument…

See the difference?

Sean Pitman

LSU Removes Dr. Lee Grismer as Chairman of the Biology Department
No. Mindless naturalistic mechanisms can and do explain many things – like the degenerative changes that result in disease and death over time…

LSU Removes Dr. Lee Grismer as Chairman of the Biology Department
What I’m saying is that your position is a Catholic position, opposed to the historical Adventist position on this topic. That fact is quite clear.

In any case, you’ve had your say, yet again, on this pet topic of yours. Nothing further will be posted on it in this forum. Discussing such topics simply isn’t the purpose of this forum.

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