Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Problems with the Argument from Design in Nature

Another argument for the existence of God is the "Argument from Design in Nature." According to Prof. Peter Kreeft, this argument goes like this...

"The universe is like a giant incubator, or a giant womb. It is exactly calibrated to produce human life. Life could never evolve if any one of thousands of extremely narrow windows of opportunity had closed. The probability of it all happening by chance is far, far less than the probability of the same one out of a billion betters winning every singe one of a billion lotteries every single day for a billion millennia. It doesn't take faith to believe that the game is fixed. it takes faith to believe it isn't."

Kreeft continues..

"This is probably the single most popular argument for God. You find it among the most primitive tribes and among the most sophisticated scientists. Order requires an Orderer. If there is no God, no divine mind that planned and designed us, if our brains evolved merely by chance, then intelligence is a latecomer in the universe and its causes were unintelligent. If i think as i do merely because the electrical signals in my brain have been caused to move in a certain way by a long, large chain of events that do not include intelligence, a chain that does not go back to an intelligent creator and designer, then i have no good reason to trust my brain when it tells me about anything, including itself and its electrical signals."

Basically, Kreft is arguing that the universe was designed because it would be statistically improbable to imagine otherwise. Such a conclusion only begs the question, if nature was "designed", who designed it? And if we say the designer was God, then we are explaining one statistical improbability with an even greater statistical improbability.  God, who is infinitely more complex than the universe, would be infinetly more improbable as well. And since God is more improbable then nature without a designer, why is Kreeft so comfortable with the former and uncomfortable with the latter?  

 This argument does not "prove" there is a God so much as it proves Kreeft's preference for statistical improbabilities.
Finally, I fail to see why Kreeft feels he has "no good reason to trust (his) brain" when it tells him to remove his hand from an open fire, or even why God's existence must first be verified by Kreeft before he will trust that his hand is burning; but I suppose that is for Kreeft and his brain to figure out.  

Religion is a disease masquerading as it’s own cure.