Posts Tagged by intelligent design

PZ Myers Reviews “Antony Flew Goes to Heaven.”

The brilliant PZ Myers has ‘reviewed’ the second story in my short story collection, “Richard Dawkins, Antony Flew, and Mother Teresa go to Heaven.”

As before, I have no interest in responding in any detail, although I might say some things when he is done. I will say: “PZ, what makes you think Antony awakes in a garden?”

After reading the last review and the comments it spawned it became apparent that a little extra help on my part is needed. There seems to be difficulty understanding the texts in question. Therefore, a reader’s guide for each story has been composed.

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Richard Dawkins Goes to Heaven? Short Story

“Richard Dawkins, Antony Flew, and Mother Teresa Go to Heaven…” What sounds like the beginning of a very bad joke is actually the title of a collection of three poignant short stories by author Anthony Horvath. Each story draws from what is publicly known about these three notable persons and places them in the presence of God. Antony Flew famously disputed the existence of such a being, Richard Dawkins- the only one of the three still living- infamously derides the notion, and Mother Teresa wondered at God’s absence- in these three stories they each get a chance to ask their questions and speak their minds. Read this short story, along with two others, on Kindle.

Excerpt from Richard Dawkins Goes to Heaven

“You know what sounds like ‘hell’ to me?” Richard asked the accompanying angel, a current of sarcasm carrying the question along.
“I know you’ll tell me,” the angel replied serenely.
“Heaven. Heaven sounds like hell.”

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You are not as smart as you think you are- your brain is smarter than all the computers of the world

Note: this post cannot be construed as offensive in anyway as it is the product of random chance and natural selection. It just popped here on this blog as a whim of the universe. The blog, of course itself being a whim of the universe. So, if you are angry at this analysis, you should wonder why. You may as well be angry with a pile of rocks for being in the configuration that they are in.

It’s true that I have picked on Tipoo, a complete stranger, based on scant background on him and his positions. But on the evolutionary viewpoint there is no real standard of morality, so it cannot be said that this was really wrong.

At any rate, the truth is that I have seen a thousand ‘Tipoos’ of which he was merely representative and when I read it this time I was just in the right mood to take issue with the ‘new atheist’ manner he seems to be exuding.

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Methodological Naturalism, Falsifiability, and Evolution: A Challenge

# In order for something to be considered robust science, it needs to be falsifiable.
# Modern evolutionary theory is usually presented so that it entails unintelligent operations.
# To falsify the claim that something is driven by unintelligent forces one would have to show how intelligent forces were at work.
# Evolutionary apologists insist (with heapings of derision) that such a showing is outside the bounds of science.
# But if showing design is outside the bounds of science than there is no reliable and objective way to conclude scientifically that something is not designed.
# Therefore, macroevolutionary theory cannot be scientifically falsified at the point that it is the result of unguided natural processes since they reject as unscientific the very things that could falsify it.

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The Theological Implications of Finding Alien Extra-Terrestial Life

I have already addressed this in several places- here, and here- so I won’t dwell on things much. Instead, I want to reflect on an article I just read regarding the Vatican participating in an astrobiology conference to discuss the question.

In my previous posts, I argued that if aliens appeared, they might fly in the face of current expectations that are drenched in an evolutionary (and atheistic) outlook. Namely, we may find that these intelligent agents believe in God. They may not, as Richard Dawkins smugly posits, inquire first as to whether not humans have ‘discovered’ evolution. Let us allow that it is a possibility… but they may also possibly have a concept of God and creation that is identical, in theological principle, to what we see in the Christian Scriptures. Naturally, they may have a belief system identical to other systems.

My point is that they may deviate a great deal from the common narrative of aliens either being hostile consumers of resources or super-intelligent, highly technological and benevolent agents that have transcended petty human foibles and myths. In this narrative, both sides assume not just evolution but atheistic presuppositions.

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Fall 2009 Online Academy Offerings

The Fall 2009 session of Athanatos Online Apologetics Academy is set to begin Nov. 2. This session includes several new courses and several new instructors. Two courses are available for free. All are listed below:

http://www.academyofapologetics.com/fall2009/

Nov 2nd – Basic New Testament Greek Part 1
Nov 2nd – Reliability of the New Testament Documents
Nov 2nd – Origins: A Survey [Creationism/Evolution/Intelligent Design]
Nov 4th – Jesus According to… [Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, etc…]
Nov 4th – Studies in Atheism
Nov 9th – The Death of Christianity [FREE!]
Nov.16th – Christ Promised in the Old Testament
Nov 23rd – Hitler and Christianity [FREE!]
Nov 30th – Study in Alleged Bible Contradictions
Nov 30th – Basic New Testament Greek Part 2

www.academyofapologetics.com

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Adam and Eve and the Tree of Knowledge and PZ Myers

Here is a short story I wrote inspired by the comments in this thread on PZ Myer’s blog. Enjoy!

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Adam and Eve and the Tree of Knowledge of Knowledge

“I got here as fast as I could!” gasped the old man. He put one hand on the hood of the squad car and bent over as he tried to catch his breath.

The annoyed chief stared at the man waiting for him to explain who he was because the chief didn’t recognize him at all. At last, the balding and sweating gentlemen stood erect and stared back at the chief expecting some word of thanks or gratitude from him. But the chief was silent.

“Well, don’t you want my help?” the old man snapped.

“I don’t know who you are,” the chief grumped back.

“Don’t you know who you’ve got up there?” the old man gestured in the direction of the top of a seven story building that was the object of all the attention.

The chief shrugged, irritated, “Two people threatening to jump?”

The old man scowled.

“This is what I’ve been trying to tell you, chief,” said a police officer standing nearby.

“What? Just tell me already!” the chief cried out, slapping his hand on the hood of the car.

“That’s Adam and Eve,” the old man snarled, “and I’m Dr. Stein Franken.”

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Missing Link, Scopes Monkey Trial, Science, Secularism, and Education

For you see, there was a day when the implications of evolutionary theory were more obvious and more openly admitted. Margaret Sanger, the founder of the aforementioned Planned Parenthood, openly urged abortion as a method of eugenics. And of course, since this was all science, and science is ‘neutral’, it should follow naturally that religious people can raise no objections.

Today of course eugenics has a bad rap. We can thank Hitler for that. But that doesn’t mean the implications have changed or that there aren’t ‘neutral’ scientists and secularists who advocate for eugenics today. People aren’t as dumb as secularists would like them to be. When you promote ‘survival of the fittest’ as the guiding biological principle the inevitable conclusion is that we have the moral obligation to utilize that principle according to our own terms. You just aren’t supposed to say it out loud…

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Christianity and UFOs and Space Aliens, an Apologist’s Perpective

What I really wanted to address was the ramifications and implications of discovering conclusive proof of an extraterrestial intelligent agent relative to Christian theism.

Already you should be chuckling, because if the atheists are to be believed, it is not scientifically possible to reliably detect intelligent agency. Intelligent Design, we are assured, is pseudoscience at best and closet creationism at worst. On this view I suppose space aliens could land in Richard Dawkins lap at which time they begin wheeling out some of their rumored probes, and Mr. Dawkins would be unable to recognize that something out of the ordinary was happening. Anyway, as funny and as fun as that thought is, I have no doubt that hard core philosophical naturalists will have little trouble ‘reliably detecting intelligent design’ when the chips are down.

I think this is because they will expect these little green critters with big skulls to support them in their atheistic worldview. But I think that will be the atheist’s undoing. They would have been safer denying that a sentient being is conversing with them because what that sentient being actually says might compromise the atheist’s philosophical foundations.

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Creationists Lurking Around Every Corner

Mr. Morris is a Christian, but he is also an evolutionist. Like another famous Christian and evolutionist, Francis Collins, Mr. Morris is fiercely set against Intelligent Design. And why? There is nothing inherent to Intelligent Design to overthrow evolution (Many if not most IDers embrace evolution, just not unguided evolution). And everyone, with the exception of a few hard boiled atheists like Dawkins, concede that evolution doesn’t preclude the existence of God. So what’s your problem with Intelligent Design?

My gut says that the problem is that the Intelligent Designers have been labeled- and dismissed- as closet creationists and as there is no insult worse than to be called a creationist, one must run far away from anything that smacks of the term if one wants to be considered credible, both inside and outside of the scientific community.

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Literary Apologetics Key to Turning the Tide

Christians are not losing on facts, argument, logic, evidence, and reasoning. We are losing because we are not effectively transmitting the faith to the next generations and probably haven’t been doing so for some time. With more nonChristians in society, logically enough, this is manifested in pop culture. Fixing how we pass on the faith is one of the most important things Christians must do. With more informed and grounded Christians in pop culture, this will have its logical effect.

The second thing is we have to fight fire with fire. The author of the ChristianityToday article doesn’t make this point and I am at a loss as to why not. He does say, correctly:

“…the church needs to broaden its apologetics work to include serious analysis of and response to popular culture, now our most potent form of religious persuasion.

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Equivocation on the word natural by atheists and philosophical naturalists

Has anyone else noticed this? As a case in point- in part because atheists have accused me of ‘inventing’ atheistic positions- consider this entry on my blog and the comments that follow.  But to be clear, I run across this phenomena all the time as I read and debate theism or ‘intelligent design.’ Let me […]

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Global Warming and Evolution: Intimidation the New Step in the Scientific Method

I must at the outset admit that I haven’t delved into the data that I am told substantiates the view that the earth is steadily warming. That is one reason why I have not said anything about Global Warming. I shall say that here in Wisconsin we just came off of a mighty cold spell with snows as late as April, and last year was about the same. As Wisconsin is part of the globe, I feel I can anecdotally chime in that to this point I am skeptical about the Global Warming argument. Moreover, there clearly are several different parts of the question: even if we establish that the earth is warming, it doesn’t follow that humans are causing it, and even if it is warming, it doesn’t follow that a warming earth would be all that bad (did I mention the cold Wisconsin winters?).

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Short Story: Chronos and Old Facts

Chronos and Old Facts A short story by Anthony Horvath COPYRIGHT, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED The sign on the door read “Bureau for Decommissioned Facts.” I pushed the door open gingerly, almost sheepishly. My quest to find this heretofore unknown department of the Universal University was not merely a recent one, but one that was given […]

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