Order in Chaos

| 72 Comments

Photograph by Francois Malan.

Photography contest, Honorable Mention.

Malan.Order_in_chaos.jpg

Incense smoke swirling in quiet air. Negative image.

Mr. Malan writes that his photograph “illustrates how apparent design can be induced in apparently chaotic natural phenomena,” though the smoke is not truly chaotic until it “goes over into true turbulence.” He concludes, “Physics, all there’s to it.”

72 Comments

Stunning! Any chance of getting a hi-res version for wallpaper?

Absolutely gorgeous! If it’s scientific enough, I’m disappointed it wasn’t a contest finalist.

There are also many such nice pictures at Physics Central.

Many of these illustrate dramatically how matter interacts, and they are beautiful counterexamples to the ID/creationist claims that matter cannot produce order and emergent properties because of “spontaneous molecular chaos”.

If you look closely at this, you can see that this allegedly random arrangement of smoke particles actually contains the image (albeit a stern one, not smiling) of William Dembski.

Beautiful!

Salvador Dali would be envious!!!!

Does it need any special kind of camera to shoot these kind of images? What kind of exposure times?

I would also appreciate a link to a higher-res version for wallpaper purposes. Really beautiful shot!

Of course, no-one real cares about “detecting design”, except for real basic and applied scientists in fields like archaeology and forensics, or for non-human design, those that study any of the innumerable animal species that design hives, nests, etc.

“ID” exists because religious authoritarians exist.

They want to impose their views on everyone by fiat, and it’s important to recall that they often tend to view other religious sects as “competition”.

They want to claim that the Bible is “literally” true, because otherwise, how could it be painted as a simple-minded rule book that just happens to tell everyone to do what they happen to command? (There are plenty of authoritarians with different sets of cultural biases who used something else as a simple book of rules, of course, but those aren’t the ones who drive ID.)

They think in terms of victory and domination, so they’ll use any tactics and accept any advantage. In fact they seem to have a preference for sneaky tactics.

Their idea of “science” is “whatever high school students are ordered to memorize in ‘science’ class”.

They learned that open “creation science” was being defeated in court, so they cast about for a more coded version, and came up with “ID”.

Actually, to be fully accurate, that lost in court, too, and they are no doubt looking for something new.

At any rate, it has, unfortunately, little to do with how apparent design can be induced in apparently chaotic natural phenomena.

wow. gorgeous.

harold said: (snip)

Actually, to be fully accurate, that lost in court, too, and they are no doubt looking for something new.

At any rate, it has, unfortunately, little to do with how apparent design can be induced in apparently chaotic natural phenomena.

It’s “academic freedom”* now, harold, do try to keep up.

:-)

*that is, freedom to teach any dumbass useless non-science they feel like teaching.

fnxtr -

There is only one “True” dumbass useless non-science they want to teach.

All other dumbass useless non-science will be banned - along with true science.

But…but…what about Jeebus??!!

ravilyn.sanders said: Does it need any special kind of camera to shoot these kind of images? What kind of exposure times?

Hi! Actually you don’t need a special kind of camera, but it helps to have a macro lens and an external flash. I illuminated the smoke from the side (using a remote flash) to freeze the action. All that extra light was very necessary since I used a small aperture to get a deeper depth of field.

However, you could probably get decent results with a normal compact and some patience.

Looks like a tornado vortex signature from the inside.

I printed the picture and made a few measurements of the spiral.

It is fairly close to a logarithmic spiral within the first 4 pi radians of revolution.

But it is obviously being distorted by the turbulence from its drift.

“…Actually you don’t need a special kind of camera, but it helps to have a macro lens…”

Why the macro lens? Is this small scale stuff?

Beautiful shot and processing, BTW :)

“…Of course, no-one real cares about “detecting design”, except for real basic and applied scientists…”

If I understand chaos theory at all, in a way this photograph illustrates the closest nexus of science and spirituality I am willing to concede.

Some scientists who do look for design are the mathematically-inclined, looking for attractors in say, EKG traces. Looking for elements of order in chaos, perhaps turbulence, which is what we see in the beautiful photograph.

But what is fascinating about the mathematics of chaos (again, if I understand it correctly at least in part) is that the equations needed to produce chaotic systems are very simple, and found ubiquitously in nature, from the architecture of tree roots to the patterns of alluvial flooding in the Amazon.

This is as close to “the hand of God*” as one may hope to see, perhaps the most compelling version of a ‘fine-tuning’ argument the DI could ever make. Should they ever make it.

* By “God” I mean, of course, Zeus, who is, after all, the frackin’ King of all the Gods.

Wait a minute cried the YEC Canuck. This is your argument for order out of chaos. Lets think about this. I say it makes the case for order from chaos. The order of the smoke is not from whim and fanct but from physics. The whole smoke thing is moving within the present universe with order/laws acting upon it. It is the order of physics that is organizing the smoke and not random chance. The previous posters here thinking is in chaos. It takes creationists to bring order to thinking.

harold Wrote:

Of course, no-one real cares about “detecting design”, except for real basic and applied scientists in fields like archaeology and forensics, or for non-human design, those that study any of the innumerable animal species that design hives, nests, etc.

And it’s often noted that those methods of “detecting design” use independent evidence of design that the “biological design seekers” don’t have. So when cornered, the latter pull the usual bait-and-switch and trot out the usual long-refuted “improbability” of “Darwinism” arguments, which, even if true, would say absolutely nothing of design.

More importantly to me - and frustrating that I’m one of the few who ever bring it up - is that those who use real methods of “detecting design” don’t stop there but continue to investigate what the “designer” did, when, and how. Meanwhile the “biological design seekers” keep retreating into “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

I wonder if out resident “YEC” can do that - move past the “I found it!” stage and elaborate on what the designer did when and how. And I wonder if he can do that without any reference to “weakneesses” of “Darwinism”? If he needs to contrast it with an explanation he considers weaker than his own, there are plenty of other creationist/ID positions to choose from.

harold Wrote:

Actually, to be fully accurate, that lost in court, too, and they are no doubt looking for something new.

They need look no further. I have something for them, and it’s perfectly legal. Without any reference to creators or designers, or designer-free phony “critical analysis” that any reasonable observer would interpret as a promotion of creation/design, they can simply state what happened, when, and how, in biological history, and support it on its own strengths. Of course that would mean that students would “critically analyze” their alternate “theories,” and discover that, after 150 years of seeking and fabricating “evidences,” they have nothing to show but a hopeless divergence of mutually contradictory conclusions, all easily falsified without any reference to evolution.

YEC Canuck:

“…It takes creationists to bring order to thinking.…”

Well, you missed it, then. It takes mathematics, not creationism, to recognize that in the chaos seen in large-scale nature, there are limits to the disorder - it is NOT actually completely random, and it does have a certain repeatability that can be described by simple equations. It remains and stays, however, unpredictable. So, it is not being acted upon and brought into order, its order is inherent. So, it doesn’t fit in well at all with your Genesis idea of perfect order being induced out of pure chaos by a Creator.

And YEC’s would blunder even further, by trying to ascribe this order or design to Christ, when as I said, it is clearly due to the power of Zeus. That would be a major mistake on their part - Zeus is very very dangerous.

Gingerbaker said:

I loved “Horses and Trees”, by the way. :-)

fnxtr said:

Gingerbaker said:

I loved “Horses and Trees”, by the way. :-)

Glad you liked it! *

* I am a drummer. Just not the one with all the talent. :D

I have enjoyed much of the insight and comments (those from Harold and Gingerbaker especially) I really love the photograph. I will definitely try that sometime with my camera. Great photo!

Is there design within chaos? Parameters of laws of physics, cosmology, mathematics, and of course evolution seem to reveal a possibility of amazing intent even in chaos. Disorder brings about order in many examples…from crystallization to snow flakes.”Inherent” as one thoughtfully stated, if I inferred correctly.

If one finds design in the natural laws, I am not sure I see the problem as some have hinted at the value of research of the data and discovery regardless of design possibilities.

Perhaps the problem begins when ID is forced into where it need not be. The disturbing dichotomy seems more to be ID philosophy and discussion versus ID Agenda and Politics. This is where the respect and thoughtful conversation tend to part company.

Again, great photo!!!

Gingerbaker said:

Why the macro lens? Is this small scale stuff?

Beautiful shot and processing, BTW :)

It’s not really small scale, but a macro lens can focus nice and close, which makes this sort of thing a bit easier.

Random Lurker said:

wow. gorgeous.

I agree…It is gorgeous!

I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke. Have we come to that? Of course design in inherent in the order of the universe, otherwise there would be no physics, chemistry, gravity, or anything else we take for granted and trust in order to exist, and even think logically.. It is escaping the obvious to say that randomness “caused” order. Randomness cannot “cause” something. I know the arguments and the so called “evidence” that is put forth (similar to this silly incense illustration), but I’m not convinced. I do have a couple of questions about the issue. Gorgeous…what does that mean? How can we say it is gorgeous and preferable unless there is some standard of preference from which to compare it? Existence of “beauty” infers a definite standard. It appears that in their overly anxious attempts to denounce the design theorists, proponents of chaos and metaphysical naturalism constantly shoot themselves in the foot by arguing on the basis of objective standards of “beauty” and “truth”. Truth…How could we trust in knowledge without some type of design that gives our thoughts meaning? If chaos is true our thoughts have no value and cannot determine actual truth. I see overly anxious evolutionists try and argue from so called “evidence” that human intelligence just evolved with no intelligent guidance and I just laugh because their ability to structure an argument proves that their conclusion (naturalistic evolution) is ridiculous. Funny stuff. Book of Rules…Funny…Ever actually cracked open a bible? Most of the bible is narrative. Much more of it is letters written from one person to help his friend avoid huge mistakes in life. The overarching theme is “love God and love your neighbor”. I guess that is too demanding for “sophisticated” scientists and sociologists. Man, must be scary to some people to be accountable for their actions. I guess that is one thing that is wrong with the world. Let’s just blame everyone else for our problems instead of being accountable for our actions. Haha. Enjoy your Incense smoke turned silly science lesson!

Kris Jones said:

Random Lurker said:

wow. gorgeous.

I agree…It is gorgeous!

I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke. Have we come to that? Of course design in inherent in the order of the universe, otherwise there would be no physics, chemistry, gravity, or anything else we take for granted and trust in order to exist, and even think logically.. It is escaping the obvious to say that randomness “caused” order. Randomness cannot “cause” something. I know the arguments and the so called “evidence” that is put forth (similar to this silly incense illustration), but I’m not convinced. I do have a couple of questions about the issue. Gorgeous…what does that mean? How can we say it is gorgeous and preferable unless there is some standard of preference from which to compare it? Existence of “beauty” infers a definite standard. It appears that in their overly anxious attempts to denounce the design theorists, proponents of chaos and metaphysical naturalism constantly shoot themselves in the foot by arguing on the basis of objective standards of “beauty” and “truth”. Truth…How could we trust in knowledge without some type of design that gives our thoughts meaning? If chaos is true our thoughts have no value and cannot determine actual truth. I see overly anxious evolutionists try and argue from so called “evidence” that human intelligence just evolved with no intelligent guidance and I just laugh because their ability to structure an argument proves that their conclusion (naturalistic evolution) is ridiculous. Funny stuff. Book of Rules…Funny…Ever actually cracked open a bible? Most of the bible is narrative. Much more of it is letters written from one person to help his friend avoid huge mistakes in life. The overarching theme is “love God and love your neighbor”. I guess that is too demanding for “sophisticated” scientists and sociologists. Man, must be scary to some people to be accountable for their actions. I guess that is one thing that is wrong with the world. Let’s just blame everyone else for our problems instead of being accountable for our actions. Haha. Enjoy your Incense smoke turned silly science lesson!

A tasty word salad! Does it come with croutons?

ben said:

Kris Jones said:

Random Lurker said:

wow. gorgeous.

I agree…It is gorgeous!

I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke. Have we come to that? Of course design in inherent in the order of the universe, otherwise there would be no physics, chemistry, gravity, or anything else we take for granted and trust in order to exist, and even think logically.. It is escaping the obvious to say that randomness “caused” order. Randomness cannot “cause” something. I know the arguments and the so called “evidence” that is put forth (similar to this silly incense illustration), but I’m not convinced. I do have a couple of questions about the issue. Gorgeous…what does that mean? How can we say it is gorgeous and preferable unless there is some standard of preference from which to compare it? Existence of “beauty” infers a definite standard. It appears that in their overly anxious attempts to denounce the design theorists, proponents of chaos and metaphysical naturalism constantly shoot themselves in the foot by arguing on the basis of objective standards of “beauty” and “truth”. Truth…How could we trust in knowledge without some type of design that gives our thoughts meaning? If chaos is true our thoughts have no value and cannot determine actual truth. I see overly anxious evolutionists try and argue from so called “evidence” that human intelligence just evolved with no intelligent guidance and I just laugh because their ability to structure an argument proves that their conclusion (naturalistic evolution) is ridiculous. Funny stuff. Book of Rules…Funny…Ever actually cracked open a bible? Most of the bible is narrative. Much more of it is letters written from one person to help his friend avoid huge mistakes in life. The overarching theme is “love God and love your neighbor”. I guess that is too demanding for “sophisticated” scientists and sociologists. Man, must be scary to some people to be accountable for their actions. I guess that is one thing that is wrong with the world. Let’s just blame everyone else for our problems instead of being accountable for our actions. Haha. Enjoy your Incense smoke turned silly science lesson!

A tasty word salad! Does it come with croutons?

Let’s hope it comes with croutons, because it sure doesn’t come with logic! (Or with paragraph breaks …)

I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke.

They can’t.

It’s just a pretty picture of smoke.

The closest anybody got to inferring “no design” was to ponder about the physics involved, so let’s stop putting words into peoples’ mouths.

Of course design in inherent in the order of the universe, otherwise there would be no physics, chemistry, gravity, or anything else we take for granted and trust in order to exist, and even think logically.

Yeah? Then it should be simple enough to put down the stoned-in-the-dorm-room freshman philosophy babble and produce some tangible evidence of design.

But, somehow you guys never actually manage to do that, now do you Kris?

Now, I wonder why that might be.…

Looks like he is defecating on a couple of threads.

Matt Young said:

By confirmed, I meant that the experiment was replicated, not that the mechanism was confirmed. I think we could in principle observe something that we could not account for except with recourse to supernatural, not that I think that will ever happen.

[…]

Whether the intervenor in our thought experiment is God, however, is another question: we asked whether science could study the supernatural. I think the answer is yes, though if you wanted to quibble, you could say that science was studying the effect of a supernatural intervention and probably could not study the supernatural entity itself.

In science, we try to build hypotheses that make testable predictions. I do not see any reason to limit the range of ideas used in formulating the hypotheses. The validity of a hypothesis is judged based on its power to predict observations. During the testing, we do have a more limiting requirement: we are allowed to use only natural measuring equipment in verifying the predictions. Revelations are excluded in the testing phase, but not during the building of hypotheses. It seems to me that this is the core of the methodological naturalism.

I think your argument is valid – almost by definition of the scientific method, as I understand it.

Mike Elzinga said:

When we think of discoveries at the frontiers of our abilities to detect phenomena, – things like the discovery of the neutrino or dark energy – we are not presuming supernatural effects, because we have an entire superstructure of tested theory for which such a presumption would be in direct contradiction to what we already know and have demonstrated.

I would like to present you a line of thoughts. They deal specifically physics, but may be applicable in other fields as well. You may find that my line of thinking does not really contradict what you said. In fact, I only wish to present a slightly different point of view.

In physics, concepts are what they do. Magnetism is a set of observations. There is no “higher idea of magnetism”. Maxwell equations are a tool to predict observations, not a description of an idea.

Assume someone manages to present a hypothesis with testable predictions using supernatural entities. Assume further that this hypothesis turns out to be successful. In a relatively short time we would have lots of observations and would be able to predict a lots more. Maybe at this point the initially supernatural entity would be replaced by description of what it does? The wave function in quantum mechanics can’t be observed directly, but there do not seem to be that many physicists complaining about that. There are physicists that try to find inner meanings in quantum mechanics, though.

When you first heard about dark energy, would you have acted somehow differently, if it had been called “The fingerprint of God”?

Eric Finn said:

In physics, concepts are what they do. Magnetism is a set of observations. There is no “higher idea of magnetism”. Maxwell equations are a tool to predict observations, not a description of an idea.

I think you are describing what are often referred to as “operational definitions” in science.

However, it is not quite that simple. Most of what we know in physics these days does not consist of separate fields of self-contained operational definitions; physics now consists of a highly interrelated set of concepts and theories that share many of the same concepts such as the conservation laws.

Further, the underlying theories have made successful predictions that lend weight to their usefulness and their “reality”.

Assume someone manages to present a hypothesis with testable predictions using supernatural entities. Assume further that this hypothesis turns out to be successful. In a relatively short time we would have lots of observations and would be able to predict a lots more. Maybe at this point the initially supernatural entity would be replaced by description of what it does?

You are describing something we do not see in this universe in which we exist. But if we did see such repeatability, I suspect it would be an entirely different universe in which the people who had exclusive access to such power would be ruling the universe and there would be no fragmentation into thousands of warring sectarian tribes (much like science today).

When you first heard about dark energy, would you have acted somehow differently, if it had been called “The fingerprint of God”?

Well, Leon Lederman’s “God particle” was a tongue-in-cheek label.

But nobody in the physics community that I know of contemplated throwing up their hands and saying “God did it” when it was discovered that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. There were already concepts in supersymmetric theories, string theories and other multidimensional models going beyond the Standard Model that could account for this (the Higgs field, for example).

The issue here is that the physics community is continuing to work on problems related to the Standard Model, and this work has implications for cosmology as well. So there are already a number of possibilities that are not inconsistent with what we already know that still need to be checked.

If I were to pick a single characteristic of the ID/creationist community that makes them so persistent in their insistence that “God did it”, it would be their continuing misinformation and misconceptions about what science (physics in particular) already knows. Those misconceptions directly relate to matter and its interactions; they apparently don’t know what matter actually does. To them, matter by itself is pure “spontaneous molecular chaos”, which by definition, cannot do anything. Therefore some deity has to step in.

Mike Elzinga said:

Eric Finn said:

In physics, concepts are what they do. Magnetism is a set of observations. There is no “higher idea of magnetism”. Maxwell equations are a tool to predict observations, not a description of an idea.

I think you are describing what are often referred to as “operational definitions” in science.

However, it is not quite that simple. Most of what we know in physics these days does not consist of separate fields of self-contained operational definitions; physics now consists of a highly interrelated set of concepts and theories that share many of the same concepts such as the conservation laws.

Further, the underlying theories have made successful predictions that lend weight to their usefulness and their “reality”.

I agree with what you said. I tried to make a point using short punch lines - and failed.

Assume someone manages to present a hypothesis with testable predictions using supernatural entities. Assume further that this hypothesis turns out to be successful. In a relatively short time we would have lots of observations and would be able to predict a lots more. Maybe at this point the initially supernatural entity would be replaced by description of what it does?

You are describing something we do not see in this universe in which we exist. But if we did see such repeatability, I suspect it would be an entirely different universe in which the people who had exclusive access to such power would be ruling the universe and there would be no fragmentation into thousands of warring sectarian tribes (much like science today).

My gedankenexperimet did not impress you. I feel that you misinterpreted me. Maybe you thought that I was trying to convoy a religious message. I was not trying to do that.

Still, I agree with what you said, even if it might be an “operational definition”.

If I were to pick a single characteristic of the ID/creationist community that makes them so persistent in their insistence that “God did it”, it would be their continuing misinformation and misconceptions about what science (physics in particular) already knows. Those misconceptions directly relate to matter and its interactions; they apparently don’t know what matter actually does. To them, matter by itself is pure “spontaneous molecular chaos”, which by definition, cannot do anything. Therefore some deity has to step in.

This appears to be the focal point in debates in the U.S. Random chemical reactions can’t do much good. True, they can’t, but random chemical reactions do not exist. Chemical reactions are far from random. They do follow patterns, some of which are well known and repeatable. You have pointed out this many times. Chemistry (or biochemistry) is not a match of pool.

To me, the most pronounced characteristics of ID is the lack of any verifiable predictions. Thus, it is not science. On the other hand, it does not matter, if one comes up with an idea while reading the Bible, or while sitting in bath tub.

A more useful definition of the supernatural:

“An intelligent interactive entity which does not exist, but which appeals to the imagination of humans.”

Instead of hand-wringing and teeth-knashing over the theoretical possibility of the supernatural in order to keep one’s scientific appearances up, why not state the obvious:

We will consider the possibility of a supernatural force when you can bloody show me one.

Show me the money! Just once.

Gingerbaker Wrote:

We will consider the possibility of a supernatural force when you can bloody show me one.

Show me the money! Just once.

Heck, I’d be content if they elaborated on what the “maybe supernatural” entity did, when and how. And made some effort to test their claims independently of any “weaknesses” of “Darwinism” or “naturalism.” Or if they can’t do that - and if the last 150 years are any indication, they can’t - at least debate each other on their mutually contradictory alternatives. That’s something that history shows that they can do and have done. And how they have been retreating from it.

I wonder if it is time for the scientific/reality-based community to stop the accommodationist tactic of treating the absurd as worthy of consideration.

What would be the problem with taking the approach that talk about the ‘supernatural’ or of something ‘outside of science’ or ‘beyond our perception’ or the ‘unknowable’ or the ‘transcendent’ is simply talking claptrap about stuff that does not exist, but is merely the product of fervent imaginations.

Stop even allowing the rhetorical accommodation of such ideas, and take the honest position that such things do not exist until they can actually be demonstrated, or just STFU!

Yes, it would be shrill and arrogant and all the other things that the religious and spiritual already say about scientists and atheists, but it would take the important step of putting the burden of proof squarely where it belongs. It could finally change the conversation, and put us on a progressive, not defensive, track.

It could also be a lot of fun. Imagine the spectacle of believers gathering to invoke the appearance of their deities, only to be chagrined once again when all efforts by humanity can not conjure even a paltry poltergeist.

Gingerbaker Wrote:

I wonder if it is time for the scientific/reality-based community to stop the accommodationist tactic of treating the absurd as worthy of consideration.

That’s a Catch-22 with any science-pseuoscience debate. Engaging them gives them unearned credibility, and ignoring them begets absurd charges that we’re “afraid” to debate. I think a reasonable compromise is to avoid refuting the same recycled nonsense that has all been refuted here, but rather to force them to support their particular “theory” on its own merits (NOT on the “weaknesses” of “Darwinism”). If they need to criticize a contradictory “theory,” tell them to practice what they preach about “equal time” and “critically analyze” an anti-evolution positon that they do not find convincing.

That’s when most of them either run away or ignore the request and keep trolling for “Darwinists.” IOW they “expel” themselves.

Gingerbaker said:

Stop even allowing the rhetorical accommodation of such ideas, and take the honest position that such things do not exist until they can actually be demonstrated, or just STFU!

Frank J has a point about getting them to critique the inconsistencies within their own big tent.

As you have probably observed here on PT when these trolls show up, they never ever defend any of their claims; rather, they try to get “Darwinists” hopping all over the place while the trolls themselves do the Gish Gallop.

One other possible approach is to not take the bait but demand that they clarified their own “science”. Not many trolls will do this, but when they do, we at least get to profile their misconceptions and misinformation. We already see the mischaracterizations they use to taunt us into engaging them.

I personally don’t like pandering to the narcissism of these more vicious trolls. They are control freaks with a sadistic mean streak that comes from their religion.

“I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke. Have we come to that?”

Yes, we have. We have learned that all natural processes are fundamentally the same, so, for example, if one wants to, one can draw a(valid, at least in a broad sense) analogy between Biological Evolution, swirling incense smoke, patterns formed by an oil slick atop a puddle of water, or whatever else you like. Nature practically shouts her ‘oneness’ at us, and once one hears her, all of these(apparently) varied phenomena make perfect sense. One gaines a higher understanding. One no longer agonizes(like your comical Dark-age Christian theologians did)over the existence of ‘evil’, or sits up at night wondering why ‘bad’ things happen to ‘good’ people. One simply sees that all of these things which appear so different to us are in fact part of a much larger process, one which is altogether incomprehensible to the ordinary brain, but which yields to close study using the scientific method. These ‘how do YOU know?’ questions(asked of a scientist, that is) are basically rhetorical, and the fact that they’re being asked by people who would have us believe the universe was created by a gaseous Hebrew vertebrate(a JEALOUS one, by his own admission)strikes me as pretty ironic. So tell me, Kris…are people like you DELIBERATELY trying to prevent others from understanding nature, in order to further some agenda, or are you just THAT dense? The best argument against ‘intelligent design’ is it’s own advocates.

“love God and love your neighbor”. I guess that is too demanding for “sophisticated” ben said: Come on ben, “…love your neighbor.” I believe in intelligent design but you’re sarcasm and unloving attitude turned me off. I respect these people. They’re fun, they’re thinking and enjoying creation. So what if they haven’t become familiar with the Bible, or reject what they are familiar with? Can’t you enjoy the beauty of the picture and give credit where it is due. Eccl. somewhere :) “…give each man what is due him.” or something like that. Is your goal to try to make people look foolish or to love them and enjoy an intelligent debate?

Kris Jones said:

Random Lurker said:

wow. gorgeous.

I agree…It is gorgeous!

I’m interested to know however, how someone can infer that there is no design in nature by looking at incense smoke. Have we come to that? Of course design in inherent in the order of the universe, otherwise there would be no physics, chemistry, gravity, or anything else we take for granted and trust in order to exist, and even think logically.. It is escaping the obvious to say that randomness “caused” order. Randomness cannot “cause” something. I know the arguments and the so called “evidence” that is put forth (similar to this silly incense illustration), but I’m not convinced. I do have a couple of questions about the issue. Gorgeous…what does that mean? How can we say it is gorgeous and preferable unless there is some standard of preference from which to compare it? Existence of “beauty” infers a definite standard. It appears that in their overly anxious attempts to denounce the design theorists, proponents of chaos and metaphysical naturalism constantly shoot themselves in the foot by arguing on the basis of objective standards of “beauty” and “truth”. Truth…How could we trust in knowledge without some type of design that gives our thoughts meaning? If chaos is true our thoughts have no value and cannot determine actual truth. I see overly anxious evolutionists try and argue from so called “evidence” that human intelligence just evolved with no intelligent guidance and I just laugh because their ability to structure an argument proves that their conclusion (naturalistic evolution) is ridiculous. Funny stuff. Book of Rules…Funny…Ever actually cracked open a bible? Most of the bible is narrative. Much more of it is letters written from one person to help his friend avoid huge mistakes in life. The overarching theme is “love God and love your neighbor”. I guess that is too demanding for “sophisticated” scientists and sociologists. Man, must be scary to some people to be accountable for their actions. I guess that is one thing that is wrong with the world. Let’s just blame everyone else for our problems instead of being accountable for our actions. Haha. Enjoy your Incense smoke turned silly science lesson!

A tasty word salad! Does it come with croutons?

If I were to pick a single characteristic of the ID/creationist community that makes them so persistent in their insistence that “God did it”, it would be their continuing misinformation and misconceptions about what science (physics in particular) already knows. Those misconceptions directly relate to matter and its interactions; they apparently don’t know what matter actually does. To them, matter by itself is pure “spontaneous molecular chaos”, which by definition, cannot do anything. Therefore some deity has to step in. Mike Elzinga said:

Hi Mike. I am no scientist but love reading books on astrophysics and quantum theory. Books for dummies :) I don’t agree that this is the attitude of most ID adherents. Science itself makes it appear obvious to me that our universe is the result of a cause from outside our universe. Something can never come into existance from nothing. My philosophy is formed by both science and the Bible. I was amazed the night Christ came into me. That the communication was so absolute. I say that only to mention that is a fact no one but myself experienced. Nevertheless, the absolute reality must be weighed in by me in considering truth. I think there should be no conflict between the Bible and science. I see that the Universe is self sustaining (The Bible states God holds all things together. I don’t know what that means other than continued responsibility of some kind on His part) but I never heard any believer indicate that ‘God just did it’ without thinking that the laws of physics are operative and we just haven’t discovered the answer yet. There is an exception. If there is a God, chances are He can intervene. If there is an intervention in the laws of physics by God it is obvious and is what we call a miracle. All IDs that I know feel the responsibility to understand the laws of the universe and are excited when scientists put more together. I think what you described would be a pretty shallow person, not your ordinary believer and certainly not those fascinated by science. :) I love reading through this article … I looked up the definition of chaos & it only confused me more. 1. disorder: a state of complete disorder and confusion. It seems like we need to redefine it as ‘Something uncontrolled by human beings’ or something like that. The laws of physics are always operating and directing. There could be no ‘absolute’ chaos. Thanks …

Yes! thought your post is a thought-provoker Order in Chaos - The Panda’s Thumb! Leslie Kirnon

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Young published on November 23, 2009 12:00 PM.

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