Recognising design

Discussion about scientific issues as they relate to God and Christianity including archaeology, origins of life, the universe, intelligent design, evolution, etc.
Fortigurn
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Recognising design

#1

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 8:43 pm

This is directed towards our non-Christians.

Is it possible to determine whether or not a entity is the product of design? If so, how?

sandy_mcd
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Re: Recognising design

#2

Post by sandy_mcd » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:03 pm

Fortigurn wrote:Is it possible to determine whether or not a entity is the product of design?
That is too vague of a question for anyone to answer. Do you mean:
1) Is it true that for every entity, it is possible to determine whether it was designed ?
2) Is it true that for some entities, is it possible to determine whether they were designed ?
3) Is the definition of designer limited to man or can it be any designer at any level ?

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#3

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:09 pm

Is it true for any entity, it is possible to determine whether it was designed?

If so, how?
Is the definition of designer limited to man or can it be any designer at any level?
Any level. We're talking about the concept of design here, not the identity of the designer.

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#4

Post by numeral2_5 » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:11 pm

It is not possible to determine whether or not the universe were designed. You can however be very very certain that some things were designed.
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#5

Post by Cougar » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:21 pm

No, you cannot determine that an entity is a product of design. However, where the uncertainty lies is in the definitions and disparities between coincidences and evidence. Meaning, for instance, if multiple diverse systems and organisms in the world contain the ratio phi, is that just coincidence or evidence for design? I do not think that question can be answered currently, but that is something we will all probably argue and dispute for quite some time.

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#6

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:23 pm

numeral2_5 wrote:You can however be very very certain that some things were designed.
How?

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#7

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:23 pm

Cougar wrote:No, you cannot determine that an entity is a product of design.
You just killed off the SETI project. I suggest you email them and let them know they've been wasting their time and our money.

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#8

Post by AttentionKMartShoppers » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:25 pm

Fortigurn wrote:
Cougar wrote:No, you cannot determine that an entity is a product of design.
You just killed off the SETI project. I suggest you email them and let them know they've been wasting their time and our money.
Well, they've wasted time and money for many other reasons as well...
"My actions prove that God takes care of idiots."

He occasionally stumbled over the truth, but hastily picked himself up and hurried on as if nothing had happened.
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An atheist can't find God for the same reason a criminal can't find a police officer.

You need to start asking out girls so that you can get used to the rejections.
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#9

Post by Jbuza » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:26 pm

I know you were asking for opinions of non-Christians, but I gotta jump in here with my own questions.

Is it possible to determine that organisms have adapted to their environment?

How would an organism differ if it adapted to an environment vs. designed for that environment?

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#10

Post by Cougar » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:30 pm

I don't think scientists in the SETI project are looking to prove design.

"The mission of the SETI Institute is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe."

I don't see anywhere in there it says they have to attribute their findings to design. There are other ways of exploring the nature of the universe and possible life in the universe without attributing it to design. Prevalence of certain chemicals, molecules, and red or blue shifting is very helpful in the exploration of possible life elsewhere.

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#11

Post by sandy_mcd » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:40 pm

Fortigurn wrote:
numeral2_5 wrote:You can however be very very certain that some things were designed.
How?
Consider the old fashioned pocket watch:
1) Trivially, without seeing or examining one, because it is part of the definition or essence of pocket watches that they are designed.

2) In general, because we are familiar with materials found in the natural world, we are familiar with the products which humans design, and we are familiar with the reasons people would design and use a pocket watch. Most metals do not usually occur in un-oxidized forms, steel is not a naturally occurring alloy, metal compounds do not naturally appear in the ornate designs found on the cover of watches, we recognize the numerals (except perhaps some of the Roman ones), we know that the numeral organization corresponds to our artificial constructs of hours and seconds, we like to keep track of time, etc. Basically because we are familiar with the context of watches.
Therefore it is extremely certain that a pocket watch was designed.

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#12

Post by sandy_mcd » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:45 pm

Jbuza wrote:I know you were asking for opinions of non-Christians
I agree ! That is precisely the prejudiced, biased, separationist attitude which should not be tolerated here ! :twisted:

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#13

Post by numeral2_5 » Sat Dec 03, 2005 10:43 pm

sandy_mcd wrote:
Fortigurn wrote:
numeral2_5 wrote:You can however be very very certain that some things were designed.
How?
Consider the old fashioned pocket watch:
1) Trivially, without seeing or examining one, because it is part of the definition or essence of pocket watches that they are designed.

2) In general, because we are familiar with materials found in the natural world, we are familiar with the products which humans design, and we are familiar with the reasons people would design and use a pocket watch. Most metals do not usually occur in un-oxidized forms, steel is not a naturally occurring alloy, metal compounds do not naturally appear in the ornate designs found on the cover of watches, we recognize the numerals (except perhaps some of the Roman ones), we know that the numeral organization corresponds to our artificial constructs of hours and seconds, we like to keep track of time, etc. Basically because we are familiar with the context of watches.
Therefore it is extremely certain that a pocket watch was designed.
Thanks sandy, I left for a while and probably should have explained my response better.
"When I do good, I feel good. When I do bad, I feel bad. And that is my religion."
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#14

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 11:46 pm

Cougar wrote:I don't think scientists in the SETI project are looking to prove design.
I am not arguing that they are looking to prove design.
"The mission of the SETI Institute is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe."

I don't see anywhere in there it says they have to attribute their findings to design. There are other ways of exploring the nature of the universe and possible life in the universe without attributing it to design. Prevalence of certain chemicals, molecules, and red or blue shifting is very helpful in the exploration of possible life elsewhere.
What does 'Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence' mean to you? People are looking for radio signals which are the product of an intelligence. They do this on the assumption that they can recognise radio signals which are the product of an intelligence, when they see them.

Think about it.

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#15

Post by Fortigurn » Sat Dec 03, 2005 11:51 pm

sandy_mcd wrote:
Fortigurn wrote:
numeral2_5 wrote:You can however be very very certain that some things were designed.
How?
Consider the old fashioned pocket watch:
1) Trivially, without seeing or examining one, because it is part of the definition or essence of pocket watches that they are designed.

2) In general, because we are familiar with materials found in the natural world, we are familiar with the products which humans design, and we are familiar with the reasons people would design and use a pocket watch. Most metals do not usually occur in un-oxidized forms, steel is not a naturally occurring alloy, metal compounds do not naturally appear in the ornate designs found on the cover of watches, we recognize the numerals (except perhaps some of the Roman ones), we know that the numeral organization corresponds to our artificial constructs of hours and seconds, we like to keep track of time, etc. Basically because we are familiar with the context of watches.
Therefore it is extremely certain that a pocket watch was designed.
The key word would therefore appear to be 'arificiality'.

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