Saturday, April 05, 2014

What would science look like in a creationist world?

Let me ask this question. Assume that creationism were true. What would science look like in that possible world? Would it be true that if even if there were no evolution, it would have been necessary to invent it?

23 comments:

planks length said...

A better question to ask is what might the world look like in a creationist universe (by "creationist" I am here referring only to Young Earth, literal 6 days, 6000 year old Earth, that sort of stuff). For starters, there would not be evidence (rock layers, fossil records, light from distant stars, cosmic background microwave radiation, etc.) that point to a far older universe.

Now if by "creationist" you mean that the existence of the universe requires a Creator (as I believe it does), then it would look like the one we live in.

Peter said...

What is meant by creationism. Traces in our DNA points to evolution. Like the genetics of vitamin c loss in vertebrates.

But still, if by "creationist" you mean that the existence of the universe requires a Creator (as I believe it does), then it would look like the one we live in.

BenYachov said...

God could have created the world 6000 years ago with the intention that it would look like it does today & we might based on our own models judge it to be older.

But there is no Church dogma that it must be one age or another. There is no Christian doctrine that it must be old(billions of years) vs young (Thousands of years).

God being omnipotent and eternal nothing is "hard" for him so it would't be harder or easier to make one world vs another.

Creationism is kind of a waste of time. It only exists because people reject the authority of the Church. So they have to believe in a perspicacious bible to replace the Church.

BeingItself said...

"What would science look like in that possible world?"

It would look the same. But we cannot say what the findings of science would look like in a created world, since God can supposedly do anything logically possible.

For example, God could create a universe exactly like ours, except instead of brains we had heads full of marbles. Or our bodies could be empty shells, yet we act exactly the same.

Crude said...

But we cannot say what the findings of science would look like in a created world, since God can supposedly do anything logically possible.

For example, God could create a universe exactly like ours, except instead of brains we had heads full of marbles. Or our bodies could be empty shells, yet we act exactly the same.


And this differs from "unguided nature" how?

mattghg said...

@BenYachov you mean perspicuous, not perspicacious, you ignoramus.

BeingItself said...

'And this differs from "unguided nature" how?'

All possible worlds are consistent with theism, but not all possible worlds are consistent with naturalism.

In our world, either naturalism is true or God has chosen to remain hidden. But in the Game of Thrones universe, at least one god obviously exists.

RD Miksa said...

Good Day to All,

Skep said:

”All possible worlds are consistent with theism, but not all possible worlds are consistent with naturalism.”

Actually, the funny thing is, in many ways, this is exactly the opposite of what is true.

Consider that on naturalism, especially a naturalism that embraces the multi-verse concept, not only could I be a brain-in-a-vat being controlled by some hyper-powerful alien scientist, or just a part of a computer simulation, or in “The Matrix”, but it is actually very likely that something like this is the case. Or, given the multi-verse, maybe I am just a Boltzmann Brain that fluctuated into existence and is hallucinating this whole universe. Or, given naturalism, maybe I am an evolutionary organism with completely unreliable cognitive faculties that somehow happened to survive and thrive, yet all my metaphysical beliefs are faulty.

Or, if the naturalist denies the principle that “whatever beings has a cause” (or, in other words, he actually believes that “something can come from nothing”), then things get really whacky. For example, maybe this universe just came into existence out of nothing five minutes ago with the appearance of age. Or maybe my brain just randomly came into existence from nothing complete with ready-made illusions that an external world exists.

And if the naturalist denies the Principle of Sufficient Reason, and he embraces the ideas of brute facts, then things also get “crazy.” Wonder why something exists or is the way it is? No need…it’s a brute fact. The hard problem of consciousness getting you down? Brute fact. The easiest answer to any problem.

See, on naturalism, all sorts of weird, whacky, and frankly absurd positions are possible. After all, given naturalism—or at least naturalism as many naturalists defend it—all these things are logically possible.

By contrast, consider something like Christian theism. Christian theism states that God wants us to come to know of his existence through what has been made. Thus, given this want, on Christian theism, it is actually not logically possible that I am a brain-in-a-vat being controlled. Nor is it possible that I am nothing but a computer simulation. Nor is it possible on Christian theism that I have unreliable cognitive faculties, for then I could never come to know that God exists through what has been made. Furthermore, since Christian theism holds that the historical incarnation of Christ occurred, then it is not possible that the world just came into existence five minutes ago.

So again, far from “everything” being possible on something like Christian theism, the fact is that Christian theism makes as many, if not more predictions about what the world should be like than naturalism does.

It is, in my view, naturalism which is the quite slippery and highly malleable worldview.



Skep said:

“In our world, either naturalism is true or God has chosen to remain hidden.”

Considering that the overwhelming majority of humanity has always believed in the existence of God or gods, a much more reasonable explanation is not that God is hidden, but rather that non-theists are defective in some way. After all, the fact that a color-blind person does not see red does not disprove the existence of that color, it simply points out that the color-blind person has a defect in his vision that the majority other people do not suffer from. No reason this is not just as good of an explanation of non-belief as “divine hiddenness” is supposed to be.

Take care,

RD Miksa
www.idontgiveadamnapologetics.blogspot.com

im-skeptical said...

RD,

That wasn't me. BI is much more sensible and prudent than I am.

However, your thesis that on materialism virtually anything is possible, while on theism one would expect only perfectly logical miraculous events, is stunning.

im-skeptical said...

Incidentally, I gave my answer to Victor's question in the thread where it was originally asked (Hasker on Chalmers).

RD Miksa said...

Dear Skep,

My apologies. I honestly don't know what I was thinking. Sorry again.


Now, you said:

However, your thesis that on materialism virtually anything is possible, while on theism one would expect only perfectly logical miraculous events, is stunning.

First, notice that your statement above is not what I actually said. I stated that on naturalism--especially a naturalism that embraces such things as the multi-verse, or that something can come from nothing, or that things can just be brute facts--there is as much or more flexibility to accommodate and absorb different observations and data than their is on a worldview like Christian theism.

After all, when you have such people as Carl Sagan saying the following...

"Consider this claim: as I walk along, time -as measured by my wristwatch or my ageing process -slows down. Also, I shrink in the direction of motion. Also, I get more massive. Who has ever witnessed such a thing? It's easy to dismiss it out of hand. Here's another: matter and antimatter are all the time, throughout the universe, being created from nothing. Here's a third: once in a very great while, your car will spontaneously ooze through the brick wall of your garage and be found the next morning on the street. They're all absurd! But the first is a statement of special relativity, and the other two are consequences of quantum mechanics (vacuum fluctuations and barrier tunnelling,* they're called). Like it or not, that's the way the world is. If you insist it's ridiculous, you'll be forever closed to some of the major findings on the rules that govern the Universe."

...is it any surprise that I find naturalism to be an endlessly elastic worldview that could accept any data that comes its way.

And this is not even bringing up such a thing as Shermer's Last Law, which states that "Any sufficiently advanced extraterrestrial intelligence is indistinguishable from God" and which thus implicitly gives the naturalist a way to account for any observation, no matter how bizarre, under a naturalistic paradigm. After all, anything--literally anything--that we observe, could, given Shermer's Last Law, be accounted for by saying: "The advanced aliens did it."

So yes, I am willing to argue that it is naturalism, and not Christian theism, that is the highly malleable, truly flexible, and ever-shifting worldview.

Take care,

RD Miksa
www.idontgiveadamnapologetics.blogspot.com

Crude said...

All possible worlds are consistent with theism, but not all possible worlds are consistent with naturalism.

So you claim, but you didn't answer my question. Remember, you gave some examples of 'what God could do': "For example, God could create a universe exactly like ours, except instead of brains we had heads full of marbles. Or our bodies could be empty shells, yet we act exactly the same."

Replace "God" with "Nature" - instead of 'creating' they Just Happened or Just Existed. In both cases it's not agency that matters, but logical possibility. And logical possibility with an unqualified "naturalistic" universe is very, very large indeed.

To give an example: Max Tegmark has recently been ramping up his touting of the Ultimate Ensemble, and both of your examples seem compatible with it - even without God. (Though in Tegmark's and certain other multiverses, polytheism obtains immediately.)

Papalinton said...

""What would science look like in a creationist world?"

In a creationist world science would look like this:

The International Society for Complexity, Information, and Design (ISCID) seeks to alter the scientific method to eliminate what it saw as its materialistic, naturalistic, reductionistic and atheistic underpinnings. The goal is to "reverse the stifling materialist world view and replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions" and to "affirm the reality of God."

In other words, return science to where it was under the hegemony of christian theism before the Age of Enlightenment of the late 17thC.

im-skeptical said...

"So yes, I am willing to argue that it is naturalism, and not Christian theism, that is the highly malleable, truly flexible, and ever-shifting worldview."

I never accused Christianity of being flexible or malleable. On the contrary, it is stuck in the pre-scientific past, with God as the explanation for everything, and no amount of evidence could change that. Science must go where the evidence leads, so our understanding of natural law (not worldview) changes from time to time, as new evidence and information becomes available.

planks length said...

"Christianity ... is stuck in the pre-scientific past, with God as the explanation for everything, and no amount of evidence could change that"

Interesting statement, considering that, to date, there has not been the slightest bit of scientific evidence "against" God. At least, none that's ever been posted to this website. (No links, please - just list this so-called evidence).

You've made the claim - now back it up. Where is this "evidence"?

Papalinton said...

Much more telling is that considering, to date, there has not been the slightest bit of scientific evidence "for" God. Not one single scrap of evidence for a god of any stripe, colour, fashion or hair style. The only thing separating the atheist from the Catholic believer is church dogma and church doctrine. As Yachov intones ad infinitum the "the authority of the Church" trumps everything.

The settling and determination of Church dogma and doctrine is the antithesis of how science settles and determines, substantiates, authenticates and validates facts, proofs, reality. And one thing science is pretty clear about, supernaturalism isn't even a hypothesis, let alone a working hypothesis. Belief in supernaturalism has grown out of our ignorance and knowledge of how the brain works and operates and how we make sense of the natural world. Thankfully the journey of investigating and understanding into this frontier of science has begun in earnest.

BenYachov said...

@MAtt

>@BenYachov you mean perspicuous, not perspicacious, you ignoramus.

I sometimes don't pay attention to the spell check or it auto-corrects against my will so sue me smeghead.

BenYachov said...

>The only thing separating the atheist from the Catholic believer is church dogma and church doctrine. As Yachov intones ad infinitum the "the authority of the Church" trumps everything.

I never said such a thing. You are such a pathological liar Kangaroo boy as always.

Rather my point ad infinitum is the rote anti-Christian polemics you Gnus deploy against Fundamentalist Protestants are non-starters when applied to Catholics.

Really Paps would you bleed to death out your arsehole if you even tried to learn just a little philosophy & go beyond your knee-jerk positivism?

We can always hope for a miracle.

Victor Reppert said...

The lack of empirical evidence for God is interesting only if it is both possible and missing.

im-skeptical said...

"The lack of empirical evidence for God is interesting only if it is both possible and missing."

If Jesus can come to live among us and rise from the dead, then it is certainly possible that there would be some empirical evidence. And it certainly is missing.

Papalinton said...

Ben
'I never said such a thing. You are such a pathological liar Kangaroo boy as always."

What you are telling us now after all this time, is that you categorically do not believe that 'the authority of the church' trumps everything? So what the church might say about the existence of god[s], without the requisite support of scientific evidence for the existence of such gods, is an open question and rightly subject to further scrutiny and investigation?

Well, I'm glad to hear that you are open to the proposition that the existence of a god might not be as substantive a claim as the Church makes out. Now that is a positive step.

BenYachov said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BenYachov said...

"Dear Benson, you are so mercifully free of the ravages of intelligence."
-Evil Genius TIME BANDITS

I think of this line whenever I think of Paps and Public School education in general.