It’s magic!

La Shawn Barber enters an objection as an Evolution Delusion. It comes across as a reminder of one of Clark’s laws: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”. This is the appeal of the Intelligent Design, a.k.a. creationism.

The idea that an undirected, random series of events caused something as wonderfully complex, specifically magnificent, and infinitely beautiful as life is, to put it mildly, ludicrous.

In other words, because its complexity, magnificence, and beauty is beyond comprehension, they “prove” a source exists that we cannot replicate or understand. ‘The source of these attributes cannot be understood because I can’t understand them therefore it must be by purpose and by design of some being greater than me.’ That is the same rationalization that is behind Clarke’s law. It generalizes an individual’s comprehension and understanding to being the same as that of all. Anything not understood is ascribed to religion or magic or something supernatural.

The key here is to take that conclusion of the supernatural and apply it to science. That is an oxymoron. By definition, science does not deal with the supernatural. It is only when a phenomena can be subject to experiment and test and repetition that it becomes a matter of science. Otherwise it is a matter of religion. Conflating the two is not honest.

Many of the comments to the blog entry illustrate the problems by asserting and demanding the points that have been answered. These include the ‘theory, not fact‘ effort to impugn evolution, misdirected arguments, the conflation of science and religious goals, and so on.

Those who understand science know that its history is one of finding ways to subject the wondrous to mundane principle. Like the magician who shows us how it is done, the wonder changes. When we start to understand how the magic works, we can then start to better appreciate the experience, the art, the skill and knowledge of the magician and those many other things that are not of the mechanics, not of the science, but rather of the other realm, the realm of God’s gifts.

By bashing and trashing evolution, false witness is given to the book that God has put before our feet, the book of the geologic record, of the behavior of life. A punishment for that sin may be the missing of much of the true wonder and glory of God.

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