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Intelligent design
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Irreducible complexity
Specified complexity
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Intelligent designer
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Intelligent design

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Intelligent design is the assertion that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."[1][2] It is a modern form of the traditional teleological argument for the existence of God, but one which avoids specifying the nature or identity of the designer.[3] The idea was developed by a group of American creationists who reformulated their argument in the creation–evolution controversy to circumvent court rulings that prohibit the teaching of creationism as science.[4][5][6] Intelligent design's leading proponents – all of whom are associated with the Discovery Institute, a politically conservative think tank[7][8] – believe the designer to be the God of Christianity.[9][10]

Advocates of intelligent design seek to fundamentally redefine science to accept supernatural explanations,[11] arguing that intelligent design is a scientific theory under this new definition of science.[12] The unequivocal consensus in the scientific community is that intelligent design is not science.[13][14][15][16] The U.S. National Academy of Sciences has stated that "creationism, intelligent design, and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life or of species are not science because they are not testable by the methods of science."[17] The U.S. National Science Teachers Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science have termed it pseudoscience.[18] Others in the scientific community have concurred, and some have called it junk science.[19][20]

Intelligent design originated in response to the 1987 United States Supreme Court Edwards v. Aguillard ruling involving separation of church and state.[4] Its first significant published use was in Of Pandas and People, a 1989 textbook intended for high-school biology classes.[21] Several additional books on the subject were published in the 1990s. By the mid-1990s, intelligent design proponents had begun clustering around the Discovery Institute and more publicly advocating the inclusion of intelligent design in public school curricula.[22] With the Discovery Institute and its Center for Science and Culture serving a central role in planning and funding, the "intelligent design movement" grew increasingly visible in the late 1990s and early 2000s, culminating in the 2005 Dover trial which challenged the intended use of intelligent design in public school science classes.[7]

In Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, a group of parents of high-school students challenged a public school district requirement for teachers to present intelligent design in biology classes as an alternative "explanation of the origin of life". U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III ruled that intelligent design is not science, that it "cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents", and that the school district's promotion of it therefore violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.[23]



The term "intelligent design" came into use after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the 1987 case of Edwards v. Aguillard that to require the teaching of "creation science" alongside evolution was a violation of the Establishment Clause, which prohibits state endorsement of a religion. In the Edwards case, the Supreme Court had also held that "teaching a variety of scientific theories about the origins of humankind to school children might be validly done with the clear secular intent of enhancing the effectiveness of science instruction".[24] In drafts of the creation science textbook Of Pandas and People, almost all derivatives of the word "creation", such as "creationism", were replaced with the words "intelligent design".[21] The book was published in 1989, followed by a "grass-roots" campaign promoting the use of the book to teach intelligent design in high-school biology classes.[25]

The same Supreme Court ruling prompted the retired legal scholar Phillip E. Johnson, in his 1991 book Darwin on Trial, to advocate redefining science to allow claims of supernatural creation.[26] A group including Michael Behe, Stephen C. Meyer and William Dembski joined Johnson in aiming to overturn the methodological naturalism of the scientific method (which he describes as "materialism") and replace it with "theistic realism" through what they later called the "wedge strategy".[27] In the 1993 revised edition of Of Pandas and People, Behe described what he later named "irreducible complexity".[28] In 1994 Meyer made contact with the Discovery Institute, and in the following year they obtained funding to set up the Center for Renewal of Science and Culture to promote the intelligent design movement seeking public and political support for teaching "intelligent design" as a creation-based alternative to evolution, particularly in the United States.[22]

Intelligent design is presented as an alternative to natural explanations for the origin and diversity of life. It stands in opposition to conventional biological science, which relies on the scientific method to explain life through observable processes such as mutation and natural selection.[29][30] The stated purpose of intelligent design is to investigate whether or not existing empirical evidence implies that life on Earth must have been designed by an intelligent agent or agents. William A. Dembski, one of intelligent design's leading proponents, has said that the fundamental claim of intelligent design is that "there are natural systems that cannot be adequately explained in terms of undirected natural forces and that exhibit features which in any other circumstance we would attribute to intelligence".[31] In the leaked Discovery Institute manifesto known as the Wedge Document, however, the supporters of the movement were told:

We are building on this momentum, broadening the wedge with a positive scientific alternative to materialistic scientific theories, which has come to be called the theory of intelligent design. Design theory promises to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions.[32][33]

Proponents of intelligent design look for evidence of what they term "signs of intelligence": physical properties of an object that point to a designer (see: teleological argument). For example, intelligent design proponents argue that an archaeologist who finds a statue made of stone in a field may justifiably conclude that the statue was designed, and may reasonably seek to identify its designer. The archaeologist would not, however, be justified in making the same claim based on an irregularly shaped boulder of the same size. Design proponents argue that living systems show great complexity, from which they infer that some aspects of life have been designed.

Intelligent design proponents say that although evidence pointing to the nature of an "intelligent cause or agent" may not be directly observable, its effects on nature can be detected. Dembski, in Signs of Intelligence, states: "Proponents of intelligent design regard it as a scientific research program that investigates the effects of intelligent causes ... not intelligent causes per se". In his view, one cannot test for the identity of influences exterior to a closed system from within, so questions concerning the identity of a designer fall outside the realm of the concept. In the 20 years since intelligent design was first formulated, no rigorous test that can identify these effects has yet been proposed.[34][35] No peer-reviewed articles supporting intelligent design have been published in scientific journals, and intelligent design has not been the subject of scientific research or testing.[36] Oxford philosopher A. C. Grayling dismisses it as "a little driblet of childish ignorance; a mark of mankind's infancy".[37]

Origins of the concept

Whether the complexity of nature indicates purposeful design is a subject of recorded philosophical discourse dating back to ancient Greek philosophy. In the 4th century BC, Plato posited a good and wise "demiurge" as the creator and first cause of the cosmos in his Timaeus.[38][39] In his Metaphysics, Aristotle developed the idea of an "Unmoved Mover" .[40] In De Natura Deorum (On the Nature of the Gods, 45 BC) Cicero stated that "the divine power is to be found in a principle of reason which pervades the whole of nature."[41][42] This line of reasoning has come to be known as the teleological argument for the existence of God. The most notable forms of this argument were expressed in the 13th century by Thomas Aquinas and in the 19th century by William Paley. Aquinas, in his Summa Theologiae, used the concept of design in his "fifth proof" for God's existence.[43] Paley, in Natural Theology (1802), used the watchmaker analogy.[44]

In the 17th century the English physician Sir Thomas Browne wrote a Discourse arguing the case for intelligent design. His 1658 The Garden of Cyrus is one of the earliest examples of 'proof' of the wisdom of God and gives examples of intelligent design in botany. In the early 19th century, such arguments led to the development of what was called natural theology, the study of nature as a means to understand "the mind of God". This movement fueled the passion for collecting fossils and other biological specimens, which ultimately led to Darwin's theory of the origin of species. Similar reasoning postulating a divine designer is embraced today by many believers in theistic evolution, who consider modern science and the theory of evolution to be fully compatible with the concept of a supernatural designer.

Intelligent design in the late 20th and early 21st century is a development of natural theology that seeks to change the basis of science and undermine evolutionary theory.[45][46][47] As evolutionary theory has expanded to explain more phenomena, the examples that are held up as evidence of design have changed, though the essential argument remains the same: complex systems imply a designer. Past examples have included the eye and the feathered wing; current examples are typically biochemical: protein functions, blood clotting, and bacterial flagella. (See irreducible complexity.)

Barbara Forrest describes the intelligent design movement as beginning in 1984 when Jon A. Buell's religious organization the Foundation for Thought and Ethics (FTE) published The Mystery of Life's Origin by creationist and chemist Charles B. Thaxton,[48] arguing for "Special Creation by a Creator beyond the Cosmos" which holds "that the source that produced life was intelligent".[49] In March 1986 Stephen C. Meyer's review described it as using information theory to suggest that messages transmitted by DNA in the cell show "specified complexity" specified by intelligence, and must have originated with an intelligent agent.[50] In November of that year Thaxton described his reasoning as a more sophisticated form of Paley's argument from design.[51] At the Sources of Information Content in DNA conference in 1988 he said that his intelligent cause view was compatible with both metaphysical naturalism and supernaturalism,[52] and the term intelligent design came up.[53]

Intelligent design deliberately avoids identifying or naming the agent of creation—it merely states that one (or more) must exist. Although intelligent design itself does not name the designer, the leaders of the intelligent design movement have said that the designer is the Christian God.[9][32][54][55][56] Whether this lack of specificity about the designer's identity in public discussions is a genuine feature of the concept, or just a posture taken to avoid alienating those who would separate religion from the teaching of science, has been a matter of great debate between supporters and critics of intelligent design. The Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District court ruling held the latter to be the case.

Origins of the term

Of Pandas and People was the first intelligent design book. Rethinking Schools magazine characterizes it as a "creationist treatise dressed up to look like a legitimate discussion of science".[57]

Before the publication of the book Of Pandas and People in 1989, the words "intelligent design" had been used on several occasions as a descriptive phrase, distinct from the modern use as a label for "creationism". The phrase "intelligent design" can be found in an 1847 issue of Scientific American,[58] in an 1850 book by Patrick Edward Dove,[59] and even in an 1861 letter of Charles Darwin.[60] The phrase was used in an address to the 1873 annual meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science by Paleyite botanist George James Allman:

No physical hypothesis founded on any indisputable fact has yet explained the origin of the primordial protoplasm, and, above all, of its marvellous properties, which render evolution possible—in heredity and in adaptability, for these properties are the cause and not the effect of evolution. For the cause of this cause we have sought in vain among the physical forces which surround us, until we are at last compelled to rest upon an independent volition, a far-seeing intelligent design.[61]

The phrase can be found again in Humanism, a 1903 book by one of the founders of classical pragmatism, F.C.S. Schiller: "It will not be possible to rule out the supposition that the process of evolution may be guided by an intelligent design". A derivative of the phrase appears in the Macmillan Encyclopedia of Philosophy (1967) in the article titled, "Teleological argument for the existence of God": "Stated most succinctly, the argument runs: The world exhibits teleological order (design, adaptation). Therefore, it was produced by an intelligent designer".[62] Robert Nozick (1974) wrote: "Consider now complicated patterns which one would have thought would arise only through intelligent design".[63] The phrases "intelligent design" and "intelligently designed" were used in a 1979 philosophy book Chance or Design? by James Horigan[64] and the phrase "intelligent design" was used in a 1982 speech by Sir Fred Hoyle in his promotion of panspermia.[65]

The modern use of the words "intelligent design", as a term intended to describe a field of inquiry, began after the Supreme Court of the United States, in the case of Edwards v. Aguillard (1987), ruled that creationism is unconstitutional in public school science curricula. A Discovery Institute report says that Charles Thaxton, editor of Of Pandas and People, had picked the phrase up from a NASA scientist, and thought "That's just what I need, it's a good engineering term".[66] In drafts of the book over one hundred uses of the root word "creation", such as "creationism" and "creation science", were changed, almost without exception, to "intelligent design",[21] while "creationists" was changed to "design proponents" or, in one instance, "cdesign proponentsists". [sic][67] In June 1988 Thaxton held a conference titled "Sources of Information Content in DNA" in Tacoma, Washington,[52] and in December decided to use the label "intelligent design" for his new creationist movement.[68] Stephen C. Meyer was at the conference, and later recalled that "the term came up".[53]

Use of the terms "creationism" versus "intelligent design" in sequential drafts of the book Of Pandas and People[67]

Of Pandas and People was published in 1989, and was the first book to make frequent use of the phrases "intelligent design," "design proponents," and "design theory", thus representing the beginning of the modern "intelligent design" movement.[28] "Intelligent design” was the most prominent of around fifteen new terms it introduced as a new lexicon of creationist terminology to oppose evolution without using religious language.[69] It was the first place where the phrase "intelligent design" appeared in its present use, as stated both by its publisher Jon Buell,[70][71] and by William A. Dembski in his expert witness report.[72] The book presented all of the basic arguments of intelligent design proponents before any research had been done to support these arguments, and was actively promoted by creationists for public school use.[28] Rethinking Schools magazine has criticized the book, saying it was a "creationist treatise" packaged to look like a high quality science textbook, with a "glossy cover, full-color illustrations, and chapter titles such as 'Homology' and 'Genetics and Macroevolution'", with numerous "professionally prepared charts and illustrations appear to show how concrete scientific evidence supports the existence of the unnamed 'designer'". Philosopher of science Michael Ruse believes the contents were "worthless and dishonest", and it was described by an ACLU lawyer as a political tool aimed at students who did not "know science or understand the controversy over evolution and creationism".[57]

Integral concepts

Irreducible complexity

The concept of irreducible complexity was popularised by Michael Behe, in his 1996 book, Darwin's Black Box.

The term "irreducible complexity" was introduced by biochemist Michael Behe in his 1996 book Darwin's Black Box, though he had already described the concept in his contributions to the 1993 revised edition of Of Pandas and People.[28] Behe defines it as "a single system which is composed of several well-matched interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning".[73]

Behe uses the analogy of a mousetrap to illustrate this concept. A mousetrap consists of several interacting pieces—the base, the catch, the spring and the hammer—all of which must be in place for the mousetrap to work. Removal of any one piece destroys the function of the mousetrap. Intelligent design advocates assert that natural selection could not create irreducibly complex systems, because the selectable function is present only when all parts are assembled. Behe argued that irreducibly complex biological mechanisms include the bacterial flagellum of E. coli, the blood clotting cascade, cilia, and the adaptive immune system.[74][75]

Critics point out that the irreducible complexity argument assumes that the necessary parts of a system have always been necessary and therefore could not have been added sequentially.[76][77] They argue that something which is at first merely advantageous can later become necessary as other components change. Furthermore, they argue, evolution often proceeds by altering preexisting parts or by removing them from a system, rather than by adding them. This is sometimes called the "scaffolding objection" by an analogy with scaffolding, which can support an "irreducibly complex" building until it is complete and able to stand on its own.[78] Behe has acknowledged using "sloppy prose", and that his "argument against Darwinism does not add up to a logical proof".[79] Irreducible complexity has remained a popular argument among advocates of intelligent design; in the Dover trial, the court held that "Professor Behe's claim for irreducible complexity has been refuted in peer-reviewed research papers and has been rejected by the scientific community at large".[80]

Specified complexity

In 1986 the creationist chemist Charles Thaxton used the term "specified complexity" from information theory when claiming that messages transmitted by DNA in the cell were specified by intelligence, and must have originated with an intelligent agent.[50] The intelligent design concept of "specified complexity" was developed in the 1990s by mathematician, philosopher, and theologian William Dembski. Dembski states that when something exhibits specified complexity (i.e., is both complex and "specified", simultaneously), one can infer that it was produced by an intelligent cause (i.e., that it was designed) rather than being the result of natural processes. He provides the following examples: "A single letter of the alphabet is specified without being complex. A long sentence of random letters is complex without being specified. A Shakespearean sonnet is both complex and specified".[81] He states that details of living things can be similarly characterized, especially the "patterns" of molecular sequences in functional biological molecules such as DNA.

William Dembski proposed the concept of specified complexity.[82]

Dembski defines complex specified information (CSI) as anything with a less than 1 in 10150 chance of occurring by (natural) chance. Critics say that this renders the argument a tautology: complex specified information cannot occur naturally because Dembski has defined it thus, so the real question becomes whether or not CSI actually exists in nature.[83][84][85]

The conceptual soundness of Dembski's specified complexity/CSI argument has been widely discredited by the scientific and mathematical communities.[86][87][88] Specified complexity has yet to be shown to have wide applications in other fields as Dembski asserts. John Wilkins and Wesley Elsberry characterize Dembski's "explanatory filter" as eliminative, because it eliminates explanations sequentially: first regularity, then chance, finally defaulting to design. They argue that this procedure is flawed as a model for scientific inference because the asymmetric way it treats the different possible explanations renders it prone to making false conclusions.[89]

Richard Dawkins, another critic of intelligent design, argues in The God Delusion that allowing for an intelligent designer to account for unlikely complexity only postpones the problem, as such a designer would need to be at least as complex.[90] Other scientists have argued that evolution through selection is better able to explain the observed complexity, as is evident from the use of selective evolution to design certain electronic, aeronautic and automotive systems which are considered problems too complex for human "intelligent designers".[91]

Fine-tuned Universe

Intelligent design proponents also raise occasional arguments outside biology, most notably an argument based on the concept of the fine-tuning of universal constants that make matter and life possible and which are argued not to be solely attributable to chance. These include the values of fundamental physical constants, the relative strength of nuclear forces, electromagnetism, and gravity between fundamental particles, as well as the ratios of masses of such particles. Intelligent design proponent and Center for Science and Culture fellow Guillermo Gonzalez argues that if any of these values were even slightly different, the universe would be dramatically different, making it impossible for many chemical elements and features of the Universe, such as galaxies, to form.[92] Thus, proponents argue, an intelligent designer of life was needed to ensure that the requisite features were present to achieve that particular outcome.

Scientists almost unanimously have responded that this argument cannot be tested and is not scientifically productive. Some scientists argue that even when taken as mere speculation, these arguments are poorly supported by existing evidence.[93] Victor J. Stenger and other critics say both intelligent design and the weak form of the anthropic principle are essentially a tautology; in his view, these arguments amount to the claim that life is able to exist because the Universe is able to support life.[94][95][96] The claim of the improbability of a life-supporting universe has also been criticized as an argument by lack of imagination for assuming no other forms of life are possible. Life as we know it might not exist if things were different, but a different sort of life might exist in its place. A number of critics also suggest that many of the stated variables appear to be interconnected and that calculations made by mathematicians and physicists suggest that the emergence of a universe similar to ours is quite probable.[97]

Proponent Granville Sewell has stated that the evolution of complex forms of life represents a decrease of entropy, thereby violating the second law of thermodynamics and supporting intelligent design.[98] This, however, is a misapplication of thermodynamic principles.[99] The second law applies to closed systems only. If this argument were true, living things could not be born and grow, as this also would be a decrease in entropy. However, like evolution, the growth of living things does not violate the second law of thermodynamics, because living things are not closed systems—they have external energy sources (e.g. food, oxygen, sunlight) whose production requires an offsetting net increase in entropy.

Intelligent designer

Intelligent design arguments are formulated in secular terms and intentionally avoid identifying the intelligent agent (or agents) they posit. Although they do not state that God is the designer, the designer is often implicitly hypothesized to have intervened in a way that only a god could intervene. Dembski, in The Design Inference, speculates that an alien culture could fulfill these requirements. The authoritative description of intelligent design,[100] however, explicitly states that the Universe displays features of having been designed. Acknowledging the paradox, Dembski concludes that "no intelligent agent who is strictly physical could have presided over the origin of the universe or the origin of life".[101] The leading proponents have made statements to their supporters that they believe the designer to be the Christian God, to the exclusion of all other religions.[9][10][54]

Beyond the debate over whether intelligent design is scientific, a number of critics argue that existing evidence makes the design hypothesis appear unlikely, irrespective of its status in the world of science. For example, Jerry Coyne asks why a designer would "give us a pathway for making vitamin C, but then destroy it by disabling one of its enzymes" (see pseudogene) and why he or she would not "stock oceanic islands with reptiles, mammals, amphibians, and freshwater fish, despite the suitability of such islands for these species". Coyne also points to the fact that "the flora and fauna on those islands resemble that of the nearest mainland, even when the environments are very different" as evidence that species were not placed there by a designer.[102] Previously, in Darwin's Black Box, Behe had argued that we are simply incapable of understanding the designer's motives, so such questions cannot be answered definitively. Odd designs could, for example, "have been placed there by the designer ... for artistic reasons, to show off, for some as-yet undetectable practical purpose, or for some unguessable reason". Coyne responds that in light of the evidence, "either life resulted not from intelligent design, but from evolution; or the intelligent designer is a cosmic prankster who designed everything to make it look as though it had evolved".[102]

Asserting the need for a designer of complexity also raises the question "What designed the designer?"[103] Intelligent design proponents say that the question is irrelevant to or outside the scope of intelligent design.[104] Richard Wein counters that the unanswered questions an explanation creates "must be balanced against the improvements in our understanding which the explanation provides. Invoking an unexplained being to explain the origin of other beings (ourselves) is little more than question-begging. The new question raised by the explanation is as problematic as the question which the explanation purports to answer".[85] Richard Dawkins sees the assertion that the designer does not need to be explained, not as a contribution to knowledge, but as a thought-terminating cliché.[105][106] In the absence of observable, measurable evidence, the very question "What designed the designer?" leads to an infinite regression from which intelligent design proponents can only escape by resorting to religious creationism or logical contradiction.[105][107]


The Discovery Institute's Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture used banners based on "The Creation of Adam" from the Sistine Chapel. Later it used a less religious image, then was renamed the Center for Science and Culture.[108]

The intelligent design movement is a direct outgrowth of the creationism of the 1980s.[109] The scientific and academic communities, along with a U.S. federal court, view intelligent design as either a form of creationism or as a direct descendant that is closely intertwined with traditional creationism;[110][111][112][113] and several authors explicitly refer to it as "intelligent design creationism".[114][115][116]

The movement is headquartered in the Center for Science and Culture (CSC), established in 1996 as the creationist wing of the Discovery Institute to promote a religious agenda[117] calling for broad social, academic and political changes. The Discovery Institute's intelligent design campaigns have been staged primarily in the United States, although efforts have been made in other countries to promote intelligent design. Leaders of the movement say intelligent design exposes the limitations of scientific orthodoxy and of the secular philosophy of naturalism. Intelligent design proponents allege that science should not be limited to naturalism and should not demand the adoption of a naturalistic philosophy that dismisses out-of-hand any explanation which contains a supernatural cause. The overall goal of the movement is to "defeat [the] materialist world view" represented by the theory of evolution in favor of "a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions".[118]

Phillip E. Johnson stated that the goal of intelligent design is to cast creationism as a scientific concept.[55][119] All leading intelligent design proponents are fellows or staff of the Discovery Institute and its Center for Science and Culture.[7][120] Nearly all intelligent design concepts and the associated movement are the products of the Discovery Institute, which guides the movement and follows its wedge strategy while conducting its Teach the Controversy campaign and their other related programs.

Leading intelligent design proponents have made conflicting statements regarding intelligent design. In statements directed at the general public, they say intelligent design is not religious; when addressing conservative Christian supporters, they state that intelligent design has its foundation in the Bible.[119] Recognizing the need for support, the institute affirms its Christian, evangelistic orientation: "Alongside a focus on influential opinion-makers, we also seek to build up a popular base of support among our natural constituency, namely, Christians. We will do this primarily through apologetics seminars. We intend these to encourage and equip believers with new scientific evidences that support the faith, as well as to 'popularize' our ideas in the broader culture."[118]

Barbara Forrest, an expert who has written extensively on the movement, describes this as being due to the Discovery Institute's obfuscating its agenda as a matter of policy. She has written that the movement's "activities betray an aggressive, systematic agenda for promoting not only intelligent design creationism, but the religious world-view that undergirds it".[121]

Religion and leading proponents

Although arguments for intelligent design are formulated in secular terms and intentionally avoid positing the identity of the designer,[122] the majority of principal intelligent design advocates are publicly religious Christians who have stated that in their view the designer proposed in intelligent design is the Christian conception of God. Stuart Burgess, Phillip E. Johnson, William Dembski, and Stephen C. Meyer are evangelical Protestants, and Michael Behe is a Roman Catholic, while Jonathan Wells is a member of the Unification Church. Phillip E. Johnson has stated that cultivating ambiguity by employing secular language in arguments that are carefully crafted to avoid overtones of theistic creationism is a necessary first step for ultimately reintroducing the Christian concept of God as the designer. Johnson explicitly calls for intelligent design proponents to obfuscate their religious motivations so as to avoid having intelligent design identified "as just another way of packaging the Christian evangelical message".[123] Johnson emphasizes that "the first thing that has to be done is to get the Bible out of the discussion"; "after we have separated materialist prejudice from scientific fact [...] only then can 'biblical issues' be discussed".[124]

The strategy of deliberately disguising the religious intent of intelligent design has been described by William Dembski in The Design Inference.[125] In this work Dembski lists a god or an "alien life force" as two possible options for the identity of the designer; however, in his book Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology, Dembski states that "Christ is indispensable to any scientific theory, even if its practitioners don't have a clue about him. The pragmatics of a scientific theory can, to be sure, be pursued without recourse to Christ. But the conceptual soundness of the theory can in the end only be located in Christ."[126] Dembski also stated, "ID is part of God's general revelation [...] Not only does intelligent design rid us of this ideology (materialism), which suffocates the human spirit, but, in my personal experience, I've found that it opens the path for people to come to Christ".[127] Both Johnson and Dembski cite the Bible's Gospel of John as the foundation of intelligent design.[54][119]

Barbara Forrest contends such statements reveal that leading proponents see intelligent design as essentially religious in nature, not merely a scientific concept that has implications with which their personal religious beliefs happen to coincide.[128] She writes that the leading proponents of intelligent design are closely allied with the ultra-conservative Christian Reconstructionism movement. She lists connections of (current and former) Discovery Institute Fellows Phillip Johnson, Charles Thaxton, Michael Behe, Richard Weikart, Jonathan Wells and Francis Beckwith to leading Christian Reconstructionist organizations, and the extent of the funding provided the Institute by Howard Ahmanson Jr., a leading figure in the Reconstructionist movement.[129]

Reaction from other creationist groups

Not all creationist organizations have embraced the intelligent design movement. Hugh Ross of Reasons to Believe, a proponent of Old Earth creationism, believes that the efforts of intelligent design proponents to divorce the concept from Biblical Christianity make its hypothesis too vague. In 2002 he wrote: "Winning the argument for design without identifying the designer yields, at best, a sketchy origins model. Such a model makes little if any positive impact on the community of scientists and other scholars… The time is right for a direct approach, a single leap into the origins fray. Introducing a biblically based, scientifically verifiable creation model represents such a leap."[130]

Likewise, two of the most prominent Young Earth creationism organizations in the world have attempted to distinguish their views from intelligent design. Henry M. Morris of the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) wrote, in 1999, that ID, "even if well-meaning and effectively articulated, will not work! It has often been tried in the past and has failed, and it will fail today. The reason it won't work is because it is not the Biblical method.” According to Morris: “The evidence of intelligent design… must be either followed by or accompanied by a sound presentation of true Biblical creationism if it is to be meaningful and lasting."[131] In 2002, Carl Wieland of Answers in Genesis (AiG) criticized design advocates who, though well-intentioned, "left the Bible out of it" and thereby unwittingly aided and abetted the modern rejection of the Bible. Wieland explained that "AiG's major 'strategy' is to boldly, but humbly, call the church back to its Biblical foundations… [so] we neither count ourselves a part of this movement nor campaign against it."[132]


Several surveys were conducted prior to the December 2005 decision in Kitzmiller v. Dover, which sought to determine the level of support for intelligent design among certain groups. According to a 2005 Harris poll, 10% of adults in the United States viewed human beings as "so complex that they required a powerful force or intelligent being to help create them".[133] Although Zogby polls commissioned by the Discovery Institute show more support, these polls suffer from considerable flaws, such as having a very low response rate (248 out of 16,000), being conducted on behalf of an organization with an expressed interest in the outcome of the poll, and containing leading questions.[134][135][136]

A May 2005 survey of nearly 1500 physicians in the United States conducted by the Louis Finkelstein Institute and HCD Research showed that 63% of the physicians agreed more with evolution than with intelligent design.[137]


The film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed sparked further controversy in 2008. This documentary, hosted by Ben Stein, spends much time focusing on professors who have been asked to leave or have left numerous institutions because, the film insinuates, of their beliefs in Intelligent Design. One of the film's first screenings resulted in Paul "PZ" Myers, an interviewee in the film, being asked to leave the theater. There have also been allegations from some interviewees that interviews were recorded many times in order to get the exact phrasing required by the producer. The production company, Premise Media, also has produced some religious films such as the The Passion of the Christ. [138] [139]

Creating and teaching the controversy

A key strategy of the intelligent design movement is convincing the general public that there is a debate among scientists about whether life evolved. The intelligent design movement creates this controversy in order to convince the public, politicians and cultural leaders that schools should "Teach the Controversy".[140] But in fact, there is no such controversy in the scientific community; the scientific consensus is that life evolved.[141][142][143] Intelligent design is widely viewed as a stalking horse for its proponents' campaign against what they say is the materialist foundation of science, which they argue leaves no room for the possibility of God.[144][145]

Advocates of intelligent design seek to keep God and the Bible out of the discussion, and present intelligent design in the language of science as a scientific hypothesis.[122][124] However, among a very significant proportion of the general public in the United States the major concern is whether conventional evolutionary biology is compatible with belief in God and in the Bible, and how this issue is taught in schools.[146] The public controversy was given widespread media coverage in the United States, particularly during the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial in late 2005 and after President George W. Bush expressed support for the idea of teaching intelligent design alongside evolution in August 2005. In response to Bush’s statement and the pending federal trial, Time magazine ran an eight-page cover story on the Evolution Wars in which they examined the issue of teaching intelligent design in the classroom.[147][148] The cover of the magazine featured a parody of the The Creation of Adam from the Sistine Chapel. Rather than pointing at Adam, Michelangelo’s God points at the image of a chimpanzee contemplating the caption which read "The push to teach "intelligent design" raises a question: Does God have a place in science class?".[149] In the Kitzmiller v. Dover case, the court ruled that intelligent design was a religious and creationist position, finding that God and intelligent design were both distinct from the material that should be covered in a science class.[5]

Empirical science uses the scientific method to create a posteriori knowledge based on observation and repeated testing of hypotheses and theories. Intelligent design proponents seek to change this fundamental basis of science[150] by eliminating "methodological naturalism" from science[151] and replacing it with what the leader of the intelligent design movement, Phillip E. Johnson, calls "theistic realism".[152] Some have called this approach "methodological supernaturalism", which means belief in a transcendent, nonnatural dimension of reality inhabited by a transcendent, nonnatural deity.[153] Intelligent design proponents argue that naturalistic explanations fail to explain certain phenomena and that supernatural explanations provide a very simple and intuitive explanation for the origins of life and the universe.[154] Proponents say that evidence exists in the forms of irreducible complexity and specified complexity that cannot be explained by natural processes.[1]

Supporters also hold that religious neutrality requires the teaching of both evolution and intelligent design in schools, saying that teaching only evolution unfairly discriminates against those holding creationist beliefs. Teaching both, they argue, allows for the possibility of religious belief, without causing the state to actually promote such beliefs. Many intelligent design followers believe that "Scientism" is itself a religion that promotes secularism and materialism in an attempt to erase theism from public life, and they view their work in the promotion of intelligent design as a way to return religion to a central role in education and other public spheres. Some allege that this larger debate is often the subtext for arguments made over intelligent design, though others note that intelligent design serves as an effective proxy for the religious beliefs of prominent intelligent design proponents in their efforts to advance their religious point of view within society.[155][156][157]

According to critics, intelligent design has not presented a credible scientific case and is an attempt to teach religion in public schools. They allege that intelligent design has substituted public support for scientific research.[158] Some critics have said that if one were to take the proponents of "equal time for all theories" at their word, there would be no logical limit to the number of potential "theories" to be taught in the public school system, including intelligent design parodies such as the Flying Spaghetti Monster "theory". There are innumerable mutually incompatible supernatural explanations for complexity, and intelligent design does not provide a mechanism for discriminating among them. Philosopher of biology Elliott Sober, for example, states that intelligent design is not falsifiable because "[d]efenders of ID always have a way out".[159][160] Indeed, intelligent design proponent Michael Behe concedes "You can't prove intelligent design by experiment".[146]

Critics have asserted that intelligent design proponents cannot legitimately infer that an intelligent designer is behind the part of the process that is not understood scientifically, since they have not shown that anything supernatural has occurred. The inference that an intelligent designer created life on Earth, which advocate William Dembski has said could alternately be an "alien" life force,[125] has been compared to the a priori claim that aliens helped the ancient Egyptians build the pyramids.[161][162] In both cases, the effect of this outside intelligence is not repeatable, observable or falsifiable, and it violates the principle of parsimony. From a strictly empirical standpoint, one may list what is known about Egyptian construction techniques, but one must admit ignorance about exactly how the Egyptians built the pyramids.

Supporters of intelligent design have also reached out to other faith groups with similar accounts of creation with the hope that the broader coalition will have greater influence in supporting science education that does not contradict their religious views.[154] Many religious bodies have responded by expressing support for evolution. The Roman Catholic church has stated that religious faith is fully compatible with science, which is limited to dealing only with the natural world[163]—a position described by the term theistic evolution.[164] As well as pointing out that intelligent design is not science, they also reject it for various philosophical and theological reasons.[165][166] The arguments of intelligent design have been directly challenged by the over 10,000 clergy who signed the Clergy Letter Project. Prominent scientists who strongly express religious faith, such as the astronomer George Coyne and the biologist Ken Miller, have been at the forefront of opposition to intelligent design. While creationist organizations have welcomed intelligent design's support against naturalism, they have also been critical of its refusal to identify the designer,[167][168][169] and have pointed to previous failures of the same argument.[170]

Some religiously oriented commentators, such as Natan Slifkin, have more directly criticized the advocates of intelligent design as presenting a perspective of God that is dangerous to religion.[171] Those who promote it as parallel to religion, he asserts, do not truly understand it. Slifkin criticizes intelligent design's advocacy of teaching their perspective in biology classes, wondering why no one claims that God's hand should be taught in other secular classes, such as history, physics or geology. Slifkin also asserts that the intelligent design movement is inordinately concerned with portraying God as "in control" when it comes to things that cannot be easily explained by science, but not in control in respect to things which can be explained by scientific theory.[171] Kenneth Miller expresses a view similar to Slifkin's: "[T]he struggles of the Intelligent Design movement are best understood as clamorous and disappointing double failures - rejected by science because they do not fit the facts, and having failed religion because they think too little of God.[172]

Defining science

The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena and acquiring new knowledge of the natural world without assuming the existence or nonexistence of the supernatural, an approach sometimes called methodological naturalism. Intelligent design proponents believe that this can be equated to materialist metaphysical naturalism, and have often said that not only is their own position scientific, but it is even more scientific than evolution, and that they want a redefinition of science as a revived natural theology or natural philosophy to allow "non-naturalistic theories such as intelligent design".[173] This presents a demarcation problem, which in the philosophy of science is about how and where to draw the lines around science.[174] For a theory to qualify as scientific,[175][176][177] it is expected to be:

  • Consistent
  • Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations, see Occam's Razor)
  • Useful (describes and explains observed phenomena, and can be used predictively)
  • Empirically testable and falsifiable (see Falsifiability)
  • Based on multiple observations, often in the form of controlled, repeated experiments
  • Correctable and dynamic (modified in the light of observations that do not support it)
  • Progressive (refines previous theories)
  • Provisional or tentative (is open to experimental checking, and does not assert certainty)

For any theory, hypothesis or conjecture to be considered scientific, it must meet most, and ideally all, of these criteria. The fewer criteria are met, the less scientific it is; and if it meets only a few or none at all, then it cannot be treated as scientific in any meaningful sense of the word. Typical objections to defining intelligent design as science are that it lacks consistency,[178] violates the principle of parsimony,[179] is not scientifically useful,[180] is not falsifiable,[181] is not empirically testable,[182] and is not correctable, dynamic, provisional or progressive.[183][184][185]

Critics also say that the intelligent design doctrine does not meet the Daubert Standard,[186] the criteria for scientific evidence mandated by the US Supreme Court. The Daubert Standard governs which evidence can be considered scientific in United States federal courts and most state courts. Its four criteria are:

  • The theoretical underpinnings of the methods must yield testable predictions by means of which the theory could be falsified.
  • The methods should preferably be published in a peer-reviewed journal.
  • There should be a known rate of error that can be used in evaluating the results.
  • The methods should be generally accepted within the relevant scientific community.

In Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, using these criteria and others mentioned above, Judge Jones ruled that "... we have addressed the seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents".

Peer review

The failure to follow the procedures of scientific discourse and the failure to submit work to the scientific community that withstands scrutiny have weighed against intelligent design's being considered as valid science.[187] The intelligent design movement has not published a properly peer-reviewed article in a scientific journal.[8][187]

Intelligent design, by appealing to a supernatural agent, directly conflicts with the principles of science, which limit its inquiries to empirical, observable and ultimately testable data and which require explanations to be based on empirical evidence. Dembski, Behe and other intelligent design proponents say bias by the scientific community is to blame for the failure of their research to be published.[188] Intelligent design proponents believe that their writings are rejected for not conforming to purely naturalistic, non-supernatural mechanisms rather than because their research is not up to "journal standards", and that the merit of their articles is overlooked. Some scientists describe this claim as a conspiracy theory.[189] Michael Shermer has rebutted the claim, noting "Anyone who thinks that scientists do not question Darwinism has never been to an evolutionary conference." He noted that scientists such as Joan Roughgarden and Lynn Margulis have challenged certain Darwinist theories and offered explanations of their own and despite this they "have not been persecuted, shunned, fired or even expelled. Why? Because they are doing science, not religion."[190] The issue that supernatural explanations do not conform to the scientific method became a sticking point for intelligent design proponents in the 1990s, and is addressed in the wedge strategy as an aspect of science that must be challenged before intelligent design can be accepted by the broader scientific community.

The debate over whether intelligent design produces new research, as any scientific field must, and has legitimately attempted to publish this research, is extremely heated. Both critics and advocates point to numerous examples to make their case. For instance, the Templeton Foundation, a former funder of the Discovery Institute and a major supporter of projects seeking to reconcile science and religion, says that it asked intelligent design proponents to submit proposals for actual research, but none were ever submitted. Charles L. Harper Jr., foundation vice-president, said: "From the point of view of rigor and intellectual seriousness, the intelligent design people don't come out very well in our world of scientific review".[191]

The only article published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal that made a case for intelligent design was quickly withdrawn by the publisher for having circumvented the journal's peer-review standards.[192] Written by the Discovery Institute's Center for Science & Culture Director Stephen C. Meyer, it appeared in the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington in August 2004.[193] The article was a literature review, which means that it did not present any new research, but rather culled quotations and claims from other papers to argue that the Cambrian explosion could not have happened by natural processes. The choice of venue for this article was also considered problematic, because it was so outside the normal subject matter (see Sternberg peer review controversy[194]). Dembski has written that "perhaps the best reason [to be skeptical of his ideas] is that intelligent design has yet to establish itself as a thriving scientific research program."[195] In a 2001 interview, Dembski said that he stopped submitting to peer-reviewed journals because of their slow time-to-print and that he makes more money from publishing books.[196]

In the Dover trial, the judge found that intelligent design features no scientific research or testing.[197] There, intelligent design proponents cited just one paper, on simulation modeling of evolution by Behe and Snoke,[198] which mentioned neither irreducible complexity nor intelligent design and which Behe admitted did not rule out known evolutionary mechanisms.[36] Michael Lynch called the conclusions of the article "an artifact of unwarranted biological assumptions, inappropriate mathematical modeling, and faulty logic".[199] In sworn testimony, however, Behe said: "There are no peer reviewed articles by anyone advocating for intelligent design supported by pertinent experiments or calculations which provide detailed rigorous accounts of how intelligent design of any biological system occurred".[200] As summarized by the judge, Behe conceded that there are no peer-reviewed articles supporting his claims of intelligent design or irreducible complexity. In his ruling, the judge wrote: "A final indicator of how ID has failed to demonstrate scientific warrant is the complete absence of peer-reviewed publications supporting the theory".[187]

The Discovery Institute insists that a number of intelligent design articles have been published in peer-reviewed journals,[201] including in its list the two articles mentioned above. Critics, largely members of the scientific community, reject this claim, stating that no established scientific journal has yet published an intelligent design article. Instead, intelligent design proponents have set up their own journals with "peer review" which lack impartiality and rigor,[202] consisting entirely of intelligent design supporters.[203]

Intelligence as an observable quality

The phrase intelligent design makes use of an assumption of the quality of an observable intelligence, a concept that has no scientific consensus definition. William Dembski, for example, has written that "Intelligence leaves behind a characteristic signature". The characteristics of intelligence are assumed by intelligent design proponents to be observable without specifying what the criteria for the measurement of intelligence should be. Dembski, instead, asserts that "in special sciences ranging from forensics to archaeology to SETI (the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence), appeal to a designing intelligence is indispensable".[204] How this appeal is made and what this implies as to the definition of intelligence are topics left largely unaddressed. Seth Shostak, a researcher with the SETI Institute, disputed Dembski's comparison of SETI and intelligent design, saying that intelligent design advocates base their inference of design on complexity—the argument being that some biological systems are too complex to have been made by natural processes—while SETI researchers are looking primarily for artificiality.[205]

Critics say that the design detection methods proposed by intelligent design proponents are radically different from conventional design detection, undermining the key elements that make it possible as legitimate science. Intelligent design proponents, they say, are proposing both searching for a designer without knowing anything about that designer's abilities, parameters, or intentions (which scientists do know when searching for the results of human intelligence), as well as denying the very distinction between natural/artificial design that allows scientists to compare complex designed artifacts against the background of the sorts of complexity found in nature.[206]

As a means of criticism, certain skeptics have pointed to a challenge of intelligent design derived from the study of artificial intelligence. The criticism is a counter to intelligent design claims about what makes a design intelligent, specifically that "no preprogrammed device can be truly intelligent, that intelligence is irreducible to natural processes".[207] This claim is similar in type to an assumption of Cartesian dualism that posits a strict separation between "mind" and the material Universe. However, in studies of artificial intelligence, while there is an implicit assumption that supposed "intelligence" or creativity of a computer program is determined by the capabilities given to it by the computer programmer, artificial intelligence need not be bound to an inflexible system of rules. Rather, if a computer program can access randomness as a function, this effectively allows for a flexible, creative, and adaptive intelligence. Evolutionary algorithms, a subfield of machine learning (itself a subfield of artificial intelligence), have been used to mathematically demonstrate that randomness and selection can be used to "evolve" complex, highly adapted structures that are not explicitly designed by a programmer. Evolutionary algorithms use the Darwinian metaphor of random mutation, selection and the survival of the fittest to solve diverse mathematical and scientific problems that are usually not solvable using conventional methods. Intelligence derived from randomness is essentially indistinguishable from the "innate" intelligence associated with biological organisms, and poses a challenge to the intelligent design conception that intelligence itself necessarily requires a designer. Cognitive science continues to investigate the nature of intelligence along these lines of inquiry. The intelligent design community, for the most part, relies on the assumption that intelligence is readily apparent as a fundamental and basic property of complex systems.[208]

Arguments from ignorance

Eugenie Scott, along with Glenn Branch and other critics, has argued that many points raised by intelligent design proponents are arguments from ignorance.[209] In the argument from ignorance, a lack of evidence for one view is erroneously argued to constitute proof of the correctness of another view. Scott and Branch say that intelligent design is an argument from ignorance because it relies on a lack of knowledge for its conclusion: lacking a natural explanation for certain specific aspects of evolution, we assume intelligent cause. They contend most scientists would reply that the unexplained is not unexplainable, and that "we don't know yet" is a more appropriate response than invoking a cause outside science.[209] Particularly, Michael Behe's demands for ever more detailed explanations of the historical evolution of molecular systems seem to assume a false dichotomy, where either evolution or design is the proper explanation, and any perceived failure of evolution becomes a victory for design. Scott and Branch also contend that the supposedly novel contributions proposed by intelligent design proponents have not served as the basis for any productive scientific research.

Intelligent design has also been characterized as a "god of the gaps" argument, which has the following form:

A god-of-the-gaps argument is the theological version of an argument from ignorance. A key feature of this type of argument is that it merely answers outstanding questions with explanations (often supernatural) that are unverifiable and ultimately themselves subject to unanswerable questions.[210]

Kitzmiller trial

Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District was the first direct challenge brought in the United States federal courts against a public school district that required the presentation of intelligent design as an alternative to evolution. The plaintiffs successfully argued that intelligent design is a form of creationism, and that the school board policy thus violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.[211]

Eleven parents of students in Dover, Pennsylvania, sued the Dover Area School District over a statement that the school board required be read aloud in ninth-grade science classes when evolution was taught. The plaintiffs were represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) and Pepper Hamilton LLP. The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) acted as consultants for the plaintiffs. The defendants were represented by the Thomas More Law Center.[212] The suit was tried in a bench trial from September 26, 2005 to November 4, 2005 before Judge John E. Jones III. Ken Miller, Kevin Padian, Brian Alters, Robert Pennock, Barbara Forrest and John Haught served as expert witnesses for the prosecution. Michael Behe, Steve Fuller and Scott Minnich served as expert witnesses for the defense.

On December 20, 2005 Judge Jones issued his 139-page findings of fact and decision, ruling that the Dover mandate was unconstitutional, and barring intelligent design from being taught in Pennsylvania's Middle District public school science classrooms. The eight Dover school board members who voted for the intelligent design requirement were all defeated in a November 8, 2005 election by challengers who opposed the teaching of intelligent design in a science class, and the current school board president stated that the board does not intend to appeal the ruling.[213]

In his finding of facts, Judge Jones made the following condemnation of the Teach the Controversy strategy:

Moreover, ID’s backers have sought to avoid the scientific scrutiny which we have now determined that it cannot withstand by advocating that the controversy, but not ID itself, should be taught in science class. This tactic is at best disingenuous, and at worst a canard.


Judge Jones himself anticipated that his ruling would be criticized, saying in his decision that:

Those who disagree with our holding will likely mark it as the product of an activist judge. If so, they will have erred as this is manifestly not an activist Court. Rather, this case came to us as the result of the activism of an ill-informed faction on a school board, aided by a national public interest law firm eager to find a constitutional test case on ID, who in combination drove the Board to adopt an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy. The breathtaking inanity of the Board's decision is evident when considered against the factual backdrop which has now been fully revealed through this trial. The students, parents, and teachers of the Dover Area School District deserved better than to be dragged into this legal maelstrom, with its resulting utter waste of monetary and personal resources.

As Jones had predicted, John G. West, Associate Director of the Center for Science and Culture at Discovery Institute, said:

The Dover decision is an attempt by an activist federal judge to stop the spread of a scientific idea and even to prevent criticism of Darwinian evolution through government-imposed censorship rather than open debate, and it won't work. He has conflated Discovery Institute's position with that of the Dover school board, and he totally misrepresents intelligent design and the motivations of the scientists who research it[214].

Newspapers have noted with interest that the judge is "a Republican and a churchgoer".[215][216][217][218]

Subsequently, the decision has been examined in a search for flaws and conclusions, partly by intelligent design supporters aiming to avoid future defeats in court. In the Spring of 2007 the University of Montana Law review published three articles.[219] In the first, David K. DeWolf, John G. West and Casey Luskin, all of the Discovery Institute, argued that intelligent design is a valid scientific theory, the Jones court should not have addressed the question of whether it was a scientific theory, and that the Kitzmiller decision will have no effect at all on the development and adoption of intelligent design as an alternative to standard evolutionary theory.[148] In the second Peter Irons responded, arguing that the decision was extremely well reasoned and spells the death knell for the intelligent design efforts to introduce creationism in public schools,[220] while in the third, DeWolf et al. answer the points made by Irons.[221] However, fear of a similar lawsuit has resulted in other school boards abandoning intelligent design "teach the controversy" proposals.[6]

Status outside the United States


In June 2007 the Council of Europe's "Committee on Culture, Science and Education" issued a report, The dangers of creationism in education, which states "Creationism in any of its forms, such as 'intelligent design', is not based on facts, does not use any scientific reasoning and its contents are pathetically inadequate for science classes."[222] In describing the dangers posed to education by teaching creationism, it described intelligent design as "anti-science" and involving "blatant scientific fraud" and "intellectual deception" that "blurs the nature, objectives and limits of science" and links it and other forms of creationism to denialism. On October 4, 2007, the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly approved a resolution stating that schools should "resist presentation of creationist ideas in any discipline other than religion", including "intelligent design" which it described as "the latest, more refined version of creationism", "presented in a more subtle way". The resolution emphasises that the aim of the report is not to question or to fight a belief, but to "warn against certain tendencies to pass off a belief as science".[223]

In the United Kingdom, public education includes Religious Education as a compulsory subject, and many "faith schools" that teach the ethos of particular denominations. When it was revealed that a group called Truth in Science had distributed DVDs produced by the Discovery Institute affiliate Illustra Media[224] featuring Discovery Institute fellows making the case for design in nature,[225] and claimed they were being used by 59 schools,[226] the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) stated that "Neither creationism nor intelligent design are taught as a subject in schools, and are not specified in the science curriculum" (part of the National Curriculum which does not apply to independent schools or to Education in Scotland).[227][228] The DfES subsequently stated that "Intelligent design is not a recognised scientific theory; therefore, it is not included in the science curriculum", but left the way open for it to be explored in religious education in relation to different beliefs, as part of a syllabus set by a local standing advisory council on religious education.[229] In 2006 the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority produced a Religious Education model unit in which pupils can learn about religious and nonreligious views about creationism, intelligent design and evolution by natural selection.[230][231]

On June 25, 2007, the UK Government responded to an e-Petition by saying that creationism and intelligent design should not be taught as science, though teachers would be expected to answer pupils' questions within the standard framework of established scientific theories.[232] Detailed government "Creationism teaching guidance" for schools in England was published on September 18, 2007.[230] It states that "Intelligent design lies wholly outside of science", has no underpinning scientific principles, or explanations, and is not accepted by the science community as a whole. Though it should not be taught as science, "questions about creationism and intelligent design which arise in science lessons, for example as a result of media coverage, could provide the opportunity to explain or explore why they are not considered to be scientific theories and, in the right context, why evolution is considered to be a scientific theory". However, "Teachers of subjects such as RE, history or citizenship may deal with creationism and intelligent design in their lessons".[14]

The British Centre for Science Education lobbying group has the goal of "countering creationism within the UK" and has been involved in government lobbying in the UK in this regard.[233] However, in Northern Ireland the Democratic Unionist Party claims that the revised curriculum provides an opportunity for alternative theories to be taught, and has sought assurances that pupils will not lose marks if they give creationist or intelligent design answers to science questions.[234] In Lisburn the DUP has arranged that the City Council will write to post primary schools asking what their plans are to develop teaching material in relation to "creation, intelligent design and other theories of origin".[235]

Plans by Dutch Education Minister Maria van der Hoeven to "stimulate an academic debate" on the subject in 2005 caused a severe public backlash.[236] After the 2007 elections she was succeeded by Ronald Plasterk, described as a "molecular geneticist, staunch atheist and opponent of intelligent design".[237] As a reaction on this situation in the Netherlands, in Belgium the President of the Flemish Catholic Educational Board (VSKO) Mieke Van Hecke declared that: "Catholic scientists already accepted the theory of evolution for a long time and that intelligent design and creationism doesn't belong in Flemish Catholic schools. It's not the tasks of the politics to introduce new ideas, that's task and goal of science."[238]


Creationism has strong political clout in many Islamic countries, and antievolutionary views are mainstream with considerable official support and elite support among academic theologians and scientists.[239] In general, Muslim creationists have partnered with the Institute for Creation Research for ideas and materials which they adapted to their own theological positions. Similarly, some use was made of intelligent design antievolution resources. Muzaffar Iqbal, a notable Muslim in Canada, signed the Scientific Dissent list of the Discovery Institute.[240] Ideas similar to intelligent design have been considered respected intellectual options among Muslims, and in Turkey many intelligent design books have been translated. In Istanbul in 2007, public meetings promoting intelligent design were sponsored by the local government,[239] and David Berlinski of the Discovery Institute was the keynote speaker at a meeting in May 2007.[241]

The status of intelligent design in Australia is somewhat similar to that in the UK (see: Education in Australia). When the former Australian Federal Education Minister, Brendan Nelson, raised the notion of intelligent design being taught in science classes, the public outcry caused the minister to quickly concede that the correct forum for intelligent design, if it were to be taught, is in religious or philosophy classes.[242]

See also

Arguments in favor
Related topics in creationism

References and notes

  1. ^ a b "Top Questions-1.What is the theory of intelligent design?". Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  2. ^ "Primer: Intelligent Design Theory in a Nutshell" (PDF). Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center. 2004. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  3. ^ Numbers, Ronald L. (2006). The Creationists, Expanded Edition. Harvard University Press. pp. 373, 379–380. ISBN 0674023390. 
  4. ^ a b Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., Context pg. 32 ff, citing Edwards v. Aguillard, 482 U.S. 578 ..
  5. ^ a b "ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer." "This argument for the existence of God was advanced early in the 19th century by Reverend Paley" (the teleological argument) "The only apparent difference between the argument made by Paley and the argument for ID, as expressed by defense expert witnesses Behe and Minnich, is that ID's 'official position' does not acknowledge that the designer is God." Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., Ruling, p. 24.
  6. ^ a b Forrest, Barbara (May 2007). "Understanding the Intelligent Design Creationist Movement: Its True Nature and Goals." (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Center for Inquiry, Office of Public Policy. Retrieved 2007-08-06. .
  7. ^ a b c "Q. Has the Discovery Institute been a leader in the intelligent design movement? A. Yes, the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. Q. And are almost all of the individuals who are involved with the intelligent design movement associated with the Discovery Institute? A. All of the leaders are, yes." Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial. "Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District Trial transcript: Day 6 (October 5), PM Session, Part 1.". TalkOrigins Archive. 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  8. ^ a b "Science and Policy: Intelligent Design and Peer Review". American Association for the Advancement of Science. 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  9. ^ a b c "the writings of leading ID proponents reveal that the designer postulated by their argument is the God of Christianity". Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., Ruling p. 26. A selection of writings and quotes of intelligent design supporters demonstrating this identification of the Christian God with the intelligent designer are found in the pdf Horse's Mouth (PDF) by Brian Poindexter, dated 2003.
  10. ^ Stephen C. Meyer and Paul A. Nelson (May 1, 1996). "CSC – Getting Rid of the Unfair Rules, A book review, Origins & Design"]. Retrieved 2007-05-20. 
  11. ^ "Top Questions about intelligent design". Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2007-05-13. 
  12. ^ See: 1) List of scientific societies explicitly rejecting intelligent design 2) Kitzmiller v. Dover page 83. 3) The Discovery Institute's A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism petition begun in 2001 has been signed by "over 700 scientists" as of August 20, 2006. A four day A Scientific Support for Darwinism petition gained 7733 signatories from scientists opposing ID. The AAAS, the largest association of scientists in the U.S., has 120,000 members, and firmly rejects ID. More than 70,000 Australian scientists and educators condemn teaching of intelligent design in school science classes List of statements from scientific professional organizations on the status intelligent design and other forms of creationism. According to The New York Times "There is no credible scientific challenge to the theory of evolution as an explanation for the complexity and diversity of life on earth". Dean, Cordelia (September 27, 2007). "Scientists Feel Miscast in Film on Life's Origin". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-09-28. 
  13. ^ a b "Teachernet, Document bank". Creationism teaching guidance. UK Department for Children, Schools and Families. September 18, 2007. Retrieved 2007-10-01. "The intelligent design movement claims there are aspects of the natural world that are so intricate and fit for purpose that they cannot have evolved but must have been created by an 'intelligent designer'. Furthermore they assert that this claim is scientifically testable and should therefore be taught in science lessons. Intelligent design lies wholly outside of science. Sometimes examples are quoted that are said to require an 'intelligent designer'. However, many of these have subsequently been shown to have a scientific explanation, for example, the immune system and blood clotting mechanisms.
    Attempts to establish an idea of the 'specified complexity' needed for intelligent design are surrounded by complex mathematics. Despite this, the idea seems to be essentially a modern version of the old idea of the "God-of-the-gaps". Lack of a satisfactory scientific explanation of some phenomena (a 'gap' in scientific knowledge) is claimed to be evidence of an intelligent designer."
  14. ^ Nature Methods Editorial (2007). "An intelligently designed response". Nat. Methods 4 (12): 983. doi:10.1038/nmeth1207-983. 
  15. ^ Mark Greener (2007). "Taking on creationism. Which arguments and evidence counter pseudoscience?". EMBO Reports 8 (12): 1107–1109. doi:10.1038/sj.embor.7401131. PMID 18059309. 
  16. ^ "Science and Creationism: A View from the National Academy of Sciences". National Academy of Sciences. 1999. 
  17. ^ National Science Teachers Association, a professional association of 55,000 science teachers and administrators National Science Teachers Association (August 3, 2005). "National Science Teachers Association Disappointed About Intelligent Design Comments Made by President Bush". Press release. "We stand with the nation's leading scientific organizations and scientists, including Dr. John Marburger, the president's top science advisor, in stating that intelligent design is not science. ...It is simply not fair to present pseudoscience to students in the science classroom." 
  18. ^ Attie, A. D.; Sober, E; Numbers, RL; Amasino, RM; Cox, B; Berceau, T; Powell, T; Cox, MM (2006). "Defending science education against intelligent design: a call to action". Journal of Clinical Investigation (American Society for Clinical Investigation) 116 (5): 1134–1138. doi:10.1172/JCI28449. PMID 16670753. PMC 1451210. 
  19. ^ Agin, Dan (2006). Junk Science. Macmillan. pp. 210 ff. 
  20. ^ a b c Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., pp. 31 – 33.
  21. ^ a b "Media Backgrounder: Intelligent Design Article Sparks Controversy". Discovery Institute. September 7, 2004. 
  22. ^ Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., Conclusion of Ruling.
  23. ^ Edwards v. Aguillard, 482 U.S. 578 .
  24. ^ Eugenie C. Scott; Gordon E. Uno (November 11, 1989). "NCSE Resource: Introduction to NCSE Bookwatch Reviews for Of Pandas and People". National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2009-11-18. 
  25. ^ Eugenie C. Scott. "Darwin On Trial: A Review". National Center for Science Education. "Although science has made great progress by limiting itself to explaining only through natural causes, Johnson would have us allow the occasional supernatural intervention for those phenomena that cause problems for his particular theology." 
  26. ^ Phillip E. Johnson (1999). "The Wedge: Phillip Johnson". Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity. Retrieved 2007-09-24. 
  27. ^ a b c d Nick Matzke (2004). "NCSE Resource". Introduction: Of Pandas and People, the foundational work of the 'Intelligent Design' movement. National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2007-09-24. 
  28. ^
    • Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005). “ID fails on three different levels, any one of which is sufficient to preclude a determination that ID is science. They are: (1) ID violates the centuries-old ground rules of science by invoking and permitting supernatural causation; (2) the argument of irreducible complexity, central to ID, employs the same flawed and illogical contrived dualism that doomed creation science in the 1980s; and (3) ID's negative attacks on evolution have been refuted by the scientific community”, Ruling, page 64 ff
    • Neil Broom; William Dembski (2001). "Foreword". How Blind is the Watchmaker? Nature's Design and the Limits of Naturalistic Science. "Broom shows conclusively that intelligent design's opposition to Darwinism rests primarily on scientific grounds." 
  29. ^ William Dembski (January 10, 2007). "Truly Programmable Matter". Uncommon Descent. Retrieved May 24, 2007. "If I ever became the president of a university (per impossibile), I would dissolve the biology department and divide the faculty with tenure that I couldn't get rid of into two new departments: those who know engineering and how it applies to biological systems would be assigned to the new 'Department of Biological Engineering'; the rest, and that includes the evolutionists, would be consigned to the new 'Department of Nature Appreciation' (didn't Darwin think of himself as a naturalist?)" 
    • "Demonstrative charts introduced through Dr. Forrest show parallel arguments relating to the rejection of naturalism, evolution's threat to culture and society, 'abrupt appearance' implying divine creation, the exploitation of the same alleged gaps in the fossil record, the alleged inability of science to explain complex biological information like DNA, as well as the theme that proponents of each version of creationism merely aim to teach a scientific alternative to evolution to show its 'strengths and weaknesses,' and to alert students to a supposed 'controversy' in the scientific community". Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, Decision, p. 34 (emphasis added)
    • "Additionally, [leading intelligent design advocate] Dembski agrees that science is ruled by methodological naturalism and argues that this rule must be overturned if ID is to prosper". Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, Decision, p. 30.
    • "Intelligent Design [...] supposes that the origins of living things require supernatural interventions to create the intricate, design-like, living forms that we see all around us". Ruse, Michael (January 1, 2004). "Natural selection vs. intelligent design". USA Today (Magazine). 
  30. ^ William A. Dembski (2004). The Design Revolution. p. 27. 
  31. ^ a b "Wedge Document". Discovery Institute. 1999. 
    • Chris Mooney (August 10, 2005). "Inferior Design". The American Prospect. "[M]embers of the national ID movement insist that their attacks on evolution aren't religiously motivated, but, rather, scientific in nature. [...] Yet the express strategic objectives of the Discovery Institute; the writings, careers, and affiliations of ID's leading proponents; and the movement's funding sources all betray a clear moral and religious agenda." 
  32. ^ Barbara Forrest (April 2005). "Expert Witness Report" (PDF). Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District. "ID's rejection of naturalism in any form logically entails its appeal to the only alternative, supernaturalism, as a putatively scientific explanation for natural phenomena. This makes ID a religious belief." 
  33. ^ "AAAS Board Resolution on Intelligent Design Theory". American Association for the Advancement of Science. 2002. "...the ID movement has not proposed a scientific means of testing its claims..." 
  34. ^ Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., p. 70.
  35. ^ a b Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005). 4: whether ID is science
  36. ^ Grayling, A.C. (Web exclusive September/October 2008). "Bolus of nonsense". New Humanist. Retrieved 2009-09-19. 
  37. ^ "Plato's Timaeus". The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. The Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford University. October 25, 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  38. ^ Plato. "Timaeus". Internet Classics Archive. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  39. ^ Aristotle, Metaphysics Bk. 12
  40. ^ Linda Trinkaus Zagzebski (2006). The Philosophy of Religion: An Historical Introduction, 31.
  41. ^ Cicero, De Natura Deorum, Book I, 36–37, Latin Library.
  42. ^ Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae "Thomas Aquinas' 'Five Ways' (archive link)" in
  43. ^ William Paley, Natural Theology: or, Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity, 1809, London, Twelfth Edition.
  44. ^ See, e.g., the publisher's editorial description of the 2006 paperback printing of William Paley (1803) Natural Theology" : "William Paley's classic brings depth to the history of intelligent design arguments. The contrivance of the eye, the ear, and numerous other anatomical features throughout the natural world are presented as arguments for God's presence and concern. While there are distinctive differences between Paley's argument and those used today by intelligent design theorists and creationists, it remains a fascinating glimpse of the nineteenth-century's debate over the roles of religion and science".
  45. ^ David C. Steinmetz (2005) "The Debate on Intelligent Design" in The Christian Century, (December 27, 2005, pp. 27–31.)[1]
  46. ^ Leading intelligent design proponent William Dembski (2001) argues the opposing view in Is Intelligent Design a form of natural theology?
  47. ^ Dr Barbara Forrest, Know Your Creationists: Know Your Allies
  48. ^ Barbara Forrest (April 1, 2007). "Expert Witness Report" (PDF). United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. Retrieved 2008-10-19. 
  49. ^ a b Stephen C. Meyer (March 1986). "We Are Not Alone". Eternity. Access Research Network. Retrieved 2007-10-10. 
  50. ^ Charles B. Thaxton, Ph.D. (November 13–16, 1986). "DNA, Design and the Origin of Life". Christian Leadership Ministries. Retrieved 2007-10-10. 
  51. ^ a b Charles B. Thaxton (June 23–26, 1988, revised July 1988 and May 1991). "In Pursuit of Intelligent Causes: Some Historical Background". Retrieved 2007-10-06. 
  52. ^ a b William Safire (August 21, 2005). "On Language: Neo-Creo". New York Times. 
  53. ^ a b c Dembski: "Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory," Touchstone Magazine. Volume 12, Issue4: July/August, 1999
  54. ^ a b Phillip Johnson: "Our strategy has been to change the subject a bit so that we can get the issue of Intelligent Design, which really means the reality of God, before the academic world and into the schools." Johnson 2004. Let's Be Intelligent About Darwin. "This isn't really, and never has been a debate about science. It's about religion and philosophy." Johnson 1996. World Magazine. Witnesses For The Prosecution. "So the question is: "How to win?" That's when I began to develop what you now see full-fledged in the "wedge" strategy: "Stick with the most important thing"—the mechanism and the building up of information. Get the Bible and the Book of Genesis out of the debate because you do not want to raise the so-called Bible-science dichotomy. Phrase the argument in such a way that you can get it heard in the secular academy and in a way that tends to unify the religious dissenters. That means concentrating on, "Do you need a Creator to do the creating, or can nature do it on its own?" and refusing to get sidetracked onto other issues, which people are always trying to do." Johnson 2000. Touchstone magazine. Berkeley's Radical An Interview with Phillip E. Johnson at the Internet Archive
  55. ^ Stephen C. Meyer: "I think the designer is God ..." (Darwin, the marketing of Intelligent Design . Nightline ABC News, with Ted Koppel, August 10, 2005); Nancy Pearcey: "By contrast, design theory demonstrates that Christians can sit in the supernaturalist’s “chair” even in their professional lives, seeing the cosmos through the lens of a comprehensive biblical worldview. Intelligent Design steps boldly into the scientific arena to build a case based on empirical data. It takes Christianity out of the ineffectual realm of value and stakes out a cognitive claim in the realm of objective truth. It restores Christianity to its status as genuine knowledge, equipping us to defend it in the public arena". (Total Truth, Crossway Books, June 29, 2004, ISBN 1581344589, pp. 204-205)
  56. ^ a b Leon Lynn (Winter 1997/98). "Vol 12 No 2 - Rethinking Schools Online". Creationists Push Pseudo-Science Text. Retrieved 2009-02-08. 
  57. ^ Nick Matzke (August 14, 2007). "The true origin of "intelligent design"". The Panda's Thumb. Retrieved 2010-01-21. 
    "Journals: Scientific American (1846 - 1869)".;cc=scia;rgn=full%20text;idno=scia0002-48;didno=scia0002-48;view=image;seq=00383;node=scia0002-48%3A1. Retrieved 2010-01-21. 
  58. ^ Dove, Patrick Edward, The theory of human progression, and natural probability of a reign of justice. London, Johnstone & Hunter, 1850. LC 08031381 "Intelligence-Intelligent Design".
  59. ^ Charles Darwin (May 23, 1861). "Letter 3154—Darwin, C. R. to Herschel, J. F. W., 23 May 1861". Darwin Correspondence Project. 
  60. ^ "The British Association". The Times. September 20, 1873. pp. 10; col A.. 
  61. ^ William P. Alston (1967). Paul Edwards. ed. Encyclopedia of Philosophy. New York City, London: Macmillan Publishing Company, The Free Press, Collier Macmillan Publishers. ISBN 0028949900. 
  62. ^ Robert Nozick (1974). Anarchy, State, and Utopia. USA: Basic Books. p. 19. ISBN 0465097200. 
  63. ^ James E. Horigan (1979). Chance or Design?. Philosophical Library. 
  64. ^ Nicholas Timmins (January 13, 1982). "Evolution according to Hoyle: Survivors of disaster in an earlier world". The Times (61130): pp. 22. "F. Hoyle stated in a 1982 speech: ' arrives at the conclusion that biomaterials with their amazing measure or order must be the outcome of intelligent design.'" 
  65. ^ Jonathan Witt (December 20, 2005). "Evolution News & Views: Dover Judge Regurgitates Mythological History of Intelligent Design". Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2007-10-05. 
  66. ^ a b Nick Matzke (2006). "NCSE Resource -- 9.0. Matzke (2006): The Story of the Pandas Drafts". National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2009-11-18.  *Nick Matzke (2006). "Missing Link discovered!". National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2009-11-18. 
  67. ^ DarkSyde (March 11, 2006). "Daily Kos: Know Your Creationists: Know Your Allies". interview with Barbara Forrest. Retrieved 2007-10-05. 
  68. ^ Richard P. Aulie (1998). "A Reader's Guide to Of Pandas and People". National Association of Biology Teachers. Retrieved 2007-10-05. 
  69. ^ Eugenie C. Scott; Nicholas J. Matzke (May 15, 2007). "Biological design in science classrooms". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (United States National Academy of Sciences) 104 (Suppl 1): 8669–8676. doi:10.1073 (inactive 2010-01-09). pnas.0701505104. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 
  70. ^ Nick Matzke; Jon Buell (October 13, 2005). "I guess ID really was "Creationism's Trojan Horse" after all". The Panda's Thumb. Retrieved 2009-06-02. .
  71. ^ William A. Dembski (March 29, 2005) (pdf). Expert Witness Report: The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design. Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial document. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 
  72. ^ Behe, Michael (1997): Molecular Machines: Experimental Support for the Design Inference [2]
  73. ^ Irreducible complexity of these examples is disputed; see Kitzmiller, pp. 76–78, and Ken Miller Webcast
  74. ^ The Collapse of "Irreducible Complexity" Kenneth R. Miller Brown University [3]
  75. ^ John H. McDonald's "reducibly complex mousetrap"
  76. ^ David Ussery, "A Biochemist's Response to 'The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution'"
  77. ^ For example, Bridgham et al. showed that gradual evolutionary mechanisms can produce complex protein-protein interaction systems from simpler precursors. Bridgham et al.; Carroll, SM; Thornton, JW (2006). "Evolution of Hormone-Receptor Complexity by Molecular Exploitation". Science 312 (5770): 97–101. doi:10.1126/science.1123348. PMID 16601189. 
  78. ^ Orr, H. Allen (May 30, 2005). "Devolution". The New Yorker.  This article draws from the following exchange of letters in which Behe admits to sloppy prose and non-logical proof: Behe, M.; Dembski, Wells, Nelson, Berlinski (March 26, 2003). "Has Darwin met his match? Letters—An exchange over ID". Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2006-11-30. 
  79. ^ Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., p. 64.
  80. ^ Dembski. Intelligent Design, p. 47
  81. ^ William Dembski, Photo by Wesley R. Elsberry, taken at lecture given at University of California at Berkeley, 2006/03/17.
  82. ^ Branden Fitelson, Christopher Stephens, Elliott Sober (1998) (PDF). How Not to Detect Design: A review of William A. Dembski's The Design Inference—Eliminating Chance Through Small Probabilities. Cambridge University Press. 
  83. ^ Some of Dembski's responses to assertions of specified complexity being a tautology can be found at William A. Dembski. "Another way to detect design". ARN. 
  84. ^ a b Richard Wein (2002). "Not a Free Lunch But a Box of Chocolates: A critique of William Dembski's book No Free Lunch". 
  85. ^ Rich Baldwin (2005). "Information Theory and Creationism". 
  86. ^ Mark Perakh (2005). "Dembski 'displaces Darwinism' mathematically -- or does he?". 
  87. ^ Jason Rosenhouse (Fall 2001). "How Anti-Evolutionists Abuse Mathematics" (PDF). The Mathematical Intelligencer 23 (4): 3–8. 
  88. ^ John S. Wilkins, Wesley R. Elsberry (2001). "The Advantages of Theft over Toil: The Design Inference and Arguing from Ignorance". Biology and Philosophy 16: 711–724. 
  89. ^ Richard Dawkins (2006). The God Delusion. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0618680004. 
  90. ^ "Evolutionary algorithms now surpass human designers". New Scientist. July 28, 2007. 
  91. ^ Guillermo Gonzalez (2004). The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery. Washington, DC: Regnery Publ.. ISBN 0-89526-065-4. 
  92. ^ The Panda's Thumb. review of The Privileged Planet
  93. ^ Is The Universe Fine-Tuned For Us? Victor J. Stenger. University of Colorado. (PDF file)
  94. ^ Victor J. Stenger. "The Anthropic Principle" (PDF). University of Colorado. 
  95. ^ Joseph Silk (September 14, 2006). "Our place in the Multiverse". Nature 443 (7108). 
  96. ^ See, e.g., Gerald Feinberg and Robert Shapiro (1993). "A Puddlian Fable". in Huchingson. Religion and the Natural Sciences. pp. 220–221. 
  97. ^ Sewell, Granville (December 28, 2005). "Evolution's Thermodynamic Failure". The American Spectator. Retrieved 2007-02-16.  (Also available from the Discovery Institute)
  98. ^ "Entropy, Disorder and Life". TalkOrigins Archive. Retrieved 2007-07-17. 
  99. ^ Dembski. "Questions About Intelligent Design". What is Intelligent Design?. Discovery Institute. "The theory of Intelligent Design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." 
  100. ^ "The Act of Creation: Bridging Transcendence and Immanence". LeaderU. 
  101. ^ a b Coyne, Jerry (August 22–29, 2005). "The Case Against Intelligent Design" (PDF). The New Republic 233 (8/9): 21–33. .
  102. ^ Donald E. Simanek. "Intelligent Design: The Glass is Empty". 
  103. ^ IDEA "One need not fully understand the origin or identity of the designer to determine that an object was designed. Thus, this question is essentially irrelevant to intelligent design theory, which merely seeks to detect if an object was designed ... Intelligent design theory cannot address the identity or origin of the designer—it is a philosophical / religious question that lies outside the domain of scientific inquiry. Christianity postulates the religious answer to this question that the designer is God who by definition is eternally existent and has no origin. There is no logical philosophical impossibility with this being the case (akin to Aristotle's 'unmoved mover') as a religious answer to the origin of the designer..." FAQ: Who designed the designer? FAQ: Who designed the designer?
  104. ^ a b Jason Rosenhouse. "Who Designed the Designer?". Creation & Intelligent Design Watch. Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal. 
  105. ^ Richard Dawkins. The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design. p. 141. 
  106. ^ See, e.g., Joseph Manson (September 27, 2005). "Intelligent design is pseudoscience". UCLA Today. ; Rev Max (July–August 2006). "The Incredibly Strange Story of Intelligent Design". New Dawn Magazine (97). 
  107. ^ "NCSE Resource". Evolving Banners at the Discovery Institute. August 29, 2002. Retrieved 2007-10-07. 
  108. ^ Forrest, Barbara (May 2007). "Understanding the Intelligent Design Creationist Movement: Its True Nature and Goals. A Position Paper from the Center for Inquiry, Office of Public Policy" (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Center for Inquiry. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  109. ^ David Mu (Fall, 2005). "Trojan Horse or Legitimate Science: Deconstructing the Debate over Intelligent Design". Harvard Science Review 19 (1). "For most members of the mainstream scientific community, ID is not a scientific theory, but a creationist pseudoscience".". 
    *"Professional Ethics Report". 2001. "Creationists are repackaging their message as the pseudoscience of intelligent design theory." 
    *Conclusion of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District Ruling
  110. ^ Wise, D.U., 2001, Creationism's Propaganda Assault on Deep Time and Evolution, Journal of Geoscience Education, v. 49, n. 1, p. 30–35.
  111. ^ Marcus R. Ross (May, 2005). "Who Believes What? Clearing up Confusion over Intelligent Design and Young-Earth Creationism" (PDF). Journal of Geoscience Education 53 (3): 319–323. 
  112. ^ Ronald L. Numbers (November 30, 2006). The Creationists: From Scientific Creationism to Intelligent Design, Expanded Edition. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. ISBN 0674023390. 
  113. ^ Forrest, Barbara (May 2007). "Understanding the Intelligent Design Creationist Movement: Its True Nature and Goals. A Position Paper" (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Center for Inquiry, Office of Public Policy. Retrieved 2007-08-22. ; Forrest, B.C. and Gross, P.R. (2003). Evolution and the Wedge of Intelligent Design: The Trojan Horse Strategy. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0195157427. 
  114. ^ Robert T. Pennock (2001). "Wizards of ID: Reply to Dembski". in Robert T. Pennock. Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics: Philosophical, Theological, and Scientific Perspectives. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press. pp. 645–667. ISBN 0262661241. "Dembski chides me for never using the term "intelligent design" without conjoining it to "creationism". He implies (though never explicitly asserts) that he and others in his movement are not creationists and that it is incorrect to discuss them in such terms, suggesting that doing so is merely a rhetorical ploy to "rally the troops". (2) Am I (and the many others who see Dembski's movement in the same way) misrepresenting their position? The basic notion of creationism is the rejection of biological evolution in favor of special creation, where the latter is understood to be supernatural. Beyond this there is considerable variability..." ; Pennock, Robert T. (1999). Tower of Babel: Evidence Against the New Creationism. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press. 
  115. ^ Eugenie Scott (July/August 1999). "The Creation/Evolution Continuum". NCSE Reports 19 (4): 16–17, 23–25. ; Scott, Eugenie C. (2004). Evolution vs. Creationism: An Introduction. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN 0520246500. 
  116. ^ "The social consequences of materialism have been devastating. As symptoms, those consequences are certainly worth treating. However, we are convinced that in order to defeat materialism, we must cut it off at its source. That source is scientific materialism. This is precisely our strategy. If we view the predominant materialistic science as a giant tree, our strategy is intended to function as a 'wedge' that, while relatively small, can split the trunk when applied at its weakest points. The very beginning of this strategy, the 'thin edge of the wedge,' was Phillip Johnson's critique of Darwinism begun in 1991 in Darwinism on Trial, and continued in Reason in the Balance and Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds. Michael Behe's highly successful Darwin's Black Box followed Johnson's work. We are building on this momentum, broadening the wedge with a positive scientific alternative to materialistic scientific theories, which has come to be called the theory of intelligent design (ID). Design theory promises to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions". Wedge Document Discovery Institute, 1999. (PDF file)
  117. ^ a b Wedge Document (PDF) Discovery Institute, 1999.
  118. ^ a b c "I have built an intellectual movement in the universities and churches that we call The Wedge, which is devoted to scholarship and writing that furthers this program of questioning the materialistic basis of science. [...] Now the way that I see the logic of our movement going is like this. The first thing you understand is that the Darwinian theory isn't true. It's falsified by all of the evidence and the logic is terrible. When you realize that, the next question that occurs to you is, well, where might you get the truth? [...] I start with John 1:1. In the beginning was the word. In the beginning was intelligence, purpose, and wisdom. The Bible had that right. And the materialist scientists are deluding themselves." Johnson 1999. Reclaiming America for Christ Conference. How the Evolution Debate Can Be Won
  119. ^ "Discovery Institute fellows and staff".  "Center for Science and Culture fellows and staff". 
  120. ^ Barbara Forrest (2001). "The Wedge at Work: Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics". 
  121. ^ a b "...intelligent design does not address metaphysical and religious questions such as the nature or identity of the designer," and "...the nature, moral character and purposes of this intelligence lie beyond the competence of science and must be left to religion and philosophy". In: "Truth Sheet # 09-05 Does intelligent design postulate a "supernatural creator?". Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  122. ^ Phillip Johnson (April 1999). "'Keeping the Darwinists Honest' an interview with Phillip Johnson". Citizen Magazine.  "Intelligent Design is an intellectual movement, and the Wedge strategy stops working when we are seen as just another way of packaging the Christian evangelical message. [...] The evangelists do what they do very well, and I hope our work opens up for them some doors that have been closed".
  123. ^ a b Phillip Johnson (July/August 1999). Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity.  "...the first thing that has to be done is to get the Bible out of the discussion. ...This is not to say that the biblical issues are unimportant; the point is rather that the time to address them will be after we have separated materialist prejudice from scientific fact". The Wedge
  124. ^ a b William Dembski, 1998. The Design Inference.
  125. ^ Dembski, 1999. Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology, p. 210.
  126. ^ William Dembski (2005). "Intelligent Design's Contribution to the Debate Over Evolution: A Reply to Henry Morris". 
  127. ^ Barbara Forrest. Expert Testimony. Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial transcript, Day 6 (October 5) "What I am talking about is the essence of intelligent design, and the essence of it is theistic realism as defined by Professor Johnson. Now that stands on its own quite apart from what their motives are. I'm also talking about the definition of intelligent design by Dr. Dembski as the Logos theology of John's Gospel. That stands on its own. [...] Intelligent design, as it is understood by the proponents that we are discussing today, does involve a supernatural creator, and that is my objection. And I am objecting to it as they have defined it, as Professor Johnson has defined intelligent design, and as Dr. Dembski has defined intelligent design. And both of those are basically religious. They involve the supernatural".
  128. ^ "Understanding the Intelligent Design Creationist Movement: Its True Nature and Goals. A Position Paper" (PDF). Center for Inquiry, Office of Public Policy. May 2007. 
  129. ^ H. Ross (2002). "More than intelligent design". Facts for Faith. Pasadena, California: Reasons to Believe. Retrieved April 25, 2007. 
  130. ^ Henry M. Morris (1999). "Design is not enough!". Back to Genesis. Santee, California: Institute for Creation Research. Retrieved April 25, 2007. 
  131. ^ Carl Wieland (2002). "AiG's views on the Intelligent Design movement". Answers in Genesis. Retrieved April 25, 2007. 
  132. ^ "Nearly Two-thirds of U.S. Adults Believe Human Beings Were Created by God". The Harris Poll #52. Harris Interactive. July 6, 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-13. 
  133. ^ "Sandia National Laboratories says that the Intelligent Design Network (IDNet-NM/Zogby) "Lab Poll" is BOGUS!". New Mexicans for Science and Reason. Retrieved 2007-07-13. 
  134. ^ Mooney, Chris (September 11, 2003). "Polling for ID". Doubt and About. Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Retrieved 2007-02-16. 
  135. ^ David Harris. "'Intelligent Design'-ers launch new assault on curriculum using lies and deception". Archived from the original on 2003-08-16. Retrieved 2007-07-13. 
  136. ^ According to the poll, 18% of the physicians believed that God created humans exactly as they appear today. Another 42% believed that God initiated and guided an evolutionary process that has led to current human beings. The poll also found that "an overwhelming majority of Jewish doctors (83%) and half of Catholic doctors (51%) believe that intelligent design is simply "a religiously inspired pseudo-science rather than a legitimate scientific speculation". The poll also found that "more than half of Protestant doctors (63%) believe that intelligent design is a "legitimate scientific speculation".
    "Majority of Physicians Give the Nod to Evolution Over Intelligent Design". Press release. Retrieved 2007-10-08. 
  137. ^ "Expelled, No Intelligence Allowed (2008)". 
  138. ^ "New Anti-Evolution Film Stirs Controversy". 
  139. ^ Shaw, Linda (March 31, 2005). "Does Seattle group "teach controversy" or contribute to it?". Seattle Times. 
  140. ^ "NABT's Statement on Teaching Evolution". National Association of Biology Teachers. Archived from the original on 2006-09-27. 
  141. ^ "IAP Statement on the Teaching of Evolution" (PDF). The Interacademy Panel on International Issues. June 21, 2006. Retrieved 2008-10-17.  Joint statement issued by the national science academies of 67 countries, including the United Kingdom's Royal Society.
  142. ^ From the world's largest general scientific society:
  143. ^ Coultan, Mark (November 27, 2005). "Intelligent design a Trojan horse, says creationist". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2007-07-29. 
  144. ^ "Intelligent Design: Creationism's Trojan Horse". Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. February 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-29. 
  145. ^ a b Wallis, Claudia (August 7, 2005). "The Evolution Wars". Time Magazine.,9171,1090909,00.html. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  146. ^ ""The evolution wars" in Time". National Center for Science Education. August 11, 2005. Retrieved 2009-11-18. 
    Martin, Justin D.; Kaye D. Trammell; Daphne Landers; Jeanne M. Valois; Terri Bailey (2006). "Journalism and the Debate Over Origins: Newspaper Coverage of Intelligent Design". Journal of Media and Religion 5 (1): 49–61. doi:10.1207/s15328415jmr0501_3. 
    Dingwall, Robert; Meryl Aldridge (2006). "Television wildlife programming as a source of popular scientific information: a case study of evolution". Public Understanding of Science 15: 131–152. doi:10.1177/0963662506060588. 
    Sheppard, Pam (2005-08-10). "Time for evolution wars". Answers in Genesis. Retrieved 2009-02-16. 
  147. ^ a b DeWolf, David K; West, Johng G; Luskin, Casey (May 4, 2007). "Intelligent Design Will Survive Kitzmiller v. Dover" (PDF). University of Montana Law Review 68 (1). 
  148. ^
  149. ^ Forrest, Barbara (Fall–Winter 2000). "Methodological Naturalism and Philosophical Naturalism: Clarifying the Connection". Philo 3 (2): 7–29. Retrieved 2007-07-27. 
  150. ^ Johnson, Phillip E. (1995). Reason in the Balance: The Case Against Naturalism in Science, Law and Education. InterVarsity Press. ISBN 0830819290. [Johnson positions himself as a "theistic realist" against "methodological naturalism".]
  151. ^ Phillip E. Johnson (August 31, 1996). "Starting a Conversation about Evolution: Johnson, Phillip". Access Research Network. Retrieved 2008-10-18. "My colleagues and I speak of 'theistic realism'—or sometimes, 'mere creation'—as the defining concept of our [the ID] movement. This means that we affirm that God is objectively real as Creator, and that the reality of God is tangibly recorded in evidence accessible to science, particularly in biology." 
  152. ^ See, for instance: Vuletic, Mark I. (February 1997). "Methodological Naturalism and the Supernatural". Naturalism, Theism and the Scientific Enterprise: An Interdisciplinary Conference. University of Texas, Austin. Retrieved 2007-07-27. 
  153. ^ a b Watanabe, Teresa (March 25, 2001). "Enlisting Science to Find the Fingerprints of a Creator". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2007-07-22. "[Phillip E. Johnson quoted]: We are taking an intuition most people have and making it a scientific and academic enterprise ... We are removing the most important cultural roadblock to accepting the role of God as creator." 
  154. ^ Belz, Joel (November 30, 1996). "Witnesses For The Prosecution" (Reprint by Leadership U.). World Magazine 11 (28): 18. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  155. ^ Nickson, Elizabeth (January 10, 2003). "Let's Be Intelligent About Darwin". The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada. Retrieved 2007-07-23. "[Phillip E. Johnson quoted]: Our strategy has been to change the subject a bit so that we can get the issue of Intelligent Design, which really means the reality of God, before the academic world and into the schools." 
  156. ^ Buell, Jon; Hearn, Virginia, eds (March 1992). "Darwinism: Science or Philosophy" (PDF). Darwinism: Scientific Inference or Philosophical Preference? (Symposium). The Foundation for Thought and Ethics, Dallas Christian Leadership, and the C. S. Lewis Fellowship. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  157. ^ Giberson, Karl (December 5, 2005). Intelligent design's long march to nowhere. Templeton Foundation, Science & Theology News. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  158. ^ Sober, Elliott (March 2007). "What is wrong with intelligent design?" (PDF). Quarterly Review of Biology 82 (1): 3–6. doi:10.1086/511656.'s%20wrong%20with%20id%20qrb%202007.pdf. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  159. ^ "What Is Wrong With Intelligent Design?". Science Daily. February 23, 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  160. ^ Murray, Michael J. (Forthcoming). "Natural Providence (or Design Trouble)" (PDF). Franklin & Marshall College. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  161. ^ Dembski, William A.. "What is the position of the NRCSE on the teaching of intelligent design [ID] as an alternative to neo-Darwinian evolution in Nebraska schools?". Creighton University. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  162. ^ Schönborn, Cardinal Christoph (October 2, 2005). "Catechetical Lecture at St. Stephan's Cathedral, Vienna" (Reprint). Bring You To. Retrieved 2007-07-22. "Purpose and design in the natural world, [has] no difficulty [...] with the theory of evolution [within] the borders of scientific theory." 
  163. ^ Scott, Eugenie C. (December 7, 2000). "The Creation/Evolution Continuum". National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2009-11-18. 
  164. ^ Resseger, Jan (Chair) (March 2006). "Science, Religion, and the Teaching of Evolution in Public School Science Classes" (PDF). Committee on Public Education and Literacy. National Council of Churches. Retrieved 2007-07-17. 
  165. ^ Murphy, George L. (2002). "Intelligent Design as a Theological Problem" (Reprint). Creighton University. Retrieved 2007-07-21. 
  166. ^ Sheppard, Pam S. (February 4, 2006). "Intelligent design: is it intelligent; is it Christian?". Answers in Genesis. Retrieved 2007-07-21. 
  167. ^ Ross, Hugh. "More Than Intelligent Design". Facts for Faith. Reasons to Believe. Retrieved 2007-07-21. 
  168. ^ Harun Yahya International (2007). "The "Intelligent Design" Distraction". Press release. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  169. ^ Wieland, Carl (August 30, 2002). "AiG's views on the Intelligent Design Movement". Answers in Genesis. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  170. ^ a b Natan Slifkin (2006). The Challenge of Creation (New York: Yashar Books) 288 ff.
  171. ^ Miller, Kenneth (2004). "The Flagellum Unspun". Debating Design. Cambridge University Press. pp. 95. 
  172. ^ Meyer, Stephen C. (December 1, 2002). "The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design: The Methodological Equivalence of Naturalistic and Non-Naturalistic Origins Theories". Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  173. ^ Wüthrich, Christian (January 11, 2007). "Demarcating science vis-à-vis pseudoscience" (PDF). Department of Philosophy. University of California at San Diego. Archived from the original on 2007-07-24. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  174. ^ Gauch, Jr., Hugh G. (2003). "Chapters 5–8". Scientific Method in Practice. Cambridge UP. ISBN 0521017084.  Discusses principles of induction, deduction and probability related to the expectation of consistency, testability, and multiple observations. Chapter 8 discusses parsimony (Occam's razor)
  175. ^ Elmes, David G.; Kantowitz, Barry H.; Roediger, Henry L. (2005). "Chapter 2". Research Methods in Psychology (8th ed.). Wadsworth Publishing. ISBN 0534609767.  Discusses the scientific method, including the principles of falsifiability, testability, progressive development of theory, dynamic self-correcting of hypotheses, and parsimony, or "Occam's razor".
  176. ^ Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., 4: whether ID is science. The ruling discusses central aspects of expectations in the scientific community that a scientific theory be testable, dynamic, correctible, progressive, based upon multiple observations, and provisional,
  177. ^ See, e.g., Mark Perakh (2005). "The Dream World of William Dembski's Creationism". Skeptic. Talk Reason. pp. 54–65. 
  178. ^ Intelligent design fails to pass Occam's razor. Adding entities (an intelligent agent, a designer) to the equation is not strictly necessary to explain events. See, e.g., Branden Fitelson, et al. (2001). "How Not to Detect Design–Critical Notice: William A. Dembski The Design Inference". in Robert T. Pennock. Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics: Philosophical, Theological, and Scientific Perspectives. MIT Press. pp. 597–616. .
  179. ^ See, e.g., Schneider, Jill E. (2005). "Thoughts on Evolution and Intelligent Design". Department of Biological Sciences, Lehigh University. "Q: Why couldn't intelligent design also be a scientific theory? A: The idea of intelligent design might or might not be true, but when presented as a scientific hypothesis, it is not useful because it is based on weak assumptions, lacks supporting data and terminates further thought." 
  180. ^ The designer is not falsifiable, since its existence is typically asserted without sufficient conditions to allow a falsifying observation. The designer being beyond the realm of the observable, claims about its existence can be neither supported nor undermined by observation, making intelligent design and the argument from design analytic a posteriori arguments. See, e.g., Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, cv 2688 (December 20, 2005). Ruling, p. 22 and p. 77.
  181. ^ That intelligent design is not empirically testable stems from the fact that it violates a basic premise of science, naturalism. See, e.g., Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, cv 2688 (December 20, 2005). Ruling, p. 22 and p. 66.
  182. ^ Intelligent design professes to offer an answer that does not need to be defined or explained, the intelligent agent, designer. By asserting a conclusion that cannot be accounted for scientifically, the designer, intelligent design cannot be sustained by any further explanation, and objections raised to those who accept intelligent design make little headway. Thus intelligent design is not a provisional assessment of data which can change when new information is discovered. Once it is claimed that a conclusion that need not be accounted for has been established, there is simply no possibility of future correction. The idea of the progressive growth of scientific ideas is required to explain previous data and any previously unexplainable data. See, e.g., the brief explanation in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005). p. 66.
  183. ^ "Nobel Laureates Initiative" (PDF). The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity. September 9, 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-19.  The September 2005 statement by 38 Nobel laureates stated that: "Intelligent design is fundamentally unscientific; it cannot be tested as scientific theory because its central conclusion is based on belief in the intervention of a supernatural agent".
  184. ^ "Intelligent Design is not Science: Scientists and teachers speak out". University of New South Wales. October 2005. Retrieved 2009-01-09.  The October 2005 statement, by a coalition representing more than 70,000 Australian scientists and science teachers said: "intelligent design is not science" and called on "all schools not to teach Intelligent Design (ID) as science, because it fails to qualify on every count as a scientific theory".
  185. ^ "Creationism and the Daubert test?". PZ Myers, May 21, 2005. 
  186. ^ a b c Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., 4. Whether ID is Science, p. 87
  187. ^ Free Speech on Evolution Campaign Main Page Discovery Institute, Center for Science and Culture.
  188. ^ Hawks, John (August 2005). "The President and the teaching of evolution". John Hawks Weblog. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  189. ^ Skeptic: eSkeptic: Thursday, April 17th, 2008
  190. ^ Goodstein, Laurie (December 4, 2005). "Intelligent Design Might Be Meeting Its Maker". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  191. ^ Statement from the Council of the Biological Society of Washington at the Internet Archive
  192. ^ Meyer, S.C. (2004). "The origin of biological information and the higher taxonomic categories". Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 117 (2): 213–239. Retrieved 2007-05-10. 
  193. ^ The Sternberg peer review controversy and several similar academic disputes are the subject of the 2008 documentary "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed".
  194. ^ Dembski, William A. (2001). "Is Intelligent Design a Form of Natural Theology?". Design Inference Website. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  195. ^ McMurtie, Beth (December 21, 2001). "Darwinism Under Attack". The Chronicle Of Higher Education. Retrieved 2008-12-10. 
  196. ^ Ruling, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District 4: whether ID is science
  197. ^ Behe, Michael J; David W Snoke (October 2004). "Simulating evolution by gene duplication of protein features that require multiple amino acid residues". Protein Science (The Protein Society) 13 (10): 2651–64. doi:10.1110/ps.04802904. ISSN 0961-8368. PMID 15340163. PMC 2286568. Retrieved 16 March 2009. 
  198. ^ Lynch, Michael (September 2005). "Simple evolutionary pathways to complex proteins". Protein Science (The Protein Society) 14 (9): 2217–2225. doi:10.1110/ps.041171805. ISSN 0961-8368. PMID 16131652. 
  199. ^ Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, October 19, 2005, AM session Kitzmiller Testimony, Behe
  200. ^ "Peer-Reviewed, Peer-Edited, and other Scientific Publications Supporting the Theory of Intelligent Design (Annotated)". Discovery Institute. July 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-17. 
  201. ^ Brauer, Matthew J.; Forrest, Barbara; Gey Steven G. (2005). "Is It Science Yet?: Intelligent Design Creationism and the Constitution" (PDF). Washington University Law Quarterly 83 (1). Retrieved 2007-07-18. "ID leaders know the benefits of submitting their work to independent review and have established at least two purportedly "peer-reviewed" journals for ID articles. However, one has languished for want of material and quietly ceased publication, while the other has a more overtly philosophical orientation. Both journals employ a weak standard of "peer review" that amounts to no more than vetting by the editorial board or society fellows.". 
  202. ^ Isaak, Mark (2006). "Index to Creationist Claims". TalkOrigins Archive. "With some of the claims for peer review, notably Campbell and Meyer (2003) and the e-journal PCID, the reviewers are themselves ardent supporters of intelligent design. The purpose of peer review is to expose errors, weaknesses, and significant omissions in fact and argument. That purpose is not served if the reviewers are uncritical" 
  203. ^ Dembski, William A. (April 2002). "Detecting Design in the Natural Sciences". Intelligent Design?. Natural History Magazine. Retrieved 2007-07-18. 
  204. ^ Shostak, Seth (December 2005). "SETI and Intelligent Design". Retrieved 2007-07-18. "In fact, the signals actually sought by today's SETI searches are not complex, as the ID advocates assume. [...] If SETI were to announce that we're not alone because it had detected a signal, it would be on the basis of artificiality" 
  205. ^ "For human artifacts, we know the designer's identity, human, and the mechanism of design, as we have experience based upon empirical evidence that humans can make such things, as well as many other attributes including the designer's abilities, needs, and desires. With ID, proponents assert that they refuse to propose hypotheses on the designer's identity, do not propose a mechanism, and the designer, he/she/it/they, has never been seen. In that vein, defense expert Professor Minnich agreed that in the case of human artifacts and objects, we know the identity and capacities of the human designer, but we do not know any of those attributes for the designer of biological life. In addition, Professor Behe agreed that for the design of human artifacts, we know the designer and its attributes and we have a baseline for human design that does not exist for design of biological systems. Professor Behe's only response to these seemingly insurmountable points of disanalogy was that the inference still works in science fiction movies".—Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., p. 81
  206. ^ Edis, Taner (March/April 2001). "Darwin in Mind: Intelligent Design Meets Artificial Intelligence". Skeptical Inquirer Magazine. Retrieved 2007-07-17. 
  207. ^ "Primer: Intelligent Design Theory in a Nutshell". Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center. 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-14. 
  208. ^ a b Scott, Eugenie C.; Branch, Glenn (September 2002). ""Intelligent Design" Not Accepted by Most Scientists". National Center for Science Education. Retrieved 2009-11-18. 
  209. ^ See, for instance: Hube, Richard H. (Fall 1971). "Man Come Of Age: Bonhoeffer's Response To The God-Of-The-Gaps". Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 14: 203–220. 
  210. ^ Intelligent Design on Trial: Kitzmiller v. Dover. National Center for Science Education. October 17th, 2008
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Further reading

Chronological order of publication (oldest first)

  • Forrest, Barbara (2004), Creationism's Trojan Horse: The Wedge of Intelligent Design, U.S.: Oxford University Press, ISBN 9780195157420 
  • Humes, Edward (2007), Monkey Girl: Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul, U.S.: Harper Collins, ISBN 978-0060885489 
  • Shermer, Michael (2007). Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design. New York: Henry Holt. ISBN 978-0-8050-8306-4. 
  • Slack, Gordy (2007), The Battle Over the Meaning of Everything: Evolution, Intelligent Design, and a School Board in Dover, PA, U.S.: John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 9780787987862 
  • Davis, Jimmy H. and Poe, Harry L (2008), Chance or Dance: An Evaluation of Design, Templeton Foundation Press, ISBN 978-1599471334

External links

ID perspectives

Non-ID perspectives

Media articles


Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Creationism and Intelligent Design article)

From Wikiquote

Quotations about Creationism and Intelligent Design.

Creationism is the position that the Universe, Earth, and life of Earth were created by one or more intelligent agents, usually the God of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism as recorded in Genesis and the Quran.

Intelligent Design (ID) the position that there is positive evidence that life on Earth was created by one or more intelligent agents, but without making any explicit claim as to the identity or divinity of the agent or agents.


Western thought

Hebrew scriptures

  • "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork." -Psalms 19:1.
  • "Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind: 'Who is this that speaks so ignorantly? Stand up like a man: I will question you, and you will answer me. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you are so smart. Who determined its measurements--surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?" -Job 38:1-7.

Greek and Roman quotes

  • In the Timaeus, Plato wrote the following question and answer sometime around 350 BC:
"Is the world created or uncreated? -- that is the first question.
Created, I reply, being visible and tangible and having a body, and therefore sensible; and if sensible, then created; and if created, made by a cause, and the cause is the ineffable father of all things, who had before him an eternal archetype."[1]
  • "Only because the people see
So much in land and sky
For which they do not know the cause,
They think Divinities are working there.
If they could but see that
Nothing can be created from nothing,
Then they would advance one more step
Toward the answer that they seek:
Those eternal elements became
Everything that is,
Without interference from Gods."
--Lucretius, "[[w:On the nature of things | De rerum natura]]," written about 60 BC
  • "Gutta cavat lapidem, non vi sed saepe cadendo." (The drop excavates the stone, not with force but by falling often.)

--Publius Ovidius Naso, Epistulae Ex Ponto (Letters from the Black Sea)

Christian New Testament

  • "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse; for although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools." -Romans 1:18-22.
  • "First of all you must understand this, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own passions and saying:
'Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things have continued as they were from the beginning of creation.'
They deliberately ignore this fact: that by the word of God the heavens were created long ago, and an earth formed out of water and by means of water, through which the world that then existed was deluged with water and perished." 2 Peter 3:3-6.

19th century and earlier

  • "The antagonism between science and religion, about which we hear so much, appears to me to be purely factitious–fabricated, on the one hand, by short-sighted religious people who confound a certain branch of science, theology, with religion; and, on the other, by equally short-sighted scientific people who forget that science takes for its province only that which is susceptible of clear intellectual comprehension; and that, outside the boundaries of that province, they must be content with imagination, with hope, and with ignorance." -Thomas Huxley, The interpreters of Genesis and the interpreters of Nature (1885)
  • "Authors of the highest eminence seem to be fully satisfied with the view that each species has been independently created. To my mind it accords better with what we know of the laws impressed on matter by the Creator, that the production and extinction of the past and present inhabitants of the world should have been due to secondary causes, like those determining the birth and death of the individual. When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendants of some few beings which lived long before the first bed of the Silurian system was deposited, they seem to me to become ennobled." -Charles Darwin [2]
  • "Books must follow sciences, and not sciences books." -Francis Bacon
  • "The church is not a pioneer; it accepts a new truth, last of all, and only when denial has become useless." -Robert Ingersoll
  • "The deepest sin against the human mind is to believe things without evidence." -Thomas H. Huxley
  • "History warns us, however, that it is the customary fate of new truths to begin as heresies and to end as superstitions; and, as matters now stand, it is hardly rash to anticipate that, in another twenty years, the new generation, educated under the influences of the present day, will be in danger of accepting the main doctrines of the 'Origin of Species' with as little reflection, and it may be with as little justification, as so many of our contemporaries, twenty years ago, rejected them. Against any such a consummation let us all devoutly pray; for the scientific spirit is of more value than its products, and irrationally held truths may be more harmful than reasoned errors." -Thomas Huxley, The Coming of Age of "The Origin of Species (1880); Collected Essays, vol. 2
  • "I attacked the foundations of morality in Erewhon, and nobody cared two straws, I tore open the wounds of my Redeemer as he hung upon the Cross in The Fair Haven, and people rather liked it. But when I attacked Mr. Darwin they were up in arms in a moment." -Samuel Butler, Evolution Old and New, 1879, p. 54.
  • "I do not feel obliged to believe that same God who endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect had intended for us to forgo their use." -Galileo Galilei
  • "Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science." -Charles Darwin
  • "It is in the uncompromisingness with which dogma is held and not in the dogma, or want of dogma, that the danger lies." -Samuel Butler, The Way Of All Flesh
  • "Man has been here 32,000 years. That it took a hundred million years to prepare the world for him is proof that that is what it was done for. I suppose it is. I dunno. If the Eiffel tower were now representing the world's age, the skin of paint on the pinnacle-knob at its summit would represent man's share of that age; & anybody would perceive that that skin was what the tower was built for. I reckon they would. I dunno." -Mark Twain, "Was the World Made for Man?"
  • "Nature and Nature's laws lay hid in night. God said 'Let Newton be!' and all was light." -Alexander Pope
  • "The religion that is afraid of science dishonors God and commits suicide.... Every influx of atheism, of skepticism, is thus made useful as a mercury pill assaulting and removing a diseased religion, and making way for truth." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • "Religions die when they are proven to be true. Science is the record of dead religions." -Oscar Wilde
  • "There is more religion in men's science, than there is science in their religion." -Henry David Thoreau
  • "This most beautiful system of the sun, planets and comets, could only proceed from the counsel and dominion of an intelligent and powerful Being." -Isaac Newton ("General Scholium," in Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, Isaac Newton. 1687)
  • "When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendants of some few beings which lived long before the first bed of the Cambrian system was deposited, they seem to me to become ennobled." -Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species

20th century


  • 16O has exactly the right nuclear energy level either to prevent all the carbon from turning into oxygen or to facilitate sufficient production of 16O for life. Fred Hoyle, who discovered these coincidences in 1953, concluded that "a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology. ~ Ross, Hugh; President, Reasons to Believe. " Design and the Anthropic Principle". Retrieved on 2006-09-13.
  • "Amazing fine tuning occurs in the laws that make this [complexity] possible. Realization of the complexity of what is accomplished makes it very difficult not to use the word 'miraculous' without taking a stand as to the ontological status of the word." ~ George Ellis (British astrophysicist) Ellis, G.F.R. 1993. The Anthropic Principle: Laws and Environments. The Anthropic Principle, F. Bertola and U.Curi, ed. New York, Cambridge University Press, p. 30
  • "Another philosophical question regards the very definition of the word 'selection'. One of the original formulations of selection was 'the survival of the fittest'. If you open a standard textbook of genetics 'fitness' will probably be defined as 'the ability to survive' or something similar. But if the 'fittest' are defined as 'the best survivors' then the idea of natural selection becomes 'the survival of those best at surviving'. So what else is new? If there is no more to Darwinism than a truism then the whole theory rests on very shaky ground." ~ B. Leith, The Descent of Darwin: A Handbook of Doubts about Darwinism (Collins, 1982), p. 21
  • "Anthropological, biological, and genetic evidence all put the origin of modern humans at between 200,000 and 100,000 years ago, probably in Africa. There is also much data that show an outburst of cultural behavior occurring around 50,000-40,000 years ago in Europe. That's when archaeologists date the oldest evidence of burial ceremonies, body ornaments, and cave paintings." ~ William J. Cromie, Harvard Gazette article, 'Facing up to modern man - Evidence shows our brains and faces have gotten smaller', which discusses the work of Harvard professor of biological anthropology Daniel Lieberman
  • "Any competent biologist is aware of a multitude of problems yet unresolved and of questions yet unanswered. After all, biologic research shows no sign of approaching completion; quite the opposite is true. Disagreements and clashes of opinion are rife among biologists, as they should be in a living and growing science. Antievolutionists mistake, or pretend to mistake, these disagreements as indications of dubiousness of the entire doctrine of evolution. Their favorite sport is stringing together quotations, carefully and sometimes expertly taken out of context, to show that nothing is really established or agreed upon among evolutionists. Some of my colleagues and myself have been amused and amazed to read ourselves quoted in a way showing that we are really antievolutionists under the skin." ~ Theodosius Dobzhansky, Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution, 1973 [3]
  • "As we survey all the evidence, the thought insistently arises that some supernatural agency—or, rather, Agency—must be involved. Is it possible that suddenly, without intending to, we have stumbled upon scientific proof of the existence of a Supreme Being? Was it God who stepped in and so providentially crafted the cosmos for our benefit?" ~ George Greenstein (American astronomer) Greenstein, George. The Symbiotic, Universe: Life and Mind in the Cosmos. (New York: William Morrow, (1988), pp. 26-27
  • "Astronomy leads us to a unique event, a universe which was created out of nothing, one with the very delicate balance needed to provide exactly the conditions required to permit life, and one which has an underlying (one might say 'supernatural') plan." ~ Arno Penzias (Nobel laureate in physics and co-discoverer of the radiation afterglow), quoted in Margenau, H and R.A. Varghese, ed. 1992. Cosmos, Bios, and Theos. La Salle, IL, Open Court, p. 83.
    • Alternative version: "Astronomy leads us to a unique event, a universe which was created out of nothing and delicately balanced to provide exactly the conditions required to support life. In the absence of an absurdly-improbable accident, the observations of modern science seem to suggest an underlying, one might say, supernatural plan." ~ Arno Penzias, quoted in Walter Bradley, "The 'Just-so' Universe: The Fine-Tuning of Constants and Conditions in the Cosmos", in William Dembski and James Kushiner, eds., Signs of Intelligence. 168)
  • "Authors of the highest eminence seem to be fully satisfied with the view that each species has been independently created. To my mind it accords better with what we know of the laws impressed on matter by the Creator, that the production and extinction of the past and present inhabitants of the world should have been due to secondary causes, like those determining the birth and death of the individual. When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendants of some few beings which lived long before the first bed of the Silurian system was deposited, they seem to me to become ennobled." ~ Charles Darwin [1]
  • "Biochemists and biologists who adhere blindly to the Darwinism theory search for results that will be in agreement with their theories and consequently orient their research in a given direction, whether it be in the field of ecology, ethology, sociology, demography (dynamics of populations), genetics (so-called evolutionary genetics), or paleontology. This intrusion of theories has unfortunate results: it deprives observations and experiments of their objectivity, makes them biased, and, moreover, creates false problems." ~ P. P. Grasse, Evolution of Living Organisms: Evidence for a New Theory of Transformation (Academic Press, 1977), p. 7
  • "Books must follow sciences, and not sciences books." ~ Francis Bacon
  • "Churches are block-booking seats for March of the Penguins, which is apparently a "condemnation of gay marriage" and puts forward the case for "intelligent design", ie, Creationism. To be honest, this is good news. If American Christians want to go public on the fact that they're now morally guided by penguins, at least we know where we all stand." ~ Caitlin Moran, London Times Online, "Penguins lead way" section of 20 September 2005 column [4]
  • "The concept of relative adaptation removes the apparent tautology in the theory of natural selection. Without it the theory of natural selection states that fitter individuals have more offspring and then defines the fitter as being those that leave more offspring; since some individuals will always have more offspring than others by sheer chance, nothing is explained.… Unfortunately the concept of relative adaptation also requires the ceteris paribus assumption, so that in practice it is not easy to predict which of two forms will leave more offspring." ~ Richard Lewontin, "Adaptation", Scientific American 239(3), September 1978, pp. 166–167
  • "[Darwin's] triumph has won for us a common height from which we see the whole world of living beings as well as all inorganic nature; phenomena of every order we now regard as expressions of natural causes. The supernatural has no longer a standing is science; it has vanished like a dream, and the halls consecrated to its thraldom of the intellect are becoming radiant with a more cheerful faith." ~ Charles Otis Whitman, 1919 (posth.)
  • "The discipline of biology will not only survive but prosper if it turns out that genetic information really is the product of preexisting intelligence. Biologists will have to give up their dogmatic materialism and discard unproductive hypotheses like the prebiotic soup, but to abandon bad ideas is a gain, not a loss. Freed of the metaphysical chains that tie it to nineteenth-century materialism, biology can turn to the fascinating task of discovering how the intelligence embodied in the genetic information works through matter to make the organism function. In that case chemical evolution will go the way of alchemy—abandoned because a better understanding of the problem revealed its futility—and science will have reached a new plateau." ~ Phillip E. Johnson, Reason in the Balance, p. 92
  • "The fact that the theory of natural selection is difficult to test has led some people, anti-Darwinists and even some great Darwinists, to claim that is a tautology. A tautology like 'All tables are tables' is not, of course, testable; nor has it any explanatory power. It is therefore most surprising to hear that some of the greatest contemporary Darwinists themselves formulate the theory in such a way that it amounts to the tautology that those organisms that leave most offspring leave most offspring. And C. H. Waddington even says somewhere (and he defends this view in other places) that 'Natural selection … turns out … to be a tautology.' However, he attributes at the same place to the theory an 'enormous power … of explanation.' Since the explanatory power of a tautology is obviously zero, something must be wrong here." ~ Karl Popper, "Natural Selection and the Emergence of Mind", Dialectica 32(3-4), 1978, p. 344 (ellipses in original)
  • "I am not arguing with the scientist who explains the elephant, but only with the sophist who explains it away." ~ G.K. Chesterton, The Everlasting Man.
  • "I find it quite improbable that such order came out of chaos. There has to be some organizing principle. God to me is a mystery but is the explanation for the miracle of existence, why there is something instead of nothing." ~ Alan Sandage (winner of the Crawford prize in astronomy) Willford, J.N. March 12, 1991. Sizing up the Cosmos: An Astronomers Quest. New York Times, p. B9.
  • "I have quoted some voices of dissent coming from biologists in eminent academic positions. There have been many others, just as critical of the orthodox doctrine, though not always as outspoken —and their number is steadily growing. Although these criticisms have made numerous breaches in the walls, the citadel still stands—mainly, as said before, because nobody has a atisfactory alternative to offer. The history of science shows that a well-established theory can take a lot of battering and get itself into a tangle of contradictions—the fourth phase of 'Crisis and Doubt' in the historic cycle and yet still be upheld by the establishment until a breakthrough occurs, initiating a new departure, and the start of a new cycle. But that event is not yet in sight. In the meantime, the educated public continues to believe that Darwin has provided all the relevant answers by the magic formula of random mutation plus natural selection—quite unaware of the fact that random mutations turned out to be irrelevant and natural selection a tautology." ~ Arthur Koestler, Janus: A Summing Up (Picador, 1983), pp. 184–185
  • "I meet many people offended by evolution, who passionately prefer to be the personal handicraft of God than to arise by blind physical and chemical forces over aeons from slime. They also tend to be less than assiduous in exposing themselves to the evidence. Evidence has little to do with it: what they wish to be true, they believe is true.… The clearest evidence of our evolution can be found in our genes. But evolution is still being fought, ironically by those whose own DNA proclaims it—in the schools, in the courts, in textbook publishing houses, and on the question of just how much pain we can inflict on other animals without crossing some ethical threshold." ~ Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World, p. 325.
  • "If complex organisms demand an explanation, so does a complex designer. And it's no solution to raise the theologian's plea that God (or the Intelligent Designer) is simply immune to the normal demands of scientific explanation. To do so would be to shoot yourself in the foot. You cannot have it both ways. Either ID belongs in the science classroom, in which case it must submit to the discipline required of a scientific hypothesis. Or it does not, in which case get it out of the science classroom and send it back into the church, where it belongs." ~ The Guardian, "One side can be wrong", 1 September 2005
  • "In all their polemics, the anti-creationists invariably avoid discussing the actual scientific evidence for macro-evolution. If there were any such evidence, they could easily settle the whole conflict, merely by presenting the evidence! Instead they seem compelled to resort to bombast ridicule, defamation, intimidation, and distortion. Surely that great body of working scientists, largely uninvolved so far in the creation/evolution conflict will soon begin to see that a two-model approach to all scientific study is salutary and will persuade their more emotional brethren to open their minds to potential truth wherever it might be found." ~ Henry Morris, founder of the Institute for Creation Research
  • "IN SHORT, three concepts, evolution, in the minimal sense of "descent with modification" (no "emergence", no "higher and lower" allowed), variation, in the sense of Mendelian micromutation, tiny changes in the structure or arrangement of the genes, the ultimate material of heredity (no sweeping or sudden alterations allowed), and natural selection, the decrease in frequency of those variants that happen in each successive generation to be less well adapted than others to their particular environment: these three form a tight circle within which, in happy self-confirmation, neo-Darwinian thinking moves. To those who believe in it, this circle is an ample intellectual dwelling place, roomy enough in fact to house all the immense achievements of modern biological research. To those not so convinced, however, the circle seems a strangely constricted one. They may even agree with the Professor Emeritus of Zoology at Cambridge that 'no amount of argument, or clever epigram, can disguise the inherent improbability of orthodox (Darwinian) theory.'" ~ M. Grene, "The Faith of Darwinism", Encounter, November 1959, p. 50 (emphasis in original)
  • "In the American vernacular, 'theory' often means "imperfect fact"--part of a hierarchy of confidence running downhill from fact to theory to hypothesis to guess. Thus the power of the creationist argument: evolution is 'only a theory and intense debate now rages about many aspects of the theory. If evolution is worse than a fact, and scientists can't even make up their minds about the theory, then what confidence can we have in it? Indeed, President Reagan echoed this argument before an evangelical group in Dallas when he said (in what I devoutly hope was campaign rhetoric): 'Well, it is a theory. It is a scientific theory only, and it has in recent years been challenged in the world of science--that is, not believed in the scientific community to be as infallible as it once was.'
    Well evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world's data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts don't go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein's theory of gravitation replaced Newton's in this century, but apples didn't suspend themselves in midair, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape-like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin's proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered.
    Moreover, 'fact' doesn't mean 'absolute certainty'; there ain't no such animal in an exciting and complex world. The final proofs of logic and mathematics flow deductively from stated premises and achieve certainty only because they are not about the empirical world. Evolutionists make no claim for perpetual truth, though creationists often do (and then attack us falsely for a style of argument that they themselves favor). In science 'fact' can only mean 'confirmed to such a degree that it would be perverse to withhold provisional consent.' I suppose that apples might start to rise tomorrow, but the possibility does not merit equal time in physics classrooms.
    Evolutionists have been very clear about this distinction of fact and theory from the very beginning, if only because we have always acknowledged how far we are from completely understanding the mechanisms (theory) by which evolution (fact) occurred. Darwin continually emphasized the difference between his two great and separate accomplishments: establishing the fact of evolution, and proposing a theory--natural selection--to explain the mechanism of evolution." ~ Stephen J. Gould, "Evolution as Fact and Theory"; Discover, May 1981
  • "Intelligent design is not an argument of the same character as these [evolutionary science] controversies. It is not a scientific argument at all, but a religious one. It might be worth discussing in a class on the history of ideas, in a philosophy class on popular logical fallacies, or in a comparative religion class on origin myths from around the world. But it no more belongs in a biology class than alchemy belongs in a chemistry class, phlogiston in a physics class or the stork theory in a sex education class. In those cases, the demand for equal time for 'both theories' would be ludicrous. Similarly, in a class on 20th-century European history, who would demand equal time for the theory that the Holocaust never happened?" ~ The Guardian, "One side can be wrong", 1 September 2005 [5]
  • "It is absurd for the evolutionist to complain that it is unthinkable for an admittedly unthinkable God to make everything out of nothing and then pretend that it is more thinkable that nothing should turn itself into everything." ~ G.K. Chesterton, St. Thomas Aquinas.
  • "It may be true that scientism and evolutionism (not science and evolution) are among the causes of atheism and materialism. It is at least equally true that biblical literalism, from its earlier flat-earth and geocentric forms to its recent young-earth and flood-geology forms, is one of the major causes of atheism and materialism. Many scientists and intellectuals have simply taken the literalists at their word and rejected biblical materials as being superseded or contradicted by modern science. Without having in hand a clear and persuasive alternative, they have concluded that it is nobler to be damned by the literalists than to dismiss the best testimony of research and reason. Intellectual honesty and integrity demand it." ~ Conrad Hyers, The Meaning of Creation: Genesis and Modern Science
  • "A life-giving factor lies at the centre of the whole machinery and design of the world." ~ John Wheeler (American physicist) Wheeler, John A. "Foreword", in The Anthropic Cosmological Principle by John D. Barrow and Frank J. Tipler. (Oxford, U. K.: Clarendon Press, 1986), p. vii.
  • "The main task of any theory of evolution is to explain adaptive complexity, that is, to explain the same set of facts that Paley used as evidence of a creator." ~ John Maynard Smith, "The status of neo-darwinism", in C.H. Waddington, ed., Towards a Theoretical Biology (University Press, Edinburgh, 1969)
  • "The most preposterous notion that H. sapiens has ever dreamed up is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of all the Universes, wants the saccharine adoration of His creatures, can be swayed by their prayers, and becomes petulant if He does not receive this flattery. Yet this absurd fantasy, without a shred of evidence to bolster it, pays all the expenses of the oldest, largest, and least productive industry in all history." ~ Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love (1973)
  • "No geological difficulties, real or imagined, can be allowed to take precedence over the clear statements and necessary inferences of Scripture." ~ Henry Morris [6]
  • "One way or another, Darwinists meet the question 'Is Darwinism true?' with an answer that amounts to an assertion of power: 'Well, it is science, as we define science, and you will have to be content with that.' Some of us are not content with that, because we know that the empirical evidence for the creative power of natural selection is somewhere between weak and non-existent. Artificial selection of fruit flies or domestic animals produces limited change within the species, but tells us nothing about how insects and mammals came into existence in the first place. In any case, whatever artificial selection achieves is due to the employment of human intelligence consciously pursuing a goal. The whole point of the blind watchmaker thesis, however, is to establish what material processes can do in the absence of purpose and intelligence. That Darwinist authorities continually overlook this crucial distinction gives us little confidence in their objectivity." ~ Phillip E. Johnson [7].
  • "Poll: Majority of Americans Reject Evolution. Accept 'The Flintstones'." ~[2]
  • "Science is fundamentally a game. It is a game with one overriding and defining rule:
  1. Let us see how far and to what extent we can explain the behavior of the physical and material universe in terms of purely physical and material causes, without invoking the supernatural." ~ Richard Dickerson, Journal of Molecular Evolution 34:277, 1992
  • "The statistical probability that organic structures and the most precisely harmonized reactions that typify living organisms would be generated by accident, is zero." ~ Ilya Prigogine (Chemist-Physicist) Recipient of 1977 Nobel Prize in chemistry I. Prigogine, N. Gregair, A. Babbyabtz, Physics Today 25, pp. 23-28
  • "Students are ill served by any effort in science classrooms to blur the distinction between science and other ways of knowing, including those concerned with the supernatural." ~ Association for the Advancement of Science, in a news release supporting the rejection by the National Academy of Science of the Kansas Board of Education's decision to a) rewrite the definition of science so that it is no longer limited to a search for natural explanations of phenomena and 2) teach Intelligent Design as a science in competition with evolution, which is presented as greatly more controversial in the scientific community than scientists themselves concede.
  • "The theory of natural selection may be so formulated that it is far from tautological. In this case it is not only testable, but it turns out to be not strictly universally true." ~ Karl Popper, "Natural Selection and the Emergence of Mind", Dialectica 32(3-4), 1978, p. 346 (ellipses in original)
  • "The trouble was that in reading widely during my early teens I ran into the Darwinian theory, for a little while with illusions and then with less respect than adults with bated breath were wont to show. The theory seemed to me to run like this: 'If among the varieties of a species there is one that survives better in the environment than the others, then the variety that survives best is the one that best survives.' If I had known the word tautology I would have called this a tautology. People with still more bated breath, called it natural selection. I made them angry, just as I do today, by saying that it did nothing at all. You could select potatoes as much as you pleased but you would never make them into a rabbit. Nor by selecting oak trees could you make them into colonies of bats, and those who thought they could in my opinion were bats in the belfry." ~ Fred Hoyle, Mathematics of Evolution (Memphis, Tenn.: Acorn Enterprises, 1999), p. 2
  • "This is an exceedingly strange development, unexpected by all but the theologians. They have always accepted the word of the Bible: In the beginning God created heaven and earth... [But] for the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; [and] as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries." ~ Robert Jastrow, God and the Astronomers [New York: W.W. Norton and Co., 1978], 116. Professor Jastrow was the founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute, now director of the Mount Wilson Institute and its observatory.)
  • "Today, almost half a century after the publication of the Encyclical, fresh knowledge has led to the recognition that evolution is more than a hypothesis. It is indeed remarkable that this theory has been progressively accepted by researchers, following a series of discoveries in various fields of knowledge … [however,] theories of evolution which, in accordance with the philosophies inspiring them, consider the mind as emerging from the forces of living matter, or as a mere epiphenomenon of this matter, are incompatible with the truth about man. Nor are they able to ground the dignity of the person." ~ Pope John Paul II [8]
  • "U.S. Falling Behind in Science, Engineering; Surging ahead in superstition, mumbo-jumbo." ~ [3]
  • "We are, by astronomical standards, a pampered, cosseted, cherished group of creatures ... If the Universe had not been made with the most exacting precision we could never have come into existence. It is my view that these circumstances indicate the universe was created for man to live in." ~ John O'Keefe (astronomer at NASA) Heeren, F. 1995. Show Me God. Wheeling, IL, Searchlight Publications, p. 200.
  • "We go about our daily lives understanding almost nothing of the world. We give little thought to the machinery that generates the sunlight that makes life possible, to the gravity that glues us to an Earth that would otherwise send us spinning off into space, or to the atoms of which we are made and on whose stability we fundamentally depend. Except for children (who don't know enough not to ask the important questions), few of us spend much time wondering why nature is the way it is; where the cosmos came from, or whether it was always here; if time will one day flow backward and effects precede causes; or whether there are ultimate limits to what humans can know." ~ Carl Sagan (From an introduction to "A Brief History of Time" by Stephen Hawking)
  • "We have the purpose of preventing bigots and ignoramuses from controlling the education of the United States, and you know it, and that is all." ~ Clarence Darrow, in response to William Jennings Bryant in the opening remarks of the Scopes Monkey Trial.
  • "What kind of God can one infer from the sort of phenomena epitomized by the species on Darwin's Galapagos Islands? The evolutionary process is rife with happenstance, contingency, incredible waste, death, pain and horror.… The God of the Galapagos is careless, wasteful, indifferent, almost diabolical. He is certainly not the sort of God to whom anyone would be inclined to pray." ~ David Hull, reviewing Phillip Johnson's Darwin on Trial for Nature
  • "When I began my career as a cosmologist some twenty years ago, I was a convinced atheist. I never in my wildest dreams imagined that one day I would be writing a book purporting to show that the central claims of Judeo-Christian theology are in fact true, that these claims are straightforward deductions of the laws of physics as we now understand them. I have been forced into these conclusions by the inexorable logic of my own special branch of physics." ~ Frank Tipler (Professor of Mathematical Physics) Tipler, F.J. 1994. The Physics Of Immortality. New York, Doubleday, Preface.
  • "When I view all beings not as special creations, but as the lineal descendants of some few beings which lived long before the first bed of the Cambrian system was deposited, they seem to me to become ennobled." ~ Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species
  • "Several thousand years ago, a small tribe of ignorant near-savages wrote various collections of myths, wild tales, lies, and gibberish. Over the centuries, these stories were embroidered, garbled, mutilated, and torn into small pieces that were then repeatedly shuffled. Finally, this material was badly translated into several languages successively. The resultant text, creationists feel, is the best guide to this complex and technical subject." ~ Tom Weller, 1990, Science Made Stupid. Houghton Mifflin Company (ISBN 0395366461).
  • "Creationism is wrong; totally, utterly, and absolutely wrong. I would go further. There are degrees of being wrong. The creationists are at the bottom of the scale. They pull every trick in the book to justify their position. Indeed, at times they verge right over into the downright dishonest. Scientific Creationism is not just wrong, it is ludicrously implausible. It is a grotesque parody of human thought, and a downright misuse of human intelligence. In short, to the believer, it is an insult to God." ~ Michael Ruse, 1982, Darwinism Defended. Addison-Wesley (ISBN 0201062739).
  • All the actions of created intelligences are not merely the actions of God. He has created a universe of beings which are said to act freely and responsibly as the proximate causes of their own moral actions. When individuals do evil things it is not God the Creator and Preserver acting. If God was the proximate cause of every act it would make all events to be "God in motion". That is nothing less than pantheism, or more exactly, pandeism. [However, t]he Creator is distinct from his creation. The reality of secondary causes is what separates Christian theism from pandeism. ~ Bob Burridge, Theology Proper - Lesson 4: The Decrees of God (1997)[9]
  • I cringe at the thought that Raymond Damadian was refused his just honor because of his religious beliefs. Having silly ideas in one field is no good reason to deny merit for great ideas in another field. Apart from the fact that this time the Creation Scientists will think that there is good reason to think that they are the objects of unfair treatment at the hands of the scientific community. ~ Michael Ruse, at Talk Origins
  • "We share most of our DNA with chimpanzees, but nowhere in the genome have we found what it is that makes us so different from chimps,"
- James Le Fanu, medical doctor and journalist, author of "Why Us? How Science Rediscovered the Mystery of Ourselves"


  • "To surrender to ignorance and call it God has always been premature, and it remains premature today." -Isaac Asimov
  • "We've arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology. We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for awhile, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces." -Carl Sagan
  • "It is, for example, impossible for evolution to account for the fact than one single cell can carry more data than all the volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica put together."-Anthony Flew, Professor of Philosophy, former atheist, author, and debater
  • "Evolution is a bankrupt speculative philosophy, not a scientific fact. Only a spiritually bankrupt society could ever believe it.… Only atheists could accept this Satanic theory." -Jimmy Swaggart
  • "We are convinced that masses of evidence render the application of the concept of evolution to man and other primates beyond serious dispute." -The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
  • "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of the culture." -Pastor Ray Mummert, creationist/intelligent design proponent, March 2005
  • The really amazing thing is not that life on Earth is balanced on a knife-edge, but that the entire universe is balanced on a knife-edge, and would be total chaos if any of the natural 'constants' were off even slightly. You see, even if you dismiss man as a chance happening, the fact remains that the universe seems unreasonably suited to the existence of life -- almost contrived -- you might say a 'put-up job'. -Dr. Paul Davies (noted author and Professor of Theoretical Physics at Adelaide University)
  • " surprising it is that the laws of nature and the initial conditions of the universe should allow for the existence of beings who could observe it. Life as we know it would be impossible if any one of several physical quantities had slightly different values." -Professor Steven Weinberg (Nobel Laureate in High Energy Physics [a field of science that deals with the very early universe], writing in the journal "Scientific American".)
  • "It now seems to me that the findings of more than fifty years of DNA research have provided materials for a new and enormously powerful argument to design." -Anthony Flew Professor of Philosophy, former atheist, author, and debater
  • "What turns a mere piece of matter from being mere matter into an animated being? What gives certain special physical patterns in the universe the mysterious privilege of feeling sensations and having experiences?" -D.R. Hofstadter
  • "The sacred myth of 'Creationism' and its ineffectually disguised equivalent 'Intelligent Design', are basically the pre-scientific modes of thinking of the limited and incurious who disdain the ability for critical inquiry and the life of the mind: it's integral to a culture that values superstition and dogmatism over learning." -The Times, Dec. 26, 2008 and Paul L. Buysrogge

Eastern thought

Hindu scriptures

Passage from the Creation Hymn in the Rig Veda (exact date of writing debated; around 3100-1500 BC).

  • "The non-existent was not; the existent was not at that time. The atmosphere was not nor the heavens which are beyond. What was concealed? Where? In whose protection? Was it water? An unfathomable abyss?
There was neither death nor immortality then. There was not distinction of day or night. That alone breathed windless by its own power. Other than that there was not anything else.
Darkness was hidden by darkness in the beginning. All this was an indistinguishable sea. That which becomes, that which was enveloped by the void, that alone was born through the power of heat.
Upon that desire arose in the beginning. This was the first discharge of thought. Sages discovered this link of the existent to the nonexistent, having searched in the heart with wisdom.
Their line [of vision] was extended across; what was below, what was above? There were impregnators, there were powers: inherent power below, impulses above.
Who knows truly? Who here will declare whence it arose, whence this creation? The gods are subsequent to the creation of this. Who, then, knows whence it has come into being?
Whence this creation has come into being; whether it was made or not; he in the highest heaven is its surveyor. Surely he knows, or perhaps he knows not."

See also

The following pages include extensive additional material on this subject:

Study guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiversity

Argument map of Intelligent Design.

See also

External links

Simple English

[[File:|thumb|Intelligent design sometimes compares the world to a clock, suggesting that both have a maker]] Intelligent design is the idea that the universe is not simple enough to be made by nature. Instead, people who believe Intelligent Design think that a smart being must have made everything. It is a kind of creationism, but it does not say who the designer is.[1] Intelligent Design is the idea that the types of plants and animals around us were not made using evolution. Some scientists do not think that there are good reasons to believe Intelligent Design. In 2005, in the Dover trial, a United States judge ruled that Intelligent Design was a kind of creationism, so that it violated the First Amendment.[2]


The Complexity of Life

Intelligent design suggests that life is too complex. Indeed, scientists are discovering that even a single cell is made of precisely structured molecules acting together. The genes in a cell code for a huge amount of information. Creationists say that information, like computer programming, has to come from an intelligent source and cannot be made randomly.

A famous guy William Paley said that life is more complicated than a machine (like as a watch.) You would think that a watch was made by an smart designer: so (he says) if you see an animal, you should think that it was also designed.

It is often argued that, although an amino acid could be made randomly, a protein is such a precise sequence and structure that it would be impossible to make by chance. Also, a protein or DNA would not do anything by itself; so an whole life form would have to be made all at once.

Evolutionists ignore this because they say that in the whole universe there would be a whole lot of chances for this to happen. The question is--is this at all possible?

Well Designed?

Intelligent design would suggest that every part of an animal is useful and there for a reason, showing how smart the designer was. Evolution would suggest that many parts of the same animal should be useless or not very good, because it came from random evolution by trial and error. People have said that many parts of the human body are pointless, but some of these parts were later proved to do important things.


Many parts of different animals are very similar. Some people think this is hard evidence of evolution. People who believe in intelligent design say it shows that a common designer used the same good design ideas in many creations.

If creatures have similar parts because they came from a common ancestor, then the genes that code for these parts should also be similar. Sometimes this is true; other times similar structures are coded for by entirely different genes. Because somebody can show lone examples of this kind of data and claim that it proves evolution wrong or right, people argue about this a lot.

Related pages

  • Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District - A trial that banned the teaching of intelligent design in public schools. It was ruled that this action would defy the First Amemdment of the U.S. Constitution, which states that the government may not promote one religion over the other. However, some argue that the ruling itself promotes humanistic/materialistic religions over deistic religions. Notably, intelligent design was not banned due to a lack of evidence.


  1. Numbers, Ronald L. (2006). The Creationists, Expanded Edition. Harvard University Press. pp. 373, 379–380. ISBN 0674023390. 
  2. Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04 cv 2688 (December 20, 2005)., Conclusion of Ruling.

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