Friday, June 17, 2011

Berkeley (1685-1753):  The not quite blind Watchmaker.

"Thus, it cannot be denied that God, or the Intelligence which sustains and rules the ordinary course of things, might, if He were minded to produce a miracle, cause all the motions on the dial-plate of a watch, though nobody had ever made the movements and put them in it; but yet, if He will act agreeably to the rules of mechanism by Him for wise ends established and maintained in the Creation, it is necessary that those actions of the watchmaker, whereby he makes the movements and rightly adjusts them, precede the production of the aforesaid motions, as also that any disorder in them be attended with the perception of some corresponding disorder in the movements, which, being once corrected, all is right again." - Principles of Human Knowledge

This was an unexpected tidbit.  I was wondering where the watchmaker/creation thing started.  Of course we all know now that Richard Dawkins has proven that watchmaking is a scientific impossibility. Berkeley's point, however, is that the order of the universe is a greater supernatural feat than any miracle.

5 comments:

Marf said...

Funny thing, I was just thinking about a relevant video on YouTube earlier today...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcAq9bmCeR0

Looney said...

I believe I have seen that one. The rebuttal is that in no peer reviewed article has evolution ever been scientifically defined. Survival of the Fittest remains an unknown relationship between undefined and unmeasurable quantities. Because no one knows what it is, therefore, it might have the supernatural powers of God! A blank check has infinite worth!

Looney said...

In the watch intelligent design industry, we have patents, rather than peer reviewed journals:

http://www.google.fr/patents/about?id=uKVXAAAAEBAJ

There are millions of patents out there. If a "scientist" comes up with an intelligent design, the last thing she wants to do is publish it in a peer reviewed journal. Instead, you make a patent.

Marf said...

So do you have patents for your children? Or your pets perhaps?

Looney said...

My house is full of intelligently designed things, but I own no patents. Most of what I designed is owned by someone else.