The Problem of Evil and Other Thoughts

This is a complex issue.

I think we need to admit that it is a real problem. But I think its a problem for everyone – not just Christians and not just theists. Evil is a problem for the atheist and the agnostic as well. Its a problem and question I’ve never heard addressed or explained by an atheist. If anyone know of an atheistic explanation for the existence of evil, I’m very interested in what it is. Or at the very least, an explanation for what evil is.I’d even just take that.

If there is evil, why is there evil?

One more question, this has less to do with atheism and more to do with science. Now, I’m not an ID guy and I’m not a evolutionist. I’m an I-don’t-know-ist (perhaps sometimes even an I-don’t-care-ist). My question is this:

How in the world are either evolution or intelligent design falsifiable?

Michael Behe writes:

How do we falsify the contention that natural selection produced the bacterial flagellum? If . . . [a] scientist went into the lab and knocked out the bacterial flagellum genes, grew the bacterium for a long time, and nothing much happened, well, he’d say maybe we didn’t start with the right bacterium, maybe we didn’t wait long enough, maybe we need a bigger population, and it would be very much more difficult to falsify the Darwinian hypothesis [than it would ID].

But Dr. Pennilyn Higgins writes:

Well, can [ID] be tested? Are there falsifying observations? ID could potentially be disproved by observing a more primitive intermediate form of some part that has been touted as ‘too complex’ to be natural. But then, the individual running the ID experiment can alter his hypothesis to say that this new structure is that which was installed by the Intelligent Designer. Because of this, there is no part of ID that can be unequivocally falsified by material science.

Which of these arguments are wrong? And why? Or are neither of them right? Are evolution and ID both unscientific?

Perhaps both these “theories” have more to do with philosophical worldview than they do with science.

3 thoughts on “The Problem of Evil and Other Thoughts

Add yours

  1. I’m definitely in the I-don’t-know-ist camp with strong I-don’t care-ist leanings.

    My position is simply this… even if evolution is 100% true beyond all refutation, that still doesn’t eliminate God. God could have created through evolution if he wanted to. The Bible isn’t a science text book and wasn’t written to explain to us the mechanics of creation and for right now, I’m ok with that.

  2. I think both views are philosophical conclusions drawn by inductive arguments. I don’t think the nature of either view is such that it’s falsifiable in any straightforward way, but much of science involves inductive arguments for non-falsifiable conclusions. Most cosmological physics is non-falsifiable and basically philosophy. It’s purely political that biological intelligent design gets excluded as non-science when other kinds of philosophy don’t, including the philosophy that’s central to evolutionary theory. That’s not to say that intelligent design arguments are sound. They may not be. But if they’re not, that’s where the argument should be, not over whether it’s science, because that kind of argument applies also against much that’s uncontroversially called science.

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