paley's watch argument

On Paley’s use of “contrivances” Which is true – complexity in and off itself does not require a designer. And we know this from all the genetic operations studies that we have.”, The only thing in Neo-Darwinism that can add information is mutations – and they are almost, He further claims “We know for a fact that nature can, does and has produced remarkably complex organisms without a conscious and intelligent behind them.”(4:14) We know no such thing. He points to an arrow consistently hitting a target. In his work, Paley uses a teleological argument based on the watchmaker analogy. What is design argument in simplest form? Showing why belief in Christianity is rational. 2. 4. Unit 5.4 Paley's Watch Argument. Those who try to refute this argument always seem to miss that point. It does this by asserting complexity and order can only be caused by a designer” Most naturalists take for granted that Hume soundly defeated Paley's argument. False Cause Fallacy   (Mistake @ 2.44) An irreducibly complex system cannot be produced directly (that is, by continuously improving the initial function, which continues to work by the same mechanism) by slight, successive modifications of a precursor system, because any precursor to an irreducibly complex system that is missing a part is by definition nonfunctional.”[4]. The above are not the words Paley use. Paley’s watch maker argument – an argument for the existence of God by the clearly apparent design in nature is one of the most powerful arguments for God’s existence. Paley’s argument has both its strengths and its weaknesses. As I noted above, complexity by itself does not require a designer. Though many objections are put forth, all fail spectacularly for usually the same small set of reasons: either because the skeptic doesn’t understand the argument and thus raises irrelevant objections – straw man arguments. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. An eternal God is also the Biblical depiction of God. Therefore, watch / universe is product of intelligent design; it’s the best option, Outline of Hume’s Argument against Design, Nietzsche’s Madman and the Death of God, Sartre’s “Existentialism and Humanism”. Because every atheist I speak to says there’s no evidence of God. Here he complains about “mistakes” and “sub-optimal design”.  Paley addresses this in his argument. One need merely take a look at all the skeptics who try (unsuccessfully) to refute it. The argument hinges upon the assumed premise that 'like causes resemble like effects'. William Paley The Watch and the Watchmaker [From Natural Theology, or Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity Collected from the Appearances of Nature (1802), pp. Because it is so clear, so easy to understand, so obvious, that it is a powerful argument for the existence of God. Therefore, the universe is (probably) a product of intelligent design (purpose). Now he says it does – but adds a caveat – it implies more than 1 designer by analogy – incorrectly using his mistaken understanding of an analogy as indicated above. Once again I must wonder if he has ever read Paley’s argument or is intentionally misrepresenting it – which is at best the fallacy of suppressed evidence and at worse the fallacy of lying. An overview and explanation of William Paley's watch analogy including some key quotes. from Expelled, No Intelligence Allowed, Documentary by Ben Stein, 2008 6. How many universes are there? Paley’s argument can be seen to be fairly weak due to a watch being man made where as a stone is something that was created in the christian God’s 7 days of creation. Creation, i.e.  The Universe consists of: Time Paley’s Watchmaker argument – undefeated – composite by Duane Caldwell, featuring So what he shows here is he’s not trying to refute Paley’s argument. The universe resembles, is like the watch. The 'watch analogy' from William Paley is an 'a posteriori' (based upon experience, as opposed to the use of logic) argument for the existence of God. On that see here or here. Once again he’s missed the point.  As noted above, complexity is a component in identifying an intelligent designer, but it is not the only component. His most famous argument is called the watchmaker analogy, where Paley makes an inference from the complexity of living systems to a "designer". It also has a sense of a moral obligation. Please elaborate. It Doesn’t Imply a Designer, it Implies Many (mistake @ 6:19) Watch’s / universe’s imperfections do not exclude a designer, 3. But as the main point has already been refuted, in the interest of brevity I will not bother with every sub-mistake under his main mistake.  Â, 5. Paley used a watch to illustrate his point. In this section he also invokes a Circular Reasoning argument, claiming we have “millions of examples of nature creating complex life.” That’s his (false) conclusion.  We have no evidence of that, only evolutionary fairytales that  evolutionists tell us. As I’ve already pointed out.  The argument uses an analogy, but the argument itself is NOT the analogy.  Failure to understand this point means you simply don’t understand the argument. "Paley's argument is made with passionate sincerity and is informed by the best biological scholarship of the day, but it is wrong, gloriously and utterly wrong. In the Full video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s06w4pXvUyk&t=400s Join George and John as they discuss and debate different Philosophical ideas. A target or goal in mind, 3. However, where my grandma uses zoo animals to teach this, Paley is famous for using a common watch. In Paley’s Watch Argument, the watch is used as an analogy of the universe while the watchmaker is used as an analogy of God. As geneticist Dr. Marciej Giertych puts it:Â, “Darwin assumed that the increase of information comes from natural selection. This is the fallacy of Division. The analogy is used for what analogies are typically used for, to help the reader understand a deeper point, the analogy in and of itself is NOT the argument. Part 3. The argument itself is a posteriori and inductive meaning that everyone can understand and relate to it and it is easy to understand. I’ve written a number of articles on why Evolution is impossible. “… It commits a false cause fallacy. I could take this point by point – e.g. An overview of William Paley's Watch analogy for students of religious studies and philosophy of religion. which is created – which means the creator must be other than material or immaterial, Space )Paley's teleological argument is based on an analogy: Watchmaker is to watch as God is to universe. The critique asserts that “The Watchmaker analogy is a recurring argument for a designer which by way of analogy asserts that complexity requires a designer.” (Time mark 0:16). Perhaps the most famous variant of this argument is the William Paley’s “watch” argument. Notice that a creator who was designed, and thus began to exist is incompatible with an eternal creator outside of time. The “analogy” is to help understand the argument. William Paley's watchmaker analogy is basically a teleological argument. He also conveniently makes a false comparisons to drive home his point, but I won’t bother to go into that error because his whole case is worthless since the basis of the Teleological argument is not based on an analogy. Plato the Soul Man. Learn. Paley presented an argument which contains an analogy. The whole point of his little video is to prove that the watchmaker doesn’t imply a designer. Skeptics routinely give these two objections to the Paley’s argument: Objection 1. Paley argues that, if one was to find a watch laying on the ground and was to be aske… Improbable” simply fail: “, How does he know the designer is complex? William Paley The Watch and the Watchmaker [From Natural Theology, or Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity Collected from the Appearances of Nature (1802), pp. Even Richard Dawkins, an opponent of the design argument, described himself as a neo-Paleyan in The Blind Watchmaker. What are the similarities between Paley’s watch argument and Thomas’s fifth way? 11. But Paley’s concepts of “purposeful design” [5] and “contrivances” [6] anticipate these concepts, and thus his argument is clearly a teleological one – not an argument based on analogy. Why all the effort? But natural selection reduces genetic information. We know evolutionists know no such thing because they can’t even figure out where the abundance of species and body types originate that are found in the Cambrian Explosion. Improbable” simply fail: “Mt Improbable and other impossible evolutionary dreams“. He further claims “We know for a fact that nature can, does and has produced remarkably complex organisms without a conscious and intelligent behind them.”(4:14) We know no such thing. 1. Paley talks about “contrivances” with clearly designed goals and purposes – which results in complexity. Even if it were accepted to be a sound argument (‘which it’s not’ he puts on the screen), it would only prove that the universe had a universe designer.”  So once again, going down this path, he concedes God, but now he’s playing ignorant on what we mean by “God”.  Well I’ve already defined that in number 6 above. Flashcards. I was asked to defend the assessment  I made  of a critique of Paley‘s argument by YouTube channel “Rationality Rules”, in which I claimed the video was a joke because it misunderstood the argument and used straw man arguments and logical flaws.  Specifically I was asked to defend: 1.) which is created – which means the creator must be beyond or outside of time since he existed “before” he created it;  Thus the creator is eternal, Material/Matter The analogy between telescope and eye, between watch … Michael Behe’s “irreducible complexity” is also a teleological argument. “…It completely ignores evolution by natural selection”, For evolution to be even remotely feasible, it must explain 1. Suppose you come upon a rock and a watch. (And of course defeating a straw man argument is irrelevant to the real, actual argument.  Apparently those who use straw men arguments hope the audience is not well versed enough in the real argument to spot it. Watch’s / universe’s imperfections do not exclude a designer 3. It is modern firstly because it regards the world in mechanistic terms i.e. Therefore, the (probable) designer of the universe is powerful and vastly intelligent. his assertion that Paley confuses correlation with causation, also another false assertion that is unfounded. Thus the conclusion from the teleological argument about God is not only does God who created the universe exist, but  based on the nature of that universe, he must be eternal, immaterial, omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent – just as the Bible depicts him. The Problem of Evil Thus examining the evidence as Paley did, one must conclude that God is eternal, and thus uncreated, and thus without beginning or end, and thus uncaused and un-designed. In order for him to make that claim he must be able to state the origin of life, and demonstrate how nature did it from the beginning to end  – not with fuzzy evolutionary just-so stories, full of maybe’s and perhaps, and could be’s – but actual step by step scientific processes.  Failing that, it’s his belief, not science.  He’s just stating it’s true by fiat using the fallacy of an appeal to ignorance and hope you don’t know any better. This objection misses the point and thus fails because Paley’s argument is not an argument based on analogy. William Dembski, Intelligent Design – the Bridge Between Science & Theology, Downer’s Grove, IL:IVP Academic, 1999, p.47 The point of the argument is to prove God exists – which it does.  Besides, the reason God sent Jesus was to reveal God. An Intelligent agent to conceive of, and execute the entirety of the plan.  These components can be identified in the first three iterations of the teleological argument above, and I submit they are also implicit in Paley’s argument which include “purposeful design” and “contrivances.”  Indeed any object that requires forethought and planning to be produced is by definition an object that can only be produced by Intelligent Design. He concludes that because the universe is complex, its designer must be complex – the way a watch or the universe is complex. However, modern science has shown that Hume's arguments were based upon ignorance, and were, in fact, wrong. But once again, Paley’s point is not on the complexity alone. 5. That is a clear-cut true statement. Although William Paley published his watchmaker argument many years after David Hume's death, his design arguments must have been going around intellectual circles for many years prior, since David Hume did address them in his Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, which was published after his death. In crossing a heath, suppose I pitched… it looks to the end purpose of things. Paley also addressed a number of possible counterarguments: Objection: We don’t know who the watchmaker is. “First and foremost what single handedly debunks the watchmaker argument is that it’s a false analogy.” [emphasis his] Contingency ensures that the object in question is not the result of an automatic and therefore unintelligent process…”[3] More on that later. Here he states, “The watch maker argument doesn’t support theism. 3. It has been hugely influential in the field of natural sciences – especially Biology – even though the majority of people have never heard of it. ( Log Out /  He then goes on to “formally” attempt to debunk the argument. Traditionally – and certainly in Paley’s day –  there is only one universe, which would then imply one designer.  In these days when physicists and cosmologists claim the existence of a multi-verse (to try escape the inescapable conclusion of fine tuning in the universe) – he might want to claim many designers for a multi-verse – but that’s a separate argument. 1) Entities w, x, and y have attributes A, B and C 2) Entity z have attribute A and B 3) Therefore, entity z … Further it’s incorrect because: Watch is not product of laws of metallic nature, 8. But he fails at that too. Here he’s just spouting Evolutionary dogma while begging the question. Thus in identifying that the universe is designed, it is clear the universe must have a designer. (Argument from analogy) 3. An overview of William Paley's Watch analogy for students of religious studies and philosophy of religion. ii. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Footnote 1 Darwin was influenced by Paley’s work, and some modern authors have cited it as an important example of pre-Darwinian “adaptationist” thinking (e.g., Dawkins 1986 ; Williams 1992 ; but see Gliboff 2000 ; McLaughlin 2008 ). 2. How might we learn something about God? But Paley’s concepts of “purposeful design”[5] and  “contrivances”[6] anticipate these concepts, and thus his argument is clearly a teleological one – not an argument based on analogy. As noted above – the conclusion from the teleological argument is that God is eternal, and thus cannot begin to exist, and thus cannot be designed. The Watchmaker Argument: Fredrik Bendz summarizes a number of objections to Paley's argument—most relating to the fallacy of false analogy. PLAY. So why does he think God is complex? 2 Paley’s initial discussion—in which he sets out and defends his argument—may be thought of as having four parts. 2. 2. First we note he starts with his misunderstanding of the usage of complexity that we noted above, then states that God (the designer) must be complex: How does he know the designer is complex? Watch / universe are not one out of possible combinations 5. His argument played a prominent role in natural theology. Here he’s just spouting Evolutionary dogma while, I’ve written a number of articles on why Evolution is impossible. So I’ve already answered #1 – it does not represent the argument accurately, but let me apply it to this video: This undoubtedly is one of the reasons that Paley’s name is most commonly linked with the design argument even though it was by no means original to him. First, to think of God in those terms is to fall to the error of Anthropomorphism – God is not complex in that manner – with many pieces and parts and complex workings the way a watch or the universe is.  God is immaterial and thus has no such parts. Presumptions God exists The world has been created by God William Paley’s Watch maker argument The above are not the words Paley use. [note: the author formatted this is a way that did not leave space for a page break. Does a design imply a designer? 1.. A watch found out in the heath (countryside) is a product of intelligent design (purpose). The argument from design is sometimes call the teleological argument. ( Log Out /  By the way, I suspect the word “tuning” was accidentally omitted after the word “fine” in the phrase “to try escape the inescapable conclusion of fine in the universe”. What evidence do we have that God is complex?  How did he examine God? 2.  His understanding of the use of complexity is flawed. We cannot figure out everything about the watch / universe, so we can’t infer it’s designed 4. Watch Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. 2.) Order or intricacy of watch / universe is not merely our human mind imposing order on watch / universe, 7. Back, 5.  On Paley’s use of purposeful design: The universe is vastly more complex and gigantic than a watch. Drops of Mercy – The use of a watch is just to help the reader understand why we can indentify that the watch is designed.  The universe is also clearly designed. It appears to be a logical argument – most people would agree that if they were to come across a watch they would assume it had a designer. )  Because Natural Selection is a process that REMOVES information, it doesn’t add it. Today, as in his own time (though for different reasons), Paley is a controversial figure, a lightning rod for both sides in the contemporary … 3. So clearly he doesn’t know God is complex by examination. The analogy is NOT the argument. – so the creator must be omnipotent. One of his concluding statements is rather revealing: “Though the watch maker argument is thoroughly flawed it is nevertheless what I personally consider to be one of the best arguments for a deity that has ever been.”. Behe explains the concept thus: “By. 1-6.] And we know this from all the genetic operations studies that we have.”[7] video. If we came across this watch even if we didn’t 1. William Paley's watchmaker analogy is basically a teleological argument. The universe resembles, is like the watch. One of the main assumptions of Paley's argument is that 'like effects have like causes'; or that machines (like the watch) and the universe have similar features of design and so both also have the same cause of their existence: they must both have an intelligent designer. Does the universe exhibit design, like a watch? Special Pleading / Self Refuting (Mistake @ 5:00) The Argument fails because the analogy fails. So this argument falls along with the false contention of being self refuting. And what can we learn from the creation?  We learn that God is timeless, eternal, and all powerful among other things.  How do we know this?  As already stated, from an examination  of the nature of creation. William Paley’s Watch maker argument The above are not the words Paley use. Notice the main features of the arguments above: each instance requires: 1. forethought and planning, 2. It’s on all that has to happen to bring it about – the planning, purpose, the assembling of parts in a particular order to achieve a specific end.  All these speak to design and purpose, not merely to just complexity. The origin of life (which it can’t) and 2. William Paley’s Watch maker argument Therefore, the universe is (probably) a product of intelligent design (purpose) 4. Basically, it was the watchmaker analogy that was used, “To support argument for the existence of God and for the intelligent design of the universe in both Christianity and Deism.” Click to see full answer. Telos means end (as in “endzone” in football) or purpose or goal. Again at this point, he’s not arguing against Paley, he’s arguing against the Judeo-Christian God.  At that point I need merely prove why there isn’t a multi-verse, since he’s already conceded a designer. Here’s one that deals with a topic we’ve been discussing – specified complexity – and why Neo-Darwinism – and Dawkins’ “Mt. Therefore, the watch can be simply replaced for another object and there would be a different outcome. Hence, Paley’s argument is referred to as the Teleological Argument – i.e. Paley’s teleological argument for the existence of God makes an analogy between a watch and the universe. Perhaps the most famous variant of this argument is the William Paley’s “watch” argument. Like my grandma, he believed creation is proof that God is real. By God we mean the designer of the universe (which the argument does in fact prove) who is  eternal, immaterial, omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent.  That’s what the creation upon examination points to and that, by the way, is the  Biblical understanding of some of the characteristics of God. That concludes his flawed arguments. Paley attempts to show that just as a watch, which is a complex device that fulfills a certain function, requires a maker, the universe, which is equally sophisticated and has complex life forms must have a designer. Spell. That is the essence of the argument of Michael Ruse to Ben Stein in “Expelled no Intelligence Allowed” – that life may have developed into the needed complexity on the back of crystals (1 minute video).  What Ruse and many others skeptics miss, is that the identification of design is contingent not only on just complexity, put as Dembski put it “specified complexity” [emphasis mine] or as Paley put it “purposeful design”. William Paley quotes Showing 1-5 of 5 “There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments, and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation.” Arrows neither aim themselves, nor shoot themselves. Self contradicting (mistake @ 5:54) Paley’s argument can be broadly categorised as a type of teleological argument, and a distinctly modern one. State Paley’s argument for God’s existence as clearly as possible. Paley’s argument is inductive by revealing it actually to be a deductive argu-ment. At most I will grant the argument does not identify the Abrahamic God – but that’s not the point of the argument. The argument makes use of an anaology as Paley compares a watch and the Earth/universe. A large premise in Humes argument however is that an animal does not need a creator. Paley attempts to show that just as a watch, which is a complex device that fulfills a certain function, requires a maker, the universe, which is equally sophisticated and has complex life forms must have a designer. Hume does not Here he states “The watchmaker argument acts as if a watch maker creates a watch from nothing.”  No it doesn’t.  Ex Nihilo is a matter of Christian doctrine ( Gen 1.1-2),  but the watchmaker argument has nothing to say about where the watchmaker gets materials for the watch, nor how the creator created the universe. Objection 2. Paley’s teleological argument is: just as the function and complexity of a watch implies a watch-maker, so likewise the function and complexity of the universe implies the existence of a universe-maker. Furthermore, Paley’s argument is rooted in similarities that he observes between a crafted machine and the natural world. The only thing in Neo-Darwinism that can add information is mutations – and they are almost always negative in impact (video). The Argument fails because complexity doesn’t require a designer. Yet the Video blogger never addresses this real argument, thus the glaring flaw, and the straw man argument. Thanks. Doesn’t Support Theism (Mistake @ 7:17) What evidence do we have that God is complex?  How did he examine God? And that is precisely what one must do to prevent the watchmaker argument from being completely self refuting.”. But Second: what he’s really addressing is another point in Christian theology.  Here he talks about things like birth defects and pregnancy complications. The watch shows that it was made for a specific purpose (to tell the time). Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. 1-6.] We cannot figure out everything about the watch / universe, so we can’t infer it’s designed, 4. I mean that the contrivances of nature surpass the contrivances of art, in the complexity, subtilty, and curiosity of the mechanism; and still more, if possible, do they go beyond them in number and variety; yet in a multitude of cases, are not less evidently mechanical, not less evidently contrivances, not less evidently accommodated to their end, or suited to their office, than are the most perfect productions of human ingenuity (Paley 1867, 13).”, 7. Plato’s View of Justice and the Soul. At this point I’m wondering if he’s even read Paley’s argument because Paley does not make this assertion. Because every atheist I speak to says there’s, So why does he think God is complex? Back, 2. But natural selection reduces genetic information. He identifies how we can infer a designer – “if the effect is both complex and specified”, Michael Behe’s “irreducible complexity” is also a teleological argument. Back, 4. Paley bases his argument on something he knows for a fact: a watch needs a designer. I think William Paley’s argument is very reasonable to the idea that it merely implies that the imaginary function of the watch would suggest the existence of something conscious and intelligent and therefore would mean that nature would require a much greater designer than the watch, that designer is god and that he clearly distinguishes that the watch and nature are two different complexities and … Because it undercuts two arguments used to try to defeat Paley’s watchmaker argument. What are his (and mine) logical flaws? “…when we come to inspect the watch, we perceive (what we could not discover in the stone) that its several parts are framed and put together for a purpose, e. g. that they are so formed and adjusted as to produce motion, and that motion so regulated as to point out the hour of the day: that if the different parts had been differently shaped from what they are, of a different size from what they are, or placed after any other manner, or in any other order, than that in which they are placed, either no motion at all would have been carried on in the machine, or none which would have answered the use that is now served by it.”, William Paley’s Intelligent Contrivance, Kestrels and Cerevisiae (blog), March 10, 2011, https://phylogenous.wordpress.com/2011/03/10/william-paleys-intelligent-contrivance/, 6. The various pieces and parts were fashioned to achieve a particular end or goal, and thus they have an intelligent goal maker. At the end of this section he goes into the Problem of Evil – another theological problem not addressed by the Teleological Argument.  For more on the problem of evil, which is addressed by the Moral Argument (not the teleological argument), see here. Michael J. Behe, Darwin’s Black Box – The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution, New York: Free Press, 1996, p. 39 This is critical to understand because this error is the foundation of many other errors in the video. And yes tuning was omitted – corrected. Behe explains the concept thus: “By irreducibly complex [emphasis his] I mean a single system 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. So the incarnation of Jesus reveals God in a way no rational argument can.  So in summary, the argument doesn’t identify God, but neither does it preclude the Abrahamic God. He’s trying to refute the Judeo-Christian one, unique God. Abstract: Paley's "watch argument" is sketched together with initial suggested objections to his reasoning. So I am inserting the break at the top — NR] Paley’s teleological argument is: just as the function and complexity of a watch implies a watch-maker, so likewise the function and complexity … William Paley begins his “Argument from Design” by enumerating key differences between two obviously dissimilar objects—a stone and a watch. “Every indicator of contrivance, every manifestation of design, which existed in the watch, exists in the works of nature; with the difference, on the side of nature, of being greater and more, and that in a degree which exceeds all computation. (Another thing it can’t do. 10. False Analogy Fallacy (Mistake @ 1:35) What are his straw man objections? This argument has been developed a number of ways: Aquinas’ fifth way in his Summa Theologiae, the section on proofs of God,  is a teleological argument.

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