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paley's watch argument

Wed / Dec / 2020

Moving on he keeps referring to the argument as an “analogy” which, as I’ve already pointed out is incorrect. The Argument fails because the analogy fails. Hence, Paley’s argument is referred to as the Teleological Argument – i.e. Full video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s06w4pXvUyk&t=400s Join George and John as they discuss and debate different Philosophical ideas. “… It commits a false cause fallacy. No amount of clear, logical reasoning will convince those who do not want to believe. Perhaps the most famous variant of this argument is the William Paley’s “watch” argument. There must be an apparent reason for the complexity and a goal or purpose for the complexity.  There is clearly an apparent reason behind the complexity in a watch: its many “contrivances” allow it to keep time according to the specification of hours, minutes and seconds.  Not so with crystals.  They exhibit merely a complex ordering of matter, with no apparent goal or purpose. Paley argues that, if one was to find a watch laying on the ground and was to be aske… Gravity. Even Richard Dawkins, an opponent of the design argument, described himself as a neo-Paleyan in The Blind Watchmaker. It is a Greek word meaning “end” for telos and a “logos” which means the study of, and in this case, it refers to science. Improbable” simply fail: “, How does he know the designer is complex? Here’s one that deals with a topic we’ve been discussing – specified complexity – and why Neo-Darwinism – and Dawkins’ “Mt. 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. Because every atheist I speak to says there’s, So why does he think God is complex? 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. Argument For God Through Design deny the status of such as a wonder, it would be a weak argument as even scientists today are left speechless about many natural events. An overview of William Paley's Watch analogy for students of religious studies and philosophy of religion. Furthermore, Paley’s argument is rooted in similarities that he observes between a crafted machine and the natural world. In reference to the argument, Voltaire once commented “if a watch confirms the existence of a watchmaker, but the universe fails to demonstrate the presence of a great Architect, then I consent to be labeled a fool.” Today, the analogy is credited with William Paley who outlined the argument in his book Natural Theology(1802). A sequence or action to achieve the target 4. ii. But natural selection reduces genetic information. He then goes on to “formally” attempt to debunk the argument. 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. Flashcards. 1. 3. William Paley : This short anonymous summary of Paley's life is from the Internet Encyclopædia of Philosophy . Perhaps the most famous variant of this argument is the William Paley’s “watch” argument. What conclusion would you draw if you found a watch on the road out in the heath (countryside)? 1. 4. If the video is a “joke” then why does it seem to represent the argument accurately according to Christian presentations and others’? The watch shows that it was made for a specific purpose (to tell the time). Paley used a watch to illustrate his point. One of the most famous proponents of the teleological argument for the existence of God is the 18th-century philosopher, William Paley. (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. 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”. Watch / universe is not product of impersonal principle of order, 6. Paley bases his argument on something he knows for a fact: a watch needs a designer. A. And that is precisely what one must do to prevent the watchmaker argument from being completely self refuting.”. Thanks. 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. 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. 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.” “…It completely ignores evolution by natural selection”, For evolution to be even remotely feasible, it must explain 1. 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. Presumptions God exists The world has been created by God And we know this from all the genetic operations studies that we have.”[7] video. Winner success concept © Mbolina | Dreamstime.com  used by permission. Those things exist because of human sin, not because of the creator’s design.  So once again he has left the teleological argument and is showing his anti-Christian bias, stating this argument does not support the monotheistic God’s and “certainly not” the Abrahamic God. 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. – so the creator must be omnipotent. which is created – which means the creator must be “beyond” space or omnipresent, Information William Paley’s book, Natural Theology, is a work of monumental importance. William Paley begins his “Argument from Design” by enumerating key differences between two obviously dissimilar objects—a stone and a 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. 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. 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. Our ignorance about a watch / universe does not mean we can’t draw some inferences about watch / universe, B. So clearly this objection is already false, but let’s play along. So clearly he doesn’t know God is complex by examination. “…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. )  Because Natural Selection is a process that REMOVES information, it doesn’t add it. Back, 5.  On Paley’s use of purposeful design: Key Point Based on the way the world is, God logically exists. 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. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. 2. What is design argument in simplest form? Test. Created by. I’ll point them out as we come across them. The reason they tend to a goal (the target) is because they have been set in motion “under the direction of someone with awareness and with understanding.” [1]  In other words, they have a goal maker, or put another way an intelligence with a design in mind – to hit the target. Follow @rationalupdates, Related Article Back, Featured Image The video blogger goes on to defines special pleading as “an argument in which the speaker deliberately creates an exception to their argument without justifying why. from Expelled, No Intelligence Allowed, Documentary by Ben Stein, 2008 Further it’s incorrect because: Paley’s argument is inductive by revealing it actually to be a deductive argu-ment. Watch’s / universe’s imperfections do not exclude a designer, 3. Thus in identifying that the universe is designed, it is clear the universe must have a designer. He’s trying to refute the Judeo-Christian one, unique God. 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 Does a design imply a designer? 3. Why is this important? A large premise in Humes argument however is that an animal does not need a creator. But natural selection reduces genetic information. First, to think of God in those terms is to fall to the error of, The Universe/Creation was created out of nothing, William Paley’s Intelligent Contrivance, Kestrels and Cerevisiae, Mt Improbable and other impossible evolutionary dreams, Everyone should have one (The Watchmaker Analogy), https://phylogenous.wordpress.com/2011/03/10/william-paleys-intelligent-contrivance/, Distant Starlight Unlikely Solutions Part 1: Light In Transit, 15 Reasons:Why Evolution has never happened-Part 3, 15 Reasons:Why Evolution has never happened-Part 2, 15 Reasons: Why Evolution has never happened – Part 1, Knowledge of the Holy One Part 5: The Trinity, Knowledge of the Holy One Part 4: The Holy Spirit, Knowledge of the Holy One Part 3: God the Father, Knowledge of the Holy One Part 2: Jesus – The Holy One Denied, Knowledge of the Holy One Part 1: Jesus – the Holy One Revealed, Questions for Question Evolution Day 2020. 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. Match. 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.) This is what we expect from the creator of life and the universe. 6. Self contradicting (mistake @ 5:54) I could take this point by point – e.g. Published in 1802, it purports to give “evidences of the existence and attributes of … The Problem of Evil That is a clear-cut true statement. Therefore, the universe is (probably) a product of intelligent design (purpose) 4. 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. 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). Bryana_Polk2. Objection 2. This is the fallacy of Division. In the He points to an arrow consistently hitting a target. His argument played a prominent role in natural theology. 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. How does Paley answer the objection that the universe could have come into order and pattern by chance? So we’ll address that here – by briefly explaining the main argument.). And now that you see all his fatal flaws in his attempts to refute it, and you see it thus remains un-refuted, we are left with: “It is what I personally consider to be one of the best arguments for a deity that has ever been.” To that, I agree. Therefore, the universe is (probably) a product of intelligent design (purpose). By looking at his creation – since we can’t examine him directly. Most naturalists take for granted that Hume soundly defeated Paley's argument. The “analogy” is to help understand the argument. Basically, this argument says that after seeing a watch, with all its intricate parts, which work together in a precise fashion to keep time, one must deduce that this piece of machinery has a creator, since it is far too complex to have simply come into being by some other means, such as evolution. What evidence do we have that God is complex?  How did he examine God? Ignores Natural Selection (Mistake @ 3:52) 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. Those who try to refute this argument always seem to miss that point. 1. 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. 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 … Back, 2. He’s not making an analogy between the watch and the universe.  His argument is based on the identification of design. The argument from design is sometimes call the teleological argument. Showing why belief in Christianity is rational. 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. The above are not the words Paley use. Watch is not product of laws of metallic nature, 8. On Paley’s use of “contrivances” It also has a sense of a moral obligation. Or second, the attempted rebuttals fail because of the use of other logical fallacies. What is William Paley's argument for design. In crossing a heath, suppose I pitched… 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. (Argument from analogy), 3. William Paley's watchmaker analogy is basically a teleological argument. Order or intricacy of watch / universe is not merely our human mind imposing order on watch / universe, 7. What are his (and mine) logical flaws? An overview and explanation of William Paley's watch analogy including some key quotes. He then goes on to “formally” attempt to debunk the argument. William Paley (1743 - 1805) was a British philosopher whose writings on natural theology and moral/political philosophy were largely influential amongst British and American thinkers. I’ve written a number of articles on why Evolution is impossible. 1-6.] 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. The analogy between telescope and eye, between watch … 5. ... Paley’s Watchmaker and Design Argument. 2. [note: the author formatted this is a way that did not leave space for a page break. Michael Behe’s “irreducible complexity” is also a teleological argument. )  The argument speaks to the designer of the universe. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. )  He should make up his mind. If he came across a mechanical watch on the ground, he would assume that its many complex parts fitted together for a … At this point I’m wondering if he’s even read Paley’s argument because Paley does not make this assertion. Just as a watch, with its inteligent design and complex function must have been created by an intelligent maker: a watchmaker, the universe, with all its complexity and greatness, must have been created by an intelligent and powerful creator. But Second: what he’s really addressing is another point in Christian theology.  Here he talks about things like birth defects and pregnancy complications. Michael J. Behe, Darwin’s Black Box – The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution, New York: Free Press, 1996, p. 39 The best option is that the watch is product of intelligent design. 2.  His understanding of the use of complexity is flawed. He concludes that because the universe is complex, its designer must be complex – the way a watch or the universe is complex. The various pieces and parts were fashioned to achieve a particular end or goal, and thus they have an intelligent goal maker. The analogy is NOT the argument. If there are problems in a design we can still detect it was designed.Â. The argument hinges upon the assumed premise that 'like causes resemble like effects'. What evidence do we have that God is complex?  How did he examine God? It has been hugely influential in the field of natural sciences – especially Biology – even though the majority of people have never heard of it. Hume does not 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 … Statement of the Argument In crossing a heath, suppose I pitched my foot against a stone, and were asked how the stone came to be there, I might possibly answer, that, for anything I knew to the 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. Back, 3.  Dembski, Intelligent Design, p 128 Back, 4. Abstract: Paley's "watch argument" is sketched together with initial suggested objections to his reasoning. c. Paley’s Watchmaker Argument. William Paley's watchmaker analogy is basically a teleological argument. 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 ). 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 –, William Dembski’s “specified complexity” is a teleological argument. (Argument from analogy) 3. We cannot figure out everything about the watch / universe, so we can’t infer it’s designed, 4. (Another thing it can’t do. Thanks for another powerful refutation of evolutionist obfuscation. 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. Thes… Please elaborate. So let’s formally show him where he’s wrong. 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”. 11. PLAY. 2. But he fails at that too. Notice the main features of the arguments above: each instance requires: 1. forethought and planning, 2. It is modern firstly because it regards the world in mechanistic terms i.e. However, modern science has shown that Hume's arguments were based upon ignorance, and were, in fact, wrong. This is critical to understand because this error is the foundation of many other errors in the video. How do I know? 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. 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.”. Plato the Soul Man. On that see here or here. 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”. An overview of William Paley's Watch analogy for students of religious studies and philosophy of religion. Creation, i.e.  The Universe consists of: Time The Argument fails because complexity doesn’t require a designer. We cannot figure out everything about the watch / universe, so we can’t infer it’s designed 4. Watch’s / universe’s imperfections do not exclude a designer 3. William Dembski, Intelligent Design – the Bridge Between Science & Theology, Downer’s Grove, IL:IVP Academic, 1999, p.47 William Paley’s Watch maker argument 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. The only thing in Neo-Darwinism that can add information is mutations – and they are almost always negative in impact (video). 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. It does this by asserting complexity and order can only be caused by a designer” 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. An eternal God is also the Biblical depiction of God. This objection misses the point and thus fails because Paley’s argument is not an argument based on analogy. 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]. Paley’s Watchmaker argument – undefeated – composite by Duane Caldwell, featuring Which requires an intelligence to create –  which means the creator must possess all the necessary information to create the universe and all life – so omniscient, The Universe/Creation was created out of nothing Second, he attempts to expose Paley’s argument as manifestly poor when interpreted in this way. Paley’s argument can be broadly categorised as a type of teleological argument, and a distinctly modern one. To follow the example in the argument, we know the watch is complex by examination. William Paley’s Watch maker argument The above are not the words Paley use. “First and foremost what single handedly debunks the watchmaker argument is that it’s a false analogy.” 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. He concludes that because the universe is complex, its designer must be complex – the way a watch or the universe is complex. 1) Entities w, x, and y have attributes A, B and C 2) Entity z have attribute A and B 3) Therefore, entity z … his assertion that Paley confuses correlation with causation, also another false assertion that is unfounded. In the first part, Paley makes some remarks about the inevitability of inference to design in certain cases. 8. 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. Basically, this argument says that after seeing a watch, with all its intricate parts, which work together in a precise fashion to keep time, one must deduce that this piece of machinery has a creator, since it is far too complex to have simply come into being by some other means, such as evolution. Like my grandma, he believed creation is proof that God is real. So why does he think God is complex? Because Paley is confronted with a crafted mechanical watch which nature clearly could not produce on its Let’s look a bit more closely at premise (2) in the above argument for the conclusion that the watch had an intelligent designer. which is created – which means the creator must be other than material or immaterial, Space 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. When you take a look at the rock, you could surmise the rock had always been there. The universe resembles, is like the watch. 2.) The “watchmaker analogy” that outlines the argument with regard to timepiece dates back to Cicero. Once again he’s just showing his anti-Christian bias as he puts up another straw man argument directed at Christianity, not Paley’s argument. Why all the effort? You’ll see it if he eliminates these inferior options or rationalizations: 1.. We have not seen a watch before or being made, so we really can’t infer it’s designed, 2. The philosopher compares the creator to a watchmaker and states that the presence of design proves the existence of a designer, although some of his ideas and statements fail to pass a logical approach. 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. To follow the example in the argument, we know the watch is complex by examination. From Youtube bloggers to high profile atheists like Richard Dawkins, doubters repeatedly try to show the argument invalid – and fail miserably. So right off the bat we see this attempt to debunk Paley’s does not represent the argument accurately according to Christian presentations as elaborated above. 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. In his work, Paley uses a teleological argument based on the watchmaker analogy. 1-6.] Addressing specific errors in Critiques of Paley. Therefore, the watch can be simply replaced for another object and there would be a different outcome. Plato’s View of Justice and the Soul. 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. 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. Once again he puts up a straw man argument claiming the argument states that nature is both uncomplicated and random, and also complicated and ordered. Paley talks about “contrivances” with clearly designed goals and purposes – which results in complexity. However, where my grandma uses zoo animals to teach this, Paley is famous for using a common watch. Drops of Mercy – ( Log Out /  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. Therefore, the (probable) designer of the universe is powerful and vastly intelligent.

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