Intelligent Design (81)

Those who believe in Intelligent Design say that they accept evolution but believe it started from an initial Intelligent Design. They then accept the process of evolution went on from this start point. It is a positive step that they accept evolution.

There are many scientists and philosophers who can show that the design of creatures on earth cannot be considered as intelligent but then I expect creationist or ID believers could argue that the flaws die out and that is because the design was intelligent from the beginning.

There is a fatal flaw in their thinking though. It has oft been said that if you gave an ape a typewriter and eternal life, then by the process of infinite randomness, the ape would eventually write the entire works of Shakespeare.

Extend this now to God. Imagine for a moment perhaps the Hindu image of God, existing in an ocean of infinite peace and bliss in a dimension of a spiritual sky. This God has been there for eons of time, trillions of years of earth time, infinity of the past stretching to infinity of the future. In that event, that God would eventually create life as the ape created the works of Shakespeare, by a process of infinite trial and error resulting eventually in life forming from this male or female God’s dreams and imaginations. Equally the spark which created the big bang could be said to have arisen in the same way.

This understanding is seen more abstractly through my experience on a visit to Nepal in 2008 where I worked on a conservation programme in the Therai, near where Buddha was born. It was revealed to me that there was a Hindu method of incorporating Buddha into their beliefs in a God of creation of the universe, another of maintenance of the universe and a third of destruction. The Nepali find it easy to imagine Buddha as being a manifestation of God where conventional Buddhism identifies him as a human teacher who became enlightened. This insight into intelligent design is easy to see in Buddha saying “Everything is nothing”. It is revealed that a God living for an infinite length of time would have achieved ‘nothing’ in creating the universe but a spark and little in creating life but the first combination of molecules. Buddha as God or not wants followers to understand that what remains for the moment the mystery of creation is as nothing.

Any attribution to God of creativity bears a resemblance to what we already accept is the statistical likelihood a ape could achieve given an infinity of time to do it in.

This has been another revelation to me of the simplicity of Buddha and not of those who surround the Buddha in myths that I have always thought previously were rather odd.

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