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How does on deal with the teleological argument?

Juiposa

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Whenever someone who believes in God brings this point about I am usually at a loss for word. This is the only one where I cannot form a decent argument myself.

So, what would be a refutation and counter argument to the teleological argument, so I can better arm myself for the future?
 

obvious Child

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Whenever someone who believes in God brings this point about I am usually at a loss for word. This is the only one where I cannot form a decent argument myself.

So, what would be a refutation and counter argument to the teleological argument, so I can better arm myself for the future?
Uh, which teleological argument we talking about? There's plenty of them.

Intelligent Design is a teleological argument that's easy to take down.
 

Juiposa

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Uh, which teleological argument we talking about? There's plenty of them.

Intelligent Design is a teleological argument that's easy to take down.
The "watch must have a watchmaker" type is the one I get the most.
 

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You'd need to go into much more detail about what you want, I never found the teleological argument(s) at all convincing.

Here's some of the criticisms, via Wikipedia.
 

obvious Child

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The "watch must have a watchmaker" type is the one I get the most.
Oh that one. This is functionally Intelligent Design. Aka, mouse trap can't work in another form.

Major assumption is that the watch cannot function in a less complicated manner. Nature shows this is a load of bullocks with less complex organisms, enzymes and processes all working. What's stopping natural processes from simply moving up the complexity level when it comes to organic subjects? Cliffs of Dover show evolution of shellfish from less complex to more complex. We find primitive bacteria in caves. That alone should rip out the main support of the watchmaker in terms of biological context. And when some fool tries to call you an atheist as to why you're wrong, there's nothing saying a Deist God started life and let it go on its own. There's no watch maker there in that the primitive organic material was divine in origin, but what happened after that was completely natural. The complex or nothing argument is garbage independent of what someone believes. There isn't any real argument after you dismantle the notion that organisms cannot survive or operate at less complex levels.

Then you get the argument that where that original organism come from? Start throwing out the dozens of abiogenesis theories and hypothesizes that are all natural in origin and point out that not knowing does not equate to the supernatural. Don't know = Goddidit it stupid
 

Captain Adverse

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Whenever someone who believes in God brings this point about I am usually at a loss for word. This is the only one where I cannot form a decent argument myself.

So, what would be a refutation and counter argument to the teleological argument, so I can better arm myself for the future?
My response is to ask them to define "order," and then explain why this needs conscious design? Wouldn't "order" exist whether or not we had the conscious ability to recognized it as such?
 

Juiposa

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Thank you you've all been very helpful.
 

opendebate

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Whenever someone who believes in God brings this point about I am usually at a loss for word. This is the only one where I cannot form a decent argument myself.

So, what would be a refutation and counter argument to the teleological argument, so I can better arm myself for the future?
I would suggest to them that they do not understand how evolution works. Characteristics that better our chances of survival remain because the life form who has chanced upon that mutation is more likely to survive and reproduce. If you look at evolution in retrospect it is easy to deduce that a mutation was "designed" to address a flaw that threatened us. In reality however, it was chance that evolved a trait which in turn was more likely to be passed on to offspring because the parents survived.
 

Captain Adverse

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I would suggest to them that they do not understand how evolution works. Characteristics that better our chances of survival remain because the life form who has chanced upon that mutation is more likely to survive and reproduce. If you look at evolution in retrospect it is easy to deduce that a mutation was "designed" to address a flaw that threatened us. In reality however, it was chance that evolved a trait which in turn was more likely to be passed on to offspring because the parents survived.
In that case one creationist response would be that's part of the "creative process." Then point to the example of a sculptor who tries many different aspects before she arrives at the finished product.
 

opendebate

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In that case one creationist response would be that's part of the "creative process." Then point to the example of a sculptor who tries many different aspects before she arrives at the finished product.
Are you saying that that person then is embracing the evolutionary process and suggesting that evolution is Gods work?
 

Captain Adverse

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Are you saying that that person then is embracing the evolutionary process and suggesting that evolution is Gods work?
I found some creationists who do just that. Others stick to mystical biblical timelines and believe evidence of evolution was created to suit God's purpose. I am not a creationist; just gave you an example of one response I've heard used to counter your argument.
 

opendebate

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I found some creationists who do just that. Others stick to mystical biblical timelines and believe evidence of evolution was created to suit God's purpose. I am not a creationist; just gave you an example of one response I've heard used to counter your argument.
I understood what you were doing no worries there.

So why wouldn't God get it right the first time? Since we're playing the game.
 

Captain Adverse

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I understood what you were doing no worries there.

So why wouldn't God get it right the first time? Since we're playing the game.
Ask God, I'm just the messenger! :angel?: LOL ;)
 

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My response is to ask them to define "order," and then explain why this needs conscious design? Wouldn't "order" exist whether or not we had the conscious ability to recognized it as such?
Most of them cannot tell the difference between "order" and a "perception of order". The human mind is inherently order-seeking, that's why we see figures in the clouds, our brains perceive order where none actually exists. Theists are not able to separate the two and they refuse to acknowledge this invalidates their claims.
 

Cephus

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In that case one creationist response would be that's part of the "creative process." Then point to the example of a sculptor who tries many different aspects before she arrives at the finished product.
Which is, of course, just a blind assertion, it cannot be demonstrated. That's why creationists fail so miserably, it's all about making unfounded and unjustified claims and not at all about backing them up.
 

marduc

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What I have never been able to wrap my head around with the whole watchmaker argument is how those making it somehow are able to exempt this watchmaker from the very argument he is used for. Who made the watchmaker? How is it you are able to wiggle out of the infinite regress inherent in the argument? Is this watchmaker less complex than the watches themselves? If not, how can he just "be" while all else is too complex to just simply be?

Taking this from another angle, here is a great video -it is an old video, some of those reading may already be familiar with it, but it is a great counterpoint to the watchmaker argument that delves into complexity as an emergent property from just a few simple underlying rules:

 

Ikari

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The "watch must have a watchmaker" type is the one I get the most.
It's an oversimplified example. We know watches are made by humans because we make them. We have direct and measurable proof of humans and of watches and of watches being made by humans. Therefore it is very reasonable to see a watch and assume it is there through human intervention.

But there is no such proof with gods and the universe. If you see something that had no known creator and no creator has ever been observed, it is rational to suggest a natural process could be at root. Design, as Hume would argue, is only applicable when order and purpose are observed to occur only when they result from design.

The watchmaker analogy tries to gloss over larger implications and presents a false choice predicated upon out existing knowledge and experience with watches.
 

davidtaylorjr

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It's an oversimplified example. We know watches are made by humans because we make them. We have direct and measurable proof of humans and of watches and of watches being made by humans. Therefore it is very reasonable to see a watch and assume it is there through human intervention.

But there is no such proof with gods and the universe. If you see something that had no known creator and no creator has ever been observed, it is rational to suggest a natural process could be at root. Design, as Hume would argue, is only applicable when order and purpose are observed to occur only when they result from design.

The watchmaker analogy tries to gloss over larger implications and presents a false choice predicated upon out existing knowledge and experience with watches.
You could say the same thing about the Pyramids. :shrug:
 

Ikari

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You could say the same thing about the Pyramids. :shrug:
What? That there's plenty of evidence that they were constructed by man and that we've even found machinery that was used to help cut and move large stone blocks? Yeah...that is true.
 

davidtaylorjr

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What? That there's plenty of evidence that they were constructed by man and that we've even found machinery that was used to help cut and move large stone blocks? Yeah...that is true.
How do you know that stuff didn't just appear? :roll:
 

Ikari

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You KNOW that, or assume that? Were you there?
We know a great many thing which have been recorded in history, including the fact that the Egyptians built the pyramids.
 
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