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By J. Warner Wallace
Much has been written about the evidence for design in biological organisms. In fact, the appearance of design is largely uncontroversial. Even famed atheist and evolutionist, Richard Dawkins has written, “Biology is the study of complicated things that give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.” But what, precisely, are the attributes of design most of us believe (either consciously or unconsciously) are most reasonably explained by an intelligent designer? In my new book, God's Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for A Divinely Created Universe, I make a case for Intelligent Design based on the contributions of many great scientists and thinkers, my own experience as a designer (my education and training is in design and architecture) and my professional investigative career as a detective. The result: a cumulative case approach to the appearance of design and the reasonable inference of an Intelligent Designer. I believe there are eight attributes of design we employ when reasonably inferring the existence of a Designer. To make them easier to remember, I've assembled them in an acronym (DESIGNED):
D- Dubious Probability (Given Chance)
Is random chance an insufficient explanation for the formation and assembly of the object we are examining?
E -Echoes of Familiarity
Does the object resemble other structures we know (with certainty) were designed by intelligent designers?
S- Sophistication and Intricacy
Does the object display specificity, sophistication and intricacy consistent with the involvement of an intelligent agent?
I – Informational Dependency
Is there any evidence the object was directed and created by way of instructional information?
G – Goal Direction (and Intentionality)
Does the form and assembly process of the object process to be goal-directed?
N – Natural Inexplicability (Given Laws of Physics or Chemistry)
Are the laws of physics and chemistry insufficient to account for the form and function of the object?
E – Efficiency / Irreducible Complexity
Does the object display efficient, irreducible complexity reflecting the involvement of an intelligent designer?
D – Decision / Choice Reflection
Does the object display evidence of conscious choices indicative of an intelligent designer?
Like every cumulative case built on a collection of seemingly innocuous pieces of evidence, no single aspect of the case may appear all that compelling. But the cumulative collection of evidences, when they all point to the same reasonable inference, provide us with good reason to believe an intelligent agent has been involved in the design process…
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