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Stephen C. Meyer | Is God a Hypothesis?

We explore some of the common ground between BioLogos and the Discovery Institute while also discussing the philosophical differences between these positions.

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We explore some of the common ground between BioLogos and the Discovery Institute while also discussing the philosophical differences between these positions.

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Description

A podcast that shows the harmony between Christian faith and current scientific discoveries by sharing the stories of interesting people who have found a better way of understanding science and Christian faith.
  • Originally aired on May 06, 2021
  • With 
    Jim Stump

Proponents of intelligent design and evolutionary creation have some different ideas about the relationship of science and faith, and relations between BioLogos and the Discovery Institute have not always been easy. But there is some common ground. We explore some of that common ground in this episode while also discussing the philosophical differences between the positions. Stephen Meyer is a leading advocate for intelligent design and is the Director for the Center for Science and Culture at the Discovery Institute, and his new book, Return of the God Hypothesis, frames this conversation.

This was meant to be a conversation and not a debate and so the intention was not to stop every time a claim was made that we disagree with. Instead, we made a companion piece to this episode where we point to many resources that do respond to these claims and help to further explain some of the philosophical concepts covered in this conversation.

Additional Resources


Transcript

Meyer:

If there were no theologians around doing their job, I would be concerned that people might want to take the arguments that I’ve made as saying all that could be said about God. But I think there’s a lot more to be said about God. And I think for that we’d require God’s special revelation through His Word. And this is why I love the metaphor that the early scientists used, talking about both the Word of God but also his work. So they talked about the book of nature and the book of Scripture. We can tell some things about him from the book of nature and I’ve done my best to make a case for the things that I think are now being revealed by discoveries in natural sciences. 

This is Stephen Meyer. I’m the Director for the Center for Science and culture at Discovery Institute in Seattle. 

Stump:

Welcome to Language of God. I’m Jim Stump, and yes, in this episode I’m talking to Stephen Meyer. Steve is one of the leaders of the Intelligent Design movement. For those who have been around the science and religion conversations on origins, you know that intelligent design is a kind of competitor to BioLogos and that relations between us have not always been easy. For those of you not in that loop, you might wonder what the issue is: don’t we believe there is a designer of the universe?

Yes, at BioLogos we believe God is the designer and even that God is intelligent! But that word “design” is similar to “creation” in that different people mean different things by it. The intelligent design community attempts to find areas within the natural world that scientists can’t quite explain, and argue that these are evidences that a designer God must have acted directly and miraculously in those instances. For many people, appeals to intelligent design in this sense have been important buttresses to their faith.

At BioLogos we arrive at the same conclusion: that there is a good God who has designed the world in ways that allow us to flourish. But we get there by different means, and we think those means are important for how we ultimately understand science and God’s relationship to the world. We don’t think evidences of God’s activity and design are best found in the parts of the created world that scientists can’t explain; it has been our experience that when scientists discover something new about the world and understand how it works, that gives all the more reason to acknowledge and praise God for his wondrous works. The intelligent design approach seems to us to foster an entrenchment of the culture wars that puts God on one side and science on the other.

Of course, Steve Meyer wouldn’t be happy with that characterization. And much of what you’ll hear in this episode is a fundamentally different way of construing things. It’s not always clear that we mean the same thing by “science” or “cause” or “information.” And we feel his scientific claims are at times a misinterpretation or even a misrepresentation of the science about evolution. Since this is not a debate, I didn’t try to stop him every time he said something we don’t agree with. Instead, we’ve created a companion piece on our website for those who want to dig a little deeper and see how we respond to issues he brings up like protein folding or the Cambrian Explosion or information in DNA. There is a link to it in the shownotes, or you can find it on our website

The occasion for this interview is the new book Meyer has written, and there is actually a lot in it that I agree with. We talk about some of that here. But my role was primarily to ask questions and to listen. I hope that some of my questions are probing enough to get at the differences between our positions, but I doubt that many listeners on either side who are already entrenched in these positions will have their minds changed by our conversation.

But still, I think it’s important to talk — particularly in our culture today and because of the echo chambers that have developed to insulate us from others. So I read Stephen Meyer’s new book and invited him onto the podcast. And he graciously agreed and we had a civil conversation. If nothing else comes of this, we’ve at least given an example of a civil conversation between two people who disagree on some important things.

This is a long episode. Sorry. We usually try to edit these conversations down to under an hour. But we took a very light editorial hand in this one, not wanting to unintentionally reshape or misrepresent what Steve had to say. So make yourselves comfortable.

Now let’s get to the conversation.

Interview Part One

Stump:

Well, Stephen Meyer, thanks for joining me today.

Meyer:

It’s great to be with you, Jim. Thanks for reaching out and for the invitation to join you on your podcast.

Stump:

Good. I would like to start by acknowledging that there may be followers of both of our organizations who are surprised maybe to hear us talking with each other as there have been some tensions and maybe even acrimony from people aligned with BioLogos and the Discovery Institute in the past. And it’s not my intention here to try to litigate or resolve those. But neither do I want to just ignore or pretend that none of that’s happened, since I think that would be a kind of disservice to those on both sides who have maybe been unfairly characterized or otherwise maligned. But let me also add that, I guess it would be an exaggeration to say you and I are best friends or anything, but I think it’s fair to say that we’ve been friendly to each other. And you’ve written a couple of articles for books that I’ve edited. And that’s gone well, at least from my perspective, I hope you might say— 

Meyer: 

Absolutely. Yeah, you did a great job in editing that four views book on science. What was it, Creation, Evolution and Intelligent Design? That was a terrific little volume you put together.

Stump:

Good thanks. And you had an article in the Blackwell Companion to Science and Christianity that I did several years ago. 

Meyer:

That was a fine piece of work, actually. That’s excellent. From beginning to end.

Stump:

Well, our goal here is to talk about your new book, The Return of the God Hypothesis. But before we get to that, I like to hear some background on our guests related both to their interest in science and to their faith. I know you started out in your professional career as a geophysicist, right? Can you look back further, perhaps, even when you were growing up, can you see any indications for where your interest in science came from?

Meyer:

Absolutely. In fact, both things, science and philosophy from a young age I, as a very young child, I was absolutely captivated by fossils, dinosaurs and all the whole story of the history of life—trilobites I thought were incredibly enchanting. And my sister tells a funny story of me that I profess not to remember, but I think it did happen, that when I was 10, when other kids were putting on Kool Aid stands in the neighborhood, I had an insect collection with little pins stuck through them. And I was trying to charge admission to come and see my bug collection, as she puts it. And every time she tells the story at the holiday, she rolls over and peals of laughter at her nerdly brother. So I had a very deep interest in the natural world and natural sciences from a young age. But I was also very interested in philosophy and philosophical questions. And my interests combined in college. My dad had encouraged me to take as much math as I could before deciding on a major. He told me I’d be limited in what I could major in if I didn’t get a lot of math under my belt. I did that.I went to a small college, Whitworth college. At the time, after you did two or three years of college math, you could either major in math or physics, which I think is what he wanted. He was a mechanical engineer. And I knew I didn’t want to be that. So I ended up majoring in physics and geology. But I was always sneaking across campus to sign up for at least one philosophy course per term. And then eventually, after working as a geophysicist for four years in the oil industry, doing digital signal processing of seismic data, I ended up going off to Cambridge and working in the field of the philosophy of science, and finally combining my two loves, if you will.

Stump: 

And what about your faith background, if I may? In the book, you’re pretty open about your Christian faith and tell some of your story there. But for our listeners here, can you share just a bit about your experience with Christianity growing up and even what role that continues to play in your life today?

Meyer:

Yeah, we were a very nominal Catholic family growing up. I went to parochial schools for a couple of years. But our family ceased to attend church in my teen years. I ended up having, at that time in my life, something of an existential crisis. I didn’t know to call it that. I was asking questions that I couldn’t answer. Things like what’s it gonna matter in 100 years? Essentially what is the meaning of life? I couldn’t find anything in anything that I was seeing going on around me. And I eventually started to read late in my teen years the big, fat, white, Catholic family Bible and found myself deeply interested in the things I was reading. And yet I had a head full of questions, and we weren’t connected to any church in any denomination at that point. So I was trying to make sense of it on my own, listening to radio broadcasts. When I got to college, I started taking philosophy classes from an outstanding Christian philosophy professor and learned that many of the questions that I had been having as a young teenager that made me think that I was actually insane or mentally ill were actually philosophical questions. And they were questions that, in the end, I realized that a biblical worldview and Christianity in particular uniquely answered. And sometime in the year or two—the first year out of college I kind of settled in my faith, the questions stopped. I became convinced that Christianity was true. And soon after began to pray for guidance for my life and wanting to—I started to get a desire to serve God, not just to question him. And so it was later that I was able to engage some of these scientific questions about how science and faith fit together. And that has ended up being the focus of my professional life, post geophysics, post looking for oil, as my Texan bosses said, “out in the Guff,” that was my job right out of school. But eventually, I got more involved in this discussion of science and faith and how the two things go together.

Stump: 

Yeah, so I often start with the same set of questions for guests asking about their science background and their faith background, and then go to that next question about whether they’ve experienced tensions or how they resolve their faith in science. For you, though, I think that question is kind of answered by your work as a whole. And in this new book, specifically. So we’ll get to that book in a second. But I wonder if, before getting that specific, you could give us a little more broad overview of intelligent design. Where where did this movement—is it right to call it a movement or position—where did it come from? How would you characterize it for someone who’s never heard of it? 

Meyer:  

Hey, before I answer that question, I just wanted in the same spirit in which you open the interview to add my two cents on the the BioLogos Discovery interaction. I think one thing—I was thinking about this in prepping for the interview, that there’s actually a very deep commonality, if you think of that old distinction they make in law between the letter and the spirit of the law, we may disagree about some of the letter of the science, but I think we agree about the Spirit and that is that science, properly understood is not a foe to faith, but it’s a friend. And it has been so historically. I think we have scholars in both of our organizations that have helped document that story. And so that’s one of the reasons I very much appreciated you reaching out. I think there are some differences about— 

Stump: 

And we’ll get to those, I’m sure here, in this hour. 

Meyer:

We’ll get to those, sure. I think that’s—anyway, I just appreciate how you started. 

And so as to the history of intelligent design. I think there are a couple of things that were very seminal in the development of the intelligent design—I would now call it a research community—and that is that—the first was I think the book by Charles Thaxton, Walter Bradley and Roger Olsen called, titled The Mystery of Life’s Origin. And I first encountered these three authors at a conference that was held in Dallas when I was working in the oil industry. It was a conference that was discussing the origin of the universe, the origin of life, and the origin and nature of human consciousness. And it featured both leading theists and leading scientific materialists who were debating or discussing these three issues from their competing worldview perspectives. And I got to know Thaxton after that conference, we talked almost three or four times a week for about a year before I went off to grad school. That’s where I decided—or it was during that time that I decided that I would like to work on this question of origin of life biology. And the question of whether or not a scientific argument for intelligent design could be made. Was there a scientific basis for the concept of intelligent design or was this just kind of an intuition where we could say that that mind was intuitively in some way connected to information. 

And so I went off to grad school somewhat, very intrigued, but not completely convinced about these ideas that were then in a kind of nascent form. So for me, that’s where it started. But there were—a number of threads have come together with a number of different figures.

Stump:

Could you say a little bit more than about this word design, which I think maybe similar to the word creation? Different people are gonna mean it in different ways. And maybe even 

give like the elevator pitch for what is this scientific—what did you call it, a scientific research community—of intelligent design, what do they mean when they say we align ourselves with that?

Meyer:

Yeah, let me give you a definition of it, then give you a little history of why the issue was framed the way it was. We would define the theory of intelligent design as the idea that there are certain features of living systems and the universe that are best explained by a designing mind, by the activity of a designing mind rather than by an undirected material process. And the framing of this issue, I think, was assisted ironically, by some of the writings of the most ardent of the Neo-Darwinists—Richard Dawkins included. Dawkins has a wonderful framing of the issue in the first—on the very first page of The Blind Watchmaker where he says that, “biology is the study of complicated things that give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.” And in fact, this has been a standard way of understanding what both Darwinism, in its classical form, and modern Neo-Darwinism has been about, that we all accept, biologists on all sides of the discussion accept that life gives the appearance of design. Of course for the Darwinist and Neo-Darwinists, that appearance is an illusion because there is an unguided undirected mechanism, namely, natural selection acting on random variations and mutations that can produce that appearance but without being guided or directed in any way. It’s often referred to as the mechanism is thought to mimic the powers of a designing intelligence. Francisco Ayala has underscored this. We have designed, he says, without a designer, and the Intelligent Design—group, movement, research community—the founders of this way of thinking said, “well, that’s a great way to frame the issue. But is it really true that biology is only studying the appearance of design? Is there not any real design evidence in nature? And is there some way to tell?” And so, the term intelligent design was chosen intentionally, to contrast our perspective with that of Richard Dawkins. That means, for example, we weren’t necessarily challenging the idea of evolution in the sense of change over time, or evolution even in the sense of common ancestry. But we were challenging the idea that the mutation-selection mechanism and other similar naturalistic mechanisms of evolution, evolutionary change were sufficient on their own, to produce the great complexity, the integrated complexity we see in living things. So that was the framing of it.

Stump:

Yeah, I think that background—I think one of the confusions that people have sometimes when they come to science and religion kinds of works is that merely by saying you accept intelligent design that doesn’t necessarily tell you what they believe on some of these other positions you just alluded to there, right? Whether even the age of the Earth and the universe, or evolution in the sense of common ancestry, those are all compatible with intelligent design?

Meyer:

This is a problem that one of my colleagues has called the problem of wagon words. You take up—you use one word and it seems to draw, drag along a lot of other words that may not, or concepts that may or may not be necessarily associated with it. If we think of the term Evolution—in fact, I’ve written an article with an historian of science, Michael Keyes about the different meanings of evolution, but there are at least three. And those three can be helpfully distinguished from one another. The first would be the concept of change over time. In the biological realm, that typically refers to things like the peppered moths or changing their coloration over time. It can refer to small scale micro-evolutionary variation. Or the simple fact that life on the planet today is different than it was quite a long time ago. So that’s evolution number one, change over time. No one in the Intelligent Design network of folks rejects that. That’s a pretty standard understanding. Second would be continuous change over time, such that the overall pattern in the history of life is best depicted by a continuous branching tree. This would be the idea of universal common descent. There are some ID proponents that are either supportive of that or open to it. And there are others, like myself, who are deeply skeptical about universal common descent, though I accept common descent within limited taxonomic groups. And then the third meaning has referred to the process of evolution, the idea that there is a process that produces that typically understood, unbounded change, a process that has created genuine creative power. And that would be, from Darwin’s time forward, the process of natural selection acting on some kind of variations—in his time he didn’t know about mutations, but we do today—so the mechanism of mutation and selection would be the process of the third meaning of evolution, that, in other words, the cause of large scale variation and innovation in the history of life. And since one of the things that is manifested in the history of life is the appearance of design in living organisms, that strict Neo-Darwinism would affirm that the process of mutation and selection and possibly some other complimentary mechanisms are completely sufficient to produce the appearance of design. So the mechanism is understood to be unguided and undirected, because if it were guided or directed, then the appearance of design would not just be an appearance, it would be actual design. So those three meanings: change over time, universal common descent, and a mechanism of change, typically mutation and selection, that’s capable of producing the appearance of design. We are, the intelligent design folks are challenging, meaning number three, not necessarily one or two, though people have different—no one I think is challenging number one. Members of our larger network have different views about number two.

Stump:

And just one more thing before we get to your book itself. You mentioned your own position in there, that you’re skeptical of some of the common ancestry. Can you say more about that? What do you accept in that regard and where do you think the limits of that are?

Meyer:  

Yeah, I think that’s actually, that’s a great question and a research question, one to which we should all be open. I wrote a whole book, as you know, about the Cambrian explosion, which is an event in the history of life in which most of the major animal body plans emerge abruptly in the fossil record, within windows of time that are far too short for the mutation selection mechanism or any other evolutionary mechanism on offer to account for the amount of innovation, morphological innovation, that arises. And what we see, therefore, in the fossil record, is something—a profound discontinuity between the types of organisms that existed in the pre-Cambrian. In a subsequent essay that I’ve written with paleontologists, Gunter Bechly, the German paleontologists, who was formerly at the Stuttgart Museum of Natural History in Germany, I documented with him that there are many such events in the history of life that are at the higher taxonomic categories of phyla, classes and orders, at least, we have major discontinuities and that is the overwhelming pattern of fossil appearance in the in the sedimentary column. And so there’s profound fossil discontinuity in the history of life. And fossils are, after all, our the most direct evidence we have about the history of life. 

Now, the advocates of universal common descent, have in recent years emphasized that the fossil evidence isn’t for them the primary evidence they would instead point to homology, similarities in the sequences of genes and proteins in different organisms. And there too however, I see profound evidence of discontinuity particularly in what are called orphan genes, genes that have no known sequence similarity to any other organism in the phylogenetic landscape, and in, especially at higher taxonomic categories. Orphan genes are turning out to be quite prevalent across the landscape. And so I think we’re seeing both fossil and genomic discontinuity, which suggests to me a picture of the history of life that looks much more like a lawn, or rather probably an orchard of separate trees, rather than one giant tree that connects all at the base. But you can see just in the way I’ve framed that, that that raises the question that you raised, how wide are the envelopes of variability? Where do we see evidence of continuity and descent with modification from ancestral forms? And where do we see separate origins of new forms? I think there is evidence of separate origin of new forms, especially at the higher taxonomic categories. I think the mutation selection mechanism does a nice job of explaining small scale variation, but large scale innovation is—I think it does not explain well. And I think even many leading evolutionary biologists are acknowledging that that’s their call for new mechanisms of evolution. And….

Stump: 

Does that lead you then to be in the, what is sometimes known as progressive creation camp, where God over time is creating these things separately?

Meyer:

I think the evidence suggests that. I’ve never really been—I’ve been involved in detecting the activity of design by looking at features of systems that are known from our experience to arise from one and only one source, namely intelligence. For example, when we look at the Cambrian explosion, one of the deep puzzles, one which our mutual colleague, Darrell Falk, acknowledged in his review of my last book is the role of what are called gene regulatory networks, developmental gene regulatory networks. These are essentially networks that are—they’re functioning like integrated circuits that control the flow of information and the differentiation of cells and cell types during animal development. And what we’ve learned in studying these in the laboratory, in model systems, in developmental biology, is that they cannot be altered or altered very much at all without deleterious and indeed lethal effects to the organisms that possess them. And yet to build a new form of animal life you need an absolutely new developmental gene regulatory network. It’s not one size fits all. So It raises this deep puzzle in evolutionary developmental biology. How do you generate innovation in the form of new body plans, when what is needed are new developmental gene regulatory networks, when pre-existing developmental gene regulatory networks cannot be altered, without lethal consequences? And so this, to me, suggests the need for a novel innovation for a separate origin for these animals. They do not look to be capable of arising from—by a series of gradual steps from something simpler. And so I’m comfortable with the idea that we might detect separate instances of designing intelligence. And indeed, developmental gene regulatory, when mapped in its functional system is mapped, it looks for all the world like a very sophisticated integrated circuit. And we know of only one cause of integrated circuits and that cause is intelligent designers. So I think we’re seeing indications of the activity of designing intelligence. And I think we see that at discrete points along the timeline. And so I’m comfortable thinking of intelligent design as having occurred more than once. And if that makes me a progressive creationist, then so be it, but I haven’t really been concerned to sort out my position in relation to these different camps within the Christian world, but rather, mainly to detect design.

[musical interlude]

BioLogos

Hi Language of God listeners. We wanted to take a quick break from the episode to tell you about the BioLogos resource centers found at our website, biologos.org. You’ll find articles, videos, and other resources curated for pastors, educators, youth ministry, campus ministry and small groups. Help bring the science and faith conversation to the places that are important to you. Just click the resources tab at the top of the page. Now back to the conversation. 

Interview Part Two

Stump:

Let’s get to your new book here. The Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Scientific Discoveries that Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe. Let me see if I can briefly describe it in a way that you think is accurate. I have three sentences here, and then we’ll see if you agree with this. There’s a brand of science communicators out there who claim that scientific advances have shown that we no longer need to appeal to a creator or a designing God to explain why the world is here, or why the world is the way it is. You say that’s not correct. And particularly for these three scientific discoveries, the beginning of the universe, the fine tuning of it, and the origin of information. For these, purely natural explanations are not sufficient and we still have to appeal to an intelligent designer for how things got to be the way they are. And the best scientific explanations for these events incorporate the direct action of God, the direct action, even of the God of personal theism. Is that a fair broad overview of what you’re trying to do in the book? 

Meyer:

Well it is, but I pick on two words you use just to maybe reveal the differences between our perspectives a bit. The word “still have to” because that implies there’s a kind of default assumption of naturalism that we must adopt in order to do good science, that as science progresses, we should eliminate appeals to creative intelligence or agency or intelligent design, or to God. And the title of my book suggests a little different way of telling this story. And that is that science gave rise—rather that a Judeo Christian context gave rise to modern science for Judeo Christian reasons. That science arose in Western Europe during the period of what’s called the scientific revolution, variously dated between 1500 and 1750, or with some historians going back into the late Catholic Middle Ages, into the 1300s, when many of the important methods of scientific investigation were first developed at places like Oxford, the University of Paris. In other words, Christianity played a seminal role in the foundation of modern science for reasons that reflected a biblical worldview. And that this was—a theistic perspective was a science starter, not only in providing presuppositions that encouraged empirical investigation, the look for lawful order, the confidence and the intelligibility of nature and the like, but also as an explanatory framework for some of the things that were discovered by the natural philosophers, which is what scientists were called at the time. And so theism was entirely fruitful for science, and both as an explanatory principle and as a providing a set of presuppositions that inspired the inquiry. In my book, I tell that story, the first few chapters, and then also describe how that perspective was reversed or lost, or certainly attenuated by the late 19th century, when a different worldview came to dominate the front, a different worldview framework came to dominate how we did science and that that framework is scientific naturalism or scientific materialism. And the argument I’m making in the book is that there are three discoveries, at least, but three big ones that suggest that that scientific materialist framework is inadequate and instead that theism can provide, can uniquely provide, an explanatory framework for understanding those discoveries, just as it has long provided the presuppositional foundations for doing science itself. 

Stump:

Yeah. I want to talk a little bit more about that naturalism and definition of science in just a little bit. But let me first ask, it’s a new move, isn’t it, for you to explicitly identify the mind or designer in your arguments as the God of personal theism? We should note that you’ve talked about your own Christian faith, but that’s not what you’re arguing for in the book, right? Jesus doesn’t make any appearances in your book.

Meyer:

Yeah, it’s a development of a line of thinking that I’ve been chewing on for 35 years. And it’s absolutely correct. In my first two books, Darwin’s Doubt and Signature in the Cell, I made the case for intelligent design as the best explanation for the informational properties of living systems, and argued that a designing mind of some kind provides that best explanation, based on our uniform and repeated experience of what it takes to generate information in a digital or functional form. But I didn’t attempt to identify the designer. In both books, I had a final chapter in which I said that I personally thought these discoveries had theistic implications, and that they were friendly to theistic belief. But I didn’t argue that only theism could explain them, and allow that people might consider some other types of designing agents if they wished. In this book, I address a question that many of my readers then asked, which is, who do you think the designing intelligence responsible for life in the universe is? And what can science tell us about that question? So this is, if you will, in evolutionary development in my own thinking, all heading in the same direction. I’ve been a theist, since, as I mentioned, my college years. But I’ve been—many people thought that the reason that I or other ID proponents didn’t attempt to identify the designing intelligence that we thought we could detect, that we do think we can detect from certain evidence, as God or a personal God was a matter of public relations. But for me, it was really a matter of not overstating my case. If you look just at the biology, it isn’t, it is logically possible, that we might be dealing with an agent that acted after the beginning of the universe, and therefore could be considered imminent, or within the creation, or within the universe. Or we might be dealing with an agent who acted after the beginning of the universe, but who also acted at the beginning of the universe, and in some way transcends the universe as a whole. In other words, God. And so I didn’t want to get into that argument in the first two books, but I’ve engaged it directly in this one.

Stump: 

Are you concerned at all, and probably my tone in the very question itself betrays the fact that I have some concern, that a theistic God that is shorn of any specific tradition can pretty quickly become the God of the philosopher’s, just just a clever idea that might solve some conceptual problems, but seems to lack qualities like love and lordship or a call on our lives, without which I’m not sure the Christian tradition would even recognize such an entity as God. 

Meyer:

Well, I am concerned about that only insofar as I—well, I would only be concerned about that if I didn’t think there were good theologians and biblical scholars and others around to provide what general revelation cannot provide. I take from you know—and I made this clear, not all proponents of intelligent design are Christians. Some are Jewish theists. Others are theists who are not associated with a religious tradition, or perhaps with some other religious traditions. But as a Christian, who is a biblical Christian, I take the revelation of the Bible authoritatively. I think St. Paul in Romans 1 tells us both that there is a place for what’s called natural theology, that from the things that are made, the unseen qualities of the Creator, His eternal power and divine nature—in earlier translations of the Bible, divine nature was rendered as wisdom—so his wisdom and his power are manifest in the creation. I think—so from what’s made we can tell not only that God exists, but something of his characteristics, his eternal power. And some Christian apologists take that further and want to say that we can deduce the plan of salvation or things like that from nature. I don’t think that the Bible itself would affirm that. I think that there is both a place for natural theology, that the argument from nature can be pushed quite far. And but it can’t be pushed beyond inferring the reality of God and some of his attributes. To get further than that you need not just general revelation, the general revelation of nature, but also the special revelation of Scripture, which tells of the acts of God in time and space history, from the creation forward. And so if there were no theologians around doing their job, I would be concerned that people might want to take the arguments that I’ve made as saying all that could be said about God. But I think there’s a lot more to be said about God. And I think, for that we’d require God’s special revelation through His Word. And this is why I love the metaphor that the early scientists used, talking about both the Word of God but also his work. So they talked about the book of nature and the book of Scripture, we can tell some things about him from the book of nature, and I’ve done my best to make a case for the things that I think can be—that are now being revealed by discoveries in natural sciences. 

Stump:  

Well, I think we’ll find a couple things to disagree about. But before we do that, I really want to acknowledge some substantial areas of agreement here, as you did just a little bit ago. We at BioLogos, and I guess I shouldn’t presume to speak for everybody, but in general, the people aligned with us who accept the consensus views of science in cosmology and biology still, like you, oppose the New Atheists and others in their interpretation that science has somehow rendered belief in God obsolete. Another point of agreement, the origin of the universe, even fine tuning sure seem to me to cry out for something more, something beyond the natural order of things for explaining—and I know that Stephen Hawking and Lawrence Krauss argue that once we understand the nature of time or quantum fluctuations or something, we’ll see that we’re making a category mistake—but to me, it sure seems like we’re still left with the ‘why is there anything at all’ question, right? Why is there something rather than nothing? And science doesn’t seem to have anything ultimately to say about that. I’m perhaps less hesitant than you about the multiverse as a potential scientific explanation for the origin of our universe and its fine tuning but then in complete agreement with you, I think I’d say that only pushes the problem back another step. Where does the multiverse come from?

Meyer: 

Yeah, that’s actually my main point, Jim, whether there is or is not a multiverse. For the multiverse advocate to explain the incredible, find incredible improbabilities associated with the fine tuning parameters, there must be a universe generating mechanism in order that the universe can be portrayed as our universe can be portrayed as the lucky winner of a giant cosmic lottery. If instead, all we have are other universes out there, but they’re causally disconnected from our own, and there’s no common cause of all the universes, then things that happen in those other universes have no effect on ours, including no effect on whatever it is that set the fine tuning parameters at the beginnings. The multiverse hypothesis only works as an explanation of the fine tuning if you have universe generating mechanisms. And two that have been proposed, are based—one is based on string theory and the others based on what’s called inflationary cosmology. And in both cases, in order for those universe generating mechanisms to explain the fine tuning, even in theory, or sorry, to explain how those mechanisms can produce other universes, even in theory, those universe generating mechanisms themselves require prior unexplained fine tuning. So either way, we have unexplained fine tuning, and yet in our experience systems that are known to be finely tuned, by which we mean systems that are, that manifest an ensemble of parameters that are jointly extremely improbable and which together accomplish some functional end or exemplify some set of functional requirements—things like French recipes, or internal combustion engines or Swiss swatches, these are all finely tuned and they all have in common that they were produced by intelligent agents. So absent any explanation for the ultimate fine tuning of the universe, and we are absent such an explanation even with the multiverse, I think intelligent design stands as the best explanation for fine tuning, whether you adopt a multiverse or not.

Stump: 

Your your third case then which— 

Meyer: 

Oh, sorry, I interrupted. You were on a roll. 

Stump:

Totally fine. Your third example you bring up that gets more into biology is probably where we start to disagree on some of the substance of specific scientific claims. But I don’t think I’m the right person to engage you in that. And I’d rather probe a little deeper into the philosophical side of things, which will bring us back to even some of these other topics that you’ve brought up. Because here’s where I think we might disagree a little bit, and this might go many different directions. I’m happy to go where you want to with it. But I’m gonna start with the title of your book itself. I’m suspicious that it’s the right way to treat God as a hypothesis that seems to compete with the scientific hypothesis. And here’s what I mean by that: so the new atheists, as you rightly point out, frame the question for any phenomenon, the origin of the universe, the origin of life, or even for a sunset, as either there’s a natural scientific explanation, or you have to appeal to God to explain it. And then they claim to have this complete scientific explanation so you don’t need God. Whereas you say, no, that science is incorrect. We still—and here, you’re going to bring up my “still” again, and I’m happy to dig deeper into this—we still do need God for this. But what I want to say is that I disagree with the framing of that question itself, that it’s not either God or the accepted scientific science of the day. What’s your reaction to that?

Meyer: 

Well, first of all, I think the theory of intelligent design is a properly scientific hypothesis. It is developed and I developed it self-consciously using the same method of scientific reasoning that Darwin used in the origin of species, that is to say, I employ a method known as multiple competing hypotheses or inference to the best explanation. And it’s a standard method of reasoning used in a number of disciplines, but especially in historical scientific disciplines that are concerned to establish the causal explanation for events in the remote past. And so when we’re dealing with origins questions, there are two basic possibilities: either undirected material processes produced the events or structures that we want to explain, or the creative intelligence played a role. And I think a fully rational scientific discourse should be open to hypotheses of both types. And what has happened is that since Darwin, the rule of methodological naturalism has come to predominate or to ascend to the established as normative. And that has limited the intellectual freedom of scientists to consider the possibility that what they’re looking at is actually the product of a designing intelligence. And yet we find features in living systems that are, in our experience, produced by only intelligent agency. 

But when I go further than just arguing that an intelligent design of some kind played a role in the history of life for the universe, and actually use the same method to address a second order question about the identity of the designing intelligence. I’m perfectly happy to characterize that as a metaphysical explanation, if you will. And in fact, the competing explanations that I deal with in this book are competing worldviews, they’re things like materialism, pantheism, deism, or panspermia, which you might want to characterize as a scientific hypothesis or as a metaphysical hypothesis. And in fact, I’m not really concerned about those definitional questions of what an idea—how we should classify ideas or hypotheses. So for me something could be scientific and could be metaphysical at the same time because there—this gets to the what’s called the demarcation problem in the philosophy of science. There’s not a bright line between the two. But there’s a wonderful passage in one of Dawkins’ books, which I employ in my book, to frame the issue. He says that, “the universe has exactly the properties we should expect if at bottom there was no purpose, no design, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference,” which he’s using as a metaphor for purely materialistic processes. And I like that statement, because it frames the issue clearly. And it also implies that metaphysical hypotheses, as much as scientific ones can be tested and evaluated by looking at nature to see whether or not what we see matches what we should expect, given the hypothesis in question. And this gets into the use of, for example, some Bayesian logic.  And so I think it’s perfectly legitimate to posit a god hypothesis opposite a materialistic hypothesis. Worldviews can be tested in much the same way, not entirely in the same way, but in much the same way as scientific hypotheses, or at least some scientific hypotheses. We can’t run the experiment under controlled laboratory conditions. But that’s typical of the historical sciences, generally. We have to reconstruct what happened. We have to reconstruct the causes from the clues that are left behind. And my argument in the book is that the clues that are left behind are what we would expect, if an intelligence of a theistic sort had acted in the history of, in the origin and history of the universe, rather than what we would expect if strictly material of a strict materialistic worldview were true. After all, I don’t think he would expect a finite universe in time and space on materialism. I don’t think he would expect fine tuning. And I don’t think you would expect to find digital code in a complex information processing system at the foundation of even the simplest cells on the basis of a materialistic worldview. And I think in evidence of that, what we see the materialist scientists generating are very convoluted ad hoc hypotheses or auxiliary hypotheses, things like the multiverse, things like the idea that life was evolved someplace else in the cosmos, and then was seeded here by a space alien, or things like Hawking’s concept of imaginary time, or the idea that the universe was somehow created by a universal quantum wavefunction. These are auxiliary hypotheses that have been formulated to save the appearances, if you will, that the things that you would expect—because materialism as a worldview does not really expect what we are seeing in the natural world.

Stump:

Yeah, so let me come back to this issue of competing explanations here again, so what I hear you saying—at one level, this is just kind of an issue of semantics. You’re saying there are natural explanations, and then intelligence, or we might say, even supernatural explanations, and all of it should be called science. I’m saying there are natural explanations, and there are supernatural explanations, but only the natural ones should be called science. So that’s just semantics. But you’re going further— 

Meyer:

That’s purely semantics. And that’s been one— 

Stump:

But you’re going further in saying that those two kinds of things may be competing for the same thing. And so let me read one of one of your sentences— 

Meyer:

Right. That’s exactly what I’m saying. It doesn’t really matter how we classify the hypotheses, what matters is the comparative explanatory power. And that theism as a worldview competes directly with scientific materialism as a worldview, and scientific materialism has as a necessary corollary certain types of explanations that have been dubbed scientific, like the multiverse, which are no more or less scientific than an intelligent design hypothesis or even intelligent design hypothesis, which is explicitly theistic.

Stump:

Okay, so you, you say a page 231 in case— 

Meyer:

Yeah, sure, go ahead. 

Stump:

That, “historical scientists commonly posit a cause of the same type as but of a different magnitude from a known cause as the way of demonstrating the causal adequacy of an explanation.” So what I’m objecting to is that I don’t think God is the same type of cause just bigger than these natural causes that science appeals to. And let me give a concrete example here that it might help to push us to see where that where the real difference lies.

Meyer:

Yeah, just just briefly, I wouldn’t say that either. I’m not quite sure how you’re deriving that from that quote, but I don’t think God is the same type of cause as a materialistic cause at all.

Stump: 

So. Let me give this— 

Meyer: 

That’s a methodological consideration. For example, in Darwinism, you can’t actually see natural selection and random variation. Darwin couldn’t see it producing the kinds of large scale innovations in the history of life that the fossil record attested to, but he could see it producing small scale changes. And then he said, “well, I can extrapolate from what I see if I have enough time and then I can propose natural selection is causally adequate to produce the big changes as well.” So that discussion was a discussion of an accepted methodological principle of extrapolation in order to establish causal adequacy. It wasn’t really saying that God is the same type of cause as a materialistic cause. In fact, I would say exactly the opposite of that.

Stump:

Well, that leads me to this example then to see— 

Meyer:

Yeah, go ahead. Go ahead.

Stump: 

—how you would answer this. So concrete example here. We’ve probably all seen these recent spectacular pictures from Iceland of the eruption of this volcano, whose name I won’t try to pronounce right.

Meyer:

Wise man, Jim.

Stump:

This is a pretty clearly understood scientific process that has caused the landmass of Iceland to come into being. What I want to ask is, though, would you also say that God is the creator of the landmass of Iceland? And then how do those two relate? Are those competing hypotheses? That God created Iceland and here are these tectonic plates that are moving around and causing volcanoes and allowing the landmass to come into being?

Meyer:

No, not necessarily at all. I think God created the universe, I think he had something very specific to do to setting up our planetary system with all the fine tuning, localized fine tuning parameters. But one of the parts of, I think, an appropriate natural—a biblical natural theology, one that I would subscribe to, and one that I think most intelligent design advocates subscribe to, is the idea that there are intelligent causes there can be evidence of discrete activity of intelligent agency, but there are also what are what used to be called secondary causes, that natural entities have causal powers and properties associated with them that can be studied and learned. And so explaining our world may require only an appeal to secondary causes, or might require an appeal to intelligent causes and might require an appeal to both, depending on the types of signatures or the types of effects that we’re looking at. And I hold the latter position. I think that we can detect the activity of intelligence and in certain cases, I think it’s legitimate to infer that the intelligence was likely God, especially if we’re talking about the origin of the universe itself. So I don’t deny the reality of natural entities having their own associated causal powers and properties. And therefore, I don’t deny secondary causes or the distinction between primary and secondary causes that theologians have long made.

Stump:

This gets very close to the chapter that you wrote on the God of the gaps, which I know intelligent design people are not thrilled with people labeling them as God of the gaps proponents in some sense, so I wanted to give you a chance…

Meyer:

Oh, we’re quite happy to be labeled that way, but we are going to vigorously contest the claim. It makes the argument more interesting if we clarify our differences.

Stump:

Well in your own words, then, say what’s wrong with calling intelligent design explanations god of the gaps explanations.

Meyer:

God of the gaps is a shorthand for an informal logical fallacy known as an argument from ignorance. Arguments from ignorance have the following form: we have demonstrated that cause A is insufficient to produce effect X, therefore, cause B must have done it, without offering any reason for accepting, without offering any positive evidence for the causal powers of cause B to produce X. We’re not arguing that way. The arguments that I’ve made for intelligent design are inferences to the best explanation, where something qualifies as the best explanation if and only if there is positive evidence for the causal power of the entity that is postulated as the best explanation. So when I offer intelligent agency as the best explanation for, for example, the functional digital information in the large biomolecules that are present in living cells, I do so because we have independent evidence that intelligent agents can and do generate digital information of that kind. And in fact, that there is—and this was the argument of Signature in the Cell—there are no alternative materialistic explanations that do produce that same type of information. So in the case, where you have one and only one known cause of a given type of effect, when you find that effect, you can reliably infer the activity of the one known cause of that effect. If it’s true that where there’s smoke, there’s fire, if we see smoke wafting up over the distant hillside, we can infer that there’s a fire below the hillside out of view. So the argument that we’re making for intelligent design is not an argument from a gap in knowledge, but rather it’s based on our knowledge of the effect, the digital information, that’s the or complex specified information that’s present in living systems, and also our knowledge of cause and effect, knowing that only intelligent agents produce such information as the information theorist Henry Quastler who first applied many of the concepts of information sciences to molecular biology said, “the creation have new information is habitually associated with conscious activity.” That’s part of our knowledge base. It’s not a gap in our knowledge. That’s actually—that makes the inference to intelligent design and an inference based on knowledge.

Stump:

So yeah, how would you compare that then to this kind of scenario? So you’re saying, we don’t have a plausible scientific explanation or a natural scientific explanation for something, we don’t even see how we could ever get one. We know that intelligent agents are responsible for this sort of thing. So we’re going to conclude that that’s the best explanation. How is that different than say, if in the middle of the 18th century, people said, we don’t have a plausible scientific explanation for how plants make food for themselves. And we don’t even really see how that could happen. But we know that intelligent and loving agents provide food for the creatures under their care. So let’s just say that God does it that God provides food for the plants.

Meyer:

We’re—in the case of the—in historical sciences, the place where intelligent agency or creative intelligence is most relevant as a possible explanation is in the explanation of particular events. Where it becomes problematic is when you’re replacing the activity of an intelligent agent as a singular discrete act, for example, as an explanation or description of what always happens in nature. The problem isn’t one that requires the principle of methodological naturalism to sort out, because the problem is typically sorted out by the context of the inquiry itself. So if I asked the question, “how does molecules—how does protein A bind to the cytoskeleton?” And I answered the question, “well, God did it.” I haven’t really answered the question that was posed. I want to know how two parts of nature interact with each other. And in the case of—whereas if I asked the question, “well, what produced the intricacies of the cell in the first place?” Creative intelligence is a possible answer to that question. So the context of inquiry determines whether or not creative intelligence is a relevant or a possible explanation. And where the God of the gaps problem has come in the kinds of examples that are used or where people have accused people of making god of the gaps arguments, and where they look, where it looks silly to invoke the activity of an intelligence or invoke the activity of God is where what we’re really looking for is a description of irregularity. And with your photosynthesis example, what you have is actually a regular process that’s taking place within plants, and invoking God as an explanation instead of investigating that regular process and the mechanisms that underlie it, is bringing God into the kind of an inquiry where, where a different type of description—probably not a causal explanation, but maybe causal is required. So that’s what I’d say to that.

Stump:

Yeah, I think that’s the crux of the issue there, if it is a different type of description. Those then are not in competition with each other.

Meyer:

I think there’s a very strong design argument to be made about the origin of the photosynthetic process. It’s an irreducibly complex system with multiple interacting components. Setting that up in the beginning would be very difficult to accomplish by any known natural process. Once the process is in place, we can describe in intricate detail how it works. And that would—it would be a mistake there to replace God for that kind of description, when what we’re looking for is to know what are the causal powers associated with these properties and systems once they’re set up. And this is where people went off the rails in accusing Newton of a god of the gaps argument. And this is, as you, if you’ve read, you know, the last chapter or second to last chapter in the book on the God of the gaps argument–

Stump:

I did. 

Meyer:

People have accused Newton of having made a god of the gaps argument and I went back to the primary sources and found that he did not make the argument that was ascribed to him. And typically what people point to is his statement in the General Scholium to the Principia where he says, “this most beautiful system of sun, planets and comets could only proceed from the council and dominion of an intelligent and powerful being.” And he contrasts, he acknowledges that the system, the description, the ongoing operation of the system can be described accurately using the law of gravity. But the law of gravity alone could not explain the initial condition, fine tuning of the system that was required to make it stable in the first place. And those are two different contexts of inquiry. The one is about the ultimate causal origins, where I think a creative intelligence is a completely legitimate hypothesis to consider. And the other is about describing systems which already exists, natural systems that already exist, and describing the causal powers associated with them. And to invoke God as an explanation for that is a category error. But to exclude God from the other type of inquiry blinds us to a possible explanation that may be true, and therefore limits what we can discover as scientists. And I think that’s an equally problematic mistake. So I think the context of inquiries is crucial. Are we talking about origins, ultimate origins or are we—and causal origins—or are we talking about the ongoing operation of a system? I think there’s a very strong argument to be made for the designing of the photosynthetic system originally. But once it’s in place, I want to know how it works. I want to know what the parts do and what their causal powers are, and how the parts interact with each other and there to invoke God would be to miss the whole point of the inquiry.

Stump:

Our time is rapidly dwindling here. Let me let me ask you one more thing here. And I want to ask this with respect and not accusatory here, but I’m guessing we’re ultimately going to disagree on this. 

Meyer: 

You’ve been nothing but throughout the whole conversation. So no worries. This is great.

Stump:

I’m trying. I think one of the ways that our two sides is characterized differently, and I’ll say this, by my side of things, the way intelligent design is characterized differently is something like the following, and I want you to be able to respond to this, is that both of us, we agree that there are some things that science can’t explain. But on our side, we don’t typically use that as a premise for claiming that God did it. We think God did it whether or not science can explain it. And so that means there’s not much riding on—not much theological riding on whether science can explain a particular phenomenon or not. And that might make us more willing to say, “so let’s see what the science can do.” Multiverse? Sweet bring em on. That just makes God’s creation more lavish and more extravagant. And there’s a feeling I think, by people on my side, though, that your arguments depend on science getting it wrong, that it somehow then even conditions people to mistrust science. Is that an unfair characterization?

Meyer:

I think it is. But let me tell you why. Because I think in telling you, in the explanation of why will amplify, I think, some further common ground. We’re not, first of all, there’s a hidden premise in the way you framed the question, and that is that science is getting it wrong. And there’s an equation of science and naturalistic explanation. What we’re arguing is that there are some domains of science, where explanations involving both materialistic or naturalistic processes, and creative intelligence are equally relevant as possible explanations. Those sciences, I would characterize as the historical sciences, that are concerned with causal origins. And in those sciences, if we insist on a principle, such as methodological naturalism, if we insist on defining science as a purely naturalistic enterprise, we may miss the best explanation for certain types of evidence. Now, we’ve made our case for—a number of cases for, positive cases for intelligent design, we think those are properly scientific explanations. So we’re not saying that science has failed. We’re saying that materialistic explanations for certain phenomena are inadequate, and there are better explanations that involve creative intelligence. But that’s not a science stopper. Not only is it itself, a part of scientific inquiry, because part of what science does is try to explain things including causal origins. So infer, making a well justified, and detailed argument for intelligent design that’s empirically grounded is a part is part of science. It’s part of trying to know the world in its, in this case, in its causal origins. But in addition, having made that inference, many scientists and in a growing network, that’s why I call our group a research community, not just a movement, a growing network of scientists are convinced of intelligent design. And like Newton, and Boyle and Kepler, they think that premise leads to further investigations that can be fruitful for science. In other words, we’re not just inferring intelligent design, we’re now using design as a heuristic guide to further discovery. And this is one of the crucial things that has developed in our work at the Discovery Institute over the last five to seven years is that we have been supporting a number of research project projects that mainstream universities around the world that are predicated on the premise of design, these are scientists who are convinced enough, they don’t think, they don’t see the need to make a case for it anymore. They want to use the concept to help their investigations of life. So design is proving to be a fruitful heuristic, not a science stopper just as it was for Newton and Boyle and the scientists during the period of the scientific revolution.

Stump:

So I guess I’m afraid that your position gives science too much prestige and too much authority by including every, you know everything into it. I want to limit science, I want to say science needs to stay in its proper place, and only gets to answer these kinds of questions instead of making it so expansive that science is the only game in town again, functionally, almost for some of the, you know, the new atheists that think every question can be answered by science. What are the limits of science in your view?

Meyer:

Well, you’re talking to a philosopher of science and one with profound philosophical inclinations. I don’t know if I’m a profound philosopher, but I’ve always had philosophical inclinations. And so I’ve always been interested in the big questions that are at the intersection between science and philosophy. I think it’s fascinating that scientific discoveries have helped us address questions that were previously thought to be solely philosophical. Questions about, for example, whether the universe had a beginning or not. I think science, the science of—neuroscience is helping us to understand more, not only about the human brain, but I think it’s also providing evidence that there’s more than just the brain, that there’s a mind at work controlling the brain. But I don’t think by any means that the empirical evidence of science is the whole show. I’m not a scientist. I oppose—I’m not a scientist in the sense of being in favor of scientism. So science certainly can tell us what is. After all, actually, let’s even back up on this. I think we have a problem of nominalism here, because science isn’t a thing. What we mean by science is a shorthand word for scientia, for knowledge. So we have different types of knowledge. We have knowledge derived from examining documents about the past, we call that history. We have knowledge that is derived from examining life, we call that biology. We have knowledge that’s derived from looking at physical processes, we call that physics. So I’m not saying that science, what we mean by the natural sciences can tell us everything. I think the historical sciences can tell us some things that the natural sciences can’t. But in all of my work, I’ve integrated a philosophical approach to the analysis of scientific data. So I’m surely not someone who advocates scientism, or that what we call natural sciences provides all of knowledge. And I certainly think the humanities and philosophy and theology and the Bible provide other forms of knowledge. So no, I’m not a reductionist. I don’t think that all knowledge comes from one source. But I want to be open to all the knowledge that the study of the natural world can provide. And the imposition of a rule, like methodological naturalism that prevents us from considering evidence of design in nature, I think is actually a form of scientism, because it’s saying, we can only have materialistic explanations, even if evidence that very strongly points in a non-materialistic direction is again, staring us in the face.

Stump:

Well, these are interesting and important questions. And unfortunately, our time for this is gone. And we won’t sort out all those differences. But I will say that reading your book and preparing to talk to you has forced me to think more carefully and at least attempt to articulate more clearly what I think on some of these topics. So I thank you for that. And you’ve obviously thought long and hard about this material. And I appreciate very much that you agreed to come on to our podcast and have a civil conversation with me about this. Perhaps we’ll do it again this time.

Meyer:

Well you too, Jim. Yeah, this was great. And these were very good and deep and probing questions, and it made for a very deep conversation. So I’m glad you reached out. Thank you very much. And I hope we do a little more of the handshake at the middle of the court with the Discovery Institute and BioLogos. So thank you and hat tip, and let’s do it again.

Credits

BioLogos:

Language of God is produced by BioLogos. It has been funded in part by the John Templeton Foundation and more than 300 individuals who donated to our crowdfunding campaign. Language of God is produced and mixed by Colin Hoogerwerf. That’s me. Our theme song is by Breakmaster Cylinder. We are produced out of the remote workspaces and homes of BioLogos staff in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

If you have questions or want to join in a conversation about this episode find a link in the show notes for the BioLogos forum. Find more episodes of Language of God on your favorite podcast app or at our website, biologos.org, where you will also find tons of great articles and resources on faith and science. Thanks for listening. 


Featured guest

stephen c meyer

Stephen C. Meyer

Stephen C. Meyer is the Director of the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture. He received his PhD in the philosophy of science from Cambridge. He is a leading advocate for intelligent design and has written several books on the subject, including his most recent book, Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Scientific Discoveries That Reveal the Mind Behind the Universe. 


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