The Design Argument

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What is the design argument?
The design argument is the idea that the entire universe was designed and created by a divine creator (God) and is affirmed by the clear and obvious patterns present everyday
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How does Plato define the design argument?
"Human body, including all it's complexities, must have originated from the royal mind and soul in the nature of Zeus"
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What type of argument is the design argument?
Teleological
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How does Aquinas present the design argument?
The design argument is the fifth of his 5 ways in Summa Theologica to prove the existence of God. He states that natural bodies achieve their end, not fortuitously, but designedly. Whatever lacks knowledge cannot move towards an end unless directed
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What analogy does Aquinas use?
Aquinas states that organic matter that lacks knowledge (trees/plants/animals) must be directed. They are the arrow. He then states that God, with ultimate knowledge, controls them. He is the archer.
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What is Aquinas' argument from the point of?
Aquinas argues from design, as he refers to the existence of design without proving it exists. "Design qua regularity" world's order = designer = God
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How does Paley argue for the design argument?
He formed his own version of Aquinas' point in his book Natural Theology. He presents an argument both for and from design.
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What analogy does Paley use?
Paley uses the analogy of a Watchmaker. He states that a man walks through a desert and finds a stone, he concludes it must have been there forever. He then finds a watch. The man thinks it must have been deigned due to intricate nature and purpose
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How does Paley use his analogy to validate the design argument?
He states that as one cannot come across an object with such intricacy and clear purpose without thinking there is a clear designer, therefore the world cannot have occurred by chance as there are too many patterns and clear designs
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What other human analogy does Paley use?
Paley uses the analogy of an eye and states that this was designed for sight, much like the telescope was designed for assisting sight.
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What is the anthropic principle?
The anthropic principle was created by Tennant and argues that the best evidence for design is that the universe can support intelligent life. The earth supports and provides everything for humans to survive and keeps everything in balance.
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What is the aesthetic principle?
the aesthetic principle was developed by Tennant as part of the anthropic principle and argues that evolution has no explanation for the love of art, music, literature etc. As these do not aid survival, natural selection cannot account for them
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What are Swinburne's views?
Swinburne uses a fine tuning argument, as he argues that the universe is too coordinated to be like it on it's own. He states that although science can explain the laws that work together it cannot explain why they work in unison
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Who challenges the design argument?
1. Hume 2. Kant 3. Mill
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How does Hume challenge the design argument?
He uses the dialogue between Cleanthes and Philo. C states that every aspect of the world bears the mark of design. P argues that using analogies to prove design it limits God to a less than perfect being (human) which weakens their argument
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How does Philo hint at a pre-Darwinian theory in Hume's dialogue?
Philo states that animals that are not well adapted to their surroundings will die off and the 'design' is just the need for survival
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What are Hume's other views on the design argument?
1. The existence of evil seriously undermines the likelihood of a loving god, therefore the design argument does not point to a god of classical theism. 2. The world might have been one of many attempts by an apprentice god. 3. Epicurean Hypothesis
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What is the Epicurean Hypothesis?
The Epicurean Hypothesis is the argument that the universe was chaotic but within it's vast lifetime the natural forces have calmed down and ordered themselves into a type of system. This has mistakenly given the illusion of design
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How does Kant argue against the design argument?
He questions how we can ever be sure of the true existence of order. He states the design argument is invalid as humans naturally categorise and order our experiences, therefore we created a false design.
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How does J.S Mill argue against the design argument?
Mill argues that as there is obvious evil, both in humans and nature, that if there was a designer he was not of classical theistic values. He then argues that there was either a cruel/evil designer (god) or no designer at all
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What does Dawkins state about the design argument?
He argues that the impressive system of natural selection has been misinterpreted by theists as evidence for design
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What is Dawkins explanation for the Aesthetic Principle?
Dawkins states that there are memes (units of cultural inheritance) which are ideas that are passed through genes and are affected by natural selection and contribute to survival.
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What analogy does Dawkins use?
Dawkins uses Paley's example of the watchmaker and manipulates it to say that there is inly one watchmaker within the universe, and that is natural selection. He calls N.S a blind watchmaker as it has no end purpose, unlike an actual watchmaker
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What are John Lennox's views on the design argument?
He states that science is limited and cannot answer elementary questions such as "who am I?" or "what is the purpose of my existence?". It is also unable to explain the existence of morals/appreciation of beauty therefore must be a reason(a designer)
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How does Plato define the design argument?

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"Human body, including all it's complexities, must have originated from the royal mind and soul in the nature of Zeus"

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What type of argument is the design argument?

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How does Aquinas present the design argument?

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What analogy does Aquinas use?

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