Stephen Meyer's "The Return of the God Hypothesis"
A caller on Michael Medved's Science and Culture Update today challenged Discovery Institute's Stephen Meyer and Oxford mathematician John Lennox in a way that prompted an important distinction from Dr. Meyer.
A theme of the program was the connection between a culture's predominant worldview and the practical expressions of that view of reality -- cultural, moral, spiritual, and scientific. Dr. Lennox spoke about the way that the Western religious heritage shaped and really gave birth to our common scientific heritage. But the caller pointed out that even so, that's not necessarily an argument against materialism as a true description of reality. Maybe science was initially nourished by a mythology -- that the universe is subject to a divine lawgiver, a designer whose will science was invited to investigate. Perhaps that myth is something we are now ready to step past as we move onward in our shared search for truth.
Meyer's response was that there are two distinct and independent questions. First, whether a theistic view is culturally nourishing, more so than a materialist one. But second, which view more closely approaches a valid description of objective truth. Theism might be fruitful and healthy...yet objectively false. In that context, Meyer referred listeners to his essay "The Return of the God Hypothesis." You'll find it here.
From the abstract:
Historian of science Frederic Burnham has stated that the God hypothesis is now a more respectable hypothesis than at any time in the last one hundred years. This essay explores recent evidence from cosmology, physics, and biology, which provides epistemological support, though not proof, for belief in God as conceived by a theistic worldview. It develops a notion of epistemological support based upon explanatory power, rather than just deductive entailment. It also evaluates the explanatory power of theism and its main metaphysical competitors with respect to several classes of scientific evidence. The conclusion follows that theism explains a wide ensemble of metaphysically-significant evidences more adequately and comprehensively than other major worldviews or metaphysical systems. Thus, unlike much recent scholarship that characterizes science as either conflicting with theistic belief or entirely neutral with respect to it, this essay concludes that scientific evidence actually supports such belief.
Stayed tuned here. We'll let you know when next week's Science and Culture Update will air.