Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design by Stephen C. Meyer

Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design by Stephen C. Meyer

Author:Stephen C. Meyer
Language: eng
Format: mobi, epub
Tags: Non-Fiction, Science, Philosophy, Religion
Publisher: HarperOne
Published: 2009-06-23T00:00:00+00:00

Conclusion

Since the intelligent-design hypothesis meets both the causal-adequacy and causal-existence criteria of a best explanation, and since no other competing explanation meets these conditions as well—or at all—it follows that the design hypothesis provides the best, most causally adequate explanation of the origin of the information necessary to produce the first life on earth. Indeed, our uniform experience affirms that specified information—whether inscribed in hieroglyphics, written in a book, encoded in a radio signal, or produced in a simulation experiment—always arises from an intelligent source, from a mind and not a strictly material process. So the discovery of the specified digital information in the DNA molecule provides strong grounds for inferring that intelligence played a role in the origin of DNA. Indeed, whenever we find specified information and we know the causal story of how that information arose, we always find that it arose from an intelligent source. It follows that the best, most causally adequate explanation for the origin of the specified, digitally encoded information in DNA is that it too had an intelligent source. Intelligent design best explains the DNA enigma.

By the late 1990s, I had become convinced—at least provisionally—that intelligent design was the only known cause of specified information. As a result, I began to sketch out the case for intelligent design as the best explanation for the DNA enigma. In the years that followed (1998–2003), I published a series of articles arguing that intelligent design provides a better explanation than any competing chemical evolutionary model for the origin of biological information.36 Since then I have continued to examine additional hypotheses and simulations such as the RNA world and genetic algorithms. The case for intelligent design has grown only stronger. Not only have these new approaches failed to provide an adequate explanation for the origin of biological information; they have strengthened the positive case for design that I had previously formulated.

Though advocates of intelligent design have been labeled by some of their opponents as creationists (even “creationists in cheap tuxedos”!), the case for intelligent design depends, ironically, upon a form of scientific reasoning—namely, uniformitarian reasoning—that creationists have often bitterly opposed. Indeed, the case for intelligent design depends on the uniformitarian method of scientific reasoning that Darwin himself used in formulating his argument in On the Origin of Species. In light of this and the evidence considered in the preceding chapters, I eventually answered the question that had first seized my attention back in 1985. I concluded that a rigorous scientific argument for intelligent design could be formulated. This chapter has described exactly how I came to that conclusion and why I think it best.



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