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The Design argument

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Philosopy of Religion - extended essay a) What are the key ideas of the design argument for the existence of God? The design argument argues for regularity, order and purpose in the world and says that these give proof for the existence of God. The argument is teleological, as it deals with end or purpose; inductive, because it draws a general conclusion that may not always fall logically from its premises and is a posteriori, as it is from experience and the empirical evidence of design in the world. The basic argument in its simplest form states that the universe has order, purpose and regularity and that this complexity within the universe shows evidence of design, such design would imply and designer and therefore the designer of the universe is God. William Paley presented this design argument in an analogy of a watch and a designer. Paley argued that if you found a stone on the ground you would not have the need to explain its existence with a designer, because it is not intricate or complicated. ...read more.


The Aesthetic principle is used to counter argue the claims made by Darwin that it is the survival of the fittest and human beings are just animals doing what they can to survive. The Aesthetic principle claims that the ability that human beings have to appreciate beauty in their surroundings, for example art and music shows that human beings do things beyond mere survival and therefore is evidence to show that they have a divine creator. b) Examine at least two criticisms made against this argument and consider whether or not they are successful? One of the main criticisms of the design argument has been the rise of modern science. It provides an alternative explanation without a designer. Darwin's theory of evolution conflicts with the creation story in genesis and suggests that the universe is the result of random natural selection rather than a planned design. This theory is successful in providing an explanation for the universe without the need for a designer. However Tennant's Anthropic Principle counter argues evolution suggesting that the universe seems deliberately designed for human inhabitancy and argues that this cannot be the results of chance. ...read more.


Even if the universe does show design, the design argument jumps from the premise that the universe shows design and that this suggests a designer to the idea that this designer is God. David Hume criticised the idea that design in the universe automatically leads to God. He felt that using analogy the argument leads to a "superhuman" designer, a glorified human creator rather than God. He argued that the conclusion of the design argument did not have to lead to just one God, a ship has many builders even though its parts work together and he said so could the universe. He said there are two sexes in humanity and therefore why could there not be both a male and a female god. Sometimes designers have practice attempts, why could this universe not just be a practice attempt that its designer has walked away from. David Hume's arguments are successful in showing flaws in the design argument's nature of inducing that design in the universe leads to proof for the existence of one God and suggest that instead the design in the world could lead to many gods, especially when analogy to human design is used. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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  1. The Design Argument

    We could fairly assume that such a complex design adapted to the purpose of showing the time did not come about by chance, but was the result of an intelligent design from a designer. Paley said that the universe is like a watch, and that it is clearly designed, even if we do not know its exact purpose.

  2. summary of the design argument

    Yet plants and animals are non-rational beings, something or someone must be directing them to their goal. To summarise, Aquinas demonstrates how the design argument is strong because, there is clear undoubted, beneficial order in the world which could not be by chance or intelligence of that being, the being must by directed by something of intelligence.

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