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What are they key features of the design argument for the existence of God? Identify the strengths of the argument - To what extent are the strengths more convincing than the weaknesses?

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Introduction

What are they key features of the design argument for the existence of God? Identify the strengths of the argument. To what extent are the strengths more convincing than the weaknesses? The Design argument is a theory based on the idea that everything in the Universe is ordered. It is also known as the Telelogical argument, derived from the Greek word "telos" meaning "end" or "purpose." The basic and fundamental proposal of the design argument is that because of the apparent order that is present in the Universe and on earth, we must conclude that there is an element of design involved. To design something, it is logical to presuppose that there must be a designer. This designer is God. The design argument is spilt into two parts; design qua regularity and design qua purpose. Design qua regularity argues that the order and regularity evident in the universe is proof of a designer. For example a formal garden shows evidence of a Gardner because of its order- the way it has been weeded and the way the flowers have been arranged. There is also order and regularity in the universe, for example the way the different planets rotate. Philosophers say this proves that it cannot have been just random chance. ...read more.

Middle

The Anthropic Principle, again developed by Tennant, is a more scientific (n.b Anthropic: linked to science) method of supporting the design argument. The conditions of chemicals and gasses at the time of creation where in just the right proportions for the development of human life. If these values had been even just a tiny bit different then this would not have been possible. With this in mind we are encouraged to conclude that, with such a minute chance, surely the universe must have been designed. There are weaknesses in the design argument that can be expressed. The basis of the argument "There is order in the universes, the universe has been designed, God has designed the universe" is an a posteriori argument. The universe certainly isn't ordered in the same perfect way as a watch is ordered. This shows Paley's analogy to be flawed. For example how can the world be in a state of perfect order when we have what is called "natural evil" in the world. Is nature not sometimes chaotic, not ordered? How does the design argument explain earthquakes and other natural disasters? We are told that God is benevolent, omnipotent and omniscient. If God created nature in such an ordered and perfect way, then why would he allow these aspects of it into his "divine plan"? ...read more.

Conclusion

It is easy to relate to the argument as humans are themselves designers by nature. It is natural for humans to think of things as having a purpose. The argument also makes good use of analogy. Whether this is using a watch, television or an acorn, using concrete images to explain abstract ideas aids our understanding of the argument by placing it within a context that can be easily understood. Some have also cited the argument's strength comes from its relation with religious materials, for example the creation story. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." For believers in God, this confirms and cements their beliefs. In conclusion, the success of the Design Argument rests upon probability and individual judgment. The Design Argument, as illustrated by the various criticisms of it, is by no means conclusive, if it was then everyone would know that God exists. If you believe that the universe is a product of blind chance then the design argument will not be strong enough to change your beliefs. I.e. it won't convince an atheist. However, the idea of the universe just being here, a brute fact, a product of blind chance and nothing more is a personally unsatisfactory one due to the extraordinary nature of the universe and so whist the Design Argument may not conclusively prove the existence of God it suggests that the existence of a Designer, who we know as God, is a more probable likelihood than not. ...read more.

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