Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-99c86f546-7mfl8 Total loading time: 0.338 Render date: 2021-12-01T04:50:52.538Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

1 - Introduction

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 June 2014

Benjamin C. Jantzen
Affiliation:
Virginia College of Technology
Get access

Summary

What this book is about

Broadly speaking, we human beings use two conceptual schemes or ‘paradigms’ to explain the world in which we find ourselves. In the ‘teleological paradigm’ natural events are explained in terms of the same sorts of purposes, means, and goals we use to explain our own behavior. Within the ‘naturalistic paradigm’, the world is explained in terms of natural laws and mindless processes. The naturalistic paradigm has been enormously successful. As an underlying framework for science, this way of approaching the world has yielded a vast knowledge of natural phenomena, as well as the technology which distinguishes our modern way of life from all that came before. The teleological paradigm on the other hand is ancient and deeply intuitive. The oldest human accounts of nature were made from this perspective. The creation stories of cultures around the world – from the Babylonian account in which Merodach fashions the world from the corpse of the great Mother dragon Tiamat, to the biblical story of Genesis – are examples of teleological explanations. While such explanations have been largely displaced by appeals to natural law, one product of the teleological paradigm continues to remain relevant: the family of ‘design arguments’ for the existence of God.

Design arguments are characterized, not surprisingly, by appeals to design. Each such argument urges us to accept that one or another aspect of the world or of things in the world is the product of purposeful, intelligent agency. That is, each design argument attempts to establish that some aspect of the natural world was designed. From there, it is a short mental hop to the existence of a designer. After all, the presence of design in the world surely implies the existence of a designer. For the arguments we will examine, that designer is typically (though not always) understood to be the Christian God.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2014

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

  • Introduction
  • Benjamin C. Jantzen, Virginia College of Technology
  • Book: An Introduction to Design Arguments
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511793882.003
Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

  • Introduction
  • Benjamin C. Jantzen, Virginia College of Technology
  • Book: An Introduction to Design Arguments
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511793882.003
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Introduction
  • Benjamin C. Jantzen, Virginia College of Technology
  • Book: An Introduction to Design Arguments
  • Online publication: 05 June 2014
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511793882.003
Available formats
×