Newton's Four Rules

With archaeology and forensic science we can and do detect agency involvement. Using Newton’s four rules of scientific reasoning allows us to distinguish between telic and non-telic processes, ie whether an intelligent agency is required or not. To do so we use our knowledge of cause and effect relationships.

Using Newton’s four rules we are also armed with the methodology to refute/ falsify any given design inference.

Welcome @JoeG, I’m glad to have you here.

What the heck are Newton’s Four Rules?

It’s not that thing that starts “God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life,” is it?

  1. Life’s a fig.
  2. Don’t be a pig.
  3. Prunes are nice, too.
  4. Whatever you do, don’t read the labels too closely. We reserve the right to substitute ingredients without notice.

They occur in his Principia, at the start of Book III, the System of the World:

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Good to see you @pnelson. Can you define and explain them? Educate us.

See? The good guys show up as soon as I make a bad joke! Good to hear from you, @pnelson . Mine were just guesses… : )


Newton’s four rules of scientific reasoning

1- We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances.

2- Therefore to the same natural effects we must, as far as possible, assign the same causes.

3- The qualities of bodies, which admit neither intension nor remission of degrees, and which are found to belong to all bodies within the reach of our experiments, are to be esteemed the universal qualities of all bodies whatsoever.

4- In experimental philosophy we are to look upon propositions collected by general induction from phænomena as accurately or very nearly true, notwithstanding any contrary hypotheses that may be imagined, till such time as other phænomena occur, by which they may either be made more accurate, or liable to exceptions.

Thanks for having me.


Thanks @JoeG , interesting blast from the past, but I’m not sure how this helps you

Nor is this does this appear like modern scientific reasoning.

Thank you, Paul.

That is standard operating procedure for doing just that. How do you think archaeologists and forensic scientists do it? SETI definitely follows those rules.

Anyone looking into the root cause of something has to follow those rules. Then we apply our knowledge of cause and effect relationships. Nature is good at producing rocks and stone formations but not Stonehenge.

We add intelligent agencies to nature for the cause of Stonehenge- artifacts require artisans. If someone comes along and demonstrates nature is capable of such a formation then the intelligent agency requirement is sliced off. That goes for all artifacts and alleged crimes.

Okay, help us solve this puzzle then. How was God involved in this story? How can Newton’s Four Rules and forensic science clarify the matter:

So, given this information, and anything else, was God supernaturally protecting the rescuers and the kids? Or was it just chance? Or was it both? Or neither? How does newtons rule’s tell us the answer?

What? Those rules cannot and do not point to any specific artisan. They can only tell you that at least one was required- and that is the case with Intelligent Design.

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Look at the Earth. Just think of how many just-so (lucky) cosmic collisions had to have occurred to give it its rotational speed, amount of water and terrestrial make up. Seeing that science can only allow for so much luck and the natural (as opposed to artificial) formation of the Earth is sheer dumb luck, why would anyone interested in science adhere to the naturalistic explanation?

Yet the Earth exists and there is only one reality behind the Earth’s existence. So we look at all of the factors required for that existence. The relatively large Moon to stabilize the rotation. That rotation to mix the atmospheric gasses. Etc. etc.

Then you add all of that to the fact that the Earth is the only place in the solar system with intelligent observers. And it is the only place that offers perfect/ total solar eclipses that add to our knowledge. AND because of the fact the Moon is receding those intelligent observers appeared at just the right time otherwise we wouldn’t get the same scientific information from those eclipses. Again, naturalistic explanations offer only sheer dumb luck to “explain” that coincidence.

But we still don’t get to God from that.

I get that, but how does this help you figure out the answer to these questions? Was it luck or a designer?

This should be straightforward and easy for you, or at least would seem from your confidence.

Well science can only allow so much luck so if the evidence warrants- as in the case of life or the earth- we would go with Intelligent Design.

As for the rescue there isn’t any need to call for the supernatural. The rescuers were well trained. The kids didn’t have any reason to just die. So it was a case of humans do what we do. It was a designed rescue. It was poor luck that got them trapped.

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And it was good luck that kept that water pump working until just after all the kids had passed through?

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Interesting. So you don’t think God was involved because a naturalistic story can explain it away?

Thanks for shepherding us through this story, Josh. What were/are your sources for this underreported information? Sorry; don’t mean to get in the way of your question, here.

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