Earlier today I asked Josh what his understanding was of how God interacted with the evolutionary process. He recommended the two threads below:
After reading through the entire conversation, I thought I’d contribute my 2 cents, even though I’m not likely qualified to participate.
I’d say my position is somewhere in between Josh and John_Harshman.
Basically, if we considered all the possible scenarios of how a god could have ‘guided’ the evolutionary process, the data we presently have is sufficient to eliminate many of these scenarios, but not all of them (this is just a different way of stating Josh’s position). I don’t find the question of ‘why god would choose one of these scenarios as opposed to a better one’ particularly interesting (John’s concern), because I am not in a position to speculate what exactly a god would do. Instead, I am just looking at how the data fits with each of the different scenarios.
When I asked Josh if he felt that an approach could be devised to eventually detect this ‘divine guidance,’ he responded that he doesn’t think it could be, unless God intended to reveal Himself in this way.
I am not sure this is necessarily the case. I think evidence of intervention can be present even when its presence is not intended, as long as the intention is not to conceal such evidence. For example, if I set out to clean the leaves in my back yard, I am not there either to leave evidence that I did it or to conceal such evidence. I am there to clean up. In the process I might leave some evidence behind, like scratching the ground with the rake, or I might not. Someone looking at my yard later, might or might not have a way to tell If I cleaned up or if the wind blew away the leaves, for example. So there are three options: 1) intention to reveal, 2) intention to conceal, 3) neither.
So then it might be said that if either option 1 or 3 were correct, we would have found such evidence by now, while, if option 2 is correct, we will never find it.
I would say, however, that it might still be possible that such evidence could be found even though we have not found it yet, for two reasons:
The people who were looking for such evidence (creationists/IDers) were using a bad approach by rejecting MN.
Those who used the correct approach were not looking for it.
In light of the above, my questions are:
does everyone here think it might still be possible to find evidence of ‘divine guidance?’
if so, how exactly would one go about studying that?
if a viable approach for studying this question is devised and the evidence supports the hypothesis, will the scientific community be ready to receive these findings?