Instructor: Jason Smith
Student: Donna Delva
Critically evaluate Paley’s argument from design. What kind of argument is it? How does it work? What does it aim to show? Does Paley succeed? Why or Why not?
While theology may take God 's existence as necessary on the basis of faith, or discovery, many philosophers have thought it’s possible to prove by reason that there must be a God. The teleological argument, also known as the argument from design simply states that a designer must exist since the universe and living things display elements of design in their order, consistency, unity and pattern. It is based on observations of the order in the universe and the natural world, to conclude that it is…show more content…
Some general comments on the effect-cause relationship in the argument from design I will described below:
To argue from design is to argue from order to an end found in some thing or in a group of things to a cause capable of explaining that order. We observe that the parts of the eye work together so that we can see, and we wonder what is responsible for this order. We know that in the case of an artifact, the order of the parts in it to an end depends on there being an agent capable of planning it. To plan is to figure out appropriate means to achieve an end which one has fixed upon. A plan for a toaster would involve heating elements, a place to put the bread, and controls. Ideally, in addition to this plan, however, one would also have another sort of plan, namely, directions for how to realize the desired arrangement (as we all know from having tried to assemble something without reading the directions). In addition to plans, there must, of course, also be an agent with the power to realize them. The need for both planning and power to execute is sometimes overlooked: People sometimes mistakenly think that if one can identify efficient causes which realize order in the effect then there is no need to bring in a planner.
This description of how order to an end comes about in a thing that sounds sensible, but when one tries to apply it to the origin of living things the alternative explanation of chance presents itself. The