Sunday, December 17, 2006

Science and Teleology

If both purpose and consciousness are illusions, then who are they fooling?

I have heard it said before that it is the glory of science to eliminate teleological processes. Well, if that is true, then is it the glory of science to eliminate teleology from archaeology and SETI regardless of its relevance to the intelligent design debate? Or does that statement need to be qualified?

Does it really mean that it is the glory of science to discover the roots of teleology, which seems to be the result of a mind which is supposedly a result of brain which arises out of genetic information? However, since information is not bound by the laws of physics and only arises from previous teleological processes, where does the loop end? In fact, if natural laws are not teleological in nature and natural laws are all that exist, do true teleological processes exist at all or are they an illusion? In accordance with purposeful processes arising from natural processes, are teleological processes truly teleological, or are they merely a set within natural processes thus being an illusion of true purpose apart fom natural laws? I say "apart" here, since natural laws don't act with purpose, they just exist. If teleological processes were merely a subset of natural laws, then there should be no difference between natural laws as the set and teleological processes as a subset within it. If this is a true account, then how are we to tell the difference between that which has been created through teleology verses that which has been created throught natural laws, since both would owe their ultimate creation to natural laws. Ie: natural laws can thus create cars, computers, and houses; discover math and logic, paint a picture, compose a song, write essays and discover and define themselves.

If teleology does exist, then does science need to address the issue? How does one scientifically demonstrate the difference between a teleological process and a methodologically naturalistic process?

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