Thanks for showing how TA's logic differs from the more recent formulations of design arguments. Comment Part 1"Chance" is a really slippery word in current usage. It means very different things in different disciplines. For many folks chance, accident, random are all synonyms, but they carry much different significance depending on the context. Mutations, for example, are generally "chance" events, but neither random or accidental. By "chance" meaning an event with a probabilistic set of outcomes as opposed to a fixed deterministic outcome. The "mechanical" view of the modernist world was all about determinism. Accordingly, it was not coincidence that Paley used his watchmaker illustration. The precision mechanical watch (chronometer) was invented about the same time as Newton discovered the laws which described the motions of the planets with their similar "clockwork" like precision. One obviously designed by man, the other "obviously" designed not by man, so by default, God. It was a "clockwork universe" up until the early 20th century when quantum mechanics was discovered, upsetting the whole determinism of the 18th and 19th centuries.Random events, such as often said of mutations, means the occurrence of any particular event is unpredictable. But the fact of some occurrence of some event may be certain. For example, it is not readily predictable if a roll of the die will result in a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6. But it is 100% certain a roll will result in a number 1 through 6. In that sense, the roll of the die is not accidental. It was rolled with an intended purpose: to generate a number 1 -6 each will equal probability. And, as is common lore, it is possible to rig a die so that one or a few numbers have greater probability of occurrence than the others. (Loading the dice!) In a similar way, while exactly which codon with mutate and to what value it will mutate, is largely unpredictable. However, some codons have greater probability of mutating than others for reasons not entirely understood. And beyond that mutations themselves have radically different probabilities of having an effect depending on the location and type of mutation. Mutations in non-coding DNA seldom have any effect at all. Mutations in coding regions also may have no effect, minor effect, or such a large effect as to be unsurvivable. In any event, mutations serve a necessary role in the survival of all life forms by allowing for adaptation. Thank you for so clearly pointing this out in your Tuesday Talk on the Fifth Way.Consequently, rather than seeing mutations (and the resulting changes from the accumulation of such mutations), the mutational process is a grand illustration of the Grand Designer that purposed to use such a process to accomplish those purposes.continued in Part 2
Comment Part 2We all actually depend on such a process in our own life times. The generation of natural "antibiotics" in each one of us occurs by just such a process over the course of a lifetime. Initially we have few natural anitbodies, but a "random generator" of antibodies continually pumps out slightly differing antibodies as we mature, so that we have a greater chance of some randomly generated antibody being a match for an invading virus or bacteria. When such a match occurs, other systems then kick in to rapidly switch production of that specific antibody into high gear. Hopefully, faster than the virus or bacteria can replicate, thus fighting off the infection. Marvelous Design! Yet fully random. Certainly not accidental, nor just "by chance".I don't mean God miraculously drives our antibody system. I mean God purposed/intended that such is the way life would work. That approach also leads to situations where sometimes the germs win. And apparently that is in accord with God's purposes/intents just as well. Not sure TA (or current believers) would have seen it that way, since it is saying disease was part of God's purpose/intent all along. Yet, I believe it was.Thanks Shane for these "talks".