Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Phillip Johnson - An interview with NOVA (PBS)

"A philosophy of naturalism or materialism is what generates the Darwinian theory. It's what generates the certainty that only unintelligent natural forces were involved in evolution, which is to say in the creative process that brought our kind into existence as well as all the animals and all the plants. That is all a non-negotiable claim on their part. And why is it a non-negotiable claim? Because if the naturalistic starting point isn't valid—if it isn't completely correct—then something else must have happened. What is that something else? It's something that they don't like that might get a foothold in science itself.
"Maybe the creator is something more than an imaginary projection of people's minds. Maybe a creator is a necessary part of reality."
Q: Are there social consequences to this philosophy of naturalism or materialism that you describe?
Johnson: Yes, absolutely. Now, these consequences may be good or they may be bad. And they are attractive to some people and unattractive to others. For example, the naturalistic viewpoint is praised by those who like it for its tendency to liberate us from religious authority.
Q: But what's the negative side? My understanding is you see not the positive side of materialism but the negative side.
Johnson: I'm happy to concede that there is a positive way of looking at something and a negative way of looking at something. The negative side is that the naturalistic viewpoint leaves the way open for a kind of freedom from divine authority, a kind of moral anarchy."

Read the whole thing here.
This article was also helpful in remembering that ideology plays a big role in media (ie. PBS) as well as in "science".

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