The Discoveroids are drifting ever further into mysticism. This can be seen in the latest post by David Klinghoffer, their journalistic slasher and poo flinger. Its title is Mathematician Amir Aczel on the “Wisdom” Revealed in Nature.
Who is Amir Aczel? Wikipedia informs us that he is “a lecturer in mathematics and the history of mathematics and science, and an author of popular books on mathematics and science.” He has a Ph.D. in statistics from the University of Oregon. Among his numerous writings, his best known is probably Fermat’s Last Theorem (Amazon listing), which should not be confused with the better-known book with that same title by Simon Singh.
Why is Klinghoffer interested in Aczel? His new post says, with bold font added by us:
Despite the clunky title, mathematician and science writer Amir D. Aczel’s new book Why Science Does Not Disprove God is one I want to read. … His point is that while science has battered a simple, literal understanding of the Bible on some points, it has simultaneously forced us to confront the inadequacy of an equally simple materialist account of existence, instead giving evidence an unfurling “wisdom” behind the universe. The more we learn, the more this is evident.
We think we already know where this is going. Aczel writes about “the inadequacy of an equally simple materialist account of existence.” Well, of course! Science isn’t about telling us why the universe exists, or what its purpose is. Science is satisfied to describe what exists and how it works. There’s no evidence of why, so science doesn’t go there. That’s the task of theology (and the Discoveroids’ “theory” of intelligent design).
We suspect that we’re about to be treated to yet another science- (or in this case math-) laden version of the God of the gaps. But we could be wrong. It won’t be long until we find out. Klinghoffer quotes from Aczel:
Why is our Universe so precisely tailor-made for the emergence of life? This question has never been answered satisfactorily, and I believe that it will never find a scientific solution. For the deeper we delve into the mysteries of physics and cosmology, the more the Universe appears to be intricate and incredibly complex. … It appears that there is a vast, hidden “wisdom,” or structure, or a knotty blueprint for even the most simple-looking element of nature. And the situation becomes much more daunting as we expand our view to the entire cosmos.
Ah, hidden wisdom! This sounds like a load of “There is much we don’t understand, therefore Oogity Boogity!” But we don’t want to leap to unwarranted conclusions. Let’s read some more of the quote from Aczel which has so enchanted Klinghoffer:
We know that 13.7 billion years ago, a gargantuan burst of energy, whose nature and source are completely unknown to us and not in the least understood by science, initiated the creation of our Universe. Then suddenly, as if by magic, the “God particle” — the Higgs boson discovered two years ago inside CERN’s powerful particle accelerator, the Large Hadron Collider — came into being and miraculously gave the Universe its mass. Why did this happen?
Why — oh why — did it happen? What’s the deep meaning of it all? Could it be that we’re all on this uniquely privileged planet for the purpose of worshiping the designer? Yes, that’s obviously why!
[*Curmudgeon regains control of himself*] Okay, okay, we’ll calm down. Let’s see … skipping most of Klinghoffer’s long quote from Aczel, we come to this:
Why did everything we need in order to exist come into being? How was all of this possible without some latent outside power to orchestrate the precise dance of elementary particles required for the creation of all the essentials of life?
Brilliant question! We need carbon? We’ve got it! Oxygen? We’ve got that too. Everything we need exists for us. It’s amazing! What does Klinghoffer say about that deeply insigntful quote from Aczel? He assures us that:
This is not about a “God of the Gaps.”
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! To back up that hopeless claim, he repeats Stephen Meyer’s denial in Darwin’s Doubt, which we discussed a few days ago — see Klinghoffer: “We Don’t Use God of the Gaps” — so we won’t bother with it again. Does Klinghoffer offer us anything else? No, not really, so this is where we’ll leave it.
What did we learn? Nothing, except that the Discoveroids seem to have a new pet mathematician. How wonderful for them!
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