Well, of course the design argument is not science!! Compatible with science? Yes. Science itself? No. Not IMHO.
The DA by definition demands a supernatural, transcendent, metaphysical being. Such a Being would be under no obligation to prove Itself in the physical realm. I find it unlikely that design will ever be naturally proven...some might argue that this should weaken my stance as a Creationist, but actually, if I believe there is a Being greater than and in fact responsible for any natural law or process, it makes perfect sense to my worldview that It would not empirically prove Itself in a natural way. But I digress...I doubt you are interested in my theology! Sorry. It so fascinates me.
In any case, I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that evolution is a viable candidate. It is no more likely to be empirically proven than is design, since many evolutionary concepts cannot be proven (since life forms that have undergone processes that are integral to their proof can never be observed, and existing life forms still don't dogmatically prove evolution --and when I say that, I mean from one species to another-- happened/happens). Now, whether evolution is just as valid an idea as Design, or whether Occam would be more pleased with it, is a matter of opinion. It seems to me that Occam would have a problem with His Majesty Stephen Hawking's idea that the universe sprang from nothingness spontaneously and then life began and evolved. He might also take issue with lack of evidence that new genetic information can be and is introduced to many, many times over time and lead from the existence of microbes to the existence of man...which is, in itself, such a complex concept that, in my opinion (and I am new to this, so forgive me a little ignorance), could be said to boast only shaky compatibility with the Principle of Parsimony. The idea that a supernatural Being created man from dust, then breathed into Him, creating life -- well, it may be a supernatural concept (which might not be pleasant to Occam's dsicriminating palate), but if allowed, it is certainly simpler than the idea of so many years and so many miniscule changes taking us from "goo-to-you," if you'll excuse the creationist humor.
I apologize if my rambling is a little murky; I probably still lack the scientific vocabulary that I need in order to sound as professional as some of you. I hope you can at least understand what I am getting at, and would appreciate your patience with my delivery.
I appreciate your lesson, and I apologize if I misused some terminology. I definitely have a lot to learn, and will reread your post to make sure I have a clearer understanding of the terms in question. I have been humbled recently by the realization of how little, in fact, I know.
OK. So...science doesn't require what I would (apparently incorrectly)call proof (meaning, my definition, evidence beyond a reasonable doubt), so why am I continually called upon by scientists to provide natural proof (evidence) of design? Just an aside of my own.
You are saying, in essence, that science by definition does not require proof, and that this is a common understanding. It's a bit like my saying, "Faith does not require proof. This is a common understanding."
Both above statements can be generally acknowledged as being true, so how will one ever negate itself by failing to produce conclusive evidence? Additionally, how can you require of one concept what you do not require of another? What is the point of requiring conclusive evidence of someone else's idea when you do not require it of your own?
There is evidence that seems to point toward evolution. There is also much evidence lacking. The same can be said of the design argument. The fact that much of the evidence for design is not the kind that science would prefer is irrelevant, for science and design, while compatible, are not ONE.
I cannot put God on a lab table and allow you to observe Him, as someone suggested in another thread days ago. The thing is, I do not have to in order for the concept of intelligent design to be worthwhile. I do not believe the burden of proof rests on my shoulders simply because someone says it does, anymore than evolution has to prove itself to me because I say it does (and the fact that it does not is awfully convenient, since there is nothing absolutely conclusive for it to present to me).
Edited by EWCCC777, : Rephrasing
Edited by EWCCC777, : Correction
Edited by EWCCC777, : Spelling of "compatible." Frick.
I would appreciate the correction if it's respectful, and also don't feel that my post is so off-topic I mean, if design cannot be conclusively proven in nature, then that goes back to the topic of the thread, doesn't it? If I'm wrong, then I'm sorry if it is too extratopical.. I honestly thought when I posted it it was pretty close to home. I am just anxious to get my ideas out there just like everyone else on the board, and see what comes back at me, hopefully learn a thing or two.