The Return of the God Hypothesis
by Stephen C. Meyer
Reviewed by Shmuel Williams
This is a book that must be taken very seriously, not just by those who reject the existence of God but even by those who claim to believe in the existence of one all-powerful and limitless designer/creator of the universe. It can be easy just to treat this book, and its author, as the latest intellectual gladiator within the field of science/theology, atheism/theism but, that would be to underestimate and deny its purpose and aim. This book has come to do many things but one of its aims is to inform the world, both accepting of God’s existence and rejecting, of the reality of anti-scientific, materialistic ideology that has infected and underpinned every western European styled science faculty. It lays bare the assumption that to be a true scientist you must first be a materialist, this is now turned on its head. The ancient scientists did not do their science despite their belief in God, no, quite the opposite, they did their science with the central underpinning of their acceptance of the creator. Their worldview meant that they were looking for uniformity in nature because they believed that there was one creator and therefore him being the source of creation meant that all things were connected and uniform in some way. Ironically this is the underpinning of the scientific method.
Stephen Meyers is a scientist and a scholar of the history of science. He brings both of these skills and lays out bare the materialist ideology that has gripped the scientific community for the last 300 years. The book doesn’t just throw the fact of the new scientific discoveries in your face and walks away, no, it explains the history of the area of science and the journey that particular fields went through in order to end up where it did so that the reader can truly understand that conclusions which the world was being told that influenced our culture, ethics, and social norms, were not conclusions of scientific evidence but were policies decided upon by the atheistic scientists, and as the world was reconfiguring itself around these pseudo-scientific conclusions they were busy trying to find any evidence to support their conclusions or, create experiments that would avoid the natural conclusion of a finite universe.
Stephen Meyer focuses on three new discoveries: the fine-tuning of the universe, the DNA/information explosion and, the beginning of the universe.
He uses these three areas and recent discoveries within them to demonstrate just how far science has moved in understanding the material world and offers inferences and implications that arises from them using very sound logical analysis.
Stephen tackles the god-of-the gaps fallacy and clearly demonstrates that this was a somewhat valid accusation towards some theists years ago but, it has been used to ridicule the intelligent design theory and proponents unfairly and unscientifically for years. Stephen actually turns the label on the materialists and basically calls it the atheism of the gaps. Atheism was able to hide in the places where knowledge was absent so that it could continue to ridicule the theists. But, as time went on the discoveries in science came, the gaps of ignorance closed around the atheists and therefore, they tried on a number of occasions, to posit theories which went against the evidence in order to avoid the theistic implications. Stephen highlights this with modern discoveries and how the scientists, especially atheists, would deliberately try to negate even their own discoveries which have theist implications. An example he sites is Stephen Hawking who did experiments that proved the beginning of the universe and then because of the theological implications went against his own findings. As we know more and make new discoveries it will be increasingly more difficult to maintain an atheistic and materialistic intellectual world view because the discoveries show that a materialistic world view becomes less possible the more we understand. Therefore the atheism of the gaps was being claimed as long as we didn’t understand the science as it reveals itself.
Another really interesting thing that Stephen does is that he compares world views and analyses them to see which approach gave the best explanatory scope and was logically consistent. He does not just push theism but weighs theism and critiques it in just the same way as he does Atheism, Pantheism, Panspermia, Materialism and Deism. This is quite profound as he demonstrates that materialism has the worst ability to explain the beginning of the universe but also to explain the discoveries in science today. Stephen even demonstrates the inability of deism to explain the universe as we understand it today.
Materialism also could not explain the DNA and protein mechanisms they use to carry digital information within biochemistry, information and instructions were not the fruit of material but of mind and an intelligent mind. Materialism was also proved to be inadequate in explaining the Cambrian explosion which accounted for very new genetic information within other species that did not exist prior to that event. In this area of the book he brings to light the new developments in the relatively new area of science, information science. He carefully explains how new understandings of the philosophy of information and the science is forcing serious thinkers to question the origin and source of information and its ability to produce meaningful syntax in the biological realm. Stephen also highlights the Information scientists questioning the woeful materialistic explanation or lack of ability to explain intelligently and coherently the new discoveries made in biology and cosmology, especially in the field of the beginning of the universe.
Stephen also calls out the unquestioned theories which have no evidence whatsoever but are allowed to be wielded because of the assumed world view of atheism/materialism. He tackles, what he calls, ‘mythological materialism’ and ‘exotic naturalism’ which is used to counter the evidence of the finitude of the universe which has theistic implications. Materialistic scientists have thrown together theories of multiverse for the simple reason of countering the implications of a finite universe and its beginning. He calls them out for indulging their imaginations to escape an implication they simply to not want by concocting theories that would mathematically explain the behaviour of the known universe but without the need to invoke a theistic creator. So, evidence based science can be jettisoned whenever it points towards there being a theist creator, a conclusion they simply do not want.
The materialist scientist take their position without evidence and treat it as a maxim of fact and then try to read it into everything. They will gladly follow the evidence to wherever it goes except when it points to or suggests a theistic Creator.
Even though all the evidence points towards us having one universe and its one and only beginning the materialists have tried to fight this in every way imaginable because of the profound effect it will have on the culture and society. Therefore they need to keep this charade going and cloak it up in the pseudoscience we all have been accustomed to. Stephen Meyer has looked the emperor in the face and stated clearly that he has no clothes.
The book is very heavy going and the reader will benefit from trying to understand the scientific areas he looks at, in the book in order to really appreciate the arguments he makes. But it is a must-read book for everyone.