I don’t want Science After Sunclipse to become, in Orac’s words, “All Egnor, all the time,” but after my recent intemperate remarks about Egnor’s misguided dualism, I figure I should follow with a link to John Farrell’s rebuttal to Egnor’s cosmology.
Following up on his insistence that science is always seeking to confirm the “design inference,” Egnor says this about Georges LemaÃ®tre, the first scientist to conceive of the Horrendous Space Kablooie:
Ironically, we owe much of our modern understanding of the universe to pro-intelligent design astronomers. Georges LemaÃ®tre was the astrophysicst who pioneered the Big Bang Theory. Fr. LemaÃ®tre (above, with Einstein) was a Belgian Roman Catholic priest, honorary prelate, and a professor of physics and astronomy. He famously described the moment of the Big Bang as â€œthe day without yesterdayâ€, referring to the first day of creation in Genesis, and he was explicit in his belief in the evidence for Godâ€™s design in the universe. His Big Bang theory met with considerable opposition because of its religious implications.
Farrell observes, “First, LemaÃ®tre was not referring to the day without yesterday as the first day of creation in Genesis. I’m sure it will surprise no one that Mr. Egnor offers no quotes to support his contention.” In fact, LemaÃ®tre stated the following at the 1958 Solvay conference:
As far as I can see, such a theory remains entirely outside any metaphysical or religious question. It leaves the materialist free to deny any transcendental Being. He may keep, for the bottom of space-time, the same attitude of mind he has been able to adopt for events occurring in non-singular places in space-time. For the believer, it removes any attempt at familiarity with God, as were Laplaceâ€™s chiquenaude or Jeanâ€™s finger. It is consonant with the wording of Isaias speaking of the â€œHidden Godâ€, hidden even in the beginning of creation. . . . Science has not to surrender in face of the Universe and when Pascal tries to infer the existence of God from the supposed infinitude of Nature, we may think that he is looking in the wrong direction.
Farrell goes on at slightly greater length, but I believe the point has been made.