Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The God Delusion #34: Dawkins and the "God of the Gaps?

Dawkins’s god is “science.” “Science,” for him, will fill in the gaps that religious people use to argue for God (the “God of the gaps”).

McGrath points out Richard Swinburne’s argument that “the capacity of science to explain itself requires explanation – and that the most economical and reliable account of this explanatory capacity lies in the notion of a Creator God.” (DD, 31)

Here is Swinburne’s argument:
- The intelligibility of the universe itself needs explanation.
- It is therefore not the “gaps” in our understanding which point to God
- It is, rather, the very “comprehensibility” of scientific and other forms of understanding that require explanation
- In short: “explicability itself requires explanation”
- To believe this is precisely not to inhibit the progress of science but to encourage it and commend it

Swinburne’s argument is found in his book Is There a God?