After reviewing this week’s material, share as a blog entry a video clip or an image that reflects Paley’s Design Argument from Analogy.

After reviewing this week’s material, share as a blog entry a video clip or an image that reflects Paley’s Design Argument from Analogy.

After reviewing this week’s material, share as a blog entry a video clip or an image that reflects Paley’s Design Argument from Analogy.

(1) After reviewing this week’s material, share as a blog entry a video clip or an image that reflects Paley’s Design Argument from Analogy. Do not choose media that explains the theory. That is YOUR job.

(2) Briefly explain why you chose that particular clip in reference to the reading.

(3) Identify the key elements of comparison in Paley’s analogy between a watch and the universe.

(4) Explain one of Hume’s criticisms of the design argument. (Hume’s position is represented by Cleanthes.)

(5) Discuss why or why not this criticism strong enough to counter Paley’s argument?

*Please number all responses*

*Be sure to embed the clip or image, rather than posting as an attachment.*

– It suggests to read the book, pages 59-74 of Great Philosophical Arguments for a more detailed explanation of the argument and critical analysis by David Hume.

– I have the notes needed for the week

Hi! These are the notes for the week that will help!

Inductive Arguments & Analogical Reasoning: The Design Argument from Analogy

An analogy is a comparison between two objects, or systems of objects, that highlights respects in which they are thought to be similar. Analogical reasoning is any type of thinking that relies upon an analogy. An analogical argument is an explicit representation of a form of analogical reasoning that cites accepted similarities between two systems to support the conclusion that some further similarity exists. In general, such arguments belong in the category of inductive reasoning, since their conclusions do not follow with certainty but are only supported with varying degrees of strength.

Analogical reasoning is fundamental to human thought. Historically, analogical reasoning has played an important role in a wide range of problem-solving contexts. The explicit use of analogical arguments has been a distinctive feature of scientific, philosophical, legal, and political reasoning.

Watch the following video clip. Can you identify the analogy being used here? Is the speaker justified in making the comparison? Why or why not?

An analogical argument has two parts: primary subject (primary analogue) and analogue (secondary analogue):

The primary subject (Q below) is the thing about which a conclusion is drawn on the basis of a comparison to the analogue (P below):

P has attributes a, b, c, and f.

Q has attributes a, b, c.

Therefore, f is also true of Q.

The basic structure of an argument from analogy looks like this:

P and Q are similar in respects a, b, c, etc.

f is true of P.

Therefore, f is also true of Q.

or like this:

P has attributes a, b, c, and f.

Q has attributes a, b, c.

Therefore, f is also true of Q.

Notice that the very thing, f, that is claimed to be true of Q is not known to be so with any certainty. The mechanism by which an analogy succeeds or fails is likeness.

There are two ways to evaluate the strength of the analogy:

  1. Look for whether or not the dissimilarities outweigh or outnumber the similarities.
  2. Look for problematic similarities.

The design argument from analogy is a specific type of analogical argument the goal of which is to demonstrate the existence of God. Design arguments are empirical arguments, which typically proceed by attempting to identify various empirical features of the world that constitute evidence of intelligent design and inferring God’s existence as the best explanation for these features.

Design arguments typically consist of (1) a premise that asserts that the material universe exhibits some empirical property F; (2) a premise (or sub-argument) that asserts (or concludes) that F is persuasive evidence of intelligent design or purpose; and (3) a premise (or sub-argument) that asserts (or concludes) that the best or most probable explanation for the fact that the material universe exhibits F is that there exists an intelligent designer who intentionally brought it about that the material universe exists and exhibits F.

There are a number of classic and contemporary versions of the argument from design. We will analyze one particular version of the design argument from analogy– the watchmaker argument, by William Paley. By way of an analogy, the argument states that design implies a designer.

The watchmaker analogy consists of the comparison of some natural phenomenon to a watch. Typically, the analogy is generally presented as

  1. The complex inner workings of a watch necessitate an intelligent designer.
  2. As with a watch, the complexity of X (a particular organ or organism, the structure of the solar system, life, the universe, anything complex) necessitates a designer.

Now you are ready to read pages 59-74 of Great Philosophical Arguments for a more detailed explanation of the argument and critical analysis by David Hume.

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