Michael J. Behe

Michael J.
Behe
1952

American Biochemist, Author and Intelligent Design Advocate, Professor Of Biochemistry at Lehigh University and Senior Fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture

Author Quotes

Dawkins writes "If evolution is not gradual when it comes to explaining the existence of complicated, apparently designed objects, like eyes, it ceases to have any explanatory power at all.

History makes some well-meaning people think that the demilitarized zone (between religion and science) should be maintained, with no fraternization allowed.

In the absence of evidence it is very difficult to prove right or wrong someone who asserts that stepping stones existed in the past but have disappeared.

It was a shock to people of the nineteenth century when they discovered, from observations science had made, that many features of the biological world could be ascribed to the elegant principle of natural selection.

Most people, like me find scenarios (involving aliens or time travel) entirely unsatisfactory, but they are available to those who wish to avoid unpleasant theological implications.

Scientific authority rests on published work. The published work must also contain pertinent evidence.

The basic structure of proteins is quite simple: they are formed by hooking together in a chain discrete subunits called amino acids.

The giants of science were motivated by a thirst to know the real world.

The source for the explanation of the development of biochemical pathways given by modern textbooks is Horwowitz in 1945. In the intervening years biochemistry has progressed tremendously, but no advance encourages his hypothesis.

Through the efforts of scientists working on the origin of life we now have a clear idea of the staggering difficulties that would face an origin of life by natural chemical processes.

Without gradualness in these cases, we are back to miracle, which is simply a synonym for the total absence of explanation"

Dawkins writes with passion because he believes Darwinism is true. He also believes that atheism is a logical deduction from Darwinism and that the world would be better off if more people shared that view.

Hume said in 1779 that the intelligent design argument is really something called an inference to the best explanation, asserting a fundamental difference between mechanical systems and living systems. This is out of date, destroyed by the advance of science which has discovered the machinery of life.

In the abstract, it might be tempting to imagine that irreducible complexity simply requires multiple simultaneous mutations - that evolution might be far chancier than we thought, but still possible. Such an appeal to brute luck can never be refuted... Luck is metaphysical speculation; scientific explanations invoke causes.

It was once expected that the basis of life would be exceedingly simple. That expectation has been smashed.

No one has a clue how the AMP pathway developed.

Scientific literature has no answers to the question of the origin of the immune system.

The Big Bang theory was controversial because many scientists thought it had philosophical and even religious overtones they didn't like.

The hope in the proposed RNA world ignores known chemistry and is hope struggling valiantly against experimental data.

The story of the impact of biochemistry on evolution rests solely on the (biochemical) details.

Throughout history there have been many other examples, similar to that of Haeckel, Huxley and the cell, where a key piece of a particular scientific puzzle was beyond the understanding of the age.

Design theory has nothing to say (with any certainty) about a biochemical or biological system unless all the components of the system are known and it is demonstrated that the system is composed of several interacting parts. Intelligent design theory can coexist quite peacefully with the panda's thumb (refer Gould).

I advocated none of those ideas. I take this as a political statement unsupported by any references.

In the face of the enormous complexity that modern biochemistry has uncovered in the cell, the scientific community is paralyzed.

It was only about sixty years ago that the expansion of the universe was first observed.

Author Picture
First Name
Michael J.
Last Name
Behe
Birth Date
1952
Bio

American Biochemist, Author and Intelligent Design Advocate, Professor Of Biochemistry at Lehigh University and Senior Fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture