Guest_ikonboard Posted December 15, 2004 Share Posted December 15, 2004 New York - A British philosophy professor who has been a leading champion of atheism for more than half a century has changed his mind. He now believes in God - more or less - based on scientific evidence, and says so on a video released on Thursday. At age 81, after decades of insisting belief is a mistake, Antony Flew has concluded that some sort of intelligence or first cause must have created the universe. A super-intelligence is the only good explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature, Flew said in a telephone interview from England. Flew said he's best labelled a deist like Thomas Jefferson, whose God was not actively involved in people's lives. "I'm thinking of a God very different from the God of the Christian and far and away from the God of Islam, because both are depicted as omnipotent Oriental despots," he said. "It could be a person in the sense of a being that has intelligence and a purpose, I suppose." Flew first made his mark with an article called Theology and Falsification in 1950, based on a paper for the Socratic Club, a weekly Oxford religious forum led by writer and Christian thinker CS Lewis. Over the years, Flew proclaimed the lack of evidence for God while teaching at Oxford, Aberdeen, Keele, and Reading universities in Britain, in visits to numerous U.S. and Canadian campuses and in books, articles, lectures and debates. Yet biologists' investigation of DNA "has shown, by the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to produce (life), that intelligence must have been involved," Flew says in the new video, Has Science Discovered God? The video draws from a discussion in New York last May organised by author Roy Abraham Varghese's Institute for Metascientific Research in Garland, Texas. Participants were Flew; Varghese; Israeli physicist Gerald Schroeder, an Orthodox Jew; and Roman Catholic philosopher John Haldane of Scotland's University of St. Andrews. The first hint of Flew's turn was a letter to Britain's Philosophy Now magazine. "It has become inordinately difficult even to begin to think about constructing a naturalistic theory of the evolution of that first reproducing organism," he wrote. The letter commended arguments in Schroeder's The Hidden Face of God and The Wonder of the World by Varghese, an Eastern Rite Catholic layman. This week, Flew finished writing the first formal account of his new outlook for the introduction to a new edition of his God and Philosophy scheduled for release next year by Prometheus Press. Prometheus specialises in sceptical thought, but if his belief upsets people, well "that's too bad," Flew said. "My whole life has been guided by the principle of Plato's Socrates: Follow the evidence, wherever it leads." A Methodist minister's son, Flew became an atheist at 15. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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