I've read several summaries of William Dembski's concept of specified complexity, including one by Dembski himself, and I've got to confess I have no idea what he is talking about.

Is it an attempt to prove God's existence mathematically?

  • 1
    Bruce: This old question seems like it is general philosophy. Should it be closed?
    – fгedsbend
    Mar 1 '16 at 0:41
  • @fredsbend Perhaps this comes down to, "according to whom?" If it's seeking Dembski's opinion, or the opinion of Creationist organizations, or the opinion of some Christian denomination, then it's okay. But if it's asking for the opinion of "science" or some other unspecified group, then it's off-topic. Mar 1 '16 at 1:43
  • @Nathaniel This seems distinctly about a philosophy that is not necessarily Christian.
    – fгedsbend
    Mar 1 '16 at 2:45
  • @fredsbend Dembski's specified complexity is part of the Intelligent Design (ID) movement, which is sponsored by the Discovery Institute's Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture. That organization explicitly identifies ID as an attempt "to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions." (The quote is from the Five Year Strategic Plan Summary on page 6 of the 1998 Wedge Document.) Mar 1 '16 at 14:34
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    @BruceAlderman Wow! Good find. With that, then we can say that at least this Discovery Institute et al. means the Christian God when they say God, so this one would be on topic. I've recently made a meta post: Intelligent Design should be off-topic unless it is specifically related to Christianity in the question We could use your help drawing the line.
    – fгedsbend
    Mar 1 '16 at 14:58

It's an attempt to show that the universe, and all it contains, is too orderly to have originated by chance with no intelligent guiding force. It simply implies an intelligent Creator, not necessarily the God of the Bible.

In short, it's an argument for creationism, without naming the Creator explicitly, which is what Intelligent Design is.

It's not so much an attempt to prove his existence mathematically, it is, (depending on which side of the fence you sit on) more of:

  • using mathematics to imply His existence


  • use mathematics to show how His existence is implied by the evidence around us.

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