Does order require design?

I think it is assumed by some people that the existence or order in the universe is evidence for design. They think, first, that the existence of order raises a question. But these assumptions are questionable.

I think these assumptions stem from the fact that man finds the world around him in a relative disorder (after his own criteria), and he can put things into order. Therefore, it seems that human intelligence (and apologists say: intelligence as such) is a source of order.

But the fact is that men do not create order. All they do is to INCREASE the order that already exists in universe. Basically, there is in the universe an order prior to men, an order that men have nothing to do with. The basic laws of nature. And when men put “disorder” into “order”, this increased order relies on a prior order, the basic laws of nature. A machine could not work properly without basic laws of nature working normally… Therefore, there is no proof that order as such comes from a designer. Order may be an essential feature of the universe. But an essential feature of a thing raises no question: the fact that the square has four sides is not puzzling.

The existence of order as such is by no means a problem. I see no link between order as such and design. What can raise a question is the AMOUNT of order: why is there so much order in the universe? Things could be very simple: why did they evolve into extremely complex lifeforms?

Here is the role of the neo-darwinian theory: random mutations and natural selection. For now, I can find no room for the idea of finality in the universe, but if there is finality, it must be because naturalistic theories of Evolution have an insufficient explanatory power.

I find it hard to think of nature in terms of being “ordered”. It is predicatable, but to what extent predictability necessarily implies order is unclear. It would seem to me that “order” requires not only that something predictable, but it must be predictable because it has a specific goal. Calling Nature goal directed seems fanciful.
Also “ordered” relative to what? Order is a relative term in the sense that we are using it. This is the only Universe we know, how can we determine that it’s “ordered” without observing other Universes. The notion of “order” seems to use an absolute viewpoint that is all to human. The idea that nature is goal directed comes from it’s predictability, for many predictability and teleology go hand in hand. But, how can we make this assumption when our viewpoint is so lacking?

S♠mkhya wrote:

I would agree wholeheartedly. I also do not see the concept of finality being truth, for as life to be limited in this view, would not be the ever changing and growing action and reaction mechanism it expresses itself to be. It seems that in itself, there is no end to evolution, accept the possibility of an end created by the forms of life expressed through it.

It appears that the complex lifeforms that we have evolved to and are evolving to are an expression of something within us that is composed of infinite energy. It is the environment we live in that produces vibrations similar to a level of vibration within the organism that produces a reaction in the organism similar to the vibration the environment has provided. The organism later produces another organism with this specific energy being more manifest in its form in order to aid in survival. I personally believe its an infinite source of energy because a limited source simply doesnt seem plausible.

Sâmkhya, my bad for messing your name up. Whats the alt code for a hat?

What exactly are you saying here? What is this energy? Is this some sort of Aristotelian potential, something specific like carbohydrates as an important storage and transport form of energy, or something spiritual?

I don’t get this either. Are we talking about string theory here? It doesn’t work that way.

Nihilistic wrote:

There are many definitions for order, and I believe you are mixing them to come to these conclusions. The specific definition of order that would be used in the consideration of this thread should be: A condition of logical or comprehensible arrangement among the separate elements of a group.

When you talk about order as being predictable for some type of goal, it appears that your more so referring to an established customary state, where as something must be in working order for its functionality. This also can be the definition used in conjuction with a need for relativity to be in place. But, regardless of the different definitions used, I will attempt to ascribe to the universe both definitions of order.

The first definition definetely works, for every separate piece of existence in the universe, well at least on earth, our empirical testing grounds, has a logical arrangement similar to all others. The properties of elements for example, are consistent among them all. The second definition being in full: A condition of methodical or prescribed arrangement among component parts such that proper functioning or appearance is achieved.

I believe that the “specific goal” you refer to is evident, the functionality of the universe. Things exist as they are supposed to, even if subjectively we dont believe so. As far as relativity is concerned, it cant be considered, for the order in our universe satisfies both definitions.

The whole thing is a case of happenstance appearing to look like order. There is no order at all.

Hello F(r)iends,

Or there is no chaos. It all just appears chaotic…


someemofag wrote:

lol. To be perfectly honest with you I dont know how what I said applies to string theory or Aristotle. These are my personal beliefs. It works though. I mean evolutionist or Darwinist understand evolution all the way to the point to where they dont know why the organism reacts in the way it does to produce from it another organism that has manifest within it these effects from the surrounding environment. My theory suggest that their is some sort of infinite potential energy not yet made kinetic, which invariably has to be done so by the outside environment. You could refer to it as spiritual if you like, but its simply potential energy that is expressed in the formulation of a new lifeform after being introduced to the same type energy in the environment. No better way of explaining it if you ask me.

Thirst4metal wrote:

Well said!

If they have matter and anti matter that if combined would equal zero.

also…Space and time are a side effect of matter. Saying that matter effects or causes the exsistance of space and time. also saying that without matter there would be no space and time.

Then we see that the human exsistance is so far advanced then any other species, that the soul must be what makes us so far advanced.

We start to see that the human body might be a conditioned capsle for reading the soul. We actual do use 100% of our brain as a reciever. That the mere idea of the soul is proof of the soul,… for an organic robot wouldn’t have any need to dream up such abstract ideas from reality. That our artistic perception of life is so far abstract to the math of chemical reactions, that this abstract effect on reality is because of a hidden factor that trumps most all of the brain.

That the human soul is neither male nor female. Our bodies are conditioned toward certain aspects of life that plays a role toward each other. That marital love allows us to see beyond our bodies, and into the soul. That maybe life was created for just this purpose.

One reason there is so much order is that many things are self-organizing. Google “self-organization” for more, but here are a few examples from diverse fields: snowflakes, nautilus shells, hurricanes, galaxies, trees branching, flocking behavior. Obviously the mechanisms of self-organization are different in these different phenomena. In the formation of shells and tree branching, a simple cellular program seems to be iterated. In snowflakes and crystals, the microshape of molecular bonds leads to the visible macroshape. For hurricanes, a continuous flow of energy determines the fluid’s shape. For galaxies, it’s just initial conditions and gravity (though some would add “dark matter”).

(Note that nothing supernatural was needed for any of the above self-organizations.)

You’re right that overall – taking the universe as a closed system – entropy apparently increases. But there are “hot spots” so that one area can get useful energy from another, and from it produce more “order”. The hot spot of most interest to us is the sun. Microbes and plants absorb the sun’s “high quality” energy and produce food for us higher species. The earth then radiates “lower quality” heat energy into space. The Sun’s loss is our gain. (As with the hurricane, a constant flow of energy can allow one area to increase in order.)

Regarding our evolution, part of it is due to random mutations and natural selection. Self-organization may explain some things; obviously nothing developed that operated contrary to the same physical laws that produce self-organization. And, as Stephen Jay Gould emphasizes, we got to be here partly by dumb luck. If any one of a number of things had not happened as they happened, we would not be here.

As to how the original qunatities of “order”, or hot spots, or negative-entropy came to be, no one knows. But I don’t recommend theological “explanations”.

alt 0226
for others who might want to know.

But I love that cute little character you made: S♠mkhya
How did you do that?

Sâmkhya, good topic and great responses from illativemindindeed.

I would just add that the Realists would agree with your thesis that human intelligence is not the source of this apparent “order”: men do not create order. I think the realists would rather say that we find the world “a certain way” and thus we describe it according to “how it really is”. And until we can “describe” it and articulate in a certain way, it really would not make sense to us, hence your “man finds the world in relative disorder and he can put things into order”, which I’d rather interpret as “making sense of the world” by trying to describe or characterize it, using the mathematics and natural science perhaps, with the help of epistemology.

Well, I would not say that that the existence of order necessarily proves that a designer exists, but I certainly would not say that human intellegence created order.

Take entropy, for example. If I’m not mistaken, this is something scientists have created so as to “measure” disorder within our universe. Even the laws of thermodynamics are against you on this one. The natural state of the universe is to become increasingly disorderly – although it is universially agreed upon that we live in an “orderly-universe”. :wink:

I’ll give you that human-beings, are, by definitions, creatures of order. I feel our very existence depends on order. So does our communication, and so on.

But, in our attempt to “be orderly”, we end-up creating much disorder. We try to become industrial, and we end-up disturbing the original conditions of our atmosphere, and rainforrests, etc…

we have done a rather poor job in maintain the original order of our planet. And then, what if we have only a slightly-correct understanding of what true order actually is? What if we are really confussing what we think is chaos is really actually a more natural, “higher” form of order that we are just not used to seeing?

I’m sure many of the previous posts in this thread have probably already raised many of the questions I’ve asked, but I’m running short on time, and I wanted to respond to this thread before I have to leave…

Just my humblle thoughts, anyhow… :wink:


The content of your argument is this: The Universe is as A, therefore the Universe is ordered. You have yet to provide a reason why things that are A are infact ordered.

Describing the Universe should NOT be seen as proving functionality or order. It’s absurd and lacks reasoning, unless ofcourse, you’re Aristotle.

What is this even supposed to mean.

First of all, thank you arendt I appreciate that immensely.

arendt wrote:

Well thats weird. Thats the alt code I used. :spades: Freaking Dell!

Nihilistic wrote:

The Universe is A: it is run on natural laws that govern it such as the laws of gravity and thermodynamics. These laws suggest some type of order. Everything abides by them, even if their are ways to maneuver around them, they still exist. Not only that, there is order in all of life. I think it was on this site where I was reading about how everything is based on a circular design, where there is a center that basically runs everything else. I mean we’ve got mitosis and meiosis. And when there are discrepancies, they inevitably end up having order as well, at least this is what scientist are telling everyone. Ah hell what am I explaining, the universe has natural laws in place. Thats order. All this other crap doesnt even matter.

Also, I wasnt attempting to describe the universe, I was attempting to prove functionality and order as being evident in the universe.

It means that because something is in existence, then that something was supposed to be in existence. Its not rocket science, but often times too simple to understand. I mean why would something exist, if it wasnt supposed to? Relatively speaking you could say well something bad happened or what not, but objectively, if it exist, it was supposed to. It serves a function. Now what this function may be you could debate, for I have my own theories on what it might be, but you cant debate that the existence of something wasnt supposed to occur.

Forgive me for the manner in which I wrote this reply, I promise you I have no ill feelings towards you or what you have written, Im just feeling out of balance right now so what Im saying might come off as “smartelicaly” (is that a word?). I truly didnt intend to attack you in anyway, but after rereading my comments I see how they could come off as such. Once again I apologize if it seems this way.


These laws suggest nothing, they are very incomplete descriptions about how we see the Universe, nothing more. That everything abides by them, is a matter of induction…that they are true or “exist” is a jump from science to metaphysics. Even according to your own arguments, science, we get a view of the universe that is unpredictable and very chaotic at small levels. There is nothing consistent about quantum mechanics…it’s based in probability.

Don’t be decieved by pop. phrases.

You’re right, but I can throw out your whole framework for understanding the Universe as absurd. Your ontological methodology is lacking, that something exists in no way implies that something should exist. What does it even mean that something should exist, the statement seems vacuous and you haven’t adequately explained it.

Viewing existence in a normative way doesn’t make sense.