The Design of Things

Remember “double rainbow man”? The guy who glimpsed a double rainbow, captured it on film, and shared it with the world on youtube? His video went viral due to his unbridled euphoria. He even wept at one point. He’s garnered his share of ridicule and prompted a lot of people to say “What is wrong with him?” I confess. I rolled my eyes the first time I watched his barrage of emotion.

And then he got me thinking. What if?

What if the world is standing on its head? Why is screaming and jumping over a football game or a U2 concert accepted yet this guy’s genuine reaction to nature is not?

I don’t know double rainbow man, don’t know what he believes about anything, but here’s a break down of the scene:

Man sees double rainbow. Man is moved. Man utters Oh my God multiple times. Man weeps. Man asks, what does this mean? several times. Creation prompts man to consider that there’s more to life than himself. There’s more.

Beauty does that. Creationist or evolutionist, we’ve all been swept away by something in nature—the ocean, the stars, the thunder—and had similar thoughts as Double rainbow man. Maybe we were just a tad less vocal about it. The world is full of artistry. Chock full and running over and all the scientific debate in the world can’t smother out the design of things all around us.

Here are a few of my favorites.

Snowflakes. Yeah, I’m sick of them too and I’m so glad they’re finally disappearing. But pretend you’ve never seen them before, at least not this close up, and look:

 w031230a113w050207a112SNOWFLAKE_libbrecht_d0123a086B

No one has ever assumed that the artwork in my house, whether it’s the kids’ stuff on the fridge or the Pissaro over the piano, just came about. Over time. So how could a snowflake, a microscopic sculpture devoid of intelligence and consciousness? How could it possibly create itself in such perfect way? And why don’t they fall as little, random blobs? What purpose does their beauty serve? What purpose does beauty ever serve?

The giraffeGiraffe_Ithala_KZN_South_Africa_Luca_Galuzzi_2004 Once I understood this it kind of blew me away. The giraffe has a big heart and a little pea head. Which means that when he bends to drink he should pass out due to the lack of blood flow from heart to head. Really, he should be passing out all the time, or his brain should explode from the pressure. But ta da! He has these one of a kind, one way valves in his neck that enable the blood to travel from his heart to head. Could this have evolved? Not likely because while waiting for these intricate valves to develop the poor creature would have expired from dehydration or, yeah, his head would have exploded.

 

The Human Eye. 7701744_f520More complex than the telescope, our little peepers are wonders all in themselves. A scientist once said, “To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest sense.” That was Charles Darwin, by the way in his book The Origin of the Species (1859, p. 170).

Another evolutionist, Robert Jastrow, wrote: “The eye is a marvelous instrument, resembling a telescope of the highest quality, with a lens, an adjustable focus, a variable diaphragm for controlling the amount of light, and optical corrections for spherical and chromatic aberration. The eye appears to have been designed; no designer of telescopes could have done better. How could this marvelous instrument have evolved by chance, through a succession of random events?”

How indeed? But, I guess for consistency’s sake, we should teach the children that all the telescopes in the world simply came to be all on their own. Over a long period of time, under the right conditions.

Survival of the fittest/natural selection. Stay with me. If we go with the natural selection/survival of the fittest: (not to be confused with speciation) Things develop and change to get what they need to survive. (Strange they never mutate.. but we’ll press on.) Certain species survive and thrive while others die out and it’s all part of nature’s course. So then why do we interfere? Why do we try to save the Red Panda or starving children for that matter? I suppose you could argue that it’s because we humans have polluted the world and really messed things up so in many ways it’s our fault. But in terms of survival of the fittest, we’re at the top. Why do we care about anything else? Rainforests? Endangered animals? Human rights? Why not let the people in parts of the world that don’t have enough food, starve? Isn’t that letting nature take it’s course, survival of the fittest?

Because we were designed with a soul, a conscience, a that’s not right trigger.

Believe or not, I’m not against evolution being presented in school, as a theory. Problem is, it’s typically not presented as a theory. Just yesterday I came across this from livescience.com: “The scientific evidence is clear: The Earth is about 4.5 billion years old, and all life evolved from primitive, single-celled organisms.”

Close your minds folks, no need to investigate any further. Don’t argue, don’t think, just swallow. Never mind that evolutionists such Darwin and Jastrow themselves recognized gaping holes and unanswerable questions or that there is no scientific way to prove the above statement.

Renowned British physicist Lord Kelvin once wrote: “Overwhelming strong proofs of intelligent and benevolent design lie around us … The atheistic idea is so nonsensical that I cannot put it into words.”

So why does evolution hog the spotlight in public shool and college textbooks while intelligent design hardly gets mentioned? (but does get an eye roll) The answer is pretty simple, and certainly not new with me:

It’s easier.

Or at least it appears to be.

The very thought of intelligent design naturally leads to more questions. Weighty, rock-your-world questions like: who is this designer and what does he want? In a way, it’s just easier to remain unaccountable and smother the bigger questions and keep your mind off snowflakes and stars and ocean tides and how the hummingbird can fly and why the the sun is positioned just so.

Grappling with the design of things is just the beginning, a prologue to a much bigger story. But this post has grown long-winded so I’ll pick up where I’ve left off for next time. The sun is melting millions of those beautiful little sculptures that have covered my yard for too long and right now I want to bask in that.

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2 thoughts on “The Design of Things

  1. Rachel, this is one of your best blog posts ever! Thamks for bring so articulate and saying what I have often thought. How can I put this on my Facebook status?

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