Imagine a colony of fleas living inside a motor car, the only home they have ever known. Two of them—let’s call them C and E—begin to scientifically investigate this world of theirs. By studying the processes going on in the car, they discover all the basic laws of chemistry and physics—motion, gravity, electromagnetism, thermodynamics, quantum mechanics, and so on.
Everything they have learned can be proved by repeatable experiments, so they eventually agree on every conclusion. Finally a young flea asks them a fateful question: ‘How did this car come about in the first place?’
C: ‘That’s obvious—it has been built at some time in the past by an intelligent designer.’
E: ‘Whaaat? I never heard you talk like that before. Oh, I know, you’re one of those religious cranks who believes in that book in the glove compartment, the manual, supposedly written by this designer. Don’t you know that our best Fleabrew scholars now agree that it is a bunch of myths written by pre-scientific nomadic desert fleas?’
C: ‘How do you account for the car, then, without a maker?’
E: ‘Please don’t get me wrong—you can believe in a maker if you wish, but you have to realize we can’t teach that to young fleas in science classes. Obviously, the scientific processes and laws which we have been studying are and have been slowly and gradually building this car up from simpler substances.’…
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