Is Intelligent Design Just Religion Masquerading as Science?

Meyer: Well, again, there’s every good reason to think Intelligent Design is a scientific theory, it uses a standard method of scientific reasoning that was used by Darwin himself.  Secondly, we don’t really look to federal judges to decide deep and imponderable questions in the philosophy of science, about the nature and definition of science. That’s actually something that philosophers of science do, that’s their specialty. I happen to be one of those people and I know that there’s every good reason to think that Intelligent Design does meet the standard definitions of science.  But, more importantly, the claim that Intelligent Design is religion raises an important distinction that we should make, and that is between the bases of the theory of Intelligent Design and its implications. I would concede that Intelligent Design has implications that are friendly to religious belief, because most theistic systems of belief, affirm that there is some of an intelligent creator or designer of some kind, and Intelligent Design affirms that. but, it’s important to point out that Intelligent Design is not based on religion, it’s not an interpretation of the biblical text, it’s not based on religious authority, it’s based on the discoveries of modern science, particularly discoveries in modern molecular biology, and it’s based on standard methods of scientific reasoning that have been established long before the theory came along, by the likes of Darwin and Newton and other, other great scientists.  So, it’s based on science, based on scientific reasoning, but it may have larger religious implications, in fact, I think it does, but that doesn’t disqualify the theory from being true.  You don’t say whether or not a theory is true because you like or don’t like its implications.  It would be totally wrong for me to say that Darwinism is true because many scientists think it leads to atheism.  You have to evaluate a theory based on the evidence, and whether the evidence is sufficient to support the claim.  And I would argue that the case for Intelligent Design is very strong based on the evidence, and so whether it has religious implications or not is irrelevant to our assessment of the theory.