Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Source of Intuition

Human intuition, an adjunct to scientists’ assembled evidence concerning origins, has received its share of attention to explain how we form our beliefs. When all is said and done, after scientists make their case for evolution, are their science students and the public at large overwhelmed by their power of persuasion?  Are they impacted by the tenets of neo-Darwinism which has captured the heart of the bio-science community with its emphasis on genetic connections between organisms? Does a significant segment of the public endorse the paradigm of evolution? In keeping with the marriage of the science profession to naturalism, secular science educators may now respond with a qualified, “Yes.” Many voices from our secular science establishment have established their claim to authority on the question of origins.

What is the effect of the evolutionary indoctrination received by our students in public education? Could the formation of the human body have occurred by a chance evolutionary natural selection scenario? More specifically, are the exquisite design features of billions of sensory neurons (cells which carry electrical signals to or from the brain) a happy outcome of natural selection? The neurons of the body are incredible structures of complexity and functionality. Integration of eye anatomy, for example, and the neural function from the retina to and including the brain leave us awe-struck with wonder. The evidence of information we have uncovered about just one sensory organ, the eye, fortifies our personal intuitional confidence that such a marvelous organ could not conceivably have developed as the outcome of an evolutionary event sequence.

In 2011 a lengthy scholarly paper in the Journal of Research in Science Teaching discussed an unusual research report of student feelings on origins of life, the many life forms we observe, and by extension, the wonders of even one body system such as the human eye and vision. The study by Minsu Ha, David L. Haury, and Ross H. Nehm was titled “Feeling of Certainty: Uncovering a Missing Link between Knowledge and Acceptance of Evolution.” A reaction by a Reasons to Believe contributor, Roger Bennett, clarifies the issue for our post readers concerned about the truth of evolution: Bennett says, “…in acquiring knowledge, we not only assimilate information, we also experience an intuitive feeling that the information is true, or in some cases, not true.

Bennett quotes an article from which underscores the point: “…the human brain doesn’t judge the merits of an idea solely on logic, but also how intrinsically true the idea feels.” Bennett believes that intuitive feelings against Darwinism arise from God’s image in man (Gen. 1:26-27). His image, according to Bennett’s analysis, enables us to be receptive to the “testimony” of His existence through creation. The previously cited scholarly paper references a study which held that children “generate creationist beliefs about origins,” but, on the contrary, do not generate intuitive evolutionary or at least naturalistic beliefs. Children do not generate naturalistic beliefs because they possess the image of God and because they’ve not yet been taught to rationalize away creation’s testimony, according to Bennett.

Children and adults have intuitions which fortify their beliefs. The above-cited scholarly paper was not written from a theistic perspective. Even so, we acknowledge the characteristic of man as a creation of God with an “image of God” signature. Our ability to observe and analyze physical evidence remains strong. Likewise, human intuition is a gift from our Creator. Romans 1:19-20 (NLT) affirms the realities of both intuition and physical evidence: “For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts. From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.”