As demonstrated through popular media in the modern world, those who believe in religion are gaining a reputation as ignorant, irrational and superstitious. Popular belief would tell us it is much more reasonable to think that everything just came into existence by random chance, rather than being fastened together by a supreme being.
If a person came across Michelangelo’s sculpture of David in the middle of nowhere without knowing where it came from, would it be more reasonable to assume that the sculpture was the result of random weather patterns, or that there must have been a sculptor that created it? The odds of weather creating such a detailed and intricate sculpture seem so low as to be nonexistent. Yet the stubborn skeptic might insist that somewhere on some planet conditions might occur that could create such a thing.
But what happens to the odds when that person comes across La Pieta? Could random events create two such different and unique statues on the same planet? Add to that Michelangelo’s statues of Moses, The Risen Christ, Rachel and Leah, and The Rebellious and Dying Slaves. Could the stubborn skeptic continue to believe that random chance could create all these statues on the same planet? The random creation of millions of such statues all on the same planet somewhere in the universe would be the equivalent of what we have surrounding us in the natural world occurring just by chance.
By profession, I am an electrical engineer who designs communication systems. In my experience, it is difficult for an engineer to design even the simplest of self-sustaining systems, let alone complex communication systems. Would it not be ridiculous to believe that a cellphone came into existence through random events rather than through careful design by teams of highly trained engineers? And yet cellphones are child’s play compared to the complexity of everything that surrounds us.
Modern science teaches about the intricate balance that must exist on our planet to support life. Millions of different complex systems interact with and sustain each other in ways that boggle the mind.
In an infinite cycle, the oceans become clouds, the clouds become rain, the rain becomes rivers and streams that flow back to the oceans. The rain combined with sunlight allows plants to generate oxygen, that oxygen and water sustains animal life. Animals die and provide fertilizer that helps the plants grow. The earth contains a molten core that creates a magnetic field that protects all forms of life from harmful cosmic radiation.
The immune system protects the body from sickness. When sickness or injury occurs, the body contains the ability to repair itself. The list goes on and on. It seems much more rational to believe that there is a designer of all of this complexity than to think that it all happened by chance.
Even renowned scientists, like British physicist Sir Fred Hoyle, have recognized this. Of the notion of a creator, Hoyle said, “A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.”
The argument for the existence of God based on the incredible complexity of the natural systems that surround us is certainly not new, but that does not mean it is not persuasive. At the very most, the world that surrounds us argues loudly for the existence of a Creator. At the very least, it exonerates believers in a Creator from labels such as “ignorant,” “irrational” or “superstitious."
Cameron Ford received BS and MS degrees in electrical engineering from the U. of U. and an MBA from Weber State. He currently works as a signal processing and modem design engineer. His thoughts on God can be found at www.2understandamormon.com
Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company