Intelligent Design

For most people, the idea of a creator necessarily involves a controling intelligence, but what if the true nature of the Creator is that it is a facilitive intelligence? What if the 'daimonic intelligence' within the universe is in fact 'dumb' or 'blind'? Bear in mind that humans with a hearing or speech disability often have other compensating faculties.

The idea of a 'permissive intelligence' facilitating the work of others is not so ridiculous in view of how the worldwide web originated. Also, consider those inventions whose ultimate use was substantially different from that envisaged by the discoverer or creator - wireless telephony and the saxophone are just two examples that come to mind. Neither Marconi nor Sax was in any sense an 'impaired' intelligence ... yet that makes the point.

While each was the cleverest in their fields, they were nevertheless 'blind' to how the reiterations and repercussions of their machines would both transform other supposedly 'smarter' intelligences and be transformed by that interaction. Notwithstanding that these subsequent folk did not, and probably could not have, invented what they were able to exploit, they took each invention to a totally different level by developing the basic concept in ways that were the result of a different perspective. It's even more true of modern computing if you see it from the perspective of Babbage or Turing. And it's a sine qua non of developments in artificial intelligence and robotics, whose heuristic trajectory of transcending each previous generation's endeavours is almost like the arc of evolution itself.

We have a hard time imagining anything like this in relation to our concepts of a creator-spirit - in the same way that as children most of us could not imagine the limitations we later discover in our parents. Yet if there was a formative mind or generative consciousness within matter which had the characteristics of its human equivalent we would find it easy to grasp. But we don't. In fact what the nature of this difference is, or might be, has engaged the finest minds since the dawn of literature - which it probably gave rise to in the first place. That which cannot be put into words cannot be discussed, and yet what lies at the roots of the mystery of life itself still defies the most ardent rationalist.

Thus when those who claim insights into the nature of this creator-spirit say that it is 'radically other', do not these characteristics well suit that description, especially when we call 'blind' the heuristic by which we come into being ... love? Indeed do not all faith traditions teach that 'God is love'?

If one considers what the emotional power of music actually is: then it becomes clear that it is possible to encounter a phenomenon well able to illustrate or amplify some aspects of the psyche whilst not capturing others at all. Again here, interestingly, the range of emotions music can express are almost wholly monistic. Broadly they are those which characterise most opera arias. Positive emotions are joy, sublimity, exhilaration, playfulness, anticipation, love, ecstacy, peace. Negative ones are malice, anger, destruction, frenzy, despair, grief. Probably the only dualistic emotion music can conjure are around mistrust, conflict jealousy. (I'm asking you to think only of musical timbre, not its lyrics.) Does this range of emotions not admirably summarise the range of sensations which may act upon most intelligent life-forms as a result of natural phenomena they may encounter during a lifetime?

What differentiates humans is that our psychosomatic awareness allows a broader range of emotion as a result of our cybernetic ability to comprehend duality, as well as using language to articulate our experiences

Because most of us have been raised within 'command structured education', centrally dictated learning, we naturally see trangressing such limitations as the first step to adulthood. And where education has included ideas of a god it will likely be one that conforms to that model of social organisation – a model targeted on the supposed moral limitations of children, and which remains firmly rooted in credal assumptions of 'sinfulness'. Or even, nowadays, taught without reference personal spirituality at all, in the conviction that only what conforms to ontological observation is valid knowledge. Thus are we all nowadays the servants of Mr Gradgrind! Yet in culture it is not the artefact itself which is valuable but the numen surrounding it which imparts the cherished character(istic).

So it is that our best chance of understanding how Intelligent Design might work in the universe is to look not directly at any one physical manifestation but at the richness of relationships and networks that interconnect all aspects of the physical and metaphysical world/s. 

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