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Inside the Human GenomeA Case for Non-Intelligent Design$
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John C. Avise

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195393439

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195393439.001.0001

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Intelligent or Non-Intelligent Design?

Intelligent or Non-Intelligent Design?

(p.134) chapter 5 Intelligent or Non-Intelligent Design?
Inside the Human Genome

John C. Avise

Oxford University Press

This chapter recapitulates evidence for rampant imperfection in the molecular architecture and operation of human genomes. Inherent structural flaws as well as mutational glitches combine to produce genomes that are complex but often dysfunctional, and that invariably fall far short of designer perfection. These unassailable empirical findings extend the age‐old theodicy challenge into the previously unexplored molecular realm. From a scientific vantage, however, such genomic flaws are hardly surprising, because natural selection (a primary directive force of evolution) is nonsentient and far from all‐powerful. Contrary to claims from the Intelligent Design movement, the human genome is not irreducibly complex. Widespread imperfections in the human genome are fully consistent, however, with evolutionary expectations. The evolutionary sciences can thus be interpreted as emancipating religions from the ancient philosophical prison of theodicy.

Keywords:   genomic flaws, natural selection, irreducible complexity, philosophy, theology, science, theodicy

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