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-----Original Message-----
From: A. Marconi [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
Sent: Friday, August 12, 2005 2:42 AM
Subject: [media-dakwah] Atheist Philosopher, 81, Now Believes in God

Atheist Philosopher, 81, Now Believes in God

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                           Atheist Philosopher, 81, Now Believes in God
                          By Richard N. Ostling
                          Associated Press
                          posted: 10 December 2004
                          09:31 am ET

                          NEW YORK (AP) _ A British philosophy professor who 
has been a leading champion of atheism for more than a half-century has changed 
his mind. He now believes in God -- more or less -- based on scientific 
evidence, and says so on a video released Thursday.

                          At age 81, after decades of insisting belief is a 
mistake, Antony Flew has concluded that some sort of intelligence or first 
cause must have created the universe. A super-intelligence is the only good 
explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature, Flew said in a 
telephone interview from England.

                          Flew said he's best labeled a deist like Thomas 
Jefferson, whose God was not actively involved in people's lives.

                          "I'm thinking of a God very different from the God of 
the Christian and far and away from the God of Islam, because both are depicted 
as omnipotent Oriental despots, cosmic Saddam Husseins," he said. "It could be 
a person in the sense of a being that has intelligence and a purpose, I 

                          Flew first made his mark with the 1950 article 
"Theology and Falsification," based on a paper for the Socratic Club, a weekly 
Oxford religious forum led by writer and Christian thinker C.S. Lewis.

                          Over the years, Flew proclaimed the lack of evidence 
for God while teaching at Oxford, Aberdeen, Keele, and Reading universities in 
Britain, in visits to numerous U.S. and Canadian campuses and in books, 
articles, lectures and debates.

                          There was no one moment of change but a gradual 
conclusion over recent months for Flew, a spry man who still does not believe 
in an afterlife.

                          Yet biologists' investigation of DNA "has shown, by 
the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to 
produce (life), that intelligence must have been involved," Flew says in the 
new video, "Has Science Discovered God?"

                          The video draws from a New York discussion last May 
organized by author Roy Abraham Varghese's Institute for Metascientific 
Research in Garland, Texas. Participants were Flew; Varghese; Israeli physicist 
Gerald Schroeder, an Orthodox Jew; and Roman Catholic philosopher John Haldane 
of Scotland's University of St. Andrews.

                          The first hint of Flew's turn was a letter to the 
August-September issue of Britain's Philosophy Now magazine. "It has become 
inordinately difficult even to begin to think about constructing a naturalistic 
theory of the evolution of that first reproducing organism," he wrote.

                          The letter commended arguments in Schroeder's "The 
Hidden Face of God" and "The Wonder of the World" by Varghese, an Eastern Rite 
Catholic layman.

                          This week, Flew finished writing the first formal 
account of his new outlook for the introduction to a new edition of his "God 
and Philosophy," scheduled for release next year by Prometheus Books.

                          Prometheus specializes in skeptical thought, but if 
his belief upsets people, well "that's too bad," Flew said. "My whole life has 
been guided by the principle of Plato's Socrates: Follow the evidence, wherever 
it leads."

                          Last week, Richard Carrier, a writer and Columbia 
University graduate student, posted new material based on correspondence with 
Flew on the atheistic Web page. Carrier assured atheists that 
Flew accepts only a "minimal God" and believes in no afterlife.

                          Flew's "name and stature are big. Whenever you hear 
people talk about atheists, Flew always comes up," Carrier said. Still, when it 
comes to Flew's reversal, "apart from curiosity, I don't think it's like a big 

                          Flew told The Associated Press his current ideas have 
some similarity with American "intelligent design" theorists, who see evidence 
for a guiding force in the construction of the universe. He accepts Darwinian 
evolution but doubts it can explain the ultimate origins of life.

                          A Methodist minister's son, Flew became an atheist at 

                          Early in his career, he argued that no conceivable 
events could constitute proof against God for believers, so skeptics were right 
to wonder whether the concept of God meant anything at all.

                          Another landmark was his 1984 "The Presumption of 
Atheism," playing off the presumption of innocence in criminal law. Flew said 
the debate over God must begin by presuming atheism, putting the burden of 
proof on those arguing that God exists. 
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