If nature, or any aspects of it, are intelligently designed, how could we tell? How would we be able to test that hypothesis?

  • $\begingroup$ Consider this: if a potter makes a pot, does it make sense to search the pot for direct evidence of his/her existence, or would doing so only possibly imply that someone made it? Does lack of finding the potter in this instance mean (s)he doesn't exist? In the same vein, if the Christian God created all the universe and reality that we know, would lack of finding direct evidence for such a God inside that universe mean that God does not exist?? (by the way, we have a lot more universe to explore anyway). $\endgroup$ – theforestecologist Apr 8 '19 at 22:48
  • $\begingroup$ The scientific process could provide evidence supporting the potter's existence, but one could never prove the existence of the potter unless one expanded his/her viewpoint beyond the pot. Similarly, the scientific process could potentially provide evidence supporting God's existence or his resulting created design, but it can never prove that a god does not exist because of the endless possibility for searching. In other words, "science" cannot prove existence (or lack thereof) of a God. $\endgroup$ – theforestecologist Apr 8 '19 at 22:48
  • $\begingroup$ To answer your question: verly likely not. The world and universe is an amazingly complex and beautiful existence, but we have no objective way of demonstrating definitively where it all came from. In science, hypotheses have to be testable and falsifiable, but in your case, we do not know what intelligent design should look like, so we have no truly objective test to perform... $\endgroup$ – theforestecologist Apr 8 '19 at 22:48
  • $\begingroup$ By the way, I think your post will be closed as being primarily opinion based (i.e., potential answers will likely only be based on opinion). You could try to rewrite to avoid having your post closed. Unfortunately, no matter how much you edit, this community typically reacts quite negatively toward religious-slanted posts, so get ready for copious downvoting $\endgroup$ – theforestecologist Apr 8 '19 at 22:55
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    $\begingroup$ I am voting to close because the question ask for testable hypothesis for a fundamentally non-scientific concept. $\endgroup$ – Remi.b Apr 9 '19 at 11:36

Only someone who believes in intelligent design can answer that question for you and that answer will most likely be unscientific (therefore not fit for this site). The reason is because intelligent design is a claim that is not based on observable reality rather divine revelation so it is impossible test any hypothesis regarding it.

Evolution on the other hand is based on two observable, testable facts: (1) all living things on Earth inherit their traits from their parents and (2) those traits are not always copied and passed on with perfect fidelity. With these two facts we can theorize on what other observable facts lead to the variation in life that we see today i.e. evolution by natural selection.


I have never read any testable hypothesis from the Intelligent Design (ID) community. As such ID is not wrong or right, it is just not testable.

To be fair, ID contains a lot of logical fallacies. Not only does it not offer any testable hypotheses but it often just does not make much sense anyway!

  • $\begingroup$ To be fair, Old Earth Creationists are more literate than their "young" group and do offer hypotheses that are "testable" to some degree. As an alternative to whale evolution for example, Dr. Hugh Ross from Reasons to Believe proposes that God iteratively created new species of whales over millions of years. He argues that God did this to lower CO2 levels in the atmosphere so that Earth remained habitable with the increasing brightness of the Sun. $\endgroup$ – user38945 Apr 9 '19 at 16:43
  • $\begingroup$ Regarding that hypothesis, it could be tested whether CO2 levels have decreased significantly as whales became larger in size. I can imagine what would happen if the hypothesis was proven or disproven. If a negative correlation was shown, OECs would show it as evidence for good design and thus, God. If it was positive or null, they would shrug off their shoulders and say that they were mistaken in what constitutes good design; not that it's proof against God (which would the logical extension). $\endgroup$ – user38945 Apr 9 '19 at 17:00
  • $\begingroup$ Your whale hypothesis is non-sense too. 1) Whales are big but they aren't that numerous. If you combine all krills together you'd get a mas much higher than all whales together. The same would be true for termites, ants, humans and many other things. 2) Also, the mass of whales is so, soooo negligible compared to the quantity of carbon in the world. 3) The hypothesis is not testable as it would it so full of much stronger confounding variables (evolution and demographic changes of other life forms) $\endgroup$ – Remi.b Apr 9 '19 at 19:15
  • $\begingroup$ 4) As you said, showing a correlation or another would not in anyway prove any intention anyway. If whales were to stuck a lot of carbon, nothing would suggest that someone "created" whales for that purpose. $\endgroup$ – Remi.b Apr 9 '19 at 19:15
  • $\begingroup$ Actually it turns out that whales are vital for oceanic carbon absorption (scientificamerican.com/article/whales-keep-carbon-out-of-the-atmosphere), mainly because they enrich they "fertilize" the surface with nutrients when they dive and defecate. $\endgroup$ – user38945 Apr 10 '19 at 14:16

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