Does neuroscience leave room for God? That was a question debated Saturday April 19, 2008 at the University of Minnesota. While Dr. PZ Myers was appearing in theaters around the country that night as Darwin's bulldog in the movie Expelled, he also appeared in person to debate Dr. Angus Menuge, Professor of Philosophy at Concordia University Wisconsin. The central issue of the debate was to examine the materialist contention that the brain reduces to the mind. Does the scientific evidence indicate that something more is going on in the brain that can't be explained purely by material causes? Dr. Menuge provided us a full report of the event along with a copy of his Powerpoint presention, and a link to a web video of the debate.
Here are a couple quotes from the report:
Myers was surprisingly passive in debate and did not really seem eager to spar. I got the sense that he had previously dismissed me as another creationist "ID-iot," and that he was not really prepared for me to make a serious case. Here are some of the main points of our discussion...
I had two very big surprises. First, Dr. Myers denied being a Darwinist, which produced the kind of stunned silence one would expect if the Pope announced his non-Catholicity. Myers' stated grounds were that Darwin has been dead for over a hundred years. I wished I had pointed out that I am on many issues a Platonist, even though Plato has been dead for 2400 years. Second, as I mentioned, Myers denied that science is really about truth. I had to wonder why it was so important for him to exclude design from science if all that matters is what works. After all, I had noted earlier on in my presentation that the Darwinist philosopher Michael Ruse agrees that methodological design does work in biology by helping scientists decode the machinery of life.
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