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  • » 12/11/2004, 00.00

    UNITED STATES

    Atheist philosopher acknowledges the existence of God



    Anthony Flew, one of the world's best known philosophical proponents of atheism, has conceded that scientific evidence points to the existence of God and that "a superior intelligence" must be involved.

    New York (AsiaNews/CWN) – Anthony Flew, the British scholar who has been one of the world's most proponent of atheism, has conceded that scientific evidence points to the existence of God.

    A prolific writer and energetic lecturer who has advanced atheist arguments throughout his long academic career, Flew made his dramatic concession at a conference in New York in which he recanted the ideology of a lifetime conceding that there is scientific evidence for the existence of God.

    Flew said that the latest biological research "has shown, by the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to produce (life), that intelligence must have been involved."

    Early this year, writing in Philosophy Now magazine, Flew had indicated that his commitment to atheism was wavering. He wrote: "It has become inordinately difficult even to begin to think about constructing a naturalistic theory of the evolution of that first reproducing organism."

    Flew credited a Texas Catholic, Roy Varghese, with helping to persuade him that biological research points to the workings of an intelligent creator. Varghese, the author of The Wonder of the World, organized the May conference at which Flew first questioned his own atheistic position.

    Flew—whose 1984 essay, The Presumption of Atheism, fixed his place as the leading proponent of that view—emphasises that he has not accepted Christianity. He said: "I'm thinking of a God very different from the God of the Christian, and far and away from the God of Islam." He likened his current position to the deism of Thomas Jefferson, explaining that he is now sympathetic to the researchers who theorise about an 'intelligent design' in the working of creation.

    Antony Flew conceded that some of his philosophical followers will be shocked by his announcement. But he said: "My whole life has been guided by the principle of Plato's Socrates: Follow the evidence, wherever it leads."

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