Intelligent Design

Can anyone who is knowledgeable in this subject please explain the difference between Theistic Evolution vs Intelligent Design? From what I have read they both seem to be the same but Im told they are different.

(Note: The topic of evolution is banned so I do not to seek to discuss this topic, only the fundamental difference between theistic evolution and intelligent design. Please do not post on why this view is correct or that view. I am looking differences only so that I can distinguish between the two, so that I may properly claim which one I believe in when asked by others.)

Thank You,
God Bless

AIUI TE says that God set up the universe in such a way that live would arise and evolve without the requirement for any further intervention. God could perfectly foresee the results of His actions from the very beginning, at the Big Bang, and so everything that has happened is in accordance with His plan. His universe was designed so that life would self-assemble and self-evolve.

ID says that there are parts of living organisms that could not have evolved, and hence there must have been some direct material intervention by the designer during the existence of planet earth. ID tends to place these direct interventions around the origin of the first living organism, around the Cambrian Explosion and around the origin of either Genus Homo, or the species, Homo sapiens.



Thank you for the explanation!

ID is pseudoscience and poor theology.

As the previous poster said, God has set up the laws of physics in such a way that the universe has the potential to evolve without any supernatural tinkering.

Yes, that was indeed an excellent explanation by Rossum.

I’d only add that from a Catholic perspective there was indeed no biological Intelligent Design required at the rise of Homo Sapiens (even though anyone is free to believe otherwise), however the Catholic Faith of course holds that God infuses an immaterial rational soul into each human being.

So, Al, why could that infusion by God of an immaterial rational soul not have happened, say, as a result of the infusion of information into the first cell that would then via genetic replication and evolution become the basis for each “rational” soul in each individual human?

Just as theistic evolution claims that God front-loaded all the potential for the evolution of living things into the laws of physics and chemistry, why could he not have accomplished the infusion of every immaterial, rational soul into the primordial genetic information found in the first cell. Immaterial “form” or “information” infused at that point, could then “evolve” via genetic replication into its intended evolved form, eventually as each and every individual human being. Human immaterial “form” or the “rational soul” is, then, passed on via genetic transposition (immaterial “information” passed from parents to offspring.)

Why would we suppose God waits for each conception to “infuse” the soul, when that could have been accomplished - just like front loading the possibility of life itself in the laws of physics - by the front loading of “information” into the first cell? We would then have a “tidy” explanation for the origin of genetic information as well as the method by which God “infuses” or “informs” the possibility of rational souls into living matter.

The immaterial soul would then be identical to the distinct “information” that is present at conception when a zygote is formed from genes from both its parents.

It would be a kind of theistic evolution paradigm applied to “soul-making.”


You’re not serious, are you?

That would be against Catholic teaching. The immaterial is immaterial. The soul cannot be studied by science so what we know about it comes only from Scripture and Divine Revelation. God is in charge of infusing souls into people.


Intelligent Design involves the fact that living things today are too complex to have evolved/developed without an outside intelligence “tinkering” with the process. If scientists announced today that they have found evidence that aliens created human beings, they would promote that.

Theistic Evolution tells us that God was a direct causal force of the development of life. God guided whatever process that may have occurred. We know that God created all living things, and heaven and earth.


You said it. :thumbsup:

“Information” or the “form” of things is immaterial.

So basically ID is the view that God created everything but intervened here and there to ensure that it evolved properly?

While Theistic Evolution is that there was no intervention since, God the creator of all, would have developed a perfect evolutionary process?

I feel like there very similar but ID has some theological holes in it because why would God create an evolutionary process that was full of error and needed intervention?

I consider ID to be a pseudoscience.

The issue I have with ID is that it seems to represent a god of the gaps.

This is a better solution and does not involve “tinkering”.

IDvolution - God “breathed” the super language of DNA into the “kinds” in the creative act.

This accounts for the diversity of life we see. The core makeup shared by all living things have the necessary complex information built in that facilitates rapid and responsive adaptation of features and variation while being able to preserve the “kind” that they began as. Life has been created with the creativity built in ready to respond to triggering events.
Since it has been demonstrated that all living organisms on Earth have the same core, it is virtually certain that living organisms have been thought of AT ONCE by the One and the same Creator endowed with the super language we know as DNA that switched on the formation of the various kinds, the cattle, the swimming creatures, the flying creatures, etc… in a pristine harmonious state and superb adaptability and responsiveness to their environment for the purpose of populating the earth that became subject to the ravages of corruption by the sin of one man (deleterious mutations).
IDvolution considers the latest science and is consistent with the continuous teaching of the Church.

You got it. If all development of the natural world were special creation, without a process, that would make theological sense – but it’s not what we observe in the physical world. A perfect evolutionary process on the other hand also makes theological sense. Yet a process that is so poorly designed that it needs ‘tinkering’ from time to time, well, that’s problematic theology – apart from being poor science since it’s not what we observe either.

I see what you’re saying but consider the following:

  1. I have an immaterial idea for the design of an object or even a living thing. I would need the information to produce a working model. This can be based on my own studies or observations of similar systems and how they work. Absorbing this information would be immaterial as well.

  2. The final form of my object has to take many factors into account for it, in this case, a living being, to survive in its environment. For example, how does my creation know what is food and what is not food? How does it know the difference between good and bad outside stimuli? How, and by what means, can it reproduce?

The soul, as Catholics know, is immaterial. It survives physical death. At some unknown time, it will be reunited with its dead physical body and be judged. We pray to a living God. In the case of Jesus, he possessed a physical body like ours, died and rose from the dead. He will return to judge the living and the dead.


I actually asked this question because I saw that website but was confused on exactly what it was which was why I asked the difference between TE and ID.
Are you the owner of the site?


A few questions get to the heart of the matter.

  1. Did God know what Adam would look like?

do you mind if I direct message you or email you?

go right ahead.

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