I am currently reading Michael Behe’s book Darwin’s Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution,one of the main books advocating “intelligent design” (ID). It’s quite different to most other science books. Whereas I normally enjoy science books and find them very uplifting, even inspirational, I am finding this one depressing.
It’s not because I disagree with Behe’s conclusions – after all one doesn’t have to accept concepts or speculations to find their discussion stimulating. Consider some of the current scientific speculation around string theory, multiple universes, etc. No, it’s really that the whole style of this book is not normal for science. Rather than being inspirational or enthusiastic it comes across as defeatist and depressing. Rather than encouraging the search for knowledge and understanding it repeatedly encourages the reader to see nature as too complicated to understand. It discounts the idea that we could ever find out how living systems work, how they arose or how life itself could have originated. This book really doesn’t offer anything positive to be enthusiastic about.