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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CI102:

Systems are irreducibly complex if removing any one part destroys the system's function. Irreducible complexity in organisms indicates they were designed.


Behe, Michael J., 1996. Darwin's Black Box, New York: The Free Press.


  1. Irreducible complexity is claimed to indicate (but does not) that certain systems could not have evolved gradually. However, jumping from there to the conclusion that those systems were designed is an argument from incredulity. There is nothing about irreducibly complex systems that is positive evidence for design.

  2. Irreducible complexity suggests a lack of design. For critical applications, such as keeping an organism alive, you do not want systems that will fail if any one part fails. You want systems that are robust (Steele 2000).


  1. Steele, Diana. 2000. Scientists search for secrets of robust systems. Dallas Morning News, 18 Sep. 2000, Science section,

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created 2001-2-18