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Antony Flew, for decades a leading champion of atheism, now says he’s concluded that a super-intelligence is the only good explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature.

“I’m thinking of a God very different from the God of the Christian and far and away from the God of Islam, because both are depicted as omnipotent Oriental despots, cosmic Saddam Husseins,” Flew, a British philosophy professor, said Thursday. “It could be a person in the sense of a being that has intelligence and a purpose, I suppose.”

He said he accepts evolution but doubts it can explain the origins of life. He remains a nonbeliever in life after death.

Flew, 81, has taught his view of atheism at Oxford, Aberdeen, Keele and Reading universities in Britain, in visits to numerous U.S. and Canadian campuses and in books, articles, lectures, and debates.

There was no one moment of change in his thinking, Flew said, but a gradual conclusion over months. His new view is explained in a new edition of his book, “God and Philosophy,” scheduled for release next year.

From Another Source

A British philosophy professor who’s been a leading champion of atheism for more than 50 years has changed his mind. Antony Flew says scientific evidence has now convinced him that a super-intelligence is the only explanation for the origin of life and the complexity of nature. Flew says biologists’ studies of DNA have shown “the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements” needed to produce life. The 81-year-old Flew says he still does not believe in a God who is actively involved in people’s lives but adds, “It could be a person in the sense of a being that has intelligence and a purpose.” If his newfound belief upsets people, Flew says “that’s too bad” — but he has always been determined to “follow the evidence wherever it leads.”