Let’s give them something to talk about…
– Sanjaya Malakar
A question that’s been rolling around my brain for a few days is “of what value is the Darwinist dialog?” Quixote said it well with his comment on yesterday’s post:
“To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.”
The concept of entropy is that it is essentially “useless energy.” We know that energy is conserved, but more and more of it becomes useless. Does the conversation also become more and more disordered and useless over time?
Perhaps. However, the real value to me is not to prove anything true or false; in fact, I would say that to attempt that is probably useless, and nothing more than arguments about “foolish controversies” (Titus 3:6). As another of my commentors said, what is true doesn’t “give a crap what you, I, your thermodynamicist or the fossil record says.” No, the goal is not proof; the real value, for me, is in relationship. It is the conversation which I value, and I appreciate blog technology for allowing these conversations to continue.
But, let’s shift the conversation a bit. So far, the focus has been on various aspects of evolutionary theory. However, as I’ve postulated before, I don’t think that evolution itself is the issue; the real issue is God. Evolution has been called “the creation myth of philosophical materialism” for a reason, and the connection between the New Atheists and neo-Darwinism adds support to the notion that this is a religious debate more than a scientific debate (and some scientists are mad at folks like Dawkins and Myers for that very reason).
So, let’s talk about God.
You sly dog. Attributing Bonnie Raitt’s song to Sanjaya.
I think that if you have read enough of the “philosophical materialists” you would know that the disbelief is based on the same skepticism that has moved us out of the dark ages. Everything must be questioned, which I hardly think can be considered presumptuous. If the Jewish carpenter could find a way to show his existence, so that we could know that there is no “man behind the curtain” as currently appears to be the case, then we would all bend our knees.
Until then, I consider myself skeptical wrt his existence as much as I do the Teapot, the Flying Spaghetti Monster, Zeus, et al.
It’s not a matter of not wanting to believe, it’s a matter of needing something far more reliable than personal revelation or even the mere words of other men (which are severely contradictory when it comes to Jesus.)
When science claims ultimate authority in determining what is to be believed or not, it is science who begs the religious question, ducking, when challenged, behind the skirts of “objectivity” and “fact.” But even in science, objectivity is the myth of every particular paradigm and fact shudders at the tyranny of inescapable presupposition. “Scientists who are only interested in science” are as utterly preposterous as religionists who are only interested in religion. Humility is in order, first for the deist who contemplates the manifold wonders of the material universe, but also for the scientist who gapes stupefied at the incalculable, stubborn “fact” of spirit.
I’m a theist, but I know that in the grand scheme of things we don’t know jack. So it pretty much boils down to whose testimony we’re going to bet the farm on. Go with the prestigious Darwin or the brilliant Einstein or the admirable Shockley if you must. And though I laud their accomplishments, for my money I’ll take the laughable Jewish carpenter—if only because it bugs the hell out of the priests of presumptuous materialism.
Yes, the debate was made a religio-political one by the creationists way back in the early 20th century. In the meantime, scientists who are only interested in science continue to make their discoveries while the debate over the religious implications barely register on their radar screen.