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"These are the days when the Christian is expected to praise every creed except his own." G.K.Chesterton

"You cannot grow a beard in a moment of passion." G.K.Chesterton

"As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of Port would do that."C. S. Lewis

"I blog, therefore I am." Anon

Saturday, April 12, 2003

"evolution doesn't give a damn"

Carol Iannone writing in the New York Press, Volume 14, Issue 18, 2001 reveals one Darwinian who doesn't give a damn that evolution doesn't give a damn - and wants the world to know it:

William Jennings Bryan Was Right

... The Darwinian theory of the evolution of species through random mutation
and natural selection is an uncompromisingly materialistic view of life that
precludes not just Genesis but any transcendent reality whatsoever.

One of the few Darwinians to speak frankly about this clash of world views
is William B. Provine, Professor of the History of Science at Cornell
University, who admits that "prominent evolutionists have joined with
equally prominent theologians and religious leaders to sweep under the rug
the incompatibilities of evolution and religion." The reason for this benign
coverup is that, according to Provine, "If modern evolutionary biology is
true, then all these lofty desires"–such as "the existence of a personal
god, free will, life after death, immutable moral laws, and ultimate meaning
in life"–are "hopeless." Instead, he declares, "we’re produced by a process
that gives not one damn about us. It simply plops us here as humans on the
earth the same way it does chimpanzees or gorillas or the AIDS virus or
anything else."

... Sociobiologists argue that social evolution is a direct outgrowth of
biological evolution. In the drive to fulfill the evolutionary mandate to
reproduce themselves and spread their genes, human beings have developed
certain characteristics, dispositions and patterns of behavior that can be
seen as ethical or moral and that are now hardwired into our species. For
example, women, driven by the Darwinian mandate to pass on their genes,
desire protection for their offspring and are therefore eager to form
monogamous attachments. Driven by the same Darwinian mandate, a man wants to
know that a woman’s children are definitely his own and he will therefore
bind himself to her in a monogamous relationship despite his natural
proclivity to roam. Pure biology thus produces what we think of as

Sociobiology can only work backwards from the moral order that we are
already familiar with by virtue of tradition and/or revelation and then
suggest some evolutionary hypothesis to explain it. As C.S. Lewis might put
it, you can’t go from an "is" to an "ought"–that is, there is no way to
derive moral strictures from the facts of biology. The laws of evolution
cannot lead to morality, but inevitably lapse into mere adaptation and
survival of the fittest.

... We’re creatures of evolution, you see, and so must continue to evolve in
response to our changing environment. Those who seek a vision of an abiding
social order based on permanent truths about human nature will not find it
in sociobiology or Darwinian evolution. In that, William Jennings Bryan was

10:13:00 pm