Sunday, November 29, 2009

At the alter of Darwin

Point 5 of the 'new atheists" according to John Haught is: "All living things are the result of Darwinian evolution." While it is true that evolution takes place (evolution in the sense of change or microevolutionary adaptations), the question really is to what extent? On a Darwinian scale all life has evolved from a single celled organism. Multiple problems exist with Darwin's view. First, how did this first organism appear from non-living material? Second, what evidence exists in the fossil record? Third, How do you add new genetic material? Fourth, How does a cold blooded organism (which is more primitive) develop a warm blooded system by way of small gradual changes? Fifth, what about the Cambrian explosion?1 Sixth, what about irreducible complexity?2 Seventh, what do you do with the appearance of design and the rise of consciousness?

Today, however the theory of evolution is being presented as settled fact. Much of what is being presented by the "new atheists" is nothing more than religious philosophy. Evolutionary changes cannot be denied, but are we talking of macroevolutionary changes where all life springs from a single life form (i.e. tree of evolution) or are the changes merely adaptations (microevolution) within the various phyla of organisms?

1 ( a secular article that addresses the Cambrian explosion)

No comments: