I am always hesitant to dive into this debate but it has been possible to suggests several plausible ideas.
The original theory was aimed at the visible macroscopic natural world and provided a method of explanation that somewhat worked well enough to make a sort of sense. It was supported by the actual variability of any species and the natural likelihood that subset variability could ultimately breed true as a species in its own right.
Field evidence beginning with the Origins strongly supported this conclusion. It still supports this conclusion.
The problem was in the mechanism. While the progress of evolution is mapped in the geology and even in the living here and now, the issue of how remains elusive and obviously controversial. Those attempting to argue against the reality of the evolutionary process are denying millions of data points that completely conform to the process itself. In fact the reality of evolution was becoming obvious long before
hit the best seller stands. Darwin
The real problem with accepting the empirical reality of evolution was that it made the God of creation into a self involved idiot. No longer did this deity not care, he was in the business of producing elaborate practical jokes in rock strata that purported to be billions of years old.
Of course, the first proper answer was to reframe our understanding of deity and God and that has been largely done.
Yet the sheer antiquity of life continues to daunt science and the inadequacy of the causation explanation grinds out too many contrived explanations. Into this area of weakness, the religious crowd has introduced the theory of ‘intelligent design’. It is seen as a backdoor attempt to provide one time complete creation in the recent past as purportedly was understood in the eighteenth century and is not accepted by anyone except this particular group. It must be noted that even this group has been forced to accept the sheer weight of data as real.
With the data I have made two observations.
1 Intelligent design is a solid hypothesis. The only difficulty is that it has nothing whatsoever to do with a divine deity. It has everything to do with biological feedback driven by the subconscious thought patterns of the parents been imbedded on its offspring. First of, this is a great survival adaptation. A camel discovers that it is wise to have a callus on its knees. So its offspring soon are born with such calluses. No messy survival of the fittest here.
The hypothesis applies to complex cellular organisms. It is able to comfortably explain the slow march of evolution. Recall that all complex life consists of managing the same body of finite cellular types. Our livers are similar to those of a fish and so on. In fact all of evolution has been about managing the set of cell groups we left the ocean with. I may have this wrong but I would love to be corrected on this.
2 Survival of the fittest as an operating principle applies solely to single cell organisms.
So the deity has disappeared in our explanation of the macro world and we are driven back to the beginning of biological creation. I have made some tentative strokes there but the problem is naturally hairy. Yet we are able to roll the act of creation back into deep geological time if not even deep into deep cosmological time. Life on earth needed only the advent of a simple cell or two, for a little variety, for everything else to follow. We likely get bombarded continuously with such cells.
I do not know if this will make anyone satisfied but these are my present conclusions. Blame it on the baby camel’s calluses and our expanding understanding of cellular communication.
WHY DO SO MANY SCIENTISTS ENDORSE EVOLUTION?
CREATION OR EVOLUTION: IT’S YOUR CHOICE!
The purpose of the following series of articles is to respond to those friends of The Cryptozoologist who have asked me what my views are on “origins”, that is, whether I ascribe to the Evolutionist explanation of the origins of life and the universe, or whether I embrace the explanations often referred to as Creationist or “Young Earth”.
Those of you who have been friends on my site for some time know that, regardless of my personal views regarding religion, morality, origins, or any other personal and often controversial issues, I never attempt to impose my beliefs on those who have honored me with their friendships on The Cryptozoologist.
While I do host other sites dedicated solely to these topics, it has always been my intention that this site should be a haven for people of all scientific viewpoints, religious persuasions and lifestyles to come together for the purpose of investigating our shared interests in the legitimate sciences of Cryptozoology and Eclipsazoology (the study of purportedly extinct animals).
Subsequently, I am offering these articles for informational purposes only, and only to those who are interested in researching alternative points of view, which are often critical of the hypothesis of evolution.
Remember! These articles are not posted here for the sake of proselytizing! They are simply in response to my friends FAQ’s!
WHY DO SO MANY SCIENTISTS ENDORSE EVOLUTION?
The obvious reason that so many scientists endorse the theory of macroevolutionary process as the best explanation for life origins and development here on earth is because they really believe such to be the case. But is that true, really? Is it possible that there's a lot more to the story than meets the eye?
Wayne Friar, Ph.D., AIIA's Resource Associate for Science and Origins, says this:
Polls have shown that about 40% of scientists acknowledge a supernatural power. But the majority of the scientific community, especially evolutionary leaders today, hold an atheistic worldview. As support for their anti-supernatural worldviews, these scientists need mechanisms for the origin of life, especially humans.
Atheism needs evolution to escape from any implications regarding a creator. If one starts with Darwinism, certainly it is easy to escape from any obligation to God. Those opposed to their reasoning are branded as obscurantists who are trying to intrude religion into science.
Dr. Emery S. Dunfee, former professor of physics at the
One wonders why, with all the evidence, the theory of evolution still persists. One major reason is that many people have a sort of vested interest in this theory. Jobs would be lost, loss of face would result, text books would need to be eliminated or revised.
Evolutionist Richard Lewontin in The
We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of the failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so-stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is an absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.
Columnist George Caylor once interviewed a molecular biologist for an article entitled "The Biologist," that ran on February 17, 2000, in The Ledger (Lynchburg, VA), and is in part reprinted here as a conversation between "G: (Caylor) and "J" (the scientist). We join the piece in the middle of a discussion about the complexity of human code.
G: "Do you believe that the [genetic] information evolved?"
J: "George, nobody I know in my profession believes it evolved. It was engineered by genius beyond genius, and such information could not have been written any other way. The paper and ink did not write the book! Knowing what we know, it is ridiculous to think otherwise."
G: "Have you ever stated that in a public lecture, or in any public writings?"
J: "No, I just say it evolved. To be a molecular biologist requires one to hold on to two insanities at all times. One, it would be insane to believe in evolution when you can see the truth for yourself. Two, it would be insane to say you don't believe evolution. All government work, research grants, papers, big college lectures —everything would stop. I'd be out of a job, or relegated to the outer fringes where I couldn't earn a decent living.
G: I hate to say it, but that sounds intellectually dishonest.
J: The work I do in genetic research is honorable. We will find the cures to many of mankind's worst diseases. But in the meantime, we have to live with the elephant in the living room.
G: What elephant?
J: Creation design. It's like an elephant in the living room. It moves around, takes up space, loudly trumpets, bumps into us, knocks things over, eats a ton of hay, and smells like an elephant. And yet we have to swear it isn't there!
Dr. John Morris, president of the Institute for Creation Research:
[Scientists] see the evidence for creation, and they see it clearly, but peer pressure, financial considerations, political correctness, and a religious commitment to naturalism force them to look the other way and insist they see nothing. And so, the illogical origins myth of modern society perpetuates itself.
Author: Daryl E. Witmer of AIIA Institute .
Text Copyright © 2004, AIIA Institute, All Rights Reserved - except as noted on attached "Usage and Copyright" page that grants ChristianAnswers.Net users generous rights for putting this page to work in their homes, personal witnessing, churches and schools.
HOW CAN SCIENTISTS HOLD SUCH DIAMETRICALLY OPPOSITE VIEWS AS EVOLUTION AND CREATION?
HOW IS IT POSSIBLE FOR REASONABLE, INTELLIGENT, WELL-EDUCATED PEOPLE TO HOLD SUCH DIAMETRICALLY OPPOSITE VIEWS AS EVOLUTIONISM AND CREATIONISM?
THE NATURE OF SCIENCE AND SCIENTISTS
There is no unique human species called Homo scientificus. Scientists are not separate from the rest of humanity. Scientists are not a class of superior beings with super-human abilities to know the ancient past; they are just people. None is all-knowing.
Being people, scientists do not always objectively seek truth, wherever it might lead. All people hold biases toward particular viewpoints. 1 Because scientists are human (subject to self-deception, pride, self-interest, etc.), there are those in both camps (Evolutionist and Creationist) who do not always practice good science. No person or institution is infallible or above all question.
Each person's particular set of biases is a result of personal life experiences, relationships, parents, schools, peers, teachers, personal practices, and the pressures of life. It is difficult for any person to deal objectively with evidence potentially destructive to one's own cherished beliefs or pride 2 - or detrimental to perceived personal security, in whatever form.
Science writer and Evolutionist Roger Lewin:
"Scientists, contrary to the myth that they themselves publicly promulgate, are emotional human beings who carry a generous dose of subjectivity with them into the supposedly 'objective search for The Truth'. …The anonymous aphorism, 'I wouldn't have seen it if I hadn't believed it' is a continuing truth in science. And of course, it cuts two ways: you often see what you expect to see and not what you don't." 2
(For further information on the fallibility of scientists, see endnote 3.)
Despite the impression science textbooks give, brilliant new ideas are not always welcomed or even given fair consideration. Politics intervene as often as logic. Scientists are humans first, scientists second.
In one way or another, bias and presuppositions 4 affect every scientist's theories, priorities, research, methods, decisions and interpretations. Whether it be molecules, test results or rocks, evidence cannot evaluate, prioritize, or interpret itself. Humans suggest meanings for evidence - interpreting it, based on their beliefs, and building theories upon it.
The fossil of any ancient extinct animal can be used as an example. A fossil is a material fact having dimensions, texture, weight and shape. However, that is all it is, just a particular hard object with shape. It comes with no label detailing its true significance and meaning. There are no attached photographs of the living animal showing its actual appearance, color, habits, environment or ancestors. 5
Detailed illustrations and colorful descriptions of long-extinct animals and their origins which are based merely on fossils are not ultimate truth. They are only the fallible, biased interpretations of human beings working with limited knowledge and no direct experience with the living animal.
The rocks and the fossils are facts. But labels such as “Cambrian,” “Cretaceous,” and the like areinterpretations. There are no “time machines” to transport scientists into the past. Thus, in many ways, science is very limited in what it can know with certainty about the ancient past. In all descriptions of origins, one must be very careful to discern between fact and fiction and between reality and philosophical belief. 6
Can both Evolutionists and Creationists be classified as true scientists? The answer is certainly "yes." Many of our world's greatest scientists have been Creationists.
REFERENCES AND ENDNOTES
Biologist, geneticist and Creationist John Klotz, Ph.D.:
"It might also be pointed out that scientists are not quite as objective as they say they are. It is simply not possible for the scientist to detach himself completely from the theories and hypotheses which he espouses. This is particularly true when they are different or new. He finds considerable pride of authorship and an intense personal loyalty to ideas which he has developed. For this reason there is a great deal of subjectivity in science."
[John W. Klotz, "Assumptions in Science and Paleontology," in Paul A. Zimmerman, editor, Rock Strata and the Bible Record (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1970), pp. 24-39 (quote from p. 25, emphasis added).]
Roger Lewin, Bones of Contention (
: Simon & Schuster, 1987, p. 18-19 (emphasis added)......... New York
Russell T. Arndts, "The Logic of Evolutionary Reasoning,"Contrast: The Creation Evolution Controversy, Vol. 8, No. 2 (
2911 E. 42nd St., Minneapolis, Minnesota 55406: March-April 1989), pp. 1-2, 4 (discusses assumptions and human bias involved in the Evolutionary theory).
"If you want to impress people with how good your science is, if you want to get tenure in a modern university, if you want to get a research grant, you can't afford to come and say, 'Well I think this MIGHT be the case BUT there are all sorts of indications here that it MIGHT NOT be the case and it's all sort of confused.' People always tend in science, as elsewhere, to sharpen up and clean up a story… Of course, it's not a fraud, it is part of the general atmosphere in which you're not actually saying to people, tell the truth, tell the whole truth and let it all out." [Leon Kamin of Northeastern University, in "Do Scientists Cheat?", NOVA, Television program #1517 (
125 Western Avenue, Boston, Mass. 02134: WGBH Transcripts, Broadcast October 25, 1988), p. 14.]
"It doesn't take much to take a little bit of the data, change it the way you want it to look and then publish it - and it's impossible to detect that." [Dr. Bruce Dan, Senior Editor of theJournal of the American Medical Association, in "Do Scientists Cheat?", NOVA, Television program #1517 (125 Western Avenue, Boston, Mass. 02134: WGBH Transcripts, Broadcast October 25, 1988), p. 1.]
"The 1980s have witnessed a flurry of scientific fraud and misconduct cases including a number of cases as yet unresolved." [Narrator, "Do Scientists Cheat?", NOVA, Television program #1517 (
125 Western Avenue, Boston, Mass. 02134: WGBH Transcripts, Broadcast October 25, 1988), p. 1.]
"After the initial inquiry by this committee into this subject [scientific fraud and misconduct in connection with scientific research], the committee has had growing reason to believe that we are only seeing the tip of a very unfortunate, dangerous, and important iceberg." [John Dingell, Chairman of Congressional House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, in "Do Scientists Cheat?", NOVA, Television program #1517 (
125 Western Avenue, Boston, Mass. 02134: WGBH Transcripts, Broadcast October 25, 1988), p. 2.]
"Yet one recent study has alleged science's quality control mechanisms can't even be counted on to catch simple sloppiness, let alone a clever fraud." [Narrator, "Do Scientists Cheat?",NOVA, Television program #1517 (
125 Western Avenue, Boston, Mass. 02134: WGBH Transcripts, Broadcast October 25, 1988), p. 10 of transcript.]
Timothy M. Beardsley, "Truth or Consequences?: How Should Institutions Handle Charges of Fraud?", Scientific American, Vol. 259, No. 2 (August 1988), p. 24.
Kenneth A. Ham and Paul S. Taylor, The Genesis Solution (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 1988), pp. 10-22.
Michael J. Mahoney, "Self-Deception in Science," paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (Philadelphia: May 28, 1986), also published in Origins Research, Vol. 11, No. 1 (Colorado Springs, Colorado: Students for Origins Research, Spring 1988), pp. 1-2, 6-7, 10.
Roger Lewin, Bones of Contention: Controversies in the Search for Human Origins (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1987), 348 pp. (challenges the notion that science is synonymous with cool, objective reasoning / documents the personal side of great controversies in paleoanthropology).
Daniel Goleman, Vital Lies, Simple Truths: The Psychology of Self-Deception (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1985).
Jerry Bergman, The Criterion: Religious Discrimination in
( America 6245 South Newton Avenue, Richfield, Minnesota 55423: Onesimus Publishing, 1984), 80 pp. (discusses evidence of widespread job discrimination against scientists who seriously question Evolution / reviews evidence of lack of academic freedom).
D. Faust, The Limits of Scientific Judgment (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1984).
Wolfgang Smith, Cosmos & Transcendence: Breaking Through the Barrier of Scientistic Belief(P.O. Box 424, Rockford, Illinois 61105: Tan Books and Publishers, Inc., 1984), 168 pp.("Presents an insider's critique of the scientific world-view based upon the sharp but oft-overlooked distinction between scientific truth and scientistic faith… demonstrates that major tenets promulgated in the name of Science are not in fact scientific truths but rather scientistic speculations - for which there is no evidence at all.").
William Broad and Nicholas Wade, Betrayers of the Truth: Fraud and Deceit in the Halls of Science (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1982), 256 pp. (shows that science is often much more than a dispassionate quest for truth / examines the kinds of pressures that can lead scientists to stray / documents cases of scientific fraud / challenges the conventional view of science).
J.V. Bradley, "Overconfidence in Ignorant Experts," Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, Vol. 17 (1981), pp. 82-84.
Karin D. Knorr-Detina, The Manufacture of Knowledge: An Essay on the Constructivist and Contextual Nature of Science (New York: Pergamon Press, 1981).
Randy L. Wysong, "Can Laymen Question?" and “Methodology,” in Randy L. Wysong, The Creation-Evolution Controversy (Midland, Michigan: Inquiry Press, 1976), pp. 17-54.
Stephen I. Abramowitz, Beverly Gomes, Christine V. Abramowitz, "Publish or Politic: Referee Bias in Manuscript Review," Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Vol. 5, No. 3 (July-September 1975), pp. 187-200.
Ian I. Mitroff, The Subjective Side of Science (New York: American Elsevier Publishing Co., 1974).
Robert A. Nisbet, "A Presuppositional Approach to the Four View Model of Biological Origins,"Origins Research, Vol. 11, No. 2 (Fall-Winter 1988), pp. 1, 14-16 (discusses some of the presuppositions and assumptions of scientists who believe in either Evolutionism, theistic Evolutionism, or Creationism).
In admonishment to fellow paleontologists, Evolutionist Dr. Martin, Senior Research Fellow, Zoological Society of
"So even the fossil evidence on which theories depend is open to subjective interpretation."
[Robert Martin, "Man Is Not an Onion," New Scientist, Vol. 75, No. 1063 pp. 283-285 (quote from p. 285 - emphasis added).]
Biologist and Creationist John Klotz, Ph.D.:
“It is clear that much of the structure of modern Evolutionary paleontology rests upon assumptions which are by their very nature not capable of verification… There is no disagreement with many of the observations of paleontology, but there may be disagreement with the interpretations which are placed on these observations.”
[John W. Klotz in Paul A. Zimmerman, editor, Rock Strata and the Bible Record (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1970), p. 39 (emphasis added).]
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