Michael K. Thompson (
Tue, 21 Jan 1997 15:16:38 -0800

Geoffrey Horton wrote:
> I have no answer to your questions, but I do have one comment. I got a
> copy of Sagan's _Demon Haunted World_ as a Christmas present and just got
> around to reading it. I was struck by how readily he proffered "evolution"
> as a solution to the question "Why are children afraid of the dark:
> "It makes good evolutionary sense for children to have fantasies of scary
> monsters. In a world stalked by lions and hyenas, such fantasies help
> prevent defenseless toddlers from wandering too far from their guardians."
> (p. 109)
> Here, as elsewhere, Sagan proffers an explanation to his taste without,
> apparently, being aware (a) he has provided no evidence, just an "it could
> be", and (b) that he is trapped just as much by his reductionist world-view
> as the oddest UFO fanatic is by his own view.
> I am not a YEC either, but careless use of "evolution," especially without
> acknowledgement of the unanswered questions, does no favor to a would-be
> scientific view of the world.
> Yours in Christ,
> Geoff

I think Sagan's comments in _Demon Haunted World_ should not be read as
a scientific text. This is definitely polemic. In that case he is
being true to his faith. I commend him for consistency. Of course a
Christian can just as easily say that God designed us in such a way and
come to similar conclusions as Sagan. But yes he largely treats
scientism as a "neutral" worldview.

Michael Thompson