Re: Regarding the IDEA website

From: george murphy (
Date: Fri Jan 04 2002 - 22:24:32 EST

  • Next message: "Re: Regarding the IDEA website"

    Intelligent des Evolution awareness wrote:

    > To accomodate this, we've constructed a definition of Darwinism which
    > is, "the scientific theory which, operating under the philosophies of
    > materialism and naturalism, makes the assertion that life today is the
    > result of purely natural processes, such as the natural chemical origins
    > of the first cell, and a mutatation-selection mechanism causing
    > microevolution, macroevolution, speciation, which account for the origins
    > of all cellular functions, morphologies, and common ancestry through
    > descent with modification for all life forms."
    > p.s. I like John Burgeson's modifications also, as I think they better
    > reflect what we're trying to say.
    > George Murphy says our version rules out that God is involved at any
    > level. I disagree, for God coul be behind it as a secondary cause. My
    > definition deals only with first causes, as natural mechanisms are only
    > first causes.

            The most natural reading of the statement that "life today is the
    result of PURELY natural processes" (my emphasis added) is that there are no
    other causes of life than natural processes, so that divine action is
    excluded. This may not be your intention but it is the way most people will
    understand the statement. If you don't mean to include those who believe that
    God acts through the processes you list then you should be explicit about
            BTW, your terminology is at variance with traditional theological
    language. A belief in divine action through natural processes is usually
    expressed by saying that God is the primary cause who acts through creatures
    as secondary causes. You've reversed this, which is likely to be confusing.



    George L. Murphy
    "The Science-Theology Interface"

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