Re: Ruse's Science Article

From: Howard J. Van Till (
Date: Tue Mar 11 2003 - 08:26:03 EST

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    In response to my earlier commendation of Ruse's approach, Rich Aussette

    Except that it is a marked contrast to the reality of the sciences as
    presented in David sloan Wilson's Darwin's Cathedral who claims
    functionlaism in the social sciences and evolutionary biology were hijacked
    in the '60s by social scientists to deny group selection in order to
    disenfranchise any claim that religious belief and practice were efficacious
    for those practicing them.

    One could just as well argue that the denial of group selection serves an
    example of good science being hijacked by one religious worldview (perhaps
    an atheistic one) to give the appearance of discrediting the efficacy of
    other religious worldviews (theistic ones). As such, it would be a rather
    self-defeating strategy, would it not?

    Ruse has the reality backward. It is NOT science that is being kidnapped by
    religion but religion being deliberately and *incorrectly* undermined by
    science. Wilson calls religion adaptive.

    As I noted above, it looks to me like a case of one religious worldview
    battling another religious worldview by attempting to kidnap and exploit
    science as its ally. In the process, good objective science becomes the

    Is that not what also happens in the evolutionism versus creationism debate?
    [where "evolutionism" here signifies evolutionary science kidnapped by
    maximal naturalism, and "creationism" here signifies a highly selective and
    unconventional science kidnapped by supernatural interventionism, whether of
    the "creation science" or ID variety.]

    Howard Van Till

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