Re: New Pope on Darwinism - NO!

From: Robert Schneider <>
Date: Tue Apr 26 2005 - 21:20:40 EDT

Michael, I've often noted that in creationist literature Theodosius
Dobzhansky is quoted disapprovingly and dismissively for having said that
"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution," quoting
the title of his 1973 article in _The American Biology Teacher_ (you can
read it on line at None of the
YECs I've read who quote this, only to put him down, tell their readers that
Dobzhansky was a Christian. Have you or any one else on the list seen this
fact stated in YEC literature? Maybe they do not know that he is.

But if they actually read the article, they would find statements like

It is wrong to hold creation and evolution as mutually exclusive
alternatives. I am a creationist and an evolutionist.


Does the evolutionary doctrine clash with religious faith? It does not. It
is a blunder to mistake the Holy Scriptures for elementary textbooks of
astronomy, geology, biology, and anthropology. Only if symbols are construed
to mean what they are not intended to mean can there arise imaginary,
insoluble conflicts. As pointed out above, the blunder leads to blasphemy:
the Creator is accused of systematic deceitfulness [referring to the Gosse
One of the great thinkers of our age, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, wrote the
following: "Is evolution a theory, a system, or a hypothesis? It is much
more it is a general postulate to which all theories, all hypotheses, all
systems much henceforward bow and which they must satisfy in order to be
thinkable and true. Evolution is a light which illuminates all facts, a
trajectory which all lines of though must follow this is what evolution is."
Of course, some scientists, as well as some philosophers and theologians,
disagree with some parts of Teilhard's teachings; the acceptance of his
worldview falls short of universal. But there is no doubt at all that
Teilhard was a truly and deeply religious man and that Christianity was the
cornerstone of his worldview. Moreover, in his worldview science and faith
were not segregated in watertight compartments, as they are with so many
people. They were harmoniously fitting parts of his worldview. Teilhard was
a creationist, but one who understood that the Creation is realized in this
world by means of evolution.

No doubt the professional YECs would still disapprove, but it would be only
fair if they let their audiences know that Dobzhansky was a Russian Orthodox


----- Original Message -----
From: "Michael Roberts" <>
To: "Robert Schneider" <>; "Ted Davis"
<>; <>; "Keith Miller" <>
Sent: Tuesday, April 26, 2005 5:02 PM
Subject: Re: New Pope on Darwinism - NO!

> Exactly Bob. I am afraid Denyse cant see the difference between evolution
> , Darwinism a la Gray or Darwinism a la Dawkins, with the result that what
> she says is confusion appealing to viscera rather than neurons.
> Am I a Darwinist? That will depend on how you define Darwinist. A useful
> book for all to read is Jim Moore's the Post=Darwinian controversies.
> Is Ted as confused over his TE status as I am?!!!!! However I think he
> overstates the equivalence of Asa Gray and Behe. I find Gray far less ID
> than Ted indicates. (recommend people to read his Darwiniana - a lovely
> book and still fresh as the day it was published in 1876.
> I am also at one with both popes on this.Probably Polkinhorne and Ted's
> friend Peacocke are as well
> Michael
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Robert Schneider" <>
> To: "Ted Davis" <>; <>; "Keith Miller"
> <>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 26, 2005 6:36 PM
> Subject: Re: New Pope on Darwinism - NO!
>> Historian of science John Greene was once conversing with Theodosius
>> Dobzhansky and mentioned him in the same breath with Ernst Mayr: "Don't
>> put Mayr and me in the same boat," Dobzhansky replied, "he is an agnostic
>> and I am a Russian Orthodox Christian." (I hope my memory is correct on
>> the words of the quotation.)
>> Bob
Received on Tue Apr 26 21:22:39 2005

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