Re: [asa] Of Stars and Starfish (divine creative action, from Timaeus thread)

From: David Campbell <>
Date: Thu Sep 25 2008 - 12:07:13 EDT

"But with regard to the material world, we can at least go so far as
this-we can see that events are brought about not by insulated
interpositions of Divine power, exerted in each particular case, but
by the establishment of general laws." I haven't checked the
references to confirm, but Michael Ruse says that Darwin quoted this
in the Origin of Species from Whewell's 1833 Bridgewater Treatise on
astronomy and general physics, i.e., a thoroughly Christian source.

Both antievolutionists and evolutionary atheists claim that evolution
implies atheism, yet neither seem to think that gravity has any
theological implication. The reasoning is the same, however, as
exemplified by the fictional statement attributed Laplace of not
needing the God hypothesis, thanks to Newtonian/Laplacian mechanics.
Although Laplace didn't really say that, gravity and biological
evolution are both scientifically well-supported models that provide
explanations using physical laws for phenomena that had been thought
to occur miraculously. As far as I know, no one has tried to make
gravity into a philosophical justification for particular action,
whereas biological evolution is very popular to misuse in that way.
However, biological evolution gives no more grounds for supposing that
something is morally superior than does gravity.

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections
University of Alabama
"I think of my happy condition, surrounded by acres of clams"
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Received on Thu Sep 25 12:08:09 2008

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