TE and the tradition (was Re: [asa] Because of us - Steve Fuller's anthropic principle - Darwin's original sin)

From: Murray Hogg <muzhogg@netspace.net.au>
Date: Wed Apr 29 2009 - 02:49:43 EDT

Hi Cameron,

There's much to chew over here but the part that draws my eye is the following;

  Do you see the
> difficulty of combining neo-Darwinism (in its original formulation, not
> in the TE rewrite of it) with the orthodox Christian understandings
> of creation, omnipotence, and providence? I maintain that it can't be
> done, and I will stick to my guns until someone gives me an argument,
> couched in the terms of the philosophical and theological tradition, to
> show otherwise.

My minor point would be that I'm personally not sure whether the traditions should dictate the argument in this way. Indeed, we may need to allow the possibility that the classical and neo-Darwinian formulations are in error at significant points and it is this, rather than a problem with evolutionary theory, which prevents a resolution of the issues involved.

My major point would be this: The TE "rewrite" exists precisely because the original formulation of neo-Darwinism is considered suspect (on theological, not scientific, grounds). That being the case, why would any TE be remotely interested in offering an argument that shows the compatibility of neo-Darwinism with the philosophical and theological traditions? It seems to me that you are, in the above, asking TE's to defend the evolutionary (and metaphysical) formulations of Dawkins, Gould, Coyne et al (i.e. neo-Darwinism "in its original formulation") rather than that which they actually affirm ("the TE rewrite"). Such a request is so curious, that I'm sure I've misunderstood it.


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Received on Wed Apr 29 02:50:21 2009

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