Re: [asa] SC Morris piece "Darwin was right. Up to a point."

From: Nucacids <>
Date: Thu Aug 20 2009 - 20:54:44 EDT

Conway Morris writes:

"Indeed it is now legitimate to talk of a logic to biology, not a term you
will hear on the lips of many neo-Darwinians. Nevertheless, evolution is
evidently following more fundamental rules. Scientific certainly, but ones
that transcend Darwinism. What! Darwinism not a total explanation? Why
should it be? It is after all only a mechanism, but if evolution is
predictive, indeed possesses a logic, then evidently it is being governed by
deeper principles. Come to think about it so are all sciences; why should
Darwinism be any exception?"

The non-teleological view of evolution is that it is not really a biological
process itself, but instead is the consequence of many smaller biological
processes. Evolution is something that just happens and its mechanisms are
brute givens. But a teleological view of evolution likens it to a biotic
process, roughly analogous to ontogeny. There is a form and logic to
evolution. One might even say that evolution is a function or a program.

So is evolution really nothing more than the by-product of messy molecular
interactions? Or is it far more sophisticated, itself being somehow shaped
by design? What I can say is this. Over a decade ago, biologist Bruce
Alberts had this to say about the cell and its contents: "But, as it turns
out, we can walk and we can talk because the chemistry that makes life
possible is much more elaborate and sophisticated than anything we students
had ever considered." Some time in the future, another leading scientist
will write something like this: "But, as it turns out, we exist because
evolution has been much more elaborate and sophisticated than anything we
students had ever considered." And that day is getting closer.


> The BioLogos blog (Science and the Sacred) on BeliefNet recently
> highlighted
> this article by Simon Conway Morris from last February that I had missed:

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Received on Thu Aug 20 20:55:19 2009

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