Re: [asa] ID question?

From: David Campbell <>
Date: Thu Oct 15 2009 - 16:08:54 EDT

> I agree with much of what you say here. Having been more than once in the
> den of ID headquarters (unlike a mere ID attacker such as Rich Blinne or
> John Walley, the latter who speaks about ID finances
> without accurate knowledge), there certainly are unclear and unresolved
> issues within the 'big tent.' It may seem to 'outsiders' that they (the
> DI/IDM) should make themselves clearer, but to 'insiders' that they should
> remain vague and bet on future successes 'in science.'

My problem is not the presence of unclear and unresolved issues, but rather
the acting as if there weren't unclear and unresolved issues. (Of course,
I'm also not happy with claims that things are unresolved when they are
resolved, or that they are resolved in a manner opposite to reality.)

> The same can be said, however, of the 'muddle' that is known as 'theistic
> evolution' (TE). Both positions - ID and TE - do *not* make a clear
> distinction about where, when and how they limit the
> 'idea/concept/grammar/paradigm' of 'evolution.'

True; the difference I see is that there seems to be less of a tendency to
claim "here's what all TE hold" on the part of TE. Conversely, there are a
lot of ID criticisms of TE that do take that approach, neglecting the
diversity of TE positions.

> There are far too many amateur philosophers of science speaking as if
> 'evolution' is almost a GUT!
> For example, when asked for examples of 'things that don't evolve (into
> being or having become),' most TEs/ECs have a tough time answering.

This is because the word "evolve" is very flexible. If you ask about things
that do not evolve in a manner similar to biological evolution, the list is
quite long-only things that can be reproduced with modification will have a
chance of being close. Galaxies and stars are described as "evolving", but
this is unrelated to biological evolution (not counting the fact that this
creates the environment and raw material for biological evolution).

Name something that never changes. If you have trouble answering that, does
it mean that you have made "change" a theory of everything, or merely that
change is commonplace?

> Too many of the accommodationist TEs haven't a clue about Teilhard or
> Dobzhansky or Whitehead or 'process philosophy' to make TE a clearly
> delineated position. (Of course, for those who would be offended by this,
> yes, undoubtedly some have read these three authors, but certainly don't
> speak about them very often at all, here on ASA list)

Perhaps because their positions are so different from the ones held as to be
perceived as irrelevant? I think the majority on this list accept evolution
as good science and conventional Christianity of whatever denomination as
good theology.

While I'm familiar with Dobzhansky's scientific work and am aware that he
had a heterodox theistic position, I haven't had occasion to find out about
his beliefs. What's distinctive about him as opposed to de Chardin?

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Received on Thu Oct 15 16:09:27 2009

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