Has Darwinian Evolutionary Theory Been Scientifically Established?

The result of blind, natural processes?

This question is frequently answered in the affirmative by its advocates. The truth is that it remains debatable and controversial, and in my opinion increasingly so. From a spiritual perspective, the neo-Darwinian synthesis, which seeks to proclaim that life arose and evolved through blind natural processes and is therefore accidental and purposeless, is nothing more than atheism disguised as science.

This is a matter of great concern, since there are moves afoot to teach evolutionary theory as truth:

In 2007, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a resolution which urged state members to defend and promote scientific knowledge, and to promote evolution knowledge as a fundamental scientific theory in school curricula. By evolution the Council of course meant Darwinian evolution, which it chose to call “scientific knowledge”. In Europe there is now an organisation called EvoKE (EVOlutionary Knowledge for Everyone), whose main concern is to find ways to increase “European citizens’ acceptance and understanding of evolution”.

In Britain child psychologist Deborah Kelemen is involved in a project which is producing books to “educate” primary school children about Darwinian evolution. Neutral observers might consider this to be indoctrination. She appeared on BBC Radio4’s Start the Week programme on July 3rd 2017 alongside Richard Dawkins. The presenter Andrew Marr actually used the phrase “get them while they’re young”. This immediately reminded me of the well-known Jesuit expression “Give me a child until he is seven and I will give you the man”, which clearly refers to a desire to indoctrinate.

In saying all this, I am not advocating any specific alternative theory, especially not biblical Creationism. (For what it’s worth, I believe in evolution, but not Darwinian, which may be a partial, but almost certainly not complete, explanation for life.) My concern is rather that what is ultimately nothing more than a quasi-religious worldview is being passed off as science, and therefore that legitimate debate is being suppressed.

On this theme I wrote two posts on my website spiritualityinpolitics.com which I reproduce here. My purpose is to offer numerous historical examples of the scientific controversy surrounding Darwinian theory. Hopefully no one who reads what follows will be able to think that Darwinian theory has been scientifically established.

graham.pemberton@aol.co.uk

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Post 1

2009 marked the bicentenary of the birth of Charles Darwin, and his name was everywhere in the media. Newspapers carried features, and the national treasure David Attenborough presented a BBC television programme in his honour. The public’s imagination was captured; at the Natural History Museum a special exhibition Darwin’s Big Idea on any given day could be sold out.

Yet in the media there are sometimes references to polls which reveal the percentage of people who do not believe in evolution. The number is usually perceived to be surprisingly high, given that science has now been “firmly established evolution as fact”.

Why are the public so unconvinced? The scientists’ answer may perhaps be expressed in more polite language than this, but the gist of it is that these people are too stupid to understand, and prefer to cling to false hopes that there may be a God, that life may have meaning, and on the whole don’t take the trouble to study the science, and listen to scientists and their compelling arguments.

An outstanding example of these points is provided by the philosopher Daniel Dennett in this passage from his anti-religion book Breaking the Spell (1). He talks about “…those who don’t yet appreciate just how well established the theory of evolution by natural selection is. According to a recent survey, only about a quarter of the population of the United States understands that evolution is almost as well established as the fact that water is H20”. He calls this an “embarrassing statistic”, and continues: “Could so many people be wrong? Well, there was a time not so long ago when only a small minority of Earth’s inhabitants believed that it was round and that it traveled round the sun… But how, in the face of so much striking confirmation and massive scientific evidence, could so many Americans disbelieve in evolution?” He calls this “the widespread misinforming of the population”, and blames priests, whom the people trust more than scientists. He continues: “There are no reputable scientists who claim this. Not a one. There are plenty of frauds and charlatans, though. …. What about the Scientific Creationists and Intelligent Design proponents who are so vocal and visible in well-publicized campaigns? They have all been carefully and patiently rebutted by conscientious scientists who have taken the trouble to penetrate their smoke screens of propaganda and expose both their shoddy arguments and their apparently deliberate misrepresentations and evasions”. He then invites his readers to educate themselves in evolutionary theory and its critics, which he says “should only take a few months of hard work”, and suggests various texts and websites to study.

Let’s examine his points in more detail.

It’s strange that a trained philosopher should include in his arguments an appeal-to-authority, which is considered to be a logical fallacy. Of course it is said, quite reasonably, that this fallacy should not be applied to dismiss the claims of experts, or scientific consensus, which is what Dennett is doing here, or at least thinks he is. Surely, however, it is not inconceivable that a scientific consensus just might be wrong. As I’ll show below, there are significant experts who disagree.

According to a recent survey, only about a quarter of the population of the US understands that evolution is almost as well established as the fact that water is H20”.

This is of course nonsense. How many scientific papers or books have been published recently arguing the case that the chemical composition of water is not H20? None. And who can even begin to imagine where they would start their argument?

There are no reputable scientists who claim this. Not a one”.

Dennett is such a fanatic that it is possible that his definition of “reputable” is someone who accepts Darwinian evolution, in which case the statement is mere tautology. I’ll put that idea to one side, however, and mention some of the scientists highly critical of Darwinism, whom Dennett, writing in 2006, had failed to notice. I’ll mention some of their qualifications, so that you can decide whether they are reputable or not.

I’ll begin with biologists and related disciplines, in approximate chronological order:

D’Arcy Wentworth Thompson and his book On Growth and Form. As this year marks the centenary of its publication, this classic book is a good place to start. Stephen Jay Gould, preeminent palaeontologist, describes the author as “perhaps the greatest polymath of our century”, and the book as “the greatest work of prose in twentieth-century science”. Peter Medawar, eminent biologist, says of it “beyond comparison, the finest work of literature in all the annals of science that have been recorded in the English tongue” (2). In it Thompson argued that the shapes, forms and growth processes we observe in nature are not an arbitrary result of evolution’s blind searching, but are governed by mathematical rules.

Douglas Dewar, ornithologist (and admittedly a Creationist, although one producing books and papers of high scientific quality). See especially Difficulties of the Evolution Theory (3), and The Transformist Illusion (4).

J. C. Willis, distinguished botanist, Fellow of the Royal Society, honorary doctorate of Science from Harvard. His most significant book is The Course of Evolution (5). He believed that plants are impossible to understand through Darwinian processes.

Dr. W. R. Thompson, biologist, renowned entomologist, Fellow of the Royal Society. See his introduction to a new edition of The Origin of Species in 1956, where he said: “The modern Darwinian palaeontologists are obliged, just like their predecessors and like Darwin, to water down the facts”. He talks about “fragile towers of hypotheses based on hypotheses, where fact and fiction mingle in an inextricable confusion” (6).

E. J. H. Corner, Cambridge Professor, Fellow of the Royal Society. See his paper on Evolution in Contemporary Botanical Thought (7). In it he states that “to the unprejudiced, the fossil record of plants is in favour of special creation”. Please note that this does not make him a Creationist, whose beliefs are inspired by the Bible, rather that the available scientific evidence suggests that. Like many who follow in this list, he believes in evolution, but not neo-Darwinian evolution, which he calls a temple where believers worship. He says of Darwinian literature: “textbooks hoodwink” (p97).

Professor Andrée Tétry, eminent French biologist. See A General History of the Sciences, volume 4, 1966, section on Evolution (8).

The interesting case of Gavin de Beer, who was a significant, and usually loyal, Darwinian biologist and embryologist. However, in 1971 he published Homology, the Unsolved Problem, which brought up significant material which challenged neo-Darwinian genetic assumptions about common ancestry (9).

Pierre-Paul Grassé, one of Europe’s greatest zoologists, who had many academic appointments, and was president of the Académie des Sciences (is that reputable enough?), said that Darwinism is demonstrably false, since it clashes with so many experimental findings. His most important book, and savage attack on Darwinism, is Evolution of Living Organisms (10), where he calls it a “pseudoscience”, “depending on frequent miracles”, and that “Darwinists only look at those facts that fit their theory”.

Dr Pierre Gavaudan, botanist and cytologist. He worked on carnivorous plants, and concluded that they could not be explained by Darwinian theory. He called neo-Darwinism an “ingenious romance” (11).

Richard Lewontin, Harvard Professor of Biology, wrote: “The theory becomes a vacuous exercise in formal logic that has no points of contact with the contingent world. The theory explains nothing because it explains everything” (12). He also said that many organisms “appear to have been carefully and artfully designed”, which is both a challenge to Darwinism and “the chief evidence of a Supreme Designer” (13).

Rupert Sheldrake, distinguished biologist, former Director of Studies in biochemistry and cell biology at Clare College Cambridge, and his theories of formative causation and morphogenetic fields. See A New Science of Life (14), and The Presence of the Past (15) .

Brian Goodwin, professor of Biology, wrote a significant book critical of Darwinism, How the Leopard Changed Its Spots (16), which was awarded the Scientific and Medical Network Book Prize for 1995. (This was obviously not enough to make him reputable in Dennett’s eyes!) He suggested that organisms are dynamic self-organizing processes that obey certain principles of order, thus questioning the importance of natural selection and adaptation as the fundamental concepts of evolution.

In the same year that Dennett wrote, the physiologist and systems biologist Denis Noble published The Music of Life, Biology Beyond Genes (17). His theory of downward causation would horrify a neo-Darwinist.

I could go on, but hopefully I have made the point. However, here are two of the more dramatic denunciations which Dennett, writing in 2006, had failed to notice.

In 1981 Colin Patterson, senior paleontologist at the British Museum of Natural History, read a paper at the American Museum of Natural History in New York (18). He said: “…last year I had a sudden realization. For over twenty years I had thought that I was working on evolution in some way. One morning I woke up, and something had happened in the night, and it struck me that I had been working on this stuff for twenty years, and there was not one thing I knew about it. That was quite a shock, to learn that one can be so misled for so long.” Because of this experience, he decided to ask his colleagues the same question ‘can you tell me anything you know about evolution, any one thing, any one thing that you think is true?’ “I tried that question on the geology staff at the Field Museum of Natural History, and the only answer I got was silence. I tried it on the members of the Evolutionary Morphology Seminar in the University of Chicago, a very prestigious body of evolutionists, and all I got there was silence for a long time”. He declared at the same meeting that evolution was “positively anti-knowledge”, saying that “all my life I had been duped into taking evolution as revealed truth”.

Along similar lines Lynn Margulis, Distinguished Professor of Botany and Geosciences, said that history will ultimately judge neo-Darwinism as “a minor twentieth-century religious sect within the sprawling religious persuasion of Anglo-Saxon biology” (19). According to Michael Behe, at one of her public talks Margulis “asks the molecular biologists in the audience to name a single, unambiguous example of the formation of a new species by the accumulation of mutations. Her challenge goes unmet. Proponents of the standard theory, she says, ‘wallow in their zoological, capitalistic, competitive, cost-benefit interpretation of Darwin… Neo-Darwinism, which insists on (the slow accrual of mutations), is in a complete funk’ ” (20).

I’ll move on now to geneticists critical of Darwinism. Perhaps the most famous amongst them historically was Richard Goldschmidt, a first-class geneticist with impeccable credentials, praised even by his intellectual opponents. He concluded, since many species and genera appear suddenly in the fossil record, differing sharply from earlier groups, that evolution did not proceed by small steps, contrary to Darwin’s thinking, and came up with the notorious concept of “hopeful monsters” (21).

John McDonald, University of Georgia, wrote: “The results of the last 20 years of research on the genetic basis of adaptation has led us to a great Darwinian paradox. Those (genes) that are obviously variable within natural populations do not seem to lie at the basis of many major adaptive changes, while those (genes) that seemingly do constitute the foundation of many, if not most, major adaptive changes apparently are not variable within natural populations” (his italics) (22). (Gene mutation is of course the foundation of neo-Darwinian theory.)

(See footnote 23 for further examples.)

Physicists are often very critical of Darwinian theories:

Paul Davies is a well-known figure, writing books for the general public. See The Cosmic Blueprint (24), and a lecture The Cosmic Blueprint: Self-Organizing Principles of Matter and Energy (25). (The use of the word blueprint is suggestive of the term archetype, which was the theory generally believed before Darwin came along.)

You may not have heard of the late Glen Schaefer, but he was an impressive figure who held degrees in Mathematical Physics and Quantum Field Theory, with a second career in biology and ecology. He said: “All the sources of information that I’m using are from people who have worked at least twenty-five years and are at the head of their fields, and are in print. If you look into those positions, you will find that there is no evidence for evolution (I assume he means neo-Darwinian) and they say so. We believe it because of our education” (26).

Professor Henry S. Lipson, distinguished member of the Institute of Physics, in communications to Physics Bulletin 1979 and 1980 (27), made the following significant statements:

I have.. tried to see whether biological discoveries over the last thirty years or so fit in with Darwin’s theory. I do not think that they do. To my mind, the theory does not stand up at all.”

In fact, evolution became in a sense a scientific religion; almost all scientists have accepted it and many are prepared to ‘bend’ their observations to fit in with it.”

the only acceptable explanation (for living matter) is creation”.

See also Lee Spetner, Not by Chance! Shattering the Modern Theory of Evolution (28).

I should note at this point that evolutionary biologists often have a very poor understanding of the quantum physics revolution, if they are even aware at all of its findings. An exception would be Bruce Lipton, who began as a Darwinian biologist, but said that an understanding of quantum physics liberated him from the antiquated worldview on which Darwinism is based. He wrote that “quantum physics is relevant to biology and that biologists are committing a glaring, scientific error by ignoring its laws”. “We biologists almost universally rely on the outmoded, albeit tidier, Newtonian version of how the world works” (29). (Thus in his view biologists on the whole operate from a starting point of ignorance).

It is clear therefore, contrary to what Dennett says, that there have always been and remain a significant number of reputable scientists who are critical of, even scathing about, Darwinian theory.

Let me remind you of another statement by Dennett above. He claims that the opposition to the “truth” of Darwinian theory is religiously motivated — priests, Scientific Creationists and Intelligent Design proponents. This is again wrong, since many of the scientists mentioned above are atheists, agnostics or otherwise indifferent to religion, and believe in evolution (but not neo-Darwinian).

I’ll pick out two striking examples. Professor Lipson, mentioned above, having said that “the only acceptable explanation (for living matter) is creation”, went on to say that the idea was “anathema” to him, “but we must not reject a theory that we do not like if the experimental evidence supports it” (my italics). Distancing himself from biblical Creationism, he said elsewhere “in our present state of knowledge creation is the only answer — but not the crude creation envisaged in Genesis” (30).

Richard Lewontin, who in the quotes above spoke of design, later wrote, in an extraordinarily revealing and refreshingly honest description of the stance of modern science:

…we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door” (31).

The important point is not whether all these dissenting scientists are right or wrong (although I believe on the whole that they are right), rather that Dennett is either choosing to live in a state of ignorance — an ostrich with its head buried deeply in the sand — or is deliberately lying to the public. Whichever is the case, if atheistic neo-Darwinians need to do this in their attempts to convert the public to their point of view, why should we listen to anything they say?

As for “smoke screens of propaganda”, “shoddy arguments” and “deliberate misrepresentations and evasions” (Dennett’s words in the quote above), in relation to neo-Darwinian advocates and theorists, the Dennett quote above being a prime example, the words pot, kettle and black spring to mind. I wonder if Dennett would be prepared to spend “a few months of hard work” studying all the scientists mentioned above.

(Post 2 follows beneath these footnotes.)

Footnotes:

  1. Viking, 2006. My quote is taken from the Penguin edition, 2007, p60–61.
  2. Gould’s foreward to the Cambridge University Press Canto edition, 1992

3. Edward Arnold, 1931

4. Dehoff Publications, 1957. Described by Alan Hayward as ‘one of the most scholarly and effective exposures of the weaknesses of Darwinism ever written’ (Creation and Evolution: the Facts and the Fallacies, Triangle, 1985, p208).

5. Cambridge University Press, 1940

6. Everyman Library No. 811, Dent

7. Oliver & Boyd, Edinburgh & London, 1961

8. Thames & Hudson. English translation of La Science Contemporaine II, ed. René Taton.

9. Oxford University Press, 1971

10. Academic Press Inc., 1977, see pp. 6, 103, 50

11. See his contribution to Mathematical Challenges to the neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution, P. S. Moorhead and M. M. Kaplan, Wistar Institute Press, 1967.

12. The Genetic Basis of Evolutionary Change, p11–12, quoted by Tom Bethell, Darwin’s House of Cards, p124.

13. “Adaptation”, Scientific American, September 1978, pp. 119–130, quoted by Francis Hitching, The Neck of the Giraffe or Where Darwin Went Wrong, Pan, 1982, p84, (accurately I hope, as this one is somewhat surprising, given other things Lewontin has said).

14. Blond and Briggs 1981, Anthony Blond 1985

15. HarperCollins, 1988

16. Weidenfeld and Nicolson 1994

17. OUP, 2006

18. Evolution and Creation, November 5th 1981

19. C. Mann, (1991), “Lynn Margulis: Science’s Unruly Earth Mother”, Science, 252, 378–381.

20. Darwin’s Black Box, The Free Press, 1996, p26. I assume he is referring to further material from the reference in footnote 18.

21. He wrote The Material Basis of Evolution, Yale University Press, 1940. See also “Evolution, as viewed by one geneticist”, 1952, American Scientist 40: 84–98. Norman Macbeth summarises his argument: ‘evolution has obviously proceeded from the higher categories to the lower… whereas the Darwinians teach just the opposite’ (Darwin Retried, Garnstone Press, 1974, p139n).

22. “The Molecular Basis of Adaptation”, Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 14, 1984,

p93, quoted by Michael Behe, Darwin’s Black Box, The Free Press, 1996, p28.

23. Behe also mentions evolutionary geneticist George Miklos, and University of California geneticist John Endler.

24. William Heinemann Ltd., 1987

25. Transcribed in The Spirit of Science, David Lorimer (ed.), Floris Books, 1998

26. Ibid., p122, in a lecture entitled A Holistic Philosophy of Nature. It would be interesting to know exactly who he was talking about. Unfortunately, because this is a quote from a lecture transcript, rather than a book, his sources are not provided.

27. Especially vol. 31, No. 4, May 1980, pp 138, 337

28. Judaica Press, 1998

29. The Biology of Belief, Hay House 2005 revised 2008, p69

30. New Scientist, Vol 90 No 1253, May 14th 1981, p452

31. In a January 9th 1997 review of Carl Sagan’s The Demon-Haunted World, still available at time of writing at http://www.nybooks.com/articles/1997/01/09/billions-and-billions-of-demons

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Post 2

In my first post I restricted myself to mentioning scientists who had written prior to Dennett’s book, i.e. those whom he could, and perhaps should, have been aware of. I also mentioned only those from scientific disciplines about which there could be no argument about their inclusion — biologists, geneticists, paleontologists, physicists. I also, with a couple of exceptions, chose scientists who, as far as I could tell, had no strong religious beliefs. I was trying to find scientists whose inclusion Dennett could not reasonably challenge. Here I won’t be quite so strict, but will offer some supplementary material that I think is relevant to the ongoing debate about the truth, or otherwise, of Darwinian theories.

Beginning with biologists, there are some whom Dennett would reject because they believe in Intelligent Design. To my mind, however, their arguments (which are scientific, and have nothing to do with religion) are at least as impressive as his. Perhaps the best known is Michael Behe, who caused something of a stir with his book Darwin’s Black Box (1). Also interesting are Michael Denton’s Evolution in Crisis (2), and Icons of Evolution by Jonathan Wells (3).

Mathematicians (I believe they count as scientists) have often been highly critical of Darwinism . The argument usually follows the line that the odds against life as we know it having been organised by blind, purposeless forces, are astronomical beyond astronomical. The most striking comment along these lines was made by the astronomer Sir Fred Hoyle, who said that the chances that life on Earth just occurred and evolved by chance are about as unlikely as a typhoon blowing through a junkyard and constructing a Boeing 747 (4).

The most significant moment historically was the Wistar Symposium in 1966, its proceedings published as Mathematical Challenges to the Neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution (5). This was actually a conference of mathematicians and evolutionary biologists where they aired their differences. In the discussions which have followed, the biologists are usually perceived to have lost the argument, making some ridiculous statements in the process.

There is more to say about Sir Fred Hoyle, who is described as either an atheist or agnostic, astronomer and mathematician. I have just noted his rejection of Darwinian evolution on the grounds of odds. In a book called Evolution from Space, he and his colleague Chandra Wickramasinghe had a chapter called The Evolutionary Record Leaks Like a Sieve, in which they said: “The general scientific world has been bamboozled into believing that evolution has been proved. Nothing could be further from the truth” (6). The whole book is an attack on Darwinian theory as an explanation for life on Earth.

From other related scientific disciplines:

Stuart Kaufmann, complexity theorist, believes that systems tend to arrange themselves in patterns, not as a result of natural selection. He thinks that Darwinism is only part of the truth (7).

Hubert Yockey, information theorist, argues that “the information needed to begin life could not have developed by chance; he suggests that life be considered a given, like matter or energy” (8). More recently he has said thatthe origin of life in unknowable” (9).

Sir John Eccles, neurophysiologist and Nobel Laureate (that should be enough to make him reputable in Dennett’s eyes), argued that “mind had an existence independent of the brain, that the uniqueness of individual personalities did not depend on genetics, and that science had gone too far in breaking down Man’s belief in his spiritual greatness. He considered that we were creatures with some supernatural meanings and endowed with purpose” (10). Together with Karl Popper, he wrote a book with a very interesting title, The Self and Its Brain (11).

Philosophers are of course not scientists, but the philosopher Dennett feels competent to declaim about scientific matters, so I’ll take the liberty of mentioning the following:

Eric Tomlin is admittedly not a household name, but his career included being Professor of Philosophy and Literature at Nice. He contributed an article on the subject of evolution to The Encyclopedia of Ignorance (12), calledFallacies of Evolutionary Thinking’. In it he said: “The truth is that evolution was an hypothesis which hardened into dogma before it had been thoroughly analysed. Hence it mothered a number of fallacies”. His major complaint was that Darwin’s theory caught on because it met a need; it was “an attitude favoured by the sophisticated as a vindication of their belief that existence lacked purpose. Darwinism appealed to them because it provided a way to justify their belief”. He argues that this is just wishful thinking, that there is purpose in Nature. He said: To ascribe (the development of the human brain and nervous system) to the play of blind forces is to suspend rational judgement and to betray the cause of science”. He actually says that it is “crazy” to do so. In case we are in any doubt about what he means by that, he goes on to use the words “psychotic” and “schizophrenic” as clarification.
These are strong words. I’m sure you can see why I have chosen to include this possibly obscure philosopher. His suggestion is that certain people, while claiming to be rational scientists objectively seeking the truth, are suffering from a severe psychological problem, in his words suspending rational judgement, in my language a desperate need to be atheists, who will say or believe anything in order to maintain their stance.

Here is another significant philosophical moment. In 2004, before Dennett wrote his book, the renowned life long atheist philosopher Antony Flew, who had previously written Darwinian Evolution (13), arguing for it, announced that he had become a deist and a convert to Intelligent Design, saying that he “had to go where the evidence leads” (14).

Historically, another book worthy of mention is The Great Evolution Mystery, by Gordon Rattray Taylor (15). He was not a scientist by profession, but was educated at Cambridge University, and went on to become Chief Science Advisor to the BBC, and edited its Horizon series. The book is an extensive critique of neo-Darwinian theory, easily understood by a general reader, with many scientific references.

So, in addition to all the scientists mentioned in my previous post, the above gives you some further ideas of the situation leading up to 2006 when Dennett wrote. The story has continued afterwards:

In 2008, the physicist Amit Goswami published Creative Evolution: A Physicist’s Resolution between Darwinism and Intelligent Design. In a chapter called ‘God and a New Biology’ he said “every modern biologist — in moments of total honesty — hears the foundation (of Darwinism) creaking” (16). (If only more biologists could be totally honest!)

In 2012, the atheist philosopher Thomas Nagel caused something of a stir when he published Mind & Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False (17).

In 2014, www.thethirdwayofevolution.com was launched, bringing together and publicising the work of scientists who find neo-Darwinian explanations inadequate, without resorting to theories of Intelligent Design or any other form of supernatural intervention. Dozens of names are listed there. Even if the website was only created in 2014, many of them had obviously begun their research and published earlier than 2006, when Dennett wrote. So here we have many other reputable scientists whom he chose to ignore. I especially like the articles of Stephen Talbott; see, for example, Can Darwinian Evolution Be Taken Seriously? (18). Interestingly, Stuart Kauffman, mentioned above, had previously used the same term, saying that we need to look for a “third way” between a “meaningless reductionism and a transcendental Creator God” (19).

I could go on, as the list of doubters in both my posts is far from exhaustive. By now, however, I hope I have convinced you, in case there was any doubt, that Darwinian theories of evolution are highly controversial. So from now on, don’t let anyone tell you, contrary to what Dennett said, that science has proved beyond doubt the truth of Darwinian evolutionary theory. If you do hear that, I hope I have provided you with enough ammunition with which to fight back.

Footnotes:

  1. The Free Press, 1996

2. Adler and Adler, 1986. There is also an update Evolution Still in Crisis.

3. Regnery Publishing, 2002

4. See The Intelligent Universe, Michael Joseph, 1983, p19

5. Wistar Institute Press, 1967

6. Evolution from Space, Simon and Schuster, 1981. Quote from the Touchstone edition, 1984, p87

7. See, for example, The Origins of Order, Oxford University Press, 1993

8. Information Theory and Molecular Biology, CUP, 1992, chapter 9, quoted by Michael Behe, Darwin’s Black Box, p29

9. Information Theory, Evolution, and the Origin of Life, Cambridge University Press, 2010, p182

10. Malcolm Lazarus, in The Spirit of Science, Floris Books, 1998, p12

11. Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1983

12. R. Duncan and M. Weston-Smith, eds., Pergamon, 1977, quotes p228, p228, p231

13. 1984, Paladin Books. Revised edition 1997, Transaction Publishers.

14. Interview with Dr. Gary R. Habermas, published in the Winter 2005 issue of “Philosophia Christi” the journal of the Evangelical Philosophical Society (www.biola.edu/philchristi)

15. Secker and Warburg, 1983

16. Quest Books, 2008, p3.

17. Oxford University Press, 2012

18. At time of writing this article is still available on the link but, as the website states, will at some point be retired, since it has been updated by another, ‘Evolution and the Purposes of Life’. This later article will obviously be as interesting as the original.

19. Reinventing the Sacred, Basic Books, 2010, p31

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