Good Morning Darwin/Dawkins

Slept so poorly last night, but at least I'm up at 5:30 AM more or less ready to finish my wretched final paper for my statistics class. Eight classes down two to go to get my M.B.A. When it's all over, I'll probably spend 10 minutes congratulating myself before I move on to a new form of self-torture!

Have been contemplating the final chapters of Dawkins book "The Greatest Show on Earth." Finished it last week, and found that I love it not so much for the evidence it presents as for its concepts. (Digression: I tend to forget concrete factoids extremely easily but remember concepts without effort. That makes me a good writer but a bad debater. It's hard to debate when you've forgotten all the details of your evidence, but it's easy to look up that evidence and add it to your writing as long as you have the concepts in place.)  It's been perhaps five years since I began shed my creationist skin and let my inner evolutionist out, so the evidence Dawkins presented for evolution did not change my basic viewpoint. It did significantly deepen it.  If viewpoints can be deepened?

(1) The distributions of animal and plant populations around the world strongly point to evolutionary origins.
(2) Evolutionary theory does not depend on fossil evidence and would easily stand without it.
(3) Ecological systems are wasteful and operate of the basis of competition within the population.
(4) A well-designed system would operate with the good of the whole in mind, but nature is not like that.
(5) There is extensive pain and suffering in nature, but nature is not malevolent.

Now to finish that statistics paper. . .

5 comments:

  1. I can relate to the part about concepts vs. facts. That's a characteristic of those who prefer intuiting (N) over sensing (S). I've been spending time on biologos, trying to sort through some of this, especially after the big homeschooling kerfluffle...I'd say my views of creation are evolving but not that my view of evolution is being created ;)

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  3. Elle, I love your way with words! As for me, my views (yes, plural form) of evolution are evolving and how that effects my theology is one of my main preoccupations.

    Oh, and the above post which was removed was exactly what I just wrote except I made a typo. "This post has been removed by the author" has such an ominous feeling, but it was just a minor typo.

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  4. Interesting. Not sure about no.2 - that comes from sitting through so many lectures and seminars and hearing "the fossil record" as the evidence. :-)
    No.3 I find the most interesting - which is about our economic systems/philosophies I think. We have enough food but don't feed the world.

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  5. My biggest trouble with evolutionary theory is always the lack of logic in the points made. This predates my conversion experience.

    #4 is a good example. IF the Bible account of a designed system that became marred was true, then it would very well explain the dissonance cited.

    There are parts of nature where it works for the good of the whole. It just seems as though the system has faultlines that produce havoc along the way.

    "Nature is not like that". Cohesive ideas on nature as a whole entity are very hard to come up with, I think. I tend to look at all this through "concepts", too. It is tough for me to argue evolution vs, creationism, so I don't. I just find enough problems that it suspends my belief, much the same way evolutionists feel on their side of it. The Bible explains moral dilemmas, the tension between the order and the chaos of the universe better for me.

    Interesting that you have found Dawkins book affirmative and I guess I would personally most agree with point #5, although I'm not sure how it fits inside a creationist/evolutionist debate... or whether it would at all.

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