Author Archives: Sy Garte
Since Jon is busy with his new band, I thought I might sneak in here and fill a space. I haven’t asked him, so I hope he doesnt mind. Jon has already mentioned and linked to my book review of Michael Denton’s new book Evolution: Still a Theory in Crisis. I wanted to post here some of my observations, not about the book, that is what the review is for, but about the reception of the review.
This post is going to be about people. I will take the opportunity to plug an article that just appeared in the journal Perspectives in Science and Christian Faith on Imago Dei. In that piece, (which can also be found in the I zine God and Nature): http://godandnature.asa3.org/essay-evolution-and-imago-dei.html I present my views on the nature of human beings. The modern view that humans are basically worthless, or even an evil side show in a mostly bacterial world, and that there is nothing special about us, is a fairly new concept among atheists. In fact the humanist creed, the belief that human beings are quite special, was shared by most of … Continue reading
In 1853, a mere 6 years before the publication of Origin of Species, a minor textbook written for the education of the public was published with the title Library of Natural History, and the subtitle “containing scientific and popular descriptions of man, quadrupeds, birds, fishes, reptiles, and insects, compiled from the works of…” and there follows a list of the most active and well known naturalists of the day. While most of the text is not very interesting, there are some remarkable aspects of this book, clearly meant to be an up to date summary of the field. First, the word biology is never used.
There is a remarkable thing about scientific discoveries in all fields. They generally tend to be surprising. Nobody expected that the universe had a clear beginning, and that space and time started at a particular moment, before which there was….. well, nothing. Not even time. How surprising was that?
I have just returned home from a small after dinner gathering of Christians at the home of one of the members of the Washington area chapter of the ASA (The American Scientific Affiliation). The guest of honor, was Denis Lamoureux, a well known evolutionary creationist, whose books include “I love Jesus, and I believe in Evolution”, and “Evolutionary Creation”. I have known Denis for a few years, and he is a gifted speaker and teacher. I don’t agree with everything he says. He does not believe in the existence of Adam, and would accept none of the 6 possible interpretations of Adam that Jon so ably presented us with a … Continue reading
In general I find Shapiro’s views very exciting and well worth disseminating as widely as possible. I think that his theory of Natural Genetic Engineering has the capability of finally unseating the rigid doctrinaire paradigm of neo Darwinism, with its overly simplistic and outdated view of the mechanism of evolution. If there is one universal rule that governs biology, it is that nothing is ever simple. Shapiro’s NGE is complex and chaotic enough to be true.
James Shapiro is a microbiologist who has been advancing a new way to look at evolution for many decades. Jon Garvey has mentioned Shapiro a number of times on blog posts, and Shapiro’s ideas have been discussed by many evangelicals interested in faith and evolution, including followers of ID. Shapiro himself is not a theist, and is not interested in supporting ID or any other theological ideas. But his scientific ideas are interesting and somewhat controversial in biology (although they shouldn’t be). And, despite his own views on theism, Shapiro’s approach has highly significant implications for theistic evolution.
One bright sunny day, the Lord God paid a visit to Earth. He arrived in a huge flaming chariot that was visible to millions of people as he circled the globe a few times. Behind the chariot was a banner that read “The Lord God, Creator of the Universe” in every human language. After a few circuits, the Chariot landed, and God stepped out. He looked a lot like Morgan Freeman, but with a beard.
About a year or so ago, I attended a “Science and Faith” symposium at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington. All of the panel members, representing five or six different religious faiths, were quite clear that they supported all of the tenets of evolutionary biology. When a question was asked (by a member of the largely atheistic audience) how they could support the notion of Imago Dei when “science” has shown that human beings are merely another species in an unbroken line of primate evolution, the Protestant minister on the panel answered that “created in the image of God” should probably not be restricted to human beings but … Continue reading