Last Updated:Friday - 09/24/2010
November 1, 2004
WCR Letters to the Editor
Earth had an initial designerIn regards to the article "Is evolution God's creation" (WCR, Oct. 4) I feel compelled to comment.
The article states the tenets of evolution including the big bang, earth's 4.5 billion year age, and all living organisms descending from a first organism evolving to man.
However, this is not a definition but part of the historical model it accepts.
Evolution primarily focuses on the process of natural selection where species having superior traits overtake the inferior members of the species. The theory states that as the survival of the fittest the process continues, life continually progresses to higher and superior forms.
Evolutionary dogmatists claim that a species survived because it was fittest. They then claim that it was fittest because it survived.
This is circular after-the-fact rationalization. Any theory which states that both rape and murder, and both kindness and love are survival traits falls short in explanatory power.
The belief in chance is nothing new. Epicurus based his entire work on chance. In contrast Aristotle viewed the heavens as the necessary result of natural laws originating from a designer.
Over the last 50 years scientific discoveries in biology and also physics and cosmology suggest that life and the universe display evidence of real design. Evolutionary scientists now acknowledge that there are fundamental flaws with the Darwinian explanation for the complexity and apparent design of living organisms.
As a result more and more scientists are saying that the theory of evolution is just that and believe the universe and life appear designed because they were.
Two years ago, in response to a PBS series on evolution, more then a hundred scientists signed a joint statement, published in numerous newspapers and journals, declaring that they are "skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life."
Dr. William Dembski has done extensive scientific work in life origins and has developed a system to detect design. This is a system to detect if she fell or if she was pushed. The system is based on the existence of contingency, complexity, and specification.
Dembski makes a very convincing case for design. This is not crank science.
It was Dembski's doctoral dissertation and it went through a gruelling review process at Cambridge University.
In addition, scientists are still pondering over the existence of irreducible machines. These are biological machines containing multiple sub-machines which if any were missing the machine would cease to be functional. As a result it is irreducible and could not have evolved from anything else.
In the article George Coyne says we live in a universe that offers many opportunities for life building processes.
However, the facts say otherwise. It has been calculated that the probability of producing a relatively short functional protein at random is one chance in 10125 - an astronomically high number (there are 1065 atoms in our galaxy).
We also know that if any of the settings for the strong nuclear force, gravitational constant, Planck's constant, or ratio of neutron mass to proton mass varied even slightly all life would cease to exist. Everything has been set to the exact right value to keep the universe running.
In the end, it is not a scientific issue but a metaphysical issue going right back to Epicurus versus Aristotle. Evolution is one of the main pillars of the atheist/materialist world view which claims that Darwin has discredited religion once and for all.
As Catholics, this goes right to the fundamentals of the faith concerning the very source of our origins as well as important theological topics including original sin. We should not take in evolutionary claims blindly.
While acknowledging the big bang theory (which in fact follows Scripture) and the earth's 4.5 billion year age (a day for God may be longer then 24 hours), we should also acknowledge the fundamental flaws in evolutionary theory and take comfort that science is now shifting toward acknowledging the work of an initial designer.
For further reading I would highly recommend the books Science and Evidence for Design in the Universe published by Ignatius Press, and Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology by Intervarsity Press.
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