Friday, August 22, 2008

theistic evolution vs evolutionary creation

As you know I have myself a theistic evolutionist, its a nice term but it doesn't seem adequate. First of all most Christians who come to my blog do not like the term "evolutionist," and that word is part of theistic evolutionist. Also theistic evolution has the theistic part as an afterthought and the main point being evolution which many Christians would not like because its not putting God first, so I am thinking of using the older term evolutionary creation(ism) to describe my position.

-- Other Christians would like the term better being that it is not saying you are an evolutionist but a creationist

--It does not have the semi-negative connotations that theistic evolution has

--It sounds more like a legitimate interpretation of Genesis, put along side "progressive creation" or "young earth creation" then a vague theological concept which could apply to any religion.

Another term might be scientific creationism but that term has already been hijacked by young earthers.

P.S. I currently have a case of writers block on more serious matters, I'll see what interesting things I can come up with tomorrow.


bobxxxx said...

Evolution doesn't need any adjectives, especially not the adjective theistic. Evolution is just science. There's nothing theistic or atheistic about it.

Some Christians like to attach the adjective theistic to evolution. That's just plain dumb. God had nothing to do with evolution. He didn't invent it. He doesn't guide it. Evolution is a completely natural process. It doesn't require God's magic.

Nobody calls other scientific facts like gravity 'theistic'. Perhaps Christians give evolution the adjective 'theistic' because they don't like the idea the God they believe in is completely useless and not needed for anything.

Evolution, unlike most scientific facts, certainly does have some serious religious implications. Anyone who understands evolution, knows that humans (including Jesus) are nothing more than a species of ape, and they know there was nothing inevitable about the development of the human apes. They also know evolution is guided by natural selection, and they know it's not guided by a Magic Man who hides in the clouds.

Christians who accept the proven beyond any doubt facts of evolution might wonder if their belief in heaven makes any sense. Most certainly people are just animals and nothing more than animals. Why should human apes get special treatment from the Christian Sky Fairy? There's no reason for it.

To solve the religious implications of evolution Christians do a lot of wishful thinking. It would be much better for Christians if they grew up and stopped believing in their childish Christian woo-woo. Their crazy beliefs might have made sense in the Dark Ages, but in the 21st century it's getting to be very ridiculous to believe in any supernatural nonsense, including Mr. God.

Created Rationalist said...

That is exactly why I sm calling it evolutionary creation rather then theistic evolution. There is no reason to attach theistic to a scientific theory, would saying theistic tension-cohesion theory make sense? being that theistic evolution/evolutionary creation is an interpretation of Genesis and God's actions in the world it would be more appropriate to place it in the category of creation.

Christians call it theistic evolution to distinguish it from your version that there was no God involved in the formation of life. Theistic evolution is not a scientific theory as much as it is a theological/philosophical concept of divine authorship of life on earth through evolution by natural selection. Also there is no way of knowing wether or not God guided evolution, your dogmatic statement that he didn't means absolutely nothing. It is your anti-theistic philosophy which brings you to believe God did not guide evolution and it is my Christian theistic philosophy which brings me to believe that he did.

You seem to make a big deal over the fact that evolution says humanity is a species of great ape, have you ever heard of the phrase making a mountain out of a molehill? True biology confirms our simian heritage, but you must admit that there is a wealth of differences between apes and humans. Also the Christiann position would be despite our obscurity on a cosmic scheme God chose our species to bear his image, a soul. Yes I understand and respect that you do not believe in a soul, however I maintain that it is because of your anti-theistic, materialistic philosophy that brings you to the conclusion that man is not more then an animal. Biology tells us that humans are animals, however our presuppositions tell us whether or not man is just an adevanced animal or something more. And why did he choose us to be the spiritually aware race? I don't know but if you notice the biblical God does choose many people in the same fashion, for example he chose David, an obscure uneducated shepherd to rule as king of Israel, is it possible that in the same way he chose us, an obscure insignificant species to be his children?

I have no problem with Jesus being an ape anymore then I have a problem with earth being a planet. It is because of my philosophy that I believe in the unprovable and rather incredible notion of Jesus being more then just an ordinary ape but the creator of the universe, the king of kings, and lord of lords, the cosmic supergenius in the flesh.

I do not believe God directly guides natural selection but that he set into motion a system which would inevitably lead to high intelligence of some kind, and it has.

For the second time I do not believe in a sky fairy that hides in the clouds, God does not literally dwell in the clouds or even in the earth's atmosphere. He does not reside in our universe but beyond it. Its inadequete to compare God to fairies and hobgoblins being that there have been those who stopped believing in fairies at age seven and began to believe in God at age seventeen. The idea of a cosmic designer makes much more sense then you give it credit for. I will stop believing in God when you give me a real reason. Your final paragraph just further proves my point that it is largely your philosophy not your science that cause you to dislike Christian beliefs. Christianity made sense to Greek Philosophers 2,000 years ago, to medieval philosophers 1,000 years ago and to many modern intellectuals today.

If you give more then your personal opinion on the supernatural I will take your accusation that believing in the supernatural is more rediculous nowadays then 1100 AD more seriously.

Created Rationalist

Herman Cummings said...

Setting Creationism & Science Straight

A new brand of creationism, which creationists and secular science
are not familiar with is "Biblical Reality", which is better known as
the "Observations of Moses".

This "Old Earth" brand of creationism puts forth the view that combines a seven 24-hr day week of original creation (Exodus 20:11), with a separate "six 12-hr days of revelation" given to Moses
(Genesis 1:2 – 2:3).

The pseudo discrepancy between the "sixth day" in Genesis chapter one and in chapter two is explained as chapter two being the beginning of modern mankind (Adam & Eve), and chapter one as being an earlier species of prehistoric mankind in an earlier restoration period, more than 60 million years ago.

Biblical Reality is defined as the "ordained marriage" of biblical Truth, and Scientific Reality. Think of Biblical Truth as historical, present, or future data (information) that has been given to us by the words written in the Bible, or what we shall call "The Printed Word of God". It is events which took place in the past, that we may not presently be able to confirm outside of the Bible.

Scientific Reality is defined as "That which has been discovered and analyzed to be of true historical existence. That which has been observed to be a real occurrence or phenomena, whether or not it can be explained." For example, the discoveries of the extinctions of life on Earth in what has been determined to be 245 Million BC (dimetrodons) and 65 Million BC (dinosaurs) is accepted as Scientific Reality.

Biblical Reality teaches that there are no "creation accounts" in Genesis, and that "Moses Didn't Write About Creation!". What is actually being said is "Moses wrote about multiple restorations".

Before the advent of "Biblical Reality", no faction of creationism could explain both the "first day" of Moses and the "Fourth Day", all being 24-hr days, without either denying literal interpretation or
"redefining" the scriptures.

The "six days of Moses" in Genesis chapter one are actually six consecutive (12 hour) days in 1598 BC that God revealed to Moses (on Mt. Sinai) from the ancient past. Each day was from the first week of each of seven different geological eras in "biblical order".

The only day of Creation Week which Moses saw was the "Fourth Day". Creation Week was 168 hours, in 4.6 Billion BC, according to the geologist.

The worlds of creationism and theology have no idea what the first chapter of Genesis is saying. The seven days in Genesis are too scientific to be understood without proper training, and they are not about Creation Week. Genesis is actually an advanced book of mathematics and science, that conveys the prehistoric history of life on Earth. I call it "the Observations of Moses". This is the correct opposing view of evolution as should be presented in biology classes.

Creationism is not the opposing view to evolution. Creationism would oppose the theory of the "Big Bang".

Herman Cummings
PO Box 1745
Fortson GA, 31808

Anonymous said...

Science is based on a philosophy that abhors fitting data to preconceptions. From a practical point of view, it simply works, and we have modern society to thank for this approach; from a philosophical standpoint, it is a means of acquiring knowledge that lends itself to improvement and expansion, whereas making unfalsifiable assertions does not.

Your desire to maintain creationism because of your belief in a "soul" could be compared analogously to maintaining geocentric views, arguing that it may appear that we orbit the sun, but that ignoring the divine position of the earth being the center of the universe precludes our species having a special nature. This is refusing to accept something because you don't like what it means to some deeply held beliefs of yours.

You attack the atheistic premise as dogmatic, but that is contrary to how dogma works. A dogma is an assertion or group of assertions that are contrary to evidence, or unsupported by evidence. The lack of a god appearing, the lack of a god being physically discovered, the lack of any evidence at all is a strong supporter of this position.

Theists quickly point out that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, but that still seems to ignore the fact that there is a void where evidence should be, if the theistic claim had merit.

To make a long diatribe short, you invent the idea that there are "positions" with regards to origins, divided between materialism and your theism. The reality is that there are positions divided between evidence, and unsupported assertions. You have the conclusion that a god exists, furthermore you have the conclusion that this god is your biblical god. You have no evidence to support your position, and you are criticizing materialism despite the fact that it is supported by evidence. Your desire for "something more" is making you fit data into your preconceived conclusions.

Created Rationalist said...

The reason I was saying the term evolutionary creation is better is because much of my audience (being conservative Christians) do not like the term evolution when referring to a theological concept which is all theistic evolution is, its is not a scientific theory, and I was not trying to imply that.

Both the position that there is a supernatural component to reality and the position that there is none is dogmatic. I was not attacking atheism per se, but materialism. One can be an atheist and believe in supernatural phenomena (that is essentially what Buddhism is). What I was saying was that materialism the statement that there is not supernatural element to the universe is dogmatic because the statement that there is nothing supernatural about the universe is universal negative, materialism cannot be absolutely proven or disproven, just like theism can neither be proven or disproven. The existence or nonexistence of a sentient creator is uncertain. Therefore denying or confirming the existence of an uncertain being is dogmatic.

"To make a long diatribe short, you invent the idea that there are "positions" with regards to origins, divided between materialism and your theism. The reality is that there are positions divided between evidence, and unsupported assertions. You have the conclusion that a god exists, furthermore you have the conclusion that this god is your biblical god. You have no evidence to support your position, and you are criticizing materialism despite the fact that it is supported by evidence. Your desire for "something more" is making you fit data into your preconceived conclusions."

Your right I make the statement that God exists and that it is the biblical God without apology, just like you start with the position that there is no god and nature is all there is. I would like to know what evidence you have for materialism. After all I was under the impression materialism could not be proven nor disproven.

I will make another responce to you later,

Created Rationalist