Tuesday, March 2, 2010


...We could even say that Darwinism itself often functions as an alternative religion. In fact, that’s exactly what philosopher of science Michael Ruse does say. Ruse is a pugnacious and aggressive evolutionist, who testified in court against an Arkansas creationist statue back in 1982. While there, however, he had a conversation with the well-known creationist Duane Gish that brought him up short. “The trouble with you evolutionists is that you just don’t play fair,” Gish told him. You accuse us of teaching a religious view, he said, but “you evolutionists are just as religious in your way. Christianity tells us where we came from, where we’re going, and what we should do on the way. I defy you to show any difference with evolution. It tells you where you came from, where you are going, and what you should do on the way.” In short, evolution itself functions as a religion.

The comment rankled Ruse, and he couldn’t get it out of his mind. Eventually, he decided that Gish was right—that evolution really is “more than mere science,” as he put it in a recent article. “Evolution came into being as a kind of secular ideology, an explicit substitute for Christianity.” Even today, it “is promulgated as an ideology, a secular religion—a full-fledged alternative to Christianity, with meaning and morality.”

Ruse hastens to reassure his readers that he himself remains “an ardent evolutionist and an ex-Christian.” And yet, “I must admit that in this one complaint... the [biblical] literalists are absolutely right. Evolution is a religion. This was true of evolution in the beginning, and it is true of evolution still today.”

Ruse announced his new insight at the 1993 annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), where his presentation was met by stunned silence. A conference report published by an evolution advocacy group wondered, “Did Michael Ruse Give Away the Store?”

But Ruse wasn’t making wild allegations. He backed them up with solid examples, citing people like Stephen Jay Gould, who once claimed that evolution “liberates the human spirit.” For sheer excitement, Gould added, evolution “beats any myth of human origins by light years.” Since evolutionary history is entirely contingent, “in an entirely literal sense, we owe our existence, as large and reasoning mammals, to our lucky stars.”

“If this is not a rival to traditional Judaeo-Christian teaching,” Ruse comments wryly, “I don’t know what is.”

Ruse’s analysis certainly throws new light on the controversy over teaching evolution in the classroom. Critics typically accuse Intelligent Design supporters of trying to inject religion into the classroom. For example, during the Ohio controversy an editorial in a Columbus newspaper said, “The problem is that intelligent-design proponents wants to bring religion into science classes, where it doesn’t belong.”

The correct response is that religion is already in the classroom—because of naturalistic evolution is itself a religion or worldview. “The so-called warfare between science and religion,” wrote historian Jacques Barzun, should really “be seen as the warfare between two philosophies and perhaps two faiths.” The battle over evolution is merely one incident “in the dispute between the believers in consiousness and the believers in mechanical action; the believers in purpose and the believers in pure chance.” To promote one faith in the publich school system at public expense, while banning the other, is an example of viewpoint discrimination, which the Supreme Court has declared unconstitutional in a wide variety of cases.

Nancy Pearcey: Total Truth, pg. 172-173Photobucket


Anonymous said...

That is so true Emily if they don't allow religion in the public schools,according to this, evolution is a religion and men are hypocrites

Gabe the fiddler said...

did you know that Ch.Darwin didn't entirely deny God's existence in his book Origin Of Species? On one of the last words on the book he sais that everything was "breathed by the Creator" ... ..? isn't that weird? the founder of the evolution movement!

yes...evolution is a religion!!

Obi said...

it all boils down to the devil trying to drown out God from everywhere possible. we christians having the truth, shouldn't freak out, but stand al the more firm on our foundation and make a difference in love and so shine a light in this dark world! .. keep it up Emily!