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Thread: Why is the concept of theistic evolution unacceptable to you?

  1. #1

    Why is the concept of theistic evolution unacceptable to you?

    Theistic evolution

    Make sure you read the section entitled Spectrum of viewpoints so you get an idea of the scope of the subject matter.

    Over the last 150 years or so, more and more religious people have come to embrace evolution as a process of divine creation. In other words, that it was either the inevitable result of the way God designed the universe, or a process that was initiated and subsequently guided to some extent by His hand.

    A literal reading of genesis (for example) doesn't lend itself very well to incorporating evolution of course, at least not according to the creationist camp anyway. But as noted on Wikipedia, "Christians have considered allegorical interpretations of Genesis since long before the development of Darwin's theory of evolution...". So, why rally so hard against the most well-evidenced scientific theory in the history of the world instead of simply embracing it as one of the pinnacles of your God's creative prowess?

  2. #2
    Valued Senior Member SciWriter's Avatar
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    Theistic Evolution?

    Let us deal with the case that evolution indeed happens and that God directs it, for that must become the fallback ID position. For starters, evolution is not goal-oriented, so we can discard the (biological teleological) argument for the existence of God, which claims that postulating God is necessary to account for purposiveness (sp?) in nature. Evolution is a blind watchmaker. Its designs are not optimal.

    To review and elaborate more, though, theistic evolution is the theological view that God creates new species through evolution. The advocates like to reserve a special place for humans, separate from the animals, but this is not a scientifically justifiable stance, given the many evolutionary predecessors of human beings. So, animals are ‘brutalized’ and humans humanized to make the alleged gap as big as possible: humans are characterized as the only creatures with reason, empathy, a rich emotional life, altruism, culture, identity, and language. Yet all these characteristics have been observed to a greater or lesser extent in nonhuman animals, especially in other primates. The history of the universe has thus been an unfolding of purely naturalistic processes.

    The ‘God hypothesis’ provides no additional explanatory value. It is but a refuge of ignorance. One who feels the need to postulate a divine cause is left with the question of what caused God to exist. They say that God does not need a cause; but then why think that the universe/stuff needs one? So, it adds nothing.

    Evolution is an immensely slow, wasteful, pitiless, and cruel process, hardly the most elegant process of creation open to a goal-oriented, omnipotent, and benevolent God. If humanity is the final goal of creation, whence the 3,500,000,000! years since the origin of life, or the 13.7 billion years since the Big Bang? What is the point of this immense amount of time if human beings and their world are the pinnacle of the Almighty’s creation?

    Does God cause mutations to direct evolution? Well, they sure seem all over the place, plus a lot are bad and many are neutral. The vast majority of mutants are selectively neutral or negative with regard to the evolution and survival of homo sapiens, and, thus, their evolution is wasteful if measured against the goal of producing human beings. Such a wasteful process is hardly consonant with a goal-oriented, omnipotent, and omniscient God.

  3. #3
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    It's not the meddling with evolution part that's unacceptable to me; it's the god part. I can't find enough plausible features in any of the god stories for serious consideration.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Rav View Post
    Theistic evolution

    Make sure you read the section entitled Spectrum of viewpoints so you get an idea of the scope of the subject matter.

    Over the last 150 years or so, more and more religious people have come to embrace evolution as a process of divine creation. In other words, that it was either the inevitable result of the way God designed the universe, or a process that was initiated and subsequently guided to some extent by His hand.

    A literal reading of genesis (for example) doesn't lend itself very well to incorporating evolution of course, at least not according to the creationist camp anyway. But as noted on Wikipedia, "Christians have considered allegorical interpretations of Genesis since long before the development of Darwin's theory of evolution...". So, why rally so hard against the most well-evidenced scientific theory in the history of the world instead of simply embracing it as one of the pinnacles of your God's creative prowess?

    As for me first you have a wheel , then you make a wheel barrel, then a 2 wheel cart , then you attach a horse, the you replace the horse with a motor , then you computerize your car , at the end you have a Mercedes 500.
    But at the beginning you had a wheel or a back pack. That is my interpretation of Genesis.

  5. #5
    All replies are welcome of course (and appreciated), but this question is more for those who already believe in God.

  6. #6
    Valued Senior Member SciWriter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rav View Post
    All replies are welcome of course (and appreciated), but this question is more for those who already believe in God.
    I'll gradually present a hypothetical court case, showing both sides.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by SciWriter View Post
    Theistic Evolution?




    The ‘God hypothesis’ provides no additional explanatory value. It is but a refuge of ignorance. One who feels the need to postulate a divine cause is left with the question of what caused God to exist. They say that God does not need a cause; but then why think that the universe/stuff needs one? So, it adds nothing.



    Does God cause mutations to direct evolution? Well, they sure seem all over the place, plus a lot are bad and many are neutral. The vast majority of mutants are selectively neutral or negative with regard to the evolution and survival of homo sapiens, and, thus, their evolution is wasteful if measured against the goal of producing human beings. Such a wasteful process is hardly consonant with a goal-oriented, omnipotent, and omniscient God.
    How would you explain genetic mutation 3000 years ago ? I suppose thy would treat you as crazy person wit an evil spirit , 3000 thy were not ready to interpret things as we know now .
    So how about if I say God created man for his glory ( I suppose it offends you ), Do you remember the early computers 1954 a big dinosaur's It have past 60 yeas we have a lap top . The computer have evolved in 60 years. Dont show your great wisdom now , you are riding on many hard working mutation .

  8. #8
    Valued Senior Member SciWriter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arauca View Post
    So how about if I say God created man for his glory.
    You could 'just say' anything, but it would need much more to it for it to go over in the 'Supreme' Court.

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  10. #10
    Registered Senior Member Promo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rav View Post
    Theistic evolution

    Make sure you read the section entitled Spectrum of viewpoints so you get an idea of the scope of the subject matter.

    Over the last 150 years or so, more and more religious people have come to embrace evolution as a process of divine creation. In other words, that it was either the inevitable result of the way God designed the universe, or a process that was initiated and subsequently guided to some extent by His hand.

    A literal reading of genesis (for example) doesn't lend itself very well to incorporating evolution of course, at least not according to the creationist camp anyway. But as noted on Wikipedia, "Christians have considered allegorical interpretations of Genesis since long before the development of Darwin's theory of evolution...". So, why rally so hard against the most well-evidenced scientific theory in the history of the world instead of simply embracing it as one of the pinnacles of your God's creative prowess?

    Please tell me you're not the type of religious person who will say "This part of the bible you don't take literal but, believe every word from this chapter." You can't pick and choose which part of the bible is or is not okay to take literal. I feel like the only reason some Theist's even use "literal" bible verses are because we haven't disproved them yet.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    Please tell me you're not the type of religious person who will say "This part of the bible you don't take literal but, believe every word from this chapter." You can't pick and choose which part of the bible is or is not okay to take literal. I feel like the only reason some Theist's even use "literal" bible verses are because we haven't disproved them yet.
    The genesis creation story was just an example. Let's remember that theists come in all theological shapes and sizes. In fact there are many theists who aren't even fundamentalists, and some who are religious pluralists, and even a few who are agnostic theists, who reject evolution on more vague religious grounds.

    ETA: I'm not actually a theist myself. I briefly toyed with the idea of messing around with you for a while (role playing can be fun sometimes), but instead I'll simply say "welcome to sciforums"

  12. #12
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    Evolution is real, and we can certainly put it as part of God's great plan. If no God we make one up anyways.

  13. #13
    had a mod but let him go spidergoat's Avatar
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    Evolution isn't planned. Otherwise the plan would be evident.

  14. #14
    Valued Senior Member SciWriter's Avatar
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    The case against theistic evolution continues… The honorable Judge Graybeard presiding, Austin Pat Torney continuing as lawyer for the prosecution (since his name contains the letters “attorney”)…

    “I call the recent family tree to the witness stand; but, wait, oh my God, there are some others, too, many of them extinct!”

    Expert Testimony: "There is no progressive trend in evolution toward the development of human beings; evolution can be seen as a huge tree with many branching points, not a direct line to humans; we are just a not-yet-extinct part of one of the very many branches of the enormous tree of life."

    “I now call upon the extinct.”

    Testimony: "What was the point of all these extinct animals, if the goal of creation is man and his surrounding nature? To what purpose were the dinosaurs? What was the point of the trilobites? These groups of animals did not even contribute to the origin of humans. The development of life has been interrupted by innumerable extinctions, some with so many different plant and animal species dying out in the same time period that they have been called mass extinctions."

    Judge Graybeard, having worked for ten minutes straight now, calls a recess for a long lunch…

  15. #15
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    Why is the concept of theistic evolution unacceptable to you?
    As far as my own thinking goes, I don't believe in "God". So theistic evolution simply introduces a huge premise that in my opinion is both unnecessary and unjustified. I think that most people who espouse theistic evolution do so in order to harmonize their theistic beliefs with their acceptance of modern science. I don't share their theistic belief, so I don't feel the same motivation.

    Having said that, I'll also say that if somebody else has a personal belief in theistic evolution, their having that belief won't typically be "unacceptable" to me. I don't expect everyone around me to agree with me.

  16. #16
    Registered Senior Member Promo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rav View Post
    The genesis creation story was just an example. Let's remember that theists come in all theological shapes and sizes. In fact there are many theists who aren't even fundamentalists, and some who are religious pluralists, and even a few who are agnostic theists, who reject evolution on more vague religious grounds.

    ETA: I'm not actually a theist myself. I briefly toyed with the idea of messing around with you for a while (role playing can be fun sometimes), but instead I'll simply say "welcome to sciforums"
    Thanks, messing around with me is fine. I'm dead inside anyways.

  17. #17
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    “We see evolution differently then, Austin Pat Torney, as the process of evolution seems most intent on the continuation of ‘life forms’, though I will agree that it does not seem to have a vested interest in which forms are successful in relation to which others.”

    “True, no vested interest. Those who were in a position to ‘adapt’ and survive, were not necessarily ‘nice’—could even be ‘mean’.”

    “Still, I tend to wonder why all species of my experience offer a great struggle to survive, when the alternative of doing nothing is by far the easier choice?”

    “Survival is the brain’s objective, sometimes even thinking its way into the afterlife.”

    “Break time.”


  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    Please tell me you're not the type of religious person who will say "This part of the bible you don't take literal but, believe every word from this chapter." You can't pick and choose which part of the bible is or is not okay to take literal. I feel like the only reason some Theist's even use "literal" bible verses are because we haven't disproved them yet.
    Why can't a Christian "pick and choose which part of the bible is or is not okay to take literal"?

    Why do so many self-styled 'atheists' seemingly believe that religious texts such as the Bible must be read and understood in what can only be called a fundamentalist manner?

  19. #19
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    The theistic evolution trial resumes… Judge Graybeard looks half-asleep, but seems to be listening with one ear.

    “God is outside of time.”

    The prosecution answers and continues: “It has been suggested that God’s mindset is very slow compared to the ‘speedy’ time of the operation of the universe, and thus I submit that God would not have been alert or responsive enough to direct evolution through mutation.”

    The defense objected, stating that they would have to check with their client on this, the judge asking how long would this would take, noting that it took over 200 years for a response to Haiti’s pact with the Devil from voodoo.

    The Judge replies, “Oh, about a million years. OK, we’ll reconvene… wait! We can’t wait that long… So I’ll allow the claim that God says that he directs mutations. Let the record show both opinions.

    “Thank you, Judge, for our theory can adapt to any and all turns of events.”

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by spidergoat View Post
    Evolution isn't planned. Otherwise the plan would be evident.
    No it doesn't. God hid his tracks. Its God, so its possible.

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