Charles Darwin: Darwinian Evolution
Professor A. Wagners
Position Paper 4
Can a person believe in both, Darwinism and religion, at the same time? “We can do so only if we do not confuse evolutionary biology with a natural science and atheistic materialism,” (Junghyung, 2011). Darwin’s Theory of Evolution has been a widespread topic of disagreement for many decades. When his theory was first introduced in the mid 1800s there was controversy between religion and science. At the time Darwin’s theory was mainstreamed most Europeans were still firm in their belief of religion and that the earth was created in seven days by a divine being as described in the ...view middle of the document...
In the past several decades historians have paid considerable attention to religious responses to Darwinism. “Studies have revealed a variety of reactions to evolution depending on local contingencies, which has made it impossible to uphold any grand narrative of the dissemination of Darwinism,” (Hjermitslev, 2011). Many people refused to believe in Darwin’s theory but there were some that supported him for their own reasons. Still, quite a few people silently supported Darwin in fear of retaliation. People were intrigued that someone would challenge the ideas behind the church and were interested in learning what else could be argued.
“From the 1870s, when evolution was generally accepted among British and American scientists, liberal and even some orthodox theologians, advocated various kinds of theistic evolutionism. It was not until the 1920s that creationists, who rejected evolution in general and human evolution in particular, took center stage in American Protestant answers to the Darwinian challenge,” (Hjermitslev, 2011). It took a long time to believe that something or someone other than a divine being had anything to do with such a vast creation such as animals. “This position he designates as theological naturalism. Once scientific naturalism has excluded all the supernatural forces from the natural processes, the processes of ongoing creation in the natural world are identified with divine action,” (Junghyung, 2011).
The scientific method can be applied to the theory of evolution. Darwin’s theory, animals differentiated into species, when the survivors of a changing environment were able to pass their genetic traits to their offspring. The theory of evolution is a scientific theory that can be tested by observations and application of the scientific method. Support for the theory of evolution is based on fossil evidence that has accumulated throughout the geologic history of earth. (Zamora, 2008)Creationism cannot be tested by the scientific method, due to the theory that everything was created by God. This makes it accepted strictly on one’s faith and cannot be investigated or tested. The intelligence design does use the scientific method, “goes from observation > hypothesis > experiment > conclusion. Intelligent design begins with the observation that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information (CSI). Design theorists hypothesize that if objects were designed, they will contain CSI. They then seek to find CSI. One easily testable form of CSI is irreducible complexity (IC). ID researchers can then experimentally reverse-engineer biological structures to see if they are IC. If they...