terça-feira, 20 de dezembro de 2011

Was Darwin an atheist? Are Darwinism and religion incompatible?

The answer may surprise many people…NO HE WAS NOT! In fact Darwin had his own positions on these matters of faith and science and accepted no external influences on his own point of view. He did not wanted to see his theories used by neither socialists, or fervent religious people, or Malthusians, or spiritualists or atheists. In fact he couldn’t stand them! Neither of them.
Due to his discovery of the natural selection many still believe that he end up becoming an atheist himself, but actually, in his auto-biography (1887), he always believed in the Bible, that he end up considering less reliable afterwards, nevertheless his notes show that for years he believed in the existence of a Creator who had Himself conceived the plan of natural selection as a general plan that would develop constantly without further divine intervention by functioning on it’s own. This natural selection would create strong individuals that would easily adapt to the constant demands of mankind over nature but also to extraordinary or strong natural events. This selection that includes genetic variability and adaptability , would so be a necessity from a dynamic planet with adaptation and compensation mechanisms , a planet able to change and adapt itself to extraordinary conditions and possible changes introduced by human or natural factors; the adaptation would involve the planet and of course, it’s inhabitants.
It is true that after his daughter Annie died in such a young age (10 years old) his skepticism would increase, unlike his wife, he found no comfort in prayers, however in his heart, in his most intimate thoughts, the idea of a supernatural force was maintained to the point where he would state that the closest word to define his convictions was the term “theistic”…

But what is theism?

Theism, in the broadest sense, is the belief that at least one deity exists. In a more specific sense, theism refers to a doctrine concerning the nature of a monotheistic God and God's relationship to the universe. Theism, in this specific sense, conceives of God as personal, present and active in the governance and organization of the world and the universe. The use of the word theism as indicating a particular doctrine of monotheism arose in the wake of the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century to contrast with the then emerging deism that contended that God, though transcendent and supreme, did not intervene in the natural world and could be known rationally but not via revelation…” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theism

In a letter written to F. MacDermot in 1880 Darwin confessed that he had never been an atheist in the sense of denying God’s existence but rather the closest word for what could eventually classify him was agnostic. So, he would keep the door open to the possibility, more than that we have in fact two kinds of agnostics: the theists and the atheists, Darwin was not an atheist…

What is agnosticism?

Agnosticism is the view that the truth value of certain claims—especially claims about the existence or non-existence of any deity, but also other religious and metaphysical claims—is unknown or unknowable. Agnosticism can be defined in various ways, and is sometimes used to indicate doubt or a skeptical approach to questions. In some senses, agnosticism is a stance about the difference between belief and knowledge, rather than about any specific claim or belief. In the popular sense, an agnostic is someone who neither believes nor disbelieves there is a God, whereas an atheist disbelieves there is a God. In the strict sense, however, agnosticism is the view that human reason is incapable of providing sufficient rational grounds to justify knowledge of whether God exists or does not. Within agnosticism there are agnostic atheists (who do not believe any deity exists, but do not deny it as a possibility) and agnostic theists (who believe a God exists but do not claim to know that)…” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agnosticism

At Darwin’s own funeral the fact that he was not an atheist was underlined, he was described as a good man and religious men said he was no threat to moral values and stated that evolutionism was merely a branch of new science; nobody saw him then as a rampart or bastion for any denial of God’s existence. Strangely enough he is seen as such today…possibly due to ignorance and superficial knowledge of his theories and beliefs/ideas but also due to some intellectual opportunism.
Historian Janet Browne said that at his funeral was known that he financially supported the church of his parish and that he frontally opposed contraception!
(This article can be read at “Superinteressante”, a Portuguese science magazine, number 136)

It is a stupid and ever repeated mistake to put Evolutionism as an opponent to Creationism ! Darwin never did it or intended to!

Some of Darwin's blunders ...

On page 130 of his "red book" Darwin wrote, between late 1836 and beginning of 1837: there we read that, given the absence of intermediate forms in the fossil record, new species should become quickly through jumps, as otherwise not survive. In the contract it appears as fervent “big jumpist” rather than a defender of gradual evolutionist jumps, strongly criticizing gradualism. He would later reverse this view of things (namely because he came face to face with how preposterous and strange the big jumps were; difficult if not impossible to prove). The fact is that Darwin may have changed his mind but still there were no fossil evidence to support neither is new or previous point of view; no evidence for small or big jump, no intermediate skeleton of some species to prove his ideas that, even then, were just that: ideas ... many people still forget this small detail that is anything but a detail: many theories are just that: theories. If faith is a matter of belief then the theories based only on speculation and little or no evidence, are a matter of belief with that small difference of being even less justified given the intelligent design of life on Earth. This intelligent design would then, more easily, bear the existence of a Creator than many outlandish theories ...

Another Evolutionist mistake is the fact that in his studies of Galapagos finches. He found that each small island had it’s own species of finches and that they possibly would have evolved to adapt to each island: they were not well classified, not well cataloged and even so the English specialist in birds John Gould told him he had found new species, a new group of birds. Basically, even today , new species of fish, small reptiles and amphibians for example are still found, and yet it is as simple as that: new species, that’s all. Nobody comes to say that they evolved from other known species, they are just new findings1 so what? There may be 10 kinds of finches and all of them could have been created at the same time with characteristics that would suit them to their habitat, they could have adapted, slowly, and none of that would deny God’s existence for reasons previously referred on this article. No intermediate
Species of finches were found to prove the evolutionist jump (big or small) , no skeleton, no strongly based prove of that evolutionist jump, the theory could even be right but is there 100% certainty prove for it? Or are there just theories…again?
So, many questions yet to be answered…

Has previously said, both evolutionism and theism or even religion are not incompatible. The processes by which evolution takes place are in fact adaptation processes that could have perfectly been created by god to function on their own without divine intervention for reasons already stated. When we say that 1+2=3 we are saying that the result of the sum of 1 plus 2 is 3 so 3 is the result, whenever we sum 1+2 we always obtain 3 but who determined that it would be so? Who made the 1 or the 2 ? Who made the equation, the formula? It’s like finding the recipe of a cake: we may find that it takes 250 grams of sugar and 250 grams of flour but that says nothing about WHO made the cake and WHY did He made it…

Recently another supposed crucial brick of skepticism was added to the wall that stands between God and us which we insist in turning more thick every time… it is the Higgs boson or God’s particle.
I'll possibly talk about it next time…a big hug to all.

Sem comentários:

Enviar um comentário