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An absolute, fricking MUST READ from Mark Shea April 13, 2007

Posted by Administrator in atheism, Catholicism, Mechanistic Relativism, Pharyngulism, Smart People.

. . .only because I spend so much time doing the Don Quixote in here to the Pharyngulite/Kraken windmill, this post requires studious attention from (limited) admirers and (probably even more limited) critics.

Shea hits the nail on the head -as usual-:

Fresh from making the mistake of mentioning the fact that things suck in Iraq in the midst of a litany of global ills illustrating an Easter homily about the power of the Resurrection (not Democracy! Whiskey! Sexy!) to heal and redeem those ills, Benedict now manages to alienate another sort of True Believer by noting:

“The question is not to either make a decision for a creationism that fundamentally excludes science, or for an evolutionary theory that covers over its own gaps and does not want to see the questions that reach beyond the methodological possibilities of natural science,”


I find it important to underline that the theory of evolution implies
questions that must be assigned to philosophy and which themselves lead beyond
the realms of science.

And, with regard to JPII’s remark that evolution was “more than a hypothesis” (which is rather different from saying “Evolution is the All Explaining Theory of Everything”, he remarks:

The pope (John Paul) had his reasons for saying this. But it is also true that the theory of evolution is not a complete, scientifically proven theory.

We cannot haul 10,000 generations into the laboratory.

Merde, meet fan.

It is obvious that Benedict is trying to counter the philosophical overreach of the folks who see in evolution a basis for their a priori atheistic materialism. But of course the “Naturalism Evolution is a *fact*” crowd are going to go ballistic with the shouts of Galileo! and “New Inquisition” and so forth. Such a clear and direct assault on the Darwinian Mythos (which is not the same as natural selection) will not be tolerated. Benedict will be told to “leave science to scientists” despite the fact that he has clearly pointed out the real issue is that scientists need to leave philosophy to philosophers (which he and JPII happen to be) and theology to theologians (which he and JPII also happen to be).


It reminds me rather a lot of Richard Feynmann’s remark that reliance on computer models was a “disease.” When you have a thimbleful of hard data out of a population of 50,000,000,000 organisms whose very existence is hypothetical, GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) kicks in with a vengeance. The notion that we know much of anything solid about the origins of homo sapiens, even from a scientific perspective, is laughable. The notions that this sketchy scientific guessowrk provides us with a solid All Explaining Theory of Everything that dispenses with the Creator is a form of arrogance so contemptible that only the excuse of endless agiptrop on gullible minds for a century can excuse it.

I must, of course, perform the de rigeur kabuki of pointing out that one need not advocate ID or six day creationism in order to affirm that God is the creator of heaven and earth and the Lord and giver of life. Nor do I “hate science” as critics of “evolutionism-as-religion” are so frequently told. I simply agree with Benedict that the philosophical and theological overreach (not to mentioned the dialectical sloppiness) of atheistic materialist agitprop is well past its sell-by date and I’m happy to see Benedict address it in his typically lucid way.

I want to be like Mark when I grow up.



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