Biologos in contrast to Intelligent Design/Darwin's Doubt?

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #21


The old fashioned way. By reading what he wrote and thinking about what he says and does not say.

(Roger A. Sawtelle) #22


I think you are right, but @Eddie isn’t talking straight either, because he refuses to take my answer to the problem seriously.

In other words Eddie is looking for people to agree with him, not to serious look for a real answer.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(Mervin Bitikofer) #24

I defer to your observation on that --and all the more so in the loud silence here where they should be reading our comments. Here is my speculation as to one plausible reason that silence seems/is so pervasive for you.

Given that it is inevitably followed with the question of “okay, so how does God do it …”, and given the specificity demanded in any answers to this by you or others asking, perhaps they too are thinking “there is no good answer to this” or perhaps more modestly: “I don’t yet have any good answer and am not willing to commit myself to something in the absence of a definitive response.” It is a very hard question to answer since it can’t be answered scientifically. Theological answers might be (some --myself included-- would say are) there, but the askers always then want to draw the answerer back into some kind of scientific specificity before they will be satisfied. I.e. You might respond: “It’s all very good for you to say God is mightily hands on and all, but you never quite say how”. In other words … bring your answer out of theological “vagueness” and into the “light” of some science. To constantly acknowledge the validity of that tug is to give in to, what is at root, a defectively Scientistic worldview.

Now – I think I might have been a little unfair to you here, Eddie and taken that in directions you don’t actually take it. Perhaps you would ask instead: “so bring more theological clarity” to how God does things. And I would be fine with that. But theology isn’t in the business of making the hard questions of life just as easy (and specified to deal with) as all the easier questions of life (the ones science can handle.) There will always be some vagueness and mystery in our theology. If there wasn’t, then our theology (as it has stood) would be totally self-contradicting.

But in any case, do you acknowledge then that anybody who attempts to give a binary answer to your initial question will immediately face at least one of the above varieties of nearly insurmountable follow-up questions from you?

(sy_garte) #25

I dont think that is fair. See Ard Louis recent post here in Kathryn’s blog. Also, it has taken some time for some of this work to gain sufficient gravitas to become widely acceptable. I know that James Shapiro and others in the stress directed mutation field have been discussing this for a while, but scientific change takes time (contrary to some atheistic mythology).

(George Brooks) #26


Roger, I’m delighted to see that you yourself used the term “guides” in an earlier thread:

Jul 23 2015
@jstump @Eddie
There is a simple way to resolve this.

In a real sense both ID and evolutionary creationism accept design, but so far neither has been able to explain how God how God guides evolution to carry out God’s Design.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(Jon Garvey) #29

Talking of the Hump of the Camel, and of blowing ones own trumpet, I’ve put a new blog up there on the “God of the Gaps” as a not-very-useful argument.

(Mervin Bitikofer) #30

BioLogos is much closer to endorsing scientism in deed (as opposed to in word) than I am, since BioLogos tends to subordinate theological truth to scientific truth wherever push comes to shove.

I think your statement above needs some nuance, if not correction. My involved outsider’s impression (subject of course to correction, of course) of Biologos is that they would subordinate all understandings (on both scientific and theological sides) to all actual truths (of theological or physical nature). In other words, I don’t think they are as dogmatic in equating our/their scientific understandings with unmitigated truth as you seem to imply. But they do take our well-supported science as being something that begins to reveal to us something of the “actual truths” category, and that needs to be considered as part of all God’s truth by any thinker whether they are thinking theologically or scientifically.

All this said, I really like the comparisons in your second paragraph, and will leave it to others here to defend whether or not your characterization is fair or not to Biologos. If indeed the “logos” leg is limping more weakly along than the “Bio” leg, --again, perhaps that could be because of an asymmetry between how science is done (on simpler measurable questions) and how theology is done (on more intractable questions). It may be a bit like saying that someone is better at arithmetic than they are at ancient language translation. It may be true enough in a simple sense, but if one wanted to add any specificity to such a comparison, they run into problems since those are two very incommensurate skills that (I should think) are not testable by the same sorts of techniques. It’s comparing apples and oranges.

(Steve Schaffner) #31

Pure neo-Darwinism has been dead for decades – since the 60s, probably. The predominance of neutral evolution, endosymbiosis, horizontal gene transfer and polyploid speciation are all processes outside classical Darwinian models, and all have been incorporated without difficulty into evolutionary theory. Some of those changes were more radical and more far-reaching than anything being plausibly proposed today. I see nothing in contemporary evolutionary biology to suggest that anything out of the ordinary is going on, or that “mounting anti-Darwinism” is a real thing. Researchers are debating the importance of various evolutionary processes and perspectives, just as they have for the last century.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(Patrick ) #33

Are you interested in what is happening at the current edge of evolutionary research? You seem like your interested in looking backwards. Are you not amazed by the new science being done every day and the new results being published at an astounding rate?

I don’t know if Biologos realizes this yet but it is going to be the new science that Biologos is going to need to harmonizing with Christian faith.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(Steve Schaffner) #36

No, but I’ve read other things he’s written. Yes, he certainly feels it important to contrast his views with existing theory. Many scientists feel it important to sharply contrast their work with everything that came before. And there are real battles going on over which issues and approaches get the attention and funding that are important both to research and to individual careers. But I don’t see anything new about these battles.

I thought I made it clear that existing evolutionary theory is not fundamentally neo-Darwinian. The processes I listed (and others) violate many of the principles of the Modern Synthesis: gradualism, the centrality of selection, a single acyclic tree of life. Lots of battles were fought over those ideas, and other ideas that didn’t pan out as well. There are battles being fought today over evolutionary concepts. Some of the “new ideas” today are being overhyped (I think), and some are being given too little attention, and some just need lots of work to assess. Which of today’s ideas is more revolutionary than previous ideas?

(Patrick ) #37

The edge is 2016. I mean papers in the Jan 2016 issue of scientific journal.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(Patrick ) #40

When did or does neo-Darwinism become neo-neo-Darwinism?