Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Intelligent Evolution

Last year Nathan was doing an assignment on whether or not Intelligent Design should be taught in the schools alongside Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.  I thought it was quite interesting to hear peoples’ opinions on the matter so I asked the question on Facebook.  My question was phrased “Evolution: Intelligent Design or Darwin?”

Some of the answers were:

Evolution is intelligent design.  There would be no evolution without an intelligent design.

Darwin we all evolve from something.


A combination of both.  I think that God would be better than creating a finished product, such as man and woman.  He would be more interested in setting up a complicated set of dominos that results in what we see now, and will continue to topple to produce what will be in the future.

Neither it was all in God's plan I didn't come from a monkey.

I think it started out as Darwin but ended up being technological design.

My view reflects Robbie’s view which is the first answer above.

But to take the subject a step further and answer Nathan’s question, this is what I feel.

To place the Theory of Evolution alongside Intelligent Design in classrooms would be like teaching decision making and history alongside decision making and tarot card reading.  No doubt tarot card reading can be interesting but it is not really a useful way to interpret the world.

The idea of Creationism in a homogenized Christian form is also an extremely narrow version of the story.  There are a multitude of stories on Creationism beyond the Judea-Christian version.

Teaching Religious Studies/Theology in schools is a great idea especially considering the misunderstandings between cultures involving belief systems.  This would be a better fit to teach Creationism within.

To me it seems that most of the problems arise when people insist that their truth is the only truth.  Theology is not a replacement to Science and Science is certainly not a replacement for Theology.

Why can’t we believe in both theories, to take a quote from Robbie “Evolution is intelligent design.  There would be no evolution without an intelligent design.”

I believe in evolution with God behind the wheel.  Is the problem the story of Creation?  Can God still not have created earth but spread over thousands of years opposed to seven days?

Can we not believe both theories?

Like I always do, I get sidetracked.  After all, I once swung from trees until I learned to walk upright.

The classroom is a place of learning and I feel that the Theory of Evolution belongs in the schools.  For me it would be fine to teach Creationism within a Religious Studies course but not alongside Evolution as a science course.

Science is unable to quantify everything and therefore our need for spirituality.  There are beliefs and aspects of the world that science can answer, but there are many that science cannot.

For me though, science does answer the questions on creation.

However, the overwhelming joy I feel sometimes and my overpowering sadness I also feel are not answered by science but they are answered by God.

I am comforted medically that science is there.

I am comforted spiritually that God is here.


Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Hi Renee... got your request and am working on it. Will get back to you later today.
xxx ooo Cheryl

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Renee, you have stated this so well. To me Intelligent Design and Creationism are one in the same. In my opinion ID is cloaked to teach the narrow view of the Christian religion to all. I don't think religion or spirituality can be set within such narrow guidelines. Our country and the world are made up of many different systems of beliefs. To explore a variety of beliefs and compare them would be an eye-opening subject. Perhaps there would be more tolerance amongst people within our own countries & with the world if we had a better understanding of all religions and cultures.
Unlike many people in the US I don't think "God" created us to demand that other people live like us. And what is "us"? There is no singular "us" as far as spiritual beliefs and cultures are concerned in this country, but a "melting pot" which is the way this country was formed. We exercise freedom of religion which does not say we are solely a Christian country. We exercise the separation of Church and State in our public schools which precludes any one religion being taught.
If a “God” in all it’s wisdom & power created this world, then it would not surprise me to think that this “God” is the “God” of all religions and is perfectly capable of creating a beginning that was meant to evolve. Who is to say what the length of a “day” is with a “God”. Could a day be 100 years, 1000 years, 10,000 years?
It will be interesting to see what Rosaria writes… I think I’ve seen her say she was reared Catholic. I was reared in the Methodist Church, but am an Episcopalian now. And Renee, perhaps you are a spiritual being. I don’t necessarily believe everything or even much of what has been written in the King James Version of the Bible (which Gerald tells me was directed by King James to be written so the Protestants and Catholics would stop fighting each other). As G says we have records of religious history based on what culture was able to produce a written history; otherwise, stories passed down orally are prehistoric (meaning before the written word).
You may be interested in looking at a blog I follow by Bishop Greg Rickel (you can find a link to his blog on my blog page). He is an Episcopal Bishop in the Seattle area (Diocese of Olympia) and used to be the priest at my church in Austin (St. James). He is proposing a read with online discussion of a book by Phyllis Tickle called The Great Emergence: How Christianity is Changing and Why. The book can be previewed at the website & there is a 3 minute video introduction.
The reason I mention the above book is that in the video Ms. Tickle states that there is a change in Christianity every 500 years and we are in the midst of one of those changes right now. It seems to me there are many changes taking place that deal with the things we were talking about earlier and I wonder what this “great emergence” is going to be.
Personally, I am not so happy with what I see from what I shall refer to as the “religious right”. It seems to me there is no room for any religion but one. There is no room even for tolerance of other religions or cultures. I worry that this may bring about a resurgence of the crusades, but of course in some sort of different form. It doesn’t seem that people are becoming wiser with all the knowledge at hand, but are becoming more demanding and less tolerant.
Wow… I’m sorry if I got too carried away and that both you and Rosaria are still speaking to me after this read.
xxxooo Cheryl

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Hi again...
Oddly enough tonight on BBC America the scientist Francis Collins was on to discuss Darwin and Evolution. He is also a believer, an evangelical, who wrote The Language of God. Some information on it is at In the interview he said some of the same things about there being no conflict in his mind between evolution and God. Of course he said them more eloquently than I. I found it amazing & fascinating that he feels this way. He said he became a believer at age 27 and was already a scientist. I hope the BBC puts the interview online. I would love to hear it again.
Evidently Darwin's birthday is the same as Lincoln's.