Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Another Blog Post on Evolution and Robots

To be honest I am quite fatigued from the endless bantering within the Christian community regarding the "E" word. The hardcore and exacting conservatives maintaining their literal interpretation of the Genesis count have wore me out, and the more liberal and enlightened faction with their esoteric and at times haughty disdain for anything traditional have equally worn me out with their esoteric apology for evolution's compatibility with scripture. I am just sick of hearing it all, sick of reading post after post on blog after blog, and sick of yet another embarrassing and public contribution to divisive notoriety of the Church.

Everyone has an opinion, including myself. Some lean one way yet have not made up their minds, including myself. Some attempt to remain aloof, including myself.

I am less hesitant to maintain a stolid outlook when robots, in all their finite wisdom, conclude and convince the idea that God himself is yet another creative byproduct of evolution. According to the article linked to above, religion can be explained two ways that are as polarized of opinions as the Creationism and Evolution in the Christian community (pardon the convenience; I am not suggesting all scientists are not Christians). One camp believes that religion is a remaining by-product of an area of the brain that developed for purposes other than religion. The purpose no longer exists, but the byproduct remains. Others view that religion itself was the adaptation itself and was necessary for the benefit of our forefathers.

James Dow, a evolutionary anthropologist, wrote a computer program, which is free for download, to compute whether God could possibly fit as an evolutionary process in and of itself. Dow plugged the idea of proselytizing into the program with the assumption that it is a genetic trait. Under normal circumstances, a desire to communicate the unreal would lead to the doom of a race, but when Dow plugged in an assumption that non-believers would be attracted to the pathological communicants of the imaginary.

I am left wondering whether Dow would view me, a believer, as evolutionary enhancement, or a dysfunctional anomaly? As a believer I cannot accept this theory regardless of where I fall on the spectrum that has Evolution and Creationism as either end. If, according my world view, God and the grace He offers is necessary for the eternal salvation of His creation, men who had not yet evolved to an understanding of His existence were unjustly doomed to perdition.

It's an interesting theory despite the fact that a man was dependent upon his computerized creation to arrive at it. What do you think?

*This post's information was obtained from Religion Is A Product of Evolution, Software Suggests from www.newscientist.com


Monk-in-Training said...

Genesis, is it literal history or metaphor?

Funny what we fight about. It doesn't matter or change things to me, if the story of Adam and Eve was literal or allegorical, the issues are the same, the teachings are the same, and the lessons we can learn from it are the same. In other words both liberals and conservatives can learn from these passages the same things and not quibble over historicity.

For example, when my beloved wife died so young, I was deeply angry at God for her loss, but a couple of years into widowhood, I figured out that bitterness and anger would only make my own life even worse, I am sure many others have discovered the same.

That is when that I believe God spoke to me about the story of the Garden of Eden. While I personally am not a literalist, I do believe the story is true and conveys truth. In this case, the story tells us that "we" humans don't get to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, in other words we don't get to choose what good and evil is. So, what is, is. What is in our control is how we deal with it

I have never considered the first Sin to be sexual in nature, to me it as always been humans trying to pick and choose themselves (without the aid of God) what is good and evil. Therefore I come down quite comfortably on the side that Hubris was the problem.

Being literal or allegorical in nature doesn't change the powerful truth I perceived in the story. For me, that is enough.

Mysterium fìdei

RC said...

That's computer program sounds super bizarre...

why do we think we're so smart?

nate said...

Thanks for the comments!
Contra the computer program, I do not believe God himself evolved, but when it comes to Genesis (portions of it), I believe, along with most scholars, it is a metaphor meant to encourage an enslaved people that they were God's chosen children with a special heritage that rivaled that of the Egyptians and they could thus break free of their bonds.

I really appreciate the personal insight in your comment. And couldn't agree more on your statements regarding truth, good and evil, and the fall.

We do think we are so smart. It all goes back to Terry's description of the fall of man. If you follow the link you can actually download and run the program. But I don't know how to do it...it's source code.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a matrix spin off. Do you think that Dow could get the part as Neo?

On a more serious note. To say any part of the Bible is a metaphor is Dangerous ground. Not b/c it is, or is not, but b/c ones western mentality would question the validity of scripture as a whole.


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