Daily Archives: May 16, 2009

It Doesn’t Matter

Let’s get metaphysical.

There are two main obstacles in reconciling Darwinian evolution and orthodox Christianity:

1. Darwinian evolution entails that chance plays a central part of our history, as random variations provide the material for selection to cull. So deeply ingrained is the role of chance that the late Stephen Jay Gould was fond of saying that if the tape of life was replayed from the beginning, an entirely different reality would exist, a reality that would not include us. This is simply because we could not count on all the various coincidences and accidents to play out again exactly as they played out in our history.

2. Darwinian evolution entails that death and suffering played a central part of our coming into existence. It is the “struggle for survival”, involving predation and disease, that has been a core part of our evolutionary history.

Orthodox Christianity views human life as an inevitable part of Creation and death/disease as a consequence of the Fall.

How shall we reconcile these?

Continue reading