It’s a good question whether Woese would have recognized the Archaea for what they were, had he not been in the habit of thinking for himself. Maybe he would have just been satisfied to shoehorn them into the conventional scheme somewhere.
Egnor: Heck, if I were a mere vehicle for selfish genes evolved wholly by natural selection, I would love mass death, as long as my own genes weren’t deleted. Coronavirus is efficient — natural selection on an industrial scale. Those of us who are alive are the winners.
According to Michael Egnor, responding to Jerry Coyne, arguments for God’s existence can be demonstrated by the ordinary method of
There are so many awkward questions that the propaganda keeps people from asking.
Lindberg: “It is little wonder, given this kind of scholarly backing, that the ignorance and degradation of the Middle Ages has become an article of faith among the general public, achieving the status of invulnerability merely by virtue of endless repetition.”
And Bimbette Fluffarelli, talk show hostess, learned it sixteenth-hand at school…
The troubling part is that many sources won’t talk about this stuff because it is “religious” but they don’t mind parroting some flapdoodle from a village atheist, of whom it might be said that to call him merely ill-informed would be to shower him with unearned praise.
It started when diehard Darwinian Jerry Coyne made fun of U.S. Veep Mike Pence and colleagues praying about the coronavirus epidemic…
For example, Günter Bechly: “Altogether, I suggest that the cumulative evidence against materialism and for theism is simply overwhelming. I became a Christian theist not in spite of being a scientist but because of it.”
Michael Denton in interview: He goes on, “As for your hint that you can only be an intelligent design [proponent] if you have some a priori theological or religious view, I disagree with that entirely because it doesn’t apply to me. Most of my life I have been pretty agnostic and would only describe myself perhaps as a backsliding Christian, though I’m not in any sense a fervent believer in a God, or the Christian God.”
A friend writes to comment on Atkins’s “smarmy condescension.” Indeed. In an age when serious scientists wonder whether the universe itself is conscious—because they cannot otherwise account for intelligence in nature— it’s not clear what smarmy condescension would achieve.
Rebecca McLaughlin: To Dawkins’s credit, he comes dangerously close to acknowledging that religious belief is correlated with better moral outcomes—though he would like to think humans are better than that (117). He finds it rather patronizing to say, “Of course you and I are too intelligent to believe in God, but we think it would be a good idea if other people did!” (122).
If Alpert’s speculation pans out, naturalism could end up with a religion where God is an unprincipled Narcissist. Cool.
Oxford mathematician John Lennox offers some thoughts, speaking as a guest of the Claremont Center for Reason, Religion, and Public Affairs
As it happens, the loss of theism puts science in an impossible position. A traditional monotheist (and probably most deists) would assume that God creates according to logic and reason and that the scientist can indeed find out the truth by “thinking God’s thoughts after him.” But otherwise, why? Loss of the theistic perspective leads directly to the current demands that science credentials and acknowledgements be apportioned on the basis of fairness as if they were public goods of some kind.
If you believe that we evolved randomly and that the world has always been governed by Darwinian survival after that, you would only give if you felt like it. The “giving gene”? The “evolutionary psychology of giving?” Sure. That’ll work.