When a neurosurgeon and a biologist keep on arguing… we suspect some pretty basic science issues are involved. But also, this topic came up along the way:
Casey Luskin: Yet Jerry Coyne is one of these bloggers who is still regularly writing on evolution. What is your sense about how the Darwin blogosphere has changed over the last couple years?
Michael Egnor: It seems to me that it’s changed quite a bit. A surgical oncologist who published under the pseudonym of Orac, and Steven Novella, who’s a neurologist at Yale, are good examples of how much I think people have changed. Both of them have written in the last year or so much less about Darwinism and Novella has written much less about his materialistic theories of the mind.
I think a major part of it — and Orac has actually been rather candid about this — is that they’ve been in bed with some pretty radical, pretty extreme, some pretty, one might even call it, disreputable metaphysics. At least Orac has implied that he wants to get away from New Atheism. It’s not something he really wants to be closely associated with. Novella hasn’t said that, but you wonder if perhaps that’s part of his motivation as well.
Casey Luskin: Over the last, I would say, two or three years, the frequency of good quality science writing on Evolution News and Views has gone up significantly. You’ve been a big part of that… At the same time, we’ve seen a decline in the amount of high quality science writing from blogs like Panda’s Thumb. Some old voices in the Darwin blogosphere have diminished and some new ones have popped up. Jerry Coyne certainly is one of the ones that has really popped up on his very popular blog.News, “When a neurosurgeon and a biologist keep on arguing…” at Mind Matters News (June 28, 2022)
Is it true? Are the Darwinblogs getting winnowed?
Takehome: Neurosurgeon Michael Egnor mixes it up with evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne about the questions science can — and can’t — answer.
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God’s existence is proven by science Arguments for God’s existence can be demonstrated by the ordinary method of scientific inference. If we approach the arguments logically, as the ancient philosophers did, we will see that it is more certain that God exists than that anything else does. Atheist evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne should consider the arguments more carefully before assuming that prayer is foolish.
Has neuroscience “proved” that the mind is just the brain? This is hardly the first time that bizarre claims have been made for minimal findings. In neuroscience, materialism is the answer only if you don’t understand the questions. Can a study of mice really do that? I challenge materialist neuroscientist Steven Novella to disprove dualism rigorously!