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Darwinism v. common sense: Imagining the puddle …

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The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Recently, ID research tank Biologic Institute picked up on Douglas “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” Adams’ barb:

… imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, ‘This is an interesting world I find myself in – an interesting hole I find myself in – fits me rather neatly, doesn’t it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!’

and riposted,

Well, if a puddle actually woke up and thought anything, it would be entitled to that opinion.

Adams was very much a Darwinist and also said things like

If you try and take a cat apart to see how it works, the first thing you have on your hands is a nonworking cat. Life is a level of complexity that almost lies outside our vision; it is so far beyond anything we have any means of understanding that we just think of it as a different class of object, a different class of matter; ‘life’, something that had a mysterious essence about it, was God given, and that’s the only explanation we had. The bombshell comes in 1859 when Darwin publishes On the Origin of Species. It takes a long time before we really get to grips with this and begin to understand it, because not only does it seem incredible and thoroughly demeaning to us, but it’s yet another shock to our system to discover that not only are we not the centre of the Universe and we’re not made by anything, but we started out as some kind of slime and got to where we are via being a monkey. It just doesn’t read well. – Douglas Adams. The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time. New York: Random House, 2002, 135–136.

Richard Dawkins quoted this in his eulogy for Adams (1952-2001).

And it will wash no more.

The kind of puerile piffle you would anticipate from the author of a tome of that name. It always struck me as twee, in a way that only a nerdy adolescent could dream up. Or an adult with that mindset. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy! Axel

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