In a popular lecture delivered in Vienna I 1900, the physicist Ludwig Boltzmann, one of the fathers of statistical mechanics and the kinetic theory of gases, declared that the nineteenth century would be remembered as the Century of Darwin, then stated:
In my view all salvation for philosophy may be expected to come from Darwin’s theory. … What then will be the position of the so-called laws of thought in logic? Well, in the light of Darwin’s theory they will be nothing else but inherited habits of thought. … One can call these laws of thought a priori because through many thousands of years of our species’ experience they have become innate to the individual, but it seems to be no more than a logical howler of Kant’s to infer their infallibility in all cases. According to Darwin’s theory this howler is perfectly explicable. Only what is certain has become inheritable; what was incorrect has been dropped. I this way, the laws of thought acquired such a semblance of infallibility that even experience was believed to be answerable to their judgment.
Boltzmann then proceeds to say that theories and deductions are not first true and then, as a consequence, useful, but rather that they were first useful and then, as a consequence, considered true. (Boltzmann, 1904, p. 193 and passim)
– Jerry Fodor and Massimo Piatelli-Palmarini, What Darwin Got Wrong (London: Profile Books, 2010), pp. 164-65.
Fast forward to Francis’ Collins brainchild: BioLogos: Only Darwin can save Christianity.