(Evolution does not necessarily produce really big changes, but that isn’t the same thing as saying it doesn’t happen.)
Anyway,here’s one theory that makes some sense:
But some entities in nature are not material at all: the number 7 comes to mind. Some philosophers have argued that we can construct a theory of items grouped by sevens without using a concept like 7. But whatever advantages these philosophers’ suggestion may offer, it does not represent what people do. We have an immaterial concept of 7 that organizes items and events, instantiated in various media at various times. It is natural without being material in any meaningful way.
Life forms seem to be somehow in between. They are material, but unlike stones, they don’t just exist. They want to exist, and to go on existing. They often seem to have a number of additional, related goals.
If Dr. Shapiro can account for the purposeful way in which life forms strive to sustain their own existence as part of a natural world, it is — as he clearly recognizes — a natural world that is far removed from the Darwinism of the science textbooks, which emphasizes the random nature of these processes.
See also: Talk to the fossils: Let’s see what they say back