Human evolution Intelligent Design

Free first and last chapters of Joshua Swamidass’s new book on Adam and Eve

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The Genealogical Adam and Eve

Readers will doubtless recall Joshua Swamidass as a controversialist in various venues. His new book, The Genealogical Adam and Eve, is free here. under the following conditions:

Join the mailing list to get your copy. This is download is free for private use only. You may not make this file available for public download. You may not share this download with any other person. Instead direct them to this webpage, where they can download a copy for themselves.

If you’ve read them, let us know in the combox what you think.

IVP will be officially releasing the book on December 10.

See also: Nathan Lents Plugs Joshua Swamidass’s Book On Adam And Eve At USA Today

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4 Replies to “Free first and last chapters of Joshua Swamidass’s new book on Adam and Eve

  1. 1
    EricMH says:

    I haven’t read his book, just skimmed the ASA paper the book is based on, and my understanding of his argument is the following:

    Go far enough up the ancestry tree and almost everyone currently living shares almost all of those ancestors. Let’s say one of those ancestor pairs is Adam and Eve, maybe specially created by God. Call this the geneological Adam and Eve (GAE) hypothesis. Therefore, it is impossible to scientifically disprove the GAE hypothesis.

    If I’ve captured it correctly, it does not seem to be a very interesting argument. And, if we are only looking at what is impossible to scientifically disprove, why stop there? Science cannot prove the universe existed one second ago, so it is impossible to scientifically disprove the “God created everything one second ago” hypothesis. And that’s a much bigger hypothesis than the GAE hypothesis.

    What is more interesting is what can science prove? Can science prove the existence of God, of the soul, of forces beyond chance and necessity? ID claims science can do this, and that is monumentally more interesting than these scientifically unprovable arguments.

    Additionally, Gauger’s recent BioC article is much more interesting than the GAE. Her article is not saying ‘science cannot disprove some geneological ancestor for everyone’. Her article is demonstrating the much bolder claim that ‘a single couple solely originated the entire human race’ is compatible with our current data. This actually has scientific traction, vs the ‘you cannot scientifically disprove X’ sort of arguments.

    At the end of the day, scientific respectability is boring, and that is what the GAE hypothesis seems to be all about. What is interesting is actually advancing scientific knowledge. And that is what ID is (or at least should) be all about.

  2. 2

    Thank you for the kind note UD. This is one of those places our goals might align quite closely. You can also find the endorsements here: https://peacefulscience.org/download/endorsements-genealogical-adam-eve/.

    See this endorsement from one the founders of the ID movement:

    “Professor Swamidass first introduced me to his very insightful idea of a genealogical Adam and Eve in a fascinating presentation at the American Scientific Affiliation annual meeting in 2017. His seminal distinction between a genealogical Adam and Eve and a genetic Adam and Eve is a paradigm pregnant with possibilities for reconciling evolutionary genetics with a historical Adam and Eve. It may also provide hermeneutical resources for Genesis 4–5, which gives more than a subtle hint that there were hominoids outside the Garden of Eden who were sufficiently like Adam and Eve genetically that they could breed and be dangerous. I hope that The Genealogical Adam and Eve will stimulate some creative new insights that will provide fertile ground for conversations between people who had
    believed they had irreconcilable differences in the faith and science dialogue.”

    —WALTER L. BRADLEY, PROFESSOR EMERITUS, TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY, AND DISTINGUISHED
    PROFESSOR EMERITUS, BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

  3. 3
    EricMH says:

    The outside of Eden hominoids theory is fascinating, and explored by authors such as CS Lewis and Tolkien.

    One upshot of the outside of Eden hominoids hypothesis is that there could be immortal people living among us without original sin. Additionally, the men from this immortal race would beget immortal children, since the fallen nature is passed on through Adam, according to traditional Christianity. Thus, to remove sin from the world, all we would have to do is for the men descended from Adam through the paternal line to stop procreating, and only allow the immortals to procreate.

    That being said, I don’t see how this sort of idea is compatible with evolutionary theory. It is compatible with ID’s devolutionary theory, however.

  4. 4
    EricMH says:

    One more point, Prof. Swamidass I do not understand how your goal is compatible with the ID goal. The ID goal is not to make religious belief compatible with modern science. The ID goal is to show that modern science can be used to detect intelligent design, especially in the biological record, via the fact that undirected physical processes cannot generate specified complexity. In other words, ID is a critique of modern science, not an accommodation. Groups such as ICR try to portray ID as accommodationist, but that is an inaccurate portrayal. ID is actually truly about the science of the matter, in particular where specified complexity comes from, and deficiencies thereof, which is why it has widespread traction across both religious and non-religious thinkers.

    On the other hand the GAE hypothesis seems to be in the theistic evolution mold of trying to make nice nice with the scientific status quo and not rocking the boat so religious people won’t get picked on by the establishment.

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