Intelligent Design

“Theistic evolution” files: Treading very, very carefully …

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From a Science article by Elizabeth Pain (February 20, 2009):

Szilágyi sees his religious faith and his research efforts as two complementary aspects of his life. Within the scientific environment, “I have some options where I can express my faith,” Szilágyi says. He directly referred to God both in the acknowledgements of his master’s and doctoral dissertations and while receiving his awards. He runs a Bible-study group for young adults, and together with a friend he founded a Christian scientific group.

But although Szilágyi’s views often lie far outside the scientific mainstream, he expresses those views only off-campus and in his personal time. For him, “the debate over evolution, design, creation, supernatural intelligence, etc., is not a scientific question in the first place but the collision of worldviews, the confrontation of materialism and idealism,” he says. He takes the Bible literally, but when he lectures on the subject–outside of work–he presents what he calls “the options” and indicates which one “to me … seems to be more probable.” But he insists that it is up to “everybody to make his or her own decision.”

“As a Christian who works in the field of science, I find it quite important to deal with the relation of Christianity and science,” Szilágyi says. But “I know that it is a minefield in today’s scientific life and can be quite dangerous for one’s scientific career. …

It is sad when talented people must tread so carefully just to keep their jobs. The thing is, in the end, that never works.

“Theistic evolution” is just a way of adjusting to a world run by atheists.

Practical questions like “Does the world show evidence of design” are scientific if the answer appears to be no, but unscientific if it appears to be yes.

Szilágyi probably knows better but has little choice. However, there are any number of Americans who are genuine useful idiots in these matters, as Barry Arrington has pointed out.

15 Replies to ““Theistic evolution” files: Treading very, very carefully …

  1. 1
    tribune7 says:

    “the debate over evolution, design, creation, supernatural intelligence, etc., is not a scientific question in the first place but the collision of worldviews, the confrontation of materialism and idealism,”

    Exactly!!

  2. 2
    Hoki says:

    “Theistic evolution” is just a way of adjusting to a world run by atheists.

    Didn’t Dembski argue in the

    “1 May 2009
    “Life’s Conservation Law: Why Darwinian Evolution Cannot Create Biological Information””

    thread that Darwinian evolution is inherently teleological? Of all the possible mechanisms the designer could have created life on Earth, isn’t theistic evolution one of them?

  3. 3
    Upright BiPed says:

    Tribune7

    “Exactly!!”

    Not at all.

    Lets all gather together and ignore that the assumptions are rigged in every question he proposes. Lets also ignore who’s scientific discipline is in freeform.

    ,

    ery discipline of science are rigged by the assumptions made.

  4. 4
    Upright BiPed says:

    Tribune7

    “Exactly!!”

    Not at all.

    Lets all gather together and ignore that the assumptions are rigged in every question he proposes. Lets also ignore who’s scientific discipline is in freeform.

    ,

    ery discipline of science are rigged by the assumptions made.

  5. 5
    Upright BiPed says:

    wtf?

    not retyping it.

    – – – – – – –

    You can’t throw what we do know and what we don’t know together. The chemists at XYZ Company are not having to make assumptions about the origin of language or meaning.

    Where we must make those assumptions, they can’t be protected from the evidence.

  6. 6
    PaulBurnett says:

    Szilágyi is quoted as saying: “I know that it is a minefield in today’s scientific life and can be quite dangerous for one’s scientific career.”

    Since this claim of persecution has come up, are there any statistics? Or is this just carping by a tiny minority? How many scientists have actually been “persecuted”? 10? 100? 1,000? 10,000? Ten thousand seems an awful lot, and yet is one-tenth of one per cent of the roughly million scientists currently practicing. Are we getting our underdrawers in a twist over an issue that affects less than a tenth of a per cent of the population?

  7. 7
    nullasalus says:

    Ten thousand out of a million would be one percent. Not one tenth of one percent.

    And considering Szilagyi’s claim is one of persecution, could it be that the reason so few are represented – even if that were the case – is due in part to said persecution? Is it alright to discriminate against, say, female mathematicians so long as their proportion is small? Can you make moves to keep that proportion small as well?

  8. 8
    Barry Arrington says:

    PaulBurnett makes an absurd argument in [6]. Even a single instance of repression is too much. And we all know that there have been sufficient instances of repression by the intolerant mandarins of academia to cast a pall over the entire enterprise. People genuinely fear for their jobs for speaking their minds. Paul, is it really such a comfort to you that the jack boots have stomped only on people other than you — so far?

    I will let James Madison have the final word:

    “It is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of citizens and one of the noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. The freemen of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise and entangled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle. We revere this lesson too much … to forget it”

  9. 9
    eintown says:

    “Theistic evolution” is just a way of adjusting to a world run by atheists”

    Loved that part. Reminds me of the Nazi propaganda: “World run by Jews”. I think every hated minority has had the honour of “running” the world.

  10. 10
    Alan Fox says:

    Barry Arrington:

    I will let James Madison have the final word

    At first glance, I thought you meant you were offering Madsen a final word. My mistake!

  11. 11
    Nakashima says:

    Mr Fox,

    Yes, what experiment was done on the liberties of Mr Madsen? Would you care to comment, Mt Arrington?

  12. 12
    Nakashima says:

    I’m sorry my previous comment was off topic.

    WRT Mr Szilágyi, he seems to have organized his life well, and have a bright future. I would be interested to hear more from him in the future.

  13. 13
    Borne says:

    PaulBurnett: A good resource is “Slaughter of the Dissidents”
    It’s far worse than the Darwinian fundamentalist perpetrators want you to believe.

  14. 14
    tgpeeler says:

    How is “theistic evolution” even logically coherent? If “evolution” means “God didn’t do it” and it does, then saying that God did it by not doing it seems self-contradictory to me.

  15. 15
    PaulBurnett says:

    Barry Arrington (#8) opines: “Even a single instance of repression is too much.”

    I recall Velokovskii claimed repression (and a lot of other things). Did he deserve repression, or was that too much?

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