Thursday, January 31, 2008
Evolutionary Evangelists Praise Creation Museum
Michael Dowd and his wife Connie Barlow are self-described "evolutionary evangelists." Dowd, a former evangelical creationist turned UCC minister, and Barlow, an author of several books on evolution, visited the Creation Museum -- and came away praising it for telling a meaningful story that has a place for us. The average natural history museum, they note, does not tell a story.
I believe that is the main point at issue. Evolution as a scientific theory can't offer a narrative of why existence -- our existence -- is meaningful. Evolution can show change over time, and even adaptations that helped survival in particular environments. But science can't say why that matters, or if all this change is going somewhere. 19th century moralists married evolution to the quite different theory of progress, with ethically suspect results. Scientific evolutionists today stay away from making ethical claims about evolution, one way or another.
But we still need a meaningful story to understand the world with. This is why most people, if forced to choose between a meaningful creation and a meaningless evolution, will stick with creation.
Dowd and Barlow say we don't have to choose. I agree.
Dowd and Barlow are extolling a middle way that reconciles Christianity with evolutionary views.