Monday, September 14, 2009

Evolution is God's Pink Slip

So says the world's most lovable atheist Richard Dawkins.

From Al Mohler:

The Wall Street Journal may be an unusual venue for theological debate, but this past weekend's edition featured just that -- a theological debate of sorts. The "of sorts" is a necessary qualifier in this instance, because The Wall Street Journal's debate was not, as advertised, a debate between an atheist and a believer. Instead, it was a debate between two different species of atheists.

The paper's "Weekend Journal" section front page for the September 12-13, 2009 edition featured articles by Richard Dawkins and Karen Armstrong set in opposing columns. The paper headlined the feature as "Man vs. God: Two Prominent Thinkers Debate Evolution, Science, and the Role of Religion." Well, the feature at least looked interesting.

Dawkins, after all, is probably the world's most famous atheist. At the same time (and not coincidentally, he would insist) he is also the world's foremost defender of Darwin and evolutionary theory. Karen Armstrong is a popularizer of works on world religion. She takes a basically benign view of religion, arguing that the different religions of the world are avenues toward the same quest for meaning. A former nun, she has written several books on themes and figures related to Islam, and she is a critic of what she terms "fundamentalist" religion. She is a critic of "fundamentalism" on whom the media can depend for comment.

The paper presented the articles by Dawkins and Armstrong in an interesting format. The article by Dawkins is headlined, "Evolution Leaves God with Nothing to Do." Armstrong's essay is headlined, "We Need to Grasp the Wonder of Our Existence."

Predictably, Dawkins begins his article with Charles Darwin and the theory of evolution. Evolution, Dawkins claims, has simply displaced God. "Evolution is the universe's greatest work. Evolution is the creator of life, and life is arguably the most surprising and most beautiful production that the laws of physics have ever generated," he asserts. Quoting a T-shirt, Dawkins insists that evolution "is the greatest show on earth, the only game in town." As for God, evolution just renders deity a useless and vacuous concept. "Where does that leave God?," Dawkins asks. "The kindest thing to say is that it leaves him with nothing to do, and no achievements that might attract our praise, our worship or our fear."

Evolution, he continues (presumably less kindly), "is God's redundancy notice, his pink slip." God, who never existed in the first place, has now been fired.

Read the entire post HERE.

1 comment:

Ryan H. said...

I think Dawkins exaggerates. The process of evolution still leaves God plenty to do. I mean, let's face it, being the author of such an intricate and amazing process, capable of establishing of such an intricate and diverse system of life is, well, pretty amazing.

The only ludicrous idea of Dawkins is that evolution could somehow exist as an entity in itself, as if "evolution" could somehow be a self-authoring process.

Nevermind that if evolution, taken as the "the only game in town," renders the purpose of life in starkly depressing terms. Dawkins may deny that, but if there's no higher deity or source of purpose, much of what we humans bother to do has been entirely pointless. Including Dawkins' own anti-religion crusade.