The “Debate” Over Evolution
There is no real debate over evolution. That the inhabitants of this planet, as well as the planet itself and the entire universe, gradually evolved over billions of years is beyond question. Human beings were obviously a part of this evolutionary process. All organic life forms on this planet have DNA, and the human kinship with all life is beyond question. Darwinism proclaims that life evolved through a process of natural selection in which the “survival of the fittest” played a major role. Undoubtedly this is also true.
However, what Darwin’s theory fails to recognize is the presence of consciousness. It’s really difficult to ignore consciousness as a major factor when any human being chooses a mate; therefore, it is astounding that it would have little place in any theory of how human beings evolved. But consciousness isn’t just present in humans. It is also in varying degrees present the animal world where the presence of feelings analogous to that in humans play a vital role in their lives. All animals also have thought processes in varying degrees although undoubtedly they do not think like humans.
The absence of the recognition of the role of consciousness in the theory of evolution leaves it incomplete and ultimately flawed. The best explanation on the role of consciousness that I have read is in Teilhard de Chardin’s The Phenomenon of Man. Teilhard was a Jesuit father and a noted paleontologist. He believed that a tiny bit of consciousness is a part of all matter but that consciousness on the level we experience within ourselves only comes about when it is highly organized in complex molecules and organic structure such as that in the human brain.
The problem with the “debate” over evolution is that it has become so polarized that no real debate exists at all. Those who want to promote the idea of “intelligent design” are actually only involved in a power play in a futile attempt to force the opposition to believe in God. It is simply a power play and nothing more or they would take a much different and more effective approach. To me, it is blasphemy. Scientists are not atheist. I am a scientist and I believe in a spiritual existence, and so do most of the thousands scientists and engineers I’ve known throughout my professional career. Darwin himself was a very religious man.