Evolution Is Natural Theology

Plato from “The School of Athens”, Rafael, 1509-1511

The modern natural theology conceives the history of nature as an impersonal mechanism of natural laws that guide the evolution of species with no apparent purpose. It transposes the design quality of the Creator to the logical mechanism of natural selection responsible for the origin, the diversity, and the adaptation of organisms on the face of the Earth. Darwinian evolution in its modern synthesis ascribes to chance a creative power – the power to create information aided by the passage of aeons in the mutation of the biological gene in its natural adaptation to the constraints of its environment, it is the miracle of a self-ordering chaos that necessitates no Divine Agency in its capacity to create novel forms that finally generates the cell, seed of the organism and remarkable source of life that coordinates the biochemical activities of organisms. There is a certain inhumanity in the postulate that recognizes no design nor plan in the evolution of the species, of the cell to the formation of the organism, a form in which the multiplicity and the diversity of cellular activity coordinates to form the life of the organism. The position that species are the product of an impersonal mechanism, namely, natural selection, acting on population of organisms whose evolution ultimately depends on chance, that is, on the novel information that is the creation of biological mutation rings the defeat of all considerations of humanism, of that continued presence of the belief in the special place of human nature within the cosmic hierarchy of the universe, a visible sign of a Divine election that perdures in the human creature, the imago dei. The modern natural theology forms an anthropology that in its theory appears to deprive history of its purpose, encountered in the fact of man, of his genius and his art, of his life and his poetry, of his history and his culture – In its essence, Darwinian evolution definitely displaces history from its final purpose in its direction towards the formation of Civilization, Humanity, and Peace. Humanism! This is the cultural element found under threat by the naturalist creed, the new conception of history, attempts to deprive it from the purpose that animates its direction.

In the final analysis, the theory of Darwinian evolution necessitates the contributions of a fresh humanism, of an ecology of man that recognizes the goodness of the human nature and that sees in history a transcendent purpose evident in the culture of the human spirit. Still, the problem posed by the modern natural theology is the question of whether history, which is a tradition of free spiritual choices, can be guided by an impersonal mechanism that does not owe its origin to any rational principle that would be its justification and the foundation of its agency. A matter, indeed, to be concluded only when evolution recognizes its philosophy as a modern natural theology, that is, a fiction that replaces historical theology with a theology that attempts to have a naturalist basis.

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