Evolution

The Debate on Darwins Theory of Evolution



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It is a favorite argument of Young Earth Creationists in attacking the Theory of
Evolution to pronounce - "Charles Darwin renounced his theory on his death bed"
...Even if it were true that Darwin renounced his theory (there is no evidence that
he did), what of it and so what?

This pathetically weak and flimsy argument used as an attack on the Theory of
Evolution is known as a non sequitur, definitions of which are: 1) An inference or
conclusion that does not follow from the premises or evidence; 2) A statement that
does not follow logically from what preceded it (definitions: Answers.com).

The reason that it is a non sequitur is because the inference that they use infers
that if Darwin renounced his theory on his death bed, then the theory must be
incorrect. Thus, the body of overwhelming evidence, in fact tons and tons of the
stuff must be wrong because on his death bed Darwin said so.

Anyone with a right mind can see that the Creationists that make this statement,
do it illogically ignoring all the preceding evidence from now back to Darwin's day.

The point is that the Darwinian Theory of Evolution would still be correct even if
Darwin never lived, it just wouldn't be called Darwinism. It would of needed
someone else to come along and discover the mechanism of Natural Selection. But
the fact of Natural Selection as the mechanism that directs the evolutionary process
in combination with genetic recombination, is a scientific fact and it would remain
a scientific fact whether Darwin denied it or not.

Darwin was of course unaware of DNA. Charles Darwin's great discovery was Natural
Selection. The awareness of the genetic recombinations which would allow descent
with modifications of species through time was a later discovery...a discovery that
only strengthened Darwin's theory. Evolution itself was not Darwin's discovery.
Evolution had been speculated by many individuals before Darwin, even long before
him. What Darwin did was discover the mechanism that would allow evolution to
run ...Natural Selection.

This anti-Darwinian argument put forward by Creationists is similar to the more
general attack they put forward to attack atheists. They are often heard saying -
"Albert Einstein believed in God" ...as if by some magic of the pronouncement
atheists must be wrong. This anti-atheism argument is no less flimsy than the
anti-Darwinian one.

It should also be noted that Einstein was most definitely not a theist. In terms of
believing in a personal God that performed miracles and had a hand in our daily lives:
Einstein was most definitely atheistic.

Einstein certainly did use the word God when explaining aspects of the Universe.
But his meaning of God was purely as a personification of the laws of nature working
in harmony. He never meant God in scriptural context such as a Jewish, Christian or
Islamic God.

"It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is
being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never
denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called
religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far
as our science can reveal it." (Albert Einstein, 1954).



Source(s):
Albert Einstein Quote: The Human Side, edited by Helen Dukas and Banesh
Hoffman, Princeton University Press

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