Author Topic: What if Theistic Evolution were true?  (Read 3838 times)

Offline Daniel

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #30 on: October 14, 2018, 06:53:09 AM »
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But let's have some honesty from the other side too shall we.  What this is really about is whether evidence or authority is to be preferred in making conclusions and inferences.

Sacred Scripture and conclusions based on its exegesis are evidence, which you dismiss because you put greater weight on what scientists say.
But you'd think that true evidence could not contradict true evidence. So if sacred scripture and natural science are both true, then the exegesis must be false and theistic evolution must be true. Otherwise either sacred scripture is false or natural science is false... but who can say which is false? If we go that route it's easier just to reject sacred scripture as not-inspired (and then I suppose you'd need to appeal to deism to fill in the gaps with atheistic evolution theory).
 

Offline Daniel

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #31 on: October 14, 2018, 06:59:43 AM »
Question... does the theory of seminal reasons count as a kind of theistic evolution? Because it's not really "evolution" in the strict sense, but I am currently of the opinion that that theory seems the most probable. It can perhaps even be reconciled with some of the exegesis.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 07:03:12 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline Arvinger

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #32 on: October 14, 2018, 01:17:17 PM »
But you'd think that true evidence could not contradict true evidence.

That is begging the question whether current scientific dogmas (like evolution) are true. There are not only theological, but scientific problems with evolution.

Quote from: Daniel
So if sacred scripture and natural science are both true, then the exegesis must be false and theistic evolution must be true.

How about scientists being wrong in their interpretation of data? If I have a choice between fallible, but well argued exegetical arguments presented over 2000 of Catholic tradition, and fallible conclusions of atheistic scientists who hold naturalistic presuppositions and rule out a priori, on the basis of their worldview, a possibility of supernatural events (as a result, no evidence could convince many of them that supernatural realm exists), why should I go with the latter?

Also, how far do you want to take it? A scientist would say that it is impossible to walk on water, but Sacred Scripture recorded that Our Lord did that. Does that mean we need to interpret Mark 6:45-53 and Matthew 14:22-34 in allegorical way in order to avoid clash with science? Surely not.

Quote from: Daniel
Otherwise either sacred scripture is false or natural science is false... but who can say which is false?

If a certain interpretation of Scripture is established beyond reasonable doubt by the means of exegesis and scienctific claims contradict it, it is a solid evidence that the scientific claims are wrong.
 
Quote from: Daniel
If we go that route it's easier just to reject sacred scripture as not-inspired (and then I suppose you'd need to appeal to deism to fill in the gaps with atheistic evolution theory).

Non sequitur.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 01:30:37 PM by Arvinger »
 
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Offline Quaremerepulisti

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #33 on: October 14, 2018, 05:47:36 PM »
Sacred Scripture and conclusions based on its exegesis are evidence, which you dismiss because you put greater weight on what scientists say.

Just so we're clear.  Because I think we have a drastically different way of understanding the issue, and until and unless this is resolved our discussion will lead nowhere.

According to you, exegesis need not take into account empirical data nor need it be consistent with empirical data.  If anyone claims a certain exegesis is wrong because it doesn't accord with empirical data (data not perhaps available when the exegesis was constructed, but available today), his arguments are to be dismissed out of hand unless he can present strictly exegetical arguments, and his claim of disaccord with empirical data is to be rejected out of hand as mere "interpretation" and putting greater weight on what others say.

According to me, exegesis must take into account empirical data and must be consistent with empirical data.  If it does not, and if that exegesis is followed, the claim of Scripture as Divine revelation is not credible, every bit as much as if we had sworn testimony from hundreds of witnesses present at the wedding at Cana who claimed the wine actually did run out and there was no more to be had, and Catholicism demands that the claim of Divine revelation be credible.

Ancillary issues are:

If you admit the possibility of an old earth, then this entails some sort of progressive creationism or theistic evolution (although not necessarily evolution by means of "random" mutation, but programmed evolution as ID theorists have it), or (as I think) some combination of the two.

And old-earthers have made plenty of exegetical arguments.  You can go to the biologos website for examples.

 

Offline james03

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #34 on: October 14, 2018, 08:23:13 PM »
Progressive creationism works for me.  When it comes time for Adam and Eve, that's another act of God.  So for the OP question, it has no impact.

I don't know what theistic evolution is.  Is the term "evolution" maintained just for rhetorical effect?  If "random mutation" is involved, then I would say the effect of discovering theistic evolution would be that we would have to rethink statistics and information science.
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Offline james03

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #35 on: October 15, 2018, 04:24:04 PM »
Q.,

I think for those interested in following the science, we have to agree on things or obviously no progress is made:

1.  Classical evolution is dead.  When you have to rely on aliens providing DNA (and I have to assume concomitant proteins, about 100) , then you have admitted God.  Sure the old evolutionary biologists and bio chemists will remain, but the future lies with nano mechanics, crtyography and its offspring information theory in mathematics.

2.  For this reason the term "evolution" serves no purpose, whether Darwinian Evolution or Theistic Evolution.  The term you used, "Progressive Creationism" seems very appropriate.

3.  If we look at bio-nanomechanics, statistics, and information theory (Shannon/Jaynes), only Progressive Creationism fits the theory and observations. The other theories actually run counter to the evidence.  Even "space aliens" just moves the problem.

4.  As far as myself, I would have to say I'm an old Earth Progressive Creationist.  Due to the rampant unethical scientific practices seen with Globull Warming, I'll keep an open mind however.

5.  Creationists and Intelligent Design proponents have advanced science.  That is obvious.  Evolution was a blind alley.

Thanks for the biologos link, I'll check it out.
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Offline james03

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #36 on: October 15, 2018, 04:33:11 PM »
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theistic evolution (although not necessarily evolution by means of "random" mutation, but programmed evolution as ID theorists have it)

Missed this.  Ironically this runs into the same problem as "the seed" from medieval science, that is every human being was once contained in one "seed".  The idea that there was an "evolutionary plan" encoded in the DNA of some primitive cell containing ALL of the evolutionary pathways is a pathetic attempt to save the term "evolution".  I think this is done by scientists who want to maintain their standing in academia.

"Progressive Creationism" is the appropriate term.  If you go so far as to admit "a god" programming an evolutionary plan inside of primitive DNA, the obvious question is raised: "why would you limit "its" acts to the origin of life?  What is your basis for that when the information bandwidth of primitive DNA can't possibly contain the information you propose?
"But he that doth not believe, is already judged: because he believeth not in the name of the only begotten Son of God (Jn 3:18)."

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Offline sedmohradsko

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #37 on: October 18, 2018, 05:31:31 PM »
Progressive creationism works for me.  When it comes time for Adam and Eve, that's another act of God.  So for the OP question, it has no impact.

I don't know what theistic evolution is.  Is the term "evolution" maintained just for rhetorical effect?  If "random mutation" is involved, then I would say the effect of discovering theistic evolution would be that we would have to rethink statistics and information science.

I think of theistic evolution as God starting off a chain of dominoes.  The mutations are technically random, even though God set up all the dominoes, but I think, I sense, that it pleases God to set things in motion and watch how they go from that point.
 

Offline Daniel

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #38 on: October 18, 2018, 06:09:28 PM »
Without denying the real existence of universal forms, how is evolution even a possibility?

e.g. We observe that cats don't have wings. But evolution says that some day cats might have wings. But as we know, the cat nature is eternal and immutable. So how is it that cats (as a species) can be wingless now but be winged later?

Perhaps we could say that the cat nature, in fact, is not wingless. Hypothesis: The form of cat has wings, even as we speak. It's always had wings, and it always will have wings. The only reason that we don't observe any winged cats is because all the cats that we've ever come across are imperfect instantiations, lacking the wings that they're supposed to have according to their nature. But some day perhaps cats will be perfect, and then they'll have wings, and then all members of the species will resemble its form.
I think this hypothesis could work, though if we are to accept it then we'd need to throw away empiricism and just admit that nobody really knows what a cat is (or, if we do know what a cat is, our knowledge comes through some means other than by observing cats).
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 06:16:10 PM by Daniel »
 

Offline Quaremerepulisti

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #39 on: October 18, 2018, 07:12:25 PM »
Without denying the real existence of universal forms, how is evolution even a possibility?

Because what changes in time aren't the forms themselves, but which particular forms are instantiated.

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e.g. We observe that cats don't have wings. But evolution says that some day cats might have wings. But as we know, the cat nature is eternal and immutable. So how is it that cats (as a species) can be wingless now but be winged later?

Not necessarily; evolution says that cats might evolve wings, or might evolve into a different species that does have wings.

 

Offline sedmohradsko

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #40 on: October 18, 2018, 07:12:49 PM »
Without denying the real existence of universal forms, how is evolution even a possibility?

e.g. We observe that cats don't have wings. But evolution says that some day cats might have wings. But as we know, the cat nature is eternal and immutable. So how is it that cats (as a species) can be wingless now but be winged later?

Perhaps we could say that the cat nature, in fact, is not wingless. Hypothesis: The form of cat has wings, even as we speak. It's always had wings, and it always will have wings. The only reason that we don't observe any winged cats is because all the cats that we've ever come across are imperfect instantiations, lacking the wings that they're supposed to have according to their nature. But some day perhaps cats will be perfect, and then they'll have wings, and then all members of the species will resemble its form.
I think this hypothesis could work, though if we are to accept it then we'd need to throw away empiricism and just admit that nobody really knows what a cat is (or, if we do know what a cat is, our knowledge comes through some means other than by observing cats).

Why do whales have vestigial hind legs?  Why do they still have finger bones in their flippers?  What is the true form of the whales, since their soft flesh no longer perfectly represents the form of their skeletons?
 

Offline Daniel

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #41 on: October 19, 2018, 07:27:35 AM »
Without denying the real existence of universal forms, how is evolution even a possibility?

Because what changes in time aren't the forms themselves, but which particular forms are instantiated.

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e.g. We observe that cats don't have wings. But evolution says that some day cats might have wings. But as we know, the cat nature is eternal and immutable. So how is it that cats (as a species) can be wingless now but be winged later?

Not necessarily; evolution says that cats might evolve wings, or might evolve into a different species that does have wings.


So suppose millions of years go by, and branched evolution occurs, such that some cats then have wings while other cats end up with fins. What you're saying is that neither the winged cat nor the finned cat are "cats" in the true sense of the word? You're saying that there are three distinct forms: the cat form, the winged catlike form, and the finned catlike form. Prior to evolution there are plenty of instantiations of cat, but no instantiations of either of the other two forms. But after evolution there are no instantiations of cat yet many instantiations of the other two forms. But we'd say that the two catlike species "evolved" from the cat insofar as you could theoretically take any winged catlike creature (or any finned catlike creature) and trace its ancestry back through time and eventually arrive at a true cat?

Ok, I guess that seems plausible.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 07:29:27 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #42 on: October 19, 2018, 03:00:26 PM »
Fruit bats have cranial and facial features that are very much like those of rodents or canines (in fact, their nickname is "flying foxes).  But we don't actually consider bats to be rodents (or foxes) with wings.  They all likely diverged from a much earlier shrew-like mammal.



It's theoretically possible that a small species of feline such as the cat could develop wings in the same way as bats and birds, with its two forelimbs growing longer and accommodating a progressively larger stretch of skin from the underarm and side of the torso, similar at first to what flying squirrels have evolved, and then having the paw bones spread out like a bat's.  The bones of a bat's wing are the bones of what were once a limb and a paw.  But first these cats would have to take to the trees and make most of their living there, in order for wings to be advantageous in the first place.

If it retained the face of a cat, though, would it still be a cat?  Do humans have ten fingers, four limbs, one head, and binary genitalia?  Or are the limbless, the polydactylous, siamese twins, and hermaphrodites non-human?
 

Offline james03

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #43 on: October 23, 2018, 10:27:54 PM »
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It's theoretically possible that a small species of feline such as the cat could develop wings in the same way as bats and birds, with its two forelimbs growing longer and accommodating a progressively larger stretch of skin from the underarm and side of the torso, similar at first to what flying squirrels have evolved, and then having the paw bones spread out like a bat's.

Problems:

1.  Define the competitive advantage along the path up to the "not yet flying" cat thing.  So this cat has to run around with 2 less paws and huge sails making noise and slowing it down, and yet not fly.  Good luck with that.

2.  Define how you will greatly expand the DNA length to accommodate the new genes.  By Shannon Entropy the bandwidth per information must stay the same at best, but most likely increase, i.e. I have to inject a bunch of new DNA in order to mutate it.  The new DNA consumes resources for zero return and is not predicted by natural selection.  This new DNA must also correspond with both the egg and the sperm so I can actually reproduce the thing.

3.  Calculate the odds for randomly generating all of the new proteins required for wings, as well as the regulatory systems and brain changes.  If you had a mutation every second the universe existed, the odds would say it won't happen.

Evolution is BS.
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Offline Xavier

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Re: What if Theistic Evolution were true?
« Reply #44 on: October 24, 2018, 10:12:30 AM »
Here are two excellent articles showing just how solid and nigh irrefutable is the theological - i.e. Biblical, patristic, mystical and Magisterial - evidence for special creation as against theistic evolution. http://kolbecenter.org/adam-and-eve-writings-mystical-saints-doctors-church/ the burden of proof is on professing Catholic evolutionists to show that their opinion can easily be harmonized with this clearly dogmatic Tradition.

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God did not, as some people think, just give Paradise to our ancestors at the beginning, nor did He make only Paradise incorruptible. No! Instead, He did much more. Before Paradise He made the whole earth, the one we inhabit, and everything in it. Nor that alone, but He also in five days brought the heavens and all they contain into being. On the sixth day He made Adam and established him as lord and king of all visible creation. Neither Eve nor Paradise were yet created, but the whole world had been brought into being by God as one thing, as a kind of Paradise, at once incorruptible yet material and perceptible.[7]

According to St. Symeon, the original harmony and incorruptibility of the first created world was destroyed by the Original Sin of Adam which brought death and corruption into the whole universe:

It was . . . altogether fitting that Adam, who had been brought down to corruption and death by his own transgression, should inhabit an earth become in like manner transitory and mortal[8] . . . [But God] wills that creation serve [fallen] man for whom it was made, and like him become corruptible, so that when again man is renewed and becomes spiritual, incorruptible, and immortal, then creation, too, now subjected to the rebel by God’s command and made his slave, will be freed from its slavery and, together with man, be made new, and become incorruptible and wholly spiritual.[9]

Several other saints of the Byzantine tradition added their eyewitness testimony to the testimony of St. Symeon.

http://www.theotokos.org.uk/pages/creation/cbutel/humanevo.html

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Pius IX. The year after the publication of Darwin’s evolution thesis, the Provincial Council of Cologne issued the following canon, which was approved by Pope Pius IX:

“Our first parents were immediately created by God (Gen.2.7). Therefore we declare as quite contrary to Holy Scripture and the Faith the opinion of those who dare to assert that man, in respect of the body, is derived by spontaneous transformation from an imperfect nature, which improved continually until it reached the present human state.” [10]

Pius IX also approved the following teaching of the first Vatican Council :

“This sole true God by His goodness and omnipotent power, not to increase His own beatitude, and not to add to, but to manifest His perfection by the blessings which He bestows upon creatures with most free volition, immediately from the beginning of time fashioned each creature, out of nothing, spiritual and corporeal, namely the angelic and the mundane; and then the human creation, common as it were, composed of both spirit and body.” [11]
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