Making CS Lewis sound more like he is in Darwin’s camp
|August 11, 2013||Posted by News under Christian Darwinism, News|
Most people familiar with C. S. Lewis’s views on evolution know that he attempted to accommodate to a kind of soft Darwinian version earlier in his life, but wised up later, saying in 1951:
September 13, 1951: I have read nearly the whole of Evolution [probably Acworth’s unpublished “The Lie of Evolution”] and am glad you sent it. I must confess it has shaken me: not in my belief in evolution, which was of the vaguest and most intermittent kind, but in my belief that the question was wholly unimportant. I wish I were younger. What inclines me now to think that you may be right in regarding it as the central and radical lie in the whole web of falsehood that now governs our lives is not so much your arguments against it as the fanatical and twisted attitudes of its defenders. The section on Anthropology was especially good. … The point that the whole economy of nature demands simultaneity of at least a v. great many species is a v. sticky one. Thanks: and blessings.
That would seem clear enough.
But just forget it, okay! Let us introduce you instead to CS “Darwin” Lewis, a recent creation of Christians for Darwin Enterprises.
The CS “Darwin” Lewis hologram is in part created through selective quotation. An example is provided in The Magician’s Twin, 2012:
[Asbury philosopher] Michael Peterson quotes Lewis in Mere Christianity as flatly affirming that “Everyone now knows… that man has evolved from lower types of life,” as if Lewis thought no reasonable person could disagree. But this is a case of putting words in Lewis’s mouth through creative editing.
Here is the unedited version of what Lewis actually wrote in Mere Christianity with the words Peterson deleted in bold: “Everyone now knows about Evolution (though, of course, some educated people disbelieve it): everyone has been told) that man has evolved from lower types of life.” (MC, p. 154) (John G. West, “Darwin in the Dock, ” pp. 111–12, quoting Michael L. Peterson, “C.S. Lewis on Evolution and Intelligent Design,” Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 62, no. 4 (December 10): 253–266; p. 264.)
In short, Lewis means everyone knows about “Evolution” the way everyone knows about the multiverse, Moore’s Law, space aliens, relativity theory, global warming, cell phone cancer, Godwin’s law, second hand smoke, and Schroedinger’s cat.
Half or more of all this is nonsense. Which?
It’s hard to make a notable Christian into a serious proponent of Darwinian evolution (the only kind legal to teach). Even harder when it’s Lewis.
But in a pinch, one can always rely on the “NBC News School of Editing” for ideas.