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Catholic hierarchy on slippery slope

Once the discussion of biological origins opens up in the way the good Cardinal proposes (see below), it’s over for standard evolutionary theory. To be sure, the distinction between “evolutionism” as philosophy and “evolution” as science is valid and at first blush may seem like a way to keep evolution safe. But this distinction is one that the figureheads of evolution, such as Richard Dawkins, Jerry Coyne, and Francisco Ayala, deliberately muddy to preserve evolution as materialism’s best safeguard.

As this discussion opens up, people are increasingly going to “get it,” and as they do they’ll realize that Darwin’s legacy is the biggest scam in the history of ideas. Right now what keeps the theory afloat is not overwhelming evidence (yes, there are “mountains and mountains of evidence” as Richard Dawkins puts it, but the quality of this evidence in establishing evolution’s grandiose claims is abysmal). Rather, what keeps the theory afloat is strict enforcement of ideological purity.

With Catholic leaders like Cardinal Schönborn taking the lead in opening up the discussion, this scam will become increasingly difficult to perpetuate. Any bets when the Darwinian house of cards will come crashing down? I’m not talking about nobody believing it anymore. Rather, I’m talking about people not having any longer to show undue deference to it — a new age when they can ridicule it openly, and its defenders must actually defend the theory rather than merely sneer at those who disbelieve it.

Cardinal Schönborn Proposes Evolution Debate
Calls for More Science, Less Ideology
Date: 2006-08-25, Code: ZE06082508

http://www.zenit.org/english/visualizza.phtml?sid=93781

RIMINI, Italy, AUG. 25, 2006 (Zenit.org).- Cardinal Christoph Schönborn is
proposing an ideology-free debate on the theory of evolution, and wants to
clarify the Church’s position on the topic.

The archbishop of Vienna presented his proposal Thursday to a packed
auditorium at the Meeting of Friendship Among Peoples, organized by the
Communion and Liberation Movement in Rimini, Italy.

At a press conference Wednesday, the cardinal, explained that the Church
does not hold the position of “creationist” theories on the origin of life
and man, which draw scientific consequences from biblical texts.

In fact, he added, there is “no conflict between science and religion,” but,
rather, a debate “between a materialist interpretation of the results of
science and a metaphysical philosophical interpretation.”

Cardinal Schönborn, who sparked a worldwide debate in 2005 with an article
in the New York Times on the subject, called for clarification of the
difference between the “theory of evolution” and “evolutionism,” the latter
understood as an ideology, based on scientific theory.

By way of example, the cardinal mentioned Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels,
who saw in the publication of Charles Darwin’s “The Origin of Species,” “the
scientific foundation for their Marxist materialist theory. This is
evolutionism, not theory of evolution.”

The archbishop of Vienna warned against the application of this evolutionist
ideology in fields such as economic neo-liberalism, or bioethical issues,
where there is the risk of creating new eugenic theories.

More than a theory

Journalists asked the cardinal what Pope John Paul II meant in his address
to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, in Oct. 1996, when he spoke of
evolution as “something more than a theory.”

Cardinal Schönborn explained that the phrase meant that “the theory, as
scientific theory, has been expanded with new scientific data, but of course
that phrase cannot be interpreted as an ‘Amen’ of the Catholic Church to
ideological evolutionism.”

The archbishop of Vienna noted a document published by the International
Theological Commission in 2004, with the approval of Cardinal Joseph
Ratzinger, entitled “Communion and Service: The Human Person Created in the
Image of God.”

He said the paper clarifies the distinction between ideology and science,
and “gives an answer to those who wished to interpret John Paul II’s phrase
in an ideological sense.”

“What I desire intensely is that, also in school programs, questions be
explained, at the scientific level, opened by the theory of evolution, such
as the famous question of the missing rings [sic; he most likely meant
"links"],” Cardinal Schönborn said.

The cardinal said that 150 years after Darwin’s theory, “there is no
evidence in the geological strata of intermediate species that should exist,
according to Darwin’s theory.”

He continued: “He himself said in his book that this is a hole in his theory
and asked that they be found.

“This should be discussed in a serene manner. If a theory is scientific and
not ideological, then it can be discussed freely.”

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10 Responses to Catholic hierarchy on slippery slope

  1. “Rather, I’m talking about people not having any longer to show undue deference for the theory — a new age when they can ridicule it openly, and its defenders must actually defend the theory rather than merely sneering at those who disbelieve it.”

    hmm. I can relate to that. I remember I got into a discussion with a evolutionist and instead of giving me evidence, he just called me names, siad I was wrong, and wouildn’t let me get a word in

  2. Unfortunately for the good cardinal, the whole lingo of something’s being “just a theory” or “more than a theory” has been undermined by the past century of philosophy of science. But I don’t suppose it matters.

    That aside, I do think the cardinal is to be commended for distinguishing between science and metaphysics. This is partly because of the tension between what Wilfrid Sellars called “the scientific image” and “the manifest image.” The scientific image tells us what the world is like from a purely third-person perspective — Thom Nagel calls “the View from Nowhere.”

    But the manifest image tells us what we’re like, what the world looks like to us, from our perspective. And although there are many attempts to express the manifest image — in art, literature, music, etc. — it falls to metaphysics to present the manifest image in strictly conceptual (as distinct from metaphorical) terms.

    (From this it does not follow that the manifest image is less real than the scientific, since the manifest could have a different kind of reality — e.g. one that is best understood through phenomenology. And in fact there has been a weird and interesting fusion of phenomenology and theology in recent decades. Very exciting times for post-metaphysical theology!)

  3. Good ol’ Cardinal. You tell ‘em, Chris!

  4. I am still struggling through Emile Zuckerkandl’s polemic. He is definitely one who strongly believes you either irrationally beileve in God or you live in the real world and are atheist.

    “evolution is a necessary condition for being” “nonevolved beings are intrinsically impossible” .. “a truth too fundamental”

    Emile will be useful ally in the next Dover case to show that “the contrived dualism” that Judge Jones decried, that it is either atheistic naturalism, “or” Intelligent Design of some sort, is not in fact contrived.

  5. 5

    I have been openly ridiculing Darwinism for years. If my many sources hadn’t been such perfect gentlemen it would have died long ago. It should have died twelve years after its inception when Mivart asked the question – How can natural selection be involved with a structure which has not yet appeared? With typical Darwinian denial his question has never even been acknowledged let alone answered. That date by the way, 1871, is very close to the time when another myth died, the Ether of Physics. They both should have died for exactly the same reason, the abysmal failure to survive experimental verification.

    It is hard to believe isn’t it?

    “A past evolution is undeniable, a present evolution undemonstrable.”
    John A. Davison

  6. Let’s remember what Schonborn also said when he clarified his original NY Times editorial:

    “….Darwin undoubtedly scored a brilliant coup, and it remains a great oeuvre [work] in the history of ideas. With an astounding gift for observation, enormous diligence, and mental prowess, he succeeded in producing one of that history’s most influential works. He could already see in advance that his research would create many areas of endeavor. Today one can truly say that the ‘evolution’ paradigm has become, so to speak, a ‘master key,’ extending itself within many fields of knowledge….I see no difficulty in joining belief in the Creator with the theory of evolution, but under the prerequisite that the borders of scientific theory are maintained. In the citations given above [he cites Julian Huxley, Will Provine, Peter Atkins], it is unequivocally the case that such have been violated. When science adheres to its own method, it cannot come into conflict with faith. But perhaps one finds it difficult to stay within one’s territory, for we are, after all, not simply scientists but also human beings, with feelings, who struggle with faith, human beings, who seek the meaning of life. And thus as natural scientists we are constantly and inevitably bringing in questions reflecting worldviews….I am thankful for the immense work of the natural sciences. Their furthering of our knowledge boggles the mind. They do not restrict faith in the creation; they strengthen me in my belief in the Creator and in how wisely and wonderfully He has made all things.” (First Catechetical Lecture, October 2005)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardinal_Schonborn

    There is also no doubt the Catholic Church won’t relinquish her belief in God the Intelligent Designer easily, so the point about philosophical materialism stands. :-)

    From the article quoting Schonborn:

    “…such as the famous question of the missing rings…”

    I’m sorry, the rings have been found, they are no longer missing. They’ve been documented them in movies.

    http://www.LordOfTheRings.net/

    Phil P

  7. “between a materialist interpretation of the results of science and a metaphysical philosophical interpretation.”

    And that’s the positions held by evolutionists that they don’t want exposed.

  8. If a theory is scientific and not ideological, then it can be discussed freely.

    Evolutionism can be discussed freely as long as the discussion is not about its failure.

  9. 9

    Evolutionism is not a failure. Neither is evolution. Without evolution Joseph, you wouldn’t even be here.

    A past evolution is undeniable, a present evolution undemonstrable.”
    Joh A. Davison

  10. “Without evolution Joseph, you wouldn’t even be here.”

    Hmmm… that statement sounds so familiar. Oh yeah… Without God, you wouldn’t even be here.

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