"When people stop believing in God, they don't believe in nothing -- they believe in anything." -- GK Chesterton
In Part 1 of Total Truth, Nancy Pearcey argues that everyone has a worldview whether we realize it or not. As Chesterton states so brilliantly in the quote above, the failure to embrace a biblical worldview does not mean that a Christian lacks a worldview. Instead, it means that they have embraced something other than a biblical worldview.
All worldviews start with an opinion on Creation. A worldview will attempt to answer questions about the origin of life. In analyzing a particular worldview it's helpful to determine how it deals with these questions. More than any other worldview, Darwinism has had the most detrimental effect on our culture.
Ms. Pearcey begins her analysis of Darwinism by documenting the origins of Darwin's theories and examining the scientific evidence that has been used to attempt to prove Darwinism as being true. A careful examination of the facts shows that there is no scientific evidence to support Darwinism.
However, Ms. Pearcey does not simply rely on disproving Darvinism through scientific analysis. It's not sufficient to simply highlight the flaws of evolutionary theory. There must be an alternate explanation of our origin. The answer lies in Intelligent Design.
Proponents of Intelligent Design not only use scientific evidence to prove Darwinism is false but also prove that biological structures are so complex that they cannot have possibly come into existence by chance.
Ironically, one of the common tactics of evolutionists is to argue that Intelligent Design proponents are attempting to inject religion into science when in fact it is Darwinism that resembles a religion since there is no scientific evidence to support evolutionary theory.
But the bigger issue is the wider impact that Darwinism has had beyond what's taught in science class. Acceptance of Darwinism as true is the first step towards adopting a naturalistic worldview and moving away from a biblical worldview. In order to win this debate, according to Ms. Pearcey, it is necessary to see Darwinism as part of a larger naturalistic worldview and not just scientific theory. As she explains:
"...the major impact of Darwinian evolution does not lie in the details of mutation and natural selection, but in something far more significant--a new criterion of what qualifies as objective truth. As one historian explains, Darwinism led to a naturalistic view of knowledge in which "theological dogmas and philosophical absolutes were at worst totally fraudulent and at best merely symbolic of deep human aspirations." Let's unpack that phrase: If Darwinism is true, then both religion and philosophical absolutes (like Goodness, Truth, and Beauty) are strictly false or "fraudulent." We can still hold on to them if we really want to, but only if we are willing to place them in a separate category of concepts that are not genuinely true but "merely symbolic" of human hopes and ideals." (page 154)
The effects of Darwinism are wide-ranging and include (but are not limited to) theology, education and the law. As Ms. Pearcey demonstrates in the balance of this section of the book, the wide acceptance of Darwinism has led to our abandonment of absolute Truth. As a result, values become relative and a matter of indivdual opinion.
How did we get to this point? Why has this happened? Why don't Christians have a stronger worldview tradition? And what do we do to fix this problem? That's the subject of the next part of the book.
Previous entries in this series:
Total Truth - Part 1 - What's In a Worldview?
Blogging Total Truth