I had written a post attributing the disintegration of the black family in American to liberal social policies. bachfiend replied (in part):
...Being able to tell stories, putting together series of events together in sequence, allows us to make sense of situations without actually understanding them...
Isn't that what Darwin's theory does?:
It certainly does, if your comprehension of evolutionary biology is still stuck with Darwin's 1859 theory of natural selection. You're just making a straw man argument.The modern synthesis is an elaboration on Darwin's basic idea of RM + NS as an explanation for adaptations. If you're willing to admit that the ground of modern evolutionary theory is story-telling, I'd certainly agree.
Your naive belief in intelligent design is equally silly. ID is just a story too, one for which there isn't the shred of any evidence.ID posits that intelligent agency is potentially discernable in biology. So does Darwinism, although Darwinists go through contortions to deny it. ID and Darwinism are merely two opposite answers to the same question: is there intelligent design in biology? Both are stories, in the sense that they are post-hoc inferences about fundamental causes.
There is nothing wrong with stories as historical science, as long as wildly inappropriate claims are not made for their value to science. The claim that 'nothing in biology makes sense except in light of evolution' is not true, just as 'nothing in biology makes sense except in light of intelligent design' isn't true either. Most biologists do their work just fine without meaningful explicit inference to either hypothesis. Many of the fundamental questions about teleology in biology are philosophical questions more than practical scientific question.
We could discuss the evidence (logical and empirical) for and against intelligent design, but the wild assertions of evolutionary biologists that Darwinism is 'proven' or that biology cannot progress without the materialistic implications of Darwinism are nuts.
In a previous thread, you'd argued that morality had been implanted into all humans by God, and was therefore proof of God's existence,Morality isn't "proof" of God's existence. God isn't one thing among others whose existence can be probed empirically. God isn't a scientific hypothesis. He is a Person, and his existence can be experienced.
Theologians have demonstrated (e.g. Aquinas' Five Ways) that the Prime Mover/First Cause etc can be logically deduced. The connection between logical demonstrations of that sort and the triune God of the New Testament is a matter of revelation and personal encounter with Him.
My argument against evolutionary psychology's explanations for morality is (in part) that denial of God's existence pretty much excludes the objective existence of moral law. Your argument is, then, that murder isn't really wrong, in any objective way. It is merely maladaptive, and thereby we perceive it as 'wrong'.
My goal is to make you state clearly the logical implications of your theory, and people can judge for themselves whether the theory makes sense.
The theory that murder/rape/theft aren't objectively wrong, but merely maladaptive, is a view that most people find implausible.
And your evolutionary theory of morality poses enormous problems for the criminal justice system. You can justify punishment for willful disobediance of objective moral law. But how can you justify punishment for (errant) evolutionary adaptation?
And if you claim that punishment is really control of maladapted humans, rather than punishment of a person with free will who violates an objective moral law, your view gets even uglier, because you reduce people who commit crimes to the level of defective animals, who need to be 'controlled' and 'conditioned', rather than dealt with as persons with transcendent value and responsibilities.
Darwinism is a universal acid. Do you really want that acid in our criminal justice system and in our Bill of Rights?
...deriding my claim that evolutionary psychology's theory that morality is naturally selected for in human social groups as being just a 'story'.Stories are fine, as long as one understands their limitations (and strengths). I believe that the story that God created us to be moral is a quite plausible story. I believe that the story that morality is a subjective evolutionary adaptation is a stupid story.
I try to get you to explain it in detail, and own up to its logical implications, so people can see just how stupid it is.
Divinely implanted morality is just as much a story, and one that isn't particularly plausible, because it isn't particularly well embedded in most people.The moral law is deeply imbedded in virtually all people. Even murderers usually make up a moral justification for their act-- 'he had it coming', 'she resisted me', 'I was mistreated by my father', etc.
Moral law is so deeply imbedded in man that the failure to recognize it, even on rare occassions, is a diagnosable illness-- psychopathic personality disorder. The moral law is so pervasive that failure to experience it is a disease.
Of course, none of us obey it without exception, but we all feel its weight, especially when we don't obey it.
Michael Jones, in his book 'Leningrad', detailing the 872 day siege of Leningrad during WWII, gives lots of cases where the atheist Russians acted with extreme morality and empathy, and the theistic Germans acted with extreme inhuman brutality.Of course many atheists acted, and act today, with extreme morality and empathy. While atheism provides no ground for objective morality whatsoever, most atheists are basically moral people. Morality is written in our hearts, and integrity and decency are not the domain of any one faith. We act (often) in accordance with moral law because we are human, and that is how we are created.
Christianity provides an explanation for our morality (and our immorality), and provides us with some very Personal help when we try to be moral.
I'm not entering into arguments whether Hitler was a Catholic or not.Hitler was baptised as an infant (probably), and he used religious rhetoric as a politician. There is no evidence that he practiced Catholicism. His marriage to Eva Braun on the last day of his life was performed in a small civil ceremony without religious references. His last will and testament make no reference to religious beliefs, and he asked to be cremated, which at the time was not permitted in the Catholic church.
Hitler obviously was not in any meaningful way a Christian.
I concede that if he had won the war, then almost certainly no religion besides National Socialism and worship of Hitler would be allowed.
But all his generals and his troops were believing Christians. The troops had chaplains in the front lines for pastoral duties.
You don't know the beliefs of "all his generals and troops". What a stupid thing to say. There were some believers, some not. Germany was a country with a long Christian heritage, so it would not be surprising if many Germans continued to practice Christianity during the war.
National Socialism was not a particularly religious ideology, except perhaps in a pagan sense-- worship of blood and soil . Not a lot of "love thine enemies" and "the meek shall inherit the earth" in Nazism.
But the Germans had as their policy to destroy Leningrad and its population by siege and starvation. Artillery units had as their targets marked on maps such military targets as schools and hospitals.[National] Socialists can be a nasty bunch.
Evolutionary psychology has no problems explaining how Hitler managed to manipulate the German people to behave with such inhuman brutality in Russia.Evolutionary psychology has no problem explaining anything. That's the problem.
Through years of propaganda and indoctrination, the German people were taught to regard the Soviets as being outside the group of humans, not deserving of humane or moral treatment.
A Darwinian understanding of human origins-- that humans were mere evolved animals-- runs through much of Nazi anthropology.
Stories-- even silly ones-- have implications in the affairs of men.