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February 7, 2009

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Q: What went on in Darwin’s brain?

A: Evolutionists often assert that one of Charles Darwin’s main contributions was to explain the apparent design in nature without appealing to a designer. The theory of evolution by means of natural selection provided a completely naturalistic explanation for the variety of living creatures on earth. They compare the contribution of Darwin to that of Copernicus. Copernicus and others showed that the earth moved around the sun and thus was not at the center as most believed. In a similar fashion, it was commonly believed that man was at the center or pinnacle of creation—that man alone among all creatures was special. In arguing that common descent and natural selection account for the origin of man from lower life-forms, Darwin proposed a natural law to explain the origin of man without a creator.

Prior to Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, the argument from design for the existence of a Creator was considered quite compelling. Indeed, while at Cambridge, Darwin was required to study Paley’s Natural Theology. To creationists, the argument from design seems no less compelling today. The amazing complexity and variety of living things does strongly point to a Creator. It is difficult to account for it all by chance and natural law. Darwinian proponents, of course, disagree.

Surprisingly, Darwin acknowledged the strength of the design argument long after Origin was published. In his autobiography, Darwin wrote:

Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist.

Why should we not get too enthusiastic about Darwin’s comment? Read on and take a peek at Darwin’s logic in Darwin, Design, and the Brain.

News to Note Quick Look

He was that scientist guy, right?: A poll in Britain reveals widespread doubt over Darwinism—or does it? Read more.


Raiders of the lost 24-IPC: It could almost be the plot of an evolutionary Indiana Jones adventure: deep beneath the sands of Arabia, lost and hidden for millennia, lay a secret molecule that transcends what we think we know. Read more.


Also: just like home; 1 of 38,000?; it’s a “whale”; that won’t stop ’em; beat it, Stein!; and don’t miss . . . . Read more.

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