Evolution: Effect on the World
One might ask why I would I address the philosophical fallout of a theory. I have found it necessary to include this subject because many defenders of evolution insist that no adverse consequences of a belief in evolution exist. The theory of evolution is often presented as if it's only a harmless explanation of biology. It is believed that evolution has nothing to do with religion. This mindset is reflective of a misunderstanding of what constitutes scientific evidence.
In the study of evolution there is a pretense that the study of evolution serves to expand man's knowledge of biological processes. Evolutionary theory is irrelevant to experimental biology. However, its acceptance carries enormous philosophical consequences. A realization of this fact enables one to understand why debates on origins can be so emotionally charged.
Evolution forms the foundation of secular humanism
In the early years following the publication of On the Origin of Species, many prominent researchers rapidly embraced the new theory. Contrary to what is widely believed, the acceptance of evolution over the past 160 years has not been the result of serious scientific scrutiny of its precepts. Rather, its popularity has coincided with an evolving worldview of man and his relationship to the universe. Simply stated, the theory of evolution was and continues to be an ideal fit with the developing political and intellectual climate pervasive in America and Europe.
That framework of thinking was germinating at the time of Charles Darwin, and has grown progressively to its current state today. Elements of that worldview include a rejection of Deity, moral relativism, and materialism. The theory of evolution has grown in popularity over the years proportionate to the increasing acceptance of secularism in the world.
"The general idea of evolution, particularly if you took it to be progressive and purposeful, fitted the ideology of the age."
How could a theory so widely accepted be patently false? It is critical to understand that evolution forms the foundation of a worldview that has been growing in the world for over 160 years. Evolution is a critical element in the worldview of secularism. If evolution is true, then the beliefs of secularism seem justified. If evolution is false and a creator exists, then virtually all the tenets of secular humanism are immediately called into question. For this reason, evolution is accepted on the hope and faith that its claims can be justified by science. Because it is such a cherished doctrine, there has been a strong push to shield it from any significant scrutiny.
Logical conclusions based on a belief in evolution
"...humans are locally determined systems that make choices. They have, however, no free will. Without free will, moral responsibility seems impossible... Free will is a disastrous and mean social myth. Using free will as an excuse, we condone a vicious attitude of revenge toward anyone who does wrong in our society...This attitude leads to a grossly expensive and hopeless system of punishment in America..."
Many other committed to atheism belief that no human free will exists.
"What are all of us but self-reproducing robots? We have been put together by our genes and what we do is roam the world looking for a way to sustain ourselves and ultimately produce another robot child."
Dr. Richard Dawkins, emeritus professor of evolutionary biology, Oxford University
The belief that humans are robotic leads to the conclusion that no one is responsible for his or her actions. Because all species are believed to be related, the belief of human exceptionalism has been eroded. If a male lion kills a cub, he is acting out of instinct. If a man rapes a woman, he is genetically hardwired to spread his genes.
Evolution and Socialism
Both socialism and the proposed evolution of species are founded on the concept of survival by competition for limited resources. Free enterprise is centered around the creation of new resources. The entire premise of evolutionary theory is survival and domination of the entire species at the expense of individuals. Systems of democracy, on the contrary, are founded on the sanctity of the individual.
Principles of liberty and democracy are based on the belief that man is endowed by a higher power with inalienable rights. The denial of God leads to a philosophy that governments have the right to determine what rights an individual has. Hence, no absolute rights are sacred, but are determined by bureaucrats who believe that they are best qualified to decide what policies should be implemented for the overall benefit of society.
A belief that man is shaped solely by his environment and genetics leads to a belief that governments have the right to equalize what nature has deprived of members of society. As Dr. Provine observed, evolution has abolished free will. It is thus concluded that no one has a right to claim the product of his labor. Any inequality is “unfair” because no one is ultimately responsible for his or her life. The doctrine of "survival of the fittest" is viewed as a harsh, uncaring reality of nature that needs to be controlled by government policy. This is a primary reason for the ever-increasing trend in the world toward socialism and deterioration of the virtue of self-determination. The ability to succeed, in the mind of a committed atheist, does not exist.
The concept of social justice is founded on evolutionary presuppositions. It's founding assumption is that human beings lack self-determination. Those who achieve success in life are believed to have done so through no free will of their own. They are merely looked at as fortunate beneficiaries of the system. Those who are wealthy do not deserve to enjoy prosperity and should be forced to subsidize the poor. Those who are homeless have a right to take from those who have achieved wealth, because their poverty has nothing to do with any choices they have made. Those who have good health do not deserve freedom from disease and should pay for others' health care. The truthfulness of these conclusions is evidenced by observing the political views of those who ardently believe in evolution. The large majority are socialists and liberal progressives.
The adoption of socialism is a logical consequence of a belief in evolution. The premise of gradualistic improvement of the species by random mutations fosters a conclusion that all individual endowments are the result of chance. Such a premise leads to the conclusion that whatever is beneficial to the entire human population should be adopted, even at the expense of the individual. As a consequence of this pervasive line of reasoning, there has been a gradual abandonment of principle-based policy in favor or result-based policy. There is a strong tendency for those involved in public office to promote policies based on what they believe to be in the best interests of society as a whole, rather than focusing on what is morally right in terms of individual liberty and moral principle. Since God is assumed to be non-existent, it is concluded that no inalienable rights exist. Therefore, it is the prerogative of governments to determine what one’s rights are based on an amoral worldview.
Debates between proponents of self-determination and advocates of socialism are often futile. A belief that individual free will should be replaced by what is perceived to benefit society as a whole is founded on evolutionary assumptions, which is ultimately linked to the religion of atheism. Those who promote such political philosophies rely on the belief that science has validated their founding principles.
Social biology is the study of human behavior based on a paradigm of evolution. It is believed that insights into man's social behavior can be gleaned by studying social characteristics of animal species. Ant colonies, for example, consist of millions of individuals whose survival depends on cooperation. Sterile workers sacrifice their lives in the defense of intruders. Nursery workers devote their lives to caring for developing larvae. The queen reproduces. These observations are sometimes cited in attempts to justify cooperative systems of government. No actual mechanisms as to how altruistic behavior in insects could have evolved by mechanisms of preferential survival and competition for limited resources can be proposed. Evolution is simply assumed to have occurred, and observations attached to evolution are proclaimed to justify socialism and other forms of government aimed at preserving the common good rather than individual rights.
The Relativistic Worldview
A belief in evolution leads to the conclusion that no absolute morality exists. The ultimate "good" is defined solely by the end result. This leads to the doctrine of the end justifies the means. It is popularly believed that whatever good can be accomplished for the overall benefit of society as a whole should be implemented regardless of the methods involved in achieving that goal. Ethical standards are measured only by the greatest good to the greatest number of individuals. This is precisely the rationale employed by totalitarian regimes such as the Third Reich. Underlying cruel practices was the belief that a greater good would be achieved, and that the slaughter of millions justified the end result.
A belief in evolution teaches this principle. The proposed origin of religion is exemplary of this. Given the fact that almost all cultures throughout the ages have adopted religions based on a supreme being, it is assumed, for example, that natural selection created the need for man to believe in a false being. Religion has benefited man in numerous ways, and for this reason it is concluded that evolution ultimately shaped a lie into the psyche of man which was perpetuated for the ultimate benefit of the human species. Thus, no condemnation of any form of dishonesty can be made based on a worldview of evolution, provided that the end result is "good". The end result defines what is "right", even if devious means are required to achieve that result.
Acceptance of evolution as to the origin of man's conscience logically leads to the conclusion that no absolute boundaries between right and wrong can be defined. Therefore, governments do not have the prerogative to impose any religion-based directives on society. Any practice that deviates from the norm is viewed only as "different" rather than "wrong". Since evolutionary theory proclaims the absence of any absolute morality, moral virtues are held by society to be of lesser importance than in times past.
Because centers of higher education generally promote evolution, the relativistic worldview is widespread among intellectuals. To true converts of atheistic evolution, a literal absence of any moral compass becomes apparent. For example, the atheist philosopher Peter Singer openly justifies bestiality, necrophilia, euthanasia, and infanticide up to two years of age. In spite of his amoral views, he was placed as bioethics chair at Princeton University. These pervasive amoral perspectives are unfortunately widespread in institutions of higher learning, and are directly correlated with the promotion of evolution.
Promotion of Abortion
Since the advancement of the theory often referred to as biogenetic law, many have become convinced that a developing fetus is not a human life. It has been widely taught in biology classrooms that a developing embryo replays much of its evolutionary history during stages of embryonic development. The developing human begins as a single cell, analogous to a paramecium. At eight days of age, it grows into a hollow spherical structure, comparable to a sponge. Later it develops into a bi-layered structure, similar to a "jellyfish". Within three weeks it possesses structures resembling "gills", a tail, and limbs which have the appearance of fins like a fish. Later, the limb buds appear like webbed feet of an amphibian. Within two months it becomes a mammal similar to other mammals. While the above description is actually a ridiculous exaggeration, this is what is often taught to unsuspecting students.
In 1957, the well-known child psychologist Dr. Benjamin Spock wrote,
“Each child as he develops is retracing the whole history of mankind, physically and spiritually, step by step. A baby starts off in the womb as a single tiny cell, just the way the first living thing appeared in the ocean. Weeks later, as he lies in the amniotic fluid of the womb, he has gills like a fish...”
Ernst Haeckle, who originally conceived the biogentic law in 1866, proclaimed that biological knowledge justified abortion. He defended his position by referencing evolutionary theory, arguing that an embryo is a pure "reflex machine, just like a lower vertebrate." Since embryonic development was stated to be a replay of man's evolutionary history, Haeckel reasoned that a human embryo was no different than a lower form of life. Haeckel was one of the most famous Darwinists in Europe in his day and promoted through his books eugenics and involuntary euthanasia. His conclusions included justification of infanticide, because of the lack of self-awareness of infants. He based his logic on the theory of evolution.
Regardless of one's political philosophy, all biologists today understand that human life begins at conception. Such is a biological fact, regardless of one's belief as to how human life originated. The attempt to invoke science as justification for the dehumanizing of a human fetus in its early stages of development is utterly ridiculous and only represents a manifestation of the encroaching dogmas of secularism.
Promotion of Eugenics
The philosophy of eugenics became popular during the time of Charles Darwin and grew in worldwide favor in the early decades of the twentieth century. Prominent voices in many developed countries including the United States became sympathetic toward its practices. This doctrine is founded on the attempt to favorably alter the genetic characteristics of humans through social policy which by necessity interferes with inherent human rights. The eugenics movement lost momentum following World War II, because it was strongly associated with Nazism and the cruelties linked to that movement. Principles of eugenics were founded on evolutionary presuppositions, and the eugenics movement is gaining in worldwide favor today.
A belief in the mechanisms of natural selection requires acceptance of the doctrine that man's struggle for survival is founded on competition for limited resources. A logical conclusion drawn from this mindset is that governments have the right to limit population growth because such policy is deemed by bureaucrats to be in the best interest of humanity as a whole. Communist China, for example, has adopted policies that include mandatory abortion, sterilization and infanticide. These policies are based on a paradigm of atheistic evolution.
Evolution and Totalitarianism
Karl Marx was a contemporary of Charles Darwin
and the theory of evolution had a profound impact on his beliefs. Multiple references to Darwinian evolution
were made in his writings, such as the following excerpt...
"Darwin’s book is very important and serves me as a basis in natural selection for the class struggle in history. … not only is it [Darwin’s book] a death blow … to 'Theology' in the natural sciences but their rational meaning is empirically explained".
The proliferation of communism and fascism in the twentieth century was founded on Darwinism. Totalitarian dictators including Vladimir Lenin, Josef Stalin, Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini and others embraced atheistic evolution and justified their cruel practices on what they believed had been proven by science. The merciless extermination of millions of people was conducted without remorse, because such practices were viewed as performing a greater good for the overall benefit of the human species. It is estimated that the extermination of human life by totalitarian regimes during the twentieth century totaled approximately 262 million people.
Adolf Eichmann, one of the principal architects of the Holocaust, stated that his belief in evolution and his rejection of God formed the basis of his worldview which led him to conduct the slaughter of millions. He wrote, "I am not prepared to accept anything that disagrees with my naturalistic conceptions."* Following World War II, the only documented remorse he showed was over the failure of the Nazi regime to more effectively carry out the extermination of all of Europe's Jews.* During several interviews in the days prior to his execution, he declared, "I have nothing to confess", "I have no sin", and "I will not humble myself or repent in any way." At his trial, many were stunned by the fact that he didn't behave in a psychopathic manner, but acted like a polite, rational human being, completely in control of his emotions. Without apology, he explained that his absence of guilt was deduced from his belief that man evolved from lower forms of life which have no concept of morality, and that Homo sapiens was in the process of evolution over millions of years. Referencing Spinoza, he argued "in this world there exists nothing that is evil in itself."