History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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muddleheads at loggerheads

January 26th, 2016 · No Comments


It is strange that religionists and new atheists have so much trouble with each other. They share something in common, perhaps ‘idiocy’, and their categories, arguments and frenzy is mostly a tale told by…well, idiots…

It might help to lay down a few ideas that can bypass the frenzy, agreeing with some parts of both sides (which is not accomodationism, what is the latter??)

Science and religion both refer to reality with claims of knowledge. There is no real difference between them, in principle. In practice, science baulks at the metaphysics of the spiritual, while religion baulks at the metaphysics of reductionist science. Science can’t detect ‘spirit’, but this creates a too extreme perspective. The discourse of the spiritual violates metaphysical canons, but that, pace Kant, doesn’t as such discredit them.

Note: this is a hopeless situation: we need to find sane religionists and more intelligent scientists, and then survey the wreckage on both sides.
Much of the problem is with Xtianity and Judaism which, it must be said, botched their legacies by producing extreme metaphysical claims.

It is generally wrong to claim, as do religionists, that religion has special status. But it is as wrong from science to sweep away all claims for the spiritual.

Much of the confusion can be addressed via Kant’s critique of metaphysics, and next to that a model (like Schopenhauer’s) of transcendental idealism (which isn’t really transcendental or an idealism) which clarifies the levels of the ‘phenomenal’ and the ‘noumenal’. Much of religion can be understood as a garbled version of transcendental idealism in which ‘god’ somehow navigates between ‘thing in itself’ and biblical Hollywood.
Science tends to mean some derivative of physics, but this project’s extensions into biology, psychology, and evolution have not been fully successful. The mythologies of Judaism and Xtianity have gotten both of them into trouble and their claims can’t really be made defensible on the basis of ‘faith’. Scientists are not required to accomodate religious fictions, but religionists might protest that the negation of the noumenal has missed a deeper reality.

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