The post yesterday at Uncommon Descent citing this blog seems to wonder where my anti-darwinism comes from. Actually it is a long story, and while I was influenced by Michael Denton (and then Johnson’s Darwin on Trial, Behe was later and by that time I was already writing WHEE with its strong critique) my sense of a problem with darwinism goes back to the seventies. The problems with darwinism have been known for a long time, and I was aware of problems with natural selection theory for as long as I can remember. Figures like Hoyle and J.G.Bennett are the tip of the iceberg from over a generation ago. Jacques Barzun in Darwin, Marx, Wagner: Critique of a Heritage gave one of the clearest exposes of darwinism in the 1940’s (sic!), this from a liberal arts professor. And yet around this time the hardening of the ‘synthesis’ occurred and we have been stuck in theory limbo ever since. It is a pathetic situation, and scientists have allowed the rightwing religious groups to make over with the theory as darwinists flounder in self-induced brainwashing.
Figures like Soren Lovtrup are a reminder that embryologists have long been an underground of Darwin critics. The Darwin paradigm has always been under assault, and the implication that the ID people have the key to the critique of Darwinism is false: Behe’s cogent citation of biological machines was obvious to figures like Dennett and many before. The implausibility of natural selection stuck in the back of mind for years and became a basic assumption in writing WHEE.
The issue of the eonic effect is confusing to many but it shows how a developmental system can operate over time and the way it must induce change over regions. The idea that a few mutations can change a whole species is very implausible.
The eonic effect shows us that a ‘field’ process acts over and seeds regions in an organized fashion. The overall model began without any teleological reference using only directionality, that is relative ‘teleological’ stages or steps with no knowledge of the ‘final endpoint’. It also introduces an innovation in distinguishing free agency and system action.
The connection of history and evolution makes no sense to most, but the reality of ‘evolution’ without genetics is clearly demonstrable in history.
Toward the end of writing WHEE first edition, the work of Kant came to the fore and the eonic model reflects this: some kind of noumenal teleology interacts with the phenomenal and this is reflected in a series of discrete transitions that seem like they are led from the future. Since the noumenal would be timeless/spaceless, the past/present/future become ambiguous. In fact, patterns like mathematical theorems are ‘timeless’ entities. There is a ‘timeless’ template for specific realizations. That timeless something seems to spring from the future when we try to realize one of its instances. (??) None of this is used as such in the eonic model which can be taken without such speculations as a phenomenological depiction.
The understanding of the eonic model occurred in 1995, more or less and its development led rapidly to a sense of the failure of darwinism.