Sunday, February 28, 2010
Duszynski on Darwin
Bacon wrote in Advancement of Learning:
"To conclude, therefore, let no man out of a weak conceit of sobriety, or an ill-applied moderation, think or maintain, that a man can search too far or be too well studied in the book of God's word, or in the book of God's works; divinity or philosophy; but rather let men endeavor an endless progress of proficience in both."
What is crazy about this quote is that it is printed in the first copies of the front pages of On The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin. A book that really does not need any kind of introduction, but rather a hose to put out the flames that are arising from it. You might be asking yourself why I even care. Well, I did some research on Charles for a class that I had to teach recently and it seems that Darwin and his ideas are mistaken quite often. Darwin's book On The Origin of Species explains the concept of natural selection, or the process of how living things change over time due to this process called selection. Much like artificial selection that we see all the time in the breeding of dogs and horses to select specific traits (like brown spotted coat, or a labradoodle), except it occurs naturally rather being humanly controlled.
When I realized that we might have Darwin all wrong, I began to look at his life. I found that not only was he a respected member of the Anglican church but went to divinity school for a time (regardless of the fact that his father made him). Along with these things he studied multiple other fields of science, including geology, medicine, and botany. It has also been reported that on his trips around the world he ministered to crew member on his ship... Kinda interesting. He asked his wife not to publish On The Origin of Species until after his death for the fear of being exiled by the Anglican church and ruining his respected family name.
Before I get too off topic and begin a tangent on Darwinism I want to get back to the quotation by Bacon. I believe, especially when considering my studies and in my faith, that Bacon's words best describe the way that I feel. God created this world, and everything in it. There is no doubting that. But can we ever really be too well studied in it? In fact, is not the study of it a way of worshiping God in itself? Through the study of the sciences I do not find an alternative to God, but rather the proof of his almightyness, brilliance, and hand in all things.