Skip to comments.Am I A Metaphysical Bigot?
Posted on 07/16/2007 12:59:52 PM PDT by dan1123
In this paper, I will define creationism, talk about the relationship between creationism and science, discuss the way that Karl Popper inspired creationists such as Philip Johnson to see the debate between creationists and scientists that subscribe to evolutionary theory and biblical literalists as philosophical, how this conclusion, combined with reflections on creation science, should be applied to the constitutional debate, and discuss whether or not we can persuade creationists to believe that evolutionary theory is true.
My metaphysical commitment to naturalism is unjustified and may be unjustifiable. I believe that we shouldnt argue with creationists because we cant convince them that creationism is false: it seems as if they begin with different metaphysical assumptions about the nature of reality. So, the theory of evolution or creationism will appear false if you use the perspective of one to evaluate the other. So, creationists are going to be able to believe in creationism, as far as I can tell, for as long they would like.
I am a metaphysical bigot and you probably are too. What do metaphysical bigots think? We think that creationism is a historical hypothesis: it is not a hypothesis about the future. We come to the conclusion that creationism is not scientific because it, by definition, is a supernatural historical hypothesis. We come to the conclusion that creationism is probably not true because we cannot tell whether or not creationism is, in fact, true.
We believe that the theory of evolution is a historical hypothesis, like creationism, because it is a theory, or, if you prefer, fact about the history of life on earth. We come to the conclusion that evolutionary theory is a stronger historical hypothesis, because, evolutionary theory gives a natural rather than supernatural explanation of the history of life on earth. The theory of evolution is also a hypothesis about the future: it is probably going to tell us how life is going to evolve over time.
Since the theory of evolution can be tested now, with evidence that is available to all of us, provides us with an explanatory mechanism that is still at work, and will be able to explain the development of organisms today, we conclude that the theory of evolution is true. We come to this conclusion due to the fact that we subscribe to metaphysical and methodological naturalism. We recognize that our unjustified commitment to naturalism has determined our answer to these questions.
The fact that we are aware of this fact makes us enlightened and distinguishes us from ordinary metaphysical bigots, such as creationists. This commitment maybe justifiable but we are comfortable with accepting that it is unjustified. We are aware of the internal coherence of the way we justify our claims, and we are also aware that other belief systems, can be coherent, though we do not believe in them, in a literal sense. We value consistency and coherence.
The fact that it is true, we contend, is due to the fact we have the unjustified metaphysical commitments that allow us to talk about the truth, and that if we did not have those commitments, we would not be able to talk about the true. If we did not have any metaphysical commitments, we could not talk about the truth, in any meaningful sense, whatsoever. We believe, given our sociological circumstances, that naturalism is probably true. We can investigate this fact, and understand how we came to believe in naturalism
We can accept that we are not as different from creationists as we would like to believe. We know that if we are going to make metaphysical claims, we need to be dogmatists. We need to posit distinctions as well as assumptions about the ultimate nature of reality that will presuppose what answers are acceptable and unacceptable. So what do we evolutionists do, now that we know that, in the end, incommensurable metaphysical commitments, distinguish us from creationists?
We now can be somewhat certain that we are not going to be able to settle our disputes with creationists and talk to someone else about something far more interesting. We evolutionists should focus our energy on developing evolutionary theory and investigating the natural word. If asked whether or not our world-view is true we can say, Yes, in a sense, but only against my theoretical or metaphysical background. If asked whether or not creationism is true we can say No, in a sense, against my theoretical or metaphysical background.
I understand that most of us want to say much more than this, but then again, most of us are not enlightened: "To let understanding stop at what cannot be understood is a high attainment. Those who cannot do it will be destroyed on the lathe of heaven."
Getting out the popcorn.....
If an ape falls in the forest, did it evolve?.........
5 seconds until the “Christians are all idiots” faux intellectual rhetoric begins anew...... 4... 3.... 2.... 1..... and.....
Creationists maybe justifiable but we are comfortable & uneasy with accepting that it is unjustified at the speed of light, except in the precense of Black Energy.
You took the words right out of my mouth.
Perfessor Corey ? Is that you ? metaphysically ?
Or just be a pragmatist and say that there is no objective truth.
As a result, we do not know how the author "will define creationism," and thus we cannot discuss what he has to say about it.
Sorry, Dan, but your post is nothing more than an invitation to ignorant finger-flapping.
Before I lived in the Bible belt, I was firmly convinced that man had evolved from the apes. Now I am of the opinion that the degree of evolution is too small to waste time in argument.
Paraphrasing Descartes, I think, therefor I am evolving.
Evolutionists never seem to fail to make the debate between the evolutionists and *Bible literalists*.
I wonder why they never seem to be willing to just make it *creationists* instead instead of forcing it into such a narrowly defined segment that few indeed (if any) fall into it?
Who are the "non-biblical" creationists?
The science of metaphysics was completely developed and resolved about 1780.
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