Sunday, August 26th, 2012

image of religious theoremA guy shows up at the farmer’s market every week, sets up a table with lots of pamphlets and a backboard heavy with illustrations of dinosaurs and cave men, and props this sign on the sidewalk. I really don’t want to talk to him about evolution because I’m not an evolutionary scientist and, even if I was, I don’t think I would usually go to the farmer’s market carrying armloads of my published work, looking for a debate with a creationist. Assuming he’s a creationist.

But I’m perplexed by what he’s trying to say with this sign. It seems to start out with the first two posits of a theorem: “Evolution is religion. Evolution is science fiction.” If this is a theorem, then the last line should read: “Therefore, religion is science fiction,” right? Which would be true in the case of L. Ron Hubbard’s followers, but this guy doesn’t seem to be preaching Scientology. He seems to want to debunk evolution.

If debunking evolution as science fiction were his goal, then wouldn’t it make more sense to say something like, “Evolution is imaginary; Science fiction is imaginary, therefore, evolution is science fiction.” Even if he left off the final line and left the rest up to the reader, it would make a little more sense that what he’s got there now, don’t you think? I guess the part that confuses me is, how does the first line, “Evolution is religion,” even make sense? How is evolution a religion? Is Darwin supposed to be a god or a prophet? Does he think evolutionary scientists pray to Darwin? Is Darwin supposed to save us for ever and ever, amen?

I’d ask, but I want to be able to keep going back to the farmer’s market, munch on scones and people-watch without being drawn into yet another conversation about religion, because that would get old in a hurry.

| 8:18 am CST
Category: daily drivel | Tags: ,
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One Comment

  1. 1 The Seanster said at 2:14 pm on August 26th, 2012:

    For some people, evolution, and the broader themes of naturalism, do serve as something of a religion: providing an overarching explanation for the universe, and our place in it.

    I would certainly include myself among those who would hold evolution, and naturalism, as being effectively “religious” to me: we are all part of a massive, spectacular, ongoing and ever-changing Creation, whose observable workings and plungeable mysteries are majestic to behold and inspiring to realize we are a part of.