Science & Faith
6/4/14 at 08:40 AM 6 Comments

Darwin's Doubt Just Got Bigger: Stephen Meyer's Expanded Edition of Landmark Book, and "The Third Way"

text size A A A

Nobel laureate Francis Crick once warned: "Biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved." What Mad Pursuit (1990), page 138. Why is the constant reminder needed? Repeat the mantra often enough, and it might ward off the doubts one naturally has about materialistic theories like neo-Darwinism, when seeing the jolting appearance of design at all levels of nature, from the fine-tuning of the universe for life, to life itself.

A year ago Stephen Meyer published Darwin's Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design. This was a game changer for the evolution debate. Yesterday, Darwin's Doubt just got bigger in its expanded edition, which sports a new 35-page epilogue in which Meyer answers the more substantive challenges to his argument -- from scientists including Charles Marshall, Donald Prothero and Nick Matzke. The epilogue digs deeper into the origin of biological information, the time frame of the Cambrian explosion, cladistic classification methods, and the mystery of the missing ancestors.

Meyer remarks:

Having considered the arguments in Darwin's Doubt, readers will recognize the challenge it offers to traditional evolutionary thinking and perhaps wonder how stalwart defenders of evolutionary theory have responded.

Now you can enter the next chapter of the debate yourself. Here's how ENV covers the news of this latest development:

Of course even in the absence of the new edition of Darwin's Doubt, you'd get a sense of the progress we've made from signs like the news this past week about The Third Way. That's a freshly launched website linking together scientists who doubt the Darwinian "consensus" and who seek a "third way," a path toward a new theory of evolution.

These scientists, led by James Shapiro at the University of Chicago, decidedly are not advocates of intelligent design. But they give evidence of the intense ferment in the field of evolutionary biology, which ID continues to do so much to encourage.

Starting today and continuing in coming weeks, we'll be featuring here "Conversations with Stephen Meyer," short videos in which Dr. Meyer reflects on the past year's controversy over his book, what the criticisms of Darwin's Doubt reveal about the weakness of his critics and what that suggests about the future of the discussion as a whole.

Stay tuned. Meanwhile, today is a good day -- none could be better -- to get your copy of the expanded edition of Darwin's Doubt.

Watch Meyer's first video short about the new Darwin's Doubt edition.

Recent Doubts about Darwin Have Generated "The Third Way"

Last week's launching of The Third Way post-neo-Darwinian website underscores the importance of Meyer's expanded edition of Darwin's Doubt. Here is the "third way" manifesto:

The vast majority of people believe that there are only two alternative ways to explain the origins of biological diversity. One way is Creationism that depends upon supernatural intervention by a divine Creator. The other way is Neo-Darwinism, which has elevated Natural Selection into a unique creative force that solves all the difficult evolutionary problems. Both views are inconsistent with significant bodies of empirical evidence and have evolved into hard-line ideologies. There is a need for a more open “third way” of discussing evolutionary change based on empirical observations.

Don't miss the significance of the "third way" rebellion. This international group of scientists doubt the neo-Darwinian "consensus" that is taught dogmatically in textbooks, and they seek a "third way" between neo-Darwinism and creationism (they don't correctly map "intelligent design" onto this landscape of options, but I'll ignore that for the moment).

For now, just take a peek at the impressive roster of scientists who loudly identify with the "third way" (there are many more, but these are among the senior members of the movement). Neo-Darwinism is in trouble. But many of the viewpoints of the "third way" have already been assessed (and found problematic) by Stephen Meyer in the latter chapters of Darwin's Doubt. The new epilogue to Meyer's book takes this conversation even further.

CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).