The Evolution of the Evolution Debate

Science and religion aren't the only two ways to view the world


| March 22, 2007


The conflict between science and religion is playing out across the American public sphere today, from schools to churches to popular culture. 'Intelligent Design' and Darwinian evolution have become wedge issues causing people to see science and religion as incompatible. But many thinkers are trying to recast the debate, showing that science and faith aren't as polarized as we think.

One person trying to reconcile the differences between science and religion is Bernard Haisch, the author of the book The God Theory. In an interview with the Jewish magazine Tikkun, Haisch explains that 'there is no contradiction' between science and spirit. Religious people can believe in Darwinian evolution, the Big Bang, and other scientific principals 'and still believe that there is room for a God behind it all.' There is, Haisch argues, a third way that bridges the gap between science and spirit.

A similar point is made by Deepak Chopra, writing for the spirituality website Beliefnet. Chopra, an author and medical doctor, sets out to debunk the assertions made by atheist and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his recent book The God Delusion. Chopra asserts that science is very good at understanding the 'objective reality' but falls short in understanding many of the 'subjective experiences' of human beings. It is only by looking at both the subjective and the objective that a 'quantum leap in evolutionary theory will be possible.'

While Chopra and Haisch present a third path between science and religion, the spirituality magazine What Is Enlightenment? identifies 12 different schools of thought in the debate between science and religion. Neo-Darwinists, Transhumanists, and even 'Intelligent Designers' are placed by the magazine's editors on a line that extends from science to spirit in an easy-to-navigate chart. The idea is to shift the debate from 'an artificial polarization' between science and religion to a discussion 'that is broader, deeper, subtler, and much more profound.'

Go there >> God and Physics

Go there, too >> Debunking 'The God Delusion'

And there >> The REAL Evolution Debate