Of Science, Metaphors, and Believing Scientists
If you haven't been keeping up with the posts of The BioLogos Forum this month, you've missed some fantastic content from our Fellows and guest authors!
Astrobiologist Stephen Freeland kicked off the month of August on The BioLogos Forum with his four-part essay “The Evolutionary Origins of Genetic Information”, an exploration of the current scientific understanding of the origin of genetic information and whether the current lack of detailed explanation for it constitutes a weakness in evolutionary theory, an assertion held by many proponents of Intelligent Design. Along the way, Freeland also offers some insight on how the scientific process works and defines its terms. Those interested can learn even more in our Q&A with Dr. Freeland, also in this month’s newsletter.
BioLogos Fellow Dennis Venema has also been busy explaining the basics of evolution, this month focusing on convergent evolution and coevolution between predators and prey. Did you know that some insects have evolved sonar jamming techniques to escape bat predators? And that the development of winged flight in both birds and bats is one of many examples of convergent evolution, showing that evolution is not “just random” but repeatable in certain ways? You can learn all this and more by following Dennis’ series “Evolution Basics”.
In response to the new film God vs. Evolution, we highlighted a review written by Jeff Zweerink of Reasons to Believe. Despite his own concerns about evolution, Zweernik argues that the film does a disservice to the science and faith discussion with its attack mindset, distortions of the evidence, and questionable treatment of scientists. He advises, “Atheists could easily produce a similar video making Christians look stupid. If, as a Christian, you would find such a video objectionable, then please do not promote Evolution vs. God.”
York University chaplain Shiao Chong, meanwhile, challenges Christians to consider carefully the metaphors they use when describing the interactions of science and faith. Chong notes the harm of the “warfare” metahpor, and asks readers to consider science and faith as “two books”, “two wings,” or “two maps.” Each metaphor offers new understanding and insight about how these two ways of knowing can work together to bring us closer to God.
Finally, BioLogos Fellow Ted Davis launched his newest series this month: a look at the faith of renowned scientist Robert Boyle. As Davis explains,
The English chemist Robert Boyle (1627-1691) is an outstanding example of a Christian scientist whose faith interacted fundamentally with his science. His remarkable piety was closely linked with his interest in science, and his Christian character shaped the ways in which he conducted his scientific life. A deep love for scripture, coupled (ironically) with a lifelong struggle with religious doubt, led him to write several important books relating scientific and religious knowledge. We’ll explore aspects of this fascinating interaction over the next few months. I hope you’ll join us for the conversation.
We’re eager to see where Davis’ journey into Boyle’s life will take us next month, as well as our many other post from Fellows and guests. We hope you’ll join us on The BioLogos Forum to read, discuss, and learn this September!