Evolution vs. Intelligent Design Essay

3619 Words Jul 10th, 2006 15 Pages
The Evolution of the Creation Controversy in Twentieth Century America
"The fact of evolution is the backbone of biology, and biology is thus in the peculiar position of being a science founded on an improved theory, is it then a science or faith?" Charles Darwin

"The empirical detectability of intelligent causes renders intelligent design a fully scientific theory." William Dembski

Introduction
Questions on the origin of life and of the universe must have permeated human thought since the very beginning of the thought process itself. Philosophers, natural scientists, and theologians have long historical records of dealing with the explanations of mankind's origin, function, purpose, and ultimate destiny1. In a seemingly
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However, scientists began to find evidence that refuted much of the doctrines that the theologians proclaimed to be the history of creation. In 1796, James Hutton, geologist, chemist, and naturalist, proposed a theory stating that geological features were the result of physical causes referring to a continuum of change during all parts of history. In The 1830's, Charles Lyell, considered by many to be the father of modern geology, developed the theory that the earth developed over many ages.7
Darwin introduced an explanation of biological change that excluded the necessity of supernatural intervention and incorporated elements of chance and indeterminacy. Darwin saw evolution as an occurrence of random variation in which a mechanism of heredity transmits similar organic forms and struggles for existence. Natural selection and survival of the fittest were key parts in his theory6.
By the turn into the 20th century, both scientists and theologians were increasingly inclined to accept Darwinism as revealing God's purpose and some elaborate theories attempted to reconcile geology and Genesis. Years later, Catholic theologians would reconcile science and religion as two different approaches to reality, distinct in their methods of thought. Both were concerned with the search for an orderly, harmonious universe, but neither excluded the other. By a sort of truce, it was assumed that religion provided a vision of a world beyond nature, while science…