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Is Either Creation or Evolution the Right Answer?

Aug 17, 2007
The choice between creation and evolution as an explanation for human existence is a source of ongoing debate. The two camps of belief from both religion and science have been at odds on this topic in American society for many years without much compromise. People of both extremes have exerted their will on the education and judicial justice systems in order to influence American society.

Creationists want literal bible scriptures related to creation taught to children in schools, while Evolutionists want them to learn evolution. What should dominate American culture - religious belief in creation or scientific belief in evolution? The following historical event took place in pursuit of the answer to this very same question.

In the 1920s during social structure chaos, Traditionalists worried that their beliefs were crumbling. Modernists stopped looking to society for approval for their actions; they were only concerned that their actions lived up to their intellect. Intellectualism flourished during that time, while Americans danced to Jazz, drank alcoholic beverages during prohibition, and debated abstract Freudian theories. As a result of this traditional social revivalism became strong, especially in the South.

Journalists were looking for a showdown during that time and found one in a Dayton, Tennessee courtroom in the summer of 1925. A jury was deciding the fate of John Scopes, a high school biology teacher charged with illegally teaching the theory of evolution. Secondary to the actual anti-evolution statute the trial emerged as an interpretation conflict between social and intellectual values.

William Jennings Bryan, a previous Democratic candidate for President led the prosecution as a Fundamentalist to banish Darwin's theory of evolution from American classrooms. Other prominent lawyers were A. T. Stewart, Ben B. McKenzie, and Bryan's son, federal prosecutor William Jennings Bryan Jr.. The defense team was lead by the famed Clarence Darrow and was joined by Arthur Garfield Hays, a prominent free speech advocate, and Dudley Field Malone, an international divorce attorney.

A carnival atmosphere pervaded in Dayton as the trial began July 10, 1925. The prosecution opened its case by asking the court to take judicial notice of the Book of Genesis, as it appears in the King James Version, and received it. The defense called its first witness, Dr. Maynard Metcalf, a zoologist from the Johns Hopkins University, over objections from the prosecution.

The prosecution mocked Metcalf's exposition of the theory of evolution, complaining that the evolutionists had man descending from Old World monkeys. Then the defense began a series of questions designed to undermine the literal interpretation of the Bible... asking questions about Jonah being swallowed by a whale, Joshua making the sun stand still, Noah and the great flood, the temptation of Adam in the Garden of Eden, and the creation according to Genesis.

The Scopes trial by no means ended the debate over the teaching of evolution, but it did represent a significant setback for the anti-evolution forces. Of the fifteen states with anti- evolution legislation pending in 1925, only two states (Arkansas and Mississippi) enacted laws restricting teaching of Darwin's theory.

Some Creationist believe that famous scientists such as Einstein and Hawking believe: "God does not play dice with the Universe." But to truly understand what Einstein meant by that, you have to see into his views toward god and religion because scientists often use the word "god" to mean the laws of nature.

The Creationist-Evolutionist controversy represents two ways of relating to the world. One being belief based on unreasoned conviction and the other based on reasoned. In other words belief in the literal interpretation of the bible as opposed the scientific rationalistic approach, stemming from men like Thales, Aristotle, and reinterpreted through Galileo, Newton, and others.

The Enquiring Mind:

If you want to find a solution to this dilemma you'll find clues on both sides of the debate. For example scientists believe that the universe began with a Big Bang. From their prospective it's reasonable to believe that something cannot be created from nothing? And therefore, if that's true then that something is what created the universe. Call it God, cosmic law or whatever else, it's beyond comprehension at this time in human development.

Being that humans are said to use only about 10% of there brain power... and use language limiting the ability to understand and convey universal law, there is no wander that the human species has a limited understanding of its true origin. To expect human kind to know and understand the source of its existence is like asking a toddler to explain quantum physics.

Where do these two beliefs find their basis of conflict? Creationist find their information in the Bible, while Evolutionist find their's in the science of Biology. Is there a conflict between Science and Religion? If you take the Fundamentalist approach (everything in the Bible is to be taken literally), then there is conflict. If, on the other hand, the Bible is not taken literally, then there is room to grow in harmony with universal knowledge with no conflict.
About the Author
Rupert Mamby has worked as an IT professional for over thirty years and is now retired. He has also taught adult self help courses and currently provides Internet marketing support, while contributing written content to online media outlets. Visit: http://viewbiz.com/MonthlyNewsletter
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