[Originally published as Biological Essentialism—It’s What’s for Dinner]
What is the opposite of evolution? It’s biological essentialism—the view that crabs have always been crabby and frogs have always been froggy and that they do not have a common ancestor.
That is, Essential Types of Life (ETLs) vary within limits. Thus, we see a wide variety in cattle, but they all compose just one ETL.
Have you ever dreamt that you evolved into a more advanced creature than a human? That’s the only place where you might see evolution in the sense of “mega-evolution” (e.g. reptile-to-bird)—in your dreams. Can monkeys run the circus?
David Gelernter, a computer science professor at Yale, is brave enough to question Darwin:
Darwinian evolution is a brilliant and beautiful scientific theory. Once it was a daring guess. Today it is basic to the credo that defines the modern worldview. Accepting the theory as settled truth – no more subject to debate than the earth being round or the sky blue or force being mass times acceleration – certifies that you are devoutly orthodox in your scientific views; which in turn is an essential first step towards being taken seriously in any part of modern intellectual life. But what if Darwin was wrong?
In 2019, Peter Robinson of Uncommon Knowledge interviewed Gelernter along with David Berlinski, who supports biological essentialism.
Berlinski’s pro-ETL stance is clearly seen in his latest book Human Nature.
Now, biological essentialism naturally leads to Young Earth Theory Intelligence (YETI). That is, there never was an “age of fishes” or “age of dinos” since all basic forms of life existed at the beginning. This implies that most of the rock deposits were part of a single cataclysmic event which in turn requires a massively condensed timescale.
Have mainstream journals published research that favors a youthful world? Yes! … check out my blog from October 2020. In addition, the Philosophical Society of Great Britain (Victoria Institute) published a paper by Dudley Joseph Whitney providing evidence for a young earth in 1933.
Ideas have consequences
What are the fruits of Darwinism? Lenin, the Third Reich and Mao’s Great Leap Forward (~40M deaths) among other tragedies. In contrast, Lord Kelvin, who rejected Darwin, said this:
The more thoroughly I conduct scientific research, the more I believe science excludes atheism. If you think strongly enough you will be forced by science to the belief in God, which is the foundation of all religion.