S. Joshua Swamidass and Social Darwinism – a match made on Earth, not in Heaven

Over at Peaceful Science, Joshua Swamidass has made another strange and unsubstantiated claim. He has attempted to speak again on behalf of (all) ‘scientists,’ as is his linguistic tendency, yet in this case about ‘social Darwinism’:

Social Darwinism was a thing that is legitimately connected to the holocaust [sic]. However, scientists today reject Social Darwinism. Even atheists should thank God for this.” https://discourse.peacefulscience.org/t/darwinism-and-social-darwinism/6873/2

It’s a bit saucy, perhaps all well & good to suggest that atheists should thank God for something, anything. Yet one of the most active living and agitating ideological evolutionists and one of his co-authors are actually trying to get people to accept ‘Social Darwinism’. https://evolution-institute.org/truth-and-reconciliation-for-social-darwinism/ How does Joshua deal with this apparent blindspot in his approach?

Even Richard Dawkins disagrees with this use of Darwin’s evolutionary theory in “political & social life”:

“What I am saying, along with many other people, among them T. H. Huxley, is that in our political and social life we are entitled to throw out Darwinism, to say we don’t want to live in a Darwinian world, we might want to live in, say, a socialist world which is very un-Darwinian. We might say: Yes, Darwinism is true, natural selection is the true force that has given rise to life, but we, when we set up our political institu­tions, we might say we are going to base our society on explicit­ly anti-Darwinian principles.”

Yet D.S. Wilson & E.M. Johnson (who I met & had a long conversation & also lunch with some years ago) are actually indeed trying to rehabilitate and are promoting ‘social Darwinism’ … in universities TODAY. https://evolution-institute.org/truth-and-reconciliation-for-social-darwinism/ Note that neither of these writers is a sociologist, culturologist or social theorist. Wilson has built up a decent sized international network of scholars across a range of fields, ‘natural & social,’ with people who support & write for the Evolution Institute. Many of them are not social scientists, and most are atheists or agnostics, who are indeed pushing ‘evolutionary’ social ideas and theories as a kind of ‘new age’ religion-substitute.

Although Dawkins has no hesitation to speak about “anti-Darwinian principles”, others are rather incredibly still trying to expand ‘Darwinian’ ideas beyond the domain of biology and natural-physical sciences. So Swamidass is either incorrect, simply unaware, or, as he recently wrote ‘peacefully’ about someone on his own site, “deeply misinformed.”

This raises some questions:

1) Is David Sloan Wilson (PhD in biology) not (does he not count as) a ‘scientist’ according to Swamidass? Since he openly embraces social Darwinism as a biologist/biological anthropologist, does Swamidass take any kind of stand at all against such ideology in science or does he actually provide ‘in the closet’ support for ideological Darwinism? It seems from his statements so far, like many things with Joshua, that he both does & doesn’t at the same time.

2) Why does Swamidass act like he’s an expert about topics he is not educated or trained in (ideology, sociology, cultural studies, philosophy of science, anthropology, etc.) from a disciplined standpoint? It appears Swamidass has taken little to no time to study social Darwinism, social and cultural evolution or evolutionism. This shows up quite clearly in how Swamidass writes about them (imperialistically). I and most non-biologists, certainly most social scientists, would never even attempt what he is do regarding a topic properly belonging in biology. This comes across to me as both absurd and counter-productive. Swamidass has even defended ideological cultural evolutionism with me when I complied with his reject to dialogue with my full name in public. He balked, again. Is this a healthy approach for evangelicalistic Protestantism?

One troubling aspect of Swamidass’ views about ‘social Darwinism,’ that natural scientists, mathematicians and computer engineers might not immediately realize, is that he apparently sees no danger areas. Nevertheless, things can get socially dangerous in a hurry if these social Darwinian/social Darwinist ‘theories’ are put into ‘practice.’ People like Swamidass, promoting something not too dissimilar from D.S. Wilson’s “Evolution for Everyone,” often underestimate the power of dehumanizing evolutionary rhetoric that is found and used in social sciences and humanities. They ignore it & thus create an uneven playing field for the discussion of “What does it mean to be human?”

This is because natural-physical scientists like Joshua simply don’t have the background reading or interactions hearing about it. This means that even when they butcher a conversation, they simply might not be aware of it. There has thus arisen a serious & ongoing communications problem, much more serious than they are likely to admit, when dealing with ‘highly confident’ imperialistic biologists who, unfortunately, look at humanity straddling evolutionary biology with ideological evolutionism.

Swamidass writes, again with inflated language choice as if he speaks for ‘science’: “I’m glad science had moved on from eugenics.” What is Swamidass saying here?! He is again, quite sadly and also importantly in this case, quite wrong. We are TODAY staring down neo-eugenics in a HUGE way. Is he even possibly unaware of the genetic engineering of human beings? No. Yet even if one can’t speak coherently about it, there is little need or good in instead reverting to ‘confident evolutionism’ & trying to paint an evangelical Protestant ‘happy face on it. This can easily be fixed, however, and Swamidass would just need to take a quick dip into transhumanism, where neo-eugenics is waiting, lurking in the dark corners, some of whose proponents are indeed, just like him, ‘scientists’. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1794693/

Swamidass continued after the above quote, saying:

it is objectionable to connect modern day scientists to Social Darwinism, as he does (‘still demands’). More than anything else, it demonstrates his ignorance of modern day evolutionary theory.”

Yet as evidenced above, surely not all, but at least some ‘modern day scientists’ don’t object to Social Darwinism the way Swamidass imagines. They actually embrace it. Does Swamidass know anything about why that is?

Indeed, his current closest ‘strictly scientific’ partner and ally, e.g. against Behe and the Discovery Institute over at Peaceful Science, in back & forths with EvoNews, etc. is Nathan Lents. This is Lents who in the same thread wrote approvingly of David Sloan Wilson’s new book This View of Life and Wilson’s promotion of a new ‘Social Darwinism’ (he capitalizes the ‘S’). Lents reveals he is also largely or entirely ignorant about ideology & that he has swallowed ideological evolutionism almost whole in his atheist/agnostic worldview. Is Swamidass, together with Lents, going to continue to act like social Darwinism, cultural & social evolutionism only exist on the margins & only constitute a valid conversation topic subserviently under the umbrella of biology?

“Eugenics and social Darwinism are, of course, related, but they are also distinct, neither has any grounding in science, neither were promoted by Darwin, and science has rejected them long ago.” – Nathan Lents (Author of Human Errors, including his own involving ideological evolutionism, posted in same PS thread as above)

I find it ridiculous that a ‘practising biologist’ would say this, as it is quite obviously untrue. Yet many biologists only approach this topic defensively, perhaps to avoid the discipline’s well-earned shame. Eugenics is certainly ‘grounded in biology’ as it’s about breeding & “the genetic quality of a human population”. That can be studied as a ‘strictly scientific’ topic, just as the mass of eugenicists in the 19th & 20th centuries thought and how the neo-eugenicists of today still think. Ironically, the people who think ‘eugenics’ is ‘strictly scientific’ of engage in writing the same kind of ideological scientism that Swamidass does.

Swamidass (who ‘liked’ the above post by Lents), like Lents, simply isn’t up to date on this topic & therefore gets it mostly wrong. Lents’ linguistic framing of “science has…” demonstrates his outdated & misleading language. Apparently Lents subscribes to the same linguistic imperialism school that Swamidass studied in. Do these men not know how to write with disciplinary humility, using proper articles, & pluralizing when something is plural, rather than singular? C’mon guys, please improve your level of communication because you’re muddying the waters!

Swamidass speaks about “ignorance of modern day evolutionary theory”, granted this is coming from within a specific narrow range of competences. These include biology, computing, physiology & YECism. He is now attempting to create a ‘fifth voice’ with what he calls ‘genealogical science’ or ‘the Science of Adam.’ Yet, he so far seems to be entirely unaware of, or has just rather shied away from the fact that social Darwinism, and indeed, cultural evolutionism, is indeed, openly or in code, being promoted by at least a few of his fellow biologists & not a few others. Swamidass appears, based on his writing, to be so far going along with them, perhaps due to his promotion of ambitious neo-creationism in post-YEC clothing.

One of the largest problems in the ‘discourse’ involving science, philosophy & theology/worldview thus remains unaddressed at Peaceful Science. While social Darwinism is an ideology, it is also something most natural scientists (& native-English philosophers) know next to nothing about. The danger is in naive adoption of ideologies by natural-physical scientists themselves, which we see playing out in practise in the Swamidass + Lents partnership. Does this bother or worry anyone here? Since most are atheists, agnostics & anti-theists here, probably 1) few people will respond other than to defend Swamidass’ scientism, 2) nobody will call out D.S. Wilson in clear & unequivocal terms, & 3) social Darwinism & neo-eugenics will only be superficially treated, and *not* as ideologies, a word which many biologists fear (for historically good reasons!) to utter.

Reference: Young, Robert M. (RIP 2019). “Darwinism Is Social.” The Darwinian Heritage, edited by David Kohn and Malcolm J. Kottler, Princeton University Press, 1985, pp. 609–638. www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt7ztrtb.25

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45 thoughts on “S. Joshua Swamidass and Social Darwinism – a match made on Earth, not in Heaven

  1. Hey Patrick are you using this forum to attack him because of problems?? Pleae don’t do this on forums/blogs as the rest don’t want this. just on subjects. if everybody did that it would ruin social media.
    Social darwinism is dead as a dodo. its boring and has no influence in society.

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  2. I believe Gregory is correct. Social Darwinism is most certainly not gone from the sciences or popular culture, and will never disappear since it is the logical conclusion of Darwinism. If evolution occurs due to Malthusianism, then insofar as we block Malthusianism we are merely building up a pool of the unfit to be naturally selected, perhaps bringing down the more fit with them. So, it becomes the moral imperative of the self appointed fit to prune those they deem unfit *cough* Planned Parenthood *cough*. Which is of course anti-thetical to the Catholic moral imperative to protect the weak and oppressed, hence the animosity of the social Darwinists towards the Catholic Church and constant attempts to destroy it.

    At a national level, China is fully on board with eugenics.
    https://www.edge.org/response-detail/23838

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  3. EricMH,

    For generations, Chinese intellectuals have emphasized close ties between the state (guojia), the nation (minzu)

    “Guojia” is the nation, not the state. He got it backwards. When people pretend to know China they often make fundamental mistakes like this that give them away.

    I think its similar to the mistake you make about saying why the Catholic Church opposes abortion. You don’t really speak for Catholics.

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  4. Gregory,

    It doesn’t look like you’re reading things carefully enough. There’s plenty of differences between the “Social Darwinisms” mentioned by each author, under each circumstance, yet you treat them as if they were all the same things and with the same purposes. Your post is a huge mixture of equivocations.

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  5. EricMH:
    I believe Gregory is correct.Social Darwinism is most certainly not gone from the sciences or popular culture, and will never disappear since it is the logical conclusion of Darwinism.

    What exactly is the logical conclusion of Darwinism Eric? I ask because the stuff Gregory linked is all over the place in meanings. So you need to be very clear.

    Your comments are usually conceptual messes, and this appears to be one more example of your lack of careful examination of your own assumptions. Remember that not everybody shares your prejudices.

    EricMH:
    If evolution occurs due to Malthusianism, then insofar as we block Malthusianism we are merely building up a pool of the unfit to be naturally selected, perhaps bringing down the more fit with them.

    Block Malthsianism? First time I read this kind of thing. Malthus got to an obvious conclusion: if the whole of the offspring survived, then, eventually, the species would grow beyond the capacity of the environment to sustain it. He therefore decided not to have kids himself. He feared to contribute to the eventual self-destruction of humanity. This had nothing to do with differences in fitness among individuals, but with something much more obvious: the planet has limited resources.

    We are adding too much people for the environment to sustain. There’s no doubt about it. We have been helped to survive despite our different levels of unfitness (note that I include ourselves in the list of the unfit, mostly because the probability that we have survived due to modern medicine, rather than due to our genetic/phenotypic prowess, is rather high).

    EricMH:
    So, it becomes the moral imperative of the self appointed fit to prune those they deem unfit *cough* Planned Parenthood *cough*.

    Moral imperative? Leaving aside that you’d have to “prune” yourself, “pruning the unfit” would be “the” moral “imperative” according to your way of understanding morality, but that doesn’t mean that it should be the way to go according to rational people.

    Planned parenthood is not Social Darwinism Eric. It’s about ourselves limiting the number of children we have in order to ensure, as much as possible, that they’ll have the resources to develop and have a good life. It’s not about “pruning the unfit.” It’s about being responsible about the children we have.

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  6. Perhaps off topic, but population growth is pretty much a thing of the past. The demographics are such that the number of people will increase for a couple of decades, then start declining. This is not based on policies. It is just an observed consequence of rising education and standard of living.

    The numbers come from the UN, but they are not really political or controversial.

    It is happening across all cultures and religions.

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  7. @Entropy

    You should read Margaret Sanger’s works, such as ‘Pivot of Civilization,’ to understand the social Darwinism foundation of Planned Parenthood. The organization was very clearly created to prune the unfit from society, as seen today in its predominant targeting of minorities and immigrants in the US, whom the WASPs consider to be ‘unfit.’ Sanger and others also fought hard to disenfranchise the Catholic Church, their main source of opposition in the US. Sanger seemed to have noble intentions, as is the case with many of the great founders of genocide in the past couple centuries, but the eugenics and social Darwinism are undeniable.

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  8. EricMH,

    ETA: In my quick reading I didn’t see the “unfit” and eugenics in the book you mentioned. After more looking into it, I found that there’s mentioning of such things. So I apologize for not seeing it in the first version of this comment.

    Either way. Planned parenthood, at least today, and at least since I first learned about it, is not about pruning the unfit. It’s about being responsible about the children we bring into the world, and about getting the information and resources to the less privileged.

    The focus on the less affluent is not about “pruning the unfit” either. It’s about giving the information to the less privileged. That many happen to be “minorities” and “immigrants” is a consequence of the way society “developed” in the US.

    In several countries where I have lived, which have more “uniform-looking” populations (thus not divided into “races”), getting the information, and the resources, to the less privileged, seems rather important because they tend to have little access to contraceptives and be less informed about that possibility. In many of those countries, birth control has achieved the goal of improving conditions for the poor, with more of them being able to pursue better education, better jobs and such. It goes beyond good intentions. My family was poor and I had to work in order to get an education. Had my family grown beyond the tiny few we were, I would have worked, mostly, to keep little brothers and sisters fed and alive, rather than get an education.

    Unfortunately, sometimes the “authorities” and/or the health workers, loose patience and try forcing birth control onto the less privileged, which is wrong headed and gives ammunition to your ilk. But they’re still thinking, even thought their approach is wrong, about controlling population to avoid disaster, to give the underprivileged a chance for improvement. Not about pruning the unfit.

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  9. Any kind of authoritarianism is unpleasant and counterproductive, whether it’s impetus is political or religious.

    Want to make the world a better place? Educate women. It provides the most bang for the buck.

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  10. EricMH,

    Just out of curiosity, do you think that every institution, business, or facility is determined by the intentions and beliefs of its founders? If not, then why are Sanger’s beliefs and intentions relevant to determining whether Planned Parenthood provides social benefit today?

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  11. phoodoo,

    “You don’t really speak for Catholics.”

    Wow, it didn’t seem like EricMH was claiming to “speak for Catholics”. What one can only conclude from your aggressive attacks here, that you don’t either. I must admit openly that I don’t. Does anyone here? So there is no point in charging EricMH this way.

    Forgive me that I don’t remember, but you represent what ‘worldview’ again? It seemed like a skeptical theism of some generic or unarticulated kind that only you on earth hold. As far as I recall, you don’t accept, embrace or ‘practise’ any of the Abrahamic monotheist world religions, is that correct? Please update & clarify as only you are able.

    p.s. it would be helpful if you don’t resort to agitation on this thread, though that may seem hard to you when ‘playing’ among mostly atheists & agnostics.

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  12. Entropy:

    It doesn’t look like you’re reading things carefully enough. There’s plenty of differences between the “Social Darwinisms” mentioned by each author, under each circumstance, yet you treat them as if they were all the same things and with the same purposes. Your post is a huge mixture of equivocations.

    Let me guess, you promote using ‘evolutionary’ theories in social sciences and humanities, including bloated usage in fields from anthropology & political science, to market research, business development & ‘literary Darwinism’? Please state some position to indicate where you’re coming from, if that guess is inaccurate. I’ve read the literature on this topic quite carefully and have much of it available at my fingertips, if you’d like to ask specific questions. Posturing won’t sway that I’m here waiting for actual engagement with the arguments in the OP re: Swamidass’ position on ‘social Darwinism’ vis a vis Lents, etc.

    Of course there are multiple ‘social Darwinisms’ – that’s exactly the point! Welcome to the conversation we’ve been having for a while. There’s much more than just ‘social Darwinism’ in the OP, as I’m really not overly fixated on or with Charles Robert Darwin of Down, England. There are far more interesting characters and provocative thinkers to consider & explore in our era now, than simply to turn back to Darwin, who’s already been long scraped over.

    “I ask because the stuff Gregory linked is all over the place in meanings. So you need to be very clear.”

    D.S. Wilson’s cultural evolutionism and the Evolution Institute, ‘evonomics’, promotion of ‘evolutionary science’ (sounds almost like a GUT or theory of everything sometimes). So take a position & express yourself on this. Can you not at least articulate what you think makes it ‘all over the place’?

    Joe Felsenstein at least knows more about specifically why he rejects Wilson’s approach re: group selection. Could you articulate why you reject or just fail to understand Wilson’s ‘evolution for everyone’ approach, as an atheist bio-anthropologist who is trying to culturally materialize religion for ideological purposes, dressed as a strictly scientific ‘view of life’? Who knows, maybe you’ll notice some parallels between the Evolution Institute and say, the Discovery Institute, and share about it here. That would turn into a contribution, rather than just fume spraying.

    What about you pseudonymous Entropy – can you give us some background to see if your knowledge is trustworthy, or do you just throw shade on how ‘careful’ other people? Are you a ‘practising natural scientist’ yourself, or not? Your note to me was vague & did not specify so-called ‘equivocations’. If you’re a biologist, it would likely take more than a blog discussion to change your mind and way of thinking.

    All I can say is good luck, it might take more effort than you’ve been willing to invest so far. Biologists and other natural scientists (my closest colleague now is one of ‘those’ folks), are, let’s be honest, usually categorical idiots, like all specialists, when it comes to things like ‘social Darwinism,’ cultural evolution and ideological evolutionism. Very few of them have taken the time to read more than just a first taste of the available literature (which also simply makes sense, such that no natural scientist should be defensive about it). That a person should take something so obvious as unwelcome news, just makes for imbalanced & awkward communication. Then again, this is a zone for ‘skeptics’, so there ya go.

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  13. Kantian Naturalist,

    “Just out of curiosity, do you think that every institution, business, or facility is determined by the intentions and beliefs of its founders?”

    When philosophers speak about practical topics outside of their realm it is often amusing. KN’s nonsense outside of philosophy must be put on notice again.

    Determined? Do you mean focussing only on the ‘efficient’ cause, i.e. the ‘founders’? And no attention at all on the formal cause or the final cause allowed? Ah, right, KN’s cultural naturalism squashed together with ideological scientism requires him to TOTALLY IGNORE formal and final causality in common social sciences topics like institutions, businesses, or facilities. It’s a flat agency he promotes, with jargon specifically aimed at obfuscating people regarding the existence of the human soul in a divine universe.

    The abstract, depersonalising nonsense of USAmerican philosophers seems to have no limits these days.

    The OP is there Dr. KN. Can’t you rise up to address it & play fair? Swamidass’ ‘methodological naturalistic’ views on ‘social Darwinism,’ along with Lents’, are waiting for your non-sophisticated, clear and honest assessment. Will you deliver it?

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  14. EricMH,

    Let me just say that, while it’s not really credible anymore (if it ever was) to ‘do it like the Discovery Institute does’, nevertheless, you are correct that eugenics isn’t just a ghost of a worldview in Sanger, nor are ‘clueless creationists’ the only ones who know about this.

    “Eugenics is the attempt to solve the problem from the biological and evolutionary point of view. You may bring all the changes possible on “Nurture” or environment, the Eugenist may say to the Socialist, but comparatively little can be effected until you control biological and hereditary elements of the problem. Eugenics thus aims to seek out the root of our trouble, to study humanity as a kinetic, dynamic, evolutionary organism, shifting and changing with the successive generations, rising and falling, cleansing itself of inherent defects, or under adverse and dysgenic influences, sinking into degeneration and deterioration.” – Sanger (https://www.gutenberg.org/files/1689/1689-h/1689-h.htm)

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  15. Gregory: Let me guess, you promote using ‘evolutionary’ theories in social sciences and humanities, including bloated usage in fields from anthropology & political science, to market research, business development & ‘literary Darwinism’?

    Neither. I just followed your links and found that you were misrepresenting and discussing as if they all referred to the very same “Social Darwinism,’ even though at least one of them is clearly about rescuing the concept for something different to its nowadays common “incantations” (I doubt such “rescuing” can be done, but to each their own). You didn’t notice, so I pointed it out. Up to you to follow, but I’m not going to spell it out for you. You have shown little interest in engaging, and a lot of interest on “blaming.” So, it has to come from your own effort or it won’t happen. I’m not holding my breath though.

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  16. Gregory:
    If you’re a biologist, it would likely take more than a blog discussion to change your mind and way of thinking.

    Holy crap. Are you serious? Do you sincerely believe that being fixed on some limited ideas and ways of thinking only happens to biologists? In my experience it’s hard to change the ideas and ways of thinking of almost anybody.

    I’d tell you to lead by example, but I doubt you have the capacity. The irony is beyond belief.

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  17. Entropy,

    “You didn’t notice, so I pointed it out.”

    Sorry champ, don’t make me laugh. Wow, you pointed out a word (actually, combo duo) that has ‘multiple competing hypotheses’ and ‘definitions.’ Thanks for telling the obvious. Many of us have known this for decades. What next?

    Try starting like this, if you wish to make an actual contribution. This is how contributors talk:
    “In my readings of D.S. Wilson’s ‘social Darwinism’ … here is what I have a problem with: ___________________________________________________. And while “I doubt such ‘rescuing’ can be done” for the ideology of ‘social Darwinism’ as WIlson & Johnson promote, I suspect the following reasons are why not a small ‘movement’ has already formed around ‘evolution for everyone’: _____’My reasons’ (not just hot air)____________________________________.

    For goodness sake, it’s alright to stop being fixated on ‘social Darwinism’, if that throws a person into a fit of feeling confounded, and just fine instead to speak about Wilson’s, Pinker’s, Harris’, Dawkins’, et al’s. ideological evolutionism. Are you going to make the massively genius observation (for a lowly biologist) that many varieties of it occur as well, and that those 4 persons each hold a slightly different version of ideological evolutionism? If so, please say a bit more specifically about that, as obviously you claim to know more about it than most people, even more than someone like me who has ‘professionally’ (it was part of my paid work) studied ideological evolutionism?

    So, then put some actual content to your imprecise, informal, somewhat condescending & whiny complaint. What specifically do you reject or just ‘doubt’ about Wilson’s usage of ‘social Darwinism’ and why? What do you doubt or reject about ideological evolutionism, if you even acknowledge its existence as a problem? Be specific; read, then quote his own words.

    I’ve written a LOT about this already &amp & quoted many of the promoters on all sides; won’t waste more time on it here with insincere, stubborn ‘anti-spiritual’ down-directed people. Sorry, trying to goad me to make an effort for lazy, unrepentant, unexplorative atheists doesn’t work. Show sincerity & respect to non-materialists & non-naturalists in your words and the conversation quickly changes.

    “Do you sincerely believe that being fixed on some limited ideas and ways of thinking only happens to biologists?”

    Uh, no.

    It sure seems like it must be so difficult for you to open up a bit and say if you’re a natural scientist or not! That would give people more context to decide for themselves, based on their interpretation of your writing, if you know the slightest thing you pretend to know about ‘social Darwinism.’ It does not appear to me that you have the faintest idea about the impact of ideological evolutionism on society & culture and more importantly, that you wish to continue to obscure it, so that others won’t know that ideology is currently in operation among many biologists & myopic natural scientists.

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  18. Gregory,

    You cannot read, can you?

    I don’t fucking care about Wilson, I’m telling you that you’re talking about those “Social Darwinisms” as if they were identical things, telling us that Joshua says scientists reject it, yet you note that another scientist actively “promotes it” elsewhere. The “social darwinism” claimed to be rejected by Joshua is not the same as the one “promoted” by the other scientist. From your lack of reading comprehension of my comments, I doubt that you can tell the difference. I doubt that you knew there was a difference, and I doubt that you’re going to check what you wrote and then notice, from actually reading the link you provided yourself, where you err.

    And, please, don’t complain to me about condescension unless you’re willing to look at the beam in thy own eye.

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  19. Gregory:
    It sure seems like it must be so difficult for you to open up a bit and say if you’re a natural scientist or not! That would give people more context to decide for themselves, based on their interpretation of your writing, if you know the slightest thing you pretend to know about ‘social Darwinism.’

    I’m not even talking about social darwinism itself Gregory. I’m just pointing out that by following the links you provided I noticed that the social darwinisms you were talking about as if they were the same are not.

    Nobody needs to know what I do for a living in order to read and notice this simple fact by themselves. It doesn’t take more than a middle-school education to go and actually read.

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  20. Entropy,

    “The ‘social darwinism’ claimed to be rejected by Joshua is not the same as the one ‘promoted’ by the other scientist.”

    Ding, ding, ding! Let’s give the natural scientist a prize. = P

    What does S. Joshua Swamidass say to that? He can be a prize judge.

    D.S. Wilson, the evolutionary biologist, is a current day ‘social Darwinist’ and is promoting cultural evolution and ideological evolutionism at the Evolution Institute. Swamidass is ‘promoting’ something different. You’re getting it, Entropy, nice work.

    I am certainly not conflating what you now call ‘those “Social Darwinisms”.’ They are clear and distinct in my mind in most cases, while there are indeed people who take linguistically relativistic or ‘intersectional’ approach to the topic, and are very difficult to ‘pin down’ on purpose. Keep calm & carry on.

    Swamidass is obviously quite confused as a ‘thinker’ (not as MD or computationalist) on this particular topic in contrast with others, & does an awful lot of terminological conflating with his clumsy, ‘practitioner’ approach to ‘science’. It’s a major communications issue that leaves better theory much to be desired. His GA -> GAE will indeed need to face social Darwinism in a more responsible, significant and mature way than Swamidass has yet done. When he eventually does, that prediction won’t come any longer as a surprise, and it won’t matter if Swamidass cares about it or not.

    “I’m not even talking about social darwinism itself”

    Sigh. Uh huh. Really?

    It sounds like you’re correct & I should just stop resisting & concede your brilliance. Is this what you’re requiring of a dialogue partner with you in order to proceed ‘rationally’? Of course, after too many years of impractical schooling in SSH, with over-focus on history, theory & methodology, reading is actually a really difficult thing for me. Arduous & rarely done. Not daily or hourly, of course not. Same thing with writing and putting together coherent sentences, both shorter and longer. I just can’t and don’t do that and never have. Both writing & speaking are hugely problematic. And it’s not just anti-religious and ‘un-spiritual’ people who make such accusations towards me. (Sarcasm off.)

    Well, unfortunately for you then, that ‘social Darwinism’ is what this thread is about. So, um, please go away. Thanks. Good day.

    As for me, I do care about what Wilson’s ideological evolutionism means & how it is promoted by small legions of people nowadays under various guises. Taking the “it doesn’t exist” approach is to represent a conspiracy theory that is too laughable to swallow anymore. The risks to humanity are too large to leave them to destructive voices fanning the flames of conflict, isolation & despair in the names of a Hobbes-Malthus-Darwin combination. Indeed, this does happen often in the ‘guns, germs & steel’ version of ideological evolutionism widely on sale at any local USAmerican or Canadian bookstore near you.

    ‘Social Darwinism’ can be safely treated as a side show to the larger cultural problem that ‘methodological naturalism’ poses through people like Swamidass & Entropy, an ideology that disallows (or just conveniently hushes) other ‘non-naturalistic’ ways of perceiving the world. They would frame the conversation so that they can’t or won’t ‘get it’ and at the same time ‘can’t lose’ because their minds have been so trained over many years to ‘block it out’ in their tribal natural science classrooms. It is actually a significant social issue that many people are curious to hear more about (because it is not on the radar of N. American scholars), not just one that can be reduced or restricted to natural scientific methodology or empirical evidence, but rather one raising the issue of communications itself.

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  21. Gregory:
    Kantian Naturalist,

    When philosophers speak about practical topics outside of their realm it is often amusing. KN’s nonsense outside of philosophy must be put on notice again.

    Determined? Do you mean focussing only on the ‘efficient’ cause, i.e. the ‘founders’? And no attention at all on the formal cause or the final cause allowed? Ah, right, KN’s cultural naturalism squashed together with ideological scientism requires him to TOTALLY IGNORE formal and final causality in common social sciences topics like institutions, businesses, or facilities. It’s a flat agency he promotes, with jargon specifically aimed at obfuscating people regarding the existence of the human soul in a divine universe.

    The abstract, depersonalising nonsense of USAmerican philosophers seems to have no limits these days.

    The OP is there Dr. KN. Can’t you rise up to address it & play fair? Swamidass’ ‘methodological naturalistic’ views on ‘social Darwinism,’ along with Lents’, are waiting for your non-sophisticated, clear and honest assessment. Will you deliver it?

    I was not addressing you and I shall not be.

    2+
  22. Gregory:
    Ding, ding, ding! Let’s give the natural scientist a prize. = P

    Yet you treated them as if they were the same “champ.” Don’t you get it?

    Gregory:
    What does S. Joshua Swamidass say to that? He can be a prize judge.

    Why should Joshua say anything about that? That wasn’t what he was talking about! Are you really that, ahem, obtuse?

    ETA: A gift that shall help you out here.

    0
  23. Kantian Naturalist,

    “I was not addressing you and I shall not be.”

    Yes, I’d prefer not to communicate with a proven incorrigible anti-religious naturalist philosophist either. Yes, “unanticipated consequences of intentional social actions” is a thing. Please stop knocking people off course with your titillating yet uninspiring & unedifying intellectual emergencies du jour. Thanks!

    Only sincere people interested in seeking & exploring should engage here.

    0
  24. Gregory: Yes, I’d prefer not to communicate with a proven incorrigible anti-religious naturalist philosophist either.

    Using the “ignore” button might help.

    1+
  25. Alan Fox: Using the “ignore” button might help.

    How do you deal with the fact that there’s shirt buttons? Now that’s sassy, I mean saucy. Specially because fashion designers talk abundantly and promote shirt buttons and many other buttons today in all departmental stores. You hypocrites, intellectual inferiors, keep stepping aside of this issue showing how tenuous and small-minded you biologists anti-religious naturalists truly are. Let me guess. You promote the use of buttons in every single area of politics, science, society, and morality. You don’t see the peril of fashion designers’ approach to buttons, but I do! I’m the only one in the knowledge of the peril of buttons. Ignoring the issue as if it doesn’t exist is a joke of a conspiracy theory. You’re lucky to have my superior intellect to help you out, but I won’t until you learn to respect my superiority and bend the knee.

    2+
  26. “Don’t you get it?”

    Double sigh. (Ah yes, one who won’t say what they’re defending, just attack the other. Such a bore.)

    Multiple social Darwinisms. Check. Got it. Don’t think I wasn’t aware of that before writing the OP. Yet that’s what you’re stuck thinking so far.

    Swamidass isn’t on the hook for anything here at TSZ & once again it does not seem he will come to face the music I’m playing here for him outside of his PS safe space. That will change soon, as there are other venues he won’t be able to ignore or avoid.

    Admittedly, S. Joshua Swamidass’ views on social Darwinism, cultural evolution & evolutionism are not clear to me. I extremely doubt they are clear to himself either. And I expect them not to be because he has little to no training to have learned how to figure it out. He has not (yet) been able to express himself clearly or coherently on the topic, from what I’ve seen of his few loose attempts.

    I expect that Entropy has as little or likely even less familiarity with this topic compared to Swamidass.

    “Why should Joshua say anything about that?”

    Another thing I already wrote about in the OP.

    “People like Swamidass, promoting something not too dissimilar from D.S. Wilson’s “Evolution for Everyone,” often underestimate the power of dehumanizing evolutionary rhetoric that is found and used in social sciences and humanities.”

    1) notice the difference between “not too dissimilar” & the accusation being made against me stating I’ve said “the same” above by an anti-religion ‘skeptic’ here?

    2) Swamidass ‘should’ do what he feels called to do. He’s recently suggested he wants to add ‘art’ to PS, which means he’ll need to include SSH voices in a different way than he has made space for so far. I doubt he will address social Darwinism in a profound or even significant way anytime soon. He is posturing to another audience and doesn’t need me to reach it, though he should be more careful, forgiving and exploring than he has been, especially regarding what he doesn’t know he got from Jon Garvey first through me and a few others.

    What I can almost guarantee is this: Swamidass will not acknowledge *anything* I say as having value to him or his work, even if my writings are what stirred him to speak about that topic in the first place. This is his bane, now that he has outted & doxxed me, instead apologizing to Moderators here, not to me who he digitally attacked publicly. Joshua’s his own man, individualistically confident in what he is doing, using ideological scientism against his brothers & sisters as a pastime nowadays, trying to start a movement. Let’s see how it goes, while being careful to warn unsuspecting brothers & sisters of what is behind the no doubt incredibly tempting message he is now feeding the claiming there is, & he is leading it, a “Science of Adam”.

    There is no need to tell Swamidass what he can & can’t do because he has shown will come in an attempt to swallow anyone who has a better argument than him ‘outside’ of science, using only ‘strictly scientific’ answers, using what he mistakes as ‘methodological naturalism’, as a weapon. This he is using, whether intended or not, to erase any humanistic voices that he doesn’t want sitting in the Empty Chair & speaking about the huge danger that his GAE hypothesis poses, not just to atheists & agnostics who will now have to confront the possibility of a ‘real, historical A&E’ anew, but also more significantly for the Abrahamic monotheists who will undoubtedly be negatively or highly negatively affected by this ‘only a liberal evangelical Protestant would even be attempting it’ move by Swamidass, along with Garvey, Ang, & others. For now, that compartmentalizing & partitioning keeps it safe & sanitized for Swamidass at PS, but once out of his bubble, it’s likely going to cause significant problems that it does not seem he has yet considered.

    “I’m the only one in the knowledge of the peril of buttons.”

    But of course you are! = P

    0
  27. Alan Fox,

    Only for the vicious anti-religious who have attacked me personally here. There are only a couple who have done that. Not nice! : ( Imo, the ‘ignore’ button has been a bad option that has served to close off important discussions at TSZ. It is used in Dawkins-like fear & trembling of certain arguments delivered by certain ‘difficult’ people for them (e.g. refusing to debate W.L. Craig) because they cannot overcome that person’s reasoning & live, ongoing monumental appeal. And so rather than most likely ‘lose’ the debate, or even participate properly, for the possible benefit of others, they just choose not to play.

    Atheists & agnostics getting out-matched in reasoned public debate by Abrahamic monotheists brings as much appreciation from people of those faiths, as hammering on YECists likely does for most of the ‘skeptics’ participating here, make no mistake about that. Yet there is a different background context and ‘moral universe’ in which ‘winning a debate’ against an opponent actually matters and has different meaning for the Abrahamic monotheist, in contrast with the atheist or agnostic. This difference is a result, as much as upbringing & environment also play a role, of personal choice & free will demonstrated in action. The fact that a few philosophists doubt their own free will merely serves to turn the conversation sometimes into a slow grind.

    KN isn’t anti-religious, at least not explicitly or overtly. And I certainly don’t hate him and am not ‘angry’ with him. There’s no need to ‘ignore’ him completely. His anti-religiosity is implicit and covert in the way his ‘naturalism’ is presented as opposed to ‘theism’ within his worldview as expressed here. Marking recognition of this makes communication difficult between KN & I because to me that ‘background/core’ makes the biggest difference, while for him it is meaningless & marginal to any philosophical ‘dialogue’. Kinda hard to make much progress with strangers under such conditions.

    This is an interesting new thread over at PS, btw, which will have an impact on future discussions in science, philosophy, theology/worldview discourse that don’t avoid ‘social Darwinism’, cultural evolution and evolutionism. Difficult to miss the implications on that conversation for the one meant in this thread’s OP. https://discourse.peacefulscience.org/t/david-kwon-and-the-genealogical-adam-and-eve/7906

    0
  28. Gregory,

    I think I get that, for some, religious belief is an issue that raises emotions. For me, the issue is a matter of personal choice. Everyone should get to make their own choices*. Other than that, let it be.

    *I know, when do kids get to choose? The hard problem of religion!

    0
  29. Alan Fox,

    “religious belief is an issue that raises emotions.”

    Yes, for those not numbed to ‘religion’ nowadays, it surely does. I take a both/and view, rather than your either/or. Belief is both a matter of personal choice and also raises emotions, again, to the emotionally not-numb or callous.

    As an apatheist, you’re pretty much in the worst position of anyone to listen to about taking a stand, Mr. Fox. It means you don’t care. How could you even possibly show you do care & would that display possibly even be real in your heart or again just fake?

    0
  30. Gregory: As an apatheist, you’re pretty much in the worst position of anyone to listen to about taking a stand, Mr. Fox.

    I am taking a stand, nonetheless. I support your right to religious belief and its practice.

    It means you don’t care.

    I do care that there should be freedom of thought and free expression of those thoughts. What sets me off is when a person or group decides that their personal ideas are somehow enforceable on others.

    How could you even possibly show you do care & would that display possibly even be real in your heart or again just fake?

    Pretty much an impossible goal. Live and let live gets round that.

    0
  31. Gregory: Double sigh. (Ah yes, one who won’t say what they’re defending, just attack the other. Such a bore.)

    I’m not defending anything Grog*gy. For the Nth time, I’m telling you that you’re equivocating, and that’s obvious from just reading what’s behind those links you provided but failed to read yourself.

    The Social Darwinism Joshua talks about is light years away from the Social Darwinism Wilson “promotes.” Should you happen to read what Wilson wrote you’d easily understand that the differences are abysmal. But you don’t want to, or are unable to, since it doesn’t align with your deeply-ingrained-prejudices you just read your prejudices into what Wilson wrote.

    Joshua doesn’t need to address your misinformed interpretations of Wilson’s aims, again, because that’s not the Social Darwinism he was talking about. Why is this so hard for you to understand?

    There you have it, once again. It’s ignore button vs fashion-designer buttons. You think that those who talk about ignore buttons should address fashion designers’ buttons. Well, if you don’t understand why that doesn’t happen then the problem is all yours.

    (WL Craig? Really? That guy is, and has been, easily dismantled too many times already. Of course, you wouldn’t know that, given your illiteracy and strong-leaning towards accepting all kinds of equivocations, as valid premises. I must guess this is so, only if those equivocations align with your deeply ingrained, blinding, prejudices. Oh, and don’t let anybody point to those prejudices, if Grog*gy said so it is so!)

    1+
  32. Alan Fox,

    “I am taking a stand, nonetheless. I support your right to religious belief and its practice.”

    It sure doesn’t appear so from where I sit. Can you put a name on what ‘stand’ are you taking? You supporting my right to take a stand, which I exercise my right to do along with many, if not most others, does not provide a substitute for you taking a stand yourself. One cannot live through proxy of another’s belief, but rather must be responsible & accountable for their own worldview themself.

    0
  33. Gregory:
    Alan Fox,

    It sure doesn’t appear so from where I sit. Can you put a name on what ‘stand’ are you taking?

    On the right everyone should have to practice the religion of their choice and not to follow any religious practice if that is their choice.

    You supporting my right to take a stand, which I exercise my right to do along with many, if not most others, does not provide a substitute for you taking a stand yourself.

    I stand with secularism – separation of Church and State.

    One cannot live through proxy of another’s belief, but rather must be responsible & accountable for their own worldview themself.

    I can’t (and I don’t think anyone else can) choose what to believe or easily change those beliefs even in the light of contra-evidence. Emotion plays a huge part in belief.

    1+
  34. Have you guys never heard of the Naturalistic Fallacy?

    You might as well be saying that Social Newtonism says we have to throw people off of tall buildings because the laws of gravity demand that they fall.

    Theories are descriptive, not prescriptive. This is basic philosophy.

    2+
  35. T_aquaticus,

    Yup, heard of it.

    Social Darwinism is not a ‘theory.’ It is an ideology.

    Do you know anything about the difference between a ‘theory’ and an ‘ideology’? Please give an example of an ideology that has plagued the field of biology. There are options.

    One thing is clear: knowing what “social Darwinism” means to people, is not the expertise of biologists. Can that simple point of fact be agreed? Or is this yet another of those unique topics that biologists for some reason think they know a LOT about when they really don’t?

    0
  36. Gregory:
    T_aquaticus,
    Do you know anything about the difference between a ‘theory’ and an ‘ideology’? Please give an example of an ideology that has plagued the field of biology. There are options.

    That’s like asking what type of cars scientists drive. One has nothing to do with the other. People push ideologies, not science. It just so happens that scientists are also people. Whatever ideologies they push has nothing to do with the actual practice of doing science.

    One thing is clear: knowing what “social Darwinism” means to people, is not the expertise of biologists. Can that simple point of fact be agreed? Or is this yet another of those unique topics that biologists for some reason think they know a LOT about when they really don’t?

    Why can’t a scientist be an expert on how people misrepresent science?

    1+
  37. So you’re suggesting that the ideologies natural scientists push (“Whatever ideologies they push”) do not actually appear in their publications EVER? That scientists’ ideologies are necessarily both invisible & also irrelevant to readers & listeners? Iow, you seem to be suggesting that natural scientists not only do not, but they simply *cannot* write ideologically. That is, no science papers contain any ideology & not a single scientific paper has even contained ideology at all! ; )

    Both positions are full of holes. Biologists obviously have blind spots. This regularly appears as one of them.

    “Why can’t a scientist be an expert on how people misrepresent science?”

    That’s not what they study. That’s what scholars in HPSS study. And most natural scientists simply haven’t taken the time required and looked at this topic closely, only holding anecdotal evidence.

    John Ziman’s not a bad example to answer your question. A rare few natural scientists have focussed “on how people misrepresent science.” But the lion’s share of leaders on this topic are not natural scientists themselves. The reasons for this make sense to most people.

    0
  38. Gregory:
    So you’re suggesting that the ideologies natural scientists push (“Whatever ideologies they push”) do not actually appear in their publications EVER?

    If they appear in papers then they are ideologies, not science.

    That scientists’ ideologies are necessarily both invisible & also irrelevant to readers & listeners?

    They are irrelevant TO THE SCIENCE. Not everything a scientist does is science. If a scientist judges a pie contest that doesn’t make pie judging scientific. If a scientist critiques the artistic value of a Monet painting, that doesn’t make art critique scientific.

    Iow, you seem to be suggesting that natural scientists not only do not, but they simply *cannot* write ideologically.

    I have expressly stated that scientists can write ideologically, but that it is irrelevant to the science.

    Biologists obviously have blind spots.

    Of course they do. They are human just like the rest of us. This is why science is tentative, and it is based on empirical evidence instead of a scientist’s say so. This is why scientists are challenged by other scientists on a regular basis.

    John Ziman’s not a bad example to answer your question. A rare few natural scientists have focussed “on how people misrepresent science.” But the lion’s share of leaders on this topic are not natural scientists themselves. The reasons for this make sense to most people.

    Unfortunately, some of the people who misrepresent science the most are in the ID and creationist communities.

    1+
  39. “Eugenics is certainly ‘grounded in biology’ as it’s about breeding & “the genetic quality of a human population”.”

    Eugenics is a set of prescriptions which are not found in biology. Nowhere in biology does it say that we should prevent one person from breeding, or kill another. Nowhere in biology does it give us the tools to assign human values to genetic traits. You might as well say that terrorism is grounded in aerodynamics because terrorists use airplanes.

    Biology can only tell us what the results of our actions will be. It can’t tell us what actions we should take.

    3+
  40. T_aquaticus,

    It continues to surprise me why you persist in fighting with caricatures of reality, rather than embracing the real thing. You can hear something real that you are missing at least echoing over at PS. It is faint or inaudible most of the time here.

    “I have expressly stated that scientists can write ideologically, but that it is irrelevant to the science.”

    Only can? If you admit can & do, then check, we are agreed. There are tons of examples of this & many studies & publications have been made on the topic. Social Darwinism is just one ideology held by scientists like D.S. Wilson. Naturalistic evolutionism is grotesquely over-extended, yet most biologist haven’t even a clue what it means, even while they are speaking & writing it often enough in their works. Framing so many things as if their only ‘relevance’ in life involves, ‘what does this have to do with science?’, meaning natural science, displays a rather shallow view of reality.

    This thread & me writing the OP obviously isn’t “just about natural science.” Maybe because you’re a biologist, you think everything is ‘natural’? Other people are of course free to ‘organize their ideas in their own minds’ differently than you do and reach a different conclusion, thus restricting severely or eliminating ideological naturalism entirely. For you, these people are crazy & simply ‘wrong’, is that correct?

    “Not everything a scientist does is science.”

    Right, like when a natural scientist smuggles their personal ideologies into their science. How often do you think that happens? Where can it be observed, and how can it be recognized? This question especially arises if one is actually trained to miss the ideology-in-action on purpose by adhering to ‘methodological naturalism’, and also because they embrace it within their atheistic/agnostic worldview. There is just no ‘worldview’ incentive for the anti-religious in this case to realize the power of ideas in peoples’ personal lives, if that would serve to be perceived as a challenge or threat to their scientism, materialism, physicalism, naturalism, empiricism &/or rationalism. These are the ideologies held by the vast majority of ‘skeptics’ of the divine & spiritual.

    Don’t look at evolutionary psychology if you don’t want to get stuck in the volume of ideological noise in the ‘field’. You can even read about this in your own home field in Alexander & Numbers’ Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins, if you would allow such contentious & highly complicated (for naturalists) knowledge into your system. Otherwise, it looks so far like a rather pointless conversation filled with unnecessary denial & diversion from what is more important.

    IDism & creationism are ideologies held by people who smuggle their personal worldview into their ‘pseudo-‘ or ‘quasi-sciences.’ Aren’t we agreed on that?! The same of course holds for ideological evolutionism among biologists, just like yourself, T_aquaticus. There’s no need to avoid this best description of the reality on the ground among evolutionary biologists themselves. Isn’t it a bit pointless to deny this sociological feature of the field of evolutionary biology, that it is made up disproportionately of atheists, agnostics & anti-religious folks? A study was done recently in evolutionary psychology pointing out just that, which the ‘scientists’ (lol) didn’t realize because they’d somehow never stopped to actually think about the ideologies they-themselves hold & how that strongly determines, expedites or restricts the entry or exit of certain people into/out of the field.

    Irreflexive biologists most often simply cannot adequately identify the ideologies they are using while they ‘do science’ and in their published writings, in their case, in evolutionary biology journals.

    Such a gap likely marks the end of this conversation, just like it was a non-starter with S. Joshua Swamidass who continues to display biologistic confusion & reductionism regarding human beings in his Lents partnership. Such is the kind of cultural ideology Swamidass is still stuck in, aside from his laudable ‘scientific’ work, which you’re right, is largely irrelevant.

    0
  41. Gregory:
    It continues to surprise me why you persist in fighting with caricatures of reality, rather than embracing the real thing.

    Irony noted.

    Social Darwinism is just one ideology held by scientists like D.S. Wilson. Naturalistic evolutionism is grotesquely over-extended, yet most biologist haven’t even a clue what it means, even while they are speaking & writing it often enough in their works. Framing so many things as if their only ‘relevance’ in life involves, ‘what does this have to do with science?’, meaning natural science, displays a rather shallow view of reality.

    The reality is that Social Darwinism is not science. If your argument is simply that scientists hold to ideologies like every other single human, then I would agree.

    This thread & me writing the OP obviously isn’t “just about natural science.” Maybe because you’re a biologist, you think everything is ‘natural’? Other people are of course free to ‘organize their ideas in their own minds’ differently than you do and reach a different conclusion, thus restricting severely or eliminating ideological naturalism entirely. For you, these people are crazy & simply ‘wrong’, is that correct?

    If someone says that Social Darwinism is scientific or backed by science then I think they are wrong. I also think it is wrong to keep spreading the falsehood that they are in some way related through science, especially when the goal is to cynically attack science because of already held religious beliefs.

    Right, like when a natural scientist smuggles their personal ideologies into their science. How often do you think that happens? Where can it be observed, and how can it be recognized? This question especially arises if one is actually trained to miss the ideology-in-action on purpose by adhering to ‘methodological naturalism’, and also because they embrace it within their atheistic/agnostic worldview.

    The scientific method is actually one of the best ways of detecting ideologies. It may not be the only method, but it sure is a handy and effective one. Ideologies are based on subjective human values. Science is based on empirical facts and the scientific method. I define nature as whatever science can study, so it requires repeatable empirical observations and hypothesis testing.

    As for my ideologies, I tend to lean towards rational skepticism. I also have adopted some of the ideologies of secular humanism. There are many ideologies that I carry around with me, but I don’t pretend they are scientific. I also don’t adhere to any ideology completely or dogmatically. Like anyone else, I am constantly adjusting my views as I go through life. I don’t hold to any dogmatic absolutes . . . except that one. Does that work for you?

    There is just no ‘worldview’ incentive for the anti-religious in this case to realize the power of ideas in peoples’ personal lives, if that would serve to be perceived as a challenge or threat to their scientism, materialism, physicalism, naturalism, empiricism &/or rationalism. These are the ideologies held by the vast majority of ‘skeptics’ of the divine & spiritual.

    Is that an ideology you are pushing?

    Don’t look at evolutionary psychology if you don’t want to get stuck in the volume of ideological noise in the ‘field’. You can even read about this in your own home field in Alexander & Numbers’ Biology and Ideology from Descartes to Dawkins, if you would allow such contentious & highly complicated (for naturalists) knowledge into your system. Otherwise, it looks so far like a rather pointless conversation filled with unnecessary denial & diversion from what is more important.

    I would agree that there has been a lot of bad science in that field. No one is saying that scientists are infallible or that every scientific paper should be taken as absolute truth.

    IDism & creationism are ideologies held by people who smuggle their personal worldview into their ‘pseudo-‘ or ‘quasi-sciences.’ Aren’t we agreed on that?! The same of course holds for ideological evolutionism among biologists, just like yourself, T_aquaticus.

    Oh, this should be good. Please, finish your mind reading and tell me about this ideological evolutionism that I hold. Please, go ahead.

    4+

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