Mormon Discussion

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

"If Darwin were right, wouldn't we all still be turning into monkeys?" says a former bishop of mine

So, we are all up in arms as a nation about the Evolution Theory vs. Creationism/Intelligent Design (which, in my opinion, isn't intelligent whatsoever, but who I am? Just a random, mouthy blog-girl).

Although there is no official church doctrine (that I'm aware of and please, if anyone knows of come, direct me to it, because I would love to peruse it), there seems to be definite opinions on this subject. Most of which I've encountered lean towards the creationism view.

However, I have never been able to subscribe to this view. It, in my opinion, doesn't make sense. Either creationism isn't all that it's cracked up to be or Heavenly Father threw some fossils around as a cruel and evil joke.

For example, as I was walking around the science museum today, I was looking at dinosaur bones and fossilized poop (yes, poop!) that was dated millions of years old. And I don't have any problem believing that these items WERE that old.

I don't think the idea of evolution is mutually exclusive with the idea of a divine creator. And there apparently is no school of thought on this (perhaps I should make one up. Called Intelligent Evolution. I like that!).

"And again, verily I say unto you, he hath given a law unto all things, by which they move in their times and their seasons; And their courses are fixed, even the courses of the heavens and the earth, which comprehend the earth and all the planets. And they give light to each other in their times and in their seasons, in their minutes, in their hours, in their days, in their weeks, in their months, in their years—all these are one year with God, but not with man." --D&C 88:42-44

"But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." --2 Peter 3:8

Here is some (only a tiny bit of much that I found on scriptural reference that states, simply put, that God does not exist in the same timeframe we as humans do. Therefore, i feel it would be very naive of us to believe differently or to take time frames in scripture as given in our time. Sure, it says the Lord took 6 days to create the earth and on the 7th He rested. But, who's to say that 7 days=168 earth hours? We as humans have no idea what God's time is compared to ours. There is scriptural reference to a day equaling 1,000 years or something like that, but again, do we take this timeframe at face value and equate it to be an exact conversion? Or more like an estimate?

So, we can say that at best, we have a rough estimate of God's time to our time. More than likely, we have no clue. So, can we really say that it was a literal 7 days and deny the scriptures that say otherwise? I don't think we can, honestly.

Let's look at the theory of evolution in a rough, simple, what-can-I-remember-from-bio format.

Evolution is something like this:
Pangea--a massive land form. This eventually breaks apart into continents
Single cells--these are the first life forms. They eventually evolve into...
Animals--which then weed out the stragglers through the whole survival of the fittest. Eventually one of these animals evolves into...
Humans--which is where we are now.

Now, let's do a brief look at the creation story:
God created heaven and earth.
Then night and day, light and dark.
Then the firmament (which, I looked up, means the vault or expanse of the heavens; the sky).
Then water and earth.
Then grass, seeds, fruit, etc.
Then seasons and more light and stars.
Then sea creatures and air creatures.
Then He tells these things to be fruitful and multiply.
Then every other living creature that is on the earth.
Then humans.

So, if we look, the story of creation seems to follow a similar pattern to that of evolution. Earth. Water/land next. Then grass. Then sea/air creatures. Then we move onto the animals on the earth. Last, people. Pretty similar pattern, if you ask me.

Not to mention the fact that the water was to gather in "one place" which would imply that if all the water is gathered together, one could draw the conclusion that the earth was then drawn together by default in another area. Sounds like it may have been pangea.

Are these to ideas mutually exclusive? I don't think so. It says that God created the heaven and the earth. It doesn't say He snapped his fingers and the earth popped into existance. Perhaps God, who talks constantly about patience and long-suffering, was interested in seeing a slow fruition of His work, so he set in motion the process of slow compression of the parts of space to create Earth, as I learned about in science class in 8th grade. Perhaps he created sea creatures as one celled ameobas and then set in motion a process we now call evolution. Perhaps in there, the creatures that walked on the land were the creation of dinosaurs. They died off before humans did, so who's to say that that wasn't their entrance and exit?

There is astounding evidence for evolution. Do we deny it? Do I look over the artifacts at the science museum and close my eyes to what I see? Do I tell my future children that their science classes are not true? How can we deny so much evidence?

People are so quick to point out the flaws that they find in evolution, as if that somehow makes it false. But, look at any theory...look at any evolves, it grows. Things change. But the essential part of it stays the same. We used to think that you could cure insanity by putting people's heads in boxes. We were wrong. Were we wrong that insanity existed? That it needed to be treated? No. We were wrong on one area of it. Finding flaws doesn't mean it is false. It means one area has yet to be explained or has been explained incorrectly.

So, is it an absolute must that we choose one side or the other?

Or can we all just jump on board to my new creation, Intelligent Evolution?


  • I've heard the "fossils are a divine practical joke" argument all my life, and I've never understood how anyone could believe it. Why would a loving God of truth try to trick us?

    By Anonymous Serenity Valley, at 6:35 PM  

  • Everyone comes up with their own ideas on how to explain the unexplainable. There are some things that we will never know until we die. A young women leader once told us that God took the bones of dinosaurs from other earths and created our earth with those parts, but the dinosaurs never walked on our earth, we just have the bones. I hate when teachers teach their own philosophy and not doctrine. But who know?!

    By Blogger The Bluths, at 6:49 PM  

  • Just to be semantic, Pangea and the separation of continents are unrelated to evolution. Evolution is about speciation not geological changes.

    By Blogger Kim Siever, at 7:40 PM  

  • Perhaps you have not explored this particular corner of the bloggernacle--you might want to check out Mormons and Evolution and LDS Science Review.

    I have a post dealing with the recycled planets thing.

    Kim is right, but biogeography blurs the line a little (ie. where and when certain animals lived.)

    By Blogger Jared*, at 8:36 PM  

  • SV--that's what I was always confused about!

    TB--i agree--stick to doctrine, not philophy.

    KS--oops...well, as i said, i'm recalling this all from 10th grade bio--it's been awhile. :)

    jared--thanks for the links--i'll peruse. and you're right, i haven't perused this corner yet--i'm brand new to the naccle!

    By Blogger mellancollyeyes, at 9:49 PM  

  • The recycled planet theory hardly qualifies as philosophy. It's simply nonsense, which shouldn't be taught anywhere.

    By Blogger Hellmut, at 1:49 AM  

  • hellmut--please elaborate. recycled planet theory? i dont' know the technical terms, so if you are tlaking about something i talked about, please point me in the right direction. 10th grade bio, remember?

    By Blogger mellancollyeyes, at 5:37 PM  

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