The ongoing efforts by people in both the scientific and religious communities (or at least some of them) to prove that humankind simply self-developed by some sort of random selection – mutations of this and that – never cease, mainly because ceasing those attempts would be evidence that the mind of man cannot encompass the “origins.” Indeed, the religious aspect of the matter, i.e., that there was/is a Creator (God) engaging in “intelligent design” with regard to the world rises to prominence especially during every political cycle, as the affirmers and deniers of Intelligent Design try to box in the candidates on one or the other side of the issue, whether it be public schools or individual spirituality.
The candidates have been dancing around the issue, though none dares to speak with any “authority” (and justifiably so) since to do so alienates part of the electorate. Usually, the position taken is that the candidate believes in God and would just as soon not explain exactly how. For instance, on the Web site of Obama’s church is the insistence that the “cradle of civilization” is Africa, a claim terribly hard to prove, not to mention unpopular.
The reticence of the candidates on this matter is not matched by the scientists. This is the opening of a column by Robert S. Boyd (McClatchy media-chain) a few days ago: “Scientists have traced the origin of eyes back to a transparent blob of living jelly floating in the sea about 600 million years ago. … It was the precursor of the wildly different, ever more complex eyes of fish, ants, flies, giraffes and people.” This claim was made by biologists David Plachetzki and Todd Oakley of the University of California at Santa Barbara.
To date, the “missing link” connecting man to some form of ape and ape to some form of whatever else has not been found, though the news is occasionally purveyed that – VOILA! – that link just may have been discovered. So…what to do? Some paleobiologists claim that life began when the earth’s crust cooled some 4.3 billion years ago…in other words, the first global warming (Eat your heart out, Al Gore!), so claiming that something specific happened a mere 600,000,000 years ago is a piece of cake.
Are the anthropologists and biologists on a collision course here? Which came first, the eye or the other material (some call it “slime” that left the sea for the land) that eventually became man, assuming, of course, that man evolved by random selection and from the sea, as at least the anthropologists claim. The obvious next question, of course, is, “How did the eye and the slime get together, and where?” The next question might be, “How did either get along without the other for perhaps mega-mega-millennia while they were working their way toward becoming human beings?”
The scientists are putting their collective thumb in the eye of the religionists (no pun intended), who simply pooh-pooh the notion of random selection and may even claim (gasp) that man and woman were simply created spontaneously through “intelligent design,” though no one has the foggiest notion how that worked…or even when. The pesky religionists discount completely all the “forerunners” such as the primates and Neanderthals, and won’t even accept the term “homo sapiens” as applicable to the human being. To them, the “living-jelly-eye-blob” matter is so much nonsense, though many, if not most, religionists believe in evolution as a practical matter for explaining many “things.” They will not stand to have it applied to the creation “made in God’s image.”
According to the biologists, that blob of 600 million years ago (called Hydra), though transparent, could only distinguish light from dark and probably used its newfound light-sensitivity ability to help it find prey. If it had come along later – like about 1611, assuming it might have been able to read the King James version by that time – it would have understood why it needed to kill by remarking Proverbs 28:22, to wit, “He that hasteth to be rich hath an evil eye, and considereth not that poverty shall come upon him.” Whether to be rich in power, fame, or finances, the evil eye leads mankind into the paths of unrighteousness, and ever has it been so…and will be so…until poverty wins.
So…was the conscience of man (the religionists insist upon “soul”) introduced through a transparent eye or through the slime? Or…was it introduced by a Creator as already endowed with the knowledge – if not the determination to heed it – of right and wrong? In this corner, it’s the latter. Beware the “evil eye,” and be ready to correct it…or blind it!