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John Haught

Theologian John F Haught considers Darwinism to be a “reasonably close, though incomplete and abstract, approximation of the way life has developed on Earth.”Haught, God after Darwin: A Theology of Evolution 15. Unlike Rolston, he believes that the ‘self-limiting scope’ of the sciences will not be able to detect divine action in biological history, but that it exists nevertheless. As such, his view is explicitly a ‘theology of nature.’ He is sharply critical of the argument from design, and the ‘Intelligent Design’ movement in particular, arguing that “the metaphysics of divine humility ... explains the actual features of evolution much more intelligibly.”Haught, God after Darwin: A Theology of Evolution 55.

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John Haught

[1] Does Evolution ‘do the work of a friend’ for the Christian Religion?
Setting the scene - why focus on providence?
[2] Supposed challenges from the evolutionary sciences to theology
Intellectually fulfilled atheists?
A challenge to human uniqueness and status?
A challenge to purpose in creation?
A threat to the veracity of scripture?
Evolution ‘explains away’ theology?
A challenge to Christian morality?
The challenges in wider context - Darwin as a scapegoat?
[3] The current state of the evolutionary sciences
Different ways of conceptualising Darwinian evolution
Evolution as chance and necessity
Evolution as an algorithm
Evolution as movement within a ‘fitness landscape’
Ongoing debates: contingency versus convergence
Ongoing debates: what are the key causal factors in biological history?
Ongoing debates: the environment as the principle cause?
Ongoing debates: convergence as the principle cause?
Ongoing debates: ‘Universal biology’ as the principle cause?
The importance of moving from evolution as abstraction to particular history
Ongoing debates: directionality and progress
Ongoing debates: the origin of life
Different levels and kinds of selection?
[4] Responses from theology
Evolution, probabilities and providence
Responses from contemporary theologians
Holmes Rolston III
Keith Ward
Arthur Peacocke
An increased role for general providence?
Theology of Creation in the light of evolution: three scenarios
[5] Concluding remarks


Adrian Wyard
Adrian M Wyard MSt

See also:

The Relation of Science & Religion
Purpose and Design
The Argument From Design
The Anthropic Principle
Charles Darwin
DNA Double-Helix