Michael Ruse

In my view, none of our knowledge, including science, just “tells it like it is.” Knowledge, even the best scientific knowledge, interprets experience through human cultural understanding and experience, and above all (just as it is for poets and preachers) metaphor is the key to the whole enterprise. As I developed my own career path, as a historian and philosopher of evolutionary biology, this insight grew and grew. Everything was metaphorical — struggle for existence, natural selection, division of labor, genetic code, arms races and more.

If the person of faith wants to say that God created the world, I don’t think you can deny this on scientific grounds. But you can go after the theist on other grounds. I would raise philosophical objections: for example, about the notion of a necessary being. I would also fault Christian theology: I don’t think you can mesh the ancient Greek philosophers’ notion of a god outside time and space with the Jewish notion of a god as a person. But these are not scientific objections.

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1 Response to Michael Ruse

  1. shinichi says:

    Does Evolution Explain Religious Beliefs?

    by Gary Gutting

    This is the eighth in a series of interviews about religion that I am conducting for The Stone. The interviewee for this installment is Michael Ruse, a professor of philosophy at Florida State University and the author of the forthcoming book “Atheism: What Everyone Needs to Know.”

    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/07/08/does-evolution-explain-religious-beliefs/?_php=true&_type=blogs&ref=opinion&_r=0

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