Evolution and the Church, plus “You’re Going to Get the Coronavirus”

Evolution and the Church, plus “You’re Going to Get the Coronavirus” February 25, 2020


Borneo, in a foggy rainforest but still alive and intact
In a rainforest in Borneo (Wikimedia Commons public domain image)


Science & Mormonism Series 1: Cosmos, Earth, and Man LDS Statements on Evolution and the Origin of Man

Part of our book chapter reprint series, this article originally appeared in Science & Mormonism Series 1: Cosmos, Earth, and Man (2016).

Abstract:This book section is composed of three parts. The first part contains the 1992 BYU packet on evolution and the origin of man that was prepared for distribution to students seeking authoritative answers by the Church on the subject. The second part contains the history and background of the BYU packet. The third part contains “all known statements relating to evolution and the origin of man from Presidents of the Church that were made while they served as president, and that were not already part of the BYU packet. Private letters to individuals have not been included. In addition an article from the Encyclopedia of Mormonism by John L. Sorenson on the origin of man is reprinted.”




“Virginia Tech paleontologists identify 1 billion-year-old green seaweed fossils, ancestors to modern land plants”


“Why DNA tests are suddenly unpopular: 23andMe and Ancestry are laying off workers as interest in their DNA tests declines.”




“To tackle the new coronavirus, scientists are accelerating the vaccine process: Researchers are turning to nontraditional approaches to create vaccines and therapeutics”


“You’re Likely to Get the Coronavirus: Most cases are not life-threatening, which is also what makes the virus a historic challenge to contain.”


“Very few infants seem to be getting sick with the new coronavirus: Scientists aren’t sure why kids seem to be more protected”




I really like the distinction that Tom Chivers makes here between “high decouplers” and “low decouplers”:


“‘Eugenics is possible’ is not the same as ‘eugenics is good’: Rows involving Richard Dawkins and Andrew Sabisky reveal how difficult it is to ‘decouple’ controversial concepts in our heads”


In my own self-evaluation, I’m a quite high high-decoupler.  And that has gotten me into rows with low-decouplers, and, I’m pretty confident, with people who pretend to be lower low-decouplers than they actually are in order to score illegitimate rhetorical points.  They grow tiresome, but they can be very loud.




I hope that you’ve seen the movie Hidden Figures.  If you haven’t, you should.  If you have, this item from the news will mean something to you:


“NASA icon Katherine Johnson has died at the age of 101:  The African-American researcher helped break barriers for minorities and women in science”



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