Our Daily Bread

Our Daily Bread March 27, 2014

Ran into this while clicking around. Don’t know where it’s originally from:

Like I said, I don’t know where this is from, so I can’t say if its a real or a parody. Regardless, it’s just a more extreme version of something I’ve seen from creationists. They’ll ask, “If evolution is real, then why haven’t [dogs, whales, aardvarks, monkeys, etc.] learned to talk?”

The thinking seems to be that evolution is a fixed path that guides life forms to a higher state, represented by humans. They don’t seem to realize that this is a species of vitalism, which argues that living creatures have a sort of energy that pushes them up the evolutionary ladder. It is the opposite of our modern materialistic view. While Darwin wasn’t a complete materialist, his theory rejected vitalism.

Interestingly, the historian of science Robert J. Richards has argued that despite the reputation for being Darwinists, the Nazis rejected materialism and the more passive understanding of evolution in favor of a species of vitalism:

Among Nazi biologists, at least those publishing in an official organ of the Party, Mendelian genetics and de Vriesian mutation theory were favored, both vying at the beginning of the twentieth century to replace Darwinian theory. Moreover, the perceived mechanistic character of Darwinism stood in opposition to the more vitalistic conceptions of Nazi biologists and that of Hitler—or at least vitalism accords with the drift of his thought about race.

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