Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Evolution of Morality?

I've been thinking a lot lately about different world views and how they each interact with morality and love. Take the Biblical world-view for example. I know that God has created man in his image. This gives humanity dignity and worth. I must respect and love others because God has endowed man in this way. Morality and affections such as love are the direct result of this special creation of mankind.

This love and respect is independent of whether or not the person is good or bad. They are still worthy. Now the confusion today is over what is loving. I can as a Christian and holding to a biblical world view, love a thief, and yet call on him to repent of their thievery. Truly loving a thief would necessitate my encouraging them to turn from a harmful and destructive sin. To ignore the sin while letting them accrue more and more consequences, would in fact be unloving.

How does this work within the framework of an atheistic, evolutionary world-view? What, if any reasons can be found for the existence of love and morality?

Love or Manipulation?

If we evolved. If we are the result of time, chance, and being fortunate enough to carry forth the stronger more adaptable genes, why should we love? The strong survive. There may be a case for relationships in which there could be some benefit or service to us, but that is all. Those that are weaker or of no advantage to us, would mean nothing. Individuals in themselves have no inherent worth or dignity. We are all in competition and only the survival of the fittest is guaranteed.

An atheistic evolutionary world-view offers no compelling reason to love. I don't believe love would ever have been able to evolve. In fact morality itself would be in direct conflict with the principals of natural selection. It would hinder the progress of evolution. Morals limit our ability to adapt and change. If we limit ourselves only to right conduct, how can we seize every opportunity to improve ourselves? If we ceased to be primarily concerned with ourselves and survival, and began to love and care for those who are weaker, we would be prolonging the existence of, and contamination caused by weaker genetic information. Not only would this hold us back, but it would inhibit the entire natural selection process.

Aiding Natural Selection?

None of us today would advocate the extermination of the physically or mentally handicap. But why? If evolution is true, then we should desire to hasten its end results. The sooner we can eliminate the weaker genes the better. Just think, we could potentially eradicate disease and deformity. Isn't this how it is supposed to work? Love and compassion are incompatible with evolution.

How can the heartless, methodical process of evolution ever explain morality and true love? It can't. The truth is so much better. God lovingly designed and created us, our consciences, and the definitions of right and wrong. We were formed in his image.

Lord, I pray that we would quit with our trying to avoid your existence and would just humbly fall into your loving arms!

Again, I've been exploring these issues lately. I'm fascinated with interplay of world views and life. But I'm curios what you've come to. Have you reached similar conclusions or am I out of my mind? Sound off in the comments below.

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