Thursday, August 4, 2011

Is emergence a miracle?

Ursula Goodenough is a biologist who wrote a bestselling book The Sacred Depths of Nature that generated various TV specials and college courses. A key idea is we should be in awe of nature and connect to the great Epic of Evolution to find our identity and purpose. Here is a quote about emergence:
The religious naturalist is provisioned with tales of natural emergence that are, to my mind, far more magical than traditional miracles. Emergence is inherent in everything that is alive, allowing our yearning for supernatural miracles to be subsumed by our joy in the countless miracles that surround us.
Ursula Goodenough, The Sacred Depths of Nature, p. 30

I do not agree with any of this. But, it does show our innate religious nature, particularly our yearning to worship something in response to the wonder that science reveals.

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