A Way Forward for the Reasons to Believe (RTB) Human Origins Model
Date: October 21, 2019
Speaker: S. Joshua Swamidass MD PhD, Author of The Genealogical Adam and Eve (ivpress.com/the-genealogical-adam-and-eve); Founder of Peaceful Science (peacefulscience.org); Associate Professor of Laboratory and Genomic Medicine, Washington University in Saint Louis (swami.wustl.edu/)
Biography: Prof. Swamidass is a computational biologist, who personally affirms evolutionary science and holds a tenured position at Washington University in St. Louis. He is the author of The Genealogical Adam and Eve (IVP, December 2019) and the founder of Peaceful Science (PS), a community of diverse scholars trying to make space for others with a humble account of science.
Summary: In 2018, private dialogue between PS and RTB began about the RTB model of human origins. RTB’s human origins model has, in the past, been critiqued sharply in the scientific community. Several scientists argued that population genetics demonstrated the RTB model false. In conversation with PS, it became apparent that some of the strong claims against the RTB model depended on important misunderstandings of the mainstream scientific consensus on population genetics. This presentation is intended to serve the RTB community by understandably explaining (1) how some of the scientific community misinterpreted the data and made incorrect claims regarding the viability of the RTB model, and (2) how the current scientific consensus on human population genetics makes space for the RTB approach. Some adjustments of the RTB model may be required to align with the evidence. These adjustments are a normal part of refining any model, and may fit comfortably within RTB’s theological constraints.
Conclusion: Many of the evidential claims against RTB’s human origins model were not valid. Dr. Joshua Swamidass, a scientist from PS, who personally affirms evolutionary science, sees a way forward for the RTB approach.