The “Evolutionary Worldview”

Let’s break this down. I’m sure you do know what ‘evolutionary’ means. Worldview (in German Weltanschauung) means, according to Google:

"the fundamental cognitive orientation of an individual or society encompassing the whole of the individual’s or society’s knowledge and point of view. A worldview can include natural philosophy; fundamental, existential, and normative postulates; or themes, values, emotions, and ethics."

Now according to what you’ve just posted, the “evolutionary worldview does not exist.” I cannot make sense of your claim. Clearly people do believe evolution has happened, and that belief has been one of the most influential philosophies in all of world history, so on what basis do you claim that there is no evolutionary worldview?

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In way do you think there is an evolutionary worldview? Do you think I hold it? (I don’t)

How does affirming evolution mean we affirming a worldview? Is there a gravity worldview too?


Yeah, we know what the word means.

Clearly people believe that erosion has happened. Is there an erosionary worldview? Clearly people believe that tree growth has happened. Is there a treegrowthionary worldview? Clearly people believe that everyone they know started as a zygote. Is there a zytogogeneticary worldview?

There are varieties of evolutionary theory, indeed philosophical camps within it, at various levels of inquiry and intersecting with many and varied other ideas. For example, there are Christians (like Joshua and others are and like I used to be) who affirm evolutionary explanations but also affirm Christian belief and even Christian claims about natural history. Are these all separate worldviews? If a person believes that the earth is 6000 years old but that there has been rapid evolution within clades (aka baramins), is that an “evolutionary worldview”?

IMO these are not interesting or important questions, but that might be because I think that most talk about “worldview” ignores the flexibility and incongruity inherent in human minds. If I were more sarcastic, I would speculate on the kind of worldview that drives people to jam other people into boxes called “worldview.”

EDIT: I meant ‘ignores’ above, and changed it, not ‘exaggerates’, which was in original post.


Yes. But that does not make it a world view.

I don’t doubt that the way I view the world is different from the way that you view the world. But the very expression “world view” suggests that we can come up with some precise definition of that.

We cannot.

Yes, I accept evolution. But I accept it because of how I view the world. That I accept evolution does not define how I view the world.

If you want to individuate worldviews, then I would suggest that there are around 7 billion of them (corresponding to the human population of around 7 billion). “Worldview” is not a useful term.

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I think what is going on here is whether you can put a culture or society “on trial” for believing that the future will generally be better than the past.

Rather than get stuck on such an idea, how about the idea that God uses Evolutionary processes to perfect his creation in the same way that God uses the processes of Evaporation and Condensation to perfect his thunder storms.

Are you logically opposed to God using natural processes to deliver his plan to the Universe?

Do you think evolution is no more controversial or relevant to philosophy and religion than erosion? What are the ethical and philosophical ramifications of erosion?

Gravity had immense theological and philosophical implications when it was discovered…

Is that the criteria you are using?

There is technically a whole family of evolutionary worldviews, and yours is part of that family. At the end of the day, everybody has a unique worldview. But we can talk about them in useful ways according to various classifications. My worldview is biblical (young earth) creationism.

My worldview is also biblical. Sounds like we have a lot in common then?

Clearly people do believe biology has happened. Biology is not a worldview.

I think it is legitimate to regard materialism as a worldview, and obviously that would largely define your position on evolution.

People can hold clashing worldviews while holding similar positions on evolution, so evolution in itself cannot constitute a worldview.

My comments were about the notion of “worldview,” which is utterly distinct from opinions about philosophy and religion, and even less relevant to opinions about the magnitude of influence of any particular idea.

Do you think we’re having a discussion here? I don’t.

I just showed you a basic definition for worldview. It has everything to do with philosophy and religion, so how you can say “worldview … is utterly distinct from opinions about philosophy and religion” is beyond me. Your worldview is your most fundamental philosophy, which also determines your religion.

I can see where this is going.

Why is it so important to shove it down the throats of people who say they are not religious that "NO, you really are religious! Atheism is your religion! You are just as religious as me!

If somebody states they are not religious, why not take their word for it? Don’t they know themselves best?


And me accepting evolutionary theory plays absolutely no role in how I live my life…

I consider my worldview metaphysical naturalism and I adopt bits and pieces of Buddhism and Stoicism. Where does evolutionary biology play a role in that?

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In which case there is no such thing as an evolutionary worldview, because evolution is an evidentially derived conclusion, not some sort of philosophical bedrock other things rest on.

It’s not even clear what you mean by “most fundamental philosophy”. Are you talking ontology, as in what exists, or epistemology, as in how we know stuff?


That is not the case. Evolution (the idea that all life shares a common ancestor) is a claim about history that can never be experimentally verified. All the evidence about how life really works (for example in genetics) points strongly away from this conclusion. Genetic mutations are non-random and are unable to build up functional complexity over time. In fact they do the opposite. They degrade life

Darwinism is a philosophical framework through which all evidence is filtered by those who espouse it. As Dr Lewontin put it, they cannot “allow a Divine Foot in the door.”

(quote at Amazing admission - Lewontin Quote -

You didn’t address a single thing he said. You just agrued against the truth of evolutionary theory and then reasserted your argument. And @Rumraket I hope you don’t get sucked into his distraction and go down the rabbit hole and address his already a million times debunked arguments and instead stay on the topic of worldviews


Darwinism is a scientific position (a wrong one) that says natural selection is the primary driving force in evolution

Whether the past can be experimentally proven is a red herring. Scientific theories aren’t “worldviews” in the sense of “most fundamental philosophy, which also determines your religion.” in any conceivable way.

That’s a nice fat list of assertions all of which are completely irrelevant to the topic at hand.

Of course Dr Lewontin speaks on behalf of no-one but himself, so you should go take that up with him. I’ve been interested in the science of evolutionary biology now for over 10 years and I’ve never actually come across anyone who thinks that. Lewontin seems to be that one guy you quote over and over again. If you had anyone else, you’d be quoting him too. Then we’d know of two guys instead of just one.

It is of course blatantly ridiculous since there are many religious scientists who affirm evolution.

Now back to the actual topic at hand: The nonsensical claim that there is such a thing as a “most fundamental philosophy, which also determines your religion” called “the evolutionary worldview”.


No, that’s not what Lewontin himself said. He specifically said, “we”, over and over, and made a point of speaking for the scientific community. You’re free to disagree, but I believe he was indeed being a bit “too” honest about how institutional science really works.