Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Darwin at the Vatican

The Vatican is sponsoring a five day conference to mark the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin's Origin of Species. They aim to re-examine the work of scientific thinkers whose revolutionary ideas seemed to challenge church doctrine belief: Galileo and Charles Darwin.

Scientists, philosophers and theologians from around the world are converging at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome to discuss the compatibility of Darwin's theory of evolution and Catholic teaching.

A leading American scholar of Evolutionary Biology, Prof Francisco Ayala, plans to tell the conference that the so-called theory of intelligent design, proposed by Creationists, is flawed. According to Prof. Ayala, the design of organisms is not what would be expected from an intelligent engineer, but imperfect and worse. In Ayala’s view defects, dysfunctions, oddities, waste and cruelty that pervade the living world are a strong indictment on ID.

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