Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Selfless Gene: Living with God and Darwin by Charles Foster

Though this book can be rather tedious reading at times, it is an excellent affirmation for those who chose to believe in a higher power but still want to keep a logical view of science and the world around them. Those who believe in God but also believe in evolution. With a recent political polarizing of the Creationist and Evolutionist camps, people naturally feel the need to consider themselves one or the other. The reality is that the majority of people fall somewhere in the middle and are a bit confounded by it all.

Foster does a fairly good job of flashing the scientific facts that disprove young-earth creationism. True believers have never been hindered by facts so if you are one of them... this book is not for you. The majority of his facts are ones that I have previously read from textbooks or noted authors so I didn't bother to check on the ones that I hadn't already been aware of. He did bring up a few that I had never thought of and it gave me more to ponder.

Foster then turns his sites on the Neo-Darwin camp - the atheists who believe that there is no creator and that all things can be explained through evolution. He doesn't do as stellar of a job pointing out their errors, mainly hanging his hat on altruism and community and asking where in evolution did altruism come from. An interesting point, but not as strong as I would have liked to support and even lashing for each elitist extremist side.

Then he gets to his conclusion... it's an interesting idea to contemplate but it just seems that there should have been a stronger more palatable conclusion that marries in the middle of the ideas. People come to this book because they are in the middle and want to know how to reconcile their faith with their logic.

In all this was a good book and many thought provoking points are brought up. The reading is rather dry and it will be easy to put this book down though if you read it the ideas will stick with you and rattle around in your head for days.

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