Evolution and Ethics: Human Morality in Biological and Religious Perspective

Front Cover
Philip Clayton, Jeffrey Schloss
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, Aug 4, 2004 - Religion - 339 pages
Christians frequently resist evolutionary theory, believing it to be incompatible with the core values of their tradition. But what exactly are the tensions between evolution and religious faith in the area of human morality? Evolution and Ethics examines the burning questions of human morality from the standpoint of Christian thought and contemporary biology, asking where the two perspectives diverge and where they may complement one another.

Representing a significant dialogue between world-class scientists, philosophers, and theologians, this volume explores the central features of biological and religious accounts of human morality, introducing the leading theories and locating the key points of contention. Central to these discussions are the questions of whether human actions are ever genuinely selfless, whether there is something in the moral life that transcends biological function, and whether one can sensibly speak of an overall purpose to the course of evolution.

Certain to engage scholars, students, and general readers alike, Evolution and Ethics offers a balanced, levelheaded, constructive approach to an often divisive debate.

Contributors:

Larry Arnhart
Christopher Boehm
Craig A. Boyd
Robert Boyd
Michael J. Chapman
Philip Clayton
Loren Haarsma
John Hare
S. Mark Heim
David C. Lahti
Thomas Jay Oord
Gregory R. Peterson
Joseph Poulshock
Peter J. Richerson
Philip A. Rolnick
Holmes Rolston III
Michael Ruse
Jeffrey Schloss
René van Woudenberg
 

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Contents

Evolutionary Ethics Past and Present
27
Darwinian Evolutionary Ethics Between Patriotism and Sympathy
50
Explaining the Prosocial Side of Moral Communities
78
Hominid Failings An Evolutionary Basis for Sin in Individuals and Corporations
101
The Leverage of Language on Altruism and Morality
114
You Have Heard but I Tell You A Test of the Adaptive Significance of Moral Evolution
132
Evolution and Divine Revelation Synergy Not Conflict in Understanding Morality
153
Darwinian and Ideological Explanations Are They Incompatible?
171
Thomistic Natural Law and the Limits of Evolutionary Psychology
221
The Good Samaritan and His Genes
238
A CrossSection of Sin The Mimetic Character of Human Nature in Biological and Theological Perspective
255
Falling Up Evolution and Original Sin
273
Morals Love and Relations in Evolutionary Theory
287
Darwins Problems NeoDarwinian Solutions and Jesus Love Commands
302
Biology and Purpose Altruism Morality and Human Nature in Evolutionary Perspective
318
List of Contributors
337

Is There an Evolutionary Foundation for Human Morality?
187
The Darwinian Moral Sense and Biblical Religion
204

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Page 60 - ... the bushes, with various insects flitting about, and with worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these elaborately constructed forms, so different from each other, and dependent upon each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by laws acting around us.
Page 54 - These poor wretches were stunted in their growth, their hideous faces bedaubed with white paint, their skins filthy and greasy, their hair entangled, their voices discordant, and their gestures violent. Viewing such men, one can hardly make oneself believe that they are fellow-creatures and inhabitants of the same world.
Page 60 - There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being evolved.
Page 29 - Blind to the fact that under the natural order of things, society is constantly excreting its unhealthy, imbecile, slow, vacillating, faithless members, these unthinking, though well-meaning men advocate an interference which not only stops the purifying process but even increases the...

About the author (2004)

Philip Clayton is Ingraham Professor of Theology at theClaremont School of Theology and professor of philosophyand religion at Claremont Graduate University in Claremont,California. He is also the author of Explanation fromPhysics to Philosophy: An Essay in Rationality andReligion (Yale) and the Templeton Prize?winning bookGod and Contemporary Science (Eerdmans).

Jeffrey Schloss is Professor of Biology at Westmont Collegein Santa Barbara, California.

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