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Download The Selfless Gene: Living with God and Darwin eBook

by Charles Foster

Download The Selfless Gene: Living with God and Darwin eBook
ISBN:
0849946549
Author:
Charles Foster
Category:
Religious Studies
Language:
English
Publisher:
Thomas Nelson (February 1, 2010)
Pages:
304 pages
EPUB book:
1397 kb
FB2 book:
1174 kb
DJVU:
1833 kb
Other formats
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Rating:
4.4
Votes:
327


The Selfless Gene: Living. has been added to your Cart In part, Charles Foster restates the scientific arguments for evolution, and his survey of events in the descent of humankind is engrossing

The Selfless Gene: Living. has been added to your Cart. The Selfish Gene is an attempt to put a veneer of theism onto what Foster argues is the bedrock of Darwinism. Mr. Foster is obviously unfamiliar with the literature that documents the fact that much of his evidence for Darwinism has been proven to be incorrect. In part, Charles Foster restates the scientific arguments for evolution, and his survey of events in the descent of humankind is engrossing. He is plainly a "believer" in evolution.

The real issue, he argues, centres around the ethical implications of natural selection, and what such a system – based on selfishness, waste and death – might say about the loving creator God of the Christian faith

The Selfless Gene book. Charles Foster insists on getting to the heart of the topic and succeeds through a scientific and biblical analysis that is second to none.

The Selfless Gene book. The Selfless Gene has the potential to become required reading for theologians and laypeople alike.

Charles Foster (born 1962) is an English writer, traveller, veterinarian . The Selfless Gene:Living with God and Darwin, 2009 (Hodder) and 2010.

Charles Foster (born 1962) is an English writer, traveller, veterinarian, taxidermist, barrister and philosopher. He is known for his books and articles on Natural History, travel (particularly in Africa and the Middle East), theology, law and medical ethics. He is a Fellow of Green Templeton College, Oxford. He says of his own books: 'Ultimately they are all presumptuous and unsuccessful attempts to answer the questions 'who or what are we?', and 'what on earth are we doing here?'. The Selfless Gene:Living with God and Darwin, 2009 (Hodder) and 2010 (Thomas Nelson). The misadventures of Mr. Badshot, 2010, Quiller. Medical Law Precedents, 2010, Wildys.

The Selfish Gene is a 1976 book on evolution by the biologist Richard Dawkins, in which the author builds upon the principal theory of George C. Williams's Adaptation and Natural Selection (1966)

The Selfish Gene is a 1976 book on evolution by the biologist Richard Dawkins, in which the author builds upon the principal theory of George C. Williams's Adaptation and Natural Selection (1966). Dawkins uses the term "selfish gene" as a way of expressing the gene-centred view of evolution (as opposed to the views focused on the organism and the group), popularising ideas developed during the 1960s by W. D. Hamilton and others

The Living Thoughts of Darwin. Charles Darwin - 1958 - London: Cassell. Darwin and Philosophy. Mark Hannam - manuscript. Charles Darwin's Natural Selection: Being the Second Part of His Big Species Book Written From 1856 to 1858. Charles Darwin - 1975 - Cambridge University Press.

The Living Thoughts of Darwin. A Concordance to Charles Darwin's Notebooks, 1836-1844. Donald J. Weinshank & Charles Darwin (ed. - 1990 - Cornell University Press. The Collected Papers of Charles Darwin. Charles Darwin - 1977 - University of Chicago Press. Darwin's Camera: Art and Photography in the Theory of Evolution.

Charles Foster insists on getting to the heart of the topic and succeeds through a scientific and biblical analysis that is second to none. ▲. Have a question about this product? Ask us here. Find Related Products.

If evolutionary theory is correct, what does that say about creator God? Ever since the famous debate on Darwinism between Huxley and Wilberforce in 1860, there has been little real conversation between the scientific community and much of the Christian world. This book offers the prospect of reconciliation between what are seen as two opposing worldviews.

If evolutionary theory is correct, what does that say about creator God?Ever since the famous debate on Darwinism between Huxley and Wilberforce in 1860, there has been little real conversation between the scientific community and much of the Christian world. This book offers the prospect of reconciliation between what are seen as two opposing worldviews.With remarkable insight and skill, Foster shows that most evolutionary theory and its consequences are easily reconciled with Christian orthodoxy and explores the ethical problems of natural selection in a fresh and invigorating way.Charles Foster insists on getting to the heart of the topic and succeeds through a scientific and biblical analysis that is second to none. The Selfless Gene has the potential to become required reading for theologians and laypeople alike.
  • Dilmal
The Selfish Gene is an attempt to put a veneer of theism onto what Foster argues is the bedrock of Darwinism. Mr. Foster is obviously unfamiliar with the literature that documents the fact that much of his evidence for Darwinism has been proven to be incorrect. For example, he brings up the poor design argument, claiming that life could not have been directly created by God because life is not optimally [meaning it is poorly designed]designed. All of the examples he uses have been carefully refuted in the scholarly literature. The first example he gives is the recurrent laryngeal nerve, an idea that he copied from Dawkins. The fact is, there are several very good reasons for its design and if Foster had researched the literature he would have known this. Another example is the panda's thumb claim. If he read the literature he would realize that this is an excellent design that does the job of stripping bamboo very well and also allows the panda to have normal walking and such use of its paws. He should have acknowledged the literature and refuted it if he disagreed. I could go on but these examples show that it is clear he has not done his homework and to publish this book is irresponsible. I very am surprised that Thomas Nelson would publish it. I expected more from them.
  • GawelleN
This books premise was simple-sounding but difficult in practice, as is evidenced by the fact that there's still raging debate between evolutionists and creationists about how life came to be as it is. As is my observation (in this issue and others), the real answer doesn't lie at either end of the scale, but somewhere in the middle.

This is the approach the author chose to take, and he did it well. He does not use the same old standby arguments that most people use, but instead started fresh, right from the beginning. He not only looked at what the bible has to say on the subject of life's origins, but also compared and contrasted that to what Christianity at large says, and what hard-core evolutionists say.

I was quite impressed by this book, and the thoroughness of the research. It made me stop reading in order to have a good think more than once, and presented facts and opinions in such a way that it shot down some arguments without seeming insulting or derisive, which must have taken a lot of effort in some case. It gives respectful treatment of both sides of the debate, explores the options carefully, and offers ways that the two theories might live side-by-side and complement each other rather than competing with each other.

I definitely recommend this book for those who are Christian and having difficulty reconciling science with what the bible and the church say. Or even for those who are just interested in seeing both sides of the debate without having people scream in your face about which side is "clearly" right and which is "clearly" wrong
  • Sorryyy
I'm giving this book 5 stars, not because I agree with everything in it, but because it is well-written and presents its thesis in an orderly, intelligent manner. The title of the book is, of course, a rebuttal to The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins, a much-popularized atheist Darwinist who claims that everything in nature evolves for purely selfish needs. Charles Foster, the author of this book, "The Selfless Gene," calls himself a "Christian evolutionist," and presents the thesis that co-operation and community also play a role in human development. Because Foster is a Christian, he comes to some theological conclusions that I, as a Jew, do not agree with. But if one is willing, for the sake of argument, to step into his worldview for the duration of the book, then his arguments are logical and make sense within that construct. I'm sure this book will be an important part of the dialogue in the Christian community.

And of course, there were parts that I did agree with -- after all, both Jews and Christians share the same Genesis story, even if we do sometimes interpret it differently. Foster's analysis of the first chapters of Genesis is brilliant and challenging. One point he misses -- probably for lack of Hebrew -- is that when God says "let us make Man..." the God-name used is "ELOHIM," which is associated in Judaism with the aspect of God as expressed through the strict laws of nature. Some Jewish commentators have interpreted the "us" as God and the rest of creation that had already been made. Which can be summarized thus: The human body evolved through nature, but the "nishmat chaim" ("breath of life" or higher consciousness) was later "breathed in" by God in the aspect of YHVH-ELOHIM, which is a balance between strictness (ELOHIM) and mercy (YHVH.) That this "nishmat chaim" is something other than regular breathing is suggested by the fact that this is the only place where God "breathes into" a creature, even though animals also breathe biologically. Foster hints at this idea in the chapter on "The Ape in the Image" but does not lay it out in this way theologically. Still, he comes rather close. (For the record, I am a Jewish evolutionist, which in my definition falls somewhere between Darwinism and Intelligent Design. I believe God created the universe and I believe evolution happens as part of that creation, but I'm not totally decided on hairline definitions as to how much is "God-guided" and how much is left to free will and randomness. Which is why I'm currently reading this type of book, for my own exploration of the issues from a variety of viewpoints.)

For me, the first half of the book was the most useful, where he presents the history and beliefs of both Creationism and classical Darwinism, the misconceptions of each as presented in the media (Dawkins vs the Young Earth Creationists), and how recent discoveries in paleontology and biology have revised the simplistic version of evolution that many of us learned in school years ago. Darwin was not an atheist, nor did he claim that natural selection explained everything. Nor was he the first to notice that there were changes in species and geological epochs in earth's history. At the time Darwin was writing, the basis of genetics had not yet been discovered (Mendel did not publish his pea studies until 9 years later) and, of course, DNA would not be discovered until over a century later. So Darwin had some good ideas, but he never claimed that his theory explained everything, and there is certainly room for modification today.

I was also interested to learn that modern Young Earth Creationism originally came out of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, and that it's spread is a late-20th-century phenomenon. (Yes, there are a few Jewish Creationists, but belief in a literal seven-day Creation is not a pre-requisite for belief in Judaism. By and large, most Jews are strongly influenced by Maimonides who, in the 12th century already, said essentially that if science and religion seem to contradict each other, then it is because of our own lack of understanding about one or the other. Maimonides was both a physician and a theologian, so he had first-hand experience in both science and religion. See his classic work, The Guide for the Perplexed.)

In the second half of the book, as would be expected, Foster attempts to reconcile all this with "the God of Christianity," which he sees as 100% "good" and therefore, not the source of death and suffering in this world (which he defines as "bad"), or of the more brutal aspects of natural selection. So who is responsible? Foster falls back on Satan as a negative "deus ex machina" to be the bad god who caused everything that he thinks a good God should not have included in creation -- a dualistic solution that does not work for me. The Jewish solution to the problem of evil is different but too complex to go into here. (For those who know Jewish kabbalah, the "shattering of the vessels" plays a big role.) Still, as I said above, for a Christian this book may work. At the very least, it is a good read.