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Vol. IX • 1987

We Are Teaching a Religion in Our Public Schools
Randy Hedtke

The Origins Question is Religious
The question of the origin of life is inherently and unavoidably religious. However an individual or group answers the question as to how life arose, their answer becomes the basic tenet for their religious make-up. Trying to comprehend the creation-evolution controversy on a strictly scientific basis, which is the desire of evolution proponents, is to deny any kind of resolution to the problem No problem can be resolved unless all of the vital factors are assimilated The scientific data for origins must always be considered with the knowledge that the much heralded scientific objectivity is not present. An investigator will always interpret data or use or exclude data on the basis of his religious belief. The typical high school textbooks are classic examples of this phenomenon.

The question of the origin of life centers on an animal origins belief or atheistic evolution and special creation. Because secular humanism, which requires evolution as its basic religious tenet, is presently in control of the public schools, textbooks and professional journals, the data concerning the question of the origin of life is interpreted or used or excluded in order to substantiate their religious belief. They do not intend to lose their monopolistic control. It is absolutely against their religion to tolerate other religious points of view.

There seems to be no end to the particular animal chosen as an ancestor for the animal origins belief. The Wanika, in East Africa, believe they came from the hyena. Another African tribe names the hippopotamus. The natives in Madagascar claim the first of their line was a large lemur, a nocturnal animal similar to monkeys! This belief could have come right out of a present-day evolution textbook. Other animals claimed as ancestors are tigers, apes, cats, goats, buffalo, etc. The evolution belief reaches back beyond the lemur and postulates that humans came up through the ranks from their particular idea of the ultimate ancestor, the organic matter in a primordial sea. The second category of belief, supernatural creation, that human beings were created from clay or the dust of the earth, is equally widespread around the world. In the industrial civilizations, the ancient animal origins belief has taken on the form of a sophisticated theory and has become the basic doctrine of secular humanism. Actually, secular humanism is a misnomer that is misleading to the general public. The word secular means "not belonging to a religious order" but, as the Supreme Court has determined, it is a bonafide religion. A more appropriate name for secular humanism and more revealing to the general public would be sectarian humanism. A sect may be defined as "a group having in common a leader or a distinctive doctrine; a following; a school, as a philosophy" or, "a party dissenting from an established or parent church."

Evolution is an Animal Origins Belief
Until recent times, the animal origins belief was not widely accepted in Western industrial cultures because of Christian influence. Then, something historically unprecedented happened which gave the animal origin belief a tremendous boost in popularity; the economic, scientific, and technological revolution began. The new materialism of the day, the belief in a utopian world through human accomplishment, and the subsequent belief that there is no higher authority than humans themselves, were ideal conditions for proselytizing the animal origins belief. The revolution gave rise to scientism, the humanist philosophy that science confirms the supremacy of natural law and refutes the belief in the supernatural.

All that was needed to clinch the movement was a credible, non-creation scientific theory for the origin of life, namely, organic evolution. Organic evolution became the modern, pseudo-scientific form for the age-old animal origins belief. One author speculated as follows on evolutionary theory's acceptance:

Just what are the implications of converting the animal origins belief into an alleged scientific theory? The historical significance is profound What the animal origins believers succeeded in doing was to eliminate creation as a rival religious belief. They were no longer competing on a religious basis; the animal origins belief had been transformed into an alleged scientific theory and science had become the most pervasive, most influential force in society. It was simply no contest in the minds of many people. Many people, then and now, labored under the misconception that the creation belief is archaic and evolution is the "new" explanation for the origin of life, when in reality evolution is the ancient animal origins belief packaged as a new scientific theory. It was a brilliant strategic maneuver, a maneuver that had been the hope and dream of others preceding Darwin, which is why it is often stated that "evolution was in the air" in the years prior to the publication of the Origin of Species.

The Importance of Knowing the Correct Context of the Controversy
As evolutionary theory became popular under the auspices of science, the clergy naturally responded by declaring it heresy. Evolution proponents in turn responded that evolution was in the domain of science and not religion and was therefore immune to criticism from the religious establishment. The strategy of separating evolution from religion was effective to the extent that the clergy was more or less hamstrung in their efforts to stop its spread. It then became the responsibility of creation scientists to respond; they met evolution theorists on their own ground, the science arena. In recent years, the controversy has taken the form of creation science vs. evolution science and again the clergy, those who continue to believe in special creation, have been to a large degree excluded from the fray. As a result of the creation scientists' efforts, there has been a growing public awareness that the evolution interpretation of the data is not infallible and that there is a case for creation within a scientific framework, at least equal to that of evolution. Again evolutionists have responded that they have a monopoly on science while creationists are religious. The fact of the matter is that evolutionists are just as religious as the creationists.

No controversy can ever be settled if it is never held in the participants minds in the proper context. As previously explained, evolutionists were successful in making it appear to be a science vs. religion issue, which is incorrect. Later, up to the present time, it became a science vs. science issue, which subverts the issue. The reality of it all is that it is a religion vs. religion issue. That was the case in the past and it continues to be so in the present. Only if it is comprehended in that context can the issue be resolved. No amount of scientific parlance can change the religiosity of the origins controversy. Religious Beliefs are Immune to Scientific Disproof

We should not think for one moment that a religious belief is in any way, shape or form accountable to any kind of rigorous scientific methodology. For example, the following axiom from W. Stanley Jevon's book, A Treatise on Logic and the Scientihc Method, will not apply: "A single absolute conflict between fact and hypothesis is fatal to the hypothesis."3 Or to state it another way: "Agreement with fact is the sole and sufficient test of a true hypothesis. Religious beliefs cannot be disproved with scientific data. Scientific data are only useful in refuting mundane, everyday phenomena that are devoid or any philosophical or religious overtones that will bias the investigator. Contradictory data for a particular belief will first of all be ignored and, if that is not possible, the belief will simply take on a new form in order to incorporate the contradictory data. The primary objective is to preserve the essential point of the belief. Scientific methodology and scientific integrity are secondary considerations.

Tofurther illustrate my contention that a religious belief cannot be disproved with scientific data, let us consider the following contradictions concerning two different origins beliefs. Anothercategoryof animal origins belief is that of humans mating with animals. A variety of animals such as frogs, wolves, fish, deer, etc. are believed to be ancestors by means of human-animal matings. What would happen if one were to attempt to persuade someone out of their belief in a human-animal mating origin, using scientific data. One could inform them that the biochemistry and the chromosome number ofthe egg and sperm of a human and animal are so incompatible that fertilization could not occur. This is obvious in that we do not see offspring produced from widely differing species. lam certain that the scientificdata would bejust so much drivel to an uneducated native and he or she would simply insist that when the mating occurred, none of the conditions of incompatibility, even if they are valid, applied in the past. Because science cannot prove the past and because the question of origins is ultimately religious, the native cannot be faulted for ignoring the scientific data.

A similar case for ignoring scientific data may be made concerning an evolutionary belief in origins. There is a law in biology called The Law of Biogenesis, which means that life may come only from life. The opposite of biogenesis is abiogenesis meaning that life can arise from nonliving matter. Biogenesis is usually explained in the textbooks along with the classical experiments conducted by Francisco Redi, Louis Pasteur, and Lazzaro Spallanzani that finally disproved abiogenesis. Obviously, according to the evolution belief, at some time in the past life had to arise spontaneously from nonliving matter, contrary to the Law of Biogenesis. If one were to point this out as evidence against evolution, the sophisticated scientists, for whom the data should really count, simply uses the same excuse as the uneducated native by insisting that conditions were different in the past, permitting abiogenesis to occur. This is exactly the claim made by present-day evolutionists. I agree with the National Academy of Sciences that, "Truly scientific understanding cannot be attained or even pursued effectively when explanations not derived from or tested by the scientific method are accepted."4

A New Biology or New Schools?
The knowledge that there is nothing new under the sun that evolutionary theory is a subterfuge for the ancient animal origins belief, that science cannot prove the past and can only speculate biasedly about it, casts a different light on the entire controversy. One can only conclude the truth the question of the origin of life is outside the realm of science.

In a booklet entitled Science and Creationism, the Council of the National Academy of Science stated the following resolution:

I agree with them. And I also challenge them to discover a testable, ongoing mechanism for the animal origins belief which would then constitute legitimate science. Otherwise, let us call a spade a spade and level with students that in the absence of a verifiable mechanism, evolution is religion.


1 Freund, P. Myths of Creation. Washington Square Press, Inc., 1965.
2 Strickbergre, M. "Evolution and Religion," Bioscience July 1973, Vol. 23-7, pp. 417-421.
3 Jevons, W. The Principles of Science: A Treatise on Topic and the Scientific Method. Dover Publications, 1958, p. 516.
4 Science and Creationism. 1984. National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., p. 11.
5 lbid., p. 6.

"We Are Teaching a Religion in Our Public Schools"
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