Thursday, January 26, 2006

Pigliucci on Facchini

Remember Fiorenzo Facchini, the evolutionary biologist recently published in L'Osservatore Romano? Remember how he trashed ID and said it isn't science and doesn't belong in classrooms? But how he then flushed his brain down the loo to make room for delusions about an Invisible Designer, declaring "In a vision that goes beyond the empirical horizon, we can say that we aren't men by chance or by necessity, and that the human experience has a sense and a direction signaled by a superior design."?

Well, another evolutionary biologist--one whose cranium doesn't leak gray matter--has something to say about his fellow Italian and biologist's slip into woowooland. Dr. Massimo Pigliucci is nonplussed as I am by Facchini's (astral?) flight into the realm beyond the empirical horizon:

What does it mean for Facchini to go “beyond the empirical horizon”? And doesn't his conclusion invalidate his plea for separating science and religion? Such are the contradictions of people who use their brains in the lab but have to hang 'em outside the Church doors on Sunday mornings. And yet, it is precisely this sort of logical incoherence that makes fundamentalism and creationism so attractive to many people: when one rejects the empirical-scientific worldview altogether one doesn't have to reconcile the way things are with the way one wishes things were. Will we ever grow up emotionally as much as we have developed intellectually?

I don't know; maybe after we develop a vaccine against SMV (supernaturalis mentalis virus--uh, forgive my Latin)

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