Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Genesis Enigma and the Evolution of the Eye

A new book that has been described as "Jaw dropping" has been produced, called The Genesis Enigma. Christopher Hart of the Daily Mail reports that the author is convinced that, although written down 3 000 years ago, the book of Genesis accurately records evolution. The story notes:

The revalation [sic] came to Professor Andrew Parker during a visit to Rome. He was in the Sistine Chapel, gazing up at Michelangelo's awesome ceiling paintings, when a realisation struck him with dizzying force.

'A Biblical enigma exists that is on the one hand so cryptic it has remained camouflaged for millennia, and on the other so obvious one cannot miss it.'

The enigma is that the order of Creation as described in the Book of Genesis, and so powerfully depicted in the Sistine Chapel by the greatest artist of the Renaissance, has been precisely, eerily confirmed by modern evolutionary science.

Yet how on earth could this be possible? And why had nobody noticed it before?

How indeed did this come about? Writers for the last 1500 years have been addressing how Genesis can be read in some way that corresponds to the natural world. It has resulted in concordism, in which the creation story is seen as being written from the viewpoint of someone on the earth, and accomodationism, in which much of the creation story is not taken literally. How has Parker done it? A very simple way:

On the fourth day, Genesis famously becomes confusing. On the first day, remember, God has already created light, and made Day and Night. But it isn't until day four that he makes the lights in heaven, the greater light to rule the day and the lesser the night.

Hang on - so he made 'Day' three days before he made the Sun? Houston, I think we have a problem. Yet the writers of Genesis were just as well aware as us, surely, that the sunrise causes the day. You don't need a degree in astronomy to work that one out. What on earth did they mean? Here, The Genesis Enigma comes up with a stunningly ingenious answer. For Parker argues that day four refers to the evolution of vision.

Until the first creatures on earth evolved eyes, in a sense, the sun and moon didn't exist. There was no creature on earth to see them, nor the light they cast. When Genesis says: 'Let there be lights... To divide the day from the night,' it is talking about eyes.

'The very first eye on earth effectively turned on the lights for animal behaviour,' writes Professor Parker, 'and consequently for further rapid evolution.' Almost overnight, life suddenly grew vastly more complex. Predators were able to hunt far more efficiently, and so prey had to evolve fast too - or get eaten. The moment that there were 'lights', or eyes, then life exploded into all its infinite variety.

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1 comment:

  1. Anonymous2:32 AM

    I read parts of this book at my local bookstore on the weekend. It was/is rather naive---especially the last chapter on the nature of God.

    Of course Parker is one of many many exoteric Christian propagandists who in one way or another are trying to "prove" that everything has to turn out to be Christian.

    And they are all unwittingly reducing the scope and scale of a Spiritually informed understanding of Reality altogether.

    Meanwhile we live in a world wherein ALL of the Sacred Scriptures of humankind are freely available to anyone with an internet connection.

    Plus all of the hundreds of known and recorded "creation" stories from all times and places too.

    This reference provides a unique Understanding of the intention and purpose of "creation" stories.


    Plus a critique of conventional religiosity altogether.