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Science Ponders Beauty's Poor Fit with Evolutionary Theory

Science Ponders Beauty's Poor Fit with Evolutionary Theory

Some scientists may be willing to admit that beauty in nature does not fit into the theory of Darwinian evolution.

In a column for The Christian Post, John Stonestreet, president of the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, and G. Shane Morris, a writer with the Colson Center, write that scientists can’t use natural selection to explain beauty in nature.

“The wings of a bird, the colors of a butterfly, and the patterns on a seashell defy the theory of Darwinian evolution. Many of us intuit, simply by looking at the splendor that permeates the natural world, that there must be some agent involved other than blind mutations or mere survival-of-the-fittest mechanisms.”

Stonestreet and Morris pointed to an article by Ferris Jabr in The New York Times, where Jabr cited a Yale ornithologist who said that “elaborate plumage and outrageous mating displays of many birds confer no obvious survival advantage. Instead, they often put these birds at a disadvantage, wasting precious energy and making them stand out to predators.”

In their Christian Post piece, Stonestreet and Morris say that traditionally, beauty in animals has been explained to show attractiveness to mates, but scientists are challenging the “good genes” theory.

“I’m glad some Darwinists are recognizing that survival alone can’t account for the art gallery we call the natural world, but is it really a better option to look at that same art gallery and conclude that the paintings produced themselves?”

They added that this might be a chance for scientists to reconsider evolution and look to the Creator.

“They should consider that the mind-boggling beauty we see around us was always intended for our eyes—designed by a master Engineer and Artist, to display His genius and glory through the language of beauty—in a language best understood not by peahens, but by people.”

Publication date: February 25, 2019