Evolutionary Theory and the Emergence of Moral Nature

Volume 29
Winter 2001
Evolutionary Theory and the Emergence of Moral Nature

The views of morality presented by evolutionary psychology and Christian theology are generally considered mutually exclusive. Love is central to the Christian message, but the self-sacrifice of Christian love seems incompatible with an evolutionary paradigm. This incompatibility, however, stems not from irreconcilable differences, but from an overextension and misapplication of the methodology of evolutionary psychology; no acknowledgement of the transcendent is possible, and morality becomes mere functionality. Within human phylogeny there is an evident ascent of freedom, mind, and moral awareness. This freedom, however, leads to greater interpersonal dependence and vulnerability, which both makes possible and makes necessary moral behavior. The crucial significance of moral conviction and motivation receives its complement and completion within the natural order in the revelation of love through the sacrificial death of Christ. The earthly and the transcendent are unified, as humanity is called into communion with a loving God.

Dr. W. Hurlbut and P. Kalanithi
330 - 339
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