Darwinians are celebrating the adaptation of a Puerto Rican forest lizard to urban life. In an article entitled Forest Lizards Genetically Morph to Survive Life in the City, the adaptation is ballyhooed as proof of Darwin's theory of evolution. This may be a fine example of evolution, but I don't think it supports the neo-Darwinist theory of Natural Selection. According to that theory, random mutations of the DNA molecule are selected to survive because they give the DNA an advantage in the struggle for survival. "Random mutation" equals "Accidental change." Accidents are more often disastrous than serendipitous.
Which is more reasonable? That when the lizards moved into the city, their genes were randomly modified and the modifications gave the lizards longer legs and modified scales which helped them to better survive in the city? Or that when the lizards came into the city, their DNA recognized the need for longer legs and modified scales and reprogrammed itself to make city life easier?
If evolution is random, why does DNA keep coming up with the same solutions to the same problems? This phenomenon is called "convergent evolution," and convergent evolution has given us the Ichthyosaurus, the Shark, and the Killer Whale, all of which are basically the same. It has also given us Hyenas and Wolves--two very different genera which survive in much the same way. Then we can look at Ants and Termites; pterodactyls, bats, and birds; and myriads of other unrelated species which have "convergently evolved" the same sort of solutions to the same problems.
One of my favorite examples of convergent evolution is the Panda's thumb. The Panda, like primates and people, needed an opposable thumb for grasping things (in the Panda's case it was bamboo shoots). To meet this need the Panda evolved a thumb. It's a very different thumb than the human thumb, but it still is a thumb.
I once read a joke that claimed DNA invented human beings because it wanted to explore extraterrestrial opportunities for replication. The joke was funny because it advanced the "ridiculous" theory that DNA had some form of intelligence, and that evolution was purposeful.
I think Darwinists are allergic to the idea that some sort of intelligence drives evolution because they see the term "Intelligent Design" as a code word for God. If they could remove God from the process of evolution and retain some sort of directing force, they would probably drop Natural Selection like a hot potato.
Henri Bergson, the atheist French philosopher, could accept neither the theory that accident drove evolution nor the theory that God controlled it. He posited a theory that there was some sort of "elan vital," or "life force," which drove evolution by seeing needs and opportunities and modifying life to meet those needs and opportunities.
I'm not a scientist, a philosopher, or a theologian, but I think I can see a theory of evolution which can satisfy both the proponents of materialistic evolution and theistic evolution. I'll discuss it in my next post.