Monthly Archives: August 2020

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 10 (Summing up 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow and his responses)

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In my 32 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow between February 11, 2015 and April 18, 2020, I answered questions concerning religious zealots who killed people on behalf of their religious views, and I have discussed other troubling issues such as the existence of suffering in the world that Charles Darwin wondered about in his autobiography.

I suggested to Dr. Barlow to watch the Woody Allen movie CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS since the bankruptcy of secular morality which has no moral basis for not evolving into survival of the fittest.

Dr. Barlow and I discussed that idea that evolution is unguided by chance and that the only possible alternative to that is special creation.

Darwin’s Doubts:

Dr. Barlow agreed with my February 11, 2015 letter that Charles Darwin did lose his appreciation of poetry, Shakespeare, paintings, music, and his love of fine scenery and that he blamed it on his study of evolution. Francis Schaeffer asserts that Darwin was a forerunner in his personal life what has happened to our society as a whole with this adoption of the Chance Evolutionary worldview. Darwin himself said, “The loss of these [aesthetic] tastes is a loss of happiness.”

In my March 18, 2020 letter to Dr. Barlow I wrote: I wanted to recommend a book to you that I thought you would really enjoy. It is the book “Why Darwin Matters” by the skeptic Michael Shermer. Michael had lost his faith just like Charles Darwin and I agree with his view that what Darwin wrote mattered a great deal and has a big impact on our secular society today. Furthermore, I pointed out that Darwin also lost his earlier form belief that both our conscience and the nature around us testifies of God’s existence.

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Skeptical Luminaries right to left: paranormal investigator Joe Nickell, Center for Inquiry founder Paul Kurtz, the Amazing One himself, and psychologist and magician Ray Hyman and Michael Shermer on left


Darwin wrote:
At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons.Formerly I was led by feelings such as those just referred to, to the firm conviction of the existence of God and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body; but now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.

In another place again Darwin returned to these two evidences which had convinced him earlier of God’s existence (the grand universe around us and our conscious selves). Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873:

But I may say that the impossibility. of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide.”

In my February 2, 2017 letter to Dr. Barlow, I quoted Darwin again. From Charles Darwin, Autobiography (1876), in The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, ed. Francis Darwin, vol. 1 (London: John Murray, 1888), pp. 307 to 313.

“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist. This conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species, and it is since that time that it has very gradually, with many fluctuations, become weaker. But then arises the doubt…”

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Francis Schaeffer commented:

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Francis Schaeffer

On the basis of his reason he has to say there must be an intelligent mind, someone analogous to man. You couldn’t describe the God of the Bible better. That is man is made in God’s image  and therefore, you know a great deal about God when you know something about man. What he is really saying here is that everything in my experience tells me it must be so, and my mind demands it is so. Not just these feelings he talked about earlier but his MIND demands it is so, but now how does he counter this? How does he escape this? Here is how he does it!!!

Charles Darwin went on to observe:  “—can the mind of man, which has, as I fully believe, been developed from a mind as low as that possessed by the lowest animals, be trusted when it draws such grand conclusions?”

Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer asserted:

So he says my mind can only come to one conclusion, and that is there is a mind behind it all. However, the doubt comes because his mind has come from the lowest form of earthworm, so how can I trust my mind. But this is a joker isn’t it?  Then how can you trust his mind to support such a theory as this? He proved too much. The fact that Darwin found it necessary to take such an escape shows the tremendous weight of Romans 1, that the only escape he can make is to say how can I trust my mind when I come from the lowest animal the earthworm?…This is a tremendous demonstration of the weakness of his own position.

(Charles Darwin’s great-great grandson Randal Keynes pictured below)

In my November 2, 2018 letter to Dr. Barlow, I quoted Randal Keynes who said in an interview with Richard Dawkins, “[Darwin] was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.He had a deep fear, I think,that one species would be discovered that had some element of its make-upthat could only have been designed.”


In my February 11, 2015 letter to Dr. Barlow, I quoted Francis Schaeffer who rightly noted:

Charles Darwin in his autobiography and letters showed that all through his life he never really came to a quietness concerning the possibility that chance really explained the situation of the biological world. You will find there is much material on this [from Darwin] extended over many many years that constantly he was wrestling with this problem. Darwin never came to a place of satisfaction. You have philosophically only two possible beginnings. The first would be a personal beginning and the other would be an impersonal beginning plus time plus chance. There is no other possible alternative except the alternative that everything comes out of nothing and that has to be a total nothing and that has to be a total nothing without mass, energy or motion existing. No one holds this last view because it is unthinkable. Darwin understood this and therefore until his death he was uncomfortable with the idea of chance producing the biological variation.

Darwin rejected the Gospel

Darwin pictured above

The naturalistic worldview has brought forth a pessimistic worldview and it is best conveyed in the song DUST IN THE WIND and the BOOK OF ECCLESIASTES. The problem with Solomon’s search for meaning in ECCLESIASTES was that he limited himself to searching UNDER THE SUN without God in the picture. In my December 2, 2018 letter to Dr. Barlow, I pointed out that the spiritual answer that sinners like us need is the gospel and the forgiveness we can experience through Christ. Darwin rejected the Christian Gospel that his wife Emma embraced.

Evidence for Christian View

I have demonstrated that Charles Darwin earlier in his life longed to see archaeological evidence that supported the accuracy of the Bible, and he also questioned the lack of fossil evidence supporting gradual evolution. Later in life, Darwin accused the Old Testament of historical errors just like Richard Dawkins did recently when he mistakenly accused the Book of Genesis of incorrectly placing camels in the Middle East during the time of Abraham. In fact, evidence indicates the Book of Genesis was correct after all.



Dr. Barlow received many letters from me that contained evidence concerning the accuracy of the Bible. Here is some evidence from archaeology that confirms many Biblical accounts: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem, 2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)

Horace in 2017 seen below 

In my March 2, 2019 letter to Dr. Barlow, included this quote from Francis Schaeffer:

Whole libraries have been discovered from places like Nuzu and Mari and most recently at Elba, which give hundreds of thousands of texts relating to the historical details of their time. It is within this geographical area that the Bible is set. So it is possible to find material which bears upon what the Bible tells us.

In my February 11, 2015 letter to Dr. Barlow I quoted Adrian Rogers who rightly noted:
For centuries man believed the earth was flat, but now we know the earth is a globe. The prophet Isaiah, writing 750 years before the birth of Christ, revealed that “God sitteth upon the circle of the earth” (Isaiah 40:22). The word translated here as “circle” was more commonly translated “sphere.” In other words, Isaiah explained that the earth was a globe centuries before science discovered it.

(Adrian Rogers pictured below)

When Ptolemy charted the heavens, he counted 1026 stars in the sky. But with the invention of the telescope man discovered millions and millions of stars, something that Jeremiah 33:22 revealed nearly three thousand years ago: “The host of heaven cannot be numbered.” How did these men of God know the truth of science long before the rest of the world discovered it? They were moved by the Holy Spirit to write the truth.

In my February 2, 2018 letter, I mailed Dr. Barlow an article from the Biblical Archaeology Society entitled 53 People in the Bible Confirmed Archaeologically.


1.-Sargon-II-Khorsabad-Bridgeman

(PICTURED ABOVE Sargon II, one of fifty Hebrew Bible figures identified in the archaeological record.)

Francis Schaeffer pictured above

The New Testament is also historically reliable. Francis Schaeffer noted:

A modern classical scholar, A.N.Sherwin-White, says about the Book of Acts: “For Acts the confirmation of historicity is overwhelming…Any attempt to reject its basic historicity, even in matters of detail, must not appear absurd. Roman historians have long taken this for granted.”

The experience of the famous classical archaeologist Sir William Ramsay illustrates this well. When he began his pioneer work of exploration in Asia Minor, he accepted the view then current among the Tubingen scholars of his day that the Book of Acts was written long after the events in Paul’s life and was therefore historically inaccurate. However, his travels and discoveries increasingly forced upon his mind a totally different picture, and he became convinced that Acts was minutely accurate in many details which could be checked.

Sir William Mitchell RamsayFBA (15 March 1851 – 20 April 1939)  pictured below:

In Luke and Acts, therefore, we have something which purports to be an adequate history, something which Theophilus (or anyone) can rely on as its pages are read. This is not the language of “myths and fables,” and archaeological discoveries serve only to confirm this.

For example, it is now known that Luke’s references to the titles of officials encountered along the way are uniformly accurate. This was no mean achievement in those days, for they varied from place to place and from time to time in the same place. They were proconsuls in Corinth and Cyprus, asiarchs at Ephesus, politarches at Thessalonica, and protos or “first man” in Malta. Back in Palestine, Luke was careful to give Herod Antipas the correct title of tetrarch of Galilee. And so one. The details are precise.

(Bertrand Russell with his son John and daughter Kait)

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Reaction of skeptics to evidence? (Just like Darwin’s Christian wife reached out to him so did Bertrand Russell’s daughter but they hold to their implicit faith!! In my October 2, 2019 letter to Dr. Barlow I asked if he ever met Bertrand Russell’s born again daughter:

 
(Dora Russell and son John and daughter Kait above)

I am looking forward to reading Richard Dawkins’ latest book OUTGROWING GOD. As you know that doesn’t always happen, and Sir Bertrand Russell’s own Lady Katharine Tait is a prime example. Did you ever have a chance to hear Russell speak in person? Did you ever get to meet Lady Tait?

(Bertrand Russell with John and Kait)

[Bertrand Russell’s born again daughter wrote the book “My Father—Bertrand Russell,” by Katharine Tait.

His daughter declared:“I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it” (185).

(SEE BELOW)

 Person(s) in Photograph: Bertrand Russell, Patricia Russell, Kate Russell, John Russell
 Description:  Kate, Russell, Peter and John in Redwood National Park, 1939. In spring 1939 Russell moved to Santa Barbara to take up a professorship at the University of California at Los Angeles.
Archive Box Number: 6,25
Date: c. 1939


BELOW ARE THE COMMENTS BY FRANCIS SCHAEFFER IN the 1960’s CONCERNING BERTRAND RUSSELL’S VIEWS AND HOW THEY WERE SHAPED:

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Francis Schaeffer noted concerning the IMPLICIT FAITH of Bertrand Russell:

I was lecturing at the University of St. Andrews one night and someone put forth the question, “If Christianity is so clear and reasonable then why doesn’t Bertrand Russell then become a Christian? Is it because he hasn’t discovered theology?”

It wasn’t a matter of studying theology that was involved but rather that he had too much faith. I was surrounded by humanists and you could hear the gasps. Bertrand Russell and faith; Isn’t this the man of reason? I pointed out that this is a man of high orthodoxy who will hold his IMPLICIT FAITH on the basis of his presuppositions no matter how many times he has to zig and zag because it doesn’t conform to the facts.

You must understand what the term IMPLICIT FAITH  means. In the old Roman Catholic Church when someone who became a Roman Catholic they had to promise implicit faith. That meant that you not only had to believe everything that Roman Catholic Church taught then but also everything it would teach in the future. It seems to me this is the kind of faith that these people have in the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system and they have accepted it no matter what it leads them into. 

I think that these men are men of a high level of IMPLICIT FAITH in their own set of presuppositions. Paul said (in Romans Chapter One) they won’t carry it to it’s logical conclusion even though they hold a great deal of the truth and they have revolted and they have set up a series of universals in themselves which they won’t transgress no matter if they conform to the facts or not.

Here below is the Romans passage that Schaeffer is referring to and verse 19 refers to what Schaeffer calls “the mannishness of man” and verse 20 refers to Schaeffer’s other point which is “the universe and it’s form.”

Romans 1:18-20 Amplified Bible :

18 For God’s [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth and make it inoperative. 19 For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness, because God [Himself] has shown it to them. 20 For ever since the creation of the world His invisible nature and attributes, that is, His eternal power and divinity, have been made intelligible and clearly discernible in and through the things that have been made (His handiworks). So [men] are without excuse [altogether without any defense or justification].

We can actually see the two points makes playing themselves out in Bertrand Russell’s own life.

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[From a letter dated August 11, 1918 to Miss Rinder when Russell was 46]

It is so with all who spend their lives in the quest of something elusive, and yet omnipresent, and at once subtle and infiniteOne seeks it in music, and the sea, and sunsets; at times I have seemed very near it in crowds when I have been feeling strongly what they were feeling; one seeks it in love above all.But if one lets oneself imagine one has found it, some cruel irony is sure to come and show one that it is not really found.
The outcome is that one is a ghost, floating through the world without any real contact. Even when one feels nearest to other people, something in one seems obstinately to belong to God and to refuse to enter into any earthly communion—at least that is how I should express it if I thought there was a God. It is odd isn’t it? I care passionately for this world, and many things and people in it, and yet…what is it all? There must be something more important, one feels, though I don’t believe there is. I am haunted—some ghost, from some extra-mundane region, seems always trying to tell me something that I am to repeat to the world, but I cannot understand the message. 


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Francis Schaeffer

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

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Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

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Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

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Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

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Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW


Summerfieldlab @summerfeildlab

Horace Barlow was extraordinary. I heard him speak in Durham in 2017, where he was invited to give the opening remarks. Instead, he gave a 1h lecture comprisingly mostly new ideas (at the sprightly age of 96). Our field is diminished by his loss.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

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I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

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Carl Sagan v. Nancy Pearcey

March 18, 2013 – 9:11 am

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Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution)

May 24, 2012 – 1:47 am

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May 23, 2012 – 1:43 am

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Carl Sagan versus RC Sproul

January 9, 2012 – 2:44 pm

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Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution)jh68

November 8, 2011 – 12:01 am

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Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution)

November 4, 2011 – 12:57 am

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May 19, 2011 – 10:30 am

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My correspondence with George Wald and Antony Flew!!!

May 12, 2014 – 1:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 41 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (Featured artist is Marina Abramović)

January 8, 2015 – 5:23 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 40 Timothy Leary (Featured artist is Margaret Keane)

January 1, 2015 – 4:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

December 25, 2014 – 5:04 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

December 18, 2014 – 4:30 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

December 11, 2014 – 4:19 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

December 4, 2014 – 4:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

November 27, 2014 – 4:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

November 20, 2014 – 4:28 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

November 13, 2014 – 4:39 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

November 6, 2014 – 4:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

June 12, 2014 – 2:52 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! PART 160 Part B (It was my privilege to correspond with Charles Darwin’s grandson, the eminent professor Dr. Horace Barlow, Neuroscience, Cambridge, December 8, 1921-July 5, 2020) My 2nd letter on September 28, 2015 to Dr. Barlow concerning Michael Polanyi’s Views!

________________

——

I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

Horace Barlow pictured below:

_____________

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Image result for harry kroto

__________________________

Remembering Horace Barlow, 1921-2020

last modified Jul 09, 2020 01:29 PM
Remembering Horace Barlow, 1921-2020

It is with a heavy heart that we inform you that Horace Barlow, FRS, has passed away on Sunday 5th of July 2020. Horace was a titan of vision research, whose work set the basis for contemporary visual neuroscience. He came from a family of scientists: his mother, Nora Darwin, was a geneticist and Charles Darwin’s granddaughter. Horace studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge and then went on to complete his studies at Harvard Medical School and University College Hospital in London before coming back to Cambridge in the late 1940s.

From the very beginning of his academic career he was interested in vision, having given a talk on colour vision to an undergraduate club while studying Natural Sciences, and becoming fascinated by the subject. In 1953, Barlow made a key development in vision research when, while recording electrical signals from nerve cells in the frog’s eye, he discovered neurons in the frog brain that fired in response to specific visual stimuli, such as small insects. This study opened the way to many discoveries about the inner workings of the visual cortex in animals and humans. His work on visual inhibition was also essential to understanding how the brain processes visual information, discarding redundant stimuli. Horace had an interdisciplinary approach to his research and was a member of the Ratio Club, a group of prominent Cambridge scientists from different fields interested in the topic of cybernetics. He wrote extensively on the statistical processing of visual images and his work has been extremely influential in the field of image classification.

A Trinity College Fellow, Horace became Professor of Physiological Optics and Physiology at the University of California, Berkeley and Royal Society Research Professor of Physiology at the University of Cambridge. He was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1969 and was awarded the Society’s Royal Medal in 1993. His academic accolades include the Australia Prize for research into the mechanisms of visual perception, the Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience and the Ken Nakayama Prize from the Vision Sciences Society.

Horace was key member and a leading light for our Department, and was still involved with PDN events and seminars until very recently. Wolfram Schultz shares his memories of Horace and his contribution to our Department: “I knew Horace before coming to Cambridge in 2001 for his work on visual adaptation, which was also a basis for several of our studies on reward adaptation, and just today I cited him in a review article I am writing (his work from 1961, more than half a century ago). Horace helped me to start the Adrian Seminars in 2006 by suggesting them to me, and encouraging me, when the Anatomy and Physiology departments fused, and making contact with the Gatsby Foundation for many years of funding these seminars. He was an active member of our Adrian Committee and hosted several prominent speakers that also led to memorable dinners”.

Roy Patterson also remembers Horace’s focus and dedication: “Horace had the most amazing powers of concentration which I observed over many years in department talks and conferences around Cambridge. He sat motionless in the front row, never dozed off, and always posed an insightful, discussion provoking question at the end. It was absolutely amazing!”

Horace will be honoured with a private family funeral in the coming weeks. Horace’s former colleagues are organising a scientific tribute to his life and work, to take place on a date close to Horace’s 100th birthday next year.

—-

XXXXXXXXXXXX

(Click on link below to hear Francis Schaeffer comments in 1968 on Michael Polanyi in part 4 of his message on evolution)

https://www.labriideaslibrary.org/IdeasLibraryDatabase/Chance-%26-Evolution-(Part-4)%3A-Michael-Polanyi-%26-the-DNA-Template-B

second letter Polanyi letter dated Sept 28, 2015

September 28, 2015

Dr. Horace Barlow,

United Kingdom,

Dear Dr. Barlow,

I must tell you how much I enjoyed your in-depth interview that you gave Dr. Alan Macfarlane. His series of interviews have been helpful to me and I wish more people would take time to ask questions as he does. Thank for you taking the time to do that interview.

Image result for francis schaeffer

__________

James Watson (1928-) and Francis Crick  (8 June 1916 – 28 July 2004)

Recently I had the opportunity to come across a very interesting article by Michael Polanyi, LIFE TRANSCENDING PHYSICS AND CHEMISTRY, in the magazine CHEMICAL AND ENGINEERING NEWS, August 21, 1967, and I also got hold of a 1968 talk by Francis Schaeffer based on this article. Polanyi’s son John actually won the 1986 Nobel Prize for Chemistry.This article by Michael Polanyi concerns Francis Crick and James Watson and their discovery of DNA in 1953. Polanyi noted:

Mechanisms, whether man-made or morphological, are boundary conditions harnessing the laws of in
animate nature, being themselves irreducible to those laws. The pattern of organic bases in DNA which functions as a genetic code is a boundary condition irreducible to physics and chemistry. Further controlling principles of life may be represented as a hierarchy of boundary conditions extending, in the case of man, to consciousness and responsibility.

I would like to send you a CD copy of this talk because I thought you may find it very interesting. It includes references to not only James D. Watson, and Francis Crick but also Maurice Wilkins, Erwin Schrodinger, J.S. Haldane (his son was the famous J.B.S. Haldane), Peter Medawar, and Barry Commoner. I WONDER IF YOU EVER HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO RUN ACROSS THESE MEN OR ANY OF THEIR FORMER STUDENTS?

John Scott Haldane (2 May 1860 – 14/15 March 1936)

J. B. S. HALDANE
J. B. S. Haldane.jpg

Haldane in 1914

(5 November 1892 – 1 December 1964)

Maurice Wilkins (15 December 1916 – 5 October 2004)

Erwin Schrödinger (12 August 1887 – 4 January 1961)

Sir Peter Medawar ( 28 February 1915 – 2 October 1987)

Barry Commoner (May 28, 1917 – September 30, 2012)

Below is a portion of the transcript from the CD and Michael Polanyi’s words are in italics while Francis Schaeffer’s words are not:

During the past 15 years, I have worked on these questions, achieving gradually stages of the argument presented in this paper. These are:

  1. Machines are not formed by physical and chemical equilibration. 
  2. The functional terms needed for characterizing a machine cannot for defined in terms of physics and chemistry. 

Polanyi is talking about specific machines but I would include the great cause and effect machine of the external universe that functions on a cause and effect basis. So if this is true of the watch,  then you have to ask the same question about the total machine that Sartre points out that is there, and that is the cause and effect universe. Polanyi doesn’t touch on this and he doesn’t have an answer, and I know people who know him. Yet nevertheless he sees the situation exactly as it is. And I would point out what  Alfred North Whitehead (1861–1947) and J. Robert Oppenheimer (1904–1967) said and that it needed a Christian consensus to produce modern science because it was the Christian consensus that gave the concept that the world being created by a reasonable God and that it could be found out and discovered by reason. So the modern science when it began with Copernicus and Galileo and all these men conceived that the cause and effect system of the universe would be there on the basis that it was created by a reasonable God, and that is Einstein’s big dilemma and that is why he became a mystic at the end of life…What Polanyi says here can be extended to the watch, and the bridge and the automobile but also to the big cause and effect universe. You have to give some kind of answer to this too and I would say this to Michael Polanyi if I ever have a chance to talk to him.You need another explanation too Polanyi.

3. No physical chemical topography will tell us that we have a machine before us and what its functions are. 

In other words, if you only know the chemicals and the physics you don’t know if you have a machine. It may just be junk. So nobody in the world could tell if it was a machine from merely the “physical chemical-topography.” You have to look at the machineness of the machine to say it is a machine. You could take an automobile and smash it into a small piece of metal with a giant press and it would have the same properties of the automobile, but the automobile would have disappeared. The automobile-ness of the automobile is something else than the physical chemical-topography.

4. Such a topography can completely identify one particular specimen of a machine, but can tell us nothing about a class of machines. 

5. And if we are asked how the same solid system can be subject to control by two independent principles, the answer is: The boundary conditions of the system are free of control by physics and can be controlled therefore by nonphysical, purely technical, principles. 

In other words you have to explain the engineering by something other than merely physical principles and of course it is. You can’t explain the watchness of the watch merely by this. You can explain it on the basis of engineering principles in which the human mind conceives of a use for the machine and produces the machine. But notice where Polanyi is and that is in our argument of a need of personality in the universethough Polanyi doesn’t draw this final conclusion, though I thought that is the only explanation.

If you look at the watch a man has made it for the purpose of telling time. When you see the automobile a man has made it for the purpose of locomotion and the explanation of the difference is not in the chemical and physical properties but in the personality of a man to make these two different machines for two different purposes out of the same material. So what you are left here is the need of personality in the universe.

____

Thank you for your time. I know how busy you are and I want to thank you for taking the time to read this letter.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher,

13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, United States, cell ph 501-920-5733, everettehatcher@gmail.com

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

There are 3 videos in this series and they have statements by 150 academics and scientists and I hope to respond to all of them. Wikipedia notes Horace Basil Barlow FRS was a British visual neuroscientist.

Barlow was the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin), and thus the great-grandson of Charles Darwin (see Darwin — Wedgwood family). He earned an M.D. at Harvard University in 1946.

In 1953 Barlow discovered that the frog brain has neurons which fire in response to specific visual stimuli. This was a precursor to the work of Hubel and Wiesel on visual receptive fields in the visual cortex. He has made a long study of visual inhibition, the process whereby a neuron firing in response to one group of retinal cells can inhibit the firing of another neuron; this allows perception of relative contrast.

In 1961 Barlow wrote a seminal article where he asked what the computational aims of the visual system are. He concluded that one of the main aims of visual processing is the reduction of redundancy. While the brightnesses of neighbouring points in images are usually very similar, the retina reduces this redundancy. His work thus was central to the field of statistics of natural scenes that relates the statistics of images of real world scenes to the properties of the nervous system.

Barlow and his co-workers also did substantial work in the field of factorial codes. The goal was to encode images with statistically redundant components or pixels such that the code components are statistically independent. Such codes are hard to find but highly useful for purposes of image classification etc.

Barlow was a fellow of Trinity College, University of Cambridge. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1969 and was awarded their Royal Medal in 1993.[1] He received the 1993 Australia Prize for his research into the mechanisms of visual perception and the 2009 Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience from the Society for Neuroscience.

________________

His comments can be found on the 3rd video and the 128th clip in this series. Below the videos you will find his words.

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

_______________

Interview of Horace Barlow – part 1

Published on Jun 18, 2014

Interviewed and filmed by Alan Macfarlane on 5 March 2012

______________________

Interview of Horace Barlow – part 2

Horace Barlow’s quote taken from interview with Alan Macfarlane:

HAS RELIGION EVER BEEN IMPORTANT TO YOU? IS IT IMPORTANT TO YOU? No, it is not important to me. Saying you don’t believe in God is a very foolish thing to say as it doesn’t explain why so many people talk about it, there has got to be more to it than that; also I think one has to respect what some godly people say and some of the things they do; I wish one could make more sense of it but I don’t think the godly people have done a very good job; I was never baptized or confirmed so have never been a practitioner, and I don’t miss it; DO YOU THINK THAT SCIENCE HAS DIS-PROVEN RELIGION AS DAWKINS ARGUES? I think it [science] provides some hope of acting rationally to handle the social and political problems we have to deal with on a personal level and one a worldwide level. Religion is a way of perpetuating a way of thought that might have otherwise been lost, and I imagine that is fine.   

Dr. Barlow’s only three solid claims in this response to Alan Macfarlane is that science is #1 the best help today with our social problems,(which is in the original clip), #2 Saying you don’t believe in God (position of atheism) is foolish, and #3 we need an explanation for why so many people talk about [God.]

My response to #1 is to look at how the secular humanists have messed up so many things in the past and I include Barlow’s personal family friend Margaret Mead in that. My responses to #2 and #3 were both covered in my earlier response to Roald Hoffmann

(Roald Hoffmann is a Nobel Prize winner who I have had the honor of corresponding with in the past. Pictured below)

Image result for Roald Hoffmann.

(This July 1933 photo shows [left to right] anthropologist Gregory Bateson with Margaret Mead)

Image result for margaret mead husband

Horace Barlow’s words  from interview conducted by Alan Macfarlane:

I don’t ever remember going to Bateson’s house in Granchester as a child; William Bateson’s wife was a friend of my mother’s; when Gregory Bateson was out in Bali he met Margaret Mead; Beatrice Bateson, his mother, felt she was too old to go out and inspect her so she sent my mother instead; she flew off in an Imperial Airlines plane and we saw her off from Hendon; that must have been 1937-8; my mother got on very well with Margaret Mead – she was not altogether convinced by her, but very impressed by her breadth of knowledge and energy; she came and stayed with us many times; I was even more sceptical than my mother and thought she was a very impressive person; Gregory was born 1904 and my mother, in 1886, so there was quite a big age difference between them; I never got on close intellectual terms with Gregory even though we were to some extent interested in the same sort of thing, both in cybernetics and psychology, and his ideas were always interesting; however, my model of a scientist was taken from my mother and not from Gregory; my mother was interested in genetics and the paper for which she was famous was on the reproductive system in plants like cowslips; my mother reasoned like a scientist whereas Gregory was a guru – he liked to think things out for himself; he obviously influenced many others too; I saw him once or twice when I went to Berkeley

Postscript:

I was sad to see that Jon Stewart is stepping down from the DAILY SHOW so I wanted to include one of the best clips I have ever seen on his show and it is a short debate between the brilliant scientists  Edward J. Larson (an evolutionist), William A. Dembski (an Intelligent Design Proponent), and then he threw in a nutball in for laughs,  Ellie Crystal (a metaphysical theorist). Dembski gives several great examples of design and it reminded me of many of the words of Darwin show above in my letter to Horace Barlow.

William Dembski on The Jon Stewart Show

Uploaded on Nov 15, 2010

Wednesday September 14, 2005 – Jon Stewart’s “Evolution, Schmevolution” segment with panelists Edward J. Larson (an evolutionist), William A. Dembski (an Intelligent Design Proponent), and Ellie Crystal (a metaphysical theorist).

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 41 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (Featured artist is Marina Abramović)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 40 Timothy Leary (Featured artist is Margaret Keane)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

_________________

___

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 9 Rock Band KANSAS: “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away”

—-

Some have embraced a form of Evolutionary Optimistic Humanism. Even Charles Darwin held unto the ideal of Evolutionary Optimistic  Humanism.

In Darwin’s 1876 Autobiography he noted:

“With respect to immortality, nothing shows me [so clearly] how strong and almost instinctive a belief it is as the consideration of the view now held by most physicists, namely, that the sun with all the planets will in time grow too cold for life, unless indeed some great body dashes into the sun and thus gives it fresh life. Believing as I do that man in the distant future will be a far more perfect creature than he now is,”

Francis Schaeffer 

Francis Schaeffer commented in 1968:

Now you have now the birth of Julian Huxley’s evolutionary optimistic humanism already stated by Darwin. Darwin now has a theory that man is going to be better. If you had lived at 1860 or 1890 and you said to Darwin, “By 1970 will man be better?” He certainly would have the hope that man would be better as Julian Huxley does today. Of course, I wonder what he would say if he lived in our day and saw what has been made of his own views in the direction of (the mass murder) Richard Speck (and deterministic thinking of today’s philosophers). I wonder what he would say. So you have the factor, already the dilemma in Darwin that I pointed out in Julian Huxley and that is evolutionary optimistic humanism rests always on tomorrow. You never have an argument from the present or the past for evolutionary optimistic humanism. You can have evolutionary nihilism on the basis of the present and the past. Every time you have someone bringing in evolutionary optimistic humanism it is always based on what is going to be produced tomorrow. When is it coming? The years pass and is it coming? 

Below is a portion of my December 2, 2017 which was responding to his November 22, 2017 letter:

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Francis Schaeffer (1912-1984) taught at the Swiss L’Abri Community.

Let me give you some background on why I have written you. Since 1974 I have been reading the books of Francis Schaeffer. Then later in the 1970’s Schaeffer released two film series. Here is what Wikipedia had to say about Schaeffer:

Francis August Schaeffer (January 30, 1912 – May 15, 1984[1]) was an American Evangelical Christian theologianphilosopher, and Presbyterian pastor. He is best known for establishing the L’Abri community in Switzerland. Opposed to theological modernism, Schaeffer promoted a more historic Protestant faith… which he believed would answer the questions of the age.

Also over the last 25 years I have had the opportunity to listen to hundreds of Schaeffer’s recorded messages from the L’Abri community in Switzerland.

Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

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—-

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Adrian Rogers pictured 


On the tenth anniversary of Francis Schaeffer’s passing, May 15, 1994, I sent out to several hundred prominent skeptics an evangelistic letter that told about Schaeffer’s life. This same letter included the CD entitled “Dust, Darwin, and Disbelief,” by Adrian Rogers and Bill Elliff which quoted your great grandfather, Charles Darwin. That CD started off with the song DUST IN THE WIND by the group KANSAS for the simple reason that if we  accept that we are the result of chance then all we are is DUST IN THE WIND.

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I thought the inclusion of the song DUST IN THE WIND was logical, but that logic was challenged by the third paragraph in your November 22, 2017 letter which said:

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Horace Barlow pictured above

You may ask, “What is to take the place of Religious Belief in helping to understand the world around us? It has order and purpose, which cannot be explained by Blind chance as evolution teaches.” I agree it cannot be explained by Blind chance alone, but Darwin did not claim that this happens, and modern evolutionists agree. We say that chance variations (mutations) occur in the substances (called genes nowadays) that control development and cause son and daughter to resemble father and mother. These genes control the development of the offspring, and and influence their success in life, and in particular they influence the types of mutated genes that are passed on to the next generation. Chance, together with “Survival of the fittest,” thus causes the appearance of apparently purposeful adaptations of the population of genes in a species.

If you are correct then I was wrong to include the song DUST IN THE WIND. Let me respond by quoting Francis Schaeffer from his talk In the spring of 1968 which centered on your great uncle Francis Darwin’s book:

Darwin in his autobiography  Darwin, Francis ed. 1892. Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters [abridged edition]. London: John Murray, and in his letters showed that all through his life he NEVER really came to a QUIETNESS concerning the possibility that chance really explained the situation of the biological world. You will find there is much material on this [from Darwin] extended over many many years that constantly he was wrestling with this problem. Darwin never came to a place of satisfaction. You have philosophically ONLY TWO possible beginnings. The first would be a PERSONAL beginning and the other would be an IMPERSONEL beginning plus time plus CHANCE. There is no other possible alternative except the alternative that everything comes out of nothing and that has to be a total nothing and that has to be a total nothing without mass, energy or motion existing. No one holds this last view because it is unthinkable. Darwin understood this and therefore until his death he was uncomfortable with the idea of CHANCE producing the biological variation. 

Below is a portion of my 25th letter September 2, 2019 to Dr. Barlow that demonstrates that humanist philosophers have given up their optimism and become pessimistic about the future:

I want to thank you again for this opportunity to write you every month about your great grandfather Charles Darwin. Today we are going to look at where our moral motions come from and this is a subject that Darwin talked about a great deal.

On August 28, 2019 on You Tube Richard Dawkins stated in an interview about his book OUTGROWING GOD:

Jesus was obviously a nice person if he lived. Either Jesus was a nice person or whoever wrote his lines was a nice person….The SERMON ON THE MOUNT is classically regarded as a very wonderful set of rules for living and indeed it is….Taken as a whole the Bible is a terrible set of rules for living….[Instead], live our lives by moral philosophers and by the general progress we see in morality as we look from decades to decades.

Let us pause for a moment and look at what Humanist autonomous philosophers have given us.


Francis Schaeffer noted:

The history of the nonchristian Philosophers up until the 18th century went like this:Here is a circle which stands for what the unified and true knowledge of the universe is. The next man would say “No,” and cross out the circle. He then would say “Here is the circle.” Then the next man would say “No,”and cross out that circle. Then he would make his circle and the next man would cross it out and make his circle. This continued through the centuries. They never found the circle, but they optimistically thought someone would beginning with man himself and on the basis of man’s reasoning alone.Then the endless rows of circles through the and the crossing out were broken and a drastic shift came because the humanist ideal had failed. Humanist man gave up his optimism for pessimism. He gave up the hope of an unified answer and this makes modern man who he is.

If Evolution by chance occurred then Ecclesiastes is correct about our lives seeking lasting lasting meaning “under the sun” is like chasing the wind and I pointed out that nihilism was the logical response of a person blocks out the possibility that God exists in my last letter to Dr. Barlow on April 18, 2020. I suggested that Dr. Barlow watch the NetFlix series AFTER LIFE which demonstrates this over and over and below is the complete letter:

April 18, 2020

Dr. Horace Barlow,  Cambridge CB3 9AX, England

Dear Dr. Barlow,

As you know I have writing you since 2015 and I was so thrilled to get a detailed letter back from you in November of 2017 that answered several of the questions that I have asked you about Charles Darwin’s views. In many of the letters I have written to you have referred also to Solomon and his words in the last book he wrote which was ECCLESIASTES. Well, Ricky Gervais has written and starred in a film series on Netflix called AFTER LIFE that reminds me of a modern day Solomon looking in vain for the meaning in life UNDER THE SUN in the fictional town Tambury which is really filmed in London.

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

Today I got to ask a question to Ricky and he took time to answer me and I thought you would enjoy some of my open letter to Ricky which I published today:

(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

I have been a big fan of yours for 20 years now and I have taken an interest especially in your philosophical views concerning atheism and your attacks on Christianity, and since 2016 I have written you 9 letters basically concerning the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of nihilism. Then I ran across your series AFTER LIFE and Tony reminded me so much of Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes and the nihilism that Solomon embraced.

Today, Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask you on your Twitter Live broadcast “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark you answer my question with the following comments:


Not, I mean he [Tony] dabbles with it [nihilism] but a lot of this stuff is like he is being provocative and he is trying to sort of hurt people. No, It is difficult to say. I don’t. The one thing he wants he can’t have so he is angry. He has to compromise. He had the perfect marriage and he doesn’t know how to act or feel anymore. He is confused. He is in pain. He is ill. He is probably ill you know. If you are not right in your [mind] then you are ill, and you can’t just step out of it. You know. You even know you are not normal or well, but what can you do? You don’t feel good. That will do. Did we get serious then? That won’t happen again!

It seems to me that you would classify Tony as angry and confused but not a nihilist. You are the writer so you should know, but let me ask you if you can philosophically back up the view that Tony is not living the life of a nihilist (one who does think there are no rules for his life and no purpose for his life and no basis for morality).

As a member of the British Humanist Association you are familiar with the view of optimistic humanism. Let me share some views on that:

Tony and his wife Lisa who died 6 months ago of cancer


Paul Kurtz – (writer of Humanist Manifesto 2 in 1973 and Dr. Kurtz was a very kind gentleman who took time to correspond with me.)

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“The universe is neutral, indifferent to man’s existential yearnings. But we instinctively discover life, experience its throb, its excitement, its attraction. Life is here to be lived, enjoyed, suffered, and endured…Again–one cannot ‘prove’ this normative principle to everyone’s satisfaction. Living beings tend instinctively to maintain themselves and to reproduce beyond ultimate justification. It is a brute fact of our contingent natures; It is an instinctive desire to live.”

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J.P. Moreland – “2 Objections to optimistic humanism: #1 There is no rational justification for choosing it over nihilism. As far as rationality is concerned, it has nothing to offer over nihilism. Therefore, optimistic humanism suffers from some of the same objections we raised against nihilism. Kurtz himself admits that the ultimate values of humanism are incapable of rational justification!!!!!!  #2 Optimistic Humanism really answers the question of the meaning of life in the negative, just as nihilism does. For the optimistic humanist life has no objective value or purpose; It offers only subjective satisfaction, one should think long and hard before embracing such a horrible view. If there is a decent case that life has objective value and purpose, then such a case should be given as good a hearing as possible.

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R.C. Sproul:Nihilism has two traditional enemies–Theism and Naive Humanism. The theist contradicts the nihilist because the existence of God guarantees that ultimate meaning and significance of personal life and history. Naive Humanism is considered naive by the nihilist because it rhapsodizes–with no rational foundation–the dignity and significance of human life. The humanist declares that man is a cosmic accident whose origin was fortuitous and entrenched in meaningless insignificance. Yet in between the humanist mindlessly crusades for, defends, and celebrates the chimera of human dignity…Herein is the dilemma: Nihilism declares that nothing really matters ultimately…In my judgment, no philosophical treatise has ever surpassed or equaled the penetrating analysis of the ultimate question of meaning versus vanity that is found in the Book of Ecclesiastes

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The humanist H. J. Blackham was the founder of the British Humanist Association and he asserted: On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility“( H. J. Blackham, et al., Objections to Humanism (Riverside, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1967). Francis Schaeffer comments concerning Blackham’s assertion, “One does not have to be highly educated to understand this. It follows directly from the starting point of the humanists’ position, namely, that everything is just matter. That is, that which has exited forever and in ever is only some form of matter or energy, and everything in our world now is this and only this in a more or less complex form.”

The 5 Conclusions of Humanism according to King Solomon of Israel in the Book of Ecclesiastes!!!!!

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The Humanistic world view tells us there is no afterlife and all we have is this life “under the sun.”

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Francis Schaeffer (Christian Philosopher) notes Solomon limits himself to “under the sun” – In other words the meaning of life on the basis of human life standing alone between birth and death. It is indeed the book of modern man. Solomon is the universal man with unlimited resources who says let us see where I go. Ravi Zacharias 

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“The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term ‘under the sun.’ What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system and you are left with only this world of time plus chance plus us (Matter)”

1st Conclusion: Nothing in life truly satisfies and that includes wisdom, great works and pleasure. A) Will wisdom satisfy someone under the sun? We know it is good in its proper place. T

But what did Solomon find out about wisdom “under the sun”? Ecclesiastes 1:16-18 (Living Bible): I said to myself, ‘Look, I am better educated than any of the kings before me in Jerusalem. I have greater wisdom and knowledge.’So I worked hard to be wise instead of foolish[c]—but now I realize that even this was like chasing the wind. For the more my wisdom, the more my grief; to increase knowledge only increases distress.” (That is NIHILISM!!!!)

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KJV and Living Bible Ecclesiastes 2:1-3, 8, 10, 11: I said in mine heart, Go to now, I will prove thee with mirth, therefore enjoy pleasure: and, behold, this also is vanity.I said of laughter, It is mad: and of mirth, What doeth it? I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly,And then there were my many beautiful concubines.10 Anything I wanted I took and did not restrain myself from any joy…11 But as I looked at everything I had tried, it was all so useless, a chasing of the wind, and there was nothing really worthwhile anywhere…

2nd Conclusion: Power reigns in this life and the scales are not balanced!!!!!Ecclesiastes 4:1 (King James Version): So I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter.
Ecclesiastes 7:15 (King James Version) All things have I seen in the days of my vanity: there is a just man that perisheth in his righteousness, and there is a wicked man that prolongeth his life in his wickedness.If you are a humanist you must admit that men like Hitler will not be punished in the afterlife because you deny there is an afterlife? Right?

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3rd Conclusion – Death is the great equalizer. Just as the beasts will not be remembered so ultimately brilliant men will not be remembered. Ecclesiastes 3:20 “All go unto one place; All are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.” Here Solomon comes to the same point that Kerry Livgren came to in January of 1978 when he wrote the hit song DUST IN THE WIND. Can you refute the nihilistic claims of this song within the humanistic world view? Solomon couldn’t but maybe you can.

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4th Conclusion – Chance and time plus matter (us) has determined the past and it will determine the future.By the way, what are the ingredients that make evolution work? George Wald – “Time is the Hero.”

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Jacques Monod – “Pure chance, absolutely free but blind, is at the root of the stupendous edifice of evolution.”

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I can not think of a better illustration of this in action than the movie ON THE BEACH by Nevil Shute. On May 4, 1994 I watched the movie for the first time and again I thought of the humanist who believes that history is not heading somewhere with a purpose but is guided by pure chance, absolutely free but blind. I thought of the passage Ecclesiastes 9:10-12 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.11 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.12 For man also knoweth not his time: as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falleth suddenly upon them.

5th Conclusion – Life is just a series ofcontinual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death.
Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16).

 Adrian Rogers (September 12, 1931 – November 15, 2005) 

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I first starting studying Ecclesiastes in 1976 when I heard Adrian Rogers give a sermon on the nihilism of King Solomon. These facts in Ecclesiastes inspired the author of the song DUST IN THE WIND. Kerry Livgren of KANSAS, who wrote the song noted, “I happened to be reading a book of American Indian poetry and somewhere in it I came across the line, ‘We’re just dust in the wind.’ I remembered in the BOOK of ECCLESIASTES  where it said, ‘All is vanity,’ ” Livgren said of the passage that it reminds man he came from dust and will return to dust.

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I remember a visit in 1976 that Adrian Rogers made to our Junior High Chapel service at EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN SCHOOL, and it was that day that I personally began a lifelong interest in King Solomon’s life, and his search for satisfaction as pictured in the Book of Ecclesiastes.

(Kerry Livgren, Dave Hope in back)

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Solomon was searching for meaning and satisfaction in life in what Rogers called the 6 big L words in the Book of Ecclesiastes. He looked into Learning (1:16-18), Laughter, Ladies, Luxuries, and Liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11), and Labor (2:4-6, 18-20).

Ecclesiastes 2:8-10The Message (MSG)

I piled up silver and gold,
loot from kings and kingdoms.
I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song,
and—most exquisite of all pleasures—
voluptuous maidens for my bed.

9-10 Oh, how I prospered! I left all my predecessors in Jerusalem far behind, left them behind in the dust. What’s more, I kept a clear head through it all. Everything I wanted I took—I never said no to myself. I gave in to every impulse, held back nothing. I sucked the marrow of pleasure out of every task—my reward to myself for a hard day’s work!

(Edward John Poynter Painting  below of Solomon)

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Francis Schaeffer observed concerning Solomon, “You can not know woman by knowing 1000 women.”

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King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 2:11 sums up his search for meaning with these words, “…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.”

After hearing the sermon by Adrian Rogers in 1976, I took a special interest in the Book of Ecclesiastes and then the next year I bought the album POINT OF KNOW RETURN by the group rock group KANSAS. On that album was the song “Dust in the Wind”  and it rose to #6 on the charts in 1978. That song told me that Kerry Livgren the writer of that song had come to the same conclusion that Solomon had. I remember mentioning to my friends at church that we may soon see some members of KANSAS become Christians because their search for the meaning of life had obviously come up empty even though they had risen from being an unknown band to the top of the music business and had all the wealth and fame that came with that.

(That is the same reason I am excited about Ricky’s series AFTER LIFE!!!)

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Furthermore, Solomon realized death comes to everyone and there must be something more. I was hoping the members of KANSAS would keep looking for something more than just material pursuits UNDER THE SUN.

Livgren wrote:

“All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

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Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player DAVE HOPE of KANSAS became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgren first tried Eastern Religions and DAVE HOPE had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same interview can be seen on youtube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible Church. DAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.

By the way, the final chapter of Ecclesiastes finishes with Solomon emphasizing that serving God is the only proper response of man. Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture.
13 Now all has been heard;
here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
for this is the whole duty of man.

14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, cell ph 501-920-5733, everettehatcher@gmail.com

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(END OF LETTER TO DR BARLOW)


Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Let me give a couple examples of nihilism and the first one is from the film series AFTER LIFE:

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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In the 5th episode of the second season of AFTERLIFE we have the following conversation:

Tony: How long have you been posting your mail in a dog waste bin?

Older Gentleman: About a year I would say. 

Tony: It says “Dog waste” on it. 
Older Gentleman: yeah but my eyes are shot. 
Tony: What did you think the smell was? Wasn’t that a clue?

Older Gentleman: Yeah. I thought it was me. I have no one to be hygienic for. No point is there. No one to wash for. 
Tony: Yourself maybe?

Older Gentleman: No point is there. No point to anything is there really? Where do they take dog crap? They probably bury it don’t they? That’s where we all are going to end up. We are all just future [dog crap]. I have no self esteem. 

AFTER LIFE is filled with episodes with the lead character Tony Johnson (played by Ricky Gervais) considering suicide, and he is surrounded by other characters such as Julian who he helps commit suicide and Brian who considered suicide in the past.

Sadly since Ricky is an atheist he doesn’t have any spiritual answers to the big problems in life that require more than secular answers.

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Edward O. Wilson tries to put a positive spin on humanism but it still ends up as nihilism when he discusses Gauguin’s 3 famous questions: Where do we come from?  What are we?  Where are we going?:

I am currently reading the book TALES FROM THE ANT WORLD by Edward O. Wilson. I have enjoyed reading several of his books. In Wilson’s book THE MEANING OF HUMAN EXISTENCE, and THE SOCIAL CONQUEST OF EARTH he discusses Paul Gauguin.

Here are Edward O. Wilson’s conclusions on Gauguin’s journey:

AND AS FOR YOU, PAUL GAUGUIN, why did you write those lines on your painting? Of course, the ready answer I suppose is that you wanted to be very clear about the symbolization of the great range of human activity depicted in your Tahitian panorama, just in case someone might miss the point. But I sense there was something more. Perhaps you asked the THREE QUESTIONS in such a way to imply that NO ANSWERS exist, either in the civilized world you rejected and left behind or in the primitive world you adopted in order to find peace. Or again, perhaps you meant that art can go no further than what you have done; and all that was left for you to do personally was express the troubling questions in script. Let me suggest yet another reason for the mystery you left us, one not necessarily in conflict with these other conjectures. I think what you wrote is an EXCLAMATION OF TRIUMPH.  You had lived out your passion to travel far, to discover and embrace novel styles of visual art, to ask the questions in a new way, and from all that createan authentically original work. In this sense your career is one for the ages; it was not paid out in vain. In our own time, by bringing rational analysis and art together and joining science and humanities in partnership, we have drawn closer to the answers you sought.

(In my 2-2-17 letter to Dr. Wilson I made the following observations below.)

I have to accept your first conclusion concerning Gauguin and that is the pessimistic  and nihilistic one. Your speculation that possibly Gauguin wrote an “exclamation of triumph” is not realistic at all because he was looking UNDER THE SUN for answers to these 3 big questions and they must be given spiritual answers. The ironic thing is that if the spiritual quest finds fulfilling answers then a more abundant life can be lived on this earth.

Author Francis Schaeffer


Here is an example of how insightful Schaeffer can be
Below is from an article by Brian Thomas and is based on Francis Schaeffer’s film series “How should we then live?” In this article you will see some of the thoughts that the artist Paul Gauguin had before deciding to attempt to commit suicide.

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Gauguin as an artist strived to give his work a more human touch, expressing feelings and knowledge and human reactions to the realities of life, while at the same time freeing himself as an artist to express color and design boldly, overcoming the narrowness of merely copying what the eye can register as the Impressionists painted. In an attempt to obtain his goal of “regaining humanity,” as he called it, he moved to Tahiti in 1891. It was here that he painted his greatest work in 1897: Whence? What? Whither?

During the course of 1897 Gauguin referred increasingly to his own death, alluding to suicide in letters and his journal. In the autumn he noted that “The artist dies, his heirs make a grab for his works, sort out the copyright, his estate, and whatever else there might be to do. Now he has been stripped to the bone. I think about these things, and am going to strip myself first: it gives me a sense of relief.”

As Gauguin contemplated taking his own life he set out to create a painting that would leave a lasting legacy of his faith, worldview, artistic insight and intentions by asking three metaphysical questions: Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going?


In a letter to friend Daniel de Monfreid, he describes the painting as a “philosophical work” which could be compared to the Gospels. We must read the work, he said, from right to left and interprets it as such:

(What could be the only photos of Paul Gauguin and his Tahitian muse have surfaced. Gauguin is at the center of this photo, kissing a woman that could be his mistress Pahura. (Daniel Blau) in summer of 1896)

“In the bottom right-hand corner there is a sleeping child, then three covering women. Two figures dressed in purple are deep in conversation. A crouching figure, which defies perspective, and is meant to do so, looks very large. This figure is raising its arm and looking in astonishment at the two women who dare to think about their own fate. The central figure is picking fruit from a tree. Two cats by a child…a white goat. The idol is raising both its arms with rhythmic energy and seems to be pointing to somewhere beyond here. A covering girl appears to be listening to the idol. An old woman, close to the end of life, completes the circle.She is ready to accept her fate. At her feet a strange, white bird with a lizard in its talons symbolizes the futility of empty words…”

Where do we come from? A baby lies next to some young women as the source of life. What are we? A woman stands reaching for the apple, a probable reference to Eve in the garden and man’s fall into sin and ruin. Where are we going? From right to left we see the process of ageing taking place culminating in an old woman, “ready to accept her fate.” Art historian H.R. Rookmaaker suggests that in the background “mysterious figures, in sad colors, standing near the tree of knowledge, are sad as a result of that knowledge.”
(H.R. Rookmaaker seen below)

It is interesting to note that a few days after completing this work, Gauguin went off into the woods and swallowed a large amount of arsenic. But his body rejected it and he was unable to keep the poison down.

I give this example to show how form and content can beautifully integrate in such a way as to make the work a more powerful vehicle of expression. It should be obvious to the reader by now that I do not share Gauguin’s unfortunate outlook on life, but as an artist and a Christian, I appreciate the thought and purpose behind his masterpiece. Both the aesthetic quality and intellectual content marry to form an important and thought-provoking piece of art. The creators of the religious kitsch that line the shelves at your local happy Christian bookstore could learn much from the serious attention Gauguin put into his work.

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Gauguin’s conclusion is logical, and Francis Schaeffer says that Woody Allen has come to this same nihilistic conclusion.

Schaeffer noted: 
One of the most striking developments in the last half-century is the growth of a profound pessimism among both the well-educated and less-educated people. The thinkers in our society have been admitting for a long time that they have no final answers at all. Take Woody Allen, for example. Most people know his as a comedian, but he has thought through where mankind stands after the “religious answers” have been abandoned. In an article in Esquire (May 1977), he says that man is left with:


… alienation, loneliness [and] emptiness verging on madness…. The fundamental thing behind all motivation and all activity is the constant struggle against annihilation and against death. It’s absolutely stupefying in its terror, and it renders anyone’s accomplishments meaningless. As Camus wrote, it’s not only that he (the individual) dies, or that man (as a whole) dies, but that you struggle to do a work of art that will last and then you realize that the universe itself is not going to exist after a period of time. Until those issues are resolved within each person – religiously or psychologically or existentially – the social and political issues will never be resolved, except in a slapdash way.
Allen sums up his view in his film Annie Hall with these words: “Life is divided into the horrible and the miserable.”


Many would like to dismiss this sort of statement as coming from one who is merely a pessimist by temperament, one who sees life without the benefit of a sense of humor. Woody Allen does not allow us that luxury. He speaks as a human being who has simply looked life in the face and has the courage to say what he sees. If there is no personal God, nothing beyond what our eyes can see and our hands can touch, then Woody Allen is right: life is both meaningless and terrifying.

As the famous artist Paul Gauguin wrote on his last painting shortly before he tried to commit suicide: “Whence come we? What are we? Whither do we go?” The answers are nowhere, nothing, and nowhere.

(John Fischer wrote) If Edvard Munch’s The Scream had a voice, it would sound like Francis Schaeffer. Schaeffer, who died in 1984, understood the existential cry of a humanity trapped in a prison of its own making.

Schaeffer was the closest thing to a “man of sorrows” I have seen. He could not allow himself to be happy when most of the world was desperately lost and he knew why. He was the first Christian I found who could embrace faith and the despair of a lost humanity all at the same time. Though he had been found, he still knew what it was to be lost.

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xxx

TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW: 

Arpan @DrArpan100

Horace Barlow FRS was an extraordinary neuroscientist. His supervisions were always inspirational and he had a gift of being able to infuse curiosity in his students. He has had a massive impact on the field of visual neuroscience. He never stopped questioning and thinking. RIP.

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Horace seen below in 2017 

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Francis Schaeffer

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

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Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

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Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

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Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

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Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

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I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

Related posts:

Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part F “Carl Sagan’s views on how God should try and contact us” includes film “The Basis for Human Dignity”

April 8, 2013 – 7:07 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis SchaefferProlife | Edit | Comments (0)

Carl Sagan v. Nancy Pearcey

March 18, 2013 – 9:11 am

On March 17, 2013 at our worship service at Fellowship Bible Church, Ben Parkinson who is one of our teaching pastors spoke on Genesis 1. He spoke about an issue that I was very interested in. Ben started the sermon by reading the following scripture: Genesis 1-2:3 English Standard Version (ESV) The Creation of the […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersAtheists ConfrontedCurrent Events | TaggedBen ParkinsonCarl Sagan | Edit | Comments (0)

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution)

May 24, 2012 – 1:47 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 5 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog _______________________ I got this from a blogger in April of 2008 concerning candidate Obama’s view on evolution: Q: York County was recently in the news […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent EventsPresident Obama | EditComments (0)

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution)

May 23, 2012 – 1:43 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 4 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog______________________________________ I got this from a blogger in April of 2008 concerning candidate Obama’s view on evolution: Q: York County was recently in the news […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent EventsPresident Obama | EditComments (0)

Carl Sagan versus RC Sproul

January 9, 2012 – 2:44 pm

At the end of this post is a message by RC Sproul in which he discusses Sagan. Over the years I have confronted many atheists. Here is one story below: I really believe Hebrews 4:12 when it asserts: For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersAtheists ConfrontedCurrent EventsFrancis Schaeffer | Tagged Bill ElliffCarl SaganJodie FosterRC Sproul | Edit | Comments (0)

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution)jh68

November 8, 2011 – 12:01 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 5 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog _______________________ This is a review I did a few years ago. THE DEMON-HAUNTED WORLD: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution)

November 4, 2011 – 12:57 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 4 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog______________________________________ I was really enjoyed this review of Carl Sagan’s book “Pale Blue Dot.” Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot by Larry Vardiman, Ph.D. […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Atheists confronted: How I confronted Carl Sagan the year before he died jh47

May 19, 2011 – 10:30 am

In today’s news you will read about Kirk Cameron taking on the atheist Stephen Hawking over some recent assertions he made concerning the existence of heaven. Back in December of 1995 I had the opportunity to correspond with Carl Sagan about a year before his untimely death. Sarah Anne Hughes in her article,”Kirk Cameron criticizes […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists Confronted | Edit | Comments (2)

My correspondence with George Wald and Antony Flew!!!

May 12, 2014 – 1:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 41 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (Featured artist is Marina Abramović)

January 8, 2015 – 5:23 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 40 Timothy Leary (Featured artist is Margaret Keane)

January 1, 2015 – 4:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

December 25, 2014 – 5:04 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

December 18, 2014 – 4:30 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

December 11, 2014 – 4:19 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

December 4, 2014 – 4:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

November 27, 2014 – 4:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

November 20, 2014 – 4:28 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

November 13, 2014 – 4:39 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

November 6, 2014 – 4:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

June 12, 2014 – 2:52 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 8 (Archaeology done by evolutionists has been twisted through the years to fit an narrative that supports gradual evolution but the fact remains that Charles Darwin rightly asked, “Why, if species have descended from other species by insensibly fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms?”)

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow

Dr. Barlow in his November 22, 2017 letter asserted concerning his great-grandfather Charles Darwin:

“Notice, however, that he clearly did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out.”

I am sure that Charles Darwin would be a creationist today if he “did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out.” Let’s look again at Darwin’s honest question.


Archaeology done by evolutionists has been twisted through the years to fit an narrative that supports gradual evolution but the fact remains that Charles Darwin rightly asked, “Why, if species have descended from other species by insensibly fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms?

On October 2, 2018 I Sent an article from 2009 which was 150 years after Darwin’s Origin of the species was published to Dr. Barlow looking at a the fossil evidence:

October 2, 2018

Dr. Horace Barlow, Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom,

Dear Dr. Barlow,

I look forward to the 2nd of each month because I get to write you a letter. You were so kind to write me such an extensive letter that I received on December 2, 2017, and I going to try to be worthy to answer the questions you raised.

I thought of you two days ago when our teaching pastor Mark Henry was preaching at our church. You can hear the whole sermon by googling Fellowship Bible Church Little Rock Sermons. He quoted I Thessalonians 2:13: 13 And we also thank God constantly[d] for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men[e] but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers.

Mark asserted, “We have to receive and accept the word of God.” As a man of science you may have a problem with that unless there is good evidence showing that the Bible is true. Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.

Genesis 1:24-27:
24 And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. 25 God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.

John D. Morris noted:

The Institute for Creation Research is well known for its conviction that the scriptural account of creation is true as it stands. In particular, we notice that ten times in Genesis 1 God created the various plant and animal types “after their kind.” He did not transform one kind into a different kind, as evolution insists. Once the kind was created it could vary and adapt, but no new basic kinds would appear by this limited variation. In some cases, a kind might today be known as a species, but in others the term genus or family, as identified in modern taxonomy, might be more appropriate.

Francis Schaeffer in the footnotes in his book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE? observed:

The more fossil evidence we find, the more apparent it becomes that there have always been distinct breaks in the fossil record. Darwin admitted that the paleontological evidence in his day was slender, but, he said, as more is discovered the new evidence will support the hypothesis. This just has not happened.
The evidence of preman is sketchy, and recent discoveries in Africa and elsewhere have generated some difficult new problems in this area. But it is not just the so-called missing links between man and preman that constitute the problem, but all the missing links, right down the whole line. Not only are links missing; the chains themselves are missing. If one removes the speculative guesses, rather than links of different chains leading from simple to more complex organisms, one finds virtual explosions of mature life forms at different periods in geological time and many simple forms of life that remain unchanged for several millions of years up to their extinction or even to today.

Evolutionists call creationists ridiculous when they agree with Darwin that the fossil record still doesn’t support the view of gradual evolution. I have enclosed an article dealing with this. At the conclusion of this article Brian Thomas rightly notes:

Fossils do reveal some truth about Darwin’s theory—they reveal that the same inconsistencies he noted between his theory and the fossil data persist, even after 150 years of frantic searches for elusive transitions. Not only is there no single, undisputed transition, but real fossils reveal that animals were fully formed from the beginning.

I wonder what your great grandfather would have to say about that if he was here today to examine the fossil evidence again? Here are Charles Darwin’s exact words below from 159 years ago.

The Origin of Species

Chapter 6: Difficulties on Theory

by Charles Darwin

Why, if species have descended from other species by insensibly fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms? Why is not all nature in confusion instead of the species being, as we see them, well defined?

…But, as by this theory innumerable transitional forms must have existed, why do we not find them embedded in countless numbers in the crust of the earth? It will be much more convenient to discuss this question in the chapter on the Imperfection of the geological record; and I will here only state that I believe the answer mainly lies in the record being incomparably less perfect than is generally supposed;

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 cottontail lane, Alexander, AR 72002, United States150 Years Later, Fossils Still Don’t Help DarwinBY BRIAN THOMAS, M.S. *  | MONDAY, MARCH 02, 2009

“Creationists claim there are no transitional fossils, aka missing links. Biologists and paleontologists, among others, know this claim is false,” according to a recent LiveScience article that then describes what it claims are 12 specific transitional form fossils.1 But do these examples really confirm Darwinism?

Charles Darwin raised a lack of transitional fossils as a possible objection to his own theory: “Why, if species have descended from other species by fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms?”2 Later in this chapter of his landmark book, he expressed hope that future discoveries would be made of transitional forms, or of creatures that showed some transitional structure—perhaps a half-scale/half-feather.

Although some creationists do say that “there are no transitional fossils,” it would be more accurate to state that there are no undisputed transitional forms. Although the article asserts that the fossil record “is full of them,” the reality is that it does not contain a single universally accepted transitional form. Every transitional fossil candidate has both proponents and doubters even among evolutionary “biologists and paleontologists.”

The first supposed transitional form offered in the report is Sahelanthropus. This 2001 discovery was first hailed as a transitional form in the ape-to-human line, but controversy over its transitional status immediately ensued. Brigitte Senut of the Natural History Museum in Paris was skeptical, saying that its skull features, “especially the [canine teeth],”3 were characteristic of female gorillas, not human-like gorillas. Senut and her colleagues also disputed that Sahelanthropus was even in the ancestry of humans at all: “To represent a valid clade, hominids must share unique defining features, and Sahelanthropus does not appear to have been an obligate biped [creature that walked on two feet].”4 In other words, Sahelanthropus is at best a highly disputed fossil of an extinct ape, having no clear transitional features.

LiveScience also listed a medium-neck-length fossil giraffe named Bohlinia and the “walking manatee” as transitional forms. However, Bohlinia is just variation within what is still clearly the giraffe kind and doesn’t answer the question, “Where did the giraffe kind come from?” Such variations within kinds do not refute the creation concept, but rather are predicted by it.5 And the “walking manatee” walked because it had fully formed, ready-to-walk legs, hips, nerves, and musculature. The article does not mention that this particular fossil is shown elsewhere to be a dead-end species, “transitioning” to nothing, according to evolutionists.6

The LiveScience article, borrowing from geologist Donald Prothero, also claimed that Moeritherium is “the ultimate transitional fossil,” the ancestor of elephants. This was an amphibious mammal, shaped like a hippo, with a mobile, muscular lip fused with its nostril. But it had none of the real characteristics of an elephant—not the trunk, size, tusks, nor the specialized weight-bearing knee joint structure.7

The “classic fossil of Archaeopteryx” is not a transitional form either, but was fully bird. Its “reptile-like” teeth and wing claws are found in some birds today.8 Many reptiles have no teeth, but nobody claims that they evolved from birds. And the discovery of a “frog-amander” has yet to be agreed upon as transitional by evolutionists. John Bolt, a curator at the Field Museum in Chicago, told National Geographic that “it is difficult to say for sure whether this creature was itself a common ancestor of the two modern groups, given that there is only one known specimen of Gerobatrachus, and an incomplete one at that.”9

Other extinct creatures had “shared features,” physical structures that are found in different kinds of living organisms. However, “shared features” are not transitional features, which is what Darwin needed. There is no scientific evidence to refute the idea that shared features were designed into creatures by a Creator who wisely formed them with the equipment to live in various shared habitats.

Fossils do reveal some truth about Darwin’s theory—they reveal that the same inconsistencies he noted between his theory and the fossil data persist, even after 150 years of frantic searches for elusive transitions.10Not only is there no single, undisputed transition, but real fossils reveal that animals were fully formed from the beginning.

References

  1. Lloyd, R. Fossils Reveal Truth About Darwin’s TheoryLiveScience. Posted on Livescience.com February 11, 2009, accessed February 18, 2009.
  2. Darwin, C. 1902. On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection: or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, 6th Edition. New York: P. F. Collier & Son. 233.
  3. Chalmers, J. Seven million-year-old skull ‘just a female gorilla.’ The Sun-Herald. Posted on smh.com.au July 14, 2002, accessed February 18, 2009.
  4. Wolpoff, M. H. et al. 2002. Palaeoanthropology (communication arising): Sahelanthropus or ‘Sahelpithecus‘? Nature. 419 (6907): 581-582.
  5. Gish, D. 1981. Summary of Scientific Evidence for CreationActs & Facts. 10 (5).
  6. Rose, K. D. and J. D. Archibald. 2005. The Rise of Placental Mammals: Origins and Relationships of the Major Extant Clades. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 87.
  7. Weissengruber, G. E. et al. 2006. The elephant knee joint: morphological and biomechanical considerationsJournal of Anatomy. 208 (1): 59-72.
  8. Denton, M. 1986. Evolution: A Theory in Crisis. Bethesda, MD: Adler and Adler, 175, 176.
  9. Casselman, A. “Frog-amander” Fossil May Be Amphibian Missing LinkNational Geographic News. Posted on news.nationalgeographic.com on May 21, 2008, accessed February 18. 2009.
  10. Gish, D. 1995. Evolution: The Fossils Still Say No! El Cajon, CA: Institute for Creation Research.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer.

Darwin did accuse the Old Testament of errors:


“But I had gradually come by this time, i.e. 1836 to 1836, to see that the Old Testament was no more to be trusted than the sacred books of the Hindoos. The question then continually rose before my mind and would not be banished,—is it credible that if God were now to make a revelation to the Hindoos”

Just like Darwin Richard Dawkins in his latest book has attacked the Old Testament for an error and I discussed it below.

Here is a portion of a letter I wrote to Dr. Barlow on November 2, 2019:

November 2, 2019

Dr. Horace Barlow, Cambridge CB3 9AX, England
Dear Dr. Barlow,

I have enjoyed reading the book OUTGROWING GOD by your friend Richard Dawkins, and he certainly has much respect for you great grandfather Charles Darwin. However, he has not studied the Bible as extensively as Darwin did because many of Dawkins’ criticisms of the Bible don’t seem to be valid. For instance, on page 53 he states:

Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham 

Did Camels Exist in Biblical Times?

5 reasons why domesticated camels likely existedMegan Sauter November 12, 2018  16 Comments 2730 views  Share

Did camels exist in Biblical times?

Some Biblical texts, such as Genesis 12 and 24, claim that Abraham owned camels. Yet archaeological researchshows that camels were not domesticated in the land of Canaan until the 10th century B.C.E.—about a thousand years after the time of Abraham. This seems to suggest that camels in these Biblical stories are anachronistic.

The Caravan of Abram

Abraham’s Camels. Did camels exist in Biblical times? Camels appear with Abraham in some Biblical texts—and depictions thereof, such as The Caravan of Abram by James Tissot, based on Genesis 12. When were camels first domesticated? Although camel domestication had not taken place by the time of Abraham in the land of Canaan, it had in Mesopotamia. Photo: PD-1923.Mark W. Chavalas explores the history of camel domestication in his Biblical Views column “Did Abraham Ride a Camel?”published in the November/December 2018 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review. Although he agrees that camel domestication likely did not take place in Canaan until the 10th century B.C.E., he notes that Abraham’s place of origin was not Canaan—but Mesopotamia. Thus, to ascertain whether Abraham’s camels are anachronistic, we need to ask: When were camels first domesticated in Mesopotamia?

Chavalas explains that the events in the Biblical accounts of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs (Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, and Israel and Rachel) have been traditionally dated to c. 2000–1600 B.C.E. (during the Middle Bronze Age). Camels appear in Mesopotamian sources in the third millennium B.C.E.—before this period. However, the mere presence of camels in sources does not necessarily mean that camels were domesticated.

The question remains: When were camels domesticated in Mesopotamia?

In his examination of camel domestication history, Chavalas looks at a variety of textual, artistic, and archaeological sources from Mesopotamia dating to the third and second millennia. We will examine five of these sources here:

1. One of the first pieces of evidence for camel domestication comes from the site of Eshnunna in modern Iraq: A plaque from the mid-third millennium shows a camel being ridden by a human.

2. Another source is a 21st-century B.C.E. text from Puzrish-Dagan in modern Iraq that may record camel deliveries.

3. Third, an 18th-century B.C.E. text (quoting from an earlier third millennium text) from Nippur in modern Iraq says, “the milk of the camel is sweet.” Chavalas explains why he thinks this likely refers to a domesticated camel:

Having walked in many surveys through camel herds in Syria along the Middle Euphrates River, I believe that this text is describing a domesticated camel; who would want to milk a “wild camel”? At the very least, the Bactrian camel was being used for dairy needs at this time.

4. Next, an 18th-century B.C.E. cylinder seal depicts a two-humped camel with riders. Although this seal’s exact place of origin is unknown, it reputedly comes from Syria, and it resembles other seals from Alalakh (a site in modern Turkey near Turkey’s southern border with Syria).

5. Finally, a 17th-century text from Alalakh includes camels in a list of domesticated animals that required food.

syria-camel-seal

Camel Domestication. When were camels first domesticated? This impression of an 18th-century B.C.E. cylinder seal from Syria depicts a two-humped camel with riders. The seal and other archaeological discoveries shed light on camel domestication history, suggesting that camel domestication had occurred in Mesopotamia by the second millennium B.C.E. Photo: ©The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore.

Although domesticated camels may not have been widespread in Mesopotamia in the second millennium, these pieces of evidence show that by the second millennium, there were at least some domesticated camels. Thus, camel domestication had taken place in Mesopotamia by the time of Abraham. Accordingly, Chavalas argues that the camels in the stories of Abraham in Genesis are not anachronistic.

Learn more about the history of camel domestication in Mark W. Chavalas’s Biblical Views column “Did Abraham Ride a Camel?” published in the November/December 2018 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review.——————

Subscribers: Read the full Biblical Views column “Did Abraham Ride a Camel?” by Mark W. Chavalas in the November/December 2018 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review.

(END OF PORTION OF NOVEMBER 2, 2019 letter to Dr. Barlow from Dawkins new book) NOW A LOOK AT ARCHAEOLOGY THAT DOES INDICATE THE BIBLE IS HISTORICALLY ACCURATE:

Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?, under footnotes #97 and #98)

A common assumption among liberal scholars is that because the Gospels are theologically motivated writings–which they are–they cannot also be historically accurate. In other words, because Luke, say (when he wrote the Book of Luke and the Book of Acts), was convinced of the deity of Christ, this influenced his work to the point where it ceased to be reliable as a historical account. The assumption that a writing cannot be both historical and theological is false.

The experience of the famous classical archaeologist Sir William Ramsay illustrates this well. When he began his pioneer work of exploration in Asia Minor, he accepted the view then current among the Tubingen scholars of his day that the Book of Acts was written long after the events in Paul’s life and was therefore historically inaccurate. However, his travels and discoveries increasingly forced upon his mind a totally different picture, and he became convinced that Acts was minutely accurate in many details which could be checked.

What is even more interesting is the way “liberal” modern scholars today deal with Ramsay’s discoveries and others like them. In the NEW TESTAMENT : THE HISTORY OF THE INVESTIGATION OF ITS PROBLEMS, the German scholar Werner G. Kummel made no reference at all to Ramsay. This provoked a protest from British and American scholars, whereupon in a subsequent edition Kummel responded. His response was revealing. He made it clear that it was his deliberate intention to leave Ramsay out of his work, since “Ramsay’s apologetic analysis of archaeology [in other words, relating it to the New Testament in a positive way] signified no methodologically essential advance for New Testament research.” This is a quite amazing assertion. Statements like these reveal the philosophic assumptions involved in much liberal scholarship.

A modern classical scholar, A.N.Sherwin-White, says about the Book of Acts: “For Acts the confirmation of historicity is overwhelming…Any attempt to reject its basic historicity, even in matters of detail, must not appear absurd. Roman historians have long taken this for granted.”

When we consider the pages of the New Testament, therefore, we must remember what it is we are looking at. The New Testament writers themselves make abundantly clear that they are giving an account of objectively true events.

(Under footnote #98)

Acts is a fairly full account of Paul’s journeys, starting in Pisidian Antioch and ending in Rome itself. The record is quite evidently that of an eyewitness of the events, in part at least. Throughout, however, it is the report of a meticulous historian. The narrative in the Book of Acts takes us back behind the missionary journeys to Paul’s famous conversion on the Damascus Road, and back further through the Day of Pentecost to the time when Jesus finally left His disciples and ascended to be with the Father.

But we must understand that the story begins earlier still, for Acts is quite explicitly the second part of a continuous narrative by the same author, Luke, which reaches back to the birth of Jesus.

Luke 2:1-7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

2 Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all [a]the inhabited earth. [b]This was the first census taken while[c]Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a [d]manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

In the opening sentences of his Gospel, Luke states his reason for writing:

Luke 1:1-4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

1 Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile an account of the things[a]accomplished among us, just as they were handed down to us by those whofrom the beginning [b]were eyewitnesses and [c]servants of the [d]word, it seemed fitting for me as well, having [e]investigated everything carefully from the beginning, to write it out for you in consecutive order, most excellentTheophilus; so that you may know the exact truth about the things you have been [f]taught.

In Luke and Acts, therefore, we have something which purports to be an adequate history, something which Theophilus (or anyone) can rely on as its pages are read. This is not the language of “myths and fables,” and archaeological discoveries serve only to confirm this.

For example, it is now known that Luke’s references to the titles of officials encountered along the way are uniformly accurate. This was no mean achievement in those days, for they varied from place to place and from time to time in the same place. They were proconsuls in Corinth and Cyprus, asiarchs at Ephesus, politarches at Thessalonica, and protos or “first man” in Malta. Back in Palestine, Luke was careful to give Herod Antipas the correct title of tetrarch of Galilee. And so one. The details are precise.

The mention of Pontius Pilate as Roman governor of Judea has been confirmed recently by an inscription discovered at Caesarea, which was the Roman capital of that part of the Roman Empire. Although Pilate’s existence has been well known for the past 2000 years by those who have read the Bible, now his governorship has been clearly attested outside the Bible.

XXX

The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

Image result for Horace Barlow charles darwin

Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

Horace Darwin.jpg

Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

Image result for Ida Darwin hoRACE

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for charles darwin

In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

Image result for francis schaeffer

Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

_____________

I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 7 (“Mr. Darwin begs me to say that he receives so many letters, that he cannot answer them all. He considers that the theory of Evolution is quite compatible with the belief in a God; but that you must remember that different persons have different definitions of what they mean by God.”)

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TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW:


Priyamvada Natarajan @SheerPriya

Very sad news – I met him 20 years ago when I was a fellow at @TrinCollCam Wow! had many wonderful conversations with him about optics, achromaticity of light bending in the universe (gravitational lensing, my field), learnt a lot about cones and rods and neurons from him, fond memories. Actually, the entire Huxley-Darwin clan was wonderfully warm to me

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Francis Schaeffer

Darwin.

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In his letter on November 22, 2017 Dr. Barlow asserted:

One reason I am interested in this topic is the selfish one that I have never been able to decide how to describe my own religious beliefs. If I declare my an atheist, I cannot help asking myself “Who am I to set at naught a concept that has guided the life of so many people, some of whom I hold the very deepest respect?”

On the other hand, if I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour, as with the current quarrel with Muslim terrorists, and as has been shown by inter-sectal violence within the Christian Church itself. Furthermore, I feel that many religious doctrines, such as Papal Infallibility, are absolutely appalling, and the same goes for many political policies supported by many different religions. 

This prompted later to send Dr. Barlow this letter below on March 2, 2019, (Steven Weinberg, what is meant by God?)

Charles Darwin

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220 × 289Images may be subject to copyright. Learn More

Steven Weinberg

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496 × 744Images may be subject to copyright. Learn MoreFrancis Schaeffer

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200 × 238Images may be subject to copyright. Learn More

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March 2, 2019

Dr. Horace Barlow, Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience, University of Cambridge, Downing Street,Physiological Laboratory, Cambridge United Kingdom,

Dear Dr. Barlow,

Have you wondered why so many people throw out the word “God” so much? Your great grandfather Charles Darwin saw it as silly too. So many people were using the word God to mean something much different than the traditional Biblical view.In Steven Weinberg’s book  DREAMS OF A FINAL THEORY he asserted:

And coming to that point which I think we will come to, some would say, well, then the explanation is God made it so. And I suppose that’s a natural reaction to this dilemma. Unfortunately to me it seems quite unsatisfactory. Either by God you mean something definite or you don’t mean something definite. If by God you mean a personality who is concerned about human beings, who did all this out of love for human beings, who watches us and who intervenes, then I would have to say in the first place how do you know, what makes you think so?And in the second place, is that really an explanation? If that’s true, what explains that? Why is there such a God? It isn’t the end of the chain of whys, it just is another step, and you have to take the step beyond that.I think much more often, however, when a physicist says, “Well, then the explanation is God,” they don’t mean anything particular by it. That’s just the word they apply. Einstein said that he didn’t believe in a God who was concerned with human affairs, who intervenes in human life, but a God who was simply an abstract principle of harmony and order.

And so then I rather grieve that they use the word “God,” because I do think one should have some loyalty to the way words are used historically, and that’s not what people have historically meant by “God” – not an abstract principle of harmony and order. If that’s all you mean by it, if God is practically synonymous with the laws of nature, then we don’t need the word. Why not just say the laws of nature? It isn’t that it’s wrong, because after all G-O-D is just a set of letters of the alphabet, and you can let it mean anything you like. But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality. And that’s not something we’re finding scientifically. It’s not something for which I see any evidence.

I totally agree with you that these scientists have twisted the word GOD unfairly. It reminds of what Charles Darwin had to say about this issue.

Again in 1879 he was applied to by a German student, in a similar manner. The letter was answered by a member of my father’s family, who wrote:–

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Charles Darwin (1809-1882) pictured above

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Francis Darwin (1848-1925) pictured above

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Francis Schaeffer (1912-1984)

“Mr. Darwin begs me to say that he receives so many letters, that he cannot answer them all.

“He considers that the theory of Evolution is quite compatible with the belief in a God; but that you must remember that different persons have different definitions of what they mean by God.”

Francis Schaeffer commented on Darwin’s autobiography:

You find a great confusion in his writings although there is a general structure in them. Here he says the word “God” is alright but you find later what he doesn’t take is a personal God. Of course, what you open is the whole modern linguistics concerning the word “God.” is God a pantheistic God? What kind of God is God? Darwin says there is nothing incompatible with the word “God.”

Steven Weinberg said of the the personal God of the Bible, “It’s not something for which I see any evidence.” Let me give you some.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?)

In the previous chapter we saw that the Bible gives us the explanation for the existence of the universe and its form and for the mannishness of man. Or, to reverse this, we came to see that the universe and its form and the mannishness of man are a testimony to the truth of the Bible. In this chapter we will consider a third testimony: the Bible’s openness to verification by historical study.

Christianity involves history. To say only that is already to have said something remarkable, because it separates the Judeo-Christian world-view from almost all other religious thought. It is rooted in history.

The Bible tells us how God communicated with man in history. For example, God revealed Himself to Abraham at a point in time and at a particular geographical place. He did likewise with Moses, David, Isaiah, Daniel and so on. The implications of this are extremely important to us. Because the truth God communicated in the Bible is so tied up with the flow of human events, it is possible by historical study to confirm some of the historical details.

It is remarkable that this possibility exists. Compare the information we have from other continents of that period. We know comparatively little about what happened in Africa or South America or China or Russia or even Europe. We see beautiful remains of temples and burial places, cult figures, utensils, and so forth, but there is not much actual “history” that can be reconstructed, at least not much when compared to that which is possible in the Middle East.

When we look at the material which has been discovered from the Nile to the Euphrates that derives from the 2500-year span before Christ, we are in a completely different situation from that in regard to South America or Asia. The kings of Egypt and Assyria built thousands of monuments commemorating their victories and recounting their different exploits. Whole libraries have been discovered from places like Nuzu and Mari and most recently at Elba, which give hundreds of thousands of texts relating to the historical details of their time. It is within this geographical area that the Bible is set. So it is possible to find material which bears upon what the Bible tells us.

The Bible purports to give us information on history. Is the history accurate? The more we understand about the Middle East between 2500 B.C. and A.D. 100, the more confident we can be that the information in the Bible is reliable, even when it speaks about the simple things of time and place.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733 13900 cottontail lane,  Alexander, AR 72002, United States

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

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Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

Horace Darwin.jpg

Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

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Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

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Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

_____________

I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

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Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution)jh68

November 8, 2011 – 12:01 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 4 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 5 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog _______________________ This is a review I did a few years ago. THE DEMON-HAUNTED WORLD: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution)

November 4, 2011 – 12:57 am

Review of Carl Sagan book (Part 3 of series on Evolution) The Long War against God-Henry Morris, part 4 of 6 Uploaded by FLIPWORLDUPSIDEDOWN3 on Aug 30, 2010 http://www.icr.org/ http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWA2http://store.icr.org/prodinfo.asp?number=BLOWASGhttp://www.fliptheworldupsidedown.com/blog______________________________________ I was really enjoyed this review of Carl Sagan’s book “Pale Blue Dot.” Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot by Larry Vardiman, Ph.D. […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists ConfrontedCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Atheists confronted: How I confronted Carl Sagan the year before he died jh47

May 19, 2011 – 10:30 am

In today’s news you will read about Kirk Cameron taking on the atheist Stephen Hawking over some recent assertions he made concerning the existence of heaven. Back in December of 1995 I had the opportunity to correspond with Carl Sagan about a year before his untimely death. Sarah Anne Hughes in her article,”Kirk Cameron criticizes […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Atheists Confronted | Edit | Comments (2)

My correspondence with George Wald and Antony Flew!!!

May 12, 2014 – 1:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 41 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (Featured artist is Marina Abramović)

January 8, 2015 – 5:23 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 40 Timothy Leary (Featured artist is Margaret Keane)

January 1, 2015 – 4:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

December 25, 2014 – 5:04 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

December 18, 2014 – 4:30 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

December 11, 2014 – 4:19 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

December 4, 2014 – 4:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

November 27, 2014 – 4:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

November 20, 2014 – 4:28 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

November 13, 2014 – 4:39 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

November 6, 2014 – 4:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

June 12, 2014 – 2:52 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 6 (Darwin: “My judgment often fluctuates . . . In my most extreme fluctuations I have never been an Atheist in the sense of denying the existence of a God. I think that generally, but not always, that an Agnostic would be the more correct description of my state of mind.”

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TRIBUTES PAID TO PROFESSOR HORACE BARLOW

PUBLISHED DATE: July 07, 2020

Professor Horace Barlow (8 December 1921 – 5 July 2020) was a neuroscientist and Fellow of Trinity College Cambridge.

Professor Horace Barlow by Louise Riley-Smith, 2003

Horace Barlow was born into a scientific family: his mother was Nora Darwin, the granddaughter of Charles Darwin, who worked in the field of genetics with William Bateson at Cambridge and his paternal grandfather was physician to Queen Victoria’s household.

He studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge University and then completed medical training at Harvard Medical School and University College Hospital, London before returning to Cambridge to study neurophysiology under the tutelage of Lord Adrian. He was awarded an Sc.D in 1943.

His research investigated the visual system at the level of single neurons and their interactions in both humans and animals. His emphasis was on understanding the act of seeing through the underlying machinery of vision.

After holding various positions at Cambridge University he became Professor of Physiological Optics and Physiology at the University of California, Berkeley. He later returned to Cambridge, where he was Royal Society Research Professor of Physiology.

Professor Barlow was elected Fellow of the Royal Society in 1969 and was awarded the Society’s Royal Medal in 1993. In the same year (1993) he received the Australia Prize for research into the mechanisms of visual perception. His other awards include Swartz Prize for Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience (2009) and Ken Nakayama Prize from the Vision Sciences Society (2016).

Trinity Fellow, Professor Roger Keynes, of the Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge, said:

Horace Barlow made seminal discoveries in brain physiology. After medical qualification he began research in the Cambridge Physiological Laboratory, recording electrical signals from single nerve cells in the frog’s eye. These showed that nerve cells are wired to detect essential features of the frog’s visual world, such as a small moving insect, and its direction. His approach paved the way for major advances in understanding how visual information in mammals is processed and stored in the brain. He also initiated psychophysical studies of human visual perception and wrote cogently on the brain in all its aspects, working in his departmental office and visiting Trinity well into his 90s.

Priyamvada Natarajan, Professor in the Departments of Astronomy and Physics at Yale University, and a Trinity alumna, said:

Deeply sad to hear the news of his passing. I fondly remember many wonderful conversations with Horace Barlow during my time at Trinity as a junior research fellow in 1997-2003. We chatted about science – in particular, about optics, and how the various wavelengths of light revealed disparate aspects of the cosmos and about the achromatic bending of light (gravitational lensing) that I worked on and its analogy to geometric optics. He patiently answered many of my naive questions about neuroscience and we were both ardent fans of Ramon Cajal’s drawings of neurons. Horace was soft-spoken, utterly curious about the natural world, and remarkably insightful –  it was a privilege to know him.

Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

Below is a portion of my February 11, 2015 letter to Dr. Barlow followed by his response in his November 22, 2017 letter:

Darwin, C. R. to Fordyce, John, 7 May 1879

“What my own views may be is a question of no consequence to any one but myself. But, as you ask, I may state that my judgment often fluctuates . . . In my most extreme fluctuations I have never been an Atheist in the sense of denying the existence of a God. I think that generally (and more and more as I grow older), but not always, that an Agnostic would be the more correct description of my state of mind.”

Francis Schaeffer asserted:

What we find now is that he comes to the place in being agnostic, but as we read through this section on religion what we find is in reality his reason leads him against this position, which is interesting but his theory makes him accept the  position of agnosticism. You will notice as we go on, on the basis of his intellect he can’t stand the thought of his own position, of there not being an answer. Nevertheless, he is increasingly forced to this because it wouldn’t conform to his own theory, man being shoved against his own will because of presuppositions. I think what you have in Darwin is a magnificent example, although a sad one of what I lecture on in apologetics,  and that is if a man takes a set of nonchristian presuppositions he is forced eventually to be in a place of tension. The more consistent he is with his own nonchristian presuppositions the more he is away from the real world. When he is closer to the real world then he is more illogical to his own presuppositions. Darwin shows this in his own writings in his own lifetime. So the things in his human nature he is sorry to lose, but he loses them, at the same time he finds that couldn’t explain things on the basis of his reason.  Yet he was driven to certain conclusions which were away from what he himself felt were the real world on the basis of his own presuppositions. He was never satisfied. Just as I very often use Sartre and Camus to point out this dilemma of nonchristian presuppositions, in actuality these sections from Darwin are a perfect example of the same thing.

Darwin’s words:

From Charles Darwin, Autobiography (1876), in The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, ed. Francis Darwin, vol. 1 (London: John Murray, 1888), pp. 307 to 313.

“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist. This conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species, and it is since that time that it has very gradually, with many fluctuations, become weaker. But then arises the doubt

Francis Schaeffer commented:

On the basis of his reason he has to say there must be an intelligent mind, someone analogous to man. You couldn’t describe the God of the Bible better. That is man is made in God’s image  and therefore, you know a great deal about God when you know something about man. What he is really saying here is that everything in my experience tells me it must be so, and my mind demands it is so. Not just these feelings he talked about earlier but his MIND demands it is so, but now how does he counter this? How does he escape this? Here is how he does it!!!

Darwin’s words:

—can the mind of man, which has, as I fully believe, been developed from a mind as low as that possessed by the lowest animals, be trusted when it draws such grand conclusions?

Francis Schaeffer commented:

So he says my mind can only come to one conclusion, and that is there is a mind behind it all. However, the doubt comes because his mind has come from the lowest form of earthworm, so how can I trust my mind. But this is a joker isn’t it?  Then how can you trust his mind to support such a theory as this? He proved too much. The fact that Darwin found it necessary to take such an escape shows the tremendous weight of Romans 1, that the only escape he can make is to say how can I trust my mind when I come from the lowest animal the earthworm? Obviously think of the grandeur of his concept, I don’t think it is true, but the grandeur of his concept, so what you find is that Darwin is presenting something here that is wrong I feel, but it is not nothing. It is a tremendously grand concept that he has put forward. So he is accepting the dictates of his mind to put forth a grand concept which he later can’t accept in this basic area with his reason, but he rejects what he could accept with his reason on this escape. It really doesn’t make sense. This is a tremendous demonstration of the weakness of his own position.

Darwin clings to agnosticism:

“I cannot pretend to throw the least light on such abstruse problems. The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us, and I for one must be content to remain an Agnostic.”

Francis Schaeffer commented:

What a stupid reply and I didn’t say wicked. It just seems to me that here is 2 plus 2 equals 36 at this particular place.

 

Here is Dr. Barlow’s response in his November 22, 2017 letter:

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Saying you don’t believe in God is a very foolish thing to say as it doesn’t explain why so many people talk about it, there has got to be more to it than that; also I think one has to respect what some godly people say and some of the things they do; I wish one could make more sense of it but I don’t think the godly people have done a very good job;

This reminds me of a story that Adrian Rogers told about his interaction with an agnostic:

Here we must observe that many people don’t want to find the truth just like a thief doesn’t want to find a policeman. I now want to share a portion of the sermon WHO IS JESUS? by Adrian Rogers because this very point is made:

Here is how the story goes:

Years ago Adrian Rogers counseled with a NASA scientist and his severely depressed wife. The wife pointed to her husband and said, “My problem is him.” She went on to explain that her husband was a drinker, a liar, and an adulterer.

Dr. Rogers asked the man if he were a Christian. “No!” the man laughed. “I’m an atheist.” “Really?” Dr. Rogers replied. “That means you’re someone who knows that God does not exist.” “That’s right,” said the man. “Would it be fair to say that you don’t know all there is to know in the universe?” “Of course,” the man admitted. Dr. Rogers asked, “Would it be generous to say you know half of all there is to know?” “Yes!” Then Dr. Rogers inquired,“Wouldn’t it be possible that God’s existence might be in the half you don’t know?” The man acknowledged, “Okay, but I don’t think He exists.” Dr. Rogers replied, “Well then, you’re not an atheist; you’re an agnostic.You’re a doubter.” The man asserted, “Yes, and I’m a big one.” Then Dr. Rogers popped the question, “It doesn’t matter what size you are. I want to know what kind [of doubter] you are.” 

“What kinds are there?”

“There are honest doubters and dishonest doubters. An honest doubter is willing to search out the truth and live by the results; a dishonest doubter doesn’t want to know the truth. He can’t find God for the same reason a thief can’t find a policeman.”

“I want to know the truth.”

“Would you like to prove that God exists?”

“It can’t be done.”

“It can be done. You’ve just been in the wrong laboratory. Jesus said, ‘If any man’s will is to do His will, he will know whether my teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority’ (John 7:17). I suggest you read one chapter of the book of John each day, but before you do, pray something like this, ‘God, I don’t know if You’re there, I don’t know if the Bible is true, I don’t know if Jesus is Your Son. But if You show me that You are there, that the Bible is true, and that Jesus is Your Son, then I will follow You. My will is to do your will.”

The man agreed. About three weeks later he returned to Dr. Rogers’s office and invited Jesus Christ to be his Savior and Lord.

 

Another quote from Dr. Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter:

 After acknowledging that Charles Darwin did lose his aesthetic tastes for art, poetry, and for fine scenery which he attributed to his study of evolution, Dr. Barlow came back and asserted, “Notice, however, that he clearly did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out. “ 

 

Here is some evidence:

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Let me quote from my former pastor Adrian Rogers:

Skeptics seem to think that the Bible is full of scientific errors. However, before an individual can make that assertion, they had better make sure they know both science and Scripture. You see, I have heard unbelievers state that the Bible is not a book of science, but a book of religion, which is basically true. It is not written to teach us about science, but to teach us about God. But the God of salvation and the God of creation are the same. Science doesn’t take God by surprise. A close look at Scripture reveals that it is scientifically accurate.

Every now and then science may disagree with the Bible, but usually science just needs time to catch up. For example, in 1861 a French scientific academy printed a brochure offering 51 incontrovertible facts that proved the Bible in error. Today there is not a single reputable scientist who would support those supposed “facts,” because modern science has disproved them all!

The ancients believed the earth was held up by Atlas, or resting on pillars, or even seated on the backs of elephants. But today we know the earth is suspended in space, a fact the Word of God records in Job 26:7: “He . . . hangeth the earth upon nothing.” God revealed the facts of cosmology long before man had any idea of the truth.

For centuries man believed the earth was flat, but now we know the earth is a globe. The prophet Isaiah, writing 750 years before the birth of Christ, revealed that “God sitteth upon the circle of the earth” (Isaiah 40:22). The word translated here as “circle” was more commonly translated “sphere.” In other words, Isaiah explained that the earth was a globe centuries before science discovered it.

When Ptolemy charted the heavens, he counted 1026 stars in the sky. But with the invention of the telescope man discovered millions and millions of stars, something that Jeremiah 33:22 revealed nearly three thousand years ago: “The host of heaven cannot be numbered.” How did these men of God know the truth of science long before the rest of the world discovered it? They were moved by the Holy Spirit to write the truth. God’s Word is not filled with errors. It is filled with facts, even scientific facts.

When the black plague was killing one quarter of Europe’s population in the fourteenth century, it was the church, not science, that helped overcome the dread disease. The leaders in the church noticed the instructions given by the Lord to Moses in Leviticus 13:46: “All the days wherein the plague shall be in him he shall be defiled; he is unclean: he shall dwell alone; without the camp shall his habitation be.” These early believers did not know microbiology or understand what germs were, but they could understand a clear teaching to quarantine someone who was sick. So they followed the Biblical dictum, quarantined those sick with the plague, and stopped it from spreading. The Bible had its science correct even before man discovered the truth! Don’t accept the charge that the Bible is filled with scientific errors. Modern science seems determined to explain God away, and refuses to acknowledge any evidence of the supernatural. But the science of Scripture is one reason to accept the Bible as God’s Word.

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow

The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

Image result for Horace Barlow charles darwin

Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

Horace Darwin.jpg

Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

Image result for Ida Darwin hoRACE

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for charles darwin

In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

Image result for francis schaeffer

Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

_____________

I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW:

Paul Linton @LintonVision
Nice (and very informative) obituary of Horace Barlow. Only minor quibble is that it slightly downplays the extent to which the psychophysics of 3D vision (Julesz, 1960) inspired the neuroscience (Barlow et al. 1967; Nikara et al. 1968):


Figure thumbnail gr1
Horace Barlow.View Large ImageDownload Hi-res imageHorace Barlow was one of the truly great neuroscientists of his time, in the Cambridge tradition of quantitative neurophysiology and psychophysics. His fundamental theoretical and empirical contributions to our understanding of brain function have inspired and influenced generations of neurophysiologists, psychologists and computational neuroscientists and are certain to endure for generations to come.Horace Basil Barlow, FRS, was born in 1921 in Chesham Bois, Buckinghamshire, son of Sir Alan Barlow and Lady Nora Barlow (née Darwin). He was educated at Winchester College and studied medicine during the war years, first at Cambridge and then at Harvard Medical School, which awarded him an MD in 1946. He completed medical training at University College Hospital, London, before commencing research in neurophysiology with E.D. Adrian at the Cambridge Physiology Laboratory. After various positions at Cambridge University, he became Professor of Physiological Optics and Physiology at UC Berkeley. In 1974, he returned to Trinity College and the Cambridge Physiology Department to take the Royal Society Research Chair of Physiology, where he continued to make important contributions to neuroscience well after his formal retirement. Horace was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1969 and won their Royal Medal in 1993. He was awarded the Australia Prize in the latter year and several others, including the Ferrier Medal in 1980 and the Ken Nakayama Prize from the Vision Sciences Society in 2016.Many interesting and charismatic people impacted on the young Horace. The first — and arguably most important — was his mother, granddaughter of Charles Darwin. She held no formal degree but worked as a biologist and later, as Darwin’s biographer, founded scholarly research into his life and achievements. Her example, together with his abilities and preference for maths over the humanities, veered Horace towards science. His contemporaries at Winchester College, Christopher Longuet-Higgins, Freeman Dyson and James Lighthill, all of whom became prominent scientists, played an influential role. During his university years there was no shortage of creative minds: his supervisor, the eminent Lord Adrian, and his tutor William Rushton, as well as Pat Merton and Tommy Gold. These latter three were part of the Ratio Club, a London-based club of about 20 carefully selected young neurobiologists, neurologists, psychologists, engineers, mathematicians and physicists, who periodically met in Queen’s Square to discuss cybernetics, information theory and brain function (see group photo). Cybernetics and information theory were central planks in Horace’s conceptual framework throughout his lifetime.Horace started his scientific career early, publishing three papers before he completed his MD: one (in Nature) with Rushton during his Cambridge undergraduate days and two with fellow students at Harvard. His next project, assigned to him by Adrian, was to investigate the proposal of Marshall and Talbot that small scanning eye-movements serve a fundamental role in vision. Horace devised a novel method for measuring eye position precisely (photographing a small spot of mercury placed on the cornea) and found that, between rapid gaze shifts, the eyes were essentially still. He concluded that the fixations rather than scanning eye-movements were fundamental to vision, dismissed Marshall and Talbot’s idea and moved on. However, the importance of the dynamics of perception, including ‘temporal interpolation’ of moving stimuli, remained central to his thinking, emerging clearly in his Ferrier lecture in 1980.Adrian’s supervision style was quite liberal, in the Cambridge tradition, described by Horace as “incisive, but economical, guidance”. Thus, Horace was free to pursue his own scientific curiosities, such as how neurons integrate information. He observed that Sherrington’s classic preparations used artificial stimuli, electric shocks applied to spinal roots, whereas applying light to the retina allows for behaviourally relevant natural stimuli. He developed a preparation for recording spikes from single ganglion cells in frog retina — no mean feat at the time — to study the most basic element of integration, signal summation. Inspired by Rushton, Horace took a quantitative approach and, by measuring thresholds as a function of stimulus area, discovered that integration was not uniform over the receptive field but that there were clear inhibitory surrounds forming separate ‘on’ and ‘off’ regions. More surprisingly, one type of ganglion cell could be a feature detector whose spike discharge anticipates the future position of a fly.This study initiated 30 years of ground-breaking collaborative work on retinal ganglion cells. Horace joined Stephen Kuffler, who had independently described the inhibitory surround in cat retina. Together with Fitzgerald, they discovered that ganglion cells adapt their receptive fields to cover the full range of light levels, switching from cones to rods at low light levels and losing the inhibitory surround. In 1963, Horace and Richard Hill discovered motion-sensitive cells in rabbit retina. Working with the most exacting of retinal physiologists, Bill Levick, Horace revealed further hidden complexities in retinal processing: a motion-sensitive ganglion cell is driven by an array of subunits. Then, in classic experiments, they established the first physiologically informed model of the underlying mechanism: the Barlow and Levick model of elementary motion detection.In 1964, Horace accepted a professorship at the Berkeley School of Optometry, where he continued his neurophysiological experiments, investigating integration by neurons in primary visual cortex (V1). One particularly influential study was conducted with former student Colin Blakemore (in Berkeley on a Harkness Fellowship) and the enthusiastic and charismatic young Australian Jack Pettigrew. Following leads from Jack’s undergraduate work in Sydney, they demonstrated that cells in cat primary visual cortex were selective to binocular disparity, the signals that support binocular depth perception. This was important and unexpected, as stereoscopic depth was thought to be a high-level perceptual property emerging late in processing. However, the results meshed well with Béla Julesz’s demonstrations in the early 1960s of ‘random-dot stereograms’, showing that depth can emerge from point-by-point disparities in otherwise random patterns. The discovery reinforced Horace’s conviction that single sensory neurons coded meaningful information.His work on retinal and cortical neurons brought home to Horace the fundamental realisation that physiological experiments could answer questions of psychological interest. Much of the sensory apparatus for complex behavioural patterns (like detecting and catching flies) may lie in the retina rather than ‘mysterious centres’ too difficult to study by physiological means. Furthermore, the lateral inhibition mechanism that he discovered in frog retina had been postulated by Ernst Mach and others to account for perceptual phenomena, such as simultaneous contrast and Mach Bands. This line of thought culminated in ‘A neural doctrine for perceptual psychology’, published in the fledgling journal Perception in 1972. The provocative formulation of ‘dogmas’ stimulated much important debate, theorising and experimental work, and the central idea of that paper, that perception corresponds to the activity of specific cells, has been hugely influential to physiologists and psychologists alike. Indeed, Horace’s doctrine is still relevant, as it goes far beyond ‘lock and key’ feature detectors. His doctrine incorporates the concepts of statistical inference, efficiency and redundancy that he formulated earlier in his career and suggests the far-reaching idea that he subsequently pursued: single neurons use synaptic plasticity to capture the redundancy that is knowledge.Horace started thinking about signals, noise and perceptual judgements when as an undergraduate he presented a new paper to a discussion group. The landmark study of Hecht, Shlaer and Pirenne demonstrated that the absolute threshold of human vision is limited by noise: quantal fluctuations whose effects can be determined psychophysically by testing the predictions of statistical models. Horace also discussed the problem of signal and noise in the Ratio Club (it was one of their chosen topics), especially with his Cambridge colleague Tommy Gold (later Professor of Astronomy at Cornell University). After his experiments on frog retina, Horace revisited Hecht et al. with a penetrating statistical analysis of published data. He found that the number of quantal events required to reach threshold is elevated by the presence of background noise that he attributed to the thermal activation of visual pigment molecules. This novel conclusion was confirmed a quarter of a century later by recording from rods. His theoretical findings prompted Horace to consider that “thresholds are efficient statistical judgements of constant fallibility”, and he quickly confirmed this more general principle with new psychophysical experiments.Figure thumbnail gr2The young Horace Barlow (bottom right) in May 1952, together with members and guests of the Ratio Club, outside Peterhouse College, Cambridge: Back row (partly obscured): H. Shipton, J. Bates, W.E. Hick, J. Pringle, D. Sholl, J. Westcott and D. Mackay. Middle row: G. Brindley, T. McLardy. W.R. Ashby, T. Gold and A. Uttley. Front row: A. Turing, G. Sutton, W. Rushton, G. Dawson and H. Barlow.View Large ImageDownload Hi-res imageHorace’s scientific approach, to try to understand the principles guiding brain function, was uncommon among physiologists. His 1961 paper on ‘Possible principles underlying the transmission of sensory messages’ (in Sensory Communication, W.D. Keidel, U.O. Keidel, M.E. Wigand and W.A. Rosenblith, eds) opens with, “a wing would be a most mystifying structure if one did not know that birds flew”. Horace argued that we need first to understand the goals of the system to avoid being buried in a mass of irrelevant neurophysiological and neuroanatomical details while missing crucial observations. He reasoned that, because neurons have limited representational capacity, they should economise on impulses by forming efficient representations. According to information theory, this can be achieved by eliminating redundancy using lateral inhibition and adaptation, and because both are observed in retina this must be a goal of early sensory processing. Two decades later, Barlow’s efficient coding hypothesis was validated. This prompted a new round of theory, measurements and experiments, which explained the function of mechanisms in the earlier stages of vision, olfaction and audition. Efficiency and ‘the economy of impulses’ continue to guide our understanding of neural codes at all levels.Horace’s approach was intrinsically interdisciplinary, a popular buzzword in modern grant writing but less usual in his day. He looked for guiding principles of brain function without undue concern whether his supporting data came from psychophysics or physiology, humans or animals, vertebrates or invertebrates. He was always trying — and usually succeeding — to merge detailed observations into the big picture of brain function, following the example of his famous great-grandfather. He was very much a ‘hands-on’ scientist, in the Cambridge mould: he never led a large research group nor took on many graduate students. That was not his style. He led by example, and his example was highly influential. There are very few sensory neuroscientists who would claim not to have been influenced by Horace’s work, one way or the other.Horace never stopped trying to understand the brain. During his own Festschrift in 1987 he gave the most interesting and original talk of the workshop. Following his major theme of how the brain maximises efficiency, he advanced a novel explanation for ‘adaptation’ (the fact that cells reduce firing rate after repeated excitation), suggesting that it is a complex phenomenon serving to ‘decorrelate’ sensory input, reducing inherent redundancy to take full advantage of the limited dynamic range of neurons. This changed the way many people thought about adaptation and again led to new lines of research.The ideas of redundancy and correlated activity of sensory pathways also underlie his highly influential paper on ‘Unsupervised learning’ (Neural Comput. (1989) 1, 295–311). This paper was one of the first to draw attention to the importance of unsupervised learning as opposed to supervised or reinforced learning. Unsupervised learning is about how a nervous system (or indeed artificial intelligence) recognises ‘statistical regularities’, or patterns in its inputs, and is of fundamental importance for understanding the cortex. Horace connected old ideas, such as Tolman’s ‘cognitive maps’ and Craik’s ‘working models’, with modern concepts of entropy, concluding that redundancy in sensory signals provides the knowledge incorporated in those maps. Such knowledge enables unexpected discrepancies to be immediately identified and dealt with. Horace’s information theory-based approach underlies many modern approaches to unsupervised learning in neural networks and Bayesian learning.In the 30-odd years after his formal ‘retirement’, Horace continued to make highly original and creative contributions to the field. He published 56 articles during this period, many as the single author. His interests were very varied, including information redundancy, predictive coding, Bayesian inference, unsupervised learning, development and many others, but all were motivated by the common themes of information theory and neural efficiency. A recent example of his creative thinking was his talk at the symposium on ‘Turing Enduring: Information Processing by Brains and Machines’ (Rockefeller University, December 2012), published in the journal Visual Neuroscience. There, Horace challenged the traditional (and still prevalent) wisdom that orientation-tuned simple and complex cells in primary visual cortex act as ‘edge-detectors’. Looking for more general guiding principles of brain function, he claimed that “the prime role of V1 is to search for regularity or redundancy in the input”, leading to the hypothesis that simple cells perform cross-correlations between the retinal input and internal templates, while complex cells calculate auto-correlations in the retinal input. Characteristically, he did not leave this as a simple hypothesis but provided solid quantitative psychophysical data in favour of his theory.Horace was renowned for his intelligence and quick-wittedness. Neuroscientists presented their research to the Cambridge ‘Craik Club’ with some trepidation. But this was unwarranted, for besides being smart Horace was kind, especially to young researchers. He quickly understood the message of the talk and gave many useful suggestions, absolutely on point, and never intended to humiliate. But his clever quips could also be fun. At a dinner that he gave for a bunch of graduate students, he invited his friend Francis Crick, who held forth on several topics throughout the evening. At one stage, Francis brought up his lineage, lamenting that he could trace it back only to Elizabethan times. With a disarming smile, Horace instantly retorted, “oh yes Francis, and which Elizabeth is that?”Most of Horace’s ideas have survived the test of time, stimulating and motivating generations of neuroscientists and leading to a cascade of advancements far too extensive to summarise here. But if we are to apply his cherished information theory, we know that there is more information in the rare and unexpected event: so did he get anything wrong? Probably not seriously. One idea that clearly evolved over time was his intuition about information redundancy in the image. Initially, he emphasised the role of reducing redundancy for efficient neural coding and economy of neuron numbers as well as impulses, but later he realised the importance of redundancy in identifying structure and statistical regularities in the environment, as sensory redundancy is the main source of knowledge. But this was not a mistake, merely a change of emphasis. If we go right back to the beginning, to his experiments that led him to dismiss the importance of eye drift, perhaps we might say that his assessment was premature, as recent work is showing how the small eye-movements serve an important functional role, conditioning the spatio-temporal frequency spectrum of the image. But while he did not exactly predict this, his intuitions about the importance of temporal dynamics and interpolations, prominent in his Ferrier lecture, were not too far off the mark.The last scientific gathering with Horace was for his 95th birthday, in December 2016. This was a fun occasion for his scientific family, some 100-odd people whose professional lives had been touched by Horace and who had passed the legacy down to their students and students’ students. The celebrations were followed by a workshop, which Horace concluded with a first-rate scientific talk, highlighting the role of information processing in the brain and urging us to consider the importance of information and entropy. His scientific curiosity never escaped him.Horace leaves his wife Miranda, 7 children and 13 grandchildren. His extended scientific family will miss him dearly.Article InfoPublication HistoryPublished online: July 31, 2020

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

June 12, 2014 – 2:52 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

MUSIC MONDAY Chris Martin writes: “Can there be breaks In the chaos of times?” Oh, thanks God You must’ve heard when I prayed Because now I always Want to feel this way!

Chris Martin writes: “Can there be breaks In the chaos of times?” Oh, thanks God You must’ve heard when I prayed Because now I always Want to feel this way!

Amazing Day – Coldplay (Live in Global Citizen 2015 – Only Audio + Lyrics in Descrip.)

“Amazing Day”

Sat on a roof
Named every star
Shed every bruise and
Showed every scarSat on a roof
Your hand in mine, singing
“Life has a beautiful, crazy design”
And time seemed to say
“Forget the world and it’s weight”
Here I just wanna stayAmazing day [x2]

Sat on a roof
Named every star and
You showed me a place
Where you can be who you are

And the view
The whole Milky Way
In your eyes
I’m drifting away
And in your arms
I just wanna sway

Amazing day [x4]

And I asked every book
Poetry, chime
“Can there be breaks
In the chaos of times?”
Oh, thanks God
You must’ve heard when I prayed
Because now I always
Want to feel this way

Amazing day [x4]

Coldplay – Amazing Day (new song) (lyric) testo + traduzione (lyrics)

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Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 5 (Darwin: “…Nor can I overlook the difficulty from the immense amount of suffering through the world”

—-

TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW:

Arpan @DrArpan100

Horace Barlow FRS was an extraordinary neuroscientist. His supervisions were always inspirational and he had a gift of being able to infuse curiosity in his students. He has had a massive impact on the field of visual neuroscience. He never stopped questioning and thinking. RIP.

——

Horace seen below in 2017 

Below is a portion of a letter I wrote on 7-1-17 to Dr. Barlow which he responded to in the letter I received in December of 2017. Basically Darwin brings up several issues such as the difficulty of reconciling the existence of a loving God with evil and suffering in the world (this may stem from the loss of his beloved daughter Anne) and also he slips in this curious phrase “but Man can do his duty” which implies that he realizes without God in the picture we may be left with determinism or survival of the fittest as our moral guide which Darwin is disgusted by.

“My mother was very enthusiastic about her grandfather and in those days thought he was rather under-rated, though by the time she died she realized that public opinion had risen almost to the point of matching her own and she thought that [Charles Darwin] was perhaps overrated.”

Just like your mother, I too think that Darwin is not thought of highly enough by some people and he is too esteemed by others. I do respect him to laying his most inner thoughts out there for all to see in the letters he wrote to his friends. One thought he had was on the issue of DETERMINISM, and I read it in the book  Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters.  

In that book he made the statement that MAN MUST DO HIS DUTY, and it is in light of DETERMINISM that had reared its ugly head. 

In this letterI am going to quote some of Charles Darwin’s own words and then include the comments of Francis Schaeffer on those words.

Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873

I am sure you will excuse my writing at length, when I tell you that I have long been much out of health, and am now staying away from my home for rest.It is impossible to answer your question briefly;and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide…….Nor can I overlook the difficulty from the immense amount of suffering through the world. I am, also, induced to defer to a certain extent to the judgment of the many able men who have fully believed in God; but here again I see how poor an argument this is. The safest conclusion seems to me that the whole subject is beyond the scope of man’s intellect;but man can do his duty.”

Francis Schaeffer commented:

What he is saying is that at this point I have no answer. You find Darwin already in a modern hell. On his own position ruling out an answer but yet not being able to live without an answer.  What he (Darwin) is saying is that at this point I have no answer, but the interesting thing is he puts a semicolon after that and then says, “but man can do his duty.” Darwin understands, he is a brilliant man,  what he has said undercuts all duty and all morals. So he adds as a faith sentence, “but man can do his duty.” It doesn’t fit really, but he adds it because he sees that he must say this because otherwise what happens to man? You can switch on further down the road and Darwin would be appalled to see where his own position has been taken, through Freud and Deterministic psychology. Modern Man has a dilemma because the word “duty” doesn’t have a meaning anymore. (Determinism: The doctrine that human action is not free, but results from such causes as psychological and chemical makeup which render free-will an illusion.)

You will remember the thing I have quoted to you about Richard Speck and the psychologists who would stand in the evolutionary stream of Freud. Let me read to you from Newsweek September 25, 1967, a review of the book by Marvin Ziporyn BORN TO RAISE HELL interestingly enough printed by Groth Press, which is this psychologist’s analysis of Richard Speck in Chicago who killed these nurses in Chicago. It runs like this:

Ziporyn who lost his post at Chicago for publishing his work with Speck, diagnosed his patient as a man unable to control himself as a result of his own medical and emotional past. You weren’t any more responsible for what you did than a man is responsible for sneezing. he said to Speck at one point.  That is Zoporyn’s biggest problem which is convincing Speck there is no difference in a sneeze and eight murders. Ziporyn admits he is a strict determinist and he is an adherent to Freud’s dictum that biology is destiny. He advocates rehabilitation. Determinists strive to change or regulate conditions rather than men but to avoid such tragedies as Richard Speck the scope of change it requires staggers the imagination.

The bigger dilemma is that man disappears. Who is hurt? The eight nurses are hurt, including their pain, terror and their sexual violation and it becomes nothing, zero in this type of analysis. Society has a terrible problem because there is no right and wrong in society, and that will deal with Darwin’s words “but man can do his duty” because those who take Darwin’s theory and extend it have eradicated the possibility of the word “duty.” …Darwin I think senses this but he doesn’t know how to handle it.

Richard Speck

Ladies Richard Speck murdered below:

__

In Chapter 7, “THE MAN WITHOUT THE BIBLE,” of the book DEATH IN THE CITY, Schaeffer writes concerning Richard Speck and “Determinism”: 

This view raises three serious questions. First of all, what about the nurses who were killed, some of them in a very violent fashion? These must then be written off. With this kind of explanation they become zero. Second, what about society? Society and the problems of ordering it also are written off. In such a situation, order in society is merely like a big machine dealing on a machine level with little machines. Third, what about Speck himself? The psychologist’s explanation does the most harm to him, for as a man he disappears. He simply becomes a flow of consciousness. He, too, becomes a zero.

In our generation there is a constant tendency to explain sin lightly and think that such an explanation is more humanitarian. But it is not. It decreases the importance and significance of man. Consequently, we can be glad for the sake of man that the Bible’s explanation is so emphatic.
Paul repeats it in verse 25: “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature [that which has been created] rather than the Creator.” This is the second of the three repetitions.

Paul was thinking of the gods of silver and stone and also the worship of the universe or any part of it. He says men have made such gods rather than worshipping the living God. Even on the basis of what they know themselves to be, they should have known better. Isaiah said 700 years before, ‘Aren’t you silly to make gods that are less than yourself. You must carry them; they don’t carry you. Now isn’t it silly to make an integration point that is less than you yourself are.’ Paul used precisely the same argument on Mars Hill. Men who refuse to bow before God take the facts concerning the universe and man, push these facts through their own presuppositional grid, fail to carry their thinking to a reasonable conclusion, and so are faced with an overwhelming lie. Idols of stone are obvious lies because they are less than man, but so are non-Christian presuppositions such as the idea of the total uniformity of natural cause and effect in a closed system, the final explanation of the impersonal plus time plus chance, which ultimately makes man only a machine.

__________________

Below is the larger biblical passage of scripture that Schaeffer was referring to in Chapter 7, “THE MAN WITHOUT THE BIBLE,” of the book DEATH IN THE CITY:

Romans 1:18-32New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Unbelief and Its Consequences

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 becausethat which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.

28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper,29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they aregossips, 30 slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

_____________________________________

Why is determinism dangerous? Francis Schaeffer in his book HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? tells why it is dangerous:

Modern determinists have not presented only abstract theories.  Rather, there have been two practical results.  First, and most important, as their ideas about what people are have been increasingly accepted, people consciously or unconsciously have opened themselves to being treated as machines and treating other people as machines.  Second, each theory of determinism has carried with it a method of manipulation.  So even though many — even most — people may reject the concept that man is totally a product of psychological, sociological, or chemical conditioning, manipulation by these methods is still very much a live possibility.  In fact, these techniques are all at the disposal of of authoritation states, and they are in some degree already being used.

Paul Chopan has rightly noted:

Naturalism takes for granted the following tenets:

  • Nature is all there is.
  • All reality is comprised of or rooted in matter.
  • There is no supernatural—no Creator, no miracles, no souls,
    no angels, no life after death.
  • Science becomes the only (or best) means of knowledge.

__________________

What is the answer to the problem of DETERMINISM? It is found in the Biblical view that the Bible is true and there was a place named THE GARDEN OF EDEN and the fact that God did create this world and it was not created by impersonal chance plus time. 

Francis A. Schaeffer on Human Free WillTHE GOD WHO IS THERE, (DOWNERS GROVE, IL: INTERVARSITY PRESS, 1968), P 131.

(James D. Watson and Francis Crick below)

The historic Christian position is that man’s dilemma has a moral cause. God, being nondetermined, created man as a nondetermined person. This is a difficult idea for anyone thinking in twentieth-century terms because most twentieth-century thinking sees man as determined. He is determined either by chemical factors, as the Marquis de Sade held and Francis Crick is trying to prove,or by psychological factors, as Freud and others have suggested, or by sociological factors, such as B.F. Skinner holds. In these cases, or as a result of a fusion of them, man is considered to be programmed. If this is the case, then man is not the tremendous thing the Bible says he is, made in the image of God as a personality who can make a free first choice. Because God created a true universe outside of himself (or as an extension of his essence), there is a true history which exists, man as created in God’s image is therefore a significant man in a significant history, who can choose to obey the commandments of God and love him, or revolt against him.

(B.F. Skinner)

THE CRUX OF THE ISSUE IS DID MAN HAVE A CHOICE AND IS MAN RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS CHOICES?

Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

XXXXXXXXXXXXX

Horace Barlow below

Morality has been undercut and that is why Darwin resorts to “Man can do his duty but Dr. Barlow has a different perspective when it comes to a secular morality in the letter I received in December of 2017:

Chance mutations increase the diversity present in the population under consideration, and evolutionists naturally think of this as a “good thing,” for without diversity there can be no evolution. This is not often true for religiously determined moral codes, for most Gods are jealous and demand conformity among their followers, often enforced by persecution and extreme cruelty. As an evolutionist, I regard diversity itself as a desirable asset, and I think this improves my judgment when I hear a proposal that I do not initially agree with.

:

_____________

Here is response from Dr. Barlow on the letter I received in December of 2017 concerning evil in the world and he blames religious people for their part:

On the other hand, if I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour, as with the current quarrel with Muslim terrorists, and as has been shown by inter-sectal violence within the Christian Church itself. 

Let me first take on Darwin’s question of evil and suffering and take on Dr. Barlow’s objection to religion next:


(C.S. Lewis pictured above)

How can a good God allow evil and suffering? Here is an explanation from the Evangelism Explosion leader’s guide: Their thinking is that either God is not powerful enough to prevent evil or else God is not good. He is often blamed for tragedy. “Where was God when I went through this, or when that happened.”  God is blamed for natural disasters, Even my insurance company describes them as “acts of God.” How to handle this one-  (O.N.E.)a. Origin of evil— man’s choice- God created a perfect world…b. Nature of God—He forgives, I John 1:9—He uses tragedy to bring us to Himself, C.S. Lewis, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains:  it is His megaphone to arouse a deaf world.”c. End of it all—Bible teaches that God will one day put an end to all evil, and pain and death. “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.  There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Rev. 21:4).As Christians we have this hope of Heaven and eternity. Share how it has made a tremendous difference in your life and that you know for sure that when you die you are going to spend eternity in Heaven. Ask the person, “May I ask you a question? Do you have this hope? Do you know for certain that when you die you are going to Heaven, or is that something you would say you’re still working on?”How could a loving God send people to Hell?(O.N.E.)a. Origin of hell—never intended for people. Created for Satan and his demons. Jesus said, “Depart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt 25:41). Man chooses to sin and ignore God. The penalty is death (eternal separation from God) and, yes, Hell. But God doesn’t send anyone to Hell, we choose it by refusing or ignoring God in attitude and action. b. Nature of God—“ God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). He is so loving that He sent His own Son to die and pay the penalty for our sin so that we could avoid Hell and have the assurance of Heaven. No one in Hell will be able to blame God. He doesn’t send people there, it’s our own choice. We must choose to repent, to stop ignoring God in attitude and action, accepting His salvation and yielding to His leadership.c. End of it all—Bible teaches that God will one day put an end to all evil, pain, death, and penalty of Hell. “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.  There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Rev. 21:4).As Christians , we need not worry about Hell. The Bible says, “these things have been written . . . so that you may know you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13).  I have complete confidence that when I die, I’m going to Heaven.  May I ask you a question?___________________________-
(Horace Barlow below)

In response to Dr. Barlow’s letter was this letter below that I mailed to him on December 2, 2018:

Image result for nicolaas bloembergen

Dr. Nicolaas Bloembergen of Harvard

Image result for hitler

Hitler and Mussolini

Image result for hitler  MUSSOLINI

Ravi Zacharias

Image result for ravi zacharias havard

Francis Schaeffer

Image result for francis schaeffer

__

December2, 2018

December 2, 2018

Dr. Horace Barlow, Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Physiological Laboratory, United Kingdom,

Dear Dr. Barlow,

It was a year ago today that I first responded to your letter of November 22, 2017. Every month since then I have written to you on the second of every month. Almost every letter has dealt with the legacy of Charles Darwin your great-grandfather in one way or another.

Let me share with you a correspondence I had with Dr. Nicolaas Bloembergen of Harvard (where you earned your medical degree during WWII) and it is because he had some of the same reservations about Christianity that you have now.

He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1981 and was born in Dordrecht, the Netherlands on March 11, 1920. He spent the last two years of World War II hiding from the Nazis. I found his life story very interesting.

In his September 6, 1995 letter to me he wrote:

Less zealotry and more compassion for those who have different concepts of the world from yours would help make this world more livable.

I mention this to you because in your letter of November 22, 2017 you asserted something very similar:

If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself” 

Back in 1995 when I responded to Dr. Bloembergen I quoted something I heard Ravi Zacharias say on an audio cassette tape and it went like this:

Atheists Charge: “What about the thousands who have been killed in the name of religion?”

The emotion-laden question is not nearly as troublesome to answer if the questioner first explains all the killing that has resulted from those who have lived without God, such as HITLER, STALIN, MUSSOLINI, et al. The antitheist is quick to excoriate all religious belief by generically laying the blame at the door of all who claim to be religious, without distinction. By the same measure, why is there not an equal enthusiasm to distribute blame for violence engendered by some of the irreligious?

But the rub goes even deeper than that. The attackers of religion have forgotten that these large-scale slaughters at the hands of antitheists were the logical outworking of their God-denying philosophy. Contrastingly, the violence spawned by those who killed in the name of Christ would never have been sanctioned by the Christ of the Scriptures. Those who killed in the name of God were clearly self-serving politicizers of religion, an amalgam Christ ever resisted in His life and teaching. Their means and their message were in contradiction to the gospel. Atheism, on the other hand, provides the logical basis for an autonomous, domineering will, expelling morality. CHARLES DARWIN himself predicted this slippery slope of violence if evolutionary theory were translated into a philosophy of life. Nietzsche talked of the enshrouding darkness that had fallen over mankind–he saw its ramifications. The Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevski repeatedly wrote of the hell that is let loose when man comes adrift from his Creators moorings and himself becomes god–he understood the consequences.

On July 3, 2016, I got a call from 96-year-old Dr. Bloembergen who told me he hoped to make 100. You may wonder why the urgency on my part to discuss these matters with you? Dr. Bloembergen died on 9-5-17 at the age of 97.

When my son Wilson was 8 years old his great-grandfather, L.R. “Tom” Sawyer, died just three weeks shy of his 98th birthday. Wilson declared, “I will make it to 100!!” I told him that Mr. Sawyer was the oldest person who ever lived in our family and that it was HIGHLY UNLIKELY that Wilson would outlive Mr. Sawyer in terms of years. I am almost 57 years old myself and many people call that MIDDLE AGED, but who am I kidding because how many 114 year old people do you see walking around?

Let me close by sharing with you a portion of my LAST EMAIL to Dr. Bloembergen:

Dear Dr. Bloembergen,

It was such a privilege to get a telephone call from you on July 1, 2016 because I know your time is very valuable. Since you said writing letters and mailing them was difficult for you I have chosen to email you this time around….Christianity is different than every other religion for two reasons according to Francis Schaeffer:

In every other religion, we have to do something–everything from burning a joss stick to sacrificing our firstborn child to dropping a coin the collection plate–the whole spectrum. But with Christianity we do not do anything; God has done it all: He has created us and He has sent His Son; His Son died and because the Son is infinite, therefore He bears out total guilt. We do not need to bear our guilt, nor do we even have to merit the merit of Christ. He does it all. So in one way, it is the easiest religion in the world….

In the book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?, and especially in the extensive notes of fifth chapter [shows] the way the Bible measures up to history. Once we say that, this is very exciting. It is very exciting because other religions are not founded in history, they are “out there” somewhere, or you can think of them as inside your own head–whichever way you are looking at it. On the other hand, the Bible claims to rooted in history. 

Taking a look at the holy books of Islam and Mormonism and you find many historical inaccuracies.  For instance, the Book of Mormon was wrong about horses, cows, steel, the wheel,  honey bees and barley existing in North America 2000 years ago. Furthermore, in 2012 during the Presidential Race Harry Kroto also asked why no one seemed to ask Mitt Romney if he actually believed that Christ visited North America 2000 years ago as the Book of Mormon claimed.

Blaise Pascal asserted, “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God the Creator, made known through Jesus Christ.”  In other words, the spiritual answers your heart is seeking can be found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Let me close by talking to you about the ROMAN ROAD TO CHRIST.

  1. Rom. 3:10, “As it is written, ‘There is none righteous, not even one . . . “
  2. Rom. 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
  3. Rom. 5:12, “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned.”
  4. Rom. 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
  5. Rom. 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
  6. Rom. 10:9-10, “if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”
  7. Rom. 10:13, “For whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Thanks for your time. Again it was such an honor to get to talk to you. I hope you enjoy the CDs on Michael Polanyi. He was a very wise man and his son John is a very outstanding man too.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 cottontail lane, Alexander, AR 72002

Nicolaas “Nico” Bloembergen (March 11, 1920 – September 5, 2017) was a Dutch-American physicist and Nobel laureate, recognized for his work in developing driving principles behind nonlinear optics for laser spectroscopy.[1] During his career, he was a professor at both Harvard University and later at the University of Arizona.

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow

The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

Image result for Horace Barlow charles darwin

Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

Horace Darwin.jpg

Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

Image result for Ida Darwin hoRACE

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

Image result for charles darwin

In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

Image result for francis schaeffer

Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

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I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

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My correspondence with George Wald and Antony Flew!!!

May 12, 2014 – 1:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 41 Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (Featured artist is Marina Abramović)

January 8, 2015 – 5:23 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 40 Timothy Leary (Featured artist is Margaret Keane)

January 1, 2015 – 4:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

December 25, 2014 – 5:04 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

December 18, 2014 – 4:30 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

December 11, 2014 – 4:19 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

December 4, 2014 – 4:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

November 27, 2014 – 4:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

November 20, 2014 – 4:28 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

November 13, 2014 – 4:39 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

November 6, 2014 – 4:42 am

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October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

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September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

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September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

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September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

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August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

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April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 4 (Darwin: “But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through CHANCE, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide.”

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Francis Schaeffer

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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In my February 11, 2015 Letter to Dr. Barlow I made the following points about Charles Darwin and the subject of CHANCE and Dr. Barlow responded to many of these points in his November 22, 2017 letter:

Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873

It is impossible to answer your question briefly; and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide.”


Francis Schaeffer observed:

So he sees here exactly the same that I would labor and what Paul gives in Romans chapter one, and that is first this tremendous universe [and it’s form] and the second thing, the mannishness of man and the concept of this arising from chance is very difficult for him to come to accept and he is forced to leap into this, his own kind of Kierkegaardian leap, but he is forced to leap into this because of his presuppositions but when in reality the real world troubles him. He sees there is no third alternative. If you do not have the existence of God then you only have chance. In my own lectures I am constantly pointing out there are only two possibilities, either a personal God or this concept of the impersonal plus time plus chance and Darwin understood this . You will notice that he divides it into the same exact two points that Paul does in Romans chapter one into and that Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961) will in the problem of existence, the external universe, and man and his consciousness. Paul points out there are these two steps that man is confronted with, what I would call two things in the real world. The universe and it’s form and I usually quote Jean Paul Sartre here, and Sartre says the basic philosophic problem is that something is there rather than nothing is there and I then I add at the point the very thing that Darwin feels and that is it isn’t a bare universe that is out there, it is an universe in a specific form. I always bring in Einstein and the uniformity of the form of the universe and that it is constructed as a well formulated word puzzle or you have Carl Gustav Jung who says two things cut across a man’s will that he can not truly be autonomous, the external world and what Carl Gustav Jung would call his “collected unconsciousness.” It is the thing that churns up out of man, the mannishness of man. Darwin understood way back here this is a real problem. So he says “the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous  universe,” part one, the real world, the external universe, and part two “with our conscious selves arose through chance” and then he goes on and says this is not “an argument of real value.” This only thing he has to put in its place is his faith in his own theory.

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Here below is the Romans passage that Schaeffer is referring to and verse 19 refers to what Schaeffer calls “the mannishness of man” and verse 20 refers to Schaeffer’s other point which is  “the universe and it’s form.”Romans 1:18-22Amplified Bible (AMP) 18 For God’s [holy] wrath and indignation are revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who in their wickedness repress and hinder the truth andmake it inoperative. 19 For that which is known about God is evident to them and made plain in their inner consciousness,because God [Himself] has shown it to them. 20 For ever since the creation of the world His invisible nature and attributes, that is, His eternal power and divinity, have been made intelligible and clearly discernible in and through the things that have been made (His handiworks). So [men] are without excuse [altogether without any defense or justification], 21 Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor andglorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile andgodless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves].


Francis Schaeffer noted that in Darwin’s 1876 Autobiography that Darwin he is going to set forth two arguments for God in this and again you will find when he comes to the end of this that he is in tremendous tension. Darwin wrote, 

At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons.Formerly I was led by feelings such as those just referred to (although I do not think that the religious sentiment was ever strongly developed in me), to the firm conviction of the existence of God and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body; but now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.

Francis Schaeffer remarked:

Now Darwin says when I look back and when I look at nature I came to the conclusion that man can not be just a fly! But now Darwin has moved from being a younger man to an older man and he has allowed his presuppositions to enter in to block his logic. These things at the end of his life he had no intellectual answer for. To block them out in favor of his theory. Remember the letter of his that said he had lost all aesthetic senses when he had got older and he had become a clod himself. Now interesting he says just the same thing, but not in relation to the arts, namely music, pictures, etc, but to nature itself. Darwin said, “But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions  and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind…” So now you see that Darwin’s presuppositions have not only robbed him of the beauty of man’s creation in art, but now the universe. He can’t look at it now and see the beauty. The reason he can’t see the beauty is for a very, very , very simple reason: THE BEAUTY DRIVES HIM TO DISTRACTION. THIS IS WHERE MODERN MAN IS AND IT IS HELL. The art is hell because it reminds him of man and how great man is, and where does it fit in his system? It doesn’t. When he looks at nature and it’s beauty he is driven to the same distraction and so consequently you find what has built up inside him is a real death, not  only the beauty of the artistic but the beauty of nature. He has no answer in his logic and he is left in tension.  He dies and has become less than human because these two great things (such as any kind of art and the beauty of  nature) that would make him human  stand against his theory

My Fourth letter dated 2-1-17 was an Email on first cause! And if creation was done by expression of a mind?

When I read the book  Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published lettersI also read  a commentary on it by Francis Schaeffer and I wanted to both  quote some of Charles Darwin’s own words to you and then include the comments of Francis Schaeffer on those words.

Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873

“It is impossible to answer your question briefly; and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide…Nor can I overlook the difficulty from the immense amount of suffering through the world. I am aware that if we admit a First Cause, the mind still craves to know whence it came, and how it arose.”

Jan Constantijn Costerus and Nicolaas Dirk Doedes pictured below:

Image result for charles darwin Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873


Francis Schaeffer noted:

What he is saying is if you say there is a first cause, then the mind says, “Where did this come from?” I think this is a bit old fashioned, with some of the modern thinkers, this would not have carry as much weight today as it did when Darwin expressed it. Jean Paul Sartre said it as well as anyone could possibly say it. The philosophic problem is that something is there and not nothing being there. No one has the luxury of beginning with nothing. Nobody I have ever read has put forth that everything came from nothing. I have never met such a person in all my reading,or all my discussion. If you are going to begin with nothing being there, it has to be nothing nothing, and it can’t be something nothing. When someone says they believe nothing is there, in reality they have already built in something there. The only question is do you begin with an impersonal something or a personal something. All human thought is shut up to these two possibilities. Either you begin with an impersonal and then have Darwin’s own dilemma which impersonal plus chance, now he didn’t bring in the amount of time that modern man would though. Modern man has brought in huge amounts of time into the equation as though that would make a difference because I have said many times that time can’t make a qualitative difference but only a quantitative difference. The dilemma is it is either God or chance. Now you find this intriguing thing in Darwin’s own situation, he can’t understand how chance could have produced these two great factors of the universe and its form and the mannishness of man.

From Charles Darwin, Autobiography (1876), in The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, ed. Francis Darwin, vol. 1 (London: John Murray, 1888), pp. 307 to 313.

“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a Theist. This conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species, and it is since that time that it has very gradually, with many fluctuations, become weaker. But then arises the doubt…”

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Francis Schaeffer commented:

On the basis of his reason he has to say there must be an intelligent mind, someone analogous to man. You couldn’t describe the God of the Bible better. That is man is made in God’s image  and therefore, you know a great deal about God when you know something about man. What he is really saying here is that everything in my experience tells me it must be so, and my mind demands it is so. Not just these feelings he talked about earlier but his MIND demands it is so, but now how does he counter this? How does he escape this? Here is how he does it!!!

Charles Darwin went on to observe:  “—can the mind of man, which has, as I fully believe, been developed from a mind as low as that possessed by the lowest animals, be trusted when it draws such grand conclusions?”

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Francis Schaeffe


Francis Schaeffer asserted:

So he says my mind can only come to one conclusion, and that is there is a mind behind it all. However, the doubt comes because his mind has come from the lowest form of earthworm, so how can I trust my mind. But this is a joker isn’t it?  Then how can you trust his mind to support such a theory as this? He proved too much. The fact that Darwin found it necessary to take such an escape shows the tremendous weight of Romans 1, that the only escape he can make is to say how can I trust my mind when I come from the lowest animal the earthworm? Obviously think of the grandeur of his concept, I don’t think it is true, but the grandeur of his concept, so what you find is that Darwin is presenting something here that is wrong I feel, but it is not nothing. It is a tremendously grand concept that he has put forward. So he is accepting the dictates of his mind to put forth a grand concept which he later can’t accept in this basic area with his reason, but he rejects what he could accept with his reason on this escape. It really doesn’t make sense. This is a tremendous demonstration of the weakness of his own position.

Dr. Barlow responds to the points I made in earlier letters in his November 22, 2017 letter:

You may ask, “What is to take the place of Religious Belief in helping to understand the world around us? It has order and purpose, which cannot be explained by Blind chance as evolution teaches.” I agree it cannot be explained by Blind chance alone, but Darwin did not claim that this happens, and modern evolutionists agree. We say that chance variations (mutations) occur in the substances (called genes nowadays) that control development and cause son and daughter to resemble father and mother. These genes control the development of the offspring, and and influence their success in life, and in particular they influence the types of mutated genes that are passed on to the next generation. Chance, together with “Survival of the fittest,” thus causes the appearance of apparently purposeful adaptations of the population of genes in a species. 



These points made by Dr. Barlow seemed to be contradicted by the following quote from the Nobel Prize winner Jacques Monod:

It necessarily follows that chance alone is at the source of every innovation, and of all creation in the biosphere. Pure chance, absolutely free but blind, at the very root of the stupendous edifice of evolution: this central concept of modern biology is no longer one among many other possible or even conceivable hypotheses. It is today the sole conceivable hypothesis, the only one that squares with observed and tested fact. And nothing warrants the supposition – or the hope – that on this score our position is ever likely to be revised. There is no scientific concept, in any of the sciences, more destructive of anthropocentrism than this one.

Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity

In my letter to Dr. Barlow on November 2, 2018 I responded to some of Dr. Barlow’s points and I tried to make the point that Darwin never did get comfortable with the idea that chance was responsible for all of the creation and Randal Keynes actually makes the point that Darwin was at times despondent about the possibility that evidence would appear showing that a species had been designed:

Many thanks for your copious and charmingly expressed correspondence about Charles Darwin’s religious views, and about his descriptions of losing his sense of reverence, awe, and beauty in his old age. Notice, however, that he clearly did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out.

Darwin may have been searching for truth, but he never did come to a complete satisfaction that he had found it with his theory of evolution. Notice that your relative Randal Keynes makes this very point on Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin”:

(Richard Dawkins words below)

Back in England at Down Housenow 20 years after his
voyage on the Beagle,Darwin had worked out the answers
to the biggest questions ever asked.But he was strangely reluctant
to go public with his idea.Darwin himself said that he’d
become a kind of machinefor grinding theories out of
huge assemblages of facts.I think that wasn’t really
what it was like at all.He was an extraordinarily
imaginative, deep thinker.He had a prodigiously
curious mind as well.He was drawn to facts
that didn’t fit.He once said,
“I cannot bear to be beaten.”Darwin’s theory explained how
the diversity of life from the planethad evolved spontaneously
without interference from any god.But he was acutely aware
of how upsettingthis flat contradiction of
the religious story would be.He hesitated to publish.Then, in June 1858,
Darwin received a letterfrom a naturalist travelling in the
Far East, Alfred Russel Wallace,which set our similar ideas.Darwin was in despair about
being scooped.He was even ready to drop
his life’s work.But he was persuaded by
Charles Lyell and othersto present his unpublished work
alongside Wallace’s notes,and then complete his masterpiece
for publication.

Dawkins interviews Darwin’s great-great-grandson below.

 I’ve come to meet Randal Keynes,
Darwin’s great-great-grandsonto try to understand
Darwin’s frame of mindas he finished his book.This is a book about
geology by Mr Greenough.It has this wonderful inscription –“Charles Darwin, Buenos Aires,
October 1832.”So he’s on the Beagle,really getting into
his stride as a geologist.This is a scrapbook,
a children’s scrapbookthat belonged to Darwin’s daughter
Annie. ‘Darwin was
no aggressive polemicist.‘He didn’t take to the stage
to publicize his work,‘but sought to influence leading
thinkers behind the scenes,‘by sending them proof copies of the
book with apologetic letters
attached.’He would write things like,
“This vile rag of a theory of mine.”Was that genuine modesty or was there
an element of false modesty about it? It was entirely real, um, and this is
a very strange point about him.Through the years when he was
steeling himself for publication,um, he was, at different times,
enormously confident in it,
and at other times,
he was utterly uncertain.
He had a deep fear, I think,that one species would be discoveredthat had some element of its make-upthat could only have been designed. Doubts may have lingered
in Darwin’s mind,but finally, 150 years ago,
he set out his ideas on evolutionand how it worked
in The Origin Of Species.   

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Charles Darwin (1809-1882) pictured above

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Francis Darwin (1848-1925) pictured above

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Francis Schaeffer (1912-1984)

A letter to Sir J. D. Hooker, June 17, 1868, which repeats to some extent what is given in the Autobiography:—

“I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science, though God knows I ought to be thankful for such a perennial interest, which makes me forget for some hours every day my accursed stomach.’

Francis Schaeffer summarized Darwin’s statement:

So he is glad for science because his stomach bothers him, but on the other hand when I think of what it costs me I almost hate science. You can almost hear young Jean-Jacques Rousseau speaking here, he sees what the machine is going to do and he hates the machine and Darwin is constructing the machine and it leads as we have seen to his own loss of human values in the area of aesthetics, the area of art and also in the area of nature. This is what it has cost him. His theory has led him to this place. When you come to this then it seems to me that you understand man’s dilemma very, very well, to think of the origin of the theory of mechanical evolution bringing  Darwin himself to the place of this titanic tension.

 Schaeffer discusses further Darwin’s doubts about evolution:

Darwin in his autobiography ( Darwin, Francis ed. 1892. Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters [abridged edition]. London: John Murray.  ) and in his letters Darwin showed that all through his life he never really came to a quietness concerning the possibility that chance really explained the situation of the biological world. You will find there is much material on this [from Darwin] extended over many many years that constantly he was wrestling with this problem. Darwin never came to a place of satisfaction. You have philosophically only two possible beginnings. The first would be a personal beginning and the other would be an impersonal beginning plus time plus chance. There is no other possible alternative except the alternative that everything comes out of nothing and that has to be a total nothing and that has to be a total nothing without mass, energy or motion existing. No one holds this last view because it is unthinkable. Darwin understood this and therefore until his death he was uncomfortable with the idea of chance producing the biological variation.

On May 15, 1994, the 10th anniversary of the passing of Francis Schaeffer, I mailed a letter to about 250 of the world top skeptics and I have posted this letter on my blog (  [Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4] ). In that letter were these quotes:

J.W.Burrow – “Nature, according to Darwin, was the product of blind chance and a blind struggle, and man a lonely, intelligent mutation, scrambling with the brutes for his sustenance. To some the sense of loss was irrevocable; It was as if an umbilical cord had been cut, and men found themselves part of a cold passionless universe.”


William B. Provine in “The End of Ethics?” article in HARD CHOICES (a magazine companion to the television series HARD CHOICES) wrote:Even though it is often asserted that science is fully compatible with our Judeo-Christian tradition, in fact it is not… To be sure, even in antiquity, the mechanistic view of life–that chance was responsible for the shape of the world– had a few adherents. But belief in overarching order was dominant; it can be seen as easily in such scientists as Newton, Harvey, and Einstein as in the theologians Augustine, Luther, and Tillich. But beginning with Darwin, biology has undermined that tradition. Darwin in effect asserted that all living organisms had been created by a combination of CHANCE and necessity–natural selection.In the twentieth century, this view of life has been reinforced by a whole series of discoveries…Mind is the only remaining frontier, but it would be shortsighted to doubt that it can, one day, be duplicated in the form of thinking robots or analyzed in terms of the chemistry and electricity of the brain. The extreme mechanic view of life, which every new discovery in biology tends to confirm, has certain implications. First, God has no role in the physical world…Second, except for the laws of probability and cause and effect, there is no organizing principle in the world, and NO PURPOSE.


Bertrand Russell – “
That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labours of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the débris of a universe in ruins—all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

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It is either a personal God who created it all or evolution by chance. Take a look at this statement by George Wald:

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George Wald in 1987


“When it comes to the origin of life, we have only two possibilities as to how life arose. One is spontaneous generation arising to evolution; the other is a supernatural creative act of God. There is NO THIRD possibility…Spontaneous generation was scientifically disproved one hundred years ago by Louis Pasteur, Spellanzani, Reddy and others. That leads us scientifically to only one possible conclusion — that life arose as a supernatural creative act of God…I will not accept that philosophically because I do not want to believe in God. Therefore, I choose to believe in that which I know is scientifically impossible, spontaneous generationarising to evolution.” – Scientific American, August, 1954.

The Designed CreationBY HENRY M. MORRIS, PH.D.  | FRIDAY, AUGUST 08, 1997

“Understand, ye brutish among the people: and ye fools, when will ye be wise? He that planted the ear, shall He not hear? He that formed the eye, shall He not see?” (Psalm 94:8,9)

The concept of evolution, according to this verse, is nothing but brute-like foolishness. If an automobile presupposes an auto-maker, and a clock implies a clock-maker, surely the infinitely more intricate and complex eyes and ears of living creatures require an ear-maker and an eye-maker! “The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them” (Proverbs 20:12).

The most basic of all scientific laws—the law of cause and effect (no effect greater than its cause)—becomes utmost nonsense if the cosmos is the product of chaos and the universe evolved by chance. “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God” (Psalm 14:1).

Every creature, from the single-celled amoebae to the amazing human body, bears the impress of intricate planning and construction. The notion that such complex structures could evolve by random mutations and natural selection is simply a measure of the audacity of human rebellion and the absurdity of humanistic reasoning. Such things never happen in the real world, and there is no real scientific evidence whatever for “vertical” evolution from one kind to a higher kind. The only genuine evidence for evolution is the fact that the leaders of intellectualism believe it, and the only reason they believe it is their frantic desire to escape God. “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:22).

The ear did not “evolve;” it was planted. The eye did not “happen by chance;” it was formed. Every wise man and woman will say with the psalmist, “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well” (Psalm 139:14). HMM

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The autobiography of Charles Darwin read by Francis Schaeffer in 1968 was not the same one originally released in 1892 because that one omitted the religious statements of Charles Darwin. 

pictured below with his eldest child William: 

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Notice this statement below from the Freedom from Religion Foundation: 

(Nora Barlow pictured below)

Charles Darwin wrote the Rev. J. Fordyce on July 7, 1879, that “an agnostic would be the most correct description of my state of mind.” Darwin penned his memoirs between the ages of 67 and 73, finishing the main text in 1876. These memoirs were published posthumously in 1887 by his family under the title Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, with his hardest-hitting views on religion excised. Only in 1958 did Darwin’s granddaughter Nora Barlow publish his Autobiography with original omissions restored  D. 1882.
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Charles Robert Darwin  (1809 – 1882) had 10 children and 7 of them survived to adulthood.

Sir Horace DarwinKBEFRS (13 May 1851 – 22 September 1928), the fifth son and ninth child of the British naturalist Charles Darwin and his wife Emma, the youngest of their seven children who survived to adulthood.

(Horace Darwin pictured below)

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Emma Nora Barlow, Lady Barlow (née Darwin; 22 December 1885 – 29 May 1989) Nora, as she was known, was the daughter of the civil engineer Sir Horace Darwin and his wife The Hon. Lady Ida Darwin (née Farrer),

Horace Basil Barlow FRS (1921-) Barlow is the son of the civil servant Sir Alan Barlow and his wife Lady Nora (née Darwin). Barlow is the great-grandson of Charles Darwin

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Horace Darwin married Emma Cecilia “Ida” Farrer (1854–1946) pictured below.

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Francis Schaeffer

Horace Barlow was the son of Nora Barlow. From February 11, 2015 to July 1, 2017, I wrote 7 letters to Dr. Horace Barlow because I wanted to discuss primarily the views of his grandfather Charles Darwin and Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism!

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In December of 2017, I received a two page typed letter from Dr. Barlow reacting to several of the points made in the previous letters and emails. Over the next few weeks I will be posting the 32 letters I wrote to Dr. Barlow from February 11, 2015 to April 18, 2020 one per week every Tuesday and below is a list of those letters. Sadly Dr. Barlow passed away on July 5, 2020 at age 98. However, I want to summarize some the issues we discussed in the next few days. 

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Franicis Schaeffer

If you wish to hear Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 talk on Darwin’s autobiography then you can access part 1 at this link and part 2 at this link.

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Horace Barlow pictured below:

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I found Dr. Barlow to be a true gentleman and he was very kind to take the time to answer the questions that I submitted to him. In the upcoming months I will take time once a week to pay tribute to his life and reveal our correspondence. In the first week I noted:

 Today I am posting my first letter to him in February of 2015 which discussed Charles Darwin lamenting his loss of aesthetic tastes which he blamed on Darwin’s own dedication to the study of evolution. In a later return letter, Dr. Barlow agreed that Darwin did in fact lose his aesthetic tastes at the end of his life.

In the second week I look at the views of Michael Polanyi and share the comments of Francis Schaeffer concerning Polanyi’s views.

In the third week, I look at the life of Brandon Burlsworth in the November 28, 2016 letter and the movie GREATER and the problem of evil which Charles Darwin definitely had a problem with once his daughter died.

On the 4th letter to Dr. Barlow looks at Darwin’s admission that he at times thinks that creation appears to look like the expression of a mind. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words in 1968 sermon at this link.

My Fifth Letter concerning Charles Darwin’s views on MORAL MOTIONS Which was mailed on March 1, 2017. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning moral motions in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

6th letter on May 1, 2017 in which Charles Darwin’s hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would show that Christ existed! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning the possible manuscript finds in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

7th letter on Darwin discussing DETERMINISM  dated 7-1-17 . Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning determinism in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 8th letter responds to Dr. Barlow’s letter to me concerning the Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning chance in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

Thanks 9th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 1-2-18 and included Charles Darwin’s comments on William Paley. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning William Paley in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

10th letter in response to 11-22-17 letter I received from Professor Horace Barlow was mailed on 2-2-18 and includes Darwin’s comments asking for archaeological evidence for the Bible! Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning His desire to see archaeological evidence supporting the Bible’s accuracy  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

11th letter I mailed on 3-2-18  in response to 11-22-17 letter from Barlow that asserted: It is also sometimes asked whether chance, even together with selection, can define a “MORAL CODE,” which the religiously inclined say is defined by their God. I think the answer is “Yes, it certainly can…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning A MORAL CODE in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

12th letter on March 26, 2018 breaks down song DUST IN THE WIND “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”

In 13th letter I respond to Barlow’s November 22, 2017 letter and assertion “He {Darwin} clearly did not lose his sense of the VALUE of TRUTH, and of the importance of FOREVER SEARCHING it out.”

In 14th letter to Dr. Barlow on 10-2-18, I assert: “Let me demonstrate how the Bible’s view of the origin of life fits better with the evidence we have from archaeology than that of gradual evolution.”In 15th letter in November 2, 2018 to Dr. Barlow I quote his relative Randal Keynes Who in the Richard Dawkins special “The Genius of Darwin” makes this point concerning Darwin, “he was, at different times, enormously confident in it,and at other times, he was utterly uncertain.”In 16th Letter on 12-2-18 to Dr. Barlow I respond to his letter that stated, If I am pressed to say whether I think belief in God helps people to make wise and beneficial decisions I am bound to say (and I fear this will cause you pain) “No, it is often very disastrous, leading to violence, death and vile behaviour…Muslim terrorists…violence within the Christian church itself”17th letter sent on January 2, 2019 shows the great advantage we have over Charles Darwin when examining the archaeological record concerning the accuracy of the Bible!In the 18th letter I respond to the comment by Charles Darwin: “My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive….The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words on his loss of aesthetic tastes  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.In 19th letter on 2-2-19  I discuss Steven Weinberg’s words,  But if language is to be of any use to us, we ought to try to preserve the meanings of words, and “God” historically has not meant the laws of nature. It has meant an interested personality.

In the 20th letter on 3-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s comment, “At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep [#1] inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons...Formerly I was led by feelings such as those…to the firm conviction of the existence of God, and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that [#2] whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body. [#3] But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his former belief in God in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 21st letter on May 15, 2019 to Dr Barlow I discuss the writings of Francis Schaeffer who passed away the 35 years earlier on May 15, 1985. Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words at length in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In the 22nd letter I respond to Charles Darwin’s words, “I can indeed hardly see how anyone ought to wish Christianity to be true; for if so the plain language of the text seems to show that the men who do not believe…will be everlastingly punished. And this is a damnable doctrine.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words about hell  in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link

In 23rd postcard sent on 7-2-19 I asked Dr Barlow if he was a humanist. Sir Julian Huxley, founder of the American Humanist Association noted, “I use the word ‘humanist’ to mean someone who believes that man is just as much a natural phenomenon as an animal or plant; that his body, mind and soul were not supernaturally created but are products of evolution, and that he is not under the control or guidance of any supernatural being.”

In my 24th letter on 8-2-19 I quote Jerry  Bergman who noted Jean Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of the 19th century. A founding father of the modern American scientific establishment, Agassiz was also a lifelong opponent of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Agassiz “ruled in professorial majesty at Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology.”

In my 25th letter on 9-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s assertion,  “This argument would be a valid one if all men of ALL RACES had the SAME INWARD CONVICTION of the existence of one God; but we know that this is very far from being the case.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 26th letter on 10-2-19 I quoted Bertrand Russell’s daughter’s statement, “I believe myself that his whole life was a search for God…. Indeed, he had first taken up philosophy in hope of finding proof of the evidence of the existence of God … Somewhere at the back of my father’s mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul  there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it”

In my 27th letter on 11-2-19 I disproved Richard Dawkins’ assertion, “Genesis says Abraham owned camels, but archaeological evidence shows that the camel was not domesticated until many centuries after Abraham.” Furthermore, I gave more evidence indicating the Bible is historically accurate.

In my 28th letter on 12-2-19 I respond to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I am glad you were at the Messiah, it is the one thing that I should like to hear again, but I dare say I should find my soul too dried up to appreciate it as in old days; and then I should feel very flat, for it is a horrid bore to feel as I constantly do, that I am a withered leaf for every subject except Science. It sometimes makes me hate Science.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning MORAL MOTIONS in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link. 

In my 29th letter on 12-25-19 I responded to Charles Darwin’s statement, “I have said that in one respect my mind has changed during the last twenty or thirty years. Up to the age of thirty, or beyond it, poetry of many kinds…gave me great pleasure, and even as a schoolboy I took intense delight in Shakespeare, especially in the historical plays. I have also said that formerly pictures gave me considerable, and music very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry: I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dullthat it nauseated me…. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, but why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone, on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive… The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness…” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of aesthetic tastes in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 30th letter on 2-2-20 I quote Dustin Shramek who asserted, “Without God the universe is the result of a cosmic accident, a chance explosion. There is no reason for which it exist. As for man, he is a freak of nature–a blind product of matter plus time plus chance. Man is just a lump of slime that evolved into rationality. There is no more purpose in life for the human race than for a species of insect; for both are the result of the blind interaction of chance and necessity.”

In my 31st letter on 3-18-20 I quote Francis Schaeffer who noted, “Darwin is saying that he gave up the New Testament because it was connected to the Old Testament. He gave up the Old Testament because it conflicted with his own theory. Did he have a real answer himself and the answer is no. At the end of his life we see that he is dehumanized by his position and on the other side we see that he never comes to the place of intellectual satisfaction for himself that his answers were sufficient.” Francis Schaeffer discusses Darwin’s own words concerning his loss of his Christian faith in Schaeffer’s 1968 sermon at this link.

In my 32nd letter on 4-18-20 quoted H.J. Blackham on where humanism leads On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility

TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW:

Dan Ruderman @DLRuderman
Obituary of my postdoc advisor at Cambridge, Horace Barlow FRS. He was a kind and brilliant man.

Figure thumbnail gr1
Horace Barlow.View Large ImageDownload Hi-res imageHorace Barlow was one of the truly great neuroscientists of his time, in the Cambridge tradition of quantitative neurophysiology and psychophysics. His fundamental theoretical and empirical contributions to our understanding of brain function have inspired and influenced generations of neurophysiologists, psychologists and computational neuroscientists and are certain to endure for generations to come.Horace Basil Barlow, FRS, was born in 1921 in Chesham Bois, Buckinghamshire, son of Sir Alan Barlow and Lady Nora Barlow (née Darwin). He was educated at Winchester College and studied medicine during the war years, first at Cambridge and then at Harvard Medical School, which awarded him an MD in 1946. He completed medical training at University College Hospital, London, before commencing research in neurophysiology with E.D. Adrian at the Cambridge Physiology Laboratory. After various positions at Cambridge University, he became Professor of Physiological Optics and Physiology at UC Berkeley. In 1974, he returned to Trinity College and the Cambridge Physiology Department to take the Royal Society Research Chair of Physiology, where he continued to make important contributions to neuroscience well after his formal retirement. Horace was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1969 and won their Royal Medal in 1993. He was awarded the Australia Prize in the latter year and several others, including the Ferrier Medal in 1980 and the Ken Nakayama Prize from the Vision Sciences Society in 2016.Many interesting and charismatic people impacted on the young Horace. The first — and arguably most important — was his mother, granddaughter of Charles Darwin. She held no formal degree but worked as a biologist and later, as Darwin’s biographer, founded scholarly research into his life and achievements. Her example, together with his abilities and preference for maths over the humanities, veered Horace towards science. His contemporaries at Winchester College, Christopher Longuet-Higgins, Freeman Dyson and James Lighthill, all of whom became prominent scientists, played an influential role. During his university years there was no shortage of creative minds: his supervisor, the eminent Lord Adrian, and his tutor William Rushton, as well as Pat Merton and Tommy Gold. These latter three were part of the Ratio Club, a London-based club of about 20 carefully selected young neurobiologists, neurologists, psychologists, engineers, mathematicians and physicists, who periodically met in Queen’s Square to discuss cybernetics, information theory and brain function (see group photo). Cybernetics and information theory were central planks in Horace’s conceptual framework throughout his lifetime.Horace started his scientific career early, publishing three papers before he completed his MD: one (in Nature) with Rushton during his Cambridge undergraduate days and two with fellow students at Harvard. His next project, assigned to him by Adrian, was to investigate the proposal of Marshall and Talbot that small scanning eye-movements serve a fundamental role in vision. Horace devised a novel method for measuring eye position precisely (photographing a small spot of mercury placed on the cornea) and found that, between rapid gaze shifts, the eyes were essentially still. He concluded that the fixations rather than scanning eye-movements were fundamental to vision, dismissed Marshall and Talbot’s idea and moved on. However, the importance of the dynamics of perception, including ‘temporal interpolation’ of moving stimuli, remained central to his thinking, emerging clearly in his Ferrier lecture in 1980.Adrian’s supervision style was quite liberal, in the Cambridge tradition, described by Horace as “incisive, but economical, guidance”. Thus, Horace was free to pursue his own scientific curiosities, such as how neurons integrate information. He observed that Sherrington’s classic preparations used artificial stimuli, electric shocks applied to spinal roots, whereas applying light to the retina allows for behaviourally relevant natural stimuli. He developed a preparation for recording spikes from single ganglion cells in frog retina — no mean feat at the time — to study the most basic element of integration, signal summation. Inspired by Rushton, Horace took a quantitative approach and, by measuring thresholds as a function of stimulus area, discovered that integration was not uniform over the receptive field but that there were clear inhibitory surrounds forming separate ‘on’ and ‘off’ regions. More surprisingly, one type of ganglion cell could be a feature detector whose spike discharge anticipates the future position of a fly.This study initiated 30 years of ground-breaking collaborative work on retinal ganglion cells. Horace joined Stephen Kuffler, who had independently described the inhibitory surround in cat retina. Together with Fitzgerald, they discovered that ganglion cells adapt their receptive fields to cover the full range of light levels, switching from cones to rods at low light levels and losing the inhibitory surround. In 1963, Horace and Richard Hill discovered motion-sensitive cells in rabbit retina. Working with the most exacting of retinal physiologists, Bill Levick, Horace revealed further hidden complexities in retinal processing: a motion-sensitive ganglion cell is driven by an array of subunits. Then, in classic experiments, they established the first physiologically informed model of the underlying mechanism: the Barlow and Levick model of elementary motion detection.In 1964, Horace accepted a professorship at the Berkeley School of Optometry, where he continued his neurophysiological experiments, investigating integration by neurons in primary visual cortex (V1). One particularly influential study was conducted with former student Colin Blakemore (in Berkeley on a Harkness Fellowship) and the enthusiastic and charismatic young Australian Jack Pettigrew. Following leads from Jack’s undergraduate work in Sydney, they demonstrated that cells in cat primary visual cortex were selective to binocular disparity, the signals that support binocular depth perception. This was important and unexpected, as stereoscopic depth was thought to be a high-level perceptual property emerging late in processing. However, the results meshed well with Béla Julesz’s demonstrations in the early 1960s of ‘random-dot stereograms’, showing that depth can emerge from point-by-point disparities in otherwise random patterns. The discovery reinforced Horace’s conviction that single sensory neurons coded meaningful information.His work on retinal and cortical neurons brought home to Horace the fundamental realisation that physiological experiments could answer questions of psychological interest. Much of the sensory apparatus for complex behavioural patterns (like detecting and catching flies) may lie in the retina rather than ‘mysterious centres’ too difficult to study by physiological means. Furthermore, the lateral inhibition mechanism that he discovered in frog retina had been postulated by Ernst Mach and others to account for perceptual phenomena, such as simultaneous contrast and Mach Bands. This line of thought culminated in ‘A neural doctrine for perceptual psychology’, published in the fledgling journal Perception in 1972. The provocative formulation of ‘dogmas’ stimulated much important debate, theorising and experimental work, and the central idea of that paper, that perception corresponds to the activity of specific cells, has been hugely influential to physiologists and psychologists alike. Indeed, Horace’s doctrine is still relevant, as it goes far beyond ‘lock and key’ feature detectors. His doctrine incorporates the concepts of statistical inference, efficiency and redundancy that he formulated earlier in his career and suggests the far-reaching idea that he subsequently pursued: single neurons use synaptic plasticity to capture the redundancy that is knowledge.Horace started thinking about signals, noise and perceptual judgements when as an undergraduate he presented a new paper to a discussion group. The landmark study of Hecht, Shlaer and Pirenne demonstrated that the absolute threshold of human vision is limited by noise: quantal fluctuations whose effects can be determined psychophysically by testing the predictions of statistical models. Horace also discussed the problem of signal and noise in the Ratio Club (it was one of their chosen topics), especially with his Cambridge colleague Tommy Gold (later Professor of Astronomy at Cornell University). After his experiments on frog retina, Horace revisited Hecht et al. with a penetrating statistical analysis of published data. He found that the number of quantal events required to reach threshold is elevated by the presence of background noise that he attributed to the thermal activation of visual pigment molecules. This novel conclusion was confirmed a quarter of a century later by recording from rods. His theoretical findings prompted Horace to consider that “thresholds are efficient statistical judgements of constant fallibility”, and he quickly confirmed this more general principle with new psychophysical experiments.Figure thumbnail gr2The young Horace Barlow (bottom right) in May 1952, together with members and guests of the Ratio Club, outside Peterhouse College, Cambridge: Back row (partly obscured): H. Shipton, J. Bates, W.E. Hick, J. Pringle, D. Sholl, J. Westcott and D. Mackay. Middle row: G. Brindley, T. McLardy. W.R. Ashby, T. Gold and A. Uttley. Front row: A. Turing, G. Sutton, W. Rushton, G. Dawson and H. Barlow.View Large ImageDownload Hi-res imageHorace’s scientific approach, to try to understand the principles guiding brain function, was uncommon among physiologists. His 1961 paper on ‘Possible principles underlying the transmission of sensory messages’ (in Sensory Communication, W.D. Keidel, U.O. Keidel, M.E. Wigand and W.A. Rosenblith, eds) opens with, “a wing would be a most mystifying structure if one did not know that birds flew”. Horace argued that we need first to understand the goals of the system to avoid being buried in a mass of irrelevant neurophysiological and neuroanatomical details while missing crucial observations. He reasoned that, because neurons have limited representational capacity, they should economise on impulses by forming efficient representations. According to information theory, this can be achieved by eliminating redundancy using lateral inhibition and adaptation, and because both are observed in retina this must be a goal of early sensory processing. Two decades later, Barlow’s efficient coding hypothesis was validated. This prompted a new round of theory, measurements and experiments, which explained the function of mechanisms in the earlier stages of vision, olfaction and audition. Efficiency and ‘the economy of impulses’ continue to guide our understanding of neural codes at all levels.Horace’s approach was intrinsically interdisciplinary, a popular buzzword in modern grant writing but less usual in his day. He looked for guiding principles of brain function without undue concern whether his supporting data came from psychophysics or physiology, humans or animals, vertebrates or invertebrates. He was always trying — and usually succeeding — to merge detailed observations into the big picture of brain function, following the example of his famous great-grandfather. He was very much a ‘hands-on’ scientist, in the Cambridge mould: he never led a large research group nor took on many graduate students. That was not his style. He led by example, and his example was highly influential. There are very few sensory neuroscientists who would claim not to have been influenced by Horace’s work, one way or the other.Horace never stopped trying to understand the brain. During his own Festschrift in 1987 he gave the most interesting and original talk of the workshop. Following his major theme of how the brain maximises efficiency, he advanced a novel explanation for ‘adaptation’ (the fact that cells reduce firing rate after repeated excitation), suggesting that it is a complex phenomenon serving to ‘decorrelate’ sensory input, reducing inherent redundancy to take full advantage of the limited dynamic range of neurons. This changed the way many people thought about adaptation and again led to new lines of research.The ideas of redundancy and correlated activity of sensory pathways also underlie his highly influential paper on ‘Unsupervised learning’ (Neural Comput. (1989) 1, 295–311). This paper was one of the first to draw attention to the importance of unsupervised learning as opposed to supervised or reinforced learning. Unsupervised learning is about how a nervous system (or indeed artificial intelligence) recognises ‘statistical regularities’, or patterns in its inputs, and is of fundamental importance for understanding the cortex. Horace connected old ideas, such as Tolman’s ‘cognitive maps’ and Craik’s ‘working models’, with modern concepts of entropy, concluding that redundancy in sensory signals provides the knowledge incorporated in those maps. Such knowledge enables unexpected discrepancies to be immediately identified and dealt with. Horace’s information theory-based approach underlies many modern approaches to unsupervised learning in neural networks and Bayesian learning.In the 30-odd years after his formal ‘retirement’, Horace continued to make highly original and creative contributions to the field. He published 56 articles during this period, many as the single author. His interests were very varied, including information redundancy, predictive coding, Bayesian inference, unsupervised learning, development and many others, but all were motivated by the common themes of information theory and neural efficiency. A recent example of his creative thinking was his talk at the symposium on ‘Turing Enduring: Information Processing by Brains and Machines’ (Rockefeller University, December 2012), published in the journal Visual Neuroscience. There, Horace challenged the traditional (and still prevalent) wisdom that orientation-tuned simple and complex cells in primary visual cortex act as ‘edge-detectors’. Looking for more general guiding principles of brain function, he claimed that “the prime role of V1 is to search for regularity or redundancy in the input”, leading to the hypothesis that simple cells perform cross-correlations between the retinal input and internal templates, while complex cells calculate auto-correlations in the retinal input. Characteristically, he did not leave this as a simple hypothesis but provided solid quantitative psychophysical data in favour of his theory.Horace was renowned for his intelligence and quick-wittedness. Neuroscientists presented their research to the Cambridge ‘Craik Club’ with some trepidation. But this was unwarranted, for besides being smart Horace was kind, especially to young researchers. He quickly understood the message of the talk and gave many useful suggestions, absolutely on point, and never intended to humiliate. But his clever quips could also be fun. At a dinner that he gave for a bunch of graduate students, he invited his friend Francis Crick, who held forth on several topics throughout the evening. At one stage, Francis brought up his lineage, lamenting that he could trace it back only to Elizabethan times. With a disarming smile, Horace instantly retorted, “oh yes Francis, and which Elizabeth is that?”Most of Horace’s ideas have survived the test of time, stimulating and motivating generations of neuroscientists and leading to a cascade of advancements far too extensive to summarise here. But if we are to apply his cherished information theory, we know that there is more information in the rare and unexpected event: so did he get anything wrong? Probably not seriously. One idea that clearly evolved over time was his intuition about information redundancy in the image. Initially, he emphasised the role of reducing redundancy for efficient neural coding and economy of neuron numbers as well as impulses, but later he realised the importance of redundancy in identifying structure and statistical regularities in the environment, as sensory redundancy is the main source of knowledge. But this was not a mistake, merely a change of emphasis. If we go right back to the beginning, to his experiments that led him to dismiss the importance of eye drift, perhaps we might say that his assessment was premature, as recent work is showing how the small eye-movements serve an important functional role, conditioning the spatio-temporal frequency spectrum of the image. But while he did not exactly predict this, his intuitions about the importance of temporal dynamics and interpolations, prominent in his Ferrier lecture, were not too far off the mark.The last scientific gathering with Horace was for his 95th birthday, in December 2016. This was a fun occasion for his scientific family, some 100-odd people whose professional lives had been touched by Horace and who had passed the legacy down to their students and students’ students. The celebrations were followed by a workshop, which Horace concluded with a first-rate scientific talk, highlighting the role of information processing in the brain and urging us to consider the importance of information and entropy. His scientific curiosity never escaped him.Horace leaves his wife Miranda, 7 children and 13 grandchildren. His extended scientific family will miss him dearly.Article InfoPublication HistoryPublished online: July 31, 2020

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January 1, 2015 – 4:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 39 Tom Wolfe (Featured artist is Richard Serra)

December 25, 2014 – 5:04 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 38 Woody Allen and Albert Camus “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide” (Feature on artist Hamish Fulton Photographer )

December 18, 2014 – 4:30 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 37 Mahatma Gandhi and “Relieving the Tension in the East” (Feature on artist Luc Tuymans)

December 11, 2014 – 4:19 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 36 Julian Huxley:”God does not in fact exist, but act as if He does!” (Feature on artist Barry McGee)

December 4, 2014 – 4:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 35 Robert M. Pirsig (Feature on artist Kerry James Marshall)

November 27, 2014 – 4:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 34 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Feature on artist Shahzia Sikander)

November 20, 2014 – 4:28 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 33 Aldous Huxley (Feature on artist Matthew Barney )

November 13, 2014 – 4:39 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 32 Steven Weinberg and Woody Allen and “The Meaningless of All Things” (Feature on photographer Martin Karplus )

November 6, 2014 – 4:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 31 David Hume and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist William Pope L. )

October 30, 2014 – 5:34 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 30 Rene Descartes and “How do we know we know?” (Feature on artist Olafur Eliasson)

October 23, 2014 – 5:01 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 29 W.H. Thorpe and “The Search for an Adequate World-View: A Question of Method” (Feature on artist Jeff Koons)

October 16, 2014 – 5:06 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 28 Woody Allen and “The Mannishness of Man” (Feature on artist Ryan Gander)

October 9, 2014 – 5:10 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 27 Jurgen Habermas (Featured artist is Hiroshi Sugimoto)

September 25, 2014 – 1:01 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 26 Bettina Aptheker (Featured artist is Krzysztof Wodiczko)

September 25, 2014 – 4:00 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 25 BOB DYLAN (Part C) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s song “Ballad of a Thin Man” and the disconnect between the young generation of the 60’s and their parents’ generation (Feature on artist Fred Wilson)

September 18, 2014 – 3:57 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 24 BOB DYLAN (Part B) Francis Schaeffer comments on Bob Dylan’s words from HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED!! (Feature on artist Susan Rothenberg)

September 11, 2014 – 4:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 23 BOB DYLAN (Part A) (Feature on artist Josiah McElheny)Francis Schaeffer on the proper place of rebellion with comments by Bob Dylan and Samuel Rutherford

September 2, 2014 – 8:42 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 22 “The School of Athens by Raphael” (Feature on the artist Sally Mann)

August 11, 2014 – 2:19 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 21 William B. Provine (Feature on artist Andrea Zittel)

June 12, 2014 – 2:52 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 20 Woody Allen and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ida Applebroog)

May 12, 2014 – 4:35 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 19 Movie Director Luis Bunuel (Feature on artist Oliver Herring)

May 1, 2014 – 11:53 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 18 “Michelangelo’s DAVID is the statement of what humanistic man saw himself as being tomorrow” (Feature on artist Paul McCarthy)

April 25, 2014 – 8:26 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 17 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part C (Feature on artist David Hockney plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 18, 2014 – 7:37 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 16 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part B (Feature on artist James Rosenquist plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 11, 2014 – 6:14 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 15 Francis Schaeffer discusses quotes of Andy Warhol from “The Observer June 12, 1966″ Part A (Feature on artist Robert Indiana plus many pictures of Warhol with famous friends)

April 4, 2014 – 5:58 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 14 David Friedrich Strauss (Feature on artist Roni Horn )

March 28, 2014 – 2:50 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 13 Jacob Bronowski and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Ellen Gallagher )

March 21, 2014 – 7:18 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 12 H.J.Blackham and Materialistic Humanism: The World-View of Our Era (Feature on artist Arturo Herrera)

March 14, 2014 – 9:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 11 Thomas Aquinas and his Effect on Art and HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? Episode 2: THE MIDDLES AGES (Feature on artist Tony Oursler )

March 4, 2014 – 9:04 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 10 David Douglas Duncan (Feature on artist Georges Rouault )

February 28, 2014 – 5:16 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 9 Jasper Johns (Feature on artist Cai Guo-Qiang )

February 21, 2014 – 6:51 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 8 “The Last Year at Marienbad” by Alain Resnais (Feature on artist Richard Tuttle and his return to the faith of his youth)

February 13, 2014 – 7:59 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 7 Jean Paul Sartre (Feature on artist David Hooker )

February 4, 2014 – 2:00 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 6 The Adoration of the Lamb by Jan Van Eyck which was saved by MONUMENT MEN IN WW2 (Feature on artist Makoto Fujimura)

January 31, 2014 – 5:43 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 5 John Cage (Feature on artist Gerhard Richter)

January 21, 2014 – 8:07 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 4 ( Schaeffer and H.R. Rookmaaker worked together well!!! (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part B )

January 14, 2014 – 8:52 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 3 PAUL GAUGUIN’S 3 QUESTIONS: “Where do we come from? What art we? Where are we going? and his conclusion was a suicide attempt” (Feature on artist Mike Kelley Part A)

January 7, 2014 – 11:06 pm

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 2 “A look at how modern art was born by discussing Monet, Renoir, Pissaro, Sisley, Degas,Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, and Picasso” (Feature on artist Peter Howson)

January 1, 2014 – 4:27 am

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 1 HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? “The Roman Age” (Feature on artist Tracey Emin)

December 10, 2013 – 2:38 pm

Debating from 2015-2020 Darwin’s great grandson (Horace Barlow) about Francis Schaeffer’s 1968 critique of Darwinism! Part 3 (Darwin: “I can well remember often inventing day-dreams of old letters between distinguished Romans, and manuscripts being discovered at Pompeii or elsewhere, which confirmed in the most striking manner all that was written in the Gospels”)


TRIBUTE TO HORACE BARLOW:

Fernando Rozenblit @frozenblit

Horace Barlow participated in the “Ratio Club”: a UK group of young scientists discussing the recent advances in cybernetics. The “Ratio Club” had members such as Grey Walter (mechanical turtles!) and Alan Turing, among other notable scientists. (1/3) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ratio_Club

—-

A portion of my letter to Dr. Barlow on May 1, 2017 which he responded to on November 22, 2017:

In Francis Crick’s book the ASTONISHING HYPOTHESIS: THE SCIENTIFIC SEARCH FOR THE SOUL I read these words:

(James D. Watson and Francis Crick below)

J
Image result for francis crick

Many educated people, especially in the Western world, also share the belief that the soul is a metaphor and that there is no personal life either before conception or after death. They may call themselves atheists, agnostics, humanists, or just lapsed believers, but they all deny the major claims of the traditional religions. Yet this does not mean that they normally think of themselves in a radically different way. The old habits of thought die hard. A man may, in religious terms, be an unbeliever but psychologically he may continue to think of himself in much the same way as a believer does, at least for everyday matters.

We need, therefore, to state the idea in stronger terms. The scientific belief is that our minds — the behavior of our brains — can be explained by the interactions of nerve cells (and other cells) and the molecules associated with them. (This idea is not novel. An especially clear statement of it can be found in a well-known paper by Horace Barlow.) This is to most people a really surprising concept. It does not come easily to believe that I am the detailed behavior of a set of nerve cells, however many there may be and however intricate their interactions. Try for a moment to imagine this point of view. (“Whatever he may say, Mabel, I know I’m in there somewhere, looking out on the world.”)

——

Why does the Astonishing Hypothesis seem so surprising? I think there are three main reasons. The first is that many people are reluctant to accept what is often called the “reductionist approach” — that a complex system can be explained by the behavior of its parts and their interactions with each other. For a system with many levels of activity, this process may have to be repeated more than once — that is, the behavior of a particular part may have to be explained by the properties of its parts and their interactions. For example, to understand the brain we may need to know the many interactions of nerve cells with each other; in addition, the behavior of each nerve cell may need explanation in terms of the ions and molecules of which it is composed.

(Francis Crick and James D. Watson below)

After reading the above passage I concluded that you do endorse the Secular Humanist point of view that Francis Crick embraced and that is the reductionist point of view. I wanted to point out that the vast majority of great scientists of the last 500 years did hold the view that we live in an open system and they did not hold the view of the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system. Recently I read the article ANSWERING THE NEW ATHEISTS, by  KerbyAnderson,  Sunday, January 30 th, 2011, and that article notes:

(Sean McDowell)

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Are science and Christianity at odds with one another? Certainly there have been times in the past when that has been the case. But to only focus on those conflicts is to miss the larger point that modern science grew out of a Christian world view. In a previous radio program based upon the book Origin Science by Dr. Norman Geisler and me, I explain Christianity’s contribution to the rise of modern science.{27}

Image result for Dr. Norman Geisler

Sean McDowell and Jonathan Morrow also point out in their book that most scientific pioneers were theists. This includes such notable as Nicolas Copernicus, Robert Boyle, Isaac Newton, Blaise Pascal, Johannes Kepler, Louis Pasteur, Francis Bacon, and Max Planck. Many of these men actually pursued science because of their belief in the Christian God.

Alister McGrath challenges this idea that science and religion are in conflict with one another. He says, “Once upon a time, back in the second half of the nineteenth century, it was certainly possible to believe that science and religion were permanently at war. . . . This is now seen as a hopelessly outmoded historical stereotype that scholarship has totally discredited.”{28}

.Do religious people have a blind faith? Certainly some religious people exercise blind faith. But is this true of all religions, including Christianity? Of course not. The enormous number of Christian books on topics ranging from apologetics to theology demonstrate that the Christian faith is based upon evidence.

The Christian faith is not a blind faith. It is a faith based upon evidence. In fact, some authors contend that it takes more faith to be an atheist than to believe in God.{7}

What kind of evidence would it take today to convince you  that God exists and the Bible is true? I submit to you that Biblical Archaeology is a field that has advanced tremendously in the last few decades and I propose you look in that area. Did you know that Charles Darwin was looking for evidence that confirmed the Bible’s accuracy back in the 19th century and this is one of the exact areas that he mentioned.

Darwin wrote in his Autobiography in 1876:

“But I was very unwilling to give up my belief; I feel sure of this, for I can well remember often and often inventing day-dreams of old letters between distinguished Romans, and manuscripts being discovered at Pompeii or elsewhere, which confirmed in the most striking manner all that was written in the Gospels.

Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer commented:

This is very sad. He lies on his bunk and the Beagle tosses and turns and he makes daydreams, and his dreams and hopes are that someone would find in Pompeii or some place like this, an old manuscript by a distinguished Roman that would put his stamp of authority on it, which would be able to show that Christ existed. This is undoubtedly what he is talking about. Darwin gave up this hope with great difficulty. I think he didn’t want to come to the position where his accepted presuppositions were driving him. He didn’t want to give it up, just as an older man he understood where it would lead and “man can do his duty.” Instinctively this of brains understood where this whole thing was going to eventually go…

Pompeii

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SINCE CHARLES DARWIN’S DEATH WE NOW HAVE LOTS OF HISTORICAL RECORDS AND MUCH EVIDENCE FROM THE FIELD OF ARCHAEOLOGY THAT SHOW THE BIBLE IS HISTORICALLY ACCURATE.

Just like Darwin you need to ask yourself this same question but you will be doing it almost a century and a half later: Is the Bible historically accurate and have I taken the time to examine the evidence? Obviously Darwin was hoping that archaeology would provide some hope for the accuracy of the Bible. 

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be Tusted and find some evidence at this link!!!

AFTER ADEQUATE AND SUFFICIENT QUESTIONS OF YOURS BEING ANSWERED THEN YOU CAN BECOME CONVINCED AS SCHAEFFER’S STORY POINTS OUT.

Is your faith in the evidence that supports the theory of evolution comparable to the faith I have in the Word of God being true and God creating the world? Recently I ran across the term “Implicit Faith” and I thought of your view that evolution must be true and we have to be living in a closed system. When I read the book  Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published lettersI also read  a commentary on it by Francis Schaeffer. I wanted to both  quote some of Charles Darwin’s own words to you and then include the comments of Francis Schaeffer on those words.

The passages which here follow are extracts, somewhat abbreviated, from a part of the Autobiography, written in 1876, in which my father gives the history of his religious views:—

“By further reflecting that the clearest evidence would be requisite to make any sane man believe in the miracles by which Christianity is supported,—and that the more we know of the fixed laws of nature the more incredible do miracles become,—that the men at that time were ignorant and credulous to a degree almost incomprehensible by us,”

Francis Schaeffer commented:

 He now says who can accept the miracles? But notice again this is an argument from presuppositions, because what this means is that he has accepted the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system which I say is the basic presupposition  of modern man. So therefore since he has accepted a closed system he assumes there is no miracle, but that doesn’t mean he has any evidence that there were no miracles. It doesn’t mean he  is at ease as a man because he has ruled these things out. Darwin is a man in tension. Does  the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system explain the wonder of the universe and secondly the mannishness of man? He himself feels caught on these two great hooks of the real world. In others I would say, “DARWIN your presuppositions don’t even satisfy you. You rule miracles on the basis of your presuppositions but your belief of the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system does not even satisfy you.” Darwin went to his death unsatisfied and yet  he was forced to give up his own presuppositions but he never gave them up. It seems to me you have the old man Darwin perspiring in his tension that you can only think of Paul’s conclusion in Romans 1, that when men deliberately turn away from the truth that is there, the external universe and the mannishness of man, God gives them up to an unsound mind. If there even was anybody that ever demonstrated this it was Darwin himself  at the end of his life. It is a position that Darwin holds with implicit faith. You must understand what the term IMPLICIT FAITH  means. In the old Roman Catholic Church when someone who became a Roman Catholic they had to promise implicit faith. That meant that you not only had to believe everything that Roman Catholic Church taught then but also everything it would teach in the future. It seems to me this is the kind of faith that these people have in the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system and they have accepted it no matter what it leads them into. 

There was an amazing man by the name of  H.J.Blackham(1903-2009) and he was the former president of the BRITISH HUMANIST ASSOCIATION. Francis Schaeffer and Dr. C. Everett Koop quoted him in their book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?

The humanist H. J. Blackham has expressed this with a dramatic illustration:

Image result for H. J. Blackham

On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit.79

One does not have to be highly educated to understand this. It follows directly from the starting point of the humanists’ position, namely, that everything is just matter. That is, that which has existed forever and ever is only some form of matter or energy, and everything in our world now is this and only this in a more or less complex form.

_______________

To sum up Schaeffer is saying, “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer in THE GOD WHO IS THERE)

IF WE ARE LEFT WITH JUST THE MACHINE THEN WHAT IS THE FINAL CONCLUSION IF THERE WAS NO PERSONAL GOD THAT CREATED US?

Comments about the evidence supporting the accuracy of the Bible probably prompted Dr. Barlow to write in the letter I received from him in December of 2017: “Notice, however, that he [Charles Darwin] clearly did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out.”

(Darwin pictured above)

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I responded in a letter on February 2, 2018 with lots of evidence indicating that since Darwin was wishing for archaeological evidence back in 1839 that supported the Bible’s accuracy that there is an abundance of evidence from archaeology now doing just that:

Here is one of your advantages over your great grandfather. With this in mind shouldn’t you investigate evidence that has turned up since your great grandfather’s day?

Here is a simple suggestion. Google the words “53 PEOPLE CONFIRMED.” That should bring you to this article, 53 People in the Bible Confirmed Archaeologically A web-exclusive supplement to Lawrence Mykytiuk’s BAR articles identifying real Hebrew Bible people Lawrence Mykytiuk • 04/12/2017.

You noted that Darwin “clearly did not lose his sense of the value of truth, and of the importance of forever searching it out.”

I wonder how Charles Darwin would have reacted to this article if he was here with us today and could examine the evidence he was wishing for back in the 19th century. I would love to get your reaction to that.

You have been very courteous in your correspondence while at the same time you are willing to listen. It is my goal to imitate that in my life too.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 cottontail lane, Alexander, AR 72002 United States

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53 People in the Bible Confirmed Archaeologically

A web-exclusive supplement to Lawrence Mykytiuk’s BAR articles identifying real Hebrew Bible people

Lawrence Mykytiuk   •  04/12/2017

This Bible History Daily feature was originally published in 2014. It has been updated.—Ed.


1.-Sargon-II-Khorsabad-Bridgeman


1.-Sargon-II-Khorsabad-Bridgeman

Sargon II, one of fifty Hebrew Bible figures identified in the archaeological record.

In “Archaeology Confirms 50 Real People in the Bible” in the March/April 2014 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review, Purdue University scholar Lawrence Mykytiuk lists 50 figures from the Hebrew Bible who have been confirmed archaeologically. His follow-up article, “Archaeology Confirms 3 More Bible People,” published in the May/June 2017 issue of BAR, adds another three people to the list. The identified persons include Israelite kings and Mesopotamian monarchs as well as lesser-known figures.

Mykytiuk writes that these figures “mentioned in the Bible have been identified in the archaeological record. Their names appear in inscriptions written during the period described by the Bible and in most instances during or quite close to the lifetime of the person identified.” The extensive Biblical and archaeological documentation supporting the BAR study is published here in a web-exclusive collection of endnotes detailing the Biblical references and inscriptions referring to each of the figures.

Guide to the Endnotes

53 Bible People Confirmed in Authentic Inscriptions Chart

53 Figures: The Biblical and Archaeological Evidence

“Almost Real” People: The Biblical and Archaeological Evidence

Symbols & Abbreviations

Date Sources


BAS Library Members: Read Lawrence Mykytiuk’s Biblical Archaeology Review articles “Archaeology Confirms 50 Real People in the Bible” in the Ma