No. 165 EVOLUTION AND THE NEW AGE
By Henry M. Morris'
A strange religion has been coming into prominence in recent
years. Sometimes mis-called the "New Age Movement," this
phenomenon is in reality a complex of modern science and ancient
paganism, featuring systems theory, computer science, and
mathematical physics along vath astrology, occultism, religious
mysticism and nature worship. Ostensibly offered as a reaction
against the sterile materialism of Western thought, this
influential system appeals both to man's religious nature and his
intellectual pride. Its goal is to become the world's one
Although New-Agers have a form of religion, their "god" is
Evolution, not the true God of creation. Many of them regard the
controversial priest, Teilhard de Chardin, as their spiritual
father. His famous statement of faith was as follows:
"(Evolution) is a general postulate to which all theories, all
hypotheses, all systems must henceforward bow and which they must
satisfy in order to be thinkable and true. Evolution is a light
which illuminates all facts, a trajectory which all lines of
thought must follow."'
The ethnic religions of the East (Hinduism, Taoism, Buddhism,
Confucianism, etc.), which in large measure continue the
polytheistic pantheism of the ancient pagan religions, have long
espoused evolutionary views of the universe and its living things,
and so merge naturally and easily into the evolutionary framework
of the New Age philosophy. It is surprising, however, to find
that Julian Huxley and Theodosius Dobzhansky, the two most
prominent of the western scientific neo-Darwinians, were really
early proponents of this modern evolutionary religion. In a
eulogy following Dobzhansky's death, geneticist Francisco Ayala
"Dobzhansky was a religious man, although he apparently rejected
fundamental beliefs of traditional religion, such as the existence
of a personal God .... Dobzhansky held that in man, biological
evolution has transcended itself into the realm of self-awareness
and culture. He believed that mankind would eventually evolve
into higher levels of harmony and creativity. He was a
metaphysical optiMiSt."2 . Morris is Prsdent of the Institute for
Dobzhansky himself penned the following typical New Age sentiment:
"In giving rise to man, the evolutionary process has, apparently for
the first and only time in the history of the Cosmos, become conscious
More recently, the socialist Jeremy Rifkin, expressed this concept
in picturesque language, as follows:
"Evolution is no longer viewed as a mindless affair, quite
the opposite. it is mind enlarging its domain up the chain of
species."' "In this way one eventually ends up with the idea
of the universe as a mind that oversees, orchestrates, and
gives order and structure to all things."5
Lest anyone misunderstand, this universal mind is not intended to
represent the God of the Bible at all. Harvard University's Nobel
prizewinning biologist, George Wald, who used to state that he
didn't even like to use the word "God" in a sentence, has come to
realize that the complex organization of the universe cannot be
due to chance, and so has become an advocate of this modernized
form of pantheism. He says:
"There are two major problems rooted in science, but
unassimilable as science, consciousness and cosmology ....
The universe wants to be known. Did the universe come about
to play its role to empty benches?"6
Modern physicists have played a key role in the recent
popularization of evolutionary pantheism, with what they have
called the "anthropic principle."
"At the least the anthropic principle suggests connections
between the existence of man and aspects of physics that one
might have thought would have little bearing on biology. In
its strongest form the principle might reveal that the
universe we live in is the only conceivable universe in which
intelligent life could exist."'
This remarkable compatibility of the universe to its human
occupants is not accepted as a testimony to divine design,
however, but as a deterministic outcome of the cosmic mind. The
anthropic principle is emphasized in a quasi-official "New Age"
publication, as follows:
"Given the facts, our existence seems quite improbable-more
miraculous, perhaps, than the seven-day wonder of Genesis.
As physicist Freeman Dyson of the Institute for Advanced
Study in Princeton, New Jersey, once remarked, 'The universe
in some sense must have known we were coming.' "I
Prior to these modern developments, Sir Julian Huxley, arguably
the leading architect of the neo-Darvanian system, had written an
influential book called Religion without Revelation, and had
become, with John Dewey, a chief founder of the American Humanist
Association. As first Director-General of UNESCO, he formulated
the principles of what he hoped would soon become the official
religion of the world.
"Thus the general philosophy of UNESCO should, it seems, be a
scientific world humanism, global in extent and evolutionary
"The unifying of traditions into a single common pool of experience,
awareness and purpose is the necessary prerequisite for
further major progress in human evolution. Accordingly,
although political unification in some sort of world
government will be required for the definitive attainment of
this state, unification in the things of the mind is not
only necessary also, but it can pave the way for other types
The neo-Darwinian religionists (Huxley, Dobzhansky, Dewey, etc.)
thought that evolutionary gradualism would become the basis for
the coming world humanistic religion. Evolutionists of the new
generation, on the other hand, have increasingly turned to
punctuationism-or revolutionary evolutionism-as the favored
rationale, largely because of the scientific fallacies in
gradualism increasingly exposed by creationists. This development
has facilitated the amalgamation of Western scientism with Eastern
"The new systems biology shows that fluctuations are crucial
in the dynamics of self-organization. They are the basis of
order in the living world: ordered structures arise from
rhythmic patterns .... The idea of fluctuations as the basis
of order ... is one of the major themes in all Taoist texts.
The mutual interdependence of all aspects of reality and the
nonlinear nature of its interconnections are emphasized
throughout Eastern mysticism.""
The author quoted, Dr. Fritjof Capra, at the University of
California (Berkeley), is one of the New Age Movement's main
scientific theoreticians, particularly in the application of
modern computerized networking and systems analysis to the study
of past and future evolution, also appropriating the unscientific
idea of "order through chaos," an ancient pagan notion
reintroduced to modern thought by Ilya Prigogine.
The incorporation of Eastern religious evolutionism into
Western evolutionary thought was greatly facilitated also by the
"Aquarian Age" emphasis of the student revolution of the sixties.
Not all of the scientific "New-Agers" accept the astrological and
occult aspects of the movement, but even these features are
becoming more prominent and intellectually acceptable with the
growth of its pantheistic dimensions. John Allegro makes the
following ominous prediction:
"It may be that, despite our rightly prized rationality,
religion still offers man his best chance of survival,. . . .
If so, it must be a faith that offers something more than a
formal assent to highly speculative dogma about the nature of
a god and his divine purpose in creation; it must promise its
adherents a living relationship that answers man's indi-
vidual needs within a formal structure of communal
worship.... Historically, the cult of the Earth Mother, the
ancient religion of the witches, has probably come nearest to
fulfilling this role, and being sexually oriented has been
especially concerned with this most disturbing and
potentially disruptive element in man's biological
constitution."12 "Gala," the religion of the Earth
Mother-Mother Nature-is essentially ancient pantheism. It is
now returning, even in "Christian lands," in all its demonic
power. When combined with the pervasive controls made
possible by modern computerized systems technology, the
global goals of evolutionary humanism seem very imminent
indeed. Jeremy Rifkin considers them to be inevitable.
"We no longer feel ourselves to be guests in someone else's home
and therefore obliged to make our behavior conform with a set of
preexisting cosmic rules. It is our creation now. We make the
rules. We establish the parameters of reality. We create the
world, and because we do, we no longer feel beholden to outside
forces. We no longer have to justify our behavior, for we are now
the architects of the universe. We are responsible to nothing
outside ourselves, for we are the kingdom, the power, and the
glory forever and ever."13 Rifkin, though certain this is the
world's future, is despondent. He closes his book with these
words of despair:
"Our future is secured. The cosmos wails.""
New Age evolutionism is not so new, after all, and Mother Nature
is really nothing but one of the many faces of ancient Babylon,
the "Mother of Harlots" (Revelation 17:5), the age-old religion of
God's ancient enemy, "which deceiveth the whole world" (Revelation
Scientifically speaking, New Age evolutionism, with its absurd
ideas of order through chaos and quantum speciations, is even less
defensible than Darwinian gradualism. Biblically speaking,
evolutionism in any form is false. "For in six days the Lord made
heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is. . ." (Exodus
20:11). Instead of a wailing cosmos, "the heavens declare the
glory of God, and the firmament sheweth His handiwork" (Psalm
19:1). The real "new-age" will come when Christ returns!
1. Cited in "Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light
of Evolution: Theodosius Dobzhansky, 1900-1975," by Francisco
Ayala, in Journal of Heredity (Vol. 68, No. 3, 1977), P. 3.
2. Ibid, p. 9
3. Theodosius Dobzhansky, "Changing Man , Science (Vol. 155,
January 27, 1967),
4. Jeremy Rifkin, Algeny (New York, Viking Press, 1983), p. 188.
5. Ibid, p. 195.
6. George Wald, as reported in "A Knowing Universe Seeking to be
Known," by Districk
E. Thomsen, Science News (Vol. 123- February 19, 1983), p.
7. George Gale, "The Anthropic Principle," Scientific American
(Vol. 245, DecerTiber 1981), p. 154.
8. Judith Hooper, "Perfect Timing," New Age Journal (Vol. 11,
D(2cernber 1985), P. 18.
9. Julian Huxley, "A New World Vision," The Humanist (Vol.
XXXIX, Mdrch/April 1979),
10. Ibid. This paper was kept "in-house" by UNESCO for about 30
years, before The Humanist was allowed to publish it.
11. Fritjof Capra, "The Dance of Life," Science Digest (Vol. 90,
April 1982), p. 33.
12. John M. Allegro, "Divine Discontent," Americari Atheist (Vol.
28, September 1986),
13. Jeremy Rifkin, op cit, p. 244.
14. Ibid, p. 255.