Is evolution evil? Goodness forbid! Forgive me if you just spit a little coffee back into your mug. Are you ready for a sobering thought experiment?
If it were true that evolution were evil, then that would make Evolutionary Spirituality a sort of practice of evil or evil-worship, wouldn’t it, in a manner of speaking? The horror. Let’s spend a moment on this idea.
Why do I even ask such a dreadful question? Simple. The phonosemantic properties of the words suggest that Evolution and Evil are closely connected, and when these properties are placed within the Lingua-U Konstruct these patterns are highlighted.
Could evolution be evil? First, let’s bear in mind that the discovery of biological evolution by Darwin was considered godless heresy in its days and is still widely disbelieved by folks on religious grounds. If true as the fundamentalists say, then evolution displaces God — considered the ground of Being and/or Goodness by many — who isn’t left with much to do since the world doesn’t need Him, not in the manner that the fundamentalists believe in any event.
Second, consider that evolution is associated with Social Darwinism and the principle of survival of the fittest. In its crude forms, this is basically the idea that might makes right, and it is used to justify ruthless power grabs so long as they further one’s own survival. Crude evolutionary theory suggests that altruism or self-sacrifical love is counter to nature, and by extension some philosophers have argued for aggressive self-interest.
Third, consider that evolution is also associated with the extinction of species for no other reason than that they weren’t strong and powerful enough. The weak die, the strong survive. It doesn’t seen right, fair, or good. The history of species is a graveyard of death and failure. And when one goes looking for a cause, a reason for such horrors, one’s sight must turn to evolution (or Evolution, some sort of personification or philosophized version of the same word).
Fourth, consider the evidence from phonosemantics. E-V-O-L, the first four letters of the word, is L-O-V-E spelled backwards. Like sounds have like significance in subtle ways that tend to reveal themselves upon close empirical study of language, taking statistics, and breaking sounds down to phonetic properties for analogical comparisons. And backwards words, according to many esotericists who know about such things on the basis of methodologies that may be pre-rational or trans-rational, tend to have an undertone or evocative quality of reversing the meaning in some sense. E-V-O-L is a form of anti-LOVE. Go back to crude Darwinism and its belief that altruism is counter to nature.
Fifth, consider the evidence from Lingua-U, if you will indulge me by looking at an unpublished methodology. Evolution appears in a specific spot in The Kalendar (one of the related Konstructs): ??, The Yin Master at the Seat of Goodness at the Throne of Evolution at the Letter of Self-Sensing. Because Yin is traditionally associated with negativity, this is not a spot that says “Evolution is good” but rather “Evolution is the negation of the affirmation which is Evidence” (it’s not translatable). The words for both Satan and Iblis, the Christian and Islamic devils respectively, are also found at the Throne of Evolution in Lingua-U, based on their sound symbolism, by the way (just as the letter S is also linked to the words Sin, Samsara, Eve, Snake, Evil, Sorrow, Slavery, Slaughters, and Sadness).
What’s more, the Seat of Goodness at the Throne of Evolution is ??, which is yang to the yin of the Seat of Goodness at the Seat of Appreciating, is the proper home of Goodness itself at ??. If you’re still with me, even a little bit, bear in mind that Good is generally considered to be the opposite of Evil. So what Lingua-U’s analysis of the two Seats containing the words for Evolution and Goodness reveals is that they are opposed as yang (Evolution) and yin (Goodness). Could this mean something we ought to pay attention to?
There are some concerns raised by this thought experiment that ought to give everyone pause who has attached an overly one-sided view to Evolution by “spiritualizing it” in a way that bypasses the ambivalent truths about natural processes that aren’t pretty. If one’s spirituality is based on purging all negative thoughts, energies, and uncomfortable feelings to a dark closet while reveling in warm-fuzzy thoughts of happiness only, you’re only looking at one half of reality. There is both yang and yin, so to speak, meeting in yin-yang.
I don’t think Evolution is evil. I don’t think any word is evil, and Evolution is just a word. What is refers to is a constructed concept that is constantly being formulated and refined through use and theorizing and construct-making. I do think some of the ways that people have conceived Evolution as a brutal, immoral, death-dealing force leading to annihilation seems pretty dark indeed … and anyone calling themselves an Evolutionary ought to wake themselves up to the darkness within their own chosen framework of meaning-making.
I believe there is an evil potential within our scientific and philosophical concepts of Evolution that ought to be remedied through theorizing that puts the Goodness back into the entire Seat of Goodness at the Throne of Evolution. We can choose how we conceive of Evolution and adjust our worldview artistically in a manner that gives Goodness a victory over its opposite. What I mean by this is too difficult to explain at this point in the, um, evolution of my own philosophy, but I will say that my wrestling with this very topic has strengthened my Abrahamic faith infused with Eastern cosmological tenets. The symbols corresponding to Evolution at the Seat of Goodness in other key points in the calendar evoke great spiritual mysteries.
Returning to the notion of yin-yang, if you’ve been paying attention, Goodness is the yin to the yang of Evolution in Lingua-U. But Lingua-U doesn’t work like Taoist yin-yang philosophy. Lingua-U is based on a construct of ternary subtleties: yang, yin, and yung. What is the yung which brings together the yang of Evolution’s Seat and the yin of Goodness’s Seat? All I can say is that it takes the union of Goodness and Evolution to an Extreme. You’ll have to wait for the Month of X-Mind, Green Bowl 9 (July 20) in The Kalendar, to find out more.
The questions I’m asking today don’t have simple answers because they cut to the heart of our appreciation and appraisal of the Goodness of Existence itself. I’ll leave you with a thought from an Episcopalian writer named Larry Gilman. In his blog post “Is Evolution Evil?”, he concludes:
Just bluntly, couldn’t God have found some nicer way to create? And admittedly, any theological acceptance of death as creative tends to clash with Christian views of death-as-enemy that go right back to Paul: “through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin” (Romans 5:12). The creationists build a great deal on that verse, of course, but we might double-dip on Romans and build instead on the statement that the “whole Creation groans in childbirth” (Romans 8:22). The pain of the world is, in that metaphor, the pain of creation.
But maybe even that is just too pat. I do not mean to say that suffering, human and otherwise, can ever be explained away or theologically domesticated. The problem of pain can be lived with, maybe, sometimes, a little, but never nullified. It cuts too deep. Christ despaired on the cross; we, too, will always face the possibility of despair, whether in the semiprivate hospital room or the torture chamber. We humans, like all the other creatures, are vulnerable to the core and no theology or narrative can ever make us otherwise.