Last night my wife ask me a question: “Why do you suppose there is such hatred in the scientific community for those in the ID (Intelligent Design) camp?” I’m sure she was looking for a simple answer, to which there are plenty of decent ones—she, however, did not get one.
The question is well founded, there is a vitriolic hatred spewed in the direction of scientists who support an ID model. It is a palpable hatred, akin to that seen in the ever-partisan and antagonist world of politics. This, however, should come as no surprise, because the hatred is, at its most fundamental level, a political hatred. More specifically, it is a hatred for any worldview that is anti-Marxist.
There was a point in history, not that long ago, in the second half of the 20th century, where nearly 40% of the world’s population lived under some form of Marxism. Due to its philosophical naivety and devastating legacy of bloodshed and unappalled human suffering, Marxism no longer holds the same position of political power. But regardless of the shares of political power it has lost, Marxism still holds a massive stake in the intellectual framework of the modern world. So pervasive is the Marxist ideology that even most capitalists unknowingly function from within the larger Marxist metanarrative.
To understand Marx properly one must have a grip on both his philosophical progenitor, Hegel, and one of his contemporaries and fellow ‘Young Hegelian’, Feuerbach. As were many in his day, Marx was captivated by the philosophy of Hegel. A young Marx, while in graduate school, even wrote to his father saying that he had “attached himself to the philosophy of the day” (Hegel). Marx saw Hegel’s work The Phenomenology of Mind as the birthplace and point of true genius in Hegel.
In The Phenomenology of Mind, Hegel argues that all of our individual minds are simply a limited manifestation of the ‘universal mind’ or ‘universal consciousness.’ Mankind however, clearly has not reached the point where we recognize this fundamental reality. If we did, if we understood that we are all one, we would never do anything to harm or disadvantage another, because in so doing, we would be harming ourselves.
In this work, so dear to the heart and mind of Marx, Hegel unveils his teleological vision of history, which will later manifest itself in what has come to be known as ‘dialectic materialism.’ Hegel argues that history has a definitive end, culminating moment, or telos towards which it is slowly but assuredly grinding. The end game of history is maximal freedom, which will only be achieved once everyone realizes we are part of the ‘universal spirit/mind/consciousness.’ History inches forward towards its goal every time freedom wins (IE: The Greeks defeating the Persians because a more free people defeated a less free people…the codification of law in ancient Rome…the Protestant Reformation and the blow it dealt to the Catholic hierarchy of power).
A contemporary of Marx and fellow ‘Young Hegelian’ Ludwig Feuerbach piggy-backed off the Hegelian thesis in his work The Essence of Christianity (This too became a favorite book of Marx). Feuerbach argued that religion was the stumbling block that was impeding history from reaching its telos. Religion alienates man from his true essence and keeps him from reaching the state of universal consciousness. Religion restricts. It divides. It, God-forbid, even predestines. Feuerbach believed that once religion was fully eradicated mankind could and would thrive.
Marx shared Feuerbach’s theory of religion, famously calling it the ‘opiate of the masses.’ You see an opiate (religion) dulls the pain but does not fix the problem. If one is in pain because a tumor is growing in their brain, but they simply rely on opiates, they might feel as if everything is fine, but soon enough they will die.
Marx, while seconding Feuerbach’s thesis, expands upon it, claiming that capitalism and class structure is the fundamental thing that stands in the way of history’s march towards utopia. Capitalism and the inequalities it births must be eradicated.
This Marxist metanarrative, that history is progressing inevitably forward, is so pervasive and persistently found in our culture that one doesn’t even recognize how enslaved to its perspective they are. Anytime one reads or writes something along the lines of: “Now that we are in the 21st century...” or “Now in the age of science…” they are swimming in the residual waters of the tidal wave of Marxism that swept across the globe last century.
The scientific community at large has not been incubated from this particular worldview. Even more, many within the community see themselves as the catalysts that will propel history forward by throwing off the training wheels of religion, orthodoxy, God. The secular world sees science as this independent thing that can accelerate mankind towards its ultimate end: the enthronement of man as supreme—the coronation of man which coincides with the obituary of God.
The ID movement is a remnant of an inequitable past that is not compatible with their material vision of history. They are right. Christians do not share in this Marxist ideology. The great Albert Schweitzer used the image of the great wheel of history. This wheel, because of sin was spinning out of control and in the wrong direction. Entropy. Disorder. Decay. Death. That was where history was marching. Christ had hoped that it would begin to turn in the right direction, that his people would turn from wickedness and turn to him. But when it and they refused, Christ threw himself on the wheel of history and it crushed him. But it is that moment that restarted the wheel spinning in the right direction.
Christians then, live in a different time and framework—one that is not compatible with the Marxist vision. History reached its telos on the cross and the God-Man that was crushed by the evil forces that sought self-enthronement now sits on the throne, the king of history. The ID movement and all other Christian movements are hated because they are revolutionary movements. They deny the rule of the false king (man) while singing in the choir of the King of kings.