Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 7 of 21)

0698 At the start of section 1.6, I learn about Aristotle’s law of proportionate causation.

No effect exceeds its cause.  The order of causes is commensurate with the order of effects.

0699 Does this translate into a slogan about the hylomorphe, dispositions [properties] powers?

There is no power than transcends its dispositions.

0700 What if a power is adequate enough to show that its underlying disposition is valuable in terms of natural selection?

That is an idea that an evolutionary biologist can appreciate.  The disposition would be sustained as an adaptation, and maybe improved upon, especially in its capacity to exploit a niche, where the niche1b is the potential of an actuality independent of the adapting species2a.

0701 Here is what the natural historian studies.

On the situation level, the normal context of natural selection3b brings the actuality of an adaptation2b into relation with its niche1b.  The situation-level niche1b is the potential1b of an actuality independent of an adapting species2a.  The AIAS2a is often labeled, “the environment of evolutionary adaptation2a” (EEA2a).

0702 Let me offer an example.

The philosopher will tell anyone willing to listen that the moth is a substantial form and the coloration of its wings is an accidental form.

0703 Certain moths have large black dots on their wings.  The naive observer notes the pattern and thinks, “Wow.  When the moth’s wings are open, they more or less look like the eyes of an owl.”

Maybe, if the naive observer (B1) believes that God is the source of the signs of nature, then he would say, “Look the Creator paints the face of an owl on the wings of a moth (C2).”

0704 The expert guiding the expedition (A3) replies, “Superstitious nonsense.  That pattern arises because it deters predation by small birds, who in turn are prey of larger animals.  Small birds have an innate fear of looming eyes.  Looming eyes indicate a predator.  So, small birds have evolved this fear, which the moth’s coloration uses to the moth’s advantage.  A moment’s hesitation by a small bird may allow a moth to escape (A3).”

Here is a picture of what the scientifically-trained guide says.

0705 What is the scientist doing in terms of the optics of Tabaczek’s mirror?

Here is a picture.

0706 In many respects, the expert (A1) believes that his model should override the thing itself.  The remarkable creature that impressed the student is nothing more than an example of natural selection.  It is an adaptation2b into the niche of small bird predation1b.

Plus, the phenomenon of moth coloration can objectify the expert’s model of natural selection.  The sign-object of the sign-vehicle of the moth’s coloration is the eyes of a looming predator.  The sign-interpretant is the mind of a small bird that would eat the moth.

0707 What does the student (and people are more like natural philosophers than scientists) see in theologymirror (D2)?

I suppose that the student (theologyagent (B3)) sees something like the following in theologymirror (D2).

0708 I ask, “Does Aristotle’s law of proportionate causation apply to signs?”

The black circles on the back of a moth’s wings (sign-vehicle) stands for the looming eyes of a large predator (sign-object) to the innate (and confirmed through exposure) fear of a larger predator by a smaller predator (sign-interpretant).

0709 I can ask the same question for a different venue.  Does a stop sign stop an automobile?

In 2024, every automobile I see on the road stops at a stop sign.

Both Aristotle (300s B.C.) and Aquinas (1200s A.D.) recognize signs.  However, the philosophical tradition does not elucidate the causality of signs until John Poinsot (in the 1600s).  In the 1800s, Charles Peirce makes the same discovery as John of St. Thomas.  Signs are triadic relations.

0710 This commentary has already introduced sign-relations.

The topic of sign-relations enters into the story around point 0328, immediately preceding the section titled, “Interscopes and Sign Relations” (point 0335).  The discussion wraps up after demonstrating how the Creation Story in Genesis 1 is a sign of the evolutionary record (point 0485).

It is important to remember that neither modern science nor premodern philosophy come to grips with the nature of sign relations, mediations, judgments, category-based nested forms or other triadic relations.

So, one must wonder, “Does Aristotle’s law of proportions apply to triadic relations?”

0711 Surely, the law of proportionate causation seems to apply to the student’s reformulation of the phenomena in sciencemirror (D2) in terms of dispositions [and] powers (B3), as well as to the projection of [properties] into sciencemirror(C4).

0712 But, the student (B3) cannot stop there.


Recall how the evolutionary biologist (A1) wants to project a model for natural selection3b and niche1b onto the noumenon, the other source of illumination in the (former) Positivist’s judgment, corresponding to the thing itself (D2)?

What about the geneticist (A1)?

Surely, the geneticist wants to project a model for body development3b and genotype1b onto the noumenon (D2) as well.

So, the current account of the moth’s wings is incomplete.

The genetics is missing.

0713 So, when the student (acting as a theologyagent (C3)) makes a snide remark after the guide’s statement (point 704), the certified expert in evolutionary biology is taken aback.

What does the student say?

“Well, I know a geneticist who says that it is all about body development and the expression of DNA.”


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 8 of 21)

0714 How about another example?

The previous blog can serve as a template for discussing the magnificent plumage of the male peacock, which is due to the discriminating tastes of plain-looking female peahen.

Application five is left to the reader to explore.

0715 My examination now turns to chapter two.  Chapter two concerns “species”.

Of course, biologists and theologians skirmish over the definition of the word.

Tabaczek first divides definitions into relational and intrinsic species concepts (RSC I; ISC II).

The following figure does not contain all the species concepts listed in Figure 2.1, but it contains enough to give a general idea.

The green correspond to scientific concepts and the blue correspond to philosophical concepts.

0716 At the same time, one can make distinctions in terms of natural history and genetics.

0717 Weirdly, the following Greimas square for Tabaczek’s mirror for “definitions of species” starts with an agent of natural history (A1) as the focal point and ends with an image appealing to an agent of genetics appearing in the mirror of science (C4).

0718 How curious.

Scienceagent (an evolutionary biologist with natural concept of the term, “species”, A1) sees in his theologymirror (D2) that biological species [can be objectified as] observations and measurements.  This makes sense to a theologyagent (B3) because the noumenon (species) represents a whole and its phenomena (a species’ traits) represent dispositions [properties] powers.  Plus, dispositions [properties] powers associate to adaptations as well as essences.

But what of esse_ces?

Have I forgot matter [substance] form as well as other associations to phenotypes, as well as esse_ces?

From Tabaczek’s distinctions according to conceptualization, I conclude that intrinsic associates to essence and relational associates to esse_ce.  From the distinction between agents of science, I see that essence associates to natural history and esse_ce associates to genetics.

0719 When an essentialist or an esse_tialist scientific use of the term, “species”, appears in an image in theologymirror(D2), a theologyagent (B3) can see and appreciate the intersection of NeoDarwinism as a vision that the philosopher can work with.

No wonder Tabaczek sees so much promise to his contemporary Aristotelian-Thomistic perspective.  The single actuality constituted by adaptation2H and phenotype2V is metaphysical.

0720 Here is a picture.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 9 of 21)

0721 Chapter three concerns natural selection, teleology and chance in evolution.

Surely, that sounds like the natural history side of the NeoDarwinian intersection.

0722 Of course, the potentials1b of the environment of evolutionary adaptation (EEA2a, also the actuality independent of the adapting species, AIAS2a) involve both tychism (blind material and instrumental necessity) and chance (blind happenstance).

I know what you are thinking.

Please, do not ask me what tychism and chance have in common.

0723 I am sure that some sort of image of that request appears in theologymirror (D).

And, the chapter starts with theologyagent (B).

Here is a picture of the start of Tabaczek’s discussion about tychism and chance.

0724 As soon as the author raises the question as an agent of theology (B1), an image appears in the mirror of science (C2).  The image consists of a question that either accuses or absolves Darwin of undermining the traditional Aristotelian concept of final causation.  The entire image is sort of foggy, because every answer seems to be correct and incorrect at the same time.

Unfortunately, the key answer for theistic (C) evolution (A) is what the agent of science says.  The evolutionary biologist (A) says that natural selection itself is not goal directed.  However, goal-directedness can be adaptive.

0725 Uh oh.

If that is the case, then what should I expect to see in the mirror of science (D)?

Something that does not quite make sense?

Here is a picture.

0726 Of course, the scientist’s affirmation that there is no teleology to natural selection (A3) is reflected in the mirror of science (D4).  Natural selection offers a picture of something blind.  Oh, correction.  Two blind somethings.  Plus, both are associated with model [disciplinary language] observations and measurements.

Does that imply that both models and observations in evolutionary biology lack purpose?

Nature needs to have foresight, at most, and vision, at least, in order to formulate a final cause.  Nature has no such foresight or vision.  It only has those two blind whatevers.

Yet, Aristotle’s four causes are intrinsic to every category-based nested form, including the situation-level nested form for the discipline of natural history… er… evolutionary biology.

0727 What does this imply?

There is a lot of explaining to do.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 10 of 21)

0728 Chapter four of Theistic Evolution introduces Aquinas’s account of creation.

In this chapter, Tabaczek completely fills the plate with theologyagent (B1) material.

This is like eating an enormous meal.

We all know what happens 18 hours later.

This makes me wonder, “Is Tabaczek (B1) aiming to take an enormous crap on the mirror of science (C2)?”

And, is he going to name that steaming pile, “Evolution and Creation”?

Well, I cannot help thinking this as I sit down to dine on Aquinas’s account of creation.

0729 Oh, yes, the appetizer is delicious.

Tabaczek knows this material like the back of his hand.

Aquinas intends to cook Augustine’s proto-evolutionary concept of rationes seminales into a dish of intellectual sumptuousness.

0730 Rationes seminales?

“Rationes” translates as “principle”.  “Seminales” translates as “seed”.

Of course, this technical term may be formulated as a hylomorphe.  So, the term belongs to the realm of actuality.

0731 Augustine introduces the term in his commentary on Genesis 1 and 2, roughly titled On the Not Allegorical and More or Less Metaphorical Interpretation of Genesis.

Well, that is a long title.

Isn’t there a better word for “not allegorical and more or less metaphorical”?

How about the word, “literal”?

“Literal” makes for a shorter title, for sure.

So, let me call Augustine’s book, “On the Literal Interpretation of Genesis”.

0732 In order to understand the term, rationes seminales, I put it2 in a category-based nested form.

0733 Right away, I think of the normal context of an oak.  I can compare an acorn to an oak tree?

Well, an acorn exemplifies a seed.

But, does a tree exemplify a principle, in the same way that a tree manifests a form?

Okay, what if Augustine’s “seed” is not an acorn?

Then, it may be a metaphor for what an acorn does.

An acorn germinates and knits together a tree.

0734 This brings me to a difficult topic, because the seed does not correspond to matter, in the same way that bronze corresponds to matter when the form is a statue.  The seed represents a relational being that entangles matter… or realness… in the process of substantiating a form.

The Latin word for “being itself” is ens.  The Latin term for “matter substantiating” is esse.

It makes me wonder whether there is a Latin word for “being substantiating”, where being, ens, is purely relational, or relational with a small entanglement of matter?

Hmmm.  The Latin term is still esse.

0735 Well, that is good enough for me.

Here is my metaphor for rationes seminales as an actuality in a nested form.

The seed, “seminales“, reminds me of the way DNA gives rise to a phenotype.  It is primarily a relational structure, a “code” to the geneticist, that makes that particular normal context3 exclusive.  This association implies that each species of tree contains its own seed.  Plus, the seed gives a species its esse_ce.

The principle, “rationes“, reminds me of the way that a living form adapts to an actuality independent of the adapting species.  It is like an idea that solves a problem.  The challenge is either dangerous (like a predator) or beneficial (like the nectar of a flower).  To the extent that the idea works, the species thrives.  “Rationes” gives a species its essence.

0736 So, now I make a substitution that translates Augustine’s term into a seemingly more familiar (yet really unfamiliar) hylomorphe.  This hylomorphe is not the contiguity between matter and form.  This hylomorphe is a metaphorical actuality.  After all, if esse_ce is matter [substantiating] and essence is [substantiating] form, then what would be the contiguity between esse_ce and essence?

Would it be a substance within substance?

0737 When Tabaczek discusses the idea of exemplars in the mind of God, each animal or plant is a manifestation of an exemplar.  Augustine’s notion of rationes seminales applies.

How so?

Rationes seminales enters into the exemplar as esse_ce [contiguity] essence2 in the normal context of each species3 and the potential that each member of the species is capable of developing (due to DNA) and thriving (due to its suitability for the environment of evolutionary adaptation or an AIAS)1.

0738 On top of that, the interventional sign-relation allows me to depict how my recognition of a particular species2aserves as a sign-object (SOi) that testifies to a sign-vehicle (SVi), the corresponding exemplar in the mind of God2c.

The following figure appears in the section on Interscopes and Sign-Relations (points 0335-0425).


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 11 of 21)

0739 What an appetizer!

The normal context of God’s word3a brings the actuality of my recognition of a particular species2a into relation with the possibilities inherent in nature2a.

God’s word3a is what is happening3a.

Nature1a is the ‘something’ in the possibility of ‘something’ happening1a.

0740 My recognition of a particular species2a (SOi) is like an impression2a that decodes its own source (SVi) as an exemplar in the mind of God2c.  My recognition2a is like a sign-object (SOi).  God’s exemplar2c is like a sign-vehicle (SVi).

With the help of Aristotle’s philosophy, I can explicitly state my impression2a of a living specimen2a as a member of a particular species2a in terms of a contiguity between esse_ce (seed) and essence (principle)2(2cin the normal context of a species3(2c), arising from the potential of ‘each member of the species to develop and thrive’1(2c).

0741 I ask myself, “What label can I place on the contiguity between seed-esse_ce and principle-essence?”

Here is the label that I can attach at the time of the creation of each species.

Yes, here is a novel, technical definition for a well-worn term.  Creatio ex nihilo is the initial contiguity between esse_ce (seed)2(2c) and essence (principle)2(2c) in what we know must be the source of our impression2a of any particular species2a.

Creatio ex nihilo corresponds to the Word of God3a that speaks to the potential of creation1a, that is to say, “nature1a“, in the first chapter of Genesis.

0742 Here is the label that I can attach to the continuation of each species.

0743 Wow!

Now that the appetizer is devoured, the salad is served.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 12 of 21)

0744 The salad precedes the first plate.  This is a good time to play with my food.  So, let me pick at what is in front of me, knowing that Tabaczek puts the garnish on the first plate in the kitchen.

0745 What is the nature of the Latin term, “creatio continua”?

Well, for that matter, what is the nature of the Latin term, “creatio ex nihilo”?

0746 In our current Lebenswelt, these are spoken words.  They are explicit abstractions.  Spoken words are labels that can be attached to whatever, including the contiguity between two real elements.  In this instance, the two real elements are explicit abstractions.  Esse_ce, being substantiating, is like a seed.  Essence, or substantiated form, is like a principle.

Indeed, seed-esse_ce is like the esse_ce of esse_ces.  Principle-essence is like the essence of essences.  The distinction between literal and metaphorical blurs in the rarified air of explicit abstractions.

0747 In the Lebenswelt that we evolved in, our ancestors practice hand-talk and hand-speech talk.  Hand-talk words cannot be used as labels that stick to whatever.  Hand talk words do not permit explicit abstraction.  Hand talk words picture or point to their referents.  Hand-talk words facilitate implicit abstraction.  This is what humans evolve to do.  We overflow with implicit abstractions.  Implicit abstractions turn out to be highly adaptive.  They operate in every social circle, family (5), intimates (5), teams (15), bands (50), communities (150), mega-bands (500) and tribes (1500).  They are built into our brains and our bodies.

0748 The expectation that linguistic hand-talk words image or indicate their referents is one of those adaptations that… well… becomes problematic in our current Lebenswelt.  How does one picture or point to the referent of a spoken termsuch as “creatio ex nihilo” or “creatio continua”? 

Implicit abstraction cannot do.

Yet, this is what we do.

We immediately assume that words, including spoken words, image and indicate their referents.

The mechanical philosophers of the seventeenth century attempt to routinize this innate expectation in order to firmly ground our spoken words.  They attempt to write down the code for each parole, in terms of other parole.  They do not realize that spoken words are merely placeholders in two arbitrarily related systems of differences, parole (talk) and langue (mental decoding of talk).  Consequently, “enlightenment” dictionaries operate successfully only for a while.

New parole keep cropping up, as if out of nowhere.  Old parole die and fall out of usage.  Even more confusing, political operatives attach novel langue to familiar parole in order to gain political advantage.

Spoken language evolves so rapidly that French descends from Latin in only 20 generations (1000 years).

0749 So what is a scholar to do?

Well, one way to understand any actuality2 is to identify its normal context3 and potential1.

Consider a spoken word or statement as an actuality2.

Ah, Peirce’s category-based nested form is useful in understanding how we, in our current Lebenswelt, cope with the fact that spoken words cannot picture or point to their referents. The logics of normal context3 include exclusion, alignment and complement.  The logics of actuality2 include the laws of contradiction and noncontradiction.  The logics of possibility1 are inclusive and allow contradictions.

A relevant category-based nested form is developed in Razie Mah’s masterwork, How To Define the Word “Religion”.

0750 Here is a picture of what I am talking about.

0751 Obviously, the picture is a little complicated.


Creatio ex nihilo and creatio continua each constitute a continuity between two real elements: esse_ce and essence.

Plus, when these Latin terms are spoken, no one utters anything about esse_ce or essence, even though they are the real elements that these Latin terms bind together.

So, I am working in unknown territory, which sounds very much like a “salad” to me.

Surely, Tabaczek is cooking up something delicious.

0752 Now, what is the potential1 underlying the term2?

Here is my speculation for creatio ex nihilo.

Clearly, the logic of firstness is inclusive and allows contradictions.

But, this application is particularly goofy.

Nevertheless, the potential1 supports the actuality2 quite well.

Nature is the meaning of creation.  Nature is present because God created it from nothing.  But, nature is not God.

0753 What about creatio continua?

Well, once nature is created, then continued creative (and destructive) activity continues because nature can adjust, modify, tweak, simplify, increase and diminish what it already has.

0754 Of course, the meaning, presence and message underlying the spoken word, “creatio continua“, exhibit a certain vulnerability.

Does a scientist need to posit the presence underlying the term?

If the answer is “no”, then all that is needed is to refurbish that stuffy old Latin term into something that sounds much more modern.

How about the word, “evolution”?

Moderns replace the presence underlying the term, creatio continua, with the label, “made by evolution”.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 13 of 21)

0755 Section 4.5 is the first plate in Tabaczek’s banquet.

From the salad course, I appreciate the meaning, presence and message underlying the Latin terms, creatio ex nihilo and creatio continua.

0756 How do these definitions apply to the six days in Genesis 1?

First, I should ask, “What distinctions does Aquinas apply to the Creation Story?”

Aquinas comes up with a three-fold distinction.

In the following figure, the column on the left corresponds to Genesis “days”.  The center column presents Aquinas’s distinctions.  The column on the right shows the corresponding substantial terms.

0760 Now, there are six days.  Let me go through each according to the following template.

For Augustine’s term, rationes seminales, esse_ce associates to seminales (seed) and essence associates to rationes(principle).

0761 The six days of creation are covered previously in the section titled, “Hegel’s Intersection and The Creation Story” (points 0426-0491). 

While Tabaczek describes the technical details of scholastic terminology.  The use of rationes seminales2 as an actuality2, supports a sequence of portrayals of day:age associations, in the normal context where God’s Word3 serves as a definition3 operating on the following potential1.  The meaning1 is that God creates out of no thing.  The presence1testifies to God.  The message1 is that nature is not God.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 14 of 21

0762 Here is how the template applies to the start of the Creation Story.

The idea that God’s initial creatio ex nihilo produces light from darkness (which is the absence of light and is nothing) is evocative, from a scientific point of view.

0763 Day one portrays images, indications and symbols that associate to the formation of the solar system.

0764 Day two associates to the formation of the planet Earth by way of images, indications and symbols.

0765 The start of day three contains icons, indexes and symbols that apply to the differentiation of continental from oceanic crust.  The earliest continents called “Archean cratons”.

0766 The end of day three offer images, indications and symbols of the start of life and of photosynthesis, which occurs in the same era as when continental crust first appears.   This vegetative life is archean and bacterial, so they initially appear as mats, slimes, filaments and so forth.  These single-celled organisms can glob together. But, they do not specialize with respect to one another.  Therefore, bacterial natural selection is not identical to natural selection for multicellular animals and plants.  For example, this photosynthetic cellular life reproduces through mitosis, not through meiosis.

Here, Augustine’s concept of rationes seminales allows the scientific features of the day:age association to shine.  Plants bearing seed are not created ex nihilo.  But, the esse_ce and essence of photosynthesis and of life associate with this era.

0767 Day four offers images, indications and symbols for the transformation of atmosphere due to release of oxygen by photosynthetic life.  Early Earth has an atmosphere rich in nitrogen (as today) along with lots of carbon compounds.  Photosynthetic life sequesters the carbon and releases oxygen, which gradually alters the atmosphere from chemically reductive to chemically oxidative.  This period lasts billions of years.

Overall, oxygen is released into the atmosphere and carbon is sequestered by photosynthetic life.  Complex “reduced” carbon-compounds are also oxidized by exposure to oxygen.  The atmosphere slowly goes from hazy, opaque, and translucent (oxygen-poor and carbon-rich) to transparent (oxygen-rich).   The sun, moon and stars become visible, to be used as celestial signs by humans.

0768 Day five contains images, indications and symbols of the diversification and evolution of eukaryotic cell-based multicellular organisms.  Eukaryotic cells contain mitochondria, special organelles devoted to utilizing the chemical potential of atmospheric oxygen (as discussed in points 0242 -0276).  Another specialized organelle for eukaryotic cells is the chloroplast.  Chloroplasts conduct photosynthesis, using carbon-dioxide as the carbon source.  Multicellular plants contain chloroplasts.  This era starts with the Precambrian and lasts hundreds of millions of years.

0769 Day six offers images, indications and symbols for the Age of Mammals.  The Age of Mammals starts 65 million years ago.

0770 That is not the end of the six days.

Augustine’s concept of rationes seminales also applies to verses associated with the intention of man (Gen. 1:26), creation of man (Gen.1:27), blessing of humans (Gen. 1.28), feeding humans with plants (Gen. 1:29) and feeding plants to domesticated animals (Gen. 1:30).

In the following figures, the day:age association for each verse display novel principles for interpreting the evolution of hominins and humans.

0771 The seeds of the intention of humans associates to the era starting with the appearance of bipedalism and ending with the domestication of fire.  The principle is the ultimate niche of the potential of triadic relations.  Another name for this niche is “sociogenesis”.

For further information, see Comments on Michael Tomasello’s Arc of Inquiry (1999-2019), by Razie Mah, available at smashwords and other e-book venues.

0772 The seeds for the creation of humans associates to the era starting with the domestication of fire and ending with the appearance of anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens, in the evolutionary record.  The principle includes the voice being used for synchronization for large gatherings (just as the voice is used today by congregations) then coming under sexual selection.  Once the voice is under voluntary neural control, the vocal tract is exapted for use as an adornment to hand talk.  Humans practice hand-speech talk since the inception of the species, until the first singularity, marking the potentiation of civilization.

0773 The seeds for the blessing of humans associates to what follows after our species appears in the archeological record, starting over 200,000 years ago.  At the time, other hominin species have very similar attributes and tool kits.  Then, over thousands of years, our lineage starts to prosper, in ways that the other hominin species do not.  By 50,000 years ago, anatomically modern humans are present in Europe with advanced microlithic stone tool kits.  Presumably, they are migrating out of Africa.

Humans interbreed with the Neanderthals and another late-hominin species, known only through DNA-extraction from one nearly fossilized bone from Siberia.  Why do they interbreed?  Humans still practice hand talk.  So do the Neanderthal and Denisovans.  The difference, though, is that humans are also practicing speech talk.  The semiotics of hand-speech talk are yet to be explored by researchers interested in human evolution.

Genetics show that humans interbreed with the Neanderthals and Denisovans.  The question to ask is, “Why does interbreeding occur only around 50,000 thousand years ago and then discontinue?  Hybrid fragility?  Or innovations in hand-speech talk shifts human cultures away from mainly hand-talk and more into a mix of hand and speech talk.”

0774 By around 30,000 years ago, the Neanderthals of Eurasia are extinct and humans clearly exhibit “modern” behavior.  To many, Paleolithic art is more beautiful and evocative than most “modern” art.  Plus, Paleolithic folk are not nearly as corrupt and degenerate as the academically certified modern intellectuals who label their behavior “modern”.  They go so far as to attach the ultra-modern label “The Paleolithic Revolution” to people who do not practice speech-alone talk.

Comments on Daniel Houck’s Book (2020) “Aquinas, Original Sin and The Challenge of Evolution” by Razie Mah, available at smashwords and other venues, offers insights.

0775 The seeds for giving plants as food for humans associates to relatively recent developments called “the Neolithic Period”.  “Neo” means “new”.  “Lithic” means stone.  New stone tools appear for harvesting and processing grains (in particular).  Research on the origins of agriculture(s) is highly evocative.  Humans act as agents of natural selection, and the genomes of certain plants change significantly.  Small phenotypic changes (such as less toxins in a fruit) motivate humans to propagate certain plants rather than others for the same species.

0776 The adornment of the world with the image of God ends with God giving plants as food to animals.  What an odd statement to tack at the end of such a fantastic evolutionary narrative.  Yet, the Developed Neolithic involves not only the domestication of plants, but also the domestication of animals.

0777 Surely, the way that Thomas Aquinas applies Augustine’s notion of rationes seminales to the six days of creations offers delicious food for thought.  Creatio ex nihilo and creatio continua enter the picture as contiguities between two real elements, seed and principle, where the seed is like the esse_ce of esse_ces and the principle is like the essence of essences.  A day:age scenario fills out the template for each day is a most satisfying manner.


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 15 of 21)

0778 What does this day:age scenario do, besides re-describing the noumena and the phenomena of human evolution, as currently elaborated by genetics and natural history?

Shall I consult the optics of Tabaczek’s mirror?

0779 Is the focus is on the six days of creation or the scientific study of evolution?

Well, in a day:age comparison, then it must be the former, no?

Or, must it be the latter?

Perhaps, I should think in terms of the interventional sign.  If the sign-object is the thing that I recognize2b, and I recognize the text before2b me as the first chapter of Genesis, then I sense that the sign-vehicle is in the mind of God2c, because only God could have witnessed the evolutionary development of our world.

0780 Say what?

Is the first chapter of Genesis the interventional sign-object2a (SOi) of the evolutionary record as an interventional sign-vehicle2c (SVi)?

Is Genesis One a sign-object (SOi) of the evolutionary record (SVi)?

0781 An affirmative answer suggests that evolution is in the mind of God2c.

And, that is a little confusing.

0782 If advocates of science have their way, then scientific models should overlay the noumenon, the thing itself.  Such an overlay buries various metaphysical implications of the noumenon, while simultaneously exploiting human interest in metaphysical implications.

Does that make sense?

If not, then welcome to the modern world.

0783 On top of that, if the scientific scenario is regarded as the noumenon then the noumenon [is objectified by] phenomena of the evolutionary record.

Typically, a noumenon, the thing itself, [cannot be objectified as] its phenomena, its observable and measurable facets.

For example, consider a fork.  The noumenon of a fork [cannot be objectified as] the phenomena of a fork, such as its dimensions, composition, tensile strength and so on.

I mention this because in the multicourse meal that the author is presenting, the waiter has taken my fork along with the empty first plate, and just brought me a second fork, for the second plate.

0784 Here is a picture of the optics of Tabaczek’s mirror for this application, so far.

0785 Tabaczek opens chapter five, titled “Aquinas and Evolution”, by claiming that chapter four shows that Thomistic theology is open to evolution.

Unfortunately, this examiner devoured that dish and already digested it by presenting a surprisingly evocative day:age correlation using Aquinas’s key terms.

Fortunately, Tabaczek is in the kitchen, and is not aware of the digestive prowess of some of his readers.

0786 So let me continue.

If a theologyagent constructs a day:age scenario using Aquinas’s key terms embedded in a Peircean category-based nested form, then the resulting work of art is as evocative as any Paleolithic cave painting.

How so?

Take a look at some examples of paleolithic art, such as the unbelievable cave paintings, rendered tens of thousands of years ago at Lascaux.

A modern cannot explicitly abstract these expressions, because these expressions belong to an interventional sign, where an evaluator’s recognition of say, particular species within a cave painting, seems to be a content-level sign object2a and the sign-vehicle resides in the mind of the Paleolithic “artists”2c.

0787 Here is a picture.

0788 What is going on in the minds of the paleolithic people who rendered those cave-paintings?

Do models based on evolutionary psychology account for what is going on?

Or is creativity embedded in having two ways of talking in one language?

The hand-component of hand-speech talk images and indicates its referent, so the referent ontologically precedes the word.

The speech-component of hand-speech talk does not violate this ontological reality.  However, it adds a caveat, because the spoken word cannot picture or point to its referent.  For spoken words, the word ontologically precedes its referent.

Paleolithic art expresses the referentiality of hand-talk and the ontological sleight-of-hand of speech-talk.  Modern viewers recognize the types of creatures portrayed in cave paintings.  At the same time, the images, the place, the atmosphere and the flicker of a small fat-burning flame speak to the viewer.  They say, “Hear our song!”


Looking at Mariusz Tabaczek’s Book (2024) “Theistic Evolution” (Part 16 of 21)

0789 The second plate of Tabaczek’s theological banquet (B1) arrives.

The aroma moves me from the issues of paleolithic art, to the topic at hand.

0790 Now, that the positivist intellect is dead, but not really gone, scientific researchers in the various evolutionary sciences (A1) project their models, woven into a scientific scenario, onto the noumenon, the thing itself (D2), and, almost magically, the scientific scenario is objectified by phenomena of the evolutionary record (D2). 

0791 Typically, a noumenon [cannot be objectified as] its phenomena.  This hylomorphe stands as what is in the (now defunct) Positivist’s judgment.  Too bad the positivist intellect is no longer in control.

What is associates to the realm of possibility, because a noumenon and its phenomena are… well… the same entity.  There are no two real elements.  There is only one, viewed from two points of view.  A noumenon is the thing as a metaphysician sees it.  Its phenomena are the thing’s observable and measurable facets.  With luck, the resulting observations and measurements can be used to build a model, using scientific disciplinary language.

0792 What does this imply?

The projection of evolutionary science subject-matter (A1) into the mirror of theology (D2) produces the “evolutionary” of “evolutionary (D2) creation (B3)”, consisting of the Christian doctrine of creation (the noun, B3) modified by scientific models pretending to be the thing itself (the adjective, D2).

0793 Tabaczek’s project start fresh (B1), taking the pretense in the mirror of theology (D2) and using the terminology of Aquinas to fashion… well… not the day:age association that I just revealed… but… the possibility that such a day:age association or other associations can be fashioned at all.

Here is a picture of Tabaczek’s second plate.

0794 As already noted, Tabaczek has good reason to imagine that his course of renewal will be regarded as a culinary… er… intellectual success.

Or should I say, “glorious success”?

In biological evolution, metaphysics is intrinsic to the single actuality in the intersection between adaptation2H and phenotype2V.

Plus, in other sciences, intersections occur as well.

For example, light is the intersection of particle physics and wave physics.  The formation of solar systems may turn out to be an intersection between gravity & angular momentum and the electromagnetism produced by the motion of charged particles.  The degassing of rocky planets may entail another intersection, say between chemical phase transitions and collision mechanics.  The list goes on.

Plus, the hylomorphic structure of all things offers promise.  As already portrayed, the actuality of each day of creationmay be portrayed as the hylomorphic structure of seed [contiguity] principle.

0795 In short, Tabaczek aims to put “theism” into the mirror of science in such a way that researchers in the evolutionary disciplines cannot ignore.

0796 He offers a number of the main postulates for a Thomistic version of theistic (C2) evolution (A3).

0797 Here is my reading of each item.

First, pay attention to models generated by the evolutionary sciences (A1).  Pay particular attention to models in natural history and genetics.

Second, ask questions.  Do these models correspond to what the believer expects to see in the mirror of theology (D2)?  Does the scientist project the image of a noumenon [cannot be objectified as] its phenomena.  Or does the advocate of science overlay the noumenon with models, so that models may be regarded as the thing itself, in which case the model-manifesting thing itself [can be objectified by] its evolutionary phenomena?

Third, after examining the image in the mirror of theology for biological evolution (D2), the tehologian (B3) should consider evolutionary phenomena as both matter [substance] form  and disposition [property] powers.  In short, the theologian works with the intersection of body development3V and natural selection3H.  So, the image in the mirror of theology (D2) transforms from either natural history or genetics to both (C3).

Yes, the noumenon, species, is the single actuality that is the intersection of phenotype2V and adaptation2H.

Fourth, other aspects of Thomist philosophy concerning the doctrine of creation come into play.  Chapter four includes discussion of the six days of creation in the first chapter of Genesis.

In sum, the theologian (B3) starts over (B1′) by reconfiguring what he sees in the mirror of theology (D2).

0798 If I place the day:age scenario from points 0762 to 0777 in for B1, I arrive at an application of these four points.

0799 In order to constellate the “theism” of “theistic (C2′) evolution (A3′)”, something must appear in the mirror of science (C2′).

That ‘something’ (C2′), must reflect a theological construction (B1′), which is, in this instance, a day:age scenarioutilizing Augustine’s notion of rationes seminales.

At the same time, that ‘something’ (C2′) should be engage the evolutionary scientist (A3′), indirectly nullifying his (A1) original image of an evolutionary model overlaying the noumenon in the mirror of science (B2).

0800 In this instance, the day:age correlation2a triggers the concept of an interventional sign-vehicle2c.  This interventional sign-relation becomes ‘something’ that may appear in the mirror of science (C2′).

0801 The scientist (A3′) cannot ignore the image in the mirror of science (C2′).

The interventional sign-relation defines humans as semiotic animals.

See Looking at John Deely’s Book (2010) “Semiotic Animals” appearing in Razie Mah’s blog for October, 2023.

How does the interventional sign-relation become innate in humans?

An answer (A3′) should produce a fascinating reflection in the mirror of theology (D4′).

Thus, the optics of theistic evolution in Tabaczek’s mirror challenges the theologian (B) and the scientist (A) in ways that evolutionary creation does not.