Evolution’s Purpose

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Introduction
    • The Role of Philosophy
    • Where I Stand
    • The Evolution of Worldviews
    • Overview of the Chapters
  1. The New Picture of Evolution
    • Defining Evolution
    • Emergence and Transcendence
    • What Causes Emergence?
    • The Evolution of Consciousness
    • Developmental Psychology
  2. Necessary Metaphysics for an Evolutionary Worldview
    • The Evolution of Metaphysics
    • How Metaphysics Is Used in the Science of Evolution
    • Toward a More Adequate Form of Evolutionary Metaphysics
    • The Influence of Information on Evolution
      • The Self-Organization Paradigm
      • Adaptive Mutation
      • Morphic Resonance
      • Intelligent Design
    • The Influence of Value on Evolution
      • Values and Agency
      • Values and Free Will
    • The Evolution of Values
  3. Eros—Value Gravity
    • The Reality of Values
    • Moral Realism
    • Values as Evolutionary Attractors
    • Values as Relational Structures
    • The Gravity of Disvalues
    • The Sovereignty of the Good
    • Evolution’s Dialectical Pattern
  4. Primary Values—Beauty, Truth, and Goodness
    • The Philosophical Pedigree of the Primary Values
    • The Dialectical Relationship of the Beautiful, the True, and the Good
    • The Teleology of Beauty, Truth, and Goodness
    • Beauty, Truth, and Goodness—Perfectly Minimal Evolutionary Metaphysics
  5. Evolutionary Progress in Human History
    • The Idea of Progress
    • The Dialectic of Progress and Pathology
    • Elements of Progress
    • Value Relativism
    • Sources of Moral Authority
    • A New Definition of Social and Cultural Progress
    • Justifying Claims for Cultural Evolution
  6. Evolutionary Progress in Nature
    • Progress in Biological Evolution Overall
    • Measuring Directionality in Biological Evolution
    • Progress and Prejudice
    • The Value of Wholes and Parts
    • Biocentric Egalitarianism
    • Anthropocentrism and the Value of the Noosphere
    • Progress in Cosmological Evolution
    • Progress and Teleology
  7. Purpose in Evolution
    • The Experience of Purpose
    • Evidence for Purpose in Evolution
    • Purpose in the Pattern—Evolution’s Generation of Value
    • The Rising Flow of Creativity
    • Parallels Between Personal and Universal Development
    • Consideration of the Purpose of the Whole
      • Instrumental Purpose
      • Intrinsic Purpose
      • Purpose and Dialectical Synthesis
    • The Purpose of Suffering
  8. Spiritual Reflections on Evolution’s Purpose
    • A Dialectical Thesis of Experiential Perfection through Evolution
    • Ten Tenets of Evolutionary Theology
    • Discussion of the Ten Tenets
    • Last Thoughts on the First Cause
  9. The Promise of a New Evolutionary Worldview
Selected Bibliography
About the Author