The Amalgamation between Psychology and Evolution: Having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof…
Michael P. Barro
Students of general and advanced psychology admitted that the theory of evolution has such tremendous influence on the birth of modern Psychology even before the leadership of Sigmund Freud, hailed as the Father of Modern Psychology. In this article I’ll be delving into Freudian Theory of Psychology and illustrate on how his myriad of ideas have become one of the major cornerstone’s of the New Age Ideology and a propeller that pushes through the great Humanist Movements of this generation.
Here is an illustration of the Freudian Philosophy of Man, where his theory of the Human Psych is best depicted in layman’s terms and understanding. According to him, a Human Being is composed of three systems or components. The first is the Id or his biological substance, his inner naturalistic reality completely objective of the external reality outside of his biological and physiological functions. Next to the Id is the Ego, where his consciousness becomes alive. Man now becomes different from plants and animals in this very particular sense since he is more than just a living matter, he is now aware of the external reality as he is of his base needs and desires. The highest expression of Man’s being and person is the last system, the Superego, where his consciousness transcends mere materialistic forms; it is now involved in philosophic understanding, perceptions, and even biases and prejudices. Reality is beyond physical and has arrived at meta-physical concerns and thought pattern. This is the part where man conjures concepts, ideas, principles, convictions, belief systems and sense of morals.
In the Superego stage, though it has transcended the biological and natural aspect of the human mind, it is still a by-product of its biological processes—i.e. if Man knows that 1+1=2 it is only and simply because he is conscious of non-physical needs, he can think, reason out and form logical thought patterns (however trivial), and he can do so simply because his brain functions well.
The superego then, as interpreted by Freudian Psychology and defined by the Evolutionary Paradigm, is obviously devoid of any supernatural connections. Again, Man knows that 1+1=2 not because of mystical revelation devoid of scientific explanation, not because of some hocus pocus, but simply because the brain is performing a biological function. According to the Theory of Evolution, Man is by far the highest by-product of this evolutionary process, and that the highest development of his faculties is the best proof that he is the greatest of life-forms, god-like if you will.*
At this point, Humanists and Traditional Christianity are in a stale opposition reaching an impasse. Humanists believe that, and regrettably also unorthodox Christianity subscribes to, to put the words of Friedrich Nietzsche’s Madman (The Gay Science, sections 108, 125 and 343), “God is Dead!”, or to the extreme humanists that Man is already the god he believes in. The Übermensch, or Superman. The Evolutionary Paradigm has already displaced Divine origin of Life and through Freudian Psychology, also displaces divine intervention and association in the fulfillment of Life meaning and purpose (Hence, Denying the Power thereof…).
Implications of this Rift between Humanist and Traditional Christian Perspectives of the Superego…
A. Divine Inspiration and Prerogatives is negated to nothing more than superstition, Myth, or Fantasy…
For man to conjure the Idea of ‘god’ and his need of such is nothing but a by-product of biological and psychological functions—after all, god is dead, he does not exists, and he is nothing but a result of imagination. Therefore, everything philosophic and metaphysical also has no inherent value and merits at all. This will automatically negate everything non-material or less pragmatic— the very subject matter of Liberal Arts Education where religious studies are associated with. i.e.—for man to realize the mathematical truth that 1+1=2 is an excellent exercise of mental functions, but for man to realize the Political-Philosophical truth that Man is born free yet everywhere in chains, is no truth at all but mere conjecture. Worst of all, for man to realize the Religious-Political truth that “Men are created equal and that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights” is nothing but hokum.
I would like to add that if such evolutionary notions are to be believed, the Orthodox Christians who suffered grave persecutions during the dark ages, suffered for nothing but the pride of being the protagonists of the scene. There is no inherent value and merit in their choosing to be faithful to Christ and his Word.
B. Humanism and Pantheism further accentuated for the World to accept…
There is a small and inner god in every man or potentiality for every man to rise up and become Übermensch, a god in his own right—this is the cry of mainstream humanists and renegade Christianity. If we subscribe to this naturalistic perspective, we simply relate to the superego as mere by-product of the inter-play between energy and mass within the person, and psycho-social variables outside of the person. Or to put the words of Theodore Roszak (1973) when he wrote the introduction of E.F. Schumacher’s book Small is Beautiful, “…as if there were no qualitative difference[s] between mindless atoms and men made in the image of God.” With this assumption, Man is already the highest being there is.
C. Morals are not to be based on the Word of God but rather on the Contextual Interpretation of the World Unified Religion…
As mentioned, moral sense and its respective components such as conscience and personal convictions are mere products of the interplay between the biology and society of Man, according to the theory of Evolution. This causes a big commotion in the global definition of Public Moral Standards. How will we define the demarcation between right and wrong? What is wrong and what is right in the first place? As psychologists explain, “The superego is “…the internalized representative of the traditional values and ideals of society as interpreted to the child by its parents and enforced by means of a system of rewards and punishments imposed upon the child.”
There are many issues that splinter from this body of thought. One consequence to this humanistic understanding of the formation of morals and conscience is that it supports the view that morals are relative and not absolute. Hence, humanism gives imperative to relativism—that moral standards are to be defined by the prerogatives of the circumstances or as defined by other mere men who are at an ‘enlightened’ stature. This means that moral standards are not all-encompassing through time and space; if premarital sex was wrong back during biblical and Victorian age, they are not now. This is because it is either society or certain authoritarian religious leaders that define what is wrong and what is right, as if either has never erred in this.
Consequent to the rise of moral relativism is the reduced urgency of the threat of sin. There is no more sin or evil in the first place, they are mere discrepancies between what society defines as right behavior, and the behavior that a party exhibits deviant to such. This is way too similar to Mary Baker Eddy’s statement on sin in her book “Science and Health with Keys to the Scriptures” (1875 1st Ed.) p. 188, “The belief in sin which has grown terrible in strength and influence is an unconscious error.”
Now that sense of morals is left to sheer collective deliberation of highly affluent men regardless of their religious affiliation, then moral standards are left to what these men has ascribed to and defined by themselves, without divine guidance and revelation. Hence, the ecumenical movement, this world religious society, where all faiths send their representatives to assist in the global spiritual formation, defines for the rest of humanity what is morally upright and what is wrong. Since in the eyes of the Humanistic Moralists there is no more God, then there is no other higher being than man to be accountable to. Man is accountable only to his fellow men and of what these Men of higher ascendancy define as morally upright. What will they define as standards which their inferiors must be liable of and submit to? Certainly not the biblical ones since by sheer initiative of the ecumenical movement they have to reject those.
But the Bible clearly states that, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” 1 John 1: 08. Therefore, biblically speaking, there is absolute demarcation between right and wrong, and that this demarcation is not subjective and subservient to circumstantial and collective bargaining. While evolutionary psychology proclaims that realization of Morals is just a product of biological function, the Bible is very specific in John 16: 08, “…when He (the Holy Spirit) is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” True Christianity knows there is truth in Evangelical Enlightenment that Man’s recognition of Divine Law and Morals is by God’s Appointment and providence and not mere human evolutionary development.
Never Deny the Power thereof…
The Good News of Peace by the God of the Bible is being sidetracked by an Alternative Good News made by Humanism. Their version of Good News is that Godless Morality, though devoid of supernatural and transcendental origin, is not only possible and real but also as justified by them, better than Godly Christian morality—having a form of godliness but denying the power thereof. It is the spiritual obligation of every Christian to be vigilant and wary of these vain philosophies and rudiments of the world which do turn the flock away from Christ. And at the same time, we the followers of Christ must always stay faithful and recognize that without him, we can do nothing—never deny the power thereof.
*Reference support regarding the Freud’s three systems within the Person is from Calvin Hall and Gardner Lindzey’s Theories of Personality (1978), John Wiley and Sons Publication, pp. 36-42.
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