Media Reviews

Evolution and Other Fairy Tales

Evolution and Other Fairy Tales
Larry Azar
AuthorHouse, 2005
619 pages
$14.50 + S&H







If you are looking for a thorough philosophical debunking of the theory of Evolution, this is the book for you. Larry Azar has done a comprehensive study into the thinking of Charles Darwin and his supporters. What he uncovers is astounding - deeply flawed evolutionary beliefs and a theory without any scientific support.

Professor Emeritus Larry Azar received undergraduate and graduate degrees in Math, Physics, and Philosophy from Boston College and a Doctorate in Philosophy from the Pontifical Institute of the University of Toronto where he studied under Étienne Gilson, Anton Pegis, and Armand Maurer. He has taught at Fordham, Lehman, Hunter, St. John's and Iona, and also served as assistant to Jacques Maritain at Princeton. Numerous articles by him have appeared in journals both national and international.

In this book Prof. Azar highlights Darwin's personal beliefs, and some of his fellow evolutionists' beliefs, many of which are contradictory. Also discussed are various facts which reveal the scientific and philosophical problems with the theory of Evolution. Some of the highlights from the book are listed below.

Darwin's Beliefs:

The very title of Darwin's most popular work, The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life, reveals a racist attitude. This is further revealed in one of his comments about the Irish: "The careless, squalid, unaspiring Irishman who multiplies like rabbits." However, according to his own theory, the Irishmen, having more offspring, were the fittest!

Darwin was heavily influence by Thomas Malthus (1766-1834) and his doctrine of the "struggle for existence." Malthus predicted, quite erroneously, that by 1932 the human population would overwhelm the earth. He advocated birth control, and praised war, famine, pestilence, and disease, and ways of increasing the death rate. Darwin agreed with him on more than one point: "I could show that war has done and is doing much ... for the progress of civilization."

Darwin did not even believe in distinct species: "No line of demarcation can be drawn between species." And, "Species are merely artificial combinations made for convenience." However, sterile hybrids show that there are genetic barriers.

Aristotle said, "Nature means the essence of natural objects." Darwin rejected essences and, therefore, nature. He even admitted that one of the foundational points of his doctrine was contrived: "In the literal sense of the word, no doubt, natural selection is a false term." The first five editions of Origin did not even use the term "evolution" once.

Darwin was ignorant of genetics. Gregor Mendel (1822-1884), his contemporary, understood that the determinants of an organism exist in the cell. Acquired characteristics cannot be passed to offspring. Aristotle is quoted as saying that when a man loses an arm, he will still have children with two arms.

Loren Eiseley: "There is a surgical precision about Mendel's procedures which is in marked contrast to the bunglesome anecdotal literature which fills so much even of Darwin's treatment of the subject."

Darwin claimed that his greatest joy in writing his Origin was his refutation of Genesis. He firmly held that those who comprehend his evolutionary views, "cannot any longer believe that man is the work of a separate act of creation."

Darwin had severe psychosomatic illness causing heart palpitations, upset stomach, skin abnormality, dizziness, and fatigue. He feared being criticized for the antireligious implications of his theory.

Darwin did not understand the effects of original sin: "I cannot see beneficence on all sides of us. There seems to me too much misery in the world. ... I see no necessity in the belief that the eye was expressly designed." However, even he could see that, "... the universe is not the result of chance." And he also believed in a creator: "There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one ..."

Evolutionists' Beliefs:

Ernst Mayr: "No other philosopher or scientist has had an impact on the thinking of modern man as Darwin."

Richard Dawkins: "Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist."

Theodore Roszak: "For if even a whisper of intentionality [design] slips into the evolutionary theory, all the great questions of destiny and value will not be far behind, and with them all the nasty philosophical conundrums which conventional science prefers to avoid. It was precisely to sidestep such questions that so many scientists rallied to Darwin's banner when it was first unfurled, even before the basic terms of his theory had been coherently defined, and long before any genetic knowledge was on hand to making convincing sense of how variation and selection might occur."

Teilhard de Chardin: "Evolution is a general postulate to which all theories, all hypotheses, all systems must henceforth bow and which illuminates all facts, a trajectory which all lines of thought must follow." He also said, "It is Christ, in very truth, who saves - but should we not immediately add that at the same time it is Christ who is saved by evolution?"

Josef Stalin: "Evolution prepares for revolution and creates the ground for it; revolution consummates the process of evolution and facilitates its further activity."

Pope Pius XII in his 1950 encyclical Humani Generis - On Certain False Opinions Which Threaten to Undermine the Foundations of Catholic Doctrine stated that, "Some imprudently and indiscreetly hold that evolution, which has not been fully proved even in the domain of natural sciences, explains the origin of all things, and audaciously support the monistic and pantheistic opinion that the world is in continual evolution. Communists gladly subscribe to this opinion in that, when the souls of men have been deprived of every idea of a personal God, they may the more efficaciously defend and propagate their dialectic materialism." And further, "If such conjectural opinions are directly or indirectly opposed to the doctrine revealed by God, then the demand that they be recognized can in no way be admitted."

Nazism was based on the idea of a master race. Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) was a famous atheist and is credited with being the link between Darwin and Hitler. Marx was contemporary with Darwin and used the ideas of survival of the fittest in his concept of class struggle. Social Darwinism can be directly linked with the extermination of millions of people during the wars and revolutions of the 20th century.

Thomas Huxley: Described evolution as a description of the "complete and irreconcilable antagonism to that vigorous and consistent enemy of the highest intellectual, moral, and social life of mankind - the Catholic Church."

National Academy of Science: "Religion and science are separate and mutually exclusive realms of human thought."

Nobelist Polykarp Kusch: "To my mind the most important statement in science, the really fundamental statement, is that the world is ordered.

G. G. Simpson: "All science is philosophical. A scientist cannot so much as make an observation without reliance on a philosophical premise."

William Beck: "Science rests on a philosophical foundation and cannot be absolutely separated from it."

Luther Burbank: The limits of development in breeding processes are based on the Law of the Reversion to the Average. Organisms tend to revert back to the average.

J. B. S. Haldane: "The barrier of inter-specific sterility is the most serious argument against Darwin's Organic Evolution."

Hampton L. Carson: "The origin of species is a major unsolved problem of evolutionary biology."

Futuyma said, "It is likely that the topic of speciation is more thoroughly awash in unfounded and often contradictory speculation than any other single topic in evolutionary theory."

W. L. Johannsen: Variability within a species is not indefinite. There is a limit beyond which variation is impossible.

Leslie Orgel: "The origin of the genetic code is the most baffling aspect of the problem of the origins of life."

I. L. Cohen: "There is no mathematical probability whatever for any known species having to have been the product of random occurrence."

E. O. Wilson: Extinction constitutes, "a central problem of evolutionary biology."

Francis Crick: "The origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going." This had led scientists to formulate the Anthropic Principle - that the universe appears to have been tuned for human life. Any small change in the universe would have negated all possibility of life appearing. Henry Margenau describes it as absolutely convincing evidence of a creator.

Simpson: "The origin of the cosmos and the causal principles of its history remain unexplained and inaccessible to [natural] science. Here is hidden the First Cause sought by theology and philosophy."

Aristotle, a pagan, maintained that the existence of a Prime Mover could be demonstrated by reason. This is not religion; it is metaphysics, the study of being.

Loren Eiseley: "It is surely one of the paradoxes of history that science, which professionally has nothing to do with faith, owes its origins to an act of faith that the universe can be rationally interpreted, and that science today is sustained by that assumption."

William Stansfield: "If a carbon-14 [dating result] supports our theories, we put it in the main text. If it does not entirely contradict them, we put it in a footnote. And if it is completely 'out of date,' we just drop it."

E. D. Lukas: "The modern antipathy toward all forms of creationism is partly due to a widespread philosophical prejudice that arises from the a priori, nonscientific assumption that there can be no divine intervention into the workings of the universe and that the scientific method is the only way to truth."

Botanist Chester Arnold: "As yet, we have not been able to trace the phylogenetic history of a single group of modern plants from its beginning to the present."

Goldschmidt (hopeful monster thesis): "The first bird was hatched from an egg laid by a reptile."

Lord Zuckerman declared that the fossil record offers no evidence of man's evolution from other anthropoids.

Richard Dawkins: "If you throw out gradualism, you throw out the very thing that makes evolution more plausible than creation."

H. S. Lipson: "In fact, evolution became in a sense a scientific religion; almost all scientists have accepted it, and many are prepared to 'bend' their observations to fit in with it."

L. H. Matthews: "Belief in the theory of evolution is thus exactly parallel to belief in special creation."

Evolutionist Soren Lovtrup described neo-Darwinism as the greatest hoax in the history of science.

Colin Patterson: "Question is: Can you tell me anything you know about evolution, any one thing that is true? I tried that question on the geology staff at the Field Museum of Natural History, and the only answer I got was silence. I tried it on the members of the Evolutionary Morphology Seminar in the University of Chicago, a very prestigious body of evolutionists, and all I got there was silence for a long time, and eventually one person said, 'I do know one thing - it ought not to be taught in high school.'" (Audio and transcript of talk available from Kolbe Center)

Malcom Muggeridge: "I myself am convinced that the theory of evolution, especially the extent to which it's been applied, will be one of the great jokes in the history books of the future."

Other Scientific / Philosophical problems with evolution:

The only thing all evolutionists agree on is that Evolution is a fact.

Distantly related species cannot produce offspring. More closely related species may produce hybrid offspring which may be sterile (a horse bred with a donkey results in a sterile mule).

Breeders have to be very careful in selecting males and females (intelligent breeders using artificial selection). Natural selection has no intelligence behind it.

Sexual reproduction has no advantage over asexual reproduction. Any genetic characteristic has a 50% chance of being eliminated through sexual reproduction.

Genetic mutations are almost always harmful, if not benign. The accumulation of genetic mutations is known as the "genetic load." If the genetic load becomes too high, a species will not be able to reproduce and will become extinct.

In the survival of the fittest, the fittest are defined as those who survive. This is circular reasoning as can be shown: Who survives? The fittest. Who are the fittest? Those who survive.

Intelligence is independent of the size of the brain. Einstein had a smaller than average brain.

Language has devolved from more complex forms to more simple. Some of the languages of "primitive" tribes are very complex. Ancient Greek and Latin are more complex than modern languages.

Walking on two feet has disadvantages relative to walking on four feet (speed and agility).

Radioisotope dating methods are based on the assumption that the elements are decaying into simpler forms. This is the opposite of evolution.

The so-called vestigial organs have been found to have uses. Similar organs in different animals often develop differently in the embryo. The idea that embryos develop through their respective stages of evolution has been refuted.

Homo sapiens (wise man) is essentially superior to the other animals because he acts in an essentially superior way (art, language, religion, science, etc.)

Rocks are used to date fossils. Fossils are used to date rocks. This is circular reasoning. The geologic column does not physically exist anywhere in the world. The Grand Canyon has at least five large "gaps."

There are no transitional fossils in the fossil record. Not only is there a missing link between apes and man, the links are missing between every species. There are no known links between invertebrates and vertebrates, or between fish and amphibians, or between amphibians and reptiles, or between reptiles and mammals.

Evolution of birds is a major problem (feathers, lungs). Archaeopteryx was a bird with teeth. There are modern birds with teeth.

Plant evolution has not even been seriously discussed among scientists.

Fossils from all phyla are in existence in the Cambrian rocks. This is fatal to the theory of Evolution.

The book has an extensive discussion on hominid/hominoid fossils. All are either apes, men, or frauds. The Piltdown fraud was not revealed until 40 years after its "discovery." Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was involved. It has been called the greatest hoax in the history of modern science.

Neanderthal men are true men. Their skulls are larger than modern men. Cro-Magnon men were larger than modern men and their skulls were also larger.

Some evolutionists have given up on gradualism and switched to saltation, or punctuated equilibrium, or hopeful monsters.

In Manchester, England, over a period of 50 years the peppered moth population changed from almost exclusively white to almost exclusively black. During this time industrial pollution changed the color of the tree trunks upon which the moths sat from light to dark. Predatory birds could better see the moths when their color contrasted with the color of the trees. The moths did not change at all; only the ratio of the black to white colored individuals. The story of the peppered moths does not demonstrate evolution in action.

Teleology, being a metaphysical topic, simply transcends the concepts of biology.

Gradual evolution is problematic; the mutant chicken cannot wait for the mutant rooster.

In scientism the denial of final causality stems from a materialistic bias, whereby nothing which transcends matter is tolerated. Matter fails to be an ultimate explanation of effects.

Abiogenesis (life from non-life) is not tenable. Life only comes from life - Law of Biogenesis.

Adaptation has been shown to be due primarily to geographic isolation.

The long epochs of time required for Darwinian gradualism appear to be an anomaly in that more species would tend to perish than be generated. Extinction rate is about 1000 per year. It [theoretically] takes tens of thousands of years for a new species to emerge. Of all species that have ever existed, 99.9% are extinct.

Salamanders and lilies have more DNA than man.

Things which have never been demonstrated: 1.) Abiogenesis, 2.) Single cells combining to form more complex organisms, and 3.) multi-celled organisms evolving into other organisms.

Dating methods are not accurate, but they are based on the irreversible decay of elements. This demonstrates the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which evolution denies. Assumptions built into methods are: 1.) known quantity of original elements, 2.) constant decay rate, and 3.) no contamination of sample. These are generally false. There is no absolute measure of age.

DNA is in all living cells, but there are no intermediate forms leading up to it.

The scientific status of Evolution: Not testable. Not deductive (no direct proof, only inferences). Not observable.


Evolution and Other Fairy Tales reveals the errors of Darwin and his followers. Prof. Azar highlights Darwin's personal beliefs, and the often contradictory beliefs of his fellow evolutionists. This book is a gold mine of facts which reveal the scientific and philosophical problems with the theory of Evolution. The lack of an index makes it a challenge to dig up these facts but there are extensive notes and a large bibliography.

Azar himself seems to favor St. Augustine's view of a single act of creation in which the seeds of all future beings were implanted in the things that were made. In the course of time, these unfolded into all things that proceeded from them. He accepts millions of years of earth history as fact. It should be noted, however, that Augutine's theory of "rational seeds" is not evolutionary. In Augustine's view, these "seeds" possessed their specific natures from the moment of their creation "in the beginning." Augustine speculated that God simply delayed the realization or expression of the seeds of certain organisms until a point in time after the end of the creation period.

Dr. Azar calls the Biblical six-day creation narrative "metaphorical" although practically every Church Father other than Augustine believed it to be literal. The chapter on Fundamentalism maintains that the six-day creation, Flood, and Tower of Babel stories of Genesis are taken literally by Fundamentalists. However, Azar notes that not all creationists are Fundamentalists.

This book is ideal for the serious student of philosophy. Larry Azar has done a comprehensive study of the thinking of Charles Darwin and his supporters. He reveals deeply flawed evolutionary beliefs and a theory without any scientific support.

Reviewed by Eric Bermingham
November 11, 2006

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