Jan 14, 2020
Because many Latter-day Saints, as well as many people in
general, have not been taught evolution very well, they will often
dismiss it out of hand, especially when it it encroaches upon their
understandings of the origins of human beings. Likewise, it is very
unlikely that they have explored the evolutionary process, along
with the environment, all of nature, and persons in a web of life,
as wonderful gateways to spiritual exploration and transformative
In this Latter-day Faith podcast episode, host Dan Wotherspoon is joined by evolutionary biology professor T. Heath Ogden in an effort to focus on the spiritual sensibilities that go hand in hand with evolution as the creative force that brings forth change, increased complexity, specialization, and the ever-widening diversity that is produced through its quiet but powerful work. They don't delve here into the nuts and bolts of the basic processes (so no real biology lessons here) as much as engage each other in an effort to convey how their understandings and acceptance of this process have enriched their spiritual understandings and vitality for life, including a greater appreciation for their fellow beings as also part of this pathway to growth, development, and flourishing.
There is a spirituality in the study of nature and in immersion
in the natural world that, when experienced, changes us, grounds
us, and brings forth in us greater compassion, gratitude, and also
a greater appreciation for all life and its significance--including
our own lives. Toward the end of the discussion, they also wrestle
together about how the concept and reality of God might or might
not enhance and inform, or perhaps distract and obscure, all the
wondrous views of life and energy that are ours to experience,
should we allow ourselves to do so.
We hope you'll listen in!