Eye Evolution: Assumption, Not Science | The Institute for Creation Research
Eye Evolution: Assumption, Not Science

The vertebrate eye is very well-constructed. Its many critical parts work together so that individual light photons are captured and converted into data that the brain then translates into a coherent visual image. Considering the obvious genius and purpose in eye design, claims that mindless natural processes formed the eye can only be made by ignoring the laws of logic.

Recently, Australian neuroscientist Trevor Lamb wrote a Scientific American article titled "Evolution of the Eye." He included a narrated history, as if he had witnessed an actual eyeball evolve. But instead of providing scientific evidence, his presentation relied on logical fallacies.

First, Lamb granted god-like intelligence to an inanimate force he termed "selective pressures." He wrote, "As body size increased, so, too, did the selective pressures favoring the evolution of another type of eye: the camera [vertebrate] variety." But only an intelligent agent—not passive, unthinking environmental factors—could fashion the massive collection of interdependent parts that form vertebrate eyes. Lamb also wrote that "natural selection…tinkers with the material available to it," when in reality only persons can "tinker."1

The article made eye evolution easier to imagine by excluding the complicated design details of eye anatomy. How, step by step, would "selection" have precisely positioned the 12 muscles that adroitly move the eyeball in its socket, including the one that uses a pulley to properly swivel the eyes?2 And even if perfectly formed eyes and eye-moving muscles had somehow managed to evolve, the apparatus still would have been useless without the involuntary computations that make both the left and right eyes move in concert. In addition to overlooking these vital features, Lamb gave no explanation for how "selective pressures" could have programmed the brain to convert raw light input into discernable mental images.

Lamb wrote, "Biologists have recently made significant advances in tracing the origin of the eye—by studying how it forms in developing embryos." He suggested that embryonic eye development moves from simple to complicated in a pattern similar to eyeball evolution. But embryo eyes have to begin small and are therefore relatively simple at the start. Assuming, with no objective evidence, that embryonic development mirrors an evolutionary past merely begs the question of an evolutionary origin.

In other words, one can use embryonic development to conclude that the vertebrate eye evolved only if one takes for granted that "many aspects of the development of an individual mirror events that occurred during the evolution of its ancestors."1 This uses evolution to prove evolution—a clearly illogical circle.

In telling his eye evolution story, Lamb used terms such as tinkers, diverged, proliferated, arose, arisen, favoring, insert themselves, invention, modified, emergence, and evolved—ignoring the fact that no one has ever observed unthinking, undirected "selective pressures" doing or causing any of those things. These "magic" words mask evolution's lack of real scientific explanations for eye origins and "convey wish-like convictions that if evolutionists just believe deeply enough, their explanations must be true and someday will be true—though currently resisted by all scientific evidence."3

Magic words and logical fallacies are miserable substitutes for science or reason, but they are apparently the best explanatory tools available to those who are determined to find a purely naturalistic cause for eye origins. Based on the evidence, the most logical source for the masterfully designed eye is a Master Designer.

References

  1. Lamb, T. D. 2011. Evolution of the Eye. Scientific American. 305 (1): 64-69.
  2. Gurney, P. 2002. Our eye movements and their control: part 1. Journal of Creation (formerly TJ). 16 (3): 111-115.
  3. Guliuzza, R. 2010. Unmasking Evolution's Magic Words. Acts & Facts. 39 (3): 10-11.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on August 29, 2011.

The Latest
COVID-19
Some Fake Coronavirus News Used to Spread Malware
As a systems administrator, I see thousands of emails come in where someone is trying to get a user to click on a link. A lot of these are just plain old...

NEWS
Traces of "Oldest Ancestor" Found
A new study released on March 23, 2020, claims that evolutionary scientists have identified the oldest human ancestor. The fossil evidence for this assertion...

COVID-19
Three Positives from COVID-19
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is no surprise to God. God knew about this pandemic before the dawn of His creation. Some people may question why God allows such...

COVID-19
The Gospel and COVID-19
It is obvious that life in America, and most parts of the world, has drastically changed in the last few months due to the novel coronavirus. Whether we...

COVID-19
A Time for Firsts Amid COVID-19
All of us have experience with firsts, and today is no exception as America sails through the uncharted waters of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19)....

COVID-19
What’s the Difference Between Virus and Bacteria?
As we are embroiled in a worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to know the basics of these tragic viral infections and why the medical community...

NEWS
ICR Beginning Search for a New President
As was noted in my article “Biblical Succession” in the April issue of Acts & Facts, the ICR Board of Trustees has authorized a national...

COVID-19
Potential Coronavirus Treatments Enter Large Clinical Trials
Some good news in potential treatment options for COVID-19 was reported in the American journal Science.1 Four new treatment options were being...

NEWS
Yellowstone Supervolcano Unlikely to Blow
For several years, secular scientists have been predicting a possible supervolcano eruption at Yellowstone National Park. Recently, the London Daily Mail...

NEWS
Deep Water Squid Communication Mystifies Scientists
In the deep, dark, cold waters of the Pacific Ocean—about 1,500 feet below the surface— hundreds of Humboldt squid the size of small humans...