Author's theory merges science, religion

Abilene Reporter News

By Celinda Emison

For the Rev. Michael Dowd, the "Gospel of Evolution," is a sacred way of thinking -- a new way to bring science and religion together.Dowd will be in Brownwood Thursday night as part of his monthlong tour of Texas, discussing the topic explained in his book, "Thank God for Evolution."Dowd has gained national and international acclaim promoting the mobile ministry he shares with his wife, Connie Barlow, a science writer who wrote "Evolution Extended" and "The Ghosts of Evolution."The couple have been traveling across the nation for the past six years, speaking in a variety of venues including schools, college campuses and churches.Dowd maintains that his theory "breathes new life into the core values at the heart of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and other religions."

"My program helps people of different religious and philosophical backgrounds find some common ground," Dowd said Monday. "We offer a sacred, meaningful, religious and inspiring theory of evolution."Five Nobel Laureates have endorsed his theory and his book, which is available for a free download on his Web site. He also offers his book and DVDs for sale.Dowd sees science as sacred and proclaims that the 13.7-billion-year epic of evolution is the creation story that all people have in common. His theory blends scientific fact espoused by Darwin with a sensibility that is based on his Christian upbringing.He says his theory appeals to a huge spectrum of the population, including Christians and atheists."Most old-time religions still reflect the flat-earth cosmology of their founders," Dowd said. "We wouldn't let a first-century dentist fill our children's teeth, yet every day we let first-century theologians fill our children's minds."Dowd, an ordained Baptist and Church of Christ minister, has not always been a fan of what he calls "evolution theology.""There was a time when I was eager to argue with anyone who believed that the world was more than 6,000 years old," Dowd has written. "Now I preach the gospel as old as the universe itself."