According to the Dorrance Publishing page for today’s work-to-be-reviewed:
[Stuart H. McElroy] wrote A New Look at the Universe and Why We Are Here to counteract the theory of evolution and the belief that earth should be as perfect as heaven.
After reading all thirty-two pages of his book, I have no doubt that that is exactly what he set out to do. Now, allow me to retort…
The main thrust of Mr. McElroy’s argument is in favor of intelligent design over the theory of evolution, seeing the hand of a Creator and His “assistants” in the origin and development of all things. For the most part, I’ve heard the majority of ID arguments before and don’t hold them in high regard. I may be a theist myself and respect a theistic view of science, but at the end of the day, I attribute to science what science has revealed and attribute to God what God has revealed. I don’t need to justify the existence of a soul or a higher power in order to believe in it. Faith is a “leap” taken from the limit of our reason and knowledge, a necessary irrational behavior. Trying to muddle faith and science (or selectively use science to justify faith) tends to go badly in my view.
The writing in this book is also in need of some coherence. For one thing, Mr. McElroy has a slight tendency to suddenly take tangent thoughts in the middle of his proofs or thought experiments regarding his metaphysics. Right at the beginning, he suddenly goes into a tangent on the etymology of both his name and his wife’s name, and later on we get this out-of-nowhere line in the middle of his theory about the nature of souls:
Since most girls seem to favor horses, I sometimes wonder if in a pre-human life they were horses. Maybe the boys were apes.
There’s nothing scientific or theological about it. Just a random thought that gets brought up and never followed up on. I nearly put down the book as soon as I read it.
In the end, while I respect A New Look at the Universe and Why We Are Here as a dissertation on Mr. McElroy’s theology, I would not hold it up as a legitimate scientific work even if I did agree with his perspective. That said, if you want to get to know this man’s view about the origins of life on this planet and see where your own reactions lie, I would recommend giving it a look.
I received a complimentary copy of A New Look at the Universe and Why We Are Here as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team. Visit dorrancebookstore.com to learn how you can become a member of the Book Review Team.
Bibliography: McElroy, Stuart H. A New Look at the Universe and Why We Are Here. Pittsburgh: Dorrance Publishing, 2007.