Darwin and genetics have blown up the idea that Adam and Eve had a special creation physically. No new species tends to bottleneck down to two (unless perhaps two stray birds get isolated on an island and start a new species). In any event, geneticists tell us that humans have never had such a species bottleneck. So, if you’re a fundamentalist or religious traditionalist, what can you do to save Adam and Eve?
The Thomist philosopher Edward Feser has a solution: make Adam and Eve have an undetectable special creation of souls. In other words, to save Adam and Eve we need a singular mutation–a soul mutation–to demarcate a new species boundary that is undetectable by geneticists.
That is, Feser posits an event that is beyond any appeal to evidence.
Yes, he’s that brazen.
Recall that an evolutionary lineage (such as from bacteria to you) knows only a continuum, but a literal Adam and Eve can have a discontinuous moment that demarcates them as the beginning of a new species in possession of a power that evolution could not have evolved in them naturally: a soul power. This soul power gets spread to their offspring. (And because Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, think original sin here–and Augustine’s idea that their offspring inherit it.)
So geneticists can be correct materially (humans evolved), but incorrect spiritually (Adam and Eve had a special soul implantation that set them apart from all other members of their species).
Physically, no geneticist says, “With this single mutation, I now declare a new species boundary.” There are numerous mutations from all across a population before one says, “This is different enough to declare a new species.” There’s no single couple so wildly different from their parents, because of a singular mutation, that a new species is declared straight off from that one event.
But theologians don’t have this limitation. They can have God enter the scene and implant souls into two soulless primates that magically transforms them into Adam and Eve–the first true humans. And souls can then spread to their offspring without material detection. Problem solved.