Evolution, at least according to Darwinism, doesn't work on the premise that "all things improve". Rather, it works because of the interaction of random mutation and environmental selection pressures. If a mutation suits an organism better that what was previously in place, then the environment selects for it, regardless of whether that represents an "improvement". Cave fishes don't benefit from having eyes, and they don't have them, the theory being that they once did have them, but then found themselves in an environment which was completely dark. Any mutation that resulted in the loss of eyes wouldn't then have been disadvantageous; in fact would have been beneficial because the fish wouldn't then have to waste energy in the production or maintenance of eyes. IOW, in Darwinian evolution, things don't necessarily "improve"; it would be more accurate to say that things become better adapted to their preferred environment. This could result in loss of features as much as gain or refinement of features. So, for instance, the Slowworm is actually a lizard that has lost its legs. Is the Slowworm an improvement on a standard lizard? Not at all; probably more accurate to say that it functions adequately in the environment it prefers, viz subterranean or amongst grass or vegetation (https://allyouneedisbiology.wordpress.com/2015/07/06/apodus-lizards/). Actually, this level of evolution (microevolution) is pretty well explained in Darwinian terms, but Darwinism doesn't explain the relative rapidity of the Cambrian or later mammalian explosions, for example. Here I would agree that overall, the tendency has been for organisms to become "improved", albeit that this improvement may only be relative to specific environments. A whale is only "improved" with respect to an aquatic environment, not a terrestrial one, for example. But what about complexity? Isn't it true that over time, organisms have tended to become more complex? Haven't they progressed from unicellular to multicellular organisms of increasing sophistication? In general, I think they have. And we shouldn't be hasty in concluding that the giant panda is an example of an organism that has regressed. Its hand is rather remarkable in that it has developed something akin to an opposable thumb: an extra appendage developed from wrist bone that enables it to grip bamboo shoots. It's believed to be a true bear, and if so, then in respect of other bears, it could be argued that it's more advanced rather than less advanced. And it's certainly more sophisticated than are reptiles, which are in turn more sophisticated than invertebrates. In a more philosophical vein, I haven't read Freke's book and hence don't fully comprehend what he's saying. But for my money, I tend to think that evolution is indeed the "prime directive" as it were. Everything is (or at any rate all organisms are) striving for more complexity/sophistication, and lying behind this is some force or entity that is the causative agent. I look at the universe from a top-down rather than bottom-up perspective, which latter is the tendency of modern science: which is why, I believe, it has entered a period of stasis in which relatively few new plausible theories are arising, and why it's increasingly becoming fossilised and fanciful in its outlook.