We describe the ubiquity of teleological language and thinking throughout biology, as a context for understanding how students think about evolution, as well. Examples can be found in molecular biology, physiology, ecology, and taxonomy, at least. Recent research documents a deep human psychological tendency to attribute purpose or intent (and thus normative meaning) to natural phenomena. We present a possible evolutionary explanation. Still, these cognitive habits help foster scientific errors of projecting human norms onto natural phenomena (what we have elsewhere termed the naturalizing error). Subsequent appeals to “nature” are used (inappropriately) to justify cultural ideologies. Accordingly, we advocate explicit learning about teleological dispositions and their cultural consequences as an essential countermeasure.