Natures Wonders (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Monday, October 31, 2011, 14:42 (2639 days ago) @ dhw
edited by unknown, Monday, October 31, 2011, 14:47

David and I are having fun with woodpeckers.

But we know the woodpecker did start.

No, we don't know how he did!. Can you point to the pre-woodpecker? What paleontology has shown ( Gould) is punctuated equilibrium: species appear de novo.

Darwin's theory doesn't attempt to pin-point the origin of the evolutionary mechanisms, But in my view that doesn't undermine the basic theory.

From his knowledge of his time, he had to assume gradualism.

He didn't claim to know all the hows and whys and wherefores, but he certainly anticipated current trends of research: "A grand and almost untrodden field of inquiry will be opened, on the causes and laws of variation, on correlation of growth, on the effects of use and disuse, on the direct action of external conditions, and so forth." (Origin, Recapitulation and Conclusion) Give the man his due!

I will. Brilliant anticipation, just as we see in saltation and exaptations in the evolutionary process we study in retrospect. The process has many such unexpected findings compared to Darwin. And evolution has all those built-in unanticipated helpers to complexity progression, as with epigenetics. Where did 'they' come from? Again, de novo by chance or designed into the process?

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