Posts Tagged ‘Scientific American’
In The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin used “imaginary illustrations” to develop his case for natural selection: “In order to make it clear how, as I believe, natural selection acts, I must beg permission to give one or two imaginary illustrations.”
The use of imaginary tales can be traced back to Greek mythology. Thales of Miletus (640–545 BC) reasoned that “all things are water,” and that the Earth rests on water and life originates from water. Anaximander (610–546 BC), a student of Miletus, extended his theory by claiming the “life had evolved from moisture”; and that “man developed from fish”—the origin of the mermaid myth. Continue Reading
In The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin describes the process of evolution: “I do believe that natural selection will generally act very slowly, only over long periods of time…. natural selection acts slowly by accumulating slight, successive, favorable variations.”
Australian paleontologist, John A. Long article entitled “Dawn of the Deed”, published in the January 2011 issue of Scientific America, highlights his recent fossil fish findings in the grassy paddocks of the Gogo Station, a vast cattle ranch located in the heart of northwestern Australia.
Surprisingly, Long’s new findings, rather than demonstrating “slight, successive” changes, however, only stands to symbolize fossil record problem, a problem painfully known by Darwin, “The distinctiveness of specific forms and their not being blended together in innumerable transitional links is a very obvious difficulty”.