By Julian S. Huxley, Theodosius Dobzhansky, Reinhold Niebuhr, Oliver L. Reiser, Swami Nikhilananda
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Extra resources for A Book that Shook the World: Essays on Charles Darwin's Origin of Species
The Hellenic component of our culture sharpened the rational instruments for the advances of all our sciences by its assumption that there were rational elements in nature which the reason of the mind could explore. Mind and nature had affinities insofar as the penetration of the one could explore the consistencies of the other. Nature is rational in terms of its consistent coherences, which is why mathematics and physics are so closely related. The inner consistencies of mind are related to these natural consistencies, which is why logic and mathematics are so closely related.
And yet, changes lasting for several years have also been observed in the same species of Drosophila. Some of them are apparently due to climatic variations, others are perhaps of a more permanent character. Competition and Cooperation The century which has elapsed since Darwin and Wallace first formulated their theory of natural selection has not only strengthened the factual basis of the theory but also changed the emphasis in studies on the action of selective processes. Darwin acknowledged that the idea of natural selection was suggested to him by the writings of Malthus, who argued that the growth of human populations tends to outrun their food supply.
But this is not the way the living bodies have developed. The body of man, or of any other organism, is a product of a historical process extending back for perhaps two billion years, to the dawn of life. It did not arise by a lucky throw of the genetic dice - it developed and became perfected, slowly and laboriously, by trial and error of countless changes which have arisen on the way, the tremendous majority of which were rejected as unsuitable. Fisher correctly said that natural selection is a means whereby things in the highest degree improbable may be realized.
A Book that Shook the World: Essays on Charles Darwin's Origin of Species by Julian S. Huxley, Theodosius Dobzhansky, Reinhold Niebuhr, Oliver L. Reiser, Swami Nikhilananda