Fr G.H. Duggan SM

Evolutionism, or, as the Europeans prefer to call it, Transformism, is the theory that the organic world of plants and animals has come into being by a process of change by which a small number of ancestral types in each kingdom, perhaps only one - as Darwin surmised - have given rise to the variety that now confronts us.

It may be extreme, as with Darwin, or moderate, as with Wasmann, L.S. Berg or L. Viaaletin, who postulate a great number of ancestral types, whose descendants form a group of limited size, such as the land Carnivira. But all evolutionists reject Fixism, the theory of Linnaeus that species remain ever the same.

However, Darwin's theory that the variations have resulted from the accumulation of minute variations from the parent stock is incompatible with the fact, established by palaeontology, that the various forms appear suddenly in the strata, fully formed, often in great variety, with no identifiable ancestral type or transitional form which could link them with another group.

To end with a story. The earliest fossiliferous strata are the Cambrian. One day two geologists were working on a 60 foot block of Cambrian shale, which contained 56 different genera of invertebrate animals, all fully formed, with no intermediate forms. "Well Bill", said one man to his colleagues, "it looks mighty like instantaneous creation, doesn't it?"

Silverstream, New Zealand

Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.