RE: Is evolution really the central theory for all of biology?

From: Bill Hamilton <>
Date: Thu Sep 22 2005 - 09:18:17 EDT

Before we leave this topic, at the risk of saying something that has already been said, here's my take:
I'm probably biased because I'm trained as an electrical engineer -- meaning that my view of the sciences is the so-called "hard" sciences -- chiefly physics. To an individual with a physics background, evolution looks "messy". If we could have more fossils and could recover more genetic material from ancient life forms, perhap it wouldn't be so messy. An article in a now defunct magazine called Scientific Research ~1967 dealt with the Wistar Symposium in which Professor Murray Eden brought up some mathematical challenges to the theory of evolution. They interviewed Eden and among other things he mentioned a paper submitted to one of his colleagues for review. The paper discussed the evolutionary implications of the dominance of a particular variety of rodent (I believe) in a particular location. To see what would happen, Eden changed the variety and circulated the paper to colleagues for comment. Soon evolutionary explanations came back. The article implied that this pointe
 d out a
 flaw in the theory of evolution. I think it just points out that evolution is an incomplete model, but still very useful for understanding how life has developed in a systematic way and for making some kinds of predictions. It does not now have the precision of say classical physics, but it is still a useful model. (And we all know that classical physics is an approximation of relativistic physics (at high gravity/high speed) and quantum mechanics (at the quantum level))

Dick Fischer <> wrote:

Cornelius brought this up:


… a paper out of Doolittle's lab has called for a "relaxation of tree thinking."


This is a good example of scientists doing what scientists do and the great unwashed, not steeped in science, reaching errant conclusions. The “tree of life” with more and more fossils having been found has developed into more of a “bush.” Richard Leakey pointed this out in his book, Origins Revisited. Note the title of his book. With new discovery of fossil evidence, branches are reshaped when the evidence accumulates. No one with any sense denies the interconnectedness of life, but exactly where and when branching occurred gets revised with new discovery as it should, that’s how science works.


~Dick Fischer~ Genesis Proclaimed Association

Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History


Bill Hamilton
William E. Hamilton, Jr., Ph.D.
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Received on Thu Sep 22 09:21:15 2005

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