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Theories of Evolution

Jonathan Paul Carson jpc4e at dayhoff.med.Virginia.EDU
Thu Aug 25 13:50:22 EST 1994

I've gotten some comments (very helpful ones, actually) about
my last posting.  

I never claimed to dethrone Darwin or uphold some
Bible-thumping view.  I never wished to throw aside all of the
subtlety in the available models we know of in population
genetics by speaking plainly and generally.  I never wanted to
preach the emergence of some Gaian global New Age consciousness.
Lovelock and Margulis are visionaries whom I admire, though; I
suspect that they are unhappy with the negative attention they've
gotten from crystal-brandishing gurus and cyncial hard-nosed
skeptics, alike.

A fully-fleshed out idea is not necessarily a good one (due to
the fact that it is always a bit *too* exclusive); a half-baked
idea is not necessarily a bad one (inspiration moves science
along just as reductionist logic gives form to good ideas).

All I wanted to   posit   was the notion that evolution and
its underlying biochemical mechanisms is still a *dynamic*
field that generates much excitement among myself and others--
admittedly I have to brush up on my understanding of genetics
(and will do so very soon).  I mean dynamic in the sense that
molecular biology and the study of evolution are not merely
tools with which to continue the never-ending (and futile)
dissection of life.  They might possibly converge to yield some
powerful and far-reaching concepts of the whole.  I mean, be
serious.  Does anyone study a living being as if it were a damn
clock with just a lot of pieces?  If you do, I wonder how you
look at your collegues and those you call friends.


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