Holistic knowledge (see at http://quranscienceblog.blogspot.com) can be developed only based on the Quran. Atheism has no scientific basis. This blog is devoted to expose the nefarious plans of the atheist lobby to distort science and level it against theism.
My website: www.islamicscience.in
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
6. Pseudoscientific Theories to Promote Atheism: Darwin’s Theory of Evolution
British naturalist Charles Darwin published the book On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Lifein 1859, which formed the basis of the theory of evolution . Darwin utilized his vast knowledge about biodiversity generated from observation of nature to build his views about the origin of biological organisms. Darwin believed that species were mutable and could give rise to newer forms if beneficial heritable variation occurred. In this way new species evolved as descent with modification. He assumed heritable variations occur in species by chance. He further assumed there is severe competition between species leading to struggle for existence. If any variation occurs in an individual that helps it in some way to outcompete, that individual survives and the variation is transmitted down to future generations. In this way the variation gets preserved in the population. He called this mechanism “natural selection”. According to the theory, natural selection is a purposeless, unconscious mechanism driven by chance whose result is supposed to take geologic time for manifestation. Gradual accumulation of small variations ultimately leads to speciation.
With the publication of Theodosius Dobzhansky’s book Genetics and the Origin of Species  in 1937 the evolutionary theory started being understood and appreciated as genetic change in populations. This led to the development of “synthetic theory” (also called “modern synthesis” or “neo-Darwinism”). Compared to Darwinism, the modern synthesis gives more emphasis to random genetic drift than to natural selection. It recognizes that genes are discrete entities through which characteristics are inherited and the existence of multiple alleles of a gene is responsible for variation within a population. Speciation occurs as a consequence of gradual accumulation of small genetic changes.
Although Darwin’s theory has been widely publicized, it has not been possible to defend the hypothesis with scientific evidence. We also do not find proof in real situation to substantiate his arguments. On the other hand, evidences and findings are mounting against the theory. In his book, Darwinism: The Refutation of a Myth, Soren Lovtrup, professor of zoophysiology at Universityof Umea, Sweden, points out a very important fact about the critics of Darwinism. He states: “Some critics turned against Darwin’s teachings for religious reasons, but they were a minority; most of his opponents…argued on a completely scientific basis.” He goes on to explain so many reasons for the rejection of Darwin’s proposal. “…first of all that many innovations cannot possibly come into existence through accumulation of many small steps, and even if they can, natural selection cannot accomplish it, because incipient and intermediate stages are not advantageous.” . Lovtrup’s remarks in effect clear the misunderstanding of many people who think that the theory is opposed only by religious leaders. Scores of scientists have either rejected it or are skeptical about it.
Is Darwin’s theory scientific?
Over the past century and a half, biologists have been hailing the theory as scientifically proven fact. A brief review of the evolutionary literature is made here to show this is a wild claim far from truth. The theory is examined here from two angles namely, whether the assumptions of the theory have been scientifically validated, and whether predictions of the theory have been proved correct.
a) Invalid assumptions
The strength of a theory lies primarily on the validity of its assumptions. Three important assumptions of the evolutionary theory namely, a) competition exists between species, b) heritable variations occur in the organisms by random chance processes (mutations), and c) natural selection offers a mechanism for evolution, are examined here.
Darwin assumes there is severe competition between species leading to struggle for existence. “A struggle for existence inevitably follows from the high rate at which all organic beings tend to increase” [1, p. 55]. “Nothing is easier than to admit in words the truth of universal struggle for life” [1, p. 54].
Darwin’s assumption of high rate of increase of organic beings as the cause of competition implies that both intraspecific competition (competition among the members of the same species) and interspecific competition (competition between species) exist in nature. Ironically we find the parents taking care of their children who are their ‘enemies’ according to Darwin. Darwin’s assumption that evolution of new structures or innovations enables a species to outcompete the others and that results in its survival is perhaps the most misleading idea by which he fools the world, more so his followers. Darwin’s theory is a circular argument. If competition is present in nature, that should also be a product of evolution. This means evolution only creates competition and does not eliminate it. There is no rationale for the argument that evolution takes place for enabling the species to overcome the competition (for its survival) when evolution itself is responsible for creating that competition. Is this science?
The existence of competition between species in nature is a distortion of facts. What we find is cooperation and harmony among species in an ecosystem. Struggle for existence due to competition between species is the key factor required to sustain Darwin’s model of biological evolution. Do conditions leading to competition of such magnitude prevail for a long time anywhere on this planet for natural selection to operate? Active competition in contemporary assemblages has often been inferred from the degree of niche overlap displayed, and invoked to explain observed patterns of distribution, abundance and behaviour. Studies conducted with lotic fish communities at the University of Southampton, U.K., showed little unequivocal evidence for the occurrence of interspecific competition because there exists no definitive relationship between similarity of resources use and degree of competition . Peter Kropotkin was a Russian revolutionary anarchist and a critic of Darwinism.He categorically denied that evolution resulted from struggle for life. Kropotkin could not accept Thomas Huxley’s (a staunch believer and protagonist of Darwinism) ‘gladiatorial’ Darwinism as valid: “They conceive of the animal world as a world of perpetual struggle among half-starved individuals, thirsting for one another’s blood.” Stephen Jay Gould devotes a full chapter in his book Bully for Brontosarus presenting Kropotkin’s views on biological evolution based on cooperation . Coexistence of species is a natural reality. A time-tested proof against competition is ‘plankton paradox’. Application of the principle of competitive exclusion, i.e., the species with greater competitive ability will crowd out the less competitive one, seems to contradict with some of the well known facts (referred to as paradoxes). The plankton organisms use the same resources. All plankton algae use solar energy and minerals dissolved in the water. There are not so many variations in mineral components to account for the large variability in plankton algae species . In other words diverse species of algae coexist with identical resource requirement without competition and mutual exclusion.
Random chance mutations
Darwin says: “…we may feel sure that any variation in the least degree injurious would be rigidly destroyed. This preservation of favourable variations and the rejection of injurious variations, I call Natural Selection.” [1, p. 69]. First, the very assumption that “any variation in the least degree would be rigidly destroyed” is itself wrong because even the first ever organism evolved with the most lethal attribute – death!The variation referred to by Darwin is the genetic variation. Heritable variation is supposed to be caused by genetic (DNA) mutation. It is now well established that spontaneous mutation is extremely rare and even if it occurs, it is mostly deleterious to the organism. Nevertheless, the evolutionary theory leans heavily on the occurrence of these random mutations.
Francis Crick, L. M. Murkhin, and Carl Sagan had estimated that the difficulty of evolving man by chance processes alone is 1 in 102,000,000,000 whichaccording to Borel’s law is no chance at all . Orthodox Darwinists however believe that despite the tremendous odds against evolution, the large amount of time involved somehow makes the impossible possible. Unfortunately, the argument that time alone solves the difficulty of probability considerations, is not only intellectually uncomfortable but also preposterous. For example, Borel’s “Single Law of Chance” declares that when the odds are beyond 10200 (on a cosmic scale) an event will never occur, no matter how much time is involved . Stephen C. Meyer, Director of Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture, U.S.A., in an excellent comprehensive review of the evolutionary literature discusses the problems and difficulties in the evolution of novel genetic information through random mutations . A typical gene contains over one thousand precisely arranged bases. For any specific arrangement of four nucleotide bases of length n, there is a corresponding number of possible arrangements of bases, 4n. For any protein, there are 20n possible arrangements of protein-forming amino acids. A gene 999 bases in length represents one of 4999 possible nucleotide sequences; a protein of 333 amino acids is one of 20333 possibilities. Since the 1960s, biologists have thought functional proteins to be rare among the set of possible amino acid sequences. The presumed ability of mutation and selection to generate information in the form of novel genes and proteins has been questioned by many scientists and mathematicians. Morris cited work relating to site-directed mutagenesis on a 150-residue protein-folding domain within a B-lactamase enzyme. On the basis of these experiments, he estimated that the probability of finding a functional protein among the possible amino acid sequences corresponding to a 150-residue protein is 1 in 1077 . These observations question the possibility of evolution of organisms requiring new genetic information. The Cambrian explosion is a case in point. The “Cambrian explosion” which is also called “biology’s big bang” refers to the geologically sudden appearance of many new animal body plans about 530 million years ago. At this time, at least nineteen, and perhaps as many as thirty-five phyla of forty total made their first appearance on earth within a narrow five- to ten-million-year window of geologic time. Many new subphyla, between 32 and 48 of 56 total  and classes of animals also arose at this time with their members displaying significant morphological innovations. The Cambrian explosion thus marked a major episode of morphogenesis in which many new and diverse organismal forms arose in a geologically short period of time . New Cambrian animals would require proteins much longer than 100 residues to perform many necessary specialized functions . Cambrian animals would have required complex proteins such as lysyl oxidase in order to support their stout body structures . Lysyl oxidase molecules in extant organisms comprise over 400 amino acids. These molecules are both highly complex (non-repetitive) and functionally specified. Reasonable extrapolation from mutagenesis experiments done on shorter protein molecules suggests that the probability of producing functionally sequenced proteins of this length at random is so small as to make appeals to chance absurd, even granting the duration of the entire universe. DNA mutation rates are far too low to generate the novel genes and proteins necessary to building the Cambrian animals, given the most probable duration of the explosion as determined by fossil studies . According to Ohno , even a mutation rate of 10-9 per base pair per year results in only a 1% change in the sequence of a given section of DNA in 10 million years. Thus, mutational divergence of preexisting genes cannot explain the origin of the Cambrian forms in that time.
Histone H4 and H3 lack functional intermediates in eukaryotes. Histone H3 is one of the slowest ‘evolving’ proteins known (1,000 times more slowly than the apolipoproteins). That would mean about 1-2 (non-synonymous) substitutions per nucleotide per trillion (=1,000,000,000,000 or 1012 ) years! That is, the time for Histone H3 and H4 to substitute one amino acid is longer than the age of the Earth, our solar system and the universe .
Discovery of the phenomenon of cell-directed mutagenesis by Miroslav Radman was another blow to the theory of evolution. He showed that bacteria harboured a genetic program to make mutations. At that time, no one believed this heretical proposal . Many evolutionary biologists were skeptical about this discovery because genetic mutation was believed to be a random phenomenon. Obviously, the scientists refuse to think beyond Darwinism. In 1988 another report of cell-induced mutagenesis appeared in the literature, which was more startling than Radman’s. Molecular biologist John Cairns and his colleagues at the Harvard School of Public Health demonstrated that bacteria could induce specific mutations depending on their environmental conditions . As expected, the evolutionists gave only a cold shoulder to this discovery because cell-directed mutagenesis indicates that there is built-in mechanism in the cell by which the organism can induce required changes at times of need.
Darwin assumed “natural selection” as the mechanism of organic evolution. “Owing to this struggle for life, any variation, however slight and from whatever cause proceeding, if it be in any degree profitable to an individual of any species, in its infinitely complex relations to other organic beings and to external nature, will tend the preservation of that individual, and will generally be inherited by its offspring….I have called this principle, by which each slight variation, if useful, is preserved, by the term of Natural Selection” [1, p. 53]. “It may be said that natural selection is daily and hourly scrutinizing throughout the world, every variation, even the slightest; rejecting that which is bad, preserving and adding up all that is good; silently and insensibly working …” [1, p. 71]. Natural selection implies that a structure evolves through accumulation of a series of beneficial variations in an individual of a species.
Many scientists have questioned the very rationale behind natural selection. Stephen Jay Gould remarks: “…how do you get from nothing to such an elaborate something if evolution must proceed through a long sequence of intermediate stages, each favored by natural selection? You can’t fly with 2% of a wing or gain much protection from an iota’s similarity with a potentially concealing piece of vegetation. How, in other words, can natural selection explain these incipient stages of structures that can only be used (as we now observe them) in much more elaborated form?” . Cohen writes in his book Darwin Was Wrong: A Study in Probabilities: “‘Survival of the fittest’ and ‘natural selection.’ No matter what phraseology one generates, the basic fact remains the same: any physical change of any size, shape or form is strictly the result of purposeful alignment of billions of nucleotides (in the DNA). Nature or species do not have the capacity for rearranging them, nor adding to them. Consequently no leap (saltation) can occur from one species to another. The only way we know for a DNA to be altered is through a meaningful intervention from an outside source of intelligence: one who knows what it is doing, such as our genetic engineers are now performing in their laboratories.” .
Results of several scientific studies also question the existence of a mechanism called natural selection. Robert Macnab of Yale University concludes his elaborate and thorough review of the sensory and motor mechanism of the bacterium, E. coli, with the following thought-provoking remarks: “As a final comment, one can only marvel at the intricacy in a simple bacterium, of the total motor and sensory system which has been the subject of this review…that our concept of evolution by selective advantage must surely be an oversimplification. What advantage could derive, for example, from a “preflagellum” (meaning a subset of its components), and yet what is the probability of “simultaneous” development of the organelle at a level where it becomes advantageous?” . The report of the restricted role of natural selection in evolution by Weinreich and his colleagues from Harvard University is another frontal attack on the efficiency of the much hyped evolutionary mechanism. They demonstrated the haplessness of natural selection, the driving force behind evolution. “Five point mutations in a particular ß-lactamase allelejointly increase bacterial resistance to a clinically importantantibiotic by a factor of 100,000. In principle, evolution tothis high-resistance ß-lactamase might follow anyof the 120 mutational trajectories linking these alleles. However,we demonstrate that 102 trajectories are inaccessible to Darwinianselection and that many of the remaining trajectories have negligibleprobabilities of realization…. we conclude that muchprotein evolution will be similarly constrained…” .
Motoo Kimura’s neutral theory is another, which questioned natural selection. Orthodox Darwinists did not like Kimura’s theory, because he maintained that all-powerful natural selection was not powerful at all. At the molecular level, the power of natural selection was greatly minimized. Molecular variation in proteins and DNA that had no influence on the fitness of the individual organism was observed, i.e., selectively neutral, questioning the importance of natural selection in the traditional areas of morphology and anatomy .
These and many other reports clearly indicate that natural selection is not operating in nature and hence to consider it as the mechanism of evolution is in itself meaningless.
b) Failure of predictions
A theory like evolutionary theory is best verified by the success of its predictions. The theory predicts many things that are verifiable. But none of the predictions is scientifically proved. Evidences are against the predictions of the theory.
Despite the scientific inadequacies of the assumptions, the only possible natural evidence that would have swayed in favour of the theory is the fossil record showing intermediate forms predicted by the theory. Darwin stated: “…the number of intermediate and transitional links between all living and extinct species, must have been inconceivably great. But assuredly, if this theory be true, such have lived upon this earth.” [1, p. 231]. “Lastly, looking not to any one time, but to all time, if my theory be true, numberless intermediate varieties, linking most closely all the species of the same group together, must assuredly have existed; but the very process of natural selection constantly tends, as has been so often remarked, to exterminate the parent forms and the intermediate links.Consequently evidence of their former existence could be found only amongst fossil remains…” [1, p. 149-150]. But the fossil record did not live up to Darwin’s expectations. It is barren for transitional forms. Darwin’s reaction to the absence of intermediate forms is: “Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory. The explanation lies, as I believe, in the extreme imperfection of the geological record.” [1, p. 230]. His remark about the imperfection of the fossil is unscientific and uncalled for. It is Darwin’s theory and not Nature that necessitated the intermediate forms and it is Darwin who predicted their presence in the geological record.
Whatever argument evolutionists may advance, the geological record is against Darwin’s theory. It shows that no intermediate forms as envisaged by the theory ever lived on this planet. The lack of transitional forms in the fossil record thus prompted Darwin to state: “He who rejects these views on the nature of the geological record will rightly reject my whole theory. For he may ask in vain where are the numberless transitional links which must formerly have connected the closely allied or representative species, found in the several stages of the same great formation.” [1, p. 279-280]. To call nature’s archive of biodiversity as imperfect for the reason that it does not agree with one’s idea is something unheard of and unthinkable in science. There are many theories in physical and chemical sciences that provide predictions to enable us to verify their veracity. But in the event of failure of a prediction, no one would consider the theory is correct and the natural evidence wrong!
If natural evidence goes against the predictions of a theory, it is preposterous to defend it by perfunctory arguments. It is a fact that Darwin knew there were no organic gradations in the fossil record even before he proposed the theory. But he deliberately ignored that and chose to cover it up by declaring the natural archive of biological history as incomplete! No evolutionist would have doubted the perfection of the fossil record if Darwin’s theory had not predicted transitional forms. In no other field of science can one find such unethical move to deliberately misinterpret natural formation in defense of a theory. David Raup, the curator of the Chicago Field Museum of Natural History commented in 1979 on the situation of the missing link thus: “Well, we are now about 120 years after Darwin, and knowledge of the fossil record has been greatly expanded. Ironically, we have even fewer examples of evolutionary transition than we had in Darwin’s time. By this I mean that some of the classic cases of Darwinian change in the fossil record, such as the evolution of the horse in North America, have had to be discarded or modified as the result of more detailed information.” .
The theory of punctuated equilibrium (PE) proposed by Eldredge and Gould literally shook the very foundation of Darwinism namely, phyletic gradualism. According to Prothero, their work not only showed that paleontologists had been out of step with biologists for decades, but also that they had been unconsciously trying to force the fossil record into the gradualistic mode . The PE does not support gradualism, the backbone of Darwin’s theory. Naturally, the gradualists started a frontal attack at PE. The debate still goes on. The minds of paleontologists were deep set in gradualism. As Eldredge and Gould observed, “the paleontologists were raised in a tradition inherited from Darwin known as phyletic gradualism, which sought out the gradual transitions between species in the fossil record.” .
If evolution takes place in steps, intermediate forms of emerging species with new organs or body parts in various stages of development will have to be present at all times – past, present and future. But we do not find intermediate forms or incomplete body parts among extant organisms. Among the two million or so documented species, not one of them has been identified by taxonomists as intermediate form; all of them have been described as perfect species clearly indicating that transitional forms as predicted by Darwin’s theory do not occur in nature. The absence of intermediate forms in the existing biodiversity, besides the lack of transitional forms in the fossil record, invalidates Darwin’s theory of origin of species.
Usefulness of a structure to other species
“Natural selection cannot possibly produce any modification in any one species exclusively for the good of another species; though throughout nature one species incessantly takes advantage of, and profits by, the structure of another” [1, p. 167]. This statement is against the spirit of natural selection proposed by Darwin. If a species can take advantage of the structures of another species, competition is nullified and natural selection is disabled. Further Darwin tries to hide this contradiction by stressing on exclusivity. Darwin puts up the challenge: “If it could be proved that any part of the structure of any one species had been formed for the exclusive good of another species, it would annihilate my theory for such could not have been produced through natural selection” [1, p. 167]. In the next breath, however, he presents an example that would annihilate his theory. “One of the strongest instances of an animal apparently performing an action for the sole good of another, with which I am acquainted, is that of aphids voluntarily yielding their sweet excretion to ants….” [1, p. 175]. But Darwin treats this case as not a challenge to his theory. He remarks: “But as the excretion is extremely viscid, it is probably a convenience to the aphids to have it removed….” [1, p. 175]. How strange the arguments and counterarguments are! Any number of cases of evolution of organs and parts in organisms for the exclusive use of other organisms can be cited. For example, banana fruit is of no use to banana plant but serves as food for other species; similarly many plants produce tubers not required for them but useful to others.
Extinction of old species
“The theory of natural selection is grounded on the belief that each new variety, and ultimately each new species, is produced and maintained by having some advantage over those with which it comes into competition; and the consequent extinction of less-favoured forms almost inevitably follows.” [1, p. 261-262]. “The extinction of old forms is the almost inevitable consequence of the production of new forms” [1, p. 280]. How could Darwin make such a prediction when there exist millions of older species including the most primitive single-celled organisms on the earth? Although the theory predicts their extinction as soon as new forms evolved, they are all there even after the evolution of the so-called newer species millions of years ago.
Descent with modification
‘Evolutionary tree’ is the representation of the concept of descent with modification through the portrayal of the common ancestries assumed to have been shared by diverse species. Evolutionists use structural, anatomical, morphological or traditional homology for the purpose on the assumption that phenotypic similarities between species are inherited from common ancestral species. Besides these, genetic homology called molecular homology also exists. This homology is based on DNA sequence. From the genetic point of view, the evolutionary tree is a portrayal of the evolutionary history based on genetic relationships. It is also called phylogenetic tree. Since the idea hinges on genetic lineage, the similarities among organisms are considered to be the result of genetic relationships among them .
The ‘similar genes’ found in two species need not be an indicator of a common ancestor.For instance, a paper published in PloS Biology in 2006 says: “Genome analyses are delivering unprecedented amounts of data from an abundance of organisms, raising expectations that in the near future, resolving the tree of life (TOL) will simply be a matter of data collection. However, recent analyses of some key clades in life’s history have produced bushes and not resolved trees… Whereas genomic analyses have shown that at the species level, chimpanzees are humans’ closest relatives…, many of the genes and genomic segments examined have followed different evolutionary paths.” . Therefore deduction of phylogeny of a species from the phylogeny of a gene is not correct. As Crawford mentioned, phylogenies generated from sequences of a protein represent the phylogeny of the gene encoding the protein, and may or may not be equivalent to the phylogeny of the species . A particularly unexpected outcome of the studies in this field is that structures traditionally viewed as being analogous are regulated in their development by genes that are clearly homologous. We must accept that homology is usually a hypothesis about evolutionary history rather than a deduced matter of fact .
Genomic similarity is the norm for determining the phylogeny. Basically, comparative genomics is a description of the matches between genomes. The most glaring omission in the stories constructed from genomic data is the comparison of phenotypic similarities vis a vis genomic similarities. Without describing the genome-phenome correspondence, genomic comparison of two species is of no value. For instance, the argument that man evolved from chimpanzee makes no sense without specifying the phenotypic similarities conferred by the 98% genomic similarity shown by these species. In reality we find man and chimp are different in every phenotypic aspect. In the absence of demonstration of genome-phenome correspondence between the assumed ancestor and the species evolved from it, the idea of descent with modification (phylogenetic tree) loses its scientific appeal.
The rooting of the evolutionary tree has also come under fire. Evolutionary biologists look at the universal tree of life as being consisted of three domains: the ordinary bacteria, the Archaea which are microbes best known for living in extreme environments and the eukaryotes (eukarya) including man having nucleated cells . From the comparisons of the genes encoding ribosomal RNAs of the microbes it was assumed that life began with some primitive bacteria. These then branched into Archaea, modern bacteria and later to eukaryotes. However, comparisons of DNA sequences of other kinds of genes had led to varied versions of the evolutionary tree making the tree of life more confusing rather than more focusing. “More genomes have only further blurred the branching pattern of the tree of life. Some blame shanghaied genes; others say the tree is wrong.” .
Woese proposed the concept of the ‘universal ancestor’ to look at the rooting of the evolutionary tree . The ancestor according to this model is not an organism but a loosely knit, diverse conglomeration of primitive cells that evolved as a unit, and it eventually developed to a stage where it broke into several distinct communities, which in turn became the three primary lines of descent. The primary lines, however, were not conventional lineages. Each represented a progressive consolidation of the corresponding community into a smaller number of more complex cell types, which ultimately developed into the ancestor(s) of that organismal domain. The universal ancestor is not an entity, not a thing. It is a process characteristic of a particular evolutionary stage. But the question how such an ancestor, which was not an organism, came into being puts evolutionists in a quandary.
Evolutionary tree also changes with the method used for identifying the species. Construction of phylogenies relies on the principle that a bigger difference in sequence between two species means a more remote common ancestor. The number of possible trees rises exponentially with each species added to the analysis. Although mathematical techniques have been devised to find out the most likely tree, it is often difficult to choose between the many possibilities with any confidence although comparing many genes can make the choice easier . The patterns of ancestry vary depending on the gene considered. In other words, what the phylogeny reveals is the ancestry of only the gene and not the phylogeny of the species that carries it .
Lateral gene transfer has literally shaken the hypothesis of descent with modification. According to Andre Goffeau, a geneticist at the Universite Catholique de Louvain, Belgium, there is so much lateral transfer that even the concept of the tree is debatable. The genomes of modern microbes may be mosaics of genes from different organisms rather than descendants of any single early form of life suggesting thereby that not even the ribosomal genes reflect evolutionary relationships . Evolutionists now realize that the contemporary view of vertical gene flow, which is what Darwin’s theory predicts and the basis of the evolutionary tree concept, is not consistent with genomic data. To their amazement, the least expected horizontal gene flow is more common. It is like saying children are born to their parents inheriting more genes from their neighbours! With the evolutionary history becoming more horizontal, the basis on which the theory has been founded is getting blurred by the day. If Darwin’s idea of biological evolution were correct, it should have been possible to construct tree of life. Descent with modification is not only a prediction of the theory but is also its central aspect. If vertically oriented evolutionary tree cannot be constructed no more evidence is required to reject the theory.In reality none of the predictions of the theory has been found true.
The picture that emerges from the foregoing discussion is that the diverse forms of life could not have evolved from a common ancestor. There is no evidence whatsoever to say that morphological, anatomical, embryonic and genetic relationships among diverse forms of life are indicators of descent with modification from common ancestral species. The literature on phylogeny passes a clear verdict of the failure of phylogenetic concepts. Neither the tree based on morphological characters nor molecular homology is correct. The reason is that the evolutionary tree is just a figment of evolutionists’ imagination. All the anomalies observed in the construction of the tree tell us so. There is no species, no phylogeny and no evolutionary tree of the kind evolutionists claim. With both the rooting of the tree and the topology coming under fire, what is left of the evolutionary tree unquestioned? These facts might have prompted Elizabeth Pennisi to title her review paper as: “Is it time to uproot the tree of life?” . New Scientist also had covered these aspects in detail in its 2962 issue (January 21, 2009).Construction of evolutionary tree proves to be an impossible proposition. Failure to construct the tree proves the concept of descent with modification is mere wishful thinking.
c) Species problem
“Species” is an undefined concept in biology. The term “species” means different things to different people and it will continue to be so in future as there is no indication of a unified concept in sight. This leads to a very complicated situation in the field of evolutionary biology because species is the unit of evolution. Even Darwin did not know what “species” is and how to define it. It is without knowing what “species” is he wrote his famous book about origin of species! Obviously it would be wrong and that reflected in his theory also as discussed earlier. He admits this fact in his book. “… I look at the term species, as one arbitrarily given for the sake of convenience to a set of individuals closely resembling each other, and that it does not essentially differ from the term variety, which is given to less distinct and more fluctuating forms. The term variety, again, in comparison with mere individual differences, is also applied arbitrarily, and for mere convenience sake.” [1, p. 46]. There are as many definitions of species as there are authors who have written about them. Some of these are: morphological species concept, biological species concept, evolutionary species concept, recognition species concept, cohesion species concept, phylogenetic species concept, Greek species concept, tyological species concept, Darwin’s species concept, ecological species concept, phenetic species concept, etc.Mayden identifies 24 species concepts .
The species concept was originally used to classify the biodiversity. Karl von Linne, a Swedish botanist and medical doctor known to scientific world as Carolus Linnaeus, published the most influential book in taxonomy Systema Naturae in 1735 in which he outlined a scheme for classifying organisms based on morphological and anatomical similarities. The order of hierarchy in Linnaeus classification is: Kingdom-Phylum-Class-Order-Family-Genus-Species. There is no reason why organisms cannot be described in terms of characteristics other than the visual ones. If the criteria are changed, the placement of species in the classification scheme will also change. Nevertheless, the concept is certainly advantageous and essential to describe and study diverse organisms. The problem comes only when the classification system is used to describe the pedigree of a species (evolutionary tree).
It is clear that the theory of evolution has no scientific basis. Its predictions have failed and its assumptions have proved wrong. But yet evolutionists propagate that it is as scientific as any theory in physics or chemistry! More importantly the results generated from evolutionary studies are interpreted to suit the assumption that the theory of evolution is a proven fact. As Thompson commented: “This situation, where men rally to the defense of a doctrine they are unable to define scientifically, much less demonstrate with scientific rigor, attempting to maintain its credit with the public by the suppression of criticism and the elimination of difficulties, is abnormal and undesirable in science.... I am not satisfied that Darwin proved his point or that his influence in scientific and public thinking has been beneficial.” .
Although evolutionists blindly believe in Darwinism, Darwin himself tells us the grave shortcomings of his theory. “I have hitherto sometimes spoken as if the variations so common and multiform in organic beings under domestication, and in a lesser degree in those in a state of nature had been due to chance.This, of course, is a wholly incorrect expression…” [1, p. 111]. Darwin wrote later in his another book, The Descent of Man that: “I admit…that in the earlier edition of my Origin of Species I probably attributed too much to the action of natural descent of the survival of the fittest.” . He also commented about his own theory as “grievously hypothetical”. Saying “The eye to this day gives me a cold shudder.” Darwin couldn’t possibly believe the eye had evolved by natural selection. He openly admitted his doubts saying that “this seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest possible degree.” .
In a letter to Asa Gray, Harvard biology professor, Darwin wrote: “I am quite conscious that my speculations run quite beyond the bounds of true science.” . Fourteen years after the publication of The Origin of Species, Darwin wrote to a friend thus: “In fact the belief in Natural Selection must at present be grounded entirely on general considerations….When we descend to details, we can prove that no one species has changed…nor can we prove that the supposed changes are beneficial, which is the groundwork of the theory. Nor can we explain why some species have changed and others have not.” . The most important message in these statements is that Darwin did not claim what he proposed was a scientific theory. Surprisingly however biologists not only accepted Darwin’s idea of origin of species but also elevated it to the status of a scientific theory without proving it scientifically. A more detailed analysis of Darwin’s theory may be found elsewhere .
1. Darwin, C. 1859. The Origin of Species. Bantam Books, New York (1999).
2. Dobzhansky, Th. 1937. Genetics and the Origin of Species. Columbia Univ. Press, New York, 2nd Ed., 1941; 3rd Ed, 1951.
3. Lovtrup, S. 1987. Darwinism: The Refutation of a Myth. Croom Helm Ltd., Beckingham, Kent, p. 275.
7. Carl Sagan, F.H.C. Crick, and L. M. Mukhin in Carl Sagan, ed., Communication with Extraterrestrial Intelligence (CETI) (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1973) pp. 45-46; cf., Emile Borel, Probabilities and Life (New York: Dover, 1962), chapters one and three. Cited from: Ankerberg, J. and Weldon, J. What is the Probability of Evolution Occurring Solely by Natural Means? – Part Two. http://www.ankerberg.com/Articles/ PDFArchives/science/SC3W1201.pdf.
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