Quote of the Day - 20 July 2005

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Most species do their own evolving, making it up as they go along, which is the way Nature intended. And this is all very natural and organic and in tune with mysterious cycles of the cosmos, which believes that there’s nothing like millions of years of really frustrating trial and error to give a species moral fiber and, in some cases, backbone. –Terry Pratchett

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Well said. I couldn’t agree more. Evolution doesn’t necessarily proceed forwards or backwards. It proceeds in any one of an infinite number of directions all at once elegantly and effectively.

Pratchett is brilliant – he’s surely among our greatest living satirists. It’s a pity he never (afaik) collaborated with Douglas Adams. Maybe he could finish _Salmon_.…

And of course, several of his Discworld novels take dead aim at Creationist ideas. His little-known short novel _Strata_ plays with the idea in a different way.

In Darwin’s Watch, there’s a beautiful passage that discusses Paley’s watch analogy. Basically, he says that Paley is “rather unjust to rocks”, and proceeds to talk about zircon crystals and what they can tell us about the history of a particular piece of rock. Rocks, as it turns out, have their own intricate structure, and are in many ways more interesting than watches…

Species are fixed, once they are gone they are gone forever, which is the way Nature intended. And woe unto him who thinks otherwise, that he can just destroy Nature with impunity.

Isn’t that just another way to say “We are right and we’ll punch you if you doubt that?”

“Do unto otters as you would have them do until you.” - Pratchett

That creationist troll wasn’t me. Sounded like somebody who ought to have been playing opposite Jeff Goldblum in “Jurassic Park”. I suspect it was actually a troll troll, if you see what I mean. Aren’t there rules about pretending to be somebody else?

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This page contains a single entry by Mike Dunford published on July 20, 2005 11:58 PM.

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