Paleontology and Other Science: June 2004 Archives

Simon Conway Morris is a scientist who is also a Christian and who has done a tremendoua amount of work on the Burgess Shale--a fauna explored by Stephen Jay Gould (largely with his skewed marxist contingency lens) in Wonderful Life In this book, Conway addresses Gould directly and seeks to refute much of Gould's contention regarding contingency. But I'm just quoting a passage that appealed to me as I was sitting at the car dealership.

from The Crucible of Creation
Simon Conway Morris

Nobody knows the precise total of species that presently inhabit the Earth, nor how many once existed but are now extinct. There could quite easily be twenty million species alive today, and the number of extinct species must run into the hundreds of millions, if not the billions. Within this vast plenitude it is perhaps rather surprising that there is only one, unique species that can understand a single word of this book. This species, which is of course ourselves, is uniquely pirivileged: not only can we understand something of our origins, but we are the first animals ever to have looked at the stars and seen anything more than distant pin-pricks of light.

Perhaps later--this evening, tomorrow, or next week, I'll get into the material that is likely to ruffle a few feathers--or perhaps not. I'm often surprised at the reaction to things here at St. Blogs. And these surprises are nearly always gratifying.

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This page is a archive of entries in the Paleontology and Other Science category from June 2004.

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