One last take on Darwin…hey, at 200 he deserves it. We use the word evolution today to describe just about every change imaginable. We talk about the evolution of cars, cuisine, relationships, fashion – just about everything that impacts our lives. Somehow I don’t think it’s quite what Charlie had in mind – but it is a tribute to him that the notion of evolution has become so pervasive.
Yet, here is the thing. We all tend to look at his writing and thinking in a superficial manner – that is – the tendency is to link it all to “survival of the fittest” – which is more often than not misunderstood as the big fish eats the little fish – or to link it to the straight line descendants of humans from the primate world – the flash point of many of his critics.
In both cases the story and his thinking is more complex, more nuanced and rich with all kinds of deep meaning and implications that go way beyond the world of natural science.
To that end I have learned a lot as I decided to celebrate his 200th from both my own readings and research and from many of your postings. So here is one last thought to share.
It seems that Darwin observed more than just random selection and the hard work of survival. He saw that there were strategies that made one form of life more resilient than the next; behavioral patterns that affected existence and influenced the endurable viability of a species.
“In the long history of humankind (and animalkind too) those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed.”
– Charles Darwin
Think on that – work together and innovate and your chance of survival goes up – way up. Need I say more?
If there ever was a message for today…this is it – Thank you CHUCK and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!