Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection Essay

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Other than Mendellson and his studies with genetics, Darwin has by far contributed the most to our modern science. From his theories on variation of species to his explanation of natural selection Charles Darwin has shocked the world by proving the world older than previously thought and creatures not immutable. In this present day these theories are as common belief as a simple mathematical equation such as two plus two equals four; but in the year eighteen hundred and fifty nine Darwin not only risked his reputation with these far fetched findings but also the risk of being excommunicated from the church.
Previous to Darwin the thought had been that the world itself was only a few hundred years old and that all creatures
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Darwin gladly took Henslow's advice and set out on his voyage to South America to analyze and collect data that would later back up his evolutionary theories (Campbell p 424).

Even as Darwin collected his data pertaining to what would become his theory on natural selection, many pre-existing views still had a hold on the scientific world as well as the public. The earliest recorded were those of
Plato and Aristotle. Plato (427-347 BC) believed in two worlds; an illusionary which was perceived only through our senses and a real world which was ideal and eternal (Campbell p 422). Aristotle (384-322 BC), on the other hand, believed in a "scala naturae" in which each being has its own rung on a ladder which was permanent (Campbell p 422). Also, there were the present religious views that had to be dealt with as well as the ancient ideals. At that time many believed that animals and plants did not evolve because they were made holy and immutable by God on those seven days (GEA & RBi p 43). A person who was widely respected and also took some beliefs from Aristotle and present religion was Carolus
Linnaeus (1707-1778). He believed species immutable and later became known as the father of modern taxonomy (Campbell p 422). Perhaps the largest barrier
Darwin had was to convince the present day scientists of his findings in contrast to their
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