Best 1587 quotes in «evolution quotes» category

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    It was badly received by the generation to which it was first addressed, and the outpouring of angry nonsense to which it gave rise is sad to think upon. But the present generation will probably behave just as badly if another Darwin should arise, and inflict upon them that which the generality of mankind most hate—the necessity of revising their convictions. Let them, then, be charitable to us ancients; and if they behave no better than the men of my day to some new benefactor, let them recollect that, after all, our wrath did not come to much, and vented itself chiefly in the bad language of sanctimonious scolds. Let them as speedily perform a strategic right-about-face, and follow the truth wherever it leads.

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    It was in the attempt to ascertain the interrelationships between species that experiments n genetics were first made. The words "evolution" and "origin of species" are now so intimately associated with the name of Darwin that we are apt to forger that the idea of common descent had been prominent in the mnds of naturalists before he wrote, and that, for more than half a century, zealous investigators had been devoting themselves to the experimental study of that possibility. Prominent among this group of experimenters may be mentioned Koelreauter, John Hunter, Herbert Knight, Gartner, Jordan. Naudin, Godron, Lecoq, Wichura--men whose names are familiar to every reader of Animals and Plants unders Domestication.

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    It will be noticed that the fundamental theorem proved above bears some remarkable resemblances to the second law of thermodynamics. Both are properties of populations, or aggregates, true irrespective of the nature of the units which compose them; both are statistical laws; each requires the constant increase of a measurable quantity, in the one case the entropy of a physical system and in the other the fitness, measured by m, of a biological population. As in the physical world we can conceive the theoretical systems in which dissipative forces are wholly absent, and in which the entropy consequently remains constant, so we can conceive, though we need not expect to find, biological populations in which the genetic variance is absolutely zero, and in which fitness does not increase. Professor Eddington has recently remarked that 'The law that entropy always increases—the second law of thermodynamics—holds, I think, the supreme position among the laws of nature'. It is not a little instructive that so similar a law should hold the supreme position among the biological sciences. While it is possible that both may ultimately be absorbed by some more general principle, for the present we should note that the laws as they stand present profound differences—-(1) The systems considered in thermodynamics are permanent; species on the contrary are liable to extinction, although biological improvement must be expected to occur up to the end of their existence. (2) Fitness, although measured by a uniform method, is qualitatively different for every different organism, whereas entropy, like temperature, is taken to have the same meaning for all physical systems. (3) Fitness may be increased or decreased by changes in the environment, without reacting quantitatively upon that environment. (4) Entropy changes are exceptional in the physical world in being irreversible, while irreversible evolutionary changes form no exception among biological phenomena. Finally, (5) entropy changes lead to a progressive disorganization of the physical world, at least from the human standpoint of the utilization of energy, while evolutionary changes are generally recognized as producing progressively higher organization in the organic world.

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    I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had. Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. There is no such thing as consensus science. If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus. Period.

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    I was aware of Darwin's views fourteen years before I adopted them and I have done so solely and entirely from an independent study of the plants themselves. [Letter to W.H. Harvey]

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    Living organisms were not independently created, but have descended and diversified over time from common ancestors. And thus, no other biological theory so elegantly explains this. Evolutionary theory has withstood the test of time—by way of vicarious experimentation, observation, analysis, and relentless criticism, though opposing viewpoints still cling to the concept of "design." As a person of the biological sciences, I cannot subscribe to such misguided notions that suggest static biological states. Clearly, proper examination of the natural world reveal evolutionary trajectories—some random, others nonrandom—and all having observable genetic implications. It is only when we apply evolutionary explanations to living systems that it becomes ever so clear. The world was not specifically designed with us in mind, but rather we long since adapted and conformed to our surroundings, only giving it the illusionary appearance of "design.

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    Long before being artists, we are artisans; and all fabrication, however rudimentary, lives on likeness and repetition, like the natural geometry which serves as its fulcrum. Fabrication works on models which it sets out to reproduce; and even when it invents, it proceeds, or imagines itself to proceed, by a new arrangement of elements already known. Its principle is that “we must have like to produce like.” In short, the strict application of the principle of finality, like that of the principle of mechanical causality, leads to the conclusion that “all is given.” Both principles say the same thing in their respective languages, because they respond to the same need.

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    Lots of animals are smaller than they used to be. Look at the size crocodiles used to be around the time of the dinosaurs. Or most of the huge mammals following that. Sometimes, being smaller means that you don’t have to find as much food.”, FADE by Kailin Gow

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    La véritable évolution n'est-elle pas intérieure? C'est en se changeant soi-même que l'on devient heureux, pas en changeant ce qui nous entoure.

    • evolution quotes
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    Live simply. Deepest joy is like a flower....beautiful in essence.

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    Long before there were effective treatments, physicians dispensed prognoses, hope, and, above all, meaning. When something terrible happens-and serious disease is always terrible-people want to know why. In a pantheistic world, the explanation was simple-one god had caused the problem, another could cure it. In the time since people have been trying to get along with only one God, explaining disease and evil has become more difficult. Generations of theologians have wrestled with the problem of theodicy-how can a good God allow such bad things to happen to good people? Darwinian medicine can't offer a substitute for such explanations. It can't provide a universe in which events are part of a divine plan, much less one in which individual illness reflects individual sins. It can only show us why we are the way we are, why we are vulnerable to certain diseases. A Darwinian view of medicine simultaneously makes disease less and more meaningful. Diseases do not result from random or malevolent forces, they arise ultimately from past natural selection. Paradoxically, the same capacities that make us vulnerable to disease often confer benefits. The capacity for suffering is a useful defense. Autoimmune disease is a price of our remarkable ability to attack invaders. Cancer is the price of tissues that can repair themselves. Menopause may protect the interests of our genes in existing children. Even senescence and death are not random, but compromises struck by natural selection as it inexorably shaped out bodies to maximize the transmission of our genes. In such paradoxical benefits, some may find a gentle satisfaction, even a bit of meaning-at least the sort of meaning Dobzhansky recognized. After all, nothing in medicine makes sense except in the light of evolution.

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    Love is concerned with growth and evolution. It is — though as yet hardly acknowledged in that connection — a root-factor of ordinary human growth; for in so far as it is a hunger of the individual, the satisfaction of that hunger is necessary for individual growth — necessary (in its various forms) for physical, mental and spiritual nourishment, for health, mental energy, large affectional capacity, and so forth. And it is — though this too is not sufficiently acknowledged — a root-factor of the Evolution process. For in so far as it represents and gives rise to the union of two beings in a new form, it plainly represents a step in Evolution, and plainly suggests that the direction of that step will somehow depend upon the character and quality of the love concerned.

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    Make mankind your dwelling place.

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    Males of all species are made for wooing females, and females typically choose among their suitors. If you take a closer look, you can observe such behavior all around you. The beautiful bird chirping outside your window. It’s a mating call. That pretty little bird is trying to attract a potential mate, so that it can propagate its genes. Why does the peacock have such beautiful feathers? It is to attract a healthy female. He as well is trying to propagate his genes. Even we humans, are not much different from the rest of the animal kingdom when it comes to attracting potential mates. When women dress up for their night out at the club, they are doing so to look attractive. This is a subconscious evolutionary desire to attract as many potential mates as possible.... While women tend to grab attention with their looks, men on the other hand, tend to attract as many potential females as possible, by showing off their resources. When a man shows off with his fancy car, expensive gold watch and suit, or flexes his muscles and brags about how many credit cards he owns, he’s doing so to make himself desirable by healthy women, in order to propagate his genes. It is all in the pursuit of reproduction.

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    Males of all species are made for wooing females, and females typically choose among their suitors.

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    Man has been evolved and created the gods. Evolved more and decided to destroy all of them.

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    Man (as he imagines himself to be), in general, is a possibility, not a fact.

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    Man came first through evolution. God came second through man's imagination.

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    Man is a clothed animal; almost.

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    Man is a glorious and unique species of animal. The species originated by evolution.... Future evolution could raise man to superb heights as yet hardly glimpsed, but it will not automatically do so. As far as can now be foreseen, evolutionary degeneration is at least as likely in our future as is further progress.The only way to ensure a progressive evolutionary future for mankind is for man himself to take a hand in the process. Although much further knowledge is needed, it is unquestionably possible for man to guide his own evolution (within limits) along desirable lines. But the great weight of the most widespread...beliefs and institutions is against even attempting such guidance. ["Man's evolutionary future," 1960, p. 134.]

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    Man is the master of Woman" - this statement may have been a glorious fact of primitive life in the wild, but it is nothing but an obnoxious stain on psyche of the thinking humanity.

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    Man is now able to fly through the air like a bird, he is able to swim under the sea like a fish, he is able burrow beneath the ground like a mole. Now if only he could walk the earth like a man, this would be paradise.

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    Mankind willfully changing the global electromagnetic radiation environment has created what I expect will become known as the man-made evolution era.

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    Many a “learned” man is destroyed by ignorance and by the learning which is of no use to him’ (Hadrat Ahmed ibn Mahsud, the Sufi).

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    Man with all his noble qualities still bears in his bodily frame the indelible stamp of his lowly origin.

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    Many kinds of animal behavior can be explained by genetic similarity theory. Animals have a preference for close kin, and study after study has shown that they have a remarkable ability to tell kin from strangers. Frogs lay eggs in bunches, but they can be separated and left to hatch individually. When tadpoles are then put into a tank, brothers and sisters somehow recognize each other and cluster together rather than mix with tadpoles from different mothers. Female Belding’s ground squirrels may mate with more than one male before they give birth, so a litter can be a mix of full siblings and half siblings. Like tadpoles, they can tell each other apart. Full siblings cooperate more with each other than with half-siblings, fight less, and are less likely to run each other out of the territory when they grow up. Even bees know who their relatives are. In one experiment, bees were bred for 14 different degrees of relatedness—sisters, cousins, second cousins, etc.—to bees in a particular hive. When the bees were then released near the hive, guard bees had to decide which ones to let in. They distinguished between degrees of kinship with almost perfect accuracy, letting in the closest relatives and chasing away more distant kin. The correlation between relatedness and likelihood of being admitted was a remarkable 0.93. Ants are famous for cooperation and willingness to sacrifice for the colony. This is due to a quirk in ant reproduction that means worker ants are 70 percent genetically identical to each other. But even among ants, there can be greater or less genetic diversity, and the most closely related groups of ants appear to cooperate best. Linepithema humile is a tiny ant that originated in Argentina but migrated to the United States. Many ants died during the trip, and the species lost much of its genetic diversity. This made the northern branch of Linepithema humile more cooperative than the one left in Argentina, where different colonies quarrel and compete with each other. This new level of cooperation has helped the invaders link nests into supercolonies and overwhelm local species of ants. American entomologists want to protect American ants by introducing genetic diversity so as to make the newcomers more quarrelsome. Even plants cooperate with close kin and compete with strangers. Normally, when two plants are put in the same pot, they grow bigger root systems, trying to crowd each other out and get the most nutrients. A wild flower called the Sea Rocket, which grows on beaches, does not do that if the two plants come from the same “mother” plant. They recognize each others’ root secretions and avoid wasteful competition.

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    Many call this process 'the destruction of nature.' But it's not really destruction, it's change. Nature cannot be destroyed.

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    Many people think that the theory of the selfish gene says that “animals try to spread their genes.” That misstates the facts and it misstates the theory. Animals, including most people, know nothing about genetics and care even less. People love their children not because they want to spread their genes (consciously or unconsciously) but because they can’t help it. That love makes them try to keep their children warm, fed, and safe. What is selfish is not the real motives of the person but the metaphorical motives of the genes that built the person. Genes “try” to spread themselves by wiring animals’ brains so the animals love their kin and try to keep warm, fed, and safe.

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    Many theories have been advanced to explain racial gaps in performance, of which these are the most common: black and Hispanic schools do not get enough money, their classes are too big, students are segregated from whites, minorities do not have enough teachers of their own race. Each of these explanations has been thoroughly investigated. Urban schools, where non-whites are concentrated, often get more money than suburban white schools, so blacks and Hispanics are not short-changed in budget or class size. Teacher race has no detectable effect on learning (Asians, for example, outperform whites regardless of who teaches them), nor do whites in the classroom raise or lower the scores of students of other races. Money is not the problem. From the early 1970s to the 2006-2007 school year per-pupil spending more than doubled in real terms. The Cato Institute calculates that when capital costs are included, the Los Angeles School District spends more than $25,000 per student per year, and the District of Columbia spends more than $28,000. Neither district gets good results. Demographic change can become a vicious cycle: As more minorities and immigrants enter a school system average achievement falls. More money and effort is devoted to these groups, squeezing gifted programs, music and art, and advanced placement courses. The better-performing students leave, and standards fall further.

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    Mastery of anything is, more than anything else, the transformation of work into play. Giving orders and answers, never making mistakes, and having around you others with the opinion that you are great has nothing at all to do with it. Read carefully: to yearn for, to be compelled by, is being called to play.

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    Meditation, in contrast, is the accidental moments of actual harmony that arrive anyway when you are trying to get something, even in trying to get harmony or calm. This often happens outside of the intention to meditate, and most people access the beginnings of this through other events, such as walking, working, athletic activities, or transitional moments, such as between waking and sleeping. The effect, in brief, is one of harmony and well-being, from which other insights or intuitive glimpses can naturally emerge. The moment you notice this, the meditation is over.

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    Men are tested and tried amongst deceptions radically and they are winning for themselves abilities to give, to deliberate, to stand fast, to choose well, to discriminate.” “They are far from the 'automata' of the Universe some think them to be. They dance the starry path and are sharpening their knowledge with every orbit of each positive thought travelled.

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    Might one not say that in the chance combination of nature's production, since only those endowed with certain relations of suitability could survive, it is no cause for wonder that this suitability is found in all species that exist today? Chance, one might say, produced an innumerable multitude of individuals; a small number turned out to be constructed in such fashion that the parts of the animal could satisfy its needs; in another, infinitely greater number, there was neither suitability nor order: all of the later have perished; animals without a mouth could not live, others lacking organs for reproduction could not perpetuate themselves: the only ones to have remained are those in which were found order and suitability; and these species, which we see today, are only the smallest part of what blind fate produced.

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    Miller believes, like many theists, that religion brings us beyond the bounds of materialism. (Ironically he insists on a material explanation [evolution] for our existence.) However, he fails to explain how religion does this. Will religion enable us to overcome Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle? Will the secrets of Miller's black box of quantum mechanics be revealed? Will chance and chaos be things of the past? If religion can't help us solve these mysteries, take us beyond the bounds of our material understanding, then Miller's belief is just so much wishful thinking. However, during one of his more coherent, non-blonde moments, Miller makes one of his strongest points: Science only concerns itself with the material universe, so we must look beyond science if we are to have morals. I can't say I disagree. However, morals don't have to come from an imaginary sky daddy. They could be rationally conceived and practiced to create an orderly society. And, why should science limit itself to the material universe? Morals can be tried and tested; bad morals can be weeded out while good morals are preserved. Such has already happened. Consider the fact that most parents no longer obey God's command to kill their children when they misbehave. Yet, those same parents abstain from stealing and adultery.

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    Mithorden: 'We become what we do, Zalos.

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    Modern human evolution has reached the point of reporting corruption to the corrupt.

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    More about the selection theory: Jerne meant that the Socratic idea of learning was a fitting analogy for 'the logical basis of the selective theories of antibody formation': Can the truth (the capability to synthesize an antibody) be learned? If so, it must be assumed not to pre-exist; to be learned, it must be acquired. We are thus confronted with the difficulty to which Socrates calls attention in Meno [ ... ] namely, that it makes as little sense to search for what one does not know as to search for what one knows; what one knows, one cannot search for, since one knows it already, and what one does not know, one cannot search for, since one does not even know what to search for. Socrates resolves this difficulty by postulating that learning is nothing but recollection. The truth (the capability to synthesize an antibody) cannot be brought in, but was already inherent.

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    More and more obstacles seem to be other people's issues that form in the way of a hand to block one, to take notice of them? Sometimes noticing ahead of time, and taking the time to notice them, makes the hand part of an arm that embraces you. The obstacles become bridges for both to cross over, even if in opposite directions.

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    Morality makes sense only in a theonomous culture

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    More focus has been placed on these subjects through human history than on anything else—mystery and mysticism, God, imagination, intuition, the nature of relationships, human purpose, happiness and salvation…

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    Most humans are refugees in our countries because all our ancestors scattered across the globe from our homeland Africa.

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    Most sociopolitical hierarchies lack a logical or biological basis - they are nothing but the perpetuation of chance events supported by myths.

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    ...most systems end up by making imagined humility into a form of vanity, so they end up with vanity just the same.

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    MRI testing again shows what may be the underlying brain mechanism. The amygdalae are two small lobes in the brain associated with fear, arousal, and emotions. When they are active, it is thought to be a sign of vigilance, meaning that the brain is wary and wants more information. A study at Massachusetts General Hospital found that when subjects looked at photographs of faces—half were white, half were black—MRI scans found high amygdala activity. This was considered to be a normal reaction to unfamiliar faces. When the subjects looked at the photographs a second time the faces were more familiar; only the other-race faces continued to provoke high amygdala activity. This was true for both blacks and whites, suggesting that encounters with people of different races keep the brain at a higher level of watchfulness. Amygdalae notice race even when a person does not. William A. Cunningham of Ohio State University showed white subjects pictures of faces for only 30 milliseconds—not long enough for the subjects to be conscious of them—but black faces triggered greater amygdala activity than white faces. When he showed faces for a half a second—long enough for people to notice race—he found that black faces prompted greater activity in the pre-frontal areas, a part of the brain associated with detecting internal conflicts and controlling conscious behavior. This suggested the subjects were trying to suppress certain feelings about blacks. Steven Neuberg of Arizona State University attributes instinctive bias to evolution during our hunter-gatherer past. “By nature, people are group-living animals—a strategy that enhances individual survival and leads to what we might call a ‘tribal psychology’, ” he says. “It was adaptive for our ancestors to be attuned to those outside the group who posed threats such as to physical security, health or economic resources.

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    Much more plausible is the computer-based explanation that dreams are a spillover from the unconscious processing of the day's experience, from the brain's decision on how much of the daily events temporarily stored in a kind of buffer to emplace in long-term memory... The American psychiatrist Ernest Hartmann of Tufts University has provided anecdotal but reasonably persuasive evidence that people who are engaged in intellectual activities during the day, especially unfamiliar intellectual activities, require more sleep at night, while, by and large, those engaged in mainly repetitive and intellectually unchallenging tasks are able to do with much less sleep.

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    Much religious teaching in the world is in reality a confused or deteriorated form, very different from its roots.

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    Nothing is more conservative than a bacterium.

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    Nothing stands still, even if it looks as though it does. Look at a light in the room you are in right now. It appears to be stationary, while the fact is that millions of rays are moving towards you at the speed of light (299,792,458 kilometres per second). Even in every “inanimate” object, particles are moving rapidly and constantly. Nothing within or outside of you remains completely still.

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    Not only had I got rid of the theology and the supernatural, but I had found the truth of evolution.

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    Not to be greedy is, paradoxically, the highest form of looking after one's true interests.