© Charles Darwin, "The Missing Link"
Fragment from the book "Origin" not
L. J. White
Charles Darwin on his most important book “ On the Origin of the Species by Natural Selection” (1859) paved the way to what science widely accepts today as the “Theory of Evolution” or evolutionary process of the species. The Theory of Evolution basically proposes that all life in the planet undergo changes in order to adapt to the changing environment, these changes can be due to environmental changes. Darwin also observed that some were inheritable changes. No one today can argue with the validity of Darwin’s theory and scientific research has proven that the evolution of life on the planet is indeed a reality.
According to present scientific research human evolution, or our earliest ancestors, appeared on the planet 4 to 5 millions years ago, it is quite possible and I propose, an earlier date of 6 to 7 millions years ago, perhaps even earlier. Humans, according to the most recent studies evolved from mammals, creatures called Primates. We are categorized in the mammalian order as Primates. Our nearest living relatives are the African Apes; the genetic similarities place them in the Hominid family.
Man appeared on earth rather suddenly and the rate of evolution has been quite rapid. We have evolved physically and mentally as well in a rather short period of time, considering that the first life forms on earth are supposedly 3.5 billion years old. In this day and age to deny our animal self would be absurd, we are indeed “Part Animal” or Primate. Nevertheless, to accept the idea that we simply evolved from primates by some freak genetic accident or by applying The Theory of Evolution, as we understand it today is very shortsighted indeed. A legitimate question would be; what took place 6 to 7 million years ago, and how, that changed Ape into Man?
In order to begin to approach the question we must look first at some very important aspects of man and the evolution process. The Ape, our nearest relative, remains Ape without any significant changes, only that he supposedly became man. However, are we to assume that only some apes underwent the genetic changes needed for man’s evolution and the rest remained basically unchanged? The genetic change that occurred 6 to 7 millions years ago to our dear cousin the Ape was rather radical; what motivated the genetic change or evolution? Was it perhaps the need to adapt to a changing environment? If so did the changing environment only affect selected populations of Apes or primates in a specific geographical location?
As man evolved from those early days, the adaptation to climate and conditions is not very apparent, actually, in many aspects the opposite has occurred. Man began to loose a large portion of his hair; a natural protection against cold temperatures, even in the Arctic Zones the absence of hair is noticeable. Man has not, through the evolution process, naturally adapted himself to the changing environment or become more adjusted to the existing conditions. Man, in essence, has tried to use and change the environment to accommodate for his needs, with a substantial degree of success.
To protect himself from the cold and other predators’ man discovered fire and eventually invented central heat, no need for hair. He began to use primitive tools and weapons to construct shelters and hunt, also to protect against predators. He develops written communication, domesticated animals, started agriculture and so on. In his evolutionary track man has challenged the environment and everything in it, including other life forms. Furthermore man has considered and placed himself above any other specie on the planet, even today the though of us being part Animal or Primates does not settle well at all.
With the appearance of man on the planet, evolution when compared to any other specie took a turn from the norm and a new twist. No other life form, which we know of, has evolved in quite the same way as man has. Why? It is important to note that the rate of evolution and differences between man’s races, or better put, physical differences, although there are some, are not, in the final analysis significant. The major differences noted being physical in nature and not in the overall mental development if we are to consider the total chronological aspect vs. the rate of mental development in different parts of the globe. What this could indicate is that the “Genetic Change” occurred to different primates on different geographical locations on or about the same time, meaning a few million years.
The above implications could seem to conflict with the migratory scenario, but in reality, it should not. It would be hard to conceive that our ancestors were concentrated on a specific geographical location, Sub Sahara, Asia, Africa, as the “Eve” theory suggests, and that furthermore they were of different physical makeup. It is more reasonable to assume that our ancestors were from different geographical locations and of different physical makeup, this would not conflict with migratory theories.
The search for the famous “Missing Link” is still going on today in an attempt to verify and justify the Theory of Evolution, we have not found the so called “Missing Link” yet, I doubt seriously that we will succeed. With the Archeological research and scientific process, we have discovered a great deal of valuable information that helps us to understand better human evolution. However, the sudden appearance of man on the globe remains a mystery today. We can understand that through the evolutionary process, more than likely, Ape became Man, biologically speaking, but the mental and “Spiritual” development of man is still not understood at all and remains a mystery today.
Charles Darwin along with the many other scientists that have developed the Theory of Evolution has contributed a great deal in the search for the “Origin” of man. The scientific data being gathered is of tremendous value and with it, certain pieces of the “Human Origin Puzzle” begin to fit. However, evolution alone does not fully account for, or is responsible for man’s existence on the planet. The Theory of Evolution, now Evolution, only accounts for the “Natural Evolution” of the species within the Planet Earth and nothing more or less than that. Therefore, any exterior or outside the Planet Earth “Genetic Manipulation” would not fit into the Theory of Evolution as we know it and understand it today.
Any reproduction in part or whole is strictly forbidden without the authors authorization