Is not this a beautiful bird, though rather singular in its appearance? To see it in perfection we should have to travel at least as far as Sardinia, and possibly to Africa, its native country. Observe its wonderfully long and slender legs. T... Read more of The Flamingo at Breeds.caInformational Site Network Informational

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Activity Of Consciousness
Aim And Method Of Naturalism
Autonomy Of Spirit
Consciousness Of The Ego
Constructive Criticism
Contrast Between Darwinian And Post-darwinian Views
Creative Power Of Consciousness
Criticisms Of The Mechanistic Theory Of Life
Crities Of Darwinism
Darwinish In General
Darwinism And Teleology
Darwinism In The Strict Sense
De Vries's Mutation-theory
Differences Of Opinion As To The Factors In Evolution
Eimer's Orthogenesis
Evolution And New Beginnings
Feeling Individuality Genius And Mysticism
Freedom Of Spirit
Fundamental Principles Of Naturalism
Goethe's Attitude To Naturalism
Haeckel's Evolutionist Position
How All This Affects The Religious Outlook
How The Religious And The Naturalistic Outlooks Conflict
Individual Development
Intuitions Of Reality
Is There Ageing Of The Mind?
Lamarckism And Neo-lamarckism
Machnical Theories Criticism
Mind And Spirit The Human And The Animal Soul
Mystery : Dependence : Purpose
Natural Selection
Naturalistic Attacks On The Autonomy Of The Spiritual
No Parallelism
Other Instances Of Dissatisfaction With The Theory Of Descent
Pre-eminence Of Consciousness
Preyer's Position
Religion And The Theory Of Descent
Spontaneous Generation
Teleological And Scientific Interpretations Are Alike Necessary
The Antimony Of Our Conception Of Space
The Antimony Of Our Conception Of Time
The Antimony Of The Conditioned And The Unconditioned
The Characteristic Features Of Darwinism
The Conservation Of Matter And Energy
The Constructive Work Of Driesch
The Contingency Of The World
The Dependence Of The Order Of Nature
The Development Of Darwinism
The Ego
The Fundamental Answer
The Law Of The Conservation Of Energy
The Mechanics Of Development
The Mystery Of Existence Remains Unexplained
The Organic And The Inorganic
The Position Of Bunge And Other Physiologists
The Problema Continui
The Real World
The Recognition Of Purpose
The Religious Interpretation Of The World
The Spontaneous Activity Of The Organism
The Supremacy Of Mind
The Theory Of Descent
The True Naturalism
The Two Kinds Of Naturalism
The Unconscious
The Unity Of Consciousness
The Views Of Albrecht And Schneider
The Views Of Botanists Illustrated
The World And God
Theory Of Definite Variation
Theory Of Life
Various Forms Of Darwinism
Virchow's Caution
Virchow's Position
Weismann's Evolutionist Position
What Is Distinctive In The Naturalistic Outlook
What Is Distinctive In The Religious Outlook

The Theory Of Descent

Again and again we hear and read, even in scientific circles and journals,
that Darwinism breaks down at many points, that it is insufficient, and
even that it has quite collapsed. Even the assurances of its most
convinced champions are rather forced, and are somewhat suggestive of
bills payable in the future.(8) But here again it is obvious that we must
distinguish clearly between the Theory of Descent and Darwinism. Of the
Theory of Descent it is by no means true that it has "broken down." With a
slight exaggeration, but on the whole with justice, Weismann has asserted
that the Theory of Descent is to-day a "generally accepted truth." Even
Weismann's most pronounced opponents, such as Eimer, Wolff, Reinke, and
others, are at one with him in this, that there has been evolution in some
form; that there has been a progressive transformation of species; that
there is real (not merely ideal) relationship or affiliation connecting
our modern forms of life, up to and including man, with the lower and
lowest forms of bygone aeons.

The evidences are the same as those adduced by Darwin and before his time,
but they have been multiplied and more sharply defined:--namely, that the
forms of life can be arranged in an ascending scale of evolution, both in
their morphological and their physiological aspects, both as regards the
general type and the differentiation of individual organs and particular
characters, bodily and mental. All the rubrics used by Darwin in this
connection, from comparative anatomy, from the palaeontological record
itself, and so on, have been filled out with ever-increasing detail.
Palaeontology, in particular, is continually furnishing new illustrations
of descent and new evidence of its probability, more telling perhaps in
respect of general features and particular groups than in regard to the

historical process in detail. For certain species and genera palaeontology
discloses the primitive forms, discovers "synthetic types" which were the
starting-point for diverging branches of evolution, bridges over or
narrows the yawning gulfs in evolution by the discovery of "intermediate
forms"; and, in the case of certain species, furnishes complete
genealogical trees. The same holds true of the facts of comparative
anatomy, embryology, and so on. In all detailed investigations into an
animal type, in the study of the structure, functions, or the instincts of
an ant, or of a whale or of a tape-worm, the standpoint of the theory of
descent is assumed, and it proves a useful clue for further investigation.

In regard to man--so we are assured--the theory finds confirmation through
the discovery of the Neanderthal, Spy, Schipka, La Naulette skulls and
bones--the remains of a prehistoric human race, with "pithecoid" (ape-like)
characters. And the theory reaches its climax in Dubois' discovery of the
remains of "Pithecanthropus," the upright ape-man, in Java, 1891-92, the
long sought-for Missing Link between animals and man;(9) and in the still
more recent proofs of "affinity of blood" between man and ape, furnished
by experiments in transfusion. Friedenthal has revived the older
experiments of transfusing the blood of one animal into another, the blood
of an animal of one species into that of another, of related species into
related species, more remote into more remote, and finally even from
animals into man. The further apart the two species are, the more
different are the physiological characters of the blood, and the more
difficult does a mingling of the two become. Blood of a too distantly
related form does not unite with that of the animal into which it is
transfused, but the red corpuscles of the former are destroyed by the
serum of the latter, break up and are eliminated. In nearly related
species or races, however, the two kinds of blood unite, as in the case of
horse and ass, or of hare and rabbit. Human blood serum behaves in a
hostile fashion to the blood of eel, pigeon, horse, dog, cat, and even to
that of Lemuroids, or that of the more remotely related "non-anthropoid"
monkey; human blood transfused from a negro into a white unites readily,
as does also that of orang-utan transfused into a gibbon. But human blood
also unites without any breaking-up or disturbance with the blood of a
chimpanzee; from which the inference is that man is not to be placed in a
separate sub-order beside the other sub-orders of the Primates, the
platyrrhine and catarrhine monkeys, not even in a distinct sub order
beside the catarrhines; but is to be included with them in one zoological
sub-order. This classification was previously suggested by Selenka on
other grounds, namely, because of the points in common in the embryonic
development of the catarrhine monkeys and of man, and their common
distinctiveness as contrasted with the platyrrhines.(10)

Next: Haeckel's Evolutionist Position

Previous: Various Forms Of Darwinism

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