Happy 200th Birthday Charles Darwin
Happy Birthday Charles Darwin !!!! It was on this day ,200 years ago Charles Darwin was born in Shrewsbury , considered by many as the most influential scientist of all time. Charles Darwin proposed his theory of evolution by natural selection in his famous book On the Origin of Species, which completely changed our perception towards planet Earth and our place inside it.This book of charles Darwin was mainly based on his famous ship journey. Darwin was an exceptional thinker and was way ahead of his time, that could be the reason why he still continues to inspire many modern scientists. His contribution to the field of biology in general and evolution in particular is immense .
A century and a half ago, Charles Darwin proposed two important concepts – 1) The mechanism of evolution by means of natural selection and 2) That all living beings on planet are descended from a common ancestor( resemble like branches of a tree erupting from a solid trunk -Tree of life).These two theories are well accepted now ,but completely shook the world at that point of time.It was not that Darwin was correct always ,as some other predictions of Darwin were proved to be wrong. One can take the examples of his idea of inheritance and comments on the distribution of species .Obviously it was not possible for him to know as he had no knowledge about how the traits are inherited from one generation to another and DNA was discovered only in 1953. He was also completely unaware of plate tectonics and thats the reason for his being wrong on distribution of species.However, his two main principles of natural selection and common descent still holds good,which went on to lay the foundation of modern biology. What amazes me is that, a man who died way back in 1882 still inspires a lot of biologists and actively discussed , speaks volumes about the great man.
Charles Darwin wrote many books in his life time but it is his magnum opus ” On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life” is widely known across the world . This is a special year for evolution today being 200 birth anniversary of Darwin and on 24 November , Origin of species complete 150 years .Evolution is no longer the same of Darwin days as it has come a long way from those times. Thanks to the work of many modern Darwins, who extended the ideas of Darwin and helped us to understand mechanism of evolution properly. So lets celebrate and enjoy the Darwin day and give all the credit the man deserves ,who helped us understand our planet and life on it in a better and correct way.
Join the Darwin day celebration elsewhere :
Darwin and the Heart of Evolution @ Biochemical soul
Observation of a nerd : Why i am not a Darwinist
Ryan Gregory @ Genomicron
Is Darwin dead? Wrong? False? No. Darwin was right @ Forms most beautiful
New York Academy of Sciences celebrates Darwin day
Wiley / Year of Darwin
Cosmos magazine : Darwin at 200
Series of exciting articles on not exactly rocket science