One of the most influential philosophers that contribute to Charles Darwin’s theory was from Charles Lyell. Lyell’s theory of geology came from the idea of uniformitarianism. Best defined as the assumption that the same natural processes that function in the universe now, have always operated in the universe in the past and apply everywhere in the universe. Lyell would conclude that Earth was made of many gradual slow changes made into what we know today. Similar to Darwin, Lyell had a thoughtful effect on our understanding of life's history. Lyell influenced Darwin so intensely that Darwin viewed evolution as a sort of biological uniformitarianism. Evolution took place from one generation to the next, he argued, but it worked too slowly for us to perceive.
How does Evolution work?
order for traits to evolve and change, they MUST be heritable. This is
one of the points that I definitely find to be of Lyell’s understanding.
Darwin could not seem to find an understanding to how traits were
passed on. But from Lyell’s beliefs, he finds that over a long course of
time things change. Just like theis traits have been passed down and
eventually changing over a long course of time, producing generation
If the environment changes, the traits that are
helpful or adaptive to that environment will be different. As Lyell in
his theories, mentions that He found evidence for many rises and falls
of sea level, volcanoes construct on top of much older rocks. Natural
processes such as earthquakes and eruptions, which had been witnessed by
humans, were enough to produce mountain ranges. Now only were valleys
the work from huge floods but they slowly were the grinding from a
intense force of wind and water. As the environments were changing by
natural processes, traits that were adaptive lived in the surroundings.
Lyell was a huge believer in environments naturally changing and how the
world will slowly change, only those who could adapt would survive.
Darwin must of found Lyell’s beliefs in this topic something he could
Darwin and Natural Selection: I do not find Charles
Darwin’s theory on natural selection to be that connected with the work
from Charles Lyell. Don’t get me wrong, I do think Charles Darwin would
not have gotten this far in his work without knowing what Lyell did
first, but I think Darwin’s thoughts on natural selection were stemmed
from his thoughts on evolution in geology that came first. From the
evolution of geology which Lyell thought took so long overtime, Darwin
interpreted that to the idea of people evolving over time.
found that religion and science could never meet hand in hand. The book
shaped a variety of religious responses at a time of altering ideas at
this time. Developments in geology meant that there was little hostility
based on a literal reading of Genesis, but defense of the argument from
design and natural theology was central to debates over the book in the
English speaking world. The church of English interpreted the idea of
Natural Selection to be an instrument of God's design. Even though the
book had hardly implied to human evolution, it rapidly became vital to
the debate as psychological and moral qualities were seen as spiritual
aspects of the irrelevant soul, and it was believed that animals did not
have spiritual traits. This divergence could be submissive by supposing
there was some supernatural intervention on the path leading to humans,
or interpreting evolution as a decisive and progressive rise to
mankind's position at the head of nature.