I will not lie and tell you that I completely understood this week’s reading. I first learned to read in Spanish so this Victorian style of writing is a little harder for me to interpret. However I did understand some of Darwin’s basic arguments in his defense of evolution through natural selection. He gave reasoning like how there were many variations of a family of creatures and how creation theory would be hard pressed to prove that they were created. Darwin argues that these families of animals with a multitude of variations could be explained through natural selection because these variations would develop different traits over time to allow them to survive in changing environments. Darwin also argues that the shifting climate and the migration of certain species across the world has led to variations such as in the horse. I am not sure if Darwin was inferring that all horses came from a creature close to the Zebra when he asks why some horses bred today far from Africa sometimes have the random stripe across a leg. But his theory of natural selection could explain this as he claims all the variations came from the same ancestor creature.
The question of whether I believe Darwin or not is a complex one. I was raised in a Christian home and do believe in a creation story. However I recognize the merits in natural selection and seem to have developed a deist approach to the question. Perhaps the Creator simply made the ancestor species and then left them alone to compete and be naturally selected from there. I am not an expert in theology or evolution, but to me this seems like a nice balance of the two theories. It is not so much that I believe Darwin as much as I have to account for what I see in the natural world. For instance the fact that certain breeds of dogs, like my Labrador Retriever, have been bred by man using creatures with desirable traits to create a perfect hunting dog is even possible seems to suggest that these variations can and do happen in nature.