Download e-book for iPad: Covenant Causality in Medieval Thought: Studies in by William J. Courtenay

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By William J. Courtenay

ISBN-10: 0860781542

ISBN-13: 9780860781547

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Extra info for Covenant Causality in Medieval Thought: Studies in Philosophy, Theology, and Economic Practice

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473) Darwin notes that whole orders of species are missing from oceanic islands, frogs, for example. Their absence can be explained by natural selection, for these organisms cannot survive seawater travel, and thus cannot move from 34 A S K T H E B E A S T S continents to lands off-shore. “But why, on the theory of creation, they should not have been created there, it would be very difficult to explain” (393). Dozens of times the explanatory power of his alternative theory is emphasized: On the view that each species has been independently created, with all its parts as we now see them, I can see no explanation.

Such adaptation does not happen to individuals in isolation, but as they co-adapt in relation to others and to the physical environment. Those variations which give a relative advantage to organisms in their effort to survive and reproduce go onwards into the next generation, eventually spreading through a whole population. Those that do not, die out. Over eons of time, new species diverge from ancestral parents as a result of this process. ” Species share a common parentage that can be traced back in time (descent); over time they 28 A S K T H E B E A S T S undergo changes which improve their success in staying alive and generating offspring, or not (with modification).

Wallace “has arrived at almost exactly the same general conclusions that I have on the origin of species” (2) and telling the story of how he received “Mr. Wallace’s excellent memoir” (2). Throughout the book Darwin makes appreciative references to Wallace’s researches, at one point citing Mr. Wallace’s fundamental principle that “every species has come into existence coincident both in space and time with a pre-existing closely allied species” (355). While Darwin’s name is associated with the theory of evolution, biographers indicate that his younger colleague did not feel wronged in any way.

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Covenant Causality in Medieval Thought: Studies in Philosophy, Theology, and Economic Practice by William J. Courtenay


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