Posted by: r.m. | August 14, 2009

evolution and extinction and communities

Famed cell biologist Bruce Lipton writes in ‘The Biology of Belief’

“Genetic evolutionists warn that if we fail to apply the lessons of our shared genetic destiny, which should be teaching us the important of cooperation among all species, we threaten human existence. We need to move beyond Darwinian Theory, which stresses the importance of individuals, to one that stresses the importance of the community.  British scientist Timothy Lenton provides evidence that evolution is more dependent on the interaction among species than it is on the interaction of individuals within a species. Evolution becomes a matter of the survival of the fittest groups rather than the survival of the fittest individuals. In a 1998 article in ‘Nature’ Lenton wrote that rather than focusing on individuals and their role in evolution ‘we must consider the totality of organisms and their material environment to fully understand which traits come to persist and dominate.’ (Lenton 1998)” (page 15)

I remembered that excerpt in the book when I read this latest news:

A study in the journal Science shows that extinctions tend to “cluster” on evolutionary lineages – wiping out species with a common ancestor.

the study’s authors point out, extinctions are likely to eliminate entire branches of the evolutionary tree.

Professor Roy said: “If you have whole lineages more vulnerable than others, then very soon, even with relatively moderate levels of extinction, you start to lose a lot of evolutionary history.”

…sigh….

I remember the old Indian (Native American) saying – warning the white man that he may die of a ‘loneliness of spirit’ without the animals…

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