Are we still evolving?

When looking at the aspects of reality that concern our origins, in particular  the  evolution versus intelligent design debate, the question has to be asked, are we still evolving? Have we stopped, are we in our final form, or are we still changing? If we are still changing, this may give credence to the theory of   humanity being a mere product of evolutionary forces.

 

Are we still evolving?

The thinking is that because of factors like clothing and technology and heating and lighting and shelter, we are protecting ourselves from the very environmental factors which may drive any natural selection change. For instance, the development of farming, which ensured a regular food supply, enabled us to keep alive many physically weaker individuals alive. They may breed, rather than be naturally eliminated from the breeding stock of man by natural early death. This is changing the quality of species overall.

 

The Human Genome Project

The human Genome project has also for the first time enabled some scientists to look at the genetic make up of multiple human beings. This is  to see if there is any favorable genetic variations occurring to indicate that alteration by natural selection is still occurring in man. Surprisingly they found that there was indication that the process was still occurring. The Broad Institute in America found that in the last two hundred years, changes had occurred in the genes for temperature regulation, skin colouring etc which indicated that we were slightly changing, as we had changed our environment around us.

 

Other scientists had looked at people living in the extreme environments. The Sherpas in Himalaya living at high altitude, with only 60% of normal oxygen to breathe, were living and thriving. This was shown to be due to a stronger circulation system which enabled their bodies to use what oxygen there was more effectively. We are still very slowly evolving according to Darwin’s rules.

 

Aspects of reality

Does this actually prove anything concrete in our search for the reality of our origins? The answer is, not necessarily. Natural selection may be a force governing our minor development. It may not have been the whole story at the beginning of time, however. It could even have been a tool used by a designer or creator God. The question of the true nature of our origins is sill wide open.

 

Marian

 

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