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Week 2

themword's picture

On Thursday, we talked about what we though Darwin's intentions might be in writing the origin of species. Was he trying to change our beliefs about how species have come to be? Or was he telling us to be open to different ideas? We don't know what his intentions were, or if he had any at all. But if he did, most of us agree with the latter. We discussed how it is almost impossible to change a person's beliefs because we all have different life experiences, and have been raised in different environments. We may be open to different views and arguments, but we often take those views and try to use them to support are arguments. Basically "I'm right and you're wrong," even if we know that we in fact are wrong. We go with our gut instincts. I believe that our use of other people's instincts to strengthen our arguments can be connected to Darwin's claim that "each species tries to take advantage of the instincts of others" (247). Our instincts, or beliefs, do not change instantly. But as "conditions of life" change over time, so our instincts and beliefs will change slightly. If Darwin argues this about all species, than I am led to believe that he did not intend to change our beliefs, for he knew that is practically impossible.

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