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Legitimate But while on these points we have confessedly no conjectures from pri- positive evidence, it is fairly open to conjecture, mordial unity of whether the views now universally adopted by the structure. We have already considered that grand fact on which the whole theory of unity of composition is based, the existence of a stage in the early evolution of every class and order, during which a community of form belongs to them all. At this stage there exists no difference between them, and out of this primitive common germ or rudiment any one of the more distinct specific forms might, as far as we know, be equally produced, provided the determining causes for that particular modification were present. Of the nature of those specific determining i need help on writing an essay causes nothing whatever is at present known. GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS ARISING OUT OF THE PRECEDING EVIDENCE. Argument In the first place, then, the belief in the essential for immu- tability of and inherent immutability of species, not only in the ESSAY III. This argument, however, appears to me altogether But dif- ference in unfounded. The laws of gravitation, heat, light, equilibrium, and the like, present positive proof of their influence in the records preserved to us through all geological time. Again, in regard to the mechanical laws of the Mechanical laws proved 414 PHILOSOPHY OF CREATION. The case is by no means analogous (as some seem to suppose) with that of the planetary perturbations. They would argue that, as the law of elliptic motion has held good, subject to those small deviations, through all the past existence of the system, so the permanence of species must have held good, allow- ing for like small deviations from type in occasional varieties. But the cases are obviously not parallel : in the former, the perturbations are all english essay writing help parts and consequences of the same principle and law of gravi- tation, perfectly understood and demonstrated by calculation to be in long periods perpetually com- pensated, so as to preserve the system. In the other case, the law (if it were such), is merely empirical: we know of no principle or reason for it. Again : the utmost extent of proof which can be ESSAY III. If those conditions were materially altered, no present experience will enable us to predict the result. Now, the stability even of the planetary system is constant only as long as the same conditions remain. Let them be altered in the slightest particular, let a period, an eccentricity, or an inclination of one orbit, be changed, and the whole stability vanishes. Immense lapse of time essen- tial to changes of species. Now the argument of "conformity to experience" is beyond question the very basis of all induction, but it requires some caution in its application. And on ex- amining the argument, as here applied, we shall find that there is a fallacy latent in the use of the ex- pression, fe we have no experience of such a thing. Yet in past epochs we know it occurred, and it is accounted for by known and existing causes. The submergence of forests, the accumulation of vegetable matter, the compression of materials by superincumbent masses, whether solid or fluid, are known natural i need help on writing an essay causes, which do, or might, occur within our experience or that of history. To how great an extent these success- ive deviations might be carried in immense periods of past time under changing external conditions, we know not.
Thus this known cause, like that of the submer- gence of vegetable masses, conjoined with the influence of incalculably vast periods of past time, MAY BE fully competent to give results as remote from those now every day seen, as the formation of coal has been, from what takes place in any submerged forest or accumulation of vegetable matter in recent times.
They do not maintain that it occurs under existing conditions, but only under great and peculiar changes of condition. Any Correct f a j r an( j C0 rrect statement of the case, then, must statement of the case, include these qualifications, We cannot say that we have no experience of a change of species in a due length of time, and under adequate and appro- priate changes of external condition. Want of Thirdly, closely connected with the last argument, experience no argu- there is another consideration equally material. And, further, if there were a show of reason, i need help on writing an essay from analogy, that such an event were likely to occur, still less could the absence of experience be urged as rendering it incredible or in- admissible. Planetary vation, that any of the single fixed stars have plane- systems round the tary systems revolving round them.
But it is admitted fixed stars - that if they had really such systems, no possible tele- scopic power could ever show them to us. Hence the argument, from want of observation, goes for nothing. On the whole, then, it is a reasonable belief that they have such planetary i need help on writing an essay systems, though all experience is, and for ever will be, wanting to show it. Applies This argument is independent of the supposed transmuta- mo de of introduction of the new species. If it did occur, it would not fall under our notice : it is, therefore, no argument against it that we have " no experience " of it.
Let us even suppose it were possible for such incredulity on such, a processes to be watched and accurately examined, sul) J ect how difficult would it be for even the most skilful and unprejudiced naturalist to feel quite sure of the real nature of the case! These considerations may suffice to show how very little any reasoning from the mere absence of evidence will really avail in the case before us.
But if the idea of a formation of organised beings out of their inorganic elements were to be preferred, still on any such hypothesis the pro- ESSAY III. And farther, even if the very cautious inquirer if the ques- tion be prefer altogether to dismiss and iqnore the considera- ignored, it is still a tion of the question, simply on the alleged deficiency physical question, of satisfactory evidence, still in the true inductive spirit he admits that it is nothing more i need help on writing an essay than a mere physical question which at present he cannot solve. And on the same grounds he would as strenuously contend against the admission of any hypotheses de- rived from other considerations, of a kind incom- patible with the great principles of natural order, and of a nature beyond the domain of science. Every advance in physiological discovery seems Law of succession to point to the necessity of an entire remodelling of of forms, complex.
AH earliest At the same time, all such speculations are de- forms destroyed, prived beyond reparation of that first essential to their completeness, a knowledge of what were really the earliest forms of life on our globe, necessarily de- stroyed and burnt up as they must have been in the metamorphic and igneous rocks.