I have a question on Evolution and I hope I can write it well enough that it makes sense. I have studied it a little and have no doubt that it is a process that is clearly happening in our world today. Much more obvious on the micro level, but the diversity of fauna in various locales would seem to speak to me on a macro level as well.
My question is how accurate and useful is the theory of evolution in extrapolating back to the origin of specific species? That is, we observe several species now, we have observed several fossils that would suggest a progression, but how confidently can we make that link scientifically? In short, can evolution truly back up the claim that life started in a primordial soup and evolved into humans? I know that is premise scientists would use, but can that actually be backed up with fact?
I understand how, depending on geography and available resources, that life will evolve in different situations and that over millions of generations there will be lots of diversity within fauna, but it still seems like a far jump to then move that from a few inorganic compounds that life sprung up.
My discomfort with evolution is not about what processes it explains going forward (those appear obvious) but the confidence it has with going backwards and the conclusions that are reached.
I had a long response to this, but I lost it somehow ugh.
The short of it:
1) Life really isn't that diverse. We share basic cellular biology with all life on Earth, that makes up a huge part of our genome. That cell process is totally complex and as a result we share a majority of the same genome. I had a good Lego metaphor here, but I'm not going to recreate it. Oh well.
2) I'm not sure that evolution attempts to explain how amino acids surfaced from primordial soup, or how primordial soup arose at all. It hardly matters whether we use evolution, gods snapping fingers, or a dissolving alien as an explanation...
3) How accurate can history be about anything that predates records? Your problem seems more with humans capacity to know the past, than with evolution. In fact your questions are more philosophical than scientific imo.
4) The lack of an equally evidential alternative.
Edited by PseudoSABR, 08 December 2012 - 03:24 PM.