SPIRITUALITY SCIENCE – THE HUMAN SPECIES:
Carolus Linnaeus also known as Carl Linnaeus, (b. May 23, 1707, d. January 10, 1778) Swedish botanist, a doctor of medicine, and explorer was the first to frame principles for defining genera and species of organisms and to create a uniform system for naming them.
Linnaeus published his Systema Naturae in 1735 and Genera Plantarum in 1737. He presented and explained his classification system that was based mainly on flower parts which tend to remain unchanged from generation to generation.
Linnaeus in his Systema Naturae gave a very precise description of man, placing him among the Class – Mammals, in the Order of Primates which includes the apes. Further, Linnaeus described the varieties of man such as The Asian, The African, and The European. He depended only on external characteristics to place objects into a rational set of categories. Thus Linnaeus formulated a Static Taxonomy in which Species of living things appear to be immutable in type throughout the ages. The Species, the fundamental unit of Classification, consists of populations of morphologically similar individuals that share the similar collection of characteristics whose combination is unique to the Species. In other words, Species is distinguished by its ability to maintain its stability from generation to generation. Since Species is self-perpetuating, they maintain the stability of all other groupings like the genera, phyla, and families which remain fixed from generation to generation. Apart from the observed stability of all recognized Species, the chemical molecules that are essential to compose the Living Matter, Material, or Substance called Protoplasm have always maintained their stability. For example, water molecule is the most important of all the biomolecules of Life and its chemical composition and properties are held stable over billions of years.
THE NATURAL LAW OF PROPAGATION:
The French naturalist Buffon in his monumental compendium on Natural History(44 Volumes), Histoire Naturelle General et Particuliere – 1749-1804), described man as a zoological species. Buffon determined species not by their physical appearances but by their reproductive history. Two individual animals or plants are of the same Species if they can produce fertile offspring. Species are known only through the history of its natural propagation. By the law of natural propagation, offspring will always be of the same species as the parent organism. A Species always breeds true. Its members always generate organisms which can be classified as belonging to the same Species, however much they vary among themselves as individuals within the group. The sub-groups, the races or varieties of Species are able to breed with one another, but diverse Species cannot interbreed. Organisms different in Species cannot reproduce productively and if crossbred, like the horse and the ass, they produce a sterile hybrid like the mule. The Natural Law of Propagation can be described as “The Law of Creation and Individuality.” Each kind of living thing always arrives as an original, distinctive, unique, and one of its own kind of object. No living thing has an independent choice of its own and there is no choice other than that of existing as a created object that can be identified as a specific individual thing with Individuality. Even with the use of the latest reproductive technology such as cloning, man cannot use the reproductive process to cause the existence of two identical living things. The term ‘Species’ must be used for purposes of ease and convenience as they are trillions of Individual living things with Individuality. In my view, the French naturalist Buffon had defined the term ‘Species’ correctly using the Natural Law of Propagation.
THE NATURAL HISTORY OF MAN:
When man is viewed as the subject of scientific investigation, the empirical knowledge of man is provided by observations of his structure(ANATOMY), functions(PHYSIOLOGY), his behavior(PSYCHOLOGY), his culture(ANTHROPOLOGY), and his past(ARCHAEOLOGY).
The study of the Natural History of Man was stimulated by the encounters with the great anthropoid Apes of Africa and Asia at the beginning of the 16th century. The discovery of the Chimpanzee and the Orangutan(meaning “Man of the Woods” in Malay language) raised questions about the status of Apes and their relation to Man. Dr. Edward Tyson, M.D., conducted studies(1699) sponsored by the Royal Society of London to analyze in great detail the similarities and the dissimilarities between a Chimpanzee and a man. For Tyson, the Chimpanzee was the missing link between animal and Man. But, Tyson and Darwin have no evidence to show that Chimpanzee or any other intermediate Species can actually transform its genome by gradual modification and appear in the physical world as a brand new Human Species.
Johann Friedrich Blumenbach is recognized as the Father of Physical Anthropology for his work De Generis Humani Varietate Nativa(1775-76). His research in the measurement of human skulls led him to divide mankind into five great families; Caucasian, Mongolian, Malayan, Ethiopian, and American. Human Species may include varieties that can be grouped into Races by using some common morphological traits.
At the same time the present Identification Technology such as the Fingerprints, Iris Scans, Facial Recognition Technology, Skin Surface Texture Recognition Technology allows the recognition of each member of the Human Species as a specific Individual with Individuality.
THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES – THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION:
Charles Darwin had no particular problem with the term ‘Species’ and in his view, Species is the term used to signify “a set of individuals closely resembling each other” – a class of plants or animals having certain characteristics. However, he wanted to seek a genealogical relationship among the various forms of life. His ideas demanded a dynamic or genealogical classification of living things. While holding that new Species originate in the course of time, Darwin formulated a view about the Origin of Species and their differentiation, and the factors or circumstances under which some life forms cease to have the status of species or become extinct. But, Darwin had not fully accounted for the reality called existence. There is no Natural Law or Principle that can fully account for the existence of Life on planet Earth.
Evolutionary Biology describes Man as a direct descendant of nonhuman Primates. From the interpretation of fossils have arisen concepts of mutation(the process by which the genetic material of a cell is altered), transformism(the theory that one Species is changed into another) and Evolution through mechanistic, unguided, purposeless and random events. At a fundamental level, The Great Chain of Living Beings has to be explained as a Continuity while the individual Species of Living Beings arrive as a sequence of discrete, creative steps. The precise physical form of Man as a special form or as a Human Species has to be explained by describing the role of natural factors and natural conditions of climate or environment that may determine the actual characteristics of a given Species. The morphological variations among the various members of the Homo Genus have to be related to the variations in diet, physical activity, and physical climatic conditions and the observed variations must explain the reproductive success or failure of the Species. In my view, the substance or material called the Living Matter has always existed with the same chemical composition resisting any influence of changing Time. The forms assumed by the Living Matter have always varied to demonstrate the operation of a creative mechanism that maintains the stability of each Species while generating variations among members of the same Species and between different Species. I would further seek to explain the arrival of the Human Species as a Creative Event as other member Species of the Genus Homo disappeared simultaneously without any specific contribution made by the Nature or the natural living conditions that prevail on planet Earth.