Charles Darwin was born two hundred years ago on February 12th, 1809. His book, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, is one of the most controversial books ever written, especially if you believe in Intelligent Design and the literal truth of Genesis. Darwin’s theory is the greatest idea that anyone has ever had.
It’s interesting to realise that Darwin returned on The Beagle from his voyage around the world in October 1836 and yet his great work didn’t appear in print until November 1859. It’s possible that without the influence of Alfred Russell Wallace, Darwin’s theory may never have seen the light of day.
Indeed, although Wallace’s ideas more or less matched Darwin’s, the people who believe in Intelligent Design would much prefer that Wallace’s theory gained the upper hand over Darwin’s. The reason for this is that Wallace believed that the human mind, and only this, must have been the product of a higher intelligence. Imagine how happy intelligent designers would be if this theory was generally held to be the correct one, rather than Darwin’s.
They could then say that the human brain was designed by God. Of course, if God designed the human mind, then surely he must have turned his hand to designing other beings too – after all why stop at a mere human, what about an elephant or a Dodo? And did God design the coast of Norway? Or was that Slartibartfast?