There have been many scientists who have revolutionized science, and have taken man’s understanding of his own origin to a completely new level. Charles Darwin was one of those great scientists, who through his ‘evolution theory’, opened a new vista in the scientific world.
Voyage in Beagle
Charles Darwin began his exploration at a young age of 22, when he undertook a land mark Voyage on the research vessel H M S Beagle, on 27th December 1931. This was a chanced opportunity that Darwin fervently took, as one of the research scholars opted out at the last moment. It was during this trip that he formulated his theory of evolution.
The Vessel, H M S Beagle
Until then, the prevalent view in Europe was that which was dictated by the Christian Theology which states that God created the earth, man and animals in 7 days, in a set sequence.
In the course of his voyage, Darwin studied various forms of life, right from butterflies, insects, to tortoises, including the famous long living tortoise of Galapagos. At every port of call, he collected samples and studied them. The ship route covered southern hemisphere, including Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Brazil, lasting for 5 long years.
The Voyage of the Beagle
On the Origin of Species
After he came back to England from the Voyage, he settled down to write his master piece book, “On the Origin of Species”. Initially, the publisher was hesitant to print and publish his book. But, Darwin was so sure about his theory being accepted that he offered to buy back the 1250 printed copies of the book if they did not sell.
This book soon shook the very foundations of science and Christian theology.
Charles Darwin’s Book, The Origin of Species
Charles Darwin & the Indian Connect
There are some aspects of Darwin’s theory that are in sync with the Indian story of evolution.
According to Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, aquatic creatures were the first to come into existence, followed by amphibians and then land creature.
In India, the concept of evolution has been discussed in the sequence of Dasavatara of Vishnu, starting from the fish and evolving all the way to the intellectual human.
Indians knew it all
While Charles Darwin’s theories challenged the idea of Divinity in the west by propounding an evolutionary origin of humans, the same theory was in line with the Indian concept of Avatars, incarnations of the Divinity Vishnu. The people of this land had understood the concept of evolution even before Darwin.