kotsbak (kotsbak) wrote,

Misconceptions in evolution theories: What is teleology?

Teleological evolution was explained by Aristotle as evolution controlled by ideas. Before the existence of an organism there was an idea about its characteristic. Darwin opposed to such views. But similar ways of thinking exist even today. We know that the phenotype is built by using building plans that are contained in the genotype, i.e. the genome. But the way these plans were created are to a lot of people a total mystery. Many people, also scientists, explain it in ways that are very reminiscent of teleology. Ernst Mayr, Lynn Margulis, Michael Behe and Richard Dawkins have ideas of evolution that are teleological. Dawkins says that evolution is predictable, which means that there is some sort of control. He gives selection full control of evolution, and selection is seen as an absolute, given the fitness of all features. Partly his standpoint could be explained by his addiction to adaptation, but he does not say clearly that adaptation is quite different from evolution.
Tags: behe, dawkins, evolution, margulis, mayr, teleology
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