Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 33.djvu/336

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322
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

the necessary natural lines of their gourd originals. Each village has its own distinctive patterns. I have a small collection of native Kabyle and Morocco pottery, and in every piece without exception one can see at once the particular sort of gourd — double, single, or flat-faced — on which each individual vase must be finally affiliated. And, when once one has learned to know and recognize these central types, the character of the ornamentation on more advanced keramic products of other nations often enables one to guess correctly from what original natural form the particular piece in question is ultimately descended. I believe it would be possible so to arrange all the keramic products in a great museum, along a series of divergent radial lines from certain fixed centers, that the common origin of all from each special sort of gourd or calabash would become immediately obvious to the most casual observer.


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DARWINISM AND THE CHRISTIAN FAITH.

III.

WE come now to that which most people feel to be the real difficulty in the way of accepting Darwinism. No well-instructed churchman supposes that the faith of Christ stands or falls with the theory of special creations, or that the existence of God is less certain because we have learned that the witness of conscience is necessary to interpret the witness of Nature, and that physical science by itself can tell us less than we thought about the personality and the love of God.

4. But Darwinism means a great deal more than the substitution of derivation for special creation, or of the new teleology for the old argument from design. It means a new view of man, and his place in creation. Darwin foresaw this from the first, and in the "Origin of Species" asserted his belief that "much light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history."[1] Now, if this had only meant a chemical analysis of "the dust of the ground" out of which man was formed, if, like Matthew Henry, Darwin had assured us — on grounds for which, indeed, no evidence is given — that the dust was "not gold dust, powder of pearl, diamond dust, but common dust: dust of the ground"; "not dry dust, but dust wetted with the mist which went up from the earth," it is clear religion would have felt that it had lost as little as science would have gained. But Darwin's theory connected man with the higher vertebrata by analogies as strong as those which made other species descendants from a common stock. This was the secret of the opposition to the "Origin of Species."

  1. P. 428.