A complete theory of evolution must acknowledge a balance between “external” forces of environment imposing selection for local adaptation and “internal” forces representing constraints of inheritance and development. Vavilov placed too much emphasis on internal constraints and downgraded the power of selection. But Western Darwinians have erred equally in practically ignoring (while acknowledging in theory) the limits placed on selection by structure and development what Vavilov and the older biologists would have called “laws of form.”
Again, silence has the power to silence heretics. Today it is the only institution that can claim authority. Like the Church in the past, it has the power to destroy, or marginalise, independent thinkers. (Think how orthodox medicine reacted to Freud , and orthodox Darwinians to Lovelock .) In fact, science does not yield any fixed picture of things, but by censoring thinkers who stray too far from current orthodoxies it preserves the comforting illusion of a single established worldview.john n. gray
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