Sunday, March 23, 2008

Hitler and creationism

I was very surprised to found out today that in fact Hitler didn't believe in evolution as presented by Darwin. It is well known that Hitler believed in the racial supremacy of German people, and it is often claimed that the basis for this idea was evolution. This claim is based on the definition of evolution as "the preservation of favored races in the struggle for life". It is very simple to get from this definition to racism and genocide. But this definition is not correct.

Photo by wrmlus

In fact, what Darwin said was the opposite of this definition. According to Darwin, it is not the best species that survive but the most adaptable. Moreover, there is no way to define what a "best" creature (or race) is from evolutionary point of view.
For example, scientists are pretty sure that dinosaurs ruled the earth for over 100 million years. It is logical to assume that they were the best product of evolution then. But they got extinct. Therefore, they were less adaptable than other creatures, and can no longer be considered "winners" in the race of evolution.
From this example it is clear that no specie can be defined as the best product of evolution - because it is fully possible that this particular specie will be extinct tomorrow.

As we now see, it is not correct that Hitler based his views on the theory of evolution proposed by Darwin. While he used the world evolution to justify his ideas, it was a different theory that was behind this word..

Surprisingly, it turns out that Hitler believed that the world was created by God and rejected Darwin theory of evolution. We can see this from the following quotes:

The fox remains always a fox, the goose remains a goose, and the tiger will retain the character of a tiger. - Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, vol. ii, ch. xi

For it was by the Will of God that men were made of a certain bodily shape, were given their natures and their faculties. - Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, vol. ii, ch. x

From where do we get the right to believe, that from the very beginning Man was not what he is today? Looking at Nature tells us, that in the realm of plants and animals changes and developments happen. But nowhere inside a kind shows such a development as the breadth of the jump , as Man must supposedly have made, if he has developed from an ape-like state to what he is today. - Adolf Hitler, Hitler's Tabletalk (Tischgesprache im Fuhrerhauptquartier)

It it very clear that this quotes deny evolution. Moreover, they seem to suggest that he believed in God. But then, what was the evolution he spoke about?
As it seems from what he did, the evolution was not an evolution, but rather a place in a list. He simply decided what nations was more superior than other nations and than used historical connections to make a list - with German people on top of the list, and Jews somewhere near the end.
When you have such a list it is very easy to talk about evolution. Evolution becomes simply a movement in the list...

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