One of Darwin’s most famous concepts, the theory of natural selection, is a perfectly logical explanation of why certain species die out, while others manage to develop further on, adapting to the changing environment. According to Darwin, the theory of natural selection presupposes that only the fittest, the strongest and the most adaptable creatures can survive in the changing habitat and, therefore, will give birth to the further generations of healthy and easily adaptable descendants. Although the given theory is often misinterpreted as the idea that only the species that are the most physically strong can survive through the changes in the environment, it is clear that Darwin had the adaptability as the key method of the ability to survive in mind.
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Physical strength is obviously not the issue in the given case, or, at least, it is not the biggest issue compared to the rest of the assets that a creature must possess to be fit to survive. The given theory is closely intertwined with the key principles of the theory of evolution, also offered by Darwin. Indeed, according to the latter, evolution presupposes not only the development of new skills and capabilities but also the training and perfection of the already existing ones to become the superior member among the specified species.
It is quite impressive that the process of natural selection does not involve great modifications of the breed – on the contrary, the basic features that distinguish the specified species from a similar group are kept intact, while the strength is increased in the process of natural selection. Biologically, the given phenomenon is quite easy to explain as a result of a combination of two types of genes, the dominant and the recessive one, the dominant shaping the features of a specific species. Thus, the key idea of natural selection is that the further generations are supposed not only to inherit the assets of their ancestors but also to demonstrate improved abilities and skills.
When considering Darwin’s theory a bit further than the famous only-the-strong-survives principle, one will see that the theory of natural selection offers a plethora of opportunities for self-analysis and a better understanding of one’s social role as well as the chances for the possible upgrade in the social status. Although the principle of species survival is no longer topical for the humankind in its crude original idea of killing the rival, competitiveness is still a driving power behind a number of scopes of activity, which means that Darwin’s principle of natural selection theory still proves to work well. Although the implications of Darwin’s theory of natural selection cannot be considered the ultimate approach to understanding the specifics of one’s own behavior patterns, they still help understand whether someone is suited to be a leader or supposed to follow someone else’s orders. Helping to define the key features of dominant behavior, Darwin’s theory gives a clear vision of humankind being split into two major parts, i.e., the leaders and their “subordinates.” That being said, Darwin’s theory can be considered a perfect foil for one’s own development and the change of behavioral patterns towards more leadership-oriented ones.
It is noteworthy, though, that Darwin’s theory of natural selection allows enhancing one’s self-understanding from the strictly biopsychological point of view without the consideration of the socio-cultural aspect of people’s lives. Truly, the former predetermines the way in which people behave and communicate to considerable extent, yet there is a great gap between the world of nature and the human civilization; primarily, the difference lies in the existence of the concept of ethics and morals in the human world, as opposed to the animal kingdom, where the ability to survive is the key asset.
It goes without saying that people have much in common with animals, being themselves a part of the animal kingdom. However, it is still necessary to keep in mind that the now-or-never principles, which are considered valid in the animal world, shape greatly when applied to the realm of the human world, mostly due to the moral and cultural restrictions that people impose on themselves for the sake of keeping the fabric of society from tearing apart. As Darwin put it, “In social animals, it will adapt the structure of each individual for the benefit of the whole community; if the community profits by the selected change. What natural selection cannot do, is to modify the structure of one species, without giving it any advantage, for the good of another species” (Darwin, 1859, 5).
Therefore, it is clear that among people, the link between an individual and the community is very strong and is based on the policy of mutual support, which is strikingly different from the survival principle in the animal kingdom. That being said, the theory of natural selection seems to have been upgraded by the human race; taking it to a completely new level, people have introduced the sociocultural aspect in it, making it clear that the human nature comprises biological, social and cultural elements, unlike the rest of the species do.