Happy Birthday

This entry was posted by Richard Beck. Bookmark the permalink.

2 thoughts on “Happy Birthday”

  1. It's only polite to wish people Happy Birthday. Particularly 200 year old birthdays.

    For readers who want a guide to the two documents I've posted without commentary, here are some liner notes:

    The top picture is from Darwin's Notebook B. Darwin has a famous series of notebooks were we can see him inching toward the idea a decent with modification. The sketch above is considered a breakthrough moment. Darwin writes the words "I think" and then draws the very first of the now ubiquitous "Tree of Life" showing how different species share a common ancestor in the distant past.

    The bottom picture is a reflection penned by Abraham Lincoln. The reflection, like Darwin's diagram, appears to be a musing as we know of no time when Lincoln used these words in public. We call this jotting of Lincoln The Meditation On the Divine Will. Many of the themes of the Meditation show up in Lincoln's historic Second Inaugural Address. The Mediation reads:

    The will of God prevails. In great contests each party claims to act in accordance with the will of God. Both may be, and one must be, wrong. God cannot be for and against the same thing at the same time. In the present civil war it is quite possible that God's purpose is something different from the purpose of either party -- and yet the human instrumentalities, working just as they do, are of the best adaptation to effect His purpose. I am almost ready to say that this is probably true -- that God wills this contest, and wills that it shall not end yet. By his mere great power, on the minds of the now contestants, He could have either saved or destroyed the Union without a human contest. Yet the contest began. And, having begun He could give the final victory to either side any day. Yet the contest proceeds.

Leave a Reply