Peacock Feathers – Darwin’s Nightmare

A few days ago, friend of mine in Alice Springs sent me these two amazing pictures of albino peacocks, and it got me thinking.

peacock two:

I started to recall my studies of the great 18,000 verse Sanskrit epic, Srimad Bhagavatam. In the Second Canto it describes what is known as the virat-rupa, otherwise known as the Universal Form of God.

The Bhagavatam describes a type of meditation where one can perceive this Universal Form everywhere in the creation. This is a highly conceptualised form, but nevertheless it can elevate one far beyond normal mundane sense perception.

As an aid to this meditation, the Bhagavatam proposes that one can see God in His creation as follows:

Hills and mountains represent His bones
Physical sound represents His sense of hearing
Material aroma represent His sense of smell
Trees represent the hairs on His body
The clouds represent the hair on His head
Day and night represent His eyelids
Religion represents His breast
Irreligion represents His back
The ocean represents His waist
Rivers represent His veins
Twilight represents His dress
The air represents His breath
The ten directions represent His ears
The blazing fire represents His mouth
The sun and moon represent His eyes
Alluring material energy represents His smile
The passing ages represent His movements
The horse, mule, camel represent His nails
Varieties of birds represent His artistry
The brahmanas represent His face
The ksatriyas represent His arms
The vaisyas represent His thighs
The sudras represent His feet

peacock one:

Note the amazing artistry of those feathers. But there’s more here than just exquisite beauty…

When bird feathers are studied closely, a very delicate design emerges. There are even tinier hairs on every tiny hair, and these have special hooks, allowing them to hold onto each other.

Just one crane feather, for instance, has about 650 barbs on each side of the shaft. About 600 barbules branch off each of the barbs. Each one of these barbules are locked together with 390 hooklets. The hooks latch together as do the teeth on both sides of a zip. If the hooklets come apart for any reason, the bird can easily restore the feathers to their original form by either shaking itself or by straightening its feathers out with its beak.

To claim that the complex design in feathers could have come about by the evolution of reptile scales through chance mutations is quite simply a dogmatic belief with no scientific foundation.

Even one of the doyens of Darwinism, Ernst Mayr, made this confession on the subject some years ago:

“It is a considerable strain on one’s credulity to assume that finely balanced systems such as certain sense organs (the eye of vertebrates, or the bird’s feather) could be improved by random mutations.”

The design of feathers also compelled Darwin to ponder them. Moreover, the perfect aesthetics of the peacock’s feathers had made him “sick” (his own words).

In a letter he wrote to Asa Gray on April 3, 1860, Darwin said,

“I remember well the time when the thought of the eye made me cold all over, but I have got over this stage of complaint…”

And then continued:

“…and now trifling particulars of structure often make me very uncomfortable. The sight of a feather in a peacock’s tail, whenever I gaze at it, makes me sick!”

The unbelievably complex design of feathers clearly demonstrate a scientific and artistic brain of immense capacity. It is clear to me that this exquisite artistry and profoundly intelligent design belongs to none other than The Supreme Artist and Supreme Designer Himself.
Posted by Kurma on 5/2/07; 10:19:21 AM

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