Charles Darwin’s most effective strategy to prove his theory of transmutation through natural selection was to prove certain aspects that creationism advocates could not. Creationism followers believed that God created the world at the beginning perfectly and that nothing had been changed and all the species are the same today as they were in the past. However, Darwin argued that species change over time due to their habitat to better suit them to reproduce more and be more “fit.” In this case “fit” means being able to reproduce more and continue the species. Darwin proved certain Creationism aspects using paleontology and homologies, Archaeopteryx, and his Galapagos finches when on the Beagle Voyage.
As one of his strongest points, Darwin used the phenomenon of homologies using fossil records. He showed that a bat wing, a whale fin, a mole forelimb and a human hand all had similar characteristics to them. Homologies helped his argument because Creationists believed that there was a Creator that created all the species and homologies showed that he had to use a template which the Creationists did not want to accept. This proved that these species had to be derived from a common ancestor because that ancestor had to have this trait and it was passed on and split into different species which had that characteristic.
In addition to homologies, Darwin used the Archaeopteryx to fortify his argument. Archaeopteryx was the missing link between dinosaurs and birds. Since birds had to evolve from somewhere and that they were not present during the era of the dinosaurs, Darwin had proved that species had to change to different once to create new ones. In this case, dinosaurs evolved into Archaeopteryx which then evolved into the birds that we have today. Creationists had believed that birds were present from the start of life but this proved that birds had to be evolved from a common ancestor which was Archaeopteryx. Creationists could not explain why birds had showed up after dinosaurs so Darwin used this to strengthen his argument.
A strong opponent to Darwin’s theories was Richard Owen. Determined to bring down Darwin and his natural selection ideas he had created a new theory as to why there are many species. He stated that there was one generic species that had diverged over time and turned into specialized species. When this theory was first made public, it seemed that Darwin was disproven and that he had lost all of his credibility. However, Darwin used this to prove his own. He retaliated by stating that species have to fight for resources in their habitat. Hence, the species would change based on what resources they needed to thrive which would lead to natural selection. This became one of Darwin’s strongest points and proved, once again, an aspect hat Creationists and Owen could not.
Lastly, Darwin used his Galapagos finches to prove that natural selection existed. According to his theory, species transform to better suit their surroundings and reproduce more to ensure the survival of their species. After analyzing the finches he saw that each finch was suited to their diet. For example, their beaks had changed based on what they would eat. Nut eaters would have thick beaks so that they could crush the nuts. Other finches had thin and slender beaks to carry cactus spikes and catch larvae from the inside of trees. This showed that a Creator could not create every single species with specific characteristics if the environment changed over time. If the environment changes, then the species change and Creationists said that a Creator created everything once in the beginning perfectly.
By proving these aspects that Creationists could not, Darwin successfully proved that species undergo transmutation through natural selection and that they had evolved form a common ancestor. This strategy is the reason why his theory of natural selection is widely accepted today.