International Darwin Day – 12th February
Darwin Day is an international celebration of science that honors the inspirational work of Charles Darwin. Darwin is admired as a curious and courageous critical thinker and remembered best for his ground-breaking research into the history of life on Earth. Charles Darwin also called as Father of Evolution Theory was born on 12th February 1809 in England. He is ranked alongside our greatest scientists—Galileo, Copernicus, Newton, and Einstein.
He shares his birthday with Abraham Lincoln (16th president of the United States). Both emancipators share the same birthday, Feb. 12, 1809. With his theory of evolution, Darwin liberated the human mind, while Lincoln liberated millions of human beings by helping to end slavery. The objective of International Darwin Day is to encourage people to reflect on his principles of “Intellectual bravery, scientific thinking, and perpetual curiosity”.
This year’s 2021 Darwin Day event covers the topic of evolution and medicine.
Charles Darwin was not only a great scientific thinker. He was fascinated by the relationship between human beings and other animals. He foresaw the false ideological evils for which natural selection might be used in justification and warned against such misunderstanding. He was also sensitive to the private and social upheaval that the theory of evolution would cause: revealing that human beings all belong to one common family and relating us to all other living things came at the cost of displacing humanity from the central, divine position we had previously occupied. Despite his personal caution, Darwinism radically re-shaped our intuitions about all living things, and today humanists all over the world can celebrate a defining moment in the naturalization of our understanding of the world.
He published the theory of biological evolution by Natural Selection in his book “The Origin of Species” in 1859. Origin of Species laid the foundation for Evolutionary Biology Anthropology. His work was criticized after he published the book but the book sold millions of copies. After the discovery of DNA in 1951, Darwin’s work was recognized and appreciated.
International Darwin Day (www.darwinday.org), a global celebration of the advancement of human knowledge and the achievements of science and reason, reminds us to improve our world through education and reasoned discourse and to reject today’s opposition to scientific knowledge and inquiry, the religious traditions that often feed such opposition, and the politicization and undermining of science by ideologues and zealots believe in it. By encouraging human beings to practice critical thinking and inspire them to wonder about the world they live in, it promotes an environment of learning that advances human development and fosters a sense of interest and respect for the natural world.
How to Celebrate Darwin Day
The event celebrates the discoveries and life of Charles Darwin, the man who first described biological evolution via natural selection with scientific rigor.
1. Educate Your Students
We can reach out to students and enlighten them about the true state of affairs. Bring Darwin’s ideas to life with some hands-on activities as part of Darwin Day.
2. Attend an Event
Darwin Day is celebrated around the world! Many colleges and universities host free lectures, movies, and hands-on experiences that you could encourage your students to check out after school. Some locations even have week-long festivals that you could attend as a field trip.
3. Take Action
Help make Darwin Day an official holiday by assisting to get a Darwin Day resolution passed in your city, county, or even state. On a larger scale, have your students write a letter of support to your local government to help this resolution pass on the national level.
4. Use social media
It’s easy to overcome apathy by using the social media that science has given us (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram). With a mere click or two, you can sign and forward dozens of worthy petitions without stirring from your computer. Post pictures and share your thoughts about International Darwin Day by using the hashtag #DarwinDay.
International Darwin Day will inspire people throughout the globe to reflect and act on the principles of intellectual bravery, perpetual curiosity, scientific thinking, and hunger for truth as embodied in Charles Darwin. It will be a day of celebration, activism, and international cooperation for the advancement of science, education, and human well-being.
Suggested Read: National Science Day