The idea of evolution seems to scare some people.
For some, it is as if they believe that accepting evolution is to abandon their faith.
For others, it is as if they feel that if they accept that they are categorized as apes, that they will suddenly no longer be able to control their behavior, that they will somehow become more animalistic.
It is as if they believe that somehow, if Human kind is a mere animal, then that makes him less special. That makes his position in the world less prominent.
To me, the idea that a single species could manage at the same time to evolve the ability to stand upright, opposable thumbs and fingers, and the ability to reason at the level that we do all at once is… Well, it is miraculous. It is amazing. It is a thing which is rare and beautiful in the universe.
Our closest cousins in the animal kingdom have opposable thumbs, and the ability to stand upright for a time, but they do not reason at the same level that we do. I mean, sure they can puzzle through simple tasks and even use tools, but they are primitive and their communication skills and social boundaries do not allow them to come anywhere near close to what we have achieved.
Our closest peers, on an intellectual and emotional level, possess the ability to reason as we do. Their societies are much like ours were in the Stone Age. They can talk amongst themselves. They can plan things between families. They can even use tools. They can even communicate with us once a common medium has been decided upon. They however do not have opposable thumbs (or any fingers/claws at all for that matter), and they cannot walk upright.
All of the creatures I have mentioned so far are mammals. Perhaps the next most intelligent creature however, because they themselves are not mammals, even though they can communicate amongst themselves, reason somewhat well, and use and create tools, and even though they have ways to bypass the need for opposable thumbs… Well, we see them as a tasty snack. Sorry guys.
My point is, even if we are animals we are still Humans. Even if Humans are apes, we are still the most elevated among the Great Apes. We have still built civilization. We are still capable of communicating with each other at great distances. We are still capable of reaching out to our fellow creatures and elevating some of them as well. We are still very much the masters of our world and our destiny.
Even if we are animals…
Even if we did evolve from some primordial muck over the course of millions of years…
We are amazing.
What is more amazing? The idea that some creature got lonely and decided to create friends, or the idea that we amongst all the millions upon millions of possible species that ever existed, we among all of those things that fly in the air, and walk on the land, and swim in the sea, that we were the ones to stand up and walk forward proudly into the darkness of night and on into the glorious dawn of the new morning and eventually to the stars?
I think that is pretty fucking brilliant personally.
I think that if the single most amazing thing on the face of the planet is going to shake your faith, then maybe you need to rethink things a bit.