“Homologous” and “Analogous” traits should be reconsidered as biological descriptors

“Homologous” and “Analogous” traits should be reconsidered as biological descriptors because they presuppose that gross evolution has occurred. We then encounter the circular logic of “we know evolution is true because of homology” and “we know homology is true because of evolution.” To be wholly objective, neutral terminology should be used which is descriptive rather than presumptive. Here are some terms which can help provide greater clarity:

Diasynmorphic: Two structural similarities between species that are widely separated taxonomically.

Diasyngenic: Genetic coding similarities between species that are widely separated taxonomically.

Diasynkinetic: Behavioral similarities between species that are widely separated taxonomically.

Diansynceptive: Perceptual system similarities between species that are widely separated taxonomically.

As we have learned from the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis, words matter because they provide channels for our ideas. If we are careless in our selection of terminology, we shackle scientific endeavor.

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About dynamicbydesign

B.A.Ed, (English, Speech) University of Nebraska, 1993 M.S. (Psychology), University of Nebraska, 1999
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