Per Bak Quote
History, including that of evolution, is just "one damned thing after another." We can explain in hindsight what has happened, but we cannot predict what will happen in the future. The Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard expressed the same view in his famous phrase "Life is understood backwards, but must be lived forwards.
How Nature Works: The Science of Self-Organized Criticality, Chapter 1 (pp. 7-8)