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Saturday, April 10, 2010

THE GOLDEN EVOLUTION (Part 24): WHAT ABOUT THE ORIGIN OF LIFE? (Part A)





The following continues the serialization of Chapter 5 on Religion from SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity:


What About the Origin of Life?




In the beginning, there were Adam and Eve, or, depending on your belief, bacteria, or, maybe, viruses or aliens. By evolution, came Man, where Homo sapiens sapiens spun off from Homo sapiens (knowing man) about 100,000 years ago, while the latter transitioned from Homo erectus perhaps 300,000 to 400,000 years ago. All signs point to this chain of human life starting in Africa. In scientific classification we follow the chain:


o Subspecies: Homo sapiens sapiens

o Species: Homo sapiens (the Homo sapiens idaltu became extinct)

o Genus: Homo (Hominini side has two branches, the Pan Genus for some chimpanzees—where the bonobo, or pygmy chimpanzee, looks awfully like humans, but with more hair—and the sapiens line)

o Subfamily: Homininae (our tribe is Hominini, while the gorilla

tribe is referred to as Gorillini)

o Family: Hominidae

o Order: Primates

o Class: Mammalia

o Phylum Chordata

o Kingdom: Animalia

Our Order is Primates. No wonder that some Creationists take offense. The chimpanzee and Man took different pathways about five to 7 million years ago. Our genetic sequences are 99% identical over 96% of the lengths. While our DNA base pairs have 35 million differences, this is out of 3 billion pairs.



Man and ape came from the first animals, sponges…yes, sponges, which formed 635 millions ago. Came the Cambrian Explosion maybe a hundred million years later, when, during only a 10 million year period (or perhaps a few ten million years), animal life suddenly advanced from worms and sponges into the seven additional animal body plans. In real world analogy: for a 75 year old man, 10 million years relative to the time span of life itself on our planet is equivalent only to about 75 days and fifty million years would be a year.


But, then, what came before sponges? Well, early life, circa 3.7 billions years, began as a single cell. Bacteria? Archaea? Many of you probably never even heard of this "recently" discovered microorganism. Stay tuned.





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