Skip to comments.The History of Mankind
Posted on 04/18/2013 9:37:09 PM PDT by DennisR
As one who believes that God created the universe and all things therein, including man, just wondering how long the evolutionists on FreeRepublic believe man has existed on the earth and why.
“Modern humans: about 250,000 years.
Pre-humans: the previous 2-4 million years.
Homo sapiens: About 200,000 years.
Man as self-aware, organized, God-fearing? About 10,000 years.
The Almighty did it all in six days, but the first five lasted a few billion years.
I agree with Squawk 8888. Humans took a while to develop. The “Beings” part was recent. Think of it as driving a car. Before you can drive a car the car must first be built. You, as the driver, can’t get in and drive where your will decides until the car is finished. Homo Sapiens are the car. The spirit to make them Beings is the driver. The spirit is created by God and given a “car” to drive. That’s why we are called human beings.
Evolutionists believe man developed from apes but I believe the reverse is happening (if not physically then characteristically).
God created the universe and man so he can filter worthy souls to fill his Kingdom of Heaven.
However, because of original sin, man is on a speedy decline to become like savage animals. When the return rate for God’s plan becomes slim, Jesus will come back and the whole universe will meet a justified end.
Satan knows this and is in a race to corrupt and steal as many souls before Jesus returns.
I don’t know the dates but it’s obvious from the news we are nearing the end. I just pray the end won’t happen for at least another 3 or 4 generations, not because I am fearful, but because I’d like to enjoy the company in the eternal Kingdom of Heaven of my own propagation.
Homo Sapiens Sapiens - about 200,000 years. There doesn’t have to be a ‘why’.
But you must have a good reason to believe what you believe, right? Is it something you learned in school? Or did you arrive at this conclusion in some other way?
Same as most other folks; a lifetime of reading and learning.
All depends on your definition of "man".
If by "man" you mean:
But if you mean perfected & resurrected humans**, well... we're still waiting...
If you took a man, and magically created a woman out of this man’s rib, then got the two to mate and produce children, then took these children and made them have sex with their own siblings through incest, and the children’s children were made to do the same, quickly, rapidly, enough genetic abnormalities will accumulate to not allow this arrangement to last more than a few generations. Definitely not enough to create 7 billion humans alive today, or the billions who died before them. If the starting pair had been somehow genetically “pure” enough to allow this, then why aren’t we seeing a generational decay in humans today? People are, in fact more or less more healthy today than a thousand years ago.
Hi there; I hope it’s ok that I created an account to reply to you; I’ve only been looking around the site for a week or two now.
Just for a bit of background, I’m a graduate student studying genetics - that is, I have a bachelors, and I’m working on getting a PhD. While I don’t want to bore you with the details, the short version is I work in a lab doing research on a specific aspect of yeast.
Anyway, to answer your question: I accept the scientific consensus when it comes to the age of humans. The short version is that means that I would say that humans have been around in our present form for a few hundred thousand years - I think 200,000 is the upper bound right now, though it may be as recent as 150,000 years ago - and by that I mean a body-shape that is effectively the same as our own. We have rather good evidence that humans have had the ability to think like us for around 50,000 years - that’s about when you start seeing things like pollen in graves (indicating burial with flowers), complex tool use (more than levers or wedges), and signs of abstract thought and composition. It’s not quite clear when spoken language first developed, but I personally would say that occurred around then as well.
From there, agriculture was developed about 10,000 years ago (~40,000 years later), writing at just under 6,000 years ago (based on the oldest writ we’ve discovered), and that’s where history takes over - history is technically the period which has had recording; everything before writing is literally prehistoric.
As to why I believe all of this, most of it comes from anthropology and paleontology, with a little geology and physics mixed in - basically, it’s based on the artifacts and fossils of early humans that we’ve found, the radiometric dating, soil conditions, sedimentary local, and so forth. It’s a bit of a list, but I’m pretty sure I can look up the references if you need them.
I understand that this...ah...probably differs from your view. If you have questions, I’d be more than happy to explain myself further, as I know this short post is a brief overview. Now, I don’t want to be attacking anyone’s personal beliefs if they’re not comfortable with that, so I’ll try to stick to scientific stuff and avoid bringing theology into it - that’s part of what I think makes me a good conservative; your business is your own, and I don’t want to butt into it without invitation.
Pardon me here, but just for the sake of devil’s advocacy, there is divine intervention to account for. Don’t get me wrong, I agree that human genetics does not point to a common ancestry within the last ten thousand years; that’s not in question. I’m just pointing out, if someone is going to use divine intervention as an explanation for the origin of man, then nothing is really stopping them from using divine intervention to explain man’s genetic diversity.
By way of example, I’ve heard the following explanations from creationists at one time or another:
* God created other men and women directly for the descendents of Adam and Eve to marry, and that’s where the genetic diversity comes from - yes, this doesn’t solve all the population issues, and I don’t honestly know if there’s biblical support for it; it’s a less common argument.
* Humans were genetically “perfect” in Eden, and with the fall came genetic diversity - now, the genetic record certainly doesn’t support this one, as there does not appear to be such a thing as “perfect genetics” now or in our history, but the fall makes for a fairly typical supernatural event people can cite to say “this is where it all changed”. It’s not a convincing argument on a scientific level, but sufficient appologetics if the base theology is accepted.
* God specifically tweaked or edited the first X generations of humans after they left the garden (in some versions, “cursed” man with these tweaks), or after certain biblical events, and that amounts for the differences between then and now - this sort of claim will sometimes claim that that’s the reason that biblical figures were so long lived; that humans still were in a different or “higher” state for a time after Eden, and it’s only later generations that got the tweak. This sort of extended timeline with the “tweaking” is typically also used to get past the genetic bottleneck that Noah’s story implies. Again, not terribly convincing from a scientific standpoint, but apologetically reasonable.
I'm with you on the evolution bit and think you might enjoy reading a modern update on Darwin's work. The title is "Darwin's Ghost" by Steve Jones, and it updates each of Darwin's "Origin" chapters with great respect and ... modern knowledge.
Thank you; I appreciate it.
Now, just to check, Google yielded two books with similar titles: “Darwin’s Ghost: The Origin of Species Updated” and another by the name of “Darwin’s Ghosts: The Secret History of Evolution” - I assume you mean the former, which is listed as an update on the prose and data involved; is that correct? The latter appears to be a history lesson going over evolutionary thought and natural history from Aristotle to Darwin.
I’ll admit, I’ve actually not read much in the way of literature on evolution aimed at laymen; I always cringe a little whenever someone asks me to recommend them a book to explain evolution to them, since my education on the topic was academic; textbooks and professors and primary papers (oh my!). Amusingly, I do list among those who has never actually read On the Origin of Species; I may have to pick up a copy as you suggest - thanks again for that.
A quick question: I’ve been a little nervous about making an account, as I figured the evolutionary position wouldn’t have a lot of fans around here, and that might get me some animosity. Would you say that’s true?
It's impossible to do or say anything and not offend someone somewhere. If it happens just ignore. Human evolution as it's commonly taught does not add up right, so creationists have a valid point. Modern humans did not evolve by natural selection, but by tribal warfare. Almost all human-specific traits are the result of a competitive advantage during combat, and that includes religion and having an intelligence far in excess of that needed to find food and shelter. War acts like a God regulated IQ test that provides just the right amount of pressure to push human evolution along at unnaturally high speed but not so fast that everyone fails. Most of academia refuses to accept any of that. The words "humane" and "man-kind" are laughable and show man's vanity, and academia is near the top of that list. A side effect of vanity is envy, and it's envy that leads to hate, destruction, terrorism, murder, war, voting Democrat, and advances in human evolution. If academics came around to a more viable explanation of how it works they would have more credibility.
That's it, and it will probably be of help in getting your genetics credentials.
One genetic story (inside one of nine pages associated with genetics) involves Madeline d'Auvermont who ... "assured her son's succession by her claim that she had become pregnant when her husband was away, just by thinkiing about him." Another is the fact that "it takes about a hundred thousand genes to create a man."
The book is a treasure in many ways ...Hope you enjoy it.
Reading what? What kind of hard scientific data have you used to reach your conclusions? And how do you know that the data is reliable?
And your point is???
“I accept the scientific consensus”
Hm...how can you have scientific consensus? Mathematicians do not require consensus. The square root of 9 is 3. Period. Light travels through a vacuum at 186000 mps. Period. No consensus needed. Ergo, anything that requires consensus cannot be true science.
In a realm of pure logic, one in which the truths of all premises were known beforehand, science would not exist. In such a world, reaching a conclusion would be as easy as logically assembling the premises. Mathematics essentially dwells in such a realm, because we create it in such a way; it certainly holds strong ties to nature, but it exists in a realm removed. However, for most things in our universe and our lives, we do not have such confidence. Many things remain unknown, many premises undiscovered or unverified. In such a world as ours, logic alone is insufficient to understand reality - it is a powerful tool, but we need something to ground it to reality itself.
That is where empiricism comes in. Empiricism is, essentially the idea that we can test. Aside from a few axiomatic principles we all hold - things like “there exists a universe” - it makes one crucial assumption: the way the universe works is consistent, and because of that, we can test it and draw conclusions from our tests and observations.
Science makes use of empiricism, turning it from a philosophy about the origin of knowledge into a methodology for creating predictive models of the world around us. The major methodology for this is rather simple: falsifying hypotheses. We make an observation, form a testable hypothesis about it, and preform an experiment to attempt to prove our hypothesis incorrect; if it is proven so, it is discarded or updated, and further testing is preformed. If it is not disproved, we try different lines, further attempting to disprove it. If, after quite a bit of testing, it is not disproved - and as it gathers supporting evidence - it may be accepted as true.
When we test a single aspect enough that we are certain it works the same way each time under specific conditions, we call it a law. It is important to note that a hypothesis does not become a law, but rather a law is based on the results of repeated and varied hypothesis testing. An example of a law would be the law of gravitational attraction on earth, which states that objects accelerate towards the earth at a rate of ~9.8 m/s^2, modified slightly for altitude.
While we're talking terms, its important to note the most misused term, and yet the most important one: theory. While a lot of us use the word theory in our daily lives to mean a guess or a suggestion, that's much closer to a hypothesis (if its testable). A scientific theory has a rather specific, and different definition: a scientific theory is a model that explains a number of laws and which is capable of making falsifiable predictions; it must be supported by the evidence at hand and not contradicted. A theory is, by definition, the highest class of scientific knowledge - the theory of relativity, for example, explains numerous physical laws dealing with motion, matter, and time, including the one mentioned above, and it makes predictions - one of which is used to allow GPS to work.
Now, I'm sure you're wondering, “Where does consensus” come into all this? A good question, and rest assured, we're getting there. But first, there's one important thing to realize: science is not the art of finding the truth, but the art of becoming ever less wrong.
Let me explain this using an example: the shape of the earth.
At first, for a time, some peoples of earth believed the earth to be flat. This was actually much less common than often imagined - the earth was known to be round since the Greeks or earlier. But at any rate, some peoples considered it flat for a time; this was a working model they generated based on the evidence they had available to them - typically on long rolling plains. Now, is this idea wrong? Yes of course! However, it remains useful in the context in which it was derived; treating the earth as flat works on the small scale, and today architects do it all the time.
Now, quite a long time ago, the earth was found to be round - originally by observations made of shadows in wells which spoke of different angles by which the sun shone onto different latitudes. This new model - the round earth - allows for more predictive power; in addition to the above, it lets us chart travel routes in ways that would not be sensible if the earth were flat, but which save distance due to it being round. But this model is wrong too.
Still later, we have discovered that the earth bulges out at the middle - it is an oblate spheroid. The bulging is a matter of it's rotation as it so happens, but what this means is the earth is thicker around the middle than a perfect sphere would be. Using this new model, more detailed predictions still can be made, and provide use in air and sea travel, as well as minute measurement. But still, this is wrong - or not quite right.
Most recently, we have found that the southern hemisphere of the earth actually bulges collectively - if slightly - more than the northern hemisphere, meaning the earth is an oblate spheroid with a slight pear-shaped nature. Now, you'll note that this change is rather miniscule compared to some of the others, but it still becomes important for the most careful measurement, such as detailed GPS tracking.
Remember, each of these models was based on the evidence they had available to them, and each is still useful in its own context. None the less, as new evidence emerges, our models are revised and improved upon, and in that regard we become ever less wrong.
Now, to finally answer your question, why do we have a scientific consensus? Well, it's really just a fancy way of saying “essentially all of us are pretty sure, based on our present evidence that *this* is the way it is”. The scientific consensus is our *present* working model, the best one we have. This comes with the natural precaution: we realize we may be wrong. The reason we call it a consensus is because while we can be pretty damn sure about most things, we're not done. There is yet more to learn and discover in essentially every field, and we must never fall prey to the mistaken belief that we know all there is to know.
Science, of course, doesn't *require* a consensus but rather it *acquires* one. It's not something that we take to a vote; science is not democratic. Instead, the consensus is the group of us as a whole saying “Yes, we're very sure about *this*, given our present data”.
By the same token, you mention the speed of light. As it so happens, the speed you mention is also what the scientific consensus holds it to be - not because, once again, we needed to vote on it, but because that's what we're pretty sure it is. However, there are those who have proposed models of the universe in which the speed of light may change with time; you can view them here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Variable_speed_of_light
None of these holds the scientific consensus, because we're not sure about these; we're still looking for more data, still discussing their merits, still testing. One of them might be right, but we're not prepared to say that that is so, because while some are internally consistent models, they do not yet have enough support.
So no, I'm afraid you're incorrect; merely because a field has a consensus does not mean it's not “true science” - rather the opposite; that a consensus is present is a strong indication that we have the right idea; it means that a lot of other scientists also come to the same conclusions based on the evidence.
Does that answer your question?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.