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If it's true that there is a single origin of humanity out ot E Africa apx.150,000 years ago, then we are all family.

Paleoanthropologists hold the 'single origin' theory - where anatomicallly modern humans originated solely in Sub-saharan Africa from a single origin point - as the most widely accepted. That would mean we all have the same ancestors. If we all have the same ancestors, are we not all related? If we're all related, then we're all family. If we are all family, then we are more than just 'community'. We are the same. Everyone. It is done. It's time now to put aside our histories, our angers, our revenge, our murderousness, our exploitiveness, and 'reach across the table' and become the strong and unitfied humans we are (obviously now) created to be.The divisions amongst us are over and need to be 'torn down'. Indira Gandhi is credited with saying: "Forgiveness is a virtue of the brave." Think what 7 - soon to be 9 - billion people working in harmony could accomplish. The rich think they're rich now, just imagine the wealth if 'the whole family' participated in the economy - not nearly half of us unable to participate realistically. What if our security forces were small and the funds were devoted to education and economic deveiopment because we knew we were a 'good family'? We've learned to be selfish, protective, afraid, and 'enmitized' towards each other. It's a now a new day, and new skills are required.

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    Jun 1 2012: the same could be said about humans and bacteria. We share a common ancestor. We're family.
    Everything on this planet is related to everything else.

    However, we're not evolutionnally designed to consider every human being as part of our family. We're tribal and it takes restless efforts from institution to ensure that we remain at peace in a global society.
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      Jun 1 2012: Well Gerald! You rained on my parade, cousin!
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        Jun 1 2012: I should've slept over and read your parade for breakfast.
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          Jun 1 2012: they say that the truth set you free. If so , why do I often want to respond with: OH POOP!?
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      Jun 1 2012: probably everything with dna is related - distantly
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      Jun 2 2012: What on Earth is, "evolutionnally designed"? Are you going all anthropomorphic Gerald and assigning the role of Intelligent Designer to evolution? Also, will you please remind me what the name of that common ancestor "EVERYTHING [my emphasis] on this planet" is related to? Thank you!
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        Jun 2 2012: hydrogen is one of our common ancestors, dear Edward. We have names for some of the stuff that was lucky enough to reproduce among of ascendents, but I don't know how to name the first cell, or the first amino acid, or whatever. I'm guessing you want me to name the first replicating mollecule. Otherwise, everything came from nuclear transmutation.
        Evolutionnally designed, sure. As opposed to randomness, as opposed to chance.
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          Jun 2 2012: Webster's Dictionary defines "ancestor" as: "An early type of animal from which later kinds have evolved." Hydrogen is neither an Animal; a Eucaryota; nor a Living Thing. Why do you not know the name of the common ancestor? I think it is because no living thing has been scientifically identified as such. In other words there is no one single living, or once living, ancestor of everything on this planet. If I am wrong please name the ancestor.
          So, on your own, you are coining the phrase "Evoltionnally Designed" as the new, more precise name to replace what is now called "Intelligent Design"? You are saying the process of evolution is driven by an intelligent force? I am hoping for two precise resposes. Thank you Gerald for your provocative perspective
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        Jun 2 2012: "An early type of animal from which later kinds have evolved"

        If you know anything about biology, you know that atoms didn't suddenly come together to shape the first animal. There is always a continuum. There was a continuum between energy and atoms, between atoms and mollecules, mollecules and the first replicating mollecules. So much so that there is no such thing as "THE FIRST" in either case. There is no first homo sapiens, for that matter.

        I don't think I coined "evolutionnally designed". I must've heard it in a pub. Anyway I like it. Creationnists always oppose Intelligent design to Chance, as in the famous watchmaker explanation, or the more recent 747 boeing nonsense. The opponents to evolution are not opponents to evolution, it turns out.
        1) Pure luck
        2) Intelligent Design (everything comes from a creator, except the creator)
        3) Evolution

        1) and 3) are opposites. NO ONE ON EARTH supports 1)!!!

        "You are saying the process of evolution is driven by an intelligent force?"
        No, but driven by a process that fools us into thinking it's intelligent. Just like a computer chess game, where the moves are a result of an evolutionnary process of trial and error, and where the resulting move seems to be a clever one.
        With evolution, however, every possible move is lived out. The "clever" one is the one that's survived the trial and error process.

        I will explain things in more detail, if you want me to.
        Regards
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          Jun 2 2012: I appreciate your offer for more detail Gerald. What I would really profit from is less detail and more clarity. You have departed from my two simple questions (name of common ancestor? and, is evolution driven by an intelligent force?) and left them unanswered. I think you are unable to answer my first question because you profess to believe that life (the mysterious common ancestor) spontaneously sprang from non-life. Your theory of evolution offers no name for, or valid scientific explanation of, that FIRST life form. You even go so far as to say there was no first life form!? I think you are reluctant to answer my second question because you refuse to support the idea of blind luck driving everything, AND you refuse to support the only other explanation available which has been popularly labeled "Intelligent Design" (to which I do not subscribe). So you dodge my questions and go after straw men and red herrings. Please condescend to indulge a non-biologist by answering these two questions : 1) What is the name of the first life form? 2) Is the process of evolution "driven" in such a way that its effects always "appear to be clever"?
          Thank you!
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        Jun 2 2012: Clarity! Fine, fine!

        1) What is the name of the first life form?

        I have to dodge this question, Edward, because as I said ; there was no FIRST life form. The process that took basic chemical reactions to something like a bacterium takes millions and millions of years. There are countless stages, evolution is a gradual phenomenum. Let's see the implications of your assumptions that there should be a FIRST LIFE FORM. What would its parent be?
        The way we name things is usually related to what we're lucky enough to dig up. We make categories up where they don't exist. Species don't exist, for that matter, as Darwin noted. (I can explain this point).
        So I hold my position on this one : This question is nonsense. " I think you are unable to answer my first question because you profess to believe that life (the mysterious common ancestor) spontaneously sprang from non-life" This is not what I meant. I think that what we call non-life gradually evolved into what we call life, SPRANG, you say. I don't think that the verb "to spring" fits a progressive change spreading over a billion years. Perhaps this is the source of your skepticism.

        2) Is the process of evolution "driven" in such a way that its effects always "appear to be clever"?

        The systematic dispatching of its errors and the systematic selecting of whatever works is called cleverness when it's virtually carried out. But stupidity when it's Actually carried out.
        Let's just say that it's very easy to forget how much time was in effect required for evolution to lead to something like a vertebrate, or like the human eye. The steps are so small and so numerous, we often can't imagine they were there at all. It's very human to think evolution is clever, since its waste basket is hidden to us, hidden to our very imagination.

        Cheers.
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          Jun 3 2012: Thanks Gerald, but the source of my skepticism is not faulty conjugation of verbs. I must question a theory that says there ABSOLUTELY was a prototype life form from which EVERYTHING on Earth is descended ( let's call that "A"). The theory also says there was ABSOLUTELY no prototype (first) life form (let's call that "Not A"). The Law of Non-contradiction does not allow something to be both "A" and "Not A". Uh oh!The word "we" in the topic post refers to Homo Sapiens. We are all Family, in both senses of the word (genaeological and taxonomic). We do all have a common ancestor pair who were the first male Hominidae and the first female Hominidae. They begat more Hominidaes and here we are, brother and sister Hominidaes begetting more Hominidaes. Black, brown, red, white, and yellow Hominidaes are one big Family.
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        Jun 3 2012: Edward,

        The name of that common ancestor is Trichituercas. I know, I know. But you shall now understand why Gerald would not give you a name. Not a very nice one this name. I blushed when I wrote it.

        Evolutionary design. Well. the designer is natural processes themselves. The distinction from human designs is that there is no thinking in the process, but designs are attained by how nature works. I know, design implies purpose. But that is a very narrow definition of design. Since you like some pretty struck definitions of terms, think about the word design here as a metaphor for lack of a more appropriate word. Feel free to suggest a word though. Maybe we went for the metaphor because our vocabularies are too limited.

        Best!
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          Jun 3 2012: I guess the Esoteric Brotherhood of Arcane Scientists have kept the Trichituercas life-form to themselves. The editor of The American Heritage Dictionary of Science is unaware of this progenitor of all life on Earth. Even internet search engines don't recognize it. I did extract something about "nuts" in the name. Is this another PIltdown Man, Gabo?
          "there is no thinking in the process"-- May I immortalize those words in a bumper sticker?: EVOLUTION IS THOUGHTLESS!. Design implies non-chaotic. Is evolution chaotic?
          We Homo Sapiens are all one big family.
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        Jun 3 2012: Edward,

        I have to correct you on a few things:

        1. The hypothesis of universal common ancestry (I dot think it is a theory) is that all life comes from a single ancestral form. It does not say anywhere that there was "ABSOLUTELY" a prototype life form from which everything on Earth is descended. It is obvious that what we would say is that the boundaries between life and no-life are not clear today, would have been even less clear back when life was just starting. Regardless again, all life forms today might be descendants of a single life form in the past. However, what is incontrovertible, is that we share ancestry with many other life forms. Example, we can't deny common ancestry with the rest of the apes, nor with the rest of primotes, nor with ... perhaps quite clearly and undeniable up to all vertebrates. Further back it's quite possible and reasonable, but not as clear cut undeniable for technical and philosophical details that I don't have time to talk about.

        2. Nowhere have I read that there was ABSOLUTELY no prototype (first) life form. Actually, it was most probably a mess of "prototypes."

        3. Your breaking the law of non-contradiction is nothing but your own fabrication. Kind of a straw man. You can notice that if you read your own words then try and find them in any scientific explanation about life, common ancestry, and origin of life. I doubt you will find the word "ABSOLUTELY" there. Also, you are missing and matching ideas such as universal common ancestry, and first life form. Universal common ancestry might lead to one life form long ago in the past. But not necessarily to the first life forms ever to exist. Thus, origin of life and universal common ancestry are separate magisteria.

        I hope that helps. remember, if you want to know about science, read science, not creationist propaganda.
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          Jun 3 2012: 1) Thank you for clarifying that the facts about the transition from non-living to living are not clear today. Scientists sometimes tend to represent theory as fact. 2) Mr. O'brian said earlier in this conversation:QUOTE: " there is no such thing as "THE FIRST" in either case. There is no first homo sapiens, for that matter." I refer your rebuttal to him.3) If all life shares a common ancestor, yet there is no common ancestor, then there is a contradiction in Logic. You guys really need a name for the "Mother of all the living".If I want to know about Baseball should I only read books written by baseball players? I can learn about science by reading History. Also, Creationist and propaganda are two words, you do not have to link the two constantly, it seems like propaganda when you do. Thrive and learn.
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        Jun 3 2012: But there is no contradiction.
        The statement that every living thing is descended from a common ancestor is true.
        AND the statement that there is no such thing as a "first" living organism is true as well.

        THe word "life" is not helpfull sometimes. We tend to forget that there is nothing chemically unusual about animals. There was no moment in history when life suddenly arose from chemistry.
        There is a continuum between the big bang and mole-rats.
        So the contradiction comes from the words, really. "Life" is not something with special properties.

        "a common ancestor pair who were the first male Hominidae and the first female Hominidae"

        I agree that we should have names for things around us, for the sake of understand each other. But names are just names. And "the first hominidae" doesn't mean anything. This is not how evolution works.
        Go back in time and try to pinpoint the "first hominidae". You'll have a hard time doing so, because you'll always find that the "first hominidae" looked very much like its mom and dad, and was definitely part of the same species as them.
        On a rainbow, where does orange become yellow, exactly?
        Names are just names.
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        Jun 3 2012: And what did you mean "a common ancestor pair who were the first male Hominidae and the first female Hominidae"

        Brother and sister? Or did the couple evolve separately?

        Warning, trick question.
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          Jun 4 2012: Gerald,

          As much as for those who understand science would find your question obviously flawed, the little and completely misinformed understanding of evolution, as propagated by creationist propaganda, makes many creationists actually think that this question you make is a valid question.
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        Jun 4 2012: Hi Edward,

        No contradiction again. The first life form is not necessarily the common ancestor. If there is universal common ancestor for all life (Trichituercas-but keep the secret), it does not follow that such universal common ancestor is the first life form (Uh-kuk-baram-balam). As I said too, first life form will be an elusive concept because the "boundaries" between life-non-life must have been looser back in the day than today.

        There is no first Homo sapiens in the sense that it should be hard to pinpoint an exact individual that we could clearly say this is the first. Why? Because the changes from one generation to another are imperceptible. It would be as if we started with English of several centuries ago and wanted to know where exactly did the first person start talking nowadays English. It's blurred, and thus the boundary would be somewhat diffuse. (Oh, I see that Gerald already answered.)

        Of course there's no thinking in evolution. But if you are interested, people have put together something called "genetic algorithms" which can solve problems, and "design" things such as circuits that people have been unable to solve/design, by using rounds of random mutations, selection, and reproduction often with recombination. The end products are often hard to understand. They solve the problems in non-obvious ways. But they work. So, that's how evolved stuff looks "designed:" rounds of random events combined with selection, and reproduction often with recombination. As you might notice now, that a component or event in a process is somewhat random does not mean that the whole process is chaotic.

        When I talk about creationist propaganda, I mean creationist propaganda. I don't think that all creationism is propaganda. It might be all false, but propaganda is distinguished by the intention to mislead. Such is the case for those creationist quacks who misteach you evolution and science.

        Be well.
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          Jun 5 2012: The first life form would be the starting point of all life. How is that not the common ancestor?
          Oh, I couldn't agree more Gabo, that evolution is blurred and diffused.
          I apologize for accusing you of generalizing that all of Creationism is propaganda. Which parts of it do you consider to be simply false, but not propaganda?
          There are TWO possible truths regarding cosmogony, not just one. One includes God, the other denies God. Nothing Science has discovered is at variance with the Biblical statement, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the Earth." Allow for Faith Gabo.
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        Jun 5 2012: The first life form may or may not be the common ancestor because there might have been other life forms after the first one which did not arise as descendants of such first life form. Also, it is quite improbable that if all life is related to Trichituercas, it is thus Trichituercas the first life form. Poor Trichituercas might have had lots of friends, and ancestors herself. This is why there is a concept called "LUCA" for "last" universal common ancestor. That this is the point where all existing life forms find each other, does not mean there was no life before. Clear?

        Creationism is false in that, not only it proposes that the whole enchilada is the creation of some god(s), but adjudicates the creation to particular myths. Most of these myths are evidently nonsensical, thus false.

        As for possibilities, there are many. Not just two. You have to count the many many myths, plus the many possibilities for natural origins to the universe and everything (42). While today the prevalent theory goes to a Big Bang, it might not be so. This is still a hot debate among physicists. I don't know what version of your preferred myth you hold to. Thus, I can't start to tell you how science contradicts such version. But it is evidently false that there are only two possibilities for cosmology. For myths the Aztec one is pretty cool.
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          Jun 6 2012: Abiogenesis is the specific part of your theory I wish to understand. But, alas it has nothing to do with RH's question, so I will depart now having spent my two-cents. Thanks for the lucid explanation of LUCA. Adieu.
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        Jun 6 2012: Hasta luego mi buen amigo.
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      R H 20+

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      Jun 2 2012: Thanks Gerald for responding. Taking the concept further as you have, it has been shown (and believed for millenia) that all matter on the earth (and the universe?) is related. But your comment of the 'evolution' of social structure is precisely what I'm shooting for. From what did the 'tribal' structure develop from? Ignorance and basic survival. Kill or be killed, and we're better off banding together to survive. I think we're past that now - as I'm sure you agree with - but we still seem to have this as our (sub?) concious modus operandi. Our technology advances with absolute miracles and lightning speed, but we, as people, languish in our relations to each other. We count on our 'systems' to save us, but those 'systems' were developed from a now archaic incentives. I see so much potential in TED to help us to get to the next stage, the 'breaking down' of barriers, the open exchange between the various 'tribes' to demonstrate to each other that we no longer have need to fear. We are the human clan.
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        Jun 2 2012: "the human clan" is an artifact. We should keep this is mind!
    • Jun 2 2012: I love the goodwill and harmony that everyone strives for in this conversation, but i'm not convinced that these differences are the causes of big problems like poverty and war. Wars aren't fought for the sole reason of other people being different. Why does being a family change the game? Some people in the family thieve and murder. And because some realize that a sudden chemical rush in the brain of someone in Siberia does not affect their own happiness in any discernible way, they see no reason to help them out. The pursuit of happiness is not overridden unless you mistakenly believe that family members are all good regardless their individual attributes (and therefore see reciprocation in your future for every act of benevloence aimed at whomever).
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        R H 20+

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        Jun 3 2012: Thanks for responding, radu. I see your point. Let me offer this: the basic tenet of this idea is how we regard one another. The fact that we have all come from the same ancestral background shows that we are closer to each other than we've previously been willing to admit. I made the arguement that we are truly 'family'. Most every culture I've been exposed to regard family members with (generally) the greatest consideration and protection. If there are members of the family that stray, or become deviant, or destructive, beneath our anger and dissappointment lies love, and we seek to assist them or help them in some way, not destroy them. If we are unsuccessful in helping, we are broken hearted, not victorious. If they come back 'home' we forgive. We want the best education, the best health care, the best living conditions, the best opportunities, for our family. Look at the strong, wise, and dedicated families you know. Yes, there still are animosities and jealousies and anger, but they are more tempered and are the exception rather an a way of life. There is a higher standard of acceptable conduct and respect. We have learned much in our histories. We have now learned that we are not innately different, just have tried to become different because of fear and violence. Let's take the next step. The vision of a strong, inclusive, considerate, and protective human family of 9 billion all knowing they belong and are welcome. The facts support it. I think war would be a much diminished industry. Hope that helps.

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