Why are there so many human types?

November 10, 2006 | By | 9 Replies More

In the Bible, Genesis chapters 7-10 describe a great flood that destroyed all human life on earth, except for Noah and his family.  Bible scholars claim this event occurred about 4500 years ago.  This raises two questions I have been unable to answer:

1)  If all human life on earth descended in the past 4500 years from one family, then why are there so many different types of humans on our planet; e.g., Caucasians (with many variations), Africans (with many variations), Asians (with many variations), Pacific Aboriginees (with many variations), Native Americans (with many variations), etc.?

2)  If all human life on earth descended in the past 4500 years from one God-fearing family, then why are there so many different ancient religions on our planet that are not based on the god of the Old Testament, including many that are polytheistic?

I’m just curious how a continent of Asians with straight black hair, a continent of Africans with tightly curled black hair, a continent of Europeans with blond hair, two continents of Native Americans, and a wide range of Pacific island tribes with semi-curly black hair, all could have descended in 4500 years — from one Middle-Eastern family living near Mount Ararat, especially if evolution is “just a theory,” and especially given that each group has its own indigenous religion(s).

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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (9)

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  1. This planet has been wiped clean many times by large comets. Each time the survivors did the best they could. Genesis begins with "the earth was without form and void" a pretty good description of an encounter {not an impact} with a large comet. After the flora and fauna were restored Adam was placed in Eden, and God added a new line of "sapiens". He was given dominion but lost it through not being able {or willing} to follow simple instructions. Cain married a woman of Nod which was east of Eden Gen 4:16.

    The Noahic flood was not planet wide {nor first}. The water covered the "erets" – the land. If you told some one you were going to go out and plow the "land" they would understand that you were not going to plow the entire planet. Another point, if the water covered the highest mountain to 14 cubits, and it if it were speaking of Everest, where did all the water go?

    The Bible is about one man's family. Other people are mentioned only when they come into contact with this group. Other people can become part of this group by following the instructions. The descendents of Adam survived only in Noah.

  2. Deb says:

    Larry J:

    I do not find it useful in any way to be repeatedly told opinions as if they were facts. "After the flora and fauna were restored, Adam was placed in the garden of Eden…." and "he was given dominion but he lost it…" etc. I appreciate that those are your beliefs, and indeed they may actually be true. I have no way of disproving it, nor do I think disproving your beliefs is necessary. I am a spiritual person, and know that I cannot explain my beliefs to another nor do I care to try. This may be a soapbox, but it is a soapbox for rational thought supported by facts and evidence. Your circular logic that "it is true because I read it in a book I believe to be true" is not helpful, and quite frankly is boring and uninteresting.

    If you have some evidence, I'd be interested in hearing it. Otherwise, some other blog that is merely a diatribe of opinion might be more useful to you.

  3. Cathy says:

    Deb says (by way of reply to Larry J):-

    >>>Your circular logic that “it is true because I read it in a book I believe to be true” is not helpful, and quite frankly is boring and uninteresting.

  4. gatomjp says:

    Larry,

    Your answer shows much confidence in the facts you present. It seems to me that most of the bible, especially Genesis, is a fable meant to represent the origins of mankind. Why do you take a literal, factual meaning from those stories?

  5. Jason Rayl says:

    Actually, modern homo sapiens sapien's origins can be traced through mitochondrial DNA (see Wilson and Cann) to a group of roughly one hunded "Eves" who most likely resided in Africa some fifty and one hundred thousand years ago (more or less–some argue for an even older origin, like two hundred thousand). Differences between modern "racial" types–Africans, Asians, Caucasians, etc–display insignificant variation in mtDNA, leading to a conclusion that the primary group dsiplayed a high degree of homogeneity.

    There hasn't been a biblical proportion inundation since then, nor, as far as we've been able to determine, a meteor or asteroid strike like the dinosaur killer that may the Yucatan crater.

    The last of the massive glaciers beganm receding roughly 15,000 years ago.

    "Modern" history, supported by archaeology, began between nine and fourteen thousand years ago–presumed settlement of North America was roughly fifteen thousand years ago, congruent with the end of the last Ice Age.

    The Old Testament was set down in writing–at least it was begun–somewhere between 1500 B.C.E. and the sixth century B.C.E.–the Babylonian Exile, during which most of the prophetic books were written. Obviously, a lot of history preceeds this period, and leads one to wonder why we give such credence to what was, after all, little more than the Hebrew national epic. Was everyone before Abraham wrong? I ask that rhetorically.

  6. grumpypilgrim says:

    Larry is a good example of a Christian who fabricates his own convenient version of the Bible to replace the inconvenient version that actually exists.

    Larry said, "The Noahic flood was not planet wide {nor first}."

    Sorry, Larry, but let's look at what the Bible actually says about the flood in Genesis 7:18-23 (emphasis added): "The waters rose and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the water. They rose greatly on the earth, and ALL THE HIGH MOUNTAINS UNDER THE ENTIRE HEAVENS WERE COVERED. The waters rose and covered the mountains to a depth of more than twenty feet. EVERY LIVING THING THAT MOVED ON THE EARTH PERISHED—birds, livestock, wild animals, all the creatures that swarm over the earth, AND ALL MANKIND. EVERYTHING ON DRY LAND that had the breath of life in its nostrils died. EVERY LIVING THING ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH WAS WIPED OUT; men and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds of the air were wiped from the earth. ONLY NOAH WAS LEFT, AND THOSE WITH HIM IN THE ARK."

    In other words, Larry, the Bible (NIV) says you're wrong.

    Larry goes on to ask, "Another point, if the water covered the highest mountain to 14 cubits, and it if it were speaking of Everest, where did all the water go?"

    Yes, Larry, where DID all the water go? You are the Believer, so why don't you tell us? See, that's one of the challenges of being a Believer: it is YOUR job to explain things like this to us non-Believers, not the other way around.

    It seems to me we must conclude either that: (a) God performed a lot of miracles to pump FIVE MILES of water (depth) onto the earth's surface, keep the ark afloat through the storm and then remove all that water, or (b) the Flood story is fiction.

    And no, Larry, you're not allowed to fabricate your own version of the Bible to simplify your explanation.

  7. Erich Vieth says:

    As I see it, Larry's "sin" is not so much fabricating as much as cherry picking: taking as literal only the parts of the Bible he wants to believe and dismissing the rest. For more on cherry picking, see http://dangerousintersection.org/?p=464

  8. gatomjp says:

    Thanks for clarifying grumpypilgrim. I didn't realize that Larry was simultaneously taking the bible literally and also saying that it was metaphorical when he writes, "If you told some one you were going to go out and plow the “land” they would understand that you were not going to plow the entire planet. "

    Interesting. I still would like to hear Larry's reasoning for his position. Either it's literal or it's not, right Larry?

  9. bipolar2 says:

    ** no self-respecting ape is religious **

    The falsity of 'intelligent design' is proved by the existence of those who believe in it.

    bipolar2

    © 2008

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