Adam, Eve, Human Genetics, and the Collapse of a Fundamentalist Worldview

Love-Child of Cassandra and Sisyphus6/03/2011 2:43:04 pm PDT

re: #26 LudwigVanQuixote

Is the argument that the common male and female ancestor would not count as human and that amongst their offspring, they interbred to produce current homo-sapiens?

The issue at hand is a particularly Christian one, strongly embraced by Protestantism, the branch of Christianity that has been most dominant in American culture. The issue is this: why did Jesus have to die if he himself was sinless? The answer, stemming from original Pauline theology, is that Jesus is the second Adam - the first Adam separated man from God and as we are all (it is claimed) the first Adam’s descendants we end up separated from God. Thus the second Adam likewise can, through one act, repay that transgression, and be the head of a whole new family.

Thus, if there indeed was not, did not exist, a first Adam, then it makes no sense to have a second one.

As for the most recent common ancestors, female (i.e., mitochondrial Eve) or male, the scientific assertion of “most recent” and “common” simply state that indeed if you and I or any other two people on the planet were to trace our lineage we would arrive, at some distant past, to a common female ancestor. However, she would not have been the only female ancestor we share (just keep dialing back the clock). And, she would not have lived at the same time that a common male ancestor lived.

So, if any “Abrahamic” religion wants to impute a federal separation of mankind from El/YHWH/Allah the problem is there has been shown (via genetics) to not have been a single individual who was alone (with or without God.) There never was any federal head of humanity nor anyone who would qualify as such.

And, furthermore, if you want to claim that God just chose any upright-walking (Homo genus) individual at some particular time in the past, and that God then specified that individual as the federal head, assigned that person sole responsibility for condemning the whole of humanity through his actions… then that seems pretty arbitrary of God. It’d sort of be like you or me picking one salmon out of a stream in Washington, looking at it and saying “You, Mr. Chinook, will be the head of all salmon-hood on Earth”, even though there are many sub-species of salmon and even interbreeding species of that fish all around the world. Very arbitrary assignment of headship.