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Is man descended from fish?

Neil Chauvin discovered the tiktalik, an intermediate creature between a fish and a land animal that explains how man evolved from the fish. Its discovery is considered one of the most important fossil discoveries in history and deals a heavy blow to the opponents of evolution. A chapter from his book "The Fish Within"

the cover of the book
the cover of the book
Neil Chauvin

this book I grew up in unusual circumstances in my life. Due to the departure of faculty members, I found myself coordinating the human anatomy course at the University of Chicago School of Medicine. The course in anatomy is the same course where first-year students who lack confidence in medicine dissect human bodies, and in the process learn the names and arrangement of most of the organs, openings and holes, nerves and blood vessels in the body. For them this is a dramatic entry into the world of medicine, a formative experience on their way to becoming doctors; Whereas I am a paleontologist who has devoted most of his professional work to the study of fish.

And here it turns out that paleontology has a tremendous advantage in teaching human anatomy. You may be surprised to hear that the best road maps to the human body are found in the bodies of other animals. The simplest way to teach students about the nerves in a person's head is to show them the state of things in a shark's head. The easiest road map for knowing the limbs is found in the fish. Reptiles help us understand the structure of the brain. This is because the bodies of these beings are mostly simplified versions of our own bodies.

In the summer after my second year as head of the course, when I was working in the Arctic region, my colleagues and I discovered a fossilized fish that gave us new and extremely significant insights into the invasion of fish onto land about 375 million years ago. This discovery, and my foray into the realms of teaching human anatomy, led me to explore the deep connection between them. The book in front of you was born from this exploration.

find the fish within us

The summer seasons typical of my adult life pass me by in snow and freezing rain mixed with hail, as I cleave rocks on cliffs far north of the Arctic Circle. Most of the time I freeze, suffer from frostbite and find nothing. But if I'm a little lucky, I find ancient fish bones. To most people this may not sound like finding treasure, but to me these bones are priceless.

Ancient fish bones may be the way to know things about us, who we are and how we became what we are. We learn about our bodies from seemingly strange places, starting with the fossils of worms and fish found in rocks all over the world, and ending with the DNA found in more or less every creature on earth. But this does not explain why I am absolutely sure that the remains of ancient skeletons - and the remains of fish in particular - provide clues to understanding the basic structure of our bodies.

How can we imagine events that happened millions of years, and in many cases billions of years, before our time? Unfortunately, there are no eyewitnesses left; After all, none of us were around then. In fact, nothing that could speak, or had a mouth, or even a head, had been around for most of that time. Worse than that, the animals that existed in those days died and were buried so long ago that their bodies were preserved only in rare cases.

If you think about the fact that more than 99 percent of all biological species that have ever existed are already extinct; that only a very small percentage of them have been preserved as fossils; And that an even smaller percentage of these are revealed to us - because then any attempt to see something from our past is as if doomed in advance to failure.

Fossil diggers - see ourselves

The first time I saw one of the fish in us was one snowy afternoon in July, when I was exploring 375 million year old rocks on Ellesmere Island, northeast of the coast of Canada and very close to the coast of Greenland - about 80 degrees north latitude.

My colleagues and I went far into this desolate land in an attempt to discover one of the key steps in the transition from fish to land animals. A fish's snout stuck out from among the rocks. And not just any fish: a flathead fish. As soon as we saw the flat head we knew we had discovered something. If we find more parts of the skeleton inside the rock, it will reveal the early stages in the history of our skull, our neck, and even our limbs.

What did the flat head tell me about the transition from sea to land? And what is more relevant to my personal well-being and comfort, why was I even in the Harkti circle and not in Hawaii? The answers to these questions are part of the story of how we find fossils, and how we use them to decipher our past.

Fossils are one of the main groups of evidence we use to understand ourselves. (Genes and embryos are among the other groups, and I intend to discuss them later.) Most humans do not know that fossils can be found in a surprisingly precise and predictable way. We work at home first, to maximize the chances of success in the field. And then we entrust ourselves to luck.

The paradoxical relationship between planning and case is aptly described in Dwight D.'s famous comment. Eisenhower (President of the United States in 1961-1953 and Supreme Allied Commander in Europe in World War II) regarding the war: "During the preparations for battle, I realized that planning is essential, but the plans themselves are worthless."

These things are a small-scale description of the fate of paleontology in the field. We prepare all kinds of detailed plans in order to reach fossil sites. But once we get there, there's a good chance the entire plan of action on the ground will be thrown into the trash. The facts on the ground can overturn our best laid plans.

We usually plan search expeditions designed to answer specific scientific questions. Relying on a few simple ideas, which I will discuss later, we have the possibility to anticipate with high probability where important fossils may be found. Of course, we don't always succeed in this, but often we find a lot of loot that justifies the whole thing. I myself have largely built my career by doing just that: finding ancient mammals to answer questions about the origin of mammals, discovering the earliest frogs to answer questions about the origin of frogs, and finding some of the earliest animals that were having limbs to understand the origin of land animals.

In many ways, the job of a paleontologist working in the field and looking for new sites is much easier today than it was in the past. We know more about the geology of different places thanks to geological studies carried out by local authorities and oil and gas drilling companies.

The Internet provides us with quick access to maps, information from field surveys and aerial photographs. I can scan even your backyard for promising fossil sites, right from my laptop. And beyond all this, imaging devices and radiographic photography allow us to look into rocks and see the bones that lie in them.

But despite all these refinements, hunting for important fossils today is still quite similar to what it was a century ago. Paleontologists still have to look at the rock themselves - literally crawl on it - and the fossils inside are removed in most cases by hand. So many decisions are required when looking for and finding fossils, that it is very difficult to develop automation of all these processes. And besides, watching a monitor screen to find fossils will never give you a quarter of the fun of digging with your own hands.

What makes it difficult for us is the fact that fossil sites are a rarity. To increase the chances of success as much as possible, we look for places where three characteristics merge: these are places where there are rocks of the right age, rocks of the right type to preserve fossils, and rocks that are exposed on the surface. And there is another factor: the randomness - the randomness of discovering something completely different from what you were looking for. I will explain this with an example.

My example will show one of the biggest transformations in the history of life: the invasion of fish onto land. For billions of years, all life existed only in water. And here, about 365 million years ago, living creatures also resided on the surface of the land. Life in these two environments is radically different. Breathing in water depends on very different organs than those that allow breathing in air.

The same is true for excretion, eating and movement. A completely new type of body is required for this. At first glance, the barrier between the two environments seems almost impassable. But things look quite different when we look at the evidence; What seems seemingly impossible - actually happened.

When we look for rocks of the right age, one impressive fact works in our favor. The fossils in rocks all over the world are not randomly distributed. Their whereabouts, and what lies beneath them, are clearly arranged in a certain order, and we have the option of using this order to plan our expeditions. Billions of years of change have left the Earth layer upon layer of different types of rocks.

The assumption of the work, which is easy to put to the test, holds that the rocks that are above are younger than those that are below; This is usually true in areas where the organization of the layers is relatively simple and clear, such as in a layer cake (think, for example, of the appearance of Colorado's Grand Mall). But movements of the earth's crust are able to cause rifts that shift the layers out of place and place older rocks on top of the younger ones. Fortunately, once we identify the location of the fissures, we can in most cases restore the original sequence of layers.

The fossils within these rock layers are also arranged in ascending order, where the lower layers contain biological species that are completely different from those found in the upper layers. If we could carve out a single column of rock containing the entire history of life, we would find an astonishing variety of fossils.

In the lowest layers there will be very little evidence of any life. In the layers above you will discover a diverse collection of jellyfish-like creatures. Higher layers will contain creatures with a skeleton, appendages coming out of the body, and all kinds of organs, such as eyes. Above these will be layers where the first animals with a backbone will be found, and so on. Layers containing humans will be found at an even higher level.

Such a single page, containing the entire history of the earth, does not exist, of course. Instead, the rocks everywhere in the world represent only a tiny sliver of its history. To create the complete picture, we need to put the pieces together, by comparing the rocks themselves, and the fossils found in them, like in a giant jigsaw puzzle.

The fact that a column of rock may contain fossils in ascending order is in itself no surprise. What is less obvious is the fact that we can predict in detail what the biological species will look like in each layer, based on a comparison between them and the species living today; This information helps us in our attempt to predict what types of fossils we might find in ancient rock layers. In fact, we can predict the sequences of fossils in the various rocks in the world based on a comparison between us and the animals found in the zoo or in the city aquarium.

A trip to the zoo

How can a trip to the zoo help us predict where we should look in the rocks for important fossils? In the zoo there is a large variety of creatures that all differ from each other in many features. But let's not focus on what differentiates them; To be successful in our prediction, we must focus on what the different creatures have in common. We can use the characteristic characters common to all species to identify groups of creatures with similar characteristics.

It is customary to arrange and organize all living creatures on earth - like a series of Russian babushka eggs - in groups in ascending order of inclusion: small groups of animals that have a great deal of similarity between them are included within larger groups, and so on in ascending order of ever-larger groups. When we organize living things in this way, we discover something very basic about nature.

Every biological species found in the zoo or aquarium has a head and two eyes (which is not necessarily true for all animals). We call these species "everything". One subgroup of the creatures with heads and eyes has limbs. We call this subgroup "everything with limbs". One subgroup of the creatures with heads and limbs has a large brain, the creatures that belong to it walk on two and talk. That subgroup is us, the humans. It is possible, of course, to continue creating many more subgroups, but even this simple division into three groups has considerable predictive power.

The fossils inside the rocks in the world are mostly arranged in a similar order, and this fact can be used when planning new expeditions. If we use the above example, the earliest member of the "everything" group, meaning a creature with a head and two eyes, is found in the fossil record much earlier than the first member of the "everything with limbs" group. And more precisely, the first fish (with a membership card in the "everything" club) appears long before the first amphibian ("anything with limbs"). We can sharpen the distinction by looking at more kinds of animals, and more features common to groups within them, and also by estimating the true age of the rocks themselves.

In our laboratories, we deal with exactly this type of analysis, which is carried out on thousands and thousands of traits and biological species. We observe every anatomical detail that can be observed, and often also large pieces of DNA. The DNA comparisons between the groups are done by powerful computers, because of the huge amount of data. This approach is one of the fundamentals of biology, because it allows us to form hypotheses about the kinship between different creatures.

In addition to the importance of dividing living things into groups, hundreds of years of collecting fossils have also produced a kind of super-dimensional catalog of the different periods in the life of the earth and the living things on it. Today we are able to identify periods of time in which particularly large changes took place. Are you interested in the origin of mammals? Go to rocks from the period called the Early Mesozoic; Geochemistry tells us that these rocks are probably 210 million years old. Are you interested in the origin of the primates (primates, which include monkeys and humans)? Head to a higher place in the rock column, to the Cretaceous period, where the rocks are approximately 80 million years old.

The order of the fossils in the rocks on Earth is a powerful testimony to the connections between us and the other living creatures. If, while excavating 600 million-year-old rocks, we found the remains of the earliest jellyfish lying next to the skeleton of a marmita (a ground squirrel rodent), we would have to rewrite all our books. Such a marmite appeared in the fossil record before the first mammal, before the first reptile, and even before the first fish - in fact, even before the first worm.

Furthermore, our Marmita would tell us that a very considerable part of what we think we know about the history of the Earth and the life on it - is simply wrong. But despite 150 years of research where people have been looking for fossils - on all continents and in almost every layer of rock you can reach - no one has ever found anything like this.

So how do we find relatives of the first fish that walked on land? In our group system, these creatures are somewhere between "anything" and "anything with limbs." We will place them in rocks based on what we know of their age, and we have solid geological evidence that the correct time is between 380 million and 365 million years before our time. The younger rocks at the edge of this range, those that are about 360 million years old, contain all kinds of fossil animals that we can all identify as amphibians or reptiles.

My colleague Jenny Clack from the University of Cambridge, and other researchers, discovered amphibians in Greenland in rocks about 365 million years old. With their necks, ears and four limbs, they don't look like fish. But in rocks that are about 385 million years old we find whole fish that look like, what can we say - like fish: they have fins, conical heads and scales; And they have no neck. In light of all this, it is not surprising that we are focusing on rocks that are approximately 375 million years old, hoping to find evidence of the transition from fish to animals living on land.

After we decided what would be the period we would explore, we thereby determined what would be the rock layers in the geological column we intend to explore. The next challenge is to find rocks that were formed under conditions that allow the preservation of fossils. Rocks are formed in different environments, and the initial conditions of their formation leave clear signatures in the rock layers. Volcanic rocks do not interest us. No fish known to us can live in lava. And even if such a fish had existed, its fossilized bones would not have survived the extreme heat conditions in which basalt, rhyolites, granite and other volcanic rocks are formed (rocks formed from hot material that erupted to the surface in a volcanic eruption). We can also ignore metamorphosed (metamorphic) rocks, such as marble, because they have been exposed to extreme heat or tremendous pressure since they were first formed. If any fossils were preserved in them, they are long gone.

Sedimentary rocks are ideal for the preservation of fossils: limestone, sandstone, slate rocks and the like. Compared to volcanic rocks and metamorphic rocks, they are formed in milder processes of drifting and deposition of materials in rivers, lakes and seas. Not only are animals likely to be found in such environments, the processes of sedimentation make their preservation as fossils more likely.

In an ocean or a lake, for example, particles of matter sink from the water and settle on the bottom continuously. Over time, as the particles accumulate, they are compressed by new layers added above them. The gradual compression, together with chemical processes that occur in the rocks over time, gives any skeleton that happens to be in the rock a reasonable chance of fossilization. The rule is that the more moderate the flow of the river, the better the fossils are preserved.

Every rock lying on the ground has a story to tell: a story about what the world looked like when that rock was formed. Inside the rock is evidence of the climate in the past, and the environment that surrounded it, which in many cases was unrecognizably different from its environment today. Sometimes it is hard to describe such a radical disconnect between the past and the present. Think, for example, of the very extreme example of Mount Everest, near its summit, at a height exceeding eight kilometers, there are rocks from the bottom of an ancient sea. Walk to the north face of the mountain, almost within sight of the famous Hillary Step, and you can find fossilized sea shells. And by the same token, where we work in the Arctic, temperatures can drop as low as 70 degrees below zero in the winter; Still, within some of the rocks in the area are remnants of an ancient tropical delta, almost like that of the Amazon: plants and fossilized fish that could only thrive in warm and humid places.

The presence of biological species adapted to life in hot climates in places that today are in very northern latitudes and at extreme altitudes, is evidence of the amount of changes our planet has gone through: mountains rise and fall, climates warm and cool and continents move everywhere. When we can wrap our minds around the enormity of time that has passed, and the amazing ways in which our planet is changing, we can begin to use this information to plan new fossil-hunting expeditions.

32 תגובות

  1. Instead of debating theology
    Maybe you can explain the title to me
    How exactly does a certain or unknown fish prove evolution?
    Does the fact that there is a fish that resembles mammals prove that mammals evolved from it? This may prove that the process could be (meaningless sentence) but not that it was.

  2. their opinion:
    I'm sorry, but your sentences do not meet the rules of syntax and it is impossible to read them and understand them.
    What is clear is that they are trying to sell me all kinds of tricks to make me see what is bad as good.
    Not buying.

  3. Michael
    The words of Hillel are the only thing that the religion dictates because he was the moral and giver of generations and he is the father of all - there is no other source for the words of the Torah
    Laws, their power is in the eternal commitment to their existence, so when they are not visible in a particular case, as soon as you partially violate logic, it is the only guide, and you see for yourself where logic alone can lead to the Holocaust, for example
    In connection with the army, I was not talking about the individual who shirks his duty for his own pleasure (there are many more such in the general public), but about the leaders of the public as a whole who have no interest and the public even out of necessity (look at the demand specifically for the combat units) obeys and listens to the voice of its great and wise men. To emphasize the priority of our leaders over other leaders who have to sit with them on the ground

  4. their opinion:
    It seems to me that there is no common ground for discussion between us.
    The facts just don't play any role for you.
    In 1966, the rabbinic court (consisting, obviously, of judges older than you) required a deaf woman who was widowed before she had children to be raped by her married brother-in-law because a deaf woman could not go through the disgusting ceremony of stripping in order to get out of the fangs of the crazy law of Hayboom.
    I'm talking about an act that happened nowadays.
    Does this seem "moral" to you?
    There are many more cases that actually happened and some of them are described in my response:

    None of the above things fall into the category of Hillel the Elder's rule.
    The words of the elder Hillel indeed symbolize to me morality in its embodiment, but they are far from matching the mitzvot of Judaism.
    In my opinion - Hillel - out of honesty and sincerity - described what he thinks is important and not what the religion dictates.

    As for the "army of Torah keepers" - your words are disgraceful.
    Other people risk their lives in the army and work hard for their livelihood, and these people are busy with a bull that has gored a cow and read a stale book written thousands of years ago.
    Are you suggesting that another army be raised to represent an even more ancient tradition of idolatry or tree-dwelling?
    I don't believe in the nonsense they believe in and I don't see any justification for me to fund this parasite with my money and risk my life to protect it.
    It is, of course, doubly serious when those parasites call me and my fellows "ego persecutors, breaking the yoke of Torah, giving away personal and national responsibility."

    If everything is in the hands of heaven then there is no personal responsibility. point.
    The fact that God is in our hands is not a matter of responsibility. Responsibility is always about the connection between the actions and the result.
    Yirah is not an act and certainly not a connection between an act and a result.
    The matter of "our responsibility for our seed" seems to be an attempt to avoid questions about the Holocaust in advance, but this attempt is ridiculous.
    When the Nazi - murderer of a baby who had not yet learned to speak - it was up to heaven to prevent this and heaven, if it exists, chose murder. Should the baby be comforted by the fact that he was murdered because of his parents' actions (let's say! Of course this is nonsense too, but just for the sake of argument) or because the rabbi told his parents that everything will be fine because God promised and that you have no reason to run away?

  5. You wrote "everything is in the hands of heaven" and you omitted the end which is the main thing "except fear of God" (Talmud Baruchot XNUMX) which is the only thing that is our sole responsibility
    Responsibility is the basic human characteristic without which he is not a person and it can be out of force and natural necessity or out of choice and desire to accept the burden
    The difference between them is love and whether it is the main thing in life or something external to it "If a man gives all the wealth of his house in love, he will be despised" (Signature of the Book of Songs)
    Our responsibility for our offspring is part of our responsibility for our own personalities which are a part of him to keep the way of God as a continuation of the way of Abraham and not the pursuit of power and property and "good food is a vegetable and love there" Proverbs XNUMX:XNUMX

  6. Michael
    I will start from what you finished (the sentence of the punch) regarding the morality of the Torah in the Talmud, in tractate Shabbat page XNUMX, Hillel - who was one of the greatest sages of Israel of all time and the main Torah moralist - said to a resident who wanted to learn the entire Torah on one foot "Do not do what is hateful to you to your fellow man, this is the entire Torah And the rest is the interpretation for you, you will learn" and from this you learn that it is impossible that it is a commentary on the main point of this is not the Torah
    I would be happy to explain all the details of the Halacha, but there is no space here
    In relation to the army of Torah keepers as a public as the authentic display of 3000 years of wisdom and knowledge of global truth, it will not belittle its honor to willingly surrender itself to the responsibility of ego persecutors, breaking the yoke of Torah, messages of personal and national responsibility
    post Scriptum. I apologize for not responding right away, I just didn't see that you responded, if you have any other questions or concerns, I'm happy to correspond here or anywhere else

  7. their opinion:
    The above rant does not answer even one of my questions or anyone else's.
    By the way - actually religions are an escape from responsibility (everything is in the hands of heaven, on the one hand, and the laws of "morality" are dictated by some stale book on the other) and secularism is accepting responsibility for your actions and their results.
    Of course, in Israel we see a particularly clear expression of this matter when the religious leave the responsibility for their children's economic future in the hands of the secular and they themselves only care that their children remain ignorant and lack the ability to earn a living or the desire to protect their homeland.
    And if you want to get involved in the morality of religion - maybe you should take a look atLink this.

  8. Hezi,

    If you read carefully what I wrote, you will see that the holocaust was about the role of randomness in bridge and evolution - both have no effect.
    I certainly did not compare the game of bridge to evolution. But as usual, you went back to arguing with what is convenient for you and not with something that was said - not nice!

    Read again carefully, and if you want, we will continue to move forward.

  9. Michael
    A quote from Hebrews XNUMX:XNUMX "And it shall come to pass that your son shall ask you what are the testimonies and the laws which the Lord our God has commanded you, and you shall say to your son... And the Lord shall command you to do all the laws to fear the Lord for our good all the days that we may live like this day" and so it is concluded there at the end of Book XNUMX XNUMX "And you chose life so that you and your descendants may live" which is simply to live the present correctly and to accept responsibility for the children's future
    Atheism is the religion of freedom of irresponsibility and in this it is the principle antithesis to any binding religion
    I think the above answers your questions

  10. To my father, Noam, Chazi, Michael, Assaf
    I don't know about you, but I'm going to have a craving for Harimi

  11. Noam,

    I again recommend that you relearn Darwin's theory.

    If you compare it to a game of bridge,
    You need a teacher, and you won't be able to understand it alone...

  12. Hezi,

    Don't despair! You have taken a small step towards understanding…

    You understood that there are processes - for example bridge - that although the distribution of the cards is completely random, the result of the process (the game) is not random at all, without regret and without great regret, simply not random.

    Now we will examine another process: evolution + natural selection.

    Random mutations happen all the time (and are analogous to random cards).

    And here we come to the critical part: there is a process that selects among all the millions of mutations, only very specific mutations. The process of selecting mutations is called: natural selection.

    Natural selection means that only mutations that give a certain advantage, or alternatively mutations that do not cause any harm, will survive. All other mutations do not survive.
    The process of natural selection is not random and therefore the whole evolution is not random at all - without grief, without great grief - evolution is not random!

    There is therefore a continuous and cumulative process of adapting to the constraints of the environment, without any need for an intelligent factor or intelligent decisions, and this is a completely non-random process.

    Is it up to here?

  13. This place called Okinos, in which the fish were "created", where did this huge water come from?!!!

    Bur and with (on the globe) the earth.

  14. My father and Noam,

    There is no argument that the randomness is specific to a given situation,
    and does not require a restart.

    But, and it's a big but,
    She is random!

    There is no intention of the change...

    The game of bridge is not random,
    Since every move of the players is made by a rational decision of the player.

    Otherwise, they would let the computer "play" randomly.
    The distribution of the cards in a random manner, parallel to the distribution of the "raw material" for the purpose of creating life,
    But as the raw material is limited by physical laws,
    This is how in bridge the distribution of cards directs the chance of the result.

    It's all still random…

  15. Hezi,

    The randomness in evolution is similar to the randomness of the outcomes of bridge games.
    The cards are distributed randomly, the results of the games are completely non-random.
    As my father explained, mutations are random, but the direction of development is not random at all - they are instituted by environmental constraints.

    Until you understand this point, you will not be able to move forward.

  16. The randomness is not in a situation where each generation has to start all over. Generally, if environmental conditions do not change, randomness operates on small variations. Only when there is a change that causes a creature to take over a vacant niche (or all the niches are shaken as in the case of the asteroid that wiped out the animals and plants that dominated the earth 65 million years ago) then can family members split into several niches and after a few dozen generations become completely different creatures, even if the differences The primary among them are small if they exist at all.
    Since it doesn't happen every day, you can say that the word "random evolution" is a mistake, the weight of randomness in the days when they are fixed is small.

  17. pleasantness,

    It turns out that you do not understand Darwin's theory.

    Summary of what he claimed:
    The evolutionary development of life is done randomly,
    When the "correction" of this random was by the extinction of a "random that does not survive"...

    It is clear to me that from the point of view of those who believe in the theory, such as Mocha Kamanban,

    "There is no such thing as random evolution."

    I suggest you go back and study Darwin's theory...

  18. Hezi,

    You keep repeating the term "random evolution"
    There are two options:
    1) Lack of understanding
    2) Since you cannot deal with the theory of evolution, you invent your own imaginary theory, and argue with it, in order to mislead.

    Regarding the second option - whoever argues dishonestly, is a dishonest person, and I don't know a process that turns a dishonest person into an honest person - it goes beyond my area of ​​expertise.

    Assuming that the first option is correct, then let's explain it in a simple way:
    There is no such thing as random evolution, and no sane person claims it is. The direction of evolution is determined by environmental constraints. There are dozens and hundreds of examples where a change in environmental conditions caused a change in the direction of evolution. Changing direction does not mean advancing or retreating or going sideways, simply changing direction.
    A change in environmental conditions causes life forms that are more suitable to the new conditions to reproduce, and life forms that are less suitable to decay.

    Before we continue, is this clear?

  19. Chest:
    It's good that now at least you put an executive summary at the beginning of your response.
    This will save people from wasting time reading the response parable.

  20. Throwing sand at the poor again...

    The title should be "opponents of random evolution"!!!

    I support evolution but oppose brainwashing,
    As in this long article…

  21. I don't want to be snooty but evolution deniers celebrate headlines like
    "One of the most important fossil discoveries in history and deals a heavy blow to the opponents of evolution."

    This fish is about as much of a blow to the opponents of evolution as the pathologist's saw is to a murder victim. When one such finding is presented as critical, the deniers of evolution cling to it as if evolution was a theory that rested on chicken legs until a minute ago and suddenly a finding appeared that "proves" it.

    You have to be careful with the headlines, you have to remember that a senior member of the Bush administration explained their weak response to Hurricane Katrina by seeing a headline in the newspaper: "new orleans dodges bullet"
    He didn't bother to read the content of the article...

  22. There is much more to add in understanding the matter I wrote in number 3, but this is not the place as above

  23. Easy repair:
    It says: "Basalt, rhyolites, granite and other volcanic rocks
    {Rocks formed from hot material that erupted to the surface in a volcanic eruption{" ...
    Basalt is indeed a volcanic rock, which means that it was formed by the eruption of material prone to the open air,
    Eruption and rapid crystallization while trapping air bubbles, therefore "sponge" basalt,
    Rocks from other trends slowly crystallized in the earth's crust
    therefore they are compressed, harder and heavier,
    Therefore, it is necessary to differentiate between: granite-trending rocks, rhyolite and the like, and volcanic rock - basalt.

  24. To Noam
    There is no connection, but no connection between evolution and religion. The individual man comes from a "drop of dirt" and life as a whole comes from embers and only then finally does he come to self-awareness. Knowledge is something that is acquired in stages. Evolution of development and acquisition [The fact that more "devout" oppose evolution than they are is related to the habit of relying on an existing tradition and not to religious understanding or understanding in general, look, there are also "devout" in atheism who are not ready to hear anything new or a different understanding and this website will prove... ]

  25. One of the most important fossil discoveries in history? I wouldn't be carried away. If this is what has to be suggested, it is quite disappointing. All in all, it is an animal that is remarkably similar to a crocodile or a salamander. On the same weight, it can be argued that the caracal is one of the most important discoveries in history because it is an intermediate stage between the domestic cat and the lion. In short, an exaggeration in my opinion.

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