We’re All Related

Brian Bowman drew the above image to my attention, which comes from the website Evogeneao.

Why is this amazing scientific information, that all living things on this planet are related, felt by some to be antithetical to religion? Because their religion is not about awe towards God which is open to discovering and learning new things over the course of their lives, but about dogmatically insisting that a simplistic depiction of the truth that they heard as children should represent the end of their education.

On this subject see also Hemant Mehta’s post with quotes from David Attenborough, Jim Kidder’s comments on the deceit evidenced in the Creation Museum, and Joshua Moritz’s article “The Hermeneutics of Science and Scripture and Emergent Levels of Meaning,” which is currently available for free online.

  • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

    We are in The Great Remembering now. The following quotes are in the video “We Are All One” below:

    And when you say “resources” you’re talking about our relatives. You’re talking about our family. Fish are our family; it’s not a resource, its family. It requires all the respect.

    Oren R. Lyons

    Our DNA is made of the same DNA as the tree. The tree breathes what we exhale. When the tree exhales, we need what the tree exhales. So, we have a common destiny with the tree. [...] And no tree grows by itself. A tree is a community. Certain trees, certain plants will gather around certain trees, and certain medicines will gather round those certain plants, so that if you kill all the trees, if you cut all the trees, then you are destroying a community. You aren’t just destroying a tree, you’re destroying a whole community that surrounds it and thrives on it. [...] And then if you replant the tree, you don’t replant the community – you replant the tree. So you’ve lost a community.

    Oren R. Lyons

    youtube.com/watch?v=hWtVTu6S51M

  • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

    I just read Moritz’s journal article, and it’s good, real good. And he teases me with a reference to paleoanthropology, so I have to say this, because most everybody is missing it: Paleoanthropology brings Genesis alive! I wish he had pursued it further. It revolutionizes religion for those who understand it. Basically:

    Original Sin (The Fall) = Neolithic (Agricultural) Revolution, i.e., what Jared Diamond calls “the worst mistake in the history of the human race.”

    Again, original sin (religious viewpoint) = worst mistake (anthropological viewpoint.) Such correlation reminds my of a syncromesh transmission. It just clicks.

    Mennonite theologian Ched Myers gets it. I’ve got two dozen scholarly texts in my house by that conform Ched Myers’ position.

    Ched Myers (2005) The Fall. Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature. Edited by Bron Taylor. NY: Continuum.
    chedmyers.org/articles/ecology-faith/%E2%80%9C-fall%E2%80%9D-and-%E2%80%9Canarcho-primitivism-and-bible

    • guest

      Is the fall is a metaphor for agriculture, what about the people who are still living as hunter-gatherers in places like the Amazon jugle or parts of Africa? Are they still in a state of grace or is their history just not part of the bible?

      • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

        Maybe ask ex-missionary Daniel Everett, for an eye-witness account. :)

        Primitives—still living like the ravens Jesus said to consider, because they neither sow nor reap nor build bigger barns—are still being treated like the allegorical Abel was by his brother Cain, Cain the first farmer, the first murderer, and the first city-builder.

        “Civilization originates in conquest abroad and repression at home.” ~Stanley Diamond (1981) In Search of the Primitive: A Critique of Civilization, p. 1, first sentence

        Yet “state of grace” is a salvationist religion term, and salvationist religions were invented to escape (i.e., heaven) or ameliorate the horrors of “the worst mistake in the history of the human race.”

        Signs of distress: 1400-0 B.C.E….For the first
        time in history, people began listening to religious teachers who promised them salvation….Judaism, Brahmanism, Hinduism, Shintoism, and Buddhism all came into being during this period and had no existence before it. Quite suddenly, after six thousand years of totalitarian agriculture and civilization building, the people of our culture — East and West, twins of a single birth — were beginning to wonder if their lives made sense, were beginning to perceive a void in themselves that economic success and civil esteem could not fill, were beginning to imagine that something was profoundly, even innately, wrong with them.

        ~Daniel Quinn, excerpt from the book “The Story of B”

        So, better put, the primitives in the Amazon are living without a need for the salvationists’ “grace.” And they know they don’t need it, if you read the time article linked above about that ex-missionary. None have converted for hundred of years, and they converted him.

  • guest

    We are all connected;
    To each other, biologically
    To the earth, chemically
    To the rest of the universe atomically

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XGK84Poeynk

    • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

      My kids have it memorized. :)

  • stuart32

    Relatedness is a funny thing. Lungfish are more closely related to human beings than they are to salmon.

    • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

      Of course, and remember who died for us, that we all might live. ;)

      “Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics. You are all stardust. You couldn’t be here if stars hadn’t exploded. Because the elements, the carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, iron, all the things that matter for evolution weren’t created at the beginning of time. They were created in the nuclear furnaces of stars. And the only way they could get into your body is if the stars were kind enough to explode. So forget Jesus. The stars died so you could be here today.” ~Lawrence Krauss youtube.com/watch?v=5Jf-uQQnEyw

      • stuart32

        Very good.

  • stuart32

    The fact that we are all related nicely explains a feature of the world that was noticed long before Darwin. Consider cats: lions, tigers, cheetahs, etc. They can clearly be distinguished from each other, but they also belong in the same group. They all have the essence of catness. There are two ways of responding to this: one is to say that the classification is arbitrary, that the idea of catness exists only in our minds; the other is to say that this is a genuine feature of the world that requires an explanation.

    One possible explanation is that God created a cat, liked what He saw, and decided to create more versions of the same thing. The other explanation is that all cats have descended from a single ancestral species which split into several branches, each of which has evolved to become different from the others while retaining some essential features of the ancestor.

    The second explanation is, of course, part of the theory of evolution, which can also explain countless other facts about the world, including ones that appear to have no alternative explanation.


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