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français
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Quick question

Post by français » Thu Dec 20, 2007 3:59 am

Hey you guys!

I am an atheist, who obviously holds the belief of evolution. However, my knowledge of evolution is limited, as my studies have been very little.

I was wondering, what are the chances that the entire human race descended from two people?(adam and eve)

Would the chances be possible, or would it be totally impossible for us to all have been from just two people?

I am just wondering out of random curiosity I suppose. Thanks!

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alextemplet
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Post by alextemplet » Thu Dec 20, 2007 6:49 am

I saw a special on the Discovery Channel a few years ago that used mitochondrial DNA to show that all humans alive today are descended from a single woman who lived about 175,000 years ago, if I remember correctly. Obviously this woman, if this is true, wasn't the first woman ever to live as we have fossils of humans that are older, but it's something to think about.
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Post by Darby » Sat Dec 22, 2007 5:20 pm

Saying we all have the same woman on our family tree is not quite the same as being descended from her. It's all a mathematical oversimplification, anyway.

But we almost certainly all can be traced back to a small starting population somewhere.

It might be useful to think about how directed evolution works (it is what got Darwin thinking about how the environment directs breeding) - how do you get poodles? Are all poodles living today descended from a single poodle couple? They certainly have a small group of ancestor dogs that were selected for certain traits, but was that group even really poodles, or just some sort of pre-poodle?

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