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Kaynak O.''The Three Leaps of The Human Evolution'' Cumhuriyet Bilim Teknoloji Dergisi s:1391/13, 2013

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Kaynak O.''The Three Leaps of The Human Evolution'' Cumhuriyet Bilim Teknoloji Dergisi s:1391/13, 2013
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  THE THREE LEAPS OF THE HUMAN EVOLUTİON   Humans are the only living being on earth endeavoring in self investigation. Then one can ask if the evolution processes regarding humans are specific to this species only, or not. My answer is “yes”. This species  had to experience three consecutive and important leaps before becoming modern human. Initially the science of Anthropology has intuitively linked the bipedalism of the human species to its intellectual capacity. As the fossils and bones of the  Australopithecine started to appear, subsequent work and research continued to support the initial intuitive assumption. The mechanism of evolution for all species can be explained as follows: Small changes in the environment and habitat create selective pressures on the organism, and the organism gives adaptive response to them. As these changes accumulate over a long period of time, speciation happens. This is how science explains the process of evolution. But such an explanation, regarding the evolution of human did not, until now, give satisfactory results. For the following reasons: Human are different when compared to other species on earth. But the same process of evolution has been assumed to apply for both human and other species.  Accordingly, the human lineage separated from a common ancestor about 6 million years ago, and the mechanisms of natural selection resulted in forming the modern human. Human are very special and very different. These are the only living being on earth endeavoring in self investigation. Then one can ask if the evolution processes regarding human are specific to this species only, or not. My answer is “yes”. This species had to experience three consecutive and important leaps before becoming modern human. 1) The Leap of Bipedalism  About 6-7 million years ago the lifestyle of a primate living in the equatorial forests of eastern Africa was disrupted and changed drastically due to rift formation. As a result of rifts and plateau formations several volcanic eruptions created wildfires that carbonized the trees on which this primate was living. Thus the primate had to abandon the carbonized trees. Since no food was available in this burned out region the primate was obliged to search food in the shallow waters. In order to search for food in water the primate had to stand on two legs. This primate, for about 4 million years, hunted and gathered food in shallow waters during daytime and during nighttime slept on carbonized trees.   Such a different lifestyle transformed the primate to adopt an erected posture and bipedal locomotion. These transformations do not stop until the biological architecture and kinematic functions of the body come to stabilize in the most economical posture. The final stage of this transformation is when the body reaches the form of a modern human. If, for example, the process towards becoming modern human stopped at some point in between these 6 million years and its genetic formation came to halt, the species could not continue to survive with its partially transformed biological architecture. This is because the locomotion of such a living being would not be stable and balanced. Especially, when it comes to run, the body would not keep its balance and would fall. No species could be able to survive and keep existing with such a body. This is why the required transformation towards the modern human body posture kept its course.  All variants of hominid types encountered up to now are transitive variations towards the modern human. They are not basically different species (Kaynak 2012, 2013). The rift and plateau formation started from the north and in time advanced towards the south. This may be why different primate groups have been forced to adopt bipedal locomotion over different periods of time. This is also why they were in different stages of the journey towards the modern human and were considered to be different species. In spite of defining the fossils until about two million years from present as being Australopithecine and as being Homo from that time on, they are not different species but are transitive variants on the journey towards becoming modern human. 2) The Leap of Mental Overturning When about 2 million years ago the body erection reached a certain angle, the embryo made an adaptive response in accordance with this vertical body posture. While previously the embryo attached its placenta to the abdominal region, it started to attach the placenta to the dorsal side of the erected mother. Previously the head of the embryo was formed towards the birth canal, but now it started to be formed towards the mother’s diaphragm.   Modern human embryos correct this “Mental Overturning” which happened about 2 million years ago by turning towards the birth canal at the seventh month of the pregnancy, and preparing for birth. This is the mental overturning that started the growth of the cranium as well as the brain.  3) The Leap of Mental Threshold The present day chimp, with its 350 cc brain can tear away a tree branch and attack its enemies with it. It can also pick up a stone and throw it to its enemy. When the predator jaguar approaches Capuchin monkeys of the Brazilian forests, they climb the cliffs and roll down an avalanche of rocks and stones, forcing the jaguar to retreat. These capuchin monkeys can also make use of stones in a sophisticated manner in order to break coconuts. The chimps can also make use of a stone for cracking fruit seeds. In a way, both primates use the stone as a tool as well as a weapon. Chimps make use of thin twigs for hunting termites and collect honey from beehives. If a chimp with its 350 cc brain can do such things, one should wonder what its capabilities would be, if it had a 500 cc brain.  After chasing its enemy, the chimp throws the stick and does not say to itself: “This stick has served me effectively; I better keep it for another occasion”. If the chimp had a brain of 500 cc, would it say: “I better keep this stick and even improve it”. The chimp may not think so with 500 cc brain, not even with a 550 cc or even a 600 cc brain. But there will be a time and a brain capacity that such a thought will occur. This is the critical point which I have labeled as the Mental Threshold. Once this mental threshold was transcended, the hominid that held a stone in one hand and a stick in the other; had the courage to intrude into the hunting zone of any animal including the worst predator. When it reached the capacity to influence his prey as well as his predator with the help of sticks and stones, the hominid departed from the rift in order to conquer the world. After the mental threshold happened the hominid became cognizant of his nakedness, realized his selfness and came to understand that sticks and stones could be used as weapons. The human mind is the result of the incredible adaptive responds given by the embryo to the vertical body posture. Copyright©2013 by Oktay Kaynak
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