All considered, when the remains of supposed ancient humans and their ancestors are measured objectively on the merit of what actually exists and what can actually be understood strictly from the material found, then we find that two or so groups actually existed during that time: the australopithecines, exhibiting features not unlike that of modern chimpanzees and gorillas, and of course upright, intelligent, man, exhibiting at least as much diversity in their physicality as modern Homo sapiens, exaggerated even further in some cases due to diet, disease, and hardship. Homo erectus was as human as you and I, and for that matter, so was the famous Homo neanderthalis, or the Neanderthals.
Neanderthals, named for their discovery in the Neander Valley of Germany in 1856, have been since their discovery the iconic caveman of pop culture. Brutish build, sloping brow, the earliest reconstructions left no choice but to accept them as the definitive ape-man, often envisioning them shambling through caves like animals, furry and nude. While this image persisted for many decades, eventually the authorities realized that such was not the case, reluctantly coming to the conclusion that Neanderthals were far more human than they had ever realized prior.
Neanderthals were like us culturally. They made complex tools from stone and bones, materials of necessity, and knew how to use fire. They spoke like man, with the biological and intellectual equipment to harness the intricacies of language, possessing an average cranial capacity of 1600cc. They produced musical instruments, as evidenced by a flute crafted of a bear’s femur,(1) and possibly even constructed seaworthy boats.(2) They cared for their own, providing the injured and infirmed with food and shelter, and perhaps even medical attention, using medicinal herbs and even surgery – such as amputation and trepanation – to treat those in need. They even buried their dead. In fact, intentional burial of Neanderthals are known from over 36 sites,(3) oftentimes with the bodies buried in ritualized postures and surrounded by possessions, jewelry, ornaments, tools, and flowers, all telling of the practice of belief.
While the mainstream fights its own battle in understanding the placement of these enigmatic humans in the chain of evolutionary events, creationist believers tend to view them in one of two ways:
The first camp contends that Neanderthals – with their suite of “primitive” features – may reflect an ancient nomadic tribe or race of man, no less human than any of the contemporary racial variations found across the planet, and that their characteristic features may be endemic to their race, while others yet believe them to be products of diet, deficiency, or disease, as with those of Homo erectus individuals. There is some issue with this notion however as the Neanderthals appear to not have been a singular people, but rather a widely-cast and geographically diverse form of man, exhibiting a range of characteristics in various locales. (4)
Regardless, while there may be some merit in this belief, the second position on the matter, for me personally, is far more intriguing, placing Neanderthals not among some other race or tribe, but instead suggesting something else quite unexpected…
Researcher Jack Cuozzo has noted that the human skull changes dramatically as it ages. Several others have published similar findings over the years, writing that, as age increases, various aspects of the skull’s shape morph, shifting the brow forward, enlarging the nose and ears, all in all producing a much different visage in the elderly than what was possessed in youth. In fact, one study noted by Cuozzo – conducted at the University of Michigan – observed the changes in over a hundred individuals spanning many decades in age, providing an amazing example of how much change is to be expected.
One woman in that study, x-rayed at ages 34 and 83, dramatically illustrated the changes seen in just five decades. Most notably, the soft tissue and bone of her forehead grew outwards primarily along the lower margins, emphasizing the brow ridge and the region above the nose, with the soft tissue of the nose becoming longer, and the underlying bone moving forward and upward. The cheeks, teeth, and jaws also began to jut forward, and the bone underlying the chin flattened somewhat. The eyes, ears, and mouth shifted also.(5) The result of Cuozzo’s interpretation of the data is breathtaking. Neanderthals may have been as purely Homo sapiens as ourselves, albeit physically distinct due to advanced age – developing slowly in comparison – and further distinguished from us by the hardships they faced during those long lives. Bolstering this view is the recent evidence that Neanderthal children lacked the distinctive brow ridges and other features of the adult varieties, looking quite indistinguishable from traditional human children in appearance. The physical evidence and the computer models that support this notion are quite sound, however when we look to other, somewhat less conventional sources, we find additional reason to consider the prospects.
Of primary importance in this regard is the Scriptural validation of such concepts. Anyone familiar with the Bible will recall that the Book of Genesis noted many polycentenarians, from Adam (who lived 930 years) to Methuselah (who lived 969 years).
It is also worth noting that the Bible is not the only source claiming that mankind once enjoyed extreme longevity. Such accounts can be found amongst the recordings of the Babylonians, Persians, Sumerians, Romans, Chinese, Japanese, and others. Whatever the cause of this extreme longevity – an issue that we will investigate thoroughly later – it may be that the elderly of that time would be what we today consider Neanderthals.
Intriguingly, what we find in Scripture is that the extreme longevity described early in Genesis slowly begins to degrade into more traditional lengths directly after the great Global Flood. Could there be a connection?
When we observe the locales and the timeframes in which Neanderthal remains are preserved, we see a tantalizing clue to the bigger picture. Neither evolutionists nor creationists dispute the fact that Neanderthals appear to have vanished from their environment as more modern humans began to show up. While secular theories for explaining the disappearance of Neanderthals have included everything from an inability to adapt to new climates, competition with modern man, interbreeding until extinction, disease, to even extreme cannibalism, if Cuozzo is correct in his assertion that Neanderthals were actually just extremely old humans, then wouldn’t it make sense that, as the conditions that allowed for such age disappeared, so too would their characteristic features, replaced generationally by ever younger populations of adults?
This notion seems to be supported in reality, as there is evidence that modern humans and Neanderthals intermingled – even intermarried – producing hybrid offspring. That of course is the secular interpretation of the material, but viewed another way, sites preserving human and Neanderthal remains could be nothing more than generationally diverse clans, and the hybridized offspring nothing more than a mosaic of features found in an individual of intermediate age.
In recent years there have been a number of attempts to analyze the DNA of Neanderthals, comparing their genes to ours and so on. Depending on whose paper you read, Neanderthals either are genetically different from us or genetically identical to us. While DNA has been collected from their fossils, we should be careful to bear a few things in mind.
First, the integrity of the Neanderthal DNA may not be as sound as would be preferable, leading to faulty conclusions. Additionally, we cannot be certain at this point to what degree our own genomes have changed in the intervening years since our polycentenarian forebears. While I completely dismiss the notion that we or any other species could have evolved from other forms of life, there is no reason to doubt that our genes have shifted and degraded since our inception. In fact, the robust physicality of elderly Neanderthals – quite different from that of our modern elders – is likely a result of vastly more sound genes, lacking the accumulated genetic load we have inherited since. Their purer, primal genomes would certainly be a critical factor in any genetic comparisons amongst us.
What’s more is that the tests themselves may be faulty in their own right. One criticality lies in the fact that modern human genomic maps are based on the genomes of many individuals (an average, if you will…), while the genome that forms the basis for Neanderthal genes have an incredibly limited number of genetic contributors.(6) Additionally, like the tests which insist that chimpanzees are our closest relatives, it may be that the tests utilized to analyze the genes of Neanderthals are providing similarly misleading answers.
It could even be that this is no accident, all things considered…
Moving past Homo erectus and Homo neanderthalis, overlooking the confusion of the australopithecines and other protohuman species, there are a handful of pertinent questions that must be addressed in regard to our origins. Strict secular naturalism insists that humanoids have been on this planet for at least 3 million years or so, yet when we look to the rocks, we find very little remains of our kind. Hominin remains are exceptionally rare, yet if our family survived for three million years here, there should have been trillions of individuals that lived during that time, and given – according to mainstreamist’s – the geological lateness of our arrival, the remains of those trillions should be relatively easy to access, near or at the surface in most cases. In fact, the ground should quite literally be jagged with the broken bones of our forebears. Furthermore, where is all the evidence of our culture? Where are all of our tools, pottery, and other implements? Shouldn’t we find more evidence of our successful colonization of the planet during the aeons than a few fragments here and there?
Questions such as these, as pressing as they are, tend to be overlooked by all but the few who seem willing to ask. Asking of course tends only to lead to fierce criticism and ostracization, with rebuttals invariably lacking any direct answers. Often times in my own experience, I have found that such questions garner no civil discussion from the other side, but rather stinging ad hominem attacks. Such is the nature of things. That said, for those who can look past the misdirection of the mainstream, who can acknowledge the weak evidence of human evolution for what it is, who can see past the artistic license used to reconstruct human remains with ape-like features in an effort to further the agenda of the mainstream, those shall prevail in the end, objectively seeing the truth for what it is as opposed to having a version of the truth fed to them by the indoctrinated leaders of mainstream authority.
In reality the evidence speaks for itself, declaring a much simpler explanation of all that we know, how it comes together, and what it all means. Despite that reality, the mainstream continues to pursue its own objectives.
Notes & References:
- Folger, T. and Menon, S., “… Or Much Like Us?,” Discover 18(1):33, January 1997
- Choi, Charles Q., “Ancient Mariners: Did Neanderthals Sail to Mediterranean?,” LiveScience.com, November 15, 2012, http://www.livescience.com/24810-neanderthals-sailed-mediterranean.html, retrieved July 24th, 2015
- Gowlett, J., “Early human mental abilities,” 1994, In: Jones, S and R Martin, D Pilbeam, (ed.) Ancestors: The Hard Evidence. New York: Alan R Liss Inc
- Fabre, V., S. Condemi, and A. Degioanni, “Genetic evidence of geographical groups among Neanderthals,” 2009, PLoS ONE 4. no. 4:e5151, http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0005151, retrieved July 24th, 2015
- Jack Cuozzo, “Buried Alive: The Startling Untold Story About Neanderthal Man,” Master Books, November 1998, pp 183-189
- Prüfer, K. et al., “The complete genome sequence of a Neanderthal from the Altai Mountains,” 2014, Nature. 505 (7481): 43-49
– This was an excerpt from “Remnants of Eden: Evolution, Deep-Time, & the Antediluvian World.” Get your copy here today. God bless! –
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