From what has been provided as scientific evidence,we have today,the following information concerning the basic “genetic” and “anatomical” characteristics of the “Neanderthal”Man. First of all,we know that the “size” of the brain of the Neanderthal was larger than that of modern human beings. Second, Neanderthals had all the anatomical characteristics (skull structure) which suggest that they were able to speak as modern humans do today. Third, the skeletons discovered demonstrate that Neanderthals had identical “bone count” and “types” as ourselves.Finally,through the science of “genetics”,we have learned that the DNA of Neanderthals is very close to that of the “Cro-Magnon” Man and the Homo-Sapien, our only direct ancestors genetically (www.conservapedia.com/Neanderthal). With so many common anatomical and genetic characteristics with those of the “Cro-Magnon”Man and of course with us,what were the causes for the complete disappearance of the “Neanderthal” Man? Not only “from the face of the earth”, but also from the genetic composition (DNA) of modern human beings!
There were surely natural and climatological causes for the disappearance of the Neanderthal,even though we know that this “branch” of the “human specie” had survived 200,000 years of glacial and inter-glacial periods(in cycles of about 50,000 years),spread out throughout the Northern-Hemisphere,except for North America.Yet, I believe that the main cause for the “demise” of this “particular human specie”, must have been the whole process of his “thinking” and “behaviour” as a “social animal”.This deduction could be plausible,since Neanderthal΄s “demise” is directly linked to the introduction (in the northern-hemisphere) of another “branch” of the human specie,the “Cro-Magnon”Man,who not only survives and even “thrives” in the same living space(initially in Europe) and under the same natural and climatological conditions,but also succeeds in a relatively “short time”(15,000 years approximately),to completely displace the Neanderthals and eliminate them as a “human specie”.Certainly,the geophysical and climatic changes(glacial period) played a critical role in making Neanderthal΄s survival a strenuous and a very difficult undertaking,but the “Cro-Magnon”Man proved to be much more “efficient” and “creative” in a “pragmatic” and “holistic”* way.We shall therefore examine all those parameters in Cro-Magnon΄s “persona”, which allowed this “human specie” to completely dominate earth΄s landscape and become our only direct ancestor(genetically).
Before we examine some of the natural and climatological effects on Neanderthal΄s survival,I would like to briefly mention some “human qualities” which I believe played the most important role in Cro-Magnon΄s survival, development and domination;”human qualities” which are not active in the everyday lives of most human beings today, and thus the main cause for the “conclusion” of human civilization as we have known it for almost 9,000 years.These “human qualities” will eventually be linked to all the achievements produced by the “cro-Magnon”Man-achievements which are not only related to this “human specie΄s” survival and prosperity,but also to the “aesthetics” of a more “interesting” and “creative” human existence, which touched everyone “equally” and “universally”;men and women of all races and cultures (primitive).
In the first part(Part A) of the essay on the Neanderthal,we had mentioned and defined two “human qualities” which seemed to have been “universal” in the everyday behavioral patterns of the Cro-Magnons;these being “altruism” and “empathy”.In simple terms ,”altruism” means “a person΄s natural willingness to contribute to the welfare of others, without any preconditions to one΄s own immediate interests.” On the other hand ,”empathy” means “to consciously put aside the belief that all reality stems exclusively from one΄s own particular situation and experiences,thus making the needs and expectations of others,part of your own existential reality.” Of course as we all know from the human sciences (history,anthropology,sociology,archeology,etc.),in our “unnatural”,”disfunctional” and “competitive” human civilization of 9,000 years,”altruism” and “empathy” have always been at “the bottom of the list” as beneficial and practical human values for the inpidual(inpidualism).As Cro-Magnon΄s social life was regulated by a deep sense of “altruism” and “empathy” for his or her fellow human beings within the group and beyond,this “human specie” had to develop its own “imagination”.This new human faculty was developed not only to reinforce those “abstract” social concepts(since they did not involve one΄s own immediate physical survival and welfare),but to also enable the inpidual to conceive of the means and ways to respond “pragmatically” to his or her strong feelings(altruism,empathy) towards a fellow human being.
Through “human imagination”, one creates a “vision” of what “human existence is all about” and “how human existence can become a bit better for everyone.” This sense of “human vision” also formulates the conceptual boundaries which define “everyday human existence”,providing it with its “”checks and balances”,the “inspiration” and the “motives” for living,and a sense of “continuity” in an “infinite universe” but with a “finite human life span”.These boundaries have to do with the “physical” and the “metaphysical”,the “finite” and the “infinite”,what links a human being to other human beings,what links a human being to nature,and naturally what links a human being to his or her “inner self”.In order for “human imagination” to be active and “human vision” truly creative(physical and mental welfare of everyone,refinement in the quality and the aesthetics of everyday life for all),one is obliged to utilize all the “human senses”,including “the 6th sense).With all these “human senses”,one is able to acquire a more complete picture of the mosaic,the complexities and the contradictions of human existence.The most critical contradiction being that “one should live for life”,for “a limited life”,producing the “right seeds”(children,students,social pre-conditions,social instruments,social incentives,etc.),so that future generations may enjoy the fruits and a better quality of life than the previous generations. With an active imagination,a creative vision and all the human senses sensitized(including the 6th sense),the next step in this “natural human development” has to be the organization of the “human thought process”, which could produce “a strategy” which will permit “the vision” to become “an actuality”.For this to happen,human beings must take “initiatives”,which means above all, that they feel self-confident and are in “harmony” with their own “human potentials”. Constructive “human initiatives” should entail “original” ideas and concepts,which would further reinforce and refine the “whole human thought process”,not only for the privileged few, but for everyone!Finally,what one has to say,is that all of these “precious human ingredients” and “qualities” cannot function properly and in harmony with the “universal laws” if there is not a dynamic,creative,open and direct communication between all human beings,each one expressing freely all aspects of his or her “persona”;ideas,emotions,expectations,and even inspirations.
What I have just described, I believe are the vital human factors which allowed the “Cro-Magnon”Man to produce such great achievements in human evolution in such a short period of time-within 30,000 years,in a human life span of more than 1,000,000 years.Yet,those are exactly the same human qualities and ingredients which have slowly been made obsolete during the last 9,000 years of what has been called “human civilization”,and this is exactly the reason why “human beings” and “the planet earth” are today in such “dire straits”!!!
In the next part of my essay(Part C), I shall relate all these “dynamic human ingredients” to Cro-Magnon΄s achievements and to Neanderthal΄s absolute demise.
*holistic-dealing with or treating the whole of something or someone and not just part.