The human race is a single family, in a common story
Genealogical ancestry, therefore, is surprising. It works much differently than genetic ancestry. [...] None of these surprises in genealogies, however, contradict genetic science in any way. The problem is not genetic science itself, but the error of using genetic ancestry to answer a distinctly genealogical question. Genetic ancestry is not genealogy. It still appears Homo sapiens shares ancestry with the great apes and arose from a larger population that never dipped in size to a single couple. Nothing in genealogical science undermines these two conclusions. If Adam as an individual existed, the notorious problem of intermarriage of his descendants with one another is avoided; instead, their descendants mixed with a larger population of reproductively compatible beings. However, we would also count a particular couple called Adam and Eve as among our genealogical ancestors. They would be two people among those from whom we all descend, with theological or historical significance. If Adam was a particular individual in our past, what happened to the population "outside the Garden?" Their history is rightfully and carefully studied in genetics, archaeology and anthropology. We find strong evidence for large-scale population movements and intermixing in our ancient history. It is often said that our ancestors arose in Africa and spread across the globe, leaving some populations isolated for long periods of time. It is now clear that our ancestors remained linked by constant interbreeding as they spread. Yes, we spread from Africa, but also individuals or groups migrated in the opposite direction of the larger populations?
We are just now beginning to uncover some of the complex history of intermixing across the globe.' What does genealogical science add to this account? The full story of human evolution is that of populations across the globe linked into a common evolutionary fate by pervasive interbreeding everywhere. We can now see the genealogical hypothesis is far more plausible than we might have first imagined. If Adam and Eve were real people, very quickly, in just thousands of years, their lineage would mix with everyone outside the Garden. Interbreeding across the globe links us both genetically and genealogically together.
James Chang and Olson's conclusion to their landmark study is poetic:
"To the extent that ancestry is considered in genealogical rather than genetic terms, our findings suggest a remarkable proposition: no matter the languages we speak or the colour of our skin, we share ancestors who planted rice on the banks of the Yangtze, who first domesticated horses on the steppes of the Ukraine, who hunted giant sloths in the forests of North and South America, and who laboured to build the Great Pyramid of Khufu."
We are all linked together in the recent past by genealogical ancestry. The human race is a single family, in a common story. Whatever our skin color, country of origin, ethnicity, or culture, we are all one family. We are one blood, one race, the human race.
Ancestral life had no homework, no boss, no civil servants, no academic grades, no conversation with the dean, no consultant with an MBA, no table of procedure, no application form, no trip to New Jersey, no grammatical stickler, no conversation with someone boring you: all life was random stimuli and nothing, good or bad, ever felt like work. Dangerous, yes, but boring, never.
Our findings suggest a remarkable proposition: no matter the languages we speak or the color of our skin, we share ancestors who planted rice on the banks of the Yangtze, who first domesticated horses on the steppes of the Ukraine, who hunted giant sloths in the forests of North and South America, and who laboured to build the Great Pyramid of Khufu.