Human evolution Intelligent Design Medicine

Neanderthals practiced some forms of health care 1.6 mya

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Neanderthal healthcare practices crucial to survival
Skeletal remains show several episodes of injury and recovery/University of York

For one thing, they had to cope with injuries inflicted by large wild animals they were hunting:

Researchers investigated the skeletal remains of more than 30 individuals where minor and serious injuries were evident, but did not lead to loss of life. The samples displayed several episodes of injury and recovery, suggesting that Neanderthals must have had a well-developed system of care in order to survive.

“We have evidence of healthcare dating back 1.6 million years ago, but we think it probably goes further back than this. We wanted to investigate whether healthcare in Neanderthals was more than a cultural practice; was it something they just did or was it more fundamental to their strategies for survival?

“The high level of injury and recovery from serious conditions, such as a broken leg, suggests that others must have collaborated in their care and helped not only to ease pain, but to fight for their survival in such a way that they could regain health and actively participate in the group again.” Samantha Martin, “Neanderthal healthcare practices crucial to survival” at Phys.org

These must have been different Neanderthals from the brutes we learned about years ago.

Unfortunately, the story at Phys.org is marred by “evolution-speak.” What on earth does it mean to wonder “whether healthcare in Neanderthals was more than a cultural practice; was it something they just did or was it more fundamental to their strategies for survival?” How could it fail to be both?

Underlying such helpless mulling is the problem that in any Darwinian scheme, someone must be the subhuman. Thus, ordinary and obvious human behavior cannot be allowed to sound ordinary and obvious. The search is on for a time when people set broken legs for no particular reason that they understood. It just happened somehow because it spread their selfish genes.

See also: Neanderthals had a sophisticated home life?

and

Neanderthals did know how to start fires

7 Replies to “Neanderthals practiced some forms of health care 1.6 mya

  1. 1
    R J Sawyer says:

    Underlying such helpless mulling is the problem that in any Darwinian scheme, someone must be the subhuman. Thus, ordinary and obvious human behavior cannot be allowed to sound ordinary and obvious.

    Evolutionary theory certainly doesn’t suggest this. In fact, it suggests the exact opposite. We would expect some “normal human behaviour” to be present in very distant anscestors.

  2. 2
    vmahuna says:

    RJ@1

    “We would expect some “normal human behaviour” to be present in very distant anscestors.” (note that “ancestors” is misspelled…

    Um, NO. Absolutely NOTHING about Darwinism would predict “advanced” human culture was present in the species that evolved into modern Cro-Magnon humans. The DISTINCTIONS between different species, leading from primitive, simple species to advanced, complex species, is the entire POINT of The Theory of Evolution.

    It is Intelligent Design that accepts the fact that new, fully developed species appear POOF!, with NO gradual step-wise advance through a series of incrementally improved ancestral species. My favorite remains bats, who appeared POOF! 30 million years ago with echo location and full ability to fly on Day 1. AND there has been ZERO “evolution” of bats since their first corpses got buried in the mud at the bottom of Swiss lakes 30 million years ago. Darwinism can’t explain ANY of that.

  3. 3
    R J Sawyer says:

    v

    Um, NO. Absolutely NOTHING about Darwinism would predict “advanced” human culture was present in the species that evolved into modern Cro-Magnon humans. The DISTINCTIONS between different species, leading from primitive, simple species to advanced, complex species, is the entire POINT of The Theory of Evolution.

    But they were not talking about “advanced human culture”. They were talking about a trait that is present in modern humans. Darwin, or its subsequent theories, do not say anything about the necessity of a modern species not retaining traits of its predecessor. In fact, we would expect it to retain a large number of the traits found in its predecessor.

    My favorite remains bats, who appeared POOF! 30 million years ago with echo location and full ability to fly on Day 1.

    Then you should search for a new favorite example. There are fossil bats from 52 million years ago that did not have echolocation.

    https://www.theguardian.com/science/2008/feb/13/bat.evolution

    If you could find a fossil example of every generation from the first life form to any modern species, there is no generation where you could say that the new species arose.

  4. 4
    Pearlman says:

    RCCF (YeC) framework for understanding science The Ice Age/s 25M – 10k ya calibrate to the 340 year span between 1656 and 1996 anno mundi so 4k rounded YA so post 1656 anno mundi impacts year / global flood by Noach.

  5. 5
    DanL says:

    RJ What if the bat without echolocation you tout as proof of evolution is a fruit bat? (Compare the fossil with the anatomy of fruit bats, please.)

  6. 6
    R J Sawyer says:

    Danl, I was just responding to vmahuna’s favourite example of evidence for ID, that bats “poofed” into existance 30 million years ago with wings and echolocation. A ten second google search was all it took to disprove this claim.

  7. 7
    ET says:

    R J Sawyer- It doesn’t matter as your position doesn’t have anything that can account for the existence of bats. And BTW, we know that traits can be lost, as could be the case with the bat fossil.

    Given starting populations of prokaryotes you don’t even have a mechanism capable of producing eukaryotes.

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