My post on the matter has been collecting quite a few interesting comments…
Zegarki questioned my calculation, and quite rightly so. If a couple had 2 kids 2000 years ago, and their children had 2, and so on, for 80 generations, the resulting number would be much, much, MUCH larger than 16 billion people – emaning from that couple alone. 2×2x2×2 – 80 times. you do the maths, I’ve only got the Windows calculator available…
Kreskowki thinks we should do something about overpopulation. We should get back to 4 billion, to avoid overuse of natural resources. Right. And who’ll have to go? What should the criteria be? The old Norse populations had a tradition of throwing old people (in those days, that would have been anyone over 35) off cliffs. Maybe that’s one way. Closing down hospitals and research centers is another. Take your pick. Genocide has been tried, but was probably a bad idea.
Schodow gave a lecture on the diversity of genes, and how that is a good thing for the survival of the species
Village Idiot said: “Jesus didnt have children, and even if he did your theory would still be wrong since Jesus was born 2000 some odd years after the beginning of time which had thriving ancient civilizations”
Jesus may well have had children. The Catholic notion of celibacy came way, way later. In Jesus’ day, marrying was a duty onto God, and having children was part of that duty. It’s much more likely that he was married than that he was not.
My theory, as you call it, is not wrong. Without interference from illness, war, accidents, natural disasters and infertility, any couple would have a staggering number of descendants after 80 generations. I picked Jesus and his alledged spouse more or less at random, to illustrate my point. As for the “thriving ancient civilizations” – most of them met with one or more of the calamities mentioned above.
Vince Ungar said my estimates would make a very large Christian population. Well – there’s no reason why kids would start doing as they’re told, just because Christ is their ancestor, is there? Anyway – Christ was Jewish, and remained so until his death. Any descendant of his would be Jewish also, especially if he had a Jewish spouse, since Judaism follows the mother, I believe. Did Jesus plan for a new religion, or was he working for a new path for Judaism? If the Jews had accepted him as their predicted Messiah, the world would have been a different place, and Christianism would not have existed, at least not as we know it today. Food for thought?
I’m inclined to agree with youdate, who said we will most likely never know the real answer, as there are too many powerful people with vested interests to whom the suppression of the truth is paramount.
Me? I believe there may well be something larger than us. God, Mother Nature, the Greater Good – I don’t know, and I’m not sure it matters. I’m not comfortable with organized religion of any kind, and certainly not with the “devouts” who see it as their predominant duty to judge their fellow men. I believe in “live and let live”, and that the final judgment (if there is one) is between everyone and his Maker – whomever that may be.