📹 7 million years of human evolution

When dealing with time on the scale of species evolution, the numbers are so large that the brain finds them incomprehensible. Saying that a certain species came into existence X million of years ago or that humans split from a certain line of evolution Y hundred thousand years back means very little on its own. Our minds do not have surrounding points of information to give us a frame of reference.

Combing over the evolution of species in a visual manner helps provide the brain with a better understanding of time. The following video goes into detail on when homo sapiens split from chimpanzees and the subsequent evolutionary steps that led to the species we are today.

While remarkable in many regards, the point that strikes me from this video is the frenetic pace with which homo sapiens take over the entire planet. Our species suddenly appears on the scene and within an instant we have wiped out the other competing species and colonized every landmass on Earth. Humans have existed for a mere blip in time, yet to most of us it feels like humans have existed forever. This view is especially true if you talk to religious people.

If more people had an accurate understanding of how much humans have reshaped the planet we live on in the minuscule amount of time we’ve existed, I believe people would behave much differently.