You can stop the wars now, we’re all related

Did you know we are all related?  It’s true.  Every single one of us anatomically modern human beings is genetically related.

I know, I didn’t think so either, but, dear friend, it is true.

It transpires that within our bodies we have floating around in us DNA that carry genetic markers.  Lots of them.  And by studying these markers, geneticists are able to determine your ancestory dating back thousands and thousands of years.  From studying your blood, you can create a map of how your particular kin migrated, over thousands of years, to where you were born.

And, it turns out, every single one of us has a marker that links us, in an unbroken genetic line, to just one woman – Mitochondrial Eve – who lived in East Africa.

{As a side note, I hate the fact that they called her Eve – yes, after the biblical woman of the same name.  It is like the christians have laid claim to her despite the fact that she existed some 198,000 years before chritianity was even a thing.  Why couldn’t they call her another name, an African name for instance, since she came from Africa.  I’m going to call her Elaine, after my mom.)

I love this on so many levels.

Firstly, it certainly means that all the wars being waged right now are ridiculous and should be stopped immediately.  All they are doing is killing their kin.  Which, okay, humans have been doing since, well, Elaine, apparently.

It also means that racism is a bit of a moot subject.

It also means that the idea of god’s chosen people is also standing on shaky ground.

But what I love most is that it is the matrilineal line that has survived this long, not the patriarchal line.   That gives me so much hope.  And strength.  Knowing that it is the maternal line that courses through each one of us.  All the female oppression that goes on throughout the world, and we are all carrying her mitochondrial DNA.  It has a sweetness about it, don’t you think?

The mapping of the human genome means that further study will only result in more specificity of our ancestory down the track.  I love that too.

I was watching Eddie Izzard in The Journey of Mankind.  He could trace his matrilineal line right from Africa, to The Yemen, to Istanbul, to the Vikings, to England, across thousands of years.  As humans migrated and colonised, our genetic DNA was creating, and continues to create, a map that will last for an eternity.  We are living maps of the history of man!  And in actuality, a part of us will live on forever, assuming man doesn’t annihilate itself (which, sadly, is somewhat of a possibility).

Think about that the next time you are speaking to your best friend who you really wished was your brother or sister.  Turns out you really are (somewhat diluted perhaps) related.

Are you fascinated?  I know I am.  I’ve asked for Genetic Genealogy for christmas.

Until next time,

SHW Signature



4 thoughts on “You can stop the wars now, we’re all related

  1. I have just sent off my 23&me test kit! it is very exciting. Might have some answers for me in other areas too. The lab can’t do medical reports, but Stanford will take your raw data and translate it. Take that FDA! I love the concept of the mitochondrial Elaine. LIke you, it appeals to me that it is matrilineal. Of course it is! We have always known on some deep level that all travels through the mother. 🙂
    Loving your posts Sarah. X


  2. This is so interesting Sarah. Love that you call her Elaine – I shall too. I must admit though sometimes I feel like killing my relatives so this information may not end all wars. xx I have loved Eddie Izzard forever – he is brilliant.


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