Keywords: Evolution, mass extinction, speciation, molecular evolution, genetic mutation, ionizing radiation, geomagnetic field and evolution, paleobiogeography
As with all the web pages on the Living Cosmos web site, this web page is a fully referenced work, and is only a portion of the factual, empirical support for the ideas presented. However, these references are not included on this web page, but are included in the book, The Vital Vastness. This book is now published with the full scope and references, and is available for purchase. An attempt will be made to address queries, but not all queries can be answered. Excerpts are presented here as indented paragraphs, and those lines appearing with quotes are from some of the cited references.
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Evolution has never been fully understood. This can be seen even in the simple fact that there are now new sciences devised to try to uncover what has been taking place. These new sciences are called molecular evolution and molecular biology. The gene is the ultimate source of variability in living things, and it at this level that the answers to evolution can be uncovered. Few realize that there are not the series of graduated steps from one species to another, but rather the sudden appearance of new species. Moreover, mass extinctions are always followed by mass speciations. With the new model of the Earth the Field-dynamical Earth Model (FEM) there are new factors at work. This is addressed in The Vital Vastness.
For more than a century we have contemplated the origin and extinction of species within the framework of evolution. Darwin claimed that evolution was the result of natural selection, a term coined to describe what is also known as "survival of the fittest."
Meanwhile, nearly a century of genetic research has disclosed that the ultimate source of variability is at the genetic or chromosomal level. Mutation in the chromosome or its components (DNA, RNA, proteins, etc.) is the primary source of producing new species. Survival of the fittest merely plays a minor, at best, secondary role. Evolutionary transitions rely primarily on mutation at the molecular level, not with competition for a given niche in the changing environment, as has been hypothesized. Evidence proves that it is mutants which are fit to survive that lead to new species.
Hereditary information is carried in DNA within the chromosomes of a cell's nucleus. Chromosomes are known to have increased lengthwise as evolution progressed from the simplest to the more complex organisms (prokaryotes to eukaryotes). The simplest mechanism for accomplishing this lengthening involves the rearrangement of preexisting identical, small DNA sequences into longer groups.
The most important characteristic of the DNA segment forming the gene is its position within the structural unit, which defines its function. Mutation or other transformations (base substitution, transposition, rearrangement, etc.) can cause small or widespread physical (morphological) changes in an organism. In fact, modifications in DNA can be utilized to demonstrate a species relatedness to other species when similar patterns are observed. "Molecular clock" is a term used to express the periodic or episodic changes that have occurred in many different species simultaneously throughout time. One level at which the molecular clock is manifested is in the sequences of DNA.
RNA reads the genetic code of DNA which cranks out the protein that make up the developing organism. The evolution of RNA played a very important role in the earliest history of life. For one, genetic variation can be introduced as the result of mutation and RNA makes the mutation workable (RNA-catalyzed recombination). Protein synthesis involves coding information from DNA, but this requires three types of RNA (i.e., messenger, transfer and ribosomal). Interrelated checks and balances between DNA, RNA and protein determine what direction a given mutation will take in an organism.
One of the major evolutionary controls is that a given protein only recognizes a given type of DNA or RNA, and thereby, contributes to determining the type of hereditary information present. A protein's recognition of DNA directs the frequency and type of mutation. Studies of the molecular clock reveal episodes in protein evolution that occur at a nearly constant rate throughout various types of organisms (i.e., lineages).
When we combine all of the components mentioned above and include genes, we then have the structures known as chromosomes. A vast arsenal of remarkable molecular devices endow the chromosome with properties that ensure its own survival. The chromosome can bypass any assault on its integrity by repairing, reconstructing, substituting, improving and innovating its own molecular environment. Chromosomes can dispose of whole regions, whole chromosomes or sets of chromosomes. Genes function according to their position in the chromosome. The very same gene sequence in a different location on the chromosome can alter the gene's action, leading genetic pathways into new functional alleys, and hence, new creatures.
When genes are broken into pieces the reordering can facilitate evolutionary transformation. The splicing of gene pieces does not have to be 100% effective, because molecular devices in the chromosome repair it, making the altered chromosome functional. The genes of higher organisms (eukaryotes), such a mammals, are not continuous but broken into coded sequences (exons) and non-coded sequences (introns). Evolution can then be described as the "shuffling" of these coded sequences into new positions, which produces new species. Because chromosomes have built-in "rules of conduct" that escape natural selection, natural selection is an explanation made in the face of our ignorance about these molecular mechanisms. The understanding that molecular mechanisms, not natural selection, are responsible for evolution will be clarified subsequently and is now generally accepted by scientists.
Recent research has uncovered the molecular mechanisms accountable for evolutionary transmutations, but not how they took place throughout the history of life. The position of genetic information within the chromosome effects the order (including polarity), structure and function of genetic information, leading to transformations at all levels (i.e., organism phenotype, chromosome phenotype, RNA transcription, and DNA replication). Distinctions are made between the two strands of a DNA duplex and different, but similar, (homologous) chromosomes. The same is true of different DNA within the same cell, DNA segments, chromosomes, segments of the same chromosome, and sets of chromosomes. Gene expressions, mutations and rearrangements occur as the result of the controlling elements within the chromosome (also episomes and transposons).
Rearrangements of the chromosome, and changing coded and non-coded sequences (exon shuffling) can cause sudden evolutionary transition. Examining a great variety of protein from different back-boned animals (vertebrates) disclosed that shuffling is a major determinate in evolutionary transitions. There are episodes in evolution when DNA underwent bursts of substitutions followed by long periods of no substitution. The major unanswered question is what caused the episodes of shuffling to take place.
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The reason that this question is unresolved is that the new model of the Earth, the Field-dynamical Earth Model or FEM, is not yet known. The Fields are particle accelerators which routinely produce X-rays and gamma-rays. Hydrogen fusion by-products include neutrons, helium nuclei or alpha particles, and high-energy protons and electrons. Collectively, x-rays, gamma-rays and fusion by-products are referred to as ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation in turn ionizes the atmosphere producing electrostatic fields, microwaves, hydrocarbons, and changes the acidity of precipitation. Furthermore, during such times the geomagnetic field experiences reduced strength, and drifts to new locations or reverses (i.e. polar wandering and reversals). As will be discussed, the process of evolution involves mutation caused by ionizing radiation, electrostatic fields, magnetic fluctuations, microwaves, alkalinity, and hydrocarbons (in the order of their greatest effect).
Ionizing radiation, in the form of x-rays, gamma-rays and neutrons, is the most effective mutagen, as has been seen by its effects on DNA. Damage to DNA is physical, chemical, and biological, leading to modifications in genetic information. Amino acid (purine and pyrimidine) bases are stacked in a parallel fashion in the core of the double spiral or helix of the DNA (see Figure 3). One of these amino acids (pyrimidine) is more sensitive to radiation damage, leading to DNA breakage or degradation. Often one or both strands of the DNA helix break leading to cross-links between DNA molecules, chemically active sites (ring openings in purine types), or liberation of a base (N-glycoside bond breakage). Double strand breaks can cause the loss of the original genetic information more than single strand breaks. Slippage during DNA replication occurs when the strands "mis-pair" in relation to their original coding. Also, randomly produced unstable chemicals, known as free radicals, in DNA can undergo a series of reactions ending in a stable radiation product with stable damage centers that confer new genetic expression.
DNA can be directly or indirectly affected by ionizing radiation, causing strand (polynucleotide) breaks and cross-links, transposing the sequence of genetic information. Induced currents can greatly increase the charge separation in molecules, producing DNA that is more reactive. Fast electrons captured by DNA, for example, can alter base functions, producing stable chemically active substances (radicals). The electrical or electrostatic potential of the DNA helix is large and attracts chemically active substances (counterions) effectively.
The genetic effects of ionizing radiation in offspring are due to DNA transformations in the reproductive cells of the irradiated parent. This transformation is of fundamental importance, because DNA double-strand breaks can lead to all of the different biological end-points observed in the fossil record. The expression of genetic information by DNA occurs as a result of RNA and protein synthesis. As a consequence, the radiation induced structural alteration of DNA molecules will alter genetic expression, producing new species.
Other molecular regulatory phenomena may weaken or amplify radiation's effect on DNA. The effects of radiation on DNA occur in body cells (mitosis) and reproductive cells (meiotic drive), bringing about uniform changes in a group of the same organisms, hence extinction and speciation take place. "Imperfect" corrections of DNA damage produce mutations that can lead to evolution and extinction. Episodes in evolution parallel those of DNA, which shows bursts of base substitutions (exon shuffling) followed by long periods of no substitutions. Collectively, the evidence reveals the fact that periods of increased radiation can be responsible for the mass extinctions and mass speciations seen in the fossil record.
RNA undergoes direct and indirect mutations from ionizing radiation, as well. One indirect effect involves alterations in DNA that exert modifications on RNA. Expression of the genetic information encoded in DNA involves the synthesis of RNA and protein. Alterations may modify the genetic information of DNA, leading to different bases in (messenger) RNA. This is in addition to the sensitivity of RNA (polymerase) itself, the effects of which include a decrease and occasionally an increase in RNA synthesis. Like DNA, RNA also demonstrates a history of (exon) shuffling that could be the result of episodes of intensified levels of ionizing radiation.
Protein also undergoes radiation induced transmutations. Recognition of protein interactions with DNA or RNA entails the electronic features of the molecules and their (steric) arrangement. Molecules with this type of molecular recognition include the major cellular components known as cytochrome C, haem protein, other proteins, and the enzymes of DNA and RNA (nucleases). The electronic and energetic aspects of the molecules correspond to their physical and chemical properties. One characteristic involves the electron donor or acceptor properties, which bring about a protein's potential for being affected by ionizing radiation. Because ionizing radiation carries charges it effects the electronic and energetic properties of the molecules. This charge shift affects protein bonding, and protein bonding is part of the stability of the genetic information.
Both the built-in (intrinsic) energy states of proteins and direct tunneling of electrons through impurity centers are involved in electron transfer. This appears to be particularly true for impurity centers with iron or an element with the same degree of reaction (valence). For example, a component of the cell, called the mitochondria, regulates the electrochemical gradient of the cell, especially protons. Within the mitochondria is cytochrome, which is involved in electron transport and utilizes iron-sulphur proteins. Examination of the evolutionary rates of mitochondria should therefore be more rapid if ionizing radiation is offsetting the electrochemistry of the cell (by causing internal ionization). Observations indicate mitochondrial DNA evolves at a rate that is five to ten times faster than nuclear DNA in various types of organisms. Such a finding indicates that mitochondrial and nuclear heredity (genomes) evolve independently while under similar environmental conditions.
A scientist asserts: "Ionizing radiation has turned out to be a powerful tool for changing the genetic material."
Also having effects on genetic expression are microwaves, which can be produced by lightning (whistlers). Also having an effect are hydrocarbons, which can be produced by the polymerization of methane in the atmosphere, and also the production of acid rain (nitric acid). All of these effects can be brought about by ionizing radiation in the atmosphere.
It is staggering to think that such minor changes can be so important. Small sections of chromosomes, known as alleles, are in the thousands, but only 10 or 100 need change to produce a whole new genus (a group of related species). Plants that were genetically engineered using ionizing radiation had improved protein content, structure, resistance to disease and pests, and better adaptability to the environment. In the case of evolution, this would mean a better ability to survive, and the fossil record shows that plants are the least affected by extinction. No scientist would doubt that ionizing radiation could be responsible for evolution and extinction, but there is no known source for the radiation in the conventional framework. However, with FEM there is a source below the assumed protective shield of the Earth's magnetosphere and atmosphere from cosmic radiation. There are also other factors at work, such as, geomagnetic fluctuations.
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Geomagnetic Excursions and Evolution
Another source for genetic mutation is the reversal or reduced strength of the Earth's magnetic field. Again, it is the electronic and magnetic features of biological molecules that make them susceptible to the influences from such forces. DNA becomes aligned perpendicular to a magnetic field when using the axis of the DNA helix as a reference point. One scientist studying the possible role of magnetic reversals on DNA comments: "This would constitute a new type of mutational force and perhaps could be used to explain, in a rather direct fashion, the interrupted speciation accompanying geomagnetic reversals."
DNA is not the only genetic material affected by magnetic fields. Also affected are RNA and protein. Magnetic fields have been shown to stimulate the formation of mutations. And reduced magnetic field strengths have produced profound irreversible body mutations in higher animals. The return to full strength of the Earth's magnetic field enhances the production of reproductive cells (shortens the mitotic cycle), which would intensify the spread of any mutation.
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The Evolutionary Scenario
The series of events at times of extinctions and speciation follow a certain pattern. First ionizing radiation breaks chromosomes and their constituents: DNA, RNA and protein. Then electrostatic effects alter active sites, and due to electronic and magnetic properties of the molecules (i.e., ferromagnetism, etc.), reorders the genetic material. A weakened or reversed geomagnetic field shuffles the material more so. Finally, microwaves, hydrocarbons, acid rain and other chemical fluctuations produced by ionizing radiation add the last of the transitions. The end result is organisms that have transformed so completely that they are categorized as new organisms -- speciation -- or organisms that could not survive the mutation -- extinction. The scenario is more on the order of extinction leading to speciation, because mass extinctions are followed by mass speciations, and the number of species has grown with time.
Much in the fossil record confirms this evolutionary scheme. Ionizing radiation is evident in the geologic and fossil records as irradiated minerals, such as iridium, tektites and microtektites, bones that are radioactive, mummified fossils, abrupt shifts in the levels of elements known as isotopes, and selective extinctions. The huge deposits of fossilized bones that make-up phosphate rock deposits is staggering, and they are often radioactive. The conditions under which these fossil bones were deposited do not exist today, as they appear to have been cut off from both sea and air, and no sedimentation took place as they were laid down. The chemical process that transformed the bones into phosphate is unknown and could have involved ionizing radiation, especially since the deposits are radioactive.
Microwaves and ionizing radiation dry vegetation, and the decay of neutrons produces lightning that could ignite wildfires, which are also recorded throughout the geologic record during these times. Everything that takes place has parallels with a nuclear war scenario, even shocked minerals, hydrocarbons and acid rain. Cycles in geological events are accompanied by cycles in the molecular clock (they might better be referred to as episodic). Mass extinctions are always followed by a blossoming of new species. Often the Earth's magnetic field drops in intensity and/or reverses or wanders. These observations will be addressed to some extent in Tome Three with particular reference to the time of the dinosaurs' extinction (i.e., K/T Boundary event).
The scientific community is looking for new interpretations of the fossil record. "Conventional dogma is being questioned and in some cases discarded. We are seeing a change from dominantly gradualist interpretations of natural phenomena to those that emphasize chaotic events."
Many scientists have suggested that ionizing radiation was responsible for mass extinctions. For example, a supernova, asteroid or comet, and a super solar flare have been proposed as sources for ionizing radiation bringing an end to the reign of the dinosaur. Some have asserted that the repeated events of extinction and blossoming of new species is the result of ionizing radiation. Many events show dramatic fluctuations in elements (isotopes), such as oxygen and carbon. Some events have been associated with iridium, an irradiated mineral. Wildfires have occurred repeatedly throughout geological history. And abrupt climate transitions and extinction events have taken place throughout Earth history. All of these observations could be expected of FEM, while no conventional theory explains all of the facts.
The fireball of a nuclear exchange is composed of ionizing radiation (largely gamma-rays and neutrons), and reflects much of what is found in the fossil record. There would be the extinction of large fraction of the Earth's animals, plants and microorganisms, including the mass extinction of plankton, genetic mutation, nutrient dumping, climatic cooling, wildfires, hydrocarbons, acid rain, soot, and shocked and/or irradiated minerals. In fact, the nuclear winter scenario was partly conceived by considering the effects of the fireball created by an asteroid impact, which has been theorized to have caused the mass extinctions that accompanied the dinosaurs' demise. However, many facts contradict the impact theory, as will be discussed in Tome Three.
Marine mass extinctions also occur in cycles. Two scientists comment: "Perhaps most importantly, it indicates that mass extinctions are not independent events, but rather are dependent on some single ultimate cause that recurs at regular intervals."
The Vital Vastness provides more evidence for this evolutionary scenario. It can easily explain the selective nature of the extinctions during the event that caused the dinosaurs' extinction. This event is marked by what is referred to as the Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary. To see a partial discussion and excerpts on this event see the web page on the Dinosaur Extinctions.
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Here, There and Everywhere -- Mass Extinctions, Mass Speciations and
Studies of mass extinctions have uncovered facts that are predictable when considering the possibility that there are events with increased levels of ionizing radiation. Mass extinctions are not random and are not related to an organism's ability to survive. Unlike other (background) times of extinction, mass extinctions are abrupt at the family level.
Those species which have a broader geographic dispersal and few species within a group (low speciation rates) have extinction resistance during mass extinctions. Typically, it is those marine organisms that are in the open-ocean or deep-ocean (benthic), such as certain shellfish (ammonites), that survive or are the last holdouts at mass extinction boundaries. However, during all large mass extinctions both surface (planktonic) and some deep-water (benthic) marine organisms become extinct. This is sufficient to rule out any cosmic origin of the ionizing radiation, such as a supernova. Meanwhile, this does not rule out FEM with the ionizing radiation being released through Fields in the oceans below the protective effects of the atmosphere and magnetosphere. Studies do disclose very disturbed oceans and atmosphere at times of mass extinctions.
Without FEM, mass extinctions remain enigmatic: "In spite of the obvious importance of extinction, and in spite of the fact that hundreds of thousands of extinctions in the geologic past have been documented, we know surprisingly little about the process itself and surprisingly little about its actual role in evolution."
Other observations confirm the reality that mass extinctions are due to episodes of ionizing radiation. The shallow-water reef-building communities are so disrupted that it takes the longest for them to reappear in the fossil record. Reefs are very high in calcium, which absorbs a great deal of radiation, and they do not have outer tissues or deep water to protect them. Moreover, reefs are typically located in the Field areas as can be seen both in the past and the present.
The severity of reef extinction is not the case with other groups of organisms. Mass extinctions of four-footed land animals (tetrapods) are not as great as marine extinctions, nor are the extinctions due to a decrease in fitness. Reptiles (amniota) are radiation sensitive, and show the cycles or episodes of the marine extinctions. Meanwhile, mammals display only the slenderest coincidence with those cycles, and those with more protection, because of a placenta, are less vulnerable than those with pouches, known as the marsupials. Radiation sensitivity is greatest in reptiles followed by marsupials and finally placental mammals, and the extinction record displays the same trend. During extinctions there is the mass disappearance of many types (taxa), then a few remain that later become extinct, and finally, totally new types emerge (see Figure 4).
Plants offer further evidence of such events, and have been studied extensively under the influence of ionizing radiation. Plant breeding using ionizing radiation has been going on for decades. A few of the most obvious alterations are increased protein, greater yields, and resistance to disease. There is even better adaptability to varied environmental conditions after radiation exposure. In most studies, plants showed superior height, weight and reproduction. Under high doses there is a great deal of mutation (e.g., tetraploidy, cytochimeras, etc.). Overall, plants are much less susceptible to ionizing radiation than animals, by a factor of ten. The fossil record shows that plants are the least susceptible to mass extinction, again reflecting their sensitivity to ionizing radiation.
The fossil record discloses that, compared to animals, plants are much less vulnerable to mass extinctions and do not show the cycles or episodes of extinction. When high levels of plant extinction do occur, it is at those times when great mass extinctions occur in animals (Late Devonian, Permo-Triassic and Late Cretaceous). Dry spores under oxygen-deficient (anoxic) conditions are very resistant to radiation. Typically such conditions occur during mass extinction episodes, at times due to wildfires and dramatic climate fluctuations. Spore-bearing plants have lasted the longest in the evolutionary history of plants.
During one of the great mass extinctions (Permo-Triassic) a pine (conifer) embryo was discovered in North America. This fossil disclosed that a significant delay occurred between fertilization and seed germination in the earliest pines (conifers). Today it is the most modern seed-plants that undergo a delay in germination, and dormancy is more common in flowering plants. Meanwhile, ionizing radiation is well known to delay seed germination. Furthermore, this pine embryo displayed no larval or fungal damage, and ionizing radiation is employed today for this very reason to preserve food, as it destroys organisms in the food.
Developmental processes are similar at the genetic level in flowering plants. Then, unique development accounts for the evolution of plant diversity. A scientist studying the effects of ionizing radiation on plant communities comments that the effects follow "predictable patterns apparently related to the evolution of life."
Another indication of the effects of ionizing radiation is the appearance of new species. Four-footed land animals (tetrapods) experience family extinction and speciation in unison and in cycles, and are not the result of changes in fitness. Even plants display a clear cyclic relationship of first and last appearances. Calcium-bearing, surface dwelling shellfish, such as foraminifera, are so frequently replaced by new species after extinction that they are used to date rocks (i.e., they are index fossils). The history of life clearly shows a blossoming of new species after extinctions. Every fact could clearly be predicted from ionizing radiation's effects.
Extinctions even show geographic relationships to the Fields of FEM.
Considering the position of the Fields, which release most of the ionizing radiation along the 30o to 40o latitudes, a latitude segregation should also be apparent. Fossils of marine mammals (Cetaceans), such as whales and dolphins, certain (Hermatypic) corals, and shellfish (bivalve molluscs and benthic foraminifera) disclose that the newer, more advanced species are found in the tropics, while the higher the latitude -- the further from the Field latitudes -- the more ancient species are found. This Field-latitude segregation is also true for both open ocean (pelagic) and bottom-dwelling (benthic) shellfish (invertebrates), fish, reptiles and mammals.
Latitude constraints are common to all extinctions for all types of organisms. This is especially true of shallow-water marine creatures, particularly reef communities, where low latitude types are more severely affected than those with polar and worldwide distribution (cosmopolitan). The facts support what could be expected from FEM.
The positions of the Fields would tend to produce more extinctions, more species and more diversity in the tropical to temperate regions. The study of the geographic distribution of life, biogeography and paleobiogeography, tells that tale. Some of the earliest plant distributions (Early Devonian and Carboniferous) are mostly between the 30o latitudes. When considered in terms of shifting continents, coals, evaporites, easterly and westerly winds, low and high pressure systems, and rainfall during these times also demonstrates a latitudinal bias that conforms to the Field regions. This holds true for all time periods.
Another confirmation of the influence of the Fields in biogeography are what is called centers of origin. These centers of origin are labeled as such because they display the earliest known fossils of a given organism, and also greater diversity than surrounding regions. Both polar regions, the Arctic and Antarctic, are two such centers. The other Field regions are represented by centers in the southeastern United States, West Indies and Central America (North Atlantic Field), and Australia and New Zealand (East and West Australian Fields). Other centers of origin are southeastern Africa and Madagascar (South African Field), North Africa (Mediterranean and Persian Gulf Fields), Eastern Europe, Ethiopia, Turkestan and other countries around the Persian Gulf (Persian Gulf Field), Brazil (Brazilian Field), and Southeastern Asia, Indonesia and the Orient (Japanese Field).
A scientist who studies ancient and present-day geographic distributions of living things, expounds on an unsolved problem: "What we really need to find out is why the evolutionary process that goes on in centers produces species that are dominant in terms of their ability to displace other, older species and to become widespread."
Again, it is the genetic mutation of the older species that gives rise to the newer species. It is not that they are "dominant" and "displace" the older species, as would be assumed in the Darwinian scenario of competition and natural selection. Hence, we could predict that the older species would be replaced by the younger species in the region of enhanced ionizing radiation. Species are not produced by competition in terms of natural selection, but by genetic mutation on a broad scale brought on by ionizing radiation, and other factors (electrostatic fields, magnetic reversals, pulsed radio-frequency fields, microwaves, hydrocarbons and alkalinity) produced by the Fields, and the particles which flow within them (neutrons, gamma-rays, X-rays and energetic electrons).
In those times when these evolutionary events take place there are also alterations in the physical environment that bare the signature of ionizing radiation. Reduced geomagnetic intensity, and polar wandering and/or reversal typically occur. There is also evidence of strong magnetic activity around the 30o to 40o latitudes between reversals, which has been referred to as a transitional field (see Tome Five for discussion). This transitional field is the Field(s) spewing out ionizing radiation as the North-South dipole is weakened. Many of the events that take place occur in cycles or episodes of similar duration.
Evidence of highly disturbed oceans include sedimentary records of changes in sea level, fluctuations in salinity and isotopes, and deposits of black shale, all of which occur in each episode. Likewise, there is a highly disturbed atmosphere, resulting in severe temperature drops leading to temperature minimums or glaciation, shifts in precipitation, large-scale winds and storms, pressure modifications, and fluctuations in carbon, hydrocarbons and isotopes. Climatic transitions and evolution go hand in hand.
As could be suspected from fluctuations in ionizing radiation, isotopes in both the ocean and the atmosphere undergo transitions in their abundance. Seafloor spreading, continental displacement (tectonic episodes), volcanic eruptions and so forth often accompany the other transformations. Records frequently show extensive areas of missing sediments (hiatuses) on submarine ridges and rises, and occasionally, even the deep abyssal floors, which reflects strong, deep ocean currents at such times. Iridium, tektites or microtektites occasionally occur at unusually high levels in the sediments laid down at these times. Cratering occasionally takes place, but not of the impact types (mostly cryptoexplosions or geoblemes, not volcanic nor impact; see discussion in Tome Three). All of these phenomena tend to occur in cycles together or nearly so, though it is rare to find a complete record for a single event with all of these phenomena occurring at the same time.
During these episodes mass extinctions take place, and eventually new species emerge. First there is the mass disappearance of many types (taxa), then a few remain that also eventually become extinct, and finally, totally new types emerge. One paleontologist discusses these "radiations" or blossomings: "Many of the radiations of the geologic record are as spectacular as the mass extinctions, although they have not attracted as much attention." Likewise, the last and first appearances of plants and animals tend to coincide.
Another paleontologist describes this phenomena in four-footed animals (tetrapods): "The total origination rates generally track the total extinction rates quite closely." The selective nature of the extinctions involve types (taxa) that are big-bodied, tropical, have few species, and are land or terrestrial types; a predictable scenario for FEM. Furthermore, origination and speciation track each other so closely because extinction is the result of mutation, which leads to origination and speciation.
In the marine realm, it is the surface dwelling plankton, reef communities and immobile, deep-water (sessile benthic) shellfish that are most affected. The immobile deep-water shellfish are those that typically inhabit the waters in the Field areas. Meanwhile, the least affected are the mobile deep-water (benthic) types.
Increased diversity occurs through time, and speciation follows each extinction event. Meanwhile, in spite of this overall increase of creatures, the number of four-footed animals (tetrapods) per classification (taxon rates) decreases toward the present. Latitude variations are common to all mass extinctions with tropical and temperate types more affected than polar or worldwide (cosmopolitan) types. These facts argue in favor of ionizing radiation and the associated factors causing the extinction of old types, and bringing about an equal number or more numerous new types through mutation. The new types are so totally different they must be put into new classifications, hence a decrease in the number of members for each classification (per taxon rates) and an overall increase in diversity towards the present. These facts and the latitude restrictions confirm that the phenomena associated with FEM is the unknown process behind evolution, including extinction and speciation.
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Cycles of Extinction
The idea of Earth history occurring in cycles had originated as the result of examining the record of extinctions. Thirty-nine stratigraphic stages (from the Permian to the Tertiary) disclose that one of the highest species or taxonomic classifications, families, had lost more than half of the original families to extinction (of 1,800 families, 970 became extinct). Many of the mass extinctions involve calcium-bearing organisms who undergo steps in extinction. As discussed previously, extinctions are correlated to cycles of polar reversals, cratering, tectonic events and other phenomena. Many of these extinctions had occurred abruptly. One mass extinction involved the loss of 96% of all marine species (Permian/Triassic Boundary). Though once a popular explanation, the closing of the ocean basins is not sufficient to explain such a widespread extinction. Another mass extinction (Mid to Late Carboniferous) displays an abrupt event for shelled marine creatures (invertebrates) on the Russian Platform that cannot be attributed to any ecological or physical transformation. Furthermore, the scientist studying this region came to the conclusion that it was the result of a worldwide increase in ionizing radiation.
After studying extinctions throughout the history of life, a scientist who attributes the events to radiation comments on a fact not explained by other theories: "It should be noted only that the sharp changes in organic life at stratigraphic boundaries are recorded almost synchronously in the most varied groups of fauna and flora." Numerous studies disclose that extinctions are followed by the blossoming of new species (see Chapters 22 and 23). Thus, observations always indicate a worldwide influence affecting all plants and animals (flora and fauna), which is not what could be expected of regional changes in habitat, gradual adaptation, and competition. Instead, the observations fit a scenario of genetic mutation induced by ionizing radiation and the other phenomena produced by a highly activated Field-dynamical Earth Model.
It is along these lines that we might find a means for a resolution to the evolution/creation controversy. There can be a special creation with all the genetic information available at the beginning, which is then rearranged into new sequences to produce new species through time. It can even be thought of as the maturing and growth of the biosphere. The biggest problem is that Darwinism and natural selection are being touted as the process when the evidence shows that this is not what is taking place in evolution (i.e., natural selection is a relatively minor, secondary influence).
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Richard Michael Pasichnyk
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