The Cambrian Period of The Bible According to Einstein

The first book of the Paleozoic

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478                        The Bible According to Einstein
The first book of the Paleozoic, called

The Cambrian

And let the waters bring forth abundantly
the moving creatures that have life.
And this happened on the fifth day
of the first month of a long lost year.

Chapter I: The Cambrian Face of Earth

And the continents of proto-Siberia, Laurentia, Baltica and Kazakhstania continued drifting north. And it came to pass that Laurentia and proto-Siberia were positioned at the equator. And Kazakhstania was southeast of proto-Siberia, while Baltica was in the middle of the Iapetus Ocean south of the Tropic of Capricorn. And Laurentia was on its side, for western proto-North-America was north of eastern proto-North-America. And proto-Greenland was east of proto-North-America.
     And Gondwana stretched from the Tropic of Cancer to the Antarctic Circle. And the pieces of proto-modern-continents in Gondwana were in different places. And for example, proto-Australia and proto-Antarctica were in the southern northern-hemisphere, while proto-Arabia was near the southern pole. And proto-China was west of proto-India which was southwest of proto-Antarctica. And proto-South-America and proto-Africa were positioned in the middle of the supercontinent in the southern hemisphere. But both were upside down, for northern proto-Africa was south of southern proto-Africa, and southern proto-South-America was north of northern proto-South-America. And proto-Africa and proto-South-America fit snugly into one another, like unto two lovers in each other's arms.
     Thus the map of the world in five-hundred-and-seventy-million years BC was not the same as the map of the world in modern times. The World was very different then.
     And it came to pass that the seas were on the rise. And coastal regions flooded. And all the continents possessed extensive margins with shallow seas, which provided fertile habitats for life, for there were nutrients in muddy ocean floors and much more oxygen in surface water than in deeper water.
     And skies were often clear; and days were often warm. And a pleasant climate over Earth prevailed.


 
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The Old Testament                                       479

Chapter II: Cambrian Life and Evolution

Now a strange wind blew the dust of Earth in swirling clouds,
as if someone were blowing it.
And in one place, where dust did settle,
was a peculiar pattern made –
It looked like unto a candelabra with eleven arms.
And each arm seemed to hold a candle.

Now evolution was proceeding at a rapid pace. The fire on the fuse was burning. The fuse itself was almost gone. And everything was perfect for a biological explosion, an evolutionary radiation:185 The geology was right; the chemistry was right; the climate was right; the atmosphere was right; the biology was right; and the recent evolutionary past was right, for sea level had risen and the continents had separated, providing new shallow-water habitats; for circulating ocean currents were full of nutrients; for the seas and air had warmed; for the atmosphere had oxygen; for eukaryotic cells had previously appeared and the sexual revolution in evolution had occurred.

And it was like unto mixing
gunpowder, gasoline and fire.

     And in five-hundred-and-seventy-million BC – the evolutionary "big bang" went off!

There was a sudden burst in evolution,
the beginning of a bio-revolution.

     And the diversity of animals on Earth exploded. There were annelids, arthropods, brachiopods, onychophores, ctenophores, cnidarians, echinoderms, chordates, mollusks, graptolites and sponges.186
     Now some Cambrian creatures created shells, while other creatures had hard bodies – the battle was on to build effective protective shields. And the metazoa made their shells and casings by secreting minerals such as calcium carbonate, calcium phosphate and/or silica. Now hard external casings were called exoskeletons. And shells made from the minerals of calcium were calcareous shells, while those from the minerals of phosphorus were phosphatic shells. And hard parts made from minerals of silicon were siliceous parts. And when the creatures died, their shells and exoskeletons collected on the bottom of the sea. And they were crushed and eroded into sediments of limestone, chert and phosphate rock, often becoming underwater carbonate platform-belts. And sometimes the ocean floor rose up above the sea, and off-shore reefs were made.
     Now some metazoa were mobile – they moved or floated. And some metazoa were sessile – they were fastened to the ocean floor.
     Now annelids were segmented worms whose bodies came in pieces that were tied together. The annelids had developed from their Ediacaran counterparts, the primitive sea worms. And some Cambrian annelids would evolve and eventually end up on land. And they would become the modern earth worm and the leech. But others would remain at sea as ocean-dwelling worms.

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185This use of the word "radiation" indicates the outset of a great diversity of new life forms.
186 These are eleven major animal phyla. They are described below.

 
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480                        The Bible According to Einstein

     Now arthropods187 were animals with hard and jointed exoskeletons whose bodies were in segments and who had matching pairs of jointed arms, appendages, antennae, legs or wings. And one day, they would be the first creatures on Earth to walk on land. Now at this time, on short stubby legs, or pods, they crawled on seabed floors, often leaving trails behind them. And so it came to pass that the tracks of arthropods were everywhere upon the ocean floor. Now eventually these ancient creatures would evolve to crustaceans such as barnacles, lobsters, crayfish, crabs and shrimp and to insects such as grasshoppers, crickets, aphids, ants, lice, earwigs, butterflies, bugs, beetles, dragonflies, wasps, fleas, flies, termites, moths and bees, and to other creatures such as scorpions, ticks, spiders, mites and centipedes.
     Now onychophores were half annelid and half arthropod – worms with pods. And they looked like unto many-legged salamanders.
     Now brachiopods, also called the lamp shells, were small marine metazoa who were filter feeders living in a two-pieced shell. And the top shell protected the metazoa from above. And the bottom shell, which in general was bigger, protected the metazoa from below. And the shells were bilaterally symmetric – the left and right halves were mirror-image look-alikes. But still the shells had many shapes – some looked like tongues, moths, stop-watches, butterflies or bats. Many shells were oval shaped. And their colors varied – brown, green, red, gray, pink or white. And some had spots and some had stripes. Now inside, the shell contained a tiny fleshy body with cilia, or hair-like filaments. And brachiopods fed through a crack between their shells by combing minute-organism-bearing currents with their cilia. Now at the beginning of the Cambrian, the shells were phosphatic and inarticulate, meaning that the two shells were locked in place. But as millions of years went by, many shells became calcareous. And at the end of the Cambrian, a few types of brachiopods became articulate – they had a muscle that could make the shells swing open or shut close.
     Now a ctenophore, also called a comb jelly, was like unto a vase-shaped jellyfish. The closed end contained a sense organ from which many comb-like strands emerged, which flapped to make the creature move. And as it moved, living organisms were swept in the open end, its orifice.188 Thus the comb jelly functioned like unto a living floating vacuum cleaner.

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187 Arthropod means "jointed feet."
188 Some ctenophores had two tentacles to clasp food to place it in their orifices.

 
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The Old Testament                                       481

     Now not all the cnidarians were newcomers to the Cambrian – some had existed in the Late Proterozoic Eon. They were jellyfish, proto-sea-anemones, primitive coral, hydra, sea pens, sea fans, and so on. And they had two-layered epidermis, or "skin," and were carnivores, feeding mostly on sea plankton. Now the bell-shaped jellyfish and hydra floated with their tentacles dangling down. And the proto-sea-anemones were cylindrically shaped and sessile, rooted in the muddy ocean floor. And their mouths and brightly colored tentacles were directed upward. Each looked more like a flower than a fauna. And cnidarians were often radially symmetric, like a disk.189 And sea pens seemed like unto feathers, growing in the ocean floor. And the sea fan was more irregular – instead of a single stalk, it had several stems that formed a branch-like structure, giving it the appearance of a spider web.
     Now the echinoderms, whose name means "spiny skins," were scavengers with hard prickly casings.190 And while crawling on the seabed or floating in sea water, they ate decaying bio-matter. And in doing so, they cleaned the ocean floors and waters. Now many looked like delicate glass ornaments, with stems, cups, spines and leaf-like pods. And many looked like underwater flowers. And later, the ancestors of the echinoderms would evolve into sand dollars, sea cucumbers, sea urchins, starfish, and into exquisite, almost brittle creatures such as feather stars, sea daisies and sea lilies.
     Now Cambrian proto-chordates were quite rare. But some soft-bodied metazoa from the Ediacaran fauna developed hard protective outer plates and swam, albeit crudely. And these were jawless proto-fish. But other swimming soft-bodied creatures obtained phosphatic cone-like "teeth."191 And when such proto-chordates died, their teeth turned into fossils, known as conodonts. But in the Cambrian, such conodontal creatures were not common.

Deep swimming proto-chordates
churned the muddy sea floor sediments.

     Now during the rest of geo-history, proto-chordates would undergo extensive evolution, eventually becoming chordates. The first chordates would be proto-fish. Now some fish would grow limbs, evolving into tetrapods, who would, in turn, branch out into amphibians and amniotes, the vertebrates that lay land eggs. And amniotes would develop into warm-blooded animals, the mammals, and into reptiles. And some reptiles would grow wings and fly as birds, while others would remain on land or go back to the sea. Thus chordates would include amphibians, fishes, reptiles, birds and mammals. Thus man would be a chordate.

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189 In other words, when turned about their centers they looked the same. This phylum of animals is called radiata.
190 Some echinoderms grouped together in small colonies.
191 It is not clear that the teeth were used for chewing; they more likely were a support structure.

 
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482                        The Bible According to Einstein

     Now the mollusks were of three main types: proto-cephalopods, gastropods and bivalves. The primitive scallops and oysters would later "join" the bivalves, the invertebrates with two-hinged shells, such as clams and mussels. And at this time, the gastropods192 were underwater proto-slugs and proto-snails, while proto-cephalopods were proto-octopuses, proto-squids and proto-nautiloids.
     Now a graptolite was a string-like metazoon that looked like unto a twig. And graptolites lived colonies in harmony, joined in branch-like structures, some of which looked like unto a net. And they filtered water for particles of food and plankton.193
     And by the hand of evolution, the Ediacaran proto-sponge became the sponge,194 organisms that filtered food through pores with thin skeletons made of fine siliceous or calcareous protective spicules.195

Chapter III: Cambrian Sea Creatures, Part A
Now soft-bodied Proterozoic fauna, being easily consumed, often were the food for Cambrian hard-shelled metazoa. And so it came to pass that most Proterozoic fauna went extinct. But a few tube-shaped metazoa managed to survive by developing solid outer-layer casings. And they became the Cambrian tube-like metazoa. And for example, anabarite was a tiny animal with a shell resembling a garden hose with three lengthwise indentations. The tube was open at one end; closed at the other. And like its predecessors, cloudina and sinotubulite, anabarite filtered ocean water, removing from it organic matter, nutrients, and particles of food.
     And a spiny creature several centimeters long inched its way across the ocean floor. And it was covered entirely with countless tiny leaf-shape plates, which made it look pineapple-like. And on its back stood two rows of spines, like two arrays of swords to threaten those above. And in the front and on its underside, two arc-shaped bars containing teeth were clawing at the seabed for algae and for bits of food. And the creature was wiwaxia, the "porcupine" of ancient annelids,196 the "tiny stegosaurus" of the Cambrian seas. And a slow current flowed between its spines like unto a weak but steady wind. Now nearby, sluggishly crawling forward like unto a snail another wiwaxia had a tiny brachiopod clamped onto its last and eighteenth spine. And still another smaller wiwaxia had spines one-third the size of its two bigger brethren. And still a smaller one had none.

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192 Gastropod means "belly-footed."
193 Cambrian graptolites were sessile and relatively rare.
194 A sponge is a creature half-way between a multicellular organism and a colony. Possessing no tissues or organs, it has relatively few types of cells, which, although they can live independently of each other, organize themselves in specific macroscopic structures. Some sponges when dissociated into individual cells will, after a few days, reorganize themselves into a macroscopic creature again. Some jellyfish can perform the same feat.
195 Some sets of spicules formed exoskeletons that could open up and close. Other spicules were needles randomly arranged.
196 Wiwaxia is so different from any modern metazoa that, rather than being an annelid, it might represent a unique ancient phylum. Recent studies suggest that it is linked to the modern scale worm, the sea mouse.

 
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The Old Testament                                       483

     And a daisy-like dinomischus undulated with the movement of the ocean waves above, its thin stem tethered to the ocean floor. And upon the stem, some twenty upright grass-like blades protruded from a bulb. And hidden by the blades and on the bulb were two small openings, one through which dinomischus took in bio-matter and one through which it discharged wastes.197
     And isorophus, a spherically shaped echinoderm with a diameter of two centimeters, was covered in countless tiny crusty plates. And on one side, like unto a starfish, five arms with grooves in them radiated from a mouth. And food particles were moving through the grooves toward the mouth.
     And protohertzinas were tiny but ferocious predators. Like the modern earwigs, they had pincers that could squeeze their prey to death as in a vise. Now when protohertzinas died, they left behind their tiny tusks. And some such tusks became phosphatic fossils, imprints that protohertzinas left behind in hardened mud.
     Now many types of inarticulate brachiopods dwelt in Nature's seas: lingulids with oval-shaped phosphatic shells and acrotretids with calcareous round shells. And although the lingulids and acrotretids would be dominated by other species and decline in number, they would endure. And unlike other inarticulate brachiopods such as obolellids and paterinids, they would survive unto this day to become the oldest lamp shell species on the Earth.
     Now a pear-shaped helicoplacus, half-a-dozen centimeters in diameter, sat upright, slightly embedded in the mud. And like unto a modern armadillo, it was completely covered by a multitude of tiny plates – it wore a helicoidal hard mosaic coat. And as it sat there, food particles were moving between the plates through grooves which, in a spiral, wound entirely around its body.
     Now a few predators drilled holes in shells of brachiopods and mollusks and sucked out the meat inside. But some brachiopods adopted skunk-like tactics by discharging chemicals and irritants that repelled such predators. And some prey, like phycoides pedum, escaped by burrowing into the muddy ocean floor. And sea worms such as ancalagon, ottoia, selkirkia, louisella, peronochaeta and burgessochaeta did the same.
     And it so happened that a swift sea current came. And an eocrinoid,198 with a stem emerging from the mud and ending in a cup which held about one-hundred feeding fiber-threads, waved back and forth but was not swept away – strong roots did hold it in the seabed floor.

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197 Although dinomischus seemed like a plant, it was not. It was a stalked animal.
198 An eocrinoid was a stalked echinoderm, having roots and stems much like a flower.

 
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484                        The Bible According to Einstein

     And an aysheaia, an onychophore which looked like unto an underwater caterpillar, was crawling on the ocean floor on twenty tiny cone-shaped pods, on which many even smaller spikes stuck out. And two antennae on its head were moving left and right, feeling things to help it find its way. And elsewhere, aysheaias were crawling and were feeding on a sponge.

They were as unto bridges
that spanned
two different lands.
And
one land was the kingdom of the arthropods.
And
one land was the kingdom of the annelids.

     And hyolithes lived in cone-shaped shells. And as these tiny mollusks grew, they grew their shells by adding to the open end.
     And a phyllocystis, an asymmetrical echinoderm encased in plates and without five-fold symmetry,199 sat feeding through its stem. It was Nature's version of an underwater apple, but somewhat smaller, flatter and with a thicker, longer stem.
     And sticking out of muddy seabed were seven pairs of "tooth-pick" spikes – each pair forming an upward pointing "V". Now these fourteen spikes emerged from fleshy sockets of a half-buried worm-like onychophore.200 And this creature was hallucigenia, for the body of this highly structured animal was so bizarre it seemed to be an apparition. On its underside were seven tiny tubes that probed the muddy earth for nutrients – it was as if the creature had seven necks and seven mouths. And at the rear were half-a-dozen tiny tentacles all grouped together. And the body of this spiny scavenger ended in a long thin open tube, which was used for getting rid of wastes. And at the creature's other end was an ellipsoidal blob, an eyeless head.
     And it came to pass that pikaia did emerge – it had a notochord, a stiffened rod, along its back. And this tiny eel-like proto-chordate, with forked tail and soft but scaly skin, was swimming through Earth's waters. Thus pikaia was a kind of tiny jawless proto-fish. Now since its descendants would one day grow a bone along their backs, pikaia and its brethren were the Adam-Eves of all the vertebrates.
     And off the coast of proto-Siberia did dwell the multi-centimeter-sized archaeocyathan. Shaped like a wine glass, archaeocyathan possessed a porous double-walled calcareous shell like unto corrugated cardboard. And although it looked like coral and although it was like sponge, it belonged to neither phyla – it was unique, a candle unto itself. Now it and others like it lived in the warm and shallow waters of the tropics, where they sometimes joined together "hand in hand," using calcareous needles as a glue. And archaeocyathids and communities of algae built porous rock-like structures. And so it came to pass that Panthalassa possessed its first organic reefs.

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199 Most echinoderms, such as the starfish, have five-fold symmetry, meaning that they look the same when rotated by seventy-two degrees.
200 Scientists believe that this creature was not an arthropod but a primitive version of the modern velvet worm. Some think the creature could have walked on its seven pairs of "stilts."

 
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The Old Testament                                       485

Chapter IV: Cambrian Sea Creatures, Part B: Trilobites201

And they scuttled across the floors of not-so-silent seas.

And a creature crawled along the ocean floor on several dozen legs. And then it paused; when motionless, its encrusted legs looked like unto a cage of ribs. Now the creature had three lobes like unto a butterfly – a worm-like central core202 along with two flat, shield-like sides. And it was moving now its head203 from side to side. And it began to crawl again. And on grainy underwater sand, it felt about to find its way. And it was called a trilobite, named as such because it had three lobes. Now it happened that the seas were full of trilobites. And there were a myriad of different types – countless shapes for lobes and legs and shield-like sides.
     Now an exoskeleton encased the lobes. And as they grew, the trilobites did shed their exoskeletons and grow new ones. And so it came to pass that the ocean floors were full of empty exoskeletons of many different shapes.
     Now it happened that a discarded exoskeleton was pressed into some sludge. And eventually the sludge solidified to shale, leaving an imprint of the exoskeleton. And the imprint looked like unto a moth with wings replaced by ferns. And elsewhere at the bottom of the sea, exoskeletons were pressed in mud and fossil imprints made.
     And it came to be that one light and tiny trilobite204 developed thin crude fins instead of legs. And instead of crawling like a crab, it floated and it swam.

Chapter V: The Eye

And the hand of Nature touched an ostracod, an ancient version of the modern mussel shrimp. And the ostracod evolved in the middle of its head a single eye – the creature was as cyclops. And many trilobites and other metazoa did acquire eyes. Thus life saw light and objects that were lit; the sense of sight had come about.205

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201 The trilobite was the most famous and common Cambrian arthropod, becoming the symbol of Cambrian life.
202 This body part had three segments – a head, a thorax and a pygidium, or tail region.
203 Its head had sense and feeding organs so that it could seek and eat its food.
204 This was the millimeter-sized agnostoid.
205 The development of the eye occurred during dozens of millions of years, beginning with light-sensitive tissues and eventually evolving into a sophisticated organ.

 
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486                        The Bible According to Einstein

     Now the shrimp-shaped opabinia was encased in overlapping armored plates that fanned out on both sides. And a long tube that extended from its head was slowly moving. And at the tube's end, a pair of tiny claws did open up and clamp down on a bit of floating biomass. Then the tube twisted back, bent down and curled around.206 And the biomass was place inside a hole beneath its head. And the biomass passed through a U-shaped channel which led to opabinia's cylindrically shaped gut, a gut that started at its neck and ran down the length of its entire body to the tail, where two side fins stuck out. Now opabinia had five raised and knob-like eyes.

And why did it have five?
Why not?
This was a time, like many other times,
when evolution was exploring all sorts of possibilities.
And Nature was venturing down many evolutionary paths,
some less travelled by.

Chapter VI: The Waste Land

And though the seas were full of living creatures, barren were the lands. And on the plains were only desert, wind and dust. On land was no discernible movement of a living form at all. Nor was there any plant or tree. And without trees and vegetation, Earth fell victim to erosive forces, when wind and rain eroded continental lands. And as dirt, pebbles and particles were transported in Earth's streams and rivers to the continental shelves, the shelves did grow in size. And so there was a general movement of material from inland highlands to the off-shore margins. And as the continents declined in height, wider did they grow. And this continental widening would continue during the rest of the Cambrian, then through the Ordovician and Silurian.

Chapter VII: Cambrian Sea Creatures, Part C

And as it swam just above the ocean floor, an anomalocaris flapped two side fins of pleated cloth-like folds. Now for Cambrian times, its body was enormous – half a meter long. And the body was shaped like unto a submarine except it narrowed in the rear. And beady, disk-shaped eyes on each side of its head searched the ocean for any sign of movement. And the anomalocaris spied a tiny crawling trilobite, maneuvered to it and then hovered over it. And underneath anomalocaris's head, two claws, consisting of segmented tubes with jagged spikes, curled opened and unfolded down and did embrace the smaller trilobite. Spines then impaled the prey. The two claws contracted, curled and lifted up the squirming trilobite. And on anomalocaris's underside, a mouth, shaped like a slice of pineapple and lined with teeth, did open up. And the ring of jaws collapsed upon the trilobite. The prey was so consumed.

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206 The motion was similar to the that of the trunk of a modern elephant when it feeds itself with grass.

 
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The Old Testament                                       487

     And elsewhere trilobites fell victim to large predators. And it came to pass that some grew pointed spines. And a few trilobites, when bitten, were able to survive and partially repair the wounds.
     Now anomalocaris was a strange and almost dream-like creature, unlike any modern metazoon – it was an ancient, long-lost phylum, a candle unto itself. It was one of Nature's experiments in bigger body size. But if longevity be the judging factor, then anomalocaris was not "successful," for in five-hundred-and-ten-million years BC, this "shark of Cambrian seas" did go extinct.
     Now the creatures of the Cambrian possessed almost all the body shapes that future forms of life would have. The variety was enormous. Often there were ornamental structures. Some creatures were adorned like Gothic churches and cathedrals.
     And a molaria was momentarily motionless, looking like unto an underwater fly. And growing in the seabed, chancellorias, piranias and vauxias had acquired shapes like cacti. And all these vauxias had hollow limbs. And a swimming amiskwia seemed like a miniature seal with two antennae, a tail fluke and two side fins. And several pea-shaped micromitra sticking on the needles of piranias used it as a host. Nearby, a mackenzia seemed driven into soft mud like a post. And upon the seabed were choias, "little balls of needles." And crawling nearby them were the bug-like naraoia and the shrimp-like canadaspis – they looked like unto beetles. Now "blooming" in the seabed was the flower-like echmatocrinus, a "frozen torch-flame wrapped in lace." And dwelling next to it was an eiffelia, a "hollow oval vase." And with the motion of the water, suspended sarotrocercuses undulated like unto tiny kites. And olenellus and callavia were just two of many types of trilobites. And these were just a few of the countless creatures which did occupy Earth's seas.207

Chapter VIII: Cambrian Flora

And sea flora also flourished, although not as spectacularly as fauna. Now many Cambrian photosynthetic organisms, including bacteria and many algae, were still a single cell. But the diversity of algal species doubled at this time. And one strain of cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, thrived in sediments of off-shore limestone platforms, building large laminated mounds of many shapes. And one green algal species, margaretia dorus, was a goliath – although a centimeter wide, it grew to be a meter long. And phytoplankton such as those producing acritarchs diversified and thrived.


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207 Many Cambrian creatures in remarkable detail would be preserved unto this day in the Burgess Shale of British Columbia.

 
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488                        The Bible According to Einstein

     And the pace of algal evolution sped up as the battle field for life became complex and fierce. And the expected lifetime of an algal species shrank to just ten-million years.208 And the number of types of plankton skyrocketed as well, for they flourished in the warm waters of the tropics. And the variety of plants in Panthalassa and in Iapetus grew exponentially.209 And since these marine plants converted carbon dioxide into oxygen, the growth of atmospheric oxygen was also exponential, with O2 soon achieving one-fourth the modern atmospheric level. And through absorption in the air, the oxygen in water near the surface grew quite high. But deeper in the ocean, oxygen was rare.

Chapter IX: The Food Chain

And it came to pass that the predatory food chain was established: The micro-metazoa fed on micro-plants and plankton. Small creatures fed on micro-metazoa. Big creatures fed on smaller ones. The biggest ate the big.

Chapter X: A Fluctuating Sea

The tree, which bendeth in the wind, breaketh not.

Now in five-hundred-and-forty-million years BC, it so happened that sea level dropped abruptly. And shallow continental shelves dried up. With disappearing habitats, many metazoa died. And the archaeocyathids that dwelt in the shallow waters of the tropics went extinct. And near Laurentia the olenellid trilobites succumbed, the holmiid ones near Baltica were killed, and the redlichiids perished near Gondwana. But the swimming agnostoid trilobites survived and even thrived.
     And when sea level dropped, some bacteria, fungi and ocean plants were stranded on dry land. And unlike their predecessors, they did not immediately die, for low was their metabolism.210 And sea mist spraying over them revived a few of them. And without water, barely could the living live, but nonetheless some life on land eventually survived. Thus life invaded land.
     And ten-million years went by. And sea level rose again. And having more shallow-water habitats, the metazoa were revived. And for example, it happened that some trilobites did grow quite large: Paradoxides harlani off the northeast coast of proto-North-America was half-a-meter long and weighed five kilograms!
     And ten-millions years went by. And sea level dropped again, causing the extinction of another group of metazoans. And hardly any archaeocyathids survived, inarticulate brachiopods declined, and many echinoderms did die. And for example, helicoplacus disappeared.
     And ten-million years went by. And then sea level rose again.

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208 Recall that in the Early Proterozoic Eon the lifetime had been five-hundred-million years!
209 Increasingly fast.
210 The ozone layer also protected them from ultraviolet rays.

 
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The Old Testament                                       489


The World in 525 Million BC


 
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To The Paleozoic Era back To The Ordovician next



Copyright ©1999 by Jupiter Scientific Publishing Company

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