1. How would you compare and contrast the specific distinctions between psychology, anthropology, and sociology? Any suggestions would be appreciate.

Psychology is the study of Man's behavior Sociology is the study of his societies and social interactions etc... Thus, both Sociology and Psychology are sub sets of the study of Man. The study of anthropology also covers economics, medicine, archaeology, human evolution etc... Any area of human endeavor could be listed under Anthropology.

2. What was the life expectancy of Homo Habilis, Homo Erectus, and early Homo sapiens? Is 18 to 20 years about right, with the oldest age around 40?

Your figures are about right for maximum life expectancies. Individuals in their 40s are extremely rare. Some scholars place the age of the "old man" of La Chapelle aux Saints in its mid-30s. Be aware, though that once individuals are skeletally mature (ca. 18 years) estimates of age are based on wear and tear on the skeleton, and this can vary widely among individuals based on subsistence adaptation, parasite load and other factors.

3. How do societies without access to text decide what are good and bad sources of information?

I am assuming that you mean by " with out access to text" as preliterate societies. One such society would be the “Kung San! - Bushmen of the Kalihari”. In this society, there are storytellers who know the history of the people (or given group). These peoples also care for their elderly after their ability to hunt ends. There are often people with injuries, blindness and other disabilities received over a long life in the bush. These elderly people often have an important role for the children not yet old enough to hunt and they impart a lot of the tribal knowledge to these youngsters as they grow up.

4. When did humans first use fire? Was the primary use of fire to cook food or something else?

There is possible evidence from about 1.4 Million years ago in Sterkfontein Cave in South Africa. Other than this, evidence for controlled use of fire that is distinct from naturally occurring phenomena (i.e., burnt tree stumps) does not become a regular part of the record until after around 300,000-200,000 year ago (Terra Amata and Pech de L'Azé Cave, both in France). You will see references to fire use in the 300,000-700,000 BP range from Zhokoudian Cave in China, but recent studies suggest this evidence is not really the result of fire.

Presumably, there was a long period during which human ancestors ate most of their food raw (much as do living chimpanzees and bonobos), however, evidence for regular controlled use of fire is pretty common by the time modern Homo sapiens fossils start showing up in the fossil record (ca. 150,000 BP).

5. How much mass extinction has been completed?

Most paleontologists recognize five major ones, End-Ordovician, Late Devonian, Late Permian, Late Triassic, and Cretaceous-Tertiary (KT- the "dinosaur killer"). Extinction rates and habitat destruction appear to be increasing over the last 10,000 years leading some scholars to propose the present day as a "sixth extinction".

6. Do you know of any cultures today or in recorded history that did not have some type of deity that they worshiped?

Belief in supernatural entities of one sort or another is a human cultural universal today, and a feature of every historic society of which we have reasonable written records. Styles of "worship" vary, though, so detecting this kind of behavior in the archaeological record can be difficult. Many hunter-gatherer societies embed their religious activities in daily life (i.e., no shrines, temples), so formal religious practices can be difficult to identify unequivocally in the prehistoric record.

7. What is the significant of the phaistos disk? Has anyone translated it?

This is a little outside my main area of expertise, but here is what I know. The disk features writing that is unique. Some of the symbols replicate ones from other Minoan (Bronze Age Cretan) script, but many of them are unique to this artifact. There are many published claims of "translations" of the disk, but no consensus among experts. (You can use Google to locate many of these, but much of what I found is "fringe scholarship", i.e., non-peer review.)

No other examples of this kind of inscribed disk are known and the original archaeological provenance of the original disk is unclear. The disk was found in 1903. That we have found no other examples of this kind of writing or medium in the countless excavations carried out on Crete suggests to me that this disk is a forgery. Somebody probably made it based on the limited published information about the Minoan civilization in the early 1900s and passed it off as having been found in a Minoan site.

8. Is there any evidence that Neanderthal man held any sort of religious beliefs?

The evidence on Neanderthal religion is equivocal. Much of what was once considered evidence for this is now believed to be natural phenomena misinterpreted or over-interpreted by archaeologists.

Head Cult: some isolated finds of Neanderthal skulls (e.g., Monte Circeo) were once thought to indicate a religious belief. Now we think these reflect the separation of skulls from the rest of the skeleton by geological processes or animal scavengers.

Cave Bear Cult: Now thought to reflect geological mixing of cave bear bones and human artifacts.

Burial: Many Neanderthal bodies appear to have been buried, but this could as much is for hygienic reasons as for religious ones. Claims of "grave goods" usually involved animal bones and artifacts very similar to those in the surrounding sediments, which makes is possible that they were accidentally juxtaposed with the Neanderthal skeletons during burial.

9. What is the most credible explanation of how dinosaur evidence (evolution) and biblical belief (creationism) can co-exist?

Biblical belief and science are fundamentally different ways of thinking about reality. Biblical belief's standard of proof for its explanations is faith. The more you believe in something, the more satisfying the explanation. Science is standard of proof is evidence, usually organized in terms of hypotheses that are possible to prove wrong. Gravity, for example, is not affected by how strongly you believe in it.

When religion and science stick to their appropriate subjects (supernatural phenomena and empirical reality), there is no conflict. The trouble starts when religious standards of proof are applied to explanations of natural phenomena and when science tries to answer questions about supernatural beliefs. Because the Biblical account of Genesis, like the mythologies of most of the world's cultures, contains an account of the origins of the world (a natural phenomenon) this tends to be a flashpoint for controversy with scientific investigations of the origin of the world and humanity.

10. Do you think, in spite of no evidence, that it is conceivable that hominids had crossed into what is now North America...?

Cold seems to have been a limiting factor in this hominin's ability to colonize new habitats.

The northernmost frontier of Homo erectus is known geographic range in Asia is northern China (presumably during a relatively warm period). This is still pretty far from the southernmost extent of the Bering Sea land bridge (that would have been exposed in COLD periods).

There is neither fossil nor archaeological evidence for such a migration. If Homo erectus populations made it to the New World, they would, one assumes, have littered the place (and especially caves) with stone tools in much the same way they did all over Africa, Europe and Asia.

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