10) Emergence of sexual reproduction

Paramecium in union. Image license Flickr Creative Commons

1.5 billion years ago, crisis conditions arise such as food shortages, lack of moisture and extreme temperatures. Hungry ancestral organisms learn to eat each other. Sometimes, these tiny cellular beings cannot digest what they have devoured and a type of sexual union arises. Previously reproduction had taken place by cells growing and dividing. With the evolution of sex, the genetic possibilities for life increase enormously with the power of preserving the achievements of a particular lineage. Previously, cell- division implied virtual immortality as each generation was a carbon-copy, a multiple of the one before. In the new sexual order, each generation now differs from either parent, and death is invented. Sex! Death!