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Deena at The Descent of Mills wrote an *exquisite* and wonder-inducing post very (very!) shortly after bringing her daughter Kaia into the world. Those unfortunates out there who find a scientifically-informed worldview ‘cold’ or ‘reductionist’ or ‘blah blah blah,’ be forewarned: this is your worst nightmare. As for the rest of us, prepare for a real privilege:

kaia mills

Introducing Kaia Elizabeth Mills, latest in a long line of carbon-based lifeforms. Kaia traces her ancestry back to an unnamed protoplasmic replicator which lived about four billion years ago. Since inventing sex about 2.5 billion years ago, every member of Kaia’s clan has had not one but two burstingly proud parents.

Among that replicator’s descendants, most remain single-celled. Kaia’s ancestors learned cooperation and have been massively multi-cellular for countless generations. When born, Kaia herself contained 8lb 6oz (3800g) of microscopic cells and was 55.5 cm (22 inches) in length.

One of several branches of the family who have (independently) developed sight, Kaia gazes at the world through deep blue eyes.

Thanks to a relatively recent family development (mammals, 247 million years ago), Kaia spent the first nine months of her development as part of her mother’s body, and so the family have opted to celebrate the moment of her emergence from that body as her “Birth Day” – six minutes past noon on the 28th of September 2007.

Though Kaia’s family are a relatively hairless part of the ape clan, she was born with her hominid cephalus covered in rich dark hair.

(My mind immediately went to my Aunt Marilyn who seriously blew a fuse when my mother, upon the birth of my little brother, said, “He looks like a little monkey!” Marilyn would be spinning in her grave at Deena’s post, if she weren’t still alive.)

I can’t help picturing that Deena is writing from the middle-distant future, from a time when we’ve suddenly awakened to the inspiration all around us and stopped insisting that Story X or Fable Y must be true for life to be endured. The wonder of the real world is such that we’ll never be able to adequately grasp and express it. But ohhh, how fun it is to try!

Kaia’s dad, by the way, is Friendly Humanist Tim Mills. Read Deena’s complete post here, with pix!

[For the origin and meaning of Kaia’s lovely name, visit this page. While you’re there, enjoy the Y-axis on the frequency chart provided, which must surely mean something.]

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Dale McGowan is chief content officer of OnlySky, author of Parenting Beyond Belief, Raising Freethinkers, and Atheism for Dummies, and founder of Foundation Beyond Belief (now GO Humanity). He holds a...