Humans possess a repertoire of unique gifts which enable them to shape the
environment. The most prominent gifts associated with man include adaptation, which
is furthermore broken into sub-categories, the conquering of fire, and the ability to
foresee thoughts of the future. All of these capabilities of man have had a significant
effect on the environment. These main gifts correlated with man are the basis to our
physical and cultural evolution.

Man is a singular creature which maintains a unique set of gifts for shaping the
environment. The most significant of these gifts, adaptation, covers a broad area of
topics. Stereoscopic vision, opposable thumbs, the formation of language, and the
ability to walk upright all are branched off of this. These components of adaptation are
all of great importance to manís set of unique gifts.

Man has the ability to adapt to certain environments and conditions. If the
weather became cold man would not just sit around and freeze, but rather build a fire,
cover up in animal skins, and retreat to the caves. By doing this man is changing the
surroundings and conditions to adequately supply his needs. Without this gift humans
would not have survived; nature would have conquered and annihilated them.

As man evolved and became more human-like, three major biological
developments took place which set man above animal. Stereoscopic vision, opposable
thumbs, and the ability to walk upright were the most significant evolutionary
advancements which put man atop animal. These three gifts also added to the ability to
shape the environment.

Stereoscopic vision involves taking two pictures, one from each eye, and
forming them into a three dimensional viewing area. This advancement to man gave
humans several environmental advantages over the animals. Stereoscopic vision
allows man to see more in depth images. This proved useful in hunting, walking, and
other simple concepts. This major evolutionary change has had a great effect on the
environment and its surroundings.

Opposable thumbs made life much easier for early humans. The opposable
thumbs allowed man to grip with a powerful hold, which led to the development and use
of early tools. They also aided in hunting, because spears, rocks, and axes were easily
able to be thrown. By using this technique of hunting less injury occurred, which
prolonged the life of humans. As cultural advancements followed, the opposable thumb
proved quite useful in the building of fire and shelter. The environment was affected
greatly by this because tools, fire, and hunting were able to be used where they were
not before.

The ability to walk upright held a definite edge over animals and the
environment. As man began to walk upright, everything became easier. He could see
farther into the distance, and know when danger was near, and man had more versatile
movements, which aided in hunting. The environment was easily shaped by upright
walking because now had the ability to do more activities, such as seeing danger and
fleeing to safety, where as before he would have been killed.

Language is also another gift which man possesses. Language was developed
through hunting because it was needed for communication. It was also used to express
feelings and distress. Language allowed man to communicate when danger was near,
and man escaped some danger because of this.

Another significant gift man acquired was the conquering of fire. Fire was
brought upon by natural reasons, such as volcanoes and lightning. Humans used fire
for warmth, protection, cooking, and a light source. Cooked meat contained more
proteins than raw meat, and these proteins caused the brain to grow, thus speeding up
mans evolutionary process. Cooked meat was also easier to chew, so the jaw became
smaller and language slowly developed. Fire helped man outlast natureís coldest
weather, and it also prolonged their life by protecting them from animals.

The last of manís major gifts was the ability to foresee thoughts of the future.

Man anticipated the future by drawing pictures of the hunt on the cave walls. He
foresaw the domestication and herding of animals, as the Lapps did with the Reindeer,
and man saw the use of rocks for tools and expanded on that. This type of reasoning
and thinking was unique to humans, and through it man greatly changed the
environment; either through subtle ways, as with tools, or in the upmost way, as with
the domestication and herding of animals.

Since the beginnings of time humans have used a set of unique gifts to shape
and configure the landscape and environment which surrounds them. These gifts,
adaptation, the conquering of fire, and the ability to foresee thoughts of future, were
essential