Human reproduction

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Human reproduction is the mechanism by which we perpetuate our species. In order for human reproduction to occur, a married man and woman should engage in the ultimate act of intimacy. Most non-Christian cultures also enshrine this activity within a marriage-like union: a lifelong, legally sanctioned bond between one man and one woman.

The ultimate act of intimacy serves to unite the male and female gametes, the sperm and egg, respectively. These gametes carry just one half of the genetic material (chromosomes) from each parent, and when they combine the new embryo contains a full set of chromosomes, as well as its soul. The process of the gametes combining is called fertilization, and takes place inside the woman's body, in the fallopian tubes or uterus. The embryo then attaches itself to the uterine lining, and is nourished by the woman's body while it develops. This development takes roughly nine months.

At the end of this process of protected development, what was once an embryo is now born as a new baby. Human babies are relatively helpless, and depend on the care and love of their parents in order to survive to maturity themselves.

Humans are not able to reproduce alone by budding, parthenogenesis, or self-cloning as some species are capable of. In addition, human gender is fixed, unlike some species, females are not able to become male or vice versa to deal with homogeneous populations of one gender.