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Everything posted by blue_cristal

  1. Probably the majority of social animal species have no sexual inhibitions ( they do not wear cloths to start with ) at all since they make sex whenever they are ready for it and in any opportunity regardless if they are alone or surrounded by other members of the same species. So regarding to this matter, I have two questions ( Please try to support your argument with at least some scientific evidence ) : 1 ) Is there any current human culture whose members are totally un-inhibited in relation to sex so they do it indifferent if they are in public or not ? 2 ) Does sexual inhibition originate from religious and cultural indoctrination –or- is there some different or additional cause ?
  2. Well, Lucaspa, I am just one guy and therefore I can only respond for myself. Actually, I would say the opposite. I would say that I did not read Dawkins enough since my last reading of some of his books was more than 20 years ago. I thought that a person with rich knowledge like you would not need to hear a caveat from me warning that some of my terms are metaphorical and that they are used just for the sake of economy of language or as analogy. Dawkins and others do this a lot, so I presumed that you would correctly detect my metaphors. How the unit of selection can be the individual if the uniqueness of his genome is destroyed during the reproductive process through random recombination and transmission of just the half of his chromosomes ? Individual genes are what have permanence, not the entire organism. Evolution is measured mainly on how different allele genes “compete” for hegemony ( actually this is a metaphor for specific genes being selected by natural selection ) in a given population and influence their distribution in it. Therefore genes are the units of selection. By the way, this concept of unit of selection based on gene was not created by Dawkins. It was formulated first by William Hamilton and George C. Williams. Humans may select for traits but they end up selecting genes. But this “package of alleles” can be destroyed at anytime by recombination and meiosis if artificial inbreeding is interrupted. Only genes have a lasting permanence, not the phenotype.
  3. Can you mention just one area of science where they know everything ? Can’t you realise about the absurdity of your proposal ( total knowledge ) ? But what is “little” knowledge or a “lot” of knowledge can be highly subjective. And since potentially what we don’t know is probably always far bigger than what we know then we probably always have “little” knowledge. So by following your criterion we should never use any knowledge at all because of the potential danger coming from what we do not know. This is a flawed interpretation, Lucasa. What I really meant is this: Most of psychology until few decades ago was unreliable and very little scientific. And yet there are thousands of “shrinks” messing with people heads and earning money with it. With the advent of evolutionary psychology there is a possibility of psychology becoming really scientific. Therefore, although evolutionary psychology is still in its infancy, this little solid knowledge is better than the previous “fortune-teller” kind of psychology. But since it is still an “embryonic” knowledge it cannot be applied socially like psychiatrists do ( actually they should not be messing with people's heads even now ). However, in individual terms, in my case, it helped me to understand human behaviour a lot. It allows me to predict correctly most of the time how people would behave under some circumstances. And this helped me a lot in my social strategies. You still do not see the elephant in the room. They made the atomic bomb experiments precisely because they thought that they “knew a lot”. You see ? “little and a lot of knowledge” is highly subjective. What seemingly you are not grasping is that no matter the amount of knowledge accumulated we still have an inherent risk on using it. For instance, people think that the aviation technology is very advanced yet airplanes still fall down. It depends on who applies this knowledge and how. In my particular case, it was immensely helpful. In wrong hands however ANY KNOWLEDGE can be dangerous regardless how developed it is.
  4. True. But if you don't have the entire picture, you must take lots of care in how you "make use of this knowledge". You have 2 different things here: 1. The knowledge itself. 2. Making use of the knowledge. Lucaspa, have you addressed this comment to the right person ? Because I don’t recall ever saying that knowledge should be used carelessly. Risks can be minimized but cannot be eliminated. Even manipulating a ordinary, simple and well known tool like a knife can have tragic consequences. There is an inherent danger on knowledge but there is, perhaps, a far bigger danger on lack of knowledge.
  5. Well, I am not too familiar to Quantum Theory, but I agree that part of physics looks more philosophy than science ( particularly the String Theory ). Regarding to philosophy I did not meant to say that all of it is mental masturbation. But from what I read in the past I have the impression that most of it is. Science departs from imaginary assumptions when it tries to elaborate a range of candidate hypotheses to explain a phenomenon. But, to start with, these hypotheses have to be tested by experiments and most of them and sometimes all of them will fail and will be discarded. So imaginary assumptions in science do not have the status of “certainties” that foolishly philosophers claim when they build their systems. Secondly these imaginary conjectures in science are not simply random guesses. They are educated guesses based on previous knowledge which is based on real facts and evidence. And even so they have to be tested empirically. Did Aristotle checked the assumption that all objects of the world are made from a combination of air, water, fire and earth ? Did Marx checked his assumption that communism is a consequence of “historic determinism” ? Abstracts ideas are products of a physical brain.
  6. That was what I meant by "abrupt". However, besides "punctuated equilibrium" there are some (seemingly) rare cases of Saltationism, where a new species can emerge very abruptly in just one generation like in the case of polyploidy and also by horizontal transfer of genes from one species to other through viruses and other vectors. Since a significant portion of our genomes have a viral origin, then perhaps saltationism is not so rare.
  7. Yes, but moral decisions only take place if obviously there is a moral code ( innate or cultural ) that influence them. Surely, but when you have to react in a split second, if you have not time to think. In these situations it is usually the genetic instructions "engraved" in your brain what will control your actions.
  8. May be you missed my post, but I already said that genes have no mind and nor eyes. They continue blindly to instruct our brains to react as if we were still living in small tribes. Genes do not know that we live in an era of huge cities and super-population. Secondly, genes do not just try to perpetuate themselves, they also try to spread in the entire population.
  9. Hi foodchain This reasoning is quite illogical and a bit out of place. First of all, when I said that we could use the available knowledge of evolutionary biology to understand our behaviour and hopefully improve it, I mean it in individual terms ( therefore not necessarily as way to formulate new social moral rules though I don’t dismiss this possibility). Secondly, the situation you are talking about is precisely what already exists now. Humans created moral codes based mostly on total ignorance about human nature and also on the capricious whims and assumptions of leaders who enforced them either by force or indoctrination. Therefore, how can our current moral code ( already based mostly on ignorance ) become worst if some ammount of reliable scientific knowledge is added to it ? This does not make sense. Sorry this is preposterously unrealistic. And actually you do not even follow this utopic principle in your daily life. Do buses, cars, trains, airplanes, home devices, etc are based on omniscient and perfect science ? Obviously not. Yet I bet that you use most of them in a daily basis. There is not and probably there will be never an “omniscient” science. The number of possible structural and functional combinations of matter and energy is virtually infinite therefore we would never be capable to know everything. I think that you are confusing science with religion ( which actually only has the pretence of “absolute” knowledge but it amounts to an incredible folly ). You are posing this matter in a wrong basis. Ignorance will always exist no matter how advanced science can be. You only can reasonably measure concrete knowledge or relative ignorance ( meaning the measurement of what some does not know in comparison with what he could know if he absorbed the current scientific knowledge ). We have no way of knowing, in absolute terms, all what we don’t know.
  10. Yes. But you are missing the point of my constructive criticism. You seemed to imply that unless we have TOTAL knowledge of the mechanisms of our behaviour ( innate + cultural ) we cannot take advantage on what we already know about it to understand better ourselves and improve our philosophy of life and our moral behaviour. And I demonstrated that this attitude is defeatist and pointless.
  11. Pure philosophy falls short precisely because it usually departs from wrong imaginary assumptions. That is why philosophy divorced from science is almost useless. It ends up being almost just inconsequent mental masturbation. Science is successful because its methodology uses a philosophy that reasons and departs from solid facts and reliable evidence. This is a pointless strategy. Do you need to know the entire detailed set of mechanisms of a car in order to successfully make use of it ? You just need to know its basic mechanisms ( in order to maintain it ) and mainly how to drive it. The same applies to human behaviour determined partially by genes. You don’t need to know everything in order to make use of this knowledge. Science is a continuously evolving body of knowledge because it continuously grows and corrects itself. Despite its permanent incompleteness it produced “miracles” in medicine, biology, construction, communications, etc. We even send man to the moon despite the incompleteness of science. Actually, I am glad that the universe is so marvellously complex ( yet simple in some ways ) that there will be always exciting new scientific discoveries to be made which triggers our enthusiasm and our imagination.
  12. Hi YT2095 Usually, you take no time to sort out who would you save ( at least no more time than the necessary for the sensorial input of the situation reaching the relevant parts of your brain and being processed by unconscious processes). The prompt reaction to the situation is already pre-programmed in your brain. This ( and others ) instructions were built by your genes during your brain development. These moral decisions based on our genes instructions were build gradually during thousands or even millions of years of evolution ( though sometimes “Punctuated equilibrium “ abrupt changes also participate ).
  13. Hi lucaspa, Congratulations. Your analysis was almost perfect. The only little mistake is that you misunderstood “MysteryousMaskMan” ( MMM ) in one little point. He did not say that “ALL morals are genetically and evolution based”. What he really said is that “This is a good example that shows that PART of our moral decisions is dictated by genes.” Therefore he knows that the other part that influences our moral decisions is based on culture ( and also self-created moral rules ).
  14. I don’t remember the exact details of the “YouTube” story, but someone proposed this dilemma: You are in the side of a road and suddenly you see a old woman, age 50, and two children, age 5 and 10, caught in the middle of the road of intensive traffic and you realize that they are about to be killed. You have time to save just one of them. Who would you choose and why ? A lot of people answered that they would choose to save one of the children but they were incapable to explain why. Then a poster called “MysteriousMaskMan” posted a video explaining why most people would choose to save one of the children instead the old woman. He based his explanation on EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY. Watch his video and tell us if you agree with his explanation or not. You can also register in the YouTube and answer there as well. Here is the video: http://youtube.com/watch?v=DIh2-qmiYJE
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