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The Selfish Gene Theory

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I was shocked when I read this book because it is crazy..i mean absolutely crazy that all that we believed throughout our life is turned upside down.

 

But what stumps me is how is the DNA able to think about replicating itself. I mean how and when it decided that "let me copy myself endlessly" how does it know that adaptation is required..how does it store the memory?

 

I find it hard to believe that you have read the book when you come up with questions like that. DNA doesn't think (obviously). It doesn't decide to copy itself (obviously). It doesn't know that adaptation is required (obviously).

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I don't know exactly why this thread is pinned, but 2 of the links in the OP are expired(and they're not explained in the OP)

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I start to read the book a long time ago I think as soon as it was translated to portuguese and I never finished it. For me is not science at all. It's just a crazy theory without any meaning to me. When someone tells me that im a kind of machine operated like the movie Inside Out it doesn't deserve my time. Since that book Dawkins evolved in a kind of crazy evangelic american or a Islamic imam regarding discussion of evolution theory.

To be honest there's no difference between the selfish gene theory and religion. Both require something to control me, a god or a gene.

 

It reminds me about the movie Zeitgeist that I only watch the first five minutes when they start talking about the ancient gods all born in December 25 long time before the month was invented. When you start with a lie ...

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Your genes will steer you towards reproducing, raising offspring and helping relatives.

 

You are not an automaton though. For more complex life, Evolution needed adaptability more than it needed perfect control. Hello brain.

 

Temporary storage, good at evaluating. If sometimes things go awry with it, so long as most members fulfill Evolution's drives everything is ok. Evolution only aims for good enough.

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When someone tells me that im a kind of machine operated like the movie Inside Out

I really don't know how you got that impression from this book.

 

I mean you do realize selfishness is used as an analogy right?

Edited by andrewcellini

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I really don't know how you got that impression from this book.

 

I mean you do realize selfishness is used as an analogy right?

Maybe I was to young to understand it. But that was the idea that remained until now. I will try to read it in english sometime soon and then I will talk about it here.

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Genes have no desires. They just do. The selfish gene theory doesn't state "You" are operated by something outside your control. That is a very difficult question for psychology. But think about how much control "You" have over your pancreas for example, that part of you is controlled by a set of genes.

 

You (the brain function which gives you self awareness) has desires though. The driving force of these desires are the reward and dissatisfaction mechanisms in your brain. These are built up by networks of neurons and neuro transmitters. All of which require a working community of genes. However we have feedback between the limbic system and our prefrontal cortex, which is built by yet more genes. And this allows us control of our desires.

 

Computers reduce down to 1s and 0s. But are so much more. And a computers complexity pales in comparison to ours.

 

Everything is made of something, knowing how things work doesn't change their function. You're still you, ignorant or otherwise.

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I would add Edward O Wilson & Stephen J Gould to the reading list . All genes are indifferent & have no concious direction . The only test is their final morphological / behavioural expression can survive long enough to replicate itself into the next generation . The ultimate definition of bilogical success .

 

I think that the idea of genes acting against or for each other is preposterous. Since half of all genes are recessive and in the case of dominant genes there is only a chance that they'll be expressed because of entirely different genes interfering with this you could hardly say that gene's tend to support themselves.

 

This is the reason why for any acre of land you can find subspecies of insect unique to that acre. The more advanced a liteform is the more likelihood that Darwinian evolution is likely to be the controlling factor. Likewise the smaller the lifeform the DISTANCE and travel time has an effect.

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I readily share the RiceAWay’s point of view. With his “selfish” gene idea, Richard Dawkins appears an utterly naïve reductionist. He thinks that since a genome is able (granted the support from the proper complex of enzymes, etc.) to reproduce itself as a whole or its fragments, then any part of a genome is also capable of reduplication at its own "will". In the eyes of a systems analyst, such a reasoning seems hardly sound.

Indeed, a true system is greater than the sum of its parts, and no part of a system is endowed with all the whole system’s properties. Dawkins is to specially substantiate the ability of a genome’s part to reduplicate at its own “will” - which he wouldn’t do.

It is clear why Dawkins was to suggest such a daring idea: in his The Selfish Gene book (chapter 3 Immortal Coils), he conclusively reveals that there is no such appearance as Darwinian natural selection (NS), in the world of sexual reproduction. So he was to look for a substitute and proposed the idea of NS among “selfish” genes. This is quite understandable.

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... in his The Selfish Gene book (chapter 3 Immortal Coils), he conclusively reveals that there is no such appearance as Darwinian natural selection (NS), in the world of sexual reproduction.

Could you point out to the exact quote where Dawkins states the above nonsense?

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I think that what Dawkins actually says is that just looking at selection at the level of groups or individuals cannot explain all behaviours. But looking at election at the level of genes (where the individuals and populations are just mechanisms for carrying those genes) is a better (more general) explanation.

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Dawkins uses the term "selfish gene" as a way of expressing the gene-centred view of evolution.

In the foreword to the book's 30th-anniversary edition, Dawkins said he "can readily see that [the book's title] might give an inadequate impression of its contents" and in retrospect thinks he should have taken Tom Maschler's advice and called the book The Immortal Gene.

Edited by Itoero

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O.K. I’m glad to lend koti assistance: “Each individual is unique. You cannot get evolution selecting between entities when there is only one copy of each entity!” [The Selfish Gene, 1976, p. 34]

George C.Williams considered the pernickety issue a decade earlier: “The natural selection of phenotypes cannot in itself produce cumulative change, because phenotypes are extremely temporary manifestations. … The same argument also holds for genotypes. ... Only in species that can maintain unlimited clonal reproduction is it theoretically possible for the selection of genotypes to be an important evolutionary factor.” [Adaptation and Natural Selection, 1966, p. 23-24] See also Evolution: from Mythology to Theory, 2017, by Anatoly Nikolaev (chapter Darwin's Nightmare).

In other words, Darwinian natural selection is a phantom, a fiction, in the world of sex… The delicate circumstance is long-standing and well known. In view of this, Dawkins saw right to find a substitute – in the name of NS among “selfish” genes.

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On 7/17/2017 at 9:49 AM, Itoero said:

Dawkins uses the term "selfish gene" as a way of expressing the gene-centred view of evolution.

In the foreword to the book's 30th-anniversary edition, Dawkins said he "can readily see that [the book's title] might give an inadequate impression of its contents" and in retrospect thinks he should have taken Tom Maschler's advice and called the book The Immortal Gene.

Thank zeus he never did that!! 

Selfish Gene was absolutely thought provoking by its title and it's content. 

 

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On 3/15/2007 at 10:01 PM, waitforufo said:

I know this is a science forum, but this is a topic has been covered for centuries by most major religions. Catholics for example call it Concupiscence.

 

--------------------

Concupiscence is defined as follows:

The propensity of human nature to actual sin as a result of the original sin, which darkened our intellects and weakened our wills.

 

Specifically, concupiscence is the spontaneous movement of our sensual appetite toward what we imagine as pleasant and away from what we imagine as painful.

---------------------

 

Richard Dawkins is therefore only providing a scientific explaination for the origin of our selfishness. I bit like Darwin in that way.

I think you're getting a bit mixed up here. One of the biggest 'sins' of recent history was social darwinism, an amateurishly pseudoscientific justifucation to treat women and non-whites as slaves or even aim for their eradication (obviosly not women). Lending from theories on genetic evolution to moral discussions is, as aforementioned, dangerous and amateurish.

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How's come this topic, ….. "Selfish Gene Theory", ……. was never moved to the Speculation forum or to the Trash bin?

A curious mind would like to know.

Or should I refrain from asking such questions because said is not PC?

Edited by SamCogar

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4 minutes ago, SamCogar said:

How's come this topic, ….. "Selfish Gene Theory", ……. was never moved to the Speculation forum or to the Trash bin?

A curious mind would like to know.

Or should I refrain from asking such questions because said is not PC?

Can't you just ask a question without throwing in a veiled insult?

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8 minutes ago, SamCogar said:

How's come this topic, ….. "Selfish Gene Theory", ……. was never moved to the Speculation forum or to the Trash bin?

A curious mind would like to know.

Or should I refrain from asking such questions because said is not PC?

As far as I can tell it is a discussion of evolution....  which is well supported by science...  why would it go to speculation? I haven't read the whole thread though.

I agree with Zaptos - why the hostility?  Did you open a speculative or preachy thread in the mainstream area and have it moved or something? Is that your gripe?

It's a science site yea?

 

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5 minutes ago, zapatos said:

Can't you just ask a question without throwing in a veiled insult?

Why don't you answer my question ……. instead criticizing me for asking the question.  

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11 minutes ago, SamCogar said:

Or should I refrain from asking such questions because said is not PC?

I understand how it makes you feel better to think you're being repressed. But I have to ask, why is being wrong unacceptable? 

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1 minute ago, SamCogar said:

Why don't you answer my question ……. instead criticizing me for asking the question.  

Sure.

You should not refrain from asking such questions due to PC.

Now how about answering my question instead of criticizing my response to you?

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9 minutes ago, SamCogar said:

Why don't you answer my question ……. instead criticizing me for asking the question.  

What was wrong with my answer?

 

....and he clearly didn't criticise you for asking the question  -  just your tone.

Edited by DrP

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1 minute ago, Phi for All said:

But I have to ask, why is being wrong unacceptable? 

IMHO, being "wrong" is only unacceptable ….. when it is "personal prejudices" and/or "consensus science" that is dictating what is acceptable opinions, truths, facts or evidence.

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28 minutes ago, SamCogar said:

How's come this topic, ….. "Selfish Gene Theory", ……. was never moved to the Speculation forum or to the Trash bin?

Because it was just discussing the published work of a well-known (and generally respected) scientist. 

It was not someone posting their own "personal theory".

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10 minutes ago, zapatos said:

Now how about answering my question instead of criticizing my response to you?

Because it is obvious that you want to engage in a "peeing contest".

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