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is it possible that humans are not animals??


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is it possible that we should not classify humans as animals; because they have a natural better understanding of the world in the bigger picture? I dont know how hominids thought but i think even they question their existence and in almost any circumstance create tools and lead to doing science. I think science is the main way we advance. we do experiments and observe the world. so is it possible to put humans in a different category because of the fact that they are mentally too different? maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call humans animals. it makes it seem like we have not evolved, but i am always amazed of how evolved we actually are and how much better we have become from creating fire, how much we can create now.

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maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call humans animals. it makes it seem like we have not evolved, but i am always amazed of how evolved we actually are and how much better we have become from creating fire, how much we can create now.

 

How much better we have become? That is both hilarious and depressing. I'm reminded of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, where there is a discussion about the superiority of species: humans consider themselves superior because they invented things like New York and the atom bomb, whereas dolphins just mess about in water all the time. Oddly, dolphins consider themselves superior for exactly the same reasons.

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is it possible that we should not classify humans as animals; because they have a natural better understanding of the world in the bigger picture? I dont know how hominids thought but i think even they question their existence and in almost any circumstance create tools and lead to doing science. I think science is the main way we advance. we do experiments and observe the world. so is it possible to put humans in a different category because of the fact that they are mentally too different? maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call humans animals. it makes it seem like we have not evolved, but i am always amazed of how evolved we actually are and how much better we have become from creating fire, how much we can create now.

Is it possible we should not classify bats as animals; because they have a natural ability to perceive the world in a wholly different way through echo location? I don't know how the ancestors of bats thought, but even if they were able to hear they would have been unable to locate a moth's position and trajectory with precision. I think this amazing ability is the main way bats advance. They combine their astounding flying and gymnastic ability with this unique way of perceiving the world. So is it possible to put bats in a different category because they are mentally too different? Maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call bats animals. it makes it seem like they have not evolved, but I always amazed at how evolved they actually are and how much better they have become from the first tentative attempts at echo location to where they are now.

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This snippet that I already quoted elsewhere may be relevant here too:

 

 

[snip]...there is another point. It's not just that you are composite, something you already knew, but you are in some senses not even human. You have perhaps a hundred trillion bacterial cells in your body, numbering ten times more than your human cells, and containing a hundred times as many genes as your human cells. These bacteria are not just passive occupants of the zoo that is you. They self-organize into communities within your mouth, guts and elsewhere; and these communities—microbiomes—are maintained by varied, dynamic patterns of competition and cooperation between the different bacteria, which allow us to live.

In the last few years, genomics has given us a tool to explore the microbiome by identifying microbes by their DNA sequences. The story that is emerging from these studies is not yet complete but already has led to fascinating insights. Thanks to its microbes, a baby can better digest its mother's milk. And your ability to digest carbohydrates relies to a significant extent on enzymes that can only be made from genes not present in you, but in your microbiome. Your microbiome can be disrupted, for example due to treatment by antibiotics, and in extreme cases can be invaded by dangerous monocultures, such as Clostridium difficile, leading to your death. Perhaps the most remarkable finding is the gut-brain axis: your gastrointestinal microbiome can generate small molecules that may be able to pass through the blood-brain barrier and affect the state of your brain: although the precise mechanism is not yet clear, there is growing evidence that your microbiome may be a significant factor in mental states such as depression and autism spectrum conditions. In short, you may be a collective property arising from the close interactions of your constitutents.

Now, maybe it is true then that you are not an individual in one sense of the word, but how about your microbes? Well, it turns out that your microbes are a strongly interacting system too: they form dense colonies within you, and exchange not only chemicals for metabolism, but communicate by emitting molecules. They can even transfer genes between themselves, and in some cases do that in response to signals emitted by a hopeful recipient: a bacterial cry for help! A single microbe in isolation does not do these things; thus these complex behaviors are a property of the collective, and not the individual microbes. Even microbes that would seem to be from the same nominal species can have genomes which differ in content by as much as 60% of their genes! So much for the intuitive notion of species! That’s another too-anthropomorphic scientific idea that does not apply to most of life.

[snip]

Individuality - Nigel Goldenfeld

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@ lyudmilascience, I hear where you are going with this but could it not potentially be more problematic to want to distance ourselves from animals...as if we have some higher purpose..?

I don't think he was heading in that direction, I think he was heading more in the direction of, we aren't animals, because we are the #1 species.

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is it possible that we should not classify humans as animals; because they have a natural better understanding of the world in the bigger picture? I dont know how hominids thought but i think even they question their existence and in almost any circumstance create tools and lead to doing science. I think science is the main way we advance. we do experiments and observe the world. so is it possible to put humans in a different category because of the fact that they are mentally too different? maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call humans animals. it makes it seem like we have not evolved, but i am always amazed of how evolved we actually are and how much better we have become from creating fire, how much we can create now.

 

You may be looking at evolution like a scale, from "least evolved" to "most evolved", but it really doesn't work that way. Evolution as a process is working equally on all animals and plants as an adaptive mechanism, so it produces results dependent on species and environment.

 

I think what you're looking for is a matter of the intelligence the mechanism has selected for humans. Other animals, no matter how clever, seem like "dumb" animals compared to us, due to the things we've achieved by using our minds. It's natural to want to put ourselves on a bit of a pedestal, but in the context of classification, we're animals. We're smart animals that have a very productive combination of highly-refined traits (cooperation, tool-use, communication) which work to increase our intelligence (when we allow it).

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Is it possible we should not classify bats as animals; because they have a natural ability to perceive the world in a wholly different way through echo location? I don't know how the ancestors of bats thought, but even if they were able to hear they would have been unable to locate a moth's position and trajectory with precision. I think this amazing ability is the main way bats advance. They combine their astounding flying and gymnastic ability with this unique way of perceiving the world. So is it possible to put bats in a different category because they are mentally too different? Maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call bats animals. it makes it seem like they have not evolved, but I always amazed at how evolved they actually are and how much better they have become from the first tentative attempts at echo location to where they are now.

 

:D :D I like this post a lot

 

 

Question for the OP,

How about people with down syndrome? They have developmental and intellectual delay, should we consider them as just regular animals? Which category should we put them in?

Edited by ModernArtist25
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How many ways can we be elite? Raise our esteem beyond plants and animals, and we are supreme, better than trolls, geeks, dimwits, scientists and people of other colors, creeds and nationalities. Let's cut the crass.

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Is it possible we should not classify bats as animals; because they have a natural ability to perceive the world in a wholly different way through echo location? I don't know how the ancestors of bats thought, but even if they were able to hear they would have been unable to locate a moth's position and trajectory with precision. I think this amazing ability is the main way bats advance. They combine their astounding flying and gymnastic ability with this unique way of perceiving the world. So is it possible to put bats in a different category because they are mentally too different? Maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call bats animals. it makes it seem like they have not evolved, but I always amazed at how evolved they actually are and how much better they have become from the first tentative attempts at echo location to where they are now.

Heh, beat me to it.

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How many ways can we be elite? Raise our esteem beyond plants and animals, and we are supreme, better than trolls, geeks, dimwits, scientists and people of other colors, creeds and nationalities. Let's cut the crass.

Yeah, let's cut the grass.

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is it possible that we should not classify humans as animals; because they have a natural better understanding of the world in the bigger picture? I dont know how hominids thought but i think even they question their existence and in almost any circumstance create tools and lead to doing science. I think science is the main way we advance. we do experiments and observe the world. so is it possible to put humans in a different category because of the fact that they are mentally too different? maybe this just comes from the fact that I hate when people call humans animals. it makes it seem like we have not evolved, but i am always amazed of how evolved we actually are and how much better we have become from creating fire, how much we can create now.

If we are not animals then what are we? We share countless biological systems with other animals...even with plants. I think it's odd to distinguish us from animals. Edited by Itoero
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If we are not animals then what are we? We share countless biological systems with other animals...even with plants. I think it's odd to distinguish us from animals.

sorry for the misunderstanding, I don't mean that we are not animals, I think we are more then animals, and should be put in a different category to distinguish us from animals.

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sorry for the misunderstanding, I don't mean that we are not animals, I think we are more then animals, and should be put in a different category to distinguish us from animals.

But you base this argument on characteristics that distinguish us from other animals. However, as I demonstrated in post #6, this is also true of bats. And ostriches, and tree shrews, and blue whales, and foxes, and kangaroos, and.........

 

You are emphasising the qualities that seem important to you, because these are your qualities. The human with the best eyesight in the world does not compare favourably with that of an eagle. A cheetah can make Usain Bolt look like he is a geriatric walker. Even among our primate cousins a third rate gibbon can our perform the gymnastic feats of a human, while a chimpanzee has far greater muscle strength. The list in which we fall short of other animals is huge. It doesn't justify an elevated category.

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sorry for the misunderstanding, I don't mean that we are not animals, I think we are more then animals, and should be put in a different category to distinguish us from animals.

 

How do you mean "more than animals"? Even if you're only talking about factors relating to intelligence, some other animals outstrip humans. Chimps may have a better memory for patterns in strategy games than we do.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/chimps-outplay-humans-in-brain-games1/

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sorry for the misunderstanding, I don't mean that we are not animals, I think we are more then animals, and should be put in a different category to distinguish us from animals.

Bats and chimps aren't as capable as people, but we haven't learned much about the toothed whales. Dolphins are very smart, but I expect their bigger cousins to be even smarter. The long finned pilot whale has about 1.5 times as many neurons is its cerebral cortex as a human. I cannot imagine how they employ that huge brain.

Edited by EdEarl
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Bats and chimps aren't as capable as people,

I apologise in advance. Normally I find your posts to be thoughtful and accurate, but in this instance you are talking unqualified, anthropomorphic crap. If you wish to say that bats and chimps are not as capable as people in those things that people are good at, well that's accurate, but wholly uninteresting and unremarkable. But, as I have pointed out for both in this thread, they exceed our capabilities in many areas.

 

We may well be the first species in the history of the planet that has the capacity to largely obliterate the biosphere, but that's not a capability I want to boast about.

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I apologise in advance. Normally I find your posts to be thoughtful and accurate, but in this instance you are talking unqualified, anthropomorphic crap. If you wish to say that bats and chimps are not as capable as people in those things that people are good at, well that's accurate, but wholly uninteresting and unremarkable. But, as I have pointed out for both in this thread, they exceed our capabilities in many areas.

 

We may well be the first species in the history of the planet that has the capacity to largely obliterate the biosphere, but that's not a capability I want to boast about.

TY. Your correction was correct, and my post would have been better without that statement, either in error or corrected.

Edited by EdEarl
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Semantics again...it is crucial to define "animal" before trying to answer the OP question. People in general have a vastly different idea of the meaning of the word "animal" If we look at animals from the evolutionary point of view the answer is obvious and personaly I think there is no other, rational point of view possible.

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