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Devolution of Humans

Use this forum to discuss the philosophy of science. Philosophy of science deals with the assumptions, foundations, and implications of science.
Jklint
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Jklint » August 12th, 2019, 10:08 pm

Felix wrote:
August 12th, 2019, 9:52 pm
Spiraling downward is a much more sudden event than applying the torque of intelligence to escape our limitations... aside from never landing where we started from as though it were a new beginning.
Dude, you are not quoting song lyrics, are you?! :o :)
No being much into song lyrics let me know who I may have copied it from.

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Greta
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Greta » August 13th, 2019, 12:19 am

Pantagruel wrote:
August 12th, 2019, 6:41 pm
Greta wrote:
August 12th, 2019, 5:44 pm

Spot on. I could not agree more.

Re: the thread. I don't think humans are devolving, they are overcrowding and the upper and lower classes are stratifying. There's many more brilliant people as well as many more ignorant ones. The latter make more noise, though.
Yes, probably speciation rather than devolution...
Yes, the first signs of an eventual split.

Popular culture today is less erudite than it was, say, 60 years ago. It's instructive to listen to political speeches on the 60s compared with slogan-rich, content-poor babble of today's politicos. If a politician spoke back then the way they speak now they'd be dismissed as morons.

On the other hand, there has been a rush of child prodigies and many, many geniuses building upon the work of prior geniuses. Advances in almost every area have never come more quickly. So when commentators speak of the future and refer to "we", usually you can assume that will be the wealthy, transhumanist tranch, ignoring what will happen with the great unwashed.

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chewybrian
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Favorite Philosopher: Epictetus
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by chewybrian » August 13th, 2019, 8:17 am

Greta wrote:
August 13th, 2019, 12:19 am
Popular culture today is less erudite than it was, say, 60 years ago. It's instructive to listen to political speeches on the 60s compared with slogan-rich, content-poor babble of today's politicos. If a politician spoke back then the way they speak now they'd be dismissed as morons.
I often link this to demonstrate this point. MLK is talking about the most serious injustices in a manner that is rarely seen today.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvG5YUjvUyk

And here is a pitiful yelling match, over issues much less important, sadly typical of what passes for discussion about the issues today...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmVEPqjiOY8
"If determinism holds, then past events have conspired to cause me to hold this view--it is out of my control. Either I am right about free will, or it is not my fault that I am wrong."

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Sculptor1
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Sculptor1 » August 13th, 2019, 9:35 am

Kane Jiang wrote:
August 8th, 2019, 7:44 am
Why do humans think we are at the top of the evolution pyramid?

In terms of lifespan, there are many animals that live as long as us such as crocodiles, turtles, and even the dinosaurs.
In terms of science, we haven't proven there is enough fuel for us to escape if the sun goes supernova. (I also do not think science can explain everything and if there is not enough fuel, I do not think that is a coincidence)
In terms of survival of the fittest, plants automatically win because animals depend on them for survival.

And then there are the major examples of devolution:
1. A starfish can regenerate its arms; our regenerative abilities pale in comparison
2. Many animals have magnetoreception, can you imagine humans losing a whole sense, a whole way to experience the world? That should be really big.
3. Many animals have electroreception.
4. Reptiles have better metabolism by being cold-blooded. By spending less energy producing warmth, they could use their metabolism in other areas. That's how dinosaurs got so big, and modern day reptiles don't usually get fat from not moving a lot. Compare this with mammals, like hippos, and elephants, they get VERY fat.
5. Reptiles and birds' feces smell less than mammals in my opinion.
6. Going from laying eggs to bearing young should be an example of devolution, right? Also, just because an animal lays eggs doesn't mean he or she can't raise their young. This is devolution in my eyes in terms of ability because of the pain and length of being pregnant compared to a chicken laying eggs everyday...


I also don't think power is an example of evolutionary finesse because of what I said above about survival of the fittest and I think all forms of power are unethical. Having ability is more ethical and makes you more independent than being powerful IMO.
There are many reasons why I think mammals are a step down in the evolutionary pyramid compared to reptiles. BUT, I do believe humans to be more evolved than most, if not all mammals and some reptiles.
You need to state clearly what you think "devolution" is. The list you give does not indicate negative evolution - just a list of things you think other creatures do better than humans; things humans never had, or in some cases have do you don't know humans have.

Let's have a look at them.
1. regenerate . Some amphibians can too. SO what. All animals have healing power. But there is no suggestion that the human line ever had this.
2. magnetoreception. Humans have a pretty good sense of direction; about as much as is practical. Since we do not have to fly thousands of miles to save ourselves from the winter, such a skill is not necessary. Evolution can be very parsimonious, which is an advantage.
3. electroreception. Funny - but most humans are perfectly capable of getting electric shocks. What's your point here?
4. Reptiles have better metabolism by being cold-blooded. No. Cold bloodedness means torpidity in the cold. Things that cannot move in the cold are highly vulnerable to predation, changes in the weather and climate change. This is probably how warm blooded mammals replaced the Dinosaurs.
5. Reptiles and birds' feces smell less than mammals in my opinion. WTF? **** smelling can have its benefits. Birds feces are highly concentrated. They live with less hydration; this helps flying as lighter in weight. Not relevant to humans
6. Going from laying eggs to bearing young should be an example of devolution, right? No. Whatever you mean by devolution? Still a moot point. It is easier to protect the young in a womb that leaving an egg somewhere. For higher mammals one egg, or just a few is all that is needed for each cycle. For lower animals more eggs are expended due to the risks of predation.

Mammals are a step down from reptiles
natural selection is about reproductive success. The measure is how many reptiles are there compared to mammals?

Kane Jiang
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Kane Jiang » August 13th, 2019, 3:59 pm

Sculptor1 wrote:6. Going from laying eggs to bearing young should be an example of devolution, right? No. Whatever you mean by devolution? Still a moot point. It is easier to protect the young in a womb that leaving an egg somewhere. For higher mammals one egg, or just a few is all that is needed for each cycle. For lower animals more eggs are expended due to the risks of predation.
But before the advent of modern medicine, the mother often died while giving birth while laying eggs doesn't involve that risk. After the advent of modern technology, leaving an egg somewhere making it vulnerable would be a moot point. Laying eggs has more potential for survivability in my opinion.
Sculptor1 wrote:4. Reptiles have better metabolism by being cold-blooded. No. Cold bloodedness means torpidity in the cold. Things that cannot move in the cold are highly vulnerable to predation, changes in the weather and climate change. This is probably how warm blooded mammals replaced the Dinosaurs.
But under certain circumstances, reptiles have better metabolism. When we talk about potential, reptiles have the potential to have considerably better metabolism because their skeletal structure is lighter and their bodies are more efficient.
Sculptor1 wrote:3. electroreception. Funny - but most humans are perfectly capable of getting electric shocks. What's your point here?
Electroreception is actually a sense (like magnetoreception) that humans lack (look it up). It would be sensing electric shocks from a distance, not sensing them after getting the electric shocks. Some of humans' ancestors did have electroreception and I posted a post detailing how I don't think electroreception has ever been regained in mammals that didn't have it. I guess this would be the only example of devolution per your definition?

Back to the OP post, I did say I think humans are more evolved than most, if not all mammals (and I think science contributed a lot), but there are some characteristics that I think humans or our ancestors devolved from (most notably electroreception) and some of my points weren't examples of devolution, I guess.

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Greta
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Greta » August 13th, 2019, 7:18 pm

chewybrian wrote:
August 13th, 2019, 8:17 am
And here is a pitiful yelling match, over issues much less important, sadly typical of what passes for discussion about the issues today...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmVEPqjiOY8
I'm impressed. In Australian politics that would pass as the meeting of great minds.

Our current PM just repeats a slogan "If you have a go you will get a go". He once brought a lump of coal into Parliament to demonstrate that coal was nothing to be afraid of.

Yes, I am talking about our nation's leader - the best of us, apparently. And he's an improvement on a previous one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wT9XS_TvzQ

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Sculptor1
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Re: Devolution of Humans

Post by Sculptor1 » August 14th, 2019, 4:40 am

Kane Jiang wrote:
August 13th, 2019, 3:59 pm
Sculptor1 wrote:6. Going from laying eggs to bearing young should be an example of devolution, right? No. Whatever you mean by devolution? Still a moot point. It is easier to protect the young in a womb that leaving an egg somewhere. For higher mammals one egg, or just a few is all that is needed for each cycle. For lower animals more eggs are expended due to the risks of predation.
But before the advent of modern medicine, the mother often died while giving birth while laying eggs doesn't involve that risk. After the advent of modern technology, leaving an egg somewhere making it vulnerable would be a moot point. Laying eggs has more potential for survivability in my opinion.
Sculptor1 wrote:4. Reptiles have better metabolism by being cold-blooded. No. Cold bloodedness means torpidity in the cold. Things that cannot move in the cold are highly vulnerable to predation, changes in the weather and climate change. This is probably how warm blooded mammals replaced the Dinosaurs.
But under certain circumstances, reptiles have better metabolism. When we talk about potential, reptiles have the potential to have considerably better metabolism because their skeletal structure is lighter and their bodies are more efficient.
Sculptor1 wrote:3. electroreception. Funny - but most humans are perfectly capable of getting electric shocks. What's your point here?
Electroreception is actually a sense (like magnetoreception) that humans lack (look it up). It would be sensing electric shocks from a distance, not sensing them after getting the electric shocks. Some of humans' ancestors did have electroreception and I posted a post detailing how I don't think electroreception has ever been regained in mammals that didn't have it. I guess this would be the only example of devolution per your definition?
No. It only works in WATER

Back to the OP post, I did say I think humans are more evolved than most, if not all mammals (and I think science contributed a lot), but there are some characteristics that I think humans or our ancestors devolved from (most notably electroreception) and some of my points weren't examples of devolution, I guess.

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