Most of the history of rise and fall of human advancement comes from the combination of a man having a plan he is willing to fight for and that fight being delayed by other men taking the time to evaluate whether it is a plan that needs to be fought against.
Underlying the proposal to ban toxic aggression is the untested proposition that major improvements for our descendant’s future can result from such a ban.
Evolutionary psychology permits us a justification to at least propose a condition where such behaviors would be rewarded and thus passed down through future generations. The problem is that the historic record doesn’t provide clear evidence of this transitional period between hunter-gatherer tribes and settlement tribes. Instead we see evidence of the nomadic tribes tracking and following the food sources through the seasons, and we see evidence of the first settlements. Missing is a condition in between, a period where humans would acquire the behavioral traits to live in a more complex arrangement of even the simplest settlements.
Back to the evolutionary psychology, we assume we know what living conditions were like for our hunter-gatherer ancestors by extrapolating backward the central premise of evolution through natural selection of accidental variations. Following a similar line of reasoning, I am inclined to assume that first breeder was someone who adopted a few orphaned hunter gatherers and bred them to be compliant to a civilized life and prefer living within it than living in the ancestral alternative.
The popular notion of a good life is to live the life of a historic king. The house becomes a castle. Every room must be filled with treasure. Every meal must be a feast. This is not a result of determination from evolution. This is a result of living a fantasy.
We do not have to call self-inflicted death suicide or represent it as a form of homicide. Using a different word, we can detach this form of death from the homicides that include justified or heroic stories. For example, if we described the event as a self execution we may suggest the stories associated with tyrannical executions or the ones we justify only after exhausting all appeals through various hearings. Execution stories may discourage a self-execution either because it is tyrannical or it because it failed to appeal the case to other judges.
My last post discussed my disapproval of describing behavior as analogous to a computer program. In particular, that post focused on the idea that behavior is inherited, and thus somehow must be encoded in DNA, and thus DNA includes instructions for behavior in addition to blueprints for building proteins. I accept that there…
I have been delighted to watch the rapid progress of understanding of DNA over my lifetime. I am amazed by the number of different directions for progress: improved technologies for rapid reading DNA sequences, improved understanding how DNA is copied, transferred toward proteins, replicated across generations, etc. Each of these areas have seen…