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6.07.2011

Homo Sapiens: Individual vs. Population

I think it is humanity itself that best illustrates the reality of Darwinism. I will expound on this more in future posts, but right now I have to go to work. At the level of the individual human, we can show examples of great intellectual development, creativity, foresight, and compassion. However, at the population level, humans show the same degree of variation in their traits, including reason and compassion and altruism and other "human" traits, as most other vertebrate organisms. Humans like to believe they are special. Some like to believe that we collectively have the "will" to adapt and survive in changing environmental conditions, such as global climate change. But that is exactly the problem. Individually, some humans have the degree of intellect and wisdom and reason to not only see us out of our self-destructive quandary, but to "prove it" with science. But at the population level, as a very consequence of random variation within our species, we are doomed by the fact that a significant portion of the population has characteristics at odds with our long term survival and willfully avoids scientific understanding in favor of mythology. When the chips are down, it is not our collective intellect or our reason that will save us (for it does not exist at that level). At the end of the world, it will be the sheer will of individual organisms to survive that matters.

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