Are human beings still evolving in response to any recognizable factors?


He claims this and so it must be true.

(Lynn Munter) #122

Sorry I didn’t understand that you were joking! :rofl:

In that case, Daniel Lieberman has written a number of professional articles on the subject, and I’ll let you decide which ones you’re interested in, if any.

(Robin) #123

I am sure that whatever change there was — took such a period of time that it would never have been observable by one or twenty generations anyway. And what we are now is what God created of us – as compared to what He created of other species. Our imperfections are the result, largely, of our rebellion. Our perfection — some time in the future (who knows when?) will also be God’s doing. If a little evolution happens along the way, so be it. But that will not be the solution. Just a step.

(Mark D.) #124

Well if we were truly a rational species I would expect to see more of us choose to delay parenthood, have fewer children or forego parenthood. But I have my doubts about that.

As for culturally-driven evolution I wonder if we ever get beyond tribalism. I suppose that is a kind of culture too but it seems like the kind that is more hard-wired and harder to escape.

I sometimes feel less hopeful about the likelihood of this happening. I’d hate to think the only correction available to us was that which befalls any other animal that overflows its petri dish.

Given my less orthodox religious perspective, it seems like we don’t rebel enough - against our instinctive patterns, like tribalism. Exercising rationality would be an improvement.

In a sense I agree with this. We have better lights available to us but we too often fail to act on them.

(Robin) #125

I like the phrase “less orthodox religious perspecitve” !! Good one… and you are right in saying that we do not rebel against our instinctive patterns – though whether or not tribalism is one of them, or a negative one, not so sure.

But we do not rebel because in some sense we like the way we are. I once heard from a man who said he did not feel that he was close to God and that God probably was not listening to him. At first I said that God is always ready to listen and does care. But after two or three years of listening to this guy — not daily but periodically – he had confessed to embezzling money , cheating on his wife, this thing and that, and oh yes, he was a deacon in his church and had just cheated a friend out of money…at that point I said there might be a reason why God seems far from you and is not speaking…

But this guy liked what he had been doing. By same token they did experiments, decades back, to figure out why seemingly normal caring people could have done what they did in the Holocaust — and discovered that if you provide a jusitifcation, you can get people to agree to any bad behavior.

As long as we have rebelled against – not tribalism but against what God says is right and wrong — then we will have what we have. But we “like” it in some personal sense — after all, the embezzler cited above made money without having to work for it – and that is where the real problem lies.

When I said that our perfection at some future stage will be God’s doing – I did not mean we ultimately on our own will choose it. Evolution on a biological sense may continue, but too slowly to be observed. This other stuff --that is, regarding morality and rationality – will take outside intervention.

(Mark D.) #126

Oh I know that but wouldn’t it be nice if many did? Maybe people doing God’s will of their own free will is the very best turn of events we could hope for.

(Robin) #127

Yes…it would be nice. But “many” would never be enough. “Many” are not doing “terrorism by drone,” which seems to be the newest thing. “Many” however, may be guilty of gossip — which is also a sign of rebellion against God (there are biblical verses to that effect). We just do not see a problem with it – and we like it as long as we are not the object of the gossip, of course.

. But yes…all doing God’s will of their own free will --even the bit about not gossiping and other things —would be great…

(Lynn Munter) #128

It occurs to me that if we do manage to maintain technological civilization for some time, I expect we’ll start editing our children’s genes and maybe even our own. So, cynically speaking, that should provide many new and exciting opportunities for particularly foolish humans to remove themselves from the gene pool of the future.

Actually this does tend to happen in civilized societies as healthcare gets to a point where child survival isn’t so much of a crapshoot anymore. But it takes a generation or two to modify cultural thinking, and meanwhile there can be a lot of kids born. In the US we would be leveling off except that immigrant birth rates are still high. If we could eliminate poverty, we should be able to maintain a level population, actually.

(Jay Johnson) #129

True, but the factor that plays the biggest part in deciding to delay parenthood is female education. To my mind, the education of women holds the key to lowering birth rates in developing countries.


It may already be widely known that it is kinky hair that protects best from sun on savannahs of Africa or elsewhere.

I love looking at why body part exist in relation to various animals and other biologicals. So not intending to distract from the running specific aspect, I wanted to mention what I read some years back regarding human male having one of the larger sex organs for body size.

Been years since I read that. It may have been the book “Sex On the Brain” by woman named Blum. Again I forget exactly or if more info exists in those regards.

A cats tail --male and female-- is used for balance when falling or running.

To run or not to run, is that the question. :thinking: